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DoubleTree Hilton Boston Wraps Its $8.6 Million Facelift

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  Site Where: 821 Washington St. [map], Boston, MA, United States, 02111
April 16, 2014 at 10:38 AM | by | Comments (0)

We love hotel renovations nearly just as much as we love new hotels. But what we really love about hotel renovations is seeing the transformation that happens when an old, tired and lackluster room gets a modern makeover and transforms into new, spiffed-up, stylish guest room. Or put more simply, we love comparing the Before and After.

For a hotel located across the street from a hospital, you’d think that that the DoubleTree Hilton Boston would have had a facelift sooner. But this month the property announced the completion of an $8.6 million renovation that gave the 267 guest rooms a much needed new look. That's the "Before" picture above. Now brace yourself for the "After" shot below.

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Waldorf Astoria Amsterdam Will Start Welcoming Guests on May 1

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  Site Where: Herengracht 542-556, Amsterdam, Netherlands
April 16, 2014 at 9:38 AM | by | Comment (1)

Looks like the order in which Waldorf Astoria’s latest hotels are coming across the opening finish line is Beijing – Jerusalem – Amsterdam in the end. A few months ago, when we doubted Amsterdam would be completed by March, the official word was still exactly the other way around, but Beijing is open (pretty parasols and all), Jerusalem caught us by surprise by being ready a few months’ early (though there is very limited view of what it’s like inside yet), and Waldorf Astoria Amsterdam is now scheduled for May 1.

Spread across six historic town houses that date back to the 1600s on one of the city’s central canals, the hotel will have 93 rooms and suites. The restaurant still awaits its name, but there will be the usual Peacock Alley, in this case on the Bel Etage, the principal floor of the town house accessed by a grand staircase from the entrance. Other things to look forward to are the private garden, the indoor swimming pool, and the Vault Bar, taking advantage of the building previously housing a private bank.

Reservations start from May 7 at the moment; we found a King Deluxe Room on that day for a not-inconsiderable €445 ($615). You can shave just over $90 off of that if you are willing to book an advance purchase rate. The 1,324 sq ft Brentano Suite will set you back €3,735 ($5,163) a night.

[Rendering: Waldorf Astoria Hotels]

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3 Things to Look For in a Hotel's Social Media Profile

April 15, 2014 at 5:34 PM | by | Comments (2)

These days, it's not uncommon for guests to check a hotel's social media profile in addition to visiting the hotel's website before actually booking a room. And since we frequent both hotel websites and hotel social media pages daily (sometimes hourly), here are 3 things we like to see a hotel talking about to all their "friends" and "followers":

3. Recent Postings and Interactions: There's nothing worse than clicking over to a hotel's Facebook or Twitter pages, which are advertised on the hotel's website, only to find that the last time someone updated the page was in 2012. Also a bummer? When a hotel does scheduled updates of the same old, regurgitated line: "Need a hotel in [Insert city]? Give us a call or visit our website to book!"

2. Reviews and Recent Posts: Most hotels have a "Reviews" section on their Facebook page. This is a good place to check out the recent guest reviews. Typically, these tend to be pretty positive but we also like to comb them for interesting anecdotes, observations and perhaps, most importantly, reactions or comments from the hotels themselves. Same goes for the "Recent Posts" sections which have posts from the hotel's followers.

Keep reading for the #1 thing to look for in a hotel's social media profile!

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Natural Hot Springs Are a Pretty Damn Good Hotel Amenity

April 15, 2014 at 3:30 PM | by | Comments (0)

Colorado takes its hot springs culture pretty seriously. They come in all shapes and sizes, and you can find them all over the Rocky Mountains. Some are family friendly, and some are clothing optional, as our bro Jaunted experienced.

At the tail end of the ski season, we took a swing down to Pagosa Springs in South Colorado. The area is known for getting the most snow in the state, and we made our home at the Springs Resort in the center of town. The 79-room hotel gives guests 24-hour access to 23 pools that have been built along the San Juan River which runs through the town.

There is always a risk that such development can lead to feelings of phoniness, but the Springs Resort did a good job of creating a spa-like atmosphere while retaining the scenic, natural beauty of the setting. You can see the river from almost every pool, and separate adult and family sections accommodate all. A soak in the natural sulfur water does a body good, and if you want to take it to the next level, you can get a spa treatment that incorporates the rich mineral water.

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MGM Resorts and Hakkasan Are Forming a Hotel Management Group

April 15, 2014 at 2:15 PM | by | Comment (1)

Nightclubs with hotels attached are no longer a punchline or the start of a bad review on TripAdivsor. They are the real thing.

Just a few months after Hyde Hotels was announced, comes news that MGM Resorts have partnered up with nightlife company, Hakkasan (they of restaurant and nightclub fame) to create MGM Hakkasan Hospitality.

The new venture will, according to an official statement, "focus on the design, development and management of luxury non-gaming hotels, resorts and residential offerings under the Bellagio, Hakkasan, MGM Grand and SKYLOFTS brands in key international gateway cities and prime resort destinations across the globe. "

Okaaaay.

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5 Hotel Deals to Cheer You Up After Filing Your Taxes Today

April 15, 2014 at 1:05 PM | by | Comment (1)

The dreaded APRIL 15 is here. Yes, it's time to break out your checkbooks and pay the tax man.

But according to these hotels, it's also time to break out your credit card and book a discounted hotel stay in honor of Tax Day. See? We're so good at spending money accentuating the positive! Here are 5 hotels with discounted rates to book in the next few days along with two hotels offering stress-relief from tax filings.

And if you're looking for suggestions on where to spend your tax refund (fingers crossed!), look no further than these Hotels With Killer Views.

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HotelTonight Gives Users a Heads Up on Room Rates With 'Look Ahead' Feature

April 15, 2014 at 12:05 PM | by | Comment (1)

The brilliant idea behind HotelTonight, which separates it from all other booking sites out there, is that you can book a last-minute hotel room for a steeply discounted rate, all from your phone (or tablet.) The only problem is, you have to wait until 9am the day of to see what the room rates are like.

This typically isn’t a problem when you’re unexpectedly stranded somewhere and desperately need a hotel room, or if you decided spur-of-the-moment to spend the night in the big city. But true deal hunters start looking at HotelTonight a few days before their trip to get a feel for the room rates. Why, just the other day we were on HotelTonight to see the rates in Vegas in case we felt like heading out there this week. (Confession: we've also been known to do this, just for fun, while we're sitting in a doctor's office, stuck in traffic, waiting for take-off, etc.)

But now, HotelTonight is gonna do that rate guessing work for you—with their new Look Ahead feature. Here's how it works:

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Well, That Didn't Take Long: Denver to Get Its First 'Bud and Breakfast' Soon

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  Site Where: 1430 Race Street [map], Denver, CO , United States, 80206
April 15, 2014 at 10:21 AM | by | Comments (0)

Back in January, we asked the question, "When will the first Denver hotel openly allow pot smoking?" now that the state has legalized marijuana and today, we find out that a hotel is already in the works.

Except it's not a traditional hotel. But rather, a bed and breakfast which will be turned into a...wait for it...bud and breakfast.

Eater reports that a company called...wait for it... The MaryJane Group, Inc. has bought the Adagio Bed and Breakfast with the hopes of turning it into a "pilot project in the marijuana-friendly lodging industry." And...wait for it...the B&B will be all-inclusive!

Guests will have "unlimited food, drink and, of course, the best marijuana and marijuana edibles Colorado has to offer." There will also be an on-site chef available to cook meals to order as well as unlimited luxury transportation within Denver city with...wait for it...24 hour security. Here's the full press release if you're interested.

If this pilot project is successful, The MaryJane Group hopes to expand to other B&Bs.

So we gotta ask--Would you stay at a Bud and Breakfast? Sound off in comments below!

[Photo: Adagio B&B]

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Get Married 'Under The Sea' by a 'Mermaid' at The Sheraton Fort Lauderdale

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  Site Where: 1140 Seabreeze Boulevard [map], Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States, 33316
April 15, 2014 at 9:41 AM | by | Comments (0)

Daryl Hannah would be so proud to tie the knot at Sheraton Forth Lauderdale Beach Hotel with their newest wedding package that's fit for those with fins. While we might be over underwater hotels, we can really get behind a picture-perfect, underwater-wedding day.

The Mermaid Wedding package offers love-dovey couples the opportunity to say their "I Do's" under water with an "actual" mermaid while up to 50 of their closest friends watch from the dry deck of The Wreck Bar, the hotel's nautical-themed bar. (See a photo of a vow-renewal here.) From portholes and picture windows, your guests have a view under the surface of the hotel pool for the bride and groom's 10-minute ceremony. Something tells us there wont be a dry eye in the house.

Once the happy couple dries off, a 90-minute reception in the bar for toasts and mingling with your guests. The package includes a choreography session prior to the ceremony so neither the bride or groom look like a dead fish and mermaid tails will be on offer for photo-ops.

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Spot Prince George, Mick Jagger, and More at Rosewood London’s Scarfes Bar

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  Site Where: 252 High Holborn, London, United Kingdom, WC1 7EN
April 15, 2014 at 9:14 AM | by | Comments (0)

Little George Alexander Louis of Cambridge may be making his Antipodean debut on the current royal tour (and looking as a cute as a button in the process, we might add), but closer to his home of Clarence House, the baby Prince can now also boast his first caricature at Rosewood London’s Scarfes Bar.

Drawn by cartoonist and illustrator Gerald Scarfe, Prince George is in good company for many reasons: his creator’s credentials range from illustrations for the New Yorker to Pink Floyd, and aside from his immediately family (including QEII and one of her corgis), he is surrounded by everyone from James Bond and Simon Cowell to the Rolling Stones and David Beckham across eight large canvases.

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Beer Canoe? Don't Mind if We Do at The Sanderling Resort

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  Site Where: 1461 Duck Rd [map], Duck, NC, United States
April 14, 2014 at 7:00 PM | by | Comments (0)

The Sanderling Resort in the Outer Banks of North Carolina has some rather clever culinary presentations that they do for wedding receptions and other events at their beachfront property (check out the I Love Bacon station here.) But with everyone else but us (or it seems like) kicking back on Spring Break this week, we're really loving this Beer Canoe.

Yup, a canoe filled with bottles of beer. So simple and yet so right. The hotel will also do a seafood buffet out of a canoe too. Hello there, lobsters!

More pics below!

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Brace Yourselves For Another Mind-Bending Hotel by Zaha Hadid, in The City of Dreams

April 14, 2014 at 6:33 PM | by | Comments (0)

Just when we were beginning to wrap our heads around architect Zaha Hadid’s design for ME Dubai, we learn that the firm is working on another hotel, due to open in early 2017.

This one, the City of Dreams Hotel Tower, will no doubt stand out in the crowd in Macau's newest entertainment and gaming destination.

The hotel will be the fifth developed by Melco Crown Entertainment Limited in China and it will be their flagship at this mega-playland. No kidding. Other Melco Crown-owned hotels at the City of Dreams include Hard Rock Hotel, Grand Hyatt Macau, and Crown Towers Macau. They also own the 5-star Altira Macau, located on the neighboring Taipa island.

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