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Kimpton Hotels' Secret Santa Turned Out to Be InterContinental Hotel Group

December 15, 2014 at 8:37 PM | by | Comments (4)

This is major. MAJOR. InterContinental Hotel Group has just announced that they will be acquiring one of our most beloved boutique hotel brands, Kimpton Hotels. Right? We know. We can't even. Someone please start spiking the eggnog. Now.

An agreement was made for IHG to purchase Kimpton for $430 million CASH. IHG said that Kimpton and its portfolio of hotels, restaurants and bars will nicely compliment IHG's own growing boutique business which includes Hotel Indigo and the new fitness-oriented EVEN Hotels. And of course, IHG thinks Kimpton is going to make a lot of money.

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Rosewood Has Your Christmas Tree Fantasy Covered At These Three Hotels

December 15, 2014 at 6:23 PM | by | Comments (0)

All week long, we'll be rocking around the Hotel Christmas Tree! Tag us @HotelChatter in your social media posts so we can spread the joy.

Three different Rosewood Hotels & Resorts have come up with three equally different and original Christmas trees.

At the Rosewood Sand Hill in Silicon Valley, you'll find a 6 ft tall by 3 ft wide edible Christmas tree made of 600 pounds of chocolate and meticulously crafted by Pastry Chef Mellisa Root and her team. The crew only used parchment and spatulas as tools. The tree is also decked with edible ornaments made of chocolate, colored with cocoa butter, and decorated with edible glitter. #edibleglitterFTW. You can get a chance to bite into the tree at the hotel's Madera restaurant which is serving a "Christmas Ornament" desert. The ornament is meant to be cracked open by diners with their spoon to get at the chocolate pudding, coeur de guanhja ice cream, whipped peppermint and shiso gin puree. Perfect for crafting foodies.

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Hotel Holiday Cocktail Week 2014: The New York Palace

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: 455 Madison Avenue [map], New York, New York, United States, 10022
December 15, 2014 at 4:30 PM | by | Comments (0)

‘Tis the season to celebrate and there’s no better way than with a holiday-inspired beverage. And, as we all know, a holiday cocktail a day keeps the Grinch away. For Hotel Holiday Cocktail Week, we’ve scanned the globe for some delectably delicious cocktails that will leave you humming a merry tune that doesn’t include, “You’re a Mean One, Mr Grinch.”

The New York Palace has gotten into the holiday spirit with its sparkly 12 Christmas trees adorned with 68,000 lights and 32,000 ornaments. The lobby also houses a 6’ x 8’ gingerbread house that is a replica of the hotel’s iconic Villard Mansion, which surrounds the hotel’s courtyard.

If you want to get into the holiday spirit too try concocting the Cranberry Garland cocktail or the Holiday Manhattan while you're trimming your own tree.

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5 Hotel Gift Cards That Your Friends and Family Will Actually Be Thrilled To Get

December 15, 2014 at 3:21 PM | by | Comments (0)

Gift cards. They are so easy to give, yet so impersonal. They also subtly tell your gift recipient, "I didn't have the time to find a good gift for you and get it wrapped and either bring it to the party tonight or ship it in time so you can open it on Christmas day."

So, if you're scrambling thinking of a hotel gift card for a traveler in your life, or wannabe traveler, you'll be relieved to know there are some ways to put a little thought into the selection. And of course, the age-old maxim of gift cards still applies--"Put a lot on the card to make up for the fact that you're copping out on getting a real gift."

Keep reading for the 5 hotel gift cards that will thrill your family and friends this holiday season.

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Opening This Month: New Hotels for December 2014

December 15, 2014 at 2:21 PM | by | Comments (0)

Finding a hotel room is easy. Simply go on the Internet or use your smartphone and voila! You're booked. But if you are only interested in new hotels, then that's a different story. Luckily, you have us. And we're obsessed with new hotels. Here's a list of hotels that have opened or are opening this month (and a few that aren't going to make it.) Got a new hotel to add? Send it to us!

OPENINGS

AMAN TOKYO: The first ever city property for the Aman resort brand will open on December 22, with more urban locations to follow in cities like for “city retreats” in New York, London, Paris, and Singapore. There are just 84 rooms and suites between floors 33 and 38 and each room has a combined living and sleeping area, and a soaking tub (a furo) overlooking the city. Deluxe Rooms start at 75,000JPY, but you need to add a whopping 20%+ in taxes, which takes you to about $800 a night.

GANSEVOORT DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: The former Ocean Club Luxury Residences is turning into a Gansevoort this month. The property has 48 luxury suites, in one and two-bedroom loft layouts, along with three-bedroom apartments and a handful of four-bedroom penthouses, each with their own private rooftop jacuzzi. Rates range from $595 to $5,000 a night and include breakfast for two along with roundtrip transfers from and to Puerto Plata Airport (POP). You can also choose to have breakfast, lunch and dinner added into the rates for an extra $200 or so a night.

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Your Newest Hot Hotel Room Will Be a London Hospital Bed

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: 24 Endell St, London, United Kingdom, WC2H 9HQ
December 15, 2014 at 9:25 AM | by | Comment (1)

Hospital (n)
An institution providing medical and surgical treatment and nursing care for sick or injured people

That’s not what the Hospital Club in London is, though. They will care for you, of course – care for you beautifully, in fact. You don’t have to be sick to go there, but you do have to be a member.

Or, at least, you did have to be a member. Because from January, the hospital is getting a hotel wing, and it’s open to us all. Just as you were starting to think Soho House was the only private members’ club that mattered!

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Historic Roots and Cool Rooms at the New Norman Tel Aviv

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: 23-25 Nachmani Street, Tel Aviv 6579441, Israel
December 15, 2014 at 9:00 AM | by | Comments (0)

A new boutique hotel has opened in Tel Aviv and, from the looks of it, it's a keeper. The Norman Tel Aviv, in the heart of "White City," blends its local history with modern art and design, while taking a much hipper approach to elegance. Just the way we like it.

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Guess the Hotel With the Angel in the Bathroom

December 15, 2014 at 8:25 AM | by | Comments (0)

It says it all in the title: time to try and Guess The Hotel where this angelic face is gazing down on you from the bathroom wall.

We’ll give you a few hints, with the additional comment that not only does the angel appear in the bathroom, so it does right above the bed:

- New as it is, having only been open for a few months, the hotel finds itself in a very historic setting
- Classic as the surroundings may be, it belongs to an international, contemporary brand
- We’ve had some love for the interior design inside similar rooms in other countries
- Murals vary by room category, but all have the same local references, including the cute automotive kind in one of the rooms

Meagre as the hints are, is it enough for you to guess it right? Let us know in the comments!

[Photo: JasonD for HotelChatter]

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Check-Out Folio: Virgin Wants to 'Elevate' Your Stay, Another Hotel Will Gouge You for WiFi

December 12, 2014 at 7:05 PM | by | Comments (0)

It's our weekly wrap-up, Check-Out Folio where we round up the best (Credits in folio-speak) and worst (Charges) hotel news of the week. Got a scoop? Or just want to share a recent hotel story? Tell us all about it!

CREDITS
· HOTELCHATTER'S MUST-STAY HOTELS FOR DENVER

· SNEAK PEEK AT LOEWS CHICAGO, OPENING IN MARCH

· VIRGIN AMERICA ELEVATE MEMBERS WILL GET THESE PERKS AT VIRGIN HOTELS

ALSO: Hot New Hotel Amenity: Welsh lessons?

CHARGES

· $369 FOR 24 HOURS OF INTERNET ACCESS

· THESE HOTELS HAD A BAD WEEKEND

· HYATT REGENCY IN LONDON TO REMAIN CLOSED AFTER GAS BLAST

ALSO: Florence is getting a millennial hotel.

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Flamingos, Palapas, Paradise: 15 Photos of Renaissance Aruba's Private Island

Where: Oranjestad, Aruba
December 12, 2014 at 5:21 PM | by | Comments (0)

For travelers flying into Aruba's Queen Beatrix International Airport, the first glance of sand beach comes about 10 seconds before landing on the runway. The stripe of lush green mangroves in the middle of Caribbean-blue waters is the Renaissance Private Island, just off the coast, home to two beaches of pristine sand surrounded by palapas, and hammocks strung between the palms.

Entry to this island is completely free, from the water taxi to the use of the beaches, with one big exception: you absolutely must be a guest of the Renaissance Aruba Resort, either the family-friendly Ocean Suites or the adult-exclusive Marina Hotel.

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The Ritz-Carlton Charlotte is REALLY in a Holiday Mood This Year

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: 201 East Trade Street [map], Charlotte, NC, United States, 28202
December 12, 2014 at 2:30 PM | by | Comments (0)

The Merrion Dublin's two Christmas trees pales in comparison to the holiday spectacular that the Ritz-Carlton Charlotte has put on, which includes three Christmas trees, a gingerbread cottage, and an edible sleigh pulled by edible reindeer. Best take out your handkerchief to wipe up the drool.

Let's start with the 17-foot-tall tree made of 789 recycled green bottles and bathed in equally green lights. Obviously, this one is strictly for admiring, not for eating. (It's also a nod to the hotel's LEED Certification.)

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Viceroy Sugar Beach Lets You Buzz a Butler From Anywhere

December 12, 2014 at 1:06 PM | by | Comments (0)

Remember that bright red phone that went straight to Batman’s cave, summoning him whenever crime was afoot and a superhero was required? Well, Viceroy Sugar Beach Resort in St. Lucia has one of those. Except it’s not red, necessarily. And it doesn't summon Batman, but rather, your butler.

But this one works from the beach. And if you find yourself in a dire champagne emergency — well, let’s just say that not all heroes wear capes.

We recently spent some time at Sugar Beach, a resort replete with amenities throughout its luxury villas--from infinity plunge pools overlooking the sea below, to full wet bars stocked with local beers and rum. (Also awesome: private terrace views of a spectacular Caribbean sunset flanked on each side by the lush Piton mountains.)

One of our favorites, though, is the handy provision of Firefly mobile phones. The brand is typically treated as a “starter cell” for kids, since the phones are restricted to dialing among a handful of pre-programmed numbers. Sugar Beach, however, cleverly repurposes them as service bells, basically.

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