ID Travel Guide
On Monday, we asked to hear from our readers about their experiences ”Adventuring Into Aloft”. Based on some of the responses we got, we thought that it might be equally productive to ask if any of you have tried out a Cambria Suites lately. Speaking of which, has anyone even heard of Cambria Suites?
While the Christmas trees at Rockefeller Center and the White House might be garnering all the media attention, “The World’s Tallest Living Christmas Tree” is actually in Coeur D’Alene, Idaho, at the Coeur D’Alene Resort, and boy do they want you to come and see it.
Not only does the Christmas tree on the shores of Lake Coeur D’Alene measure up at 161 feet (about twice the size of the tree they schlep in every year to Rockefeller Center), but each ornament on it is ten feet tall, and the surrounding light show is illuminated with 1.5 million bulbs.
Sound like a waste of energy? At least this year, the 30,000 sparkling lights on the tree itself will be LED. Add in an impeccably cued snow flurry, and you’ve got yourself the perfect white Christmas.
Andre Agassi / Hotel News / Celebrity Hotels / Fairmont Hotels / Idaho Hotels / Hotel Closings / → All Tags
"It was just a pipe dream honey."
Yet, it was not meant to be. The tennis superstar and his wife, Steffi Graf have cancelled the resort. As usual, money woes are to blame for the development's collapse.
The husband-and-wife tennis champions pulled the plug on the development because Credit Suisse Group sued to foreclose on a US$260 million loan to Tamarack's founders, said Joel Goldman, chief operating officer at Echo Partners, which also invested in the development.
Deposits taken for condo units in the development will be refunded. Perhaps Andre and Steffi would want to look at Las Ramblas?
Okay, we haven't celebrated the summer equinox yet but aren't you wondering what you'll do over July 4th weekend? Ever been to Idaho in the summer? You probably thought it was just for snowbirds, potato heads and indoor waterparks right? Wrong.
Besides powdery slopes, complex carbs and wet screaming kids, Idaho can be a fun summertime getaway. Casinos, canoeing and river rafting, ghost town visits, rodeos, paragliding and lots more, including a pretty good nightlife. Seriously, Idaho has a nightlife. You learn something new everyday.
Ah, Boise, land of hotel hype and glitz-filled nights. Wait, Boise? Seems so, now that Cambria Suites has rolled into town. It's the first property for the latest brand from Choice Hotels, which has been in the works since January 2005.
A mid-range business-centric hotel, we're not predicting that Veronica Mars will show up. But she'd probably have a decent time if she did: the Cambria has loads of amenities. The suites sport flat screen TVs, iPod hookups, DVD players, free WiFi and fridges. The place has a sort of Drury Inn thing going on.
There's no introductory pricing, per se, but rates start at $149 and can only go up from there.
· Choice, Summit Unveil Cambria Suites [HotelMotel]
You can practically hear the cheers echoing off the mountains of the Pacific Northwest--Idaho's got dumped with snow. The people are rejoicing!
Schweitzer Resort, on the western part of the state, got pounded with 40 inches of snow over the Thanksgiving Weekend. Bogus Basin, to the east, is reportedly "thrilled" by the 14 inches that whitened the slopes, and the prospect of the heavy snows this winter have set their hearts all aflutter.
Out here, it's not just the spuds that bring home the bacon. Skiing and snow are big bucks. Now that it's blizzard time, Idahoans are ready to mix business with pleasure.
So where to crash? In the Schweitzer Mountain Resort Village, the Selkirk Lodge wins big points for ski-in, ski-in convenience. Its après-ski sounds fairly delish, too - the hotel's Chimney Rock Grill won the 2003 and 2004 Wine Spectator Award. Tripadvisor reviews mention plush bathrooms, hot tubs with mountain views, and amply stocked minibars.
Bogus, hardly as glam a moniker as "Sun Valley" but bigger by far, has an astonishing variety of slopes, styles, snowboarder's paradise, and even an aerial facility so you can test your anti-gravity skis. A call to the boys at Bogus told us they're set to open the front of the mountain tomorrow, and the weather is cold, so the snows will keep.
There aren't any resorts nearby, but plenty in Boise, 16 miles down the road. If you don't have a rental car, buses run regularly ("45 minutes tops one way in bad weather," according to a very Bogus Ski Patrol dude). Maybe you haven't snagged yourself a mountain-top condo, but you can still schuss like the rest of them. High marks go to the Residence Inn Boise for giant hotel rooms featuring fireplaces and complementary logs.
It's also featured on Bogus Basin's list of participating hotels that offer "Stay & Play Packages," which means buy one, get one free lift ticket or Nordic trail pass. However -- when we called The Residence Inn Boise to inquire about what sounds like a very good deal, they didn't know anything about it.
[Photo: Snowboard Mag]
It's not even open yet and the Fairmont Tamarack in Donnelly, Idaho, is already attracting an A-list clientele, perhaps, because Andre Agassi and Steffi Graff are part owners? Nah, because the condo hotel is situated in the new, all season, all ski bunny, hot spot.
Jessica Biel and two girlfriends were seen at the five star ski resort that's slated to open at the end of 2008 just this past weekend. According to our sources, Biel and co. were seen taking advantage of the stunning scenery and becoming one with nature. "They kayaked, hiked, and took advantage of the property's world class, private chef," says our spy. What? They ate? Indeed. Hiking sure builds up an appetite.
Hopefully for the Fairmont, a 50-50 venture between Miami-based Bayview and Agassi, it also builds up an appetite for buyers. Biel is a prospective buyer, among many other A-listers.
Now that Andre Agassi has officially retired from the world of tennis, he can concentrate on his new role as hotelier.
Agassi and his tennis-superstar wife Steffi Graf announced their plans to build a luxury hotel in Idaho last summer. But now plans are moving full-steam ahead with the place, Fairmont Tamarack, taking reservations for the residences to be built within the hotel.
The couple's development company, Agassi Graf Development LLC, has partnered with Fairmont Hotels & Resorts which will manage the place. The resort will actually have two locations, a resort and spa located in Tamarack's village and a mid-mountain site. The place is expected to be completed in 2009 with sales of residences expected to start in early 2007.
But unlike a lot of other celeb-sponsored resorts, Agassi and Graf will have hands-on development in the place.
"Tamarack is the perfect location for anyone interested in taking a little time out of their lives to get away or spend quality time with their family," said Agassi. "Our vision is to create an exceptional lifestyle offering that complements the natural beauty and uniqueness of the resort. It's about bringing the highest standard of quality and luxury to the whole experience."
The place has everything you would expect from an upscale ski and mountain resort, but sadly no big plans for an Agassi Graf tennis center.
· Andre Agassi and Stefanie Graf to Develop Luxury Hotel and Residences: Fairmont Tamarack [PR Newswire]
· The Agassi-Graf Hotel Update [HotelChatter]
We are not a big fan of the indoor waterparks that are popping up in the MidWest in low-budget hotels. Aside from the ever-present chlorine smell and the screaming kids, the room views are even of the waterpark, so there's no escaping it.
This is the enclosed water slide of the Raptor Reef Indoor Water Park which is attached to the Holiday Inn Express in Hayden, Idaho.
Somehow, this makes us prefer a parking lot or a brick wall.
Feeling as if conquering the Tennis World was not enough, real-life husband and wife doubles-team Andre Agassi and Steffi Graf announced over the summer that they were developing a luxury mountain hotel development in Donnelly, Idaho at the new Tamarack ski resort.
We've recently found out that it's not all hands on by the two with Fairmont Hotels & Resorts signing on to manage the luxury hotel.
In addition to being financial investors in the project, Agassi and Graf will be active in the development, design and overall lifestyle....The couple chose Tamarack for their first lifestyle development because of what they consider its stunning natural surroundings, which they believe make it ideal not just for skiing but for the active outdoor lifestyle it offers.
The hotel will break ground sometime this summer and is anticipated to be done by 2008, along with the rest of the ski resort.
Will the Agassi-Grafs at least teach some tennis lessons there?
·Tennis Stars to open luxury resort in new ski resort [Ski Press]
·Andre Agassi, Steffi Graf, Building Idaho Hotel [HotelChatter]
Back in August we told you tennis's über couple was planning to open an Idaho resort and it looks like the resort is a go.
Located in Donnelly, Idaho the Tamarack Resort will be managed by Fairmont Hotels. Agassi on the resort:
Tamarack is the perfect location for anyone interested in taking a little
time out of their lives to get away or spend quality time with their family. Our vision is to create an exceptional lifestyle offering that complements the natural beauty and uniqueness of the resort. It's about
bringing the highest standard of quality and luxury to the whole experience.
The resort will have two locations, mid-mountain Whitewater, which is currently accepting reservations, and the village location, Belvedere Ridge.
Complete with a golf corse, spa, ski access... but neither location mentions tennis courts.
Both locations will break ground in 2006, and slated to open in 2008.
· Andre Agassi and Stefanie Graf Develop Luxury Hotel [PRNews Wire]
· Andre Agassi, Steffi Graf, Building Idaho Hotel [HotelChatter]
· More Tamarack Info [TripAdvisor]
If you and your spouse were the greatest tennis duo on the planet, what would you do while you waited for your genetically engineered super tennis children to win a Grand Slam title?
If you guessed open a luxury hotel inside Idaho's Tamarack Resort, you would be correct.
· Tamarack Hotel News [ktvb.com]
· Andre Agassi and Steffi Graf Plan Hotel At Tamarack [Luxist]
· More Tamarack Info [TripAdvisor]