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Europe’s busiest airports had a good year last year: citizenM arrived at Paris Roissy – Charles de Gaulle, the first European Element came to Frankfurt, and of course, the shirtless men of Moxy welcomed us at Milan Malpensa. With the last two of those openings courtesy of industry giants Starwood and Marriott, it seems appropriate that the latest news comes from Hilton Hotels, which is reflagging the former Kempinski hotel at Munich airport as the Hilton Munich Airport this month.
With that step, the almost proverbial “airport Hilton” is now available at each of the seven largest European airports (that’s London Heathrow, Frankfurt, Paris CDG, Munich, Amsterdam, Madrid, and Rome). There is more to the change in Munich than a different badge on the front door though, and construction in Amsterdam to replace its dated 1970s hotel is moving along too.
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Part of a mixed-use development called Gateway Gardens, the hotel is just over 2 miles from the airport terminal. TripAdvisor reviews haven’t made it onto the site just yet, but a first few questions regarding airport shuttles (there is one 24 hours a day) are being answered by the hotel.
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Think about the adjectives typically associated with Frankfurt, Germany. They're not exactly the most pleasant, are they? Perhaps that's why the Goldman 25Hours Hotel shakes up the scene with confident use of colors and whimsical design touches. In any case, our stay (1 night, paying a standard prepaid rate of 92 Euros) blessedly brightened what had been a dreary, sleep-deprived week
Never heard of the 25Hours boutique chain? Well neither had we until last year, when we found their Hamburg HafenCity location and promptly fell head over heels. Their Goldman Frankfurt property is not as new or large as Hamburg, but the brand's bravery with design and affordable rates are very much in house at all locations.
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While more and more hotels realize that perhaps their guests prefer a fitness experience other than a musty gym, we see more and more yoga mats in closets and jogging maps on desks. Recently, during a stay at the Goldman 25Hours in Frankfurt, Germany, we checked in at reception next to this little "Jogging Corner" cart.
The Jogging Corner is all the basics you'd need to have an enjoyable run, while traveling light. That means they provide the water bottles, the small sweat towels, wristlet keychains or branded sweatbands, all complimentary to guests.
We went for the sweatbands, since we quickly figured out that these serve more than the function of storing the tiny specially made jogging map of the area; we wore the sweatband and stored our bus and tram coins in it. Perfect! No fumbling in a wallet while trying to board public transportation.
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With all the design details in hotels, it's no wonder they're the perfect place to get creative with Instagram photos. We're kind of obsessed with browsing the #hotel tag, and every once in a while, we bring you 5 of our favorite shots that impart major wanderlust. And don't forget to follow our own shots on Instagram under "hotelchatter," "jaunted" and "vegaschatter."
· The above shot was taken by us during a visit inside the Coach Suite at Martha's Vineyard's Charlotte Inn. Not bad, eh?
· Photo via claudialesti — Boy, this looks fun: lounging by the Hotel Santa Tecla Palace's square pool, gazing out at the Ionian Sea.
[Photo above: HotelChatter]
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Is Europe ready to balance itself out?
This week it was announced that Element, the brand that once gave out free rooms to guests who showed up with recyclable plastic bottles, is finally making the move across the pond. Starting with...Frankfurt, Germany. Though from the sound of it, Starwood is just scratching the surface, as it plans to embark on a full-blown European expansion of the eco-conscious brand.
Hope those Germans have a soft spot for smoothie stations and healthy breakfast wraps!
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Airport hotels get a pretty bad rap. Sure, there are the greasy, grimy ones, but we like to think that for every one of those, there's a perfectly clean business-friendly oneor, even better, an airport hotel with the luxury of an airport view. All this week we'll be taking a look at a few of our favorite hotels for plane spotting.
Today: The Hilton Garden Inn at Frankfurt International Airport.
Not only is this hotel brand-spanking-new, but it has something others don't at FRA: affordable rooms with a view of the runways. You see, the Hilton Garden Inn sits within a shiny new building called THE SQUAIRE, full of offices, shops and even an international railway station. There's also a Hilton in the same complex, dead next to the Garden Inn, but having been to both we say go with the Garden Inn.
Anyway, let's get to the plane spotting.
We love technology. Especially in the context of making our stays more comfortable. At the 218-room Jumeirah Frankfurt, for business and pleasure travelers, technology plays an important role in the guest experience.
While you are checking-in, your room is being acclimated to your preferences so that upon arriving at your door the in-room climate will be set at what Jumeirah refers to as "optimal heating or cooling." Before you get in the elevator, you must use the key touch pad to press in your room floor. The system will then direct you to a particular elevator to catch based on the "matched grouping" of other guests desiring the same floor or nearby floors.
Jumeirah says the elevator also limits the number of guests so the number of "stop-overs" is reduced. We didn't try it, but what about that kid who presses the buttons for all of the floors? If you try it, let us know how this works.
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Over on Jaunted, you can get our inside looks at some of the world’s best airline lounges, so we thought we’d do something similar here and start talking about some of the hotel lounges we’ve frequented lately for our series on Hotel Club Lounges. Today, we're having a look inside the Executive Lounge at the very new Hilton within The Squaire complex at Frankfurt International Airport.
When you're an executive lounge at an airport hotel, it's probably a good idea to mirror the upscale airline lounges found next door, right? Right. So when the Hilton Frankfurt Airport finally opened last December, they kept that jet set appeal all the way up through the executive lounge.
We popped into the lounge only a few days ago, thanks to one of our buddies at Australian Business Traveller and his Hilton status. Upstairs in the shiny, zeppelin-like SQUAIRE complex, the Hilton's lounge overlooks the atrium lobby andif you're luckythe glass roof will give you brief glimpses of airplanes taking off right overhead.
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Finally finally Frankfurt Airport has more hotels to offer than the Sheraton with the horrible internet situation. Both the Hilton Frankfurt Airport and Hilton Garden Inn Frankfurt Airport debuted yesterday, though this December opening date is a long delay from March, when they originally planned on polishing the door handles.
Whatever. We're just happy we don't have to stay in that Sheraton again.
So, what does the duo of Hiltons have to offer? First off, they're in a striking new building with an odd name the "Squaire." It's connected to the airport via walkways, but it's got far more going for it than that; this is a mega center with restaurants, shops, landscaped atriums andthe real clinchera major transit hub on its ground level. Zipping below your hotel rooms are 185 daily high-speed rail links across Europe.
That's our most favorite featureits convenient location to both the airport and the German ICE trainsbut our second favorite is the promise of Free WiFi at the Garden Inn, and more:
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This week, Con Nast Traveler took a minute to examine some of the world's most unique and gorgeous hotel bathrooms. Ever. Sure, a few classics made it onto the list—like the Mandarin Oriental New York and the Hyatt on the Bund—but the above photo caught our eye. It's of the public mens bathroom inside the Goldman 25hours in Frankfurt, Germany. We wonder what gets used to clean these things: a toilet swab, or a toothbrush?
Sorry, Starwood; we're just not that into your Sheraton Hotel & Towers at Germany's Frankfurt International Airport. Mainly our hate is due to some of the suckiest hotel WiFi we've ever encountered (and a friend who was there last week confirms it's still bad), but also because we're about to get some options. As we reported earlier, the super modern, super shiny Squaire building across from the airport was due to open both a Hilton and a Hilton Garden Inn this spring. Sadly, both seem to be delayed until September.
Focusing on the Hilton for a bit, it's worth pointing out that this hotel isn't designed to be some massive airport conference hotel; its 248 rooms and suites will instead focus on design, with a boutique hotel attitude. Rooms are projected to begin around 199 Euro per night, and it's going to have the best location for catching one of the German ICE trainsthe hotel sits atop a station that sees some 185 high-speed trains daily.