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We had the chance to stay at the new ALT Hotel Toronto Pearson, owned by Canadian boutique hoteliers, Groupe Germain and, we gotta tell ya, this hotel-in-a-box is stylin’!
Back in April we reported Groupe Germain planned to open several ALT Hotels across Canada, and Toronto is the first up. The ALT Hotel business model is to maximize style while keeping costs down by minimizing superfluous services and prefabricating the hotel rooms – sort of like how cruise ships are built (ergo, hotel-in-a-box!). What this means is that you can get a hotel room for a very reasonable price, that is always the same, no matter what day of the week or what time of the year.
Knowing all of this, we were still pleasantly surprised that the 153-room hotel is so well-designed. When you enter, you'll first notice the eye-catching video wall. Made up of photos and LCD screens, this ever-changing mural is comprised of photos submitted via Instagram.
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In its continuing quest for world domination – Okay, Canadian domination – family-run Canadian hotelier, Groupe Germain, has announced that they will build another ALT Hotel in Ottawa for 2014.
Expect to see a modern hotel with twelve floors and 148 rooms designed by Canadian architects Lemay Michaud and Richard Chmiel. The hotel will be located on well-traversed Slater Street in Ottawa's bustling business district and will share space with 164 luxury condos in the same complex.
As in all ALT Hotels, WiFi is always free and the hotels don’t just call themselves green, they mean it. They use: geothermal heating and cooling, heat recovery from indoor air that's vented outside, water from commercial washers, energy-efficient lighting and a direct digital control system for ventilation, heating and cooling.
Speaking of Canada today, Groupe Germain Hospitality – a family-run, luxury boutique hotel company based in Québec – is expanding into the Prairies and the east with its little sister hotel brand, ALT Hotels.
The concept is simple: maximize modern design and minimize unnecessary amenities. The cost of your room remains the same no matter when you travel, so no need to try to angle for the best room rate during those peak times. Need a Wi-Fi connection? Included. iPod docking station? Got it. A doorman who’ll hail a taxi for you? Nowhere to be found.
Another innovation is that each room in an ALT Hotel is prefabricated. That’s right, folks... it’s a hotel in a box. So rooms only come in two different sizes, but with customized interiors to reflect current design trends.