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There's nothing really new about movie crews making use of hotels (either in which to film, or to sleep—though rarely both). But lately, it seems like location scouts are getting more and more creative with their picks. Here's a look at five recent movies that have all shot in hotels.
When director Steve McQueen went looking for a hotel to host his movie about a manic sex addict (played by Michael Fassbender), the Standard must have seemed like a pretty obvious choice. In addition to a painfully tense sex scene shot in one of the hotel's Hudson-facing rooms, the Shame crew also made use of the former Boom Boom Room to film Carey Mulligan dressed up like a lounge lizard singing "New York, New York."
The budget brands are rolling out London hotels thick and fast these days. The latest hotel chain to announce its arrival in the city is Hampton By Hilton. (You may know this brand better as Hampton Inn in America.)
The hotel group will knock down a derelict building (pictured above) on Waterloo Road to build a new 278 room hotel, one of the largest Hampton By Hilton hotels outside of the U.S.
The hotel joins a host of budget hotels planning to open in the area including the Tune Westminster (open now) a Travelodge (due to open down the road) and an easyHotel also opening in the area. However unlike the other hotels, Hampton By Hilton offer free internet and a free hot breakfast. Lets hope that’s enough to swing them some guests especially as there are 17 neighbouring hotels.
Free waffles! How can you say no to free waffles? Well, if you're in New York City and willing to show up to Herald Square park at 6am this Thursday, then you could get more than just some free waffles, but rest assured that there will be waffles and they will be free until noon.
The waffle-a-thon is in celebration of Hampton Inns adding freshly-baked waffles to the breakfast choices at their 1,800+ nationwide hotel locations. And in addition to claiming your free waffles on Thursday, you'll also get to meet chef Guy Fieri and his son Hunter, who'll be passing out the waffles, andif you're among the first 50 to show up and present their pdf Facebook invite (print it!)you'll also get a prize pack including a waffle baker, waffle mix, Hampton apron and tote bag.
Ever wanted to know what's the first thing HotelChatter does upon entering a hotel room? (After filming a video tour, of course) Why, we pull that nasty ole' duvet comforter off the bed and leave it there on the floor until we check out. Yup, we've watched enough local news specials on hotel germs to know that the duvet is loaded with germs and other fun stuff like semen and blood.
And it turns out we're not the only ones who think that.
Hampton Hotels has commissioned an online study last month that found almost half of adults think that hotel duvets, bedspreads and/or comforters are not clean. A whopping 70 percent of U.S. women went so far as to describe hotel bedding as "used, unsanitary, uncomfortable, old, gross and/or dirty." Yowza, that is not good.
When you think of SoHo hotels, you probably think 60 Thompson, The Crosby Street Hotel, The SoHo Grand, The Mercer … and the Hampton Inn SoHo. No? Well, perhaps you should. News that this outpost just opened a new bar sent us looking for reviews of the place, and what do you know? People like it.
Artifakt Bar welcomed its first drinkers on Sunday night for the Super Bowl, and was reportedly packed. From the photo it looks like your standard-issue hotel or airport bar, but in a neighborhood where cocktails can cost 18 bucks, this could be a good little spot to know about.
And the deals just keep a-coming. Hampton Inns have begun offering guests 10 percent off their available rates for weekend stays between Thursday and Sunday nights at 1,600 participating locations.
Hampton's Holiday Hit the Road Rates are good from now through January 4, 2009 and travel must be completed by January 5th. An added bonus is also thrown in to the mix because guests who book a weekend stay will get a $10 Visa gift card as well (It will be mailed to you 7-10 days after your stay.)
If you're a Hilton HHonors member, any online Hampton Inn bookings will net you 250 bonus points for stays booked and completed by January 5th too. Hampton Inn wasn't in our travel agenda over the holidays but it might be now.
Reservations can be made online at Hampton.com. Click on the "Hit the Road Rates" banner .
If one of your dreams happens to involve getting 10 percent off your stay at Hampton Hotels (and perhaps a chance to win a free bike, if you're really shooting for the stars), allow us to bring you the news that your dreams are coming true this summer:
Beginning with the Let the Dreams Begin Rate, which offers guests 10 percent off the best available rate of all weekend stays from June 5 through September 1, 2008 when they book through Hampton.com, Hampton will reward all HHonors members who book the rate with an additional 250 Hilton HHonors bonus points for any weekend stay from June 5 through September 1, 2008.
And since it's summer and the Olympics are coming (Hilton sponsors the USA Olympic team and Hampton sponsors USA cycling), Hampton's Olympic-themed Let the Dreams Begin site gives visitors chances to win a bunch of stuff, like a bike, a free weekend stay or a $5,000+ vacation package.
The program has recently enlisted more than 100 of its workers - along with serious star power in the form of actor Samuel L. Jackson - to overhaul the National Civil Rights Museum, in Memphis, Tennessee.
The Museum celebrates the work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and sits on the former site of the Lorraine Motel, where the civil rights leader was assassinated on April 4, 1968.
From new wallpaper and walkways, to displays, landscaping and electrical work, the Museum aims to complete most of the project by the 40th anniversary of Dr. King's untimely passing.
Jackson, who was an usher at King's funeral, is contributing to the more than 1000 man-hours that will go into rolling out the new look for this important landmark. And Hamptons plans more legendary makeovers this year -- including the birthplaces of Helen Keller and Jessie Owens.
Got a landmark you wanna see preserved? Nominate one here.
Volunteers from Akron-area Hampton Hotels were out in force last week to restore the World's Largest Cuckoo Clock. The 23-foot-tall time-structure was built in the late-1960s to attract customers to a restaurant on Route 62 deep in Ohio Amish country.
The current owner, Lee Ann Miller of Grandma's Homestead, told The Canton Repository that the clock's Bavarian music had been off key and that many of its features -- dancing figurines, a water wheel -- had deteriorated.
The clock is the latest landmark in Hampton's Save a Landmark campaign. In addition to the clock, the initiative has also restored the world's largest buffalo, in Jamestown, North Dakota, and the world's largest teapot in Chester, West Virginia.
The campaign is not all roadside kitsch. It also helped restore Tybee Island Lighthouse, in Tybee Island, Georgia, and the One-Room Schoolhouse in Northville, Minnesota.
Hampton is donating $20,000 and an estimated 80 hours of volunteer time to the cuckoo clock project, which will include moving the clock to ground level from the roof. The clock is listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the world's largest cuckoo clock. Some clockowners dispute that. The clock is the Hampton Hotels' Save a Landmark's 32nd project. They are aiming to have one in each state.
You can nominate a landmark here. In addition to saving known landmarks, Hampton also runs a Lost Landmarks campaign, an effort to locate long-gone pop-culture items such as Elvis' first guitar and a tiki statue that was used as a prop in a Brady Bunch episode.
You may know that our lovable sibling site is heavy into big things of all sorts, and it's finally rubbed off on us. Maybe it was the hotel tie-in?
The hotel chain is looking for the world's largest whatevers as part of their Save-A-Landmark program. Hampton is already restoring six oversized landmarks for this year but are taking nominations for next.
To get you started, we'll warn you that these have already been logged:
· The Big Duck in Flanders, NY: a 20-foot-tall, duck shaped gift shop.
· The World's Largest Santa Claus in North Pole, AK: The bearded one stands more than 48 feet tall. You can be damn sure he knows if you're being naughty.
· The Giant Prospector near Carson City, NV: This big bad boy kneels next to a chocolate shop, which may not be huge but certainly has more edibles inside it.
Have a favorite landmark that the world needs to know about? Let Hampton know, and, hey, fill us in, too.
[Photo: the real janelle]
· Hampton's landmark restoration program [Hampton]
Our friends at Curbed asked us to look in the mirror on this whole NYC Hampton Inn jaw dropping prices thing, so we did.
Last fall, we had no idea waking up to "Candy Shop" and sipping on the "healing power of Guava Juice" would lead us towards $350 Hampton Inns in New York City, and we still aren't sure exactly what propelled the room rates that high. Sure, we knew the Inn room rates were not low...but some rooms at $350...in November!
Upon further review, there are only two situations in which the Hampton Inn Chelsea should be charging over $350:
- If 50 Cent himself hops out of your alarm clock to give you a personal morning concert.
- If after quaffing down the gratis guava juice you suddenly have the strength, and energy, of ten Operating Thetan V's.
Unless one of the two above scenarios is true, we suggest you look elsewhere for your NYC hotel room, at least until Hampton drops their prices out of the stratosphere.
What do y'all think? Did the Manhattan Hampton Inns jump the shark with their pricing?
· Hampton Inn: Where Price Is Not An Object [Curbed]
· Why Are Manhattan Hampton Inns So Expensive? [HotelChatter]
· Hampton Inn Chelsea Hotel Reviews [TripAdvisor]
· Hampton Inn Chelsea [HotelChatter]
Hampton Inn has received the prestigious Sustainable Tourism Award presented by Smithsonian Magazine Travelers Conservation Foundation, making it the first ever hotel brand to be so honored.
Hampton Hotels has worked hard to make a mark in this arena, which has not only won them an award and saved 21 historic places, but brought tourist dollars to the out-of-the-way corners of the country that are host to the landmarks.
You can nominate future landmarks for preservation (and vote on the eventual contenders) at Hampton Hotels' Save-A-Landmark site, hamptonlandmarks.com.
Looks like a bit of good karma for Hampton Inns.