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Over in Manhattan, New York Hilton Midtown is celebrating the big 5-0 by launching a new website that fills people in on the hotel's colorful history (did you know this was the first hotel to replace keys with keycards? Yeah, neither did we!).
But there's more happening here than just reminiscing over old black-and-white photos (see above).
Another component of the birthday celebrations are what the hotel is calling 50 Random Acts of Hospitality, which calls for New York Hilton Midtown employees to "engage in random acts of hospitality". In case you're wondering just what that means, the acts will include: offering complimentary room upgrades, handing out umbrellas on rainy days and helping guests score tickets to local attractions and events.
In other words, everything a hotel is supposed to do anyway.
We love a room with a view, particularly when that room comes with a built-in window seat to enjoy it all. This combination can be found in the Executive rooms at the London Park Lane Hilton; located on floors 18 to 27 (this shot is from the 20th floor). You’ll take full advantage of being in one of the tallest buildings in the area.
Views range from the greenery of Hyde Park and Knightsbridge/South Kensington, like in the above photo, to city views of Mayfair and the West End. As appealing as they are, the trade-off comes with the hotel’s exterior, which sticks out like a sore thumb at the eastern edge of Hyde Park, but you won’t see that when inside, right? If you’re not staying the night, you can still sample the views in the bar, Galvin at Windows, on the 28th floor.
We found an Executive room on a Saturday in early June for £419 ($650) a night, but special offers can be a much better value from time to time.
[Photo: JasonD for HotelChatter]
In the important quest for the mighty "pink-dollar", the folks over at Hilton have introduced a creative way of attracting more gay and lesbian travelers to check-in to their hotels. Last week, the company re-launched a campaign to turn a few heads when it comes to same-sex relationships.
Hilton originally started the program in 2012, but have added more hotels and revamped the offering; the package will include perks like complimentary internet, two welcome drinks, late checkout and a full-year digital subscription to OUT magazine. Of course nothing says 'gay' like free WiFi and booze, right? Pfft. But hey, we'll take it. An effort is being made.
With a slogan like "Stay Hilton...Go Out", the brand plans to pull in the reservations by sponsoring some major gay-themed events around the world. From Chicago's North Halsted Marketdays to San Fran Pride, the chain is slapping their name on various gay events. Along with the sponsorship, they've created a gay newsletter highlighting major gay global events like Amsterdam Pride and Sydney Mardi Gras.
Hotel Openings / Hotel Rebranding / Hotel Renovations / South Africa Hotels / Hotel Design / Cape Town Hotels / Hilton Hotels / DoubleTree Hotels / → All Tags
Last week, Hilton Worldwide opened the 183-room DoubleTree by Hilton Cape Town - Upper Eastside, the brands first DoubleTree by Hilton hotel in South Africa. Yes, the name is a mouthful, but we can swallow that if it means a new affordable option for Cape Town.
We’ve noticed lately Hilton’s been stylifying (yeah, made that word up) their DoubleTree brand, and this newly reno’ed, upscale property is no exception. The lobby is filled with white latticework and vibrant nature colors of green and blue. Rooms are a mix of earthy browns, greys and whites. The Rooms range from executive and suites to two-story loft rooms located on the penthouse floor with sweet views of the city’s skyline.
Hotel Deals / Hotel Promo Codes / Miami Hotels / Hilton Hotels / Maui Hotels / DC Hotels / → All Tags
Deals: you want 'em, and surprisingly, everyone has 'em. Take a look at some of the latest hotel deals going around the internet today from booking sites, social media sites, flash sale sites and more. Don't forget to scroll down to see the HotelChatter-approved deal either. Who knows? You might just find what you're looking for. (But don't forget to tell us about your stay!)
DEALS, DEALS, DEALS*
· Taxes are a Beach in Miami Beach: The Sagamore Hotel in Miami has put together a "Taxes are a Beach" vacation package that is run by the hotel's own IRS (Internal Rejuvenation Services.) The minimum two-night stay deal includes tax-free accommodations in a Sagamore Suite, $25 daily stimulus (i.e. a hotel credit that can even be used to deduct from the room rate), daily breakfast for two, daily beach chairs for two and complimentary WiFi. The deal represents an overall savings of 20 percent. Rates start at $320 a night. The deal is only valid for April stays. Go here to book.
· Hilton's LGBT Deal is Back: The Stay Hilton. Go Out package is back. The deal includes high-speed internet (wahoo!), one-year digital subscription to OUT magazine, two welcome beverages and late checkout, where and when available. Guests who plan on staying with Hilton during the Gay Pride season can also download and print an LGBT event calendar from Hilton's Go Out website as well as sign up for the Hilton LGBT travel newsletter for travel ideas, upcoming events and special offers. Go here to book.
· Spring for a Springtime Hawaiian Getaway : Love Hawaii but hate the crowds? Avoid the summer rush and go this spring instead. Stay at the 43-room Ka'anapali Beach Hotel in western Maui and book their Spring Bonus package. The deal is good from now through May 31 and includes pool view accommodations, daily buffet breakfast for two and a compact rental car. Rates start at $215 a night. Go here to book.
Thanks to Melbourne-based artist, Matthew Bird, we can now rethink the image we have in our heads as we slide our key-card into a new hotel-room's door. He's created an art installation piece at the city's Hilton on the Park called "Hotel Otherworldly" that reworks an existing hotel room into a fabulous piece of art.
Housed in a fairly non-descript, brown brick building with no balconies, or character for that matter, this artistic hotel room is tucked away amongst business travelers and tourists unknown they might be sleeping next to a piece of art. A design that is as loud as a tornado, maintains the wallflower persona by being purely art.
One of the typical Hilton king guest suites has been transformed into a space where everything installed offers a regional reference to Australia, from flora and fauna to history and culture. A gold slap in the face for the region's gold rush days, art featuring crocodiles and royal blue to signify the history as a British colony all play a significant role in creating not only an over-the-top piece of art, but a reflection of the local culture.
St Patrick's Day Hotels / Hilton Hotels / Hotel Woes / Manhattan Hotels / Los Angeles Hotels / Hyatt Hotels / Marriott Hotels / Chicago Hotels / Amsterdam Hotels / W Hotels / Austin Hotels / Hurricane Sandy / → All Tags
In honor of St Patrick's Day coming up this Sunday, we thought we'd take a look back at a few hotels that just can't seem to catch a break. If any leprechauns are reading this right now, take note. You've got your work cut out for you!
#7: Le Parker Meridien.
We thought it was bad enough when a random construction accident managed to flood the entire Knave Cafe at LPM. But it turned out the hotel had more bad luck coming, when Hurricane Sandy tore through Manhattan, toppling a nearby crane, and causing Le Parker Meridien to be evacuated. Here's to a cheerier 2013.
#6: JW Marriott Chicago.
The JW Marriott Chicago made plenty of headlines (though not the good kind) this past fall when an outbreak of Legionnaires' disease claimed the lives of three guests who stayed there over the sumer. The Chicago Dept of Public Health reported that the hotel "fully cooperated with the ongoing investigation," and concluded by saying there was no further health threat at the hotel. Still, we're probably going to lay off those hot tub parties for a while.
#5: Revel Resort.
This $2.6 billion resort was supposed to be the saving grace of Atlantic City, but after barely a year of being open, it announced it was planning to file for bankruptcy. Ouch! Hurricane Sandy couldn't have helped things either. We feel like they need a lucky charm or something to bring them back from the dark side, but then again, if a four-night Beyonce run during opening weekend didn't manage to do it, we're not sure what will.
Four more unlucky hotels after the jump!
Just a little while ago, we went on a rant about hotel Facebook pages, and what the fuss is all about. Many of you piped up, with one commenter noting "the whole Facebook marketing angle is over-hyped."
Another pointed out that often times, the "social strategy is coming from a global [headquarters] that is unaware of local trends."
Which might actually be a clue as to why Hilton has managed to beat all the other brands at the Facebook game.
Just yesterday, Hilton announced they were the first ever hotel brand to reach one million "likes" on Facebook. For those of you who abstain from the Facebook (stay strong!), that statement probably reads like gibberish. But we're guessing the rest of you are just as curious as we are to find out exactly how Hilton managed to pull off such a feat.
Hotel Openings / Panama Hotels / Waldorf-Astoria Hotels / Hilton Hotels / Hotel Lobbies / Photo Gallery / → All Tags
We've been waiting on this one for a while, and now, over a year behind schedule, the Waldorf Astoria Panama is finally here. The 130-room hotel is in its soft opening phase right now (meaning, fancy private parties for rich people), but that'll all change by the end of this week when the hotel officially opens on Friday.
The hotel is located on a quiet little side street in the center of the city, just two blocks from Cinta Costera, a popular pedestrian strip that hugs the Pacific coastline. Close to it are other hotel neighbors like the InterContinental and Le Meridien, though in terms of luxury service and design, this place is definitely doing something those other two hotels aren't.
Take a look at more photos after the jump!
Hotel News / Manila Hotels / Philippines Hotels / Mall Hotels / Conrad Hotels / Hilton Hotels / Hilton HHonors / → All Tags
It's no surprise that the upcoming Conrad Manila will share intimate relations with its neighbor, the sprawling Mall of Asia complex. Why? The manager of the upcoming hotel, which is set to open in 2015, is a company called SM Group. And as Wikipedia so eloquently points out, the Mall of Asia "is a shopping mall owned and developed by SM, the largest mall chain owner and developer in the Philippines."
So, yeah. Conrad's first property in the Philippines will be pretty much just a place for Hilton HHonors members to spend lots and lots o' dollars at the fourth largest shopping mall in the world, which gets a reported 200,00 visitors per day.
We're guessing Hilton is pretty stoked to get a piece of that pie. And after all, mall hotels can be kind of exciting (Minnesota's new Radisson Blu would likely agree). So...what else can we expect from Conrad Manila when it opens?
The folks at Hilton Sydney unveiled their latest incarnation--a themed cocktail lounge. The hotel's Zeta Bar has been transformed into 'The Secret Garden' with a modern twist, and of course inventive drinks.
The bar itself is quite known locally as one of the best cocktail lounges and with a group of masterminds and mixologists, the hot bar comes alive with it's latest them that is based on the beloved children's novel. From happy hour on a Friday night to the wee hours of the morning, the lounge gets an overhaul with garden furniture, trees, beautifully manicured lawns and models covered in bodyart to host the city's hip crowd ready to mingle.
You better believe the drinks are part of them if each master bartender is tasked with creating a special cocktail for the concept bar. Alcoholic Jell-O and Bellini popsicles all create a wonderland that is a feast for the senses as much for the eyes. If you're looking to sample as a pair, the Tweedle Dum would suit; the gin-based cocktail is topped with Limoncello and sparkling wine and is served up in a smoking tea-pot.
The largest hotel suite in the Midwest just got a whole lot swankier. The Conrad Hilton Suite at the Hilton Chicago recently finished a $1.8 million renovation. Yes, well over a milli was spent on this two-story suite overlooking Grant Park and Michigan Avenue. So we gots to know--what's in it?
For starters, the suite has its own Grand Salon with a fireplace, a dining room for seating up to 14 guests, a library with a pool table and a bar, and a private kitchen. The suite also got a decor makeover and now features a new color palette of "neutral tones with crisp white trim", dark parquet floors, a Carrara Gold marble fireplace, a cleverly disguised television that pops up out of a dresser via the in-room iPad, and an old-school grand piano.
The suite's three bedrooms each have their own bathrooms along with freestanding bathtubs, glass showers, private dressing rooms and their own night-cap bars. This suite is now fit for a king, or at least the president. In fact, the suite is often referred to as the "Midwest White House" and every president since Reagan has spent the night here.
No doubt the Conrad's renovation has only made Barack Obama's hotel choices when visiting his hometown a lot tougher. Does he stay in a two-story suite worth nearly $2 million or does he go with the suite named after him at the Fairmont Chicago? File this under Problems We Wish We Had. Sigh.
[Photos: Hilton Chicago]