Tag: Hotel Amenities

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The Club Hotel Jersey Launches A 'Sunshine Butler' For Fashionably Pale Brits

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  Site Where: Green St, St Helier, Jersey, United Kingdom, JE2 4UH
July 21, 2014 at 3:10 PM | by | Comments (0)


The Sunshine Butler's grounds

In America, they have tanning butlers. In the UK, one is fashionably pale, so one has a “sunshine butler”. Or at least, one does when there’s enough sun to merit wearing sunscreen.

Yes, hot on the heels of the biggest heatwave ever (maybe), The Club Hotel & Spa in St Helier, Jersey, has recruited a Sunshine Butler to strut the terraces of the hotel, polishing sunglasses, administering suncream of various strengths, misting one’s face and feet with mineral water, and proffering iced towels and chilled watermelon.

That leaves guests to wallow on their sunloungers by the Mediterranean-style Pool Terrace, take a dip (once adequately creamed) in the pool, or enjoy that cocktail without being irritated by one’s hot and sweaty feet. What more could one need?

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Plastic Tea Cups Are The Way Forward For An OCD-Free Stay

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  Site Where: Address: Rue du Vieux Marché aux Grains 30,, Brussels, Belgium, 1000
July 21, 2014 at 8:25 AM | by | Comment (1)

If you’re anything like us, you will frown at this picture of the set up of the “tea and coffee-making facilities” in our room at the Atlas Hotel in Brussels. You will raise your eyebrows, sigh ‘this is exactly what I stooped to when I booked a three star hotel’ and wonder how on earth one is meant to raise one’s pinky when drinking from a plastic teacup.

But then you will realize the genius of the Atlas Hotel’s tea and coffee-making facilities set up. Because it is the set up of dreams for hotel germaphobes. If you have any level of OCD, or worry about housekeepers cleaning mugs with spit/mirror cleaner/nothing, it is for you. Because these cups are replaced – new – after every use.

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Books and Booze: The James Knows What We Want

July 15, 2014 at 6:47 PM | by | Comments (4)

While most hotels are introducing new services to guests via in-room tablets, James Hotels are going a different route.

The boutique brand has partnered up with writer, author and humorist Joel Stein, who we first fell in love with during his stint on VH1's "I Love The 80s" show, to create a new literary program for guests.

Stein has chosen four paperback books for each James location--New York, Chicago, Miami and the upcoming Los Angeles hotel--which guests can read during their stay. The books will be available in the living libraries at each hotel but in New York and Miami, the books can be also uploaded to the eReaders and Kindles that are available (So, it's still a tech-forward program.)

But that's not all. Master mixologist Johnny Swet who does the libations at JIMMY in New York, has created cocktails that pair with each city's corresponding books and personalities. Hmm, we're seeing a pattern here--James, Joel, Johnny. Maybe with my name, I could get a job too?

Here's what on the James summer reading list, as selected by Stein and the corresponding cocktail as crafted by Swet:

NEW YORK
· The Big Short by, Michael Lewis: “Sure, there’s advertising and media, but this is actually a one-industry town and that industry is money. Michael Lewis explains how our economy depends entirely on a bunch of traders who don’t entirely know what they’re doing and how they messed up in 2008.”

· A Visit from the Goon Squad, by Jennifer Egan: “Unfortunately, you have to finish the novel to feel all the disparate stories come together, but I hereby give you permission to steal it. I’m guessing I’m empowered to do that.” Heat by, Bill Buford: “Everyone in New York is a part-time restaurant critic. You’re going to spend a lot of time talking about where to eat and what you thought of where you ate. So you might as well read this and find out how hard it is to cook that meal.”

· From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by, E.L. Konigsburg: “Yes, it’s a kid’s book. But that’s exactly what you have time for in a hotel. And if you take the book’s advice and check out of this hotel, hide in the Met after it closes, sleep there and buy street food with the coins you find in the fountain, you’ll save your company a lot on your expense report.”

· New York Cocktail Pairing: Blood & Sand - a classic cocktail that blends Chivas Regal Scotch, Sweet Vermouth, Cherry Herring and Orange Juice.

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The Maldives Just Got A Whole Lot More Exciting: Flyboarding Comes To Sun Siyam Iru Fushi

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  Site Where: Noonu Atoll, Maldives
July 11, 2014 at 9:33 AM | by | Comments (0)

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? 007? No, it’s flyboarding – one of those sports you think you’ve heard of, until you see a photo and think hell naw, aint seen nothing like that before.

Anyway, if this photo doesn’t give you vertigo, flyboarding might be for you – and you just got a chance to try it at the Sun Siyam Iru Fushi in the Maldives. Yes! The Maldives just got a whole lot less boring.

The hotel (which is your typical 52-acre-private-island-with-rooms-cantilevered-over-the-ocean Maldives affair) already caters for you watersporters with kiteboarding, scuba diving, windsurfing, jet skiing and sailing, but consider those passé as of now.

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Hotel Skeppsholmen Stockholm Is a Country Hotel Hiding in the City

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  Site Where: Gröna gången 1, Box 1616, Stockholm, Sweden, 111 86
July 9, 2014 at 8:25 AM | by | Comments (0)

Looking at the above photograph of the front yard and entrance to Hotel Skeppsholmen, you’d be forgiven to think it’s somewhere in the scenic Scandinavian countryside rather than a 20-minute walk from Stockholm’s Old Town.

Its split personality is a result of its setting on the tiny island from which the hotel takes its name, which is almost entirely parkland, and the 18th century buildings that have been converted into the hotel. We spent an overnight at Skeppsholmen on a short visit to the Swedish capital – read on to see what we found.

Check-In: we arrived at the hotel by taxi, having taken the Arlanda Express from the airport to the city’s central station. Big mistake: it cost us $35 for the short journey, and bus no65 does the same journey for a few dollars. Given that a return on Arlanda Express alone is $65, we made sure to save the cab fare on the way back. Check-in was quick and easy, and we were on our way to our room in a few minutes.

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Name Your Own Star, And Other 'Extraordinary Experiences' From Four Seasons

Where: Europe
June 24, 2014 at 12:30 PM | by | Comments (0)

The Milky Way, with HotelChatter star

Ever strolled across the Ponte Vecchio in Florence and thought, if only there were a private place to have dinner and enjoy this beautiful view? Ever visited the Royal Observatory at Greenwich and thought, Greenwich Mean Time would mean so much more to me if I could have it to myself? Ever gone to the opera (in Prague, to be precise), and thought, this is all well and good, but those acoustics would really shine better if it was just me and my loved ones soaking them up?

If so, the European cluster of new Four Seasons Experiences may well be for you.

Similar to the newly launched Peninsula Academy, Four Seasons Experiences are for people to whom a Four Seasons property is what a Motel 6 is to the rest of us: completely affordable and a little bit yawn. To stifle that yawn, the brand has come up with various “experiences” to liven up your stay. Having taken a look at the European ones, we’d say they’re pretty good. Pretty good if you’re a particularly spendthrift oligarch, that is.

Let’s start with one for everyone, or everyone who can afford to stay at the George V in Paris. All guests of the hotel and Le Cinq restaurant can partake in a special monthly wine tasting in the hotel’s wine cellar. It’s guided by Eric Beaumard, director of Le Cinq, and cheese, charcuterie and puff pastry snacks included too. Win! Cost: just the room rate, a mere €905 and up.

Up next: a behind-the-scenes visit at St Petersburg’s famous Russian Museum, courtesy of Four Seasons Hotel Lion Palace St Petersburg. You’ll get a 90-minute tour of the museum’s restoration chambers and a walkthrough of the restoration process. Price: $1175 per visit (maximum three people). Room rates from $502. Perfect for those wishing to celebrate their first mil with an art purchase and wanting some Proper Background.

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Wake Up With John Wayne At Hotel Derek

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  Site Where: 2525 West Loop South [map], Houston, TX, United States, 77027
June 23, 2014 at 9:44 AM | by | Comments (0)

Derek's pool

Ever fantasized about waking up with a celebrity? Actually, that hardly needs a question. We know you’ve done it, and we all know how that fantasy goes. Hotel bed, rumpled sheets, pillows shmooshed and a glass of champagne on the table. Shower running and the dulcet tones of singing to themselves under the water, acting as your sweet alarm clock.

Ok, so we can’t exactly make that happen, but we can get you part of the way, by telling you about the Hotel Derek in Houston, which has none other than John Wayne delivering its wake up calls.

And no, “Rise and shine sleepyhead, it’s time to giddy up and get those feet on the ground,” may not be the romantic arousal you were envisioning, but you can’t have everything, plus John Wayne strikes us as the type who’d have enjoyed a bit of flirtatious banter.

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Wake Up, Work Out At Profil Hotels In Sweden

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  Site Where: Rådhusesplanaden 14, Umea, Sweden, 903 28
June 9, 2014 at 8:32 AM | by | Comments (0)

Sometimes in a hotel, you just want to hit the gym. Sometimes, though, it just seems like too much hassle. Getting changed, walking over, getting changed into normal clothes – not enough time, right?

No such excuses if you book at a Profil Hotel in Sweden, as we learned from a friend who stayed in one last week. To make working out as obligatory easy as possible, they’ve put dumbbells by the bed in every room.

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Meet The Resident Cats At Istanbul's Empress Zoe

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  Site Where: Akbiyik Caddesi 10, Sultanahmet, Istanbul, Turkey, 34122
June 6, 2014 at 9:32 AM | by | Comments (0)

It's Friday. You know what you need to get you through the rest of the day? Cat pictures.

So without further ado, here are our current favorite hotel cats. These two, along with one other, reside at the Empress Zoe hotel in Istanbul: a one-of-a-kind boutique pad in Sultanahmet, just below Hagia Sophia.

All three are former street cats who walked in one day and never left. (Istanbul is all about the street cats.) They aren't BFFs with each other; but, luckily for you, they are with the guests. Cuddling opportunities, should you be so minded, are unlimited.

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Jade Mountain Laughs At Your Inferior Turndown Chocolates

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  Site Where: PO Box 4000, Soufriere, Saint Lucia
June 4, 2014 at 9:42 AM | by | Comments (0)

A hotel with its own cocoa plantation? Pretty cool. A hotel with its own cocoa plantation that organizes weekly tasting sessions of the inhouse chocolate? Even better.

A “chocolate laboratory” is the newest amenity at St Lucia’s Jade Mountain, in which you can learn how to make your own chocolate. Pretty good, and not too expensive at $45 per person for an hour-long session.

But better still are the new “chocolate sensory tastings”, held every Tuesday at 10am. You’ll get to taste all incarnations of chocolate and soon-to-be chocolate, from the cocoa bean to cocoa mass; and after you’ve put in all that hard work, they’ll reward you with Emerald Estate (the house label) chocolate bars and homemade truffles.

Oh, and the tastings are free.

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The Rain in Spain Doesn't Matter With Thoughtful Room Mates

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  Site Where: Travesia de Trujillos 3, Madrid, Spain, 28013
June 2, 2014 at 9:56 AM | by | Comments (0)

Ok, so it may not be a turned down plunge pool or drone-delivered champagne, but sometimes, as your guru would say, the most pleasure comes from the simplest things.

Which is probably why we were so excited during our recent stay at Room Mate Laura in Madrid. Because, of course, we can barely stay in a nice hotel without a fancy umbrella being thrust at us by the concierge or the cupboard. But an offer of a raincoat? That’s a new one. A thoughtful one, too.

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7 Cool New Things We've Seen at Hotels This Year (So Far)

May 20, 2014 at 1:14 PM | by | Comments (0)

We're pretty jaded folk here at HotelChatter. There's not much that we haven't seen already when it comes to amenities and services. But lately, hotels have been killing it, rolling out novel or useful or just plain fun goodies that hotel guests of all tax brackets can enjoy. Naturally, we thought it was worth a round-up. Now presenting...

7 Cool New Things We've Seen at Hotels This Year (So Far)

1. A Light in the Toilet Bowl

We called this the "manliest bathroom amenity ever" when we spotted it at The Landing Hotel in South Lake Tahoe, because it ensures that men will always have the correct aim in the middle of the night.

2. Drone Room Service

High-paying guests at The Casa Madrona in Sausalito, Calif. can (and should) have their pricey picks of champagne delivered by state of the art, remote-controlled, octo-copter drones from the hotel's wine cellar to an outdoor deck of the hotel's exclusive Mansion suite.

3. USB Ports in The Room Telephone

We've seen USB ports near the bed or on the nightstand but never have we've seen them IN THE PHONE until we took a tour of the Delano Las Vegas, opening in September. Now you don't have to get out of bed to drunk sext check your email.

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