Tag: Hotel Bars

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When in Rome, at Aperitivo Hour, Come to the Hotel Corner

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  Site Where: Viale Aventino, Rome, Italy
April 20, 2015 at 9:36 AM | by | Comments (0)

One concept that’s huge in Rome: the aperitivo hour, between around 5-8pm, when bars serve platters of free food (sfizi) alongside spritzes and proseccos.

One concept that’s not huge in Rome: the hotel bar. Why go to a boring hotel bar when you could sit with the beautiful people in Piazza di Pietra?

But when in Rome, you don’t always have to, you know – at least not at the Hotel Corner, slightly out of the centre, between the Circus Maximus and Piramide.

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An Icy 'Iron Throne' Is Now a Real Thing In Midtown Manhattan

April 7, 2015 at 10:40 AM | by | Comments (0)

We do not have to tell fans of Game of Thrones that season five is hitting HBO this weekend, but we did figure it was worth mentioning that the Iron Throne is now a real thing ready for your visit.

It’s the latest addition inside Minus5 Ice Bar located at the Hilton Midtown New York, and it just might make a great stop before or after your season premiere viewing party.

The throne is made of around 1,000 pounds of ice, and apparently it’s even better than the ice we get here in the nifty fifty—this stuff is 100% pure Canadian ice. Of course photo opportunities are available, and visitors can even choose from white or black fur jackets that fit right in with those who would be considered royal citizens of the Seven Kingdoms.

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Keep Your Booze Bottle With the Bottle Keep at Glasgow's Blythswood Square Hotel

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  Site Where: No.11 Blythswood Square, Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom, G2 4AD
April 1, 2015 at 2:00 PM | by | Comments (0)

About a year ago the barkeeps at Glasgow’s Blythswood Square hotel (part of The Town House Collection) had the brainiac idea to house a whisky Bottle Keep in The Salon for locals and guests who visit the bar on a regular basis. The set-up is super simple: Buy a bottle at the bar, ranging in price from 135 GBP to 2,500 GBP, store your golden liquid in the hotel’s Bottle Keep, and drinks will appear upon request.

With your purchase you get a session with a skilled bartender who will tell you the proper way to drink your purchase – for example, who knew that Johnny Walker Blue Label (250 GBP) is properly served with shaved ice and water? – or the mixologist will create a signature cocktail tailored just for you, preferably made with your newly-purchased Haig Club whisky (135 GBP).

Why this whisky, you may ask? One reason is that one of the owners is – still-hunky after all these years – David Beckham, but perhaps the more-important reason is that this whisky, only launched a few months ago, is lighter and less sweet than your standard Scotch.

In other words, it’s made specifically for the cocktail lover. This recipe is stored with your bottle and you can partake of it whenever you’re in a cocktail mood.

If, however, whiskies are not your thing, don’t despair. The Salon has a wide array of delicious cocktails on offer, and all can be found in the recently-begotten Bar Book. Already in its third installment since the hotel opened in 2009, the book is a collection of cocktails unique to the hotel along with some classics that have withstood cocktail culture’s test of time.

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Bubbles & Cocktails in the Champagne Room at London's The Connaught

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  Site Where: Carlos Place, Mayfair, London, United Kingdom, W1K 2AL
March 27, 2015 at 9:00 AM | by | Comments (0)

Right around this time last year, we saw first-hand what happens when two famous hotel bartenders spend a week mixing cocktails in the same London hotel bar: a double feature of Confessions of a Hotel Bartender and six specially-selected cocktails to drink your way through.

The bar at The Connaught, where all of this went down, was packed during Colin Field’s week long residence in Agostino Perrone’s home, but it almost always is. Luckily, there is now this: the Champagne Room at the Connaught Bar – a small, secluded drinking spot accessible either through an internal passageway from the main bar or through a set of heavy curtains off of a quiet corridor behind the lobby.

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Like Cocktails? You Have to Get to This Venice Pop-Up in April

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  Site Where: Venice, Italy
March 25, 2015 at 10:32 AM | by | Comments (0)

Walter Bolzonella at the Cipriani

Having a drink in one iconic hotel is good enough. Having a drink in one iconic hotel that’s mixed by the staff from another iconic hotel – even better. Having a drink from one iconic hotel that’s made by the staff of another iconic hotel while on the most iconic train on the planet? We need a drink. Preferably one made by the Ritz Paris bartenders, but made at the Belmond Cipriani in Venice, or served on the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express.

In a collaboration between the two hotels and the famous train, the head bartenders of the Ritz Paris (Colin Field - who, of course, is currently homeless, since the hotel is closed, and is going around the world staging pop-ups) and the Cipriani (Walter Bolzonella) will run a pop-up bar at the Cip from 9-15 April.

But wait! It gets better than that.

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Drink to Your Health (Literally) at the Shelborne Wyndham Grand in Miami

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  Site Where: 1801 Collins Avenue [map], Miami, FL, United States, 33139
March 19, 2015 at 4:05 PM | by | Comments (0)

Who knew that drinking alcohol could be good for you? When you show up for a cocktail at The Drawing Room in the Shelborne Wyndham Grand South Beach, have a chat with the apothékers (A.K.A. bartenders) and tell them what ails you. They’ll whip up a medicinal concoction full of herbs and other goodness and then write you a prescription in case you need a refill.

Run by famous (and a wee bit infamous) Austrian-born bar chef Albert Trummer, formerly of NYC's Apothéke and the Theater Bar, The Drawing Room has only been open since October 2014.

Using his knowledge of all things botanical (Albert is also a trained chef), he’s created a series of ten house elixirs using recipes he’s collected from monks and monasteries throughout Europe. These elixirs (not all are available at all times as it depends on seasonality and availability) are used to create his and his team’s Prescription Cocktails. If you plan it right you can bring yourself up at the start of the evening and then back down at its close.

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A Lesson in How to Bill Your Service Charge Politely

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  Site Where: Beeston Place, London, United Kingdom, SW1W 0JW
February 25, 2015 at 8:25 AM | by | Comments (2)

Service charges – a topic that’s been in our minds on HC recently. The ethics of room service charges got us all wound up the other week, but what about normal service charges – the type that get added automatically to your bill, before you can say whether or not you wanted to leave a tip?

Automatic gratuities are becoming the norm in London now, with 12.5% the normal whack (apart from our funny little friends at Belgraves who automatically add 15%, thank you very much). For reference, 10% is what one would normally tip in London.

But here is the genteel way to present your service charge:

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Old and New LA Is Converging at Koreatown's Hotel Normandie

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  Site Where: 605 S Normandie Ave [map], Los Angeles, CA, United States, 90005
February 24, 2015 at 9:15 AM | by | Comments (0)

Cassell's reborn

One of the things we most like about the Downtown LA renaissance is the redevelopment of old buildings into sexy modern hotels (unless, that is, you’re talking about the Fig, which we cannot conscience in anything but its old, Moroccan incarnation).

The Hotel Normandie was already pretty sexy – a Renaissance Revival-style building done 1920s by Walker & Eisen, who also did the Beverly Wilshire and the United Artists Theater (aka the Ace DTLA), and now a 94-room boutique hotel (although with the old style preserved rather than gutted).

But now it’s stepped up the ante with some food and drink offerings that, rather like the hotel, combine the best of old and new LA.

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Brussels' New Zoom Hotel is All About the Beer

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  Site Where: Rue de la Concorde 59, Brussels, Belgium, 1000
February 20, 2015 at 9:06 AM | by | Comments (0)

Last time we checked in on Brussels, we were all about the beer bar at the new Zoom Hotel in Ixelles (up the hill from the medieval bit, but where all we the cool kids go). 50 Belgian beers, selected by a top Belgian sommelier? Oui, s’il vous plait.

So obviously, when we were in Brussels last week, there was only one place we were going to stay. More on the hotel another time, but for now, here is the beer bar.

Yeah, it’s not what we were expecting either. Discreet. Grown up. Who knew boozing could be like this?

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The Dupont Circle Hotel Will Make You Feel All Warm Inside... While You're Outside

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  Site Where: 1500 New Hampshire Ave NW [map], Washington, DC, United States, 20036
February 19, 2015 at 9:02 AM | by | Comments (0)

Hotels reaching out beyond their walls – this could be a thing. Hot (literally) on the heels of the James NYC turning its outside wall into a mural, the Dupont Circle Hotel in Washington, DC, has opened a new bar – on the street.

The pop-up “snow bar” is to warm you up as you pass through the snowy city, with cocktails created by the hotel’s mixologists. Hot cocktails, of course – they’ve invented one called the Nutty Van Gogh, which takes Nutella-brewed hot chocolate and adds Frangelico and caramel Van Gogh vodka. Too sweet? Try a coffee infused with Bailey’s or Kahlua. Too sickly? Go old school with some mulled wine.

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Happy Hour at the Eccleston Square Hotel Comes with a 3D TV

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  Site Where: 37 Eccleston Square, London, United Kingdom, SW1V 1PB
February 19, 2015 at 8:29 AM | by | Comments (0)

The 3D TV

Anyone who loves hanging out in hotels* will know that the downside of gorgeous spaces, people-watching and nice bathrooms is usually the premium price. £15 for an entry level cocktail in a nice London hotel? Yeah, we’ll reluctantly swallow that, it’s par for the course.

Not so at the Eccleston Square Hotel, though. Until the end of March, it’s offering £4.95 cocktails from 5pm-8pm Monday to Saturday.

Yes, cocktails for under a fiver. In London. In a nice hotel. And not at an hour where drinking incurs funny looks.

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Are We the Only Ones Who Visit Hotels for Fun?

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  Site Where: Leicester Square, London, United Kingdom
February 18, 2015 at 9:31 AM | by | Comments (9)

The W London Lounge

Last week, I found myself in central London with a colleague, with an hour to spare between meetings. It was lunchtime. We both had work to do. We’d been out and about all morning.

We were near Covent Garden. My colleague suggested a restaurant. I mooted the Lounge at the W London. I won.

But when we got there, he was shocked. It was so fancy! All the staff were so beautiful! Everyone around us was so… rich looking! “Do you have to be Scandinavian to work here?” he asked me. He called his wife to marvel at the “eurotrash” and the “too beautiful” people surrounding us. He brought it up in the meeting we went to afterwards. The other meetingees were equally baffled and entranced by the idea of going to this insane, snazzy, eurotrashy hotel, when we could have gone to Starbucks.

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