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Just when you thought Soho House was all about quietly colonizing the world, with Chicago on track to open next month, comes the welcome news that it’s not neglecting its origins. No, not the forthcoming City of London property, but something much better – another English country house hotel to rival Babington House.
When we had our first drink at Gŏng at Shangri-La at the Shard a few weeks ago, we spied a number of cranes across the river working on neighboring hotel projects 10 Trinity Square and citizenM Tower Hill, and made a mental note to have a closer look on the ground.
So we did this past weekend, with above the imposing façade of the former Port of London Authority, due to become mixed-use complex 10 Trinity Square, with 120-room hotel, restaurant, club, spa, and 41 residences. The glass building you see poking out on the left is the car-melting Walkie-Talkie tower on Fenchurch Street.
Hotel Okura might be preparing itself for a multi-year closure–demolition–redevelopment cycle next year (if the Monocle petition to keep it won’t throw a spanner in the works), but another iconic Tokyo hotel will have shrugged when they read that news and thought: been there, done that, way ahead of you.
Above is what Palace Hotel Tokyo looked like in late 2008, presiding over its own moat in its second incarnation, after starting life as the government-run Hotel Teito just after WWII. The following year it closed and reinvented itself over the span of three years into something worthy of the theme “Before and After” – check it out after the jump.
Believe it or not, but this sad-looking vacant block of red brick has uninterrupted, million-dollar views of London’s Tate Modern museum, with that little bit of murky water actually being the river Thames. Why are we showing you this? Because a few years from now this might turn into a glassy new mixed-use complex, centered around a new 224-room hotel a few blocks away from St. Paul’s Cathedral.
Referred to at the moment as the Queensbridge House Hotel & Apartments, the 7-story building would replace three existing office blocks, which sit tightly between the Thames and the busy street right behind, as well as above it – more pictures to get a sense of how that works below.
Late last year we asked the question whether the Hilton London Bankside was being revived, with construction having picked up after several years of silence to the point where the multi-story hole in the ground had been filled up.
The revival question we can now answer with a resounding yes, with the hotel recently having “topped out”, i.e. reached its highest point. It also sounds like it will open mid next year, with the rather bland interior renderings we looked at previously now updated on the architect’s website to reflect a much warmer, interesting design which apparently follows “Hilton’s newly launched brand standards”. Above one of the 292 rooms, further below lobby, restaurant and bar.
Then and Now / Edition Hotels / Miami Hotel Mambo / Miami Beach Hotels / Hotel Construction / Hotel Openings / → All Tags
A tipster on the ground in Miami Beach snapped these shots for us a few weeks ago and all we can say is WHOA. Like, in a good way. WHOA.
Of course, there still is a lot of work to be done but it is looking rather crazysexycool already. For comparison, here's what the hotel looked like back in February 2012.
When Four Seasons Kyoto made it onto our list of openings to be psyched for in 2013, it was really a mix of hope and wishful thinking on our part that secured it a spot on there, following the announcement the year before that the Canadian group was developing a property in the former imperial capital of Japan (which, incidentally, gets a staggering 50 million visitors a year).
Having had a chance to walk by the construction site this week, we’ll be readjusting our expectations significantly and shooting for a 2016 to 2017 completion. The Four Seasons sign is proudly displayed though at the 5 acre site in Higashiyama-ku, just to the east of the city’s Kamagawa river and less than 10 minutes by taxi from Kyoto’s JR / Shinkansen train station.
Grupo Habita, Mexico-based operators of boutique design hotels, will be taking on the Windy City with a 120-room hotel in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood. There is no official name yet for the hotel, which is presently scheduled to open in the summer of 2015.
This will be the 15th and largest hotel for Grupo Habita, who has made transforming historic buildings a true art form. We don’t know yet who the design team is for the new hotel; however, all you have to do is look at their other hotels - such as Downtown in Mexico City and Hotel Americano in Manhattan - to see what an extraordinary pool of design talent there is coming from Mexico.
According to DNAinfoChicago, approval was given to Convexity Properties by the Chicago City Planning Commission— no small achievement—to convert a 12-story Art Deco building, the Northwest Tower, to a 75-room hotel, along with a nearby warehouse, which will offer “shared rooms,” for a total of 120 rooms.
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Seeking to tap into the ever-growing Latin American market in South Florida, Chile’s Atton Hotels has announced that it will build its first U.S. property, a $65 million project to be named the Atton Brickell Hotel, in Miami. Scheduled to open in 2016, Atton says it will instantly become the chain’s flagship hotel due to Miami’s ties to Latin America and its growing international business community.
The property will be the company’s fifth overall and will be located in the Brickell Financial District of downtown Miami. It will be 12 stories high and have 275 rooms, offering free buffet breakfast, an outdoor pool, and on-site restaurant and bar concepts (specifics have yet to be announced).
Here's a snapshot CitizenM posted on Facebook last week. Um, yeah. Not much to look at except the funny tag lines ("New York luxury, New Jersey prices") but the good news is, the hotel is in very much works and should open in 2016. And then after that, CitizenM is hoping for four more hotels in NYC. We say, let's focus on the Bowery first.
Yeah. That's all we got. BUT we did get to tour some model rooms and the rest of the property. We'll have a bigger breakdown for you on Monday but here's what you need to know:
· The room types are spread out amongst three towers. The World Tower has the biggest but most basic rooms. The Story Tower has the smallest but funnest rooms while the Luxe Tower has the plushest rooms with the full SLS experience (mirrors on the ceiling, peek-a-boo showers, pops of pink.)
· The casino floor will have plenty of gaming but surrounding the gaming floor is an SBE-wonderland of sorts with restaurants from Katsuya, Umami, 800 Degrees and Cleo, along with several retail stores from Fred Segal.
· The Bazaar restaurant from Chef Jose Andres isn't just a restaurant. The space will have 10 gaming tables, a MEAT room (yes, it's what you think it is) and a Bar Centro.
· The Life nightclub, which was created out of the old Sahara theater space, is going to be off the chain. Make no mistake--this is a massive nightclub but if you're into that, it will blow you away with massive LED screens and aerial performers.
We'll have more from inside the SLS on Monday but if you want to get all caught up with the latest, head on over to VegasChatter to get up to speed.
If that headline implies hope of an opening date for The Bangkok Edition itself being around the corner, we’re going to ruin it for you straight away: looking at the state of construction at the Mahanakhon Tower – see below for further photos – we’ll say it will be at the very least the 2016 that Edition Hotels itself currently lists on its website before that happens, if not a bit closer to a decade after we first looked at the crazy-cool development (Jenga!).
That hasn’t stopped Dean & Deluca from opening in early March though, and if the crowd we saw here this past weekend is anything to go by, the urban Bangkok set is all over the barista-crafted lattes and $11 ham & cheese sandwiches. If you’re looking for the affordable Bangkok, you certainly won’t find it here.