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Hilton Hotels are back with their creative approach to making going away for vacation a top priority. At the end of last winter, the chain wanted you to get away and now they want you to do it again; by staying at, of course, a Hilton property.
This week marks "International Use it Or Lose It Week", marking six weeks to go until we bid a fond adieu to 2013. Along with this celebration, the possibility of losing unused paid vacation time looms and Hilton doesn't really want you to relinquish this hard-earned benefit.
Diagnosing some imaginary (or not-so imaginary) working symptoms of vacationitis like Yellow Post-it Fever and Replyallgia, Hilton has gone pretty creative. If you feel like you might be coming down with any of these ailments, you can seek a consultation at the hotel's vacation website appropriately named, Vacation Care Center. A cheeky, self-triage of your workaholic needs will also enter you into a contest to win a weekend getaway at a Hilton property.
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Nevertheless, this hotel is a feast for the visual senses since the restored building marries vintage charm with edgy design and comfort. Named after the year that Kodak launched their first box and roll camera which, coincidentally, was the same year the building was built. Freaky!
With little doubt, the hotel's public spaces and rooms are an Instagrammers dream, 1888 is planning to attract even more "snap happy" guests with an Instagram contest.
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Renaissance Hotels wants you to ignore the “Do Not Disturb” sign and discover what’s behind door #1. It could be Cee Lo Green.
They’ve just launched the “Discovery Doors” online contest which they describe as a “new interactive film-based digital gaming experience.” We like gaming as much as the next guy or gal, so we couldn’t resist gettin’ all interactive with Renaissance and tell you how it plays.
The online game is directed by award-winning director Jason Zada, creator of the oh-so-creepy Take This Lollipop Facebook phenom. You enter the lobby of a real life Renaissance hotel filled with a cast of characters who give you keys to unlock doors that have a surprise behind each. We’re not going to tell you what those surprises are, but to give you an idea of the coolness factor, for the contest kick-off Renaissance Hotels surprised an unsuspecting family at the Renaissance New York Hotel 57 with an intimate serenade. When they opened their door they entered a room full of candles, flowers and Cee Lo Green.
The contest is appropriately titled "My Travel Turning Point," and entries so far have encompassed a wide range of experiences—from a road trip in South Dakota (as pictured above) to scuba diving in Hawaii to stumbling upon Brussels' Old Market Place, strewn with 1 million begonias.
As with any of these types of contests, the real opportunity here is to brag about all the cool places you've been, while doing your best to make the trip seem somehow meaningful. (As travel addicts ourselves, we know that most of the time, we just travel to travel—any life lessons learned along the way we just count as a bonus.)
And speaking of bonus, we bet you're wondering about the prize, right?
TownePlace Suites is offering five grand prize packages of $1,000 and 10 free hotel nights. Kinda worth it, if you ask us. How else do you plan on financing that camel trekking expedition in the Sahara? Or whatever other trip you have coming up, you crazy jetsetter, you…
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Summer tis the season for hotel contests, and Marriott got things kicked off last week when it announced its Pinterest five-day giveaway. One in four Americans said that they're going to spend more on travel this summer than the previous five years, but wouldn't you rather get stuff for free? We certainly like free, and we'll take anything, really, regardless of whether it's a bedside bottle of water or five nights on the house.
Feeling lucky? Here are a few rings in which to toss your hat:
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Ok, so you probably didn't win the $600-million Powerball drawing this past weekend, but we've got another contest for you to enter, this one with a bit better odds.
Marriott is giving away a customized trip to one of its eight tropical resorts in the Marriott Caribbean & Mexico Resorts collection, which include resorts in Aruba, Cancun (2), Puerto Vallarta, Curacao, Grand Cayman, St. Kitts, and St. Thomas. If you win, you get a five-night stay, daily breakfast for two, and a $200 resort credit at your choice of the above destinations.
How do you win? First, you follow Marriott Resorts Pinterest page and create a board on your Pinterest profile named “My Marriott Resorts Vacation.” Then, you find the "Pin Your Dream Vacation Board" located on Marriott's page and repin one image from each of the five categories (resorts, destinations, activities & amenities, dining and shopping) in your "My Marriott Resorts Vacation" board. Then dust off your hands and put your feet up -- this will automatically enter you in the contest.
The cookie monster's favorite hotel brand, DoubleTree has just launched a new travel-themed social media site called "DTour." Why should you care? Because to promote it, they're giving away six all-inclusive trips around the globe. Yup, free!
The DTour site is like a digital scrapbook, allowing users to post their own stories, photos and videos onto an interactive Google map—thus sharing their travel tips for a particular destination, and possibly being inspired by the experiences of others.
To enter the contest, all you have to do is upload your video onto the map.
According to a promotional video posted on the site, DTour (which was developed in partnership with Google and lives on a YouTube channel) aims to "redefine the way you plan and share your travels" and offer "inspiration to help plan the trip you've always wanted to take."
Some of the travel tips are kinda useful, like a Seattle video showing a 2-acre mountain bike trail built under the I-5. Though others are a little more questionable: do we really need to be cruising the Chicago River with some schmoozy travel talk-show host? Or watching a rerun of a Lonely Planet video about music venues in Nashville? (We'll go ahead and answer that one for you: nope.)
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Fly over the Pacific Ocean just before popping the question, thanks to The Shore Hotel in Santa Monica.
June is just a month and a half away and you know what that means--wedding season kicks off once again! (Yay! Boo! Uggggh.) But for hotels, the wedding season is practically a year-round thing. So if you're looking for the right way to propose, or if you're in the midst of planning a destination wedding or even if you're just looking for the chance to get a free wedding, start with these three hotels right here:
· The Shore Hotel Santa Monica: The Ocean Avenue hotel, practically an aisle march away from the Santa Monica pier and beach, has put together the Proposal By The Shore package which gives lovebirds a private helicopter ride over iconic LA landmarks with a special landing at a private and secluded spot overlooking Malibu beach. Once that's over a gourmet dinner will be provided on the beach at sunset with a personal beach butler, where presumably the question should be popped. (Sorry, ring not included.) The next morning, guests are treated to a massage at the holistic Tikkun spa nearby. Starting at $1,399, the package also includes overnight accommodations (of course) and a bottle of champagne and chocolate-covered strawberries. The package must be booked at least 72 hours in advance. Call the hotel at 800-599-1515.
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What would you say to an all-expenses-paid 35-day sojourn in Helsinki? Well, we know what we'd say: kyllä! (that's 'yes' in Finnish, at least according to Google translator…)
This summer, the Hotel Finn is offering one intrepid, bilingual blogger the chance to stay at the hotel for free (fun!), sleep in a different room each night (not so fun), and write about his or her experiences.
According to the Daily Mail, hotel manager Tio Tikka came up with the idea as a way to promote the renovations that were just completed on the hotel's 35 guest rooms.
Evidently, he was onto something. So far, over 600 people have applied for the role of 'professional sleeper', though we hope they all managed to read the fine print before sending off their writing samples. As per the guidelines, the winning 'sleeper' needs to be fluent in Finnish and English (there go our chances), with some knowledge of Russian as well. On top of that, the blogger will be required to "share his thoughts, adventures, and experiences of living in summery Helsinki."
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Sweepstakes alert! Next month (April 17 to 28) is the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival and as the official hotel partner, Conrad Hotels is giving you the chance to experience it for yourself with a pretty amazing sweepstake.
Not only does the lucky winner get two Vesey passes to the Tribeca Film Festival for three days – which give access to most screenings – they’re throwing in three nights’ accommodation at the all-suite Conrad New York and two business class flights from anywhere in the United States or the United Kingdom to the Big Apple.
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You saw their videos and heard their stories, and now you'll get to pick out the colors (and more) of their wedding. Congratulations to Robin and Jeremiah, who won the Embassy Suites Denver's $30,000 "Win a Wedding" contest.
More than 10,000 people voted in the online contest, which was held on the hotel’s Facebook page. The couple will tie the knot in front of 100 family members and friends on Saturday, May 18, in the hotel's Crestone Ballroom. We're not going to call it a celebrity wedding, but it comes pretty close. To hear more about their story, including jumping out of an airplane on their first date, see our first post profiling the constants.
That's settled, but the fun is far from done: Voting will start next week to select all the wedding details, from the dress to the entertainment. Each week there will be something different to vote on. Invitations are on the ballot now (as of Wednesday), and the wedding dress is next up on February 27th (we imagine that will be one of the bigger debates). You can vote on the hotel's Facebook page.
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You'll be able to vote on every detail down to the dress, but first you must decide which couple deserves to walk down the aisle in style. The contestants' videos are out, and the voting is in full effect! Now it's time for you to weigh in and decide their fate!
Robin and Jeremiah had a family member sing a song about them which, we must say, is so bad it's... bad (you'll see at the end). Jennifer and Chad literally put all their cards on the (poker) table (above) to convince us to vote for them.