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With the start of the holiday season about a week away, don't forget about the hotel lover on your list. You might not be able to predict their schedule enough to give them a specific getaway, but you can sort them out for a future stay with a gift card from Hotels.com.
Redeemable at any hotel, resort, or B&B on the site (claimed to be over 100,000), it's hard to think of a traveler who wouldn't be appreciative of a few bucks in their back pocket towards a room, whether it's a staycation or a proper vacation.
Last week, we stayed at a hotel that shall remain nameless. We checked in after a 13-hour flight to a room stocked with a free minibar. A few minutes later, we were brought a welcome gift: orange juice, a packet of cheese cookies, a chocolate bar, and a box of marshmallows. Perfect! A little graze of that, and we wouldn’t need to venture out while zombie-fied.
As it happened, we drank the juice, had one cookie and one marshmallow, and realized we didn’t want to add a sugar coma to the jetlag one, so we ordered room service. No worries! We closed the marshmallow box, put the lid on the cookies, and left the chocolate in its wrapper. The rest of those goodies could wait for tomorrow.
The next morning, we stumbled down to breakfast. By the time we stumbled back up, our room had been cleaned. And the entire tray had been taken away.
Why, housekeeping, why? Why would you think that an airtight plastic pot of cookies that had been opened, deprived of one cookie, carefully closed again and set neatly on our desk, was finished? Why would you think that a box of marshmallows that had been dipped into and taped back up was to be thrown away? Why would you think that an unopened chocolate bar was repellent to us? Why?
British-born, NYC-based artist Shantell Martin has designed a stream-of-consciousness-type summer tote exclusively for W New York. As an added bonus it's filled with sweet treats and summer essentials for a weekend getaway:
- Sugarfina Candy Cubes (Champagne Bubbles, Martini Olive Almonds, Peach Bellinis, Sugar Lips, Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Caramels, and Robin’s Egg Caramels)
- Kiehl’s Super Fluid UV Defense Sunscreen
- Never Hungover hangover prevention
So how do you get ‘em? It’s remarkably simple: stop in at the W New York’s newly reno’ed Living Room on Fridays between 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., order a cocktail, and presto! A tote bag arrives. This will only last until supplies run out, but we’ve been promised that they have a goodly sum available.
[Photo: W New York]
If you're reading this today from inside a Ritz-Carlton Hotel, then scurry on down to the front desk and immediately request one of the new signature Ritz-Carlton chocolate cakes.
Available at all Ritz-Carlton hotels around the world, the chocolate cake was created as an edible way to celebrate the heritage of Ritz-Carlton. They also wanted a cake that could travel well as they anticipated guests would take them home as gifts.
So, 20 of the Ritz's pastry chefs from around the world were asked to submit their own recipe for the best cake, all to be executed by Frederic Barasse, the head pastry chef at The Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner, and judged by Ritz-Carlton's top execs.
However, Ritz's corporate chef Rainer Zinngrebe had some stipulations--the cake had to contain Grand Marnier since the liqueur was named by Cesar Ritz for his friend Louis-Alexandre Marnier La Postelle, who had invented the liqueur (and who later gave Ritz the money to start up his very first hotel in Paris.) The cake also had to contain fine chocolate because, well, of course it has to have chocolate. And lastly, the cake needed to stay fresh for up to eight days.
After an extensive taste-test (which was written about for the latest issue of the Ritz-Carlton magazine), the chef with the winning cake was….
Keep reading to find out who won the Ritz-Carlton cake-off!
Holiday Hotels / Andaz Hotels / Hotel Shopping / Hotel Shops / Hotel Gifts / Hyatt Hotels / → All Tags
Since 2011, Andaz Hotels has worked with Women for Women International (WfWI) to provide women in war-torn countries with economic opportunities and be positive catalysts for change. Through these efforts, the Andaz Holiday Bazaar was born.
The Andaz Holiday Bazaar is a virtual pop-up shop offering locally inspired, unique gifts with proceeds donated to WfWI. The hotel brand collaborated with its Cultural Insiders from around the globe to curate the bespoke online Holiday Bazaar available through e-retailer, Joyus.
With everything from custom created home décor to one-of-a-kind artwork and artisanal food, here are a couple of our favorites:
Hotel Gifts / Hotel Gift Cards / Hotel Robes / Hotel T-Shirts / Hotel Bedding / Kimpton Hotels / Standard Hotels / Omni Hotels / Peninsula Hotels / → All Tags
No pressure or anything, but you only have 7 days to shop for the folks on your list before Christmas Eve arrives. But never fear, we're here to help you out with 7 Gift Ideas for the Hotel Lover in Your Life. Give this list a look and then get shopping!
1. GIFT CARDS: Let's be real. It's not the most thoughtful option but it is easy. And damn, wouldn't you be psyched if someone gave you a gift card for a hotel stay? Totally beats a gift card from Barnes & Noble.
2. ACE HOTEL LONDON's QUILT, $720: You can sleep assured knowing that you're the only person who has touched this blanket.
Visitors to the The Setai in South Beach this month might notice the property smelling a little more fragrant than usual. That's because master perfumer, Roja Dove, of Roja Perfumes (and formerly of Guerlain) has created a new fragrance especially for the luxury hotel.
The orange-inspired Neroli-based scent is now present throughout all areas of the hotel and can be found in the new line of bathroom amenities from the shampoo to conditioner, shower gel, body milk, and hand soap. Roja himself traveled to the Setai last New Year's to conduct research for the "olfactory project." And here's what he came up:
Hotel Swag / Dorchester Collection Hotels / Hotel Teddy Bears / Hotel Gifts / London Hotels / → All Tags
How much do you love the Dorchester Hotel in London? So much so that you would spend 125 GBP (or $200 US) on a special handmade mohair teddy bear dressed up as a Dorchester hotel chef? Or perhaps you fancy the doorman version instead? (It's also slightly cheaper at $145 US.)
Price tag aside, we're suckers for these little teddy bears. Maybe it's because their little uniforms are exact replicas of the staff uniforms. Or maybe it's because the hotel has only made 500 of these, making them limited-edition bears. Beside it totally beats another boring hotel candle.
Now if only they could make a teddy bear that exactly resembled HotelChatter's Hottest Chef in the World....
[Photo: Dorchester Hotel Shop]
Readers, it has become an obsession.
Earlier this year, we returned home from the Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge in Alberta, Canada, with a few wee jars of their bee's honey. When we ran out, we were bereft. What could brighten up a cup of morning tea or bowl of yoghurt like this honest-to-goodness, tastes like real food sweet stuff?
Supermarket honey just didn't cut it, of course. To our surprise, the Fairmont folks heard our Twitter moaning and offered to send us samples from a few more of their hard-working hotel honeybees in residence.
After our last-minute reminder yesterday, all you Bostonian hotel geeks should already have 'pink' on the brain. Which might make this other piece of news more applicable. Following on the success of its signature hot pink taxis, Langham has partnered with beauty product wizards at O.P.I. to manufacture a line of "Langham Pink" nail polish.
Now, we realize this may not be for everyone. After all, not all men and women like to paint their nails. And the ones who do might not necessarily jibe with the Langham's ludicrously bright color of choice. But for the discerning eye, this little bottle of pantone 707C will be taking its rightful place in a long line of must-have hotel knickknacks.
You know the scene: wandering down the Champs Elysées looking aimlessly for some Christmas presents. Will it be some macarons from Ladurée? Some sparkle from Cartier? A €3 saucisson from the Christmas market? And as you’re mulling them over, you walk past the Hotel de Crillon and spy the perfect present for your hotel-loving friend.
Ladies and gents, may we present, Crillon keyrings. They come in eight charming shades, are shaped like the Eiffel Tower, and have the hotel’s C logo stamped into their supple leather bods.
Hotel Gifts / Ace Hotels / Holiday Hotels / New York City Hotels / Manhattan Hotels / Hotel Shopping / → All Tags
Hotel gift shops often offer a dire selection of wares: chintzy city memorabilia and chocolates of questionable quality, for instance, and maybe a plush monogrammed robe if you're lucky. There are exceptions of course, usually on the higher end of the spectrum (see: offerings from Ritz-Carlton properties and The Beverly Hills Hotel, for instance).
Ace properties, however, have done a stand up job in reversing the middling retail reputation of hotels. (Partnering with bourgeoise hipster boutique Opening Ceremony added some definite street cred). Currently offering a few Holiday Bundles, these pre-packaged and branded designer goods include a themed New York pack with an Ace New York x Pendleton plaid throw, Ace x Wings + Horns hooded bathrobe, and Ace Hotel Tee ($390.00).