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Is Amsterdam on your travel itinerary this summer? You may want to reconsider your hotel choices, as there will be something new to try: The Hoxton Amsterdam beat our estimate of an opening in September (along almost-neighbor W Amsterdam) by unleashing reservations from July 13.
Officially, rates start from €89, which currently comes out to a clean $100. Playing around with dates in the second half of July, a Saturday night seems most expensive, with rates from €159 ($178) a night, while on Sunday, we even spy a “Shoebox” for €69 ($77) a night. We’ve heard of dorm beds in an Amsterdam hostel going for more than that. All in all, depending on the size of the room you pick, you should be able to get an average of around $150 a night, which is outstanding value.
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This time last year, the San Clemente Palace was a shuttered, slightly battered grand old hotel in Venice, quietly wasting away on her own private island.
How things have changed – because after being picked up by Starwood and promptly closed for €25m of renovations, the St. Regis Venice San Clemente Palace is now open. Doesn’t she look better?
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But now it's time to start planning a sweltering summer break in Miami, because reservations are now open for July 6.
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It feels like we’ve already waited too long for the 24-hour stays, possible calligraphy classes and six full stars of the Patina Singapore, but the wait is nearly over – because they’ve now set August 1 as the opening date.
At least, that’s what they say on the Leading Hotels of the World website (there’s still no info on Patina Hotels’ own site). But should you try to book, you’ll find reservations are only open from September 1. Perhaps they’re hoping to open up the August rooms nearer the time. Perhaps they’re playing it safe. Or perhaps they enjoy making us wait longer.
Either way, there’s a nice surprise – a really nice surprise – with the rates.
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That was crazy fast.
Rooms are available to book for April 26 for $229 a night. That's for a 300-sq.ft. king room with modern minimalist decor in warm colors (Notice the "floating" cabinet.) The room rate includes complimentary in-room coffee and WiFi. Other top amenities include the Hyatt Grand beds, a 40" TV, iPod docking station and windows that open.
Downstairs the hotel will have a restaurant from Chef Roland Liccioni called Cochon Volant Bakery, Brasserie and Bar, which as the name reveals is an all-day spot serving "gourmet cheeses, fresh baked goods, fruits, organic juices, to-go foods and wines imported from France." The hotel's lobby also features a interesting "statement" piece behind the front desk from local South Loop artist Francine Turk.
In short, the place looks very cosmopolitan and chic, almost like Park Hyatt-lite.
But that's not all on the Hyatt Centric front.
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Few things are more exciting than a swanky new hotel in Thailand, but one thing that definitely is is a swanky new all-suite hotel in Thailand. Thai service + Thai food + lots of room to enjoy it = bliss.
The Akyra Manor Chiang Mai (the latest to join the SLH group, was due to open May 1, but has now been pushed back to July 1. You’ll just have to wait 8 weeks longer for its resort-in-a-city style to be unleashed.
What is resort-in-a-city style? Well, it’s in the middle of Chiang Mai, on the trendy Nimmanhaemin Soi, AKA Coffee Street; and yet each suite is centered round its own private “courtyard” (actually a balcony), complete with hot tub. Yes, your own private outdoor space with hot tub in the city center.
The banking theme runs through the hotel (as well as the Gotham City theme, thesexy Downton theme and the “sexiest hotel in Europe” theme), according to Mancunian Matters, with moneybags on the laundry bags, walls embossed with typewriters and “gold ingot toiletry stands” – for real.
As we told you before, the building originally opened as a bath house – Marcel Proust’s favorite, no less. In the 1970s, a newbie designer called Philippe Starck turned it into a nightclub, and it swiftly became the place to party in Paris. Then, it fell into disrepair, occasionally hosting artist residences. And now, it’s a hotel. Or, rather, hotel, restaurant and club, according to Paris Match. (Starck’s famous black-and-white checkered club flooring is now part of the restaurant.)
The JW Marriott Bodrum, which opens May 15, will be just outside Bodrum proper (no real sacrifice), in Yalikavak. It has 107 rooms, all with views of the Aegean Sea, as well as seven villas, most of which have their own pools.
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Cast aside all mental images of Radisson Blus and chain hotels – this is a delicate 9-room, family-owned place in a 16th century palazzo. Palazzo Ricasoli (built by one of the main Florentine families) has been a hotel before – in the 19th century it was the oddly named Grand Hotel de New York. Now, it’s equally grand but a lot more Italian, with the rooms curated by local designer Piero Brarda.
This isn’t your average hotel – the palazzo is still owned by the family who built it, and your host is Baroness Maria Teresa Ricasoli Firidolfi who, amazingly, promises to treat you as if you’re at a friend’s house. There’s a butler and a concierge, who’ll do everything from unpacking your luggage to booking your Uffizi tickets.
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There’s a trend emerging for 2015: private members' club hotels. Hot on the heels of the Hospital, the Arts Club and Soho House Istanbul comes The Convent, a country retreat in the Cotswolds, near Stroud.
The Convent – in an old, Grade II listed convent, set in 22 acres of land – is already a members’ club popular with the music industry (its live music venue probably has a part to play in that). It soft opened last year, but now it’s ready for a full unveiling.
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A while back, we talked about Ikos Resorts a new, two-strong European hotel brand that was planning a novel take on the all-inclusive concept. Well, the first property – Ikos Oceania, in Halkidiki, Greece – has now opened, and we have a little more information about what they have in store.
The “Infinite Lifestyle” concept revolves around the two major additions to the standard hotel bill: eating and spa-ing. The spa deal depends on your taking the deluxe package, which gets you one treatment (and this is a fancy Anne Semonin spa, so it’s a fancy treatment), along with a designated pool, area of the beach and dinner on the beach one night.
But it’s the food offerings that will really set it apart.