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Hotels Doing Good / Hotel Openings / Hotel Opening Rates / Marriott Hotels / Marriott International / Haiti Hotels / Port-au-Prince Hotels / → All Tags
Normally, we tend to think, it’s easy. Independent, locally-owned hotel: good. Big, nasty, advantage-taking chain: bad.
But not in the case of the Marriott Port-au-Prince, the first international brand to reach Haiti, which opens March 1. It’s not just a chain hotel, but a collaboration between Marriott, the Clinton Foundation and Digicel Group, and it “aims to bring sustainability to the people of Haiti”.
Those are big words, but they’re backed up by fairly big actions. Staff are predominantly Haitian, and local businesses are providing everything from bathroom amenities and food (even the coffee) to the artwork displayed in the hotel, and even some of the “design elements” (or “furnishings”, as we assume we should call them).
Hotel Openings / Hotel Opening Rates / Baccarat Hotels / Hotel News / Manhattan Hotels / Luxury Hotels / Barry Sternlicht / Starwood Capital Group / → All Tags
But now, in checking the hotel's website, we see that the hotel will actually be open on March 2. And the price has dropped down a bit to $729 for a classic king. Here's what you'll get for that rate, aside from the glittery Baccarat decor:
The Classic King’s refined palette of champagne, ivory, platinum, stainless steel and chocolate brown feels both classic and contemporary, setting off such considered accents as cashmere throws, marble-topped nightstands and hand-painted panels, plus Baccarat crystal sconces and tabletop pieces. Crisp white custom-made Mascioni jacquard linens cover the beds, and delicacies from Parisian gourmet shop Fauchon fill Baccarat-red enamel minibars. In the white-marble bathrooms, meanwhile, Italian robes await and amenities created exclusively for the hotel by Maison Francis Kurkdjian Paris abound.
Guests will also be able to control their lighting, climate, entertainment and more by a tablet, which will also be wired into housekeeping, valet, a 24-hour concierge and in-room dining. Another cool touch is that the oversized, flat-screen TVs are "concealed within smoked mirrors." Sounds very "Fifty Shades of Grey" and we like it.
The steep rate, fortunately, does include complimentary WiFi. #richpeoplelikefreeWiFitoo
Hotel Fitness / Larry Johnson / Manhattan Hotels / Times Square Hotels / Hotel Openings / Hotel Opening Rates / → All Tags
New York's Knickerbocker Hotel is set to open/reopen on February 12 and while we're excited to see the end result of the transformation of a hotel that closed in the 1920s and languished as an office building for decades back into a modern day Times Square hotel, we are momentarily distracted by their fitness offerings.
That's because The Knickerbocker has hired former Knicks basketball player, Larry Johnson, as their new "Fitness Curator." So apropos. #alsoclevermarketingtheweekbeforeopening
Johnson who was a power forward for the Knicks, hand-picked the equipment placed in The Knickerbocker's fitness center, which includes such advanced machines like MyRide V3 spinner bikes by MATRIX and technology like the NIKE + iPod connectivity and FitTouch Technology.
Pittsburgh is definitely a town on the up. Want proof? Look no further than the Hotel Monaco, which opened last week.
248 rooms including 13 suites are what’s available, and the Pittsburgh theme (yes, there’s a Pittsburgh theme) is strong, if subtle- think a lamp in the shape of a penguin (hockey), meeting rooms named after notable locals (including Scott Fahlman, who invented the :) smiley face emoticon (for real)), and the Rebellion Suite, named by locals for locals, which harks back to the "great whiskey rebellion of western Pennsylvania".
Rooms are your typical Kimpton riot of weirdness, including jade-colored headboards, black paisley carpets, yellow cushions, houndstooth curtains, feature wallpaper and gilded cages for the pearl-effect chandeliers. That’s all good; what’s less so are the “glass showers” that the hotel describes (there are no photos, but we assume that means peekaboo. Peekaboo is not sexy. It's gross).
Here is one suggestion that floated into our inbox: the new Sir Albert Amsterdam, just opened in a former diamond factory next to the city’s Museum Square. Part of Sir Hotels, with each property based on a particular character in a borderline millennial-esque way, the group has a few hotels in Germany (Berlin, Munich, Hamburg) and one in Tel Aviv, Israel. Above a shot of one of the 90 rooms and suites: white walls contrasting with dark floors, furniture, and a shade of brown in the curtains and throw on the bed. The building being a former factory has the advantage of high ceilings and those factory-style windows we love. The vanity you see gives you a hint of where the bathroom is going for its color scheme – check it out below.
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When we say “pod hotel” what do you think? Cramped space, wallet-friendly, slightly claustrophobic but worth it if it saves a bit of money in an expensive city or when you only need a few hours kip in an airport, right?
These pods are wall-to-ceiling-to-floor glass. They are, in effect, little glasshouses. And instead of being cramped in a city, they’re in the countryside outside Canterbury, in a place called Little River, that looks as cute as it sounds. This is in the middle of nowhere – you reach it on foot, through bush land, and you’re rewarded with all-round views of the local valley and, beyond that, the Pacific (and of course, at night, the stars right above you).
Hotel Rebrandings / Hotel Openings / Hotel Opening Rates / Hilton Hotels / Paris Hotels / Hotel Renovations / → All Tags
Paris hotels – they’re just like buses. You wait months for one swanky new one to open, and then two come along at once. Mon dieu!
Yesterday we showed you La Réserve, Jacques Garcia’s ridonkulously expensive new project in the 8th arrondissement. Today, let’s look at something far, far more affordable: the Hilton Paris Opera, which has just concluded its renovations.
The hotel is indeed near the Opera Garnier, also in the 8th arrondissement, near the Gare St Lazare. Formerly the Concorde, Hilton have poured €44m into the refurbishment, and the property now has 268 rooms, of which 29 are suites.
First, the good news: after a two-year wait, La Réserve Paris, Jacques Garcia’s latest project for hotelier Michel Reybier, opened this week. The first, and very lucky, guests checked in Monday.
And now for the bad: with rates starting from $1,262, it’s likely you’ll be waiting a little longer to try it out.
You know the story already, of course, but this joins Geneva and St Tropez for the La Réserve brand, it’s in the 8th arrondissement, just off the Champs Elysées near Place de la Concorde, and is a petite place with just 40 rooms. We say “rooms” but 26 of these are suites, and four are presidential suites.
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Good news for the cost-conscious business traveller to London: a few weeks from now, there will be a fifth Tune Hotel to choose from, this time among Canary Wharf’s corporate high-rises. Four and a half years after we first tested its Westminster location, this 130-room hotel will bring some new interior design to go with the same low, low, low rates the group is known for.
Above a double room with window, of which there are 85. Another 22 doubles do without the exterior aspect, while for the 20 twin rooms the only choice is the windowed kind. Three accessible rooms (also with window) take it to the total of 130 rooms, walking distance from Canary Wharf tube station (the Jubilee line will take you to the heart of the West End in less than half an hour) and West India Quay for the DLR overground.
Naturally we had to do a room rate check. Here's what you can expect to pay on March 27. Break out the dollar bills!
Baha Mar Resort & Casino: At the main resort on site, you can expect to pay $350 a night for a seriously stylish deluxe king room with ESPA toiletries, a 48-inch flat screen TV, a Nespresso coffee make and a full or step-out balcony. The special opening offer also throws in a $100 in resort credit, which helps make the $40 resort fee plus 17.5 % tax per day a little more bearable. (But not really.) That resort fee includes: In-room Internet access, In-room Coffee, In-room Bottled Water, Unlimited Local calls, Health Club Access (2 per day), Non-motorized beach equipment.
Sorry the resort credit cannot be applied to the resort fee.
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Last week we had to inform you that the rooms at The Hospital have gone up in price just a few weeks in. But what we taketh away, we also give, so here’s some good news: Urban Villa is launching with lower rates than planned.
It is, of course, the all-suite half hotel, half residence midway between London and Heathrow (or, as they euphemistically style it, the “Great West Quarter” of London). When we first discovered it, rooms were due to start at £129, but now they’re down, right down, to £100 and up. For what you get, that is an exceptional rate. Nay, extremely exceptional.
Hotel Openings / Hotel Opening Rates / Marriott Hotels / Sarajevo Hotels / Residence Inn Hotels / → All Tags
Sarajevo is more famous as a city of hills, but it’s also one of those beautiful European cities with a river running through it. The Miljacka splits the city in two, with the city center on the north and a quieter, more residential side (with better views) on the south.
You’d think that a river city would have hotels clamoring to sit along the riverside, but for some reason, in Sarajevo, that hasn’t happened – most of the smaller, independent hotels are in the Old Town, and most of the chainy and business ones sit on the main airport road (AKA Sniper Alley).
But there is one exception. The only hotel that actually sits right on the Miljacka is the brand new Marriott Residence Inn. In another first, it's also the only internationally branded hotel in the whole of Bosnia & Herzegovina.*