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Football. Gotham. There’s a theme to England’s upcoming hotel openings – they’re themed. How very exhibitionist, you say? Not as much as this next one, which will actually be called The Exhibitionist.
The Exhibitionist will open in London’s chi-chi South Kensington in November. It’ll be part of the Preferred Hotel Group and is in a building that was apparently constructed for officials of the royal family. There’s not a huge amount to go on so far, other than a Facebook page and this landing page on the PHG website, but here are some things we have gleaned already. There will be:
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Finding a hotel room is easy. Simply go on the Internet or use your smartphone and voila! You're booked. But if you are only interested in new hotels, then that's a different story. Luckily, you have us. And we're obsessed with new hotels. Here's a list of hotels that have opened or are opening this month (and a few that aren't going to make it.) Got a new hotel to add? Send it to us!
OPENING THIS MONTH
· Rosewood Beijing: We've been eying this property for quite some time and now we're excited to see it will open on October 23. The first Rosewood for China, the Rosewood Beijing will have 283 rooms opposite the twisting CCTV Tower by Rem Koolhaas. There's a Sense Spa on site (complete with Spa Suites that you can book) and six restaurants and bars to choose from. Rates start at 2,050 CNY a night for a deluxe room with a king bed. That's about $334 USD.
· AC HOTELS BY MARRIOTT NEW ORLEANS : The first stateside AC Hotels by Marriott is promising to open in the Big Easy this month. But for now, no reservations are being accepted on the website. We plugged in dates in October and November and the dreaded "unsuccessful sell" came up. However, we do know that the hotel will be opening by November 12. So it's just a matter of getting the reservations system done.
NOT GONNA MAKE IT
· W BEIJING: We've been skeptical of the W Beijing's opening date for a really long time. Last we heard, they would open in September but now the hotel is saying it will open on November 1 instead. We're already starting to lose interest.
· HOTEL ZOO BERLIN: The reopening of the historic Hotel Zoo in Berlin will not happen this month. Instead, the new look will be unveiled on November 3 with rates start at 121 euros a night. We've been kept in the dark on the design details of the renovation but these rooms pics are showing off some pretty luxe spaces. We likey.
Call us snobs, but London goes better with Paris and Rome than with Hamburg and Copenhagen. We’re not the only ones who think so, either – Generator Hostels are opening properties in the City of Light/Eternal City next year.
Generator Paris (above) will be the largest Generator to date, with 950 beds in the 10th arrondissement (AKA the Canal St Martin nabe). It’ll be designed by Toronto-based Anwar Mekhayech, who’s also worked for Soho House and Momofuku, and will include a café-lounge and an intimate bar”. Prices will start from €25 for a dorm and €98 for a private ensuite room (for two people). Pretty decent, for Paris.
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A tech-friendly hotel that accepts reservations by app? Snooze. A tech-friendly hotel that only accepts reservations by app? Now that’s something we’re not sure anyone’s dared try before. Except there’s probably a reason for that.
Next month, budget UK chain Premier Inn launches a new brand, hub, with a flagship hotel opening in St Martin’s Lane, central London. It’s another millennial-friendly idea – aiming “to catch the imagination of guests who already rely on technology for many other aspects of their everyday lives”. Technology is going to play a central part – or, rather, the new hub by Premier Inn app will.
You’ll check in via the app, of course; then during your stay, you can control the TV channel, the room temperature or the lighting by using the app. You can use it to order food to pick up downstairs, and stream entertainment on the 40in TV. And for when you venture outside, the app contains a “detailed local area guide, hosting a careful edit of the hottest places” (more millennial speak, there), and even “is enhanced by an Augmented Reality experience in the room”. Not sure what that means. Not sure we want to.
Virgin Hotels have put an end to the rumors they willingly helped others spread about themselves, but there's still a while to go before the hotel actually opens to the public. Yet if you continue to be good little boys and girls, you should be able to sleep with a Virgin by Christmas.
The unofficial opening date for the Virgin Hotel Chicago is now December. And boy, do we hope Santa Branson and his elves can pull this off. Work is still obviously underway at the hotel and we've yet to see an actual website for the property. But they do have a general manager and a chef on board.
So we hope the rest is just a matter of making lists, checking them twice, finding out what's naughty and nice, and then, finally, crossing them off.
[Photo: Virgin Hotels/Facebook]
Manhattan may have something to say about this.
There’s a new hotel opening in Manchester next year. It’s retro, it’s art deco-ey and it’s a brooding old Victorian towerblock. Its name? Hotel Gotham.
Taking over a Manchester landmark – the former Midland Bank HQ on King Street – in April 2015, Hotel Gotham will have a restaurant and club as well as 60 rooms – spread over seven floors above a Jamie’s Italian restaurant. While the website is all retro New Yorky, the rooms, apparently, will “take their cue from art deco”. And, here’s where it gets weird – the Manchester Evening News reports that the overall design will be “Japanese and Tuscan inspired”. Too much? Not according to the owners, who are already calling it “one of the sexiest hotels in Europe”.
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Following a snapshot on Wednesday, it’s time to take a closer look at Mondrian London at Sea Containers, now finally open on the city’s Southbank. Getting inside the hotel is possible from the river if you’re on foot, but the main entrance – white curtains, candles, and all – is on Upper Ground, where construction on Southbank Tower is still in full swing.
Up a few steps and past the second of two oversized interlocking anchor chains (the first is outside), you’ll find reception (above), sliced out of the copper hull that runs all the way to the river, with spotlights marking its shape as a dotted line on the floor.
The City of Light is a cruel mistress. She taunts us by opening amazing hotels we can never afford (like the Peninsula) and gets us all steamed up wanting to visit. She tantalizes us with €1 hotel deals, but only for a few weeks. And then she goes silent on new, but affordable, openings.
But word has reached us of an opening that has style, joie de vivre, je ne sais quoi and, erm, panache. Hotel Panache will open early next year in the 9th arrondissement, in the Grand Boulevards neighborhood (close to the Folies Bergères).
Formerly the three star Hotel Madrid Opera (which is now closed), it’s being done by the team behind the nearby Hotel Paradis, with design by Dorothée Meilichzon. Info is limited so far, but we know that the Panache will have 45 rooms “with big suites”, a restaurant and – the best bit – a cinema room.
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Shoreditch may seem to be the destination of choice for hoteliers at the moment, but there are other parts of London that are ripe for an accommodation invasion – like Greenwich, for example, where Accor has just announced a forthcoming Ibis Styles property.
Ibis Styles, of course, are trendy Ibises – millennial-focused, one might even say, with the budget roomrates you’d expect from an ibis proper, but with a focus on swish, boutique-style interiors. And Greenwich – or, the Greenwich Peninsula, to be precise, is in the midst of a vast regeneration project, with £5b ($8b) investment being pummeled into the area, overseen by the Mayor of London. It’s where the O2 (Millennium Dome) events arena is based, and is well connected to central London, despite being out in the sticks. It’s also an easy 10-minute journey from London City Airport.
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We said on Monday that September was making its last two days count in London, and it did: following the opening of The Beaumont in tony Mayfair, we finally had a chance to see inside Mondrian at Sea Containers last night.
The references to the building’s history are everywhere: from the copper hull that cuts from the entrance past reception to the riverside restaurant in a sweeping curve to the actual containerships displayed in the lounge above.
Located in the city's Hivernage district, the W Marrakech will have 148 guest rooms nd suites, include one Extreme WOW suite, along with residences. there will also be a signature restaurant, an all-day dining venue, a bar, an outdoor bar, WET pool deck, an Away Spa and FIT, the W's branded fitness center. And of course, Whatever/Whenever will also be in place.
GA Design International, the folks who did the W Taipei and the St. Regis Osaka, will handle the interiors fror the property which is expected to be "cutting-edge" and "contemporary lifestyle." In a hotel scene, that's dominated by old world luxury hotels, we think this W will be very much necessary.
Up next for W Hotels? Quite a lot, actually. The group plans on opening 15 hotels by 2018.
You might have heard of Chicken Shop, the ever so trendy (but tiny) restaurant chain owned by the people behind Soho House. You might have heard that its fourth London outpost opened this weekend in the Hoxton Holborn. You might pop along to the Hox, and stride confidently past the people flooding the open-plan bar and lobby area, towards the restaurant at the back.
“Is this the Chicken Shop?” you might ask the perfectly made up, beautifully dressed ladies looking you quizzically up and down at the restaurant entrance. And they will say: no.
You see, the restaurant in the lobby is Hubbard & Bell, “dishing up Brooklyn grill style grub”, as the website says. Chicken Shop, on the other hand, is an underground restaurant. As in, it’s actually underground. And unmarked. And the closest to a secret restaurant you will get in the London hotel scene.