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Nothing like a little celebrity appearance to make a hotel re-opening event really sparkle, and that's what happened last week when Sheryl Crow turned up at the Sam Houston (which used to be called The Alden).
The 100-room hotel recently completed renovation work on all guest rooms, suites, and public spaces (the rooms now "combine clean decor with contemporary touches," which is a good thing, since the hotel's been around since 1924!), and has spent the past month celebrating its grand re-opening. Meanwhile, Sheryl Crow has a new album coming out, and she was in town doing promo at a local radio station.
The opportunity was too good to pass up!
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But it seems like the Paramount is poised for its big comeback, after it reopened this week flaunting a $40 million renovation, including updated guest rooms, a redesigned two-story lobby, a new restaurant and bar, an Italian cafe, and a retail concept to rival the Ace's hipster goodie shops, Opening Ceremony and Project 8a.
Coolest of all, perhaps, is the fact that Diamond Horseshoe, the hotel's legendary supper club from the 1920s, is going to be resurrected this fall in its original basement location. Developer Aby Rosen told the WSJ that the new 21st century Diamond Horseshoe will "be a nightspot akin to the Box, but without the raunchy content."
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It's a move we've witnessed before—an out-of-date Manhattan hotel seeks to reinvent itself with a sexier design and a shortened name. Hence, the Roger Williams became The Roger. And now, the former Radisson Lexington will now be known as The Lexington.
The hotel actually dates back to 1929, when it was originally known as The Lexington (so essentially it's come full circle). But the hotel isn't just returning to its roots by name alone: the owners hired Dash Design, who's worked on flashy renovations at the W Union Square and the J House in Greenwich, CT, to breathe new life into the 84-year-old hotel. The theme of the new multimillion dollar re-design? the glamorous, jazz age of New York.
That 1920s theme is definitely trending right now—we've also seen it appear at Manhattan's two newest hotels, The Refinery and The Jade—though we don't mind since part of New York's charm lies in its past.
If you're wondering exactly what "glamorous, jazz age New York" entails, take a look at the photo above, or read this tidbit from the hotel's press release:
"Brilliant gold elevator doors with whimsical songbirds will offer a taste of the Lexington New York City's original construction and serve as the entry point to the upstairs area of the hotel.
Photographs and drawings reflective of the Lexington New York City's storied past will compliment imagery of today's music scene and hang salon style above the bed…a verse from Irving Berlin's Russian Lullaby will dance through the room, embroidered into elements such as the lamp shade, bed cover and drapery."
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After months of renovation work, costing around $20 million, Le Meridien Atlanta Perimeter has officially opened inside the former Atlanta Perimeter Hotel and Suites. Of course, you remember the back story on this place, right? It originally opened as the W Atlanta Perimeter back in 1999, then Starwood sold it off in 2012, and it became an independent hotel.
Lots of work went in to transforming the hotel—including top-to-bottom renovations of all guest rooms, suites and public spaces, as well as a new Club Lounge, two club floors, and a new restaurant and bar. Biggest of all, the hotel took away all the balconies and replaced them with floor to ceiling windows.
But the hotel is nearing the end of its metamorphosis: on Thursday, the hotel officially re-opened as Le Meridien, with four out of twelve floors now open to guests. Though the restaurant is still under construction, the Longitude Bar is open, and the rest of the property is set to be completed by early June.
"Meet. Eat. Play. Stay." That's the motto at Reno's "CommRow," the 16-story, 60,000 square foot complex that opened downtown in 2011 right next to the arch as the biggest little city's premier "urban adventure destination" (i.e. a "non-gaming," "non-smoking" anti-casino funpark).
Not only is the world's tallest climbing wall (164 ft.) plastered to its facade, but inside, this place is stuffed silly with a 7,000 square-foot bouldering park, two live music venues, a cabaret-themed nightclub, and eleven different food and beverage "vignettes." (A martini bar! A tequila bar! A juice bar! Oh my!).
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On January 1, the former Hotel Conrad in Brussels changed hands and reopened as the Steigenberger Grandhotel. We don’t hear much about the brand in North America, so here’s the scoop. They’re a Germany-based group that manages 81 hotels all over Germany and in Austria, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Egypt and now Belgium. This includes their upper mid-range hotel brand, InterCity Hotels and the higher-end Steigenberger Hotels.
The hotel is located on the swishy Avenue Louise with its high-end boutiques and restaurants. We had the chance to get a look inside the hotel this past summer when it was still a Conrad and then, as now, the hotel falls into the deluxe category. It has an old-school glam feel to it with a great “gentlemen’s club” type bar and lounge. There’s even a smoking lounge if that’s your thing which, as you know, is quite scarce these days. Their restaurant, Cafe Wiltshire, has a lovely terrace overlooking the hotel’s courtyard.
The last time we’d talked about the Mayfair Hotel & Spa in Miami’s Coconut Grove section, things weren’t faring well. To be blunt—it was becoming a downright dump. In fact a friend who stayed there this past April told us that the previously named Mayfair House Hotel still hadn’t looked that great.
Well, it seems things have changed and the hotel has undergone a major renovation and will relaunch as a luxury property on September 21st. And if the images we’ve seen are any indication—they’ve put in major work.
The 179 suites, spa, and rooftop deck have all been overhauled to a South Beach sleekness that has us well intrigued. They’ve added Amazon ironwood fixtures, stained-glass windows, and sculptures plaster ceilings crafted by talented artisans.
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Natural disasters, like earthquakes, can paralyze travel plans, sometimes months and even years later. The February 2011 earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand, which pretty much closed down the city to tourism, was no different. But we've got good news--things are bouncing back, including the September 4th re-opening of the Ibis Christchurch Hotel, which has been closed for two years.
The South Island city of Christchurch experienced a 6.3 magnitude quake that caused 185 deaths. Slowly, but surely, the city has been rebuilt and people are moving back to the region.
It's been a long winter (and spring) but soon things will be getting back to normal on "Hotel Row" aka 44th Street in New York City with tomorrow's reopening of the revamped Algonquin Hotel at precisely 10am. After six months and an $18 million facelift, everything will be back in its place, except better than before. And that includes the hotel's resident guest--Matilda!
To celebrate the hotel's reopening and the return of Matilda, you can book the Matilda Package which includes To celebrate its re-opening, the Algonquin has updated its popular Matilda Package to includes accommodations; continental breakfast for two; a welcome cocktail in the lobby, a Matilda coloring book, a feline-focused book called "Fabulous Felines" by Sandy Robins, a plush stuff Matilda cat and chocolates for the kids and a "CATabulous" eye mask to help you with your catnaps.
Rates for Matilda package start at $329 a night not including taxes. Meanwhile, regular room rates for tomorrow start at just $229.
Wanna see what the new rooms of the Algonquin look like? GO HERE for our extensive photo gallery!
The Buckingham is turning into The Quin Hotel.
We've already told you that the Buckingham Hotel in NYC is turning into a new chic spot called The Quin but now we've got an estimated opening timeframe--Winter 2012.
Since that's Winter 2012 and not Winter 2013, we're guessing the place should open before the year is out. And with its location just blocks off Fifth Avenue and near big touristy spots like Lincoln Center, Museum of Modern Art and even Rockefeller Plaza, we bet the place will open right before the holidays to better cash in on the annual influx of holiday visitors.
Here's what we can expect when the hotel does reopen:
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The super-luxurious Ritz-Carlton Montréal is opening its doors once again on June 1 after an extensive renovation that saw it revamp its public areas as well as all of its rooms and suites.
This Grande Dame of a hotel has kept its belle époque style intact in its lofty lobby, Palm Court and Oval Room with coffered ceilings, much marble, and gold flourishes, but they’ve added a contemporary elegance by bringing in lots of whites, greys and textured woods.
The rooms and suites, too, are ritzy (sorry – we just couldn’t resist) with white, grey and yellow in abundance, modern lighting, and luxe decor. They’re a thing of beauty.
The Algonquin has been in the midst of a major spruce up since January, actually closing down for a few months for head-to-toe renovations. But before guests arrive on May 24 there's a part of the hotel that needs just a little extra time--the hotel's historic Blue Bar.
The venue has been expanded and updated with new lighting, banquette seating with black, white and navy fabrics and a jewel-toned blue carpet. The bar will open the first week of June.
The lobby area will keep its assorted sofas, chairs and loveseats for guests to sip cocktails, order light food or read a book. But the grouped seating will get new patterns and fabrics.
Rates for the hotel's reopening night are holding steady at $329 a night.