Tag: Hotel RumorsView All Tags
When Richard Branson was asked at the launch of Virgin Atlantic’s direct service from Heathrow to Detroit whether he had any plans for a Virgin Hotel in Motor City, we assumed he was just being polite.
“I’d love it if we could find the right site for a Virgin Hotel,” he said at the press conference. “We’ll talk,” said Wayne County Exec Warren Evans. “I’ve got an existing jail site that could work.”
Everyone chuckled, and assumed that was that.
But now it seems we may have been making one assumption too many, because in an interview with D Business, Branson expanded on his idea.
Printer's Alley, soon to be home to a Virgin, an Ace and... a Witherspoon?
Perhaps it was the ludicrously over the top travel experiences offered to the Oscars nominees in their party packages. Perhaps she wanted some luxury after the wilds of Wild. Whatever – rumor has it this week that Reese Witherspoon is to open a hotel in Nashville.
US Weekly claims that Witherspoon and husband Jim Toth have been down “a few times to look at properties”, and have already met an architect and decorator (before they buy? Dedication).
Hotel Rebrandings / James Hotels / Hotel Rumors / Miami Hotel Mambo / Starwood Hotels / Luxury Collection Hotels / MiamI Beach Hotels / → All Tags
Yesterday was the official last day of existence for the James Royal Palm Hotel in Miami.
Not much else has changed at the property except for its logo which is quite cute. Rates for this weekend for a superior king bed start at $546 a night (plus a $25 resort fee.) FWIW, it's an SPG Category 6 hotel, which means it will take between 20,000 and 25,000 Starpoints to stay here for free night.
So we guess that's that. Or is it?
We'll probably get coal in our stocking for this latest hotel rumor but Santa Claus already has us on the naughty list, so here it goes:
We got this cryptic email in our inbox a few weeks ago that said:
A Very wealthy Russian is in process of buying a number of Aman Hotels, including the renowned Hotel Bora Bora on the island of Bora Bora which was closed completely some 5 years ago. With plans to completely renovate or re-build.
(The emailer also wrote "Arman Hotels" but we've taken the liberty of correcting it to Aman, since surely that's what they were talking about.)
This is interesting because Aman Resorts, a collection of stunning luxury retreats, has been the victim of a nasty business dispute, and subsequent lawsuits in the UK and the US, between Russian billionaire Vladislov Doronin, and troubled financier Omar Amanat, who purchased the hotel brand together during a happier time.
It's been a while since we've heard from Viceroy Hotels but today's announcement is rather grand--Viceroy Algarve at Quinta Da Ombre will open in Portugal in 2017.
The resort will have 147 "stylishly-curated hotel guest rooms" along with 99 Viceroy-branded residential units in apartment, villa and townhouse configurations. There will also be seven dining venues, two outdoor swimming pools, an 18-hole golf course with designated clubhouse, a spa, a children's center a library lounge and over 6,000-sq.ft. of event and meeting space. The property will be designed by architectural design firm WATG, with interiors done by Wimberly.
All we have right now to look at is a watercolor painting of the area but Viceroy promises the resort will mix a "classic villa aesthetic" with "sleek, modern decor." As for Quinta da Ombria, it's a major development project by Pontos Group in the Algarve region, Portugal which is about two hours south of Lisbon and just 25 minutes from the Faro airport. It's still under construction but Viceroy is already hyping up its proximity to neighboring villages which are described as "centuries old." And that's what this Viceroy seems to be about--mixing the very old with the very new.
Now that Viceroy has broken into the European market, we expect more locations to be announced. We've also heard a rumor that Viceroy Hotel Group might be creating another brand.
Hotel Development / Nashville Hotels / Ace Hotels / Edition Hotels / 21c Museum Hotels / Hotel News / Hotel Rumors / → All Tags
Exciting times are ahead for Nashville’s hotel scene. In particular, the city's boutique otel scene is really coming up. Already, there's a Virgin, Thompson and Kimpton in the works, but now we've learned there's an Ace and an Edition coming as well.
How do we know this? The Nashville Convention & Visitors Corporation has released a "cheat sheet" of new Downtown/Midtown hotels in the works, most of them opening in the city's coolest neighborhoods. But don’t pack your bags yet, as many of these hotels are years from completion, with some still under speculation. And we all know that anything can happen in hotel development, not the least of which is a flag change.
Still, it's hard for us not to want to grab a partner and do-so-do with excitement. Here's what has us skipping in our cowboy boots this morning:
Hotel Rumors / Moxy Hotels / Marriott International / Marriott Hotels / Hotel News / New Orleans Hotels / → All Tags
We can't reveal our sources but there is word going around that a Moxy Hotel is being developed for New Orleans, which really could not be a more perfect city for the young and fun Moxy brand. It's also a favorite city for Marriott International.
The hotel company already has 18 Marriott-branded hotels in or just outside the city, with several more within an hour's drive. And every brand is represented there from Residence Inn to Couryard, Springhill Suites, Ritz-Carlton, JW Marriott, Renaissance, Marriott and even the first-ever AC Hotels by Marriott in the United States. That hotel is opening next month.
We can't hardly wait for the November opening of the Miami Beach Edition Hotel but a self-described "hotel enthusiast" is more excited for the Abu Dhabi Edition Hotel, which is slated for 2016.
Admittedly, we haven't heard much about Edition's first Middle Eastern property but our curious reader did some sleuthing and has uncovered its location of in the Al Bateen Harbour complex in Abu Dhabi Marina. He also determined that the hotel will most likely be within a complex called Al Marasy.
There's no mention of a hotel project on the complex's website but our curious reader thinks that the Abu Dhabi Edition could open in one of the nearly finished, but still empty buildings on the waterfront. If that's true, the Abu Dhabi Edition could totally open in 2016. If construction still hasn't started, then we can kiss that date goodbye. Anyone know what's going on with the Edition in Abu Dhabi? Send your sleuthing to us!
Interestingly, Marriott has already sold the Edition Hotels in London, Miami and NYC to the Abu Dhabi government. Marriott will, of course, manage the properties. And as long as each one is run like London Edition, we won't mind.
Once upon a time, we called the in-room hotel iron one of the most useless hotel amenities. However, business traveler readers of the site disagreed since they often use the iron for last-minute crisping up. As it turns out, other travelers are using the iron for crisping up too. Just not for button down shirts and linen pants.
The Best Reviews site said they heard a rumor "that some guests use hotel irons to prepare simple meals. Allegedly, it's the convenience, cost savings, and special diets that drive the behavior."
Ok, special diets are one thing. Convenience and cost savings are another. Are you out of your minds? Why would you do this? If you can afford a hotel room that has an iron in it, surely you can afford some food nearby. Unless it's 3am and you've got the munchies. But still. Cooking a hot dog, or other food, on a hotel room iron means you went somewhere to purchase a hot dog and a bun and some ketchup, instead of just buying something that's already cooked.
Of course, Best Reviews, being a product review site, went one step further and actually cooked a hot dog on an iron. And an egg and a hamburger, a pizza, s'mores and more. They also recommended the best irons to use for this sort of thing. #SMH #NIMBY #WTF #STFU #NOPE #DROPSMIC #PEACEOUT
Have you ever used a hotel room iron to cook a meal? You are going to have to tell us about it in comments below. Some judging may occur.
[Photo: Best Reviews]
The other day we were tipped off to a rumor that Ritz-Carlton Hotels would be taking over the swank One Bal Harbour Resort & Spa in Miami on October 1. (The hotel is currently a part of the Personal Luxury Resorts & Hotels portfolio. Previously, it was a Regent Hotel.)
Before you get your La Perla and/or Hugo Boss undergarments in a bunch, nothing has been confirmed. Indeed, when you make a reservation on One Bal Harbour's website for next month, there is no mention of the RC takeover. Similarly, Marriott's Find a Hotel search function has no Ritz-Carltons listed in Bal Harbour. And combing random pages on the internet is also turning up nothing. But usually when we hear a whisper on the hotel grapevine, it turns out to be
a done deal true. Now, we'll just have to wait and see.
Currently, One Bal Harbour charges no resort fee. Meanwhile, Ritz-Carlton South Beach is going to start charging a $25 fee on October 1.
[Photo: One Bal Harbour/Facebook]
Hotel Rumors / Rocco Forte Hotels / Venice Hotels / Italy Hotels / Luxury Hotels / Amanresorts / MGallery Hotels / LaGare Hotels / Sina Hotels / → All Tags
Scouring around for information about the forthcoming JW Marriott Venice yesterday, we stumbled upon a rather exciting piece of news: Rocco Forte is planning to open a hotel in Venice.
According to La Nuova, RF himself said that Venice is “attractive” (no, really?), and that he’s looking for a property. The only problem is:
Venetian palazzos are small, and it’s difficult to find space for a 60-room property, which is what we’d like.
Simples, Rocco – buy an island.
That article is from 2012, so let’s hope they’re close to finding something by now. In the meantime, here are three other recent Venice openings (all 2013) that’d be worth a shot:
Given that both companies share a common investor--Saudi Arabian billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal--a merger isn't that surprising. Indeed, whispers on the inside of one of the tony hotel brands is that the merger is likely, although still nothing's been confirmed.
But when it does happen, we're extremely curious about how it will happen. Our source says the two companies will operate separately but does that ever really go as planned in a merger?
And what about the guest experience? We're guessing that stays separate too since Fairmont and Four Seasons have some wildly different properties (and not so wildly different ones.) But will Four Seasons guests have access to the Fairmont loyalty program and vice versa? (FS doesn't have a loyalty program per se but they do have an "By Invitation" program that gives regular, loyal guests some perks.)
So many questions and so little answers. If you've heard some "chatter" on this possible luxury union,let us know!