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Earlier, we gave you 10 Basic Things a Hotel Must Offer Guests, no matter what the service level, as these basics are the core of any hospitality offering.
Those requirements ranged from security to cleanliness to service responsiveness. However, as the industry has evolved, the needs of guests too, have evolved. The constant demands for technology and customization have elevated the need for hotels across all service levels to keep up with these demands and ensure that they offer them through accessible and affordable options. Here are some of those requirements that have become, The Basics 2.0.
We'll be continually posting new "basics" so if you've got an idea for one, let us know.
Hotel Memories / Snapshot / Hotel Toiletries / Hotel Rants / NH Hotels / Hotel Amenities / Bathroom Amenities / → All Tags
Our name is HotelChatter and we are addicted to hotel toiletries.
Designer, cult, no-name motel brands Ė we canít get enough. We stash them away every night in our suitcase, so housekeeping gives us more. We check out with bagfuls of the stuff. We havenít bought soap or shampoo in years.
Hotel toiletries are the first things that always crop up in those articles that always crop up Ė the ones asking what is ok and not ok to take from hotel rooms. (Spoiler: itís always the toiletries and stationery thatís ok, everything else is off limits.)
Recently weíve noticed a decline in hotel toiletries. Smaller bottles. Fewer restocks. A sparser selection of products. Those wall dispensers that, much as we want to be eco, we canít quite get around to accepting.
We live, of course, us inhabitants of HotelChatter Towers, surrounded by hotel toiletries (a shoebox of soap, one of shampoo and conditioner, one of body lotion). And we tend to grab them without much thought Ė itís hard to remember just where that bottle of CO Bigelow came from, after all.
But, spring cleaning this week, we stumbled upon another shoebox full of body lotion Ė one collected in happier times, around 2006-2008. Perhaps itís coincidence, perhaps itís pre-financial crisis, but we noticed that most of these bottles had been personalized to the hotels Ė and we had a Proustian moment, there in the bathroom, remembering the various trips.
As expected it is full of "Mama" jokes. Well, actually, the skincare line itself is full of organic goodness made by Absolution Cosmetics like aloe, almond and sesame. The products are also without paraben, PE, phthalates, fragrance, synthetic dye, and aggressive surfactants. And they are made in France, to boot. (A 200ml bottle costs 14 Euros.)
But what really catches our eye are the names of the products. There are actually only three products--an all-in-one cleansing wash for face, body and hair; a body cream; and soap, but with the exception of the body cream, they all have different mama sayings..
Mama Loves You From Head to Toe
Mama Likes to Keep It Pure
Mama Wants To Cream You Up (Face and body cream)
Mama Loves You From Top to Bottom
Mama Only Wants What's Best for You
Mama Says Its Totally Natural
Getting clean has never felt so dirty.
Hotel Toiletries / Hotel Amenities / Luxury Hotels / Upper East Side Hotels Manhattan Hotels / → All Tags
So when it came to introduce a new line of bathroom amenities, the hotel had to go beyond the bland, diminutive plastic bottle. Instead, they collaborated with branding expert Richard Pandsicio and French illustrator Jean Philippe Delhomme, who've done a couple of other cheeky branding and caricature projects for the hotel from the website to hotel stationary and adverts.
But while you may not think much of the stationary stashed in a drawer, you will certainly notice the illustrations on the toiletry bottles which include a topless lady combing her hair (conditioner) and a man reading the paper in the bathtub (body wash.) And what's inside the bottles are note-worthy too as the products come from La Bottega, an Italian manufacturer.
Rates at The Mark start at $745 a night this weekend for a superior courtyard view room. We say grab all the toiletry bottles you can on your stay!
[Photo: The Mark]
Regardless of whether it's a huge resort or a small inn, bathroom amenities are so commonplace now that we simply expect them to be by the sink in every room. But next time you come across Aveda products at a hotel, don't take them for granted. As it turns out, not all conditioners are easy to come by.
As a male contributor on this site, I sometimes have a hard time understanding all the hype over our stories on toiletry products. Consider me a changed man. On a recent stay at the Inn at Lost Creek in Telluride, I learned that carrying certain brands isn't as easy as just calling up and ordering them.
Aveda, for example, requires properties to complete an application to purchase its products, which includes three pages of environmental analysis. A spokesperson for the company said it all goes back to the green beliefs of its original founder, and that a lot of the questions revolve around the idea of recycling and ecological policies of the hotel. Do you have recycling cans in your lobby? Do you recycle towels? Do you have someone who oversees your recycling programs?
When Gramercy Park Hotel first opened in 2006, the hotel prided itself on its hodgepodge of bath toiletries which were hand-picked by the editors at Allure magazine. Fast forward eight years, and the Gramercy Park Hotel has gone a different but still luxe route with Aesop skincare products.
The Melbourne-based line (also found at some Park Hyatt hotels) uses plant-based and laboratory-made ingredients of the highest quality, which sound like they will actually help out your skin and hair during your stay. Here's what can now be found in the bathrooms at GPH:
· Rind Concentrate Body Balm - An intensive hydrating body balm with orange peel, pink grapefruit and lemon rind to hydrate, soothe and cool.
· Body Cleansing Soap Slab - A soap slab rich with steam-distilled extracts of bergamot rind, ylang ylang and wild lime. Combined in a gentle soap, the trio effectively cleans and hydrates the skin.
· Geranium Leaf Body Cleanser - An exhilarating, low-foaming shower gel with geranium leaf to cleanse without drying. It's an ideal alternative to conventional soap that leaves skin clean and refreshed.
· Classic Shampoo/Classic Conditioner - Lather with rosemary leaf, cedarwood bark and juniper berryent then condition with bergamot mint, cedarwood bark and lavender stem. Aesop's hair care products are inspired by new ingredients that cleanse without stripping the hair of its natural protective oils and condition to improve appearance and make hair more manageable. Both guard against breakage while working to soften, add shine and hydrate the hair.
Rates at GPH start around $450 a night.
[Photo: Gramercy Park Hotel]
Hotel Toiletries / Julien Farel / Loews Hotels / Luxury Hotels / Hotel News / Manhattan Hotels / Park Avenue Hotels / → All Tags
Last week, the Loews Regency Hotel on Park Avenue re-opened after two years of intensive renovations. Rates are already at a premium for the hotel, around $440 a night this weekend, but you can at least sleep knowing that you will have fabulous hair the next day.
That's because celeb hairstylist, Julien Farel, will not only open his salon in the hotel in March, he's also provided the in-room toiletries in all of the 379 guest rooms and suites. Farel's Anti-Aging Haircare & Body are powered by an exclusive Anti-Aging Balance 'A2B' Technology that " delivers clinically proven Anti-Aging Bioactives to rejuvenate skin and hair with intense hydration, targeted repair and vital protection." YES.
But that's not all. You can style your tresses with a Julien Farel high-performance hairdryer which is now present in all the Loews Hotels and Resorts nationwide. So while the room rates might be high, you'll be able to get salon-quality hair without having to pay Farel's prices, which start at around $650 just for the cut. Blowdrying costs extra.
Peek at the newly renovated Loews Regency rooms below!
Love 'em or hate 'em, toiletry dispensers are here to stay. And while we still think that five-star luxury hotels should probably avoid the dispenser situation, we're totally ok with cool, well-designed dispensers filled with high-end products. (See the Four Seasons Hualalai.)
Which is why we totally approve of these new toiletry dispensers being put in place at the Opus Hotel Vancouver filled with tasty Malin + Goetz products like peppermint shampoo, cilantro conditioner and rum body wash. (Fingers crossed there's a tequila mouthwash!)
Opus Hotel asked their Facebook fans (and us) what they thought and most reactions were pretty positive, with one commenter saying he wanted it for his own house. And we kinda agree. Except we're gonna miss stashing those Malin+Goetz freebies in our bag before we check-out.
What do you think--#like or #dislike? Let us know in comments below!
[Photo: Opus Hotel Vancouver]
Launched at Marriott hotels in October, Thann is a Thai skin care line featuring their Aromatic Wood Collection, "a line that balances Nutmeg essential oil with the sweetness of Orange and Tangerine essential oils." This line replaces the old Bath and Body Works line. It should now be in all Marriott hotels in the U.S. and Canada and should be in all Marriott hotels in the Americas, Latin America and parts of Asia by the end of this year. Or in a few weeks. (Marriotts in Europe and the Middle East will simultaneously be getting the Green Mandarin Collection from Acca Kappa, an Italian toiletry line.
But in reading this forum of Marriott Rewards members (note: the forum is not part of Marriott Hotels), reviews are so far mixed on the new line.
Just stayed @ the Marco Island Marriott. They had Thann Orange and Tangerine soaps in our room, but that was the only Thann product. The Paul Mitchell Awapuhi shampoo & conditioner were ok, but too small to use without adding what I had travelled with. The Thann soap smelled heavenly & the odd shape was good to hold on to. It would have been a classier touch if the products were all Thann.
They have an upleasant smell (to me). They seem more manly and it seems like you're catering to a male traveler. The Bath and Body Works products were unisex, imho, but if you are looking for a change perhaps offer both and have us put it in the preferences just like extra towels and type of pillow, etc.
We've yet to see Thann in action in a Marriott hotel room, but we think it's gotta be better than Bath & Body Works, which reminds us of our many mall excursions in the early 90s. Let us know your thoughts on the new line in comments below!
If you love the bright colors, gold leather sofas, designer-branded towels and bathrobes, and Maseratis of the Missoni Hotels, you are probably impatiently awaiting the new upcoming Turkey, Oman, Mauritius, Brazil and Doha properties from the fashion brand. In the meantime, if you can't get to the brand's first two properties -- in Edinburgh or Kuwait -- you can still get a sniff of the Missoni hotel experience via their new line of hotel amenities.
When we checked into the JW Marriott Desert Springs in Palm Springs the other weekend, we were tickled to see the Aromatherapy Associates line of toiletries in the bathrooms. Mouthwash included!
Last year, we had heard that JW hotels would be rolling out these upscale toiletries but now they are officially in place at every JW Marriott. Designed for business travelers to fight off skin dehydration after long flights and fatigue due to changing time zones, the line is made with all-natural ingredients and has a scent that appeals to both men and women.
During our stay we realized we forgot to pack our face wash, which nearly gave us a panic attack but the Aromatherapy Associates soap worked amazingly well, without overly drying our skin. (Of course, this being the desert, we slathered on moisturizer followed by sunscreen so our skin didn't have much time to feel dry.) And we loved the fragrant shampoo and conditioner. Even better, our hair was smooth and soft after blowdrying it too.
Shockingly, we forgot to grab our toiletries before we checked-out but if this happens to you, don't fret. You can buy the entire toiletry line on the Shop Marriott site.
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At The Salvatore Ferragamo Hotel in Florence You'll Find (What Else?) Salvatore Ferragamo Toiletries
Oscar de la Renta is not the only fashion designer with his own bath toiletries in hotels. Long before Oscar unveiled his new line for Peninsula Hotels, fashion house Salvatore Ferragamo had put their Tuscan Soul toiletries in the Lugarno Collection, their small portfolio of Italian hotels. And thanks to HotelChatter Flickr Member, Uggboy, we've got a close-up of what the amenity line looks like.
This photo was snapped at the Gallery Hotel in Florence near the Ponte Vecchio which houses its own Salvatore Ferragamo museum downstairs. But you won't leave the hotel with just Ferragamo toiletries.
As part of the Salvatore Ferragamo Experience, guests get a tour of the museum as well as a private shopping excursion to the SF store upstairs. Guests of the Gallery Hotel's suites also get a private visit to the Salvatore Ferragamo Creations Santa Trinita Boutique, where historical Ferragamo shoe collections, accessories and a 10% discount await. Rooms start at 225 Euros.
Want to nab some Ferragamo toiletries closer to home? They can also be found at several Waldorf Astoria hotels.
[Photo: Uggboy/HotelChatter Flickr Pool]