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So much hotel news, so little time – here are a few snippets to keep you up to date with the latest news from around the world!
· DEBUT HOTEL GROUP TO MANAGE LIVE AQUA HOTELS IN THE US: This brief is a bit of a doozy but here's what's happening--Grupo Posadas, Mexico’s largest hotel operator, is bringing its premier luxury boutique hotel brand, Live Aqua, to major U.S. cities, courtesy of benefactor/private equity group, Bighorn Capital, Inc. Debut Hotel Group, a Hampshire Hotels Management company, who are in charge of the Dream, Night and Time Hotel brands, will manage the Live Aqua U.S. hotels which are expected to "debut" in cities such as Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, Houston and Washington, D.C. Interestingly, Chicago will be the first U.S. city to get a Live Aqua in 2017. Keep reading as the next brief is connected to this one.
· DREAM HOTELS TO OPEN IN CHICAGO: The Live Aqua hotel mentioned above will open in an 82-story high-rise in the West Loop area, which will actually be dual-developed as a Live Aqua and Dream Hotel. Yes, Dream Chicago is now happening. However, do not confuse this building with the other Mexican hospitality group Grupo Habita who are opening a hotel in Wicker Park, nor should you confuse it with the Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel. Meanwhile, a Time Hotel is expected to open in Nyack, NY. We'll have more on that later this week.
· INTRODUCING THE HOUSE COLLECTIVE: Forget luxury homes, when you can stay in luxury "Houses" from Swire Hotels. The Opposite House in Beijing, The Upper House in Hong Kong and the just-opened Temple House in Chengdu have always been united but now they've been consciously branded as The House Collective with a new website to boot.
More news briefs below!
We’re getting close to the midway point of 2015, and so far we only have one confirmed opening from our list of five London hotels to watch this year (that’s the M by Montcalm Shoreditch). Things are looking up this week though, starting with online reservations going live for stays from August 15 at The Laslett Notting Hill, the new townhouse hotel we told you about late last year.
We can see rates starting from £155 ($244) on a Sunday night for a Spare Room Double, which range from 193-203 sq ft. That’s a prepaid rate, which goes up to £255 ($400) on a Saturday night. Largest rooms are Master Bedroom Suites at 313-360 sq ft, which on a Saturday in August is £350 ($550) a night when prepaid. Spare Room Singles are the entry-level category but as the name implies, sleep only one.
The Hotel Imperial Marhaba, said to be one of two hotels involved in the attacks
Horrendous news out of Tunisia this morning, as 27 people are reported to have been killed after gunmen opened fire at hotels in the popular resort of Sousse.
According to the Tunisian government (via the Independent), two gunmen opened fire on a beach between two hotels, the Imperial Marhaba and the Soviva. One is dead, the other is on the loose.
Tourists in the resort talked of hearing noises like “firecrackers” and “fireworks”. Those in the hotel barricaded themselves in their rooms.
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Pool Access Room
Alaya Room Terrace
This is Indonesian-owned Alaya Hotels & Resorts’ second hotel in Bali (the first one is in Ubud) and the first artsy, upmarket boutique hotel to enter one of Bali’s, let’s say, more colorful neighborhoods. In fact, it’s reputed to be THE hotel opening of the year in the party-hearty South Kuta resort district.
Four Seasons London at Trinity Square, another obscenely expensive hotel heading to the UK
Are you planning a trip to the UK any time soon? Apologies in advance. We’re ever so sorry, but unfortunately a new study has shown that British hotels are substantially more expensive than European ones – in fact, you’ll end up spending £76 ($120) more on a night in the UK than on the continent.
There are several factors at play, here – the euro is getting weaker and the pound stronger, London is of course obscenely expensive, which pumps up the averages, and extras like food generally cost more in the UK.
According to the study by HRS (reported in City AM), business travellers spend an average of £65 per night in Europe on a room, or £129 including “breakfast and other services”.
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Hello Thursday! Time for a quick roundup of news from around the world, because hotels never sleep. We’ve got Shanghai, Mumbai, Uruguay, and a few places in between. Onwards!
Rocco Forte Shanghai: Following the first small steps on the road to significant expansion taken in Jeddah, here is the confirmation that Shanghai (above) will follow in 2018. The first Rocco Forte hotel in China is also the first in Asia Pacific altogether, and part of the “Longhua International Aviation Service Centre, a new urban complex in Shanghai’s Xuhui Riverside area known as West Bund”. There is no official name yet, but it will be on the top 15 floors of a high-rise at 280 rooms and suites.
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You best have those electronic devices charged for your next stay at an InterContinental Hotels Group property, as the hotel chain is upgrading and improving some of their travel technology.
There’s a whole bunch of goodies that they’re planning to introduce sooner than later, but to us the thing that deserves top billing is mobile check-in and check-out. This means confirmation of arrival time, text notification when your room is ready, as well as all kinds of other flexibility to manage your stay right from your phone. The nifty fifty is one of the first countries to score these features, but a global roll out is not far behind.
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We like to think that we know our way around social media, but when it comes to aggregating data from Twitter and parsing out the positive and negative posts—that’s above our pay grade.
Thankfully Fortune is featuring the handiwork from the smarty-pants team over at Crimson Hexagon, as they just released a little information about the most hated hotel brands doing their thing on social media. We’ll get to all the details in a minute, but to cut to the chase Hilton has a lot of work to do. They scored a 17% negative rating, as guests aren’t cool with paying for WiFi, complain of poor connection speeds, report billing problems, and note a few other less than positive comments.
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The other week we strolled by another new hotel coming to Miami Beach--Nautilus, a Sixty Hotel at 18th and Collins Ave, which we last heard was opening on July 6. Well, that date's not going to happen anymore as reservations for the hotel are being pushed back to October 1. Bienvenido a Miami!
On that date, rooms are going for $238.67 for a king superior room which includes a king bed, white marble floors, SFERRA linens, REN bath products (an HC fave), Bluetooth docking station, 48-in. flat screen TV and this badass vintage travel chest which doubles as the mini-bar filled with gourmet goodies and even books on how to make a cocktail. Keep reading to have a closer look at it!
Booking your next stay at a Marriott property just got that much easier, so maybe you’ll be enjoying one of those new social hour things before you know it.
It’s all because of a new partnership between Marriott and TripAdvisor, as per Bloomberg Business the two will now kind of be joining forces when it comes to making a room reservation or two. Through the use of TripAdvisor, one will be able to book rooms within the Marriott portfolio of brands. We can only imagine the thinking here is that someone would be so enamored with all those traveler photos that in only a few clicks he or she would be counting down the days until check-in.
It’s not been an ideal week for the poor Waldorf Astoria New York. First there was that shooting. Now, it’s been announced that the US will be moving its HQ for the UN General Assembly, which traditionally takes place there, to the New York Palace Hotel.
The move is at the behest of the US State Department, because of worries about safety – but not because they’re concerned a possibly drunken wedding guest might let his gun go off in the lobby, oh no! It’s because the Waldorf Astoria is now owned by Chinese company Anbang Insurance Group. Allegedly (the State Department didn’t give a reason.)
The extreme makeover of the seductive hotel will be undertaken by The Related Group/Related Companies, who purchased the W last summer and the renovations will be carried out in stages throughout the year.