Tag: Luxury Hotels

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88 Pounds of Chocolate Went into This Christmas Display at Dublin's The Marker

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  Site Where: Grand Canal Square, Docklands, Dublin, Ireland, 2
December 19, 2014 at 8:56 AM | by | Comments (0)

That’s a paltry little holiday display, you might say, observing the santa-sleigh-tree combo in the lobby of Dublin’s The Marker hotel. These trendy hotels. Too cool for Christmas. SMH. By the way, why does the lobby smell of chocolate?

Then, if you got up close to the santa, you would realize your terrible mistake. I have maligned the Marker, you would say. This santa-sleigh-tree is so well done that I had no idea it was entirely made of chocolate and icing. This is actually the most fabulous Christmas display in the world!

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Inside The Long-Awaited Ritz-Carlton Rancho Mirage Near Palm Springs

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  Site Where: 68900 Frank Sinatra Drive [map], Rancho Mirage, CA, United States, 92270
December 17, 2014 at 7:01 PM | by | Comments (5)

It is always a bit surreal to step inside a hotel or resort that you've spent months or years hyping up--you know how we do it--poring over renderings, searching for possible opening dates, hunting for room amenities and cycling through the reservations system to find out the opening rates for different room types.

But when we stayed at the Ritz-Carlton Rancho Mirage near Palm Springs last month, that strangeness was heightened because the resort took more than seven years to open.

In fact, the resort was mostly finished in 2008 but then the financial crisis hit and since one of the hotel's backers just happened to be Lehman Brothers (RIP), the Ritz-Carlton was put on hold. The hotel was locked up--but fully secured and with air conditioning--for the next seven years until new owners (and money) were found to finish up the resort.

It finally opened for real in May. And yes, some of the rooms look exactly like the initial room renderings we saw back in 2007.

Yet despite all those years hidden away, half-finished and neglected, the resort has emerged as a bright, shiny desert gem.

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The Ritz-Carlton Charlotte is REALLY in a Holiday Mood This Year

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  Site Where: 201 East Trade Street [map], Charlotte, NC, United States, 28202
December 12, 2014 at 2:30 PM | by | Comments (0)

The Merrion Dublin's two Christmas trees pales in comparison to the holiday spectacular that the Ritz-Carlton Charlotte has put on, which includes three Christmas trees, a gingerbread cottage, and an edible sleigh pulled by edible reindeer. Best take out your handkerchief to wipe up the drool.

Let's start with the 17-foot-tall tree made of 789 recycled green bottles and bathed in equally green lights. Obviously, this one is strictly for admiring, not for eating. (It's also a nod to the hotel's LEED Certification.)

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The Merrion Dublin Has Two Doppelganger Christmas Trees

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  Site Where: Upper Merrion Street, Dublin, Ireland
December 11, 2014 at 9:25 AM | by | Comments (0)

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas in hotel-land. Trees. Baubles. Gingerbread houses. Scented candles – they have it all. Over the next couple of weeks, we’ll be picking out some of our favorite decorations. Got some OTT trees of your own? Send ‘em in to tips@hotelchatter.com!

The Christmas tree at the Merrion, Dublin’s poshest home-from-home-style hotel, took all day to put together on 1 December. Staff – led by the hotel florist – worked all morning and into the night in order to put each bauble in the correct place. But enjoy it while you can, because the Merrion tree’s lifespan is a short one – it’ll be taken down and replaced with a doppelganger on Thursday.

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Sleep in a Nate Berkus-designed Suite at Loews Regency New York

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  Site Where: 540 Park Avenue & 61st [map], New York, NY, United States, 10065
December 5, 2014 at 9:30 AM | by | Comments (0)

We said over the summer that entry-level Luxury Kings at the newly renovated Loews Regency Hotel in New York are a pretty excellent room choice already, but now, as the hotel wraps up its overhaul, it’s adding more choice with six designer-led Signature Suites.

You guessed right that one of those designers is Oprah’s own go-to guy Nate Berkus, who redid a 1,000 sq ft one-bedroom suite on the 21st floor. Above the bedroom, which we have to say, like most of his designs, we like a whole lot. It’s contemporary, uncluttered, and with interesting patterns, colors, and materials. More shots of the suite, and others, below.

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Four Seasons Brings the Zebra Print at The Westcliff Johannesburg, Now Open

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  Site Where: 67 Jan Smuts Avenue, Johannesburg, South Africa
December 4, 2014 at 8:55 AM | by | Comment (1)

If hunting for hidden Mickey Mouse ears isn’t your thing, perhaps some wildlife spotting sounds more appealing? It may not have made the summer opening we were hoping for, but Four Seasons The Westcliff in Johannesburg is now welcoming guests, after a $56 million renovation of the hotel.

As we showed you earlier this year, the refresh isn't afraid of a little zebra print, across a number of different styles and colour schemes. The hotel has 117 rooms and suites, ranging from entry-level Superior Rooms to the Royal Suite, which has its own plunge pool.

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One & Only Reethi Rah Maldives Ups the Luxe With New Overwater Pool Villas

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  Site Where: North Male Atoll, Maldives
December 3, 2014 at 8:55 AM | by | Comments (0)

Truthfully, we don’t know if it would be possible to make One&Only Reethi Rah any more luxurious, being the all-villa tropical-island getaway (and celeb-magnet) that it is.

The resort is trying nonetheless, introducing a new accommodation category that removes the understandably fundamental dilemma between wanting your own private pool, which confines you to staying on land, and wanting to see the Indian Ocean right underneath you, which means no pool.

The solution? Overwater pool villas, because of course.

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Claridge's Made This Woman Cover Up While Breastfeeding. Were They Right?

December 2, 2014 at 8:59 AM | by | Comments (8)

Afternoon tea at Claridge’s is a London institution. Afternoon tea at Claridge’s in the run-up to Christmas is a global institution. Seats are like gold dust: even when we stayed overnight a couple of years ago in December – in a posh suite, for goodness’ sake! Costing over a thousand pounds! – there was no room for us for tea.

So when Louise Burns turned up for tea with her mother, sister and newborn baby, it was obviously a long planned, much longed for treat.

But then it soured when she started breastfeeding and the hotel brought over a napkin and asked her to cover up.

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Take a Peek Inside the Rooms at Rosewood London

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  Site Where: 252 High Holborn, London, United Kingdom, WC1V 7EN
November 26, 2014 at 10:30 AM | by | Comments (2)

We’ve already taken you on a tour of the public areas of Rosewood London, but now it’s time to get more intimate with the hotel.

We had a chance to look inside an Executive Room, considered to be an entry level room right after the Deluxe Room, a Premier Suite and a Grand Premier Suite. (After these come the eight Signature Suites, one being the Manor House Suite which can become the Manor House Wing if you book all five connecting rooms – the only hotel “suite” in the world to have its own postal code.)

The 306 rooms and suites were designed by Tony Chi & Associates, who also designed most of the public spaces including the lobby. The rooms feel like stylin’ pieds–à–terre – dramatic in black lacquer, 50 shades of grey (yeah – couldn’t resist!), and design-studio white. Artwork on the walls is equally striking in black and white. But what could potentially be considered “cold” in feel is warmed up by textured wood furnishings.

All bathrooms have hammered silver sinks (very old-school becomes new-school), white marble, and mirrors, mirrors everywhere so no awkward navel-gazing required; do it with ease. You’ll also find heated floors (yes!) and Czech & Speake toiletries in Lavender or Neroli (the first foray into hotel toiletries for this London-based fragrance house).

Check out the image gallery for lots of room pics!

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A First Look Inside Four Seasons Trinity Square London, Opening 2016

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  Site Where: Trinity Square, London, United Kingdom
November 25, 2014 at 9:28 AM | by | Comments (0)

Never did we think it would be Four Seasons that would end up managing Ten Trinity Square when we first looked at the development earlier this year, but so we found out a few months ago. The website has moved on from being just a landing page, with a tiny bit more detail on the hotel, residences, and club that will arrive inside the former Port of London Authority building.

Starting with the hotel, opening is scheduled for 2016, with no further commitment to when within that twelve-month window. It will occupy the lower ground to the third levels, with 100 guest rooms and suites (the press release from Four Seasons talked about 98, but who are we to nit-pick).

Above the rendering we have at this point, which shows soaring ceilings, classic details, and a dramatic four-poster bed and step-down lounge. We assume this would be one of the suites, and if the hotel is located on the lower floors of the building, this 2nd floor layout we found in February may indeed be accurate. That called for all rooms having separate bathtubs and showers, and no fewer than three Royal Suites.

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Why Doesn't Regent Seem Able to Stick With Its Hotels?

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  Site Where: Everywhere
November 21, 2014 at 9:02 AM | by | Comments (2)

What was the Regent Bali

Between the friendly rebranding of a property here and some owner-operator drama there, it’s part of hotel reality that the name above the door may change. But we struggle to think of a brand that is guilty of a more continuous stream of, “Whoops, that didn’t work out as planned, we’re leaving” as Regent Hotels. Let’s recap.

Travel back well into the last decade, and there was The Regent South Beach, which became a Vincci, then a De Soleil, before settling on Z Ocean South Beach as a name, while sort of being a Crowne Plaza.

A second, more recent attempt at a Florida hotel was equally unsuccessful, with The Regent Bal Harbour, having tried on its own as One Bal Harbour, now being a Ritz-Carlton. Further north, The Regent Battery Wharf in Boston never made it to opening, arriving as Fairmont, which now has also said its goodbyes to the harbor-side property.

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Is This The Best Afternoon Tea In London?

November 20, 2014 at 8:25 AM | by | Comments (0)

The best tea in London?

It’s a question of such monumental proportions that it will ruin your trip to London if you get it wrong. Which London hotel does the best afternoon tea?

The easy answer used to be to consult the Tea Guild’s anonymous reviews – but the guild has rebranded now (as the UK Tea and Infusions Association) and as part of the revamp, has ditched its reviews. Big mistake. Huge.

London Hotels Insight is equally outraged, so they have created their own list. How? By calculating the “excellent” and “very good” ratings for tea on TripAdvisor. Doing it this way, they have come out with some surprising results. Their list reads:

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