Tag: Luxury Hotels

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Could the World's First Ila Spa Look Any More Heavenly?

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  Site Where: Jodhpur, India
November 7, 2014 at 9:00 AM | by | Comments (0)

We are, of course, spa fanatics at HotelChatter, but if we had to pick just one skincare brand that we would chase to the ends of the earth, it'd almost certainly be Ila, a supremely decadent UK brand that calls itself "beyond organic" because it really is something more than a box-ticking exercise - it uses "wild-harvested" biodynamic ingredients from artisan sources around the globe, and Ila products are genuinely unlike any you've used before.

Ila has been hovering around hotel spa land for a couple of years now, but it has just opened its first standalone spa - or Ila Only, as it calls it - at Raas in Jodhpur, India. Treatments are pretty affordable, starting from 2800INR, or $46. Oh, and the treatment rooms look divine.

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Istanbul's Mysterious New Public Hotel Is Not a Public Hotel

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  Site Where: İstiklal Caddesi, Turnacıbaşı Sokak, No 1, Beyoglu, Istanbul, Turkey
November 5, 2014 at 9:42 AM | by | Comments (0)

The email came from a tipster. “Public Hotel Istanbul”, it said. A five star hotel opening on Istiklal Caddesi in Beyoglu. We squealed with delight – Public comes to Istanbul! A quick google shows it’s not, but Schrager or no Schrager, this is still a fascinating project.

There's infuriatingly little info about the hotel, but our tipster told us it was about to open when he went past, and that it was a $20m renovation project. The website seems to be in Turkish only, but Google Translate (which is really hard to decipher here) makes it a 19th-century building, originally owned by a woman related to Egyptian Ottoman statesman, Abbas Halim Pasha. It describes it as a blend of neoclassical and Ottoman architecture.

Istanbul is, of course, one of the world's best cities for boutique hotels, so the old building has been meticulously brought up to date. The website describes it as a "HIP most exclusive hotel" - we're wondering whether this means a forthcoming partnership with HIP Hotels, though there's no mention of it on their website yet. There will be 51 high-ceilinged rooms and seven suites, decorated in a neoclassical meets art nouveau style (some of them have stucco ceilings), although they've been kitted out with retro touches, like Smeg fridges, and modern fixtures like a tech hub. Bathrooms have L'Occitane smells, Seljuk tiles and Philippe Starck fittings. No photos yet, other than these background ones from the website.

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Four Seasons Confirms Oahu at Ko Olina, Renovates Mexico City

November 5, 2014 at 9:14 AM | by | Comments (0)

The bit of rumor we passed on back in August about the JW Marriott Ihilani’s future has been confirmed: it will become Four Seasons Resort O‘ahu at Ko Olina.

The few things we know at this stage? It will be the first Four Seasons hotel on the island of Oahu, the fourth island of Hawai’i with a Four Seasons (the others are Maui, Lana’i, and the Big Island), and the fifth Four Seasons in total. Another first is the creation of private residences, which adds to our expectation that the current room count of 387 will change.

The only rendering we have is above, a sweeping staircase (complete with lady in a mustard-yellow ball gown) over reflecting pools. The architects working on the renovation include 2013 Pritzker Architecture Prize winner Toyo Ito.

When we look at the JW Marriott website, we can only make reservations up to January 9, 2015. We think it will be 2016 or 2017 until Four Seasons reopens.

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First Photos of Aman Tokyo, Opening December 22

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  Site Where: 1-5-6 Otemachi, Chiyoda-Ku, Tokyo, Japan, 100-0004
November 4, 2014 at 2:35 PM | by | Comments (0)

We were wrong. After a number of delays, and our own gazing up to the top six stories of Otemachi Tower without being able to step inside, we thought Aman Tokyo wouldn’t open this year.

It is. On Monday, December 22, the first city Aman will be here, and we have some truly luscious photos for you to drool over too. If ever you’ve had a fantasy of staying in a hyper-modern, minimalist penthouse in the sky, floating above the city, start scouting for tickets to Tokyo now (we were just there and confess to doing a quick fare search already). Here’s what else you need to know: Aman Tokyo is the beginning of a new chapter for Aman, with discussions in progress for “city retreats” in New York, London, Paris, and Singapore.

The photo above is of the soaring atrium, up thirty-plus stories from the city’s business district. Nearly 30 meters high, it’s been designed to resemble the interior of a Japanese paper lantern. For a sense of scale, spot one of the chairs next to the pillars on the far left. We love the deep grey stone, the wood (Camphor wood, so we’ve learned), and the simplicity of the furniture design.

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W Beijing Is Opening Tomorrow, Here's What's Inside

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  Site Where: No.2 Jianguomennan Avenue, Beijing, China, 100022
October 31, 2014 at 9:25 AM | by | Comments (0)

The day has (almost) arrived: the W Beijing Chang’An is, at long last, opening. Not only are we able to make online reservations, rooms are still available on opening night tomorrow from $242.

What’s more, we actually have a photo from inside the hotel: we present to you, above, what a Spectacular Room looks like. A step up from entry-level Wonderful Rooms, they run at $318 under the “Extraordinary W Offer”. That shoots up to $451 for a fully flexible rate. The room comes in at nearly 540 sq ft, with the prerequisite open plan bathroom and some interesting purple herringbone-style art-slash-headboard. That pattern comes back in the hardwood floors and what we think could be quite a pretty blue area rug.

The exterior of the hotel leaves no doubt about this being a W either: check it out below.

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AmanDayan in Lijiang, China Is Hiring, Could this Be What it Looks Like?

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  Site Where: Lijiang, China
October 30, 2014 at 11:08 AM | by | Comments (0)

While Venice and Vietnam got their Aman Resort in 2013, the openings we so optimistically wrote about for China and Jordan never materialized. Another year on, and we’re still waiting, but just like that we stumbled onto two things for one of them: a recruitment ad and an interior image.

This page has the ad for an Executive Assistant Manager (Rooms) at AmanDayan, the 32-suite resort on Lion Hill in the ancient city of Lijiang, in China’s Yunnan province. While the ad refers to it without the capital letter, we were explicitly told at the time that AmanDayan is how it should be spelled. We’re going to liberally take the closing date of mid-November as a sign that the resort is nearing completion, so perhaps we’ll see an early 2015 opening?

Diving a bit further down the rabbit hole that is the internet, we came upon the above photo here, in a post now about a year old. While we’d take it with a grain of salt, the design does strike us as being very Aman, so who knows. We’re hoping to get some more detail soon, so stay tuned.

Meanwhile, further east in Japan, we wouldn’t hold our breath for a 2014 opening of Aman Tokyo either – expect that to be a 2015 affair too. When we have more detail, we'll be sure to let you know.

[Photo: Weibo via Flyertalk, JasonD]

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Exploring the Green Mountains of Oman at Alila Jabal Akhdar

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  Site Where: Nizwa, Oman
October 30, 2014 at 9:25 AM | by | Comments (0)

With the hotel overload in Dubai, and to a lesser extent in Doha (Qatar) and Abu Dhabi (UAE), Oman has had a slightly lower profile among the emirates, but that seems to be changing: Four Seasons is heading to the sultanate, and so is Aman, and looking at the photos of recently opened Alila Jabal Akhdar makes us want to book a ticket to capital Muscat as soon as possible.

A two and a half hour 4WD-only drive from Muscat into the Al Hajar mountains, the hotel is built to fit within the natural environment, perched on a cliff overlooking the gorge below (Jabal Akhdar means “The Green Mountain” in Arabic). There are just 78 suites and villas, all with outdoor space like above to soak in the surrounding landscape and dramatic sunsets – more photos below.

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Four Seasons Moscow Opens Today With Lower Rates Than Expected

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  Site Where: 2, Okhotny Ryad Str. , Moscow, Russian Federation, 109012
October 30, 2014 at 8:25 AM | by | Comments (0)

Добро пожаловать!* We may have got a little sidetracked by the insane suites of St Petersburg yesterday, but today our eyes are pointed back towards Moscow, where the Four Seasons finally opens in a recreation of the legendary Hotel Moskva which featured on the Stolichnaya vodka label and which was bulldozed 10 years ago. (In fact, it ‘opened’ two days ago with a big party, but is only available for bookings for normal folk from today.)

As we said before, the location is spectacular, on Ploshchad Revolyutsii, which filters into Red Square. It has five food and drink venues including Italian and Russian restaurants, a 24-hour fitness center, a glass-roofed lap pool and a whopping 32,292 square feet spa, which will open early next year.

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Which Ritz-Carlton Hotel Do You Think Is The Ritziest?

October 27, 2014 at 2:16 PM | by | Comments (19)

Rich, er Ritz Chocolate Cake

We've learned which Four Seasons Hotel you heart the most, as well as your favorite and least-favorite W Hotels, Kimpton Hotels, Sofitel Hotels, Andaz Hotels and the Le Meridien Hotels. Now, we're getting ritzy with it.

We want to know where in the world is your favorite Ritz-Carlton Hotel? This may be a tough question considering that Ritz-Carlton has opened up all over the world lately from Palm Springs to Kyoto, alongside expensive renovations of existing properties. But there's got to be a Ritz-Carlton you prefer above all the rest.

Maybe it's because your favorite TV show films there or maybe it's because they spoil your leather shoes or perhaps you just like their funky bar concept. Heck, maybe you just like their signature cake.

Whatever the ritzy reason, share your favorite Ritz-Carlton hotel in comments below. Don't have a favorite but instead have a Ritz-Carlton you wouldn't visit again? We want to know that too!

Dish on your favorite Ritz-Carlton below!

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Five Years On, Will L'Ermitage Become Viceroy Beverly Hills?

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  Site Where: 9291 Burton Way [map], Beverly Hills, CA, United States, 90210
October 24, 2014 at 9:03 AM | by | Comment (1)

It’s astonishing to us we have to go as far back as early 2010 for the news that Raffles L’Ermitage would become Viceroy Beverly Hills, with a “significant refurbishment” to follow in the months after.

That relaunch date soon became “early 2011”, but three and a half years later, the hotel still carries its L’Ermitage badge, rooms shows essentially the same décor, and the group’s directory has it listed as a “future Viceroy”.

But! It looks like half a decade is a lucky window for L’Ermitage, because the latest we hear is that renovation is meant to start in January. While we hate thinking about it too much as the year passes us by, that’s only three months away. Details and visuals of what the interiors will look like are still to come, and while we expect a more Californian vibe, taking a cue from Viceroy New York’s stylish rooms we’d have no issue with. We'll keep you posted as we find out more.

As for the official name change to Viceroy Beverly Hills, we haven't received official confirmation but a new name to go with a new look could be nice.

In the meantime, a Deluxe King with balcony at L’Ermitage starts about $430 a night in November.

[Photo: Viceroy Hotels]

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Singapore Will Gleam Next Year With A Six Star Patina

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  Site Where: 15 Stamford Road, Singapore, Singapore, 178906
October 21, 2014 at 8:55 AM | by | Comments (0)

Pretty sure this is the Patina

The scene: the breakfast buffet at the Sofitel So Singapore. The date: last Wednesday. The characters: a group of smartly dressed men and women having a business meeting. And us at the table next door, listening in.

We hadn’t realized when we sat down, but these people were in the hotel industry – two of them seemed to be on a giant hotel of Asia (take us with you?), and they were discussing the scene. They talked about millennial hotels, they talked about HotelChatter (hi!) and then they started talking about Patina Hotels, a forthcoming brand for Singapore. So we googled. And Patina looks incredible.

Behind it all is the Kwee family from Singapore, who own Capella, the Conrad, the Regent and the Ritz-Carlton. The first, and flagship, property will be The Patina, Capitol Singapore, part of a $750 redevelopment project of the old Capitol movie theater (Singapore’s first) on Stamford Road, and designed by Richard Meier (yes, the Richard Meier) and Jaya International Design.

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Four Seasons Checks Out of Dublin, Closes Jakarta

October 20, 2014 at 8:55 AM | by | Comments (0)

If you’re looking to capture the last moments of Four Seasons Hotels before they close, your itinerary is no longer limited to Hawaii’s Lana’i this year (one of the two hotels there, The Lodge at Koele, will shut early January for most of the year, as part of Larry Ellison’s plans for the island).

You’ll be heading to the Irish capital Dublin and Jakarta, Indonesia, too – quite the reach for a three-country jaunt, isn’t it? In Ireland, the goodbyes are forever, with the announcement that the group will cease management of Four Seasons Dublin on December 31 this year. Luxury hotels in Dublin have had a tough run since the 2008 crisis, with probably some of the lowest rates we’ve seen of any European Four Seasons, often hovering around the €200 ($250) mark, if not just below, at the hotel. The Irish Times reports that the hotel was sold in 2011 for €15 million, believed to be a quarter of what it cost to develop the hotel in 2001. Another “five-star international brand” will be taking over, so we’ll have to wait and see which one that is – perhaps InterContinental?

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