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One of the perks of staying in a luxury hotel is riding in the complimentary house car, which is often a car you'd never be able to afford in real life. We're talking Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous cars like Mercedes, Rolls Royce and Bentley. But now in Santa Monica, Calif., Shutters on The Beach is offering a very 21st century type of house car, one that's quickly become the new "it" brand in luxury--a Tesla Model S.
General manager Gregory Day said the hotel changes out their house car every year but have slowly been moving towards a greener alternative.
"We've always been heavy-Mercedes house," he said, while showing off the Tesla in the hotel's porte-cochère. "We had a CLS 550 when I got here and I think our next one we got, to make it more environmentally-friendly, we got a V6 engine, and then the last car we had was a S400 hybrid Mercedes," Day said. "But the more we learned about it, hybrid isn't that green in a sense because the battery, once it's done, there's no way to recycle it."
The hotel considered electric vehicles but Day said it was hard to find one that would also appeal to their high-end guests. So when the Tesla came out, the hotel dug both its sleek look and its technology.
Earlier this month, we finally got our hands on a first guestroom image at the upcoming Peninsula Paris, having walked down Avenue Kléber many a time to see how the hotel was coming along from the outside.
The August 1 opening is still a little while away, but it looks like Peninsula is treating us to a whole range of additional imagery to pore over with the release of its new website. A video shows glimpses of craftsmen working on the restoration of the Beaux Arts building and shots of what the finished product will look like, including the glamorous – and almost spare – entrance lobby above.
The chandelier is a hand-blown Lasvit made of crystal ‘leaves’, referencing the trees lining the Avenue outside. We’re intrigued by the artwork underneath (it’s a stone installation from Bhutan), which looks to have a reflecting surface. From renderings of the restaurants and suites to rooftop views in the video, we patiently collected a few more impressions for you below.
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There are definitely killer views from Monastero Santa Rosa, located as it is on Italy’s almost painfully scenic Amalfi Coast. We’ll get to those in a second, but perhaps unusually we’ll start this time with this killer view of the hotel itself, because it is just as good.
Perched on a rocky outcrop and beautifully lit at night, it began life as the name suggests as a monastery in the 17th century. These days, it’s a pretty stunning hotel with just 20 rooms and suites and – what else would you expect – a cliff-edge pool. Check it out after the jump.
The other week we told you how the London Edition was all man, which was more than fine, just a little unexpected. So when we stepped into balcony king room at The Berkeley in Knightsbridge, we fell instantly in like with the room's feminine touches like the soft colors and patterns, the chaise lounge at the foot of the bed, and a bathroom wonderland with both a shower and a bathtub, a vanity area and a heated toilet seat. #omg
But that's not to say men won't be happy in this Robert Angell-designed space either. There were plenty of tech-centric touches like free WiFi, USB ports and outlets galore, a giant flat-screen TV, and a bedside phone/room control panel. Oh, did we mention there's a heated toilet seat? #omgx2
And true to its name, the Balcony King room features an expansive balcony overlooking Knightsbridge with a Sparrow and Finch birdhouse, something everyone can enjoy.
The second location of the upscale brand makes a pilgrimage to Plymouth.
There’s more than an ocean between Plymouth and Paris. Yes, the Massachusetts city holds a pretty important place in history. (Which, if you passed seventh grade, you hopefully recall involves a very important boat crash-landing on a very famous rock.)
But with all due respect to the Pilgrims’ first stomping grounds, most people would probably choose a vacation sipping wine by the river Seine than pounding beers in a South Shoh-wuh bah.
But when it opens in June, The Mirbeau Inn & Spa at The Pinehills (a rendering seen here) may offer the area’s best approximation to a French getaway.
Like its sister property in the Finger Lakes Region of New York, the Plymouth Mirbeau is modeled in the style of a romantic country manor house and inspired by the Impressionist art of Claude Monet: think picturesque grounds with covered wooden bridges, waterfalls, lush gardens, placid ponds, and grounds filled with beret-wearing French hens strutting with cigarettes in their beaks and baguettes tucked under their wings. (Okay, everything but the last, obviously. Birds are notoriously anti-smoking.)
The procession of Parisian luxury hotels on their way to closure for a full revamp is not unlike the parade of models swooshing past a front-row seat during the city's famous fashion week, soon to loop back in a brand new outfit: there was Prince de Galles (now open again, dressed in full Twenties Art Deco), the Ritz (still closed, but harboring the home of Madame Coco), the Crillon (still closed too, but with Lagerfeld involved), the Plaza Athénée (due to return in June), and now it is time for Hotel Lutetia to do the same.
The hotel, unlike all others above located on the city’s Left Bank, will close its doors on April 14. They will stay that way for at least a year, during which time it will be transformed to become part of The Set Hotels. It will be the third hotel for the group, joining London’s Café Royal and Amsterdam’s Conservatorium.
Where else should a hotel suite filled with American art, furniture and decor open but Washington D.C.?
The Park Hyatt in the capital city recently unveiled a special Made in the USA Suite in conjunction with the new exhibit of the same name at The Phillips Collection, which will be on display through August 31st.
Inside the suite are five giclee reproductions of the museum's American art masterworks including Marsden Hartley’s Off the Banks at Night; Arthur G. Dove’s Red Sun and Peppino Mangravite’s Political Exiles. The suite also includes some American-made furniture such as a timber rocking chair (made in Vermont) and artisanal items from the museum's gift shop like a spiral wrap bowl (Rhode Island), a WUD martini glass (Colorado) and stackable wooden blocks (Washington state.) Anonymously modern Hyatt decor no more! We kinda think all Park Hyatt rooms should get these little touches.
Guests who book the suite, which starts at just $399 a night, also get the following:
As long as the list of London hotels is, there aren’t that many that come with a proper pool, and between space restrictions and historic buildings, it’s not that easy to just add one in. The solution? Dig down, which is what Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park did to accommodate a new 17-meter (56 foot) twin-lane, stainless-steel pool, fitness centre and changing areas.
Like we’ve seen at Piccadilly, the busy streets of Knightsbridge give little away of what lies underneath. As you step into the marble-filled lobby of the hotel, take the stairs on the left towards the spa, where down the long corridor, the elevator can now take you a level further into the ground, provided you have a guest key to activate it (or have one of the limited and rather expensive memberships). Rather than having the hotel above you, it’s the palatial apartments of One Hyde Park, the Candy & Candy development that arrived a few years ago amid much publicity and more than a little bit of controversy as the symbol of what real estate in the city has come to.
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The Ritz-Carlton Georgetown is serving Cherry S’mores, made with cherry marshmallows, gooey chocolate sauce and homemade pistachio crumble and, if that weren’t enough, the s’mores will be complimentary in The Living Room between 6:30 to 7 p.m., passed around by whom, you may ask? S’morelliers, of course.
The hotel is also serving up Festive Cherry Blossom Cocktails to go with the s'mores. And you betcha, cherry is a prominent flavor in all of them.
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We can rattle off a handful of hotels opening in Bali in the next few years without much effort (there is the Regent, Ritz-Carlton, Ritz-Carlton again, Starwood (Luxury Collection and Westin), and Six Senses, among others), which, together with everything that’s already there, raises the pressure once again to slow down hotel development on the island.
While the discussion on overcrowding and what is right for Bali continues, so do the announcements of new openings, with this week the addition of a Waldorf Astoria resort in 2017. Only a short transfer from Ngurah Rai Denpasar airport, the resort will have 96 villas on a cliff facing the sea.
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As spring continues to elude a lot of us, you might be mind escaping by leaving on a jet plane to far-off destinations. To feed your fantasy, we thought we’d share with you this flight of fancy offered by Four Seasons: A $69,000 backstage pass package to some of Europe’s most iconic cultural kicks.
This 16-day Backstage with the arts package includes the use of a fully kitted out 757 private jet that’ll whisk you from European capital to European capital: Lisbon, Milan, Istanbul, St. Petersburg, Paris and Prague, complete with a Four Seasons Global Guest Services Manager to help make all of your arts and culture dreams come true along the way.
To further whet your appetite for this OTT fantastic fantasy, here are some of the behind-the-scenes treats for the 52 people who will be able to book the package.
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*We've actually been informed that the Park Hyatt New York will open earlier than August 28th but that this is just a placeholder date on their website for reservations. We're not sure of the exact opening date but rest assured, we will tell you AS SOON as we know.
It's not quite the moment we've been waiting for (that will happen on opening day) but it's a very close second. Today we've got a sneak peek at what the 210 guest rooms and suites inside the Park Hyatt New York will look like when it opens on August 28th.
The room interiors were done by design firm Yabu Pushelberg who clearly went for a residential feel with plenty of seating, a perfectly positioned TV and dresser and with custom artwork on the walls. We also found out the bath toiletries will feature a custom scent from Le Labo called, Tubereuse 40.
Elsewhere in the hotel, which takes up 25 floors of the 90-story One57 skyscraper, will be an indoor pool with underwater speakers that pipe in an exclusive soundtrack from Carnegie Hall, a restaurant from Executive Chef Sam Hazen, a 25th floor spa and a bar overlooking Carnegie Hall on 57th Street. There will also be free WiFi throughout the hotel. YES.
Alas, this is a Park Hyatt near Central Park so room rates are priced accordingly, about $795 a night. And no, we don't think those will ever come down.
[Photo: Donna Dotan/Park Hyatt New York]