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For travelers that like to arrive in style, raise your glass to the new MO Bar + Lounge, now open inside Mandarin Oriental in Miami. (And by arrive in style, we mean you would not make an entrance with sandy sandals -- it was SOBEWFF weekend!--like we did.)
We stopped by five-star hotel during the daytime (before the bar’s official opening) and found guests in resort wear and collared shirts that matched the “relaxed, yet polished” surroundings of MO Bar + Lounge.
Located just down the hall of the hotel’s main entrance, the lounge is partitioned off by tall wooden sticks, with a 14-seat bar in the center, and surrounded by comfy velvet chairs that are easy to sink into after a couple cocktails. The MO Bar + Lounge concept will be joined soon by the new restaurant, La Mar by Gaston Acurio which replaces the oldCafe Sambai restaurant.)
While we wait for its brand new hotel in Milan, Mandarin Oriental is giving us something new this spring in Barcelona: five rooms and 17 suites are being added to the converted bank on Passeig de Gràcia in April by expanding into a building next door.
That takes the total number of rooms up to 120, all done up by Spanish designer Patricia Urquiola, so we’re expecting a similarly understated look in the new accommodations as in the existing suite pictured above. Rooms and suites facing Passeig de Gràcia give you a view of Gaudi’s famous Casa Batlló across the street.
Hotel Restaurants / Boston Hotels / Daniel Boulud / Celeb Chefs / Mandarin Oriental Hotels / → All Tags
Asana at the Mandarin Oriental Boston is about to assume its final resting position. (That’s a yoga joke, guys.) The New American restaurant will soon be replaced by the third location of Bar Boulud, renowned French chef and restaurateur Daniel Boulud’s casual bistro and wine bar. Renovations to its ground floor space in the 14-story hotel will begin in June, and the new eatery is expected to open in Fall 2014.
His partnership with the five-diamond Mandarin marks Boulud’s first venture into Boston. Time will tell what culinary surprises are in store for the spot, though an announcement promises the type of French bistro fare and seasonal charcuterie similar you’d find at Bar Boulud’s existing locations in New York City and London.
It "will be filled with energy, a great range of wine selections and soulful bistro cooking to create a vibrant eating and drinking destination,” states Boulud. The Boston restaurant will be overseen by Aaron Chambers, most recently chef de cuisine at the Mediterranean-focused Boulud Sud.
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Yo. There is so much hotel news flying around this week--way more than usual--and in between checking out Vin Diesel's latest Facebook video and signing petitions to get Bieber deported, we just don't have enough time to focus on all the new hotels news. So here's a quick rundown to get you up to speed on the latest.
TRUMP HOTEL RIO DE JANEIRO: So our guess yesterday about Trump Hotels' latest announcement had to do with China but we were so wrong. The luxury hotel group is actually planning a 13-story, 171-guestroom hotel in the Jardim Oceanico sub-district of the famous Barra da Tijuca borough. It will open in 2016 just in time for the Summer Olympics. The Rockwell Group will be doing the interiors and the hotel will have a rooftop pool deck with private VIP cabanas, a nightclub, a spa, a fitness center and all the signature Trump services and amenities.
THOMPSON PLAYA DEL CARMEN: Commune Hotels + Resorts have announced a second Thompson Hotel for Mexico--Thompson Playa Del Carmen. The hotel will have 125 rooms and suites with a rooftop pool as well as a spa. It will be the only hotel in Playa to have a both a central 5th Avenue--a 2-mile-long shopping and entertainment pedestrian thoroughfare--and a beachfront location. It will open in 2015. The other Thompson in Mexico, Thompson Los Cabos, is currently under development.
ROSEWOOD SANYA: Rosewood Hotels and Resorts have announced yet another new property. Rosewood Sanya will open in 2017 in a new development in Haitang Bay in Southern Hainan Island. The resort will actually be integrated with the International Finance Forum convention center which will open in 2015. Designed by Chicago-based architectural firm, Goettsch, the Rosewood Sanya will have 229 ocean-facing guest rooms and suites, an infinity-edge "sky pool" (i.e. located way up high), a Sense spa and five restaurant options.
Keep reading below for even more hotel news.
If you asked us what a new Mandarin Oriental hotel would look like in Taipei, the capital of Taiwan and home to things like Taipei 101, we would have probably gone with something like this. It wouldn’t have been even remotely along the lines of this exterior rendering, showing a, let’s say, ‘classically-inspired’ pile that, if nothing else, kind of reminds us of a red-brick version of the top floors of Paris Las Vegas. Anyone else see the resemblance?
Opening doors during the second quarter of the year, the hotel will have 256 rooms and 47 suites, with two Presidential Suites that clock in at over 4,000 square feet each. There will be a number of restaurants (French Brasserie COCO, restaurant Ya Ge for Cantonese, Bencotto for Italian), an MO Bar, a Cake Shop, and the Jade Lounge for afternoon tea. An outdoor swimming pool, a spa, roof gardens, and meeting rooms round out the facilities.
[Rendering: Mandarin Oriental]
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It’s Monday morning and there is tons of hotel news flying around, so to get the week off to a good start we have the latest for you from Philadelphia to Bermuda and Indianapolis to Kuala Lumpur.
The debate on which Philadelphia hotel has the best view we think may permanently shift in a few years’ time, with the announcement that Comcast is building a second skyscraper – 59 stories tall – that will house a new Four Seasons Hotel on its top fifteen floors. Furthest up is the above top-floor restaurant, in what we assume is one of 13 three-story “sky gardens” the building will feature. Located at 18th and Arch, it will be the tallest building in Philadelphia, and the tallest in the United States outside New York and Chicago.
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Where are Munich’s well-heeled women sipping oolong these days? We’d venture to guess it’s at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel, which just partnered up with Jimmy Choo for an unusually shoe-centric tea service.
The Jimmy Choo Fashion Afternoon Tea takes place in the Lobby Lounge and Mandarin Bar, which is all leather club chairs and plush, patterned sofas. The tea, available through February 28, takes its cues from Choo’s 2014 Cruise collection. So think pointy toes, metal studs, and python skin—but, um, sugar-dusted? (Just go with it.)
The service starts at $53 a head, and offers goodies like chocolate-raspberry macaroons, fruit-caviar shooters, and organic green tea. And then, there’s the piece de resistance: pink candy purses, filled with chocolates. (Modeled, of course, on Jimmy Choo’s swanky bags.) There are some glitzy extras, too: Guests get a glass of bubbly and a gift set with the fashion brand’s perfume.
So, the tea service itself is definitely cheaper than a pair of Jimmy Choos. A stay at the hotel, though, is a different story. We took a peek at rates for this weekend, and they range from $783 to $1,460 a night.
[Photo: Mandarin Oriental Munich]
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As much as we wanted to believe that Mandarin Oriental would open its Milan hotel this year, no one will be surprised that’s not happening. Unfortunately, we’re going to rain on your – and our own – parade even further, since it was whispered in our ear that it will more likely be sometime in 2015.
2015! That demands at least another year of patience for the 104-room hotel on Via Monte di Pietà, around the corner from the W Milan. It seemed rather quiet when we walked by recently, but who knows what hive of activity it was inside. The MO announcement from way back in 2007 talks about three 19th century buildings, but we counted four distinct facades, which also pop up in an architectural rendering we found in the wonderful treasure trove that is the internet.
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While Mandarin Oriental Hotels have an impressive collection of hotels that never fail to dazzle, we've always been a bit annoyed by their WiFi charges, especially since their rooms don't come cheap. For example, at the Mandarin Oriental Paris, rooms cost over $1,000 USD but the hotel also charges another $20 for WiFi. Mon dieu! However, that will now change.
Mandarin Oriental has announced that they will give its guests complimentary internet access to those guests who create an online profile and book published rates through the hotel's own website. A-ha, we see what you've done here.
You can create your Mandarin Oriental online profile here. It's free to do but it does require you filling out some personal information like your name, address and gender. This will no doubt means you will be receiving some marketing mail, both paper and electronic, from Mandarin Oriental.
However, Mandarin Oriental does stress that they will offer you the best rate on their site. And if you find a better rate, Mandarin Oriental will not only match the rate, but they will offer you a further 10 percent reduction. And once you make your reservation through Mandarin Oriental, you'll get free internet access for up to six personal devices.
That's pretty rad. We hate having to jump through this online profile hoop but it does seem like it will pay off during our next stay. Now, if only we can scrounge up a $1,000 for the Mandarin Oriental Paris.
[Photo of Mandarin Oriental Paris: JasonD/HotelChatter]
Adventures in Overservice / HotelChatter Flickr Pool / Mandarin Oriental Hotels / Shanghai Hotels / → All Tags
When we checked the HotelChatter Flickr Pool this morning for some new additions, we found this snapshot of the Mandarin Oriental Pudong in Shanghai from member BenLee123, a well-traveled man with a taste for the finer hotels in life.
The hotel just opened in April and as we expected the luxury hotel looks pretty luxurious filled with lots of high-tech amenities.
BenLee123 dropped in a few more photos of the hotel and he also posted a link to his lengthy TripAdvisor review. But this paragraph stood out for us:
No request is too much trouble. Some examples: I was on medication during this trip and asked the hotel to prepare and boil some Chinese herbs which I brought along twice a day. That’s something out of the usual service request and any lesser hotel especially in China, the answer will be an immediate NO. In this case, the staff immediately agreed to prepare this for me without a second thought or the need to “consult with management”.
Xie xie indeed!
The hotel is still offering its opening offer which gives you a complimentary second night and free internet. We found rooms on the 11th of October for just $277 USD a night.
Got a cool hotel photo to share? Drop it into our HotelChatter Flickr Pool and maybe next Monday, we'll be talking about your photo instead!
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There's tons of hotel news flying around this week and we don't have time to give each and every story the love and attention it may deserve, so here is a quick rundown to get you up to speed on the latest.
Four Seasons goes to Seoul: the Canadian group just announced it will be adding a 317-room Four Seasons hotel in the Sejongro area of South Korea’s capital, due to open in May 2015 in a brand new 25-story building
One&Only goes Down Under: we had heard the rumor before, but it’s official now. Australia’s Hayman Island will be managed by One&Only, with a full re-launch in April next year. The resort, in the Whitsunday Islands near the Great Barrier Reef, will undergo extensive renovations. Private residences will be added as well
The Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong sent us a sweet summer reminder that it’s celebrating its 50th birthday all year long – and everyone’s invited, as long as your “splurge travel” budget can handle it. With special spa treatments and commemorative cognac, dining promotions in all 10 F&B venues and champagne flowing from every direction, the hotel is wooing travelers on every front.
The list of “50 Fantastic Years” promotions goes on and on, so here’s the Cliff Notes verision of the MO, HK Glorious Excess.