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Yes, ladies and gentlemen — April is National Grilled Cheese Month (who’s coming up with this stuff?).
Some hotels have embraced the concept as a means to reinvent this American classic, some even going so far as to create over-the-top versions of what’s, already, a delectable comfort food.
The Seagate Hotel & Spa, for instance, is celebrating the month by offering a new specialty grilled cheese available at the hotel’s Beach Club. Are you ready for it? The Lobster & Pork Belly Pimento Grilled Cheese Sandwich, created by Chef Chris Schaefer, features pickled green tomato on Texas toast.
Executive Chef Gabriel Ask of Parq Bar at Montage Beverly Hills serves up a more traditional Brioche and Aged English Cheddar Grilled Cheese Sandwich, and kids staying at Gramercy Park Hotel can try their own version with brioche by having an American or Gruyere on Brioche Grilled Cheese Sandwich with French Fries from the Room Service menu.
And then there’s the Grilled Mac ‘n Cheese at Lake Arrowhead Resort & Spa, created by Sous Chef Chris Salazar, which combines homemade mac ‘n cheese, ham, grilled balsamic tomato and guacamole on grilled sourdough bread.
See what Loews Hotels are doing for National Grilled Cheese Month after the break!
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We're only on the third day of the new year, but we've got word of a big change at Montage Hotels--the luxury hotel company just snapped up the Inn at Palmetto Bluff in South Carolina, their first-ever East Coast property. The hotel was previously an Auberge Hotels.
While the official name change will happen on February 1st, Crescent Communities, a diversified real estate investment, development and operating company, will also put more than $100 million in to expanding the resort. That money will go towards adding 150 luxury rooms to the Inn's 50 individual cottages (spread out over a few buildings) as well as creating a premium Spa Montage and Fitness Center and expanding meeting facilities and dining options. Montage-branded residences will also be offered. But we're guessing the Auberge-branded Alligator Tracking adventure will probably disappear.
The Athens Group will be the development partner, leading a design team that includes Hart Howerton, HKS Hill Glazier Studio and Wilson Associates. Rates are currently going for about $420 for a forest view cottage at the end of January and remain the same after Montage takes over in February. Of course, rates could be adjusted upwards when the expansion is complete.
Yesterday, Montage Hotels officially announced their plans to take over The Residences at Kapalua Bay in Maui. We had heard that Montage would be taking over the residential property but we weren't quite sure what the plans were for the hotel side of things. Well, now we know. Here's what they are planning:
The expansive resort, set atop the world-class, picturesque Kapalua Bay, will undergo a multi-million dollar improvement program beginning this fall, with plans including 56 Montage branded residences offered for sale and the introduction of a 50 room all-suite Montage hotel.
Those hotel suites will feature spacious living rooms, large private lanais, fully equipped kitchens, elegant master suites and luxurious bathrooms. Sounds like heaven.
Montage Hotels has already assumed management of the property yet it will continue to be known as The Residences at Kapalua Bay on an interim basis. As the spot gets closer to unveiling their 50 hotel suites, that's probably when a name change will happen. In the meantime, you can keep up with their hotel's new website here.
Montage Hotels may be super luxurious but with only three hotels (in Laguna Beach, Beverly Hills and Deer Valley), they aren't exactly everywhere you want to go. However, that may change after they open in two huge vacation destinations--Mexico and Maui.
Right now, Montage is building a beachfront resort in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Here's an idea of the vibe they're working on:
All of our Los Cabos, Mexico hotel's public spaces, guestrooms and suites will celebrate the area's tradition of indoor/outdoor living.Gracious tiled terraces, shaded courtyards, balconies and expansive windows will offer stunning views of sea, sky and the surrounding Baja desert landscape. Our hotel's guestrooms and suites will feature elegant, hacienda-style furnishings and luxurious bathrooms. A central gathering spot, complete with landscaped terraces, is designed for comfortable conversation and relaxation over morning coffee or sunset cocktails.
The resort will also have "multiple" dining options" , a full-service spa with fitness center, a rotating schedule of wellness classes and year-round leisure activities such as snorkeling in the Santa Maria Bay, diving, boating, golf on a Fred Couples signature golf course, tennis, guided hikes, biking and more. Plus, the hotel will offer "indoor" leisure pursuits as well such as wine tasting and culinary classes. In other words, it's going to be a montage of Montage amenities and services. Can't go wrong with that.
But before Montage opens in Mexico (which doesn't have an opening date), it will actually open in Maui first.
Earlier this week, we talked about all the good things coming (fingers crossed!) to downtown Los Angeles. Today we've got a round-up of some cool new things happening in Los Angeles proper, starting off with this West Hollywood hideout.
SUNSET MARQUIS: The rock star haven that is the Sunset Marquis (the hotel hosted 43 Grammy nominees this year) has begun offering a pool membership for non-guests that will allow use of the hotel's main pool and villa pools along with some other perks like a complimentary one-night stay, a Sunday brunch, drinks at the restaurant or 1200 bar, discounted cabana rentals and discounted spa treatments. The cost for a one-year member ship is $2,000 while a six-month membership can be had for $1,500. Membership is based on availability and the hotel only gives out 20 at a time. If you're not interested in joining, you can pay around $250 a night as a hotel guest and use the pool for free.
There might be little argument that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie make for the most interesting celebrity couple on this planet. After announcing their pending nuptials, the hearts of world-wide paparazzo may have skipped a beat, but the couple may have scored a point against the camera lens after organizing a private dinner at one of the restaurants in the Montage Beverly Hills.
Perhaps they were picking the flowers or even color schemes for their big day, either way Brangelina wanted a little privacy while dining in the hotel's £10 restaurant. Allegedly, after a little coaxing, they shut their doors to the public and other hotel guests, and no doubt waited on the power couple hand and foot. No word on what they dined on (does Angie eat?), but with a menu like aged bison tartare and mini lobster rolls, no doubt the bill was more than £10 ($16).
Last week, we tested your hotel knowledge with this snapshot and congrats are in order for Willfojo who correctly guessed that the barrel of Macallan Whisky can be found at The Montage Beverly Hills' secret bar, £10.
Tucked away in a separate room above the Montage's Scarpetta restaurant, £10 is not your average hotel bar. For starters, you can't just pop by whenever you want as reservations are required. You can't even find the place without someone who works there showing you the way. This isn't a 24-7 kind of place either as £10 is only open from 5pm to 1am from Tuesday-Saturday.
The bar's menu also has some of the most expensive drinks we've ever seen in our life like the 64-year-old vintage of Macallan whisky that goes for $64,000. The reason why it's so expensive, aside from age, is that these are the remaining two ounces of this vintage...in the world.
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Our resident celebrity hotel hopper, Josh Flagg is about to invade your living rooms again when the fifth season of Million Dollar Listing premieres on Bravo on June 6. But life isn't all "house" work for Josh. As soon as filming finished, he packed up and resumed his whirlwind travels. Here's what he thought of the Montage Deer Valley.
Back in March, I had the pleasure of staying at the Montage Deer Valley. It was one of the best ski-in, ski-out hotels I have ever stayed at.
Not only does the hotel have it's own in-house pooch, Monty (short for Montage) and heated outdoor swimming pool, but they also have a firepit blazing everyday from 4 to 5pm a fire pit where all the rich people get together and make s'mores. It's the only place I know where people paying $700 a night for a room get together to roast marshmallows!
The hotel also features it's own bowling alley (see the photo below.) Needless to say, this is a must-stay for a winter getaway.
You can read more on the Montage's indoor bowling alley and Daly's Pub right here!
Last week we told you about how seriously the Montage Laguna Beach’ takes its wine program, and about its weekly Sunday Artistry of Wine tasting series. This time, we’re going to fill you in on the employee continuing education class that just might be the coolest hotel job perk ever: sommelier training open to every staff member interested.
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Most people come to the ritzy Montage Laguna Beach to take advantage of its incomparable location along the stunning SoCal coast. During a recent visit, though, we actually came to experience the resort’s comprehensive wine program. Not only does it have 7 sommeliers on staff among its three restaurants managing a list of over 45,000 bottles of 2,100 wines, but it also holds a weekly wine-tasting for guests and locals called the Artistry of Wine series.
It was during a routine Twitter browsing session that we came across an excited fan's 88-character message about spotting the big "O" at none other than the Montage Beverly Hills. Now, this hotel has been known as a haven for celebrities for some time now—Mariah and Nick threw their baby shower there, for crissakes. The swanky hotel also accommodated a newly-homeless Maria Shriver when she needed a place to stay.
It was yesterday afternoon when @ttcrebekah's Oprah sighting took place—in the gift store, no less. We'd imagine, after the crazy giveaways her old show was known for, she's probably got the extra cash to pick up a few "nice things" for the house.
We reported on the opening of the deluxe Montage Deer Valley in Park City back in December, and since then we’ve told you why it’s on of the best ski-in ski-out hotels in the country, but we actually paid the mountaintop retreat a summer visit to try out activities like mountain biking, hiking, archery on the Grand Lawn, and chillaxing at the sprawling spa. However, thanks to a veritable cornucopia of bar games and a hearty menu of American classics, one of our favorite features at the hotel had to be its gastropub, Daly’s Pub & Rec.