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While we may be a little over hearing how the European attitude to alcohol is so much more refined than that of Americans, we have to admit we couldn't see this new "Dishonesty Hour" service by Paris' Pavillon de la Reine translating so well across the pond. Free liquor can go far wronger than a mere wine hour.
The recently inaugurated Dishonesty Hour at the Honesty Bars at the Pavillon de la Reine and its two sister hotels -- the literary-themed Le Pavillon des Lettres and Christian Lacroix-designed Hôtel du Petit Moulin in Paris -- runs every Wednesday from 5 to 6 p.m. Typically, guests are invited to help themselves to the bar, write down what they make and receive the bill later, but at Dishonesty Hour guests can shake, stir and pour their own drinks to their heart's content, completely free of charge.
A mere hour it may be, but we still think this demands an awful amount of restraint.
Photo: Pavillon de la Reine]
Hotel Openings / Hotel Opening News / Peninsula Hotels / Paris Hotels / Luxury Hotels / Hotel News / → All Tags
We knew an opening had to be close when we walked by the Peninsula Paris in early October and saw that the facade had been freed of construction wrapping. Now, Le Figaro is reporting that the luxury hotel will actually open on August 1st.
We tried to read the article using our rudimentary French skills but we picked up the most important part--the opening date. Besides we already knew that the hotel would have 200 rooms, an all-day dining restaurant in The Lobby, a Chinese restaurant, cigar lounge, a rooftop bar and terrace and an 18,000 square foot spa below ground with indoor pool.
The hotel's website is not taking reservations yet but we hope that changes in the new year.
Hat tip to Hoteliere de Luxe for the heads up.
[Photo: JasonD for HotelChatter]
Hotel Restaurants / Morocco Hotels / Los Angeles Hotels / Manhattan Hotels / Singapore Hotels / Paris Hotels / Berlin Hotels / Art Hotels / → All Tags
Most high-end hotels take great care in creating impressive dining spaces, often luring in celebrity chefs and extra business along the way. But lately we have noticed a solid restaurant scene isn't always enough to draw in some extra business and hotels are going to greater lengths to bring in dollars, from opening up their pools so patrons can enjoy the sun and a cocktail, to installing full-blown art installations. Some hotels have taken to blending art and dining and the results certainly make for an eye-catching environment. Take a look at these six hotel restaurants where diners can take in both a five-star meal along with a helping of art and design:
SBE as a whole is an artsy and progressive name when it comes to hospitality and dining, working with big names to produce memorable venues like Katsuya and the SLS-branded hotels. The Bazaar by Jose Andres in Los Angeles is no exception with an eclectic design created, like most of their projects, by master Parisian designer of interiors Philippe Starck. Filled with seemingly random artistic pieces and a rainbow of colors, The Bazaar is anything but boring with a practically exhaustive small bites menu to match with everything from classic dishes to creations made using molecular gastronomy.
Killer View / Manhattan Hotels / Shanghai Hotels / Australia Hotels / Mumbai Hotels / Paris Hotels / Rome Hotels / → All Tags
Two weeks ago, we ran a story on some of the details about a hotel room that bother the average luxury traveler. Have you ever flung open the drapes in a gorgeous room, only to see a brick wall a few feet away? Yeah, we should’ve added that to the list. Few things can be so disappointing. In complete contrast, when you score one of those oh-so-sweet views to die for, it can be the difference between an okay hotel stay and the memory of that room with the great view. So, in case you were out to make your next great memory, allow this list of killer hotel views to inspire you:
We begin with Capella Lodge (pictured above), located on the itty-bitty (11 kilometers in length) Lord Howe Island in the Tasman Sea. The landmass is located in the midst the world’s most southern coral reef, an area declared an UNESCO heritage site in the early ‘80s. Seriously, who wouldn't want to wake up like this?
While the Peninsula Paris might be slowly revealing its Beaux Arts façade on Avenue Kléber, a hop and a skip down the Champs Élysées, two other Parisian luxury hotels are still very much off in the land of dreams.
Hotel Ritz, on terribly chic Place Vendôme, is coming up to the midway point of its two-year plus closure, or as the French put it so much more eloquently, “vers une nouvelle legende”. If possible, the building is even more obscured from prying eyes than it was last time we walked by, earlier this year.
Last time we walked down Avenue Kléber in Paris to check in on the construction progress at The Peninsula, the former Hotel Majestic was still covered in scaffolding. Just over five months later, there is much more to see, with the limestone exterior freely basking in a pale autumn sun last week. The 1908 façade has some beautiful architectural details, and the u-shape that will enable a lobby terrace facing the avenue is clearly visible.
Hotel Elevators / Hotel Gimmicks / Manhattan Hotels / Sydney Hotels / Edinburgh Hotels / Arkansas Hotels / Berllin Hotels / Paris Hotels / London Hotels / → All Tags
Any hotelier who looks at their elevators as merely a necessary function by which to transport guests between the lobby and their rooms is missing an opportunity, because if our hotel has a quirky elevator, we're probably going to talk about it. Here are ten of the best hotel elevators we've come across over the last few years.
Generators Hostels / New Hotels / Paris Hotels / Rome Hotels / Affordable European Hotels / → All Tags
We've already recommended the Generators Hostel as a budget alternative when visiting Barcelona as it offers stylish and playful digs along with the option of private rooms as well as shared rooms which start at just 17 Euros a night.
Now there's two more design-forward Generators coming to Paris (late 2014) and Rome (Spring 2014.)
The Generator Paris, located in the 10th Arrondissement and Canal St-Martin neighborhood, will actually be the brand's largest property to date, accommodating up to 950 guests in a variety of rooms from dorms to private rooms and even luxury penthouse apartments, all of which will have in-room bathrooms. Tres Bien! The hotel will also include a café lounge serving French cuisine as well as a nightclub and bar. Since Generators are knownw for their live music shows and DJ showcases, we expect this to be where it will all go off at night.
The Generator Rome, located in a stately residential building on Via Principe Amedeo, will be within walking distance to Colosseum, Termini Station and Metro station. It will be much smaller than Generator Paris with just 80 rooms on seven floors, accommodating up to 264 guests. However, it will have a large, rooftop terrace open to all guests with killer views of the city, along with a cafe and a bar and lounge.
No word yet on pricing for Paris and Rome but you can expect it to be crazy sexy cool...affordable.
[Renderings: Generators Hostels]
Hotel Cocktails / Hotel Bars / Raffles Hotels / Singapore Hotels / Seychelles Hotels / Cambodia Hotels / Philippines Hotels / Paris Hotels / Europe Hotels / Dubai Hotels / Istanbul Hotels / Indonesia Hotels / China Hotels / → All Tags
It's no secret that we love drinking in hotels here at HotelChatter. In fact, hotels might be our favorite "local" bar. So all this week, we'll be pouring out some drinks for you during our first-ever Hotel Cocktail Week. All this week, we'll be posting specialty drinks, booze trends, mixology tips and most importantly, drinks recipes so you can recreate your favorite hotel drink at home. Everyone will be getting tipsy this week! But don't forget to tip your bartenders, in this case, us.
Raffles Singapore, the place where the famed Singapore Sling was created, has launched a cocktail menu designed to take you around the world while you still remain seated and sipping in their Long Bar, god bless ‘em.
Resident mixologist, Randolph Velasco, has come up with eight spiritus drinks inspired by a Raffles hotel destination, so come join us as we embark on our virtual journey through time and space. First stop? Seychelles.
The Seychelles conjures images of an island paradise with deep blue skies, sultry breezes and emerald seas. No surprise, then, that the Raffles Seychelles cocktail is an emerald green beauty created by combining Smirnoff Vodka with melon-flavored Midori and tangy Apple Sourz, then topped off with apple juice. Garnished with slices of star fruit and a lemon wedge, this is a sipper meant to be sipped in a rattan chair with one of those tropical ceiling fans swooshing slowly overhead.
Next, we go to Raffles Cambodia –- specifically, Raffles Hotel Le Royal, Phnom Penh and Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor. Using the Kingdom’s national fruit, the five finger banana (who knew?), this golden concoction consists of rum, banana and pineapple juice, but it’s the finishing touch of zesty kaffir and fresh, green pandan leaves (a herbaceous tropical plant) that gives this drink its aromatic and mysterious character.
The Raffles Philippines takes you to the newly-opened Raffles Makati in the heart of Manila’s financial district. A mix of Bacardi rum, juicy mango and pineapple are enhanced by a mere suggestion of basil and the tart, citrus flavor of calamansi, a wee fruit that bears a resemblance to a lime but is about the size of a kumquat. Calamansi is supposed to have some health benefits, so drink up.
Raffles Istanbul anticipates the opening of Raffles Istanbul Zorlu Center in late 2013 (no date as of yet) with a cocktail that evokes the complex flavors of Turkish coffee. Rich Kahlua is layered with potent Pisco, fresh lime juice and anise to create a boozy drink not quite appropriate for the morning but it does kinda taste like coffee, so we’ll leave it up to you. (Recipe below!)
Can W Paris Opéra live up to the hype? A HotelChatter Review
After winning our hotly-contested Worst Hotel Hype award all the way back in 2011 for not just missing its July 1 opening date, but failing to open that year altogether, W Paris Opéra flung open its doors late February 2012 in the end. Countless fashionistas click-clacked their Manolos through the stone-tiled entrance and swooshed up the elevator to spend the night in this former Parisian bank, but we only coveted it from afar. None of that matters anymore now, because 2013 goes down as the year we finally did sleep with W Paris Opéra. Read on to find out how it was.
Check-In: we arrived after midnight in a taxi from Gare du Nord train station, wanting to get to sleep as soon as possible. We were happily surprised by the complete lack of attitude our cynical side was expecting from the staff; the guys checking us in were unfailingly friendly, offering to walk us to our room and show us around. We foolishly declined, thinking we’d find our own way. That turned out to be a bad idea once we got to our room.
HotelChatter Reviews / Paris Hotels / Affordable Paris Hotels / Bastille Day Hotels / Boutique Hotels / → All Tags
Does Hotel Verneuil Offer Affordable Parisian Charm? A HotelChatter Review
We teased you last week with a shot of the cozy living room at Hotel Verneuil Paris, looking ahead at that most French of holidays, Bastille Day, this past weekend. Today we have the full review of this intimate, 26-room Left Bank hotel, to see whether it should be on your list of affordable Parisian hotels – a list that can never be too long on good options, right?
Check-In: we walked to the hotel from the metro at Rue du Bac, which is minutes away, as are a number of other public transport options (more on location later). Being such a small hotel, check-in happens in the reception area just to the left of entrance, while comfortably sat at a vast wooden desk. There is someone available 24 hours a day, also to let you into the hotel after hours, so you can leave the traditional heavy key behind when you leave the hotel. There is a tiny lift, but it only starts from the first floor, so people with reduced mobility will want to consider this and potentially opt for the room on the ground floor (but as always we’d recommend discussing your needs directly with the hotel).
Kids Programs / Family-Friendly Hotels / Kid-Friendy Hotels / Paris Hotels / Raffles Hotels / → All Tags
No pressure, kid, but this better taste good.
Parisians: aren’t they just so chic? The thought of them makes us want to fly over there right now in the hope of some of that je ne sais quoi rubbing off. Now, thanks to Le Royal Monceau, our kids stand a chance of getting polished up as well.
The program includes a big line-up of art workshops held during Saturday brunch at the hotel’s Michelin-starred La Cuisine -- and we just love the idea of the kids creating masterpieces while we take our time over a spectacular brunch. The workshops, led in French and English by professional artists, are timed to coincide with current exhibitions in the city. The first workshop on September 28th, for example, will look at the work of cubist Georges Braque as a major retrospective of his work opens at the Grand Palais, while the November 30th class focuses on Pablo Picasso just as the Picasso Museum reopens after two years of renovations.