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An Inside Look at ME Madrid, Where Nightlife Reigns Supreme

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  Site Where: Plaza de Santa Ana, 14, Madrid, Spain, 28012
August 27, 2014 at 2:04 PM | by | Comments (0)

When we went down for dinner at ME Madrid Reina Victoria’s restaurant, Ana La Santa, at 9:45 p.m. while staying at the hotel, we were the only people in the restaurant. By the time we left at around 11 p.m., it was packed to the gills.

We headed up to the hotel’s super-swanky rooftop bar, The Roof: besides seeing one other forlorn-looking North American couple, it was empty. So we headed back down to the Ana La Santa Bar for cocktails and were surrounded by locals all just getting their after-dinner espressos as we reached the midnight hour.

By the time we hit the hay at around 1:30 a.m. the streets just outside the hotel were reaching a fever pitch. When we went back to the lobby at around 4:30 a.m. to check out, the loungey lobby was packed.

This is ME Madrid. (See the pics below!)

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Affordable Style in Bordeaux: An Inside Look at Hotel Burdigala

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  Site Where: 115, rue Georges Bonnac, Bordeaux, France, 33000
July 31, 2014 at 1:35 PM | by | Comments (0)

The 83-room contemporary chic Hotel Burdigala is found in Bordeaux’s Mériadeck district. About a block from the tram and across the street from a well-disguised mall, the hotel is apart from the action but close enough to it.

Part of Accor's MGallery collection, this hotel is billed as a five-star, but we would place it more at a solid four-star rating. This is not meant to deter you, though, as the hotel certainly has style and is at a budget-conscious price point.

Have a look at the pics in the gallery!

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A Peek Inside Mama Shelter Bordeaux

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  Site Where: 19, rue Poquelin Moliere, Bordeaux, France, 33000
July 23, 2014 at 4:48 PM | by | Comments (0)

Last week we gave you a peek at the hip Seeko’o Hotel in Bordeaux and now it’s Mama Shelter’s turn. If you know other Mama Shelters, then you know that the hipness tap stayed on during the making of this little gem.

Located right in the heart of things at Place Saint Christoly, this 97-room hotel opened in October of 2013. Like all of the Mama Shelters the concept is simple: Give the people what they need and charge ‘em extra for the stuff that they might want. That, plus a Philippe Starck design concept that’s stark (or Starck! yuk-yuk) white minimalism in the rooms and wild and wacky design in the public areas.

(Plenty of pics in the photo gallery!)

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Hip Bordeaux? A Peek Inside the Seeko’o Hotel

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  Site Where: 54, quai de Bacalan, Bordeaux, France, 33300
July 16, 2014 at 5:22 PM | by | Comments (0)

We spent some time in Bordeaux this summer and we have one question: When did Bordeaux get to be so hip? To prove this point, we give you the 45-room Seeko’o Hotel, in the up-and-coming Chartrons district.

Formerly a wine shipping area, this warehouse neighborhood had fallen into a state of decrepitude before the current mayor thought that enough was enough and government and businesses started investing in the buildings. Now you’ll find trendy shops, galleries and restaurants all along the river in these cool reno’ed warehouses.

Across the street from one of the quays is the Seeko’o Hotel – a modern vision in white – angular and austere. “Seeko’o” is the Inuit word for “iceberg” and it’s a fitting name. King Kong Architecture designed the building and clad the outside in white Corian. Standing taller than the buildings surrounding it, it doesn’t feel obtrusive but, rather, takes command of its space.

(Since pictures speak a thousand words, be sure to have a look at the pics in the photo gallery!)

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5 Things to Do at Paris’s Fouquet’s Barrière When You’re Too Jet-lagged to Leave

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  Site Where: 46, avenue George V, Paris, France, 75008
July 11, 2014 at 2:21 PM | by | Comments (0)

We’ve all had those days while traveling overseas when you can’t quite get the gumption to leave your cozy hotel world and explore the greater world outside. We recently had one of those days while staying at the celeb hangout, Fouquet’s Barrière in Paris (a Luxury Hotels of the World property), and have put together a list of things to do if agoraphobia hits you too.

1) Food glorious food: Fouquet’s has five restaurants and three bars, not too shabby considering the hotel has only 81 rooms. Our favorite places to hang out were at Le Bar Marta, with its black and white 1930s Hollywood glam design and La Petite Maison de Nicole because, heck, if it’s good enough for Jay-Z and Beyoncé, it’s good enough for us. The food at La Petite Maison is best-described as gourmet southern France comfort food. That means Macaroni with Truffles and Provençal Ratatouille. If you go on a Thursday, Friday or Saturday evening you can groove with one of the resident DJs.

2) Shop at the front desk: There is no reason you can’t still shop if you don’t leave the hotel. If you’d like to buy the monogrammed robe you can certainly do that, but you’ll also find five proprietary perfumes, yo-yos, aprons, pencil sets and Panama hats. Some products are on display throughout the lobby, some in your room, and some are found at the front desk.

Three more tips below!

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Hotels Are Making Big Design Statements, and Occasionally Music, With Their Pianos

July 10, 2014 at 7:11 PM | by | Comments (0)

Hotels are adding keys, as in piano keys, into their design repertoire, and there seems to be no end in sight.

We’re seeing more of them as a carefully placed, often dominating feature in lobbies, bars, ballrooms, and specialty suites. As hoteliers and interior designers seek to create a unique identity for a brand or even an independent, the style or placement of a piano can and usually does, set the tone, so to speak.

We thought it might be fun to take a collective look at some examples of how hotels use pianos to show their true colors, their sense of style, or simply to show off. In some hotels it is clearly the piano itself that makes the design statement—these will be obvious— and in other cases it is the overall setting that brings it all together.

We threw in a couple of “extras,” one which is a temporary piano display in a hotel that we could not resist, and the other which is more of a suggestion on our part, for matching a piano that we found, to a hotel that is not yet open.

Here’s our gallery of hotels and their pianos, quite possibly the first of its kind. Not the last, the way things are going.

[Photos by the hotels mentioned; Blue Dog Steinway piano by RodriguesSteinway; Ferrari Grand Rossa piano by Ressino]

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Inside Suite 335 at Four Seasons George V in Paris

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  Site Where: 31, avenue George V, Paris, France, 75008
July 10, 2014 at 5:05 PM | by | Comments (3)

Last week, we gave you ideas for things you can do at Four Seasons George V if you can’t afford the pretty penny it costs to stay there, but still want a piece of that luxury pie. Now we’re going deeper inside to give you a peek at one of the coveted suites at the hotel – Suite 335.

Suite 335 is a Four Seasons Suite, the lowest rung on the suites ladder at George V. After it comes the Deluxe, Premier, Duplex, and Empire Suites, and all the way up to the Penthouse Suite. The Four Seasons Suites are not to be scoffed at, however, as runts of the litter, for they range in size from 650-750 sq ft and have the old-world elegance found throughout George V plus all of the mod-cons you need to carry on with your daily life.

Plenty of pics below!

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5 Things to Do at the Four Seasons George V Without Booking a Room

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  Site Where: 31, avenue George V, Paris, France, 75008
July 3, 2014 at 11:31 AM | by | Comment (1)

Paris is crazy expensive, especially when you get into the five-star hotel world, but who doesn't want a hit of that kind of luxe?

Here's how to get your glam on at one of the most iconic hotels in all of hoteldom without having to spend the night: the Four Seasons George V in Paris where rooms start at 1,000 Euros a night. Your bank account will thank us.

1. Cocktails at Le Bar: Fresh off a renovation, Le Bar is the cheapest, er, easiest way to take in the ambiance of the George V. We recommend the George Fizz champagne cocktail for 28 EUR ($38) because hello, it's champagne. Mixed with fresh strawberries, raspberries and orange juice, as well as guava juice, we thought it had more than enough vitamins and phyto-nutrients to cancel out the alcohol.

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A Magical Mystery Tour of Buddha-Bar Hotel Paris

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  Site Where: 4 rue d'Anjou, Paris, France, 75008
June 25, 2014 at 2:17 PM | by | Comments (0)

Now that the word is out regarding the sale of the Mondrian Soho to the Buddha-Bar Hotel Collection owner, Gerard Guez, we thought you might like to have a peek at the fairly-new Buddha-Bar Hotel Paris (opened as a Preferred Boutique Hotel in June 2013) to get an idea of what all the brouhaha is about regarding these properties in Paris, Prague and Budapest.

The 56-room Buddha-Bar Hotel Paris is located right in the fashion heart of the 8th arrondissement (and is often used in fashion shoots), just off Faubourg Saint-Honoré but, when you enter, you feel as if you’re not in Kansas (or Paris) anymore. All looks standard-issue Paris on the outside of the 1734 building, but step inside to face the 120 red-glass lanterns hanging at the entrance, and you imagine that you’ve been thrown into the movie classic, “Shanghai Express.”

With just a hint of opium-den design, the hotel and its rooms are full of mahogany wood, red or black lacquered doors and tabletops, golden brown or yellow walls and carpets, and grey or red sofas and chairs. Greeting you in the lobby, besides the Buddha-like black cat, is the Chinese Dragon woven into the carpet – a motif you’ll find throughout the hotel – as the official protector of travelers to this, and other, foreign lands.

Have a look at the photo gallery!

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15 Hotels With The Best Outdoor Spaces for Loungin' (That Aren't Rooftops)

June 17, 2014 at 5:59 PM | by | Comments (0)

With summer almost officially under way, hoteliers are getting their (rubber) ducks in a row in preparing their outdoor spaces for the influx of party-hungry crowds, both guests and locals alike. Terrace seating areas are primped, outdoor lighting and special effects are recharged, and bars with summer drinks and menus await our arrival.

As a kickoff to a wonderful summer season that most of us have already started, we have compiled a photo gallery of hotels' outdoor living spaces representing a range of designs and scenic settings. For this gallery we did not focus on rooftop bars or pools, as those have, like, totally been done before.

Enjoy!

[Photos in gallery courtesy of the hotels featured]

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Blinded By The White: 14 Hotels With All-White Designs

April 2, 2014 at 2:31 PM | by | Comment (1)

Two things can be said about present day hotel interiors that cannot be refuted--they are sometimes colorful and they are sometimes colorless. For as many hotels that we have seen with lobbies, guest rooms, and restaurants that feature bold, bright, and busy settings, we come across almost as many that go for the classic simplicity of a predominantly white palette.

The consensus is that white offers a sense of calm, order and cleanliness. That might be true in a hotel setting when there is no one in it. Further, whoever says that white signifies innocence probably doesn't spend much time in hotels. We're just saying.

Without getting too nitty gritty on whether white is or is not a color – we leave that discussion to Bill Nye the Science Guy — we have compiled a photo gallery of some great hotel interiors that have seriously lightened up. As you will see in this gallery there are many shades of "white" (for further study refer to your handy Pantone color deck) and infinitely many ways that designers capitalize on this eternal non-color in their hotel designs.

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Hotels and Their Endless Love Affair with The Wingback Chair

March 6, 2014 at 10:33 AM | by | Comments (0)

If you happen to be reading HotelChatter.com from a hotel -- and how great if you are -- take a look around. There's a very good chance you will see one of the most popular and re-invented lounge chairs ever -- the wingback chair. Maybe you are sitting in one now and if so, it's pretty comfy isn't it?

The wingback chair has been around since the 17th century yet seems to have found a permanent home in modern hospitality. What a difference 300 years can make, as there are about as many different versions on the market to entice us.

It is a design that has always been intended for comfort first. This chair generally features a high back that you can fully rest your head against, and projecting side sections that offer a subtle sense of security, especially at the top (hence the term "wings.") This goes a long way in a great big hotel lobby -- designers love it and guests love it. Win win.

This photo gallery celebrates the chair that has won the hearts of hoteliers, their designers, and perhaps more often than we realize, our derriere. Have a seat and take a look at our first round of images. Trust us, we've got more.

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