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Facing Randolph Street from the rooftop at Soho House Chicago: to the left under the orange awning is Nellcôte with Little Goat across the street at right. Let the chow down begin!
Last January when we shared that the private member boutique Soho House would be coming to the white-hot Chicago hotel scene (watch out, don’t touch!), there was some talk from Crain's Chicago Business about whether the hotel would have trouble drawing guests to its West Loop location -- what it called a "non-traditional neighborhood" for a Chicago hotel.
Despite the location, we had no doubt from the get-go about the potential hotness of Soho House Chicago, based entirely on what we know about the collection. “The Soho House experience is so covetable, if you will,” we wrote, “that luxe scenesters--especially A-list celebrities as well as high-profile artists--will seek out the patented private haven, wherever it may be. We know we will.”
There's more: we recently spent time in the West Loop neighborhood and there's every reason to believe the West Loop location is going to be downright killer -- as hot if not hotter than the likes of the new Hotel Lincoln in unexpected Lincoln Park.
The company announced yesterday (while we were on vacation, naturally) that the Soho House Toronto will open this fall on Bishops Block in recently restored building from the 1880s. BlogTO.com reports that the house will open on Adelaide Street across from the soon-to-open Shangri-La Hotel on Adelaide St. W.
Soho House, which has always operated pop-up spots during the Toronto International Film Festival, plans to install a rooftop bar, a library, a house kitchen and pantry bar and a main lounge area, named the Pretzel Bell Bar Lounge (after the tavern that originally occupied the space, according to BlogTO.) Sadly, it doesn't look like there will be any hotel rooms here. Booo.
The Shoreditch House in London
Last week we were overly excited about the future opening of Soho House Chicago. But before the private members club/boutique hotel opens in the Windy City, Soho House is expected to first open in Mumbai this June and then in Istanbul in 2013.
And it turns out all this globe-trotting expansion is probably due to a major investment from grocery store billionaire Ron Burkle who recently bought a 60 percent share in the company.
Soho House hotelier Nick Jones wrote about the news to Soho House members saying:
'Though we've had a number of interested parties table offers for Soho House in the last few years, I believe that Ron shares our vision, and provides us with the backing to expand and improve our clubs whilst remaining true to our original ethos.'
Now, look what we've started. Just the other day we mused about the possible location for the planned Soho House Chicago. We were skeptical of the private members club' plans for Chi-town from 2008 which would have opened a hotel inside a building on Dearborn Street but we had no leads on where else they were thinking for Chicago.
Lo and behold, an excited Chicago-based tipster tipped us off the other day about a report in Crain's Chicago Business that says the Soho House Chicago will actually open in the West Loop/Fulton Market area inside a 91,000-sq.ft. warehouse at 113-125 N. Green Street. Soho House would install about 50 rooms, a signature restaurant and yes, a rooftop pool.
Apparently, Chicago-based hotel company AJ Capital Partners LLC is close to buying the property and once that sale goes through, Soho House will be installed.
Crain's also surmises that Soho House might have a problem drawing guests to a not-so-traditional neighborhood for tourists. We beg to differ. The Soho House experience is so covetable, if you will, that luxe scenesters--especially A-list celebrities as well as high-profile artists--will seek out the patented private haven, wherever it may be. We know we will.
[Photo mash-up: Google and HotelChatter]
You know the drill. Drinks going well, you decide to get dinner, then more drinks… then all of a sudden it’s midnight on a school night and you have to go home. What a downer!
Ah, says the Dean Street Townhouse, but it doesn’t have to be. Because if that dinner happens to be in that restaurant, and you happen to order after 11pm (it’s open till midnight weekdays and 1am at the weekend, last orders 11.30 and 12 respectively), they’ll make you an offer you can’t refuse: stay on in a hotel room that night for just £50.*
The £50 is per room, not per person, and you could strike lucky – they’ll give you any category, including the top level ones, worth £410.
Soho Beach House, Miami
We knew Chicago was having a bit of a hotel renaissance these days as evidenced by our 2011 Best Hotel Scene award and now we've got word that it will get even more exciting with the addition of Soho House.
A reader pointed out the careers page of the Soho House website which detailed some "What's Next" plans:
We are very excited to announce that we have a few new ventures just around the corner. In June 2012 we will be opening a site in Mumbai, followed by a site in Istanbul in June 2013.* We also have plans to take Soho House to Chicago in the not too distant future!
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In a world of shrinking amenities (hello, slippers, we miss you) and toiletry bottles getting ever smaller, it’s a mammoth relief to rock up somewhere and find as many options for molly coddling in your hotel room as you have at home.
And at Babington House, the country outpost of Soho House, the selection is pretty incredible. With full-size bottles of the entire Cowshed range of toiletries, you'll be spending more time in the bathroom than the rest of the room!
Now that it's getting crisp, it's time to start thinking about winter getaways--and one of our favorite things, beach resorts.
Which brings us to a fabulous amenity we noticed at two beachy hotels--the in-room loaner beach bag.
Yesterday we took you on a full tour of our room in the hotel portion of East London's private members' club, Shoreditch House, and even though the 26 rooms are very affordable at an average of 95-110 GBP per night, they aren't always available. This is an understandably popular place, but definitely still worth checking out if you're in the area...and particularly if you've got a massive craving for pizza in a lively atmosphere, surrounded by some of the coolest (and those who think they are the coolest) people in town.
It's called Pizza East, and it sits not inside Shoreditch House, but on the corner. It's still within the old Tea Warehouse building and part of the Soho House group, but separate enough from the private members' club that you don't need to drop keywords or cash to make it in the door.
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Our Guess the Hotel revealed...
It's springtime in London and we're tired of the cookie-cutter hotels. What to do? Hmm...maybe one of the Soho House properties...maybe one we haven't yet tried? Fifteen minutes after having this simple thought, we had booked ourselves a 95 GBP per night "Tiny" room at the Shoreditch House, the private club collection's too-cool-for-school property in London's east end, and let us tell you that it was everything to us for the next 24 hours.
The Shoreditch House, like many of the Soho House's other clubs/hotels, has a wishy-washy reputation. In fact, when we went to check in on Foursquare, Shoreditch House showed up along with "Surebitch House," a nickname for which we didn't find any justification during our brief stay. If anything, the Shoreditch House was the least bitchy hotel we've stayed in for quite some time, echoing our happiness with one of its sister properties, Dean Street Townhouse.
What makes the Shoreditch House a hotel of our dreams? Let's take a look inside...
Everyone's gone crazy over the impending royal wedding between Prince William and Kate Middleton and London Hotels are doing their best to rile up crazed royal watchers. But Heidi Atwal is here this week telling you to JUST SAY NO to hotel packages built around the royal wedding and consider these alternatives instead.
Soho House enjoys a revered reputation among the luxury-seeking set, particularly those belonging to the group's Membership Committee-approved coterie. (Viewers of Sex and the City may remember the New York outpost prominently featured in one episode.)
We don't find it hard to relax in Miami--a stroll along the beach, a spell by the pool, and a stay in a room like this makes it pretty damn easy.
But during our recent stay at Soho Beach House we needed a helping hand to ditch the stress of a busy schedule and holiday travel. So we headed straight to the Cowshed Spa and booked a Head Massage.
Guests can book treatments in their room but we were curious about the spa's 'lived-in English country style', so opted for a visit to the second floor. The look is certainly posh-rustic, but like the rest of Soho Beach House, the feel is laidback. After checking in at the front desk/retail area, you take a set of spiral stairs up to the next floor where the treatment and dressing rooms are located.