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The Lanesborough now has a closing date for its massive renovations--December 20th.
As we reported in August, the luxury hotel is to go under the knife for extensive renovations. While we had hoped the hotel would stay open during the renovation and keep the disturbance to guests to a minimum, it looks like they've decided to close up shop while they work behind the scenes. We've been told by sources that the hotel will be closed for about a year. So that means it should reopen just in time for the 2014 holiday season. We're still working on getting more info on who is doing the job and what the final result may look like but when we have it, we'll get it to you.
Looking on the hotel's website, we see that reservations past December 20th are a no-go. You can, however, reserve a room for December 19th for £495 a night, which is nearly $800 US. Then again, it's your last chance to stay at the Lanesborough in its current condition.
And don't fret, while the hotel is closed, the Lanesborough's butler's heart, er service tips, will go on.
Hotel Tips / Hotel Commandments / Hotel Butlers / St Regis Hotels / London Hotels / Daniel Jordaan / → All Tags
In an age where you can remotely check-into a hotel with your smartphone and then use the in-room iPad to order breakfast from room service and tell housekeeping to change your towels, human interaction at hotels seems to be decreasing minute-by-minute every year. Often times, the only time we talk to a hotel employee is at check-in and, if something isn't working in the room.
But luxury hotels still put a premium on face-to-face interaction, thanks to their staff of well-trained concierges, front desk agents, bell men, housekeepers and more, who constantly check to make sure their guests have everything they need. And the uber-luxe hotels keep the constant contact going with their butler service, like the The Lanesborough Hotel in London, where a personal butler is automatically available to every guest who books a room. (The hotel was one of the first hotels to institute private butlers almost 25-years-ago.) Machines can do a lot but can they anticipate your needs like a real-live human butler? Not just yet.
To show how butlers can stay on top of their refined service game as we become increasingly dependent on machines, Daniel Jordaan, Head Butler of The Lanesborough, has shared his 10 Commandments List for hotel butlers.
These rules not only ensure that hotel guests' every need will be met but also offer some valuable insight for anyone working in the hospitality industry, in any position. No smartphone apps needed! We are especially big fans of #2, #3, and #6. (Actually, we're fans of all of them but these really stood out for us.)
Keep reading to see the full list of the 10 Commandments for Hotel Butlers
Hotel Butlers / Kids Programs / Family-Friendly Hotels / Kid-Friendly Hotels / Bali Hotels / St Regis Hotels / → All Tags
With family travel being an ever increasing market these days, hotels are doing the right thing by expanding their services to accommodate younger visitors. We've recently written about a few hotel services designed to keep the kids occupied while you're chilling on your vacation, but we are just bowled over by the St. Regis' commitment to creating a home away from home for families staying at their resorts.
Case in point: the St. Regis, Bali had been seeing a family from the Asia-Pacific region stay for three to five weeks in a two-bedroom villa between Easter and Christmas. The family would settle in, sans the father, who, as a surgeon, travels a lot for work and would always arrive a few days later.
The resort noticed the father's busy schedule and responded by creating personalized programs for the children and even, get this, arranging for their butler to dress up as the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus to deliver gifts!
Our hearts are warmed and we are utterly charmed by the St. Regis for this ... and maybe just a little envious of those lucky kids.
[Photo: St. Regis Hotels]
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Oh, who are we kidding? We're sure St. Regis Hotels and their polo team, captained by hunky Nacho Figueras, let Prince Harry and his Sentebale Land Rover team win the match with a final tally of 4-3. After all, the
hot ginger Prince Harry even scored the winning goal.
The polo match took place last week as part of the Royal Salute Sentebale Polo Cup at the Greenwich Polo Club in Connecticut. The match was the opener to the polo season and it's primary goal was not to give us pictures of Prince Harry and Nacho together but rather to raise awareness and support for healthcare and education of the children of Lesotho, Africa.
Several other St. Regis Connoisseurs came to cheer the St. Regis team on--which includes Dawn Jones (wife of Tommy Lee Jones)--such as fashion designer Jason Wu, Starwood’s SVP Brand Management Dave Marr, Greenwich Polo Club Co-Founder Peter Brant and Stephanie Seymour, Nacho's wife Delfina Blaquier (pictured above), model Karolina Kurkova and Olivia Palermo.
Hotel Openings / Dubai Hotels / Abu Dhabi Hotels / Marriott Hotels / Starwood Hotels / St Regis Hotels / Ritz-Carlton Hotels / Hotel News / → All Tags
Things are most definitely not slowing down over in the capital of the United Arab Emirates. After announcements on forthcoming hotels by Le Bristol and the budget-oriented Ibis, it looks like the 395-room Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi is now taking rezzies for stays beginning on Jan 1, 2013. Whoopie!
Marriott's luxury brand already has quite a strong presence in neighboring Dubai, with two properties—the beachfront Ritz-Carlton Dubai Marina (which happens to be undergoing some major renovation/expansion work), and the snazzy Ritz-Carlton DIFC—attracting plenty of luxury-seekers in an already luxury-saturated market. But further down Sheikh Zayed Road, this will be Ritz-Carlton's first Abu Dhabi location.
But that's not all! Read on to find out about more UAE openings coming up around the corner!
Movie Set Hotels / St Regis Hotels / Starwood Hotels / Atlanta Hotels / Denzel Washington / → All Tags
It's not all in-room movies and #HurricaneSandy mania for all hotels. Others, like the St Regis Atlanta, are celebrating their fifteen minutes of fame in what many are hailing as the next movie to sweep the Oscars.
We received word that Denzel Washington filmed scenes for the upcoming Robert Zemeckis-directed film Flight, which comes out this Friday, November 2, at the Atlanta hotel. And if initial reactions at this month's New York Film Festival are anything to go by, then this is definitely a movie we want to check out.
An insider confirms that Denzel filmed three scenes for the movie inside the hotel, including the above shot, which was taken at the hotel's Wine Room. Additionally, the film will show the actor in the St Regis Bar, as well as the lobby. Even better: Denzel actually gets to call out the hotel in one of the scenes, with a quick one-liner, "Meet me at the St. Regis." We will, Denzel, we absolutely will.
You gotta hand it to Starwood. When it comes to partnerships, they certainly know how to align themselves with the right brands to make people really sit up and take notice (a few that come to mind: W and Instagram, Westin and Amazon, Aloft and Bud Light...oh, and Pitchfork).
Back in April, St Regis made a lot of guests happy by ordering fleets of the new Bentley Continental Flying Spur model to be "stationed" at their hotels around the world. Now, St Regis New York has decided to take the partnership one step further by creating a dedicated Benley Suite. And it's taking reservations for next month.
On the one hand, you have one of the city's most traditional hotels, housed in a nearly two centuries' old former hospital on the Knightsbridge side of Hyde Park Corner, with white-glove butler service and more Regency period pieces than you could shake a stick at. On the other hand, there's plenty of modern in-room technology (laptops and mac minis) and the hotel has seen more than its fair share of celebrity antics (rapper party anyone?).
With the Games now less than a month away, The Lanesborough is getting on the Olympic bandwagon with a signature drink in their Library Bar: the Gold Medal Martini, complete with gold leaf rim. Having a martini while curled up in one of the leather wing chairs by the fire (it is British summer after all) in this intimate, clubby space might be just the way to escape the madness that is set to take over the city this summer.
Hotel News / Starwood Hotels / Dubai Hotels / Hotel Openings / W Hotels / Westin Hotels / St Regis Hotels / → All Tags
What's missing from this picture?
If you've thought to yourself recently, 'Gee, Dubai sure is a great place to visit, but boy, would it be even better if they opened a W, Westin and St Regis there too!' then we're here to tell you your prayers have been answered. Starwood announced today that it will do just that, after signing an agreement with Al Habtoor Group (the same conglomerate responsible for the city's upcoming Waldorf-Astoria resort, and a few of its own hotels too).
All three hotels will get built onto the same, giant complex (a one million square-foot property, in case you were wondering), and the total room count will be 1,675. This on top of the fifteen other hotels that Starwood already operates in Dubai, including Le Meridien, Sheraton and Four Points by Sheraton. But, we suppose, there's always room for a few more...
Hotel Music / Hotel Concerts / Celebrity Scoop / Starwood Hotels / Westin Hotels / Aloft Hotels / Sheraton HOtels / St Regis Hotels / W Hotels / → All Tags
Any true Ben Folds Five fans will have already heard the news (which Mr. Folds announced himself via Twitter in January), but for the rest of you: the Ben Folds Five will be making their first album since 1999. And one of the places they'll be re-uniting onstage? The Westin Times Square.
We know what you're thinking...but before you go scratching your heads about why they would pick such a random concert venue for their reunion tour, know that this gig is actually part of a new live music program being launched by Starwood hotels all over the world. Titled "On Tour with SPG: Hear the Music, See the World," the promotion consists of notable bands either performing in, DJing at, or attending parties inside Starwood hotels—all for the enjoyment of (incredibly spoiled) SPG members.
Celebrity Scoop / Kanye West / St Regis Hotels / London Hotels / Bad Celebrity Behavior / → All Tags
Rapper Kanye West must prefer hotels to mansions. After an extended stay at the Mercer Hotel last year, Kanye has ditched NYC for London and is now living at the swank Lanesborough Hotel where guest rooms and suites come with their very own butler.
Word is that Kanye is staying in one of the hotel's $5,000 a night suites along with fellow rappers Common, Pusha T and Big Sean. And it was Big Sean with the big mouth who told the UK's Sun newspaper that the group's loud music upset the royal family.
Kanye had rented out the top floor and we was banging that bitch out. Every room was a studio. The Royal Family below were complaining like, 'We got all this loud-ass rap music above us and weed smoke.' They paid all this money and you don't expect to get these kind of complaints.
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There's nothing really new about movie crews making use of hotels (either in which to film, or to sleep—though rarely both). But lately, it seems like location scouts are getting more and more creative with their picks. Here's a look at five recent movies that have all shot in hotels.
When director Steve McQueen went looking for a hotel to host his movie about a manic sex addict (played by Michael Fassbender), the Standard must have seemed like a pretty obvious choice. In addition to a painfully tense sex scene shot in one of the hotel's Hudson-facing rooms, the Shame crew also made use of the former Boom Boom Room to film Carey Mulligan dressed up like a lounge lizard singing "New York, New York."