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Hotel Trends / Hotel Workouts / Hotel Gyms / Dorchester Collection / London Hotels / Europe Hotels / Raffles Hotels / Westin Hotels / Starwood Hotels / Starwood / San Diego Hotels / California Hotels / Swissotels / → All Tags
We've started a series of what’s trending in hotels these days: What’s Out, What’s In. Do we like what we see? Think it's a dud? You be the judge!
What's Out: Trekking to the hotel gym
What's In: In-room workouts that rival a personal training session
The hotel gym. We know people use ‘em, but sometimes it’s hard to find that last bit of energy needed to drag yourself out of your room after a busy day of sightseeing or making deals. Or maybe you’re just jet-lagged and are up at 3 a.m. thinking, “Man – I could really go for a workout right now.” At these hotels, the gym comes to you.
Dorchester Collection’s new contemporary hotel 45 Park Lane in London offers you an exclusive in-room workout with fitness guru and trainer to the stars, Matt Roberts, through a bespoke and full-body in-room video program. The hotel committed to get fit during the London Olympics and got Matt to create five workouts, each video focusing on a different area of the body using the furniture at hand. (We’re not suggesting they’re copying us here at HC, but sort of like our Sweat-Worthy Hotel Room Exercises series we brought you about a month or so ago.)
When you leave you’ll also get a freebie Matt at 45 Park Lane Fitness Pack which includes step-by-step training techniques for beginners through pros, a healthy eating plan, and “in the know” tips from the trainer -- things only Matt Roberts and Naomi Campbell knew till now.
At Raffles Praslin Seychelles space is your friend if you want to have an in-room workout. In the privacy of your own 410 sq ft (minimum) villa, with a vast outdoor terrace looking out over the ocean, you can do as many Sun Salutations as you want without bumping into the furniture. All villas already include a yoga mat and, at your mere request, the resort will deliver a fitness kit consisting of a dumbbell set, skipping rope, stability ball, resistance band and a selection of exercise DVDs. If that’s not enough to get you going you can arrange for an in-room personal trainer to take you through your paces with a customized exercise program.
And don't forget, HotelChatter's Sweat-Worthy Workouts: Can't afford to hire a personal trainer to come to your room? Or more likely, are you staying in a property that doesn't have a gym or in-room fitness videos? We've got you covered with our five sweat-worthy workouts, all of which you can do in your hotel room. Watch the videos for instructions on the different body parts to work out. You're very welcome!
Two more fitness-crazed hotels below!
Hotel Bars / Hotel Wine / Wine Hotels / Sheraton Hotels / Starwood Hotels / Hotel News / Hotel Lobbies / → All Tags
In our experience, hotel bar wine lists can be hit-or-miss. You either show up in the lobby ready to drink a mediocre (and, often, overpriced) glass of vino, or you go on Yelp! and find the nearest best-reviewed wine bar or bistro. Easy.
But over the past year, Sheraton has been changing things up with their exclusive (and verrry popular) Sheraton Social Hour. The program, which partially debuted last year in select Sheraton hotels, is awesome because it allows Sheraton guests to sample top-notch wines that have been given the thumbs up by Wine Spectator magazine.
Unsurprisingly, the program was a hit. So much of a hit that, as of yesterday, Social Hour has officially been rolled out to all 430 Sheraton hotels around the world.
Sheraton hotels and resorts in Hong Kong, Bali, Edinburgh, Santiago, New York, Waikiki—pretty much everywhere in the world, actually—all celebrated the launch with a 24-hour "toast around the world" (if you don't believe us, just type in the hashtag #sheratontoast on Instagram, and be prepared to see photos from the biggest, most extensive global wine fest ever known to man).
Hotel Rate Watch / Manhattan Hotels / Sheraton Hotels / Starwood Hotels / Langham Hotels / Kimpton Hotels / Hotel Rates / → All Tags
Summer is almost upon us, and along with all the regular seasonal delights (rooftop cocktails, long weekends in Cape Cod, ice creeeaaam), one thing we hate, hate, hate about summer in the city is the exorbitant hotel rates.
We've seen numbers climbing to $600, $650, and even $700/night for a standard room, and we feel someone needs to take a stand against such preposterousness. So that someone may as well be us.
At a glance, we found several hotels overstepping the line with $700+ rates on a weeknight in June. Sheraton Times Square must be really raking it in, as they claim their "lowest available rate" is $749/night. Meanwhile, less than three miles away, the Sheraton Lincoln Harbor is offering a room on the same night for $289. For the difference in price, we could treat ourselves to a steak dinner at Peter Luger's and still wind up saving money.
Our question is: considering that hotels can justify these kinds of rates because it's the summer season, would you pay $700/night to stay at a Sheraton? Or would you look elsewhere? Let us know your thoughts below!
Guess The Hotel / Thailand Hotels / Chiang Mai Hotels / Le Meridien Hotels / Starwood Hotels / → All Tags
Wow, we were quite impressed with the responses from our most recent, Guess The Hotel. Not only because we had a few contenders in the game, but we also had a winner! The hotel that uses their key cards as framed art in the lobby is Le Meridien Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Since we headed to the Northern Thai city for Songkran, the country's new year celebrations, the unique display caught our eyes while heading back to our room to change out of the soggy clothes we were in. When the streets and anybody walking on them got super soaked, we knew that we could escape into the comfort of our hotel with its opulent lobby and comfy rooms.
Even though the streets got hectic, we always received a warm smile and Sawatdee ka/krab from any of the staff and even were handed fluffy towels to dry off before we headed to the elevator. The one thing that stood out here was how welcoming the staff was, thanking us for coming to Chiang Mai and even providing personal cell-phone numbers to offer assistance during our stay. Truly an above and beyond experience.
Hotel WiFi / Manhattan Hotels / Starwood Hotels / Tryp Hotels / Indigo Hotels / Ace Hotels / Andaz Hotels / Element Hotels / Hotel Amenities / King and Grove Hotels / → All Tags
We brought you the 2013 WiFi Report last week, and today we're here to tell you which hotels in NYC you can count on for free WiFi. Here are a few of our faves…
Indigo Chelsea: This isn't the kind of place you go for a buzzing lobby scene or super luxe rooms. However, with a super-friendly staff and great midtown location, you can't go wrong. Rates from $293/night.
Ace Hotel: Sure, there's free WiFi. But with all the action going on at this hotel (lobby bar, Breslin restaurant, shops, and basement performance venue), will you actually get any work done? Rates from $289/night.
Andaz Fifth Avenue: Fifth Avenue shoppers will love this WiFi-enabled gem, where you can spend the day hitting up Louis Vuitton and Bergdorf Goodman, and then come home and play with those awesome welcome amenities. Rates from $432/night.
Hotel Books / Luxury Collection Hotels / Starwood Hotels / Manhattan Hotels / Venice Hotels / Hawaii Hotels / Germany Hotels / Spain Hotels / Historic Hotels / Hotel Stories / → All Tags
If you're feeling wistful this weekend, a good way to kick back and set out on a magical hotel journey—without ever leaving your home—is to flip through Assouline's new 160-page Luxury Collection book, which is part of their Hotel Stories series.
The Luxury Collection: Hotel Stories devotes a mini-chapter to each of the 80+ hotels under Starwood's chi-chi Luxury Collection brand. There's history, and celebrity interviews, and design details—but you can technically find those things anywhere on the internet. What really makes the book stand out are the photos. Rich, full-color, splashy images of ITC Mughal, Gritti Palace, Al Maha and tons more.
While drooling over the images, we managed to scan a bit of text too. Here are five takeaway facts about Luxury Collection we didn't previously know:
Hotel News / Hotel Rebrandings / Dallas Hotels / Historic Hotels / Celebrity Hotels / Texas Hotels / Le Meridien Hotels / Starwood Hotels / Haunted Hotels / → All Tags
The hotel, originally built in 1923, has seen plenty of stars through out the years; it was where Hollywood's movers and shakers stayed while visiting the Texas city. It has seen everyone from Elvis Presley, Judy Garland and Katharine Hepburn in its glory days, to Jessica Simpson and Lebron James more recently after a 2008 refurb.
The new owners, HEI Hotels, plan to update the lobby-bar with modern furniture and take advantage of the unique courtyard to attract Dallas' social-set to the Uptown area hotel. Already, the landmark Beaux-Arts building has changed the restaurant name to T/X, and serving up revamped Latin-American cuisine. We do appreciate when hotels give their properties a little love and spruce things up a bit, even when they're historical legends.
Mall Hotels / Radisson Blu Hotels / Radisson Hotels / Minnesota Hotels / Hong Kong Hotels / Singapore Hotels / JW Marriott Hotels / Dubai Hotels / Kempinski Hotels / Kuala Lumpur Hotels / Sheraton Hotels / Starwood Hotels / Macau Hotels / Macao Hotels / InterContinental Hotels / Seoul Hotels / Houston Hotels / Four Seasons Hotels / → All Tags
Last month, the 500-room Radisson Blu Mall of America became the second Radisson Blu to open in the US (after Radisson Blu Aqua Chicago). But one thing that sets this place apart from Chicago (and all other subsequent Rad Blus) is that it directly connects to the Mall of America, with its 530 shops, 5 major department stores, multiple food courts, indoor theme park, and 14-screen movie theater. If they want, hotel guests can even arrange for a personal shopper and bag pick-up to maximize the experience. Rates from $174/night.
For more mall hotel awesome-ness in Hong Kong, Dubai, and Houston, read on!
Hotel Openings / Paris Hotels / Luxury Collection Hotels / Luxury Hotels / Starwood Hotels / → All Tags
As we recently mentioned, we had the opportunity to step inside the Prince de Galles hotel during our time in Paris and see what Starwood has been cooking up over the course of two long years of renovation and restoration.
Pierre-Yves Rochon oversaw the redesign of the hotel’s lobby and guest rooms & suites, while Bruno Borrione created the restaurant and the bar. Both were on hand to walk us through the various spaces and explain the thinking behind their work. Here are some of the impressions we walked away with.
Reality TV Hotels / Hotel Packages / Westin Hotels / Starwood Hotels / Manhattan Hotels / → All Tags
Fans of the hit ABC show Shark Tank ought to perk up when they hear about a new package being offered by the Westin New York Grand Central. Dubbed the "Game Changer," the three-night package offers aspiring entrepreneurs a premium Corner King room (pictured), complimentary New Balance sneakers and workout clothes (for lending only), and free WiFi.
Pretty sweet deal, right?
Oh, wait. We almost forgot the most important part! "Game Changer" guests will also receive a half hour consultation with the shark himself, Daymond John, via Skype or in person. Yes, the FUBU man himself.
The package is named after Game Changer Meetings, a service designed to connect business people all over the world with top experts in their respective industries. Of course, it depends what your chosen industry is. For example, if it has anything to do with suspicious-looking cigarettes, then these guys probably can't help you.
Celebrity Scoop / Hotel News / W Hotels / Starwood Hotels / Amanda Bynes / Manhattan Hotels / → All Tags
We're no strangers to celebs having total meltdowns in hotels (hi, Charlie Sheen! hi, Lindsay Lohan!), so when we read about 27-year-old actress Amanda Bynes' recent spaz-out at the W New York Times Square, we thought to ourselves, "Of course."
In Touch reports that Bynes was enjoying a month-long extended stay at the hotel recently, when her erratic behavior started to creep out employees in a big way. According to the article:
"…an employee 'found her curled up in the corner of the gym smoking — with no pants on!'"
Apparently, Amanda never got around to reading our handy guide on "What Not To Do In a Hotel". Because we'd definitely file that one under "do not do." Ever.
Bynes has certainly been having a tough time lately (On Thursday, a day after her 27th birthday, she announced she had an eating disorder). And she was also photographed wandering around Times Square (probably en route to her hotel) holding a FedEx package, but then explained on Twitter that the girl in the photographs "was an impostor." Um, right…
As we see it, the W Times Square might actually be her best bet for the time being: earlier this year, the hotel was offering a detox program with supplies for a six-day juice cleanse (the promo's expired, but then again, we're sure they could bend a few rules for the former star of She's The Man.
Fiji is paradise; end of conversation. In this super tropical location in the middle of the South Pacific, you can only imagine that a hotel will capitalize on the best it has to offer: lush terrain, crystal blue beaches and sunset that make you look forward to the sun going down. In the island nation, there are only a few better locations for catching all of those points mentioned and more, Sheraton Fiji Resort.
Most of the resorts on the island have beach frontage, but the Sheraton is lucky enough to be placed on the corner of the island so it can brag about having double beach-front property. Each room is positioned to take the best advantage of, at least, patio views of the Pacific; and while ours was a bit interrupted, it was still nice to wake up and see the surf.
One of the best parts of the entire resort, besides the Flying Fish restaurant, is the open-air lobby that opens up to a gigantic pool, then on to the beach and then on to the open Fijian waters. Perfectly positioned to frame the breath-taking sunsets that casts an orange and red light onto the pool and outdoor diners.
Another amazing part is a little-slice of Fiji, a group of beautiful ladies selling their jewelery, clothing and wood-carvings right on the lawn. On agreement from the hotel, the pop-up shop is full of not only great Fijian souvenirs, but a warm "bula!" and a peek inside the local culture.