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What do you think of when you hear the word "Buckingham"? OK, yeah. Wills and Kate. But we're not talking Buckingham Palace--we mean 51 Buckingham Gate, the Taj Hotel that's not too far from the royal's HQ.
Even still, the word "Land Rover" is not one we'd usually associate with such a posh property. But off-roading is now on tap at 51 Buckingham, with the hotel's Land Rover at 51 Package.
The Ambassador, New Delhi, has joined the Vivanta brand.
Taj Hotels is known for its slew of properties in India, like the Rambagh Palace in Jaipur, where Katy Perry and Russell Brand will tie the knot, as well as its few stateside hotels, like New York's Pierre, San Francisco's Taj Campton Place and the Taj Boston. But the company is adding a number of its hotels into a Vivanta Collection.
Sixteen hotels joined the already existing three Vivanta hotels—Vivanta by Taj - Whitefield, Bangalore; Vivanta by Taj - Panaji, Goa; and Vivanta by Taj - Coral Reef, Maldives. The master plan is to get 30 of 'em in the next two years.
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Reports say the duo have selected the Taj Rambagh Palace in Jaipur to be the site of their Hindu nuptial ceremony, after a three-day celebration on the edge of a tiger wilderness preserve at Aman-i-Khas. The Taj Hotel is actually the place where they got engaged last year.
But now, The Daily Mail has some pretty specific detes about the wedding ceremony:
The heritage palace was home to Indian royalty and is spread over 47 acres of tranquil, landscaped gardens. Funny man Brand is expected to ride through the palace gates on a lavishly decorated horse, escorted by camels and elephants.
Folk dancers are expected to welcome the couple with a traditional dance and fireworks. From here, Brand and Perry will travel in a horse driven cart to the main garden where a Hindu ceremony will be conducted in front of a small fire.
We've seen some crazy-insane hotel packages before, but this one takes the very expensive cake. The Taj Boston is offering a $6 million suite.
What the heck do you get for $6 mil, you ask? For one, you'll see your name on a new theater at the renowned Boston Conservatory. As the building's namesake, you'll also attend grand-opening events, including a ribbon-cutting ceremony and guided tours of the new complex and several performances. As part of the deal, you'll also receive two lifetime tickets to all Boston Conservatory shows.
Who's thirsty? It's time for another installment of our Summer Cocktails series. All summer long we've been profiling fun new summer drinks served at hotels around the world, and even though summer is coming to a close you should still feel free to share your favorite hotel cocktail recipes with us. And, as always, @reply us when you're wasted!
Today's cocktail does double duty in that it's not just a Summer Cocktail, it's also part of Fashion's Night Out. This fancy beverage will be served up at The Pierre's Two E Bar/Lounge next Friday, September 10, when fashion fans are getting down at at FNO party from 6–11 p.m.
Yesterday was India's Independence Day so it was a fitting day to welcome back the Taj Mahal Palace Mumbai, which reopened its Palace Wing yesterday. This part of the beloved hotel had been closed since the terrorist attacks of November 2008, which killed 166 people and also hit Oberoi Hotels & Resorts, a railway station and a cafe.
The Tower Wing of the hotel has been open for more than a year but now, with $37 million worth of renovations, the Palace Wing is now back in business as well. Part of the restoration project included work on the Taj's extensive art collection, which has been painstakingly restored for the reopening—with over 300 important pieces now hanging in the banquet hall, the lounge, and a bar off the main lobby.
Would Obama stay here? Umm...
We’re always up for hotel refurbs here at HotelChatter, so it’s nice to see 51 Buckingham Gate are keeping their rooms ticking over – they just renovated five suites at a cost of a cool $1.8million. Apparently:
The inspiration behind the renovation was to extend a feeling of tranquility, evoked by 51's unique setting, positioned around a secluded courtyard garden - a rarity in central London.
Two E: where you'll be drinking your iced tea
When we first got word of the Pierre’s new $24 prix-fixe lunch, we thought maybe they’d missed a zero off the price. But on inspection, it’s all good. Even better, according to the hotel, it’s officially Iced Tea Month – and a better excuse to go to the Pierre and drink iced tea we have yet to hear.
The $24 menu is served at bar-lounge Two E on weekdays from 10.30am-3pm. For your moneys, you open with an iced tea (posh iced tea, though - mango passion black, organic peppermint or mountain berry), progress to a main (grilled cheddar panini with a gazpacho shot or lobster or nicoise salad), and finish off with a dessert of either fruit tart or sorbet.
No, it's hardly Le Caprice, but it's summer and it's $24. Plus, you get to spread the iced tea gospel afterwards. Sorted!
Deal or No Deal / Shopping Packages / Hotel Packages / Taj Hotels / London Hotels / Luxury Hotels / → All Tags
Not to be trumped in the posh stakes by the Dorchester’s Harvey Nicks shopping package, the posh 51 Buckingham Gate (owned by Taj, next door to Buckingham Palace) has come up with its own posh partnership.
The Harrods at 51 Buckingham Gate package gives you bed and breakfast accommodation, free evening cocktails, a chauffeured ride in a Jaguar to and from Harrods, £100 off your purchases, access to the Harrods personal shopping service and “membership to Harrods Rewards’ prestigious black tier level” (whatever that is – we’re too poor to do anything in Harrods except look at the tacky Diana memorial).
What’s interesting about this, though, is the price – it starts at £330 ($488) per night, and when they ran a very similar promotion at the end of last year, prices started at an absurd £550.
We told you last month that the St. Regis Monarch Beach in Laguna Beach was hosting "Pure Seduction" parties every Thursday as a way to liven up its staid hotel offerings. The weekly dance parties are held in the lobby and when were there, we observed hotel guests, locals and cougars alike shimmying on the dance floor until the wee hours.
Now on the East Coast, cougars, recent college grads, partying parents and even the old folk, can hit up the newly redone Pierre Hotel for their twice-monthly dance parties, Rumor, which take place in the hotel lobby's bar, Two E. The NYT reports that all ages were recently be-bopping to Rihanna, Jay-Z and Lady Gaga in a hotel that was once a formal gathering place for high society.
Running every other Thursday from 9 p.m. until 2 a.m., Rumor has gained a following, attracting a lively crowd of young professionals, hotel guests and longtime Upper East Side residents who miss the Pierre’s old piano bar, now subsumed by the restaurant Le Caprice.
Best of all, the party is open to everyone. There's no dress code and no velvet rope to cross. We'll have to check this out when the hotel has its next dance party on April 22. Anyone game to meet us there?
[Photo: New York Times]
Yes, these people will happily pocket your cash
Are you part of the mega-rich? Do you lie awake at night, worrying about what to do with all those $100 bills which are currently acting as stuffing for your mattress? Yes? Then fret no more, because we have found the package for you.
The understated-but-seriously-swish 51 Buckingham Gate, neighbour to the queen, Taj property and purveyor of pawsh BBQs, has teamed up with Harrods for their imaginatively named Harrods at 51 package.
As you might surmise, it’s pretty bling. The package consists of three nights B&B accommodation, a chauffeured Jaguar to Harrods, £100 gift card, 10% off stuff from the Food Hall, membership to the “Harrods Rewards” loyalty program and an invite to their personal shopping service. Oh, and they’ll throw in a cocktail-n-canapés reception in the evening for when you come back exhausted from flexing your little manicured fingers all day long.
The Martha Stewarts in our readership might find it sacrilege to think of eating out on Thanksgiving. But for the 98 percent of the rest of you (ourselves included), it can be quite tempting to hear about Turkey Day festivities at hotels (no slaving over the oven all day, no manic cleaning session minutes before guests arrive).
Last week we rounded up a few Thanksgiving dinners at major hotels around the country, but, of course, there are additions to make. Like the Taj Boston, which is offering a $75 three-course prix fixe chef’s menu at The Café. Bonus: The hotel is thanking its guests for their holiday patronage with a $75 per person guestroom rate (with purchase of dinner for two).