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The cookie monster's favorite hotel brand, DoubleTree has just launched a new travel-themed social media site called "DTour." Why should you care? Because to promote it, they're giving away six all-inclusive trips around the globe. Yup, free!
The DTour site is like a digital scrapbook, allowing users to post their own stories, photos and videos onto an interactive Google map—thus sharing their travel tips for a particular destination, and possibly being inspired by the experiences of others.
To enter the contest, all you have to do is upload your video onto the map.
According to a promotional video posted on the site, DTour (which was developed in partnership with Google and lives on a YouTube channel) aims to "redefine the way you plan and share your travels" and offer "inspiration to help plan the trip you've always wanted to take."
Some of the travel tips are kinda useful, like a Seattle video showing a 2-acre mountain bike trail built under the I-5. Though others are a little more questionable: do we really need to be cruising the Chicago River with some schmoozy travel talk-show host? Or watching a rerun of a Lonely Planet video about music venues in Nashville? (We'll go ahead and answer that one for you: nope.)
YouTube / Movie Set Hotels / Mr. Bean / Hotel Advice / Hotel Music Videos / Miami Hotels / China Hotels / Hotel Construction / Comedy Hotels / → All Tags
Thanks to the Almighty miracle that is YouTube, we could spend all day just browsing clips of featherbrained folks doing weird things in hotel rooms (like watching Cuban rapper Pitbull get it on with a hot female plumber in Miami's Epic Hotel—not the kind of thing you see every day).
But to make things easier, we've whittled down the selection to just five videos, showing the best of what YouTube-broacast hotel shenanigans have to offer. Click below to see for yourself!
We can't imagine a hotel being built in six days unless we're talking about one of those pop-up hotels but in Changsa, China The Ark Hotel was built in just SIX DAYS.
The 15-story sustainable hotel already had its foundation but using pre-fabricated columns and modules as well as modern construction techniques, construction workers took just 46 hours to finish the main structural components and another 90 hours to finish the building enclosure. While the workers didn't work all through the night, they did work until 10pm each night, something you'd never see happening here.
Of course, we don't know what the hotel is like on the inside (we can't seem to find a website for it) and we hope that they put some nice furniture in there too. But wouldn't it be cool if some hotels could be done this fast? Then again, what would we have to talk about?
Guests at the Westin San Francisco over the weekend had some fantastic entertainment to watch in the hotel's lobby.
That's because gay rights' groups, San Francisco Pride at Work and One Struggle One Fight (along with the Brass Liberation Orchestra) put on a special show just to urge guests to boycott the hotel. Their cause? Fair contracts for hotel workers. (This has been a very long ongoing issue in San Francisco.)
Part flash mob, part political rally and part "Glee" episode, the event used Lady Gaga's "Bad Romance" song (and choreography) to voice their problems with the hotel.
YouTube / Prizeotels / German Hotels / LipDubs / → All Tags
We thought lipdubs had gone the way of Julia Allison last year but we have to make an exception for this one from the Prizeotel in Germany. The Bremen hotel put together an extensive lipdub production to celebrate the hotel's birthday. The song choice? Celebration by Kool and The Gang.
It's cute and we love their enthusiasm (not to mention the unintentional comedy is off the charts) but it's too bad this is the only thing we understand about Prizeotel since their website is entirely in German.
But don't worry, it was just for a music video.
American Idol runner-up, Glambert, and friends hit up a room at the Hotel Angeleno to film a promotional spot for Vevo, a new music video website that launched last month.
The video intersperses shots of the hotel with Glambert and his friends "trashing" one of the rooms to one of his songs. Glambert takes a flat-screen TV off the wall and throws it out the window, then he begins jumping on the bed while his friends crawl around on the floor.
There's also a Stifler's mom type of lady walking around the room, clutching the remote control and crying about the loss of the TV until Glambert tells her "There's Vevo, you don't need this." And promptly throws the remote control out of the window.
As for the "trashing", it's pretty benign. But it really does look like they threw a TV out the window of the Angeleno which is kinda cool. Then again, it took a lot of effort to get the hotel world to convert to flat-screen TVs in the guestrooms and this is how Glambert repays them?
Video / Hotel Valet / Hotel Parking / Hotel Hell / Hotel Employees / YouTube / → All Tags
It's a scene straight out of "Ferris Bueller's Day Off." You pull up to the hotel in your expensive ride and after forking over an insane hotel parking fee, the valet parkers whisk your car off into a garage where you have no idea what could be happening with your baby.
You pray the valet guys aren't joyriding in your car and racking up the miles but at the Hyatt St. Louis,
Cameron's your worst nightmare has come true.
Employees from a valet company are being Accused of ABUSING guests' cars at the Hyatt Hotel in downtown St. Louis. A person who goes by the alias "election Underground" posted dozens of Videos on Youtube that show valet drivers doing burn outs, donuts and numerous other antics with all sorts of cars ranging from a Ford Focus to a Porsche 911 and a Maserati Coupe.
The first Home2 Suites from Hilton has broken ground in in Fayetteville, North Carolina and we were recently tipped off to a YouTube video of the ceremony.
Last time we checked in on Home2Suites, Hilton's new extended-stay brand, things were looking a bit quiet. But it looks like now 50 Home2 Suites will be opening before 2012 is out. This one here will open in late 2010.
As for the brand concept, it's nothing earth-shattering but it is a good addition to the Hilton brand. The target audience is "the savvy, value-wise extended-stay guest." The hotel rooms will start at 323-sq.ft. and a large emphasis will be placed on community space called The Oasis, which will include an activity room, fitness centers, outdoor living rooms and even, barbecue grills.
Every time we go away, we feel pangs of guilt if we don’t bring back souvenirs for our nearest and dearest; especially, our beloved dog-sitter. As a carry-on only kinda gal, it can get burdensome, and many times we cop out with a 25¢ cookie cutter postcard with an impersonal message.
Well, the San Juan Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino just launched a very cool (and complimentary) service that lets guests send a virtual shout out to the folks at home, and avoid the whole issue of having to schlep a bunch of useless tsotchkes. Plus think of all the money you’ll save on ever-increasing postage prices if you’re a postcard kinda person.
You know what? We know it's hard to stay in shape on the road especially with the availability of massive breakfast spreads in all the budget-ish hotels. You can stuff yourself full of things that come in wrappers inside airports and at gas stations but it can be hard to resist hot food when placed in front of you on a plate or in a buffet spread. Even worse: you totally usually can't cook for yourself when you're traveling, and what you can prepare on an extended-stay kitchenette is, well, not a vast and varied menu.
Hilton Garden Inn is already workin' on this helping-you-stay-healthy thing big and tall CJ from Top Chef cooked up a healthy new breakfast menu for the chain and now Residence Inn is following suit by teaming up with celebrity chef Brian Duffy of Kildare’s Irish Pub to design and promote something that will help keep your waistline in check.
Chef Duffy has put together "delicious recipes specifically designed to be pr0epared easily in a Residence Inn guest suite kitchen" with some short, "high-energy" cooking videos, complete with, demonstrations and such so you can tap into your inner celeb chef. All the vids were shot on location in Residence Inn kitchens with minimal ingredients, like the one above.
Check out the video library here.
9 Beaches, that "ultra-casual resort" in Bermuda, has certainly gotten itself entrenched in the ol' social media scene: they've been getting their bloggin' on for a long time (two-esque years), but now the place seems to have gotten tons of web 2.0 action, from YouTube vids to this sort of thing.
Recall 9 Beaches is the place that promises (no, guarantees) 68-degree days, and also was kinda too smelly for a reviewer once (oh yeah; we never let anything go around here). Per the 9 Beaches peeps:
Most recently YouTube videographer Kevin Nalty (fondly known by his online moniker Nalts) visited 9 Beaches and captured her essence on film. He is spot on with his remark, “I am feeding my mojo,” because at 9 Beaches guests unwind and revive at this unexpectedly casual Bermuda resort set amid a natural xeriscape with water views all around.
And also this may be our fave ever the resort people say, "those same easy-goers who run in social media circles are comfortable at 9 Beaches. Here guests can enjoy sophisticated and civilized Bermuda and leave the formal attire at home." What that means to us: the same people who sit around and blog in sweatpants all day long (which could be us sometimes...) will enjoy not having to go shopping for real-world clothes before going on a trip."
Teehee. Rates start at $280 for double occupancy, bloggers.
Much like Hyatt's recent brand-wide 30 percent off deal, Marriott Hotels have just announced a Global Rate Break for 20 percent off at participating Marriott hotels brand-wide and worldwide from Thursdays through Sundays. Except Marriott's put together a little video of "man on the street" interviews to hype their deal.
Whatever your reasons for getting out of town, reservations must be made by June 2 for weekend stays from May 21 through September 7. Visit marriott.com/globalratebreak or call 1-877-MARRIOTT and use promo code F5X to book.