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The B Hotel will open out of the old Royal Plaza Hotel which was a part of the Downtown Disney Resort Area Hotels and was an Official Walt Disney World Hotel. (The B Disney World will remain a part of the Downtown Disney resorts when it reopens.)
The B will feature 394 "completely redesigned" guestrooms (20 of these will be family-friendly rooms with bunk beds) and brand-new public spaces. The B will also feature a BBQ restaurant concept in partnership with Jeffrey Chodorow of China Grill Management as well as the brand's first full-service B Indulged® spa.
We've written a few times about the b2 miami downtownin the Biscayne Boulevard area, but the question still remained--would it be a good place to stay given its location? Well, Angela "Big Ang" Raiola of Mafia Wives and Big Ang fame thought so! She was just there last week filming a scene for her new VH1 reality show airing in September called "Miami Monkey".
Still, in a region that courts both beach crowd and cruise customers, we needed to take a look for ourselves and see who b2 would best benefit.
Indeed, it's decent Downtown digs, but you have to know what you're getting into to make it work.
So, here are the good, the great, and the not-so-great when it comes to this hotel.
If you're a cruise ship passenger and arriving the day before your sailing, the b2 is in a top spot, just across the street from the Port of Miami. In fact, from most rooms you're looking directly out into the Bay and can see mega-liners set up and ready to go. It's super convenient. Also, if you're in town for a Miami Heat game or concert, it's less than a 10 minute walk to the American Airlines arena. There's no official biz center, but we loved the free WiFi and loaner iPads (even if they're only available for one hour if there's a demand for them). Plus one can print remotely to the front desk if you've brought your own laptop.
It's moments like these when we at HC just love our job. We can be minding our own business, doing super service-oriented thangs like checking out a hotel's WiFi for you, and then we get hit with unexpected tidings we can't wait to share.
That happened last week while we were scoping out the new b2 miami downtown. Don't worry, you'll soon get the full review on our experience there, but right now? We need to gossip!
The scene: We return from a tour of an up-and-coming neighborhood (more mystery, ooh) and was immediately visually assaulted by the super tanned woman with the gigantanormous breasticles you see above. She was puffin' on a stogie right on the b2 Miami steps and said out loud she had to "finish mah cigarette".
Listen. We've been around the world and ay yi yi, but we couldn't stare any longer, especially when, in all of her bosomy, raspy goodness, she began taking photos with hotel execs. That would have been rude and we have some manners.
So, we at HC know why b2 Miami is a pretty dope place to stay. But why was Big Ang there?
All will be revealed this week, friends!
[Photos: Chanize for HotelChatter/B2 Miami]
There's no shortage of hotel options in Miami these days but the newly-opened b2 miami downtown, across from the Bayfront Park and less than a 10-minute walk away from the American Airlines Arena, is one hotel that won't break the bank.
All 243 rooms at the b2 miami downtown offer either city or bay views and feature modern furnishings and amenities such as the B-branded Blissful Bed, interactive HD LED TVs with web capabilities, built-in docking stations with USB port and MicroSD cords and Aveda bath amenities. And don't forget the free WiFi!
The b2 hotel is the second hotel from B Hotels and Resorts. The first B Hotel opened two years ago in Fort Lauderdale while The B Hotel Disney World will open this Fall. b2, however, is the more affordable B brand, promising guests all the signature services of a B Hotel like free WiFi, in-room dining, mood-lighting and more but at more affordable prices.
This b2 also features a new eatery from restauranteur Jeffrey Chodorow of China Grill Management called Biscayne Tavern. The spot is now serving up "the next evolution of comfort food" such as grass-fed beef burgers, oyster po-boys, short-rib pot roast and truffle popovers. (Don't fret, vegetarians. The menus has array of salads and pastas too.
We found a Chic City King for tomorrow night with free parking (normally $25) for just $128.15. Un-B-lievable! Perhaps we can trust this B after all.
Seems like this is the week for Miami, as the southern city rolls out more hotel news. This time we’re told a new kid on the block wants to play with the big dogs. It’s called the b2 hotel, a new concept hotel from B Hotels & Resorts.
We have to remember not everyone wants to be beachside when visiting Miami, so this Downtown property, which opens in March, is of interest, especially to those who want to be in proximity to Biscayne Bay, the Port of Miami and the American Airlines Arena. Reservations opened yesterday for the 243-room hotel, which will court guests with its Blissful Bed (anyone ever slept on one of these?), free WiFi, and in-room Smart HD LED interactive televisions.
B2 will also feature a new restaurant from Jeffrey Chodorow of China Grill Management. Called Biscayne Tavern, the casual resto will have over 30 craft beers available that will go along with dishes like Oyster Po-Boys and short rib pot roast with truffle popovers. Special introductory offers will give up to 25% off on the best available rate for stays from March 1 through September 30, 2013.
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Deals: you want 'em, and surprisingly, everyone has 'em. Take a look at some of the latest hotel deals going around the internet today from booking sites, social media sites, flash sale sites and more. Don't forget to scroll down to see the HotelChatter-approved deal either. Who knows? You might just find what you're looking for. (But don't forget to tell us about your stay!)
· Fourth Night Free at the Hilton Curaçao: It's not quite as romantic as The Bachelorette's proposal-cation but for families looking to get away before school begins again, the Hilton Curaçaois offering a fourth night free from now through August 29th which also includes 50 percent off all meals for kids ages 6 to 12, a free stay for kids under 18 and a special children's welcome gift. We found rates in early August for just $169 a night. Book the package directly online from the hotel's special offers page.
· You Say It's Your Birthday and the B Ocean Resort Has a Deal For You: Want to celebrate your birthday with a hotel stay? Conside the B Ocean Fort Lauderdale which has special B Celebrated rates of $1 for birthday folks. Here's how it works--the first night is a regular rate starting from $139 a night but the second night is just $1. Aside from the two-night stay, the only other catch is that your birthday must fall on the second night. But really? For a $1, we think you can work around that.
· Turtle-Hatching Season in Full Swing at CasaMagna Marriott in PV: Here's another family-friendly vacation idea from the CasaMagna Marriott Puerto Vallarta--rescuing turtles. As endangered turtle eggs get ready to hatcoceanfront resort, guests can choose a baby turtle to name and send it on its way back to the ocean. A biologist is also on hand to educate guests about the endangered turtles. The hotel's Escape! package includes complimentary breakfast for two adults and two children under 12, pizza and a movie for one night, free entrance to the Kids Club for ages 4-12 and nightly milk and cookies turndown service. Rates start at $189 a night and are good through December 8. Use hotel promo code MAJ to book either online or by calling 800-228-9290.
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The B in Lake Buena Vista will open in the Downtown Disney Resort area in what is currently the Royal Plaza. And yes, the 394-room will be totes family-friendly. B Hotels will do a complete renovation (hello mood lighting!) and repositioning so that the hotel will be ready to launch in late 2013. Meanwhile, the B South Beach, B Hotels' second location, is expected to open in early 2013.
As for the budget spin-off, b2, that hotel will open in early 2013 as well inside the old Continental Bayside Hotel at 146 Biscayne Boulevard. The hotel will undergo an extensive renovation b4 opening as a b2 next year. (Sorry, we couldn't resist.) b2 will offer the same value-oriented amenities to guests as B Hotels but the properties will be more of a three and three and a half star experience as opposed to four star hotels in key destinations like B Hotels.
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It's been a while since we checked in with B Hotels and Resorts but we were generally pretty pleased with our stay at the B Ocean Hotel in Fort Lauderdale which offered modern guestrooms with fun amenities and free WiFi for a reasonable price (Our stay was $169 on Jetsetter.com). Now B Hotels is getting even more affordable with their new spin-off brand called b2 hotel.
b2 will be offer the same value-oriented amenities to guests as B Hotels but the properties will be more of a three and three and a half star experiences in smaller markets, as opposed to four star hotels in key destinations.
According to Ayelet Weinstein, CEO of B Hotels & Resorts, the b2 concept will also have a more streamlined operational and staffing model. Yet while going more of the select-service route, b2 will still offer the following B signature service: B In Touch amenities like complimentary iPad rentals, digital concierge touchscreens and of course, free WiFi; B Ambiance which includes mood lighting and signature scents and B Nourished food and beverage offerings with a signature restaurant concept and even, in-room dining.
The Big B coming to SoBe. Or is that SoB?
If you're like us and have enjoyed the B Ocean Hotel in Fort Lauderdale experience but not so much the location, you won't have much further to travel to switch it up as B Hotels have just announced their second location will be in Miami Beach.
The one-lettered hotel brand will take over the Continental Oceanfront South Beach Hotel, a 250-room budget property at 18th and Collins. The hotel will be open during the renovation and rebranding but it won't officially b-come a B Hotel until Fall 2012.
That's a ways away but we're still rather excited by this news. For one thing, B Hotels has free WiFi so we can add this hotel to our list of hotels in Miami doing it for free. Second, we dug the personal touches during our B Ocean stay from the friendly staff, to the stuffed tortoise on the bed, the cotton candy in the minibar, the premium cable channels on the TV and the mood lighting in the lobby.
The other night we finally got to experience the new B Hotels and Resorts brand at their first (and only) hotel, The B Ocean Hotel in Fort Lauderdale.
Don't worry, W, your standing as the Prom King of boutique hotels is not in any jeopardy at all. But B Ocean definitely surprised us with their rooms and amenities. We just hope that future B Hotels open in more exciting places than Fort Lauderdale.
When we turn out the light for the night in our hotel room, there's one thing we always do--and that's slide the safety latch above the door lock into place.
Sure, a determined thief could use a special tool to dismantle the latch but we still feel safer doing it.
Usually, the safety latch is a chain link with a nobbin on the end of it that you insert into another piece on the door. When the door opens, it immediately gets caught by the latch. (OMG we totally just tried to explain how a safety latch works.)
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Feel that warm ocean
For those of you stuck inside because of Snowmageddon, here's something to fantasize about - the new B Ocean Fort Lauderdale is offering a warm-weather escape for only $149 a night as part of its Snow Day sale.