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So much hotel news, so little time – here are a few snippets to keep you up to date with the latest news from around the world!
· DEBUT HOTEL GROUP TO MANAGE LIVE AQUA HOTELS IN THE US: This brief is a bit of a doozy but here's what's happening--Grupo Posadas, Mexico’s largest hotel operator, is bringing its premier luxury boutique hotel brand, Live Aqua, to major U.S. cities, courtesy of benefactor/private equity group, Bighorn Capital, Inc. Debut Hotel Group, a Hampshire Hotels Management company, who are in charge of the Dream, Night and Time Hotel brands, will manage the Live Aqua U.S. hotels which are expected to "debut" in cities such as Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, Houston and Washington, D.C. Interestingly, Chicago will be the first U.S. city to get a Live Aqua in 2017. Keep reading as the next brief is connected to this one.
· DREAM HOTELS TO OPEN IN CHICAGO: The Live Aqua hotel mentioned above will open in an 82-story high-rise in the West Loop area, which will actually be dual-developed as a Live Aqua and Dream Hotel. Yes, Dream Chicago is now happening. However, do not confuse this building with the other Mexican hospitality group Grupo Habita who are opening a hotel in Wicker Park, nor should you confuse it with the Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel. Meanwhile, a Time Hotel is expected to open in Nyack, NY. We'll have more on that later this week.
· INTRODUCING THE HOUSE COLLECTIVE: Forget luxury homes, when you can stay in luxury "Houses" from Swire Hotels. The Opposite House in Beijing, The Upper House in Hong Kong and the just-opened Temple House in Chengdu have always been united but now they've been consciously branded as The House Collective with a new website to boot.
More news briefs below!
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Like most dreams, we forget about them when we wake up in the morning. So it's understandable that we've forgotten all about the Dream Hollywood Hotel since first hearing about it in 2011. But lo and behold, here's a snapshot of the Dream sequence, er, construction, rising up on Selma Avenue in Hollywood.
When it's all said and done, the hotel should have 182 rooms, spread out over 10 stories. And as you can see from this rendering posted on Curbed.com, there will some sort of rooftop experience as well.
Which means that while you're on top of the Dream, you'll also be able to wave to the people dining and drinking (and working out) on the rooftop at the forthcoming Mama Shelter Los Angeles which is half a block away. (Mama will be opening in a few weeks; stay tuned next week for our sneak peek.)
Also in the neighborhood, just a few small blocks away, will be Thompson Hollywood which was announced the other week. At long last, Hollywood won't just be a trendy branding fad, but instead, it will be a neighborhood you can actually stay in. Cheers to that.
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This is definitely not your mother’s penthouse suite, but for its unique design, funky features, and creative amenities, could be the “mother of all penthouses” for the hip (or hip hop) Manhattan lifestyle seeker.
The zany world of hotel penthouse design just got a new entry and the bar is now officially raised. Dream Hotels, the artsy brand that dares to go where no one else goes, has unveiled the new GuestHouse at Dream Downtown. With its vibrant design and endless amenities, sleeping is probably not high on the list of things to do.
The 220-room Dream Midtown recently completed the first phase of a $20 million renovation that included a floor-to-ceiling redesign of the lobby, guest rooms, and suites. The property also changed its name from the Dream New York to the Dream Midtown.
As you can see above, the new rooms look pretty spiffy with their canopy-style headboards. But the most interesting thing about this renovation is the second phase that will be unveiled this spring: Nightlife offerings by TAO Strategic Group, they who run the massive nightclubs Tao in NYC and Las Vegas, will include the introduction of 4,000 square-foot bi-level rooftop lounge. According to the hotel, the atmosphere and vibe will mirror the current experience one can have at Dream Meatpacking, which is already big party spot. Dream Midtown will also turn its cellar into a nightlife zone, but no timetable for that has been released.
So, we don't really even have to read between the lines to get the drift of this announcement: Dream Midtown is turning itself into a party zone. Whether it's a good idea or a bad idea will simply depend on how the plan is executed, and we look forward to seeing how it turns out. Either way, we hope the new renovations include soundproofing the rooms.
[Photo: Dream Hotels]
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We stopped in to the uber-artsy Dream Downtown this week to check out their current holiday exhibit. From the photos alone, we were admittedly a little dazed and confused - and maybe that's the point - so we had to see it for ourselves. And we're glad we did. It's creative, eye-catching (eye-popping rather) and a little mind-bending to boot.
Chilled-out is perhaps not a state of being one would most commonly associate with NYC hotel Dream Downtown, but even hard-partiers need a break some time.
The hotel is now running a series of Sunday Sessions that are free and open to anyone who wants to join. Yoga classes are held in The Gallery every other Sunday, and taught by Lululemon ambassadors. Also, in-between Yoga Sundays they are offering other fun classes, such as a Wool & The Gang knitting circle. In the new year they plan to add to the program with juicing classes, cinema classes, and more. It's not all kumbaya, by the way, when we attended a yoga session the other week, we found it pretty darn competitive.
Dream Hotels have made their mark in NYC but now they're dream of hotel expansion is taking them to Dallas.
Hampshire Hotels Management has signed a deal with the Dallas Dream Group LLC in Dallas to open a 128-room hotel in the city's Uptown district. The Dream Dallas will also have a 6,000-sq.ft. ground-level restaurant, a lofted pool deck and adjacent 14,000-sq.ft. lounge with killer views of Downtown Dallas. In other words, the Dream will be the same but the location has changed.
“We see huge opportunity in Dallas, it’s one of the most cosmopolitan and fashion-forward of Texan cities. I’ve always found it odd that there is such a relative vacuum of design-oriented, lifestyle hotel products there. “ Says Brendan McNamara SVP of Brand Development and Design at Hampshire Hotels, the parent company behind the Dream concept. “Dallas also offers up inspiration for a whole new twist on our design ethic. We are looking forward to turning some heads and shaking up the scene a bit… it’s what we do best.
The project will start construction in January and should be completed by winter 2015. Architecture group 5G Studio will do the design while Hyphen Construction Group, has been retained to build the project. We hope it's everything we dreamed it would be.
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Dreams do come true...in Dubai, where Vikram Chatwal's Dream Hotels will open in late 2014. But this won't be some regular old hotel on a city block. No, this is Dubai, where everything is done not just bigger and better, but biggest and bestest.
So in following that logic, the Dream Dubai will be housed in the Marina 101, which is on track to be one of the largest super towers in Dubai and which will make the Dream Hotel the tallest hotel tower in the world when it opens. (Sorry, JDubs. You've got competition.)
Even though MTV insists on keeping on with its Video Music Awards, despite not ever playing music videos on the channel, the truth is no one is watching music videos on TV anymore.
It's all done online (or on mobile devices) and leading the way is VEVO TV, an internet music and video channel that plays video premieres from today's big artists (Bieber, Rihanna, etc.) as well as live concerts and interviews. For example, when you wanna see what that scandalous Miley Cyrus video is all about, you'll be watching it through VEVO. And now you can watch it from your room at the Dream Downtown in New York.
The hotel has announced a new partnership with VEVO, the first of its kind for a hotel brand, to bring VEVO's content to the 315 guestrooms. Guests can watch music video 24-7 from their hotel rooms on a dedicated TV channel, no internet connection required. Here's what Dream Hotels' Brendan McNamara, senior vice president of brand development, had to say about the new partnership:
We at Dream Downtown miss the days when music television channels actually played music videos! So this is the first time Vevo is broadcasting on TV. There are really no music channels anymore so this is both retro and futuristic.
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The downstairs restaurant at Dream Downtown hasn't exactly had an easy run. First, it opened as the "theatrical dining" concept Romera, by neurologist-turned-chef Miguel Sanchez Romera. The NY Times panned it. Then, earlier this year, a BondSt sushi spin-off opened in the form of Japanese-French fusion joint Cherry.
By showcasing exhibitions in untraditional spaces, Indiewalls transforms walls into galleries and redefines the white cube.
The current display features works by Allan Hasty & Joseph Grazi, Alicia Debrincat, AVone, and LJ Lindhurst, and is on view throughout different areas of Dream, from the Presidential Suite to the staircase and the ever popular PH-D nightclub. Here's a taste of what graces the walls.
We already told you about the arrival of Serafina, the new Italian restaurant at the Dream South Beach. But what we've since learned is that Serafina has something pretty special going for it — something few Miami hotel restaurants get right, including the two chefs who struggled to get this space going in the past 12 months.
The secret ingredient? Common sense. Yes, the Pizza Tartufo Nero (pictured above) is to-die-for. Just like the Prosciutto & Bufaline, the Farfalle al Limoncello and the boozy popsicles for dessert. But it's what all of these dishes have in common that makes Serafina a standout in a city awash in mediocre Italian restaurants: the fact that they're actually perfectly suited to the climate.