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We've talked about Even Hotels and their quest to help guests live a healthy lifestyle while on the road. Besides cool in-room training areas, healthier mini-bar snacks and improved exercise options, both on-property and off, the healthy hotels have now partnered with some fitness experts.
The IHG group have called upon Athletic-Minded Traveler, a San Diego-based company that specializes in making it easy for road-warriors to get their sweat on. AMT is working closely with EVEN Hotels to incorporate innovative hotel wellness solution concepts, fitness strategies, facility designs and decor, equipment recommendations and healthy food and beverage guidance. AMT will even help Even train their staffers. (Remember, all employees at Even Hotels are expected to be knowledgeable in wellness living.)
There are a lot of hotel openings to mark on the calendar this year but one that really caught our eye was the openings of the very first EVEN Hotels from InterContinental Hotel Group. Remember, EVEN is all about wellness and fitness and sticking to a healthy lifestyle while you're away from home.
According to their websites, both EVEN Hotels in Rockville, Maryland and Norwalk, Conn. will open on the same day--June 15. We plugged in the dates of June 15-17 and found a king room ("with a shower") for $171 a night in Rockville. (In Norwalk, the rate was $195.) The amenities listed include the following:
In-room fitness zone, sound-controlled refrigerator, 40inch HDTV, free high-speed internet, multi-media ports, iron and ironing board, ergonomic desk chair, workspace options, recycling bin, adjustable lighting, spa-like shower, ionic hairdryer, all-natural linens and eo bath amenities.
We're totally down with the in-room fitness zone and the free WiFi but what is this sound-controlled refrigerator? Is it going to set off an alarm if we try to reach for the mini-bar snacks? Aren't the snacks supposed to be healthy anyways?
Well, we guess too much of any healthy snack is still too much. Perhaps EVEN is just trying to help us stick to our calorie limits. We'll find out in June, fingers crossed.
[Photo: EVEN Hotels]
We're still anxiously awaiting the opening of the very first Even Hotel from IHG, which is supposed to be a health-conscious and wellness hotel brand, but while we sit here jittering, Even has announced plans for yet another new hotel in NYC--Brooklyn, actually.
The downtown Brooklyn Even Hotels property will be located at the intersection of Nevins and Schermerhorn Streets, just four blocks from the Barclays Center. Word is construction has already begun on the hotel and when it opens in mid-2015 it will feature 204 guest rooms on 13 floors and all the hallmarks of an Even Hotel, which include adaptable public workspaces; an open-style Market and Bar; an Even Hotels Athletic Studio; flex space for small group fitness classes; guest rooms featuring the Even Hotels In-Room Training Zone and more.
Remember, this brand is all about helping travelers stay in the health and fitness zone while they are traveling, so if you're looking for greasy burgers topped with chili cheese fries to be washed down with soda, you'll have to set out from the hotel to find it.
We've been nearly starving for more info on Even Hotels, the new wellness hotel brand from InterContinental Hotel Group, and their development plans and today, we finally got a nibble.
Even has already announced two locations in New York City but those won't actually be the first Even hotels to open. Instead, Even will open in Rockville, Maryland and Norwalk, Connecticut as early as next year. (The NYC hotel will open in 2015.) Here are the specs on each property, which will be both IHG owned and operated:
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UPDATE: Ok, the NYC hotel will be the flagship for the brand. But it won't be the first one to open. Where that first hotel will be is still a mystery.
It's been over a year now since we first heard about the new "wellness" brand from InterContinental Hotel Group, Even Hotels. Since then, the brand has announced not one, but two hotels for New York City. Yet despite an intial belief that one of these Evens would be the flagship for the brand, we've since been told otherwise by folks at IHG. Strike that. This will be a flagship hotel but it won't be the first to open.
So where could this new
flagship first Even hotel open? San Francisco? Los Angeles? Chicago? Miami? The first two would make sense for a fitness and health-oriented brand but Chicago's hotel scene is on fire, with so many new hotels and brands heading there. And who doesn't love Miami? Or maybe Even will stay close to home, IHG's home that is, somewhere in the Atlanta area. We've been digging and digging and so far, nothing has come up. If you happen to have a line in on Even's development plans, feel free to tip us off!
Meanwhile, construction has not even begun on the planned first Even Hotel for NYC which is expected to open in
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Manhattan is still the place to be for hip new hotel brands. Yesterday, we mentioned how Commune Hotels would be opening not one, but two new Tommie Hotels in the Big Apple. Today, we learn that InterContinental Hotel Group's upcoming Even Hotels brand has signed an agreement to open a second hotel in NYC--this time at 321 West 35th Street.
The hotel will be an entirely new build and will feature 150 guestrooms over 25 guest room floors. The rest of the hotel will feature flexible public workspaces, dining and social areas and since this hotel brand is all about health, fitness and wellness, a state-of-the-art,t hree-zone gym. Plus the entire place will be outfitted with free WiFi. The hotel is expected to open in 2015 as will the other Even Hotel on 44th Street. The very first Even Hotel will open sometime in 2014. That location is still TBD.
Keep reading for more hotel opening news!
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UPDATE 3:41pm: Even Hotels informs us that while the 44th St property is the first one they've announced, it won't actually be the first Even Hotel to open. Keep an eye out for more Even news in the coming months!
Considering how much love NYC's been getting from various hotel brands, we're not too surprised to hear Even will be marking its territory there too.
IHG first announced the new healthy, fitness-oriented brand back in February. And though we learned a ton about what to expect inside the hotels (free WiFi, sparse furniture, peppy slogans written on the bathroom walls, extra-healthy food), we still didn't know where—or when—we would get to see one.
TravelPulse reports that the first Even Hotel in New York will open in 2014 at 219 E 44th St, which strikes us as a bit of an odd location, since it's practically on the East River, and nowhere near the subway. But unless that's the point? To compel guests to do even more exercise getting to and from the hotel? As if the in-room yoga mats and weight benches weren't enough?
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All this talk about IKEA getting ready to sweep Europe with a new chain of budget hotels got us thinking about some of the other cool brands out there. And it's a good thing there's so many of them—because while certain brands have managed to deliver on their promises, others have yet to open a single property. And yet we still remain hopelessly glued to the screen...
Take a look at these six other hotel brands we're most excited about, and see which openings are coming to a theater near you.
The world finally exhaled when Virgin made the announcement that the location of its first-ever hotel would be in Chicago. It's going to have a modest 250 rooms, and it will open in the city's historic Dearborn Bank Building, which will hopefully make good on Richard Branson's promise that all Virgin properties will become "the hippest most comfortable in any city." Well, sir, we'll hold off on judgment until we see one actually open. Construction began in May, with a projected opening date of Fall 2013.
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We teased you a little bit yesterday with some scoop on the new, health-oriented Even Hotels from InterContinental Hotel Group (namely that there will be free WiFi in the rooms and burgers and wine downstairs). So today, let's dig a little deeper. You can do it, just five more! Push! Think of the end result! Don't give up! You can do it! Er, sorry, we got a little carried away with the fitness theme here.
Our biggest question for IHG's Christian Hempell, vice president of new brand development, was can a regular traveler feel comfortable at an Even Hotel? You know, not one of the 17 million healthy-minded main stream travelers that IHG estimates are out there?
Hempell admitted that "the brand is not for everyone. It's for folks who like healthier travel." Yet, he said that doesn't mean the Even brand is "health-obsessed." Instead, Even will be offering different options for people so they choose their own specific formula for a healthy balance. For some, Hempell said, that might mean working out so that they can enjoy a burger and wine downstairs (albeit healthier versions of such revered hotel comfort foods)
For others, it could just mean eating right and at Even, guests will have access to healthier foods and snacks. Even will even offer more vegetarian and vegan fare in their restaurants.
The other day the hotel world was abuzz with news of InterContinental Hotel Group's newest hotel brand, Even Hotels, designed for the "healthy-minded mainstream traveler."
We got the chance to speak with IHG's Christian Hempell, vice president of new business development and delivery, and he gave us a ton more insight into what Even is about and what it will be offering to guests.
We'll have the full story on that tomorrow but we wanted you to know upfront that Even Hotels will have even offer guests free WiFi. Woot. And we're guessing you can probably access the free internet while you're on the treadmill too since Even is all about healthy living.
As for the hotel guests who aren't crazy about working out while traveling (or at all), Hempell said there are options for everyone. And if you were worried the food at Even Hotel would be wheatgrass juice and alfafa sprouts, Hempell let us know there will be burgers and wine available downstairs, just healthier kinds.
Stayed tuned for our full interview with Hempell on Even Hotels, coming tomorrow!
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With this morning's announcement of IHG's newest hotel brand, Even Hotels, we started to look at the names of a few other new hotels that have come about in recent years and there's something kinda innnereesting about them. Take a look:
· Even Hotels: The new fitness-conscious brand from InterContinental Hotels. The first Even Hotel will be announced shortly and will open in early 2013.
· Commune Hotels: The new parent company of JDV and Thompson Hotels. Previously, a temporary name of JT Hospitality was being used. Commune plans to announce a new brand later this year.
· Public Hotels: Ian Schrager's new affordable chic hotel brand. The first location opened in Chicago last September (and quickly became one of our fave stays.) A New York location is expected next year.
· Edition Hotels: The brainchild of Schrager and Marriott Hotels opened first in Waikiki but was shut down last year. Another Edition is now open in Istanbul with South Beach, London, New York and Bangkok hotels all coming online "soon."
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The mid-market brand is aimed at "travelers who want guest rooms with space to exercise and amenities such as hypoallergenic linens and healthier food options." Even Hotels will feature in-room fitness equipment, workout tips from the staff, LED dimmers in the guest room, natural lighting, coat racks that double as pull-up bars and oddly enough, anti-bacterial wipes. We guess even those with OCD can stay at Even Hotels.
The Wall Street Journal has even (heh) more scoop on the fitness-oriented hotel room amenities like exercise mats and benches at the foot of the bed that double as workout benches. The fitness centers on-site at the hotel will be right next to the lobby and will be three to four times bigger than most hotel fitness centers. The cafe menu will also feature health-conscious options on their menu.
It sounds good but boy, you REALLY have to be dedicated to your workout routine to stay in a hotel that is pretty much all about working out. Can you imagine staying here on your "cheat day"? You will probably want to check-out fast. And forget about walking into the lobby with a Mickey D's bag in your hand.