Tag: fairmont hotels

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How Many Savoy Butlers Does it Take to Run a Bath?

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  Site Where: Strand, London, United Kingdom, WC2R 0EU
February 4, 2015 at 8:30 AM | by | ()

Sean attends to his typical Savoy clientele

They’re contractually obliged to fulfill all the desires of the other party, they submit to ridiculous demands whatever their personal preferences, and they’ll go to great lengths to satisfy the other person. No, we’re not talking about gruesome Fifty Shades packages, but those bastions of English propriety, the butlers of the Savoy.

There are around 25 butlers at the Savoy, providing 24-hour service to all suites (of which there are 73). Sean Davoren here is their chief. And the hotel has got him to open up a little about all the weird and wonderful facets of being a butler.

Of course, this interview having been commissioned by the hotel, there’s nothing really mindblowing or naughty, but we like these facts:

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One Mayakoba, Three Resorts: Which to Choose?

January 20, 2015 at 3:03 PM | by | ()

The Mayakoba resort community near Playa del Carmen, Mexico sits on 240 acres of tropical forest with eco-friendly lagoons and surrounded by the Caribbean shoreline.

Unlike many resorts in Mexico, there is much more to do than just drink margaritas on the beach (although we like that too). Biking via the extensive shady paths, golfing and scenic boat tours around the canals are just a few.

The hard question is this: Which of the three resort properties should you choose for your stay-- the Fairmont, Rosewood or Banyan Tree? Here is a brief overview of each:

The Fairmont Mayakoba struck us as the most kid-friendly with its waterslide and kids pool, even though all three resorts have kids clubs. It’s also apparently dog friendly as we saw this little number poolside (sadly the Paris Hilton-y owner was not actually Paris Hilton). Casitas are scattered throughout the property, some of which are beachfront with stairs leading right to the ocean and some have oceanfront private plunge pools. The Mexican craft beer tasting with tapas is a must do. The Fairmont is the largest of the three with 401 rooms but it is also the least expensive (although certainly just as lovely as the others.) Off-season prices start at less than $300 per night.

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The Best Room to Book at The Savoy in London

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  Site Where: Strand, London, United Kingdom, WC2R 0EU
January 7, 2015 at 3:05 PM | by | ()

If you like traditional elegance in a hotel, you can’t really beat the star wattage at London’s Savoy hotel. The place oozes fine service and, to be honest, we were pretty impressed. But great service, location and iconic status often comes with a price tag to match. Luckily, what we were shown as the best room to book at the hotel was not a status symbol suite, but a Luxury King River View--specifically, room 514.

Rooms at The Savoy are decorated in either Edwardian or Art Deco style--although all Luxury King River View rooms are done up in Edwardian--and are pretty darn spacious. But what makes this room so special? It’s the commanding view over the River Thames and the British Eye. We stayed on a higher floor that also looked out over the Thames, but there is something about being a bit lower down at tree-level that makes one feel more "at one" with your green surroundings and dappled sunlit room.

Check out the photo gallery!

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The Fairmont Copley Plaza Will Pop Up All Festive on Friday

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  Site Where: 138 St James Ave [map], Boston, MA, United States, 02116
December 17, 2014 at 8:25 AM | by | ()

Trees, gingerbread houses, insane glass bottle installations – Christmas hotel decor is all well and good, but sometimes you want to bring a taste of it home.

Luckily, this doesn’t mean stealing the towels at the Fairmont Copley Plaza in Boston – because they have a holiday-themed, farmer’s market-style pop-up store in the tea court this Friday.

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Character Cocktails at The Savoy's Theatrical Beaufort Bar

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  Site Where: Strand, London, United Kingdom, WC2R 0EU
December 11, 2014 at 4:05 PM | by | ()

The Savoy Hotel has had more than its share of legends stay at the hotel since its opening in 1889 – Charlie Chaplin, Frank Sinatra, Marilyn Monroe, Judy Garland and Humphrey Bogart are but a few. To honor these celebrities and captains of industry The Savoy’s deeply dramatic Beaufort Bar has created a series of Character Cocktails and, we gotta tell ya, this is cocktail theater.

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Fairmont Ditches Corporate Coffee For a Small, Artisanal Cup

December 5, 2014 at 2:45 PM | by | ()

For those that follow this site regularly, you know we take our in-room cup of coffee seriously.

With that in mind, it is in good spirits that we pass on the word of Fairmont Hotels' partnership with a southern artisanal micro-roaster from Birmingham, Alabama called H.C. Valentine Coffee Company.

We haven't yet sampled the coffee personally, but it sounds promising, or at the very least, interesting, since most corporate brands tend to offer corporate coffee, like Starbucks.

The partnership is only for Fairmont's North American line of properties, and you can find a list of participating hotels here.

[Photo: Fairmont Hotels]

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Fairmont Running into Some Trouble (And Other Hotel News)

November 3, 2014 at 5:40 PM | by | ()

OhEmGee. There is already so much hotel news flying around this week and it's ONLY MONDAY. Needless to say, we just don't have enough time to focus on all of it. So here's a quick rundown to get you up to speed on the latest.

· FAIRMONT NO LONGER IN PLACE AT BOSTON'S BATTERY WHARF HOTEL : The Fairmont Battery Wharf Hotel in Boston was recently sold and the Fairmont brand was ousted as of October 27. The hotel will now be known as The Battery Wharf Hotel & Spa. It will be managed by a Canadian company, Westmont Hospitality Group.

· FAIRMONT ALSO HAVING ISSUES IN BERMUDA BUT PICKS UP BARCELONA: Just after the $90 million redevelopment of The Fairmont Hamilton Princess, and their brand new marina, The Princess Marina, the hotel's owners are now trying to ditch the Fairmont brand. A report came out today about a lawsuit filed in NYC by the hotel's owners and as expected for these type of owner-manager lawsuits, it's not pretty. Read the full list of accusations, and Fairmont's response, here. Meanwhile, Fairmont has announced they will pick up the Hotel Rey Juan Carlos I in Barcelona.

· ANOTHER AC HOTEL BY MARRIOTT IN THE WORKS: We're closing in on the grand opening of the first AC Hotel by Marriott in the U.S. (in New Orleans) but we've got a tip on another AC location. Sorry, it's not as exciting as NOLA. Woodbine Development, Inc is bringing the AC brand to the Park Place Development in Irvine, Calif.

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Drink Your Own Water In Your Room, Pay A Corkage Fee At The Fairmont Monte Carlo

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  Site Where: 12 Avenue des Spélugues, Monte-Carlo, Monaco, 98000
October 15, 2014 at 8:58 AM | by | ()

Charges for keeping your own stuff in the hotel minibar – that’s so Vegas. Our sister site VegasChatter spotted a $50 “restocking fee” at MGM Grand last year, and the story went round again last month at MGM’s sister property Mandalay Bay.

But a “corkage fee” for merely having a bottle of water in your room? Now that’s a new one.

This was a note we saw in the info book at the Fairmont Monte Carlo when we stayed earlier this year. The Fairmont is one of Monaco’s iconic hotels, right on the Mediterranean. At check in, we were impressed that staff went out of their way to tell us that we should sign up for the President’s Club in order to get free WiFi (if you can’t be bothered to do it now, do it at some point during your stay and we’ll take the charge off at check out, they said, which was awesome).

And then we stumbled upon this note. This penny-pinching, parsimonious note. “A corkage fee will be charged on an item purchased outside and consumed at the hotel”, it said. €15 for champagne and spirits. €10 for wine. €5 for soft drinks and water – water! Not bottles illicitly stored in the minibar, remember – bottles merely kept in the room.

There are so many problems with this. For starters, the sign wasn’t prominent – it was buried in the info guide, which is only read properly by geeks like us. Not a peep on the minibar, not a squeak on the bedside table.

For another, how can the hotel distinguish between drinks consumed in-room and bottles from drinks you bought earlier and didn’t bother to throw away? Chuck out that empty bottle of water in your bag you’ve been carrying around all day, and suddenly it’s chargeable.

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Oprah Winfrey Wears Her Sunglasses in the Hotel Gym, So She Can, So She Can...

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: 2401 M Street, NW [map], Washington, DC, United States, 20037
September 22, 2014 at 5:32 PM | by | ()

...keep track of the visions in her eyes?

It's been a while since we checked in on the hotel habits of Oprahy Winfrey but this sighting by the Washington Post is kind of amazing.

Spies told the paper that Oprah trooped down to the Balance Gym at the Fairmont Washington DC in Georgetown and hit the treadmill.

Sporting black athletic pants and a pink top, Winfrey was all smiles and friendly to fellow patrons, we’re told. The only clue that this wasn’t your typical convention attendee burning off last night’s buffet dinner in between sessions: the Divine Ms. O wore fashionable dark sunglasses during her session, spies say.

From now on, we will be wearing sunglasses in the hotel gym. Fake it 'til you make it, ladies! At the very least, it will help us feel slightly less mortified about tripping over the equipment in front of everyone (this actually happened to us last week.)

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Yoo Hoo, Sultan! Did You Know How Fabulous The Plaza Once Was?

September 8, 2014 at 6:16 PM | by | ()

We've been longtime lovers of The Plaza Hotel in New York, even after the hotel was renovated and turned into a branded Fairmont Hotel with residences. But we had no idea The Plaza had such a racy side.

A reader, Tommy, wrote into us with this fabulous memory of The Plaza and one that's particularly poignant considering that the homophobic Sultan of Brunei is interested in buying the hotel:

When Donald Trump owned The Plaza Hotel from 1988 to 1995, the Polynesian restaurant in their basement briefly ran a weekly Sunday night GAY PARTY called "GAUGUIN"! I know, because I used to attend it.

I unfortunately cannot remember the exact year it operated this party but I do remember the exotic Polynesian decor & the fruit-infused tropical drinks served. This short-lived party ended after some fights broke out at closing time & the restaurant's liquor license was threatened with being revoked.

That's a fascinating description (oh, how we wish we could have been there if not for our geometry homework!) but it's not quite accurate.

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Quirky Cocktails That (Can Make You) Go the Distance

August 14, 2014 at 7:13 PM | by | ()

It's no secret that we love drinking in hotels here at HotelChatter. In fact, hotels might be our favorite "local." So all this week and next, we'll be pouring out some drinks for you during our second Hotel Cocktail Week(s) -- newly-expanded because there’s just so many drinks to share. We'll be posting quirky cocktails, boozy trends, unique menus and even recipes so you can recreate your favorite hotel drink at home. We expect everyone will be getting a bit tipsy over the next couple of weeks! But don't forget to tip your bartenders, in this case, us.

There are some cocktails in this world that make you go, “Really?” Here are a few that fall into this category, proving that some things are best left for the experts to come up with.


This savory concoction comes from Shangri-La, At The Shard’s GŎNG. It contains Scotch – good; sherry – OK; blue cheese – what the?; and chocolate bitters. Really? All we can say is that we’re going to London soon and you can bet we’re making a pit stop here to see if it can actually be done.

Black and Blue Swizzle

Ingredients:
1.5 oz Talisker 10 Years
1/2 oz Pedro Ximinez Sherry
1/2 oz fresh lime juice
3/4 oz honey-blue cheese mix (method below)
1 drop Mozart Chocolate Bitter

Method:
To make the honey-blue cheese mix:
Add 2:1* honey syrup and 200g crumbled blue Stilton into a saucepan over medium heat and let the syrup simmer for a while (do not let it boil). Use a blender to make sure the cheese and honey are combined. It’s recommended to fine strain the syrup before usage.

Pour all of the ingredients into a copper mug and add crushed ice. Use a swizzle stick to blend the drink and crushed ice until the outside of the mug is frosted. A spoon can be used if you can't get hold of a swizzle stick.

Top up with fresh crushed ice and garnish with mint leaves, orange peel and cinnamon crumbles.

*A 2:1 (sugar/honey to water) is often referred to as rich simple syrup. The 2:1 ratio often gives the cocktail a better mouth feel and less is needed since it’s richer. It also lasts longer before spoiling.

Cost to imbibe at the hotel: £17 ($28)
Cost to stay at the hotel because you've imbibed too much: £500 ($834)

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Might Fairmont Get Rid Of Its President's Club Program?

July 30, 2014 at 10:39 AM | by | ()

A strange email popped into our (personal) inbox the other week. The sender called itself “Hotel Naming Study”, and it purported to be from polling company YouGov, on behalf of Fairmont Hotels. “With your input they can continue offering unique experiences designed around your travel needs,” it said. Spam or real? We clicked.

We are interested in your opinions on potential names that have been created for a new program,” it said. “On the following seven screens, you will see a total of seven names. Please use a few lines to describe what associations come to mind.”

What excitement! What new program, and what new names? We could hardly wait. Until we clicked through. The seven names under consideration were:

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