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Finalmente! The Hilton Cabana Miami Beach has officially opened.
The beachfront property on (way north) Collins Ave was set to open in December but that was quickly pushed off until March. Then we sort of lost track. But now we've got word that it's really open.
The 10-story Art Deco building has 231 guest rooms and suites spread out over Cabana-style buildings, hence the hotel name. Most of the rooms will have balconies from which you can gaze at either the sea or the pool. We dig the orange stripes and the cheeky photograph of two ladies fishing.)
In-room amenities include 42-inch flat-screen TVs, walk-in showers, large work desks, room service from 6am to midnight and complimentary WiFi (well, it's part of the $20 resort fee. ) Also onsite are two pools; the Brasserie L'echon, an all-day dining spot; a lobby bar and both a business and fitness center.
Right now, room rates this weekend start at just $199 a night for a room with two queen beds. Gotta love Miami in the off-season!
[Photo: Hilton Cabana Miami Beach]
Washington DC’s uber high-end mixed use and all-one-word development, CityCenterDC, will also have a high-end hotel brand inside--Conrad Hotels, which is anticipated to open in early 2018. This will be the first time Conrad has opened in DC and it will also be the only hotel planned for CityCenterDC. But what exactly is CityCenterDC? Allow us.
CityCenterDC is a micro-planned, urban “neighborhood” encompassing 10 acres in downtown DC. It’s been constructed in phases over several years and includes residential, retail and dining, offices, and a luxury hotel that now has a name.
Speaking of names, The Conrad DC has a distinguished team working out the details of its design-- a duo of architects in Swiss firm Herzog & de Meuron Architekten and Dallas based HKS Architects, Inc, and Rottet Studio as interior designer. Based on their previous work, it's safe to say this Conrad will be no ordinary hotel.
The imaginatively named Hilton Garden Inn New York/Midtown Park Avenue is set to open on August 24 and will sprout a bounty of goodies and amenities (Ok, we'll stop with those gardening metaphors right now.)
For about $249 on opening night, you'll get a king bed room with free WiFi, a Keurig make, a mini-fridge and microwave, a flat-screen TV and an ergonomic desk chair with a large work space. The hotel will also have three bars, including one on the 2nd floor terrace, a 24-hour Pavilion Pantry that will sell food, drinks and toiletries; a 24-hour fitness center and Little Town Social, a full service restaurant that will server breakfast, lunch, dinner and get this room service until midnight. That's right. The Hilton New York ditched room service but the Hilton Garden Inn is serving it up.
Other bonuses include 24-hour guest laundry rooms and a generous pet policy that for four-legged friends that weigh up to 75 pounds. Did we mention the starting rate was just $249 a night? For NYC? In the summer?
[Rendering via Hilton Garden Inn]
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Tosh & Carmine at the Carlton Hotel New York, for Marriott's #LoveTravels campaign
June is Pride month, and plenty of hotels are getting into the spirit by saluting the LGBT (gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender) community in different ways. Here are a few that caught our eye, for every guest in the rainbow.
For the Party Animal: Dream Downtown in NYC. Party lovers heading to NYC for Pride (June 24-29) will want to check out the Dream Downtown, offering a Pride package which includes drinks at check-in (might as well get started) and an all-access pass to “Hot & Wet,” a DJ-hosted Pride kick-off pool party on Tuesday, June 24. Also provided is a hangover kit that includes Emergen-C and, most importantly, a 3pm checkout. Rates start at $350 per night with a two-night minimum; valid for stays through June 30, 2014.
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¡Mira! There is so much hotel news flying around this week, we just don't have enough time to focus on all the new hotels news. So here's a quick rundown to get you up to speed on the latest.
· KONNICHIWA ANDAZ TOKYO: The newest Andaz Hotel, Andaz Tokyo Toranomon Hills, is now officially open! Check out the room shot above. Swoon. Hopefully, we'll more from inside the property for you to see next week.
· HILTON HOTELS TAKING OVER MYANMAR: Only a few years after opening its country to tourism, Myanmar has been prepping for some major growth. And now it needs to brace itself for the onslaught of Hilton Hotels. The hotel chain has partnered up with the Eden Group Company to rebrand two of the Group's recently opened properties in the capital, Nay Pyi Taw, and on Ngapali beach in Rakhine State. Those hotels will now be known as Hilton Nay Pyi Taw and Hilton Ngapali Beach Resort. Hilton is also planning three more hotels in the next three years, namely: Hilton Bagan and Hilton Inle Lake in 2016 and the Hilton Mandalay which will open in 2017.
We've long known that Hilton Hotels was working on a new hotel brand but we didn't think they'd go the exact same route as Marriott and Carlson Rezidor and create a "hotel collection" that picks up existing hotels, instead of creating an actual new brand. But that's the hand we've been dealt and so here it is--The Curio Collection.
This is the official branding of Curio Hotels:
Individuality. It's what unifies the hotels in Curio - A Collection by Hilton™. These hotels exude authenticity. They capture you. Each with a distinct character and a personality you can't duplicate.
And a little more:
These are hotels as fascinating as the cities they call home. Hotels with stories to tell, and secrets to share. Hotels that stay with you, wherever you go.
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There's always some crazy news out of Las Vegas these days but we were a bit stunned this morning to hear that Blackstone Real Estate had purchased The Cosmopolitan Las Vegas from Deutsche Bank for about $1.73 billion. That's a lot of cash!
But does this mean The Cosmopolitan will stop being an Autograph Collection Hotel by Marriott?
The chances of The Cosmo moving from a Marriott to a Hilton entity are extremely likely as the Blackstone Group pretty much owns Hilton Hotels. Yet Blackstone's real estate division, which is responsible for the purchase of the Cosmo, has a diversified portfolio, which also includes, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, a percentage in Caesars Entertainment. Innnnteresting.
If Cosmo does move from Marriott to Hilton, we don't think it will happen immediately and we are sure Cosmopolitan will keep its Identity, not just the players reward club, but its cool kid persona which had made it a premiere casino resort on The Strip.
Bike maintenance stations get your Huffy purring.
Introducing: a biker bar where you’re more likely to wear Birkenstocks than leather boots.
Vermont visitors will find that the 258-room Hilton Burlington has rolled out a new lobby restaurant, The Mounted Cat, which is sure to gain traction with local cyclists. That’s because it’s located adjacent to the Burlington bike path, and boasts two “maintenance stations” offering free help to bikers in need: a handful of common tools for tune-ups, plus an air station. There’s also covered bike parking and complimentary water bottle fill-ups. Suddenly, “ride-sharing” has a whole new meaning. (Cue: “aw!” chorus and schmaltzy Full House music.)
But bikers may want to spend more time at The Mounted Cat than just the few minutes needed to tighten that doohickey or adjust the thingamajig. (We are very serious bikers here at HotelChatter, guys.) The curiously named restaurant evokes a modern farmhouse – you know, the kind where “reclaimed wooden planks” and “bar tops with tablet docking stations” coexist in peaceful harmony.
The note is all a part of Hampton Inn's plan to assure guests that while Hampton might not be a five-star luxury hotel, the beds (and arguably the most important thing in a hotel room) are clean. And now, Hampton is updating the comforting of the bedding too.
The Clean & Fresh Hampton Bed has new fluffy duvet inserts and covers with streamlined bottom corners. The beds will also have four pillows instead of three and at least one of those pillows will be the Down Dreams Soft pillow, reportedly a guest favorite.
The post-it notes are also getting switched up, although we aren't exactly sure what they will say. If you see them in the wild, let us know!
Meanwhile, Hampton's free breakfast is also getting some new options as well as a new name.
The flagship Hilton brand and its luxury properties (Conrad and Waldorf Astoria) still charge in the guestrooms as do Embassy Suites and DoubleTree by Hilton, while the "focused service" and extended-stay brands--Hampton Inn & Suites, Hilton Garden Inn, Homewood Suites and Home2 Suites-- typically have it for free. Hilton has also introduced a tiered WiFi structure for guests who need more than just basic internet.
But beyond the actual physical WiFi offerings, Hilton has also introduced a personal service--The StayConnected Program which includes a 24-hour dedicated call center to help guests with their WiFi issues while traveling.
The program also allows owners and operators access their bandwidth usage so they can better understand the needs of guests coming into their hotel. Which should be pretty simple--we all need fast, working WiFi. So give guests the best network that you can.
For more on who's still charging for WiFi and why, read our 2014 Annual Hotel WiFi Report.
In Midtown Manhattan, you need a break sometimes, so it's good to see New York City's largest hotel, the the 1,985-room New York Hilton Midtown has gone for a tranquil look in its multi-million dollar room renovation.
The hotel has just completed the first phase of a renovation program that is expected to last until 2016. With the help of Dallas-based interior design firm, Looney & Associates, 187 Executive level guest rooms and 41 suites now have a minimal, sophisticated new look.
Functional design features include custom dimmable lighting, oversized televisions, multiple power point options and abundant workspaces. Renovated bathrooms have new architectural finishes, vanities and illuminated mirrors, while the lobby features a new reception area, luxurious Executive Lounge, improved lighting design, and new stone flooring.
Up next is the Grand Ballroom, the city’s largest hotel ballroom. Its Foyer, Promenade Sutton Hall and Nassau ballroom complex are scheduled to be completed by end of third quarter 2014.
Alas, despite the renovations, Hilton still isn't bringing back room service or a full-service restaurant.
[Photo: Hilton Midtown New York]
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Maybe we had the date wrong but we could have sworn the Waldorf Astoria Jerusalem was opening in August, not April (after missing a Summer 2013 opening date.) But whatever the reason for the mix-up, we don't care. Because the luxury hotel is now OPEN.
The Waldorf Astoria Jerusalem was built on the site of the former Palace Hotel within walking distance to the Old City and Jaffa Gate. Here is a gushing description of the hotel from the press release:
The breath-taking centrepieces of the hotel are the grand entry and lofty atrium promenade, featuring a retractable glass ceiling which floods the hotel with natural light throughout the day. Complemented by arched windows, this open-air architectural style creates the atmosphere of a Jerusalem city street. Drawing on the rich heritage of Waldorf Astoria, a towering, iconic clock rests in the atrium expanse, with four sets of numbers covering its four bold faces. Blending Greco-Roman, Gothic and Ottoman architecture, the hotel is a wonderful mixture of cultures, creating a fascinating space beyond the hotel’s beautifully preserved 80-year old façade.