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When is a Holiday Inn not a Holiday Inn? When it’s the Holiday Inn Sarajevo.
Its story makes a sad little Flashback Friday. The Holiday Inn is perhaps one of the most iconic buildings in the Bosnian capital; not just because of its
fugly outlandish yellow design, but also because it gained a certain kind of notoriety during the siege of Sarajevo (which, at 1245 days, was the longest siege of a capital city anywhere in the world).
This is where the journalists stayed during the war, so there were a lot of pictures of the hotel published. Also, despite being smack on Sniper Alley (the main route to the airport, where the surrounding Serbian army liked to focus its attacks), the Holiday Inn survived the war relatively unscathed. It was bombed, of course – the mortar scars are horrific. But compared to the complete destruction of other buildings on that same road, it did pretty well.
Tallest Hotels / Hotel Openings / Manhattan Hotels / World Trade Center Hotels / Gene Kaufman / Hotel News / Holiday Inn Hotels / → All Tags
While we are on the subject of prolific hotel
cookie cutter maker architect Gene Kaufman, another one of his projects is set to open on Friday near Manhattan's World Trade Center---the world's tallest Holiday Inn. Um, yay?
We wrote about this hotel back in April 2012 and much of the announcement specifics are the same. The 50-story hotel at 99 Washington Street will have a whopping 490 rooms, many with killer views of the city and the Hudson River. It also promises to be full-service but we're not seeing much that's full-service about it, aside from the St. George's restaurant on site ("where kids eat free and the cuisine is sure to delight even the most discerning palate") and the complimentary "dinner snacks" that are served.
Judging by the photos on the website, the rooms look horrifyingly bland and boring but the lobby is a looker. Hello chevron floor design! And we're in love with the orange bar stool and high back armchairs. Here are the pictures on the hotel's website so far.
Earlier this week, we learned that Snoop Dogg got young and wild and free with some staffers at a UK Holiday Inn Express in Cornwall. But not only did he hang with the staffers, he actually stayed in the hotel as a guest. (With a late check-out of 3pm.)
Now, we'd like to take you back to the days of 2003 when Snoop once worked at a Holiday Inn. Ok, so it was just in a music video for the song "Holidae In" with Chingy and Ludacris. But still, nice to see Snoop is true to what what he raps about.
Just don't light too much of that sticky icky in the hotel room though.
Celebrity Scoop / Snoop Dogg / Cornwall Hotels / Devon Hotels / Exeter Hotels / Holiday Inn Hotels / → All Tags
Celebrities: they’re just like us! Or not, in the case of TLC, Lohan et al. But if your faith in celeb hotel guests has been shattered by our story yesterday, here’s one to warm the cockles of your heart: Snoop Dogg is the perfect non-demanding hotel guest.
The Dee Ohh Double G performed an intimate gig in Cornwall at the weekend, but instead of demanding to shack up at one of the county’s finest hotels, he opted for the Holiday Inn Express (or Holidae In Express as he might prefer) in Exeter – a 90-minute drive away. Perhaps he sees the value in free breakfast and WiFi?
Not only that, but he was, according to the hotel, the perfect guest:
”He had a late check out at 3pm and spent time chatting to the staff and having his photo taken with them and customers. He was very pleasant and very polite and happy go lucky.
They left the rooms in an absolutely perfect state.”
He even posed for photos with staff, and they did not get fired afterwards. Best celebrity hotel guest ever?
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Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Is it (fittingly) a giant beach ball on the roof of this beachside Holiday Inn?
Nope, none of them. It’s a military radar thingy.
Taking working with the military to a whole new level beyond giving servicemen and women discounts, the Fort Walton Beach Holiday Inn in, you’ve guessed it, Florida, has joined forces with the military to create a beach resort-military base combo. Why hasn’t Vegas thought of this before?
According to the Miami Herald, in a story that made us triple check it wasn’t April 1 today (until the hotel confirmed the news on its Facebook page):
The combination resort hotel and military test site opened in late May in an unusual partnership between the military and private business in a time of tighter military budgets. In exchange for allowing the Innisfree Hotel company to build the 152-room resort on Air Force land, the military was able to construct a rooftop station that receives radar signals and a secure conference room for classified meetings. The dome hiding the military equipment is painted red, white, blue and yellow like a beach ball.
According to the Miami Herald's gossip columnist, Lesley Abravanel, Prince Harry, fresh off a break-up, and his buddies were at the LIV nightclub at The Fontainebleau Resort in Miami Beach last night. Abravanel writes:
Harry kept his plaid shirt on and danced in the comforts of his own skybox. As for pictures of this controlled debauchery, no such luck. Neither pictures nor DJ shout outs were allowed as "per his security detail." Staffers were sworn to secrecy or else it was off with their heads--and their jobs. "I wouldn't have known he was there if it wasn't for you," said one LIV employee.
What we want to know is, did Harry spend the night?? We're guessing probably not because this is Miami and there are many mansions for a Prince to
playhide the ginger sausage in.
But what's also interesting is that Abravanel reports Harry is on his way to Memphis for the wedding of his friend Guy Pelly to Elizabeth Wilson, granddaughter of the founder of Holiday Inn chain of motels and hotels, Kemmons Wilson.
Of course, there are several Holiday Inns in Memphis but even though Prince Harry has stayed in a Courtyard by Marriott before, we hope the Wilson family has something more luxurious in mind for him.
Clearly, this is not a funeral home so we don't think the wake is a proper wake (if you know what we mean) but rather a place for folks to gather, perhaps after the burial, to pay tribute.
While we're certain that many hotels have hosted similar receptions, we've never seen one advertise this on their website. But then again, maybe we just weren't looking for it.
Hotel Renovations / Airport Hotels / Heathrow Hotels / London Hotels / Holiday Inn Hotels / → All Tags
Holiday Inn London Heathrow M4 Jct 4 usually hypes its convenient location to Heathrow Airport, just off the M4 motorway at Junction 4, and its airport shuttle service but now they've got a few new things to shout about.
The hotel finished a renovation of 280 of its rooms with the "modern business traveller" in mind and they crowdsourced a lot of the design from customer feedback.
Five concept rooms were initially done over and the hotel had guests come in and share their thoughts. The hotel then took the best elements from each of the five designs and incorporated those into the final product which are called Double Standard Rooms. Now the rooms have new furniture, leather club chairs, 32-inch HDTVs, ample workspaces and quality bedding with a choice of soft or firm pillows. Compare the new rooms with the older standard rooms here.
The Holiday Inn is now calling these rooms the hotel room of the future. We don't think it's quite there yet but it's a massive improvement. Rates for a double standard room start at $118 this weekend while the standard rooms are $104. The hotel still somehow charges for WiFi but all you need to do is join IHG's Rewards Club loyalty program to get it for free.
Keep reading for more photos
Confirmed: Hyatt is taking over NYC.
Chesapeake Lodging Trust appointed the brand to take over an existing Holiday Inn on W. 31st Street and rename/rebrand it to the Hyatt Herald Square. Not to be confused with Hyatt Times Square or Hyatt Union Square. And for those keeping count, this will be the 8th Hyatt Hotel in Manhattan.
The hotel will actually close down in August and undergo a multimillion dollar renovation, reopening by the end of September. Everything will be upgraded from the 122 guest rooms to the lobby/social spaces. Paul Vega, founder of VLDG designs of New York, will be leading the redesign and is expected to borrow from the hotel's surrounding Herald Square nabe and the nearby Fashion District. In other words: rinse, lather, repeat.
Right now, rates at the Holiday Inn are just $133 a night this weekend. No doubt that will increase a lot when it reopens as a Hyatt.
[Photo: Holiday Inn NYC Midtown ]
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InterContinental Hotels Group have just announced they are continuing their expansion into downtown Brooklyn, with the development of a new Holiday Inn at Nevins Street Station, just a few minutes walk from the recently (officially) open, Hotel Indigo Brooklyn, and close to the Barclay's Center and Brooklyn Academy of Music.
The hotel, owned by K.K. Mehta and his son Sanjeev Mehta, broke ground last week and construction is expected to be completed by the end of 2014, with an anticipated opening in early 2015.The hotel will have 246 rooms spread over 15 floors with more than 3,000 square feet of meeting space, and (in keeping with the brand's relaunch) what the company describes as "an emphasis on arrival and welcome services, guestroom and guest bath comfort, and a redesigned logo and signage.
Mad hotel construction on the Lower East Side is not looking like slowing down any time soon: projects currently in the works include the promised-to-finally-open-soon 180 Ludlow, Peter Poon Architects' skyscraping Hotel Bowery, and what will be the city's second CitizenM at 185 Bowery. While most offerings down on the LES skew hip, it is somewhat comforting to hear that good old Holiday Inn's newish property, the Holiday Inn NYC - Lower East Side has been consistently selling out since opening earlier this year.
Hôtel Americano's La Piscine is the place to see and be seen, with its trendy Chelsea Riviera location.
The whining in New York City is at an all-time high. Seems like folks just can't handle the July heat. From Twitter to Facebook and all points in between, the cries about the temperatures are soaring as high as the humidity.
While some folks are lucky enough to escape to the Hamptons for a bit of relief, not everyone has that option. So, in the spirit of tradition, we've come up with a few hotels that are allowing non-guests to enjoy their rooftop pools.
New York does it right with parties and yummy, cold drinks to go along with their cool-down experience, so hopefully this will help cease the moaning and groaning. You know, until winter comes and there's complaints that it's too cold. Sheesh!
La Piscine is the rooftop pool at Grupo Habitat's Hôtel Americano in Chelsea. Cozy cabanas and daybeds surround the space, which makes it the ultimate chill-out spot for stressed-out New Yorkers. Plus, the view of the High Line and the mezcal menu don't hurt, either. Call 212-525-0000 for reservations if you're not a guest.
Every Saturday and Sunday starting at 3pm, JIMMY at The James hotel offers pool parties for guests which includes specialty cocktails like the Grilled Pineapple Mojito, food by David Burke (tuna tartare tacos!) and a live DJ. If you happen to play hooky during the week, or are on vaca, take advantage of the teak bedecked pool when its available for guests only and chill on the plush chaise lounges. Guests can also take advantage of the free poolside yoga classes, which we recently mentioned.