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"Room 100," a lifestyle blog by Thompson Hotels just won an award. Why should you care? Well, there are a growing number of these artsy e-narratives, which attempt to embody the specific culture of their respective hotels—and which are essentially modern versions of the outdated hotel magazine.
We've covered a few of 'em in the past. But seeing how they're all going off and winning awards, we figured now would be a good time to recap and re-examine few of our favorites, starting with...
GANSEVOORT: Just like at the hotels themselves, the Gansevoort Hotel Blog (a Tumblr, in case you were wondering) is all about image, with the blog's homepage a pastiche of pretty looking vignettes—a ballroom, a Porsche, and the odd Gansevoort event promo—lifted from various places around the internet. It won't tell you anything about the hotel, but it'll give you something to talk about when you get there.
Uh-oh. It looks like Morgans Hotel Group isn't the only boutique hotel chain in town with a flashy new blog.
Last week, Standard Hotels unveiled their new Tumblr blog called Standard Culture, a fantastical, image-heavy blog that chronicles all that is going on socially and culturally at Standard Hotels in the U.S. But please note--if you're looking for info on the rooms at these hotels, you're better off sticking to the regular Standard Hotels website.
In some ways Standard Culture is an extension of the already amusing Stan D'Arde Twitter feed which goes way beyond talking about Standard Hotels, although they do get some heavy play (Stan also contributes frequent blog posts to Standard Culture.)
Content on the blog focuses primarily on art, music, fashion and art, music, and fashion events happening at Standard Hotels.
Really, there's no use in us describing every feature on the blog (namely because there are so many) so you're best off checking it out for yourself. Once you've done that, jump below to read our thoughts.
Life is Suite as its tagline suggests--"Celebrating Kimpton Travel, Food & Lifestyle"--focuses on Kimpton Hotels and only Kimpton Hotels, from their suites (called "Suite Spot") to their farmer's markets, hotel style (where to buy Kimpton swag) and even their own version of What's on the Block, called "Hot Blocks."
The blog is currently manned by freelance writer Kelly Aiglon but it will be peppered with posts from Kimpton's president and COO Niki Leondakis as well as Ave Bradley, Kimpton's VP of design; Emily Wines, who is fitting Kimpton's director of wines; and Jacques Bezuidenhout, a master mixologist.
You Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare but do you Tumblr? Well, if you want to keep up with the latest news from Morgans Hotel Group, you may wanna start Tumblring. The hotel group has launched its very own Tumblr page, Morgans/Back of House.
For the briefest of lessons on Tumblr--it's a blogging platform, a really cool one. We love its clean layouts, easy HTML buttons and the capability to "follow" other blogs and have their posts pop up into your home page feed, otherwise known as a "dashboard."
Although most Tumblrs are personal blogs, lately Tumblr is being used as blogging platform for professional websites and companies, i.e. NY Times (although, nothing's there yet.)
You know how you can't get into the Rose Sessions at the Gramercy Park Hotel's Rose Bar? And how miserable it is to read about who was there and how much famous fun they had in The New York Post a few days later? Well, now Mr. Schrager has decided to let you in for a sneak peek at his famous guests and the other cool creative types who are welcome at such shindigs. Virtually, anyway.
Yes, the GPH is the latest hotel to jump on the hotel blog bandwagon but of course with a star-studded clientele, it actually has fodder to share beyond cheesy contests and news about room discounts. (We're pretty sure we'll never see anything of the kind on this blog.)
If you want an electronic glimpse at all the coolness you can't experience in real life, follow this link and bookmark away.
Hotel Blog Watch / Ritz-Carlton Hotels / Amanda Jet / Family-Friend Hotels / Kids Programs / Hotel News / → All Tags
Amanda Jet with her younger brother, her uncle Johnny and the hotel's director of PR, Christine DiRocco.
UPDATE 3.10.10: Looks like the Petite Blogger has been "put on hold for a little while." The hotel promised to let us know as soon as they are able to move forward with Miss Jet.
Last week, we were obsessed with Racked's child fashion blogger, Katie, who was really just a tongue-in-cheek commentary on the preteen and teen fashion bloggers that have captivated the fashion world. (See: Tavi.)
But kiddie bloggers can do more than pontificate on short hemlines and Rodarte for Target. They can write about kids programs at hotels! Thus The Ritz-Carlton Palm Beach has appointed their own child blogger--12-year-old Amanda Jet, niece of the very popular travel expert Johnny Jet.
Amanda's official title is Petite Blogger and her role is to, duh!, blog about her adventures at the hotel and the resort's kids program, Coast and AquaNuts.
The Ace Hotels are already known as purveyors of cool so we’re not surprised that they’ve started a blog—just that it’s taken them so long to do so. The still fledgling blog, which you can find here, looks appropriately lo-fi, fitting right in with the chain’s artsy vibe. Featured posts include photobooth strips of the Portland staff, and videos of the artists who worked on their walls at work.
In the email introducing their new home on the world wide web, Ace said the blog would be a showcase for “things about Ace that you may want to know. Like the artists who worked on the hotels, cultural events, videos, room deals, and whatever else we feel like posting.” In other words, they’re no different from your moody 14-year-old cousin.
As you know, we keep our eye out for new hotel blogs on our Blog Watch, and have watched the evolution of Marriott’s blogs with great interest since Bill Marriott himself launched Marriott on the Move in January 2007. That was followed in January 2008 by Marriott in the Kitchen written by the mustachioed head Marriott International chef, Brad Nelson, whose mantra is “you’re only as good as your last meal.”
Now we are happy to report that the chef blog has just completed a re-design of the site and are using it to hype special events, such as Chef Laurent Tourondel’s (of BLT Restaurants) recent foray into the kitchen to personally fix a burger for Bill Marriott, complete with slideshow.
We spend a lot of time harping on things we don't like: fugly carpets, opening delays, crappy service and high room rates. But here is something we really, really do like (for a change): TripAdvisor's blog, "We Are Not Making This Up." We mentioned this a couple of years ago, but it's still up and running and turning out amusing nuggets of text and photos from real people that make you lose (or help restore!) a bit of faith in the world out there.
You know, every once in a while you come across a review on TripAdvisor that is somewhere along the lines of, "This hotel is horrible!!!11one!!1 Do NOT stay here!!!1!! NEVER AGAIN!!" and you're like, hmmm, this person is certainly quite distraught but it's sort of funny, though. But have you ever wondered what happens to the reviews from people who are so distraught (or just so set on telling everyone in the world that the coffee maker was broken) that it was actually not publishable by TA? Enter the WANMTA blog.
It's looking like more and more hotels and hospitality-focused companies are zeroing in on the business travel sector (er, are they maybe the only ones that are really traveling these days?) and now Embassy Suites has gotten in on what seem to be two of the hottest trendy-trends in the industry: social media (or, like, blogginess) and business travel.
The chain has revamped and repositioned its BusinessBalance.com site, and while the previous iteration of the site was all about offering advice to biz travelers, it's keeping all that up but with new experts dishing out the tips and in a blog format. Sweet. Oh, and they switched from a Flash site to a more reader-friendly HTML-style site. Yay!
The blogging experts offering up the tips are:
· Jane and Michael Stern of Roadfood.com (writing about food, obviously)
· Erin Whitehead and Jenn Walters of FitBottomedGirls.com (writing about fitness)
· Erin Kane and Kristin Brandt of ManicMommies.com (writing about balancing work and life)
Some of the newer blog entries give tips on how to stay fit on the road (whether it's heading out of the hotel's immediate area to find a hiking trail or just treading water downstairs in the hotel pool) and there are some pretty sweet food tips here, too.
Head on over to check out the new site. We dig.
Hyatt would like you to know that they understand the Internet. They're a big-box hotel chain, yes but look! They're down with that Twitter stuff and the blogs that kids these days are so into (note: being social media-savvy does not mean they are allowed to put any less effort into their booking website; it should, like every hotel website should, strive to be freakishly easy-to-use).
Over at USA Today's Hotel Check-In, Hyatt Hotels CEO Mark Hoplamazian is bloggin' away well, he's written two blog entries on Check-In's monthly "Checking in with the Chief" series, that is.
Well, we're going to go ahead and put this in our "Adventures in Overservice" category, even though this is just sort of a story about someone doing something ridiculously, exceptionally nice for a stranger regardless of whether this was a hotel employee/hotel guest arrangement.
Yesterday (so April 2nd, which leads us to believe this is a legitimate tale and not a joke at all), Bill Marriott blogged about a particularly interesting Marriott customer service anecdote that had him quite tickled: a Canadian Residence Inn employee actually gave a guest his pants. For real.