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Considering it’s right on Venice Beach (or pretty much right on Venice Beach, anyway), the Hotel Erwin was always going to have top notch views of the Pacific from its rooms.
But, on a recent visit to the rooftop bar, High, we couldn’t help but noticing that not all views are created equal.
From High, the coastline was spectacular – both north, towards Santa Monica, and south, beyond LAX – and the whole rooftop was in the sun.
We've long known that Airbnb wants to "disrupt" (gag) the hotel industry but we found this recent social media posting from its founder, Brian Chesky, rather bold.
Captured by Valleywag on the Frontback app, the image shows a picture of Chesky's girlfriend in an Airbnb pad with a note attached to a bouquet of flowers that says, "Fuck Hotels."
Hmm...we wonder what Chesky's partner, Chip Conley would have to say about that, given that Chip made his fortune off of his Joie de Vivre hotel company, which he later sold off but in which he's still a part-owner of about 15 hotels. #notcool
Social media takedown aside, Airbnb is incredibly useful in many ways--for folks on a budget, or for hosts who have extra space in their houses and apartments and in areas with limited hotel rooms or too-high hotel rates. But we hope Chesky realizes that he can never stay in a hotel ever again. Never.
And now, we'll be waiting for a hotel's answer to Airbnb. (Hint: you can start with that room and its dubious comforter.)
[Image via Valleywag]
Commune Hotels / Thompson Hotels / Joie de Vivre Hotels / Tommie Hotels / Jason Pomeranc / Hotel News / → All Tags
The other week, we were searching hard for information about the reopening of the Thompson Ocean Drive hotel in Miami Beach yet we were met with absolute silence when it came to the matter of the hotel's name change--would it go ahead with the Thompson name or stick with the original moniker, Hotel Victor?
Well, today's HUGE news from Commune Hotels has answered that question. No, it will not be a Thompson hotel in name, mainly because Thompson Hotels' founders--Jason Pomeranc and his brothers, have sold out the rest of the company, including the Thompson name, to Commune. Get comfortable, because this is going to take a while to explain.
Way back in 2011, Joie de Vive Hotels linked up with Thompson Hotels and the two formed Commune Hotels and Resorts. Joie de Vivre was fresh off its own acquisition from Geolo Capital, founded by Hyatt heir, John Pritzker (he has nothing to do with Hyatt Hotels today btw.) The two companies, Geolo Capital and Thompson BP, were equal partners in the formation of Commune Hotels although Thompson Hotels would be its own brand, as would Joie de Vivre, as would the spin-off brand of Thompson Hotels, Tommie Hotels.
Fast forward to today and all brands are expanding to new locations as everyone hoped they would. Commune even managed to snag Niki Leondakis away from Kimpton Hotels. And now, Commune has bought out the Pomeranc brothers. Here's the parting statement Jason Pomeranc gave today: "After nearly 15 years, my brothers Lawrence, Michael and I are incredibly proud to see how Thompson Hotels has evolved into an enormously impactful global hospitality brand," said Jason Pomeranc. "We now look forward to exciting new endeavors and wish John Pritzker and the entire Commune family well."
"After nearly 15 years, my brothers Lawrence, Michael and I are incredibly proud to see how Thompson Hotels has evolved into an enormously impactful global hospitality brand," said Jason Pomeranc. "We now look forward to exciting new endeavors and wish John Pritzker and the entire Commune family well."
So the pressing question is, who gets what in the deal? Here's how it all shakes out:
It's time for a walk down memory lane with a HotelChatter Flashback!
Three years ago today, we heard the news that Chip Conley's indie boutique hotel chain, Joie de Vivre Hotels, would be expanding outside of California for the very first time, thanks to a new partnership with investor, John Pritzker, heir to the Hyatt Hotels chain and his Geolo Capital private equity firm. This was a big deal back then as JDV was strictly a California-based hotel company.
Fast forward to today and Joie de Vivre is now a part of the bigger Commune Hotels which is also made up of the too-cool lifestyle hotel brand, Thompson Hotels, and the just-announced new hotel brand, Tommie Hotels.
JDV has still made good on its 2010 promise to expand opening hotels in Chicago, Scottsdale (above) and even Hawaii, although California still makes up a good deal of its heart and soul. We're not sure if JDV will ever break out into Seattle, Miami or New York as it will probably leave that up to Commune but you never know...
Getting surfers and skateboarders to stay at the Hotel Erwin in Venice, Calif. has never been a tough sell for the hotel, thanks to its beachfront location along the Venice Boardwalk, its spunky style (a wall of grafitti art greets guests upon their arrival) and a killer rooftop scene like no other on the beach.
But now there's a whole new way for skaters to go all out at the hotel--The Red Bull Dogtown Suite.
For $1,500 a night, guests can stay in this 750-sq.ft. suite decked out with surf and skateboard decor, a 52" TV, a big round bed and a giant two-person tub. The suite also has a large private balcony with killer ocean views and even a custom DJ turntable should guests want to spin some tunes. And of course, it's stocked with cans of Red Bull.
Thompson Hotels / Commune Hotels / Joie de Vivre Hotels / Mexico Hotels / Hawaii Hotels / Hotel Hype / Hotel News / → All Tags
We hope you like these rooms, because there's more of 'em coming!
Yesterday's news of the sixth Thompson Hotel coming to Manhattan was surprising enough but not nearly as surprising as Thompson's expansion plans, which are no doubt being made possible by its new parent company, Commune Hotels and Resorts. (If you aren't up to speed, Thompson and Joie De Vivre Hotels merged back in October and their new parent company, Commune, debuted last month.)
Indeed, the company's CEO Stephen Brandman told us yesterday, "Global expansion will happen before you think." But it seems like it's already here.
Aside from 5 Beekman and the newly opened Thompson Belgraves in London, Thompson Hotels is also running The Sutton Place Hotel in Chicago (which will be relaunched as the Thompson Chicago in late 2013 after renovations) and the Hotel Victor in Miami (which will go by Thompson Ocean Drive after its renovations are finished). But there's even more.
Hotel News / Hotel Industry News / Hotel Rebrandings / Commune Hotels / Thompson Hotels / Joie De Vivre Hotels / JT Hospitality / → All Tags
[This story has been updated from yesterday's, which was originally posted on 2/21/12 at 3:28pm.]
We've been anxiously anticipating the new name for the newly merged Joie de Vivre Hotels and Thompson Hotels as the temporary name, JT Hospitality, was not very original and also conjured up a line of hotels from Justin Timberlake.
Nevertheless, the wait is over as the announcement comes today that the hotels will now fall under the new company name...COMMUNE HOTELS AND RESORTS. (And yes, the website is already up and running.)
"Our ethos is about individuality, community, locations that are authentic to their environment, and the kind of service that exceeds guests' expectations and makes travel exciting again," the three executives wrote in a statement. "We believe celebrating individuality is the best way to elevate the guest experience."
HotelChatter Reviews / Photo Gallery / Scottsdale Hotels / Saguaro Hotels / Joie De Vivre Hotels / Hotel Pool / Hotel Restaurants / Jose Garces / → All Tags
Even though the Saguaro Palm Springs just opened the other week, we decided to eschew the two-hour drive from Los Angeles and instead, hop on a plane to Scottsdale and check out the original Saguaro.
We've been obsessing over this hotel's bright color scheme for months now and indeed, driving towards the hotel we let out a little yelp when we saw the brightly colored walls on the guestroom balconies. Yeah, we're nerdy like that. But how did the hotel measure up in living color? Read our review and peruse our galleries to find out!
Well, it looks like our guessing game from yesterday wasn't very hard at all. Yes, the shiny, bright and happy pool scene indeed belongs to the colorful Saguaro Scottsdale. Now that we've given you a peek at the pool scene, allow us to take you inside one of the hotel's garden suites located on the ground floor with private patios that lead out to the hotel's two pools. We hope you like the color pink!
This is room 4109 which features a king-sized bed, separate sitting area, a large bath room with a soaking tub and a separate shower, two flat-screen TVs (one in each room) and two mini-patios that lead out to the hotel's main pool.
Hotel Toiletries / Lather / Viceroy Hotels / Joie de Vivre Hotels / Andaz Hotels / Hotel Amenities / → All Tags
As committed hotel toiletries connoisseurs, we are fans of Lather soaps and bathroom goodies. (That includes the littlest hotel fans among us.) So we're happy to see that hotels around the country agree, and Lather is popping up everywhere from West Hollywood to Manhattan.
We asked the Lather peeps for an update on where we can
stealuse their products in hotels, and also where to find them after we've checked out....
OMG / JT Hospitality / Thompson Hotels / JDV Hotels / Joie de Vivre Hotels / Hotel News / Stephen Brandman / Chip Conley / Jason Pomeranc / John Pritzker / Geolo Capital / Hotel Industry News / → All Tags
What do you get when you merge The Custom Hotel with The Hollywood Roosevelt? JT HOSPITALITY. Note: JT is not actually involved in this one.
When we got an email in our inboxes a short while ago with the subject heading, "JOIE DE VIVRE HOSPITALITY AND THOMPSON HOTELS MERGE" we thought for sure someone was playing a prank on us. Or maybe that someone was celebrating April Fools Day six months early.
But given that the news came from JDV's director of public relations, we knew that this was no joke. So now let's get into the details of this seemingly unholy merger.
The merger took effect on October 1st and it is purely a management partnership involving only hotel management operations but not real estate assets. Together, the company will now be known as JT Hospitality (did anyone just think of Justin Timberlake? We did.) and will manage 45 properties under the Thompson and JDV brands. The company is set to be officially announced/rebranded in early 2012 when the global branding strategy is rolled out.
Thompson's CEO and co-owner Stephen Brandman has been named CEO of JT Hospitality and the company will be headquartered in NYC. John Pritzker, whose private equity firm, Geolo Capital, took a majority stake in JDV last year, will serve as co-chairman as will Jason Pomeranc, Thompson Hotel's other co-owner and poster boy.
Snapshot / Killer View / Intercontinental Hotels / Joie De Vivre Hotels / Hotel Bars / San Francisco Hotels / → All Tags
How’s this for an Inception moment? There we were, yesterday, having lunch at the Top of the Mark in San Francisco’s Intercontinental Mark Hopkins, looking idly at the view of the Transamerica Building, the Golden Gate Bridge and Twin Peaks when we cast our eyes southwest and noticed The Clift. We’d stayed there last week, so that tickled us.
But then our eyes panned a little to the right and saw a tiny rooftop oasis with palm-type plants and bushes and sun loungers. And as we were thinking how cute it was, we realised that it was the penthouse at the Hotel Adagio. And, coincidentally, our room, since we’d checked in at 11pm the night before to find the hotel full. The only room available? The penthouse. So instead of walking us to another hotel, lovely Peter at the front desk did us the honors.
So there we were in the rooftop bar of one hotel, looking at our ex hotel and our at-the-time-current hotel room. Yes, it was as convoluted as a Christopher Nolan script.