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Back in November, we told you about the gas explosion that occurred at the Hyatt Regency London – The Churchill, which led to the evacuation, and subsequent closure, of the hotel. The “foreseeable future” time frame that was attached to that closure was sad to see, but we can tell you that things are looking up: after four months, the hotel is open again.
We can find a King Room this coming Friday for £290 ($433) a night, which goes up £40 ($60) if you include breakfast. An additional bit of good news is that the hotel has taken the closure to not only do the repairs necessary after the incident, but kick off a multi-million pound renovation of the rooms and suites as well. That renovation should be complete by the summer; we don’t have any visuals of the changes yet, but will share them when we have more details.
Lest Starwood steal all the Apple-related attention, Marriott Hotels have announced they will start accepting Apple Pay at a few U.S. hotels later this summer, becoming one of the first hotel brands to do so.
Marriott already has a bunch of bells and whistles on their mobile apps, including the ability to check-in and check-out (so long as you are a Marriott Rewards member.) And there are plans to have the mobile app open room doors, someday.
But having Apple Pay now will make the check-in process even quicker for Marriott guests. Guests can load their credit card details, even their Marriott Rewards-branded credit card into the app, then hold their phone (or Watch when it comes out) up to an Apple Pay reader at the front desk, before moving onto their room.
"When their device responds with a subtle vibration and beep, the payment information has been securely captured. There will be no need to provide a credit card upon check-in."
Word is Apple Pay will roll out at the following hotels this summer:
In the past couple of years, Marriott Hotels have rolled out quite a few important, and relevant, new amenities and services. So many, that we're kind of in disbelief at how far Marriott has come, aside from that whole hotspot blocking biz of course.
Just 10 years ago, Marriott Hotels felt very out of touch with the emerging breed of savvy travelers who want new technology and good design. Marriott Hotel furniture was often depressing, the carpeting was usually an eyesore, while lobby socializing was nonexistent, and the services were almost always at an added fee. There was also a complete lack of innovation. Just sell a room, check in the guest then collect their money.
But today, even though Marriott would never be considered a boutique or lifestyle brand, it is giving guests a thoroughly modern experience. Here's how:
The WiFi is free-ish (so long as you are a member of Marriott Rewards and book directly through Marriott), the furniture is still corporate but definitely more appealing (and in some cases, even stylish), the technology in the rooms has been upgraded to include flat-screen TVs and plenty of outlets, and you can even check-in and check-out of your room through the Marriott Mobile App. They've also shown their softer side with employees, by introducing these tip envelopes.
One hotel that's got all that's new and shiny about Marriott to show off is the Anaheim Marriott at Disneyland.
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After a busy 2014 that saw Denver's hotel scene hit its highest peak, the city is wasting no time keeping the momentum going, announcing yet another downtown hotel project, this time in the form of a dual-branded property.
This spring, Marriott and Starwood will team up to break ground on an 18-story building that will house an AC Hotel and Le Méridien Hotel. To be located at the corner of 15th and California, a block from the Convention Center, the two hotels will add a total of 491 rooms. Each will have its own separate entry, lobby, and restaurants.
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Let superstition be damned: Marriott Hotels is taking Friday the 13th head on by opening its JW Marriott Austin tomorrow. The largest JW Marriott in the United States (1,012 guestrooms) and second largest in the world (largest being the JW Marriott Marquis in Dubai, because everything is bigger in Dubai), there are some dazzling stats that come with its size, but we’ve mostly focused on its walk-up burger window.
A King or Double-Queen Room is still available from $299 a night on opening day, of which the website currently only displays the above artist impression. We like the factory-style rolling doors that return in the headboard design, with the rest showing an expected subdued mix of blues, greys, whites, and browns.
The 1,000+ rooms on East Second Street are only the beginning of a highly-concentrated hotel boom for Austin, with another 1,400 rooms arriving within blocks of the JW Marriott. First up is The Westin Austin Downtown, now scheduled for July 16th on East 5th – a relative lightweight with only 326 rooms. It is making good on its promise of a 2015 opening though, which cannot be said of The Fairmont Austin, now pushed back to 2017, half a decade after it announced its 1,000+ room hotel.
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Normally, we tend to think, it’s easy. Independent, locally-owned hotel: good. Big, nasty, advantage-taking chain: bad.
But not in the case of the Marriott Port-au-Prince, the first international brand to reach Haiti, which opens March 1. It’s not just a chain hotel, but a collaboration between Marriott, the Clinton Foundation and Digicel Group, and it “aims to bring sustainability to the people of Haiti”.
Those are big words, but they’re backed up by fairly big actions. Staff are predominantly Haitian, and local businesses are providing everything from bathroom amenities and food (even the coffee) to the artwork displayed in the hotel, and even some of the “design elements” (or “furnishings”, as we assume we should call them).
There are hands on hotel General Managers, and then there are hands on hotel General Managers.
The new GM of the London Marriott Park Lane, Nicolas Kipper, is one of the latter.
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The importation by Marriott Hotels of the European, design-forward but very functional, AC Hotels brand is kicking into high gear. The first property opened in New Orleans in November with AC Kansas City set to open at the end of this month, followed by AC Miami Beach in April, along with several more in the pipeline for the Midwest, California and North Carolina. But as we hinted back in November, there's one more AC Hotel coming soon--The AC Hotel Washington, D.C. at National Harbor. We're gonna call it the AC DC Hotel, if you don't mind.
The AC DC Hotel, technically located in Maryland (and close to Marriott International's headquarters), was officially announced this morning with an opening date of March. Yes, that soon!
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So Moxy Hotels are definitely coming to America. With last week’s confirmation that eight US Moxys (Moxies?) are lined up – NYC, San Fran, Seattle, New Orleans, and Chicago – we thought we’d give you a little taster of what to expect. You already know to expect man meat, of course, but here’s what the rooms will look like, if our stay last October is anything to go by.
Firstly, expect a small room. In Milan, there’s not a lot of room to move about in – and certainly not enough for a desk. Perhaps in America they will supersize them a little. But pack light.
Inside your small room, you should find:
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And now, it is also so very Marriott.
Fresh off announcing its U.S. expansion plans for Moxy Hotels, Marriott has now gone and snapped up all 38 Delta Hotels, all of which are located in Canada. Here are the terms of the
signing over of Delta's soul acquisition:
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Already eight Moxy Hotels are lined up, with three hotel set for NYC (in Chelsea, Mid-town and Lower Manhattan), as well as San Fran, Seattle, New Orleans, and Chicago. (See? WE TOLD YOU.)
Naturally, we're a bit concerned about the need for THREE hotels in New York City. But Marriott is sparing no expense here, having contracted Yabu Pushelberg to do the design of at least one NYC hotel. (Remember, this duo recently did another Marriott property--Miami Beach Edition.) So clearly, Moxy is aiming to make a sexy splash when it lands stateside. Which is probably right on brand as the Moxy models are always half-dressed.
Meanwhile, the men of Moxy are still planning on coming in, er, to London three times, as well as in Munich, Frankfurt, Berlin and Denmark.
So what can you expect from Moxy Hotels, aside from lots of man meat? Affordable rates (well, at least near the airport in Milan. NYC probably will not have this), free and "furiously fast" WiFi, Apple TV in the rooms, snug rooms and no phones next to the bed as Moxy is all about high-tech, including keyless entry and motion-sensor lighting. And whatever else millennials are into these days.
Venice Hotels / Luxury Hotels / St. Regis Hotels / Starwood Hotels / JW Marriott Hotels / Marriott Hotels / Hotel News / Hotel Openings / → All Tags
That’s what’s on the menu this spring in Italy, where both Starwood (by way of St. Regis) and Marriott (by way of JW Marriott) are entering the Venetian hotel scene with a splash (ha!) on Isola di San Clemente and Isola delle Rose, respectively. But who will be victorious? Let’s look at what each brings to their corner before things get real around March / April time.
We’ve established they're fighting for your attention in the same category: private islands, ensuring the ultimate Venice experience of hopping on a complimentary shuttle when you want to be whisked away from the crowds on San Marco. We’ve known for a while that the JW Marriott would be opening in March, but the St. Regis is now confirmed for the month after. If all goes as planned, then Marriott will have a (minor) head start.