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Hotel Sales / Starwood Hotels / Luxury Collection Hotels / Venice Hotels / Historic Hotels / → All Tags
#Thatmomentwhen one of the most famous hotels in Europe gets sold and you start panicking that it’s the end of an era until you realize that everything’s going to be just fine and it’s just the owners, not the management, that are swapping keys.
That panic was all over us earlier this morning when saw a press release with the words “Gritti Palace” and “closing” in the headline. Could one of Starwood’s two flagship properties in Venice really be leaving the Luxury Collection?
Hotel Rebrandings / St. Regis Hotels / Kempinski Hotels / Moscow Hotels / Starwood Hotels / Luxury Hotels / → All Tags
The first St. Regis in Russia, its arrival has come a little suddenly, which is easily explained by its previous life as a Kempinski hotel. Dating back to 1870, when it was built as the home of Count Orlov-Davydov, the hotel now has 210 rooms and suites with “belle époque interiors”, which includes the Royal Suite above. It’s… a lot. We’re not so sure about the grey/green and cognac leather combo, but mostly the sofa on the left hurts our eyes a little – not the only questionable sofa, it turns out.
Hotel WiFi / Free WiFi / Bora Bora Hotels / St. Regis Hotels / Starwood Hotels / Hotel News / French Polynesia Hotels / → All Tags
Spending time not paying attention to your significant other just got that much better in paradise, as The St. Regis Bora Bora Resort has flipped the switch for complimentary WiFi all across the resort. Of course we’re kidding, no one would ever take a Facebook or Instagram break while on their honeymoon; however, if an exception ever arose this hotel has you covered—ha!
Hotel News Briefs / Ritz-Carlton Hotels / Marriott Hotels / Autograph Collection Hotels / Phoenix Hotels / Starwood Hotels / Ian Schrager / Disney Hotels / Hotel Books / → All Tags
So much hotel news, so little time – here are a few snippets to keep you up to date with the latest news from around the world!>
· RITZ-CARLTON PHOENIX TO BECOME AN AUTOGRAPH COLLECTION HOTEL: There's one less Ritz-y place to stay in Phoenix as the Ritz-Carlton there will be rebranded into an Autograph Collection Hotel, run by Destination Hotels. Per this press release, the property will close in July and will reopen in early 2016 as an Autograph Collection hotel. Perhaps they took note of this commenter's observation on our OpenThread in October:
However, the Ritz Phoenix is startlingly dilapidated and dated. I'm surprised it still meets the chain's standards. The lobby is pleasant enough but the rooms and especially bathrooms are ancient and unpleasant.
So far, there's no message on the Ritz site about the closure and we were able to make reservations for July online so the exact closing date doesn't seem to be so set in stone. We're sure that will change soon though.
It’s maybe not quite six months since we last looked at the Hilton Bankside, but it’s worth checking in on the hotel now rather than wait for our usual twice-a-year update on the long-running project. Why? Because not only does less scaffolding give us a better view of the hotel’s exterior, we also have proof that this indeed will be a Hilton: the logo is right there. What’s more, it seems Starwood is preparing to attach its Westin logo to a project nearby. Read on for details.
If you need a little refresh on the Hilton and why you should care, here we go: yes, it is one in a long list of Hiltons London has, but we have our eye on it for the “new brand design” it will supposedly showcase, which based on renderings we saw looks very interesting. There will be a leisure club with pool, and location is just a block or so behind Tate Modern and the Thames. Despite the logo being up, there is still no sign of the hotel on Hilton’s website; let’s assume that cannot be far off.
Apple Watch / Apple Watch Hotel Apps / Hotel Technology / Starwood Hotels / Marriott Hotels / Expedia / HotelTonight / → All Tags
We're highly doubtful that an Apple Watch will change the way you stay in a hotel (#googleglass #neverforget) but the watch will give travelers some new technology to try out during their hotel stay.
Starwood Hotels were the first out the gate with an Apple Watch app for their Starwood Preferred Guest program. This app will let guests check-in, check-out and open their room door--should they be staying at one of the 118 Aloft and W Hotels that are equipped with the right technology. On the heels of that announcement, Marriott Hotels said they too would have an Apple Watch app, one that would allow guests to use Apple Pay to book their hotel room at 12 participating Marriott Hotels (the Apple Pay roll-out will begin this summer.) However, you can use the Marriott app to book a room, manage reservations, check-in and check-out, and receive a "Room Ready Alert."
And now, here comes the OTAs.
Hotel Reopenings / Hotel Renovations / Hotel Opening Rates / Venice Hotels / St Regis Hotels / Starwood Hotels / → All Tags
This time last year, the San Clemente Palace was a shuttered, slightly battered grand old hotel in Venice, quietly wasting away on her own private island.
How things have changed – because after being picked up by Starwood and promptly closed for €25m of renovations, the St. Regis Venice San Clemente Palace is now open. Doesn’t she look better?
Before and After / Hotel Renovations / San Francisco Hotels / Luxury Collection Hotels / Starwood Hotels / → All Tags
We love hotel renovations nearly just as much as we love new hotels. But what we really love about hotel renovations is seeing the transformation that happens when an old, tired and lackluster room gets a modern makeover and transforms into new, spiffed-up, stylish guest room. Or put more simply, we love comparing the Before and After.
When we think of The Palace Hotel in San Francisco, we think of its rather splendid Garden Court. What is now the Garden Court once was the Grand Court, an open air carriage entrance in the original Palace Hotel, which burned down in the 1906 earthquake that destroyed 80% of the city (for more on its long history, go here).
As much as we immediately think of the Garden Court, less of an instant image comes to mind when we think of the rest of hotel, including its guestrooms. Or at least we did, until we saw what The Palace is doing to its rooms this year, grabbing 2015 by the horns to bring them up to date in a big way. See both before and after below.
Tribute Portfolio / Tribute Hotels / Starwood Hotels / New Hotel Brands / Hotel News / Hotel Collections / → All Tags
Not long ago, Starwood Hotels hinted that they would be unveiling a new "soft" collection of hotels. Well, today is the day. Introducing: Tribute Portfolio. And guess who's now a part of it? (Keep reading to find out!)
The collection is meant to be a group of independent luxury hotels, who will keep their own identities rather than take on a Starwood-branded personality. But of course, the Starwood Preferred Guest program will be in place, allowing guests to use and earn Starpoints for stays at Tribute hotels.
As for what the collection is about, it's simply a "celebration of individuality." Which is not that much different from other hotel collections out there such as Marriott's Autograph Collection and Hilton's Curio Collection. Here's a description on the Tribute website for interested guests:
This isn't about us. It's about you. You want more one-of-a-kind hotels in exciting locations, superior service and the SPG member benefits you love. Tribute Portfolio invites you to discover hotels as unique as you are. Stay Independent.
W Hotels / Hotel Openings / Hotel Delays / Starwood Hotels / Amsterdam Hotels / Milan Hotels / Hotel News / → All Tags
W giveth, W taketh away...
Opening date will be Monday, September 21, with a “Cozy Exchange” room (from 22 sq m / 237 sq ft) setting you back a clean €450 ($478) a night. Prepaying shaves just €10 ($12) off a night, which doesn’t really seem worth it for the flexibility you sacrifice. The “Exchange” reference we presume means the room is located in the 1903 Telephone Exchange building, as opposed to the former bank just across the street (go here for exterior shots of both).
From Cozy, the order is up to Wonderful and then Fabulous rooms, with Cool Corner, Studio, and Marvelous Suites before you get to Wow and Extreme Wow Suites – which we saw those renderings of. The Extreme Wow Suite gives 112 sq m (1,206 sq ft) of space and runs at €2,162 ($2,292) a night.
Actual photography of the rooms and suites is still to come, but we’re kind of surprised to read the intro text on the homepage of the hotel refer to the ability to “recharge with our W signature bed and a peek-a-boo shower”. Is that becoming an actual industry term now?
Hotel Openings / Hotel Opening Rates / Istanbul Hotels / St Regis Hotels / Starwood Hotels / St. Regis Hotels / → All Tags
It’s always the way. You wait for one jaw-dropping hotel to open in Istanbul, and then two come along at one.
One new announcement – as well as the Brasserie restaurant we were expecting, there’s also a Spago – yes, a Wolfgang Puck Spago.
For those looking to kickoff the spring season in style look no further than Starwood, as once again it’s time for their annual Suite Week promotion over in New York City. The fun started earlier this week and runs through April 7, as room packages, discounts, and other goodies call all be yours—and at a discount.
Offers include a 30% discount on rates, complimentary WiFi, early check-in and late check-out, and plenty of other goodies depending on the property. Of course getting away now would be great, but even if you book now during the promotion you can enjoy the fun later—through March 24, 2016.
Many of the Starwood properties in New York City are getting in on the fun, so think of spots like W New York locations from Union Square to Downtown, plenty of Westin prosperities, and even The St. Regis New York—complete with that new Bentley fleet. Even properties in Hoboken and Jersey City are getting in on the fun as well.
In addition to the discount on rates those visiting the W New York can score a 30% discount on all Bliss Spa services, a Bliss welcome gift, two complimentary signature cocktails, complimentary breakfast for two, and even free parking. Other properties are offering up things like welcome drinks, discounted tickets, and free breakfasts for two.
So there you go—looking for a suite and some savings in NYC? Give a click over to your favorite Starwood property, and enter those credit card digits.
[Photo: W New York | Facebook]