10019 Travel Guide - Page 2
With all the regular-sized hotels opening this winter in New York (see: Hyatt Union Sq, The Refinery, The Quin), it's easy to forget about Marriott's rather ambitious double hotel tower set to open on West 54th St, which we first reported on in early 2011.
While we'd initially been told the Nobutaka Ashihara-designed hotel would be completed in 2011, that obviously never happened. Now, The Observer reports that the tower has finally topped out at 750 feet, which The Real Deal points out is an impressive 34 feet higher than originally planned.
Guess those construction workers must have gotten a little carried away...
It’s time for the annual, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad Show, where the Iranian leader comes to NYC and addresses the U.N. at the General Assembly Meeting where he makes a traditionally anti-American, Anti-Semitic speech that leaves people fired up for days. His political rants need no further comment. Instead, we continue to be fascinated by hotels that still put him and his band of brothers up. Also, we’re amused by what happened this year.
That would be the New York Post attempting to deliver a gift basket of assortedfoods and sundries to Ahmadinejad’s room at the Warwick Hotel! Those kind of antics have us in stitches. Since the hotel has had him visit before, he probably didn't want to hedge his bets anywhere else, so he returned again. Ahmadinejad is scheduled to speak at the U.N. on Wednesday, but arrived in New York on Saturday, so the Post took it upon themselves to offer:
The anti-Semite’s special welcome basket — from New Yorkers with love — [it]included such locally procured goodies as Gold’s Borscht, Manischewitz Gefilte Fish and smoked whitefish from the world-famous Murray’s Sturgeon House on the Upper West Side. If Ahmadinejad (pronounced: I’m a dinner jacket) needed midnight munchies during his visit to this infidel city, there were also plenty of H&H bagels, onion bialys and Zabar’s cream cheese.
UPDATE, 3:21pm: We've received a response from Hampshire Hotels & Resorts, who tells us that while the Chatwals have indeed assumed a small equity stake in The Plaza, Fairmont will remain as the hotel's management group. So that stomps out any rumors about a possible Chatwal rebranding!
At the beginning of the summer, reports emerged—and then were confirmed—that the India-based Sahara Group had bought the historic Plaza Hotel for an alleged $600 million. Interestingly, Sahara is the same company who in August also bought a controlling stake in the Chatwals' Dream Downtown.
Never in a million years did we imagine what would happen next.
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We know, we’ve kind of been obsessed with HotelTonight lately, but we promise it’s for the greater good of all! Call us the Rebels of Hotel Rates, but there’s just something about getting kick-ass deals on normally outside-your-budget hotels.
Case in point: Last Thursday we needed to stay in New York City for a night but weren’t sure what hotel rates would be. Rock bottom because of the impending Labor Day weekend, or sky high because of just that? That morning we checked the usual suspects, Quikbook, SniqueAway, and Jetsetter and everything seemed to be around $250 a night and more. ‘Not bad, for NYC!’ you might think. Well, we just didn’t/couldn’t/wouldn’t PAY those rates. Something in our gut told us things would get better if we just waited until noon.
When the clock struck 12, we opened our Hotel Tonight app and the gold was there. Dream New York for $155 a night! . With a rate that's been more than $269, we knew we had a winner.
It's that time of the year again! SighFashion Week, when Manhattan's nicer hotels book up their event spaces with runway shows, after parties and viewing appointments while travelers book up the rooms, hoping to catch a glimpse of the fashion set heading to them.
We're preparing for a deluge of Fashion Week hotel package announcements here at HotelChatter, but The Plaza is leading the way. The "Fall Fashion Week Package" is a pricey affair in Plaza style; a three-night minimum is required, from $865 per night. For that you receive:
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They say history has a way of repeating itself. And apparently, so do hotels, because Jumeirah Essex House is set to become a Marriott once more, after previously flying the Marriott flag between 1969 and 1985.
The hotel has been on the market since March, with plenty of people speculating on just who would be replacing Jumeirah. Nothing was confirmed until late last week, when USA Today announced that JW Marriott would be hanging its sign over the front door.
The new owners, Chicago-based Strategic Group, are happy to be reuniting Marriott with its long-lost Essex House, which Marriott says it has spent the last ten years trying to get back. And Marriott is happy because it finally gets to show off its JW Marriott brand in Manhattan. Winners all around!
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The NY Daily News reports that just hours after a man tragically jumped to his death from the hotel's 22nd floor rooftop, another woman—totally unrelated, and in a different part of the hotel—collapsed to the floor and began having an epileptic seizure. Luckily for her, a nice man came to her side and held her hand until the fit passed. His name was Stephen Baldwin.
Labor Day Hotels / Hotel Deals / Sheraton Hotels / Manhattan Hotels / Brooklyn Hotels / Hotel Renovations / Ace Hotels / Hilton Hotels / W Hotels / → All Tags
We're already three days into August, which is about halfway through the Olympics, as well as (sadly) summer in general. That means the next big date coming up for NYC hotels is—you guessed it!—Labor Day.
We poked around online to see what's still available for a one-night stay on September 1, and, while we came up with a few decent options, one of the top choices would have to be Sheraton New York's 50th Anniversary deal. Celebrating two milestones at once (fifty years in business, plus the hotel's brand new renovation), the hotel is offering rooms on Sept 1 for the spectacular $196.20/night.
We know where we'll be next Monday night—and it won't be at home spying on our old man neighbor. Instead, we'll be at Peninsula New York, watching a film about neighbors getting spied on.
Amelie, one of our all-time favorites, will be shown as part of a new outdoor French cinema series taking place at Salon De Ning's West Terrace.
Meaning, yes, a French-themed film screening at a Chinese-influenced bar in the middle of New York City. But hey—a view's a view! We happened to visit the hotel's sun terrace, two floor below, last fall, and have to admit, we liked what we saw.
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When he isn't pricing new real estate in Macau, Las Vegas tycoon Steve Wynn is keeping his eyes peeled for a new home in Manhattan. And he's now found the house of
our his dreams: the penthouse suite at the Ritz-Carlton Central Park.
The NY Observer reports that Wynn has nabbed the apartment for $70 million, and it sounds every bit as incredible as we imagine. In fact, if we weren't so busy finding out about all the new hotels opening up in Manhattan, we would be knocking on his door this very instant trying to get a peek inside.
Think he'd have us in for tea and a bit of hotel gossiping?
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Back last fall, we were having some seriously lovey-dovey feelings after visiting the Peninsula New York's wraparound Sun Terrace, an intimate urban oasis, raised up on the twenty-first floor of the hotel with sprawling views of midtown, endless rows of black deck chairs, and most importantly, a strong sense of quiet.
Today, we learn that we're not the only ones with a strong sense of attachment to the place. Fellow hotel lover John Travolta felt so comfortable during visits to the tranquil spa that he was known to get a little, er....intimate with some of the male masseurs employed there.
Now, a former masseur at the hotel has come forward claiming Travolta's bad behavior landed him on the hotel's black list back in the early 2000s, after multiple male employees flat out refused to be alone in a room with him.
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[UPDATE 10:37am: Though Jelsomino is located inside the Dream New York, sources at the hotel have told us that the bar is actually a separate entity, owned by (and imported from) Russian hospitality and nightlife company, Ginza Project]
Our friends at Condé Nast Traveler have picked up on a new venue that recently opened inside The Dream New York: a Broadway-themed underground karaoke bar called Jelsomino. And, as we've seen with other NYC hotel venues under the Chatwal empire (we're thinking of high-concept hotspots like Romera at Dream Downtown and the all-red Lambs Club inside The Chatwal), there's nothing subtle about the place.
The Dream doesn't just 'open a karaoke bar' and that's that. No, it sets up eight VIP tables with bottle service, astronomically-priced cocktails, iPad song menus, and even a troupe of backup singers and dancers on stage. Golly, our dreams really have come true.