Luxury hotel brands get creative when it comes to differentiation, incorporating travelling photography exhibitions, perfume butlers and studio visits into their offerings.
The law was laid long ago that luxury hoteliers must offer more than gilded mirrors and Egyptian cotton sheets to ensure the longevity and loyalty of their discerning clientele. This has been extensively reflected in experiential marketing – as seen in The Luxury Collection’s short film above – but we are beginning to see the crème de la crème of the hotel trade push boundaries in the realm of events and services.
In the case of Sofitel, this is the traveling photo exhibit venerating the legendary French actress, singer, and model, Brigitte Bardot, to launch during Oscar Week at the Sofitel Los Angeles. Fairmont Hotels recently announced a partnership with Abbey Road Studios – an extension of their existing partnership with EMI Records – where guests will be offered behind-the-scenes studio visits and even the opportunity to record a song. Conversely, Fairmont’s Savoy will be charged with the task of stylising the Abbey Road Lounge.
Most recently – and perhaps most interestingly – Rosewood hotels have launched a fragrance butler service, whereby guests can request a selection of perfumes and colognes be brought to their room, and discussed with the butler trained in each ones merit. Each fragrance menu is tailored to that of its property, for example within the old world elegance of The Carlyle, guests will find Hermès Eau des Merveilles for women and Ralph Lauren Polo Black for men.
Thompson Hotels have launched in London’s Belgravia, designed by Tara Bernerd of Tara Bernerd & Partners. 85 guestrooms are decorated in a palette of grey tones and textures against aubergine walls. Marble bathrooms have been finished with smoked glass and brass beaded curtains. The Hix Belgravia restaurant offers a menu inspired by chef and food writer Mark Hix, while the mezzanine level plays host to Mark’s Bar and leads to a stylish cigar garden.
Source: Hospitality Design
Vivanta by Taj Surya, Coimbatore
India’s Taj Hotels has unveiled its latest Vivanta property in Tamil Nadu, Coimbatore, taking the Vivanta portfolio to 22 hotels across India. The 180 room business hotel features state-of-the-art conferencing facilities, fine dining, a health-conscious juice bar, cocktail bar and a large outdoor dining terrace. The property also offers guest a full spa menu, swimming pool and 24-hour access to the gym.
Website & Source: vivantabytaj.com/Surya-Coimbatore
Starhotels has chosen Milan for its first ecological property, E.c.ho, in a bid to prove that great design and environmental awareness can go hand in hand. The property has been designed to minimise ecological footprint, using solar energy for lighting, emissions reduction systems and water recovery systems to reduce consumption. The 143 rooms – including 8 junior suites and 6 suites – have been built using sustainable materials, where even the mattresses are eco-friendly.
Website & Source: starhotels.com/echo
Park Hyatt Ningbo, Zhejiang
Park Hyatt has entered China, opening the Ningbo Resort and Spa in the eastern province of Zhejiang. The lakeside property boasts 236 guestrooms and 10 low-level, standalone villas, designed in the style of a traditional Chinese water village. Signature restaurant Seafood House features 10 private pavilions with a private entrance, lounge, and dedicated butler, whilst the Yue Hu Spa promotes ancient Chinese wellness philosophies.
Source: Hospitality Design
Anantara Resort & Spa, Mui Ne
Along Vietnam’s stunning southeast coast, Anantara Mui Ne Resort & Spa is the latest luxurious beachside living venture by Anantara. The property features a signature wellness spa, shoreline pool, reading lounge and full service gym. 89 rooms, suites and villas feature large stone tubs, separate rain showers, 32 inch plasma TV, high speed internet, and iPod docking stations.
Source: eTravel Blackboard
InterContinental Tverskaya, Moscow
After being without a Russian property for over a decade, InterContinental Hotels Group has launched the InterContinental Moscow Tverskaya. Located minutes from the Kremlin and Red Square, the property is owned by Business Centre on Tverskaya LLC and managed by IHG. The 203-room hotel is part of a new business complex, featuring 10 meeting rooms spanning over 600 square metres and a ballroom for private dining and events.
Source: Breaking Travel News
Anantara Sathorn, Bangkok
After a rebranding and renovation, the former Marriott Bangkok has opened as Anantara Bangkok Riverside Resort & Spa. The 407-room resort’s newly transformed South Wing features two new deluxe room categories, renovated restaurants, and upgraded gym and fitness facilities. Sixty per cent of the eleven-acre resort is covered with tropical gardens, where décor highlights include Thai sculptures and wall paintings, private balconies and warm wood interiors.
Source: Luxury Travel Magazine
Viceroy Riviera Maya, Playa del Carmen
The Tides Riviera Maya in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico, has undergone a significant renovation and rebranded as Viceroy Riviera Maya. Eleven new luxury oceanfront villas have been created with private plunge pools, bringing the all-villa total to 41 units. Existing accommodations feature new lighting, furniture, and décor accents, complimented by a new library lounge, fine dining restaurant and café located at the sand’s edge.
Source: Luxury Hospitality Design
Marking the brand’s debut in India, Sofitel has launched in Mumbai, within the Bandra Kurla Complex. The five-star hotel offers 302 rooms and suites, nine function spaces, five innovative dining concepts and the sanctuary of a Sofitel So SPA. Its design reflects a marriage of French and Indian cues, drawing inspiration from Indian temples, carvings, iconic monuments and art, and infiltrated by famed French design, rich history and cuisine.
Source: Drinks Media Wire
St. Regis, Bal Harbour
The small city of Bal Harbour – best known for its luxury shopping mall – is the latest destination for St. Regis. The $1 billion development comprises a 243-room hotel and two residential towers along a breath-taking strip of Floridian coastline.
“It was clear to us and the research we did that this was a very special location — very affluent local suburb, attracts a very affluent international audience,” said Paul James, global brand leader for St. Regis, part of Starwood Hotels & Resorts. “It was among the best beachfront locations we had in our portfolio anywhere.”
Source: Miami Herald
For more in the series of The Latest Hotels, please see our most recent editions as follows:
- The Latest Hotels, Kitzbühel, Tuscany & Hanoi
- The Latest Hotels, Tianjin, Beijing & Shanghai
- The Latest Hotels, Florence, Milan & Los Angeles
Live the life!