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Updated daily, except weekends (unless we find something really, really good)

NEWS Vail Resorts to acquire Stowe Mountain

The mighty Vail Resorts, the custodian of some of the world’s best ski resorts is adding Stowe Mountain Resort  to its impressive portfolio. Stowe Mountain Resort will be Vail Resorts’ first mountain resort on the East Coast of the United States. The aim is to ensure Stowe remainsthe  premier, high-end resort for skiers and snowboarders on the East Coast, and indeed gets even better. Vail Resorts, unquestionably the world’s leading mountain resort operator, is joining forces with AIG Global Real Estate (AIGGRE), real estate developer to ensure a starr-spangled resort.  “We’re thrilled to add Stowe Mountain Resort to our family of world-class mountain resorts. With the investments in both mountain infrastructure and base area facilities that AIG has made over the years, Stowe Mountain Resort has become the premier, high-end resort for East Coast skiers and snowboarders. We look forward to working with AIG to continue enhancing the guest experience and to ensure the resort’s long-term success,” said Rob Katz, chairman and chief executive officer of Vail Resorts. Snow enthusiasts will be glad to know that if all goes well with the acquisition Vail Resorts  will integrate Stowe Mountain Resort into its Epic Pass and other season pass products for the 2017-18 winter season, adding the resort to the Company’s network of 10 world-class mountain resorts and three urban ski areas. www.vailresorts.com

NEWS A cool new hotel with Gangnam style

From the crew behind Seoul’s fashionable club D.Bridge, comes the new multilevel dining and entertainment concept that is GLAD LIVE GANGNAM,  the sister hotel of GLAD Hotel Yeouido and the latest Design Hotels™ member in the region.South Korea is definitely on the cool list with Korean design, aesthetics, and K-pop achieving worldwide cult-like status, the global gaze is on Seoul.  Standing proud in the heart of Gangnam, GLAD LIVE GANGNAM  has  210 rooms, and – our favourite feature -  in-suite plunge pools. There is also a gym, and round-the-clock wine and dine concepts. The restaurant, bar, and lounge are deliberately layered on top of one another in an open, flowing design over three stories. We love a good chandelier  and they don’t get much better than the one hanging cente stage in this hotel.  The extraordinary 180-bulb four-meter-tall chandelier houses hidden speakers and blends with an orchestrated coloured lighting design.  The hotel’s main restaurant Flint serves up modern European food in elegant surroundings, defined by gold accents and marble furniture, while Powerplant is a more casual brunch and bar area, specializing in burgers, pizza, and tacos. www.designhotels.com

NEWS Lizard Island's perfect lovers' package

  Lizard Island, Queenland has a new Pavilion Perfection package, which is perfect for lovers who want to be alone. Positioned on a cliff, high above the Coral Sea, on the point of Sunset Bay, The Pavilion is the definition of lovers’ luxury,  combining complete privacy with a spectacular 270-degree panorama of Anchor Bay, Osprey Island and Sunset Beach. Designed by the Melbourne based studio Hecker Guthrie, the interiors offer a neutral palette with touches of colour inspired by the reef. The lounge, w opens onto the expansive deck   there is a plunge pool and secluded outdoor seating for outdoor canoodling. The package is valid between now and 31 March 2018, (minimum four-night stay )  priced from $5,644 per night. This includes three gourmet meals daily, a mini bar with champagne and canapés daily, non-motorised water sports and motorised dinghies, a Full day Fascination Charter for fishing & diving and a personalised 2 -hour in-room spa treatment each as well as a range of other options. www.lizardisland.com.au

 
NEWS First spa carriage aboard Belmond trains

Luxury trains are a treat, luxury spas aboard luxury trains are even better. Belmond is launching the first  spa carriage to feature aboard its  portfolio of luxury trains. The new spa will be aboard Belmond Royal Scotsman, joining the rake on 17th April, the start of the 2017 season. The Bamford Haybarn Spa  features bespoke Bamford treatments for passengers travelling on overnight rail journeys throughout Scotland and Great Britain. British wellness brand Bamford was established in 2006 and is inspired by nature, with botanical skincare collections and holistic treatments made using organic ingredients. Its Geranium, Lavender and Peppermint Botanical collection has also been selected by Belmond as the amenity range for each cabin.  Individually crafted wellbeing treatments are devoted to connecting the mind, body and soul with the natural world. The Bamford Bespoke Facial is a 55-minute ritual that aims to restore, rejuvenate and repair the skin. The treatment features facial reflexology, lymphatic drainage, stimulating lifting and ancient yogic breathing. Treatments on offer include the Bamford De-Stress Massage, Deep Tissue Massage, as well as manicures and pedicures using eco- natural Kure Bazaar nail polishes. And the Bamford Bespoke Facial; a 55-minute ritual that aims to restore, rejuvenate and repair the skin.  The Haybarn Spa has been designed using sustainable wood from Scotland and the Cotswolds, and features two relaxing single treatment rooms with picture windows looking out onto the beautiful Scottish countryside. www.belmond.com

NEWS MS Amadeus Provence introduces a dedicated pool deck

We love a good floating pool  and it looks like the new MS Amadeus Provence, the latest premium vessel in the elegant Amadeus river cruising fleet will be the first in the fleet  to boast a dedicated pool deck.  There will be eight spacious suites with walk-out exterior balconies and 62 staterooms, most with adjustable panoramic windows, with all rooms featuring luxurious bathrooms, premium amenities and offering a choice in bed configuration. Amadeus Provence’s superb pool deck will feature a tranquil infinity plunge-style pool and Lido Bar, the ideal spot to enjoy a refreshing cocktail while watching the stunning scenery effortlessly pass by.The countdown is on ahead of the maiden voyage of MS Amadeus Provence on the iconic Rhône and Saône rivers in Europe. The maiden voyage in April 2017 will be the 8-day Treasures of Burgundy & Provence journey from Lyon to Lyon, taking in iconic sights from medieval market squares to the lavender fields of Provence and the wine region of Beaujolais, with a 10 per cent earlybird discount available for all 2017 bookings made by 28 February 2017.With a total of 19 departures in 2017, guests of the AMADEUS Provence can experience an 8-day journey of discovery, visiting Avignon and Arles, and getting to experience world-famous sights, such as the Pont du Gard, Gorges de l´Ardèche, the Camargue and the Beaujolais region.  “While on board Amadeus Provence, guests will enjoy our expert chefs’ lively cooking demonstrations, featuring locally-inspired cuisine as well as daily musical performances in the Panorama Bar and fascinating folklore shows, as well as schooling up on upcoming destinations through a series of intriguing on-board lectures designed to bring every port to life,” said Gil McLachlan, CEO, McLachlan Travel Group.

NEWS Four Seasons Ten Trinity Square Opens

In what could be the most exciting new London hotel opening of the year (and so early in the year too) one of the most iconic buildings in the City of London, Ten Trinity Square, has been transformed into a Four Seasons hotel. The landmark grade II listed building, designed by architect Sir Edwin Cooper., opened in 1922 as the headquarters of the Port of London Authority. The luxury hotel is the third Four Seasons Hotel London (adding to the two existing hotels at Park Lane and Canary Wharf).It occupies the lower ground to the third levels, with 100 guest rooms and suites, two restaurants, bars, meeting salons and spa.  TLTB readers will love the signature suites featuring the historic building's ornate architecture and the custom Four Seasons Bed. There are also 41 spacious private residences on floors three to seven with views of the Square Mile, Tower of London and the River Thames. The restaurants include La Dame de Pic from acclaimed three Michelin-starred French chef Anne-Sophie Pic, and a second flagship Asian restaurant serving contemporary Japanese and Chinese cuisine, open later in 2017. The Rotunda, which sits at the heart of the hotel, houses a bar and all-day dining room under the original domed ceiling - beautifully restored after heavy bombing during World War II. The project also includes a private club with a wine store and Chateau Latour Room. www.fourseasons.com

NEWS Celebrity Cruises’ new design ambassador

Celebrity Cruises has announced an exclusive partnership with design icon Nate Berkus, naming him Design Ambassador for the brand’s newest class of ships – Edge Class. Berkus established his award-winning interior design firm at the age of 24, showcasing an approachable design philosophy that has transformed countless interiors around the world for more than 20 years. TV personality and designer Berkus has been featured in many US publications including Architectural Digest, House Beautiful, VOGUE, InStyle, O Magazine, People and ELLE DÉCOR, which included him on their “A-List” of the world’s top designers. “Nate Berkus embodies modern luxury, and evokes a global aesthetic with his forward-thinking style, which is admired by the design world and the world at large,” said Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, President and CEO, Celebrity Cruises. “When we first sat down with Nate, we knew this was going to be an incredible partnership. Design is in our DNA, as well as Nate’s, plus we share a love for the same things: modern luxury, one-of-a-kind design, and global travel. We couldn’t think of a better person to collaborate with on the truly transformational Edge Class. Edge Class is Celebrity’s first new ship class in nearly a decade, succeeding the brand’s revolutionary Solstice Class. The company expects delivery of Celebrity Edge in Fall 2018. Celebrity Beyond is scheduled for delivery in Spring 2020, and the third and fourth Edge Class ships in Autumn 2021 and Autumn 2022. www.celebritycruises.com , www.celebritycruises.com.au


NEWS Hilton launches a new brand

Hilton Worldwide has launched a new brand, Tapestry Collection by Hilton. The world's second-largest hotel company (after Marriott International intends to sign up an initial seven hotels to join the Tapestry Collection, including properties in Chicago and Nashville. Hilton will add its first hotel to the new brand in September. Tapestry Collection properties will be "original upscale hotels that cater to guests seeking reliability and value in their independent hotel choices," said a spokesperson from Hilton. This will be the fourteenth brand for Hilton Worldwide and a similar brand to the Curio group of independently-run hotels launched in 2014. Mark Nogal, global head of Hilton’s two soft brand collections, said the idea to develop Tapestry also came from Hilton’s work in building the Curio brand. “As we were putting Curio together, we had a number of properties that didn’t quite fit the Curio category,” Nogal said. “It was a business opportunity we had owners inquiring about. Our focus is on conversions.” The new brand will compete in the upscale sector, which includes brands like Choice Hotels' Ascend Collection, InterContinental Hotels Group's Hotel Indigowww.hilton.com

NEWS London’s new Biggest Fans

Sir Peter Blake, a leading figure in the art world, and often referred to as the ‘Godfather of British Pop Art’, has been commissioned to create a collage which will cover Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, London’s iconic façade during part of the hotel’s comprehensive phased renovation
Our Fans, is the largest artwork Sir Peter Blake has ever created, is a collage of 100 prominent faces, from Morgan Freeman and Helen Mirren to Joanna Lumley and Jenny Packham. All of whom are regular guests at Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, London as well as fans of the Group’s hotels around the world. 
‘Some of my first works were collages of crowds of people; this piece is in the spirit of The Beatles 1967 Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album,’ said Sir Peter Blake, the artist responsible for this iconic album cover. It is therefore entirely apt that Sir Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr should feature in the poster, during the 50th anniversary of the album.
The hotel will remain open throughout the comprehensive multimillion-pound which will be completed in Spring 2018. www.mandarinoriental.com

 
NEWS DUKES London’s luxury gift to take home

Looking for a last-minute gift for a luxe lover? This winter, guests of the five-star Mayfair hotel can purchase the DUKES LONDON by Floris London scented candle, created in partnership with the oldest English retailer of luxurious fragrances and toiletries.
DUKES and Floris London have partnered for more than a decade, with guests being welcomed by distinctive Floris London floral scent wafting through the property. Guests will see the signature candles on display throughout the public areas of the hotel, which adds to the warm and cosy ambience.
In addition to the candle, Floris London will now supply DUKES LONDON’s luxurious bathroom amenities, part of a multi-million pound refurbishment currently taking place at the London property. The British Perfumer will also be providing amenities throughout the soon-to-open DUKES DUBAI, from January 2017.
Priced at £40, the DUKES by Floris London candle is available to buy from December 2016 from DUKES or online at www.dukeshotel.com

NEWS Mercer Hoteles new offering in Seville

The Mercer Hotel Sevilla opened last wek.  And already Seville's newest boutique hotel (just hotel 12 rooms and suites ) is causing a stir. Located in Casa Palacio Castelar,  in the heart of the historic center of Seville.  Each Mercer Hoteles  project has a distinctive look and feel that is based on the location and history of the building and destination. The new hotel in Seville is a perfect example of the philosophy,  26 Calle Castelar is an historic building with a modern styling.  Our favourite example of this is the cocktail lounge which reflects the vibrant colours  of Seville: mandarin orange and russet reds with gold accents.  We're rather fond of the rooftop pool too. definitely a Pool with a View. Within minutes, guests can reach Seville's major attractions such as Torre del Oro, La Giralda, the Cathedral, Real Alcazar and Real Fábrica de Tabacos. Each Mercer Hoteles. www.mercersevilla.com

NEWS Switzerland's world first electric car tour

We applaud a country that takes the environment seriously. Switzerland has launched the world’s first road tour for electric vehicles, the E-Grand Tour of Switzerland. The Grand Tour is the world’s first official touring route that is fully accessible to electric vehicles and bikes, where travellers will cross five Alpine passes, run alongside 22 lakes and take in 12 UNESCO World Heritage sites. And there’s an impressive infrastructure to go with this eco-friendly tour. Switzerland Tourism has announced that from April 2017, an extensive network of 200 charging stations will be available along the entire 1,600km route. The charging stations for the E-Grand Tour are all ‘smart’, meaning travellers will be able to hop online to check if the charging station is free and/or if a reservation is required. Fast charging stations (DC) with at least 22kW will be present at major attractions such as the Rheinfall where travellers will be on a short driving break while sightseeing, whereas public charging stations (AC) with at least 11kW will be found at hotels, where travellers will be staying the night.  The maximum distance between charging stations will be 100km, many will be closer together.  Powered by energy company Alpiq, the E-Grand Tour will face its first crucial test during the WAVE event (World Advanced Vehicle Expedition) in June 2017. Next year sees the seventh running of the rally, which will be held exclusively on the Grand Tour of Switzerland route from 9 – 17 June 2017. www.myswitzerland.com


NEWS Capella Hotel Group's new Bali hotel

Capella Hotel Group Asia will operate an ultra-luxury resort in Ubud, Bali. Capella Ubud is a hidden sanctuary within densely forested terrain, edged by rice fields. There are 22 luxurious tents designed by celebrated architect, Bill Bensley. Dotted along the sacred Wos River, where the Balinese regularly gather for festive processions, the resort offers a charming insight into their traditional way of life. A Capella Personal Assistant is on hand to attend to every guest's preferences from the point of reservation until departure or to curate the perfect bespoke Balinese adventure. "The Capella Experience is sensitive to our local culture and history. Inspired by early European settlers from the 1800s, Capella Ubud gives our discerning guests the chance to relive the spirit of adventure while enjoying the natural essence of Bali in luxurious comfort," said Mr. Nicholas M. Clayton, Chief Executive Officer of Capella Hotel Group Asia. "Within the next 18 months, we will introduce three distinctive Capella projects to Asia, beginning with Shanghai in Spring 2017, Ubud in Autumn 2017 and Bangkok in Spring 2018. Each Capella hotel will showcase the rich heritage of each destination, delivering the authentic experiences that our guests expect." www.capellahotelgroup.com

NEWS Rocco Forte's first Saudi Arabia hotel now open

The first Rocco Forte hotel in Sauda Arabia is now open. Occupying two towers at the centre of Jeddah’s business and shopping district. Assila Hotel is designed by Olga Polizzi, Director of Design of Rocco Forte Hotels and sister of Sir Rocco Forte.  Mrs. Polizzi has worked closely with Martin Brudnizki on a design which combines Arabic influence with a modern vibe.  There are 147 deluxe, superior deluxe and executive rooms, 63 sumptuous suites culminating in the opulent magnificence of the Royal Suiteas well as 94 fully-serviced residential suites.  For food lovers, Assila Hotel currently offers fine dining at the Twenty Four restaurant and delicious homemade Italian patisseries, ice creams and cakes at Il Caffé coffee lounge, both open 24 hours daily. Traditional Arabic mezze are served Al fresco on the terrace overlooking Tahlia Street.  A set of rooms are now available to book starting from (1,600 SAR) and reservations are now being taken for the remaining rooms, available from 1st February 2017. www.roccofortehotels.com

NEWS Brown’s Hotel’s new in-house Florist

This autumn Brown’s Hotel, a Rocco Forte Hotel, will feature its own in-house florist, Ellie Hartley. Ellie Hartley Flowers will be a standalone floral boutique within the hotel, and will be the first florist on Dover Street, Mayfair. 
Talented florist Ellie has worked with Brown’s since 2010, and has since then been responsible for the beautiful floral displays throughout the hotel.
The new floral boutique, Ellie Hartley Flowers, will be a ‘decadent emporium filled with blooms, and a glamorous space adorned with gold and marble, yet simple enough to let the flowers do the talking’. The architecture of the space is a continuation of the elegant decor seen throughout Brown’s Hotel. Working with the guests of the hotel and customers Ellie can cater to all floristry needs, designing bouquets for special occasions, large scale events, weddings or just that simple hand tied posy to celebrate the start of the weekend.  www.roccofortehotels.com , www.elliehartleyflowers.com

NEWS Alila's new hotel in India

The quest for the preservation of an ancient Indian warrior fort inspired the creation of  Alila’s newest boutique resort .  When Alila Fort Bishangarh opens near Jaipur in February 2017, Alila will be the first international hotel group to open a property in the Aravalli hills  Fort Bishangarh is thought to be one of the only warrior forts of its kind to be converted into a unique heritage resort of this stature. It has a remarkable presence, sitting up high on a granite hill with staggering 360-degree views of the Rajasthani landscape, surrounded by hills dotted with havelis, villages and temples. The imposing structure is a perfect example of the Jaipur Gharana architecture influenced by both the Mughals and the British, with two-metre thick stone walls, majestic turrets and intricate arched windows. The use of traditional materials in a contemporary manner is the basic design ethos for the hotel. The new structure – created above and outside the old fort – houses four different categories of suites with each of the 59 suites custom designed to make the most of the stunning views from  large windows.  There will also be an indoor speciality restaurant, an outdoor grill dining venue on the terrace, and a cigar/cognac turret. A library, amidst old marble pillars and Spa Alila, carved out between granite rocks both promise to be very special too. Everything a modern-day Maharaja or Maharani could wish for. www.alilahotels.com

 
NEWS Megan Hess brings her art to Oetker Collection

One of the world’s leading fashion illustrators, Megan Hess, has become Artist in Residence for Oetker Collection.  Her first illustrations of Le Bristol Paris and The Lanesborough in London were unveiled this week during the book tour promoting her latest book, ‘New York, through a fashion eye’ . The artist will be illustrating each of the Collection properties in her own delicate style. Her illustrations for the New York Times, Italian Vogue and Vanity Fair Magazine are well known, as are her drawings for the Sex and the City book. Her work has also appeared on the bottom of luxury swimming pools in Dubai and on the walls of some of fashion houses around the world. She illustrates all of her work with a bespoke Montblanc pen, which she affectionately calls Monty. All of which makes her a perfect fit with the luxurious Oetker Collection, so we can’t wait to see how Megan’s exceptional skills bring the exquisite Oetker hotels to life. “As an artist, one of the biggest sources of inspiration for me is travel, says Hess. “My work and the bespoke illustrations that I create takes me all around the world on luxury projects and it is with great excitement that I will now be sketching and staying at the world’s most beautiful masterpiece hotels with the Oetker Collection. From the incredible architecture, to the finest cuisine and of course, the world’s chicest people, I will be sketching them all at each Oetker Collection property. My aim is to bring the bespoke and unique luxury of each hotel to life in illustration”.
 Below Le Bristol (left) The Lanesborough (right).  www.meganhess.com , www.oetkercollection.com

NEWS Stunning new resort in Lake Lucerne

 can’t get over what  stunning views guests of the new Bürgenstock Resort Lucerne will have when  when it opens in  August 2017.The 500 million Swiss Francs development will see award-winning architecture, four hotels,  a 10,000m² glass-clad Alpine spa and a world-class medical centre come together in a spectacular setting, elevated 500m above the shores of Lake Lucerne. The contemporary Bürgenstock Hotel, will sit alongside the visionary Waldhotel, historic Palace Hotel and rustic Pension Taverne 1879  There will also be 12 restaurants and state of the art resort facilities which will all come together to  to create this spectacular destination. www.buergenstock.ch/en

NEWS Penfold vault aboard Genting Dream

Dream Cruises, the first-ever Asian luxury cruise line, has announced a partnership with iconic Australian winemaker Penfolds to create the world’s first Penfolds Flagship Wine Vault at sea on board Genting Dream. Wine connoisseurs on board  will be able to indulge in an array of rare wines and fine vintages from one of the world’s leading wineries, including Penfolds Bin 170 (which celebrates the winemaker’s 170th anniversary)  and Penfolds Grange 2010, which has three perfect scores of 100 points from highly respected international wine critics. Penfolds Wine Vault  will store a wide range of Penfolds finest labels with an in-house sommelier to enhance guests’ Penfolds experience. The food pairing will be impressive too with expert chefs and sommeliers working together .  Mr. Peter Gago, Penfolds Chief Winemaker, said: “It is extremely exciting to be part of the history-making inauguration of Genting Dream. As wine culture becomes an increasingly important part of the luxury travel experience, it’s my pleasure to see the extremely rare Penfolds Aevum Imperial Service Ritual* find its home aboard this magnificent cruise ship”. 
 * A crystal vessel designed specifically to hold the 2012 Penfolds Grange Imperial in honour of the winemaker’s flagship brand and (one of the most highly regarded Grange vintages). dreamcruiseline.com 

NEWS DUKES LONDON’s Multi-Million Pound refurbishment

This month DUKES LONDON, the award winning five-star Mayfair hotel, is set to undergo a major multi-million pound refurbishment programme. The hotels new look will start with the hotel’s meeting rooms and changes to the restaurant and hotel bedrooms will follow in January 2017. The improved look is anticipated to be completed by the end of spring 2017.
The popular Duchess Rooms, a personalised service aimed at the female solo traveller, will also undergo a dramatic facelift, working with several leading luxury British brands that work in synergy with DUKES’ own quintessential British offering.
Managing Director of DUKES COLLECTION, Debrah Dhugga said, “At DUKES LONDON we understand that to remain at the forefront of the luxury hotel industry, maintaining standards is essential. This multi-million-pound renovation will be the biggest investment the hotel has seen in decades. Our aim of the refurbishment is to enhance and enrich what our guests know and love about the DUKES experience, whilst maintaining our award-winning five-star service and attention to detail that the hotel is so well-known for.”  www.dukeshotel.com


NEWS Fairmont St Andrews Unveils Renovation

Five-star hotel, Fairmont St Andrews has revealed its multi-million pound renovations of its public areas. The highly anticipated renovations have been highly influenced by the history and landscapes of St Andrews, and seen a complete redesign of the hotel’s Atrium, incorporating a bespoke 60m long ceiling sculpture by award winning artist George Singer, a new restaurant and the Kittock’s Bar.
As well as a revised layout, Kittock’s Bar has drawn on nautical elements found in the nearby River Tay estuaries and surrounding fishing villages, to create a comforting atmosphere for drinking and dining.
The extensive refurbishment follows the appointment of executive chef Frank Trepesch, former executive sous chef at The Savoy, and the arrival of The Savoy Afternoon Tea.
Over the next 12 months several of the hotel’s guestrooms will undergo refurbishment to complete the multi-million pound renovations showcasing the best of Scottish heritage and hospitality. www.fairmont.com/st-andrews-scotland

NEWS The Lanesborough Club & Spa opening Spring 2017

When The Lanesborough Club & Spa opens in spring 2017 it is set to be one of London’s most exclusive private members’ health clubs.
The club will be open to both private members and guests of The Lanesborough Hotel, and will feature recognised experts in the fields of fitness, beauty and wellness.
With a state-of-the-art fitness space, The Lanesborough Club & Spa gym will house state of the art equipment, as well as personal training and group fitness classes from lifestyle and wellbeing experts, Bodyism.  The spa will bring together world-renowned spa and beauty brands ila and La Prairie, as well as ‘super therapist’ and beauty expert Anastasia Achilleos, in one luxurious sanctuary in central London. www.lanesboroughclubandspa.com , www.lanesborough.com





NEWS Bartender in a book at The London EDITION

The Luxury Travel Bible loves it when a hotel thinks creatively about the minibar. 
The London EDITION has partnered with Hendrick’s Gin to present the H.O.T.E.L. (Hendrick’s Ocular Tool for Extraordinary Libations) – which reinvents the hotel mini bar experience by offering residents a virtual in-room bartender.
Guests will discover a book, curiously placed on the hotel’s signature drinks trolley with the words “open this book and tell no one”. Once opened it will reveal a virtual video cocktail class led by global Hendrick’s gin ambassador, David Piper. Davide Segat of The London EDITION’s award winning bar Punch Room has created two signature cocktails – Inspector Gimlet and Caught by the Fizz – which guests can recreate in their own suite.
Guests can become a professional mixologist as all the mixing, stirring and shaking apparatus and glasses are ready for the cocktail making to take place! 
Lance Perkins, Director of Bars at The London EDITION, adds ‘The standard of offerings in hotel bars has become extremely high and unique, that’s why at The London EDITION we’re always aiming to go the extra mile to offer something different – this time, extending that experience to the hotel suite’.
The H.O.T.E.L. will be available across 12 of the suites at the five-star London EDITION. www.editionhotels.com/London

NEWS Ten golden moments with the Hotel de Rome
The Hotel de Rome in Berlin is celebrating ten years of operations by creating ten special golden moments for guests with  its Ten Year Gold package. .During a two night stay in an historic suite guests will be treated to ten truly glittering experience including:  A 24-carat gold leaf treatment at the De Rome Spa to a private boat trip and champagne picnic, a private tour of the Collectors Room with art collector Thomas Olbricht, in-suite hairstyling by star hairdresser Shan Rahimkhan,  a ten-course candlelit dinner in the former bank vault, and much more.  This special Ten Year Gold Package can be booked for EUR 10.000 per person for two nights from 12th October 2016 until 12 October 2017, based on availability and double occupancy. During its first decade  the Rocco Forte hotel has hosted  495,366 guests, plumped  1,223,100 pillows, popped 8,590  champagne corks,  shaved  39,010 grams of truffles, while the hotel's own patisserie has transformed over 4,380 kilograms of the finest chocolate into elegant creations.  Quite a record. www.roccofortehotels.com 
NEWS The ultimate Sydney wine cruise

It has to be one of the ultimate Australian wine experiences, on one of the world’s most scenic harbours. Captain Cook Cruises is offering a six course degustation dinner aboard the MV Sydney 2000 accompanied by a Penfolds’ platinum selection of private bin & vintage wines  which complement each course. Canapés and sparkling wine are served on arrival followed by  courses which include such succulent delights as slow cooked pork belly, Queensland snapper with grilled king prawn and Osso Bucco ragu with pumpkin gnocchi. The highlight of the dinner is of course the fact that guests receive one full bottle of Grange per table. Your bottle of Grange will be decanted at your table, rebottled and left to breathe, awaiting the penultimate fifth course. The famous Penfolds Grange Hermitage is arguably Australia’s most celebrated wine and is officially listed as a Heritage Icon of South Australia. So the chance to drink it while sailing past that other Australian icon, the Sydney Opera House  is pretty special.  The Platinum Penfolds Grange Dinner costs from A$395 per person for a table of 4 or more guests. Book online at  www.captaincook.com.au 

NEWS Rocco Forte Announces Second Hotel in Rome

The Hotel de Russie, run by Rocco Forte Hotels is one of the best boutique hotels in Rome. So it good to learn that a second Rocco Forte hotel will open in the city in late 2018. The (former InterContinental) Hotel De La Ville is positioned at the top of the Spanish Steps on via Sistina, a location that is hard to beat. The hotel is currently closed and will reopen at the end of 2018 after a major facelift to bring it up to Forte’s stylish standards.  “It has been a long standing ambition of mine to have a second property in Rome so I am delighted to be working with the prestigious Reale Group to launch a new hotel in the heart of the city.” Says Sir Rocco Forte. The news of the new Rome hotel follows a recent announcement of Rocco Forte Hotels’ expansion, with Sir Rocco revealing his intention to double the number of hotels in the group over the next five years. The existing ten hotels in the bijoux collection are largely European based The group will continue to expand in Europe  but will also branch out worldwide  with a hotel in Jeddah opening in 2016 and another in Shanghai, opening in 2018. www.roccofortehotels.com

NEWS Ser hotel collection launches

Sandra Perez, Cuban artist and owner of CasaSandra hotel in Holbox, Mexico has announced the launch of Ser Collection,  a new boutique group of hotels defined by their organic spaces, connection nature, and art. “With exceptional standards of service and a strong commitment to nature and local culture, Ser Collection will define a very different authentic story for the hotel industry.” says Perez.
Initially, the new hotel collection will include CasaSandra on the Mexican island of Holbox and Habiramy, a new property in Havana.   The original CasaSandra opened in 2003 was ,as the name implies , the artist's own home. “This used to be my private refuge ... which I decided to open to guests to share this special destination and help them to unplug.  Its smell, warmth, colours and design create the perfect environment to forget time, forget the world and simply enjoy the stillness of the beautiful moment.”  Say Perez. A philosophy that bodes well for the quality of Ser Collection. Expect intimate surrounding and interesting art. To celebrate the launch of the collection CasaSandra will host a series of art installations created by Sandra Perez in collaboration with other international artists to highlighting the importance of the interaction between life, art, culture and spirituality.  The first installation will be in collaboration with Sandra Ramos,  the Cuban artist known for her surrealist expressionism and political commentary. Ramos comments: “Holbox is the dream of any creative artist – unlike any other, this remote island not only inspires the imagination but truly nurtures the soul.” We think it inspires guests too.

 www.casasandra.com 


NEWS The new world food guide from Conde Nast

Condé Nast Traveler unveils its first ever Where in The World to Eat Awards in the October issue. And ,yes we’re listening . Experts who have contributed to the list include 72 chefs, restaurateurs, food writers, and hospitality veterans who nominated the top 42 countries where it’s worth traveling to for food.  And let’s face it  who else would tell us where to eat in Dakar? As CN point out “There’s no shortage of food-focused Instagram feeds that will direct you to the tastiest avocado toast in cities like Paris, London, New York, … but  when you’re faced with the make-or-break travel dilemma of where to eat in Hong Kong, Mendoza, Dakar—you have one shot to get it right. “  We disagree about Hong Kong as we think there are plenty of good Asia Pacific food guides . Never the less we’re keen on some other recommendations such as shaved truffles from Toklarija, Sovinjsko Polje in Croatia and La Huella, Maldonado in Uraguay. And the White Rabbit, Moscow (been there, loved that). Oh, and in Dakar? Chez Loutcha for Senegalese fish. Gottcha.  

The Food Issue of Condé Nast Traveler will be available on US newsstands on September 27th, 2016. But here’s sneak peak:
http://www.cntraveler.com/story/best-restaurants-africa-middle-east



NEWS Oetker Collection's private jet around Europe

Driving between one’s favourite European hotels is such a bore darling. And commercial airlines are just too horrid.. The only way to travel between Paris and the Riviera is by private jet – naturally. Luckily Oetker (a hotel collection which does indeed encompass some of our favourite hotels in Europe) has the answer.  The company has announced  a modern European Odyssey, flying guests on a Luxaviation, Legacy 600 private jet between European countries in mere minutes. The tour begins at the aristocratic Lanesborough London, followed by a stop at  Germany’s Grand Hotel Brenners Park-Hotel & Spa in Baden-Baden. The group then set course southbound to Milan countryside and finish their day at the iconic Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc where guests can dine over the Mediterranean with all the pleasures of the French Riviera. Last stop is Paris and the iconic Hotel Le Bristol. Along the way guests will enjoy the best of Europe’s art, history and gastronomy.  “Over twelve days passengers will share their passion for the finest things life offers, jetting between our masterpiece hotels in London, Baden-Baden, the Riviera and Paris; crossing Europe for private access to absolutely the most exclusive destinations.”, says Jean-Pierre Soutric, Senior Vice President Sales & Marketing commented.  The twelve day jetsetting trip begins 22 April 2017. 
That’s April sorted. 
www.oetkercollection.com


NEWS Vail Resorts Epic Pass includes Europe

OK, its official the mighty Vail Resorts is going for ski domination. Today Vail Resorts announced it will add Les 3 Vallees, Paradiski and Tignes-Val d’Isere in France, Skirama Dolomiti Adamello Brenta in Italy, 4 Vallees in Switzerland, and Arlberg in Austria to the 2016-2017 lineup of the Epic Pass.  See the chart below for the fall –and impressive – list. The Epic Pass was already the world’s most popular ski pass due to the unlimited skiing access and the fact that you could visit 13 iconic resorts in the U.S. and Australia. The new additions mean that the Epic Pass is the only multi-resort pass to offer significant access to European resorts and also featuring unlimited, unrestricted access to world-class resorts in Colorado, Utah and Tahoe for just US$809. This gives Epic Pass holders access to the best skiing in six countries. Ski junkies take not the deadline for the lowest price is Monday, September 5 2016, so work out your ski plans this weekend. www.vailrsesorts.com


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