New Proper Hotels Brand Celebrates Innovation Districts

January 30, 2015 on 11:27 am | In California, Hotels, San Francisco | Comments Off

A new hotel brand, Proper Hotels, is aiming to blend luxury with a boutique feel, focusing on culture, innovation and design in locations that celebrate mixed-use environments, or “innovation districts.”

Conceived by founder and former Viceroy Hotels CEO Brad Korzen, Proper Hotels—launched today—honors districts that combine residences and commercial buildings and create an environment that is both culturally sound and keeps some elements of the classic grand hotels intact.

The brand, which will open its first property in San Francisco in late 2015, celebrates entrepreneurs, startups and creative minds, including those who grew up with boutique hotels before they began taking off.

To say Proper Hotels is inclusive of many types of people and demographics would be putting it lightly. Innovation districts—and the idea behind Proper Hotels—trace back to the 1950s or so and extends to today’s traveler.

The upcoming San Francisco hotel is set within the historic Renoir Hotel in the Mid-Market neighborhood, which once was a vibrant and eclectic hotspot that was part of what created San Francisco’s character: free, liberating and tech-centric. The area has seen better days, but Proper Hotels sees potential in Mid-Market, claiming it’s “more than ready for its renaissance” on the brand’s website.

San Francisco Proper will feature 135 rooms, the Renoir Hotel’s timeless lobby, three restaurants and an indoor/outdoor rooftop restaurant and bar opening up to the San Francisco skyline.

Goddess Swimwear from Today ShowGiven Proper Hotels’ focus you may be able to guess where the brand’s second property will be based: That’s right, Austin.

Specifically, the Austin Proper Hotel—slated to open in mid-2017—will be located at the Green Water Treatment Plant development, a neighborhood that has come to life and added even more character to the city’s 2nd Street district.

As the brand website notes, “Once thought of as a sleepy college town and the Texas outpost for hippies and cowboy poets, Austin has evolved into a thriving creative hub for music, food, technology and ideas.”

Austin Proper will be a 35-story modern high-rise offering 250 hotel rooms and 120 luxury residences, as well as two rooftop swimming pools and several food and beverage outlets. Even the hotel’s views will incorporate it all: the Colorado River and the Texas Hill countryside, as well as the city below where the popular SXSW festival takes place.

In terms of design, Korzen has enlisted the help of his wife Kelly Wearstler, whose design concepts were a major draw to Viceroy Hotels. Wearstler’s work combines vintage and modern design aspects while staying true to—and drawing inspiration from—the local environment.

Proper Hotels is also looking into building properties in Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Brooklyn, Miami and the Napa Valley.

For more information, visit  Read more travel news at

Jetstreams for Travel Discounts

Marriott Testing Out In-Room Netflix Service

January 30, 2015 on 11:21 am | In Hotels, Mobile Apps | Comments Off

Goddess Swimwear from Today ShowTo cater to the ever-increasing technological demands of travelers, Marriott International is testing out the idea of allowing its guests to access Netflix, Hulu and Pandora via their in-room TVs, according to Bloomberg News.

Marriott is currently testing out the service at eight of its properties.

“We have invited leading technology companies and content providers to work with us to design the next wave in in-room entertainment focusing on on-demand programming,” said John Wolf, a spokesman for Bethesda, Maryland-based Marriott, told Bloomberg News. “We are currently offering guests in eight test hotels the opportunity to stream their content through our high-definition TVs from multiple content providers.”

According to the report, Marriott is not the only one considering the idea. The global hospitality company is “one of several hotel chains” that have thought about offering Netflix to guests as part of their in-room entertainment. Marriott guests can currently access Netflix on their laptops and tablets via Wi-Fi, but offering the ability to stream on Marriott’s high-definition in-room TVs is being looked at as an opportunity to attract more revenue for both Marriott and Netflix.

Netflix, the biggest subscription-based streaming service, has been expanding quickly in its desire to become the world’s first global online network. In March, Netflix will expand to Australia and New Zealand.

Netflix is also outpacing rival, Inc. The service began producing and distributing movies back in September and will introduce its first movie in late 2015.

Marriott’s portfolio includes more than 700,000 rooms in 79 countries and territories. Overall, it was one of the more accomplished hotel companies in the world in 2014—opening its 4,000th hotel, introducing millennial-minded brands such as Moxy Hotels (and AC Hotels by Marriott in North America) and installing beacon technology—but it received some flack for its Wi-Fi programs and its initial stance of seeking to block personal Wi-Fi devices at its meeting and event spaces.

But given how popular Netflix is—and a clever marketing campaign with GoPro—Marriott could be on the upswing in the minds of some travelers. Read more travel news at

Getaway Specials from Marriott.

Marriott to New Lifestyle Brand Moxy Hotels in U.S.

January 29, 2015 on 11:25 am | In Hotels | Comments Off

Goddess Swimwear from Today ShowOn the heels of last week’s revelation that it aims to have more than one million rooms open or under development across the globe by the end of 2015, Marriott International has announced the introduction of Moxy Hotels to the U.S.

The new lifestyle brand was first launced in Europe, but is now set to make its American debut in a big way.

Identified locations for the new U.S. properties include metropolises like New York City, San Francisco, Seattle, New Orleans and Chicago.

“Moxy fully embraces today’s contemporary traveler and welcomes guests with its style, design and attitude,” said Tina Edmundson, global officer, luxury and lifestyle brands. “Moxy clearly resonates with the young and young at heart—it’s fun, edgy, and social, all with a youthful spirit.”

Initially launched in Milan in September 2014, Moxy Hotels isn’t finished expanding in Europe either, with additional properties in Germany, Denmark and the United Kingdom set to open over the next two years.

“We have implemented a development strategy across North America in locations that meet the Moxy mantra – high-performing markets and urban locations popular with millennials,” added Eric Jacobs, chief development officer. “We are focusing on travelers looking for comfort, a distinct style and affordability.”

Inviting lobbies, free and fast Wi-Fi, digital guestbooks and libraries are just a few of the exciting features these new Moxy Hotels will offer travelers.

And as far as the big picture is concerned, the brand’s expansion is sure to propel Marriott toward its goal of surpassing the one million room target it set out to beat at the start of the year.

“We achieved record growth across the board in 2014, as we opened more than 46,000 rooms worldwide,” said Tony Capuano, Marriott’s executive vice president and chief development officer in a statement.

“Having signed agreements in 2014 for over 650 new hotels and 100,000 rooms, we boosted our record pipeline of new hotel development to nearly 240,000 rooms. When opened over the next few years, these new hotels will expand Marriott’s presence from 80 countries and territories today to more than 100. This continues a historic four-year surge in demand for new Marriott hotels that drives a bullish growth outlook.” Read more travel news at

Getaway Specials from Marriott.

Hyatt to Debut Hyatt Centric Lifestyle Brand in Summer

January 29, 2015 on 11:22 am | In Hotels | Comments Off

Hyatt Hotels Corporation has announced the introduction of Hyatt Centric, a new lifestyle brand designed for business and leisure travelers alike.

The company’s goal is to bring guests to the “center of the action in the best destinations.”

More than 15 Hyatt Centric locations are set to debut this summer, including properties in marquee destinations like New York, Paris, Atlanta, Chicago and Miami.

“From listening to our guests, we learned there was an opportunity to better meet the needs of a large group of travelers that we call Modern Explorers. These travelers are looking for a cosmopolitan vibe in the center of the action, so we worked to test various elements in real time, in real hotels over the past two years. Hyatt Centric is the culmination of that work,” said Hyatt president and CEO Mark Hoplamazian in a statement.

So what defines a modern explorer?

Hyatt’s vice president of brands Kristine Rose explains:

“Modern Explorers are truly a savvy, curious group. Their expectations are simple, but their standards are high and they want their experience to be intuitive and smart. They want options and all the must-haves from a full service hotel but without any fuss or complications.”

The Hyatt Centric experience will revolve around authenticity, simplicity and providing a balance between human interaction and digital capabilities.

Knock n’ drop room service, a knowledgeable staff, vast work and social spaces as well as authentic artwork, furniture and decor are some of the many Hyatt Centric features that are sure to appeal to the aforementioned modern explorers.

2015’s launch marks the sixth Hyatt brand introduced since 2006.  Read more travel news at


Marriott to Acquire Canada’s Delta Hotels and Resorts

January 28, 2015 on 11:20 am | In Alberta, British Columbia, Canada, Golf Resorts, Hotels, Labrador, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Nunavut, NWT, Ontario, PEI, Quebec, Saskatchewan, Toronto, Yukon | Comments Off

Marriott International, Inc. announced today it has signed definitive agreements to acquire the Delta Hotels and Resorts brand and management and franchise business from Delta Hotels Limited Partnership, a subsidiary of British Columbia Investment Management Corporation (bcIMC), for approximately $135 million.

Delta Hotels & Resorts is a popular brand in Canada that features 38 hotels and 10,000 rooms in more than 30 cities across the country. It has gained a following based on innovative approaches in technology and guest room design (its new ModeRoom offers multiple connectivity options, a mobile-friendly design and free Internet), exemplified in its flagship property Delta Toronto, located in the center of Canada’s thriving high-rise neighborhood, South Core.

Not only does the acquisition add another strong brand to Marriott’s offerings, but it’s also significant in that it helps Marriott expand its global portfolio, which it has been focusing on lately. When completed, the transaction will increase Marriott’s distribution in Canada to more than 120 hotels and 27,000 rooms, making Marriott the largest full service hotel company in Canada.

“Delta has an impressive portfolio of hotels that are among the most preferred in Canada,” said Arne Sorenson, president and chief executive officer of Marriott International, via a press release. “With this acquisition, we are continuing our focus on building our brand portfolio and growing in attractive regions outside the U.S. Combining the strong Delta brand with Marriott’s hotel development expertise will accelerate growth of the brand in Canada and in other markets around the world.”

David Grissen, group president overseeing The Americas for Marriott International, said, “At completion, this transaction will propel Marriott to a leading position in Canada. Canada represents the largest international source market for our hotels in the United States, and the integration of Delta into Marriott’s 4,100 plus hotel global portfolio will provide new travel opportunities for both Delta and Marriott customers. We expect integrating Delta into Marriott’s systems, sales engines,, and the more than 49 million member Marriott Rewards loyalty program will create meaningful operational synergies for owners and franchisees.

Marriott’s Americas management team looks forward to working closely with Delta’s hotel owners and franchisees, and welcoming Delta employees, who will have access to a larger range of opportunities in North America and globally once the transaction closes.”

Marriott is acquiring the Delta management and franchise business, as well as the Delta brand and related intellectual property as part of the agreement. At stabilization, after realizing certain operating synergies, Marriott expects the purchase price to be approximately 10 times annualized earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA).

As far as bcIMC is concerned, the company’s affiliates own 13 Delta hotels (and one under development) and will sign new 30-year management agreements with Marriott for these properties. The other 25 Delta hotels are owned by third parties (15 are managed by Delta and 10 are franchised). Five managed hotels (about 1,100 rooms) are under development.

Assuming consent by third parties and the Canadian Competition Bureau, the transaction is expected to be finalized in the second quarter of 2015. Marriott does not expect the transaction will have a material impact on its 2015 results, excluding one-time transaction and integration costs. Read more travel news at

AAA Names 14 Hotels, Restaurants to 2015 Five Diamond List

January 20, 2015 on 11:39 am | In Dine Drink, Florida, Golf Resorts, Hotels, Orlando | Comments Off

AAA has added eight hotels and six restaurants to its exclusive Five Diamond List for 2015, subsequently qualifying them for this year’s Five Diamond Award list.

Over the past 12 months, AAA has announced 184 total hotels and restaurants that have received the AAA/CAA Five Diamond Rating, with that group representing just 0.3 percent of the total number of AAA/CAA Approved and Diamond Rated hotels and restaurants, which stands at more than 58,000.

The recently announced Five Diamond hotels are headlined by the Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.

The only Five Diamond hotel in the Orlando area, the Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World Resort features an abundance of “upscale service options,” including an iPad in each room that effectively serves as a point of reference for guests throughout their stay.

The luxury resort even allows guests to control the lighting and temperature from a keypad.

Goddess Swimwear from Today Show“At the ultra-luxury level we’re seeing an increasing number of hotels offering guests the choice of high-end service by white glove or touch screen—in person or electronically,” said AAA Inspections & Diamond Ratings director Michael Petrone in a statement.

“They’re complementing personal delivery with technology options such as in-room iPads and TV menus for ordering and scheduling services, apps for accessing newspapers and local reservations, mobile check-in and text alerts when their room is ready. Some Five Diamond hotels even place a TV within the bathroom mirror to complete guests’ high-tech stay,” he added.

Joining the Four Seasons Resort Orlando on the list are the following accommodations: Four Seasons Hotel Denver; Grand Luxxe (Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico), One&Only Palmilla (San Jose Del Cabo, Mexico); Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa (Rancho Santa Fe, California); Shangri-La Hotel (Toronto, Ontario); The Langham (Chicago) and The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman (Seven Mile Beach, Cayman Islands).

Puerto Morelos, Mexico’s Le Chique kicks off the list of recently selected restaurants, which also includes Orchids at Palm Court in Cincinnati and Palme d’Or in Coral Gables, Florida.

Passion by Martin Berasategui, located in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico made the list, as did San Francisco’s Saison and Twist in Las Vegas.

AAA points out that Five Diamond restaurants are often ahead of the latest “trends in farm-to-table and super-local food sourcing.”

What’s more, these restaurants don’t just supply delicious food, but provide a unique dining experience and are even becoming international destinations in some cases.

“Attaining the Five Diamond Rating is an impressive accomplishment and a point of great pride for these top hotels and restaurants,” said Petrone. “Five Diamond establishments stand apart by redefining personalized service, using creativity to enhance guest comfort and providing memorable experiences,” said Petrone.
Read more travel news at

Book Your Beach Resort at a Discount

For Military Travelers: Hotel Deals and Steals‏

January 15, 2015 on 10:37 am | In California, Chicago, Florida, Great Lakes, Hotels, Los Angeles, New York City, Orlando, The South | Comments Off

Details of the Red Roof 15% Off Military and Government Promotion:

· Red Roof offers 15% off for veterans, active duty military and their families!

· Use VP+®/Promo Code 619091 when making your reservation.

· Booking & Stay Dates: January 20 – March 31, 2015

· A valid military ID is required at check-in

· For more information, please visit: (Please note the page will be up on January 20)

Budget-Friendly Guide to Winter Travel Hot Spots: Orlando, Charleston, New York City, San Diego, Chicago

Orlando: There’s no other place in the United States that celebrates childhood quite like the theme park capital of the world, Orlando. Of course the city is internationally-recognized for its fun theme parks, but it also offers a lot more. With the subtropical climate and the attractive downtown city landscape, Orlando has its unique charm that appeals to all ages.

How to Save Money in Orlando

Goddess Swimwear from Today Show· Bundle your fun – Hidden savings of theme park packages and hotel deals come in the extra amenities, including meal plans, shuttle service, etc.

· Purchase combo tickets for theme parks – Splurge for combo tickets that provide admission into five or six of the area amusement parks, instead of purchasing single tickets for just one of the area parks per day.

Red Roof Inn NextGen, Orlando South – Florida Mall & Orlando Convention Center

Charleston: Travel to Charleston to experience two styles of living in the city of heritage and wonders. Enjoy a laidback afternoon, walking down the cobblestone streets in Charleston with centuries-old mansions and Spanish moss-draped trees aside or explore the modern aspect of this South Carolina city that boasts innovative restaurants, unique shops, contemporary art galleries and the world-class Spoleto Festival USA.

How to Save Money in Charleston

· Visit in the winter – Visit Charleston in winter to enjoy a variety of hotel deals for off-season travel, fewer tourists, and hospitable winter temperatures, hovering between 40 and 60 degrees.

· Best things to do in Charleston for FREE – For camera-toting tourists, The Battery, formerly the heart and soul of the city’s maritime activity is the best place for sightseeing with rows of Southern-style mansions overlooking Charleston Harbor. For travelers interested in shopping, the Charleston City Market buzzes with locally-made goods and regional souvenirs.

Red Roof Inn NextGen North Charleston Coliseum, SC

New York City: As the most populous city in the United States, the Big Apple sits at the forefront of fashion, arts and cuisine, and it’s a surprisingly attractive destination for budget travelers. Catering to all spending levels, there is world-class art and culture available to all, free live performances, international cuisine specials and special deals for all kinds of activities.

How to Save Money in New York City

· Search for museum deals – Research and plan in advance to find deals, such as Museum Free Days.

· Save on Broadway tickets – Save some serious money on a Broadway show by purchasing discounted tickets from the half-price ticket booth in Time Square or discount ticket web sites.

· Enjoy a visitor’s shopping discount – Before making a purchase, visitors may present out-of-state IDs or passports at the visitor’s desk at major retail stores, such as Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s for discounts on certain items.

Red Roof Inn PLUS Secaucus – Meadowlands, NJ

San Diego: Known for its idyllic year-round sunny weather and its 70 miles of magnificent coastline and beaches, San Diego has never failed to fascinate winter travelers. Recognized as one of the nation’s finest destinations with SeaWorld, LEGOLAND and San Diego Zoo, the Southern California city is just perfect for families and anyone looking for a laid-back winter getaway in the sun.

How to Save Money in San Diego

· Skip Summer – Summer is the peak tourist season with skyrocketing hotel rates and long lines in various attractions. Vacationers can break away for a winter getaway to escape from the cold and crowds.

· Get a Discounted Go San Diego Card – San Diego has a lot of favored attractions, including the San Diego Zoo, Wild Animal Park, SeaWorld, among others. Tourists may purchase the Go Card to see all popular attraction sites. Additionally, there are discounted cards offered on many local tourist guide sites.

Red Roof Inn NextGen San Diego-Pacific Beach/Seaworld Area

Chicago: Enjoy the holiday season with a Chicago twist and there is plenty of winter fun to explore in the Windy City that are worth combatting the cold: catch a concert performed by the A-list artists coming to town, go ice skating in Millennium Park or downhill skiing without leaving the Midwest and attend numerous festive events including the Magnificent Mile Lights Festival.

How to Save Money in Chicago

· Free attractions and events – Three Chicago landmarks are open year-round and are always free: Lincoln Park Zoo, Millennium Park, and Navy Pier. On winter evenings, travelers can enjoy luminous displays at the annual ZooLights at Lincoln Park Zoo.

· Get a Go Card – Visitors can plan their itinerary in advance and purchase a Go Chicago Card prior to the trip for free admissions at dozens of local attractions.

Red Roof Inn PLUS+ Chicago Willowbrook; PLUS+ Chicago Naperville

TFE Hotels Top Tips for a Room Upgrade

January 11, 2015 on 5:32 pm | In Australia, Beachbooker, Golf Resorts, Hotels, New South Wales, Northern, Queensland, South Australia, Sydney, Tasmania, Western | Comments Off

Kiwi and Australian travellers look for a free room upgrade first and foremost when booking a hotel room, according to a survey conducted by TFE Hotels of more than 17,000 travellers.

Somewhat surprisingly, free mini bar items were ranked as the least enticing offer.

Asking travellers what they most desired when booking a hotel stay, 29% of respondents said a free room upgrade while staying with a trusted hotel brand influences 20% of travellers to book. Travellers also sought dining or beverage credits and looked for free wifi options. Only 3% would be tempted by free mini bar items.

Emma Fraser, Group Marketing Director of TFE Hotels says she also looks for an upgraded room over other inclusions when she books a holiday. “A free upgrade to a more superior room means there’s generally more space, making my stay more comfortable and usually offers better views. An upgrade is always a nice touch and adds to a memorable experience, all at no extra cost.”

There are numerous ways to score a premium room without having to pay for the upgrade. However, it requires a mix of skill, emotional intelligence and a considerable amount of luck. For any traveller staying at a hotel with their sights set on a room with a view, here is some advice to consider from TFE Hotels, the ‘Ambassadors of Great Weekends':

1. Book during the low season

Being smart about the date, time and room you purchase can entitle you to an upgrade, without doing any extra work. Choose to book a room during the off-peak season when rooms are likely to be available. Hotels are often fully booked over weekends; especially when there’s a big event or concert in town, so stick to off-peak dates.

Arrive late in the afternoon – between 3pm and 5pm is ideal – when Reception Teams will have a better idea of what rooms are likely to stay empty overnight. As a result, you may just be bumped up to a more superior room.

Try this line: “I’m so glad to get away for the weekend – hopefully everyone else hasn’t had the same idea. Are you very busy at the moment?”

2. Use your manners

Manners accompanied with a smile can go a long way to make someone feel happy to help. Greet hotel team members as soon as you arrive and use your charm to stand out from other guests. Hotel Receptionists deal with travellers on a day-to-day basis so being that ‘one’ person who made their day, with a compliment or witty line, could earn you some brownie points.

3. Join a loyalty programme

Flattery doesn’t always get you far, sometimes it comes down to customer status. Most hotels offer benefits for loyal customers. Joining a hotel’s loyalty program and e-news database, depending on the status you have attained, may entitle you to a room upgrade.

When signing-up to TFE Hotel’s eclub, subscribers instantly receive 10% off their stay and will also receive updates on prize giveaways and upcoming sales.

4. Advocate your special occasion

Drop a special occasion such as an ‘engagement’ or a ‘birthday’ into the conversation. But don’t just blurt it out of nowhere; casually talk about it mid-chat. This way hotel teams will feel you are a genuine customer and be more inclined to go above and beyond to make sure you have a special stay. Hotel Teams always want you to enjoy your stay so you can tell others about your positive experience via word of mouth or an online review.

“It’s our first weekend away together without the kids in five years – we’re really excited to be here, especially as it’s our tenth wedding anniversary. We are especially looking forward to our stay.”

5. Be a frequent visitor and review your stay

Sometimes it’s simply a case of who you know. The more times you stay at a hotel the more familiar you will become to hotel receptionists. Your details are often stored in the system too – so they can tell when you last visited.

To make sure you are acknowledged as a frequent stayer, be friendly and get to know one or two receptionists or better yet the hotel manager, so you are recognised on your return.

Let them know about how great the stay was and that you will be back. And most importantly – write a review!

Leaving a ‘happy guest’ review on the likes of Trip Advisor, is one of the best ways to ensure you become known to a hotel team and it also spreads positive feedback to other potential guests. You scratch their back and they’ll scratch yours.

“It’s great to be back. Am I in my usual room or is there something larger available?”

Book Your Beach Resort at a Discount

Le Club Accorhotels Rewards Customer Loyalty with Exclusive ‘Triple Points’ Offer for Members

January 9, 2015 on 3:36 pm | In Asia, Hotels | Comments Off

Le Club Accorhotels has launched an exclusive ‘Triple Points’ offer for its Asia Pacific hotels to reward and recognize members from now until 28 February 2015. The promotion capitalises on Accor’s generous points program with over 500 hotels taking part including selected Sofitel, Pullman, MGallery, Sebel, Grand Mercure, Novotel, Mercure and Ibis hotels.

The enhanced promotion will provide members the opportunity to accumulate points much faster in exchange for more benefits and privileges when they stay at selected Accor hotels from luxurious city-centre hotels in China, Australia, Malaysia, New Zealand, South Korea, Japan, India, Laos, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Macau or Vietnam. Le Club Accorhotels offers more privileges and more points than ever before, with more hotels participating including over 100 resorts across Asia Pacific where members can burn points at gorgeous locations from the beaches of Bali and Fiji to the Gold Coast, Phuket or Bora Bora. This enhancement demonstrates Le Club Accorhotels’ commitment to care for the travel experience of guests staying across Accor’s 600 hotels and resorts in Asia Pacific.

“We want to reward and recognise our most loyal members three times more than before with our exclusive ‘Triple points’ offer and thank them for their continued support and loyalty to our brands over the years,” says Javier Cedillo-Espin, Vice President Communications & Loyalty, Accor Asia Pacific. “The ‘Triple Points’ offer gives members the highest earning rates in the program, allowing them to enjoy multiple stays in Asia Pacific without any date restrictions. We continue to see growth in hotel stays by our Le Club Accorhotels members and with the launch of ‘Triple Points’, we encourage our members to discover new memorable experiences at our properties.”

Le Club Accorhotels is the only hotel loyalty program that allows members to use their points at more than 2500 hotels globally, without any validity or availability restrictions. For every €10 spent, members earn 25 points; as soon as they reach 2,000 points, members are entitled to a €40 voucher, whichthey can use towards future stays or convert into privileges with one of the program’s many partners (airlines, car rental firms, etc.) and exclusive Le Club VIP member events.

Members must register to be eligible for this offer and the campaign is valid at participating hotels in Asia Pacific for stays from 1 November 2014 to 28 February 2015 for bookings made online.

Joining Le Club Accorhotels is simple. Anyone who has not signed up yet can do so before making their booking to enjoy the special triple points offer. For full information on the program, visit

Editor’s Note:

* The Le Club Accorhotels loyalty program provides more benefits than ever in every tier of membership, be it Classic, Silver, Gold or Platinum with the program update in July 2014:


Benefits highlights:

Ability to earn 25 points for every 10 Euros spent (12.5 points for every 10 Euros spent in Ibis and Ibis Style)
Priority check-in/out
Free internet access
Exclusive Access to Member Sales & Packages with Cash or Points

When you register for the free Le Club Accorhotels Loyalty program online or at any participating Accorhotel, you are automatically granted Classic Status and basic membership benefits. You are eligible to collect points and receive access to exclusive sales on the website. You will earn 25 points for every 10 euros spent at participating Accor hotels.


Benefits highlights:

Ability to earn 31 points for every 10 Euros spent (15.5 points for every 10 Euros spent in Ibis and Ibis Style)

Priority check-in/out
Free internet access
Free Welcome amenities
Late Check Out
Exclusive Access to Member Sales & Packages with Cash or Points

After you have stayed 10 nights at any participating Accor hotel or have accumulated 2,500 points within a calendar year, you will be upgraded to Silver status. In additional to the privileges of Classic membership, you’ll receive a welcome gift (gifts vary by hotel) and a complimentary drink at participating hotels, plus 31 points for every 10 euros spent at participating hotels & resorts. To maintain your membership status, you must stay a minimum of 10 nights (or collect 2,500 points) within 12 months of achieving Silver status and every 12 months thereafter.


Benefits highlights: Ability to earn 37 points for every 10 Euros (18.5 points for every 10 Euros spent in Ibis and Ibis Style) Free room upgrades Early Check-in Late Check-out Priority check-in/out Free internet access Guaranteed room availability Free Welcome amenities Exclusive Access to Member Sales & Packages with Cash or Points Once you have stayed 30 nights with Accor, or have accumulated 10,000 points within a calendar year, you will achieve Gold status. On top of the benefits afforded by Silver membership, Gold status comes with late checkout times, complimentary room upgrades and guaranteed room availability. You can also receive 37 points for every 10 euros spent at participating hotels. In order to keep your Gold status, you must stay a minimum of 30 nights or accrue 15,000 points in the 12 months following your promotion to Gold and every 12 months after that.


Benefits highlights:

Ability to earn 44 points for every 10 Euros (22 points for every 10 Euros spent in Ibis and Ibis Style)

Free room upgrades
Early Check-in
Late Check-out
Priority check-in/out
Guaranteed room availability
Free Welcome amenities
Access to Hotel Executive Lounges
Exclusive Access to Member Sales & Packages with Cash or Points
Exclusive Invitations to Member Only Sports Events, Concerts & Entertainment

The advantages of Platinum status — the highest tier within the Le Club Accorhotel Loyalty program — are only awarded once you’ve stayed 60 nights or earned 25,000 points within a calendar year. As a Platinum member, you can enjoy all the benefits of the Classic, Silver and Gold levels, including late checkout times, complimentary room upgrades and welcome gifts. In addition, you’ll receive access to hotel executive lounges and 44 points per every 10 euros. To maintain these benefits, you must stay at least 60 nights (or accrue 25,000 points) within 12 months of achieving Platinum status and every 12 months from then on.

Accor, the world’s leading hotel operator, offers its guests and partners the dual expertise of a hotel operator and brand franchisor (HotelServices) and a hotel owner and investor (HotelInvest) with the objective of ensuring lasting growth and harmonious development for the benefit of the greater number. With around 3,600 hotels and 460,000 rooms, Accor welcomes business and leisure travelers in 92 countries across all hotel segments: luxury-upscale with Sofitel, Pullman, MGallery, and Grand Mercure, midscale with Novotel, Suite Novotel, Mercure and Adagio and economy with ibis, ibis Styles, ibis budget and hotelF1. The Group boasts a powerful digital ecosystem, notably its booking portal, its brand websites and its loyalty program Le Club Accorhotels. As the world’s top hospitality school, Accor is committed to developing the talents of its 170,000 employees in Accor brand hotels. They are the daily ambassadors of the culture of service and innovation that has driven the Group for over 45 years.


New Hotels Opening in Tokyo

January 7, 2015 on 10:25 am | In Adventure Travel, Asia, Hotels, Japan | Comments Off

So much of the infrastructure necessary to host the 2020 Olympics is already in place that you might not even notice the preparations being made. While most Olympic host cities have to build from bottom to top, Tokyo’s preparations will have a lot more “tweak” about them. A few new hotels that are coming on line are examples of this tweaking, though they were being built long before Tokyo won the Olympic bid in the fall of 2013.

Tokyo’s Otemachi District has deep roots in the Edo era as the oldest part of Tokyo, but in more recent years it’s taken its flavor as the center of Japanese journalism. Located north of the classic Tokyo Station and the nearby Marunouchi District, the neighborhood’s architecture has been reaching for the sky in recent years. A new commercial complex, Ootemori recently opened to the west of Tokyo Station. Two hotels are opening in Otemachi, one that embraces modernity and one that puts a modern interpretation on the Edo past.

The new 84-room Aman Tokyo will open in the top six floors of Tokyo’s new Otemachi Tower on Dec. 22 with a panoramic view that takes in the gardens of the Imperial Palace. Though it’s the 27th Aman hotel, it’s the brand’s first urban property. “Our new concept, commencing with Tokyo, perfectly captures the legacy and heritage of Aman and presents it for the first time in an urban setting,” said Olivier Jolivet, Aman’s CEO.

Designed by Kerry Hill Architects, the hotel is a hybrid of traditional Japanese and modern design that combines camphor wood, Washi paper and stone with modern technology and a variety of fabrics and textures to create an interplay of shadow and light. An inner garden both locates the hotel in a strong Japanese identity and provides a little serenity in Tokyo’s often frenetic tempo. The Aman Spa with its eight treatment rooms also provides a little Zen tranquility inside the rush.

A towering lobby, nearly 30 meters high, suggests the interior of a Japanese paper lantern, rising six floors through the center of the building. Beneath the Lantern is the hotel’s inner garden which includes two traditional Japanese rock gardens. The inner garden is surrounded by an engawa, a Japanese term for a wooden space between the garden and living areas in traditional homes. Several restaurants serving Japanese as well as Western cuisine will take advantage of the view, which includes a distant Mount Fuji.

In 2016 something completely different will come to Otemachi when the Hoshinoya Tokyo opens with 84 traditional Ryokan-style guestrooms and suites. This very traditional approach to hospitality will make its nod to modernity with conference and function space for smaller groups. A Japanese restaurant and a spa will round out the amenities. Yoshino Resorts operates 29 ryokan-style properties in Japan.

In September, the 164-room Andaz Tokyo Toranomon Hills opened as the first Andaz hotel in Japan.

It’s the 12th Andaz branded property, and the fourth Hyatt property in Tokyo. Perched high atop the Toranomon Hills Tower on floors 47 to 52, the hotel sits between the Tokyo Tower and Imperial Palace, not far from the Ginza shopping district.

Andaz is Hyatt’s lifestyle boutique brand. Designed by New York’s Tony Chi and Tokyo’s Shinichiro Ogata, the hotel seeks a Japanese “purity of form by using natural materials such as washi paper and walnut throughout each space.”

Standard rooms average 540 square feet; a spaciousness that’s accentuated by the eagle-like view over Tokyo. Bathrooms feature deep soaking tubs inspired by Japanese bath culture.

On the 51st floor the hotel’s main dining venue, Andaz Tavern, exploits that view with 16-foot floor-to-ceiling windows. The 52nd floor, Rooftop Bar suggests a traditional Japanese teahouse. The 37th floor AO Spa & Club includes a 65-foot pool, five spa treatment rooms and more.

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