Monthly Archives: July 2017

Best Hotel Restaurant

There were a few rules we established in order to narrow down our nominees: The hotel had to have at least 15 rooms (so quaint, family-run bed-and-breakfasts and famed restaurants that happen to have a few rooms for the convenience of guests were eliminated). In addition, notable restaurants located just a few steps from hotels, even if they are under the same ownership, were also excluded; they had to be under the same roof as well as the same proprietorship.

  1. Mi Casa by José Andrés at Ritz-Carlton Dorado Beach (Dorado, Puerto Rico)

Dining in Puerto Rico has improved dramatically in the past decade or so, and the quality and variety now outpaces what’s available on any other Caribbean island. Even so, the opening of this new restaurant  two years ago by the irrepressible José Andrés has brought a new level of dining to the island. The menu is full of traditional offerings both Spanish and Puerto Rican (first-rate jamón ibérico, shrimp with mojo negro, grilled rib eye with yuca purée, and piquillo pepper confit), along with simply cooked steaks and seafood and some avant-garde touches, including coconut water and rum spheres with mint and lime after a recipe by Ferran Adrià and a Spanish omelette “new way,” with puréed potatoes and a 63-degree poached egg.

2. NoMI Kitchen at Park Hyatt (Chicago)

Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner as well as a weekend brunch, NoMI Kitchen describes itself as “a relaxed open kitchen restaurant,” but it’s also open to the city, offering extravagant views of downtown Chicago, including the Water Tower and Lake Michigan. The menu at NoMI is driven by fresh, locally sourced ingredients and high-quality flavors. On the dinner menu are mains including lake perch served with sugar snap peas, potato confit, and early tomato nage; milk-fed suckling pig with asparagus, rhubarb, and ramp jus; and Wagyu strip steak with spring onions and mushrooms.

3.The Bazaar by José Andrés at the SLS Hotel (Los Angeles)

The Bazaar is a gastronomic journey through chef Andrés’ celebrated culinary styles. It is composed of four adjoining bars and eateries: Bar Centro, Rojo y Blanca, Patisserie, and SAAM. At Bar Centro, Andrés has crafted a menu of cutting-edge cocktails, including one of the bar’s signature cocktails, “Smoke on the Water,” a “smoking” cocktail made with blackberries and Scotch. Rojo y Blanca offers an array of Spanish-style tapas for sharing, and the Patisserie serves pastries and sweet treats like cookies, cakes, and candies. SAAM, the restaurant’s exclusive chef’s tasting room, gives guests the chance to feast on a multicourse avant-garde tasting menu. Currently SAAM is featuring its third annual White Truffle Series. The 16-course dinner unearths the flavors of the truffle through the playful imagination and vision of Jose Andres’ culinary team and runs every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday until November 22.

Cool Bedroom Hotel

Here at Luxury Accommodations, we went through all the wonderful hotels, resorts, and various vacation rentals listed on our blog, and compiled a list of some of the most amazing and unique hotel bedrooms you’ve ever seen. Our curated collection below includes designs from all eras and corners of the globe, from idyllic tropical retreats with stunning ocean views to outstanding rustic spaces, splendid open-air bedrooms, and creatively themed units that will inspire you to redecorate.

1. Spectacular Whitewashed Bedroom, Sophia Luxury Suites

A spacious, strikingly designed sleeping area, the honeymoon suite at Sophia Luxury Suites features a modern, minimalist décor with gently curved whitewashed walls and several unique details such as a superb ceiling hanging chair with pulley system.

2. IN THE GREEN Room, Zash Country Boutique Hotel

Wide glass doors let nature take center stage in this stylish, contemporary garden bedroom at Zash Country Boutique Hotel. Designed by award-winning architect Antonio Iraci, the space is swathed in calming shades of grey, creating a refined, delicate environment.

3. Levitation Under Roof, Seven Hotel

The bold futuristic design of Seven Hotel’s Levitation Under Roof room makes a powerful visual statement, with its levitating bed lit from beneath, starry ceiling, and sparkling acrylic shelves that seem to float in the air. The deep blue lighting and state-of-the-art technology add to the ambience, transporting guests into a sci-fi wonderland.

4. Cubo Suite, Emiliano

The Cubo Suite penthouse at Emiliano is an architectural masterpiece filled with natural light, exquisite designer furnishings, and striking details. Finished in light Brazilian woods and soft beige leathers, the 135 sqm room lies within a glass cube on the hotel’s top floor, boasting spectacular 180° views of São Paulo, a sumptuous king size bed, and a heated plunge pool in the living area.

5. Legend Serenity Room, Legend Hotel

This seductive and mysterious little bedroom at the Legend Hotel in Paris invites daydreaming and relaxation with subdued designer lighting and a theatrically lit bed. The soft white curtains add a touch of romance to the décor, while a warm mix of creams and chocolate browns create a sensuous, intimate atmosphere.

6. Overwater Bedroom, Zaya Nurai Island

If your idea of a dream bedroom is to wake up with the ocean in sight, then this gorgeous overwater retreat at Zaya Nurai Island will make you never want to leave. Housed in one of the resort’s water villas, this contemporary, light-filled room makes the most of the magnificent sea views with glorious glass walls that seem to let the outside in.

7. Love Nest, The Retreat Selous

Perched in the Love Nest treehouse of The Retreat Selous, this open-plan bedroom couldn’t be more fabulous. The entire space has a natural, yet sophisticated feel with its rustic floors, fine African antiques, and plush bed enclosed by a silk mosquito net. The views are sensational and the hammock makes for great lounging.

8. Romantic Pool Bedroom, An Lam Ninh Van Bay Villas

The dreamy white curtains make this elegant poolside bedroom at An Lam Ninh Van Bay Villas a pleasure to relax. The sleeping area is decorated in an elegant Asian style, but it’s the sumptuous king size bed that holds all the magic.

9. Standard Room, Mondrian LA

Envisioned by world-famous designer Benjamin Noriega-Ortiz, this STANDARD room at Mondrian LA comes with fanciful aesthetic details and floor-to-ceiling windows that frame dazzling views of Los Angeles. One of the quirkiest features is the oversized mirror the morphs into a flat screen TV.

10. Pirate Room, LEGOLAND Hotel

Childhood fantasies come alive in the Pirate-themed sleeping area at LEGOLAND Hotel. The décor is playful and full of color, with Lego graphics adorning the walls.

Hotel Lobby

Hotel Lobby is an oil painting on canvas by American realist painter Edward Hopper; it is held in the collection of the Indianapolis Museum of Art (IMA), in Indianapolis, Indiana, United States. The painting depicts two women and a man in the lobby of a hotel. On the right is a woman with blond hair and a blue dress, sitting with her legs crossed and reading a book. To the left sits an older woman with a red dress, a coat and a hat. A man stands next to her, facing forward, with a suit on and an overcoat draped over his right arm. On the left wall, above the woman, is a framed landscape painting. A clerk behind the reception desk is barely visible in the shadows. Hotel Lobby is a signature piece in Hopper’s work, displaying his classic themes of alienation and brevity. The Hoppers traveled frequently, staying in many motels and hotels throughout his career. This is one of two works in his catalog that depicts a hotel, the other being Hotel Window (1955). It is also one of the two paintings that he created in 1952, both of which dealt with alienated couples. The older couple are believed to represent Hopper and his wife, at that date in their 60s. The hotel guests have been described as being “both traveling and suspended in time,” reflecting a stoic and dramatic feeling, reminiscent of the film noir movies Hopper might have seen and the complex structure and feeling of works by Edgar Degas. The painting utilizes harsh light and rigid lines to create a “carefully constructed” uncomfortable environment. The elevated and theatrical vantage point of the painting may be derived from Hopper’s love of Broadway theatre which he often watched from the balcony.

To some hotels, however, unique stone and flora are just the tip of the iceberg. From multi-ton chandeliers to indoor gardens, these 10 hotel lobbies really get that whole “first impression” thing.

1. Burj Al Arab , Dubai 
Prepare to be dazzled as you enter the most luxurious hotel in the world. Between the colorful Islamic-inspired art, 24-karat gold leaf detail, tiered waterfall, 600-foot multicolored atrium—the world’s tallest—and two aquariums, the Burj Al Arab really outdid itself.

2. Hermitage Hotel, Nashville, Tennessee
Go back in time to the early 1900s as you enter the spacious Beaux-Arts lobby of the Hermitage Hotel in Nashville, which features Siena marble and Russian walnut paneling. As if that weren’t enough, the grandiose space is topped off with a stained-glass ceiling.

3. Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi
You may recognize this lobby as the one that housed the gaudy $11 million Christmas tree decorated in gold and gems in 2010. While they’ve cut back on their holiday decorations, they still have their piano, an ATM that dispenses gold, the caviar bar, the 245-foot-high dome and lighting that makes the entire lobby glow gold. Not bad.

4. Al Bustan Palace, Oman
With a dome higher than the Taj Mahal’s and a 5.5 metric ton crystal chandelier, this lobby puts the Sheikh’s palace to shame.

5. ITC Grand Chola, Chennai, India
At first glance, the lobby of the ITC Grand Chola hotel seems like a spacious plain area that pales in comparison to the extravagant lobbies on this list. Look closer and you will find 1 million square feet of hand-carved marble. Any of the golden sari-clad staff members (often lined up perfectly on the grand staircase) will be happy to answer any questions you may have.

Tip for Hotel Cleaning

When traveling, people remember to tip servers, bartenders and hotel porters, but many overlook hotel housekeepers. Hotel cleaning is a job performed when travelers are outside of the hotel room, so their work may go unnoticed. Housekeepers make sure beds are made, linens are fresh and the room is clean. Housekeepers rarely get paid more than minimum wage and some earn a flat fee per room. Tipping for hotel cleaning is a polite way to reward for excellent service. While tipping is always appreciated, it is expected in some countries where employees rely on tips to supplement their income.

STEP 1

Inquire with the hotel staff as to whether you will have the same housekeeper each day or if it varies for each day of your stay. This dictates whether you should tip for housekeeping each day so that each housekeeper who cleans the room is paid or leave a lump sum at the end of your stay if you have the same housekeeper.

STEP 2

Leave a standard tip of $2 per day for each bed in your room, or $3 to $5 per day for upscale hotels and resorts. If you have the same housekeeper, leave a lump sum before checking out or leave a tip daily if your housekeeper changes each day.

STEP 3

Supplement the standard tip with additional money at your discretion if your housekeeper provides you with exemplary service, such as bringing extra towels frequently, helping you set up a cot or if your room is unconventionally messy.

STEP 4

Write a small note to leave with your tip or put the tip in an envelope marked “housekeeping” on the front. Housekeepers are very careful not to be accused of stealing cash, so tips must be clearly marked so they know the tips are intended for them.

STEP 5

Place the tip or envelope on a pillow or nightstand where the housekeeper is sure to find it.

STEP 6

Fill out the hotel survey to leave with the tip if you would like to compliment your service.

STEP 7

Give tips discreetly in Middle Eastern hotels. Tipping is expected for most services, but the exchange of money is usually concealed, such as by a handshake.

STEP 8

Tip an amount that you deem to be appropriate if you receive exceptional service in a country in which tipping is not customary, like in many European countries. Tipping is actually discouraged in some parts of Australia.