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Hotel openings, happenings in Boston

Posted by Melanie Nayer March 16, 2014 07:01 PM

Boston is about to be the center of the hospitality industry, thanks to an onset of hotels opening in the Hub this year. There are nearly two dozen new hotel projects planned in greater Boston, some recently opened, some soon to break ground, others still in the planning stages, with a potential for a maximum of 3,000 new hotel rooms in the next 2-3 years.

According to the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau, more than half the rooms are planned for the South Boston Waterfront near the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center; the area south of North Station, TD Garden, and west of the North End will be the next neighborhood to be entirely transformed following Boston’s Big Dig and the completion of the Rose Kennedy Greenway parks. East Boston, Cambridge, MA and Chelsea, MA are also key areas of new hotel development.

Here's a look at a few of the new Boston hotels you can expect to see this year:

The Godfrey Hotel, a luxury boutique hotel with 243 rooms, a full service restaurant, retail space, a coffee shop and a 1,500 square-foot spa center, will be the next hotel to open in downtown Boston. The hotel is projected to open in late-2014 in as part of the “59 Temple Place” development downtown and will occupy the upper floors of the historic Blake Building at the intersection of Temple and Washington streets.

50-room Mirbeau Inn & Spa will open in Spring 2014 at the Pinehills Village Green in Plymouth, MA (about 8 miles from Cape Cod). The Inn will combine a luxury retreat with one of New England's premier golf experiences.

A 330-room Aloft hotel & a 180-room Element hotel will open on a 5.6-acre parcel on D Street opposite the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center (BCEC). The $137.8 million project broke ground in December 2013 and will bring 510 new hotel rooms in close proximity to the BCEC, with the hotels set to open in 2015.


Fully-customized beds coming to a Four Seasons hotel near you

Posted by Melanie Nayer March 10, 2014 10:21 AM

CFS_279_aspect16x9.jpgRaise your hand if you slept well last night. My guess is that most of you didn't. And those of you who travel experience a certain type of sleep deprivation that only other travelers can appreciate, or at the very least, commiserate with.

The Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts is hoping to change all of that.

In an effort to help guests get a good night's sleep, the luxury hotel brand is rolling out customized beds. The new Four Seasons Bed is being touted as the first fully customizable hotel bed, thanks to a partnership between the luxury hotel group and leading bed manufacturer Simmons. A choice of three different levels of firmness will be offered, along with a variety of pillows and bedside amenities for customized comfort.

As part of the new mattress program, guests can choose from three mattress tops that vary in firmness (Signature, Signature Firm, and Signature Plush). Returning guests will find their favorite mattress top already in their room.


Ritz-Carlton creates signature cake

Posted by Melanie Nayer March 8, 2014 10:41 AM

It's not enough that Ritz-Carlton hotels rank tops among luxury hotels around the world, thanks in most part to their unparalleled service, extravagant amenities and their innate ability to always go the extra mile for their guests (who can forget about Joshie, the once-lost-but-now-found giraffe, or the Boston Strong cupcakes). Now, they've gone and created a signature cake.

Beware chocolate lovers: this might put you over the edge. The long rectangular cake is a sponge cake mixed with three different kinds of chocolate and layered with bitter caramel and orange ganache (a combination of candied fruit and Grand Marnier). It's topped with another fine strip of chocolate, stamped with the Ritz-Carlton lion logo and packaged perfectly with a white bow.

Corporate Chef Rainer Zinngrebe shares the details on what goes into this priceless piece of chocolate decadence, and where guests can get some of their own:

More Boston hotels join Hotel Week Boston

Posted by Melanie Nayer January 29, 2014 05:01 PM

Leisure_Location.jpgThe Boston Harbor Hotel is one of the participating properties in Hotel Week Boston.

More hotels just joined the tally of participating hotels for Hotel Week Boston. Check out the official Hotel Week Boston website for the latest deals.

The first ever Hotel Week Boston kicks off Feb. 16 – 23, 2014 with specially-crafted Boston hotel packages. Conveniently organized during February School Vacation, Hotel Week Boston is a great option for those who want a staycation in the city, or just know of some friends and family who want to come for a visit.

Participating hotels and their offers include:


Hilton offering free weekend getaways through year-long sweepstakes

Posted by Melanie Nayer January 7, 2014 10:26 AM

hilton-nyc.jpgIf flexibility and spontaneity are on your side, and you prefer weekend escapes, Hilton Worldwide has a special offer for you. The caveat: you have to be a Hilton rewards member.

Hilton launched its Ultimate Weekender Sweepstakes for Hilton HHonors members, encouraging those members to “Be a Weekender” in 2014 by offering the chance to win a weekend trip every week throughout the year.

Every Monday, a new giveaway destination will be revealed. Members of Hilton HHonors are invited to enter once a day to win that week’s getaway at

Starting in February, members can earn additional daily entries for each giveaway by submitting photos or travel tips related to that particular week’s getaway destination. And lest you forget how much social media plays a role in travel… you'll also be entered into the promotion via Twitter. All entries from the year will go into a draw to select a grand prize winner. Any stays by a member in 2014 will also count as entries toward the grand prize of 12 weekend getaways.


Mandarin Oriental New York debuts new Suite 5000

Posted by Melanie Nayer December 15, 2013 01:54 PM

The way of luxury suites is getting more luxurious. Last week I told you about the new signature suites at New York's The Plaza Hotel, and this week comes the debut of another Manhattan hotel suite: Mandarin Oriental, New York's Suite 5000.

The Mandarin Oriental, New York's newest signature suite, Suite 5000 spans 3,300-square-feet on the hotel's 50th floor. The theme of the suite is that there isn't just one theme. The hotel will work with various partners in the city’s finest art, fashion and design industries to customize each stay from start to finish.

“Our aim is to showcase the essence and distinctiveness of New York City within Suite 5000, and offer guests unparalleled access to new and enriching cultural experiences,” said Susanne Hatje, General Manager of Mandarin Oriental, New York. “Combined with Mandarin Oriental’s legendary service and style we believe this will provide our guests with a memorable, one of a kind stay,” she added.


David Beckham is getting into the hotel business

Posted by Melanie Nayer December 8, 2013 04:56 PM

beckham_lasvegassands.jpgDavid Beckham is a man of many pursuits – from kicking around the soccer ... err, football, to modeling underwear and making cologne, it seems just about anything Beckham touches turns to gold. Now, he's putting his midas touch on hotels.

The Las Vegas Sands Corp. announced that Beckham would be assisting in the development of "dining, retail and leisure concepts" at the Sands properties in Macao and Marina Bay, Singapore. In a press release distributed by the Sands Corp., the details were pretty limited to what, exactly, Beckham will be doing, but the star power might be all the hotel group needs to drive attraction to their hotels.

Beckham made the following statement:

"The Sands team has created amazing resorts in Singapore and Macau. The scale, vision and caliber in all that they do is impressive. I am very excited to be working with them to develop a range of new business ideas in a part of the world that I love spending time in and is full of optimism and growth."

Hyatt opens two all-inclusive resorts in Mexico

Posted by Melanie Nayer December 6, 2013 08:27 AM

Hyatt Hotels is making its way to the resort world. The big-brand hotel chain opened their first all-inclusive resorts in Los Cabos and Cancun, Mexico.

The Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos, formerly the Barcelo Los Cabos, is situated beachfront on the Sea of Cortes and features eight restaurants, six bars and lounges, a kids' camp, adult pool, water fountains, stunning views and on-site spa.

The Hyatt Zilara Cancun is an all-suite resort located in the heart of Cancun’s Hotel Zone, featuring 14 restaurants and bars, a spa, pool and beach butler service and more.

The Hyatt Zilara resorts will be adult-only, while the Hyatt Ziva resorts is more family-friendly.


Stay, sleep, support: Hotels are giving back this Thanksgiving

Posted by Melanie Nayer November 20, 2013 09:57 AM

At Thanksgiving, we give thanks for all we have. But many go the extra step and give something special to those in need. From helping at homeless shelters and serving at soup kitchens, this time of year is typically saturated with ways to spread good cheer.

If you're traveling for Thanksgiving this year, or just looking for a way to donate, the team at Hawkins PR rounded up a few New England-based hotels that are giving back this Thanksgiving:

Support the Greater Boston Food Bank, Fifteen Beacon, Boston, MA: At Fifteen Beacon this Thanksgiving, 15% of the room rate is donated to the Greater Boston Food Bank, so everyone can enjoy a meal this Thanksgiving. The “ThanksforGiving” package includes complimentary airport transfer and welcome amenity. Package starts at $895 for a 2-night minimum stay. (XV Beacon was recently named the second best business hotel in the world by Conde Nast Traveler.)


Loews Hotels turns Twitter into booking tool

Posted by Melanie Nayer November 17, 2013 02:46 PM

loews_boston.jpgThere's no doubt social media has upped the game in customer service. Now, one hotel chain is taking social media to a new level.

USA Today reports that starting Tuesday, Nov. 19, Loews Hotels and Resorts will launch "social reservations," allowing travelers to book rooms at 16 of its 19 properties via Twitter.

Here's the hotel-skinny: If you're on Twitter, follow @Loews_Hotels. Tweet them the hotel you're interested in staying in, using the hashtag #BookLoews. A Loews travel planner will get in touch via Twitter and when you're ready to book, the planner will tweet a link to a secure chat conversation so you can finalize the booking and enter your payment information. The only hotels not included in "social reservations" are the Loews Orlando properties.


About the author

Melanie Nayer is a travel writer who spent many years in the newsroom before jetting off to see the world. Her goal is to bring readers the best insider information More »

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