Monthly Archives: November 2009

Crowne Plaza Chicago O’Hare Completes Renovation

Just in time for the end-of-the-year holiday season, the Crowne Plaza Chicago O’Hare has finished the two-year “transformation” of all 503 guest rooms at the airport hotel, with an emphasis on a more modern design, improved “guest friendliness” and environmental sustainability. 

Guests at the Crowne Plaza Chicago O’Hare will find new “handcrafted custom furniture”, refrigerator, in-room safe (big enough to store a laptop PC!), 32-inch HDTV, wireless internet access and the “Roomlinx interactive entertainment solution”.  The addition of the Crowne Plaza Sleep Advantage program means new bedding, guaranteed wake-up calls and sleep-aiding amenities such as eye masks, ear plugs and lavender spray.  Things are greener in the hotel, too, with more energy-efficient windows, light bulbs and heating/air conditioning systems.

The Crowne Plaza Chicago O’Hare is located in the Chicago suburb of Rosemont,  next door to the Stephens Convention Center and the Rosemont Theater and about a 5 minute ride from Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD).

Grand Opening of Sheraton Puerto Rico Convention Center Hotel & Casino

Located next door to the Puerto Rico Convention Center in San Juan, the Sheraton Puerto Rico Convention Center Hotel & Casino celebrated its “Grand Opening” this month.  The newest hotel in San Juan features 503 guest rooms, all kinds of amenities specifically designed for convention goers and the largest casino in Puerto Rico.

At a cost of $210 million, the Sheraton has its own 35,000 square feet of meeting space (in addition to the 580,000+ square feet at the convention center) and the largest ballroom in the San Juan region.  Meetings and other events can also be held in the 57,000 square foot pool deck area that offers great views of the San Juan Bay.  Business amenities include the lounge called the “Link @ Sheraton experienced with Microsoft”, with all kinds of internet and computer access offered.

The 20,000 square foot on-site casino is the biggest in Puerto Rico and includes a casino bar and an entertainment stage.  The casino is smoking-free and open 24 hours a day, with 448 slot machines and 16 table games.

22 suites are available at the Sheraton Puerto Rico Convention Center Hotel & Casino including a Presidential Suite with penthouse-level views of San Juan Bay.  Other guest rooms and suites on the Sheraton Club level have access to an exclusive lounge with an open-air terrace.

Varden Hotel Celebrates Anniversaries

Located in the heart of Long Beach, California, the classic Varden Hotel is celebrating the 80th anniversary of its original opening and the first anniversary of the major renovation that transformed it into a “European-style boutique hotel”.  It was long known as the “Dolly Varden Hotel”, after the “colorful and eccentric” circus performer for whom it was purchased by an admiring wealthy gentleman.  The sign on the roof, offering “A bath in every room”, was one of the reasons the hotel received city landmark status in 1995.

The recent renovation of the Varden gave the 35-room hotel a completely new feel, with custom-made glass shelves and desks, plush pillow-top mattresses and “sleek and sophisticated” mosaic bathrooms in each room.  The hotel also became much more “green”, with the addition of more natural lighting sources, low-flow toilets and “mini rain showers”.

The Varden Hotel is just a few blocks from the Long Beach Convention and Entertainment Center and a short drive from the port area that is the home of the Queen Mary and the Long Beach Cruise Terminal.

$6.1 Million Renovation Complete At Marriott Cincinnati RiverCenter

Visitors to the Marriott Cincinnati RiverCenter will find a nicely upgraded hotel, thanks to a recently completed $6.1 million renovation.  Most noticeable are the modifications to the atrium lobby, now re-created into Marriott’s “Great Room” format, and additions to the on-site meeting spaces.  Two “break-out” rooms – the RiverView addition – have been added to the ballroom, giving meeting plannners access to patio space and views of the Ohio River.

Guest rooms at the Marriott Cincinnati RiverCenter each have a 32″ LCD HDTV with an unusually useful “plug-in panel” for attaching your laptop – you can even split the screen to work on your PC and watch TV at the same time. 

The Marriott is on the south side of the Ohio River in Covington, Kentucky, with views of downtown Cincinnati to the north.  An enclosed walkway attaches the hotel to the Northern Kentucky Convention Center.  Football fans will find it a very convenient place to stay before heading to Paul Brown Stadium (home of the Cincinnati Bengals) only 1/2 mile away across the Ohio.

Doubletree Comes to Cincinnati International Airport

When looking for a place to stay near Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG), you can’t get any closer than the Doubletree Hotel Cincinnati Airport – the only hotel located at the entrance to the airport.  It’s one of 45 airport hotels under the Doubletree name, making it a popular spot for conferences and “fly in” meetings.

There’s more than 7,000 square feet of event space and a 24-hour self-service business center at the Doubletree, including the 5,400 sq. ft. “Concorde Ballroom” and the 2,700 sq. ft. Ballroom Foyer, which can accommodate social events of up to 500 guests. There are also “executive boardrooms” available for smaller meetings or training sessions.

Guest rooms at the Doubletree Hotel Cincinnati Airport include high-speed internet access, the “Sweet Dreams by Doubletree sleep experience” (i.e. very comfy bedding), 32-inch LCD HDTV, radios with MP3 docks, gourmet coffee service and Neutrogena bath products.

The Cincinnati Airport is actually located in the nearby suburb of Hebron, Kentucky but is a reasonably short drive from downtown Cincinnati.

Hotel Indigo Asheville Downtown Opens

If you’re planning a visit to historic Asheville, North Carolina or the nearby Biltmore Estate, the Hotel Indigo Asheville Downtown is an interesting new option for accommodations.  It’s located within walking distance of the shops, museums and other attractions of downtown Asheville.  And it’s only a block off of I-240 to make it easy to get to destinations throughout the Asheville region.

The Hotel Indigo Asheville features guest rooms with oversized beds, plush bedding, hard-surface floors (for a “fresh residential” feel), and spa-inspired showers with Aveda products. Each guest room includes a 32-inch HDTV and iHome/MP3 alarm clock radio. The hotel also offers gourmet menu items and a full service-bar at “Phi Bar and Bistro”, complimentary parking, complimentary wired and wireless high speed internet access, a 24-hour business center and meeting space for business functions or special events.

There are now 34 Hotel Indigo properties open worldwide – use our exclusive search engine to find great deals at all of them.

Montage Beverly Hills Gets Five Stars

It’s only been open for about a year, yet the Montage Beverly Hills hotel has already gained significant traction in an area that’s overloaded with world-class luxury hotels.  The latest achievement for the Montage is a five-star award from the folks at Forbes magazine.  It’s the only new California hotel to get the award for 2010.  It’s also the first new luxury hotel to be built in Beverly Hills in over 15 years.

You know you’re in for something special as soon as you arrive at Montage Beverly Hills – the “Spanish Colonial Revival-style” exterior gets plenty of oohs and aaahs.  Once you’re inside, guest amenities include “complimentary access to a fleet of Mercedes-Benz automobiles, 24-hour flexible check-in/check-out, airport luggage valet service and John Lobb Certified Shoe Butlers”.  It’s also a rather green place, the first hotel in southern California to receive Gold LEED certification.

The Montage has 201 guest rooms, including 55 awe-inspiring suites.  It’s located between Santa Monica Boulevard and Wilshire Boulevard in what’s known as Beverly Hills’ “Golden Triangle”.

Hotel St. Francis in Santa Fe, New Mexico

The Hotel St. Francis is the oldest hotel in Santa Fe – but you wouldn’t know it as the result of a recently completed renovation.  The redesigned Hotel St. Francis emphasizes a seriously peaceful feeling, much like being in a Franciscan monastery – appropriate, consider the hotel’s namesake.  But not too monastic, as guests get a full set of modern amenities and comfortable accommodations.

The St. Francis Hotel is just a block away from Santa Fe Plaza.  It’s a smoke-free establishment with 80 guest rooms.  The on-site Tabla De Los Santos restaurant and Secreto Bar provide nice spots to grab a bit to eat or drink.   The De Vargas Room, The Boardroom and The Garden Patio are available for events and meetings of groups of under 100.

The Hotel St. Francis is on the National Register of Historical Places and is a member of Historic Hotels of America.  You’ll have a hard time finding a better place to stay if you’re interested in a quintessential Santa Fe experience.

More hotels to consider for your next visit to Santa Fe

New Best Western Atrea In Denton, Texas

If you’re in the Denton, Texas area (that’s just a short drive northwest of Dallas) and looking for a “mid-range” place to stay, you might want to consider the new Best Western Atrea Crown Chase Inn and Suites.  The “Atrea” in the name is the designation for a relatively new format that’s just a little nicer than your average Best Western.

Guests at the Best Western Atrea Crown Chase Inn and Suites have rooms with microwaves, refrigerators, LCD TV’s, coffee makers and free internet access (both wired and wireless).  An outdoor pool features a rocky landscape and waterfall.  A full hot breakfast is complimentary every day of your stay.

Best Western Atrea Crown Chase Inn is a stone’s throw off of I-35 and not far from the University of North Texas, Texas Woman’s University, Texas Motor Speedway, Bayless-Selby House Museum, North Texas Gateway Center and Courthouse-on-the-Square.

W Boston Opens In, Umm, Boston

It’s the ninth “W” hotel to open in 2009 and the 35th in the chain, it’s the W Boston and it’s ultra-convenient for those heading to the city’s historical and theater districts.  There are 24 suites (including the “Wonderful Room” and the “Extreme WOW Suite”), plus over 200 more guest rooms.

The W Boston features a design with a modern take on Boston’s traditional design mixed with the modern touches you’d expect at any “W”.   There’s “falling water” in the lobby that is full of glass providing views of what’s happening out on Stuart Street.  A fireplace gives the lobby a glow for those passing by on the outside.  All guests get the usual “signature W amenities”, including the “W bed”, Bliss bathroom products, the mini bar known as the “Munchie Box” and an in-room entertainment system that includes two (!) plasma televisions and a docking station for your MP3 player.

Book your next stay at a Boston luxury hotel at TheRealPlaces