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Hotel Trendsetters
 

Whether you are travelling on business or for personal pursuits, the following hotels offer experiences to make any stay truly special.

BETTER WINE LISTS

Starwood’s Premium Wine Program

Business travellers have spent years enduring mediocre wine lists while attending conventions and meetings. This year oenophiles rejoiced as Starwood introduced the “Toast Around the World” at over 400 Sheratons. Developed by wine experts, this program features 90+ rated wines by Wine Spectator, special wine tasting events and the Sheraton Social Hour.

ECO EXPERIENCES

Mashpi Lodge, Ecuador

Set in the Andean rain forest, the Mashpi Lodge is the gateway to a verdant and exotic world of indigenous plants, monkeys, puma and over 500 bird species. This sustainable luxury lodge allows visitors to experience the natural setting of Ecuador through a host of rich experiences. Exploration activities include the “Sky Bike”, an aerial biking adventure through the overhead forest canopy and night walks to view luminous fungus and nocturnal creatures. In September 2013, the Canopy Gondola will transverse the upper tree canopy to provide a bird’s eye view of the amazing ecosystem.

LEADING TECHNOLOGY

Fairmont Pacific Rim Vancouver, Canada

The Fairmont Pacific Rim was the first hotel in Canada to implement an Interactive Customer Experience TM using iPad devices in all guest rooms. This virtual concierge allows guests to access room controls, order services through the hotel and discover the best of Vancouver. Other technology touches include easy to access outlets, data ports and TV embedded mirrors. The hotel’s latest technology is the Fairmont Pacific Rim app.

SUSTAINABILITY

Hotel Éclat Beijing, China

The new Hotel Éclat Beijing is a distinctive statement of luxury and design set within the exclusive Parkview Green complex, a structure that was the first integrated commercial project in China to receive the LEED Green Building Platinum Certification. The award-winning structure uses innovative environmental technologies including a special climate-control system, which results in energy use that is 50% lower than in other buildings of similar size.

COMPLIMENTARY INCLUSIONS

Hotel 1000 Seattle, USA

In an era of hotels charging more for less (resort fees, wi-fi charges and other unexpected fees), it is refreshing when a hotel offers unanticipated complimentary services. In 2013, Hotel 1000 announced unlimited international calls for all guests. “Guests are encouraged to call long distance on the hotel’s dime as long as they like.” Add to this to their other complimentary inclusions: champagne on arrival, morning coffee, donuts and newspaper, in-room internet and fitness centre access – it’s no wonder Hotel 1000 is on the 2013 Condé Nast Traveler Gold List.

ESCAPE

Amangiri, USA

Voted by T+L 500 as one of ‘The World’s Best Hotels 2013′, Amangiri, meaning ‘peaceful mountain’, is positioned on 600 acres of unadulterated, striking desert, 25 minutes from the nearest town on the border of Arizona and Utah. This spectacular retreat rises around a central swimming pool that blends into a dramatic stone cliff. The Amangiri’s Aman Spa is a destination unto itself, with design elements reflecting the Navajo culture and healing traditions. We all appreciate hotels that integrate their design with culture, arts and natural surroundings.

WELL BEING

Verdura Golf & Spa Resort Sicily, Italy – A Rocco Forte Resort

This resort doesn’t just want you to look & feel better, they want you to be better! The Verdura Golf & Spa tailors individual wellness programs to the personal diagnosis of each guest. Prior to arrival, upon request, the guest receives at-home tests to provide the hotel’s wellness centre with an advanced overview of health issues. The natural wellness experience is then tailored to meet the specific needs of each individual.

EXPERIENTIAL TECHNOLOGIES

Sol Wave House, Melia Hotels International, Majorca Spain

Touted as the ‘World’s first Twitter Hotel’, Sol Wave House uses social media to connect guests so they can communicate, interact, and experience the destination together. The hotel features a virtual community called #SocialWave which is only accessible from the property’s free WIFI service. Twitter concierges meet guests’ needs for those in #PartySuites …. a hotel where the real world merges with the virtual world!