Bambara re-emerges as a sleek tavern

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Cambridge, MA — Hotel Marlowe in east Cambridge shuttered its restaurant, Bambara, for two months this summer, allowing for a top to toe redesign and reboot as a more casual eatery and bar… Bambara Kitchen and Bar.

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Teal blue paint and grey tweedy upholstery give a library meets modern tavern look. Lots of comfy booths provide seclusion and break up the large split-level room. Eat local with Massachusetts oysters such as First Lights from Mashpee, courtesy of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe, or Sunken Meadow from Eastham, each accompanied by a pungent mignonette. Wash down with Chateau Ste. Michelle’s Mimi chardonnay, a ferny, woody wine, which compliments the sea creatures’ mineral flavor. Chef Jay Silva also prepares hearty skirt steak with mushroom pilaf and braised cod on a chorizo succotash and accompanied by Red Bliss potatoes, and snacks like flatbreads and chick pea fries with aioli.

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Hotel Marlowe is part of the Kimpton Hotel Group and is located directly opposite the MGH area of Boston, not too far from the Museum of Science. It’s also handy for Kendall Square and MIT. And let’s not forget its proximity to the River Charles, which always provides a nice backdrop.

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The Langham, Boston, Boston, Massachusetts, USA

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Location  The Langham, Boston is located in the city’s Financial District. The hotel overlooks the design award-winning Norman B. Leventhal Park and Post Office Square. Leventhal believed the city should have beautiful green space’s for everyone to enjoy and tucked a hideous parking garage underground and put the park on top of it. It proved a great idea, because it adds a pretty, natural element to what can be a cold feeling part of town — it does deal with capitalism and corporate America after all. But, it’s an area packed with history: walk to the Old State House and hear about the Boston massacre; or head to the Tea Party Museum for the lowdown on that famous Boston Tea Party. A short walk away lies the South Boston Waterfront, which is newly filled with bars and restaurants. Faneuil Hall  and Quincy Market are steps away. As is Downtown Crossing, ith the Boston Common and Public Gardens just a little further west.

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The Hotel It’s not everyday one gets to sleep in a Federal Reserve Bank, but that’s precisely what the building  now housing The Langham, Boston once was. Built in 1922, the building became a hotel in the early 1980s and then became part of The Langham Hotel Group in the mid-2000s. Because the building is on the National Historic Register, development of the hotel meant working with preexisting design conditions, or rather restrictions, and building a new addition to provide an adequate amount of guest rooms and working spaces. This explains the rather strange low ceiling in the lobby, but the beautiful new atrium more than makes up for that quirk.

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View of a Room: 243 This two-story loft suite is in the old bank and retains the giant arched windows overlooking the street. Being split-level, there is ultimate privacy for sleeping in the cozy upstairs bedroom, which has a lavish, marble bathroom, TV, and lots of wardrobe space. Within steps of the bed, there is a coffee maker as well as kettle for tea. Perfect for the early morning caffeine fix.

 

 

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The distinctive, high ceilinged living room has a queen sized sleeper sofa, desk, and armchair with ottoman.

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Every bedroom should have a valet stand like the one in room 243. It is such attention to detail, even basic simple additions like this, which set the hotel apart.

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The suite has a powder room on the lower level and full bathroom upstairs. which is thoughtfully fully stocked with everything you need, including an elegant amenity box with shaving kit, dental kit, cotton buds and pads, nail kit, sewing kit, and shower cap complete with hair tie. It’s filled with useful bits and bobs that it makes a perfect traveling case — which why they’re for sale in the lobby! Bathroom products are from the hotel’s Chaun Spa range and includes a body scrub along with the usual trio of shampoo, conditional, and body lotion.

 

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Restaurants and bars The Reserve Lounge in the lobby is open morning till night and serves breakfast, lunch, a bar menu, and a wonderful Tiffin Tea, every afternoon. Champagne is a nice addition to that! Bond is a sleek bar and, on weekends, it’s a late night club with DJs. Note: the name and decor pays homage to the building’s banking past. Cafe Fleuri is a large airy atrium restaurant, where, among other meals, the hotel’s famous Chocolate Bar brunch takes place every Saturday, September through June.

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Fitness, spa, and pool The hotel’s fitness room is augmented by a heated pool. Chaun Spa, which is rooted in Chinese medicine and natural healing, is one of Boston’s best spas.

Info

Langham, Boston

250 Franklin Street, Boston, MA 02110, USA

T (+1) 617 451 1900

F (+1) 617 423 2844
Email tlbos.concierge@langhamhotels.com

http://www.boston.langhamhotels.com

 

 

Three things you must do in Saint Lucia

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Saint Lucia, West Indies — Sure, there’s much to enjoy on this beautiful island, but there are three things you must do before you leave:

Get a massage: Head to The BodyHoliday, an all-inclusive resort (it includes one spa treatment daily for every guest) near Castries, and, among a lengthy menu of treatments, enjoy an Ayurvedic massage. This massage is best for people who don’t like deep tissue and prefer short strokes and lots of oil.

Get a massage: Head to Boucan by Hotel Chocolat on the Rabot Estate near Jalousle for an aromatherapy massage that you won’t forget. Choose an oil, say rose or peppermint, and soak in the tranquil environment, right on this working cocoa plantation. Unlike many aromatherapy massages, where the oil is a faint whiff, Boucan uses top quality all-natural essential oils. Heavenly scent!

Get a massage: Lastly, but not least, it is well worth the trek to Ti Kaye Resort and Spa, up in the hills above Anse Cochon. Not only does this amazing spa space look over the cove and the sea, and use locally made all natural products, but their masseuses have magic hands, guaranteed to untie knotted muscles.  It’s a top rate spa experience, quite unlike any other.

 

Photo credit: Ti Kaye Resort and Spa

Fairmont Copley Plaza throws cutest party of the season

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Boston, MA – It’s THAT time of year again. No, not THAT time of year. It’s Catie Copley’s birthday. On Saturday, December 6 at 1 p.m., the Fairmont Copley Plaza will host a birthday party for its canine ambassadors, Catie and Carly Copley. Catie will celebrate her 13th birthday and Carly her fourth with a reading from the book all about her adventures, Catie Copley,which will be followed by birthday cake (for humans) and special snacks for Catie and Carly’s canine friends. The reading and birthday party are free and open to the public. In lieu of gifts for the hotel’s adorable pooches, the Fairmont Coley Plaza invites guests to bring a donation of towels, blankets, or toys for the dogs and cats at the Animal Rescue League’s Boston Shelter.

For more info: 617-267-5300,  Fairmont Copley Plaza

 

Photo credit: Fairmont Copley Plaza

Boston Harbor Hotel brings back Winter on the Wharf

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Boston, MA  – It’s getting a bit nippy in the northeastern corner of the US — well, not just the northeastern corner. Embracing the winter season, the Boston Harbor Hotel announced the return of its Winter on the Wharf festivities, including a picturesque ice-skating rink, located under the hotel’s iconic archway, overlooking Boston Harbor.  From November 22 through March 15, 2015, it’s open to all and will debut with a special celebration Saturday, November 22.  From 3 p.m. ’till  5 p.m., the Rotunda Rink will open to the public for complimentary skating, winter warming treats, and an appearance by Citi Performing Art Center’s Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer. There will also be festive winter crafts and cookie decorating, face-painting, balloon animals, raffle prizes, holiday music, movies and more. Normal rates are: Adults: $10, Children: $5, Children under 5 years old: Complimentary. Rentals:  Adults: $10 | Children: $8

For more info: www.winteronthewharf.com or  www.bhh.com

 

 

Photo credit: Boston Harbor Hotel

Head to New Hampshire for a Thanksgiving break

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New Hampshire — Take advantage of special hotel packages and promotions for a Thanksgiving break in the Granite State.

Wentworth By the Sea Hotel- New Castle, New Hampshire

Thanksgiving Celebration in New Hampshire Package

Visitors can experience a Historic Thanksgiving Celebration in New Hampshire with Dinner at Wentworth by the Sea. On Thursday, November 27th, guests will be given two options for a Thanksgiving dinner.  A traditional dinner at SALT, the hotel’s reimagined dining room, served 11:00am – 10:00pm, or the festive Thanksgiving Day Buffet in the Wentworth Ballroom, served 11:00am – 5:00pm. Pricing is as follows: adults $49.95, and children under 12 $19.95 each. Guests can also extend the Thanksgiving holiday with a Thanksgiving Package (online booking code TD1), rates starting at $439 which will include deluxe accommodations for two, Thanksgiving Day dinner and buffet breakfast.

Contact: Call 603-373-6566 or visit www.wentworth.com for more information.

 

The Inn at East Hill Farm- Troy, New Hampshire

Farm stays for Thanksgiving

Guests will experience a true Thanksgiving on the farm at The Inn at East Hill Farm. The itinerary includes collecting eggs for breakfast, milking cows and goats, and enjoying a morning guided hike on Gap Mountain along with pony rides for the kids. The complimentary Thanksgiving meal at the inn includes post-dinner folk music and seasonal entertainment by Shamus and Eileen, The Musicmakers. Rates start at $128 for this experience and all meals/activities are included.

Contact: Call 603-242-6495 or visit www.east-hill-farm.com for more information.

 

Appalachian Mountain Club- Gorham, New Hampshire

AMC Highland Center Thanksgiving Weekend    

The AMC Highland Center is offering a Thanksgiving Buffet and lodging accommodations – AMC Highland Center has a full weekend of Thanksgiving celebrations. The Thanksgiving Buffet is offered from 12:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. Pricing is as follows: $23 (members) and $28 (non-members) for adults and $20 (member) and $24 (non-member) for children. The Joe Dodge Lodge is offering a three-night lodging special, including dinners, breakfasts, and programming, starting at $194 for member adults and $231 for non-members adult for those interested in a full weekend of celebrations.

Contact: Call 603-278-4453 or visit www.outdoors.org for more information.

 

Purity Spring Resort- East Madison, New Hampshire

Purity Spring Resort Thanksgiving Day 5K 

On Thanksgiving Day at 9:00 a.m. starting at the Main Lodge, the Purity Spring Resort will hold their annual resort sponsored 5K run. Guests are offered the opportunity to give back while getting a good run in before a full Thanksgiving meal. Registration begins between 7:30 a.m. – 8:30 a.m. and race proceeds benefit the Kennett High School Cross Country and Track and Field programs.

Contact: Call (603) 367-8896 or visit www.purityspring.com for more information. Guests can register for the link online athttps://www.runreg.com/purity-spring-thanksgiving-day-5k.

 

Coppertoppe Inn & Retreat Center- Hebron, New Hampshire

Gourmet Thanksgiving Dinner Package

Guests can share a fully catered five-course gourmet Thanksgiving dinner with a family-style experience.  A minimum of eight adults is required and an HD football viewing room is an option with dinner or a separate viewing space is available on request. This wine and dinner pairing package start at $65 per adult for dinner and an additional discounted price of $189 per room per night. Each room sleeps up to six adults. Vegan, gluten-free or allergy-free menus available and pets are welcome.

Contact: Call 603-744-3636 or visit www.coppertoppe.com for more information.

 

The Bernerhof Inn Bed & Breakfast– Glen, New Hampshire

Inn Made Pilgrim Feast Package

This boutique bed and breakfast is offering a two-night stay for the holiday of feasting with a complimentary homemade Thanksgiving dinner. This package also includes a history of Thanksgiving novel, complimentary cooked to order gourmet breakfast for two each morning, and post Black Friday shopping gift wrapping is offered on site. The Bernerhof Inn Bed & Breakfast also offers amenities such as the Serenity Wellness Studio, The Black Bear Pub & Martini Bar, and The Taste of the Mountains Cooking School to compliment your stay. Room rates start at $149 per night.

Contact: Call 603-383-4200 or visit www.bernerhofinn.com for more information.

 

Rosewood Country Inn- Bradford, New Hampshire

Harvest Home Thanksgiving Package

Guests can indulge in a full country breakfast each morning during their four night stay at the Rosewood Country Inn. Thanksgiving Dinner will be at the nearby Millstone at 74 Main Restaurant where guests will have a $75 gift certificate for a traditional turkey dinner with all the trimmings. Post black Friday shopping, wrapping supplies will be provided along with hot mulled cider and light hors d’oeuvres. Rates are starting at $556 for this package.

Contact: Call (603) 938-5253 or visit www.rosewoodcountryinn.com for more information.

 

Photo credit: Inn at East Hill Farms.

A Perfect Circle at The Landings

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Saint Lucia, West Indies — Saturday afternoon and its time for doughnuts – water doughnuts. Forget the parking lot, doing a doughnut in Saint Lucia is a whole other world – and quite an art. This speedboat artist is taking a turn in front of The Landings in the Cap Estate district in the northern part of the island. A perfect circle?

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Postcards from Saint Lucia’s The Landings

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Saint Lucia, West Indies — Firstly, above, we have the sunrise view of the beach where The Landings Resort sits awaiting yet another sunshine filled day. People make a fuss over sunsets, but sunrises are filled with hope and promise. Promise of sun drenched sand and sea, as exampled in these next scenes.

 

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OMG: Double Rainbow at Ti Kaye Resort in Saint Lucia

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Saint Lucia, West Indies — It’s the rainy season; it’s 7 a.m. It’s a Double Rainbow. Remember Double Rainbow Guy on YouTube? Well, his awestruck commentary was not unfounded. These colorful banners are righting front of my porch at Ti Kaye Resort and Spa. I am calling these fleeting beautiful entities Bertie and Barney… And now they’re fading… And, yes, it was an OMG moment.

 

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jetBlue gives Boston a non-stop ticket to paradise

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Boston, MA — A musician tapping out Don’t Worry Be Happy on a steel drum soon swung into Everything’s Going to be Alright. He was an usual sight and sound at Logan airport, this musician dressed in island wear of panama hat and loose, short-sleeved boldly patterned shirt. Certainly, he seemed at odds with a dull first day of November. But this was Gate 34, where jetBlue’s inaugural weekly direct flight from Boston Logan to Saint Lucia’s Hewanorra International was launched with a breakfast spread and celebration. Less incongruously, on touchdown in Saint Lucia, a Caribbean band was in full swing. Perhaps, as temperatures were predicted to drop to freezing in New England, the lone musical messenger in Boston was spot-on: jetBlue’s new route offers a non-stop ticket to Paradise and here was the man with the soundtrack for it.

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Hilton to adopt smartphone enabled room keys

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Hilton Worldwide will begin to introduce mobile-enabled room keys next year. Hilton HHonors members staying at U.S. properties of the Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts, Conrad Hotels & Resorts and Canopy by Hilton brands, can simply and securely use their smartphones to access their rooms.

 

Photo credit: Conrad NYC/Hilton Worldwide

Book now for a free night at Bonaire’s Harbour Village Beach Club

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85Bonaire, Dutch Antilles – Bonaire’s Harbour Village Beach Club is offering a free night or free upgrade when you book 7 nights by November 1st for stays through December 20, 2014.

Located on a four-acre private peninsula on the unspoiled island of Bonaire, Harbour Village Beach Club’s well-appointed private suites are nestled amid lush tropical gardens, just steps from its dazzling white-sand beach. Amenities include an onsite First Class 5 Star PADI Instructor Development Center offering onsite scuba certification and a variety of other classes taught by some of the world’s top professional dive teachers, and dive sites just off the resort’s white-sand beach.

Bonaire is designated as having the most pristine coral reef environment and most species of fish in the Caribbean by the NOAA and is consistently named Best Overall Dive Destination by Scuba Diving Magazine’s Reader’s Choice Awards. Due to the island’s leeward location outside of the hurricane belt, and its consistently pleasant climate, crystal-clear visibility prevails at any depth and gives an enthralling view of the undersea landscape. Dive sites just off Harbour Village’s shore include the shipwreck of the 60-foot “Our Confidence,” located just 50 yards out, while another popular dive site, “Something Special,” is also a short swim away. The resort also offers florescence night diving, allowing guests to use special UV lights to see the astounding array of florescent colors emitted by underwater animals and corals.

The resort is also home to the acclaimed La Balandra Restaurant and Bar, the perfect spot for a romantic sunset dinner with a dining deck located on a jetty extending out to sea that gives the sensation of sailing into the Caribbean seascape. Other onsite amenities include The Spa at Harbour Village Beach Club, offering a full menu of professional reflexology, aromatherapy, therapeutic and relaxing couples massage. A private cascade pool and pool deck offer a tranquil retreat before or after a treatment.

In addition to diving, the resort’s concierge can help craft the perfect itinerary of island adventures. Explore natural wonders such as Bonaire’s famed solar salt beds and one of the world’s largest pink flamingo nesting grounds, or catch a glimpse of the island’s rare Bonairean Lora Parrot. Or relax at the resort, lounging at the seaside pool, dozing in a hammock on the beach or taking to the waves with our complimentary paddle boards and kayaks.

The free night or free upgrade offer is not valid for existing bookings. For more information on Bonaire and Harbour Village Beach Club, 1-800-424-0004, www.harbourvillage.com

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Enjoy Amsterdam with The Dylan’s Serendipity Winter package

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Amsterdam, Netherlands –  The Dylan, a stylish luxury boutique hotel centrally located in the heart of the city’s sophisticated Nine Streets, invites travelers to explore the historic canals and streets of Dutch capital with its new Serendipity Winter package.

Guests of the historic 40-room hotel can cruise along the picturesque canals in a private and heated 19th century salon boat, enjoy luxurious suite accommodations with stunning views of the famed Keizersgracht canal, and savor The Dylan’s signature High Wine tasting near the lounge’s cozy fireplace.  The Dylan’s “Serendipity Winter” package includes:

  • One night stay in a Serendipity Junior Canal View Suite
  • One and a half hour private morning cruise in a classic wooden salon boat on the canals. (guests may board between 7 & 9 a.m.)
  • Personally customized breakfast plate to be served on board
  • Entrance to the Canal House Museum
  • High Wine experience featuring a selection of fine wines paired with savory bites from the kitchen of Executive Chef Dennis Kuipers

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Rates start at €325 (approximately $415 US dollars) per person; based on double occupancy.  The “Serendipity Winter” package is available December 1, 2014 through February 28, 2015 and subject to availability.  To book, email reservations@dylanamsterdam.comwww.dylanamsterdam.com

 

Photo credit: The Dylan

XV Beacon celebrates being number one

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Today, Condé Nast Traveler announced the results of its 27th annual Readers’ Choice Awards, which placed Boston’s XV Beacon as #1 in the 25 Best Hotels in the U.S, and #22 in 100 Best Hotels in the World. To celebrate, the property has a special welcome amenity for all check-ins through the end of the month and a limited time “Best of the Best”  stay package, which includes an overnight stay, Roederer champagne, a complimentary upgrade, and a special XV Beacon keepsake. Additionally,  an in-room chocolate surprise awaits all guests in their room, through the end of the month. The “Best of the Best” package is bookable now for travel dates now through March 31st 2015. Rates starting at $395. 

For further info: 617-670-1500, www.xvbeacon.com.

Photo credit: XV Beacon

Putting on the seasonal Ritz at the Ritz-Carlton, Boston Common

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Boston, MA — The Ritz-Carlton, Boston Common has an array of exciting events for the upcoming holiday season, including Breakfast With Mrs. Claus, Sugar Plum Fairy Teas, Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner. Additionally, the hotel’s Nutcracker Suite returns, adding a dedicated room paired to the Boston Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker at the nearby Boston Opera House.  Here’s the schedule:

THANKSGIVING BRUNCH A feast of traditional carving stations with roast turkey and prime rib, and a seafood station with shrimp, Jonah Crab claws and oysters. Live music and dessert decorating stations for children are also featured. Thursday, November 27, in The Ballroom. Seatings available from 12 noon to 2:30 p.m. $98 per adult, $48 per child

CHRISTMAS DAY IN ARTISAN BISTRO Enjoy a pre-fixe three-course festive mea in the award-winning, modern Artisan Bistro. Thursday, December 25, 12 to 9 p.m. $78 per adult, $35 per child

NUTCRACKER BREAKFAST WITH MRS. CLAUS Buffet breakfast with Mrs. Claus and her friends includes some of the cast of Boston Ballet’s The Nutcracker for live musical entertainment, storytelling, and interactive holiday activities. Local charitable organization, Catching Joy, offers craft projects for the entire family, along with an exclusive presentation from American Girl.  Sundays, December 14 & 21 at 10 a.m. $68 per adult, $44 per child

SUGAR PLUM FAIRY TEA An enchanting tradition featuring costumed characters from Boston Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker. Expect desserts, sing-alongs, and interactive holiday crafts courtesy of Catching Joy and American Girl. Saturdays, December 13 & 20 at 11 a.m. $58 per adult, $42 per child

HOT COCOA BAR We hate to say this, but winter is coming and few things make it more worthwhile than hot cocoa! In Avery Bar, sit by the fireplace and warm up with a cup of hot cocoa. Choose from white, milk or dark chocolate, and top off with a selection of candies, cookies and creams, served with scrumptious holiday sweets and pastries. The pastry chefs will offer festive tips for children who can decorate their own gingerbread men. Saturdays, December 6, 13, 20, & 27, from 1 to 4 p.m. $36 per adult, $28 per child

THE NUTCRACKER SUITE PACKAGE Starting at $995 per weeknight and $1,295 per weekend night, The Nutcracker Suite Package includes:

  • Overnight accommodations in a custom-designed suite decorated with holiday trimmings and elements inspired by Boston Ballet’s The Nutcracker. The suite has been generously designed by our friends at Be Our Guest, Michael Barnum Studio and Winston Flowers with exclusive gifts from American Girl. Master bedroom features a king bed; connecting double room is a magic-inspired children’s room.
  • Teddy Bear tuck-in service with a holiday treat from the hotel’s Pastry Chef, Kerry Meister
  • Satin pointe shoe, autographed by a Boston
  • Ballet company dancer
  • CD recording of The Nutcracker, performed by the Boston Ballet Orchestra and Music director Jonathan McPhee
  • A Sugar Plum inspired bubble bath from the Land of the Sweets drawn by The Ritz-Carlton Bath Butler
  • A personalized American Girl shopping experience including casual dining with a special touch for four (two adults, two children) in their in-store Bistro.
  • Customized American Girl photo frame and Isabelle DVD.
  • Overnight valet parking
  • For assistance with tickets to Boston Ballet’s The Nutcracker [not included in package], please contact The Ritz-Carlton, Boston Common concierge for VIP services.

The Nutcracker Suite package is available Friday, November 28, 2014 through Sunday, December 28, 2014. .

For more info: The Ritz Carlton, Boston Common

 

Photo credit: The Ritz-Carlton, Boston Common

Viceroy Palm Springs adds new chef at Citron

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Palm Springs, CA — The Viceroy Palm Springs new French-born Executive Chef, Patrice Martineau, will head its Citron restaurant. The Champagne, France native trained at some of the France’s best known Michelin Guide-starred restaurants before joining the team at Daniel in New York City.

In 2005, after several years as Daniel Boulud’s second-in-command, Chef Patrice returned to Europe as the youngest executive chef of London’s legendary Savoy Hotel, and then moved to Tokyo as chef de cuisine of the acclaimed Peter at the Peninsula Hotel.

Most recently, Chef Patrice created the culinary offerings at the newly re-opened Belmond El Encanto Hotel in Santa Barbara. New menus at Citron are expected launch on October 27.

 

For more info: 760-320-4117, viceroyhotelsandresorts.com/palmsprings 

Photo credit: Viceroy Hotel Group

Riff Chelsea opens in Manhattan, Riff Downtown to follow

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New York, NY – Located at West 30th Street and 8th Avenue, Riff Chelsea traces its ancestry to a rundown hotel called the Chelsea Star, where Madonna crashed in the early ‘80s — it’s the rumored inspiration for the pop goddess’s first hit, “Lucky Star.”

Just opened this fall, Riff Chelsea aims to channel the legendary ‘80s Downtown arts scene – the era of Danceteria, day-glo, post punk, no-wave, and street art. A former flower shop on the hotel’s ground level is a rotating gallery curated by Chashama, an acclaimed New York artists’ collective that creates pop-up art spaces for local emerging artists.

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The hotel consists of 44 rooms, from budget-friendly singles with shared bathrooms to more expansive guest rooms with seating areas and en-suite bathrooms. The property also features six apartments in an adjacent building, connected by the hotel’s central 600-square foot outdoor courtyard.

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Starting rates at Riff Chelsea range from $99 for standard accommodations to $249 for the apartments.

In 2015, Riff Chelsea’s founders plan to expand with Riff Downtown, a 36-room apartment-style hotel at 102 Greenwich Street near the World Trade Center and Tribeca – another neighborhood where New York’s boundless creativity flourished in the 1980s. The property has a black and white themed look with curated mix of pop art by legendary artists Francesco Scavullo, Richard Avedon and Richard Corman displayed throughout. Huge windows and loft ceilings capture some of Tribeca’s singular flavor and history, and each room will feature a kitchenette and a washer/dryer unit. Riff Downtown will also have a 2,500 square-foot rooftop terrace and bar.

 

Photo credit: Riff Hotels/Salt Equities

Charles Hotel’s Rialto restaurant hits 20

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Cambridge, MA — Chef Jody Adams recently celebrated the 20th anniversary of her signature Italian restaurant, Rialto. Tucked inside the Charles Hotel in Harvard Square, the elegant modern space was closed to the public for a private celebration.

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On arrival, guests were given take-home wine glasses etched with the event’s date. Before they became souvenirs, though, the glasses were filled with tasty Italian wines to enjoy with a variety of small plates created by guest chefs such as Joanne Chang (Flour) — her chocolate mousse was not to be missed. (PS: We did not miss it!)

 

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Photo credit: Rialto

Martha’s Vineyard Food & Wine Festival

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Edgartown, Mass. – From Oct. 16-19, the annual Martha’s Vineyard Food & Wine Festival is a great excuse to head to Cape Cod. The four-day festival will showcase local and regional chefs, include a Grand Tasting, and add seminars with wine experts from around the country. To celebrate the festival, Harbor View Hotel has a special package that includes overnight accommodations in an elegant Captain’s Cottage suite, two tickets to the Grand Tasting event on Saturday, Oct. 18, and a bottle of sparkling wine delivered in-room, upon arrival. Saturday night starting rates are $799, and a Friday night can be added for a starting rate of $499, excluding tax.

Harbor View Hotel is also hosting two events, the Gourmet Wine Cellar on Friday, Oct. 17, an exclusive dinner for fine wine collectors featuring 16 wine personalities and a gourmet menu, and the Grand Sunday Brunch at Water Street, the hotel’s fine dining restaurant.

Based on availability, restrictions may apply, and this cannot be combined with other offers. For more info: 800-225-6005,  Harbor View Hotel

 

Photo credit: Harbor View Hotel

Hotel Belleclaire adds Halloween fun — with prizes

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New York, NY — Hotel Belleclaire’s annual Harvest Week (10/26 – 10/31) packs fall fun into a stay on the Upper West Side. There’s pumpkin carving and painting, a Halloween Cocoa Party, hot apple cider and caramel apples, and a Sixpoint Brewery Tasting — all set in the luxurious lobby at this historic New York gem. To cap it all off, Batman will make an appearance for Halloween.

Hotel Belleclaire Harvest Week Schedule:

  • Sunday, October 26: National Pumpkin Day – grab a pumpkin from the front desk and get painting – the best one wins a prize. Available until 10/31
  • Monday, October 27: Halloween Cocoa Party – enjoy complimentary candy corn treats (1-4 p.m.)
  • Tuesday, October 28: Guests enjoy complimentary hot apple cider and caramel apples
  • Wednesday, October 29: Sixpoint Brewery Tasting – nibble on trail mix treats between brews (3-6 p.m.)
  • Thursday, October 30: Special appearance by Batman! (2-4 p.m.) and Pumpkin Carving Demonstration (3-6 p.m.)
  • Friday, October 31: Sweetery NYC Gourmet Food Truck serves complimentary gourmet desserts, coffee, cider, hot cocoa from (2-4 p.m.) followed by another Batman appearance from (4-6 p.m.)

The best costume and pumpkin painting each win a prize! Guests who take a picture of their costume in the hotel lobby and post to Facebook or Instagram are entered. Both winners from the pumpkin painting contest and costume contest will receive one complimentary night in a deluxe room. Winners will be announced on Halloween, October 31, via social media.

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For more info: hotelbelleclaire.com

Photo credit: Hotel Belleclaire

Cloudy Bay 2014 Sauvignon Blanc unveiled at Park South

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New York, NY — Last night, Cloudy Bay unveiled its 2014 Sauvignon Blanc at a private event at the Park South hotel’s Roof at Park South bar. Accompanying the wine were incredible bites from Tim Cushman, chef and owner of O Ya in Boston, who helms the high level bar’s food, prepped truffle oil soaked hamachi, chili-garlic roasted shrimp, and Island Creek oysters — the latter paired particularly well with the delicate mineral undertone of the piney, passionfruit, and citrus noted wine.

 

 

The R returns to the month, so the Sea Crest Beach Hotel celebrates oysters

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North Falmouth, MA – The Sea Crest Beach Hotel has partnered with the lengthily titled International Oyster Symposium of the World Oyster Society to host the first annual Oyster Grand Tasting on Oct. 26 in Sea Crest’s newly renovated Nauset Center. The tasting will highlight dishes utilizing oysters harvested from waters spanning Provincetown to Nantucket from leading area chefs, including Sea Crest Beach Hotel’s own Executive Chef Daniel Kenney. Participating chefs include Florence Lowell from the Naked Oyster in Hyannis, Timothy Ames from Mooncussers Tavern in Harwich Port, and Matt Tropeano from Pain D’Avignon.

The tasting, designed to raise awareness for the 6th International Oyster Symposium, which will be held at Sea Crest Beach Hotel for its East Coast debut in October 2015, is priced at $95 per person and will run from 5 to 7:30 p.m. Tickets to the tasting can be purchased at OysterGrandTasting.com.

To celebrate the oyster, Red’s Restaurant and Lounge at Sea Crest Beach Hotel is offering $1 local oysters on the halfshell every Friday night from 5-9 p.m. Grand Tasting attendees can also take advantage of Sea Crest’s The World Is Your Oyster package the night of Oct. 26, including two tickets to the Grand Tasting and breakfast for two in the Ocean View Room. Rates start at $353 and include all taxes and gratuities.

 

For more info: Sea Crest Beach Hotel.

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Photo credit: Sea Crest Beach Hotel

 

Hyatt Herald Square New York announces three dining and drinking spaces

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New York, NY – This fall, the  122-room Hyatt Herald Square New York is due to open in Midtown Manhattan’s Herald Square neighborhood. The Hyatt Herald Square New York will include three themed food and beverage outlets, each with its own distinct identity, headed up by the hotel’s Food & Beverage Director and Executive Chef, Gunnar Steden.

The self-explanatory Espresso Bar boasts locally roasted beans from Stone Street Coffee Company and a wide variety of barista-prepared espresso, coffee and specialty drinks, as well as freshly baked pastries from Balthazar Bakery. The seating area has swing out stools set in front of an art installation featuring Dali-inspired clocks. In line with the fashion theme of the hotel, each clock will be set to the local time of a major fashion capital, including Paris, New York, and Hong Kong.

Espresso BAr

The lobby bar and restaurant, The Den, will feature a causal bistro menu of Large Bites, Light Bites, and Even Lighter Bites — the latter possibly something to do with that fashion theme? The Den will include rocking chairs and the bar area will look like a finished bar cart that one might have at home.

The Den

Hyatt Herald Square New York’s rooftop bar, Up on 20, see above, has views of the midtown skyline, including — we’re told — the Empire State Building and Freedom Tower.

For more info:  Hyatt Herald Square New York

Photo credit: Hyatt Herald Square New York

Too early to be thinking about, you know, Christmas?

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Washington, D.C. – Fall has barely begun, yet the Fairmont Washington, D.C. has announced its Georgetown’s Holiday Lights and Breakfast Delights Package. Who can blame this discreetly luxurious hotel from getting excited about the holiday season? The hotel’s festively decorated lobby is one thing, but the courtyard, which is transformed into a Crystal Garden filled with thousands of tiny white lights, shimmering holiday trees and over 30 animated Reindeer, well, that’s quite another level of magical.

The Holiday Lights and Breakfast Delights Package allows guests to start their day with a healthy continental breakfast for two of fresh juice, coffee or tea, seasonal berries, fresh fruit, yogurt, cheese and cold meat selections, bagels, muffins, Danish and oatmeal. Follow up with shopping in Georgetown and at the Downtown Holiday Market, ice skating at the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden, catching “A Christmas Carol” at Ford’s Theatre, the Washington Ballet’s “Nutcracker” at the Warner Theatre, Handel’s “Messiah” at the Washington National Cathedral and admiring the National Christmas Tree and the National Menorah on the White House Ellipse.  At the end of the day, enjoy a cup of hot chocolate and holiday cookies in the Loggia by the Crystal Garden, where the interior holiday tree and the a gingerbread display created by the hotel’s pastry chef complete the seasonal picture.

Available from November 16, 2014 through January 18, 2015, the Holiday Lights and Breakfast Delights Package includes overnight accommodations, continental breakfast for two daily and hot chocolate and cookies in the hotel lobby.  Rates start from $219 per night, based on double occupancy and availability, and do not include taxes or gratuities. For reservations, 202-429-2400/1 800-441-1414,  www.fairmont.com/washington.

Photo credit: Fairmont Washington, D.C.

Historic Italian winery hit won’t produce Amarone Classico this year

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Valpolicella, Italy —  Bertani, the historic winery in Valpolicella, will not produce an Amarone Classico 2014. The decision was made because constant rain this year prevented the natural partial drying grapes undergo before fermentation. “We made this choice for Bertani Amarone Classico,” explains Emilio Pedron, CEO of Bertani Domains Group. “It was an important decision, costly, but consistent with our style and our identity, and above all, highly respectful of our consumers and customers.”

Since 1958, its first year of production,  Bertani Amarone Classico was made with a specific technical expertise and the use of a unique, high-quality fruit: perfect, intact grapes laid to rest exclusively on bamboo cane racks (rush mats), in naturally aired rooms on the hills of Valpolicella Classica.

 

Willy Wonka has nothing on the Langham, Boston’s chocolate wonderland

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Boston, MA — Bostonians looks forward to September. Not because the wicked humidity finally drops, but because  The Langham, Boston revives its utterly decadent, nutritionally pointless, completely unmissable Chocolate Bar. The 26th season of the all-you-can-enjoy chocolate buffet presents a new theme, the “World of Langham,” and pays homage to the upcoming 150th anniversary of the brand and its flagship, The Langham, London. As part of more than 100 chocolate dessert combinations, Executive Chef Mark Sapienza and Executive Pastry Chef Ryan Pike feature chocolate dishes from Langham Hotels across the globe, every Saturday in the hotel’s pretty Café Fleuri restaurant.

Wait, chocoholics, there’s more: a new chocolate-themed guest room suite! Like a scene out of “Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory,” the suite is fully stocked with chocolate and candy as far as the eye can see. For dinner, guests can order from a special room service chocolate-infused menu with items such as piri- piri chili shrimp with cocoa nibscocoa dusted filet mignon, and cocoa butter seared New Bedford sea scallops. Breakfast in bed options include dark chocolate croissants and Nutella, banana and hazelnut brioche French toast. In the afternoon, chocolate remains front and center as guests enjoy The Chocolate Bar buffet. Downtime can be spent in the suite watching some of the top chocolate-influenced movies of all time including “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” “Chocolat” and “Forest Gump.”

The Chocolate Suite is a two-story loft featuring a distinct living room and bedroom with a king bed and queen sized sleeper sofa. Rates begin at $697 per night.

The Chocolate Bar at The Langham, Boston takes place from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. every Saturday through June 27, 2015. Adults: $42, kids: $29. For reservations and more information: 617.451.1900, Boston.LanghamHotels.com.

Photo: Langham, Boston

A cocktail is born, well, two actually: twins!

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Boston, MA — InterContinental­­ Boston, in collaboration with Bacardi, will take part in InterContinental Hotels & Resorts’s first ever international Top Shelf Cocktail Competition. As one of six hotel finalists, InterContinental Boston’s head mixologist, Dragan Gajica, has been busy creating the ultimate cocktails to submit to this competition, held in Miami on November 13. Gajica is road testing two drinks next week. The winning cocktails will be featured on InterContinental Hotels & Resorts’ new Signature Cocktail menu at all the brand’s Americas properties.
Photo: InterContinental Hotels & Resorts

The James Chicago is ready to race

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Chicago, IL —  With the Chicago Marathon just around the corner, The James Chicago, a residentially-styled boutique hotel, located steps off Michigan Avenue and near key points of the marathon, is treating guests to special perks before and after the race.

The morning of the marathon, Sunday, October 12, all hotel guests are invited to a complimentary pre-marathon stretch class by Dani Ragland of AIR Aerial Fitness.  The stretch class will help runners increase muscle flexibility and mentally prepare for the upcoming race.  After the class, all runners will receive a complimentary grab & go healthy breakfast bag, compliments of David Burke’s Primehouse. Throughout the weekend, those looking to indulge before or after the long day of running, David Burke’s Primehouse will offer high-protein dinner specials.

Rates begin at $355 with a two-night minimum stay, beginning on Saturday, October 11.  For more info: 312-337-1000, jameshotels.com/chicago

Photo credit: The James Chicago