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ALOFT HOTELS BRINGS ITS CONTEMPORARY STYLE AND VIBRANT SOCIAL SCENE TO SAN JUAN

Aloft Hotels brings contemporary style, vibrant social scene to San Juan

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PRISA Group, the developers of The District San Juan, Puerto Rico’s premier entertainment destination, has unveiled the flag for its lifestyle-focused hotel at the Convention Centre District in Miramar.

The hotel, which has already broken ground and is expected to open the second half of 2019, will feature 175 loft-like guestrooms over seven stories with a variety of open spaces that are alive with activity and integrating the latest, innovative technology, including:

the Re:mix lounge, an area for innovative programming and can’t-miss events;
the Re:fuel café, the next-generation foodie fix from Aloft Hotels, offering made-to-order fresh, nutritious and grab-and-go food options from morning to midnight;
the anchor of the hotel’s vibrant social scene, the W XYZ® bar is always lively. Mix, meet and mingle over music and cocktails. Guests can watch live acoustic concerts, part of the Live at Aloft Hotels events, while snacking on sharable plates and sipping on seasonal cocktails;
Infinity pool and bar area with a 1,152 square foot fitness centre on the second level offering fantastic views of the Convention Centre and its fountains, and
6,000 square feet of flexible meeting space

The Aloft brand offers a tech-forward, vibrant experience and a modern style that is different by design. A hotbed of innovation, Aloft has piloted programmes such as the world’s first emoji-only room service menu, the world’s first robotic butler, the industry’s first keyless entry system and a groundbreaking streaming solution for guests to stream their favorite content direct to their rooms. Aloft San Juan will bring this tech-forward experience to The District.

Jo&Joe by Accor

AccorHotels launches Jo&Joe brand for millennials

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AccorHotels will be launching a new hospitality brand called JO&JOE. Its aim is to blend the best of private-rental, hostel and hotel formats to reinvent and provide a disruptive experience in terms of design approach, catering, service and the customer journey.

AccorHotels plans to expand rapidly by opening 50 venues by 2020, with locations including Paris and Bordeaux (2018) as well as Warsaw, Budapest, Rio and São Paulo.

Jo&Joe by Accor

Accorhotels has released visuals of the new design of the hotels, along with descriptions of what guests may expect. In general, Jo and Joe properties are described as “a vibrant living space, a home that is open to the external world and designed to meet the expectations of Millennials and all those who value sharing, spontaneity and experience”.

The design for the new hotels has been in collaboration with UK design company Penson (also known for flagship designs including campuses for Google, YouTube, Jaguar Land Rover and interiors of the world’s 5th tallest building, Lotte World Tower).

Jo&Joe by Accor

“Break with tradition, forget old habits, be surprising, authentic, unexpected, bring a breath of fresh air to AccorHotels. Do it quickly and do it well. It wasn’t an easy brief to put into practice, particularly when you’re primarily targeting Millennials, who can be very difficult to win over,” said Sebastien Bazin, CEO of AccorHotels.

“But with the launch of our new brand, JO&JOE, we have now more than met that challenge. I’m extremely proud of the work accomplished by the AccorHotels teams in mobilizing the energy necessary – both inside and outside the Group – to bring this enormous project to life. JO&JOE represents the very essence of hospitality: welcoming, exciting and beyond our guests’ expectations,” he added.

YTL Hotels - Edinburgh's The Glasshouse

YTL Hotels expands luxury portfolio in UK

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YTL Hotels is delighted to announce the expansion of its luxury portfolio with the recent acquisition of three properties in Edinburgh, Berkshire and London, strengthening the company’s presence within the United Kingdom.

The company’s current portfolio in the United Kingdom encompasses The Gainsborough Bath Spa, the sole hotel to be part of the Leading Hotels of the World’s collection in Bath and offering the only natural thermal spa within a hotel in the United Kingdom, and Muse Bray Cottages, an exclusive collection of three bespoke private residences in Berkshire.

Dato’ Mark Yeoh, Executive Director of YTL Hotels commented: “I am delighted to welcome these new properties into the YTL Hotels fold. We will be undertaking exciting enhancements to each property and its offerings to elevate their value in line with our best of class standards. Last year, we opened The Gainsborough Bath Spa, our first classic hotel in the United Kingdom, and it has done us proud by exemplifying the same tradition of excellence known for in Pangkor Laut Resort – Malaysia and all the properties within our portfolio.

“Our core philosophy of not just building properties but crafting inspired experiences for guests will guide us in our enhancement and development plans for these newly acquired properties.”

YTL Hotels - Monkey Island, Berkshire

YTL Hotels – Monkey Island, Berkshire

The property acquisition in Edinburgh attests to YTL Hotels’ long standing relationship with Marriott International since 1995 through the ownership management of five luxurious properties around the world: Sydney Harbour Marriott Hotel, Brisbane Marriott Hotel, Melbourne Marriott Hotel, The Ritz-Carlton Kuala Lumpur and JW Marriott Kuala Lumpur, as well as the future development of The Ritz-Carlton Koh Samui – Thailand and the first Ritz-Carlton Reserve in Niseko Village – Japan.

Three new additions to the YTL Hotels’ portfolio will include the following: The Glasshouse Hotel, a part of Marriott International’s Autograph Collection, is already an award-winning 77-room luxury boutique hotel with a secret rooftop garden and was once the Lady Glenorchy Church built in the mid-19th century.

YTL Hotels - The Academy, West End London

YTL Hotels – The Academy, West End London

The second acquisition, Monkey Island, is a centuries old retreat in Bray-on-Thames, Berkshire that nestles on an island in the River Thames surrounded by stunning gardens and accessible only by a footbridge or boat. The stately retreat will be redesigned by the award-winning New York-based Champalimaud Design who orchestrated distinctive interior design projects for The Gainsborough Bath Spa, The Green Leaf Niseko Village, The Ritz-Carlton Kuala Lumpur, The Carlyle in New York and the Dorchester in London, to name a few.

The Academy Hotel comprising of a collection of five restored Georgian townhouses combined into one charming hotel, is centrally located in London’s West End within a stone’s throw from The British Museum, surrounded by fine restaurants and world famous shopping streets. The boutique hotel will undergo a full refurbishment.

These latest acquisitions mark YTL Hotels’ global portfolio expansion to a total of 29 assets with a footprint across Australia, Japan, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, China, France, Spain and the United Kingdom.

Starwood to launch Principal brand

Starwood Capital announces launch of Principal brand

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Starwood Capital Group, a leading global private investment firm, announced last week that it will launch PRINCIPAL, a new urban lifestyle hotel group, on 1st November 2016, following a capital investment in the portfolio of approximately £150 million.

Principal is a collection of city-centre hotels based in landmark buildings in exceptional locations across the United Kingdom. The distinctive heritage and resulting relationship between the properties and their surroundings are the cornerstones of the Principal brand. Each of the hotels has a story to tell — of its history, its design and architecture, its quirks and characters, and its role in shaping the city and forging relationships with local partners, whether corporate or creative. From the elegant Georgian townhouses that form the core of The Principal Edinburgh George Street (formerly The George Hotel) to the clock tower that’s synonymous with The Principal Manchester (formerly The Palace Hotel) and its history as the headquarters for the Refuge Assurance Company— Principal Hotels define their cities and neighbourhoods.

“At the heart of a great business is a unique and authentic story. Our people and our buildings have great stories to tell, and these stories differentiate you from the competition, giving your guests and your staff something to cheer about,” said Barry Sternlicht, Chairman and CEO of Starwood Capital Group. “Reviving these historic, grande-dame hotels is a truly great story— they are spectacular buildings in which we can create dynamic scenes. The story of each hotel, its amazing history and architecture is the opposite of the mass-produced chain hotel, and provides us with a canvas on which to curate a unique sense of place.”

The Principal Manchester
The Principal Manchester, on the corner of Oxford Street and Whitworth Street, occupies three adjoining buildings dating to between 1895 and 1932. Designed by Alfred Waterhouse, his son Paul, and Stanley Birkett, all three buildings were commissioned by The Refuge Assurance Company as its company headquarters, and they include the iconic, 66m (217ft) clock tower, which has become a symbol of the city and its status as a centre of industry and commerce.

Following an investment of more than £25 million, The Principal Manchester has been remodelled from top to toe to create 270 loft-style bedrooms and suites designed by Michaelis Boyd Architects; 17 meeting and event spaces, including the largest hotel ballroom in the northwest of England; The Refuge Dining Room and Public Bar, curated by DJs-turned-restaurateurs Luke Cowdrey and Justin Crawford; and a double-height lobby in which stands a specially commissioned, 600kg (1300lb), 3m (10ft) high bronze horse sculpted by Sophie Dickens, a reference to the turning circle for horse-and-carriage that once occupied the centre of the space.

Starwood to launch Principal brand

The Principal York
The Principal York (formerly The Royal York Hotel) dates from 1878, and was built to complement and serve the significant expansion of York Railway Station, with landscaped, private gardens running to three acres. Local Tadcaster stone gives the exterior a honeyed glow, and the imposing façade suggests a grand country home more than a Victorian railway hotel. The sensitive architectural restoration, by 3D Reid and Goddard Littlefair, places an elegant Garden Room at the hub of the hotel, next to the main lobby and the sweeping grand staircase, where guests can enjoy afternoon tea whilst looking out across manicured lawns to York Minster in the distance. In addition to 155 guest rooms and suites, The Principal York offers an Events Centre and 10 additional meeting and event spaces; a gym and indoor pool; the Chapter House bar, serving local craft ales alongside wines, spirits and cocktails; and The Refectory Kitchen & Terrace, whose cooking champions fresh, seasonal, local produce and the abundant larder of “God’s own country.”

Starwood to launch Principal brand

The Principal Edinburgh
Completing the trio of hotels at launch, The Principal Edinburgh on George Street has been welcoming hotel guests since 1881. At its heart are five listed Georgian townhouses, built in 1775 as homes for Edinburgh’s most prosperous citizens—among them James Ferrier, a lawyer, who bought No. 25 and whose daughter, Susan, was considered by Sir Walter Scott to be the equal of Jane Austen. Their former home is now The Printing Press Bar & Kitchen, where local Head Chef Colin Fleming champions modern Scottish cooking, and the bar team oversees an impressive collection of local spirits, from single malts to Edinburgh gin and Scottish vodka.

The Principal portfolio also includes Principal Partners—iconic hotels that will join the brand over the course of 2017, among them The Grand Central Hotel in Glasgow; The Hotel Russell in London, which is currently closed and is due to reopen next summer as The Principal London; and the former Martins Bank, which will open as The Principal Liverpool in early 2018.