Industry News

Despite rumors to the contrary, I do find news relevant to our industry. So I will dedicate this edition to news in the biz!

Robots in the Lobby
The Sheraton Grande Tokyo Bay Hotel hosted Hitachi demonstrating some new robots. They were working as Hotel Clerks. I don’t know any Japanese but if you want to check out some video you can watch it in flash or in HD!

Bora Bora
Intercontinental is set to open a new resort in Bora Bora. So what is the news, you might ask. Aside from the over water bungalows that seem to be all the rage in the South Pacific, over water chapel with glass floor and spa they have a unique air conditioning system. They are pumping water from 2,500 feet and cools the bungalows. The water is returned to the ocean at safe depths to prevent negative impacts on the environment.

Exotic Sports Car Packages
The Macdonald Holyrood Hotel in Edinburgh and the Baglioni Hotel in London are offering packages that include the use of a Lamborghini Gallardo and Maserati Quattroporte respectively. The Lamborghini package in cludes a double room w/ bulter service, complementary champagne, private library access and all for a mere £600.

Mandarin Oriental Tower in Chicago
This might be old news to many of you, but it isn’t to me. Turns out the Mandarin Orient Tower, Chicago is going to open a “co-tel” a mix of condos and hotel rooms. Prices will start at a mere $500,000 and go over $10 Million. They have a nice FAQ on how the condo rental program works.

Dubai or not Dubai, that is the question
I can not get over the amazing volume of money that must flow through Dubai. In recent news the Aviation Club is going to become a hotel.

  • The Aviation Club – is a leisure club with a spa and health club and different food options. It will become a 5-star hotel with 250 rooms, golf course, etc.
  • The Grandeur Residences – A new development on the Palm Jumeirah. The Palm Jumeirah is considered the 8th wonder of the world and is a man made series of islands connected by roads and will have all sorts of expensive outfits once complete. 50 hotels, 2,500 villas, shopping, etc. be located here. Amazing!
  • The Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates – Will be located on the indoor ski slope in the Mall of the Emirates. Yes, I did say indoor ski slope and yes, Dubai is in the middle of the desert. It will have ski chalets with views of the slope! Wow, how many places can you go bake on a beach all day and ski before dinner!
  • Starwood – Not to be outdone by all of the other building going on in Dubai Starwood is going to build a W at Festival City. Festival City is a mix of shopping, entertainment, business and living area.
  • Conrad – There will be a new addition to the Hilton Family in Dubai with addition of a new Conrad in 2008. There are two Hilton properties in Dubai.

Go to sleep, go to sleep…
Not that this is news to you vets, but the bed wars are well underway. I read this article from the Honolulu Star Bulletin about the Marriott replacing their beds with the new “Revive Beds”. The article does mention the Hilton Suite Dreams bed. I thought it was interesting the author chose to get the opinion of a smaller hotel that was feeling pressure to make changes to their beds.

Weekend Time Waster
In honor of spring…Bunny Hunt IV: The Good Friday Massacre is making the rounds. Oh yeah, it was done in AJAX!

Final Word
In an unrelated note…Apple made some big news this week and their stock shot up nearly 10% in one day. Why? Seems Apple has the bright idea to allow users to install Windows along side the Mac OS. This is only for the new Intel based machines. This is a pretty big move for Apple but thus far the reports have been mostly positive.

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