Come 01 July 2016, New Zealand will get her third Sofitel-branded property, the Sofitel Wellington, and it will be located in Wellington's Terrace. This $51 million development will join the other two award-winning sister properties in New Zealand - Sofitel Auckland Viaduct Harbour (check out my review of the property here!) and the Sofitel Queenstown Hotel & Spa.
The Sofitel Wellington will house 129 beautifully-appointed rooms (clad in vintage gold and bronze) in the 14-storey building and it is set to become the capital's go-to destination for business and leisure travelers. The property is also nestled between the city's iconic landmarks like 'The Beehive' and the Botanical Gardens. Guests at the Sofitel Wellington will be able to enjoy Smart TVs with Bluetooth, a So Fit gymnasium and state of the art technology across three meeting and event venues.
The Sofitel Wellington's resident restaurant, Jardin Grill, will feature floral dining areas with a sophisticated interior that exudes contemporary charm with a a statement copper kitchen. The Green Room, which is the property's lounge and bar, will offer a relaxed and private atmosphere for all your evening catch-ups and mid-day drinks. These rooms are traditionally painted green and this plays on the link to Bolton Street’s verdant gardens, viewable through expansive floor to ceiling glass.
Located just 60-minutes away, The Canopi in Bintan can easily be accessed via ferry from Singapore - this destination is also a popular glamping spot for families and thrill-seekers on weekends especially. While trying to book hotels this morning, I realised that The Canopi will soon be joining Tribute Portfolio which is a brand under Marriott International and Marriott Bonvoy members will soon be able to earn points and eligible nights at this property from February 2019.
While the merger of three loyalty programs (Marriott Rewards, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards and SPG) has not been exceedingly successful (at least in the eyes of an average consumer), the combined loyalty program will relaunch on 13 February 2019 with a brand new program name - Marriott Bonvoy. Some Platinum membership tiers will also be renamed to make the distinction a little more obvious.
OCBC removed the option to purchase 500,000 VOYAGE Miles (which is converted into KrisFlyer Miles) for S$10,000 with the OCBC VOYAGE Card in September last year. While new customers still have the option of getting the card at either S$488 (15,000 Miles) or S$3,210 (150,000 Miles), existing principal holders of the VOYAGE Card do not officially have this option with renewal until now.
A 38-villa ultra-luxury resort is set to open in the rare Maldivian oasis of Gaafu Alifu Atoll on 1 February 2019 - the Raffles Maldives Meradhoo is AccorHotels’ fourth property in the Maldives and it will offer unparalleled views of the Indian Ocean for travellers seeking the perfect over-water escape.
AccorHotels has just debuted its award-winning midscale brand, Novotel, with the opening of the new-built Novotel Haikou Xinbudao in the capital city of Hainan province. The property is located on Xinbu Island, a newly developed area in the northeast part of Haikou city, and it is expected to quickly become a favorite on Hainan Island, China’s southernmost province famous for its amiable tropical climate and idyllic sun-blessed beaches.
Capella Hotel Group will be unveiling her first urban resort next year in Thailand - Capella Bangkok is slated to open in Q2 2019 and it will be located on the east bank of the famous Chao Phraya River where it will join the ranks of other luxurious properties in the City of Angels. This strategically-located property will offer a contemporary playground for travellers who wish to immerse themselves in one of Bangkok's oldest neighbourhoods where the burgeoning local arts scene and provincial culinary landscape is flourishing.
Hopping on a taxi and using a ride-hailing app in Singapore is not difficult but I sometimes prefer a proper limousine arrangement (especially when traveling to and from the airport) since they are a lot more comfortable and predictable. My OCBC VOYAGE Card is great since it gives me up to two free rides each month by spending S$3,000 (one free ride) or S$6,000 (two free rides) per calendar month. While this is typically enough for me, I sometimes make two or three trips a month and therefore, I turn to the next best alternative (or so I thought), Wolero One.
The first ever Swissôtel Hotels and Resorts property in Indonesia is set to make its first debut in the city of Jakarta. Slated to open in mid-2019, the Swissôtel Jakarta PIK Avenue will be located in a mixed-used lifestyle mall complex. The hotel will feature 412 spacious guest rooms, six dining outlets, an executive lounge, the Pürovel Spa & Sport facility as well as the city’s largest event space of 3,044 square meters that can accommodate up to 3000 guests in its ballroom.
Now that the MO BAR is officially open, Mandarin Oriental, Singapore is bringing back the popular afternoon tea experience with a bi-monthly seasonal menu with views of Singapore. The MO BAR is a relaxing space that is awash in natural daylight during the day and the antique gold geometric patterns inspired by Polynesian tattoos on the ceiling and façade greet guests upon entering.
San Francisco-based luxury boutique brand, Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants has just opened the first property in the UK in London’s Bloomsbury neighbourhood. The Kimpton Fitzroy London combines late-Victorian heritage with a quirky, modern vibe. The existing glamour of the building, paired with Kimpton’s signature heartfelt service, brings a new hotel offering to London that delivers exclusivity for everyone.