In November after taking tea in Brussels, reserving seats for skiing at the Prieuré in Chamonix, inaugurating the new concept signed by Banyan Tree in Phuket, getting lunch or a drink on top of slopes in Megève at the Woody, we visit London to feast at the Sexy Fish, in Dominican Republic at the new Amanera in Amsterdam at the W and the Totem in Flaine, the latest flagship by Sibuet. Each month, PLUME VOYAGE Travel News inform you on luxury hotels, boutique hotels and the world of travel. Is this giving you travel cravings?
The Amanera, newest Aman Hotel is ideally located on a cliff above the beach of Playa Grande. It is the first golf resort signed by Aman, it is dotted with undulating fairways and challenging golf greens. No less than 800 hectares for this property counting 25 casitas. The “raw organic » decor with natural materials: stone, tiles … thus perfectly integrate with the surroundings. 13 Casitas are fortunate to have a beautiful 10 meter-long swimming pool. Culinary we find, of course, a beach club playa offering simple dishes and Aman restaurant signature displaying a fish menu and fresh products. A library and a cigar bar allow to relax away from the bustle. And, Aman Spa features solo and duo treatment rooms and offers a wide range of personalized treatments and care. The dream after all! A. F.-M.
In December 2015 we will celebrate the inauguration of the last establishment by Maisons et Hôtels Sibuet, a label which now has 10 establishments, each being unique. The Sibuet, gifted for over 25 years with a superb knowledge to carry new hotel projects have “invented” Terminal Neige – Totem inaugurating another style of mountains hospitality. This latter will be declined in many Alpine resorts like Avoriaz in 2018 with Terminal Neige – Station. Why Totem? because the property is located opposite the Picasso Totem, embodying the architectural style in which this snow city was designed. The design mixes very contemporary materials: concrete, glass and ethnic spirit through raw wool fabrics that adorn chairs and curtains of the 98 rooms These offer a wide bay window … We love in the evening the different corners dedicated to various specialties: from Italy with Fernande grandma pots : every day, a different casserole recipe is simmered: stew, to the soup bar, the “healthy” place for the vegan food addicts, and of course the mountains specialties ! A Pure Altitude Spa completes the offer of Totem, with its 3 cabines where we find the brand spa treatments. The little extra? The jacuzzi and outdoor saunas, refurbished in old gondolas! A. F.-M.
Opened just a few weeks ago, close to the Dam and the Royal Palace, the W offers a bold design combining very contemporary lines with other more conventional. The 238 rooms, 21 suites, three WOW suites and two Extreme WOW suites of 183 m2, are divided in two historic buildings: the old telephonic center (“Central”) and the historical premises of KAS Bank (“Bank”) . In the best of the place we include the W Lounge, a twisted version of the traditional lobby: located on the sixth floor of the Central Building it offers, thanks to its four outdoor terraces and bay windows, 360 degree views over the city, the first rooftop pool of the city, a spa installed in the old vaults of the bank, XBANK, a gallery of 700 m2, two restaurants: The Duchess and Mr Porter (on the roof) and the first system that allows us to use our smartphone as a key!
Right in Mayfair, on Berkeley Square, The Sexy Fish opened its doors on October 19th. It is the 16th Caprice group’s restaurant , owned by Richard Caring businessman who already owns a few home addresses: The Ivy, Scott’s, The Mount Street Deli …This large restaurant is displaying an exploding decor! Martin Brudnizki , the designer is set to surprise the whole London, yet blasé: in a marble flood, smoked mirrors and green onyx some amazing works are throning… A huge crocodile in resin, signed by Frank Gehry basks on a wall, fishes, by Gehry again, undulate above the bar with blue sirens by Damien Hirst. The Asian-inspired cuisine with a clear tendency of Japanese style by chef Benjamin Orpwood, an insatiable globe trotter, is delighting a hype public. Japanese whiskey lovers will love to find there a magnificent selection of this beverage: The bar has the largest collection in Europe and 4 th in the world! A. F.-M.
Since the beginning of November Banyan Tree has launched Cassia Phuket, a first apartment residence enjoying the group hotel service. Cassia Phuket offers a new vision of hospitality with 221 apartments with one or two bedrooms. Each one has a separate living area and fully equipped kitchen. Many of a very stylish design offer a loft style, with stunning views on the lagoon, ocean or park. A new way of conceiving family holidays, with friends or just a couple for those who want to create their own space, design their holiday as they wish, and to immerse themselves further in the environment and local culture. Attentive staff watches over guests, spa is available to them as well as two restaurants. Two swimming pools and direct access to the private beach of Bang Tao complete the offer of this new different place. A. F.-M.
Mariott International on the way to acquire Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide announced that they had unanimously approved a definitive merger agreement becoming the world’s largest hotel group. Result: the created company will then benefit from leading lifestyle brands and international footprint of Starwood with magnificent Hotels W including: newest W Amsterdam and the strong presence of Mariott: recent inauguration of JW Mariott Venice on luxury and holiday villages segments, expanding its portfolio. Together, the two companies operate or franchise more than 5500 worldwide hotels, 1.1 million rooms. It is breathtaking! A. F.-M.
Maranatha Group’s latest acquisition, this member of Châteaux & Hôtels Collection, reopens its doors with a fourth star. The 44 rooms and suites were revisited in homage to contemporary dance …. Montpellier is the capital of it! Imposing volumes, cornices, chair rails … the hotel unabashedly features a Napoleon III style. The designer Julie Gauthron chose baroque shades such as an opera red in public areas; On the walls in the corridors, black and white photos of past shows, to recreate the atmosphere of a place … The rooms are divided into 4 universes: Red Reverence, Contemporary Green, Blue Ballerina, Yellow Arabesque. Large, from 20 to 35 m2. Not to mention the 3 suites on the corner of the hotel watching the Place de la Comédie. A. F.-M.
Clinged to the mountainside the latest “place to be” in Megève is called the Woody. Located at the entrance of the middle station of the gondola Princesse, its true originality is to offer a variety of areas ranging from the library in the living room, the dining room, the heated pool (yes!). The very cocooning decor highlights club chairs, light wood library crammed with books, antique furniture and a fireplace to settle with a tea in hand … The actual restaurant, also paneled with wood is composed of 150 tables nicely dressed in an ultramarine blue. The menu displays local specialties such as raclette and other fondues, pasta and salads but we particularly like the Woody Burger with Beaufort. As for the terrace if the weather allows it, it hosts 200-400 people by the heated pool … And we can go there by snowmobile or snowcat in the evening. A. F.-M.
The Prieuré is a 3-star chalet-hotel in the heart of the mythical “high-mountain town.” Inaugurated in 1960 by the Morand family, it aims to be a friendly stopover before or after the ascension of a summit or simply a “haven” for calm lovers. It is called The Prieuré, in a nod to the name of the village center in the Middle Ages. Now completely re-designed by two architects from Chamonix, the hotel has 97 rooms, the decor combining wood and contemporary touches. All rooms have a balcony facing south with stunning views of the Mont Blanc! We love the Rôtissier restaurant with huge windows in straight contact with the summets! As the name suggests it, you can treat yourself with meat cooked on a spit accompanied by gratins. Local specialties: raclettes, fondues … are not to be forgotten and take the upper hand in the evening at the From Haute Savoie restaurant. A spa completes the offer of this place becoming “the place to be in Chamonix” …. A. F.-M.
At the end of November we will celebrate the opening of the Faena Miami Beach in the Faena District, a new district rooted in art and culture. Located along a beautiful beach in the heart of Miami Beach, the hotel, which stands as a flagship of the South American hospitality, composed of 169 rooms and suites and 13 penthouses occupying the top two floors of the building. Still following a tribute to South America, the Los Fuegos restaurant orchestrated by Argentine Chef Francis Mallmann Argentina offers a contemporary version of the South American cuisine around the traditional Argentine asado (outdoor barbecue). But Pao, the restaurant of chef Paul Qui, is a modern Asian cuisine that delights gourmets. A superb Tierra Santa Healing House spa over 2000 square meters where you can relax with care rituals inspired by South America. Finally at the Saxony Theater, you can enjoy performances like in Broadway. A. F.-M.
Elegant and welcoming Eden Ouest is well named! This lovely guest house, once a shipowner’s of the eighteenth century, is nestled in the heart of the old ironworks area, 10 minutes walk from the harbor and close to the covered market. Three householders: Lise, her husband Bertrand and friend Véronique receive their guests as friends. The house offers four suites of 41-48 m2, with private lounge and balcony, terrace or bay window, nicely named: Ocre Mauve, Ocre Rouille, Ocre Jaune et Ocre Rouge and a blue bedroom. The decor emphasizes clean lines enhanced by noble and natural materials: wood, limestone, marble, earthenware. Honors for bathrooms with their beautiful wooden cocoon tub larch and private hammam. Eden Ouest is very proud of its landscaped garden: the ideal place to take your breakfast with the first sunbeams. A. F.-M.
The famous palace of the capital, the Majestic Hotel & Spa, magnificently located on the Paseo de Gracia has created a new “éclairs” menu inspired by the fall-winter 2015 collections of five major fashion brands: Bulgari, Jimmy Choo, Salvatore Ferragamo, Brunello Cucinelli and Rosa Clará. The team of pastry chefs invented five flagship desserts of the highest order to enjoy at the bar of the hotel. Between Serpenti by Bulgari, lemon confit, Daisy by Jimmy Choo reinterpretation of the caramel popcorn, Fiamma by Salvatore Ferragamo, a creamy mixture of chocolate and raspberry coulis, Sorriso di Solomeo by Brunello Cucinelli, a blackcurrent jam éclair and candied chestnuts and Rosa by Rosa Clará, a rose and raspberry jam mousse, we no longer know where to start! This unprecedented tasting happens every day from 4 PM to 7 PM at the Majestic bar. We can even add a glass of Ruinart champagne to these feasts. A. F.-M.
At the heart of Brussels, the Wiltcher’s that we’ve already talked about a few months ago is “the” mythical palace, situated on Avenue Louise. This must-go address of the Belgian capital inaugurated a new ultra-cozy place, “The Library” with a decor irresistibly evoking an English novel salon. Besides the joys of reading that each one is doing here: a rich selection of books on the city of Brussels and art in its many forms is available to the hosts, it treats you with a superb Belgian Afternoon Tea. Pastry chef, Michaël Derolez, aims to highlight local and seasonal products: espuma gingerbread, wonderful mini, “financiers” with cherries, lemon cake, scones … And for the salty touch, « vols-au vent” and sandwiches bread to share. Not to mention traditional marshmallows, candies and cuberdons happily regressive. These feasts get watered with a range of rare teas, served in the rules of art, not to mention the Champagne at the top of the ladder! A. F.-M.
For its complete renovation, the Hotel Mont Blanc, beautifully situated in the heart of Chamonix, has offered itself the pen of the famous interior designer Sybille de Margerie …. with ease! With the talent we know it, she succeeded in respecting the history of this legendary place and century-old while bringing serious modern touches. This 5-star now offers 40 rooms including 18 junior suites and two suites of 75 m2 who dress in Savoyard-inspired wood and a panel of warm tones. They all face a magnificent panorama of mountains. In the public areas around the monumental staircase with beautiful iron work, various areascan be used to meet after a walk in the mountains or a day of skiing. We like the Spa by Clarins, which spreads on 250 m2 with a steam room, a sauna and a shower experience. The beautiful heated outdoor pool in summer and winter, boasts with a stunning view of the Mont Blanc. In the charming restaurant Matafan, we enjoy the cuisine of Chef Mickey Bourdillat who highlights recipes according the seasons. Finally be aware that the restaurant’s name comes from a famous potato pancake that « kills hunger “! A. F.-M.
Portuguese hotel group Pestana The Hotel Group recently opened a new facility in the heart of Lisbon, the Pousada de Lisboa. Perfectly located right in the Portuguese capital on the corner of the famous Praça do Comércio, a few hundred meters away from the Tagus and near the oldest café in Lisbon – A Brasileira, this was once the Ministry of Interior Affairs. The hotel has 90 rooms, bathed in light and boasting superb views over the river and the Castle of Sao Jorge, they are designed in the spirit of a luxury boutique-hotel. The elegant legacy of the past: the high ceilings of the 18th century and original structures enriched with art loaned from various museums, has been carefully preserved and enhanced. The hotel also features an indoor pool, a spa and a fitness room, which should be highlighted: it is not necessarily the case in a historical building in the city center ! A. F.-M.
Keeping warm at the end of the year: we are all dreaming of it! So go ahead and let yourself be tempted by this mini-circuit of five days in Dubai and Abu Dhabi from the 29th of December to the 2nd of January. Concocted by “Aya désirs d’Orient et des îles » the Middle East tour operator, it will take you from the Heritage Village craft center that traces the history of Abu Dhabi to the Qasr Al Husn Palace, the city’s oldest monument through souks of gold and spices in Dubai, a crossing of the creek by boat, an evening in a traditional camp, a ride in a SUV in the dunes, some lazing on the beach, well course gala dinner in a 5 star hotel for the New Year’s Eve evening … A.F-M.
Lovers of great Burgundy wines have found their second address in Lyon. At the Burgundy Lodge, you can enjoy a selection of the finest wines by the glass, thanks to the Coravin system or discover perfect wine pairings during theme nights and tastings with winemakers. In this cozy and refined setting, the wines are honored with an original principle: customers initially select wines (among 6000 bottles from the village appellation to the largest and most prestigious wines) and chef Romain Dobovskek and chef sommelier Jean-Sébastien Jurin offer wine agreements and harmonious dishes. B.D.