Hotels

Hotel Wrap: Langham appoints first-ever operations chief, SLH welcomes six more properties + MORE

Out of touch with the latest hotel happenings? Check in to this week’s Hotel Wrap and stay as long as you like.

Langham appoints Bob van den Oord as first chief operations officer

Langham Hospitality Group has announced the appointment of Bob van den Oord (pictured above) in the newly created position of chief operations officer, to support the company’s hotel operations and core business functions.

Van der Oord – who brings more than two decades of experience to his new role, based at the corporate office in Hong Kong – will report directly to chief executive Stefan Leser.

The new COO was most recently managing director at The Langham, London as well as regional vice president, operations (Europe, Middle East and the United States).

In his new capacity as COO, van den Oord will oversee the regional vice presidents, hotel managing directors and general managers to elevate the operational success of the group’s properties in North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and the Middle East.

At the corporate level, van den Oord will steer the food and beverage, spa, rooms and quality divisions to ensure that the hotels around the world meet or exceed operational, guest service, strategic, branding and fiscal plans, while maintaining the highest standards of regulatory compliance.

Montville House launches at Spicers Clovelly Estate

Spicers Clovelly Estate in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland has launched Montville House, a luxuriously appointed standalone guesthouse, reflecting Clovelly Estate’s signature French provincial style.

Located by 22 acres of lush, landscaped grounds, Montville House offers six self-contained suites, each with its own distinctive character, and a marble-tiled ensuite, including freestanding limestone bath.

Montville House guests have access to an exclusive stylish lounge/library with open fireplace, private covered veranda, and tranquil gardens to offer the ultimate in relaxation and indulgence.

Small Luxury Hotels of the World welcomes six new member hotels in Asia

The MIST Hot Spring Hotel, Xuchang City, Henan, China

Small Luxury Hotels of the World (SLH) has welcomed six new member hotels across Asia, with properties in Bhutan, China, and Japan recently joining the brand ready to welcome guests with their diverse and delightful experiences in the very near future.

These include:

  • Bhutan Spirit Sanctuary, Shaba, Bhutan
  • Sowaka, Kyoto, Japan
  • Shima Kanko Hotel The Bay Suites, Ise-Shima, Japan
  • Hinode Hills Niseko Village, Hokkaido, Japan
  • The MIST Hot Spring Hotel, Xuchang City, Henan, China
  • YiuTeung Mansion, Chengdu, China.

More than just safe holiday havens, SLH hotels are able to offer additional services from arranging restaurant reservations, hotel-exclusive private tours to planning that special celebration, making the now-treasured vacation more meaningful and memorable.

Marriott International’s The Luxury Collection debuts in Abu Dhabi

The Luxury Collection, part of Marriott International, has welcomed Al Wathba Desert Resort & Spa to its unique ensemble of iconic hotels, marking the debut of the portfolio in the United Arab Emirates’ capital.

Just a 30-minute drive from the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, Al Wathba Desert Resort & Spa is located deep within the expansive landscape of Abu Dhabi. With a design reminiscent of a historic desert village, it is an intimate retreat suffused with natural beauty, unique tranquillity, and rare experiences.

Marriott’s W Hotels brand has also expanded, with the announcement of an agreement with KJP Participaçoes LTD to bring the W Hotels brand to Gramado, a mountain resort town in the Brazil’s southernmost state, Rio Grande do Sul.

The property will be the second W Hotel to open in Brazil and the fourth in the Southern Cone of Latin America. The 80-room hotel, W Gramado, will be located in the Swiss Village, the highest point of Gramado, known for exceptional views into the valley and hills beyond the city centre.

Quest Hotels opens new Palmerston North property

On Monday, Quest Apartment Hotels announced the opening of the new Quest Palmerston North in New Zealand. The property is a joint venture between local iwi Rangitāne o Manawatū, and Wallace Development.

The brand-new 40-apartment hotel, which replaces the former Quest Apartment Hotel in Palmerston North, is conveniently located in the Palmerston North CBD, just a short walk from Palmerston City Library, Jetts gym, the Manawatu River Walkway, Victoria Esplanade and Lido Aquatic Centre.

ONYX Hospitality Group introduces Saffron Collection

ONYX Hospitality Group is introducing the Saffron Collection, a portfolio of individual boutique hotels and resorts to complement the ongoing regional expansion of Amari, OZO and Shama.

Conceptualised as a portfolio of hotels that creatively interpret “compelling stories of the personalities and history associated with each destination”, the Saffron Collection will initially be available in Hanoi, Penang, Bangkok and Aranyaprathet in Thailand.

The company plans to further expand the collection across Asia-Pacific.

ONYX Hospitality Group’s Oriental Residence Bangkok (pictured) will be reintroduced as a Saffron Collection property, with The Five Residences Hanoi scheduled to open in October 2020 as a new-build addition to this collection.

This will be followed by the mid-2021 opening of The George in Penang, and the early 2022 opening of Indochina Hotel in Aranyaprathet, Thailand.

Ascott offers ‘Work in Residence’ and ‘Space-as-a-Service’ to seize new business opportunities

CapitaLand’s wholly owned lodging business unit, The Ascott Limited, has launched its ‘Work in Residence’ initiative at participating properties worldwide, leveraging its design strengths to transform selected apartments into conducive work suites, which guests can now book on its website.

To extend its service offerings to guests, Ascott is also providing its ‘Space-as-a-Service’ by exploring with multinational corporations, entrepreneurs and small-medium enterprises different possibilities to optimise the use of space in its properties.

These range from hosting cloud kitchens and Starbucks coffee kiosks, to organising live streaming or fitness activities in its apartments, and serving as parcel collection hubs for convenient pick-up of online orders.

Singita Sabora Tented Camp to reopen end-September

Conservation and ecotourism brand Singita has announced its Sabora Tented Camp property is set to open next month, after an extensive redesign.

Reopening at the end of September 2020, Singita Sabora Tented Camp’s extensive redesign is a modern interpretation of luxury tented safaris that retains the quintessential elements of a romantic experience under canvas.

The new forward-thinking camp features sophisticated details such as hand-stitched leather finishes, as well as durable canvas and campaign furniture, and echoes the unmistakable spirit of classic East African adventures combined with intuitive simplicity.

Andrew Gunn joins The Calile Hotel as Lobby Bar’s head chef

Former Urbane and The Euro head chef Andrew Gunn is bringing his vast international experience to The Calile Hotel’s Lobby Bar restaurant, with a new menu taking inspirations from Japan, Spain, France, and Columbia thanks to the chef’s travels and experience in Michelin-starred restaurants.

Gunn is also marrying the experience of Columbians on his kitchen team, two of who also worked at ‘Urbane’ alongside the head chef.

Hailing from Brisbane, Gunn began his career locally at Isis Brasserie, then in Sydney at Bécasse under Justin North before relocating to France.

He worked in Paris for six years within several Michelin-starred restaurants including Les Ambassadeurs at Hôtel de Crillon, Le Taillevent with Michelin-starred Alain Solivérès, and Le Cinq at Hotel George V with Michelin-starred Christian Le Squer.

Upon Gunn’s return to Brisbane, he assumed the role of executive chef at acclaimed restaurants The Euro and Urbane working alongside head chef and now wife Amélie Gunn.

Refurbishments for Adina Apartment Hotel Brisbane Anzac Square and Travelodge Resort Darwin

The 96-room Adina Apartment Hotel Brisbane Anzac Square (pictured) has thrown open its doors on a million-dollar-makeover, which has transformed the inner-city heritage gem into a sophisticated spot for CBD stays.

TFE Hotels’ classic apartment-style hotel offers both heritage architecture and contemporary design, with dove greys and calming whites dominating the new in-room colour scheme.

Each of the 96 spacious studio, one or two bedroom apartments – equipped with all the amenities and features to make you feel at home while you’re away, including full sized refrigerators, laundries and separate living space – boast a new kitchen fit out, new furniture and fixtures, and new flooring.

Darwin’s Travelodge Resort (pictured) has also unveiled a multi-million-dollar makeover ahead of the famous region’s festival of events.

Designed around lush resort-style pools and a waterfall, the Travelodge is an urban oasis in the heart of Darwin’s CBD, offering a great short or long stay alternative accommodation offering for both leisure and corporate travellers alike.

As part of the $3.7 million wet season refurbishment program, each of the hotel’s 168 accommodation rooms and 32 self-contained townhouses was stripped to the bones, with new TFE Dreamcatcher beds and bedding, smart TVs introduced alongside upgraded guest WiFi and a fresh new design scheme.

Capella Bangkok opens for reservations

Capella Bangkok – Riverfront Premier III

Capella Bangkok is now accepting reservations for stays from 1 October 2020. The highly anticipated opening is Capella Hotels and Resorts’ first property in Thailand.

Situated within the Chao Phraya Estate, Capella Bangkok offers 101 guestrooms, suites and villas, each of which boasts uninterrupted views of Thailand’s revered river.

The location was selected due to its access to the storied Chao Phraya River and Charoenkrung Road – Bangkok’s oldest paved road where tradition and cultural heritage meets the city’s trendiest cafes, bars, and art galleries.

Hotel Milano Scala and Sky Terrace to reopen from September

Hotel Milano Scala, Milan’s first zero-emissions hotel, is preparing to reopen on 1 September.

The team at Hotel Milano and Sky Terrace has worked consistently to adapt to all safety measures and procedures without losing sight of comfort.

Wearing masks and providing disinfectants ensures the individual protection of each person so that nothing stands in the way of a relaxing stay in the hotel or on the roof terrace, the hotel said.

The arrangement of the tables, the confidential dividers and the possibility of reserving parts of the rooms ensure maximum safety and well-being.

Green sea turtles return to Grand Park Kodhipparu, Maldives

This year, for the second time, another endangered sea turtle species discovered a safe ecosanctuary at,Grand Park Kodhipparu, Maldives to lay her eggs, on 1 August 2020.

In the four months of the first-ever nesting at Grand Park, staff were fortunate to welcome a very special Green Sea turtle, also known as Chelonia Mydas, considered to be one of the largest sea turtles and a strict herbivore who trusted the beach to safeguard her eggs.

“It’s a fabulous feeling for our green team when nature rewards us with joyful moments in this manner, for the commitment to protecting the environment, the ocean and our reefs we are surrounded by in the Maldives,” the team at Grand Park Kodhipparu said.

Movie night at the world’s last BLOCKBUSTER store with Airbnb

In a major throwback moment, the world’s last Blockbuster store has been listed on Airbnb for a nostalgia-filled, 90s-themed slumber party.

The manager of the last-of-its-kind Blockbuster store in Bend, Oregon, will be hosting the end of summer sleepover to show her appreciation for the community support she has received during these uncertain times.

While the opportunity to score one of three nights’ accommodation is sadly only open to Oregon residents, Airbnb can’t help but wish that it too could be transported back to the 90s.

Nesuto partners with AsheMorgan for signing of Nesuto Docklands Apartment Hotel

Nesuto today announced the signing of Nesuto Docklands in Melbourne’s The District Docklands precinct, its first property to open in Victoria.

The partnership adds to Nesuto’s existing portfolio of 11 operating and 1 pipeline hotel and apartment hotels in Australia and New Zealand.

The signing of the 211-key apartment hotel also marks the first time Nesuto has partnered with Australian real estate investment firm AsheMorgan, which is the owner of The District Docklands, Melbourne. The total investment of the new build apartment hotel is $100 million.

Agoda introduces day use feature in South Korea

Agoda has introduced a beta version of its day-use feature available from 7,000 hotels in South Korea, giving people the choice to book a room for just a few hours in the day.

Agoda believes the day-use option will benefit accommodation providers, allowing them to maximise their revenue by increasing occupancy in the day.

To book a day-use room, Agoda users can start by searching for any destination in South Korea on the Agoda mobile app, select the ‘day use’ tab, enter the check-in date and browse through a wide range of properties across the country.

Day use rates are available for two- to ten-hour blocks, depending on the hotel’s availability. Users can select from available check-in timeslots before 11pm (local time).


Featured image: Spicers Clovelly Estate Hinterland dining with views (source: supplied)

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