Whether you’re traveling close to home or venturing across continents, hotels around the world are spiffing up for the season. Renovations, upgrades, new amenities and even charity events are putting them on the radar of travelers and revitalizing destinations as people finally take the long-awaited trips they have been planning.
Some hotels are even looking to hire some of their most loyal guests. Four Points by Sheraton is looking for someone to take on an epic project becoming its “chief brew officer,” who gets to take a beer-themed vacation. Courtyard by Marriott is running a contest to give someone a sleepover inside the Super Bowl stadium next year.
No matter where you stay, don’t forget to register for this season’s latest hotel loyalty program promotions to earn bonus points and perks along the way. Here is some of the latest hotel news to keep you updated of the latest and greatest in hospitality.
Anantara Veli Maldives completes 9-month renovation
Adults-only Anantara Veli Maldives Resort plans to reopen Dec. 1 with a new top room category and an entire remodel following a nine-month closure. Wood, stone and rattan compose the redesigned guest accommodations, but it’s the new 1,593 square-foot Beach Pool Villa category that will most impress repeat visitors. The six villas in this top luxury category comes with a villa host, private pool and direct beach access. Also new is a wellness experience that incorporates light, sound and scent therapy into the villas that changes from day to night as well as a minibar stocked with healthier items like wholefood snacks and smoothies. Guests booking this experience receive a wellness consultation on arrival and can take part in daily yoga or fitness experiences, a healthy cooking class and a spa discount.
W Aspen offers leaf peeping package with BMW test drive
Between now and mid-November, guests at W Aspen can book a special leaf peeping package that includes a leaf-peeping test drive in the resort’s own BMW cars. It includes a scenic journey through the mountains’ beautiful scenery filled with trees and leaves changing colors. At the end of the drive, guests are treated to a gourmet picnic prepared by the hotel’s culinary team. It includes things like sandwiches of roast duck, fig and grain mustard with arugula and brie or grilled tenderloin, horseradish aioli, chimichurri red onion and greens. Sides include Country Scotch egg, Colorado beef chili, and black bean salad, corn, diced pepper, lime and pomegranate vinaigrette. Even better, this fall experience comes with the opportunity to earn or redeem Marriott Bonvoy points during their stay.
Westin Puntacana Resort & Club shows off renovation
Grupo Puntacana is unveiling a major investment to the Westin Puntacana Resort & Club in the Dominican Republic. This fall, the Marriott Bonvoy property is showing off many new dining options including the remodeling of the existing Brassa and Anani restaurants plus two new options, a steakhouse and an Asian-themed venue. Additional meeting space will also help the resort attract more group business. Guest rooms received substantial touch ups as did the lobby bar and pool area. There is a new gazebo on the beach, which is sure to be popular with weddings. The resort is part of the 15,000-acre Puntacana Resort & Club, which has three miles of beach.
New Carlotta Sky Bar at The Ritz-Carlton, Mexico City
The Ritz-Carlton, Mexico City now has a shiny new crown at its summit, the Carlotta Sky Bar. On the menu is a variety of wine, beer and craft cocktails that pair well with the shiny views of the city’s glittering skyline from this high, 38th floor vantage point. Live entertainment and DJ sets will take place regularly. The financial area-based Ritz-Carlton is one of the many Marriott Bonvoy properties in the Mexican capital, and this luxury hotel sits along the famous Paseo de la Reforma making it popular with both business and leisure travelers.
JW Marriott Maldives upgrades main pool
Dangling over the edge of the aqua blue water, the main pool at JW Marriott Maldives now sports a new look. Colorful mosaic tiles, a refreshed pool deck with cushioned day beds, and the popular bar and Italian restaurant with pizza oven will be back in time for the holidays. The Horizon pool is the main pool, but there is a second option reserved for adults on the other side of the island. Also new this year is an overhaul of the resort’s sustainability efforts including removing single-use plastics. The resort will have its own glass water bottling plant as well as a new waste management system.
La Cantera Resort unveils new chefs and menu; hosts charity ‘teddy bear brunch’
Fresh from winning the title of the best resort in the southwest (and top resort in Texas) from a major travel magazine, La Cantera Resort is launching a new menu at Signature Restaurant thanks to a new culinary team. On the updated menu card are things like hamachi crudo and Spanish octopus, which are specialties of the new, local executive chef, John Carpenter. Asian and Latin American influences are now among the options. The team also includes executive sous chef Jaime Torres and pastry chef Stéphane Leopoldo. On the weekend of Nov. 6, the restaurant will host a charity “teddy bear brunch” (open to the public) benefiting the Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas.
Venice’s Gritti Palace leads major preservation project
In partnership with Save Venice, an American non-profit organization focused on preserving art and architecture in Venice, The Gritti Palace, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Venice, is a lead sponsor in a major project for the city. The official details will be announced early next year, but the Marriott Bonvoy hotel hopes to cement its role as a former, noble private residence and as a hotel, a major center for social events and patron of the arts. With 61 rooms and 21 suites, several with Grand Canal views and inspired by past guests or visitors like Ernest Hemingway and Somerset Maugham, the hotel and Palazzo Gritti have strong cultural roots in the city. At the moment, Save Venice has more than 40 art and architecture restorations for at-risk pieces and buildings underway. Over the past decade, more than $18 million has been invested to support everything from historic churches to individual paintings, frescoes, sculptures and manuscripts.
Hilton Tulum Riviera Maya opens ‘Family Zone’
There’s a new area dedicated to parents and their kids at the Hilton Tulum Riviera Maya All-Inclusive Resort in Mexico. Dubbed the Family Zone, it is divided into three areas with a kids club featuring bean bag chairs, board games, a playground and splash pool and a teens club with a movie theater, air hockey table, billiards and video games. Adults are not left out as there is a bar and adult pool within the same area. The area also includes an all-day Mexican restaurant as well as a churro and ice cream shop. In the kids club, activities will include piñata making, pool float races and a mini Olympics experience.
Longest timber suspension bridge opens in Michigan
Boyne Mountain Resort is home to the world’s longest timber-towered suspension bridge, which opens this month. Named SkyBridge Michigan, the 1,200 foot pedestrian bridge sits between the peaks of McLouth and Disciples Ridge and will be open year-round. Visitors start by riding a chairlift ride to the mountain top before a thrilling open-air walk across the suspended five-foot-wide walking surface, which dangles almost 118 feet above the valley floor. On either side, the bridge is supported by two 52-feet tall timber towers. The resort is also home to Michigan’s largest indoor water park, two golf courses and an 18,500 sq ft spa.
The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch plans winter activities
As people plan their winter vacations, The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch is releasing its lineup of activities for the cold season. They include seven snowshoe hike trails designed for the best Rocky Mountain views, stargazing and a village-to-village, four-mile trek from Bachelor Gulch to Beaver Creek. Parents will be happy about the return of the Ski Nanny program that not only looks after young visitors while the parents are skiing, but also helps dress kids for a day on the slopes or playing in the snow. For many parents, that is the most stressful part of the day. Holiday programming starts in December with everything from cookie decorating to arts and crafts that includes making candles and snow globes.
New spa and specialty suites at Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at Sultanahmet
Once a prison, but now a 65-room luxury hotel, the Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at Sultanahmet is debuting a new spa this month with a authentic hammam experience. Also new this fall is a series of specialty suites, some with iconic views of Hagia Sofia. The hotel’s outdoor terrace is home to an Anatolian restaurant serving traditional recipes, and Turkish wine and cocktails are served on the property’s rooftop terrace, also overlooking Hagia Sofia.
Vogue magazine and Sofitel develop fashion partnership
The French hotel brand Sofitel Hotels & Resorts and famous fashion magazine are tying up for a three-year partnership focused on “mastering art de vivre.” Sofitel has always been focused on its French heritage, and this ongoing program will include various public festivals, fashion collaborations and beauty-inspired programs. The first event takes place in Paris as the Vogue x Sofitel Festival this weekend. Coming soon are additional events at Sofitel New York and Sofitel Washington DC Lafayette Square with Vogue US. Another immediate initiative includes a partnership with Grey Goose vodka, a spirit with French heritage, to create a series of exclusive cocktails for Sofitel properties worldwide.
Outrigger Resorts & Hotels celebrates 75 years
In honor of its hallmark birthday, future guests can take advantage of special offers that range between 25-50% off upcoming stays. At resorts across its Asia-Pacific and Hawaiian portfolio, overnight savings as well as complimentary food and beverage packages are available to new bookings. This includes room discounts and free breakfast at Outrigger Koh Samui Beach Resort, Outrigger Surin Beach Resort and Outrigger Khao Lak Beach Resort in Thailand. The brand’s premium vacation condos in Hawaii are eligible for up to 25% off the rate