Tag Archives: Boutique Hotels & Resorts

Bali Hotels hit by Eat Love Pray fever

By Dian Hasan | September 3, 2010

Eat Pray Love Vacation Package

The “Eat Pray Love” frenzy continues and for those who have been inspired to set off on their own soul-searching adventure in Bali’s Kamandalu Resort has come up with their own version of Elizabeth Gilbert’s story. The “Eat Pray Love” package starts with your choice of private luxury villa (Garden, Pool, or Deluxe Pool) and includes a variety of goodies all for both you and a guest including daily breakfast, cycling to see the Eat Pray Love movie sets in nearby Ubud, a romantic Italian dinner in the garden, 30 minute spa treatments for each of you, an outdoor activity of your choice (trekking, cycling, village or Royal Palace visit), and a trip to see Elizabeth Gilbert’s palm reader. Plus plenty of extras like bottled water in the room, comfy robes and slippers, transportation, and free drinks and coupons at the lounge.

The package is available from September 2010 thru July 2011 and sounds like a nice balance of experiencing the movie’s theme while still leaving room for a personalized experience, and if you were really inspired by the movie you can enter their contest and potentially win a trip for free. Otherwise there’s a minimum two night stay required with rates ranging from $280 – $440/night, depending on which villa you choose. Let yourself go!

Inspiration: Luxist and Unique Travel Destinations

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Green & Chic | Kahanda Kanda, Galle, Sri Lanka

Kahanda Kanda, among Sri Lanka’s newest boutique hotels, offers the indulgent luxuries of a private villa with the service of a five star hotel, and is situated near the southern coast not far from Galle. Five air conditioned suites with breathtaking panoramic views of palm fringed jungle and the Indian Ocean promise stylish, spacious interiors, ideal in which to unwind – the perfect example of getaway boutique hotels.

Overlooking Koggala Lake and surrounded by the lush greenery of a working tea estate, my home turned award winning boutique hotel offers discerning travellers a unique wellness escape with quick access by charming tuk tuk to timeless treasures inside Galle Fort as well as some of the world’s best beaches, for which Galle and Sri Lanka are so well known.

Peaceful, tropical ambience, world class heartfelt service and fresh fusion cuisine that lures guests from surrounding hotels in and around Galle, Kahanda Kanda is an idyllic environment for a wedding, a honeymoon or a holiday of absolute relaxation, all on a working tea plantation.

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Green & Chic | Raas Haveli, Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India

By Dian Hasan | August 31, 2010

Some of Asia’s most historically impressive destinations (save Bali, Bangkok, Luang Prabang & Kyoto) have often lacked accommodation that matched the magic of the place. The choices were mostly limited by large and unimaginative chain hotels, or a coterie of humble abodes for the backpacking crowd. And nothing really in between – a stylish small and personal hotel that breathes and oozes the place. Personality was missing big time. Such condition afflicted Jodhpur, Rajasthan, one of India’s most alluring destinations!

As the Indian economy continues to forge ahead, minting a new monied crowd with a lifestyle appetite to explore the continent’s diverse offerings, tagging with it an international clientele that seeks the chic and hip. The right hotels are coming on stream. Raas Haveli is one such fine pedigree! The age of the Boutique Hotel has arrived!

Situated at the foot of the mighty Meherangarh Fort, in the heart of Jodhpur’s Walled City. It is the only luxury hotel to be based in the old town, and the views directly up to the fort, which looms above you, are quite spectacular. It is situated in the prestigious north-eastern quarter of the Walled City, just a stone’s throw from the Clock Tower. One may simply wonder out into the surrounding maze of streets to explore the markets. The hotel comprises four charming 150-year old restored buildings in Jodhpur’s very own ‘rose-red’ sandstone.

This is combined with stylish, contemporary new buildings which have been designed by an acclaimed architect. In its entirety the Ras Haveli (as it was originally called) remains today the best preserved, largest and most complete urban noble residence perhaps in all Rajasthan. This exquisite little hotel is Jodhpur’s first eco friendly boutique hotel in the true sense of the term.

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Ace New York, the utterly “un-boutique” hotel

By Dian Hasan | May 16, 2010

Going against the grain of boutique hotels seems to be the basic premise of Seattle-based Ace Hotels, which has gone eastward and planted their first brand of new cool in the Big Apple. This is after a series of successfully acing hotels by the same name in Seattle (obviously), Portland and Palm Springs.

After all, what boutique hotel could claim having bunk beds, turntables and SMEG fridges in the guest rooms, an industrial-style elevator, and mix and match vintage furniture so unique, it feels as if New York’s famous ABC Carpet & Home furnishing has decided to start allowing stay over night in the store.


Ace New York City, a reincarnation of the 1904 edifice that housed the former Breslin Hotel, and what a sumptuous reincarnation at that!  Ace defies classification, it’s as if you’ve entered an old aunt’s living room in Prague, Berlin or Paris.

From the 18-foot-high ceiling that adorns the lobby, to the original mosaic tile floor and carved plaster ceiling in the public areas, to the vintage faucets and blackboards for scribbling your thoughts in the guest rooms, Ace is uniquely different.

Ace , positions itself impeccably against Gotham City’s plethora of hotels with personality. For this one’s shines through.

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Sleek & Chic | Hotel Parco dei Principi, Sorrento, Italy

By Dian Hasan | May 16, 2010

Designed in 1964 by iconic Italian architect Gio Ponti, the Hotel Parco dei Principi in Sorrento, overlooking the Gulf of Naples, is an essential stop for architecture and design aficionadoes, who come to experience the all-encompassing Ponti aesthetic. Born in Milan and trained as an architect, the prolific Ponti designed buildings, interiors, furniture, and lighting, and founded the magazine Domus.

Ponti’s refined sensibility is on view at the Parco dei Principi; he designed every detail of the hotel, from the furniture to the lighting to the 30 different geometric-patterned blue and white tiles used in different combinations throughout the interior. The hotel underwent a meticulous three-year renovation from 1999 to 2002, and still captures Ponti’s original vision.

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Chic & Sleek | Axel Hotel Guldsmeden, Copenhagen, Denmark

By Dian Hasan | May 16, 2010

What happens when Bali meets a Scandinavian city in Northern Europe?  If that place is Copenhagen, home to Hans Christian Andersen’s Little Mermaid, and a city renowned for its clean design flair, the result is a pleasant exercise in mix and match.

That special hotel is Axel Hotel Guldsmeden, and the location befits a hotel that defies categorization, in Vesterbro, Copenhagen hippest neighborhood.

Axel is casual and laid back, with furnishing that is part Balinese, part vintage local finds. The adjoining organic Bakery Cafe gives it the home appeal it screams out so comfortably.

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Chic & Sleek | Mosquito Beach, Playa del Carmen, Mexico

By Dian Hasan | May 16, 2010

Mosquito Blue, a quintessential boutique hotel in what is arguably Mexico’s best-kept secret, Playa del Carmen. This bohemian beach town is a perfect home for Mosquito Blue, a unique blend of traditional Yucatan look with Balinese and Mediterranean touches, resulting in an eclectic fusion of styles.

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