A bi-weekly round-up of new hotels and hideaways, treks and tours.
Out NYC, New York’s first gay “urban
resort” (it markets itself as straight-friendly), opens 1 March in far west
Midtown. The low-rise hotel has a dance and cabaret space called XL Nightclub,
a sundeck, courtyard and interior lawn, plus “sleep shares” with four beds to a
London’s Apex Temple Court Hotel also opens 1 March off Fleet Street in the city’s Temple
district. The 184 rooms are decorated in contemporary fabrics and suites are a
generous 50sq m.
Also with 184 rooms, the 12-storey Hotel Lincoln opens on 8 March in Chicago’s Lincoln neighbourhood.
Rooms on the higher floors have lake views and food will be provided by the well-regarded
restaurant next door. For a fee, guests can work out at the neighbouring
Equinox fitness club, and a rooftop lounge is planned for June 2012.
The Hotel Indigo Santa Barbara opened on State Street on 14 February in the heart of
downtown with 41 rooms, 13 of which have private gardens. The hotel also has a
“living wall” of plants and gives a discount to guests who stay without a car.
It houses a satellite of the Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum and exhibits
works by local artists and specially-commissioned pieces.
Far from the urban whirl, Ariara, a 125-acre private island that is part of the Philippines’
Calamian Islands, opened on 28 February. It can accommodate up to 17 guests in
beach cottages and jungle villas, and the main lodge has a dining hall, lounge,
master suite, infinity pool and pier. Guests are looked after by 30 staff
members, including scuba instructors, spa therapists and a private chef.