Six years ago, the “upcycling” transformation of the former Pearl Brewery complex into The Hotel Emma brought new meaning to the term “craft brewery.” And, in 2021, the jewel of the Pearl District feels as refreshing as ever. Although this walkable neighborhood is undoubtedly a tourist hot spot, residents embraced it for its conglomeration of chef-driven restaurants, one-off boutiques, a regular farmers market and various cultural events (especially as the pandemic has eased).
Hotel Emma is inspired by one-time brewery owner Emma Koehler, who steered its operations through the first decades of the 20th century. San Antonio design firm Roman and Williams honored her legacy of initiative and innovation by stringing together the original, late 19th-century brewhouse and five other adjoining buildings into the perfect amalgam of industrial chic, classic grand hotel style and lots of local character.
In addition to 140-plus rooms, there are several memorable one-of-a-kind suites. The Emma and Otto presidential suites and two-story Billmeier and Maritzen inside the pinnacle of the original Brewhouse fuse the late 19th-century structure with the needs of discerning 21st-century executives and vacationers. Appointments customized for each room include a full wet bar, distinctive dining tables and seating areas, fireplaces, custom-designed furniture and original artwork. In every room, guests will find Cuban-style Guayabera robes custom made by Dos Carolinas (one of The Pearl’s independently owned retailers), Merit Roasting Company coffee, Frette linens, a macaron from The Pearl’s Bakery Lorraine replacing the mint on the pillow, and an Ice Box and In-Room Pantry that teases a few of the offerings available at The Larder, the hotel’s fancy food shop.
The rooftop pool looks like a 1930s travel poster, while the 3,700-volume library adjoining the lobby is a fine place to enjoy complimentary coffee and breakfast pastries or take an afternoon break. As one could intuit, craft beer and cocktails are available inside the guests-only Sternewirth, a luxury lounge carved out from a massive storage room built in 1896. There is 6,160 square feet of event space within the six connected buildings and outdoor areas, with the same attention to historic details and preserved architectural attributes as the suites and public spaces. Catering options are designed by hotel executive chef John Brand, who also engineered Supper, the widely acclaimed in-house restaurant.
Services and amenities are on a par with properties like The Four Seasons and Peninsula, but executed with distinctive “Southern hospitality” flair. Electra cruiser loaner bikes can be booked along with car service that can take guests to must-see destinations beyond downtown, such as San Antonio Botanical Garden and McNay Art Museum. A short walk along the northern stretch of the city’s Riverwalk leads to the San Antonio Museum of Art. Foodies can turn to Hotel Emma’s Culinary Concierge to arrange and book custom culinary and cultural experiences within the Pearl.
136 E. Grayson St.
San Antonio, TX 78215
tel 844 845 7384
Without a doubt, the pandemic changed the role of airports in the travel industry. Hamad International Airport’s role evolved in many ways since the pandemic hit. Now, more than ever, airports are responsible for creating a secure passenger experience. As the gateway to Qatar and the world, the safety and wellbeing of staff and passengers has always been at the core of Hamad International Airport’s strategy.
I imagine that when writer Hans Christian Andersen mused, “Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale,” he was standing at the edge of Copenhagen’s historic Tivoli Gardens, one of his favorite haunts, enlivened by the swirl of human happiness that surrounded him: children laughing; carousels spinning; games of chance played for prizes; lovers holding hands; hungry people whispering over sweets, hot drinks, beer and towering, open-faced smørrebrød, Denmark’s quintessential sandwich. That fairy tale lives on today at the second-oldest amusement park in the world, a spectacle of folly architecture, bakeries, gardens, rides, restaurants, puppet shows and joy ... and which also happens to be one of the city’s most storied places to convene for business.
The restored Park Hyatt Toronto reopened its doors, bringing luxury, sophistication and glamour alongside a nod to the hotel’s Canadian heritage. Alessandro Munge of Studio Munge collaborated on the hotel’s refresh, drawing inspiration from Canada’s seasons and natural landscapes.
GBTA’s Convention 2021 will bring the business travel industry together for the first time in a long time. Once again, you’ll learn and connect with experts and each other, along with discussions with leading thinkers, entrepreneurs and change makers addressing the issues that matter most.
The Global Business Travel Association, the world’s largest business travel and meetings trade organization, recently released a statement from GBTA CEO Suzanne Neufang regarding the Biden administration’s recent announcement that the U.S. travel ban will be relaxed in November for vaccinated travelers from 26 Schengen countries, the United Kingdom and Ireland.
Arriving early afternoon in Puerto Rico, we jumped in an Uber and took a short, 15-minute drive from the airport to La Concha. As it was Tuesday, the streets were not too busy and the hotel lobby was calm. During the weekend, the scene likely would have been more bustling. We were greeted by a staff member who requested proof of vaccination and government-issued ID, and were given a wristband to indicate we were fully vaccinated. All guests are required to be vaccinated and wear masks at all times while moving around the hotel. Hand sanitizer stations were placed around the lobby, in elevators and in each common area.
The Global Business Travel Association’s (GBTA) Convention 2021 will be unlike any other convention before it, as we come together in person for the first time since the business travel industry drastically changed and look forward to rebuilding and reshaping the future. GBTA Convention 2021 will bring all of us together to learn from experts and each other, in-person at Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, Nov. 17–19. The safety of our attendees is our top priority. View health and safety protocols.
The Rittenhouse has long stood out as one of Philadelphia’s finest hotels, centrally located in one of the city’s poshest neighborhoods. Needless to say, I knew I was in for an afternoon of luxurious pampering when I hopped in my car and headed down I-95 from my suburban home to the heart of the City of Brotherly Love. As I drove through the seemingly endless roadwork on the highway, I realized just how long it had been since I’d driven this once-familiar route into the city as a result of the pandemic. Of course I was eager for the relaxation and bliss that was in my future, but it was also a welcome feeling to head back into Philadelphia for a moment of normalcy.