Arrival/Check-In: Upon arriving at the Hotel Bel-Air, I was directed over a bridge to reception. It was like walking through a tropical paradise with gardens all around. The bridge provided a view of a pond and three beautiful swans (Hercules, Athena and Chloe).
I arrived at 10:45 a.m., well before the 3 p.m. check-in, so I wasn’t surprised my room wasn’t ready. I hadn’t eaten all day, so I decided to grab a bite to eat at the hotel’s restaurant, Wolfgang Puck at Hotel Bel-Air. While waiting for my room to be prepared, I sat on the terrace and enjoyed a gourmet grilled cheese with French Comté, Gruyere and smoked caramelized onions on rustic bread. By the time I was done with lunch, my room was ready.
Guest Quarters: I was happy to be escorted to my room, as the hotel property is on 12 acres and the rooms are more like bungalows, tucked into little nooks along winding walkways through lush greenery. The bellman showed me how the touch screen on the phones control various features in the room, including the lights and temperature. It also allows you to easily contact hotel staff with the touch of a button.
My room had a king-sized bed. A sitting area included a couch, a chair, a small table and a nice-sized desk equipped with an iPad for guests to use throughout their stay. It was programmed with information about the hotel, spa, restaurant and local activities, and also offered Web access.
The bathroom was large, with a double-sink vanity, rainfall shower and — my favorite part — heated floors. There was even a TV over the tub to entertain guests while relaxing.
Speaking of TVs, the Bang & Olufsen flat-screen HD TV in the bedroom was amazing. The picture was so sharp, it almost looked as though the people on screen were in my room.
Services/Amenities: The hotel has a business center equipped with one PC and one Mac adjacent to the lobby lounge. La Prairie Spa is located in one of the new buildings, just added last year. It has seven treatment rooms, including a suite with an outdoor space to accommodate groups. The fitness studio is in the same building and has state-of-the-art equipment with USB ports, Internet access and TVs on all cardio machines.
The Experience: The Hotel Bel-Air is a little slice of paradise right in the heart of L.A. The grounds, which are home to more than 200 species of plants and flowers, are perfectly manicured, and the hotel takes full advantage of the outdoor spaces, allowing guests access to the beautiful scenery as much as possible while maintaining privacy. Many of the suites have large balconies with Jacuzzis, along with fireplaces for a cozy night inside. The staff were all friendly and always greeted me by name and with a smile. I can’t wait to go back.
- Less than 10 minutes for check-in
- Separate tub and shower
- Large vanity
- High-quality towels
- Powerful, unattached hair dryer
- High-quality bed linens
- Large, flat-screen television
- Large desk with convenient outlets
- Complimentary in-room WiFi
- Complimentary bottled water
- Stocked minibar
- Ample lighting
- In-room coffeemaker
- Iron and ironing board
- On-site restaurant and bar
- 24-hour room service
- Large, complimentary laptop safe
- State-of-the-art fitness center
701 Stone Canyon Road
Los Angeles, CA 90077
tel 310 472 1211
Travelers interested in the trend of forest bathing have a new resource at their disposal. Forest Bathing Finder is an all-in-one website that connects forest bathing walkers with trained guides. Forest bathing guides list qualifications and venues, routes, walks and payment requirements for browsing forest bathers to then peruse.
According to the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy, small businesses create two-thirds of net new jobs and account for nearly 48 percent of the U.S. private sector workforce. And small- and medium-sized businesses outpace all other sectors as one of the fastest-growing in the United States. InterContinental® Hotels Group (IHG) goes above and beyond to create opportunities for this segment with its IHG® Business Edge program, voted Best Small- to Mid-Sized Business Program in Global Traveler’s 2019 GT Tested Reader Survey awards.
At FXExpress Publications, Inc., we can’t wait to #ComeBacktoTravel, and we can’t wait for the travel industry and others to #ComeBacktoGT. Take a visual journey through Japan with us.
THERE’S NO DOUBT 2020 HAS BEEN AN UNPRECEDENTED year for the travel industry. As borders begin to reopen and destinations, hotels and airlines around the world prepare to welcome travelers once again, we’re celebrating travel and looking to the future as we congratulate the winners of our eighth annual Leisure Lifestyle Awards. This annual survey honors the best in the world of leisure and lifestyle travel, awarding goods, services, destinations, hotels, airlines and cruises.
oneworld is an alliance of 13 world-leading airlines committed to providing the highest level of service and connecting you to more than 1,100 destinations around the world.
Best Western Hotels & Resorts opened its third Aiden by Best Western. The Aiden brand is designed to give travelers boutique, modern, stylish and locally inspired stay experiences. The new property is situated in Warm Springs, Georgia, adjacent to the Warm Springs Hotel and Event Center.
Paul Gauguin Cruises offers savings up to $3,050 per person on select voyages when booked by July 8. Round-trip airfare between Los Angeles (LAX) and Papeete (PPT), Tahiti, is included. Deposits for the select sailings have been reduced to $250 per person.
Looking for a truly unique travel experience and considering a new vehicle? The Volvo Overseas Delivery Program is the perfect solution to create your own adventure of a lifetime. Volvo allows you to custom order your new automobile tailored to fit your needs and desires. They will fly you to Sweden to pick up your Volvo so you can drive and explore Scandinavia and Europe on your terms for up to two weeks.
Through Sept. 7, guests at M Resort Spa Casino in Las Vegas can enjoy the No Resort Fee Summer promotion. The resort will waive daily resort fees on all reservations, and guests can also take advantage of summer rates beginning as low as $75 per night. Book online or by calling 877 673 7678.