ARRIVAL/CHECK-IN: An interesting morning of air travel was followed by a stress-free greeting at The Peninsula Chicago. Upon arrival I stepped out of my Uber and onto the sidewalk of the hotel to be greeted by a doorman in a beautiful all-white uniform who asked my name in order to alert the front desk of my arrival. Once I made my way through the doors and up to the lobby, a front desk agent acknowledged me by name and assured me check-in was not necessary and that she would take care of it later. She actually walked me all the way to my room on the 17th floor and showed me around the suite. This would be unnecessary if the suite wasn’t so high-tech. I appreciated it after realizing how detail-oriented each guestroom was. A hands-free check-in experience is something I can get used to.
GUEST QUARTERS: The Grand Premier King room was where I would rest my head for the one night I was in town. A cloud of a king bed sat in the naturally lit room adjacent to a beautiful couch; a work station equipped with an array of outlets and a printer; and a table holding a hand-written letter from The Peninsula staff, two waters, a fruit basket and a jar of nuts. The room was operated by a tablet system that controlled the lights, temperature, TV and pretty much anything else you could imagine. This system allowed me to request pillows, room service or any other needs I had during my 24 hours in town. One of my favorite aspects was the “dressing room” with lighting options; it led into the beautiful bathroom with its mix of classic and modern décor — complete with a TV and a spa-sized tub where I would wind down after a day of meetings.
SERVICES/ AMENITIES: While I didn’t have time to book myself a spa treatment, I could not resist peeking in to see what all of the excitement was about online; and let me tell you, excitement was an understatement. On the top floor of The Peninsula, I took it upon myself to walk around the half-Olympic-sized indoor pool, spa quarters and women’s locker room.
The service was wonderful. Since returning to Pennsylvania, I have certainly missed being greeted as Ms. Fogarty every time I entered or exited the property. The turndown service was most notable, as I returned from my dinner reservation to calming music, dimmed lighting and a water bottle next to my bed — also something I’ve missed!
One thing I will say is no matter how often I tried to express my gratitude toward the attentive staff, they appreciated my gesture. But what makes The Peninsula Chicago so outstanding is the fact they do not expect thanks. The 5-star service is such a standard, and I never once felt like the employees were anything less than thrilled to provide such an experience.
- The rooftop bar, ZBar, and restaurant Shanghai Terrace were delicious!
- Great location on Michigan Avenue
- My experience was completely personalized, and the staff was wonderful!
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This past May, the location of Dunfermline in Fife, Scotland, was granted status as a city of its own during Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. Not too shabby for a town that’s actually been around for a while, boasting structures dating to the 11th century.
Marriott Bonvoy and American Express recently debuted changes to the Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card. The card, aimed at helping small business owners turn business expenses into travel rewards, now provides new and existing card members with a 7 percent Room Rate Discount on eligible bookings at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels; four times Marriott Bonvoy points at restaurants worldwide; and complimentary Gold Elite status. These changes are in addition to the card’s other existing benefits.
IHG® Hotels & Resorts certainly has a lot to celebrate, starting with an incredible growth story. Over the past five years, IHG has acquired or launched six new brands: Six Senses® Hotels Resorts Spas, Regent® Hotels & Resorts, Vignette™ Collection, voco™ hotels, avid® hotels and Atwell Suites™. Most recently, IHG reached an important milestone with its 6,000th open hotel. The company looks to further expand its portfolio by 30 percent with 1,800 hotels in the development pipeline, with significant focus on growth in the luxury segment where IHG is positioned as one of the top two hotel chains.
PHOTO: © BOGDAN LAZAR | DREAMSTIME.COM,
National Rum Day is right around the corner on Aug.16, meaning it’s time to start planning your celebration. Sandals Resorts, the all-inclusive Caribbean resort company, shares recipes from mixologists, allowing rum fans to celebrate as if they are staying on property.
Sweet tea. Soul food. Y'all. Sound familiar? Though these words and phrases are commonly associated with the South, it's understood in any language. If you're seeking a city abroad that will enchant you, capture your attention from start to finish and welcome everyone as family, we cordially invite you to visit Savannah.
Until Aug. 21, catch the museum premier of Bonnie Lautenberg: Art Meets Hollywood at Boca Raton Museum of Art. After learning one of the large-scale red paintings created by artist Lucio Fontana was the result of his viewing of the 1964 film Red Desert (directed by Michelangelo Antonioni), Lautenberg set out to discover other instances where filmmakers and artists knowingly — or perhaps unknowingly — had an effect on one another’s work.