We’d like to begin this week’s column by sending out our thoughts to all of those who have been without power or homes since Sandy tore through the East Coast earlier this week. While we escaped the worst of the storm in D.C., we know that many of our friends and colleagues in the Northeast were not so lucky. We’ll be reporting on ways travelers can help throughout the coming weeks.
The hotel news, however, must go on. So, without further ado, here is this week’s issue of “Hotel News We Noted.”
If you’re interested in sending us newsy tidbits or comments, please do so via email. We welcome reader mail! We’re also seeking hotels and travel companies offering Black Friday and Cyber Monday specials for an upcoming special edition.
Storm Loss: $700 Million In Business Lost
A new Wall Street Journal article estimates that the one-day loss totals from Hurricane Sandy equaled 600,000 business trips lost and $700 million in associated spending loss. Significant, sure, but not compared to the $50 billion plus expected to clean up the damage as a result of the storm. Still, for the tens of thousands of travelers still stranded in airport hotels waiting to get home and those who are currently staycationing because their buldings lack power, we hope you get home soon.
Hotel Openings: In North Korea?
We all knew those crazy North Koreans were on a power trip. Now the AP is reporting (see the full story over on our friends at HuffPo) that the “world’s tallest hotel,” Pyongyang’s Ryugyong Hotel, will likely open next year. The 105-story hotel will partially open more than two decades after initial construction began, via a management contract with European hotel chain Kempinski.New Hotel Partnership: Gaylord Joins Marriott
Marriott now has a 14th brand. As of early 2013, Gaylord Hotels’ four resorts in the D.C., Orlando, Dallas and Nashville areas will be part of the Marriott Rewards program. Members earn 10 points per dollar spent at Gaylord Hotels on room rate only or two airline miles per dollar spent on room rate only. That’s a good deal for business travelers, many of who find themselves at these massive conference centers for events.
Haute Hotel Package: Holiday Prep at the White Barn Inn
Learn how to be the “Hostess with the Mostess” this holiday season. On November 10, The White Barn Inn, the boutique Relais & Chateaux property in Kennebunkport, ME, is offering guests a Holiday Workshop, complete with a baking class in the new bakery (with champagne, of course), lunch at the famed White Barn Inn restaurant where guests can try their baked creations, and a cocktail class by White Barn Inn expert mixologists to learn to make the hottest holiday cocktails of the season. Rates start at $760 for an overnight plus breakfast for two. Pricey, but if it gets you any closer to Martha Stewart-like fame for your domestic skills, the investment might be worth it.
Hotel Deals of the Week
It seems like even hotels are getting in the holiday spirit early this year. Arizona’s Biltmore is offering an incredible $89 holiday rate for stays booked between Nov. 2 and 9 for stays between Nov. 18 and Dec. 1 or between Dec. 14 and Jan. 1.
[Image Credit: Arizona Biltmore]