“Dress Rehearsal” rate offered at the new Sanctuary Hotel in NYC

The Portland Square Hotel in New York is getting a face lift next spring. By fall of 2010, it will be reopen as the four-star boutique Sanctuary Hotel. During the final days of operation, guests who stay in one of the already renovated Sanctuary Studio rooms will receive a discounted rate of $159 per night and get a preview of what the rest of the completed rooms will look like.

The new rooms are decked out with European linens, plasma tvs, and iPod docking stations. Some will have unique design features like exposed brick or metal beams, and all will feature open plan bathrooms with rain showers.

The “Dress Rehearsal” rate of $159 is good through March 31, 2010. When the hotel officialy opens in the fall, rates will be nearly double, at $309 per night. Guests who book a room at the preview rate and then offer feedback about their stay will also receive a $50 credit towards a future stay.

Only nine of the 125 rooms have been renovated as of yet, so the rate may not be available on all dates. To book the deal, you can call the hotel reservation desk, or just type in the code DRESS1 and book online.

Free night at Sheraton up for grabs

It’s not often that you have such a good chance at winning a free stay at a hotel. Sheraton will be giving away 2,100 one-night stays at 86 locations during its Check-In On Us Giveaway.

You must be able to stay at the Sheraton hotel that you choose on Friday, October 23rd. You’ll be limited to that day for your overnight.

First register online, and then you can enter the giveaway once a day between October 6-9. There’s a chance that you might not win a room at the specific hotel you choose, but you’ll know instantly.

If you don’t win, you can try back the next day, through October 9. The rooms are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

If you win, congratulations–it’s all paid for! The hotel will cover the fees, taxes, and surcharges for the one night, but any additional nights and services will be your responsibility.

The promotion isn’t valid at all of the locations, but it is at 40% of them in the U.S. and Canada–meaning 86 locations. You must be specific and choose one hotel each time that you enter to win.

If the rooms are already booked by the time that you enter, you’ll still be offered a coupon for a room discount.

The promotion highlights Sheraton’s recent renovations. They’ve added or renovated 70,000 hotel rooms worldwide since 2007, and all of the hotels featured in the promotion are either new or newly renovated.

They threw out the bathtubs!

No more bathsI hope you weren’t planning on a nice, leisurely bath on your next trip to Australia.

The Rialto in Melbourne has done away with bathtubs. They just underwent a $60 million renovation which included the removal of the bathtubs! What? $60 million to downgrade their amenities?

According to their research, travelers only want showers anyway. I’m guessing some dudes didn’t fess up that they love bubble baths. I know y’all are using candles, too. Well, now you only get a bath if you sleep in one of the hotel’s 9 suites (not the 253 other rooms).

At least they’re now offering an Enomatic, an Italian machine that prevents wines from oxidization. This way, you don’t have to order a whole bottle of top shelf wine; you can just have a $175 glass of Grange (for example).

We hope this isn’t a trend. The bathtub should be a standard. Why not do away with the TV and the ice buckets, while you’re at it?

[via The Sydney Morning Herald]