Hotel News We Noted: April 19, 2013

As we bring you this week’s “Hotel News We Noted” column, we must first take a moment to share our thoughts with the people in and affected by this week’s events in Boston and in West, Texas.

If you’re joining us for the first time, “Hotel News We Noted” is a weekly column bringing readers the best, oddest and most interesting news of note from the hotel world each week. We welcome reader tips via comments and email, so feel free to send us a note!

Hotel Security: Hotels In Boston Tighten Security
Earlier this week, we shared some basic safety tips for travelers both home and abroad, but we also have word that hotels in the Boston area have tightened security in response to the bombing earlier this week at the Boston Marathon. Hotel Management has reported that the Mandarin Oriental underwent a forced evacuation and, due to an “abundance of precaution,” Marriott, Ritz-Carlton, Starwood, Loews, InterContinental and Westin have upped security measures. Nearly all hotels have waived last-minute booking fees as well. Hotels in New York and Washington, D.C., have also upped security to some degree.

Unique Hotel: World’s First “Chocolate Hotel” Opens
A 13-room hotel in Bournemouth, near Dorset, has opened, featuring cocoa-themed rooms, cooking classes and a chocolate bar serving boozy cocoa-inspired cocktails, the Daily Mail has reported. The family run hotel is dubbed perfect for “hen nights and girlie get-togethers.” Guests paint their portraits with chocolate and enjoy sugar-high inducing amenities like chocolate fountains installed at the foot of each bed. The hotel is relatively affordable as well – £170 gets guests the “best suite” and single rooms start at just £65.Fit for a Princess: The Goring Wins “Top Afternoon Tea” Award
The Goring hotel, perhaps best known to Americans as the hotel where Kate Middleton stayed on the night before her wedding, now has a new honor. The hotel was awarded one of the highest accolades from the UK Tea Guild, The 2013 Top London Afternoon Tea Award. Now in its 28th year, The UK Tea Council’s Tea Guild Awards are considered to be The Oscars of the tea world. The Goring was judged by anonymous tea inspectors on 16 categories including décor, efficiency of service, tea appearance and flavor. Want to try for yourself? It’s relatively affordable, starting at $49 per person USD.

Hotel Opening: The Graham Georgetown
Washington, D.C., has had a busy few weeks with hotel openings, and now the Georgetown area boasts a new boutique hotel, The Graham. The revamped and renamed hotel offers just 57 rooms (all suites) plus a rooftop lounge called The Observatory, which will be the only public rooftop lounge in Georgetown. Expect a popular cocktail lounge, A.G.B., Bvlgari spa products, a 24-hour gym and a prime location off to M Street.

[Image Credit: The Graham]