Oberoi Hotels & Resorts voted the World’s Best Hotel Brand at Travel + Leisure, World’s Best Awards, 2015

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Oberoi Hotels & Resorts has been voted World’s Best Hotel Brand by Travel + Leisure, World’s Best Awards, 2015. Furthermore, The Oberoi Udaivilas, Udaipur has been voted the World’s Best Hotel Overall. 

These rankings are the result of a Readers’ Poll conducted by the magazine.  Travel + Leisure’s World’s Best Awards are amongst the most prestigious in the travel industry as it is the readers who define excellence in hospitality and travel. Readers rate their experiences and evaluate hotels across the world on the following characteristics – rooms and facilities, location, service, restaurants, food and value.

Mr. P.R.S. Oberoi, Executive Chairman, The Oberoi Group said, “I am very proud that Oberoi Hotels & Resorts have been voted the World’s Best Hotel Brand and The Oberoi Udaivilas, Udaipur has been voted the best hotel in the world. The awards are an affirmation of The Oberoi Group’s unwavering commitment towards offering guests world-class facilities and unsurpassed service. I dedicate the awards to our people who are our biggest asset and who have worked passionately to ensure our guests receive warm, personalised and caring service”.

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St. Georges Yacht Club in Beirut, Lebanon is still an unfriendly place!

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After frequenting the St. Georges Yacht Club’s pool and restaurant from more than a decade, I have grown to known it very well. However, despite its long struggle of gaining recognition for its name and place, the place has gone down the hill especially considering the options that have spurted up for beaches and pools around the shoreline of Lebanon.

First of all, the person responsible for the entry into the facility is probably one of the most rude human beings you will encounter in Beirut. His reputation precedes him with a recent racism scandal in which he was filmed refusing entrance to someone because of her race, while allowing others to come in. Look up the term “Saint Georges Discrimination” on YouTube. Although they have since apologized for this incident, the person responsible hasn’t been fired and we experienced this first-hand recently from him. Nothing has changed. People have been refused entry because of their gender and talked down to because of their ethnic origins until today (September 2014)

 

 

The St. Georges Yacht Club has the most amazing location in Lebanon and lively atmosphere, however this is hampered by the service and the bigotry that is bound to ruin any vacation. Until this behaviour is eradicated, young people and tourists (of all colors, nationalities, genders and preferences) are opting to visit other places. Too bad the attitude of this deterred us from entering, we could have return a better review otherwise.

Check-In: Rosewood London Hotel, UK

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Being one of the largest metropolises in the world, London has an array of hotel options to offer any kind of traveller. However, there are only a few hotels that stand tall and mighty in comparison to the rest. Rosewood London is not only one of them, but the crop of the best.

Located on Holborn High, not far away from London’s buzzing shopping heart, the hotel offers an experience unlike any other in the city. The website describes this perfectly upon arrival: “Guests arrive at Rosewood London through an archway that opens into a grand Edwardian courtyard, in a little oasis of tranquillity unique among London luxury hotels. It is the perfect start to a memorable stay in a timeless heritage hotel, set just steps from Covent Garden.”

The hotel is truly exceptional. Every detail is taken into account. The staff are eager to help and are probably the sharpest dressed hotel staff you will ever see. Once you enter the vicinity, the utmost of attentiveness is offered throughout you stay. This includes butlers, 24 hours services, amazing room services, friendly reception and round-the-clock upkeep of the facilities.

Plainly put, the rooms are to die for. Spacious, luxurious and tranquil – the rooms are a far stretch from the other hotels in London. The marble bathrooms are fitted with TV screens and every detail is taken into account, from space for luggage to the provision of two sinks for rooms catering to couples. The mini-bar is not mini. It has everything from beer, to English sweets to free organic vodka and gin.

The setting is that of British modern luxury. The seamless decor is streamlined to equip everything in the room without compromising the overall look of the suites.The lighting is carefully studied to fit all corners of the rooms and the panelling is custom-made for each unit. The aura of the interior design is grand, yet inviting. When the Rosewood London describes itself as “ultra-luxury” – it is definitely not kidding around. For short-term travellers to London, this is the closest to an English heritage setting one can get without leaving central London.

Other than the hotel’s exceptional facilities, the entrance is hugged by two of the best culinary venues in the area. Scarfes Bar offers a rustic English lounge setting with some of the best mix cocktails (and impeccable service) this side of Tottenham Court Road. As the website describes: “Gerald Scarfe, renowned British artist and caricaturist has lent his name and artistic vision to Scarfes Bar where his completed artwork has now been revealed. Gerald’s collection of amusing and conversation-provoking paintings, highlighting his best work, adorn the marble walls turning Scarfes Bar into a living canvas, described by Gerald as ‘my personal art gallery, where you can see my life on walls.’ Gerald’s collection of original and one-off paintings, now a permanent feature in the bar, add a unique twist and depict well-known historical and famous faces recounting the colourful history of the United Kingdom in Gerald’s witty and satirical way.”

While Holborn Dining Room, previously known as the East Banking Hall of Pearl Assurance, keeps the tradition of the hotel by offering delicious British dishes with a modern twist in what seems like an American style diner. Designed by Martin Brudnizki, the restaurant is divided into eight sections: Bar Snacks, Cold Counter, Hot Counter, Grill, English Kitchen, Sides, Sandwiches and Afters. It makes for a great starting point for a night out on the town!

Rosewood London is truly an experience in and of itself. It is one of those few high calibre hotels that gets accommodation from A to Z without being too pompous. A stay here will ensure a great trip! Highly recommended!

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Check-In: One Aldwych Hotel, London, UK

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In the hustle and bustle of London, it’s hard to find a suitable hotel for your needs – especially a central one. That is not to say there aren’t many, but the expense and spaciousness is usually what worries the traveller in London. Not only are the hotels atrociously priced, but the sizes of the rooms are sometimes too tight and in some cases plain unliveable. However, one hotel has managed to create the perfect package with value, space, design and a central location all taken into consideration- One Aldwych. 

Located in the center of London steps away from Covent Garden hugging the Theatre Land of the West End, One Aldwych is a hotel that serves the most in its platter in this side of the city. It is aptly situation in a fork in the streets of Aldwych, which makes its unique shape a sight to see for all London visitors and residents. Sitting in the the lavish lobby by itself is a London experience – it offers two large window views of two streets with double decker buses and black cabs passing at all times while you enjoy one of their signature cocktails (So well-mixed, it serves as the perfect launchpad for your night out!). The lobby is meticulously decorated with international art pieces and designer furniture.

Located on a loft overlooking the lobby (and these amazing views we talked about) is Indigo restaurant. A small restaurant with a wide selection of dishes, from succulent steals to smoked salmon. With its relaxed and informal atmosphere, the restaurant serves as the perfect place for an early dinner. In fact, given its proximity to Theatre Land, it is a very suitable place to have a meal before hitting the shows with friends.  (Thank you Krizstian for the amazing service!)

The hotel also has a very cozy lounge on the ground floor that can serve as a great place to have meetings. Sectioned in accordance to needs, the place is carefully decorated to service guests with coffee table books peppering the tables and shelves. Paul Smith picked these books and has been known to frequent the place, since his offices are close.  iPads for guests are available, just ask for them (another reason to travel light).

The rooms are spacious for a central London design hotel. While being in the middle of the metropolis, the rooms are insulated in a way that deters the outside sounds from coming in. The room is filled with all needed amenities, including a bathtub with a view and a small TV in the bathrooms (in case you don’t want to miss anything from the array of TV Channels available). The bed are remarkably comfortable with a great choice in linens for the sheets.

Everything aside, the real eye-grabber is the pool. Located in The Health Club is a 18 meter pool with some startlingly amazing features including soft mood lighting, chlorine-free water, a projecter and, last bust not least, an underwater music system. Yes, you can swim and listen to beautiful moody sounds without headphones and only when you dip in! This is a first for us here at Flight965.com and we sure took our time to examine this unique facility. Also, it is safe to mention that The Health Club is a full-option spa with some of the best masseurs in the city. A 60-minute sessions will ease out all the tension built up for being in a city like London. Plus, the gym is right there whenever you need it.

If you are going to London, One Aldwych is a must-visit. Even if you are not staying there, the facilities it encompasses make for a great day trip. The hotel is equipped with everything to make your stay in London fantastic. Also, don’t forget to try out the pool!

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Check-In: Four Seasons Resort Seychelles

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The Indian Ocean is home to some of the best beaches on Earth, however, most of the unspoilt beaches are very hard to get to and even harder to stay at. So, it is only natural that islands like the Seychelles serve some of the best accommodation options on this Ocean. In fact, we managed to visit one of the best resorts there – Four Seasons Resort Seychelles.

Situated in the southwestern part of Mahé Island, the resort occupies a very unique corner of the biggest island in the country. The resort sits atop sprawling hills facing pristine waters in the middle of the tropical jungle. The nature is so lush that you can barely spot the villas which sporadically dot the area facing the beach. Sinking into the greenery, the resort seems much smaller, but its area is 170 acres facing one of the cutest beaches in the world – Petite Anse Beach. Petite Anse is a white powder sand beach surrounded by the trademark Seychelles granite rocks that every brochure about the country will showcase. With clear waters, sun rays,  full menu and amazing flora and fauna, what else do you need?

Just 18 kilometers away from the international airport, the location is perfect for those who want a secluded break with many cultural options. The resort takes relaxation and simplicity to a whole new level. The Spa reigns supreme with a monumental views and a variety of services that will leave you wanting more. The treatments all come with natural products. The staff are very attentive and will take the time out to talk to you about your needs and your emotional wellbeing. Most visitors sign up for a relaxing message upon arrival that will give the gues a better understanding of how to plan the rest of their trip to paradise.

The dining options vary and the concierge is more than helpful should you need to go out and explore. The restaurants include the ZEZ (A Middle Eastern fiesta of flavors) and Kannel (Probably the best Creole-influenced culinary offering on the island). Because the resort caters to honeymooners (or generally lovers), the In-Villa Dining is impeccable. To put it simply, the food is so good, you don’t need to leave the villa during your entire stay.

 

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Another reason why you wouldn’t leave the villa is the fact that everything you need is there, including your own private swimming pool, a jacuzzi and a scene that many people wish for. The mini-bar is fully equipped to handle snacks and the entertainment options are all there. Waking up in the morning on the outdoors bed and bird watching is a must for every guest!

To put it simple terms, Four Seasons Resort Seychelles is the best accommodation option in the entire country. You know we don’t usually go that far as it bars us from visiting other places, but we are confident enough to say that. It was a truly impeccable experience.

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Check-In: Four Seasons Hotel Beirut, Lebanon

There is a plethora of hotel varieties in Beirut, Lebanon but very few fit international standards of luxury in accommodation. Four Seasons is one of these hotels. Located in the new swanky part of downtown Beirut overlooking the historic St. George Yacht Club, the hotel has some of the best views of the city. The newly-cemented building is large-scale and central. It’s hard to miss if you are in the capital.

The accommodation is that of a Four Seasons, minor modern touches to overarching contemporary renaissance. Having all the amenities of a traditional hotel with comfort as a mindset and grandeur as an overall aura. Though it may not have considered a minimalist approach to its interior decor, it has all the conveniences that one would expect from such a brand name. In fact, the service could be the second biggest draw to this establishment.

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