Sunday, May 28, 2017

citizenM Schiphol Airport, an amazing airport hotel!

It was our first time in Amsterdam. We decided to arrive rather late in the afternoon and wanted to spend the night close to the airport before heading to the city the next morning. What a great decision. I’ve never stayed at an airport hotel before and to be honest, I wasn’t sure what to expect but then the citizenM hotel just looked so great that it won our hearts over the Internet, and then for real the minute we set out foot in their lobby.

We didn’t know the citizenM hotels around the world but quickly realised that we were about to stay in a luxury hotel with a contemporary edge and an eye on value. It was a great mix between futuristic and contemporary, sophisticated and witty.

When we arrived, we were offered to do a self check-in service, using touch screen terminals. We weren’t overly excited to do so because we were tired after the day but then the check-in was so easy and quick that we almost haven’t seen this one minute of our time going by when doing it.

We headed directly to the room before thinking about our dinner. The room had so called 'mood pads' to control TV, lights and temperature from an iPad. We could choose from a total of 6 pre-programmed moods (such as “romance”, “business” or “surprise me”) and 6 pre-programmed functional light-settings (“work”, “shower” or “read”). The mood pad also controls the blinds and the black-out curtain. Mr Handsome had some great fun playing with it as we arrived in the room. And OMG, that shower! I could call it space-age rain shower, especially when adding the violet or green light touch to the room.

The room was very comfortable and high-techy but not necessarily the most beautiful one I’ve ever stayed in. I’ve realised that the idea behind the hotel is to focus on what well travelled people look for in a hotel. Instead of making the room the best place in the hotel, the living room and the restaurant are rather the places you’d like to hang out in - and never leave again.

We very much liked our dinner in the evening. The bakery-style kitchen is open around the clock and serves sandwiches, salads, sushi, warm dishes and beverages. The tiramisu we had as a desert was really yummy and we even got to chat with the chef a bit. A cool guy indeed :)

The living room is another place you'd like to stay a while. It's made up from different bigger rooms that all blend together and are filled with interesting books and objects from all around the world.

An important touch to the citizenM is its focus on contemporary art. Inside the hotel, in front of it - it surprises you on every step. We're curious to check the other citizenM hotels out. Maybe soon in Paris?

More info: citizenM Schiphol Airport
Address: Jan Plezierweg 2, 1118 BB Schiphol, Netherlands
Webpage: http://citizenm.com/

Hotel Gustave, romantic hotel with the view of the Eiffel Tower

When you almost think that sparkling Eiffel Tower is overly touristic - and then stay scotched to the window, soaking in the beautiful view of Parisian rooftops and the Iron Lady in the back. AND waiting impatiently for the next full hour to be mesmerised by it’s sparkling again. The view the Hotel Gustave offers from some of their rooms is astonishing, to say the least. And so is the service they offer.

Hidden from the noise of the nearby attractions and monuments (the Seine, Champ de Mars, the Eiffel Tower and more), this hotel offers an oasis of peace in the heart of Paris.

We stayed in the Deluxe Room with a large and very comfortable bed. The room itself was not super big but it was very well optimised and beautifully decorated, letting you prepare your Nespresso coffee in your room at any time of the day. I always appreciate a spacious bathroom with a big shower - we fell in love with their fab monsoon shower. Modern, beautiful, spacious bathroom with toiletries from Fragonard! Great experience at any moment. Not to forget the bathrobe and sleepers. It's incredible how much little things like that enhances your stay at a hotel.

We enjoyed breakfast in the Scandinavian Pavilion, early in the morning before going to work. Hot drinks, breads and pastries, fruit juices, cheeses, scrambled eggs... What better way to start a day than with a view of the Eiffel Tower and great breakfast!

It goes without saying that the hotel is well served by public transport. Feel like some shopping? Do check out the brand new Beaugrenelle mall with a wide choice of shops and restaurants. If you still prefer Champs Elysées, just hop on the next metro Line 6 - you’ll be there in less than 15 minutes.

More info: Hotel Gustave
Address: 34 Rue Viala, 75015, Paris, France
Webpage: https://www.hotelgustave.com/

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Hotel Adèle & Jules in Paris, a real love at first sight!

This boutique hotel has been a real love at first sight! We have never enjoyed our stay as much. Located in the city center but at the same time hidden from the hustle and bustle of the city, it’s a concealed place I’d almost rather not talk about so it doesn’t get too popular too quickly :)

Not very obvious to find, its location is a great advantage. Just a few steps from the Grand Boulevards, Hôtel Adèle & Jules is located in a small quiet private street you probably wouldn’t enter when just passing by. We actually missed a turn when heading there. Once you arrive, you find out that Adèle & Jules are actually two separate buildings, with identical beautiful interior and room organisation.

We’ve stayed in Adèle, in a room with a window overlooking the calm street, and fell in love the moment we entered. On the ground floor, there is a very cosy place to enjoy breakfast, have a glass of wine during the honesty hour or just chill. It has been for the first time that I’ve actually wished to stay in the hotel and read a book in the lobby instead of going around the city or simply staying in the room. The window ceiling with the natural light makes you simply want to stay there forever. I’ll go there for breakfast soon again!

When we came in the room, not only we loved the interior. There was a beautiful handwritten card waiting for us, next to a box of Angelina chocolates! What a nice attention! And this is not all - people behind this hotel are putting a lot of efforts in details. Everything seems to have its place, a well chosen one.

Not only they pay attention to details. Even their bathroom is so nice you want to have the same at your home. We were treated to Fragonard toiletries, enjoyed super soft bathrobes and perfectly sized slippers (which is quite rare for girls!).

Oh, and not to forget - they have a well equipped gym in the basement! I only wanted to have a look at it but my Mr Handsome seriously planned on exercising in the morning. Yeah, why not. I finally went with him to exercise before breakfast and I felt great (and proud, haha) for the rest of the day!

It goes without saying that we felt so much at home that we didn’t want to leave - and have been dreaming of going back for a night ever since.

More info: Hotel Adèle & Jules
Address: 2 & 4 bis Cité Rougemont, Paris, France
Webpage: http://www.hoteladelejules.com/

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Hotel Boris V., a cute little hotel just on the outskirts of Paris

When looking for a place to stay during a trip to Paris, people are often looking for hotels in Paris exclusively. They don’t know that just a few minutes from the city centre of Paris, they can find the a cool offer in the hotel Boris V. and have a great stay.

Levallois Perret is a nice suburb of Paris literally just a few metro stops away from the capital. Even better - the metro line 3 is a direct line to the Opera house, the beautiful Marais part of Paris, busy and dynamic Place de République or even Saint Lazare if you are taking the train from Paris. If you’d like to stay in a unique boutique hotel in Levallois Perret, Boris V. is the place to go.

Boris V. is a small hotel, inspired by the world of a famous writer of the 50s. Its special furniture and attention to detail when it comes to decoration create a unique vintage atmosphere. It is ideally located for visiting the capital in peace.

The staff is very friendly and welcoming too, flexible when it comes to check in or check out and making sure your stay is great. The hotel is clean and pleasant to stay at.

With my man we've spent a beautiful stay in this nice hotel. Breakfast in bed was a special treat, and the idea of staycation suits us just perfectly. It makes you discover your own city through different eyes. We took the time to go to the local market on the Sunday morning, soaking in all the aromas and colours.

Little details were present in the bathroom as well. The spacious shower in the clear blue colour almost makes you think you're somewhere south next to the sea. I'm already counting down to the next seaside trip.

More info: Hotel Boris V.
Address: 73 rue Louise Michel, 92300 Levallois Perret, France
Webpage: http://borisv-hotel.com/

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Grand Hotel Union – A really “Grand” experience

A good friend of mine once told me that she followed the advice of her dad and spent the night in a hotel in her own city. Being a tourist in your hometown can open up so many new possibilities to discover it over and over again. The idea of “staycation” has been on my list for a while. I primarily meant it for Paris, which I like to call my home. However, a perfect opportunity for this opened up during my quick break in Slovenia.

One of the highlights from the last trip to Slovenia was definitely our stay at the Grand Hotel Union. Amazingly located in the mere city center of Ljubljana, only a few steps away from Prešeren Square and the beautiful Triple Bridge, it offers the perfect immersion into the life of a city center local.

Opening the window in the morning, overlooking the Miklošičeva Street, took my breath away. Seeing people heading to the local market, friends meeting for a morning coffee and cyclists riding their bikes around makes you feel something very unique. You just want to run outside and be part of this pleasant hustle and bustle of this lovely city.

But then you turn around and never want to leave the hotel again. This high-end hotel offers simply but beautifully furnished rooms with an amazing attention to details. To mention just two of those – on the table awaits a beautiful package of the superior blend of coffee “Cankar’s Cup of Coffee” (Ivan Cankar, the greatest Slovene writer, was a frequent visitor of the Grand Hotel Union Cafe); the personal care amenities in the bathroom offer a hint of fun with amusing personalized titles. Such details make you feel more at home and less at “just another hotel”.

When the hotel has already won you over with everything of the above, it takes it all to a whole new level with food. Breakfast or lunch there is not just a meal, it is an experience. The hotel makes sure that it is easy for anyone to indulge in the Slovene culinary world while keeping all of the essential international meals. Lunch is served at the garden restaurant Unionski vrt in a pleasant shade of chestnut trees. Could you even ask for more?

Our flight back to Paris was just two hours after our lunch there so we didn’t have the time to enjoy any of their delicious deserts. We’ve heard the cakes are heavenly good at the Café. We know where to go first when we arrive to Ljubljana again!

Grand Hotel Union
Address: Miklošičeva cesta 1, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia
Webpage: http://www.union-hotels.eu/