The hospitality world has been busy over the past year preparing for the spring tourist season. In addition to dozens of new hotel openings, many hotels and resorts are unveiling new features, packages, renovations and expansions ready to impress. Here are a dozen exciting developments to have on your radar as you plan your spring and summer trips.
New water park at the Orlando World Center Marriott
This week sees the opening of the new River Falls water park at Orlando World Center Marriott near Walt Disney World. It’s part of the larger, recently updated pool complex and features three 50-foot-tall inner tube waterslides and a 575-foot zero-entry lazy river, all of which are free for hotel guests.
Boomerag is a fast slide that launches guests into the air before landing in the pool. The open-tube sections of Tailspin, the longest slide at 525 feet, is a thrill ride that puts riders in a spin before hitting the paddling pool. The resort has also completed a larger renovation, including guest rooms, restaurants like its famous Japanese teppanyaki venue, and 40,000 square feet of additional meeting space across two dozen venues slated to open this spring.
Ritz-Carlton Orlando Renovations, Grande Lakes
A multi-million dollar renovation is ready for prime time at the Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes. Accommodations, more than a dozen food outlets, and even poolside cabanas have gone under the knife to reveal something fresh and modern for spring and summer. Amenities include a 40,000-square-foot spa and the Knife & Spoon Restaurant, run by four-time James Beard Award-nominated chef John Tesar.
Popular with families as well as business travelers and meeting groups, the hotel is part of the larger 500-acre resort in Grande Lakes, which also includes the JW Marriott Orlando. This property will soon begin a renovation project.
New chef at the Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island
The sous-chef at Bernardin, Eric Ripert’s 3-star Michelin fine-dining seafood restaurant in New York, is now at the Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island. Head Chef Okan Kizilbayir’s began his tenure at Salt restaurant at the hotel. He plans to launch several collaborative dinners with various other chefs and winemakers throughout the year as part of the resort’s broader culinary offering.
Nonprofit Swimsuit Collaboration at Sugar Beach St. Lucia
Guests can look good and feel good at the same time with a new swimwear and resortwear collaboration at Sugar Beach St. Lucia. An exclusive print of Love mark & Co is available through the resort. Made from recycled plastic, each fashionable pair sold includes a donation to save elephants in the wild. The print is inspired by the iconic Pitons that serve as the resort’s backdrop as well as the triangular architectural style of the property.
New seafood restaurant at the Grand Hotel Tremezzo
When the Grand Hotel Tremezzo opens for the season on the shores of Lake Como, it will add a new restaurant to its culinary line-up. The April 1 debut of Giacomo al Lago will be the first-ever lakeside seafood restaurant in this famous region. Also new is the hotel’s gift collection “sense of the lake” available online and in-store featuring designer apparel, fragrance and travel products.
New rooms at the Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul in Sultanahmet
Once a prison, this small luxury hotel is now a bastion of luxury and one of two Four Seasons properties in Istanbul. Closed for extensive renovation, the Four Seasons Istanbul Hotel Sultanahmet is slated to emerge top-to-bottom later this spring as a new hotel. The property used downtime from fewer visitors during the Covid-19 pandemic last year to begin updating. New room interiors and furnishings in public areas will be a luxurious welcome when the hotel reopens in May. Its most popular rooms always offer beautiful views of its famous neighbour, the Hagia Sophia Grand Mosque.
Biohacking Spa Treatment at Fairmont Century Plaza
A new biohacking program at Fairmont Spa Century Plaza combines infrared technology, neuroscience and compression therapy to improve wellness at the “cellular level” by reducing stress and improving sleep. The program was designed by Dr. Oz Garcia, a “biohacker” specializing in healthy aging.
Each session uses Normatec by HyperIce compression boots to increase circulation, an Oakworks Curva Lounger anti-gravity chair with a NASA-inspired curve and tilt for relaxation, LED face shields and NuCalm, neuroacoustic headphones for soothing the mind and the nervous system. The Fairmont Century Plaza participates in Accor’s All Live Limitless program, which offers triple points for stays through June 30.
Select Slopeside at W Aspen
Après-ski has never been so chic. As part of a partnership between W Aspen and Select Aperitif (creator of the original Venetian spritz cocktail), the hotel hosts Select Slopeside every afternoon until April 11th. The pop-up experience includes the signature Prosecco-based red spritz, sparkling water, a green olive, and the plant-infused Aperitivo Select. Guests and visitors can enjoy live music and fireside entertainment with 360 degree mountain views after a day on the slopes.
The W Aspen is part of the Marriott Bonvoy program which offers guests the opportunity to earn and redeem points during their stay. With a promotion this spring, customers can earn bonus points and double Elite Night Credits.
Romantic wine-themed package at Yeatman Hotel Porto
Continue until early spring is it romantic package at the wine-themed Yeatman Hotel in Porto, Portugal. It includes a night in the famous Bacchus Suite with its copper tub, fireplace and mesmerizing views of the Douro River and Porto’s famous waterfront. After a welcome bottle of champagne, guests can enjoy free breakfasts and discounts at the hotel’s wine boutique or wine therapy-focused spa.
Strolling through the hotel gardens brings visitors to WOW Porto, a cultural district with museums and unique experiences centered on Portuguese wine, fashion, cuisine and history. WOW Porto-The World of Wine and The Yeatman are owned by the same owner, and a visit to both is a special way to kick off the warm season with a glass of Portuguese wine in hand.
Get better ZZZs at the Sheraton Phoenix Downtown
As part of National Sleep Month, Sheraton Phoenix Downtown has launched a new sleep package in partnership with a portable sleep device, cove. The vibrations of the device help “activate a brain pathway” that stimulates relaxation after wearing it twice a day for 20 minutes. The hotel will also launch a new restaurant this spring inspired by the flavors of the Sonoran Desert.
Charleston Place becomes independent
Once owned by Belmond, The Charleston Place in South Carolina is now owned by Charleston-based Beemok Hospitality Group. It will be undergoing a $100 million renovation, and to celebrate, the hotel is offering a special package called “The place to celebrate”, which includes a bottle of Moet Chandon plus a $100 food and beverage credit. The property will continue to be part of the American Express Fine Hotels and Resorts program, which offers benefits by booking directly through the credit card program.
New Presidential Suite at the Waldorf Astoria Atlanta Buckhead
As part of an extensive renovation and redevelopment project slated for completion this spring, the Waldorf Astoria Atlanta Buckhead unveils new residential-style suites crowned by a new 2,340 square foot Presidential Suite design. The hotel’s most luxurious accommodation includes a new kitchen, dining room and living room, two private terraces, a fireplace, a master bedroom and a bathroom (with the possibility of connecting to another suite for make it even bigger).
Coming soon is a Southern-inspired French brasserie as part of the hotel’s culinary offering, which also includes Peacock Alley (a Waldorf Astoria staple honoring the iconic Waldorf Astoria New York lounge).