CHECK IT OUT ROSEWOOD BEIJING
THE upscale Rosewood Hotels & Resorts has opened its first property in China, a luxurious 283-room Beijing bolthole featuring interiors by Melbournebased design outfit BAR Studio, six restaurants and a soon-to-debut day spa. Located in the Chaoyang District opposite the famous CCTV Tower, the hotel features large, apartment-style guestrooms and suites with comfy window seats to make the most of the building’s downtown views.
Frette linen, bespoke bathroom amenities by Florence-based Lorenzo Villoresi, Nespresso machine, mood lighting and selections of books add to the cosy residential mood in the smooth-as-silk rooms where the muted palette has been inspired by traditional Chinese paintings.
Club Floor rooms have access to one of the best lounges anywhere, equipped with a sitting room, library and billiard den and serving top-flight cocktails and champagnes. Beyond the usual inclusions of breakfast, afternoon tea and canapés, lounge guests can order packed lunches or even an in-room footbath.
Hotel facilities include an indoor, heated swimming pool, fitness centre and yoga studio. Striking design features include an entrance clad in Mongolian bluestone and a five-storey lobby adorned with an enormous painting inspired by the traditional Shanshui landscapes of the Song dynasty.Recycled materials, including old bricks salvaged from demolished buildings on the outskirts of the city, have been incorporated into the hotel’s design.
A green tea gimlet on the terrace or in winter by the fire in the lobby.
Chef Jarrod Verbiak, protege of celebrated New York-based Daniel Boulud, heads the hotel’s lively Bistrot B where a large open island kitchen turns out both French fare and Asian favourites; think bouillabaisse and foie gras burgers alongside black pepper crab and prawn laksa. Leave room for the Oolong tea creme brulee. The hotel has five more dining outlets including the rustic Country Kitchen specialising in northern classics such as wood-roasted Peking duck, Hangzhou aged ham and claypot pork belly. Chef Leo Chai’s top-notch team includes a noodle master.
Madame Zhu’s Kitchen (contemporary Chinese); Opera Bombana (Italian); Janes and Hooch (cocktails).
Explore Beijing’s burgeoning contemporary art scene in the very un-touristy Caochangdi precinct; don’t miss The Three Shadows Photography Art Centre or Pekin Fine Arts.
Time to Discover opening package from CNY2188 ($430) for a deluxe room with the option of a CNY500 supplement for Manor Club lounge access. Valid to February 28. More: rosewoodhotels.com
Raffles Makati, Manila; The Peninsula Shanghai; Rosewood London.
CHRISTINE McCABE AFTER a multi-million dollar refit, Samoa’s famous Aggie Grey’s is now a Sheraton property; located beachfront on the main island of Upolu, the Sheraton Samoa Aggie Grey’s Resort features 133 guestrooms, each with a balcony or patio • New York-based Australian Georgie White launches the Ocean Soul Retreat in Bali’s Seminyak in April, offering week-long wellness retreats for a maximum of 10 women; programs are based around nutrition, yoga and surfing and offer Reiki and spa treatments • Massimo Ferragamo has handed the management of Castiglion del Bosco to Rosewood Hotels & Resorts; the idyllic 800-year-old Tuscan estate features 23 suites, 10 villas, a day spa and cooking school • Swissotel will open its first hotel in Bulgaria in 2018; the 200-room Swissotel Sofia will form part of a new mixed-use development in the capital and will offer three restaurants and day spa as well as 81 one, two and three-bedroom serviced apartments • The Brisbane Marriott Hotel has extended a Kids Stay and Eat Free deal until April 30; 30 per cent off standard rates means a city view room costs $195.
Rosewood Beijing is the luxury group’s first hotel in China