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International Business HotelsApril 1, 2008 By: Lauren Price Home-Based Travel Agent
These Seven properties are upping the Executive-Amenity Ante
Shangri-La Hotel, Dubai (www.shangri-la.com), on Sheikh Zayed Road, is near business centers and tourist attractions. For your master-of-the-universe types, book the butler-serviced, two-bedroom Horizon Club Presidential Suite, overlooking the Arabian Sea from both the 40th and 41st floors. In addition to offering a terrace big enough to throw a cocktail party, this duplex tops out at 4,600 square feet and features a receiving room, office/den, living room and dining room.
Otherwise, the most requested accommodations are the generously sized Executive Rooms (592 square feet) on floors 29 through 39, which provide stunning views but no Horizon Club access. Horizon Club rooms and suites, ranging from 484 to 893 square feet, receive complimentary breakfasts, beverages, concierge services and Internet access in the Horizon Club. Other club perks include a boardroom and health club with an infinity pool, sun deck and gym. Complimentary suit-pressing is also provided upon arrival. The Shangri-La also offers 126 fully furnished apartments, ranging from studios to three-bedrooms, available on a short-term lease basis. Renters have access to the hotel's services and amenities, as well as a dedicated pool, tennis and squash courts, private dining and meeting facilities and membership at the Spa at Shangri-La.
Airport expediting can easily be arranged by contacting Chief Concierge Randy Santos ([email protected]). The fitness center is open from 6 a.m. to midnight, and the business center welcomes guests around the clock. Everything but the Presidential Suite and the apartments can be booked over the GDS. For special clients, contact Director of Marketing Anny Tan ([email protected]).
Pan Pacific Serviced Suites (www.panpacific.com) opens this month on Somerset Road in Singapore. The hotel offers its long-stay guests (minimum seven nights) around-the-clock personal assistants to provide local support, so that working and living in a foreign country is a breeze. An orientation tour of the area familiarizes guests with bank locations, convenience stores, transportation and dining options. Personal assistants also offer local connections and access to business events and exclusive social events. Clients will also have access to an array of professional support services, including tech support and emergency contacts. Welcome baskets, airport transfers, grocery deliveries, pillow and bath menus, as well as complimentary suit-pressing on arrival, are part and parcel of their amenity package. The one- and two-bedroom suite categories are Executive, Premium and Penthouse and range from 527 to 1,690 square feet, with WiFi throughout. All have washer/dryers, fully equipped kitchens, Bose home-entertainment systems, LCD TVs and iPod docking stations. For leisure, there is a communal fitness center, a hydro-therapeutic spa, a mineral water pool, a well-stocked library and a resident's lounge.
In the central business district, all the accommodations at the Conrad Bangkok (www.conradhotels.com) feature executive workstations, high-speed Internet access and laptops, fax machines and printers on request. Best to book are any one of the accommodations on the six Executive Floors. Rooms and suites range from 436 to 974 square feet—and all feature iPod docking stations, safes big enough for laptops and private key access to the complimentary Executive Floor Lounge, where daily full breakfasts, afternoon tea and evening cocktails are served.
The Lounge also features a meeting room and free Internet access (all suites include free in-room Internet access). There are 112 residential apartments, ranging from studios to two bedrooms, with fully equipped kitchens and access to all of the hotel's services. All but the apartments can be booked over the GDS. For special requests, contact Director of Marketing Ross Cunningham ([email protected]). The full-service business center is open 24/7, and the spa (open from 7 a.m. to midnight) has 11 treatment rooms, with services available in-room or poolside. There's a fitness center (open 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.) and a rooftop sun deck with a pool, jogging track and tennis courts.
Clients can catch up on financial news the minute they leave the airport, thanks to the "Limousine In-Car Entertainment" service, which has exclusive programming from CNN. Another plus? To ensure that clients arrive to meetings on time, specially outfitted scooters for weaving in and out of the dreadful traffic are now available. The Skytrain, which runs through the city's commercial areas, is another terrific option for fast tracking through traffic.
Park Hyatt Buenos Aires (www.parkhyatt.com) offers business travelers special room-service carts designed to match their oversized desk's height, making it easy to enjoy a meal without giving up any workspace. London's Dorchester (www.thedorchester.com) and Paris' Plaza Athéneé (www.plaza-athenee-paris.com) now provide a service designed for returning guests to pack a bit lighter. Clients can now leave clothes in their room, and upon their return, the garments—laundered and dry cleaned—will be waiting. The Dorchester also has an E-Butler for computer glitches. We also hear that at the Hotel Martinez (www.hotel-martinez.com) in Cannes, the Penthouse Suite comes with a complimentary on-call secretary and a Technology Butler.