WHY IT RATES: The global hospitality group is celebrating several new openings, new reopenings following staggering renovations and new experiences to enjoy in 2023. — Lacey Pfalz, Associate Writer, TravelPulse
World-leading hospitality group Accor is excited to announce key openings, renovations, culinary debuts and limitless experiences at iconic properties across North & Central America. 2023 marks the much-anticipated opening of both Sofitel Legend Casco Viejo Panama and Raffles Boston Back Bay Hotel & Residences, alongside renovations at iconic Fairmont properties, including Fairmont Mayakoba, Fairmont Kea Lani, and Fairmont Banff Springs.
Read on to explore 2023 news from Accor across North & Central America.
This spring, Fairmont is ushering in a series of new one-of-a-kind Beyond LIMITS experiences designed to defy convention and elevate luxury beyond what was previously thought possible. Launched in late 2022 and available exclusively at iconic properties across North and Central America, the Beyond LIMITS collection kicked off with an inspiring blend of unique and immersive experiences such as Fairmont Orchid’s Pauoa Bay Underwater Ballet, Fairmont Century Plaza’s Vertical Stage, Fairmont Lake Louise’s Fire & Ice culinary adventure and Fairmont Banff Springs’ Haute O2 cliffside oxygen bar. The popular series will live on in 2023 with the continuation of Fairmont Olympic’s glamorous Tea Noir (available until March 31), Fairmont Mayakoba’s Symphony in a Cenote (happening on May 14), and more soon-to-be-launched transformational experiences, including Fairmont Waterfront’s Enchanted Forest.
NOTEWORTHY HOTEL OPENINGS
— Sofitel Legend Casco Viejo Panama — Accor’s internationally renowned French luxury heritage brand has arrived. Sofitel Legend Casco Viejo Panama made its grand debut in January 2023 with a distinctive waterfront enclave that was once the site of the former Union Club of Panama in the heart of the Casco Viejo district, a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site. The history, heritage, and celebration of Panamanian culture at this remarkable property brings undeniable French savoir-faire to one of the most sought-after destinations worldwide. The stunning property offers 159 rooms and suites, the vast majority with enviable ocean views; five spectacular food and beverage venues, including a rooftop bar and lounge; a pool; Majordome butler service; and a full-service SoSPA and SoFit exercise studio overlooking the ocean.
— Raffles Boston Back Bay Hotel & Residences — Joining Raffles Hotels & Resorts’ prestigious collection of 16 unique and timeless properties, Raffles Boston Back Bay Hotel & Residences will bring glamor and elegance to this iconic New England destination with 147 guestrooms and 146 branded residences in a striking new 35-story LEED Gold building. Opening in the summer of 2023, the project will be the brand’s first mixed-use property in North America. Hotel highlights include a mix of signature hotel services such as the Raffles Butler and elegant and lively public spaces, including a two-story sky lobby perched high above Copley Square; five distinct food and beverage venues; a state-of-the-art Raffles Spa with a 20-meter indoor pool; a stunning rooftop garden terrace and lounge; and expansive meeting and pre-function space.
Here’s a look at the biggest and brightest renovation projects recently unveiled — or set to be unveiled in 2023.
— Fairmont Mayakoba — After a multi-million-dollar renovation, Fairmont Mayakoba is thrilled to unveil its extraordinary new facilities. The project included a complete renovation of all guest rooms, casitas, and suites; an overhaul of all restaurants and bars, including the completion of La Laguna and Bassano; three beach pools and the main pool; the lobby area; two kids clubs; and the hottest beach club in the Riviera Maya. Hix Bar & Lobby Lounge is an airy, newly renovated lobby with a vast terrace that gives patrons a bird’s-eye view of Mayakoba’s dense mangrove forest, water canals, and wildlife.
— Fairmont Palliser — Since 1914, Fairmont Palliser has stood as Calgary’s premier hotel and gateway to the scenic wonders of Western Canada. The landmark building, rich in history and architecture, is embarking on a $4.5 million renovation of its event space. The iconic Crystal Ballroom, Oval Room, Alberta Ballroom, and all meeting rooms on the mezzanine level will receive a refresh with a targeted completion date of March 31, 2023.
— Fairmont Tremblant — Starting this spring, Fairmont Tremblant will embark on its 2023 Gold renovation encompassing the rooms, suites, and Gold Lounge, scheduled for completion in the fall. Stylish, contemporary, yet accessible, the new Fairmont Gold will incorporate the latest design and technology trends to highlight the Laurentians’ unique natural setting. The hotel is also launching a new outdoor ski-in-ski-out terrace — La Terrasse Après-ski. This heated, lively, and inviting terrace on the edge of Tremblant’s Lower Nansen Trail welcomes guests for champagne, cocktails, mulled wine, a DJ, and plenty of food and drink for an unforgettable and festive après-ski experience.
— Fairmont Banff Springs — As part of a $35 million renovation of its suites and guest rooms, Fairmont Banff Springs has launched the newly renovated Fairmont Gold and Signature Suites. This extensive makeover – including the coveted Crown Suite (formerly the Royal Suite), select one and two-bedroom suites, plus Terrace Suites – offers guests unparalleled luxury and access to exclusive services in Banff’s iconic castle. Fairmont Banff Springs also recently launched a new exclusive adventure — Soaring Through Paradise. This hour-long helicopter tour brings guests over the Purcell Mountains to the pristine backcountry for a private snowmobile adventure, culminating in a cozy Alpine Cabin with a crackling fire and treats.
— Fairmont Kea Lani — An oceanfront jewel on Polo Beach in Wailea, Fairmont Kea Lani’s 413 suites and 37 two-story villas have recently undergone a multimillion-dollar transformation, incorporating elements that encapsulate the resort’s storied location. The color palette mirrors the hues of the shoreline while textures, furnishings, and artwork blend ancient Hawaiian tradition with modern elegance. The second phase of Fairmont Kea Lani’s project (commencing summer of 2023 and concluding in December 2023) will transform the lobby to feature an elevated arrival experience, an interactive Hawaiian Cultural Center and the addition of a new dining outlet with cuisine marrying ancient and modern Hawaii.
— Fairmont Empress — This year, Fairmont Empress will celebrate its 115th Anniversary with a fresh upgrade to the iconic Fairmont Gold experience. Slated for completion in Spring 2023, the renovation will include an expansion of the Fairmont Gold Lounge and the development of additional Fairmont Gold rooms and suites. Fairmont Empress, named in honor of Queen Victoria, celebrated its Grand Re-Opening in 2017 following a $60 million renovation that elevated the historic property into a new era of modern luxury.
TASTING AND TOASTING IN 2023
Come hungry and thirsty to experience these noteworthy food and beverage outlets
— Fairmont Grand Del Mar — This past December, Addison Restaurant at Fairmont Grand Del Mar in San Diego received its third Michelin star, the highest honor of excellence, from the Michelin Guide. With the recognition, Addison is now among only 14 restaurants in the U.S. and 142 around the globe that currently have three Michelin stars. Chef/Director William Bradley showcases the beauty and allure of California gastronomy, offering his distinct perspective through an experience that celebrates regional ingredients and influences. The dining room creates a transportive setting for Chef Bradley’s tasting menu with its soaring ceilings and picturesque views of the Carmel Valley hillside and Fairmont Grand Del Mar grounds.
— Fairmont Olympic Seattle — The George restaurant recently debuted with a stunning new look by Spanish design studio Lázaro Rosa-Violán (LRV) that honors the dining room’s illustrious history and soaring classical framework. Guided by the vernacular of the building’s original architect, George B. Post, the renovation incorporates fresh and timeless interior designs, a new beautifully crafted bar and a dedicated street entrance. As a showcase of the Pacific Northwest, The George offers the freshest seafood from local waters, Washington dry-aged meats, local artisan cheeses, and seasonal Pacific Northwest fruits and vegetables.
— Sofitel Mexico City Reforma — Sofitel Mexico City Reforma’s famous 38th-floor rooftop bar Cityzen Rooftop Kitchen expects an interior design makeover in 2023. This iconic bar is the perfect spot to have a drink while enjoying the Mexico City skyline. Boasting unparalleled views of the Paseo de la Reforma, Angel of Independence and Chapultepec Castle, Cityzen is Mexico City’s newest rooftop restaurant, delighting guests with luscious French and Mexican cuisine and signature cocktails.
— Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise — Adding to its portfolio of compelling dining experiences, Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise has recently opened the doors of the much-anticipated Louiza restaurant. From breakfast to dinner and après delights, Louiza sets the stage for guests to savor a local take on global tastes with its Mediterranean-inspired menu, curated wildcrafted cocktails and view of the famed emerald lake.
BEFORE & AFTER DARK
Exciting entertainment experiences make a splash
— Fairmont Le Château Montebello — Fairmont Le Château Montebello recently opened the first BRP Experience Center in Canada. The center offers a half or full-day Can-Am Winter Off-Road Experience and a newly launched Ski-Doo Experience, allowing guests to explore Montebello’s magnificent, federated trails, forests and frozen lakes. Adventures include an expert guide, a full snowsuit, gloves, boots, fuel, BRP vehicle rental, and trail access. The hotel also introduced a new bonfire and cabin bar and is home to the fireside “Clicquot in the Snow” lounge, open seasonally, featuring Veuve Clicquot Champagne.
— Fairmont El San Juan Hotel — Fairmont El San Juan Hotel will offer new, vibrant, live entertainment programming at Chico Cabaret and The Lobby. Inspired by the people, parties, and performances that defined El San Juan nightlife beginning in the roaring 60s, the hotel continues the legacy with awe-inspiring performances that have made it “the place to be and be seen” among generations of locals and travelers. The Well & Being Spa and Fitness Center at Fairmont El San Juan Hotel is also refreshing its fitness schedule with innovative classes such as Beach Body Bootcamp, Ocean Morning Meditation, and Sunrise Therapeutic Yoga.
THE FUTURE OF WELLNESS
Activities to improve holistic health
— Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa — Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa offers romantic accommodations in a secluded sanctuary at the heart of Wine Country. This year, the luxury resort has partnered with Sonoma Apothecary, a local maker of handmade bath and body goods, to craft an exclusive lineup of their most popular products exclusively for guests of the Mission Spa Suites. Guests can expand upon their experience at Fairmont Spa, ideally situated atop an ancient mineral hot spring, to take advantage of the proven healing benefits of mineral waters at its geothermal pools.
— Fairmont Empress — This winter, Fairmont Empress debuts a new signature spa treatment inspired by none other than their famous Empress 1908 Gin. The warming spa treatment is a 60-minute experience incorporating juniper notes, the vibrant butterfly pea blossom, and other natural ingredients found in the Empress 1908 Gin. The new spa offering is the perfect blend to nourish and exfoliate the body and relax the soul.
SOURCE: Accor press release.
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