Past & Future Merge at Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo
Serenity and five-star service in a dream like garden environment in theheart of Tokyo has attracted visitors for over twenty years as a former Four Seasons property, and in January 2013 it became a property of Fugita Kanko, where elegance and attention to detail continues to be paramount.
Hotel accommodations include 260 beautifully appointed guest rooms and suites with views of the Chinzan-so gardens featuring the camellia hills that have a 700 year history. The Yu Spa, the largest spa in Tokyo, offers exceptional treatments combining modern technology and ancients wisdom of the Orient, in a peaceful and modern venue that showcases a 16,145 one of a kind rooftop serenity garden, along with a relaxing indoor pool.
The Camellia dining room offers elegant French food preparation and presentation in an exquisite venue that features a delightful menu of French favorites. The hotel has twelve restaurants, including Chu-an sushi restaurant and several attractive bars.
An historic site for guests to visit includes a beautiful shrine moved to this site in 1924 by Mr. Fujita. The Shiratama Inari Shrine, the Main Hall from Kyoto’s Shimogamo Jinja (a world cultural heritage site) and the Shiratama God as the guardian of the Shrine.
Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo, the iconic five-star flagship property of leading Japanese hospitality company Fujita Kanko, recently was named "Best Luxury Hotel, Japan, 2013" by Business Destinations magazine. "We are honored and humbled to be chosen as the best luxury hotel in Japan," said Koichi Urashima, the hotel's General Manager. "We will do our best to live up to the title. We pay careful attention to the needs of both business and leisure travelers, and this award is very gratifying."
Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo, Bunkyo-ku Tokyo 112-8680, Japan
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Historic Beverly HillS Haunts FOR THE HOLIDAYS
By Bonnie Carroll
The Dorchester Collection now manages two iconic properties in Beverly Hills that are divinely decorated for the holiday season. Both the Beverly Hills Hotel and the Bel-Air Hotel are glimmering and glowing as the New Year approaches.
THE BEVERLY HILLS HOTEL
The renowned Polo Lounge in the Beverly Hills Hotel is just a small part of the subtle and smart changes being made to the historic hotel that celebrated its 100th year in 2013. The oval shaped room overlooking the dining patio have always been coordinated beautifully, but recent changes include lovely color and fabric introductions that soften the ambiance, however, the green and white striped ceilings and patio umbrella’s remain in tact.
Pepe De Anda, the Polo Lounge Manager, who has greeted me at the door for over twenty-five years, is still there smiling and making people feel welcome. The servers, in immaculate white uniforms, are totally in control and strive to make your visit memorable. The dining room is relatively quiet, while the patio has always bustled with the activity of people wanting to be seen, and obviously still does.
The menu in the Polo Lounge has changed many times, but today Executive Chef Kaleo Adams has introduced some amazingly healthy items like kale and quinoa salad. Sorry to say they no longer serve things like apple-pan-dowdy, but the McCarthy salad is still a big favorite, and according to my server the West Hollywood salad that was introduced recently has become a number one item on the menu. Personally, I would give their beet salad with goat cheese a best of 2013 award.
Whether it’s steak, chicken, lobster or fish you will find fabulous entrée and salad items to pair. Soups and pasta dishes are outstanding, and the desserts in this ‘room to be seen in’ have always been something to brag about. The crème brulee is perfect! The bar features the best classic cocktails to be found, and as you would assume the wine list is an endless collection of the best in the world.
Interior design changes are seen everywhere in the hotel, and also atthe restaurant pool, where the favored colors of pink and green remain but in soft subtle hues that are so attractive. The pool cabana’s have also been renovated, but will always be associated with the pool where major Hollywood stars have hung out through the years.
THE BEL-AIR HOTEL
Entering this noble hotel is magical. Walking under flowering vines, across the covered bridge overlookinthe swans lakedecorated for the holiday season, and on to the hotel lobby that is the ultimate combination of ‘old world charm’ and modern chic is a wonderland experience. The beautiful white swans floating on the lake before you is surreal, and the entire hotel is sparkling and elegant for the holidays.
The Lobby, showcases a huge Christmas tree, and burning fireplace that are beyond inviting, as is the hotel dining room. Chef Hugo Bolanos is in charge of hotel food and beverage and the Wolfgang Puck Bel-Air Restaurant, featuring walls lined with cabinets containing their amazing collection of fine wine to pair with lunch or dinner.
The dimly lit and very intimate Lounge has an amazing photo of Tina Turner lining an entire wall, and live entertainment is featured here in the evening. This would be the ideal place to have a special rendezvous with friends or family during the holiday season.
THE CRESCENT HOTEL
A local boutique option for holiday fun is The Crescent Hotel. This darling boutique hotel at Brighton Way and Crescent Drive in Beverly Hills was built in 1927, and today is a chic little jewel of a hotel that offers breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as live entertainment on Thursday nights.
The newly decorated property is a lovely spot for patio dining and cocktails by the Christmas tree in the bar. It is located one block from Beverly Hills City Hall, The Wallace Annenberg Center for the Arts, and the only family owned market in the city.
Their talented chef Diana Hemandez, who has a curriculum vitae that includes a stint at CUT in the Beverly Wilshire Hotel with Chef Lee Hefter and work with the Patina Group offers a menu that has something for everyone. Their deep fried olives with blue cheese are an intriguing and delicious appetizer favorite with cocktails. Visit www.crescentbh.com.