I have been keeping my fingers crossed on this one. Way back when, when Colony Capital owned Aman, right at the last minute, Adrian brought together an investment group to buy it back. I was hoping he would do the same - he always leaves it to last minute - and there we have it. I gather his backers are Indonesian. It is the PERFECT outcome.
Now official - The first half of 2013 will see the launch of two new Amans in World Heritage Sites. Aman’s third resort in China will open in Lijiang, while Aman’s first Italian property will be launched in Venice.
After the tsunami hit the Sri Lankan coastal town of Galle last December, the Amangalla hotel, which had been open for only nine days, dispatched employees in its fleet of 1948 Nash Ambassadors to search for survivors...Within 24 hours, the Amanresorts rescue team had brought more than 500 displaced and injured survivors to Amangalla, which became a shelter for these victims of the catastrophe.
Two months later, Amangalla resumed operations as a hotel
Amanresorts opened its second Sri Lanka property, Amanwella, just three months after the December 2004 tsunami
The Chedi Phuket which received a fair bit of international publicity with a sequence of photographs showing a wall of water overwhelming the beach restaurant, was fully operational when I visited in the first week of January 2005
Chedi guests were evacuated from the beach in time as were guests at the Amanpuri...Says Trina Ebert of Amanresorts, “The only structural damage to [Amanpuri] was the Beach Gym. Access roads are open, the resort is fully functional and none of the Aman Cruises vessels were damaged. Amanpuri is fully functional and the beach area shows no signs of damage. An alert young Aman employee spotted the tide receeding dramatically and called the cruise director who immediately sounded the alarm, evacuating guests from the beach and calling incredulous resorts farther up the coast to warn them of impending danger. In an unprecedented move to help "revitalise the island’s tourism" Amanresorts has announced "a 50 percent reduction on its rack rates for stays at Amanpuri until October 2005."
"At most places there's a clear dividing line where the sprinklers stop and the outside world begins," says Nathan Browning, Amanyara's landscape consultant
Offshore is a protected marine park with a pristine barrier reef and, just beyond, a diving wall formed by a 6,888-foot drop
Zecha came upon this deserted spot eight years ago, stood atop the bluff, and immediately knew he'd found his site. "It took us two or three more years to actually work out the details...granted a 75-year lease.
we try to minimize alterations. Of course, the ideal would be to not do anything at all." Zecha believes a resort should merely "frame" its setting
“Some of the designs had to be reviewed in the process as there was no historical detailing to work from,” Ms Dingler Ebert said. “It is much easier to start from scratch than to recreate something and apply updated technology [to real estate] that interferes with its original impression.”
Ms Dingler Ebert remarked...Zecha...is probably one of the most geographically literate persons in the world.
I recall him handing me a beautiful book some 16 years ago featuring the coastline of Montenegro and him saying how wonderful it would be to have an Aman in this area
Amanpuri, the very first resort. We started building it in March 1987 and officially opened it on January 1, 1988
Zecha...wanted houses in a few different places. He already had one in Bali and had always loved Phuket. He was visiting Thailand on holiday and was drawn to the topography, beautiful headland and coconut grove where Amanpuri is
I started working with Zecha in 1975 when Regent started
Zecha selects the sites and the architects. Many people, including me, tell him he is a visionary, although he does not like that word. He has a gift for looking at a raw piece of land and seeing what can be built. He selects the architect who will be the most sympathetic to the land or the environment, then they collaborate on the creative process. Adrian always says there is no such thing as the best; nothing is perfect. But, as we have grown, Aman has become very geographically literate because of this understanding of what the world has to offer
Why did he choose Bodrum for a new opening?
TDE: In 1999, Mr Zecha was on a boat along the coast and noticed this valley, olive grove and pine trees and how it married with the sea so beautifully. The lady that he and his wife were travelling with was from Turkey and she found out more about it for him. A meeting was arranged in January 1999, followed by a visit to the site in April.
At that point we were only 10 years old and most of our properties were in Asia. You cannot just go into the middle of nowhere and expect people to come. We needed to grow and create awareness, but the seed had been planted. The architects had already visualised the little village. We had more meetings with the architects and construction began in April 2010.
took almost 12 years to open in Bhutan
“Visit Thailand” year was in 1987, so that was an amazing time to do it. The most wonderful compliment we got was when Thai Airways’ in-flight magazine did a series of landmarks since they opened for their 50th anniversary, including things like the first landing on the Moon. They actually put the opening of Amanpuri in it.
Luxury is an extension of lifestyle and the physical aspect would probably be space, if you had to pick one word. When you have a sense of space people feel much more relaxed.
Ebert said that in January 2003, Amanresorts acquired the Lodhi Hotel in Delhi for Rs 76.25 crore. Amanresorts also has a 12-suite hotel property called the Manor in Delhi.
Ebert said that Amanresorts is not planning to open more properties similar to Aman-i-Khas, the exclusive, air-conditioned luxury tents outside the 400 sq km Ranthambore National Park, which opened in November 2003.
"It is always the site that dictates the right concept for the company," she explained. But is the company looking at any new properties in India? "Amanresorts is always on the lookout for interesting properties that meet our requirements," she added.
i wonder if DLF started paying attention to india/sri lanka activity especially delhi acquisition, which DLF has referred to as very valuable land. seem to be operating aman lodhi suites as apartments now, presumably full conversion in future.
Aman Resorts has appointed Geoffrey Weill Associates (www.geoffreyweill.com) to handle its public relations in the United States. The move comes as Aman Resorts gears up to mark its 20th anniversary in 2008.
Aman Resorts has handled its United States public relations internally since 1988, when it opened its first "flagship" resort on Thailand's Phuket island. "But as we move into our third decade, and as we expand, we need to reach further," says Trina Dingler Ebert, Aman Resorts' Executive Director.
Trina Dingler Ebert of the luxury hotel brand Amanresorts, “There is no question that two of the most influential countries for the future economically are India and China. The speed at which each of their key cities are developing, inevitably gives rise to the presence of a luxury market in search of quality travel.”
Says Trina Dingler Ebert, "India is a destination to which we are committed and is an important part of our portfolio. It affords diverse opportunities to travellers - both leisure and business - with its historical, cultural, wildlife and wellness offerings."
"Our focus so far has been on north India. It is not that we seek sites, but it is the other way round. The sites select us and we choose those areas which draw us to them with their beauty. The founder, Adrian Zecha, is fascinated with Rajasthan."