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"secret" hotel within hotel concepts

"secret" hotel within hotel concepts

Old Jan 11, 19, 6:04 am
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"secret" hotel within hotel concepts

I am very curious about the idea of hotel within hotel concepts around the world at various properties.

The typical RC concept at most of their properties I am not a huge fan of as its like a decent airline lounge with sometimes great views but at a few properties it includes somewhat secretive perks like separate pool and I find that fascinating.

Esteemed contributor @m0hamed recently piqued my interest in a somewhat luxury property in Sharm, the Hyatt Regency which has a club level that truly seems like a separate hotel within hotel. This property features not only a large club house, differentiated rooms, but a really lovely private pool with service and a private beach. I was recently at the soon to be flagged Waldorf (now Towers Hotel Heliopolis) in Cairo and while the rooms pre refurbishment where very very mediocre they had an unadvertised lounge with private entrance from the driveway and private elevator. There was also unadvertised butler service for this level which was some of the best I have ever experienced (and Im generally really not a fan of this concept as find it useless) as well as separate pool area from the joined Hilton property. As a separate topic I think this WA hotel when refurbished is going to phenomenal.

This got me wondering about luxury properties around the world that might have similar features beyond the standard lounge that truly differentiate the product from the rest of the hotel/resort and might not be obvious/well advertised. I hope this thread seems appropriate and am eager for your expert knowledge as I couldn't find much on this topic.



Best, BT
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Old Jan 11, 19, 7:53 am
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These are far from secret. The entire marketing approach is to promote these facilities incrementally. E.g., "we're happy to have you staying with us, but we would like to make your stay even more exclusive."

The key is to figure out what you are really buying. At some places it is simply playing to people who want others to believe that they are special. At others, it really is peace & quiet, perhaps access to a lounge where decent food can be put out without having people shovel it into their pockets as though they haven't eaten in 6 weeks.
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Old Jan 11, 19, 8:05 am
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Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
These are far from secret. The entire marketing approach is to promote these facilities incrementally. E.g., "we're happy to have you staying with us, but we would like to make your stay even more exclusive."

The key is to figure out what you are really buying. At some places it is simply playing to people who want others to believe that they are special. At others, it really is peace & quiet, perhaps access to a lounge where decent food can be put out without having people shovel it into their pockets as though they haven't eaten in 6 weeks.
I nah sure @Often1 it seems that some of these facilities are not immediately obvious (with the exception of the RC Club levels which I often detest as you reference, full of people shoving themselves full of really poor to mediocre offerings). For example, as I referenced, Cairo's Towers Heliopolis doesn't advertise the butler service or very private club access amenities. Hope that carries over when the hotel is fully a WA.
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Old Jan 11, 19, 8:12 am
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Not a club per se, but the Shangri-La(s) in Singapore is a good example of this.
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Old Jan 11, 19, 8:18 am
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FS Seoul has their Korean baths and sauna that is a paid extra charge, Executive suite (or higher) guests or hotel members only.

They don't advertise it and try to keep numbers down. The downside to this approach is hotel members bringing their extended family during the Korean vacation period time. They are paying 20 to 30k USD so I guess that gives privilege.
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Last edited by Aventine; Jan 11, 19 at 8:25 am
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Old Jan 11, 19, 8:24 am
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Originally Posted by Aventine View Post
FS Seoul has their Korean baths and sauna that is a paid extra charge, Executive suite (or higher) guests or hotel members only.

They don't advertise it and try to keep numbers down. The downside to this approach is hotel members bringing their extended family during the Korean vacation period time.
Great example of something really exclusive and seemingly very special.
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Old Jan 11, 19, 8:37 am
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You might want to have a look at Las Vegas or a number of other integrated resort type of operations, where you will likely find "secret"/unadvertised rooms and products.
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Old Jan 11, 19, 8:51 am
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Waldorf Towers part of the Waldorf Astoria in NYC is an obvious example, before and after it became part of Hilton.

Even some Sheratons have Towers hotel within a hotel with separate (better) lounge. Hong Kong is an example.

Before Katrina, one of the two RCs in New Orleans had a hotel within the hotel.

Hyatt on Bali had a special pool for club level.

Laguna at Bali (SPG LC) has some villas, IIRC with a private pool for them.

Canyon Suites (hotel within a hotel, with pool, hot tubs, business center but no restaurant in the building) and Canyon Residences (generally private pools), both SPG LC, are on the Phoenician resort complex and operated as separate hotels.

Imperial Hotels (Tokyo and Osaka) have Imperial floors with hostesses in kimonos that give access to a special lounge near the business center with free coffee and tea all day. At times there's an offer (for ICI members or suites occupants)b for access to their private club (evening drinks, etc.).

Parts of the Broadmoor seem special. Some sections have their own lobby, check in desk, concierge, etc.

Andaz Scottsdale has a separate area with units around a courtyard with its own pool, but it's for groups and seems much less attractive than the rest of the property and main pool.

Hotel du Cap has a smaller separate building (IIRC mostly junior suites) near the water/pool and down the hill from the main palace that's considered exclusive. There are also a couple villas on the property.

I'm forgetting the name now, but the iconic historic resort hotel in the small town on the lake in Switzerland (with the floating pool) has the separate building beyond the pool that's considered more exclusive than the main palace building.

In some of the resorts in Australia (Great Barrier Reef, for example), there are groups of villas that share a pool.

Some huge conference hotels that are chain properties have one tower that they try to designate as special, but it's a meaningless joke. I'm thinking of the big Marriott in Philadelphia for example with its regular tower and deluxe tower.
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Old Jan 11, 19, 9:04 am
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Originally Posted by scented View Post
You might want to have a look at Las Vegas or a number of other integrated resort type of operations, where you will likely find "secret"/unadvertised rooms and products.
Thanks, I read some about those but Vegas frightens me. I feel very sad when visiting as walking around every other person I see looks like they are an abused sex slave or deviant (male I am sorry to say) pedophile/rapist.
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Old Jan 11, 19, 10:37 am
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Why not just go to a small, exclusive hotel that treats all its guests like celebrities? Surely, this is what luxury is about.
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Old Jan 11, 19, 11:01 am
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Originally Posted by vuittonsofstyle View Post
Why not just go to a small, exclusive hotel that treats all its guests like celebrities? Surely, this is what luxury is about.
We do but I also have particular interest in things like secret elevators and doors (partly due to my lifelong neurodiversity/diagnosis of Asperger's, now ASD). I found myself transfixed by the two entrances to the Towers Heliopolis (one into lounge) and the other for main entrance and then began wondering more about the hotel within a hotel concept that others have kindly provided further information about. My amazement at not so obvious entrances/features is not limited to luxury hotels, another beautiful example is the Etihad Residence lounge within the lounge at JFK that has a nearly hidden entrance opening up into a very exclusive little space.
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Old Jan 11, 19, 11:22 am
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Originally Posted by BOStonTravels View Post
We do but I also have particular interest in things like secret elevators and doors (partly due to my lifelong neurodiversity/diagnosis of Asperger's, now ASD). I found myself transfixed by the two entrances to the Towers Heliopolis (one into lounge) and the other for main entrance and then began wondering more about the hotel within a hotel concept that others have kindly provided further information about. My amazement at not so obvious entrances/features is not limited to luxury hotels, another beautiful example is the Etihad Residence lounge within the lounge at JFK that has a nearly hidden entrance opening up into a very exclusive little space.
As others said only a handful might be "secret". So far I didnīt read much here what qualifies as secret. In the end a hotel lives from ist offerings, so why should it be secret?
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Old Jan 11, 19, 11:31 am
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Originally Posted by offerendum View Post
As others said only a handful might be "secret". So far I didnīt read much here what qualifies as secret. In the end a hotel lives from ist offerings, so why should it be secret?
Maybe a better word than secret, I just use that word because I like it for the fantasy imagery but agree the actual definition does not fit well with the topic I started. I use secret as a sort of term to describe things that might not be apparent (e.g. a separate entrance). I think elements of hotels like the Korean baths at the 4S would not be obvious to most checking over the website or of course staying in the hotel outside of suites.
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Old Jan 11, 19, 2:59 pm
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The Hyatt Regency Danang in Vietnam has a private pool for the club bookings.
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Old Jan 11, 19, 4:21 pm
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I don't think most of these are secret per se. Hotels within hotels are common place. I can think of the Wynn in LAS the Vista inside the Hilton in TLV off hand. Cruiselines have separate parts of the ship as a hotel within the hotel. None of these are secret. There was a "secret" hotel inside Disneyland this is now widely known. Secret doors? Not so much but option luxury in mainstream brands yes.
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