The Orania Hotel in the Kreuzberg neighbourhood of Berlin opened a few months ago in a building that dates back to 1913. Its 40+ rooms are accompanied by a private members’ literary salon (hotel guests have access), as well as restaurant, bar and concert space where you might listen to jazz, classical, electronic or world music depending on the night.

Orania.Berlin_facade & sign

Orania.Salon bei Tag

Orania.Berlin_Lounge mit Kamin

Orania.Berlin_Lounge

Orania.Berlin_Bühne mit Piano

Orania.Bar

Orania_Restaurant_2

Orania.25_bedroom

Orania.45_livingroom1Photos are copyright of Orania, Berlin

My story about new sea swimming holidays in Ibiza appeared in the Financial Times this month.

Click here >>> Ibiza <<< to read the piece if you subscribe to the FT online.

Thanks to my great guide Alessandro Mancini and to Swimtrek for organising it all.

Ibiza

 

I’m going to try and post more new hotel openings on Mondays, to give us a post-weekend boost on an otherwise rather grey start to the working week. (Well, if you’re reading this in London it’s pretty grim today. Ignore than bit if you’re in Cape Town, Buenos Aires or Melbourne right now).

This week it’s Copenhagen and the newly-opened Nobis Hotel. It’s a sister property to the Miss Clara in Stockholm which is one of my favourite hotels in Europe, and where I took my sister for her round number birthday last year.

Rates at the Nobis for a double room start from around 2500 Krone (£300 / €340 / US$400).

RED

Nobis 180917 4054

Nobis 180917 4175

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Nobis 180917 4163

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Visit Copenhagen

Images are courtesy of the hotel, and their copyright. 

I get sent information about a lot of new hotels. I’m going to try and post more of them from now on. Even if you and I never get to visit them, they’re nice to look at on the top deck of the bus on a Monday morning in October!

Bikaner is a city in Rajasthan, east of the border with Pakistan and surrounded by the Thar Desert. It was once a great staging post on the great caravan routes that criss-crossed the region. In terms of tourism it’s number one attraction is the Junagarh Fort, built between 1588 and 1593.

This is the newly-opened Narendra Bhawan in Bikaner. Formerly owned by the last Maharaja of Bikaner (HH Narendra Singhji, 1948 – 2003), the hotel’s interiors play on his journey through life, and are full of carefully-sourced antiques and artefacts from around the world. 

Narendra Bhawan - Bikaner (27)

Facade

Corridor 2 NEW

Diwali Chowk NEW

Narendra Bhawan - Bikaner (19) Entrance

The craftsmanship is superb and Art Deco furniture contrasts brilliantly with Rajput and European.  Built of soft pink sandstone, the tall building surrounds a pretty inner courtyard, overlooked by airy corridors, and has a lovely rooftop pool.

There are 82 bedrooms: some are contemporary, others more traditional and some more avant garde. The interiors of each reflect the different categories and phases of the Maharaja’s life.  They vary from bright and minimalist to more ‘arty’ or more traditional.

Narendra Bhawan - Bikaner (69)

Prince Room

Infinity Pool

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You can find more information at the website of India travel specialist Mahout. (The details and photos here has been provided by Mary-Anne Denison-Pender, the MD of that company, who is encyclopaedic in her knowledge of Indian hotels.)

The price for a “Prince Room” is from £190 per room per night (for two people) including breakfast.

Alaska has always been somewhere I’ve wanted to visit, and I was able to do that earlier this summer when I checked out the World Eskimo Indian Olympics, held in Fairbanks, Alaska.

If you’re flying on British Airways this month look out for my report on it in their in-flight magazine, High Life.

Eskimo 1

Eskimo 2

Eskimo 3

Eskimo 4