Recently Tokyo , Nicole, and I traveled to Orlando, FL and stayed at the Grand Bohemian Hotel, with my husband Joe, in the eclectic downtown area. The area was vibrant with great sculptures, water features, stores, and restaurants. But what I really want to share is my experience of a growing trend in boutique hotels. Not only do you get a lovely, comfy super fluffy bed in a room with “upscale” hip décor but you get a “cultural” experience. The public spaces adorned with original works of art invited you to linger and converse. Large sculptures pose like stationary greeters at the end of each elevator alcove. Some have price tags, some just a brass plate hanging nearby to inform and educate the viewer. Even the pool area had fabulous sculptures. Before visiting, I read an article about a hotel in NYC, NY hiring a young exhibited artist to set up and curate the art at a chic new boutique hotel. My question is — why do you think hotels are going down this path?
I believe it is for “ratings”. These hotels have found a way to make themselves stand out from the crowd and offer an experience. A guest can experience both relaxation and stimulation in the same stay. Why get just a cot, when you can have art and a cot? Want to take a piece of your experience home, the hotel showcases a “Gallery” where you can purchase art, jewelry, and usable art items. The art even tumbled onto the walls of the attached Starbucks. The support for this display was marble, velvet, mirrors, and mica all in deep rich colors punctuated with bold and striking colors and textures. A comfortable level of posh meets chic. So if you love art, you may want to treat yourself to a dip into this new pool of luxury travel.
Here are some pictures of Tokyo taking in the art. I’m really glad she didn’t take home one of the two CDs of mood music from our room for $20.00 or think of buying one of the silver “gilt” mirrors or the crisp white duvet from the hotel’s collection discreetly advertised via strategically placed invitation cards. All and all we had a relaxing time in engaging surroundings in a vibrant city center. A special thanks goes out to Bill G. for recommending the accommodations.