Take a trip back to the golden age of travel with the Louis Vuitton Hotel Label Postcard Collection.
On October 28th, 2011 was the third anniversary of the day my boyfriend and I met. To celebrate this special moment, we decided to take the train from Paris, where we live, to Brussels, the capitale of Belgium. We had a great time in this lovely city, and enjoyed one night in a remarkable place: the Hotel Bloom!, a 4 stars design hotel in the North of the town.
Located nearby the botanic garden, some rooms have a very pleasant view on it. From mine, the view was not extraordinary, but I have to admit it is difficult to content me since I can see the Eiffel Tower and the Sacré Coeur from my living room! Nevertheless, even if you don’t see the Botanic Garden from your room when staying at Hotel Bloom!, you can still enjoy it for a little walk in the morning or during the evening when it becomes a place for concerts and artistic representations. If you are even too lazy to walk there, the lounge bar of Hotel Bloom! is a good choice too: every weekend, live DJs are coming to make the clients shake their heads with some groovy house tunes, while they’re having a cocktail and some appetizers.
But let’s talk about the most important: the rooms! What is very unique at Hotel Bloom is that every single bedroom has been decorated by a European artist. Indeed, the hotel has a partnership with Arts Schools all across Europe, and offered the opportunity of young artists to express their talent on the 305 bedrooms’ walls. The great thing is that you can even choose your room according to the fresco you like the most: http://www.hotelbloom.com/frescos-fr.html
Here is the one I had on my room, number 741.
I really love the concept, don’t you? I also have to say a few words about the breakfast: it was absolutely delicious, with plenty of quality food (the croissants were delightful). In a nutshell, I really appreciated my stay at the Hotel Bloom, with its nicely decorated room, friendly staff, good location and excellent breakfast. If you have the chance to go to the beautiful city of Brussels, do not hesitate to stay there!
Rue Royale 250
1210 Bruxelles, Belgique
+32 2 220 66 11
@hotelBLOOM on Twitter
Hotel Bloom on Facebook
A big thank you to Laura for translating from her native French the review of Hotel Bloom she wrote for her own blog – La Frange. She is also on Facebook, if your French is good check it out. Otherwise we hope to hear more from Laura here on RoomCritic.
As Laura mentioned above, guests at Hotel Bloom can choose their room based on the artwork (frescos) painted behind the bed. It’s great to see Hotel Bloom have created a real point of difference with this concept. We love it, and can’t wait to see a few of their rooms for ourselves. You’ll definitely see more of Hotel Bloom from us.
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The RoomCritic travel team have pulled together their 13 most wanted gifts for the festive season. Give them to the other person in your life or keep them to yourself, either way they’ll keep everyone happy.
Rock the slope (and the city).
When the cold sets in and the first snowflakes fall, where better to escape to than a winter wonderland like Switzerland. From the staggering beauty of the Alps and world class ski-runs, to quaint Alpine towns and family-run restaurants, this cozy and enchanting country has so much to offer.
Whether you want to discover untouched nature, charming cities or be surrounded by the glitz and glamour of St Moritz,
Design Hotels have handpicked selection of Swiss properties with Alpine charm and hospitality with modern design and sophistication. As well as offering a discounted rate, each hotel has provided special tips and a complimentary neighborhood benefit, to help you discover their area like a local.
A calming fusion of luxury, fun and rugged alpine beauty.
A luxury boutique hotel that celebrates simplicity and spirituality as much as it does elegance, refinement and timeless design.
Equated with such words as luxury and alpine-chic, Hotel Nevai is surrounded by more than 400 km of slopes for skiers of all levels.
The Cambrian looks out onto one of the world’s most spectacular landscapes with some of Switzerland’s best ski slopes and hiking trails.
One of the most unique and spectacular ski resorts in the world, guaranteeing a satisfying and fuss-free holiday in winter as well as in summer.
Fresh, welcoming and with a distinctly modern twist, it’s where guests can live and feel Zermatt at its best.
La Réserve is an explosion of extravagant color, sumptuous fabrics and exotic touches.
For more information about the best places to stay around the world, follow this blog or our @roomcritic twitter stream. Receive our travel stories and hotel links direct to your own Facebook wall, just ‘like’ our RoomCritic Facebook page.
Earlier this week I had to make a quick dash down south to Melbourne for a last minute shoot. My trip was full of surprises.
Simon, my work colleague booked our flights to fit within the budget for the trip. Being a Qantas Frequent Flyer, they tend to be first choice but budget was the main concern this trip. Virgin Australia won the price war over Qantas. OK, so no surprise there.
Our call sheet had us starting early so we red-eyed down on the 6.30am flight. Simon chose the basic non-flexi economy fare. Normally I will pay a bit more to get the extra legroom. I’m a tall guy at 6’7″ and my legs don’t fold up like they used to. Unfortunately the exit row seats were taken. Row 20 here I come.
I actually fitted into the seat. There wasn’t much extra room but my knees weren’t crammed up against the seat in front and I didn’t have to stretch them out into the isle. My last Qantas flight to Melbourne was terrible for space.
I knew I wouldn’t get food or entertainment without paying so sleeping for the 90 minute flight was my main concern.
After shooting all day Tuesday around a beautifully sunny Melbourne, we had a great Mexican dinner at Los Amates Mexican Kitchen and back to our hotel for the night. We were staying at The Royce. The stay wasn’t RoomCritic related so I decided to go undercover.
My room was not what I expected from “One of Melbourne’s finest designer five star boutique hotels” as they so graciously state on their website. See my next post later this week or next for details of my stay at The Royce Hotel.
Anyways, back to the main story. Wednesday we were back in the edit suite to complete our video. Simon had booked a flexi fare to get us back to Sydney as we weren’t sure of the time we’d finish. We did in fact finish a little earlier than expected, so made our way to the airport a few hours before our flight was due.
At the busy Virgin Blue check-in counter the very helpful and cheerful staff member got us on the very next flight out. An hour and a half earlier than our booked flight. Of course, that’s what is supposed to happen with a flexi fare but the big surprise was we didn’t have to pay any extra for the earlier flight which was more expensive.
After downing a quick beer in the bar we made our way to the boarding plane. Not thinking about seating, I ended up with the window. Oh well I thought, I’ll chat to whoever it is in the isle and ask if I could change. The plane must have been one of the newer on the fleet. New leather seats, new interior colour combo’s (Just quietly, I think the purple plexi glass divider to business will date rather quickly). But it looked good.
When I finally made it down to row 15 to my F window seat,
Surprise 4 & 5.
There was even more room than the previous flight. We’re only talking a leg hairs difference, but it was better. I’m not sure I would have been so comfy in the middle seat, but Simon doesn’t take up much room so he was happy to be there. A few minutes into the flight Captain Guy comes over the microphone and announces the details of the flight as well as letting those passengers on flexi fares that there is now a free snack and drink available. Yes Free… The snack was actually a pretty reasonable cheese and something wrap with a water I could have even chosen a beer or wine if I’d wanted it.
I was very impressed with everything about our flight. Virgin Australia have actively been out to attract the business traveller and break the perception they are just another budget airline. With all the service changes they have implemented this year it should be working for them. They have changed my perception.
Virgin Blue, you’ve changed and think I like it. Hello Virgin Australia
Have you had any equally surprising positive or negative experiences flying Virgin Australia or any other airline for that matter? If so we’d love to hear about it. Leave a comment below or tell us about it on our Facebook page.