News for the Hospitality Executive
31 New Hotels and Restaurants Accepted
into Relais & Chateaux
November 19, 2008 - Relais & Chateaux, a collection of the world's finest intimate hotels and gourmet restaurants, announced its newest worldwide members at its annual Congress today. A total of 31 new members were accepted into this prestigious organization, which now has 480 properties in 56 countries.
Relais & Chateaux reviewed 100 candidates around the world with a commitment to selecting only outstanding properties with truly unique character. Each new member represents the guiding principle of Relais & Chateaux: to create for guests moments of exceptional harmony and unforgettable celebrations of the senses. In the U.S., only one restaurant, Eleven Madison Park, and three resorts -- Winvian, The Inn of the Five Graces, and Hotel Fauchere, earned this exclusive distinction. Three outstanding chefs at Relais & Chateaux properties in North America were also named Grands Chefs Relais & Chateaux.
For over half a century, discriminating travelers and gourmands worldwide have come to expect the extraordinary from Relais & Chateaux. With the addition of Camp Jabulani in South Africa, an astonishing self-sustaining camp that protects elephants and houses a five-star property that harmoniously blends with the African bush; and Winvian, a whimsical collection of accommodations in Connecticut's Litchfield Hills that includes Treehouse and Helicopter cottages, this year is no exception.
"Our newest members offer truly unique and unforgettable experiences for our guests," said Jaume Tapies, international president of Relais & Chateaux. "We are delighted to welcome them into our family, where personal generosity and hospitality are a way of life."
New U.S. Members
Eleven Madison Park, New York, NY: Set in a magnificent art deco dining room in New York City, with soaring ceilings and lush views of historic Madison Square Park, Eleven Madison Park serves Chef Daniel Humm's modern, pure and market-driven French cuisine. It joins only a handful of Grands Chefs Relais & Chateaux in New York -- Per Se, Daniel, Aureole, Le Bernardin, and Jean Georges.
Danny Meyer, renowned restaurateur and owner of Eleven Madison Park, has a profound and poignant connection to Relais & Chateaux. Meyer's father discovered the small inns of Relais de Campagne, predecessor of Relais & Chateaux, while living in France in the 1950s. Inspired by the organization's concept of the Route du Bonheur (the Road to Happiness), a road that connected small inns throughout the French countryside, he founded Open Road Tours, which arranged driving trips to Relais & Chateaux properties in France. From the age of 7, Danny spent time at Relais & Chateaux properties, where he learned first-hand about cuisine and hospitality and became smitten by the lifestyle. His father eventually opened the Seven Gables Inn, in St. Louis, Missouri, and the crowning achievement of his life was when the inn became a member of Relais & Chateaux.
"Just as it was for my father, becoming a member of Relais & Chateaux is a peak career moment for me," said Meyer. "It is an affirmation by the finest hospitality organization in the world of Eleven Madison Park's achievement, and I am incredibly proud of our team. As a young boy, I first learned what a soulful hospitality experience could feel like by staying at Relais & Chateaux properties. In fact, I still have the diary I kept during that time. I have imagined and hoped for this day for a long time, and I can't even begin to express how much this means to me."
Winvian, Litchfield County, Connecticut: Set amidst 113 acres, Winvian was created to recharge and indulge. Fifteen different architects designed individual cottages that combine the whimsical with the traditional, the modern with the historical. Examples include: the Helicopter cottage, which features a fully restored 1968 Sikorsky HH36 Sea King Pelican helicopter and the Treehouse, a two-story cottage suspended among the trees ten meters off the ground that allows guests to sway with the breeze and touch the leaves.
The Inn of the Five Graces, Santa Fe, New Mexico: The Orient and the Old West meet at this hotel, whose name relates back to the Five Graces of Tibetan culture celebrating the human senses. Originally known as Seret's 1001 Nights, the inn is a truly magical and fanciful transformation to another world. The exteriors are traditional old Santa Fe with intriguing architectural details, including hand carved ceilings and columns from Tibet and a Jain altarpiece. Ira Seret, an internationally known importer of Oriental rugs and antiques, and his wife Sylvia, a designer, opened their 22- suite inn in an historic neighborhood of Santa Fe in 1996. The property is a showcase for the Serets' decorating talents.
Hotel Fauchere, Pike County, Pennsylvania: Founded in 1852 and
family operated for 124 years, the Hotel Fauchere was meticulously restored
and reopened in 2006. The classic Italianate-style property has 16 rooms,
all with marble baths, two restaurants, a patisserie and an adjacent spa.
The public areas feature a collection of Hudson River School paintings.
The hotel's Delmonico Room features contemporary interpretation of classic
cuisine, while the more casual Bar Louis offers bistro-style global cuisine,
including its signature Sushi Pizza, as well as a giant photograph of Andy
Warhol and John Lennon above the bar. The Hotel Fauchere is located on
the upper Delaware River, 75 miles from New York City, in Milford, Pennsylvania.
It is near the Grey Towers National Historic Site and the Pike County Historical
Society's Columns museum, which displays the famous blood-stained Lincoln
Flag, which cushioned the dying president's head after he was assassinated.
New Grands Chefs Relais & Chateaux North America
Three North American chefs at established Relais & Chateaux properties have also just been named Grands Chefs Relais & Chateaux. They are: Christopher Brooks of Blantyre (Lenox, Mass.), Jason Robinson, The Inn at Dos Brisas (Brenham, Texas), and Jonathan Gushue of Langdon Hall County House Hotel & Spa (Canada) join the contemporary elite of fine dining in recognition of their passion, creativity, experience and expertise.
New Relais & Chateaux Guide
"We all need ways to escape and seek out places that provide us with a way of seeing the world in a different way," said Kennedy. "When you arrive at a Relais & Chateaux hotel or restaurant, you arrive somewhere that isn't afraid to trumpet its uniqueness. The new Guide will allow readers to immediately identify each property's extraordinary qualities to draw inspiration for their next destination."
About Relais & Chateaux: Relais & Chateaux is an exclusive collection of 480 of the finest charming hotels and gourmet restaurants in 56 countries. Established in France in 1974, the Association's mission is to spread its unique art de vivre across the globe by selecting outstanding properties with a truly unique character. Furthermore, Relais & Chateaux is also a family of hoteliers and Grands Chefs from all over the world who share a passion for and a personal commitment to ensuring their guests are privy to moments of exceptional harmony, an unforgettable celebration of the senses. From the vineyards in the Napa Valley to the beaches in Bali, from the olive trees in Provence, to the lodges in South Africa, Relais & Chateaux offers all the stops on the finest route for discovering each special place and country.
|Also See:||Relais & Chateaux Adds 34 Privately-Owned Hotels and Restaurants to its Global Association / November 2007|
|The Relais & Châteaux Association Reorganizes; Appoints Jacques-Olivier Chauvin, Chief Executive Officer / June 2004|