News for the Hospitality Executive
NEW KINGSTON, Jamaica, June 2, 2009 - The Crissa Group has added "pizzazz" to the road warriors' dictionary with the official launch of the Spanish Court Hotel in New Kingston on June 14, 2009. This first new hotel in Kingston in nearly 40 years fills a need in Jamaica's capital and thriving cultural center for a hotel with unabashed style, great dining and contemporary amenities to which guests of urban hotels in particular are accustomed.
Designer Alison Antrobus creates sparks in comfy, residential elements and Jamaican-made appointments with bold colors, patterns, shapes and materials in the public spaces, while ultramodern rooms and suites boast large flat-screen TVs and soaking tubs. An infinity-edge lap pool rises out of the hotel's second floor Sky Terrace and a sundeck offers a reminder that this metropolitan setting is in the Caribbean. In the evenings, guests can lime at the Sky Bar, considered to be Kingston's newest and hottest bar, with distinct views of the high rise buildings in the foreground and the beautiful Blue Mountains surrounding Kingston in the background.
Heading up The Crissa Group and the Spanish Court Hotel development is lawyer and "village architect" Christopher Issa. Though he is from Jamaica's renowned family of tourism pioneers, this is Issa's first hotel venture. With a passion for his hometown of Kingston, and having more of an interest in city hotels than resorts, he recognized the potential in the location and architecture of the former Spanish Court Shopping Centre, spending US$12 million to acquire and, along with architect Oscar Garcia, transformed the structure into a 107-room boutique hotel.
Noting that great city hotels that thrived from one generation to the next had landmark exterior architecture, Issa strived to recreate this for the Spanish Court Hotel by preserving the structure's existing Spanish-influenced exterior and arches on the ground floor. Exterior corridors became interior ones and additional floors were added.
As construction progressed Issa hadn't found a designer for the hotel's public areas; discovering designer Alison Antrobus was destiny. In a store he spotted a restaurant on the cover of a magazine, "I thought, that design has what I am looking for and it was done by a Jamaican-born designer," says Issa. "I googled her, called, and she answered. My pleading and pulling on her Jamaican heartstrings began and the rest as they say is history."
Finding most hotel lobbies sterile and uncomfortable -- particularly for women traveling alone -- Antrobus' design defines different zones of use without closing off the large open space of the hotel's first floor; teak pivoting louvers act as walls. Spaces are inviting: a place to relax, a spot to rendezvous. Guests settle into leather couches and high-back chairs in the "library," or a zebra print lounge chair with a reading lamp. Bean-shaped leather benches and Martin Fluss chandeliers in the reception area radiate light against rich jatoba wood floors that run throughout.
The key to Ms. Antrobus' vision for the hotel's Spanish Court Cafe is a unique multi-function Dining Bar that transforms from breakfast buffet to cocktail bar. Fronted by an unusual backlit acrylic "hedge," the bar is sliced diagonally with a long table creating a gathering spot; mahogany tables are arranged for an at-home feel and cabanas provide an intimate dining experience.
The Spanish Court Hotel has private and semi-private meeting and party space, including the Sky Terrace, making it a perfect venue for small groups of up to 50 people. The hotel is a free Wi-Fi hotspot for guests, has a virtual business center and 24-hour concierge service which provide all the necessities for business and personal requirements.
The Spanish Court Hotel delivers effortless luxury, comfort, and personal attention -- "Real style. Real service." Every guest is treated as a VIP -- a Very Individual Person.
Introductory rates at the Spanish Court Hotel start at $135.00 per room, per night based on double occupancy for a Deluxe Standard room now through June 30, 2009; and Summer Saver rates start at $145.00 from July 1 through August 31, 2009. Rates include continental breakfast and internet access. For reservations call 876.926.0000 or visit www.spanishcourthotel.com.