We have asked luxury travel, culture, and lifestyle blogger Nyssa of The Cultureur, to share her thoughts with us about her love for hotels, and Amberlair, of course. And before you ask, a #BohoLover is a Boutique Hotel lover… just like us!
How do you choose a hotel when you travel?
I scour the Internet for reviews, check social media for behind-the-scenes glimpses, and crowdsource for recommendations through my network. Luxury hotels should be spaces that help you to appreciate the moment and provide a respite from the humdrum of daily life, and after researching the property, the location, range of amenities, and overall vibe are what ultimately determine my booking. It also depends on my mood and destination – sometimes I’m looking for modern luxury, while other times I’m more in the mood for traditional white-glove service. Both have their own place in my travel style.
If you had to choose 3, which were the most special (boutique) hotels you have ever stayed at?
That’s an incredibly difficult question – there’s far too many! But off the top of my head, I’d have to choose The Lowell in New York City, The Imperial in New Delhi, and Mandarin Oriental in Atlanta.
What made them so special?
They were all different experiences, but they had perfect location, impeccable service, an acute attention to details, and exquisite décor in common. It’s about how it makes me feel at the end of the day – the overall vibe that dictates to return or not to return.
If you had your own boutique hotel, what 3 things would you make sure existed?
I’d make sure that it was friendly towards the modern digital traveler, so lots of outlets and charging stations near the bed and complimentary high-speed WiFi. I’d also make sure there was complimentary water throughout the day and tons of healthy food and drink options to choose from – maybe even an in-house juice bar. On that same note, I’d also make exercise machines available to be brought up to the guest’s room upon request. Staying healthy and fit on the road is hard enough as it is, so if my property can help make it even a tad bit easier, I’d do it. It’s that kind of personalized, out-of-the-box service that people remember and are drawn to.
Name 3 things you loved in hotels you stayed in before…
I love turn-down services that go beyond the normal water, chocolates, and slippers. I appreciate something out of the ordinary at the end of my long day, whether it’s a monogrammed pillowcase or a bedtime butler.
I also love when properties interact with you on social media before your stay to find out what you like and don’t like and customize your stay accordingly, whether it’s naming a drink after you or leaving a highly personalized welcome gift/note in your room.
Lastly, I love it when hotels have healthy options on the late-night in-room dining menu. It comes down to personalization, customization, and paying attention to details in ways that your competitors are not.
Name 3 things you wouldn’t want to experience in a hotel ever again.
After paying a high premium for a luxurious experience, the last things I want to experience are rude service, external noise that prevents me from having a restful sleep (I’m a light sleeper!), and dirty bathrooms.
While all three will leave a sour taste in my mouth and make it unlikely for me to return, the last one is the ultimate deal-breaker for me – I’m incredibly particular about bathrooms, from optimal lighting for vanity purposes and clean, beautiful showers, and everything in between.
How do you feel about the Amberlair concept?
It’s fantastic and a long-time coming! Travel is increasingly becoming more common, and many luxury hotels are finding difficulty in staying on top of the latest trends and expanding their definition of the modern luxury traveler, so it’s great to see a concept that marries the two. As someone who works with the legal side of the hospitality space, it’s always a pleasure to see innovation in this industry.
Where are you off to next?
I just got back from Houston and New York City last night and will be headed to Montreal in a week. I can’t wait to explore a European-inspired city with a Canadian twist!
Originally from southern California, Nyssa is a travel journalist who has lived around the world, calling Paris, Los Angeles, San Diego, Seattle, Reykjavik, New Delhi, London, and Berlin home, and traveled to 50+ other countries. Her travel style fuses the hidden gems of a local destination’s culture with the finer things in life, redefining the idea of experiential luxury travel.
In addition to being the founder of The Cultureur, she has been featured in the Huffington Post, AFAR, Travel Time, and other international publications. You can follow Nyssa on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.