Sep 01, 2012 | Wallpaper
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Proving you can mix business with pleasure, we present our annual shortlist of the best new openings around the world. A smart new generation of business hotels has sussed that hitting the road in the name of work can, in the right hands, be a positive experience. What you need is a mix of great design, good service, delicious food and a little je ne sais quoi. Here we bring you the rare gems that have it all sorted. To pick the ten winners, we have tapped a coterie of well-travelled creatives for our judges (see our October issue). Check back in November to see their selection.
Amba Taipei Ximending, Taipei
Rates: from TWD$6,600 ($220)
Overview: The Amba is the brainchild of the Taiwanese Ambassador Hotel Group. Collaborating with some of Taiwan’s edgiest architects, artists, music stylists and interior designers, the property is the first of a planned series of boutique hotels targeting urban business and creative travellers. It is located in the bustling shopping district of Ximending.
Business amenities: While there is no business centre as such, there are plenty of quiet nooks and tables in the tech- friendly public spaces for informal discussions and networking. All rooms come with complimentary Wi-Fi, IP telephone and TV with built-in Skype, social media and internet videos.
Rooms: The 160 rooms range in space from 20 to 60 sq m and reflect the Ace Hotels’ philosophy of minimalist functionality. An eclectic mix of environmentally friendly materials, with industrial lighting, recycled plywood floors, bath products made from ginger, natural unbleached linens, organic cotton towels, and painted tin drum side tables.
Leisure: There are no hotel leisure facilities, but plenty of diversion in the surrounding Ximending district, including shops, the Red House Theatre and the National Taiwan Museum.
Restaurants: In-house restaurant Chiba sets the kickback mood with an open kitchen and communal seating. The bread is imported from New York, but the menu is happily focused on local ingredients. Enloy a lethal brew concocted in Tingba, the hotel’s chic cocktail and music lounge. Also on offer are organic and biodynamic wines chosen by top sommelier Jean-Marc Nolant.
77 Wuchang Street, Section 2, Taipei; Tel: 886.2 2375 5111; www.amba-hotels.com