Sunday, October 17, 2010

Asian Sensation

Sleek and shiny at the corner of West Georgia and Thurlow, the imposing tower of the Shangri-la hotel Vancouver is – like so many new-builds today – mostly residences. At its base, though, is the Hong Kong-based chain’s entry into the Canadian hotel market. (Toronto’s “Shang” isn't due to open until 2012.)

All 119 guestrooms enjoy the exact same décor and amenities, such as free internet - the only difference in room categories is the size. Meeting space includes a state-of-the-art theatre for up to 47 people. There’s a large, well-equipped fitness centre, and the signature Chi spa offers six self-contained “spa within a spa” treatment rooms, one for couples.

The Lower Level lobby – though a bit dark – is designed to welcome guests as they arrive by car or taxi. There’s a second lobby at ground level with high ceilings, lots of natural light, a helpful Concierge desk, and a Lobby Lounge. Guests also have their choice of “four distinct dining atmospheres” at MARKET.

Asian art and design features grace the rooms and public spaces throughout the hotel, which is located within walking distance of downtown Vancouver’s popular attractions and shopping, and is exactly nine minutes (I timed it) from the brand new Vancouver Convention Centre.

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