The Old War Office Transformed into a Luxury Hotel: Hinduja's Remarkable Endeavor

The Old War Office Transformed into a Luxury Hotel: Hinduja's Remarkable Endeavor

By Author

Published on September 30, 2023

In a remarkable transformation, London's Old War Office (OWO), a historic World War II landmark, has been reborn as a luxurious hotel, thanks to the efforts of the Hinduja Group and Raffles Hotels & Resorts. This grand opening was graced by British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Princess Anne.

The Hinduja family, originating from India, has breathed new life into a site where Winston Churchill once referred to Mahatma Gandhi as a "half-naked fakir." This historic transformation was unveiled by Princess Anne, the princess royal, and a tour of the hotel accompanied by GP Hinduja, Chairman of the Hinduja Group. Collaborating with the French hospitality giant Raffles Hotels & Resorts, this venture has converted the OWO into a luxury haven. The hotel offers rooms at daily rates ranging from INR 1.2 lakh for a room to INR 5.8 lakh for a suite next week.

GP Hinduja, Chairman of the Hinduja Group, expressed, "We have always worked towards strengthening the ties between India and the UK, as we believe our role is to act as a bridge between our host country and our motherland. It took us eight years to transform this iconic structure into a symbol of peace and comfort rather than its World War history. The OWO is set to become a London landmark, representing the legacy of the Hinduja Group. Anyone arriving in London will surely make it their first stop."

British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak made a brief appearance at the event, along with parliamentarians, entrepreneurs, hoteliers, and entertainment luminaries. Musical performances by Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber and Andrea Bocelli added a special touch to the occasion. The hotel is set to welcome its first guests starting from Friday, September 29.

The OWO's grand inauguration ceremony was attended by a distinguished guest list, including Princess Beatrice, Sadiq Khan (Mayor of London), Adil Ray (British Actor and Comedian), Natalie Pinkman (British TV presenter), Richard Caring (British businessman), and actors Akshay Kumar and Twinkle Khanna, as stated by the group.

This revamped OWO is now home to 85 Residences by Raffles and has transformed into a culinary district for London, boasting nine new restaurants and three bars, including a rooftop with panoramic views of Buckingham Palace. This transformation represents an endeavor to combine history with modern luxury, and it is sure to leave an indelible mark on London's landscape.


Atmosphere Core Introduces Raaya to Expand Maldives Portfolio

Atmosphere Core Introduces Raaya to Expand Maldives Portfolio

By Nithyakala Neelakandan

Published on March 28, 2024

Atmosphere Core, a renowned international hospitality company, is set to broaden its presence in South Asia with the addition of Kudakurathu island in Raa Atoll, Maldives, to its management portfolio. The island, soon to be rebranded as 'RAAYA BY ATMOSPHERE,' is scheduled to open its doors on July 4, 2024, marking the third Atmosphere Hotels & Resorts property in the Maldives and the ninth globally.

Since its inception in December 2013, Atmosphere Core has been synonymous with exceptional service, innovative culinary concepts, and groundbreaking experiences, establishing its properties as premier choices in the Maldivian hospitality sector.

Salil Panigrahi, Managing Director of Atmosphere Core, expressed excitement about the expansion, stating, “By adding ‘RAAYA BY ATMOSPHERE’ to our growing Maldives portfolio, we aim to further enhance our brand position of ‘…A New Experience Awaits’. Our goal is to provide guests with curated experiences through our signature RAAYA™ Holiday Plan, ensuring unparalleled service at every touchpoint.”

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Accessible via a 45-minute seaplane flight from Velana International Airport, 'RAAYA BY ATMOSPHERE' is a sanctuary nestled amidst lush greenery, with 88 percent of its expanse dedicated to nature. The resort boasts 167 beach and ocean villas, six diverse dining options, and an array of recreational activities, including water sports, diving, and a kids club, offering guests a memorable escape enriched by the vibrant local culture.

Mr. Ranjit Batra, President, Hospitality of Kudakurathu Island Resort Pvt. Ltd., shared his enthusiasm, stating, “Kudakurathu is a captivating island that combines the untouched beauty of the Maldives with innovative design, creating a distinctive destination.”

With this expansion, Atmosphere Core continues its commitment to delivering exceptional hospitality experiences and creating unforgettable memories for guests in the Maldives and beyond.


Experience the Ultimate IPL Extravaganza at The Eloquent Elephant, Taj Dubai

Experience the Ultimate IPL Extravaganza at The Eloquent Elephant, Taj Dubai

By Nithyakala Neelakandan

Published on March 23, 2024

The Eloquent Elephant at Taj Dubai is all set to host an exclusive Indian Premier League (IPL) extravaganza from March 22 to April 14, 2024.

Get ready to immerse yourself in the excitement of cricket as The Eloquent Elephant transforms into the ultimate IPL hub. Whether you're a die-hard cricket fan or just looking for a vibrant atmosphere to enjoy with friends and family, this event promises an unforgettable experience.

Attendees can look forward to thrilling matches, delicious bites, and refreshing beverages. Plus, there's an exciting opportunity to predict the man of the match in every game and win amazing prizes.

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Here are the irresistible offers awaiting you:

  • Dive into the IPL action with a minimum spend of AED 150 for league matches and AED 250 for the finals, fully redeemable against the exquisite a la carte menu.

  • Indulge in three signature bar nibbles for just AED 99, perfect for snacking while enjoying the cricket action.

  • Experience the ultimate IPL experience with three hours of free-flowing house spirits, house grapes, bottled hops, and nibbles for AED 250.

Don't miss out on this opportunity to enjoy thrilling cricket matches alongside delectable treats at The Eloquent Elephant. Join us for an unparalleled IPL adventure!


AHEAD Awards 2024: Celebrating Excellence in Hospitality Design

AHEAD Awards 2024: Celebrating Excellence in Hospitality Design

By Author

Published on January 27, 2024

AHEAD, the prestigious awards recognizing excellence in hospitality experience and design, is now accepting global entries for the year 2024. The awards, organized by the team behind Sleeper, Supper, and Starboard magazines, honor outstanding hotels and the creative minds shaping them. To encourage participation, there is a limited-time 20% discount on entry fees available until March 1.

The independent panel of experts, consisting of architects, designers, owners, operators, developers, and industry commentators, will evaluate projects based on exceptional design, functionality, client and guest satisfaction, and commercial viability.

Winners will be revealed at regional ceremonies throughout 2024, with categories spanning from Guestroom and Event Spaces to Hotel Conversion and the prestigious Hotel of the Year.

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Eligible projects include hotels, resorts, lodges, cabins, and tented camps that opened within specific date ranges for each region:

Asia: January 2023 – April 2024

Americas: January 2023 – April 2024

MEA (Middle East and Africa): January 2023 – June 2024

Europe: January 2023 – July 2024

Entry fees are categorized as follows:

Early (£220) – applies before March 1, 2024

Standard (£275)

Late (£330) – applies in the final two weeks

To explore entry guidelines, regional deadlines, and kickstart your entry process, visit AHEAD Awards Platform.

About AHEAD Awards:

AHEAD stands as the preeminent global awards program recognizing excellence in hospitality experience and design. Hosted annually in Singapore, New York, Dubai, and London, these awards celebrate the most exceptional projects and the talented teams behind them.

Organized by the team responsible for the industry-leading publication Sleeper, AHEAD serves as a benchmark for design excellence worldwide, with a distinguished panel of 60+ industry leaders, including architects, interior designers, and developers.

The awards are categorized regionally into Asia, the Americas, the Middle East and Africa (MEA), and Europe. Spanning diverse categories such as Hotel Newbuild, Hotel Renovation, Guestrooms, Bar, and Restaurant, each regional panel seeks projects that exemplify outstanding design, functionality, and commercial viability.

Entries for the AHEAD 2024 series are now open. For more information and to enter, download the entry guidelines here. Stay updated on the latest announcements, including deadline reminders and ticket releases, by signing up for the mailing list.

Save the date for AHEAD Asia, scheduled at Parkroyal Collection Marina Bay on September 25, 2024. Join our mailing list for timely updates.

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