October 2010

Butterfly Bar, Petit Ermitage, Los Angeles

The outdoor portion of Butterfly Bar at Petit Ermitage in Los Angeles

Last week we told you about six hotels that we consider to be the best hidden gem hotels in Los Angeles. One of them, Petit Ermitage, is just so quaint and adorable that we just need to tell you more. Its bohemianism, lovely outdoor spaces, and unassuming location on a residential street make it one of our favorite picks in L.A., so below are some photo highlights that will show you around the hotel. Here’s hoping you fall in love with it as much as we have.

You can skip the below photo tour and head straight to our hotel review of Petit Ermitage in Los Angeles to read more about it, or you can go straight to our 297 photos of the hotel.

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Byodo-In Buddhist temple

Byodo-In Buddhist temple

No matter your religious affiliation, these places of worship offer a unique opportunity to experience the history and diverse culture of Hawaii. Enjoy the serenity of a Buddhist Temple, see the first Christian church raised in Oahu by missionaries, and pay respects to the Hawaiian culture at a heiau.

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Ford's Theater in Washington, D.C.

Ford's Theater in Washington, D.C.

Ford’s Theatre is much more than the infamous site of Abraham Lincoln’s assassination. It’s also a museum, and an operating theater with regular shows. 

The Museum

Once you arrive, head downstairs to the newly restored museum. You might be surprised at its scope: The assassination of Lincoln is covered in one small exhibit, and the majority of the museum focuses on Civil War history, with particular emphasis on the role played by Washington, D.C., and its elected representatives. Life-size models are dotted about the museum representing citizens and dignitaries during Civil War times.

The museum tells the story of Abraham Lincoln’s presidency, from his arrival in Washington in 1861 to the legacy he left. It features a remarkable collection of historic artifacts, including the deringer that John Wilkes Booth used, as well as a replica of the coat that President Lincoln wore the night he was shot. Of particular interest will be the timeline for April 14, 1865, the day and evening of Lincoln’s assassination. As I read the text of the day’s events, I couldn’t help but think of a CSI crime scene timeline.

Ford’s Theatre is open daily with tours scheduled from 9 a.m. through 4 p.m. The tours are free, but tickets are required. Since Ford’s is a working theater, there are times when the museum is open, but the theater is closed. Check Ford’s Theatre website for details. Read More »

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The Waldorf Astoria

The Waldorf Astoria

New York is a city that has it all. The Empire State Building, Wall St., Central Park, and dozens more iconic sites make it unlike any other city in the world, and it’s an ever-popular backdrop for movies and films of all types. The city is also home to some of the world’s finest hotels, and it is no surprise that some of them have made it onto the silver screen. Here is a list of some Oyster.com favorites that have appeared in the movies.

The Waldorf Astoria, New York City

A Midtown East icon, the 1,300-room Waldorf-Astoria comes with some of New York’s best spa services, fitness facilities, restaurants, and bars. The dress code and antique décor aren’t for everyone, but the cinematic history and unrivaled elegance make the price tag well worth it. The hotel has been used as a classic New York backdrop in dozens of movies including the hilarious Coming to America (1988) in which Eddie Murphy plays an African prince who travels to New York to find his queen.
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The Hilton Orlando Bonnett Creek

The Hilton Orlando Bonnett Creek

Shhh, don’t tell anyone, but there are several non-Disney hotels on Disney Property. Let’s take a look.

The Swan and Dolphin

The most obvious non-Disney hotel on Disney Property is The Swan and Dolphin, a Westin Resort with stunning architecture. The first thing you’ll notice are the huge sculptures that sit on top and around the buildings (they look even better at night). The Swan and Dolphin is renowned for its outstanding rooms, service and unique dining experiences.
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A woman who committed suicide on this site in the 19th century still haunts the halls of the Hay-Adams, trailed by the scent of mimosa.

A woman who committed suicide on this site in the 19th century still haunts the halls of the Hay-Adams, trailed by the scent of mimosa.

Prepare yourself for a spine-tingling visit from beyond the grave at these eight haunted hotels. Visit the New York hotel where Sid stabbed Nancy, or get haunted by Marilyn’s ghost at the Hollywood Roosevelt.

The Hay-Adams

The Hay-Adams was built in 1927, for the not-too-modest sum of $900,000, over the former homes of best friends John Hay (Abraham Lincoln’s private secretary and later a secretary of state) and Henry Adams (the author and descendant of John and John Quincy). Supposedly, the ghost of Adams’ wife, who committed suicide on this site in 1885, still walks the halls, trailed by the scent of mimosa. Read More »

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Actor Charlie Sheen went on a destructive bender in his suite at the Plaza Hotel last night.

Actor Charlie Sheen went on a destructive bender in his suite at the Plaza Hotel last night.

Bad boy Charlie Sheen is at it again. The Two-and-a-Half men star’s destructive drunken rage in his hotel suite last night resulted in a 911 call, The New York Daily News reported today. And the site of this booze-fueled fiasco? None other than the swanky Plaza Hotel. We’re always sad to hear about hotels vandalized –especially hotels this heart-stoppingly luxurious. More photos of The Plaza — and more on what Charlie destroyed — after the jump. Read More »

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Players use the driving range at The Ritz-Carlton Golf & Spa Resort, Rose Hall's White Witch course

Players use the driving range at The Ritz-Carlton Golf & Spa Resort, Rose Hall's White Witch course

Last week, we shared our list of the best golf resorts in the continental U.S. to help you plan your fall golf getaway — before it gets too cold. But if you can’t plan a trip before the weather gets chilly, not to fear: Some of the world’s best golf courses are located in tropical locals, where you can hit the links at any time of year. Below, see our picks for the best golf courses in Hawaii and the Caribbean, or head to our main site to browse our list of 50-plus hotels with golf courses for more options.

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Tiles for America in Greenwich Village

The tiles for America 9/11 memorial in Greenwich Village

Every great city memorializes its heroes, those paragons of virtue or suffering. As we gaze upon these monuments in everlasting metal, we’re meant to feel both thankful and uplifted, perhaps even capable of great feats in our own lives. Here are some of New York’s most moving memorials.

African Burial Ground
In 1991, construction workers discovered that the spot carefully chosen as the setting for a federal office building in Lower Manhattan was actually a burial ground used by Africans and African-Americans from 1626 to the late 1700s. After much controversy, the National Park Service took over the site, which now consists of a large granite sculpture with running water and engravings from various African cultures. Its center has a scalloped design that lists the few known facts of those buried there, all likely enslaved, most killed by malnutrition, violence, or punishment. Open daily from 9 am to 5 p.m., the park is located at the corners of Duane and Elk Streets, about a mile from Gild Hall.

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Empire Hotel marketing image

Hotel's photo

Oyster's Photo of Empire Hotel

Oyster's Photo

The Empire Hotel in New York City is a great hotel with a rooftop bar, swanky decor, a seafood restaurant, and a great location. Plus, it’s been immortalized for an entire generation by Gossip Girl as the hotel that boy-billionare Chuck Bass owns and lives in. But does being a popular, stylish hotel give you the right to deceive potential guests? We vote no. Which is why the photos of the hotel’s pool that are featured on the hotel’s website irk us. Although a nice hotel pool deck is a rarity in Manhattan, and we give the hotel props for that, the reality is that the Empire’s pool is tiny, tiny, tiny. But you wouldn’t know it by looking at the marketing images, which show you just a corner of the pool — leaving the rest to your imagination. If you’re intrigued, you can see plenty more real, honest photos of the Empire Hotel’s pool, from every angle.

See all of our hotel Photo Fakeouts.

See the full Empire Hotel review, or see all of our Empire Hotel photographs.

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