Monday, October 19, 2009

Academic Ambassadors update

Hi Friends,

This past spring, I wrote about a great service I stumbled across called Academic Ambassadors. Well,I wanted to check back in with Adam Siegle, the brain behind the surface, and I though I would share his response with you:

I recently got back from a hotel scouting trip (doubling as an exhausting family vacation) and wanted to report back that AcAmb has been enhanced with some smashing new offerings.

Upon the recommendation of a member from Harvey Mudd College, I checked out (and into) the Hotel Roger Williams in NYC. Wow! From the moment we walked in, this place felt right. It's colorful without being startlingly and offputtingly chic. The rooms are so bright and cheerful (and not at all tiny a la Manhattan), the public spaces are very inviting, and the breakfast tremendously tasty!.

Moving southward, we hit the just-opened Hotel Monaco in Baltimore, and it's grand. Carved into a cathedral of 19th century big business, it's now an epic boutique hotel (oxymoron?) with soaring public spaces and huge rooms. Plus, it has all the Kimpton magic: (comp) wine hour, coffee hours, fitness and business centers...

Last stop was DC, where I needed to submerge my kids in the Palomar pool, cooling hot tempers while mom and dad chilled for (brief shining) moments. I hadn't been there before and have been showcasing the more intimate and trendy Topaz and Rouge on the site, but I loved the place and its location--so close to lively Dupont Circle.

Hmmm...what else? Oh yeah, I worked out a deal with Enterprise/Budget Rent-a-Car. We now get an additional 5% off their already discounted rates. I know that's not blockbuster savings, but imagine if we all access that; it will mean (in the aggregate) tens of thousands more available for our worthy causes.

Ever scouting for new hotels in yet covered cities, we're picking up a new haven in, uh, New Haven. It's boxy, glassy and classy, and it's called The Study. Continuing is my infinite search in London (suggestions, please!). Also, I'd like to add more to our Florida territory, especially as the warmth up here (New England) wanes.

Lastly, and maybe most importantly to you, Kimpton has extended for us its 20% discount off their Best Available Rates until the end of March (we had been getting 10% off). So, from Seattle to Atlanta (new) and from Aspen to Chicago, we can drink their free wine (4-6 most of their hotels) and luxuriate in their tiger-print robes (grrr), with the piece of mind knowing that our decadence is affordable. Enjoy!

Wishing you a stimulating and productive fall,

appreciatively yours,


PS. Thanks, as ever, for passing word of AcAmb on--it's still very much a word-of-mouth endeavor!