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Thursday, October 24, 2013

Starwood in its "element" opening Element Vaughan Southwest



   One-Tank Trip for Oct. 12/13

   (c) By Jim Fox

   Hotels are no longer just for one-night stays as Starwood launches an “eco-wise enclave” in Vaughan, north of Toronto.
   Designed for a “new generation of traveller,” this trail-blazing brand of Starwood Hotels and Resorts is the first-of-its-kind in Canada.
Element Vaughan Southwest, an “eco-wise” long-stay hotel, has opened north of Toronto. (Jim Fox photo)

   This is where guests can charge their electric cars at complimentary stations and pedal to power up their personal electronics in the fitness centre.
   They can also leave their cars in the garage and borrow one of the hotel’s bicycles to “get where they need to go,” said John Caneco, Element Vaughan Southwest’s general manager.
   Guests can start their day with a free, healthy breakfast that Element calls Rise and wind down after work with the Relax evening reception, he added.

   There is also an outdoor patio for warm-weather barbecues while heaters are placed by tables to take away the coolness at night.
   Element’s amenities and services offer a fresh take on the traditional extended-stay experience, said Cynthia Bond, public relations director for Starwood Canada.
  Starwood’s Amy Rosen urges Vaughan Mayor Maurizio Bevilacqua and others to pedal faster to power up the presentation at the opening of Element Vaughan Southwest hotel. (Jim Fox photo)
   In addition to en-suite kitchens and grab-and-go pantries, guests appreciate features such as free Wi-Fi, light-filled public spaces and always-open complimentary gym and business centre that make longer stays more comfortable, convenient and inviting, she added.
   Included are the signature Heavenly Bed, 42” flat-screen TVs, a large desk with open shelving and ergonomic chair.
Rooms at the eco-friendly Element hotels are designed for long-stay guests.
  The 152 guestrooms offer “eco-centric sensibilities” with recycled tire flooring and mountings for art, soy-based fabrics, spa-inspired bathrooms with a rain-shower, dual-flush toilet, low-flow faucets and fixtures, and recycling bins.
   Kitchens have filtered water, energy efficient appliances and cooking utensils, while there’s an indoor all-natural saltwater pool and high-tech meeting rooms.
   Element by Westin also has “specially appointed pet-friendly suites” with doggie beds, food and water bowls, treats and other necessities (no fee for up to 40-pound pups).
   Atlific Hotels manages the Vaughan property for Starwood that has Elements in 10 U.S. markets and plans to open in Vancouver next year and Calgary in 2016. Details: elementhotels.com; 1-877-353-6368

   Sexy stays
   The Toronto Centre InterContinental Hotel offers a “perfect evening for couples” after visiting the upcoming Everything To Do With Sex Show.
   This “Romance Package” includes a one-night stay in a newly renovated room, bottle of sparkling wine, chocolate-dipped strawberries, a $30 voucher for the hotel’s spa, valet parking and two weekend passes to the big show.
   The sex show is back for a 14th year from Oct. 18 to 20 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.
   Show-goers can learn about erotic body painting, sexual fitness, see sensual food demonstrations, Canadian burlesque troupe Pastel Supernove and Love Letters Cabaret, and artistic diva star Jessica Gorlicky.
   There are also seminars and “hands-on demonstrations for those seeking to explore their wilder side,” organizers say. everythingtodowithsex.com; torontocentre.intercontinental.com

   Who wants tickets?
   Sheraton Centre Toronto and the Westin Harbour Castle are offering tickets to see Les Miserables and Aladdin this fall while staying overnight.
   In partnership with Mirvish Productions, the hotels offer tickets to the currently playing Les Miserables at the Princess of Wales’ Theatre.
   Included is a three-course dinner at one of 20 featured restaurants plus overnight accommodations at either hotel.
   It’s priced at $221 a person (double occupancy) for Tuesday to Thursday performances and $244 for Friday to Sunday.
   The same-priced package is offered for Disney’s Aladdin, opening at the Ed Mirvish Theatre on Nov. 1. It’s available from Nov. 1 through Dec. 22. Details: mirvish.com or to book, call: 1-800-461-3333.

   Go Argos
   The Sheraton Centre Toronto is the “official hotel partner” of the Grey Cup Champion Toronto Argonauts and offers deals for ticket holders.
   These “exclusive-savings” deals are for select weekends for home games throughout the regular season.
   Located near the Rogers Centre, room rates start at $159 a room, nightly through Nov. 5.
   Club Level rooms are an additional $80 a night, providing access to the 43rd Club Floor Lounge with deluxe continental breakfast and canapes in the evening. sheraton.com/tospecials; 1-866-716-8101 (GOARGOS rate plan).

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Jim Fox can be reached at onetanktrips@hotmail.com
For more One-Tank Trips: http://1tanktrips.blogspot.ca

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