Aloft Hotels

MUNICH – Sometimes in life we read too much about a place before we arrive. We get all pumped up about this area or that, and then we get there and it all goes flat. I have to plan my trips reasonably carefully to get the stories I want, but I still try to leave as much unplanned – and un-scouted – as possible. That way, I get to a destination and find myself more surprised than I might otherwise have been. That was the case for my recent (and sadly, quick) visit to Munich. We were on our way ... continue reading →


ORLANDO – Just east of The Mouse, there’s an entire city waiting to be discovered. This city has long been known for its theme parks and shopping malls, but there’s a cool, new vibe in the city’s growing downtown. Which makes it attractive for not just family trips but also hipsters looking for a fun (and reasonably priced) alternative in the Florida sun. Here are some suggestions. DRINKING Most folks don’t conjure up images of Orlando when you mention great bar towns, but the cocktail scene has kicked things up a notch or three the past few years and you’ll ... continue reading →


Starwood several years ago came up with Aloft Hotels, aimed at millenials with casual, colourful lobbies, snack stations, tons of solid and free Wi-Fi and more. They’re nice properties. I stayed at one in Orlando on Thursday night last week and loved the lobby area (great drinks at the bar and local art work) and the overall feel of the place. So that’s fine. Then today I read that Hilton is developing the “Tru by Hilton” brand, also aimed at millenials. Good idea, and I’m sure Aloft is flattered. But check out the photo I saw on a press release ... continue reading →