“Not without Theseus” was a common saying among Athenians, indicating their dependence on the Greek hero to accomplish challenging endeavors. His assistance might have been called on by locals in the transformation of an iconic Aegean gem, the Four Season’s Astir Palace Athens, which is scheduled to open spring 2019. Located on the tip of the sun baked Riviera, within a protected pine forest, the turquoise blue sea laps against sandy white beaches, the remote peninsula translates to privacy and serenity.
The Athens Riviera has known one previous hotel the beloved Astir Palace and after extensive upgrades, the Four Seasons has transformed and revived the glamour of the Astir Palace’s golden age. Offering the best of both worlds: a laid-back seaside oasis just 30 minutes from the historical city center. Day trips to view the incomparable Acropolis and all that the energized Athens has to offer in sight seeing, taverna dining and marvelous museums, then trot back to the refuge of the Four Seasons. Cooling sea breezes, gentle surf, yacht charters, water sports, fishing charters, kids club, all that you expect from the Four Seasons brand, the perfect base for exploration of ancient culture.
A full complement of room types, including sea view bungalows with pools or for extended families, the largest and most lavish penthouse suite in a two-level penthouse offers four bedrooms. Crowned by a roof top garden and plunge pool, gaze at the sparking Aegean and nearby islands
I enjoyed an impressive three hour visit in June and met with GM Sam Ioannidis and Marketing Director Markos Lambiris, both were enthralled with the project and looking forward to sharing local products and traditional welcoming Greek hospitality. When I returned to Athens, I was thrilled to find a Four Seasons gift bag in my room filled with wonderful lotions and oils, all derived from Greek olives.
Day trips: from Astir Marina, set sail on a bespoke day trip to nearby islands – and view the ancient Temple of Poseidon. The new Stavros Niarchos Foundation’s Cultural Center – with its new opera house – and the National Museum of Contemporary Art are also nearby.
Athens is in the midst of an exciting re-birth, rebounding from the depths of financial and cultural crisis. Ancient wonders abound in Athens, this graceful city has been drawing visitors for years and it’s time to revisit. Spring opening and I plan to be there to explore this ancient city again.
Our clients are exceptionally spoiled at The Four Seasons!
For serious consideration, are you aware that studies indicate that modifying your routine to include mental breaks will increase productivity, replenish attention, solidify memories and encourage creativity? Consider an escape to relieve you of cerebral congestion! Recent getaway for a few days of client meetings in Beverly Hills landed me at the Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills on Doheny Drive.
Quick access from LAX, I promised a poolside lunch to longtime friends who insisted on picking me up at the airport, treading those traffic lanes truly deserves a special lunch!
Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills Lobby Floral Power
We arrived to a busy Sunday afternoon crowd, this property seems to be very popular with locals for lunch. Early check in was offered, well done Four Seasons! My lovely light filled suite had a wrap around balcony and French doors to let in the sunshine! All good…we moseyed down to the pool distracted by the spectacular floral display in the lobby.
Internationally celebrated floral designer Jeff Leatham has returned to his original roots in Los Angeles, from Four Seasons George V in Paris, where he spent 16 years dazzling Parisian guests. His style and artistic sensibilities are incomparable, his floral displays are instantly recognizable and breathtaking! In 2014, the French government bestowed Leatham with one of their most distinguished titles: Chevalier in the Order of Arts and Letters, for his outstanding contribution to the culture of Paris.
I digress, back to our lunch adventure – arriving at the pool, I was surprised to find the ‘pool restaurant’ wasn’t really at the pool, it was near the pool, however the table-side reservation would be in a garden alcove near the pool…I was confused as I had called the restaurant to specify poolside. The very affable hostess, inquired: Ms. Books would you like us to set a table in a pool cabana? Hmm, why yes, that would be perfect, how long will that be? Five minutes, Ms. Books. We trailed behind the hostess, servers and our table to the cabana. The restaurant staff literally carried a table and chairs to our own private cabana! My friends gave me the look – the look that says we follow you on social media, we see how you travel…my immediate response: we are at a Four Seasons property, they unravel dilemmas! When we discovered there wasn’t a table at the pool, the extremely well trained Four Seasons staff solved a problem and made this guest very happy…they did not know I was on a site inspection trip, this is typical Four Seasons service! Champagne all around! It’s the little touches that make a property special.
There is a row of cabanas at the pool for snoozing and dining. The Four Seasons doesn’t let a city space, define its décor, they’ve created a tranquil rooftop oasis.
Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills
Of course, everyone who traipsed by our cabana peeked in looking for celebrities, sadly for them, it was merely high school girlfriends catching up and utterly delighted with our decadent Cabana lunch!
Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills a Tranquil Oasis
There are two Four Seasons in the Beverly Hills area, the other property is literally downtown near Rodeo Drive. More on that property soon. The gardens here are spectacular, a little sanctuary in the midst of Los Angeles, water features add a sense of tranquility to the spacious lawns and lush shrubbery. From sun-filled guest rooms featuring private step out balconies to award winning see-and-be-seen dining, Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills is a city icon, buzzing with energy and excitement.
The property is well known for celebrity sightings, press junkets and has a history as a power lunch location. Located in a quiet residential area which is great for morning walks, it’s only a five-minute drive to the chic Rodeo Drive shopping. There are 285 rooms including 98 suites, I liked the rooms on the back side of the property with balconies. L.A. rooms should always have a balcony or French doors, it’s rarely cold here, we want to soak up that So Cal sunshine! High-tech features (temperature control and in-room dining via iPad) and on-demand movies. Entry-level rooms are big for LA standards. Open-air 24-hour fitness facility with cardio machines, weights, pulley. Full-service spa and nail salon on the premises. Breakfast and muffins provided in the lobby every morning
Huge bathrooms with sunken tubs, as you know if I can drown in a tub, I’m happy; these tubs definitely provide the perfect soak!
Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills Suite
Relaxed luxury – my beautiful suite was decorated in soothing tones of glossy black doors, pale gray walls, with an emphasis of whites and metallic accents, very restful in the frenetic LA atmosphere.
Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills Gym outside access!
One unique feature in development is the Wellness Rooms near the spa. The rooms are designed in partnership with Delos, with the creation of five wellness-themed guest rooms and two suites that aim to optimize guests’ physical and emotional well-being while travelling. Located on the fourth floor Spa level, the Wellness accommodations combine the latest technologies from Delos with a stylish new room design and eco chic features. Upon arrival, guests will have access to Wellness by Delos room features and programs, including sleep, stress and nutrition programs from the Cleveland Clinic, GoWell! nutritious menu options endorsed and approved by Cleveland Clinic, and guided mediations by Deepak Chopra, MD.Separate post coming on this innovative health conscious aspect of the hotel.
Dining – Who doesn’t want to be my guest when I come to town! Late dinner at hotel restaurant Culina which has been recognized as one of the “Best New Restaurants” by Esquire magazine, one of the “100 Best Wine Restaurants” by Wine Enthusiast magazine, one of the top restaurants in Los Angeles by Zagat, and one of the “Hollywood’s 25 Top Power Lunch Restaurants” by The Hollywood Reporter.
Milanese chef Luca Moriconi Culina Restaurant Four Seasons Los Angeles
The Roman kitchen led by Milanese chef Luca Moriconi is channeling his Italian childhood with old school recipes with a sense of a family kitchen. He frequently visits the tables to share stories behind the dishes. I was tired and seeing artichoke Risotto on the menu, I knew it was the comfort food I craved. The artichoke Risotto is part of Moriconi’s new Tuscan-inspired spring menu at Culina, and apparently, he is taking this yummy recipe to Milan for a cooking competition. One distinctive aspect of the dish is the crown-cut wheel of Piave Vecchio cheese which the risotto is spooned from – rather than using Parmesan, he uses this distinctive cheese. A server follows him to a table and drops a smidgen of balsamic vinegar on each plate. While talking to the guests, Moriconi finishes his table-side Risotto preparation by stirring the warm rice in a crater at the center of the cheese wheel and spooning out the creamy result onto each plate.
My friend who ordered salmon, nibbled from my plate in obvious delight. Delizioso!
Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills – come for the sunshine, come for the Cabanas, come for the people watching and don’t miss the spa or the Artichoke Risotto!
Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills
Loved my all to brief visit where the professional staff proved again that it’s the little things that matter and make for a special visit. Four Seasons never disappoints!