Hangzhou, China – 9 September 2014 – The Luxury Collection Hotels & Resorts, part of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, announces the opening of The Azure Qiantang, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Hangzhou, in the capital of China’s Zhejiang province. With the openings of The Azure Qiantang and very recently The Castle Hotel in Dalian, The Luxury Collection brand includes six hotels as part of its distinguished portfolio in China, including the legendary Astor Hotel in Tianjin, Twelve at Hengshan and The Hongta Hotel in Shanghai, and The Royal Begonia in Sanya.
“2014 marks a milestone year for Starwood’s Luxury Collection brand in China, with two exceptional hotels joining a glittering ensemble of 88 hotels around the world,” said Paul James, Global Brand Leader, The Luxury Collection, St. Regis, and W Hotels Worldwide. “With the expert guidance of The Luxury Collection Concierge, global explorers are set to experience the beauty of Hangzhou and its incredible natural water features of this unique destination.”
Situated along the Qiantang River, legendary for the world’s biggest and most spectacular tidal bore, The Azure Qiantang is a perfect blend between Hangzhou’s traditional foundation of simplicity and elegance, combined with contemporary design elements. Designed by world-renowned architect Mr. Pierre-Yves Rochon, the hotel uses a blue glass colored structure which showcases design elements that reference the surging waves of the Qiantang River, merged harmoniously with the colors of the sky.
“It is a momentous occasion for all of us at The Azure Qiantang to officially open our doors and welcome the first guests,” announced Mr. Andy Wang, General Manager of The Azure Qiantang, adding “Through our highly experienced local teams, guests will have access to exceptional local experiences in the city commonly referred to as ‘Heaven on Earth’, including the best vantage point of the legendary tidal bore of the river Qiantang.”
The Azure Qiantang
The Azure Qiantang is named after “Memories of the South”, a masterpiece written by renowned Tang Dynasty poet Bai Juyi. The hotel boasts 205 elegant guest rooms and suites, all with spectacular views of the Qiantang River. The hotel is equipped with a swimming pool, spa and a 24-hour fitness center for guests to pursue moments of deep relaxation or invigorating workouts.
The hotel spa will feature seven treatment rooms and three massage rooms, offering moments to replenish the mind and body inspired by five of Hangzhou’s surrounding water elements, including the river, canal, stream, lake, and sea. Signature treatments include the “Enchanting Lotus Facial Therapy” which uses a potent blend of lotus extracts combined with ingredients rich in anti-oxidant, as well as the “Warm Seashell Bodyworks” which uses special heated seashells on fatigued muscles to provide deep relaxation, opening the energy channels.
Exquisite Epicurean Journeys
The “five waters” theme also carries throughout the authentic culinary experiences at The Azure Qiantang. The Lan Ting Chinese Restaurant features 14 private dining suites in addition to its main dining hall, providing a delicate and elegant ambience to partake in authentic Hangzhou-style cuisine, including a menu inspired by ingredients from Hangzhou’s lake, river, stream, canal and the sea. Prepared using traditional local methods, guests can look forward to dishes such as the “Four Treasures Water-shield Soup”, made with herbs native to the West Lake, and “Steamed Crabs with Chicken Oil and Rice Wine” with fresh crabs sourced from the nearby sea shore.
At Panorama Restaurant & Bar diners can savor a range of favorite local snacks in addition to international buffets while taking in the majestic view of the Qiantang River. While seated on the Riverview Terrace on the 22nd Floor, guests can sip cocktails while enjoying the sunset. The Lobby Bar with its beautiful garden views is another ideal location for spending time while indulging in a lavish local afternoon tea.
For meetings and celebrations, the hotel offers seven distinct rooms, all featuring natural light through floor-to-ceiling glass windows, as well as a Grand Ballroom spanning 650 square meters with its own 312 square meter foyer – each with stunning river views. The Azure Qiantang provides exceptional service, state-of-the-art equipment and brand’s signature Luxury Collection Concierge Service, providing guests recommendations and assistance to discover and experience the city.
Paradise on Earth
Hangzhou, which is famed across China for being the “Paradise on Earth”, has a deep and long cultural heritage and rich and enchanting natural scenery. The city is also renowned for its beautiful West Lake, fine-quality silk, delicate Longjing (or “Dragon’s Well”) Tea, as well as world’s largest and most spectacular tidal bore on the Qiantang River.
Every summer, The Qiantang River attracts large crowds of international spectators to witness this impressive natural phenomenon, which dates back over 2000 years to the Han-Wei Period, and reached a peak during the Tang Dynasty. The Annual Qiantang Autumn Tidal Bore, which occurs on the 18th day of the 8th Lunar month, is considered the world’s largest tidal bore for its width and scope with sweeping waves fiercely thrashing along the river banks, making it one of China’s most unusual and spectacular sights.