Taipei’s tallest hotel, Shangri-La’s Far Eastern Plaza Hotel, has completed a NT$1.5 billion (US$50 million) and 18-month renovation in May 2015 that encompassed all 420 guestrooms and suites, the Horizon Club Lounge, lobby, driveway, Lobby Court and Cake Room.
The refurbishment is in keeping with the hotel’s elegant surroundings that have warmly welcomed guests since 1994. Custom artwork created for the property includes “Along the River during the Qing Ming Festival”, an installation depicting the ancient capital of Kaifeng by famous Taiwanese artist Shen Cheen. It stretches across two silk scrolls, each measuring 7.2 by 1.68 meters and frames the reception area embellished with natural amazonita gemstones and equally stunning art inspired by classical Sung dynasty pieces.
Continuing the natural-colored tones prevalent in the ten-meter-high lobby, and heightened by modern copper chandeliers, are the spacious and sun-bathed guestrooms offering unparalleled views over Taipei through picture windows. Starting from 36 square meters each room is equipped with free Wi-Fi, a large glass desk and a nook with a comfortable window seat. A new twist on woodwork, fashioned after traditional Chinese-inspired window frames, is harmonized into eye-catching details at the entrance, ceiling and mini-bar area.
In the 226-square-metre Presidential Suite on level 37, the impression is more dramatic with its double-storey ceiling and floor-to-ceiling windows. A grand piano in the living area, along with a 65-inch curved television and Bose sound system provides a central point for entertainment, while Chinese furnishings lend a classic continuity and blend with contemporary pieces.
In addition to a separate dining room and kitchenette, the suite’s master bedroom boasts an ensuite bathroom complete with two flat-screen televisions, a sauna, steam shower and Jacuzzi. The use and privileges of the Horizon Club Lounge are available to all suite guests.
The new approach to the Horizon Club Lounge on level 36 has taken on a luxuriously understated feel in tones of shimmering grey. Just as notable are the over-sized windows, which maximize the views of Taipei city. Functioning as an exclusive space for guests to enjoy daily breakfast, refreshments or cocktails from the central bar, the lounge is also inviting to those who prefer to use the private meeting room, relax with a wide selection of reading materials or plan excursions through the personal concierge.
For the past two decades, Shangri-La’s Far Eastern Plaza Hotel, Taipei has been a market leader in introducing guest-centric technology. In line with the hotel’s goal to add further convenience for travelers “DigiJames,” a digitalized butler system that controls and monitors the rooms’ air conditioning, curtains and entertainment setting, was installed in the signature suites and is due to be set up in all guestrooms, transforming the hotel into a “smart” accommodation venue.
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