Hospitality is one of the most creative industries in the world. Travelers are always looking for new spots to spend their holidays. For the more daring, there exists the possibility of staying in fascinating historical sites of great natural and architectural beauty.
The British firm Amazing Venues, founded by entrepreneur Mike Clare, specializes in unique properties with the premise of offering incredible getaways for customers looking for something unique. They feature a number of exceptional hotels for special celebrations, marvelous lodgings of unparalleled architecture in Great Britain housed in towers, castles, fortresses and monasteries. Some outstanding examples are the Ackergill Tower in Scotland´s Highlands, the Château Rhianfa in Wales and the Stanbrook Abbey in Worcestershire.
One of Amazing Venues´ most famous properties, the Spitbank Fort hotel, is located in one of three floating forts on the Solent Strait. This strip of sea in the English Channel separates Wight Isle from Portsmouth from the British mainland.
Spitbank Fort, the smallest of the three existing fortresses, was built to defend against the French maritime invasions of Napoleon III in the 19th century. The other two fortifications–Horse Sand Fort and No Man’s Land–are currently under renovation and will open their doors this summer as a museum and hotel respectively.
With a circular shape and 6 feet thick walls, the Spitbank Fort became a hotel in 2012. It boasts eight rooms equipped with the highest standards of luxury, an outdoors hot tub, sauna, wine cellar, and playroom. It is ideal for special events, private parties and weddings. Very few places in the world can compete with this hotel for privacy and serenity.
Similarly, the Italian group WTB Hotels pays particular attention to the changing demands of the modern traveler. The company recently opened an amazing venue in the Piazza Santa Maria Novella in Florence, Italy. The charming and exclusive boutique hotel Blu Garibaldi takes its name in honor of the military hero Giuseppe Garibaldi, who frequented the historic palazzo.
Cozy Garibaldi Blu is modern, contemporary and with the latest cutting edge technology. On the other hand, it maintains its historical and artistic legacy, with original murals from the 19th century and vaulted ceilings typical of Florence´s architecture.
The large lobby is the heart and soul of the hotel. It is a light-filled room with high ceilings and large windows, which welcome guests to a grand hall featuring artful palm trees made of recycled materials. Garibaldi Blu plays with our perception of history introducing pop culture elements to a very classical structure. There are life-size sculptures of Batman, Spiderman, Cat Woman and Captain America throughout the central collective spaces.
The three-storey boutique hotel has 22 rooms and suites characterized by their design, style, art, and technology. The walls are decorated in soft shades of blues, grays, and pinks. All units have hardwood floors, handmade vintage-style furniture, and contemporary artwork. Some rooms and suites offer unique views of Santa Maria Novella square and display splendid antique woodwork and original frescoes. ■