Luxury Hotels


Girlahead arrived back in Amsterdam more or less at the same time as about a quarter of a million happy travellers from all over Europe. Why? It was the annual PRIDE parade and this is an event not to be missed. A well-organised flotilla of 90 canal boats processes round the waterways, Amstel River and canals, for about six hours. Boats are rented for the duration: they come with ample liquor and edibles, and necessary services, and in broad sunlight they party-party. Going under some bridges everyone onboard has to drop to the floor to avoid an unwanted mega headache. The bridges and the streets all around are similarly chocabloc with party-goers. Required gear is dare to be different, as many chains, gold tutus and multi-coloured war paints as your body will take.

Quietly, the following morning, Ruurd Hooijer, above, hosted an intimate breakfast meeting at Amsterdam’s THE CONSERVATORIUM HOTEL, part of The Set Collection. Why the name? Ruurd, with the company since the owners bundled their portfolio together, sees the hotels, in London, Amsterdam, Paris and Jerusalem as a set. A quartet of finest 18th century goblets, long before Riedel entered the arena, can be a set. It also implies winning a game. Set and match.

But what is the difference between a collection and a collective?   Collective is usually an adjective but that bible of good language, The Oxford English Dictionary, does admit it can be a noun ‘Collective nouns are words for single things that are made up of more than one person, animal, place, thing, or idea’. Hotels certainly fit into that classification.

When Paul Jones, then based in Mauritius, bundled LUX* properties he called them a collective. Now Jones, headquartered in Singapore, continues to look even further east. The Lux Collective and Jumbo Group, led by Chairman Liu Yi, have signed an agreement for a 109-room LUX* Guangzhou , with its own art gallery, and an indoor-outdoor pool. Watch more Lux Collectives invade China.

Back to The Set. That collection, sic, is now also in China as collection Executive Director Jean-Luc Naret has signed an agreement with Swire-owned House Collective, sic, so its four properties, in Beijing, Chengdu, Shanghai and Hong Kong are now part of The Set.

Listen to Jean-Luc Naret, in an earlier incarnation, here: