Hotel Bristol, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Warsaw The 19th-century Hotel Bristol, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Warsaw is a grand property with lavish fin de siècle interiors in a prime location opposite the State Opera and Presidential Palace. In February, the 168-room hotel joined Starwood’s Luxury Collection following a multi-million dollar renovation. Hotel Bristol has been at the center of Varsovian society since it was founded in 1901 by Polish Prime Minister, Ignacy Paderewski. So this grande dame hotel now presents a way to introduce groups to an emerging destination with a hotel familiar to U.S. planners in a setting that’s anything but. Shades of ivory and blue were added to the guestrooms as backdrop for the deep charcoal and ebony furnishings. Designer Anita Rosato blended aesthetics of the Art Nouveau and Art Deco periods into the existing 1920s decor, while enlarging the lobby lounge with deep-buttoned armchairs, marble walls and antique mirrors with brass frames. The hotel’s original chandelier was restored in the winter garden, and the wallpaper in the lobby is Hermes. Advinture is a new wine bar serving food/wine pairings by Chef de Cuisine Michal Tkaczyk. The Column Bar is another popular spot, serving signature cocktails like the Nocturne Fizz, a Mazovian-inspired spritzer. The historic Cafe Bristol remains onsite since the original opening in 1901, famous for pastries, coffee and baked goods. Marconi Restaurant is an elegant combination of Polish and Mediterranean cuisine, including the popular roasted duck with caramelized apples, rosemary, garlic and cloves. Hotel Bristol has 10 meeting rooms, including a 1,600-sf ballroom seating 180 pax, designed in Art Deco style with crystal chandeliers, a wall of mirrors and high ceilings. We spoke Thomas Willms, regional director for Starwood to learn more about the location and renovation. Prevue: Where is Hotel Bristol located? Thomas Willms: Hotel Bristol is in a prime location in the middle of Warsaw near the most historic part of town. It’s an unbeatable spot and the hotel is an iconic building in Poland. This is a building and area that Polish people are very proud of. And groups that come here should be proud to stay here when it comes to the location, history and brand. The location is our biggest selling point because groups don’t have to board a bus to see the sights. Everything is within walking distance. What are popular group attractions in the area? The hotel is located near the Nowy Swiat, the most exclusive shopping street in the area. It’s one of the most luxurious shopping districts in Poland. The street is walking distance from the hotel and located in one of the most historic parts of Poland. If a group is on break from their meeting, they can head down there and check out the boutiques, restaurants and shops on Nowy Swiat. There’s also Manufaktura Cukierków candy shop, it is very famous. They make the candy with beautiful colors, shapes and traditional flavors. Groups are always bringing back bags of it when visiting. The hotel looks pretty modern. How do you keep the history alive? The history of the hotel continues to live on. That’s what the Luxury Collection is all about. We keep everything that the hotel is known for. We just restore everything and keep it authentic. What is something unexpected that groups should anticipate? There’s a beautiful balcony at the front of the hotel. As groups are arriving we have opera singers perform across the beautiful façade. It’s a nice touch and very traditional. It’s something that’s only done at this hotel.