Le Meridien Unlocking Art program

Discussion in 'Starwood | Preferred Guest' started by canucklehead, Apr 11, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. canucklehead
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    canucklehead Gold Member

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    Came across this promotion while staying at the LM Picadilly (great hotel, btw). Its called Unlocking Art and I was told by the Concierge that LM was offering free passes to art exhibitions at the Tate Museum. Other LMs in other cities were partnered with local modern and contemporary art museums (special thanks to SPG Champion for confirming the program and providing link). Almost 50 hotels are participating in the program (only 2 in NA, though).

    A writeup (directed to my attention by SPG Champion and colleague) about the program was published today and can be found here.

    I had intended to go to the Tate Modern to see Ai WeiWei's sunflower seeds, but this offered me a chance to see another exhibition - Gabriel Orozco, with Joan Miro beginning April 14th.

    To get the card, I asked at the Concierge who gave me the Corporate Member card (had to guarantee its return with a deposit note for 50 pounds- billed only if you do not return the card).

    Personally, its a great program as I do try to visit museums and galleries where ever I go.
     
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  2. MSPeconomist
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    The hotel isn't on the list, but when I stayed in LRM Shangahi, I got complimentary admission to the contemporary art museum located nearby. I had the impression that this is a permanent feature that they offer to all guests.
     
  3. SC Flier
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    SC Flier Gold Member

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    The LM Etoile offers free admission to the Palais de Tokyo. We didn't make it there during our stay, but some things to take note...
    "The Palais de Tokyo is undergoing in 2011 a partial remodeling of its exhibition spaces and will reopen in its entirety in spring 2012."
    "In 2011, during the renovation, the exhibitions continue and are open from noon to 9 pm."

    The LM Barcelona offers admission to the Barcelona Contemporary Art Museum. I can't remember if we only had to show our room key or if we had a coupon to present. Either way, we didn't really have any appreciation for the art that they featured. We only went because it was free and we had some spare time in our afternoon. We tried to give it a chance, but there would've been no loss if we'd skipped it.

    Taking a different approach to art, the LM Ra Beach offers a winery tour and tasting as their part in the Unlock Art program. (Regularly 10 € per person.)
     
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  4. sdcarver
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    sdcarver Silver Member

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    Thanks OP,
    If I came across any "Unlocking Art" specials I will post them here.

    sdcarver
     
  5. Canadi>n
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    Canadi>n Gold Member

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    Yes, this relationship has existed for several years. However, I have now attempted twice to locate the art gallery in People's Park that participates but have never found it, even with the map. (No it's not the major Shanghai Art Gallery on the other side of the Park, it's a smaller private gallery. That said, I am determined next week to find it when I have a short stopover there! (That property also has installed audio art in its elevators which at first hearing can be a bit jarring...wildlife sounds, birds chirping, etc.)
     
  6. SC Flier
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    SC Flier Gold Member

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    I forgot about that from LMs in Europe. I encountered this at either LM Etoile, LM Barcelona, or both. Sometimes, the volume is just too loud or the sounds are too shrill. It can be quite irritating. The least they could do would be to provide a way to temporarily turn off the sounds when you step inside.

    Le Parker Meridien NY has classic cartoons such as Tom & Jerry playing in the elevators. Does that count as art? ;)
     
  7. Jenny & Curt
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    Jenny & Curt Gold Member

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    Same crickets in Bangkok and Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai. I am not a fan. Silence in elevators is not a negative in my book.
     
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  8. MSPeconomist
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    I've visited this art museum several times. If you're walking from the river or from LRM to the Shangahi Art Galley, you need to enter the park through a gate just before the Shanghai Art Gallery (before its driveway and service entrance) and near some sort of a kiosk or food stand. Walk into the park and one way requires that you stay to your right and walk straight until the path curves left at the far end of the block, it looks like a wall or service area, and find the museum you want in a modern building on the edge of the park but accessible only from within the park. Alternatively, the pretty route requires that you get around and to the other side of the pond with some water lilies, behind the restaurant/tea house in the old building, and then the museum is more or less straight ahead although the paths curve.

    It's not signposted well and many locals don't know, but I found it the first try with lots of determination and walking in circles. The building is interesting. They seem to mostly show special exhibits of young contemporary, almost cutting edge, Chinese artists.

    Have you been to the gallery neighborhood in Shanghai, the place with galleries in more than twenty buildings? It can be hard to find too, and perhaps harder to find a taxi back to your hotel, but it's worth it if contemporary art and Asian art interests you. With luck, you can be there for some opening receptions which seem to always be happening somewhere over there.

    Finally, don't forget the private art gallery (open late at night) in 3 (???) on the Bund.
     
  9. canucklehead
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    canucklehead Gold Member

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    I forgot the T&J cartoons in the LPM/NY. Popeye too, but IIRC, the cartoons are definitely not PC!

    The soundscapes in the elevators are intriguing. I can take it for a few minutes. Overall, as an art-lover, I do appreciate when a business makes a conscious effort to be a patron of the arts.
     
  10. SC Flier
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    I appreciate the effort, too, but if it doesn't mesh with a lot of customers, then the brand will lose a lot of repeat guests. If I were in a position to frequent one of those hotels, I'd be vocal with complaints to management to cut out the elevator soundscrapes.
     
  11. Canadi>n
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    Canadi>n Gold Member

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    Thanks, MSPeconomist. I will give it another try. The map they give out tends to approach it from the other side of the park (the non-Nanjing Rd one). Won't have time to check out the artists' area you mention but have ventured into the 3 Bund one.
     
  12. MSPeconomist
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    The first time I went, after discussion with the St Regis concierge and valet, they decided that the taxi should drop me at the Nanjing road gate, which I initially thought was the other big art museum in the older building, but after asking a few people, it worked. When I stayed in LRM, I don't think I looked at their map. It's a modern building IIIRC off-white stucco) several stories tall, with a rooftop cafe with nice views.
     

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