Los Angeles, California—Reported by Kelly Carter for Elite Traveler, the private jet lifestyle magazine
TOWER WITH A VIEW
Jennifer Lopez used a private side entrance when she checked into the new SLS Hotel South Beach, which has quickly turned into the place to go on Collins Avenue. The paparazzi practically fell over one another trying to get shots of JLo lounging poolside at Hyde Beach, located on property just beyond the hotel’s guests-only pool, and frolicking in the pool with her twins Max and Emme and boyfriend Casper Smart. But what the pesky photographers couldn’t do was snap JLo in the Tower Penthouse, where she spent four nights. From her perch on the hotel’s top floor, she was able to enjoy broad views of Miami Beach and the interior design skills of singer/songwriter Lenny Kravitz. The multifaceted Kravitz created the look for both of SLS’s penthouses (Philippe Starck designed the rest of the hotel). Warm, worldly and eclectic, the Tower Penthouse pays homage to the Art Deco architecture of yesteryear while the Villa Penthouse exudes a modern flair.
PUTTING ON THE RITZ
Emmy award-winning actress Christine Baranski “loves, loves, loves” to travel. She’s partial to Europe, the Caribbean and, she added, “I love the natural world so I love Africa.” On hiatus from shooting CBS legal drama The Good Wife, she jetted to Vienna, Prague, Turks & Caicos and Vieques. She describes Vieques as being “kind of like Cuba. It’s not a tourist place. It’s very interesting.” She opted to stay in a private home on Vieques but usually prefers boutique hotels like the Hôtel Duc de Saint-Simone in the chic St. Germain district. “It’s the best little boutique hotel in Paris on the Left Bank. I don’t like generic luxury hotels. But I wouldn’t mind staying at a grand hotel in a great city like the Ritz in Paris or the Hotel Imperial in Vienna just to have the experience for a few nights.” The legendary Ritz Paris, which opened in 1898 and was once home to Coco Chanel and Ernest Hemingway, closed on August 1 for a major two-year overhaul. “I hope they don’t make it too modern,” Baranski said of the renovation. “People wanted to go to the Ritz to try and relive the old experience. I hope they don’t turn it into another generic, modern hotel.”
Actress Kerry Washington, who stars in the ABC hit show Scandal, isn’t big on repeating her vacation spots. “I feel like the world is too big of a place to keep going back to the same place again and again,” she says. Where she goes depends on her mood. What’s her dream trip? “The Galapagos Islands.”