A $58 million renovation has transformed The Peninsula Hong Kong into a time machine. Step into the lobby — or into one of the hotel’s signature Rolls-Royces — and you’re transported back to the gilded age of travel in the early 1900s.
Step into your room, though, and you have arrived in the future. Using technology the hotel company developed, the 85-year-old Peninsula now boasts arguably the most technologically advanced guest rooms on Earth. Wireless tablets (jammed with local tourism and hotel information) control lights, room temperature, drapes and more; a 3-D television (with loaner goggles and 3-D movies) and a Blu-ray player are in every room, complete with a sophisticated sound-bar speaker system for the total home-theater experience; and the hotel will soon begin streaming video to the aforementioned tablets so that you can watch videos in the bed, bathtub or anywhere else you please.
Even better, fiber-optic lines to routers mean ultra-high-speed Wi-Fi — free — and VoIP phones in every room offer crystal-clear calling anywhere in the world — also free. Lest you need more, the make-up-room button signals maids via their smartphones; the TV mutes when the phone rings; and pressing the spa button in the bathtub dims the lights, turns on background music and illuminates the do-not-disturb light. What’s next? A similarly futuristic system in the new Peninsula Paris, opening in late 2013.
From $641 for a Superior room