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The new Éclat Hotel in Beijing: Bathtub head games and other small details

I rarely write about hotel bars, let alone hotels, but after visiting the soon-to-open Italian restaurant Opera Bombana in Parkview Green — see here — I tagged along on a tour of the new Eclat in the same complex. The hotel is not fully open and I wasn’t planning to talk about big stuff like the omnipresent art (including numerous Dali sculptures), the meters-wide photos of Beijing landmarks in the hallways, the rooms complete with jet stream pools that create a current against which you can swim, the dining and exercise options, or the quirks that border on kitsch — from American gas pumps to bicycle collections — in the hallways. What struck me about the place were small details in the rooms that made it seem more fun and memorable than most hotels.

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Check out this bathroom with a frosted window.
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Press the “magic glass” button inside and…
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… it becomes clear. Good for checking up on significant others while you dry your hair / clip your toenails / have a poop. Well, perhaps best to keep it frosted for that last one.
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Forget remote controls or consoles with a dozen buttons. Instead, point the “gun” at the lamps so the shades pop up and the lights go on.
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This old-style bathtub is lots of fun on its own. Even better is the attachment, at the front end, that allows you to avoid a sore neck.
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Put your head in the hand for comfort.
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Then, post bath, put your body in a massage chair — I’m told there is one in each room.
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And watch some 3D TV. Did you know Finding Nemo is out on 3D? It is and it has a 99 percent approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes. There are two pairs of glasses per room in case you want to watch with a friend.
If you take off the glasses, you arguably have a more interesting view.
If you take off the glasses, you arguably have a more interesting view.
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This is a little trickier to use than a Nespresso machine but makes a fine cup of coffee.
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Finally, this feels like a cottage deck — albeit twenty stories high and beneath a canopy made with the same surfacing as the Water Cube — but it has the added benefit of a statue of a guy with ten fingers.
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OK, I can’t resist. A few more photos. One of the deck pools…
One of dozens of fancy pants bicycles in the hallways....
A fancy pants designer bicycle, one of dozens in the hallways…
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Some of those hallways, decorated with photos of Beijing landmarks…
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A piano, in one of the floor entries, for the musically inclined…
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And a space for monkeying around.
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Enter and exit via the lobby…

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