Hostels in Taipei
Taipei luxury hostels come at a price but guests are assured of elegance, comfort and gracious hospitality. Most are conveniently placed close to attractions or MRT stations. The atmosphere is pleasantly relaxed, even in busy venues.
After a day sightseeing or attending meetings, there’s no better place to unwind than these luxurious oases at the heart of the city.
Luxury Hotels, Grand Formosa Regent, Four Seasons Taipei
The multi-award winning Grand Formosa Regent offers world class luxury in a stylish décor, blending traditional and modern Chinese features. The 538 rooms and suites greet discerning guests with soothing colours and marble bathrooms. The VIP Tai Pan floor adds personalised butler service and exclusive lounge with all day refreshments and panoramic views over the gardens.
There’s a rooftop swimming pool, a health club and sauna and a spa for Chinese rituals, jetlag relieving massage, volcanic stone and much more.
Grand Formosa Regent has eight restaurants, some with private dining areas, including a steak house, Japanese char-grill, international Brasserie, Feng-shui designed Cantonese venue and a 24 hour Grand Café for Asian and Western cuisine. Luxury boutiques and duty-free outlet, one of the largest in Asia, complete the Grand Formosa picture.
Designer Boutique Hotel, 8 Zone Taipei
Hotel 8 Zone has 50 rooms on 8 floors from superior, deluxe and executive to junior, luxury and extra spacious 8 zone suites. The striking interior décor comes in a range of 8 designs, all in contemporary style, uncluttered but enhanced by special light effects, mirrors and in some cases, floral or geometric patterns. All materials and furnishings are Taiwanese.
Glass doors, with curtains if required, divide the sleeping area from the large bathroom which includes stand-alone bathtub with jaccuzi and LCD TV and walk-in shower, some with steamer. Panoramic windows allow great views over the city and there are daily papers, free wireless and broadband access and complimentary breakfast served in sleek modern surroundings.
Taipei Grand Hotel-Hostels in Taipei
Ranking high among the city’s landmarks and prized above all for its palatial look, the Grand Hotel is a striking example of traditional Chinese architecture with suitably impressive lobby. Comfortable rooms range from standard to superior, deluxe and suites, most with balconies and city and mountain views by clear weather. The 12th floor presidential suite is in classical Chinese style and claims a desk used by Chiang Kai-shek. Each of the eight floors is designed to reflect an ancient Chinese dynasty.
Northern Chinese and Cantonese cuisines are on offer and guests can also enjoy a European style buffet or relax with coffee and cakes at the Chi-Lin Café overlooking the Keelung river.
February 2010 saw a new player emerge in the luxury hotel and fine dining scene in Taiwan. Starwood Hotels officially opened the doors to their newest property – the W Hotel in Taipei’s XinYi district. The W Hotel in Taipei is also home to one of the brand’s first Chinese restaurants in the world. Perched atop the 31st floor and offering expansive views of the Taipei skyline, YEN features fine Cantonese cuisine in a modern, stylish atmosphere.
Jereme Leung Consults on YEN Cantonese Restaurant-Hostels in Taipei
One of Asia’s leading and most respected chefs and restaurateurs lent his expertise in creating the menu for Yen. Jereme Leung is the mastermind behind Shanghai and Beijing’s Whampoa Club and spent some time in Taiwan last year to consult and develop a “modern Cantonese” menu for the W Hotel.
After literally eating his way through Taiwan night markets and local restaurants during 2010, Leung utilized elements important in Taiwanese cuisine to help create an innovative and modern take on Chinese cuisine that appeals to both locals and tourists alike.
Focus on Labor Intensive Chinese Dishes
A new trend in many higher-end Chinese restaurants is to go back to their roots – taking dishes that have long been abandoned by many restaurants and bringing them back to a whole new generation of food lovers. Many traditional Chinese dishes are labor intensive – some requiring multiple days of preparation – and have since disappeared from most menus. Some long-established Michelin starred restaurants and “up-and-comers” in Asia are taking the time to include these dishes on their menus again, ensuring these important dishes in Chinese culture will not be forgotten.
Signature Menu Items at W Hotel’s YEN
While the entire menu is worth sampling, YEN offers some signature dishes that should not be missed. One caveat: the menu is designed with traditional Chinese style dining in mind – meaning portions are large and designed to feed four to five people. This means you may not be able to sample many different dishes if you are a party of one or two so make some new friends or grab some co-workers for dinner.
One item to try is the Roast Fortune Suckling Pig (per portion $800 NT). One of the best suckling pig offerings in Taipei, the skin is crispy and flavorful, and the layer of pork is not greasy or overly fat like many other Cantonese restaurants.
The House Specialty of Rock Salt Baked Chicken ($1,200 NT) is worth trying – even if you only have two people. It’s an entire chicken, but one of the best dishes in Yen. Be advised that they only have a certain number of these available and it is possible to find it is sold out as early as 7:30pm – including weeknights.
YEN’s Duo of Rice Cakes ($200 NT) is a fine dining spin on a local Taiwanese classic. Known as Wagui rice cakes, these are a popular snack food item in the southern city of Tainan. YEN has taken this and combined it with a Southeast Asian rice cake variety to create the “duo of rice cakes” featuring white and dark rice cakes.
Directions and Location of YEN
YEN is located on the 31st floor of the W Hotel, which is located in the XinYi district of Taipei. The restaurant is open for lunch (11:30am – 2:30pm) and again for dinner at 6pm (service runs until 10pm). It is a fine dining atmosphere and the dress code is smart casual. Reservations are highly recommended and truly a necessity during weekends and holiday periods.
The W Hotel is located at 10 ZhongXiao East Road, Section 5 in Taipei. The W Taipei sits atop the Taipei City Hall MRT station, or it is easily reached by an inexpensive cab ride, making it easily accessible from anywhere else in Taipei County.
Looking for Taipei Hotel? 2-star hotels from $7, 3 stars from $14 and 4 stars+ from $34. Stay at Main Inn from $14/night, So Stylish 3s Inn from $19/night.
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