Whilst Macau has worked hard to forge its reputation as the Las Vegas of Asia, Taipa Village, with its rich cultural heritage and natural beauty, is one of the few areas where you can seemingly step back in time and enjoy quiet strolls along pedestrianised streets and hidden, characterful alleys, thus offering a welcome respite to the high octane Cotai casino area. The best-preserved area of historical Taipa Island, and home to Portuguese architecture and Mediterranean influences alongside Chinese architectural features, Taipa Village offers rich cultural heritage and a host of authentic local delights, including museums, colonial churches and Chinese temples. It is against this colourful backdrop – tucked away in its own corner of Taipa yet set well away from the area’s other hotels – that The Macau Roosevelt recently opened its glamorous doors, looking onto Macau’s racecourse and over the Hengqin River towards China.
Pairing a modernist design and the glamorous golden age of Hollywood with champagne-popping views, Roosevelt’s first outpost outside the States was fashioned by talented yet fierce Iceland-born Los Angeles-based female architect Gulla Jónsdóttir, and has added a noticeable dash of exclusivity to Taipa and indeed Macau overall.
Given the Roosevelt brand’s colourful past (including hosting the first Academy Awards in 1929), there was a lot of pressure to get things right for its first overseas property. But, in the very capable hands of Jónsdóttir, local Chinese owner Yoho Group need not have worried about the outcome of its debut hotel. The Macau Roosevelt has literally overnight become the insider address for music makers, fashionistas and adventurous socialites alike, tapping into a Tinseltown design aesthetic, stylistically dated back to when Southern California epitomised glamour like nowhere else.
The hotel’s 368 rooms are sumptuous yet not overpowering, with white oak flooring and a lavish use of materials such as bronze and stone in creative ways. In corner suites, a built-in wood and marble window seat doubles as a desk. Large timber dividers in bathrooms are set against bronze doors and black and white marble feature walls carved with an organic pattern akin to inkblots. At the top of the building, the hotel’s duplex suites – named after Hollywood Roosevelt regular Marilyn Monroe – are akin to glamorous penthouse playgrounds, and boast rooftop hot tubs and multiple beds, creating some of the most decadent yet fun lodgings to rest one’s head in Macau.