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LUXURY HOTEL INSIDER
 
FSA LogoThe Luxury Hotel Insider: Exclusive luxury hotel deals, features and special rates from the luxury hotel experts at Five Star Alliance. 
 
Named one of Tripbase's Best Luxury Travel Blogs for 2011, below are Five Star Alliance's newest articles featuring exclusive information on luxury hotels worldwide including special offers and deals at the world's best hotels.

Shompole, Great Rift Valley: Luxury, Eco-Friendly Lodgings in Kenya

April 23, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Shompole Indulge in some guilt-free pampering-- safari-style-- at the Rift Valley's stunning Shompole lodge. Overlooking the sun-bleached savannah near the Tanzanian border, Shompole is a luxurious outpost surrounded by pristine wilderness. Tented rooms are composed of quartz floors and pale thatch roofs, blending perfectly into the surroundings. From your own private "cool-pool," gaze out across the valley while lounging in blissful seclusion. The resort is managed by both a private safari company and members of the local Masai tribes, and sets an example for its environmental and social programs: wildlife conservation projects, the use of solar power, and low-impact building practices. Shompole has lured savy travelers with its exquisite accommodations and services, but now that green travel has gone mainstream, this eco-friendly resort will no doubt shine in the media spotlight. Guests enjoy safaris to view the big game and incredible wildlife, along with trips to the Shompole village and Flamingo breeding habitats at the alkaline lakes Magadi and Natron.

Via Sherman's Travel Magazine


Special Offers in Hawaii: Four Seasons Resort Lana’i, The Lodge at Koele

April 20, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Four Seasons Lodge at Koele As if you needed an excuse to plan an escape to Hawaii. Four Seasons Lodge at Koele has announced a spectacular special: Get a fourth night free when booking three consecutive nights until December 19, 2007. Luxuriate in style at this opulent outpost surrounded by gardens and reflecting pools, ancient pines bordering expansive greens, and a magical orchid greenhouse. Hidden within the central highlands on Lana'i, The Lodge at Koele is the place to be to savor Hawaii's natural beauty. In addition to the spectacular golf courses, pool, and in-room spa services, the resort offers a slew of activities-- from archery to horseback riding. Rooms start at $295 per night.

Related Articles:

Fodor's, "Luxury for Less: 4 Nights for 3 Special on Lanai"

Vagablond, "Luau For Less: Four Seasons Lana'i Lodge at Koele"


Hayman Island Resort Celebrates Earth Day 2007

April 19, 2007
By: Editorial AdvisoryBoard

Hayman Island ResortIn celebration of Earth Day, the Hayman Island Resort will be featured on ABC News broadcasts this weekend to report on significant environmental programs in Australia and the Reef. Located on the southwestern side of Hayman Island just beside the Great Barrier Reef, Hayman boasts an idyllic setting surrounded by coral fringed beaches and the lapping waters of the Coral Sea. The resort's website offers a dedicated page - Hayman.com.au/planetearth - to recognize the resort's involvement with ABC News and the "Planet Earth 2007: Seven Ways to Help Save the World" program.

The spotlight is on Hayman because of their direct involvement in the preservation of the Great Barrier Reef through a series of projects with the Great Barrier Reef Foundation. The report will also show ways in which desalination plants, such as the one operating on Hayman, may be the answer to water shortages. Tune in to ABC's 20/20, Nightline or Good Morning America on Friday and Saturday of this week to watch the Hayman Island Resort interviews Live.

PS - In recognition of Hayman's involvement with ABC News, guests can benefit with the Hayman has also introduced the "ALL INCLUSIVE HOLIDAY- Hayman Planet Earth 2007 Escape" which includes 3 nights, full breakfast, a la carte 3-course dinner, and numerous Island activities. The 3-night package is priced from AU$1485 per person, and is valid through 20 December 2007.


Football World Cup 2010 in South Africa

April 16, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

The Plettenberg Get ready. The 2010 World Cup promises to be one of the biggest sporting events of the century (over a billion people are expected to follow the month-long tournament). And this is the first time in history when the World Cup will be hosted by an African nation. Here's the skinny on the ten proposed stadiums for World Cup South Africa: Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban, Nelspruit, Rustenburg, Pretoria, Polokwane, Port Elizabeth, Orkney, and Bloemfontein. Relais & Châteaux's got it covered, with some seriously swanky (and unique) properties to discover. Check in, and then check out the nearby soccer matches, glorious surroundings, and exciting experiences that await in South Africa. A sampling of properties includes the ocean-facing Plettenberg, which seems to float above the sky and sea (check out the photo), and the award-winning Singita Lebombo & Sweni hotel located within the stunning game reserve north of Joburg.


Top Ten Luxury Eco-Resorts

April 12, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn and Spa From the soft sandy beaches of Mexico's Yucatan peninsula to the paved boulevards of Washington D.C., luxury hotels are turning green. Who says luxury travel can't embrace the values of responsible tourism? ForbesTraveler has highlighted the world's best luxury eco-resorts, along with a separate list of America's greenest hotels. These luxury resorts include the Fairmont Washington D.C. and Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn, as Fairmont has been an industry leader in transforming their hotels into eco-friendly ones.

Related Articles:

Helium Report on Luxury "Green" Vacations


Angsana Resort and Spa Velavaru: Eco-Friendly Luxury in the Maldives

April 10, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Angsana Velavaru Maldives Newly opened in November 2006, Angsana Resort and Spa Velavaru is a seductive paradise of golden beaches, turquoise lagoons, and plush, private villas, situated on an island in the middle of the Indian Ocean, thousands of miles away. Here, guests delight to discover the beauty of the Dhaalu Atoll-- with untouched dive sites, reefs, and islands teeming with tropical life. From island hopping and dolphin watching to snorkeling safaris and night fishing, guests enjoy a wealth of experiences. Here on the southern shores of the Maldives-- the world's hottest destination and islands du jour-- Angsana Velavaru has unveiled a Marine Lab dedicated to marine conservation. The research facility aims to safeguard the biodiversity of the Maldivian reefs and ocean, while sharing with resort guests the importance of marine conservation. Guests are encouraged to participate in projects and the complimentary marine biology classes which are taught twice a week. Guided snorkeling safaris are conducted twice a week. The Marine Lab also focuses on protecting sea turtles, as Angsana Velavaru is a known turtle nesting site.

Related Articles:

What's Hot: Angsana Resort and Spa Ihuru Maldives


Hike and Bike Yosemite National Park, California with Backroads

April 3, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Backroads Yosemite Tour Who says an active vacation must deny the creature comforts? Backroads, the California tour experts, organize upscale adventures in exciting destinations worldwide. Unique itineraries include New Zealand, Croatia, Belize, the vineyards of California, the chateaux country of France, and the scenic mountains of Italy's Dolomite region. This summer, head to Yosemite and California's dramatic Sienna Nevada range. Hike and bike through dense forests and flowering meadows and enjoy the natural wonders of one the nation's most stunning national parks. It's no wonder Ansel Adams went gaga snapping photos here. Choose the "Premiere Inns" Family Adventure with Backroads and stay in superior accommodations while getting a taste of the Wild West in Cali's Gold Country. Backroads chooses inns which are among the world's best; the tour operator works closely with distinguished alliances like Relais & Chateaux and Small Luxury Hotels of the World, and guests are spoiled with award-winning facilities. This summer's 6 day/5 night tours start at $2,998.

Via Sherman's Travel Magazine


Devil’s Thumb Ranch, Colorado: Luxury Eco-Getaways

March 21, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Devils Thumb Ranch These days, we're all about sustainable luxury. And this spot--5,000 acres of raw and gorgeous Colorado terrain-- will take your breath away. Devil's Thumb Ranch is a year-round resort and spa with rustically upscale accommodations, fine dining, year-round swimming pools overlooking the mountains, and winter/summer outdoor recreational activities galore. It's been dubbed "the eco-getaway that leads the way." Outside Magazine applauds the geothermal heating, low-emissions chimneys, and the organic menu with free-range antelope steaks. Located 65 miles west of Denver, the resort ranch sits at the foot of the Continental Divide in the spectacular Rocky Mountains. Thousands of acres of countryside means cross country skiing, snowshoeing, horse back riding, fishing, hiking, downhill skiing, river rafting, and more. After a day exploring this majestic wilderness, relax with a culinary feast and divine fine wines. (Check out the Barrel Room, a hand-crafted wine uncorking room, pictured at right.)


Orient-Express in the Real Estate Business

March 19, 2007
By: Editorial AdvisoryBoard

Orient-Express - famous for their luxury hotels, trains, and cruises - has also introduced a range of property developments linked closely with some of their most popular hotels and resorts. La Samanna St. MaartenCupecoy Yacht Club, Saint Maarten is a rare opportunity for 5-star condominium ownership on Saint Maarten and is linked with La Samanna - the luxury resort. The Cupecoy Yacht Club & Villas will feature 169 luxury condominiums, ranging in size from 750 to 3,000 square feet. Owners of these one to four bedroom homes can choose from a variety of styles designed by leading interior designers who have put their stamp on some of the most renowned luxury hotels in the world. At the Residences La Samanna, St. Martin, the first villa at La Samanna officially opened in December of 2006. The Residences will include eight Mediterranean style villas ranging in size from 4000 to 4500 square feet. The Estate Keswick Hall When Orient-Express Hotels purchased the 600-acre Keswick Estate in 2000, they knew that it would be a great accompaniment to Keswick Hall. The Estate features two to eight acre wooded home sites in a secured, gated community - some homes with lake views, others nestled in mature woodlands, and many bordering on the Arnold Palmer signature golf course. MaromaThe Villas at Maroma offer the unique opportunity to own one of 25 exclusive residences at Maroma. The 3 to 4 bedroom villas at Maroma will begin pre-sell in late 2007. Owners will enjoy all the luxuries of this boutique hotel including two restaurants, three pools, two bars and the award winning Kinan Spa.


Cruise around Phuket with Banyan Tree’s Sea Gypsy and Pi Marn Yachts

March 15, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Banyan Tree Phuket Cruises That's right. Banyan Tree Phuket has announced two new yacht cruises around Phang Nga Bay. Hop onboard the Sea Gypsy and Pi Marn and experience the glorious deserted beaches, crystal clear waters, spectacular underwater life, and majestic limestone cliffs that make Phang Nga Bay legendary. You'll even get a chance to see the best of Phuket's wildlife: chattering monkeys, flying fruit-bats, and eagles. Travel in style on the recently refurbished yachts and enjoy delicious gourmet meals and excellent service by a personal butler. The day-long private cruise, priced from $700 per couple, includes a kayaking expedition into a limestone cave at low-tide.