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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.

Pan Pacific Manila Wins World Travel Award for Leading Business Hotel

October 13, 2008
By: Betsy LeTourneau

Pan Pacific Manila Congratulations, the Oscars are in! That is, from The World Travel Awards, the "Oscars of the Travel Industry." This year's recipient, announced at the the 15th Annual World Travel Awards 2008, for the Philippines' Leading Business Hotel is

Pan Pacific Manila. General Manager, Richard Masselin, attributes this honor as due to the hotel's dedication to exceptional service on a personalized level.

As the first and finest five star property in Philippines, Pan Pacific Manila offers contemporary style that is luxurious but casually elegant. While staying at Pan Pacific Manila you will receive a heartwarming welcome in true Filipino style. All guests are provided Butler Service, the Hotel's unique concept of consolidated services associated with the utmost personalized care. Each guest room and suite includes an expansive desk, 2 phone lines, fax line, broadband internet access, fully stocked mini bar, and personal coffee and tea making facilities. Bath Rooms are uniquely designed with a sliding wall to open into the bedroom. The property includes extraordinary dining and entertainment at the Adriatico Square, outdoor swimming pool and jacuzzi, and a health and fitness center.

Pan Pacific Manila stands ready to provide an experience of luxury and indulgence like never before for you to enjoy.


InterContinental Hanoi Landmark: Vietnam’s Tallest Hotel to Open in 2011

October 6, 2008
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Hanoi By NightInterContinental is bringing its distinctive luxury touch to more and more locations across the Asia Pacific region, with 30 new hotels scheduled to open within the next three years. One of the most anticipated debuts is the InterContinental Hanoi Landmark, which will be Vietnam's tallest hotel when it opens in 2011 in the 70-storey Keangnam Hanoi Landmark Tower. Like the new InterContinental Westlake Hanoi overlooking the 800-year-old Golden Lotus Pagoda on Hanoi's largest lake, the InterContinental Hanoi Landmark is bound to make waves on the luxury hotel scene with its stylish amenities and first-class service. The Westlake was named to Condé Nast Traveler's prestigious 2008 Hot List for its "sublime waterfront locale," and it seems likely that the InterContinental Hanoi Landmark will also land on the list for its resort-style pool, fitness club, and panoramic city views from the atrium lobby located on the 60th floor. The new hotel will join the ranks of the world's tallest hotels, including the InterContinental Doha West Bay in Qatar (scheduled for 2009) and the InterContinental Nanjing in China (slated for 2010).

Image of "Streets of Hanoi at Night" via Travelblog


What’s Hot: China’s Carbon-Neutral Hotel, URBN Shanghai

October 3, 2008
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

URBN ShanghaiWith all the talk of smog-clouded skies in Beijing and factories sprouting up like weeds, it's nice to see a new(ish) line of carbon-neutral, boutique hotels in China. URBN Shanghai is making waves as a model for eco-design and sustainability in the hospitality sector. Named to Conde Nast Traveler's 2008 Hot List and recently cited by Fodor's Hot List, URBN was built with recycled materials and energy-saving technology. The hotel calculates its carbon footprint (including energy consumed by staff who commute, and food and bev delivery), and then purchases credits for green energy to neutralize the footprint. Guests are encouraged to buy carbon credits to offset their flights. The hotel has 26 designer rooms outfitted with all the latest technology, housed in a renovated factory just two blocks from Shanghai's high-end Nanjing Road. This is the first of what's promised to be a chain of URBN hotels across China.

Image Via Boutique Design


Free Fourth Night at Ritz-Carlton Hotels (Pay with American Express)

October 2, 2008
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Ritz-Carlton Fort LauderdaleWe just got wind of a cool offer available at luxurious Ritz-Carlton hotels worldwide. You'll get a fourth night on the house when you book and pay with any American Express Card. Head to Fort Lauderdale for some fun in the sun and check out the ultra-luxury beach resort, the one-year-old Ritz-Carlton (formerly the St. Regis). Indulge in a leisurely spa treatment at the Mobil Five Star and AAA Five Diamond Ritz-Carlton New York, Central Park. Check into the Ritz-Carlton Moscow at the edge of the famed Red Square and enjoy the largest, poshest rooms in the city. Ogle the views from one of the most dramatic skyscrapers at the Ritz-Carlton Tokyo. This special offer is available until December 19, 2008.


Buzzworthy: Amanresorts Opens The Aman at Summer Palace, Beijing

September 26, 2008
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

The Aman at Summer Palace, BeijingBefore the Summer Olympics, we heard a lot about the hotel building frenzy in Beijing and all the new hotel openings. But this one is so special, says the LA Times, and promises to be so sought-after, that its debut will occur next month, well after the world's Olympians have come and gone. The latest luxury offering from Amanresorts, The Aman at Summer Palace is a sight to behold, housed in a series of historic dwellings (which hosted those awaiting an audience with the Empress Dowager Cixi at the turn of the last century) just a stone's throw from one of the most legendary sites in China. Fittingly, the hotel exudes a sense of tranquility throughout. There will be only 18 guestrooms and 25 suites, outfitted with furniture pieces inspired by the Ming Dynasty. You can try Peking duck at the restaurant, and sip drinks at the bar overlooking a traditional Chinese pond and garden. There will also be a nine-room spa with an indoor pool, gym, and dedicated pilates/yoga room.


Canine Cuisine and Five-Star Service for Fido: Peninsula Tokyo Launches Dog Stay Program

September 24, 2008
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Peninsula TokyoBring your dog to the award-winning Peninsula Tokyo for a little canine pampering. Just like its sister hotels in New York, Chicago, and Beverly Hills, The Peninsula Tokyo has launched a dog stay program so four-legged family members don't have to miss out on the legendary Peninsula service. As to be expected from Peninsula, the program is positively indulgent. When you arrive in your posh guest room, you won't just be ogling the high-tech gadgets. You'll find countless pet amenities: stainless steel water and ceramic food bowls with a placemat, Vittel bottled water, a Simmons dog bed with blanket and pillow, and a welcome basket that includes wet tissues, dog diapers, toys and snacks. When your pup needs a walk, The Peninsula Pageboys and Pagegirls are available to provide complimentary walking service in Hibiya Park or in the outskirts of the Imperial Palace. Your pooch can be outfitted in a Peninsula Page uniform, if you'd like! The fun for Fido doesn't stop there. The "canine cuisine" room service menu offers a range of appetizers and treats, entrees, and desserts for dogs that can be paired with a complimentary video movie or CD for their entertainment. Tasty treats include Organic Cobb Salad, Seasonal Sashimi Tartar on Rice, Kobe Big Burger and Afternoon Tea Delight, along with regular soft and hard dog food. And get this- you can even order a special dog CD which contains music that only dogs can hear. The Dog Stay Program at The Peninsula Tokyo is available for dogs weighing up to 15 kilos (33 pounds) and costs JPY 5,000 per night.


On Top of the World Yoga Retreat in Bhutan: Judy Krupp at Uma Paro Resort

September 17, 2008
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

BhutanThe 29-room Uma Paro, operated by COMO Hotels and Resorts, offers more than the usual five-star hotel experience in Bhutan; Uma Paro welcomes visitors on an holistic, cultural adventure- where you can discover one of the last pristine mountain cultures on earth, surrounded by towering peaks. Uma Paro arranges the entry permission required to visit the Kingdom, along with visas and Druk Airline tickets. Because the core of the COMO Shambhala experience is yoga and Asian-inspired therapies devoted to physical and spiritual wellbeing, it's only fitting that Uma Paro is offering a 6-night yoga retreat led by Australian teacher Judy Krupp. Suitable for all levels, the retreat will take place from January 4-10, 2009 and is priced from $3,968 (single occupancy). The program includes six nights accommodation, breakfast and lunch daily, five hours of daily group instruction, a traditional Bhutanese Hot Stone Bath and Massage, exploration of the local scenery and monasteries with an English-speaking guide, a pilgrimage to Bhutan's most sacred site Taktsang monastery (Tiger's Nest), a lunch at a Traditional Bhutanese Farmhouse, and a picnic at a ruined fortress at the end of Paro Valley with views of Bhutan's highest mountain, Mt Jomolhari (7,314 meters).


Buzz: Langham Hotels Signs First India Property in Pune

September 17, 2008
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Langham Place, Koregaon Park, Pune, IndiaFrom the legendary London hotel to Hong Kong's stylish establishment, Langham has brought its stimulating hospitality concept to four continents now. Luxury hotel operator, Langham Hotels International, has doubled in size in the last year with 16 hotels open or in the pipeline. We just got word that Langham has signed a contract for Langham Place, Koregaon Park, Pune, India- as Langham expands into what's termed the "new Silk Road of China, India and the Middle East." Slated to open in 2010 in the "Silicon Valley of India," the 180-room hotel will be home to India's first Chuan Spa concept, featuring oriental hot tubs, ice caves, herbal steam rooms, singles and couples treatment suites, and an infinity edge indoor and outdoor pool. The exciting restaurants on offer will include a new hybrid concept called Portal- Work & Play. Here's the scoop from the press release: "By combining a lobby lounge, cocktail bar and business centre, Portal is where work and play seamlessly intertwine to meet the needs of today's multi-tasking world." A DJ will spin in the lobby-atrium, setting the mood.


Around the World in 80 Ways: The Epic $1 Million Journey from Leading Hotels of the World

September 16, 2008
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

One Aldwych, LondonWe recently spread the word about the incredible deal-- $19.28 room rates!-- offered by Leading Hotels of the World to celebrate its 80th anniversary. And now it's time to highlight another celebratory package from LHW-though this one is a tad more extravagant. Leading Hotels of the World has created an epic voyage, "Around The World in 80 Ways," to pay homage to both the 80th anniversary of the Academy Awards, and their own 80th birthday. The price tag for this amazing, glamorous journey? One million dollars.

Traveling in a private jet all the way, you and a companion will see everything in the world worth seeing and do everything in the world worth doing. Best of all, 10 percent of the USD 1 million price will be donated to the Elton John AIDS Foundation for the global fight against AIDS. So, with that in mind, we invite you to open your hearts and wallets and get ready to set off on the adventure of a lifetime.


Stay 4 Pay 3 at the All-New Anantara Phuket Resort and Spa, Thailand

September 16, 2008
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Anantara Phuket Resort and SpaBack in June we broke the news about the brand new Anantara Resort on Thailand's Phuket Island, set to debut in early October on a quiet stretch of Mai Khao Beach on Phuket's secluded northern sunset coast. You'll fall in love with this all-villa resort, where the stunning accommodations come equipped with individual private pools. Another perk: the Anantara signature outdoor "made for two" terrazzo tub that seamlessly blends with the private pool. Be one of the first to experience an unforgettable getaway at the Anantara Phuket Resort and Spa with a special opening offer. Stay for four nights and pay for only three at the special Anantara Breeze rate, available from October 1- December 23, 2008. Rates start from THB 16,000.