The 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.
In the past, hotels were not really known as great dining destinations. This has all changed in recent years, where it seems like every luxury property has at least one fine dining restaurant on site. In fact, many hotels seem to be striving for a culinary hot spot. This not only helps to set them apart from competitors, but is also a great way to generate buzz. So where can you find some of the world's best hotel food? If you happen to be in Hong Kong, there is no better example then the Lung King Heen restaurant in the Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong. Executive chef Chan Yan-tak was recently awarded three Michelin stars for his contemporary Cantonese cuisine- an amazing feat in itself. Yan-tak also happens to be the first Chinese chef to obtain this distinction. Known mostly for the seafood and dim sum offerings, the restaurant's highlights include the steamed shrimp and garoupa dumplings with black truffles. With such great distinction attached to this restaurant, guests can not only expect the kind of service long associated with the Four Seasons Hotel, but also, perhaps, the best dim sum meal in the world.
Dreamed of living it up like a maharajah for awhile? Here's your chance to bed down in opulence with one of the leading hotel chains in the world, Oberoi Hotels & Resorts. India's Ministry of Tourism is promoting 2009 as "Visit India!" year and so Oberoi has decided to go in on the initiative-- giving you another reason to explore the magnificent country with a night free at some of its properties, recognized worldwide for all-around excellence. Gape at the Taj Mahal from your room at The Oberoi Amarvilas in Agra. Embark on a Himalayan adventure in alpine India at Wildflower Hall in Shimla. Explore Rajasthan while staying at The Oberoi Udaivilas in Udaipur-- consistently ranked one of the top hotels in the world-- or The Oberoi Rajvilas in Jaipur. The third night free offer is valid through the end of September.
Shanghai is gearing up for 2010's World Expo with a slew of luxury hotel projects. One such project is the renovation of The Peace Hotel-- "a symbol of all that was playful and decadent in old Shanghai," to quote The Financial Times. Facing the Huangpu River from its strategic spot on the Bund, The Peace Hotel is an Art Deco landmark with lots of history. (Put it this way: The Peace Hotel has seen a lot: from Sun Yat-sen to Japanese occupation during WWII straight through to the present-day skyscraper boom in the city called "hipper than Hong Kong and more alluring than Beijing.") Fairmont will be managing the 12-storey property when it opens next year after a renovation project that's been hailed "one of the most challenging, and closely watched, historical restoration efforts in China" as it seeks to "balance the needs of profit and preservation."
Times are tough for the tourism industry in Thailand. All the more reason to get on over to the "Land of Smiles"! Deals are yours for the taking. Try some of these courtesy of the AP:
-Free round-trip domestic tickets on Thai Airways when you fly in to Thailand from Europe, North America, Australia and New Zealand.
-$10 domestic flights through October on discount carrier AirAsia.
-70 percent savings on glam goods and shops with the "Amazing Thailand Grand Sale"
What's more: Gorgeous luxury hotels likeThe Peninsula are offering nice incentives for bookings. You can nab an $100 bar and restaurant credit plus a free second night at any Peninsula hotel in the world when booking a special package with the riverside palace hailed as one of the finest hotels in the world.
Word on the street is that Beijing is introducing a new tourism initiative to entice visitors, including free five-star hotel accommodation for newlyweds on their honeymoon. Also in the works: the payment of 1 million yuan of highway toll fees for tourist buses for half a year.
Talk about a pedicure with a view! Pictured at right, the exclusive Chuan Spa at the Langham Place Mongkok is an oasis of luxury on the 40th floor. As if the views could get any more exhilarating, the hotel's rooftop boasts a 20-meter heated swimming pool with chill-out tunes played underwater. Kick back in the jacuzzi, or in one of the large poolside cabanas with a cocktail under the stars, and check out the twinkling lights across the city. You'll also get panoramic views of Kowloon and Hong Kong from the 24-hour fitness studio, equipped with 12 card machines, 10 strength machines, and free weights. And the rooms.... Flanked with floor-to-ceiling windows, the 665 rooms and suites are five-star fabulous. High-tech amenities are plentiful: flatscreen tv, DVD/CD player, iHome, and a modern workstation with state-of-the-art Cisco IP telephony, wired and wireless broadband. Book a luxurious stay in Kowloon at the Langham Place Mongkok and you can take advantage of a special "Free Night SUITE Deal" until September 6, 2009. Stay for three nights in a suite and you'll get a fourth for free. Plus you'll enjoy Club L benefits.
Situated on the warm pristine waters of the Indian Ocean, the Republic of the Maldives offers some of the world's best diving spots, featuring some of the most psychedelic colors in underwater life anyone has seen. Cocoa Island Maldives is ideally located in a quiet atoll of undisturbed waters and provides dive enthusiasts with everything they need to explore the fascinating underwater oasis surrounding the resort. Not only does this top rated boutique property have a team of knowledgeable and experienced PADI instructors available on site, they also provide a full package kit for all diving needs, including Scuba Pro BCD's, regulators with 11 liter tanks, and long-leg and short-arm wetsuits. The resort also provides Gull and Mantis masks, Technisub fins, and Aladdin Pro dive computers. So leave your dive gear at home and let the Cocoa Island Maldives take care of the equipment, while you enjoy beautiful luxury accommodations in one of the world's most beautiful locations.
Burj al Arab in Dubai. The poll was conducted among top travel connoisseurs-professionals who stay in five-star luxury properties at least 20 times per year- and the ratings were based on room quality, service, decor and cuisine.
Since the Capella Singapore opened in March, guests have been dazzled by the largest guest rooms in Singapore. (Not to mention the one- and two-bedroom garden villas with private pools overlooking the South China Sea.) These interior spaces feature handcrafted objects, artwork and furniture from Lamont Design, a Bangkok-based company that worked with Norman Foster's architectural design to achieve Capella's vision for the new hotel. Centered around two historic "Tanah Merah" houses (dating from the colonial era), the ultra-luxury hotel was built to take advantage of its hilltop setting with tiered pools and marvelous courtyard gardens. Seascape vistas aren't the only thing guests appreciate inside the resort; Lamont's sophisticated objects in bronze, earthenware and Peking glass display a rich history of craftsmanship and create the mood. You can browse Lamont's contemporary collections and rare objects-- showcased at the Capella Singapore and Miami's Setai Hotel-- in five stores in Thailand, including a boutique at The Sukhothai. And from now until August 31, 2009, you can check out the Capella Singapore's lush tropical haven with a special introductory offer where you get a third night free.