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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.

New Capella Singapore Accepting Reservations for March


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Capella Singapore

We've been keeping our eye on the new Capella brand of ultra-luxury hotels, founded by Horst Schulze, the former president and CEO of Ritz-Carlton. What's the latest? Capella Singapore will open its doors in March, the first flagship property for Capella Hotels and Resorts in Asia. There's a reason this resort debut is highly-anticipated: Capella Singapore is a design dream conceived by some of the world's most talented hospitality gurus. Just 10 minutes from the heart of the cosmopolitan city of Singapore, the Capella is nestled in a private enclave on Sentosa Island surrounded by 30 acres of rolling hills and verdant rainforest. The South China Sea is the resort's backyard. Of the world-class attractions on the island, there's championship golf, tennis, beaches, nature trails, and the Resorts World Development. As to be expected, the accommodations are as dreamy as the treatments at the Auriga Spa. Capella Singapore is currently featuring a Special Opening Offer, where you can stay three nights and only pay for two, available March 30-May 31, 2009.


Free Dolphin Safari and Champagne: Paradise in the Maldives at Naladhu Resort


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Naladhu Resort, Maldives

Powdery white beaches? Check. Turquoise lagoons? Check. Your own private house with infinity-edge pool, hardwood floors and goose-down pillows? Check. You've arrived in paradise on your own private island at Naladhu Resort, steps from the Indian Ocean, where your very own Naladhu house comes equipped with wifi, Bose home-surround theater, satellite TV, and in-room iPod. Did we mention the House Master who can cater to your every whim? After an unbearably long winter, a sunny, private sanctuary like Naladhu Resort is looking pretty tempting. When you book your stay with Five Star Alliance, you'll get a free Dolphin Safari, bottle of Champagne, and late check-out, to boot.


New Seven Wonders of Nature Campaign is Well Underway


By: Mackenzie Allison

Matterhorn What do The Great Wall of China, Petra, Chichén Itzá, the Statue of Christ Redeemer, the Colosseum, Machu Picchu and the Taj Mahal have in common? Well, on July 7, 2007-- or 07.07.07-- they were declared the official New 7 Wonders of the World. This project, led by The New7Wonders Foundation, aims to preserve global heritage, and more than 100 million votes were cast worldwide to give these seven places this distinction. Now, the second phase of the project, the New 7 Wonders of Nature is well underway. During the first stage, 441 sites from 222 countries were nominated. On December 31, 2008, the first phase ended and 261 nominees proceeding to the current stage—one national nominee per country, plus all multinational nominees. Some of the nominees include Matterhorn, Christmas Island, Yu Shan and Wadi Rum Desert. To find out more and to vote, visit www.new7wonders.com. The 21 Official New7Wonders of Nature finalists will be announced on July 21, 2009.


Discover Kazakhstan with the Intercontinental Almaty


By: K. Clare Johnson

Intercontinental AlmatyWant to visit somewhere completely different? How about Kazakhstan? Forget everything you saw in Borat. The post-Soviet country is the 9th largest country in the world, and thanks to its huge gas and oil reserves, is now one of Asia's most important emerging economies. For luxury accommodations in the area, try out the The InterContinental Almaty. The hotel occupies an enviable location opposite the Presidential Palace in Republic Square. It's located near Zenkov Cathedral, the Green Bazaar, and the Koktobe Mountain. For a limited time, the The InterContinental Almaty is offering a Mountainview Picnic package. The hotel will prepare you a sumptuous picnic and guide you to the perfect spot to breathe in the fresh Tien Shan Mountain air. Enjoy your feast while being serenaded by the area's extraordinary birds. Prices vary for this special, so check with your travel agent for details.


2008 Overall Best Luxury Hotel Award: lebua at State Tower, Bangkok


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

lebua at state tower, bangkokVisitors to Bangkok (and local urbanites alike) flock to the Sky Bar, one of the hottest venues in the city, for heart-stopping views of glittering Bangkok. But this birds' eye view of the Chao Phraya River meandering through the city is not limited to the dramatic Sky Bar. In fact, guests at lebua at State Tower experience these incredible views from their guest room too, as this all-suite luxury hotel boasts extraordinary balcony views from every single room, along with Bvlgari bath products, Petrossian amenities in mini bar, and 330 thread count linens. Winner of the "2008 Overall Best Luxury Hotel Award" at the prestigious World Luxury Hotel Awards in Cape Town, lebua at State Tower features several fine dining options and in-suite cooking by an award-winning chef. The best part of all? The hotel is surprisingly affordable, with rates this month hovering around $164. Plus, lebua at State Tower is running a special promotion, whereby you get 20 percent off if you stay two nights, 30 percent off if you stay three nights, and a whopping 40 percent off if you stay four nights.


A Nobu Restaurant on Every Continent? From Atlantis, The Palm, Dubai to Honolulu


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Atlantis, The Palm, DubaiBack in October, the world's gaze shifted to Dubai to gawk at the new Atlantis resort on Palm Jumeirah, the world's largest man-made island situated in the Arabian Gulf. Billed as the "majestic focal point" of the palm tree-shaped island, a "dazzling world of imagination," and a place to "live out your dreams," Atlantis, The Palm held a grand opening party so lavish, so excessive, that it's fireworks were supposedly seen from outer space. Boasting the third largest aquarium in the world, this extravagant resort is also home to the a Nobu restaurant, the first outpost in the Middle East for the world-renowned chef. As the Nobu empire has expanded to 16 cities around the world, from Atlantis, Paradise Island in the Bahamas to Atlantis, The Palm in Dubai, from Miami to Hong Kong, we can't help but wonder... will we soon have a Nobu on every continent? Next up: A Nobu in Qater.


Announcing the Aman New Delhi, the First Urban Hotel for Amanresorts


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

The Aman New DelhiAt long last, the Aman New Delhi has opened its doors, and promises to be one of the hottest hotel openings of the year. The ultra-luxury hotel brand founded by Adrian Zecha has established quite the following (and with hotels like Amangani in the portfolio, how could that *not* be the case?) Situated in the heart of New Delhi next to the medieval Nizamuddin complex, the urban resort is designed with contemporary flair, accented with numerous Indian touches such as hand-made rugs. What else can you expect to find? (Get ready to swoon.) An otherwordly spa, a beautiful pool (a whopping 50 meters), elegant cuisine, and a health center set in a sunken courtyard, where professional instructors are on hand to help you out with your Pilates moves (in the studio) and tennis game (on three courts).  The suites are ridiculously spacious, and some offer private pools and butler service. Tranquil and sophisticated, the Aman New Delhi is the ultimate haven in a bustling, cosmopolitan city.


Get a Hotel Credit from Le Royal Meridien Shanghai


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Le Royal Meridien ShanghaiShanghai bound? Check into Le Royal Meridien Shanghai, the city's sleek landmark on historic Nanjing Road East opposite People's Square, and you'll enjoy unforgettable views of the Bund and Huang Pu River from the hotel's floor-to-ceiling windows. After all, this is one of the tallest buildings in the city, measuring 66 storeys. An unbeatable location and up-to-the-minute technology make Le Royal Meridien Shanghai the place to stay in the "Paris of the East." Stay a minimum of two consecutive nights until the end of February 2009, and you'll receive a RMB 600 credit redeemable at Le Spa and the hotel's 10 exciting restaurants and bars. Rates start from RMB 1,388 per night for a Grand Deluxe room.


Airport Hotels Get Swanky


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Sofitel Heathrow...and it's about time! Airports around the world are seeing the debut of sexy luxury hotels. From the cutting-edge Radisson SAS in Zurich Airport's Terminal 1 to the stylish, "cheap-and-chic" Aloft hotels in North America, these new offerings at international airports are actually giving city-center hotels a run for the money. These are-- to quote the recent article in the New York Times-- "airport hotels that invite lingering." You can find personalized iPods at Singapore's Crowne Plaza, but perhaps the finest of the bunch is the new Sofitel at Heathrow:

Sofitel's six-month old, 607-room Heathrow property cost a cool $400 million to build — and looks it — with interior design by Khuan Chew (also responsible for Dubai's ultra-luxe Burj-al-Arab hotel) and bathrooms fitted with Swarovski crystal fixtures... (It) includes a brasserie by the Michelin-starred chef Albert Roux and a spa with five treatment rooms.

Image Via PeterGreenberg.com


Suite Surrender at Shangri-La Hotel, Chiang Mai


By: K. Clare Johnson

From THB 12,999, you too can surrender to wondrous relaxation at

Shangri-La Hotel, Chiang Mai. You'll also get to go back in time and explore one of Thailand's most famous mountaintop temples, Doi Suthep, and meander amongst hill tribes in the well-preserved Mhong Village. Shangri-la hotel, Chiange Mai When you take advantage of a Shangri-La Hotel, Chiang Mai's Suite Surrender package, you'll stay in a Horizon Executive Suite room, enjoy a half day tour to Doi Suthep and Mhong Mountain Tribe village, and indulge in a Lanna Blend massage at CHI, The Spa (45 mins). The package also includes roundtrip airport transfers, Horizon Club benefits access, and complimentary broadband Internet access. This offer is available until March 31, 2009, subject to availability. Rates are subject to tax and service charge, a total of 18.5%, and minimum of 2 nights required.