Five Star Alliance
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
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.

What’s Hot: The Rania Experience, Maldives

May 11, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

The Rania Experience The Maldives has become the most sought-after destination on the planet. The archipelago's desert atolls (white sandy beaches and turquoise waters) boast some of the finest luxury hotels in the world. In this paradise, The Rania Experience truly stands apart-- raising the luxury experience to another level. Ranked as one the hippest new places to stay on Conde Nast Traveler's 2007 Hot List, The Rania Experience is limited to just one exclusive booking at any one time (up to 15 people). Your own private island in paradise includes use of The Rania, an 86 foot luxury yacht with indoor and outdoor lounges, Jacuzzi, and a full entertainment center with home theater. In addition, guests are pampered with yoga on demand, personal dive instructor, three private butlers, personalized gourmet meals, and unlimited spa treatments at The Rania Spa. Opened in 2006, the six-room Rania Experience is a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World.


Luxury Boutique Hotels in Shanghai

May 8, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Jia Hong Kong The trend for cutting-edge boutique hotels is catching on in major metropolises across Asia. As recently featured by Newsweek International, these cool hotels are "popping up in Asia's more cosmopolitan cities faster than construction cranes." In recent years Hong Kong and Singapore have paved the way with a slew of intimate design hotels, but now Shanghai is also getting its share of hip boutiques. Opening within months of each other, these new luxury hotels include the 30-room Mansion Hotel, a renovated French villa-style manor which "evokes the swinging Shanghai of the 1920s", and M Suites, which has a "sleeker, more contemporary feel." But perhaps the most exciting news of all: the sexy, Philippe Starck-designed Jia Hotel in Hong Kong is branching out to two new locations: Krabi, Thailand and Shanghai.

Photo Via itravelishop


Announcing the Langham Place Hotel Beijing

May 3, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Langham Hotel Hong Kong Just in time for the Olympics, Langham plans to open its first hotel in China, the five-star Langham Place Hotel, Beijing located in the Chao Yang District, close to Chang An Avenue. Known for its swanky hotels in London, Melbourne, Boston, and Hong Kong, Langham strives for elegance in design and genuinely warm service. The new 26-storey hotel will provide 440 guest rooms for business and well-heeled leisure travelers, 5,000 square meters of function space, five restaurants/bars, and the Chuan Spa based on Traditional Chinese Medicine.


Grand Opening of the Shangri-La Hotel, Suzhou, China

April 27, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Suzhou gardens Just a few hours drive from Shanghai, the historic city of Suzhou is world-famous for its Classical Chinese gardens, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site. These nine garden masterpieces recreate natural landscapes in miniature:

Dating from the 11th-19th century, the gardens reflect the profound metaphysical importance of natural beauty in Chinese culture in their meticulous design.

Part of China's coastal economic development area, the city itself is a key tourist destination with its tile-roofed houses, canals linked by small bridges, and tranquil gardens. Here, visitors can discover 487 historical sites! Shangri-La has just opened its newest luxury hotel in the Metropolitan Tower in Suzhou. Located between the 28th and 51st floors, the hotel features 390 spacious rooms and suites, six restaurants and bars, meeting and banquet facilities, tennis courts, and a Health Club with indoor pool, steam sauna, and Jacuzzi.


Announcing the Ritz-Carlton Jakarta, Pacific Place

April 25, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Jakarta Get ready, Jakarta. The city's getting another luxury addition. Ritz-Carlton has staked its claim to the city's newest and hottest development, Pacific Place, where the hotel company is planning to open a 62-room boutique hotel sometime this year. Located in the heart of Jakarta's central commercial district, adjacent to the Jakarta Stock Exchange, Pacific Place is described as "the nation's benchmark development." Ritz-Carlton is promising the largest suites in the city, a 44,000 square foot ballroom, and dedicated concierge service with complimentary food and beverage presentations throughout the day in the Club Level. Of course the biggest draw is access to Pacific Place's upscale shopping, dining, office tower, and entertainment.

Photo Via National Geographic


Raffles Beijing: The Hotel of Choice for the 2008 Olympic Games

April 20, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Raffles Beijing The Chinese capital's in the press a lot these-- mind-boggling economic growth, the new city-wide anti-spitting campaign, and all the buzz for the imminent Olympic games. After all, tickets have just gone on-sale! So once you've secured seats for your favorite sporting event, it's time to think lodging. The place to stay in Beijing is the new Raffles, awarded "Best New City Hotel" by Andrew Harper's Hideaway Report (2007) and also listed on Conde Nast Traveler’s 2007 "Hot List." Dating from the 1900's, the distinguished hotel is an architectural icon in the city. The location is ideal, just minutes from the Forbidden City and historic Tiananmen Square. The 171 guest rooms are downright decadent.

Related Articles:

Diario del Viajero, A la venta las entradas para los Juegos Olímpicos de 2008


Luxury Values in Bangkok: Baan Thai Wellness Retreat

April 13, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Baan Thai Wellness Retreat The hotel trend in Bangkok these days is going "mini," according to a recent Travel and Leisure article. Smaller boutique hotels are setting the standard for affordable luxury and authentic experiences. Smack dab in the middle of the bustling cosmopolitan city (amidst soaring skyscrapers, a maze of traffic, and Sky Trains), the Baan Thai Wellness Retreat is a tranquil oasis in the Sukhumvit area of downtown Bangkok. Sprawling across a royal estate of five two-storey Thai teak homes transported from Ayutthaya (the ancient Thai capital), the hotel is straight out of the Old World, but wrapped in contemporary luxury. Rooms are outfitted with sumptuous Thai silk, antiques, and elegant teak furniture. Choose a suite with private pool, or opt for a spa suite with outdoor massage table and private treatment room. The Spa itself is a luxurious hideaway with a full menu of spa services. Three night packages start from $770 per person (double).


Over-The-Top Luxury in Tokyo at the Brand New Ritz-Carlton

April 11, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Ritz-Carlton Tokyo Say hello to the newest five-star hotel in Tokyo, housed in the tallest skyscraper in the Japanese capital. Recently opened in the beginning of April 2007, the Ritz-Carlton Tokyo occupies the top nine floors and the first three levels of the 53-storey Midtown Tower. The hotel is utterly dazzling. There are panoramic vistas of the city and Mount Fuji, the magnificent sky lobby, sensational restaurants and bars, the 2,000 square meter Spa by ESPA, and a highly sought-after Wedding Chapel. As reported by the Washington Post, the international brands of five-star hotels are taking Tokyo by storm. The Ritz-Carlton is the fifth after the Mandarin Oriental, the Conrad, the Grand Hyatt and the Four Seasons. These hotels are upping the ante as Japan's own upscale hoteliers sometimes "fail to deliver" for Japan's "New Rich:"

The Ritz-Carlton will make an ice sculpture that holds an engagement ring for a man planning to propose to his girlfriend. It also places playful little cards under beds in hopes of wowing fussy and hypochondriac Japanese guests. The cards say: "We cleaned here too."

The Ritz-Carlton Tokyo is even offering a Diamonds-Are-Forever Martini in partnership with Bulgari. Shell out $16,000 for the cocktail, and you'll find a one-carat Bulgari diamond at the bottom, which you can take it to any Bulgari store in Tokyo and have a ring fitted to the stone for free.


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


Buzzworthy: Claska Hotel, The Talk of Tokyo

March 29, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Claska Hotel, Toyko Utterly unique, Claska is one of the coolest small hotels in the world. Hip Tokyo architects Intentionallies and British design gurus Tomato transformed an old business hotel into the city's cutting-edge boutique hotel. On the first floor: lobby, buzzing café-lounge (with DJ spinning), and DogMan dog salon, the city's coolest place to bring fashionable Fido. The second floor is an art gallery which showcases the newest groundbreaking trends. And on the third and fourth floors: the nine unique guest rooms which are all individually designed, stacked with designer amenities. (One even has an attached terrace, another with a view from your bathtub.) And then there's the rooftop lounge which offers stunning panoramic views of the Tokyo Metropolitan area. Note: You must reserve months in advance to get a room. (It's worth it.) The one setback: the hotel is located in the trendy Meguro neighborhood, not exactly centrally located.

Related Articles:

Time Magazine, "Call housekeeping for more vinyl"