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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.

Puerto Rico Fall Getaway: Discounts at the Conrad San Juan Condado Plaza

October 1, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Conrad San Juan Condado PlazaLooking for a beach break just a short flight from the East Coast? A fall getaway for a song? Think Puerto Rico, where sandy beaches and alluring cocktails await. The Conrad San Juan Condado Plaza is offering an irresistible package deal with low rates and lots of perks. The Fall Getaways Promotion is priced from $179 per night and gives lucky guests a third night free. But that's not all. You'll also get 20 percent off spa treatments at the Zen Spa, a 10 percent discount at the hotel’s in-house car rental desk, a $25 casino match bet coupon and 20 percent off at participating restaurants, including Eight Noodle Bar (with late night hours) and the poolside Aqua Bar & Grill. Unique to the Conrad: a beach in downtown San Juan! The resort has it all-- from water sports and tennis to a 24-hour casino and a sprawling pool complex including San Juan's only filtered saltwater pool. The promotion, associated with Puerto Rico Getaways, must be booked by October 31, 2010 and is available for travel now through January 15, 2011.


Laid-Back Luxury on St. Barth’s: Le Sereno Gets Five-Star Status

September 17, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Le Sereno, St. Barth'sIt comes as no surprise that Le Sereno-- the intimate beachfront hotel on the French Caribbean isle of St. Barth's-- just nabbed five-star accreditation under the French government's new hotel ratings system. Le Sereno is the first St. Barth's property to achieve this status. (Previously, the system maxed out at four stars.) Situated on the famous Grand Cul-de-Sac beach with views over the turquoise lagoon, Le Sereno has just 37 suites and three new 7,000 square foot Villas designed by Parisian designer Christian Liaigre. With full access to the hotel's amenities, these independent Villas feature their own private pools and gardens. Guests can expect impeccable service from a round-the-clock staff. At this stylish sanctuary, guests have access to a beach club with attendants and freshwater swimming pool, in-room spa treatments by La Ligne St Barth and a fitness center. Not to be missed: The Restaurant des Pecheurs which specializes in fresh seafood simply and elegantly prepared.


The Dream Within a Dream - The Reserve at Paradisus Palma Real, Dominican Republic

September 14, 2010
By: Daniel L. Moses

The Reserve at Paradisus Palma RealHave you seen the movie ‘Inception’ yet? I have. It’s pretty good stuff. But you’re probably now wondering how it relates to luxury travel, and more specifically, this blog. Well, it doesn’t really, but I’m making a point here. In the movie, and this is no great spoiler, Leonardo DiCaprio and his ‘Inception’ co-stars exploit the world of people’s dreams for their own various profit motives. Occasionally, when they need to do something especially awesome, they use the famous “dream within a dream” move. The dream within a dream is especially useful for those who might know they’re dreaming. Anyway, but I digress. The point of all this is that there is such a place on this great planet that is the luxury hotel equivalent of a dream within a dream, a place so special that only a few are allowed to enjoy its excellence.

That place is The Reserve at Paradisus Palma Real at Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic. You see, Paradisus is already an immaculate resort, with some of the best beaches, dining, golf, and you name it, but The Reserve takes it one step further. With Residential Concierge Suites, Suites with a private garden, Swim-up Suites, and (perhaps the dream within a dream within a dream) Presidential Suites, The Reserve doesn’t just want you to stay in luxury. That part is covered. The Reserve wants you to feel like royalty. You, and your family of princes and princesses if you so desire, will be made to feel like the king and/or queen that you deserve.

So while you may not have seen ‘Inception’, you can still be a part of that dream within a dream at The Reserve at Paradisus Palma Real at Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic.


Hotel Discounts with Voluntourism: Give & Getaway with RockResorts

September 9, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

The Landings St LuciaAcross the globe, voluntourism projects are taking off. Hotels from Texas to the Maldives are giving discounts on accommodations when guests sign up for volunteering projects. Another example: the Give & Getaway program with RockResorts. They'll arrange an environmental conservation project for you-- such as light trail maintenance or working on an area community farm-- and you'll get a reduced rate on your stay plus complimentary swag like hydration packs. Give back to the environment and get rewarded for your efforts! Participating hotels in the RockResorts portfolio include:

The Arrabelle at Vail Square & The Lodge at Vail - Vail, Colorado

Guests have the option of two different dates doing trail restoration work in the Vail area.

Snake River Lodge & Spa - Jackson Hole, Wyoming

Snake River Lodge & Spa is partnering with Jackson Hole Wildlife Foundation to remove miles of old buck and rail fence surrounding Grand Teton National Park.

The Landings St. Lucia – Rodney Bay, St. Lucia

Spend the day harvesting locally grown fruits with St. Lucians on a working warm and end the day sampling locally caught seafood at the Anse La Ray Friday Fish Fry!


Last Summer Fling in the Caribbean: 3rd Night Free at Half Moon Resort

August 30, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Half Moon Resort, JamaicaExtend the summer with a jaunt to the Caribbean for some sun, sand, and surf before the cold days of autumn are upon us. Jamaica's Half Moon Resort-- home to a championship golf course, 13 tennis courts, the sumptuous Fern Tree Spa, and an exclusive dolphin lagoon-- has extended its Third Night Free promotion. For a limited time only (through September 30, 2010), travelers can book three nights for the price of two and enjoy accomodations at the luxurious resort located on Montego Bay in Rose Hall. This special offer is for travel from September 1 - October 31, 2010. Plus, as The Washington Post points out, "kids younger than 16 stay free in their parents' room."

Related Article:

Great Luxury Value in the Caribbean with Five Star Alliance Rates at Half Moon


St. Barth’s Hotel Guanahani & Spa Gets a Makeover

August 26, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

GuanahaniNews from St. Barth's in the French West Indies: the Hotel Guanahani & Spa-- famously open year-round-- has closed its doors for a few months to undergo major renovations. Nested on a private 16-acre peninsula surrounded by the sparkling Caribbean, the luxurious resort has an unparalleled location unlike any other on the island-- boasting two private beaches: one facing the Atlantic and one facing a quiet lagoon perfect for windsurfing on Marigot Bay. Set to reopen on December 15 just in time for the winter season, Hotel Guanahani will be refurbishing its guest rooms, all housed in private bungalows. Some bathrooms will be remodeled to open onto private outdoor gardens, and the terraces/decks of more than 20 rooms will be enlarged and decked out with plush new lounge chairs. Overseen by architect David Schwarz, interior designer Luis Pons and local architect Nicolas Lossent from Lotus Architectes, the renovation will also include the addition of one new, luxury suite that resembles a villa and has exclusive access to a private beach. This Admiral Suite is named for Christopher Columbus, who received the title "Admiral" from the King of Spain after his first expedition to the Americas; he discovered the island of St Barth's during his second expedition in 1493.


Off-Season Deals in the Caribbean at Hermitage Bay and Gansevoort Turks and Caicos

August 18, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Hermitage BaySummer's winding down, so now it's time to start plotting a fall getaway- preferably somewhere fabulous and tropical. We've got our eyes on two heavenly Caribbean properties: the first, an all-adults, all-inclusive resort on the island of Antigua, the second, a sleek boutique hotel on the sand on the Turks and Caicos' Grace Bay, one of the world's most beautiful beaches. Hermitage Bay offers 25 sumptuous private cottage suites spread out across the hillside overlooking Antigua's West Coast. The best part of a stay at this five-star hideaway: the all-inclusive amenities including meals, beverages, and unlimited water sports. On the Turks + Caicos islands, the Gansevoort channels a "sensual island vibe" while also reflecting the urban chic associated with the flagship hotel in New York. On site: a gorgeous infinity pool, trendy beach lounge, and award-winning spa.

We've scouted out some special offers for the fall at these two Caribbean hideaways. Hermitage Bay is offering 30% savings between August 28 and September 5, and also between October 10 and October 30. Three night minimum stay required, with roundtrip airport transfers, meals with drinks and one 30-minute massage included. At the Gansevoort Turks and Caicos, stay two nights in September and October and you'll get the third night free (full payment required in advance; October 8 and 9 are black-out dates).


The World’s Best Up and Coming Hotels

August 5, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

The James ChicagoIn its August 2010 issue, Travel + Leisure highlights "20 to Watch: 2010's Best Up-and-Coming Hotels," many of which can be found in the Five Star Alliance collection. Predicting "the next hottest hotels around the globe," Travel + Leisure scoured the globe "to pick out this year's new and refurbished, expanding, or otherwise evolving hotels." What the magazine's editors found: domestic hotels are raising the bar, with fantastic luxury hotels in the United States and Canada. So without further ado, here's the list:

Mandarin Oriental Barcelona

Algodon Mansion, Buenos Aires

Amangiri, Utah

Aria Resort & Casino, Las Vegas

Four Seasons Beirut

The James Chicago

Jumby Bay, A Rosewood Resort, Antigua

Mandarin Oriental Barcelona

The Peninsula Chicago

The Pierre New York, A Taj Hotel

Radisson Blu Le Metropolitan, Paris

Ritz-Carlton Reserve Phulay Bay, Krabi, Thailand

Town Hall Hotel & Apartments, London

Trident, Bandra Kurla, Mumbai, India

Veranda Resort, Turks & Caicos

Verdura Golf & Spa Resort, Sicily

W Retreat & Spa, Vieques Island

Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa, Australia

Destination Spa: The Ranch at Live Oak Malibu , Malibu, California


Nominate Someone for Rosewood’s 30 Under 30 Program

July 28, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

The Carlyle, A Rosewood HotelRosewood Hotels & Resorts is celebrating their 30th anniversary with a special recognition program called 30 Under 30. Do you know someone under 30 who shows special drive and promise and is on their way to becoming a leader in their field? Rosewood is looking for nominations for the program; the individuals should demonstrate qualities that Rosewood considers on par with the company's own core values:

*Mindful of the community

*Leadership with integrity

*Passion of conviction

*Dedication to preserving our natural environment

*Strong sense of life balance

Applications will be accepted through November 1, 2010 and on December 1, Rosewood will debut a website of 30 Under 30, featuring the 30 people who most lead lives of consequence. On behalf of each finalist, Rosewood will make a $100 donation to the non-profit organization of their choice. What's more-- each finalist will enjoy a complimentary dinner for two at any Rosewood property (like The Carlyle in New York, pictured). The grand prize: Rosewood will select just one nominee whose life is truly exemplary to receive a $1,000 donation to the non-profit of their choice and a complimentary three-night stay at any Rosewood hotel or resort. Helping to select the best 30 Under 30 will be a panel of judges including Peter Greenberg, CBS News Travel Editor, Jason Binn, CEO of Niche Media and Pamela Fiori, Editor-at-Large of Town & Country.


Great Luxury Value in the Caribbean with Five Star Alliance Rates at Half Moon

July 26, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Half Moon Resort, JamaicaA corner of Caribbean paradise is yours for the taking with exclusive Five Star Alliance rates at Half Moon, the legendary resort nestled on two miles of white sandy beach on Jamaica's Montego Bay. Score a great luxury value starting from just $250 per night in a Garden View room. Snag these discounted rates by booking at Five Star Alliance, then vacation in style with a host of luxurious resort amenities at your fingertips: from the Fern Tree Spa to the 13-lit tennis courts.