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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.

It's Business Time: The Hay-Adams Best Business Hotel Washington DC


By: Christopher Roney

There's a very interesting split in the travel industry between business and leisure travelers. And if you're one of the business types, you know well that you're on the road constantly and the things that matter to you, travel convenience, efficiency, and connectivity, are almost the opposite of what a leisure traveler might want. If the word 'secluded' ever appeared in a hotel description, you'd cross it off the list immediately. So I'm here to use some adjectives you might appreciate hearing in describing some of the world's best business hotels. Today? Washington, DC.

"Hey, Adam, where would you stay on a business trip to DC?" a hypothetical man might ask.  And Adam, being a good sort and lover of wordplay, would most definitely tell him, "The Hay-Adams Hotel, my good sir."  Well, clearly this Adam guy knows the hotel scene in DC pretty well because the Hay-Adams is the iconic DC residence for visiting dignitaries.  With almost a hundred years of a history studded with the politically influential, the Hay-Adams does it right.  Emulating a distinguished private mansion on Lafayette square, you would have to actually be in the White House to get any closer to the president.  And I'm pretty sure there's a few german shepherds who might have something to say about that.  8,000 ft of meeting space ensures that you can have your meetings nearby if need be, and the rooftop terrace can accommodate parties of up to 225.  The Hay-Adams Hotel gets my recommendation for the DC business traveler.  It's central, connected, dignified, and luxurious, and that's everything I want on a business trip.


Michelin Guest Chef to Rock your Taste Buds at the Fullerton Hotel Singapore


By: Oksana Balytsky

Two-star Michelin Guest Chef Claudio Sadler is coming to the Fullerton Hotel Singapore March 29th – April 1st, 2012. Claudio Sadler is one of Italy’s most highly regarded chefs, and he will be creating his exceptional creations for only 4 days at the Lighthouse Restaurant. Enjoy culinary masterpieces like the Risotto laced with Franciacorta Rose Braised Red Onion, Pan Fried John Dory on Burrata Cheese Sauce, and Fennel Seed Roasted Suckling Pig Loin with Carrot and Campari Puree while taking in the stunning vistas of the Marina Bay.

Make your reservations today at the Fullerton Hotel Singapore and experience the phenomenal creations of Chef Claudio Sadler for yourself!


Condé Nast Traveler Gold List 2012: Alvear Palace Hotel


By: Oksana Balytsky

We understand that no one aims to come in second place; there is no recognition for mediocrity. We at Five Star Alliance understand better than anyone the importance of offering the most luxurious resorts in the world, so we notice what’s going on in the industry, and it matters to us, because it matters to you. We work hard to offer you the best in the industry, and we’d like to welcome you to our second blog series where we feature the best and most luxurious resorts in the world. But don’t take our word for it. These resorts have been recognized as the best in the business and have made the prestigious Condé Nast Traveler Gold List 2012.

The Condé Nast Traveler Gold List 2012 is the eighth of their annual lists, and the hotels chosen by their team of editors and experts are the best for service, food, location, rooms, leisure facilities, ambiance and design.

The Alvear Palace Hotel is featured on the Gold List 2012: Best for service. This luxury hotel is located in the heart of the bustling district of Recoleta in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The décor of its 197 rooms and suites have a beautifully empirical style featuring Louis XV and Louis XVI with opulent art and antiques admirably displayed. The service of this luxury hotel is to be recognized; the Alvear Palace Hotel goes above and beyond professionalism and refinement, offering services such as personal shopping, flower deliveries, and everything in between.

Check rates, availability, photos and more at the Alvear Palace Hotel here!


It's Business Time: Park Hyatt Best Business Hotel Tokyo


By: Christopher Roney

There's a very interesting split in the travel industry between business and leisure travelers.  And if you're one of the business types, you know well that you're on the road constantly and the things that matter to you, travel convenience, efficiency, and connectivity, are almost the opposite of what a leisure traveler might want.  If the word 'secluded' ever appeared in a hotel description, you'd cross it off the list immediately.  So I'm here to use some adjectives you might appreciate hearing in describing some of the world's best business hotels.  Today? Tokyo.

Guests may be familiar with the criticallly-acclaimed Park Hyatt Tokyo from its estranged cinematic guests from the film Lost in Translation.  Designed as a modern private residence, the 178 rooms and suites are the most spacious in the city.  Its 24-hour business center gives you unparalleled access to everything you might need, and it is located next to the city's major transportation hub.  The Shinjuku station provides rail and subway access to anywhere in the city. Extensive meeting and business facilities provide spacious room for anything from business meetings to conferences.  And you can wine and dine your clients at the New York Grill, number one for the past five years in Tokyo's Zagat Survey.  The Park Hyatt Tokyo is everything a business traveler looks for, packaged up nicely in one convenient location.  And who knows? You might even have an incredibly dysfunctional but endearing relationship with an American transplant while you're there.


Going out on a Limb: The Peninsula Bangkok


By: Christopher Roney

Looking for a place to stay along the Chao Phraya riverfront in Bangkok?  Well, look no further than the Peninsula Bangkok.  The 370-room super luxury hotel was voted the world's best in 2003 and has kept up its best-of-the-best presentation since.  Guests are treated to uninterrupted panoramic views of the river and city, and with a beauty spa and fine dining on site, you'll find little need to leave the hotel if you desire not to.  Pick from any of four restaurants:  traditional Cantonese at Mei Jiang, homestyle Thai at Thiptara, international buffet at River Cafe & Terrace, and Pacific Rim at Jesters.  And once you've satiated your body, satisfy your mind by relaxing in a wonderful three-tiered swimming pool.  Maintain the careful balance by adjusting the custom environmental controls in your chich but classical room.  The Peninsula Bangkok really is my choice to stay for my next trip to the city.


Visiting London? Check Out the Four Seasons Hotel London at Park Lane


By: Oksana Balytsky

The Four Seasons Hotel London at Park Lane is located on a quiet street in the heart of Mayfair. It is one of the few luxury hotels in London that has greenery and open spaces on all sides, allowing visitors access to the best of both worlds; nature and the city. Hyde Park, Green Park, and St. James Park are all located nearby, and the hotel is just a short stroll from to the West End theatres, Bond Street, Knightsbridge, and Buckingham Palace. Aside from an incredible location, this luxury hotel has a few other distinguishing factors that make it one of the best hotels in London. It has a putting green on its terrace as well as a glass-walled rooftop spa offering 360 degree views of the treetops and the city. The Four Seasons Hotel London at Park Lane is also a wonderful choice for families, and it certainly goes out of its way to welcome young travelers. The concierge is extremely accommodating and always available to assist with making reservations for a family dinner, a babysitter, and more.

Need more details about the Four Seasons Hotel London at Park Lane? Be sure to explore room types, availability, and photos here!


Hotels with an Edge: Raffles Hotel Singapore


By: Oksana Balytsky

In today’s competitive world, everyone needs a way to stand out from the crowd. Luxury hotels certainly are not any different and are always looking for ways to outshine their competitors and attract more visitors. We understand that our travelers look for the best of the best, and we would like to introduce you to our blog series, Hotels with an Edge. We’ll be highlighting and featuring a few hotels we feel truly stand out and offer their guests more than is expected. Be sure to check in with us to explore various hotels that deserve recognition for their supreme levels of luxury.

Our fourth featured hotel is one that is exclusively comprised of suites, the Raffles Hotel Singapore. This luxurious property is one of Singapore’s most elegant landmarks, and its colonial style architecture radiates a timeless grace. The suites in the hotel are certainly this hotel’s distinguishing factors, specifically the Grand Hotel Suite which has 2 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, a parlour, a private verandah and butler service. It is also the only hotel in Singapore with a movie theatre on site, a pool open 24 hours a day, and the only Singapore hotel marked as a National Monument.

Explore photos, availability, and rates at the Raffles Hotel Singapore here!

Be sure to keep up with our blog series for a little inspiration on where to stay next!


Can Luxury Hotels Be a Force for Development?


By: Christopher Roney

The last place one might expect to find a luxury hotel is on the wartorn streets of Kabul, where the porter's duty is as much to wipe off the accumulated dust of the ruined cityscape as it is to carry your luggage.  But one hotel brand is not just opening there, it's making it its mission to use the luxury hotel business to spur development in struggling countries, predominantly in the Middle East.  As Foreign Policy reports, Serena hotels are a mainstay of areas of internal conflict, its flagship property protected by armed guards in the heart of Islamabad.  And they're looking to expand their efforts in Afghanistan as a part of the unique mission of their benefactor, Aga Khan.

Aga Khan, whose personal wealth measures in the billions, began the hotel chain in the 1970s, and it is supported by Norfund, a Norwegian development fund, and International Finance Corp. of the World Bank.  As he is himself a spiritual leader of a sect of some 15 million Shiite Muslims, the vested interest in bringing the luxury hotel industry to Muslim countries is clear.  Part of the international development process is giving visiting businessmen and dignitaries a place where they can feel safe and taken care of while they come to work the deals that might, in theory, help lift places like Kabul out of the perpetual poverty of a war-stricken country.  

While the investment is not without its perils, the Serena in Kabul has been attacked three times since its opening in 2005, Serena has also been able to maintain occupancy rates of 60% in the very same hotel.  The visitors to Kabul are, of course, aware of the perils of the situation they are choosing to step into, and are often intimately tied into the conflict itself.  The clear hope is that once stability is gained, the hotels can serve as an existing infrastructure to develop a tourism industry around, and Serena's safer hotels in more established regions do a good business.  Regardless of your thoughts on this kind of luxury development work in countries where even food and water can be hard to come by for much of the population, Serena serves as a fascinating test case for developing industries in countries without the infrastructure to support them and shows the potential the hotel industry has to do more than provide a nice vacation.  You can read the full piece from Foreign Policy here and find out more about Serena properties at Five Star Alliance.

 

Kabul Serena Photo via Foreign Policy

 


Condé Nast Traveler Gold List 2012: Hotel Adlon Kempinski Berlin


By: Oksana Balytsky

We understand that no one aims to come in second place; there is no recognition for mediocrity. We at Five Star Alliance understand better than anyone the importance of offering the most luxurious resorts in the world, so we notice what’s going on in the industry, and it matters to us, because it matters to you. We work hard to offer you the best in the industry, and we’d like to welcome you to our second blog series where we feature the best and most luxurious resorts in the world. But don’t take our word for it. These resorts have been recognized as the best in the business and have made the prestigious Condé Nast Traveler Gold List 2012.

The Condé Nast Traveler Gold List 2012 is the eighth of their annual lists, and the hotels chosen by their team of editors and experts are the best for service, food, location, rooms, leisure facilities, ambiance and design.

The Hotel Adlon Kempinski Berlin is featured on the Gold List 2012: Best for service. This luxury hotel is located right at the historical Pariser Platz, a short stroll from the beautiful boutique shops and right in the vicinity of the financial district. Its atmosphere is inspired by history and modernity, and a number of the rooms and suites offer breathtaking views of the Bradenburg Gate. This luxury hotel burned down in 1945, was rebuilt in 1997 and remodeled in 2007. This hotel’s service certainly sets it apart, and their concierge team is more than willing to set up and organize whatever sort of adventure you want. Their staff is flawlessly prepared and extremely helpful and accommodating to any and all questions or concerns.

Check rates, availability, photos and more at the Hotel Adlon Kempinski Berlin here!


The World’s Best Hotels


By: Oksana Balytsky

Big shout out and thank you to all our loyal blog readers! We certainly love bringing you the latest and greatest luxury travel news, and we appreciate hearing from you via phone, email, or our Facebook and Twitter pages. We realize that every traveler begins his/her journey in the research phase; deciding on where to go, and we certainly get a number of inquiries about the best hotels in certain areas, the most romantic hotels, the best hotels for families, the best all-inclusive resorts, and onward. To help you pick the absolute best hotel that fits your needs and criteria, we would like to draw your attention to our ‘World’s Best Hotels’ tab. Here you’ll be directed to lists and lists of phenomenal hotels and resorts in various categories. From the best ski resorts to the best spa resorts, we certainly have you covered. Be sure to check out the various lists for a little inspiration on where to travel next! You want the best, and we certainly want to give it to you!

Photo of the Meridian Club in Turks and Caicos, a luxury hotel on our Best Honeymoon Resorts List