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.

Fun Fact Friday! Break a Sweat at the Kerry Hotel Pudong Shanghai

By: Oksana Balytsky

Let’s face it; working out while traveling in hotel gyms that are outdated and cramped is pretty unappealing. Finding the energy to work out at all is a feat, and to get through a workout in a hotel gym is truly an accomplishment I have yet to cross off my list. Luckily, a few luxury hotels sympathize with our struggles and have created a work out environment that some may find hard to leave!

The Kerry Hotel Pudong Shanghai has extensive facilities covering 6,000 square meters over 3 floors, making it the largest gym in China. The gym features more than 80 weight machines and cardio equipment as well as an ‘Iron Man’ zone with training tools for triathletes. The best part of this stunning facility is that it sports panoramic views of Century Park, allowing gym goers to enjoy a beautiful view while breaking a sweat!

Check out photos, availability, and rates here!

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Cool New Addition: Four Seasons Hotel Pudong Shanghai

By: K. Clare Johnson

Four Seasons Hotel Pudong Shanghai is now accepting reservations for stays starting August 28, 2012. This Shanghai
luxury hotel offers an ambience inspired by Shanghai moderne, dialled up for hip, 21st-century tastes.

This Shanghai luxury hotel offers wall-to-wall views of the ever-changing cityscape. Highly functional, with
extra-large marble bathrooms, the room designs anticipate sophisticated travel needs.

Whether you're making your mark in today’s fast-paced, high-energy business environment or luxuriating during
some well-deserved downtime, we offer the ideal combination of modern amenities and renowned Four Seasons service.

It's Getting Hot in Here: Conde Nast Hot List 2012

By: Christopher Roney

Conde Nast Traveler, purveyor of fine hotel reviews and travel advice, has just released its 2012 edition of the Hot List, a list of hotels that are setting the hotel world aflame with fresh designs and new concepts, or maybe just a solid new look at classic luxury. 41 reporters embedded themselves anonymously in hotels across the globe to review their targets. What results is a list of 121 hotels around the world that are so on fire they should be put on your watch list, just in case they end up burning down. 

A couple highlights from the Hot List that caught our eye:

The Rosewood Hotel Georgia in Vancouver was originally opened in 1927 but after an illustrous career that saw the likes of Elvis Presley and Katherine Hepburn grace their front steps, the hotel went dark for a while. Emerging from its cocoon in 2011, the hotel is looking to recreate the legend it forged in the last century.

The Andaz Shanghai brings the contemporary style of the Andaz brand to the heart of China. Its minimalistic design and great spa are the perfect combination for any type of traveler to the Shanghai area. The customizable LED lighting featured in its premium rooms and suites is also incredibly fun.

Keep on the lookout as we take a more in-depth look at a few of our favorites from the Hot List in the days to come.

On the Hot(el) List: Waterhouses at South Bund

By: Christopher Roney

In a fantastic renovation project, korean lawyer-turned-hotelier Loh Lik Peng has turned an old warehouse located in the old dock district of Shanghai into one of the edgier contemporary hotels that's around: The Waterhouse at South Bund.  Making the Conde Nast Hot List for 2011, the broken-down building has been given a thorough scrubbing and made leaps and strides into modernity. Designer furniture accents minimalistic rooms that allow the peculiarities of a building definitely not built to be a hotel to shine through.  The external maintains a facade of the original industrial architecture that hides within it the intimate boutique hotel.

Small projects like this are the perfect province of boutique hotels. The small scale allows the designers to take risks that would never fly for larger investors who want a safe, guaranteed return.  Cutting-edge properties like this one are, in my opinion, where the real innovation in luxury design happens.  Public and private spaces are integrated into one another, allowing glimpses of the other side. The Waterhouse is part of a Chinese aesthetic revolution that is grasping at the old classics and transforming them into something wholly new.

The Ritz-Carlton Shanghai, Pudong Voted "Best Hotel in the World"

By: Mary Winston Nicklin

The Ritz-Carlton Shanghai, Pudong

The Ritz-Carlton Shanghai, Pudong set the bar high when it opened on June 21, 2010. Literally, the hotel caps off Cesar Pelli’s IFC Shanghai building with an incredible rooftop bar on the 58th floor that's the tallest in Shanghai. Gadling buzzed about the hotel as "luxury in a modern Mandarin-style shell." Travel + Leisure said: "The 285-room hotel places you in a cloud-level fantasy." And now the readers of Condé Nast Traveler magazine (U.S. edition)-- besotted with all the hotel's superlatives-- have voted it the 'Best Hotel In The World' in the magazine's 24th annual Readers Choice Awards. Two top awards were bestowed upon the hotel in one evening, Best Hotel in Asia Pacific, and then Overall Best Hotel in the World. Collecting the award on behalf of the hotel was The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company President, Herve Humler.

Opening Soon: The Andaz Shanghai Debuts in January

By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Andaz Liverpool Street in LondonAs fans of Hyatt's Andaz brand, we've been keeping our eye on this story for awhile. Come January 1, 2012, Andaz will be arriving in China with a cool new hotel in Shanghai's Xintiandi district. HotelChatter recently got the scoop from a very-excited tipster who claimed the property was originally slated to belong to Jumeirah. From the hotel's official website, there's a lot to be thrilled about. A spa with a swimming pool and juice bar. An all-day patisserie called-- what else?-- Éclair. A fun lounge and restaurant that combines a "French bistro and Shanghainese brasserie." A Glass Pavilion for weddings and red carpet events. Not to mention the rooms with a view, all equipped with an "impressive LED lighting where guests can customise the colour to suit their mood." In Andaz fashion, all non-alcoholic minibar drinks and snacks, local telephone calls, and wireless internet access are free.

Pictured: Andaz Liverpool Street in London.

The Peninsula Shanghai Celebrates 11.11.11, The Century's Most Auspicious Date

By: Mary Winston Nicklin

The Peninsula ShanghaiWhere will you be on November 11, 2011? According to Feng Shui masters, November 11 (11.11.11) is the most auspicious date of the 21st century, a moment when the pillars of heaven and earth will be in balance. To celebrate this once-in-a-lifetime occasion, The Peninsula Shanghai is rolling out two exclusive 11-themed special packages. Don't forget to fete this unforgettable date! The Peninsula Suite 11.11.11 offering includes:

* a one-night stay in a Peninsula Suite with a personal butler

* round-trip airport limousine service by Rolls-Royce

* 24-hour use of a Peninsula Shanghai Rolls Royce Phantom

* 1,111 roses arranged inside the suite

* 11 types of chocolate

* a 111-minute treatment for 1+1 in The Peninsula Spa by ESPA’s private suite

* American breakfast for 1+1

* a deluxe hamper filled with 11 gourmet items from The Peninsula Boutique and 11 different light snacks

* 11 cheeses

* 11 types of liquor

* 11 bottles of mineral water to share with 11 family members, friends or colleagues in the Peninsula Suite

This package is priced at RMB 111,111 per night for a minimum stay of two consecutive nights. The Deluxe Suite 11.11.11 offering, priced at RMB 11,111 per night for a minimum two-night stay, includes:

* a one-night stay in a Deluxe Suite

* round-trip airport limousine service by Rolls-Royce

* a deluxe hamper filled with 11 gourmet items from The Peninsula Boutique

* 11 types of chocolates

* 111 roses placed inside the Suite Daily

* American breakfast for 1+1 a 111-minute spa treatment for 1+1 in a private spa suite at The Peninsula Spa by ESPA.

More Details on the Andaz Shanghai, Opening This Summer

By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Andaz Wall StreetEver since the story broke that Hyatt would be exporting its trendy boutique brand to Shanghai, we've been waiting with bated breath for more news. And now we've got it. The brand spanking new hotel-- expected to open this summer-- will have 307 rooms "all with vibrant views over Shanghai and impressive LED lighting where guests can customise the colour to suit their mood." Of course, this hotel will have all the complimentary inclusions that makes Andaz such a beloved brand: non-alcoholic minibar drinks and snacks, local telephone calls and wireless internet access. There will also be a spa with a juice bar, fitness center, and swimming pool, along with a healthy selection of dining options: Éclair, billed as an "all-day patisserie specialising in classic, cream-filled French pastries," the Andaz Lounge; and Hai Pai- a Franco-Shanghainese brasserie.

Pictured: The Andaz Wall Street in NYC.

A Glowing Review of The Peninsula Shanghai

By: Mary Winston Nicklin

The Peninsula Hotel ShanghaiA warning: Read this review of The Peninsula Hotel Shanghai and you might change your summer plans to include a trip to China. The first new building to be constructed on the Bund in 60 years, The Peninsula scores a perfect 10 in just about every category. Here's how The Globe and Mail describes it:

"A Peninsula hotel is like that frustrating friend who, no matter how hard you look, has no flaws. Not one. You could say the luxury chain favours quality over quantity, given that it has fewer properties in the world than you have fingers. Its latest creation occupies a prime spot on Shanghai's Bund... it overlooks the gardens of the former British consulate and has commanding views of the city's hyper-developed Pudong district, the Huangpu River and the Yangtze in the distance. As rusty boats, the symbols of old China, slide inland or out to sea, the Peninsula stands majestically above the shoreline, representing all that new China has to offer, a place where luxury and history intersect to create a spectacular sleepover experience."

The Peninsula ShanghaiNot sold yet? Read on:

"Want to lower the blinds from bed? Just press a button. Need to make a phone call or put on the privacy sign when you're soaking and watching TV in the opulent bathtub? You can do that too. Feel free to dial international numbers so you can boast to friends and family about your surroundings – the Peninsula has VOIP service so long-distance discussions won't cost you a dime. The rooms also have iPod docks, 42-inch plasma TVs, Nespresso machines and Internet radio with hundreds of channels to choose from... And don't forget the Peninsula's signature “nail dryer,” the can't-do-without for women who would rather be painting the town red than watching polish dry. If you plan to stay in, be sure to book a room overlooking the Huangpu River so you can watch Pudong light up and stare at the still-futuristic-looking Pearl of the Orient."

3rd Night Free at The Fairmont Peace Hotel, Shanghai

By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Fairmont Peace Hotel, ShanghaiHere's your chance to get luxury for less at the newly renovated hotel everyone's talking about. Closed for three years for a top-to-bottom restoration by Fairmont Hotels, the historic Peace Hotel opened its doors in summer 2010 to glowing reviews. Back in the day (1929), the hotel was known as the "Number One Mansion in the Far East." And now it's been hailed "the highest-profile hotel in China." And with a sky-lit swimming pool, Willow Stream Spa, the famous Jazz Bar, and 8th floor terrace with knock-out views, we can see why. Special offer: Fairmont has unrolled a "3rd Night Free" offer at its hotels across China, including this glam Shanghai landmark, the Fairmont Peace Hotel. Valid on stays to August 31, 2011. Starting from 2,100 CNY per night, based on double occupancy in a Fairmont room. Based on availability, and some black-out dates may apply.