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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.

Opera in Venice with the Hotel Cipriani

February 19, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Hotel CiprianiIn the most romantic city on earth, the Hotel Cipriani offers the most luxurious accommodations in a secluded haven of elegance and calm. Located at the tip of Giudecca Island, the Cipriani is just a short, spectacular boat ride from St. Mark's Square. The 15th century buildings of the Palazzi, linked to the hotel through an ancient courtyard and flowered passageway, boast magnificent views overlooking the lagoon and Piazza San Marco. The gorgeous swimming pool, the only one of its kind in central Venice, likewise enjoys incredible views over the lagoon. The hotel's spa, named Casanova for the legendary lover who used to hold clandestine trysts in the gardens of the Hotel Cipriani, spills out onto private terraces with fountains.

In this magical setting, take advantage of a special three-day opera package which features a performance at the Fenice Theatre in Venice. The package is available starting with the premiere of Rachmaninov's Francesca di Rimini and Aleko on March 16, 2007. The Great La Fenice Opera Theatre Package includes three night's luxurious accommodation in a junior suite with full American breakfast, Italian Spumante and flowers in-room, two seats in a centrally located box at La Fenice (to be shared with another couple), one gourmet three-course dinner for two (either at the Cip's Club or in a Venetian restaurant near the Theatre La Fenice), and complimentary transportation to and from the airport. The package is priced at EUR 1,450 per night, from March 16-April 19, 2007, and October 21, 2007-January 6, 2008. (From April 20-October 20, 2007, the package is EUR 2,160 per night.)

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Fodor's, "High art in Venice; a chocolate fantasy in Newport"


Luxury Flying with Singapore Airlines Boeing 777-300ER

February 16, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Singapore AirlinesIn an era of premium air travel for the uber-rich, the likes of which has never been seen before, Singapore Airlines proves itself a trendsetter with the launch of its new fleet of Boeing 777-300ER's. As described by ABC News, the "Orient Express of the skies" makes the 20-hour flights seem short:

For a mere $10,000, first class airline passengers can now rest their champagne glasses on mahogany tables as they hunker down in Givenchy sleep suits in 30-inch leather seats that turn into cozy beds.

This is luxury flying at its finest, with the world's widest First and Business Class seats, enhanced personal space, awesome entertainment systems, and tempting cuisine. In addition, Singapore Airlines is scheduled to launch its new 555-seat Airbus 380 in October, which will boast a bar on each deck.


Mandarin Oriental Prague: Special Opening Offer

February 13, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Mandarin Oriental PragueThe picture-perfect setting in a fairytale city. The new Mandarin Oriental recently opened in the Mala Strana district, in the heart of Prague's historic center. Housed in a renovated 14th century monastery, this luxurious hotel embodies the allure of Prague. London-based architect Khuan Chew, famed for the swank interiors of the world's only seven-star hotel, Dubai's Burj al Arab, mixed contemporary amenities with the building's fine architectural details (parquet floors, vaulted ceilings, limestone bathrooms). From your guest room, gaze out over the cobble-stoned streets, ancient spires, and red rooftops. Indulge in the world-class spa, located on the site of a Renaissance church. Take advantage of a fantastic Opening Offer at the Mandarin Oriental Prague, and score a third night for free! Available until March 31, 2007, the Opening Offer Package includes daily American breakfast, late check-out at 6pm, complimentary extra bed for a child under 12, and a third night free when you book two. Rates start from EUR 219 for a Superior Room.


St. Patrick’s Day Festival in Ireland: Specials at The Merrion, Dublin

February 12, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

St. Patrick's Day ShamrockGet ready for Ireland's biggest party of the year. Don your green and get ready to imbibe some brew... The St. Patrick's Day Festival will shake things up in Dublin from March 14-18, 2007. Enjoy the city's finest music, theater, carnivals, comedy, dance, and the famous parade, and then retire to the elegant Merrion hotel, just steps away from the action. Hit the fabulous Tethra Spa, or dine at Patrick Guilbaud, Ireland's only two-star Michelin restaurant. In celebration of Paddy's Day, The Merrion, Dublin's most stylish five-star spot, is offering some dandy packages. The St. Patrick's Day Shamrock Package, available March 16 to 18, features two nights in a Superior or Twin room in the contemporary Garden Wing, full Irish breakfast daily, The Merrion's signature "Black Velvet" cocktail, two grandstand tickets for the St. Patrick's Day Festival Parade and a special picnic box with snacks to take to the parade. Priced at EUR 795 per couple. The St. Patrick's Day Festival Special Offer, available March 16 to 18, features overnight accommodation, full Irish breakfast and a Black Velvet cocktail for EUR 355 per night for a Superior Room or EUR 375 per night for a Deluxe Twin room in the Garden Wing. Rates are based upon double occupancy, and subject to availability.

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On the Rocks, Santorini: Think Greece This Summer

February 9, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

On the Rocks, Santorini This could be the most exciting setting on earth. Situated in the world's only inhabited volcano crater-- I kid you not-- On the Rocks is blessed with staggering views of the Aegean Sea and Santorini's world famous sunsets. The hotel is comprised of a complex of traditional Greek buildings: white-washed walls, dramatic blue furnishings, bougainvillea-draped terraces (and all that jazz). Situated above the charming village of Imerovigli, the hotel's exclusive apartments boast private verandahs overlooking the cusp of the volcano crater, with the brilliant blue sea beyond. Set to open April 1, 2007, this unique hotel will feature an impressive spa, inviting pool, and gourmet poolside restaurant serving traditional Greek fare. Noteworthy: one of the newest members of Small Luxury Hotels.


Easter Follies at the Hotel d’Angleterre, Geneva

February 5, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Hotel d'Angleterre

Leave it to Hotel d'Angleterre, one of the finest hotels in Europe, to plan a scrumptious Easter getaway package sure to delight the whole family. Enjoy a spring jaunt to Geneva and set up shack at the lakeside boutique; from your guest room balcony, the views of Lake Geneva, the Jet d'Eau and Mont Blanc aren't too shabby. With only 39 rooms and 6 suites, the historic hotel provides impeccable personal service in pampering guests with true luxury on the lake. (And Windows restaurant, recognized by the Gault and Millau guide as one of the top city restaurants, isn't so bad either.) Celebrate Easter in Switzerland and indulge in the world's finest chocolates with the Easter Follies package at Hotel d'Angleterre. The package includes two nights accommodations, daily buffet breakfast, a chocolate-making lesson and trip to a traditional chocolate maker, and the cocktail of your choice at the fashionable Leopard Lounge, named Hotel Bar of the Year by Andrew Harper's Hideaway Report. Easter Follies is available from April 5-April 15, 2007 and starts at CHF 530 per night.


One More Night at Hotel Albatroz, Cascais: Portugal in the Off-Season

February 2, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Hotel Albatroz

Situated on a cliff top rising above the ocean, the Hotel Albatroz offers the best of the Portuguese Riviera, only 35 kilometers from the Lisbon airport. Formerly a royal summer retreat, Hotel Albatroz is now one of the top boutique hotels in Portugal. Composed of three historical buildings-- including the Duke of Loulé's Palace-- the hotel is a bastion of true luxury and elegance. From the swimming pools and sun terrace, enjoy panoramic views of the bay. From the excitement of the city to the serenity of the sea, Portugal offers an excellent getaway. Explore the historical riches of Lisbon, challenge yourself with a round of golf on five nearby championship courses, enjoy an endless array of water sports, take in the sunset from the bar, and dine on traditional seafood specialties at the popular hotel restaurant, where guests gaze at the jagged coastline of Cascais and Estoril from the stunning beach setting. A winter break at Hotel Albatroz is a steal with their One More Night promotion. Book three nights, and get the fourth night for free! Rates start from EUR 124 (single), EUR 157.50 (double), per night, which includes buffet breakfast and all taxes. Valid until March 31, 2007; subject to availability.


It’s Warm in Paris: Escape to the Hotel du Louvre

February 2, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Hotel du Louvre

The sun is shining. The Jardin des Tuileries beckons for a stroll. The grands magasins (not to mention all the fashionable boutiques) have marked down their merchandise by an extraordinary amount for the twice-yearly Soldes. The Louvre's most famous painting, the Mona Lisa, is yours for the viewing. You can stand and gape to your heart's content with nary an elbow-pushing tourist in sight. And with airfares available for a song, now is the perfect time to visit the City of Light. Head to the elegant Hotel du Louvre for its excellent location, surrounded on all sides by famous Parisian landmarks. (The Opera Garnier, the Comedie Francaise, the Place du Palais Royal, and of course the Louvre Museum itself.) Choose the glamorous Pisarro Suite and stay where the famous Impressionist painter took up residence in the late 19th century and created some of his great paintings of Paris. From the floor-to-ceiling windows, the Suite offers an inspirational view of the Opera House, which was reproduced on canvas by the master painter. Or check out the view from your own Jacuzzi and hammam in the white Carrara marble bathrooms.


Stay Another Day at Stein Hotels and Resorts

February 1, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Cap Estel Hotel

Desperate to shake the winter blues? Escape to the Stein Group's luxury hotels in Europe for a little rest and relaxation. Stein Hotels and Resort has designed a special package which offers three nights for the price of two across all its properties. So whether you're craving some retail therapy (shopping in London) or Riviera sunshine (Amalfi Coast, the Cote d'Azur, or across the Med, on the lovely Spanish isle of Mallorca), Stein's got the answer for a soothing escape in a luxurious resort sanctuary. There's the legendary 19th century hotel, Cap Estel, situated directly on the sea at the charming French village of Eze-Bord-de-Mer. Or the two boutique gems on Mallorca: Gran Hotel Son Julia, housed in an exquisite 15th century mansion not far from Palma de Mallorca, and Gran Hotel Son Net, the 17th century hacienda-turned-hotel surrounded by olive groves. Or the elegant London hotel, The Cadogan, located just off Sloane's Square and just a few minutes from the international fashion houses in Knightsbridge, and London's most famous department stores, Harrods and Harvey Nichols. Take advantage of the Stay Another Day package and indulge in luxurious amenities sure to lift the spirits.


The Arkle at the Chester Grosvenor Hotel and Spa: England’s Top Restaurants

January 31, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

The Arkle at the Chester Grosvenor

Hot off the press. The Arkle, the elegant gourmet restaurant at the Chester Grosvenor Hotel, was awarded the coveted Michelin star for the 17th consecutive year. It is one of only five restaurants in England that currently hold a Michelin star for that long a period. Executive Chef Simon Radley has devised an exceptional menu that changes seasonally, with the emphasis on the very best, fresh local produce. In a beautiful setting, diners indulge in splendid French cuisine with a contemporary twist. Named after the famous steeplechaser owned by the late Anne, Duchess of Westminster, the restaurant boasts one of the most extensive wine cellars in England, with over 600 bins from all over the world. The Chester Grosvenor Hotel and Spa, owned by and named after the family of the Duke of Westminster, dates back to 1865. This luxurious hotel, with only 66 rooms and 14 suites, is one of only a handful outside London to be awarded five AA Red Stars. The Arkle is open for dinner from Tuesday to Saturday and the adjoining Library and Archive is ideal for pre-dinner drinks, morning coffee, light lunches and afternoon tea.