Five Star Alliance
Tag line NEED ASSISTANCE? 1-(888)-5STAR-11
  • 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.

Magical Experiences at the NoMad Hotel NYC


By: Five Star Alliance

The Magician is a collaboration between the NoMad Hotel,in the heart of the cutting edge and historic NoMad neighborhood, and theory11 starring famed illusionist Dan White. The intimate performance showcases in the Johnston Room features the art of magic, illusion, and deception. Around the world, Dan White has been preforming magic on stage and screen for over 20 years. From the notes, "Most recently, Dan was featured on the Discovery Channel special The Supernaturalist and White Magic on the Travel Channel. In 2014, Dan served as a creative consultant to Kanye West, collaborating on iconic, magic visuals for the YEEZUS tour. Prior to that, Dan consulted on-site in Las Vegas with legendary illusionist David Copperfield."

Tickets are available throughout 2016, shows are currently at 7 and 10:30 pm. You can have dinner or bar reservations prior to the show at both the NoMad Bar (on 28th street) and the Elephant Bar, which are first-come, first-served. As a hotel guest, you can also visit The Library, which is reserved for guests of The NoMad Hotel in the evening. 

Learn more about The NoMad Hotel in New York City >>

The Magician at the NoMad Hotel NYC

 


Ko'a Kea Hotel & Resort Perfect for Weddings & Honeymoons


By: Five Star Alliance

This article about Ko'a Kea Hotel & Resort at Poipu Beach, where couples can celebrate their special day with a perfect destination wedding, was originally posted by our sister publication, Luxury Travel Advisor, and was written by Nanci McArdle.

Ko'a Kea Hotel & Resort at Poipu Beach

Always a popular wedding and honeymoon destination, Hawaii offers myriad options. Ko'a Kea Hotel & Resort at Poipu Beach near Kauai's southernmost point is one of the many options for couples to spend their honeymoon. Although wedding ceremonies and receptions are not currently available at Ko'a Kea, discounted accommodations are on offer for groups celebrating elsewhere on the island.

Among the most popular retreats for honeymooners is Room No. 376, an oceanfront suite closest to the water on Kauai. The 624-square-foot room has a separate living room, wooden-beamed ceiling and large soaking tub (one of just 12 on property). A patio with chaise lounges is ideal for taking in 180-degree views of Poipu Beach.

For family or friends traveling together to celebrate their loved ones' special day, the resort presents 29 sets of connecting rooms located in various areas of the property. They range from two Partial Ocean View Rooms (Nos. 269 and 271) to an Oceanfront Deluxe Room and Oceanfront Suite (Nos. 378 and 376). And good news for those traveling with their furry friends: the hotel permits dogs 25 lbs. or less. The pet fee is a non-refundable $100 per day, and a bed, food, water bowl and toys are supplied. (Note: Due to limited availability of oceanfront and suite rooms, it is advisable to book at least two months in advance. During high demand periods such as summer and winter holidays, booking three, or more, months before is recommended.)

Romantic dining can be found in the resort's upscale seafood restaurant, Red Salt, where they can enjoy the Red Coral Martini, Ko'a Kea's signature cocktail made with Stolichnaya vanilla and raspberry vodka with a splash of pomegranate juice. Tables 22 or 27, next to the windows overlooking the property and ocean, are the most romantic seats in the house. Reservations are recommended one week in advance.

Couples or groups can enjoy some down time at The Spa at Ko'a Kea, which has five treatment rooms, plus a seaside cabana. Why not live like the natives and enjoy a traditional Hawaiian Lomi Lomi massage before taking a walk along the seaside path that runs in front of the hotel or directly on the sand. More vigorous oceanfront hiking is located nearby on the bluffs of Mahaulepu. Bicycle rentals are available at Outfitters Kauai, about four minutes from the hotel.

Discover more about Ko'a Kea Hotel & Resort at Poipu Beach >>

 


Whimsical Wedding at Bacara Resort in Santa Barbara


By: Five Star Alliance

This article originally appeared in our sister publication, Luxury Travel Advisor, and was written by Nanci McArdle.

Exterior of the Bacara Resort and Spa in Santa Barbara

Bacara Resort & Spa in Santa Barbara is one of our World's Best Destination Wedding Resorts for 2016. Find out why ...

Couples can celebrate their special day at the seaside sanctuary - Bacara Resort and Spa in Santa Barbara - that offers both romance and relaxation for newlyweds and their friends and families.

Bacara Resort & Spa is an ideal destination for couples that are California dreaming. The resort can accommodate wedding requests ranging from a private ceremony in one of the Mediterranean-style guestrooms to a ballroom wedding, hosting up to 1,250 guests and many options in-between.

The 11,300-square-foot Bacara Ballroom features 23-foot-high ceilings and six balconies and can be divided into three separate areas, each accommodating up to 350 wedding guests. The ballroom also has 8,700 square feet of additional event space, including a vaulted foyer with fireplace, an adjacent ocean-view terrace and an expansive lawn, where guests can enjoy cocktails and hors d'oeuvres prior to the ceremony.

The Ocean Lawn at Bacara Resort & Spa affords panoramic ocean views for a wedding ceremony and is surrounded by the resort's lush landscaping.

Pictured: The Ocean Lawn at Bacara Resort & Spa affords panoramic ocean views for a wedding ceremony and is surrounded by the resort's lush landscaping.

Other options include the Rotunda and Rotunda Terrace, a 1,734-square-foot circular area atop Bacara's main lobby offering views of the ocean, along with an outdoor area perfect for an al fresco celebration. For a more intimate wedding, Bacara's wine cellar features a display of 12,000 wines from around the world, along with a private dining room that can seat up to 40. Those looking to take in the natural beauty of the resort can choose from The Bluff, an expansive lawn area with ocean views that can accommodate up to 300 guests for a seaside wedding ceremony or reception; the Ocean Lawn, which affords panoramic ocean views; or the Residence Lawn, a more intimate, oceanside venue that can be reserved in conjunction with The Residence, Bacara's 3,700-square-foot retreat. This option can accommodate up to 120 guests for outdoor wedding receptions and includes a two-night stay in The Residence. Finally, the Oval Lawn offers couples a private and enclosed garden area, accommodating up to 300 guests.

After the tying the knot, newlyweds can retire to one of the rooms right on property. The Residence, which is the closest accommodation to the ocean on the bluff and includes ocean views, three wood-burning fireplaces, a patio for private dinners and its own workout area, is one of the top two options for honeymooners. The other is The Terrace Suite, which features ocean views, a master bedroom area with a fireplace, a wrap-around terrace overlooking the ocean and a relaxing soaking bathtub.

Outdoor Pool at Bacara Resort and Spa, Santa Barbara

When the new couple is ready to venture out, many options are right at their fingertips, including a visit to the 4,200-square-foot, 36-room spa that offers private treatments, or they can reserve the roof deck area, where they can host a group get-together with their wedding guests, enjoying treatments such as a private mud bar and private massages, overlooking the ocean. While it is recommended to make reservations as far in advance as possible, the spa will do its best to make last minute arrangements.

For outdoor enthusiasts, Bacara offers a variety of ocean sports, including surfing, body boarding, ocean kayaking and sailing. Also available is horseback riding, cycling, mountain biking and hiking. Those looking to hit the links are in luck. There are three nearby 18-hole championship golf courses: Sandpiper Golf Club, Glen Annie and Rancho San Marcos.

For those with kids, Monarch Kids' Club offers fun activities and exploration options for children ages five through 12. The program was designed especially to reflect Bacara's surroundings and rich Chumash history.

Click here to learn more and check availability at Bacara Resort & Spa in Santa Barbara, CA >>


The Americana Music Event at Blackberry Farm


By: Five Star Alliance

Blackberry FarmThe sixth annual Americana Music event at Blackberry Farm celebrates and showcases the musicians and singers who have captured the moving stories of the South and beyond. This year, legendary American country/folk Singer-Songwriter John Prine, who first picked up a guitar at age 14 and went on to become one of the most influential songwriters in the nation, will captivate audiences in The Barn with reflective stories and songs drawn from his personal history. Joining Prine is multi GRAMMY, AMA, ACM, CMA and Billboard Awards winner and current Grammy Nominee Lee Ann Womack, and critically acclaimed singer-songwriter, guitarist, Grammy Winning producer, Joe Henry. This year's event will be held March 31-April 3, 2016. Event Activity Fees, which are in addition to room rates, start at $1000. These concerts benefit the Americana Music Association.

Book a stay at Blackberry Farm >>


Discover Chicago Through the Peninsula


By: Five Star Alliance

The Peninsula Chicago
There's no better place to discover Chicago than The Peninsula Chicago. The luxury hotel is located in the center of downtown Chicago on the Magnificent Mile. It is just steps from the Windy City's best shopping, dining, and activities, and a few blocks from the business and financial district. 

Here's just a few ways The Peninsula Chicago Gives Guests the City:

-Suite Rides in the MINI Cooper or BMW house car. Guests will be chaffeured through the city in one of the hotel's two bespoke MINI Cooper S Clubman vehicles. MINI Coopers are subject to availability, for a maximum of three hours per stay. A bespoke BMW house car, available on a first-come, first-served basis, chauffeurs guests within two miles of the hotel. 

-Second City:Next Big Comedy Star. Guests who have dreamed of a career in stand-up will be thrilled with a private Second City IThe Peninsula Chicagomprov or Stand Up Comedy Class, a behind-the-scenes tour of the theater and more.

-Eastern Eats:Cooking Class and Tea Ceremony at Shanghai Terrace. Once guests complete this program, they can satisfy their need for Cantonese dim sum whenever they'd like. Tutored by Ivan Yuen, Chef de Cuisine of Shanghai Terrace, guests will spend time in the restaurant's kitchen learning techniques in dim sum making, ingredient selection, menu planning, and plate presentations. A Chinese Tea Ceremony experience, a four-course dinner in Shanghai Terrace, and a photo book of the experience is also included.

-Florist for a Day. Guests will assist in designing and planning the weekly floral displays that are a signature of the Peninsula Hotels experience. A personalised tour of the floral warehouse, and time with the design team as they take it from planning to execution. Champagne, tea sandwiches, a monogrammed apron and floral shee.rs, plus a take home arrangement you helped create is all included.

-Broadway In Chicago:Exceptional Seats to Preferred Performances. Receive VIP access to premier seats for coveted performances. The journey begins with a delicious three-course, pre-theatre dinner in The Lobby or Shanghai Terrace. After dinner, the hotel's bespoke BMW house car whisks guests away to the performance where a personal escort is on hand to show the way to premier house seats and serve  welcome drinks. During the intermission, the VIP service continues as the personal attendant delivers additional refreshments and drinks. Upon conclusion of the show, receive signed merchandise from the cast as a prized keepsake of the experience and a transfer back to the hotel.

For more ways to experience Chicago, book a stay at The Peninsula Chicago>>


Saudi King Takes Over Four Seasons Georgetown


By: Five Star Alliance

Four Seasons Washington
We've heard of celebrities and presidents renting out whole hotel floors before, but the king of Saudi Arabia just went one step further. King Salman bin Abdulaziz reportedly rented out the entire Four Seasons Washington in Georgetown. To make the king feel more at home, and true to the hotel chain's reputation for guest services, the hotel even redecorated with gilded furnishings and decor. The even rolled out (literally) the red carpet. 

 

Book your own stay at Four Seasons Washington >>


W Mommie Dearest Drag Mamas Take Over Mother's Day at W New York Downtown


By: K. Clare Johnson

W New York Downtown
If you can't be with your mom on Mother's Day, W New York Downtown may have the answer. The hip hotel has teamed up with some Drag Mamas to offer W Mommie Dearest events. 

These surrogate mamas are offering their services on Sunday May 10. Here are some of the events planned:

- Mama Needs a Drink. Head to the hotel's Living Room Bar & Terrace and order up a "Mama's Martini Madness." The special drink consists of vodka, orange and pineapple juice, Chambord, topped with some bubbly and garnished with a kiss from Mama.

- Mommie's Turn Down. These mother figures will tuck you in. If you ask nicely, maybe you'll even get a bedtime story.

- Mama Knows Best. Take advantage of your drag mom's wisdom. If you are wrestling with a question about love, relationships, or really, anything, the Drag Mom will offer her best advice for solving the problem. W New York Downtown

- Breakfast with Mama. It's usually your mom that gets Mother's Day breakfast in bed. Not this time. Drag Mama's will serve you up eggs with a side of sass.

- Facetime with Mother. Your tech-savvy mom will appreciate the video chat from you...but she probably won't expect your Drag Mother to be there too. 

Services are subject to availability so book quickly. 

Spend time with your Mommie Dearest at W Hotel New York Downtown >>


Have an Equine Experience at Miraval Arizona Resort and Spa


By: Five Star Alliance

Miraval Arizona Resort and Spa
Ready to try something new in 2015? Give the Miraval Equine Experience a whirl.  For $45, guests can practice living life in the moment. You will work with specially trained horses and instructors to practice equestrian ground skills. The class will give you a chance to notice personal patterns of learned behavior that may be holding you back from the life of your dreams.

Nestled at the base of the stunning Catalina Mountains, Miraval Arizona Resort & Spa's 400 acres of lush Sonoran Desert creates an inspiring backdrop that is warm and welcoming year-round with luxurious accommodations and a world renowned spa.

Why not give it a whirl if you find yourself at Miraval Arizona Resort and Spa


Ziggy Stardust Hits Thompson Chicago


By: Five Star Alliance

Thompson Chicago
David Bowie fan? You'll want to head to Chicago's Museum of Contemporary Art. The hotel is hosting the first retrospective of the extraordinary career of David Bowie. More than 400 objects, most from the David Bowie Archive—including handwritten lyrics, original costumes, photography, set designs, album artwork, and rare performance material from the past five decades—are brought together for the first time.

So, where should you stay? Try Thompson Chicago. Located in the heart of Chicago's exclusive Gold Coast , it offers luxurious accommodations and sophisticated guest services. Right now, if you book the Five Star Alliance rate, you'll receive a complimentary upgrade based on availability.

Book your stay at Thompson Chicago >>


Hotel Monteleone Aims to Break Records


By: Five Star Alliance

Hotel Monteleone
Hotel Monteleone
, the quintessential New Orleans hotel, is looking to make history in a whole different way. Fittingly, the piece will be made out of Mardi Gras beads, bottle caps, and wine corks. It will depict Life in the French Quarter. Over the next year, Wanger will be traveling with the piece to schools and community centers statewide to work with volunteers on placing more than four million Mardi Gras beads on the art work. The piece will return to the Hotel Monteleone in summer 2015. 

The massive art piece titled “Life in the French Quarter” is the latest project of local bead artist Stephan Wanger’s Bead Town initiative. The inspiration behind “Life in the French Quarter” is to translate everything that makes New Orleans great into art. Wanger’s vision of the piece features a background of iconic New Orleans scenery and a second line of famous local movers and shakers from the past and present including Lena and Louis Prima, Robin Barnes, Tennessee Williams and many more. The free standing 16-panel plywood canvas measures 96 feet wide by 8 feet tall and will be made entirely out of Mardi Gras Beads along with bottle caps and wine corks. Wanger started to prep the canvas by sketching out his vision for the piece in July 2014 and he projects it will take a year to add over four million Mardi Gras beads to complete the project by August 2015.

View rates, details, and more images of Hotel Monteleone >>