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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.

Where to Sleep at Excelsior Palace Hotel Rapallo

May 24, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Excelsior Palace Hotel Rapallo
The unique setting of Excelsior Palace Hotel Rapallo, facing the bay of Rapallo (Italian Riviera) to the east and the headland of Portofino to the west, has inspired a return to the elegance of the early 1900s, when the international beau monde gathered here.

Refined and comfortable ambiences reflect the warm colours of the sun and sea of Rapallo and the Portofino Coast. The guest rooms and suites look out onto one of the literature's most celebrated panoramas, the Gulf of Tigullio. The Hall stands out for paintings, prints, and furniture which all are authentic antiques.A splendid setting for weekends and vacationing, Excelsior Palace Hotel five-star luxury hotel Rapallo devotes special attention to lovers of relaxation and of excellence, offering a Beach Club with terraces on the sea, individual cabanas and a panoramic swimming pool, in addition to an exclusive wellness centre, an oasis of pure pleasure for personalised treatments, gym and an indoor pool with a sea view.

All the Excelsior Palace Hotel's rooms are equipped with lock with electronic key, individually controlled heat and air conditioning, telephone with a direct outside line, satellite TV and pay TV, individual safe, a well-stocked mini bar, bathtub and shower, telephone, hair dryer, bathrobes and slippers.

Here are the room choices available to guests:

Classic Rooms (pictured right)-Attractive and comfortable, with elegant furnishings that often recall the colours of the sea, the Classic Double Rooms of the Excelsior Palace Hotel in Rapallo are ideal for those who feel the need for comfort and luxury, but no great additional space. Approx. 22 square meters.

Excelsior Palace Hotel Rapallo

Superior Rooms-Pretty rooms located in various points of the building, spacious and well-lighted, may offer a view of the open sea or a partial view of the Tigullio's Gulf. Some have a small external space – a balcony – while others, more spacious, are also suitable for accommodating three people. Approx. 28 square meters

Exclusive Rooms-The Exclusive rooms category feature balconies and a view of the sea of Portofino or Rapallo view. Some are connected with Superior category rooms. The wi-fi connection is free of charge. Approx. 35 square meters.

Here are the suite choices available to guests:

Suites offer spectacular panoramas and enchanting terraces, luminous rooms, and elegant furnishings, beds that are the utmost in comfort. A stay in a suite offers a unique chance to experience a special vacation. Warm sun and sea colours tinge the furnishings of the comfortable, spacious rooms, places of quiet, pleasant relaxation. The windows open onto picturesque landscapes that lift the spirits and stimulate the fantasy. Among the services present in the suites are a lock with electronic key, individually controlled heat and air conditioning, double telephone with a direct outside line, stereo, satellite TV and pay TV, individual safe, a well-stocked mini bar, open bar with choice of liquors, Internet connection, Jacuzzi bathtub and separate shower box, telephone, hair dryer, bathrobes and slippers.

Classic Suites-These suites enjoy privileged positions, with a lovely view of the Gulf of Portofino. Terraces or furnished balconies make a stay in this luxury five-star truly one of a kind. All Suites are very roomy, divided between a spacious bedroom and a bright living area, furnished with elegant and ancient furniture. All Suites offer internet connection and open bar with choice of liqueurs. Most of the Suites are connecting with either a Deluxe or a Superior Double Room. Starting from approximately 50 square meters.

Junior Suites-Recently redecorated, all the Junior Suites of the Excelsior Palace Hotel have a spacious bow window instead of balcony to afford guests a sweeping view over the sea and the Gulf of Portofino. Their main characteristic is that there's no separation between the large bedroom and the sitting room, with parquet pavement. All Junior Suites offer the internet connection. Most of the Junior Suites can connect with either a Deluxe or a Superior Double Room. Starting from approximately 50 square meters.

Deluxe Suites-The two luxurious Deluxe Suites are located at the sixth floor and have a terrific view on the Portofino Coast and on the Rapallo marina. With elegant decoration and antique store high quality furniture, all authentic prints and paintings, the Deluxe Suites are provided with an outdoor sea view space. One Deluxe Suite is equipped with a brand new Jacuzzi City spa on the terrace. All Suites offer internet connection and open bar with choice of liqueurs. These Suites are connecting with double rooms. Starting from approximately 60 square meters.Excelsior Palace Hotel Rapallo

Relax Suite (pictured left)-The Relax Suite offers a private Sauna where you can pamper and relax yourselves with a terrific view on the Portofino Coast from the seventh and last floor of the hotel, which will become an all suite floor. Furthermore, the magnificient terrace is equipped with a Jacuzzi City spa to enhance its wellness offer. The Relax Suite can be interconnected with the Presidential Suite.

Presidential Suite-Located on the seventh and top floor, with a superb view of the sea, the fascinating Presidential Suite features exquisitely elegant furnishings. The refined and elegant living room, with a desk corner, opens onto a spacious terrace, spectacular with its sweeping panorama from the Bay of Rapallo and its famed tourist harbour to the Portofino lighthouse, for a total view of the Gulf. The terrace, equipped with awnings, recliners, sofas and armchairs, is perfect for celebrating special occasions or simply relaxing in total privacy, in tune with the style of refined, discreet elegance that is a hallmark of the hotel. This oustanding space is provided with a brand new Jacuzzi City spa. Inside the Suite, in addition to the living room, a large bedroom, two cloakrooms, parquet floor, air-conditioning, four direct dial phones, private safety box, two TV;s with satellite channels, pay TV, VRC, stereo, minibar, and open bar with choice of liquors. Two bathrooms, the more spacious one offers double basins, corner Jacuzzi bathtub for relaxing pause of wellness, separate shower box, and separate toilet. The Presidential Suite, in addition to the Main Room with a living room, includes two spacious and bright Deluxe Exclusive Rooms with respective bathrooms, both overlooking the terrace. This Suite offers an internet connection. The suite is 130 square meters with a 150 square meter terrace.

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Did You Know? Wentworth Mansion

May 19, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Wentworth Mansion


Wentworth Mansion, in Charleston, SC, was originally the private residence of Francis Silas Rodgers, his wife Marie Elizabeth Evans Cochran, and their 13 children. It was built in the mid-19th Centuryand designed by the noted architect Daniel G. Waynes, . In 1920, members of the Rodgers' family sold the home to the Scottish Rite Cathedral Association for $100,000. The Scottish Rite Masons kept the home until 1940 when they sold it to The Atlantic Coast Insurance Company who used it as their office headquarters until 1996. 1997, current proprietor Richard Widman purchased The Wentworth Mansion and began an extensive $7 million renovation that preserved historic features including the inlaid floors, original staircase, and Tiffany glass. He also added modern conveniences and luxurious bathrooms transforming the home into a one-of-a-kind historic hotel experience.

 

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New to Five Star Alliance: Victoria Palace Hotel

May 16, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

 

Victoria Palace Hotel

Since 1913 Victoria Palace Hotel has been a landmark of the 6th arrondissement of Paris. Located on a quiet street off the bustling Rue de Rennes, the hotel truly is an expression of the Rive gauche. It combines a very Left Bank sense of understated and un-self-conscious luxury with the obvious advantages of a centrally located, residential neighbourhood.

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Did You Know? Hotel Balzac

May 14, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Hotel Balzac


In 1853, Hotel Balzac was built for the director of the Paris Opera. It was home to its namesake, the 19th century French writer Honore de Balzac. The hotel is reminiscent of town houses of that period.

In 1846 Balzac acquired the property to give to Countess Ewelina Hanska, who he married in May 1850. He spent his last days in the house and died a few months later without ever having paid the purchase price.

His writing influenced many famous authors, including the novelists Marcel Proust, Emile Zola, Charles Dickens, Gustave Flaubert, Marie Corelli, Henry James, Jack Kerouac, and Italo Calvino as well as philosophers such as Friedrich Engels. 

Balzac's spirit lives on in the luxury hotel where collections of antique books as well as lithographs depicting the writer, and scenes from his work can be found.

 

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Did You Know? Villa San Michele

May 13, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Villa San Michele

Villa San Michele is nestled on a hilltop amid lush trees and terraced gardens, enjoying unparalleled vistas of Florence, stretched out before it in all its classic splendour. Dating from the 15th century, the Villa's facade is attributed to Michelangelo. The hotel's largest and most romantic suite, the Michelangelo Suite, stretches the whole length of the façade of the hotel. Once the monastery library, it also served as Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte's headquarters in Florence.

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New to Five Star Alliance: Museum Hotel Cappadocia

May 5, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Situated in a very special geographic region, Museum Hotel Cappadocia has been designed and created from a distinctive combination of the land and historical features and ruins, some intact and some beautifully restored to their original glory. The hotel features 30 rooms and suites—each of them exceptional in their own inimitable way. No room is alike, with each bringing its own special ambiance, contributing to Museum Hotel’s character and charm. There are 55 specially trained staff members who cater to guests' every need to ensure their stay is a truly unique experience.

Museum Hotel Cappadocia 

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Dining al Fresco: Dunbrody Country House Hotel

May 4, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Dunbrody Country House Hotel

Dunbrody Country House Hotel
 is a small luxury hotel in Wexford located on the dramatic Hook Peninsula on Ireland's south coast.  The hotel's award-winning restaurant The Harvest Room is less of a hotel dining room and much more of a stylish, atmospheric restaurant. The Harvest Room Restaurant has been the recipient of numerous awards. Emphasis is always on the freshness of the ingredients and the enhancement of them through the simplicity of combinations. All the ingredients are locally sourced with many of the fruits and vegetables and all of the herbs from their own kitchen & herbs gardens.

Located just opposite Dunbrody Country House where the restaurant has received numerous awards the simple philosophy of under-stated but delicious food follows on in the Dunbrody Cookery School. Dunbrody Cookery School has been designed to cater for all levels of cooks, from budding enthusiasts (Back to Basics) to the experienced gourmet (specialised courses). 

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Did You Know? Soniat House

May 4, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Soniat House

Between 1829-1833 French sugar plantation owner Joseph Soniat Duffossat and his eldest son Robert built three French Quarter townhouses. The custom of the day, for those with means and social standing, was to have a residence in town. Such homes were built both for their convenience, and most importantly, to entertain and receive guests.  In 1982 the townhouses began their new life as Soniat House. The 31 guest rooms are furnished and decorated with French and English antiques and custom European fabrics. Hotel guests are especially fond of sitting in one of the two courtyards and soaking up the atmosphere. 

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Five Star Alliance Recommends Ten Little-Known Honeymoon Locations

May 1, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Lounging on the beach for a honeymoon is nothing to sneeze at, but the newlyweds who want something different should try staying at one of these luxury hotels in an these unusual honeymoon locations.

Five Star Alliance recommends these unusual post-nuptial spots:

Cappadocia, Turkey
Why Visit
This Anatolian region is a UNESCO world heritage site known for its cave structures. Dwellings have been hewn from the rock as far back as 4,000 B.C. During Byzantine times chapels and monasteries were hollowed out of the rock, their ochre-toned frescoes reflecting the hues of the surrounding landscape. It is 30 kilometers from Nevsehir Airport.

Where to Stay
Cappadocia Cave ResortCappadocia Cave Resort and Spa (pictured right) is built right into a mountain and offers a spectacular view over the dramatic landscape. The exclusive spa area offers all kinds of treatments, from steam baths to an experience shower with sound and light effects, to a couples massage.

Cappadocia Museum Hotel has just 30 rooms and suites. The unusual living museum concept means the cave rooms and specially restored traditional rooms are decorated with antiques and have wonderful views of Cappadocia.
 

Hue, Vietnam
Why Visit
The city is located in central Vietnam on the banks of the Perfume River, just a few miles from the East Sea. Hue has various points of interest, such as the Citadel, the royal tombs of Tu Duc, Khai Dinh, and Minh Mang, Thien Mu pagoda, and Dong Ba market. Other attractions include Bach Ma national park, Lang Co beach, Truc Lam Zen monastery, and Thuan An beach.

Where to Stay 
Vedana Lagoon Resort & Spa is nestled on the shore of a peaceful and serene lagoon, with stunning views across one of the largest lagoons in Southeast Asia. It offers stylish interior decoration on an area of 27 hectares of undulating land and lagoon.

Pilgrimage Village is ideally located in the quiet countryside in rustic village setting surrounding by lush tranquil gardens, yet near to famous historical landmarks. With 99 rooms and villas, the resort is warm and inviting. Hue airport is just 20 minutes away.
 

Cuzco, Peru
Why Visit
Cuzco was the historic capital of the Inca Empire and is a Unesco World Heritage Site. It is one of Peru's most visited spots as it is a convenient city from which tourists can begin visits to Machu Picchu. It is located 7,000 feet above sea level and is nestled in a small hilltop between the Andean Mountain Range with a generally dry and temperate.

Where to Stay 
Aranwa Sacred Valley Hotel & Wellness (pictured right)is located in the Urubamba Valley on the banks of the river Vilcanota. The hotel’s property spreads over 10 hectares. Unno Spa includes a hyperbaric chamber, hydrotherapy pools, Vichy shower treatment rooms and meditation, and aromatherapy oxygen.Aranwa Sacred Valley

Belmond Palacio Nazarenas is a former palace and convent set in a tranquil plaza behind Cuzco’s main square. This intimate urban retreat has just 55 suites, each enriched with oxygen and with its own private bar where guests can create drinks using the fresh ingredients grown at and around the hotel.

Umag, Croatia
Why Visit
With a coastline filled with stunning beaches, Umag is an established summer destination in Europe. It is known as the town of tennis because it hosts many tennis camps and the ATP Vegeta Croatia Open. Beautiful architecture, delicious restaurants, and unrivalled scenery add to the city's undeniable charm. The international festival of chamber theatre Golden Lion is a popular local event.

Where to Stay
Hotel Monte Mulini is situated in a beautiful and quiet location, but close to the town of Rovinj. Maistra’s boutique hotel Monte Mulini is the perfect starting point for sightseeing in Croatia, a wine trail tour, or time in the sun and sea.

Kempinski Hotel Adriatic is surrounded by picturesque olive groves and vineyards, and offers breathtaking views over the Adriatic Sea. Things to do include treatments at the 3,000 square foot duplex Spa, and a few rounds at the first professional 18-hole golf course in the region.

Doha, Qata
Why Visit
Located on the coast of the Persian Gulf, the modern Doha skyline contrasts with the surrounding desert. Things to do in Doha include playing world-class golf, off-road desert cycling, beach trips, and fossil hunts. Popular attractions include the City Centre Doha Mall, the Corniche Promenade and the acclaimed Museum of Islamic Art. The city will host the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Where to Stay

The Torch DohaThe Torch Doha (pictured left) is 300 meters high and has panoramic views of the city. It is located on Al Waab Street, 30 minutes from the airport and 20 minutes from the city center. Hotel guests have private walkway access to Doha's largest shopping mall Villaggio.

Sharq Village and Spa's fourteen courtyard houses are located on one thousand meters of private coastline. Guests can tour the village streets, cool off in the two pools, recline on an outdoor majlis, or shop at the village souq. The hotel is operated by The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, B.V.

Other Recommended Locations:

-Ras Al Khaimah, United Arab Emirates: A destination with year-round sunshine, white sandy beaches, and world class resorts. It’s just 45 minutes from Dubai International Airport.

 

-Lanai, Hawaii: 9 miles from Maui, the smallest inhabited island in Hawaii is all unspoiled beaches and serenity.

-Port Antonio Jamaica: A quiet and beautiful haven with both jungle trails and impressive museums.

-Almaty Kazakhstan: The largest city in Kazakhstan has a spectacular mountain backdrop and is a winter sports haven.

-Herzliya, Israel: 10 minutes from Tel Aviv, this coastal city offers water sports, boating, and hiking.

 

 


Did You Know? Palais Hansen Kempinski Vienna

April 29, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Palais Hansen Kempinski Vienna was originally built as a hotel for the World Exhibition in Vienna in 1873. It is perfectly located in the heart of Vienna, right at the famous Ring Boulevard.

Today it is a glamorous 5 star superior Palais Hotel with 152 elegant rooms and suites, two restaurants and three bars including a Night Bar & Cigar Lounge, a Kempinski The Spa and fitness area, as well as conference rooms and a ballroom.

Palais Hansen Kempinski Vienna

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