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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.

Your Questions Answered: Luxury Hotel Recommendations in Ireland

August 23, 2012
By: Oksana Balytsky

We at Five Star Alliance work tirelessly to ensure we bring you the best luxury hotels selection and information regarding amenities, location, and highlights so you are confident that the hotel you choose will exceed your expectations and serve your needs. Sometimes, however, you are left with a few questions that go unanswered, and that’s why we’re here. Be sure to explore our new blog series ‘Your Questions Answered’ to find answers to real questions submitted to us by our clients regarding traveling with kids, pets, the best beach hotels, and much more.

Question: I’m traveling to Ireland in October with my great aunt and I’d like a few recommendations on where to stay. We’re not set on any specific location and just looking for an incredible hotel. What can you recommend?

Answer: A few incredible hotels in Ireland that have availability for October 16th - 25th are below: To explore the full list of hotels as well as their rates and photos, simply visit this website and enter your dates of travel:

The Westin Dublin has rooms with one queen bed starting from 217.89 Euros per room, per night, so you could get two of these rooms. This hotel is located on its own city block in downtown Dublin opposite Trinity College, only steps away from the Cultural Quarter, Temple Bar, as well as the famous shops of Grafton Street.

For a more traditional experience, Ashford Castle in County Mayo, Ireland is an excellent choice. It has a breakfast inclusive room options with 2 twin beds starting from 225 Euros per night, or breakfast inclusive rooms with 1 king bed for 225 Euros per night as well, if you'd prefer to get two separate rooms. Originally built as a crenellated castle in the 13th century and rebuilt as a hunting and fishing lodge in the 1800s, today Ashford Castle is one of the finest and most luxurious castle hotels in Ireland. Located in the picturesque village of Cong, Ashford Castle is 1/2 hour northeast of Galway City on the shores of Lough Corrib, Ireland's second largest lake.

Mount Juliet Hotel Kilkenny in County Kilkenny, Ireland has rooms with 1 queen bed available starting from 119 Euros per room, per night. Mount Juliet is Ireland's leading country estate and one of the most luxurious Hotels in Kilkenny. This one is approximately a 2 hour drive from Dublin.

Please be advised that rates and availability are subject to change prior to making a reservation.

Photo of Ashford Castle


A Hogwarts Halloween at Ashford Castle

August 9, 2012
By: Oksana Balytsky

Have a ‘Harry Potter’ filled adventure this Halloween at Ashford Castle in Ireland. For one incredible week, Ashford Castle will be under a magical spell with Hogwarts activities perfect for the whole family. Ashford Castle’s hidden rooms, soaring ceilings, and hundreds of years of history give it a wizardly feel that kids will surely appreciate. Go on a ‘Forbidden Forest’ treasure hunt, visit the hiding place of Ashford Castle’s own, Dingle, take a ‘Chamber of Art’ painting class, and of course, watch a ‘Harry Potter’ movie screening. What an incredible way to bring Hogwarts to life! Make your reservations between October 26th and November 3nd at Ashford Castle for an unforgettable adventure for you and your family!


A Boutique Critique: Ballyfin

May 30, 2012
By: Christopher Roney

I have a special place in my heart for tiny boutique hotels. It may be a little smaller than some of the other chambers, and there aren't enough spots for everybody, but that just makes the few who do make their way into my good graces all the more special. I can give each and every one the loving care and attention they deserve. And thus began my new segment on boutique hotels that I just adore.

There are few places in the world as storied as Ireland, and people travel there specifically for the romance of the countryside. Why then would one stay in a large city hotel when your accommodations can be as magical as the views? Ballyfin, at the foot of the Slieve Bloom Mountains, was restored in an eight year process that just finished in 2011 to allow it to open as a 5-star country house hotel with the pure Gaelic soul of the rolling hills. 600 acres of land hold just fifteen rooms, so you'll experience the greenery in perfect quiet. 

Open to children 14 and over, the all-inclusive resort maintains the original 1820s design, full of antiques and gorgeous art. Row boats are available on a nearby lake, and you can even go ice skating in the wintertime. This small boutique hotel is the perfect destination for a wedding or retreat, and, listed as a Forbes Top Life Hotel, it has the accolades to back up its reputation. If you want to experience Ireland as she's meant to be, then you should think about staying at Ballyfin.


Deals and Steals at the Four Seasons Dublin, Ireland

April 30, 2012
By: Christopher Roney

We at Five Star Alliance know that our travelers are in search of luxurious accommodations at the best prices available, so we go above and beyond to find the best promotional packages and specials to ensure you get the most from your hotel experience. We’re thrilled to introduce our newest blog series where we’ll be featuring luxury hotels that offer you more than just room-only rates. Whether you’re traveling on business or pleasure, we certainly have something for you. Be sure to check in with us often to get the inside scoop on the best deals and packages available at luxury hotels all over the world!

Today's big opportunity comes at the Four Seasons Dublin, a wonderful place to stay and see one of the UK's most storied cities. The Four Seasons is close enough to the heart of Dublin to feel the city's heartbeat, but you'll also find yourself looking out over over Ireland's natural beauty. A great mainstay for a trip to Ireland.

Stay A While and Listen

What's the big deal at the Four Seasons Dublin? Stay for at least three nights, and the third will be on the house while you're in the house. That means you can get 3 nights for 2 or 4 for 3, or even 11 for 10 if you're feeling extra intrepid. In any case, check out the upcoming months for availability on this great deal at the Four Seasons Dublin.


It's Not Pint-Sized: Ashford Castle

March 1, 2012
By: Christopher Roney

Before it became one of the most renowned castle hotels in Europe, the Ashford Castle was the home to the Guinness family, to which all of the beer drinkers among us owe a serious debt of gratitude.  I think I need not explain more, for we all know Guinness's enchanting charm.  Built originally in the 13th century, the estate holds over 350 acres of private land and has played host to the rich and famous, including President Reagan and Pierce Brosnan, who married there.  You could end up feeling just as cool as the agent himself while staying in rooms that combine a preserved 13th century style with all of the modern amenities of top-notch hotels.  Resident Chef Stefan Matz offers four unique dining experiences on the property that make innovative use of traditional Irish fare; you'll be stepping into a world where meat and potatoes are anything but meat-and-potatoes.  A dedicated spa featuring the products and philosophy of Yan Ka, meant to help the skin regain its vital balance and energy.  

Alongside the property lies the second-largest Irish lake, the Lough Corrib, whose idyllic shores offer unparalleled views as well as a number of outdoor activities.  Miles of hiking trails are available through the countryside, and a 9-hole golf course, designed by legend Eddie Hackett, features prominently.  Fishing and hunting are available on the grounds, with Lough Corrib offering some of the best in Ireland during May, June, and July.  Not only that, you can enjoy a jacuzzi, sauna, and steam room alongside your beauty treatments, and then refresh in the crisp lake air on any one of three daily lake tours.  The Ashford Castle is truly one of the jewels of Ireland.


November in Dublin: Indian Summer in The Spa at the Four Seasons

November 8, 2011
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Four Seasons Hotel DublinThe Indian Summer may be long gone (the holidays are right around the corner!), but the Four Seasons Hotel Dublin is bringing you a little summer sunshine with some new spa treatments. Throughout the month of November, when you're not getting cozy in a Dublin pub, retreat to the spa sanctuary at the Four Seasons, the only hotel in town with a full-service spa. The "Ultimate Indian Summer" treatment package draws on traditional Indian ingredients and techniques to ward away the winter blues. You'll start off with the Aromatic Lulur Sayan Body Scrub, which incorporates sandalwood, ginger, cumin seed and yogurt to increase blood circulation and smooth the skin’s appearance. Next, a stress-relieving back massage eases muscle tension, and a pampering facial does wonders to your skin. To finish up: You'll tuck into a two-course lunch served poolside so you can relax and make use of the spa's facilities. Make sure to indulge in the sauna and steam room, soak in the whirlpool, and go for a swim in the sunlit indoor pool. The "Ultimate Indian Summer" package is priced at 185 euros, available Monday to Friday until November 30, 2011.


Best of the Best: Solis Lough Eske Castle is the Best Luxury Countryside Hotel in 2011

September 28, 2011
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'd like to welcome you to our new blog series, Best of the Best, where we’ll be featuring the best and most luxurious resorts in various categories. But don’t take our word for it. These resorts have been recognized as the best in the business by the prestigious World Luxury Hotel Awards, so you can relax and stop worrying about your upcoming trip, knowing that it truly will be the best of the best.

Today’s featured locale is the Solis Lough Eske, recipient of the Best Luxury Countryside Hotel award in 2011, or should we say "best castle"? Located just outside of Donegal Town, Ireland, the Solis Lough Eske Castle is on the water’s edge of Lough Eske and surrounded by the incredible Blue Stack Mountains. Like escaping into a fairytale, the Solis Lough Eske Castle has its spa facility located in the castle garden, providing you with every opportunity to relax and take in the natural beauty of Ireland. Looking for a thrill? The Solis Lough Eske Castle offers some of the best hiking, mountain biking, and surfing in all of Ireland. Whether you’re looking for some peace and quiet or an adventure, the Solis Lough Eske Castle is the perfect and best destination for an escape into the magnificent countryside of Ireland.