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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.

Image of the Day: Vana Belle

February 17, 2013
By: K. Clare Johnson

Situated on a serene bay, Vana Belle, Koh Samui is fringed by verdant surroundings and the transparent Gulf of Thailand, which guarantee endless activity.

 

Explore rates, details, photos and more at Vana Belle >>

 

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Posted in: Koh Samui, Asia, Hot Spots

AKARYN Koh Samui Delivers Pizza

January 30, 2013
By: K. Clare Johnson

 

If you are craving pizza in Koh Samui, you are in luck! These aren’t your average jumbo slices, either. AKARYN Samui Resort and Spa has unveiled a new menu of over 80 gourmet pizzas, cooked in the island's only hand-made, wood-fired, beachfront pizza oven and featuring the cream of genuine Italian cheeses and cold cuts.  The oven was hand-built built by Chef (and Venice native) Andrea Brunello. The pizza choices pay homage to all the major regions in Italy,with toppings ranging from San Daniele Parma Ham to Schiacciata Calabra Salami to Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese. Other choices include classic pizzas, truffle pizzas, novelty shaped pizzas and Thai-infused specialties like Tom Yum Pizza.

The pizza-making started last week, and 400 pies have already been sold. The pizza has proved so popular that the resort is delivering to select luxury villas in the neighbourhood of Hanuman Bay. The luxury resort is also launching Samui’s first Pizza Academy, where guests (and residents) can learn how to make real pizzas. AKARYN Pizza takes its place in the resort's Gourmet Village, where other culinary options include the Asian tapas experience Ochos, The Legend, dedicated to rediscovering the culinary secrets of Old Siam, The Edge, where fresh seafood is served with international flair, and The Wet Bar, the island's most chilled submerged bar.
 

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Your Questions Answered: Rate Description for SALA Samui

November 13, 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 saw the following rates information when I am trying to reserve 3 nights for Sala Samui from 23-26 Mar 2013 for Deluxe Balcony.

Honeymoon Transfer Bf X2 Wine Dinner X2 Spa - Deluxe Balcony With Complimentary Wi-fi (wireless Internet) 47 Sqm King Or Twin Beds Balcony With Daybed Open Bath

Could you please explain what is included in this reservation? Is the nighly rate inclusive of taxes?

Answer: The rate includes the following and it is strictly available for honeymooners only:

Round Trip Private Transfers from/to Samui International Airport

Succulent SALA Seafood Splendor: A beautiful romantic candlelight Dinner for two which includes SALA Seafood Mixed Grill and a bottle of house wine.

- A Complimentary SALA Spa Package for 2 persons with complimentary Herbal Steam 30 Minutes.

- A Selection of Spa Service 60 Minutes

1. Massage Selection: Swedish / Asian Combination / Soothing Aroma / Traditional Thai

2.Body Scrub Selection: Sesame Herbal / Salt Glow / Asian Herbal

3.Facial Treatment Selection: Thai Herbal

- Free use of Gym & Fitness

- Free use of wireless/internet

To make a reservation for this room type, simply visit this website, enter your dates of travel, select the room type, and fill in the booking form. Tax is not included and is an additional THB 4880.70, which is viewable on the booking form. Please be advised that rates and availability are subject to change prior to making a reservation.


Image of the Day: Banyan Tree Samui

September 23, 2012
By: Five Star Alliance

 

A view of the sea, courtesy of the lovely Banyan Tree Samui.

 


Image of the Day: Akaryn Koh Samui

August 5, 2012
By: Five Star Alliance

The Akaryn Koh Samui has the perfect spot to enjoy a glass of vino.


Recent Hotel Openings: Le Méridien Koh Samui

December 7, 2011
By: Meagan Drillinger

Le Meridien Koh Samui Plunge Pool SuiteCalled the "Coconut Island," Koh Samui is situated in the Gulf of Thailand bordering the South China Sea. Once a haven for fishermen, it is Thailand's third-largest island. Earlier this fall, the ultra-posh Koh Samui got another dose of luxury with the opening of Le Méridien Koh Samui Resort & Spa.

The island resort sits on the exclusive Lamai Beach, with 77 suites and villas designed in the image of a traditional Asian seaside village. All rooms are quipped with 32-inch TVs, DVD players and iPod docking stations. We love the rainforest showers in the bathrooms, as well. We hear the best rooms in the house are the Ocean Front Pool Villas. These freestanding villas span 1,500 square feet and have open-air salas, sitting rooms, and a stretch of private ocean facing the infinity lap pool. In-villa dining with a private chef can also be arranged.

Le Méridien Koh Samui features three distinct epicurean experiences: Latest Recipe, all-day dining in a casual setting; Latitude 9, a colorful bar, great for coffee and pastries; and Plunge Bar, for swank barefoot relaxation.

An on-site spa, fitness center, and beachside and ocean swimming pools are also available.

This article was originally written for our sister publication: Luxury Travel Advisor


The W Retreat Koh Samui Celebrates 1st Birthday with a Special Offer

October 12, 2011
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

W Retreat Koh SamuiThe W Retreat Koh Samui is turning 1. Now's the time to surrender to a tropical island escape... W's sexy resort on the Gulf of Thailand made some waves when it opened last year. (One look at the photos and you'll see why.) Situated on a pristine stretch of Koh Samui's coastline, the resort manages both to delight the local party crowd and mesmerize global jetsetters, all while keeping its cool. Secluded villas surrounded by lush foliage make for the ultimate in relaxation after sampling the island's red-hot nightlife. Book the "1st Year Celebration" at W Retreat Koh Samui and you'll reap the rewards:

* A price of THB 11,111 per Retreat/per Night in a Jungle Oasis with free breakfast for two. (That's $358.)

* Only 11 Retreats are available per day for this special offer, so act fast to book.

* 1+1 Thaimazcal Spa Experience (buy 1 get 1 free at THB 2,400)

* Reserve your stay over 11/11 and get a free Thaimazcal Spa Experience for two persons

Book by November 30, 2011 for stays from November 1- 30, 2011.


Pooling our Resources: The 10 Best Hotel Pools in the World

September 19, 2011
By: Christopher Roney

 After reading CNN’s own list of great hotel pools, we decided to put our heads together and write up our thoughts on the matter. Who has the 10 best hotel pools in the world? To truly know, you’ll have to visit yourself and see. But these are certainly our favorites.

10. The Banyan Tree Seychelles

With the simple application of basic mathematics, the Banyan Tree has figured out how to improve upon the tried and true concept of the private pool: By giving its two-bedroom suites two private pools – and what a sight they are. That’s the kind of thinking I can get behind.

Banyan Tree Seychelles

9. Le Palais de la Mediterranee, France

Le Palais de la Mediterranee in Nice rolls in at number 9 with its incredible 3rd floor indoor/outdoor pool. Just feet from a sun terrace with a gorgeous view of the Mediterranean, this is a pool that was tailor-made for lounging. If to you a vacation means leaning back, lowering your sunglasses over your eyes and relaxing the afternoon away, then this is the hotel for you.

Palais de la Mediterranee

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8. The Berkeley, London

While some other pools may be more spectacular, as you’ll see in a moment, none offer the same level of comfort year-round as The Berkeley rooftop pool in London. The heated pool features a wonderful open-air swimming experience in the summer, but unlike most hotels, when it gets a bit colder, you don’t have to take the party inside. The Berkeley instead rolls out its retractable roof, and you can now enjoy the comfort of a perfectly climate-controlled rooftop pool in winter.

The Berkeley London

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

7. Villa d’Este, Italy

The pool at Villa d’Este on Lake Como would make Archimedes blush. Floating above the very lake that the Villa rests against, the pool features a built-in Jacuzzi and fantastic view of the surrounding mountains. It’s like swimming in the lake just inches below your feet, but it’s always the perfect temperature.

Villa d'Este

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6. Blue Palace Resort and Spa, Crete

The Blue Palace Resort and Spa is truly deserving of its sixth place finish, and really if we were fair it’d be on this list twice. The aptly-named Blue Palace is renowned for the private pools that come standard with most of their rooms and suites. With pools up to 40 sq. meters in size for just you and your companion(s), there couldn’t be a more private or luxurious swimming experience. And if that weren’t enough, the Blue Palace is famous for its unique Grecian Thalassotherapy, which combines the relaxing powers of a world-class massage with water-cleansing rituals guaranteed to revitalize your body.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5. The Library Koh Samui, Thailand

In this case, the picture speaks for itself. The Library Koh Samui is built around the innovative concept that a vacation is about relaxation and people should be allowed to free their minds from stress by engaging in the simple pleasures of cracking open a book and enjoying the company of their family or friends. They’ve also turned their pool red - which is both surreal and strangely captivating, like green ketchup or a fish riding a bicycle.

The Library Koh Samui

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4. Rawi Warin Resort and Spa, Thailand

The 1000 sq. meter infinity edge pool at Rawi Warin looks as if the water is fading into the ocean, with only little beach umbrellas poking above the water line to let you know that it doesn’t go on forever. The illusion is compelling and gorgeous. As if that weren’t enough, Rawi Warin also has Asia’s first ocean swimming pool, extending 100 meters into the water and allowing you to swim with the fishes in an entirely literal way.

Rawi Warin

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. Palazzo Sasso, Italy

The Palazzo Sasso has one of the more innovative designs for a hotel pool we’ve ever seen. Situated on the edge of a cliff 1000 feet above sea level, the pool at Palazzo Sasso offers underwater windows with a view of the sea below, thus discovering the heretofore unknown condition of subaqueous vertigo. But seriously, it is the single most impressive thing I’ve seen at the bottom of a pool.

Palazzo Sasso

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. Atlantis the Palm Dubai

Atlantis the Palm Dubai may just be the best thing ever. If you got all the things together in one place, and made me pick, I’d say, “I want that thing. It looks like the best thing.” So what is this thing I’m so excited about? Well, it just might be a standard luxurious hotel pool, only it’s attached to a full water park! I don’t bandy about with exclamation points lightly, but this seems to be worth one. If you, like me, have ever thought, “wow, this vacation is really relaxing, but what I’d really like is to go launching out of a ziggurat at high speeds into a pool of water,” then this is the destination for you. And even more than that, much of the hotel is themed around this aquatic experience. There are underwater mazes, a four-and-a-half hectare dolphin habitat, and something they just call Aquaventure.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1. Marina Bay Sands Singapore

Occasionally, a feat of engineering comes along that’s so remarkable, you have to doff your hat to the architects of its design. The Marina Bay Sands Infinity Pool in Singapore is more like what would result if Leonardo da Vinci were in the hotel business. Resting 200 meters above the ground in the Sands SkyPark, the Infinity Pool is as breathtaking as it is surreal – the edge of the pool seems to fade into the horizon itself. Swimmers are greeted with a panoramic vista unequaled anywhere. Without a doubt, the Infinity is the coolest hotel pool we’ve ever seen and not just for the breeze.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So throw on your swim trunks and book a room at any of these amazing hotels (maybe in the other order), and soon you'll be enjoying the sun by some of the most amazing pools in the world.


Island Hop in Thailand with Anantara Resorts

August 18, 2011
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Rasananda Phangan Island ResortWhy settle for one idyllic Thai island when you can experience the best of two? Embark on an indulgent and diverse getaway to the Gulf of Thailand to get a taste of the red-hot nightlife on Koh Samui and the relaxing beaches of Koh Phangan (the isle famous for its full moon parties). Anantara Resorts is whisking you away with a special offer called the "Two Island Experience." Divide your time between Anantara Lawana Resort & Spa, a hideaway near bustling Chaweng, with the dreamy seclusion of a private pool suite or villa at Rasananda Phangan Island Resort. With breakfast, sea and land transfers all included, this special package invites you to linger longer and soak up tranquil island life. Rates from THB 17,700 with three nights at each resort.