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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.

Sponsored Article: Discover Art and Culture in Rome with the Regina Baglioni Hotel

November 15, 2010
By: Five Star Alliance

Regina Hotel BaglioniWith over two and a half thousand years of history, Italy's city on the Tiber River is a bastion of art and culture. As the ancient capital of the Roman Empire, seat of the Papacy, and one of the centers of the Italian Renaissance, Rome is a major draw for visitors, brimming with monuments and museums. In fact, it's the 11th most visited city in the world, and its historic center is listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.

Regina Hotel BaglioniOne of Rome's most emblematic streets is Via Veneto, made famous by director Federico Fellini in the classic 1960 film La Dolce Vita. Lined with upscale shops, the street is also home to the Café de Paris and Harry's Bar. While visiting the Eternal City, why not stay in the center of the action and sleep on the Via Veneto? The five-star Regina Hotel Baglioni is the ideal jumping off point for discovering Rome's art and culture. Just a stone's throw from the Villa Borghese, Piazza di Spagna and Via Condotti, this luxurious hotel is a favorite meeting place of the international jet-set.

Regina Hotel BaglioniThe hotel has an excellent selection of rooms in original Art Deco style. The 39 Superior Rooms are appointed with antique furniture, rich brocades and precious Murano hand-blown chandeliers. The 46 Deluxe Rooms are a mix of styles; some are traditional with antique décor, precious silk tapestry, damask and Murano crystal chandeliers, while others offer a more innovative design, defined by fine marble floors and original Art Deco furniture. Some have private balconies overlooking the Via Veneto. The 18 Grand Deluxe Rooms feature tapestries in refined combination of colors, precious fabrics, Murano hand-blown chandeliers, original furniture and marble floors. All bathrooms are designed in elegant marble, and all rooms are equipped with free high-speed Internet access.

Regina Hotel BaglioniAfter a day of taking in the sights, relax with a spa treatment at the hotel's Tempio della Salute. Then enjoy refined Mediterranean dishes at the Brunello Lounge & Restaurant, while sipping innovative cocktails and people-watching on the Via Veneto.


Shopping in Chicago with Gifts from Kimpton’s Hotel Palomar

November 11, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Hotel Palomar ChicagoHeading to the Windy City for some holiday shopping? Get a little help from Kimpton's Hotel Palomar, an art-centric boutique hotel in River North. Book the "Little Brown Bag" package and you'll get a $50 Bloomingdales gift card plus a gift tote to haul future purchases, stuffed full of goodies: one 15% off Bloomingdales coupon (good for one full day on all regularly priced items); a black leather "shopping wallet" complete with discount offers (valued at $100); two bottles of water to stay hydrated while gift hunting; and a $5 Starbucks gift card to fuel up before hitting the stores. Nightly rates start at $239 per room and the package is available through Jan 31, 2011. If you fill up on too many holiday treats while out on the town, you can work it off at the hotel's 24-hour fitness center or in the heated indoor pool.


Shopping in Beverly Hills: The Peninsula Girls Getaway with Tory Burch

October 29, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

The Peninsula Beverly HillsPlanning a girls getaway in the glam shopping mecca of Beverly Hills? The Peninsula Hotel-- an exclusive urban hideaway nestled in lush gardens-- has teamed up with iconic fashion designer Tory Burch to create a perfect experience for girlfriends, mothers and daughters. Share some down time together while shopping, spa-ing, and sipping bubbly in the luxurious environs of The Peninsula. You'll experience private after-hours shopping at the Tory Burch boutiques in LA or Santa Monica, or a private in-room consultation and mini trunk-show with a Tory Burch stylist. Here's what else is included in the package: two $100 Tory Burch promotional cards, two $50 spa credits for any facial or body treatment, overnight valet parking for one car, daily Continental breakfast for two, and a complimentary bottle of Champagne. Priced from $665, available until December 15, 2010.


The Conrad Hotel Makes Parking Easy in Chicago

October 28, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Conrad ChicagoGetting ready for a Black Friday shopping extravaganza in Chitown? Avoid the notorious parking problems on the Magnificent Mile with a little help from the Conrad Chicago. Stay the night in luxury at a prime Chicago address-- just steps away from exclusive retailers, dining, and nightlife-- and get free self-parking with in and out privileges during your stay. Available for stays completed by December 31, 2010, the package is priced from $205 per night.


Dispatch from Paris: A Behind-the-Scenes Look at Le Royal Monceau

October 26, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Le Royal Monceau, ParisThe talk of the town in Paris is the re-opening of Le Royal Monceau, the legendary palace hotel that recently emerged from a dramatic renovation by designer Philippe Starck. The Informed Traveler went behind the scenes before the official opening date to check out the property, now operated by Raffles. And we're totally smitten. This could easily be one of the hottest hotel openings around the globe this year. Here's what we loved:

Le Royal Monceau, ParisA thoughtful and eclectic design scheme. Inspired by the working studio of André Malraux, each spacious guest room is equipped with a guitar, haute couture walk-in closet, and a map highlighting Starck's favorite Paris addresses.

Desserts by Pierre Hermé. Enough said.

Le Royal Monceau, ParisA movie theater that puts iMax to shame. Built for major film premieres and private screenings, the 100-seat cinema has divine leather seats, high-tech projection equipment, and a decadent snack menu, including gourmet popcorn recipes dreamed up by Hermé himself. Can we say celeb central?

Le Royal Monceau, ParisAn impressive contemporary art collection in the hotel's public spaces. The on-site contemporary art bookstore boasts screens which broadcast live feeds of international art auctions. There's even an Art Concierge on staff.

The cigar lounge, painted in bright red, with 50 private cigar boxes outside, reserved for cigar-lovers to store their favorite cigars for the next visit.

Restaurants which are destined to become top addresses in the French capital. Both La Cuisine and Il Carpaccio boast talked-about decor (a chandelier made from shells in the Italian resto, a colorful ceiling painting called "Le Jardin de Paris" adorns La Cuisine).

Le Royal Monceau, ParisA central garden with a giant tea-pot sculpture designed by Portuguese artist Joana Vasconcelos. This garden is a magical space available for al fresco meals in the summer months. It's also got a neat pond with views- through sheer glass- of the spa swimming pool below. In another part of the hotel, there's an organic garden where the chefs grow herbs and produce for the restaurants.

Coming soon: an outpost of the trendy L'Eclaireur concept store. *Swoon*

Note: The spa-- My Blend by Clarins-- won't be open til next year.


Ritz-Carlton Tysons Corner Opens New Restaurant from Chef Michel Richard

October 26, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Chef Michel Richard, Ritz-Carlton restaurantRumored to be opening this week outside the nation's capital: the highly-anticipated new restaurant from award-winning chef Michel Richard. Located at The Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner, the new "Michel" restaurant will be in the old "Maestro" space and will serve up "innovative modern French cuisine" in an "upscale, casual" setting. Zagat Buzz describes the design scheme:

A symphony of luxurious materials and craftsmanship, the chrome-and-burgundy-toned contemporary space features textured walls and banquettes, sculptured lights that change colors, cleverly designed viewing into a showcase kitchen and a chef’s table that’s suspended from the ceiling (look, Ma – no legs!).

At the helm is Executive chef Levi Mezick, who had former stints at top NYC restaurants Daniel, Oceana and Per Se. What's on the menu? Favorites like wild mushroom pie, steak frites, vegetable tartar, and duck with figs and cinnamon. Expect top-notch desserts, as Chef Richard got his start as a pastry chef in his native France.

Image Via Washington City Paper


4th Night Free in Paris at the Sofitel Arc de Triomphe Hotel

October 15, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Sofitel Paris Arc de TriompheLooking for a little romance in Paris? Book the Sofitel Arc de Triomphe-- just steps from the Champs Elysées-- for a stylish taste of the City of Light. You've got all the fashion boutiques at your fingertips from this address on a quiet street in the Golden Triangle. Behind the Haussmann-style facade, there's a gourmet restaurant that serves bountiful buffet breakfasts (lunch and dinner, too). Plus the Clés d'Or Concierge will hook you up with dinner reservations to the coolest spots in town (or perhaps the top of the Eiffel Tower?) The classic guest rooms are all outfitted with the Sofitel MyBed, flat screen TV, and free wifi. Take advantage of a special offer called "Exclusively Yours" and get your 4th night on the house when staying four consecutive nights.


A Sky-High Infinity Pool and More at Marina Bay Sands in Singapore

October 12, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Marina Bay Sands SingaporeHow do we love the Marina Bay Sands? Let us count the ways. An infinity pool 55 storeys above the ground with 360 degree views of Singapore... The incredible Sands SkyPark, a tropical oasis floating atop the hotel and stretching longer than the Eiffel Tower on its side... The restaurants by Guy Savoy... The museum shaped like a lotus flower...This is the world's most expensive hotel, built at a cost of billions, so we expect nothing less. Book one of the 2,560 guest rooms and you'll be privy to the inside secrets of a business, leisure, and entertainment destination that's unparalleled. As globorati points out, Savoy's resto is "only the second restaurant outside Paris for the multi-starred Michelin chef," with most of the ingredients flown in from France. What else is inside? An indoor canal, "the best shopping mall in Asia," a convention centre, a casino, and an outdoor event plaza and theaters featuring Broadway hits such as "The Lion King."


Ritz-Carlton Rolls Out the Hotel Credits

October 7, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Ritz-Carlton Grand CaymanWeekend getaway, here we come. Ritz-Carlton may never slash their room rates to lure guests, but they certainly know how to reel in well-heeled clients with alluring enticements. The "Reconnect" package is back, perfect for a quick, rejuvenating escape with luxurious accommodations, breakfast, and up to a $100 resort/hotel credit per night that can be used for shopping, dining, or spa services. All served on a silver platter, Ritz-Carlton style. Plan an adventure to a resort like Grand Cayman (pictured), Powerscourt, Half Moon Bay or Palm Beach (dining under the stars, anyone?), or plot a city escape to a world-class urban hotel.


Talk of the Town: Introducing Cassa Hotel and Residences in New York

October 5, 2010
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Cassa Hotel and Residences, New YorkThere's a new architectural landmark in New York City's Midtown and it's getting lots of press love. A luxury condo hotel with a prime location near Fifth and Madison Avenue shopping and the bright lights of Broadway's theatre district, the Cassa Hotel and Residences has 165 refined guest rooms. Here's what The New York Times has to say about this new breed of condo hotels: "Room service on demand from a celebrity chef. A maid to make the bed with fresh linens every day and leave a chocolate on your pillow at night... All yours with the purchase of a luxury condo." But even if you're not in the market for a Manhattan condo, you're guaranteed to appreciate the service and amenities at this sophisticated hotel. Here's the skinny from The Globe and Mail:

Lower Manhattan's hotel boom is trickling up to Midtown with the opening of Cassa Hotel and Residences. Unlike blander hotels in the Times Square neighbourhood, Cassa has a whiff of European minimalism with exclusive guest amenities such as an in-room Dean and Deluca snack bar, the Cassa Care babysitting program and daily fresh flower delivery upon request. Art and architecture buffs will appreciate the polished, black volcanic walls in the lobby and the Rizzoli and Taschen design books in the rooms... Introductory rates start from $287 a night.

Cassa Hotel and Residences, New YorkTake advantage of the Sneak Peek Special Offer, available until December 30, 2010, and get savings depending on the length of stay. Stay 2 Nights, Save 10%; Stay 3 Nights, Save 15%; Stay 4+ Nights, Save 20%. (2-night minimum stay and 1-night non-refundable deposit required. Rates are based on double occupancy and subject to room availability; blackout dates may apply.)