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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.

Celebrate the Fourth of July in DC!

By: Oksana Balytsky

We can’t think of a better place to celebrate our country’s Independence Day than our nation’s capital! Take advantage of the mid-week holiday by taking an extra-long weekend to explore and take in everything DC has to offer. With 37 luxury hotels located in various parts of the city, Washington DC certainly has the perfect hotel for your individual stay. Take advantage of the free Smithsonian Folk Life Festival which celebrates unique cultures with music, food, demonstrations, and more on the National Mall as well as the patriotic programs put on at the National Archives, the National Cathedral, and the Smithsonian Museums. For more information about the happenings in Washington DC, check out Explore the various hotel options and make your reservations in Washington DC to ensure you’re in on all the action this Fourth of July!

Deals and Steals at La Samanna in St. Martin, French West Indies

By: Oksana Balytsky

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 feature is La Samanna in St. Martin, French West Indies. This stunning boutique resort is located along the exclusive Baie Longue in the Caribbean. La Samanna is consistently ranked among the region’s top 10 retreats, and it features 83 stunning oceanfront guest rooms perfect for a honeymoon, romantic getaway, or a family vacation. Facilities include the Caribbean’s most celebrated wine cellar, phenomenal dining options, an indoor/outdoor spa, and a stunning infinity pool. Still not sold? Then check out a few of the following deals which are certainly too good to pass up!

Suite Dreams

From May 1st – December 21st, this package allows guests to enjoy a luxurious suite at a discounted rate of 25% off the regular rate. This package includes luxurious accommodations in a 1 bedroom suite, daily buffet breakfast, and access to all of the facilities of La Samanna Resort including the state-of-the-art fitness center, tennis courts, business center, and unlimited use of all non-motorized water sports. Please note that a minimum of five nights stay is required, the offer is applicable to one bedroom suites only, rates are exclusive of tax, resort fee and gratuities, subject to availability, and cannot be combined with any other offers or packages.

Island Discovery

This package is perfect for folks looking for an adventure and an opportunity to really get to know the island. This package includes a mid-size car rental for four days, one round-trip airport transfer, daily buffet breakfast, and access to all of the facilities of La Samanna Resort including the state-of-the-art fitness center, tennis courts, business center, and unlimited use of all non-motorized water sports. Please note that rates are exclusive of tax, resort fee and gratuities, subject to availability, and cannot be combined with any other offer or promotion. The guest will be responsible for gas, tax, insurance and any damages (if any occur). La Samanna must make the car rental booking and provide clients credit card information for incidentals. Car rental rates for the additional days of stay will be given at prevailing rates, and there's a maximum four guests per vehicle.

Family Getaway

Take your family on a once in a lifetime ultimately relaxing escape this summer. This package is available from May 1st – December 21st and it includes accommodations in a luxurious 2 bedroom suite which has a comfortable living room and a full kitchen. Also, enjoy daily buffet breakfast and access to all of the facilities of La Samanna Resort including the state-of-the-art fitness center, tennis courts, business center, and unlimited use of all non-motorized water sports. Please note that rates are exclusive of tax, resort fee and gratuities, subject to availability, and cannot be combined with any other offer or promotion. This offer is applicable to two bedroom suites only.

Condé Nast Traveler Gold List 2012: Villa San Michele

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 work hard to offer you the best in the industry, and we’d like to welcome you to our second blog series where we feature the best and most luxurious resorts in the world. But don’t take our word for it. These resorts have been recognized as the best in the business and have made the prestigious Condé Nast Traveler Gold List 2012.

The Condé Nast Traveler Gold List 2012 is the eighth of their annual lists, and the hotels chosen by their team of editors and experts are the best for service, food, location, rooms, leisure facilities, ambiance and design.

The Villa San Michele is featured on the Gold List 2012: Best for service. This luxury hotel was a 15th century monastery which was converted into one of Europe’s most charming luxury hotels. Its located only a few minutes from the center of Florence, and it is surrounded by its own gardens and woodlands of the Fiesole hills. The Villa San Michele goes above and beyond to ensure that its guests are comfortable and have everything they need for a lavish and enjoyable stay.

Check rates, availability, photos and more at the Villa San Michele here!

Cheese Caves are the New Craze at the Ritz-Carlton Toronto

By: Oksana Balytsky

Wine cellars are so last year, and cheese caves are becoming the new and hip necessity for luxury hotels. The Ritz Carlton Toronto has a glass-enclosed cheese cave inside its Toca restaurant, and it features over 200 delectable cheeses for guests to sample! A sampling of three or four cheeses is offered nightly at the dining tables, and the true cheese connoisseurs can take it up a notch by tasting their way through more than 50 varieties made available to guests. Savor a phenomenal goat cheese or a five-year aged cheddar that the chefs at Toca infuse with whiskey and maple syrup.

The Ritz-Carlton Toronto welcomes its guests to the heart of the financial district with a 23,000 square foot spa, exquisite dining options, amazing service, 267 guest rooms and suites, and of course, its cheese cave of wonder. Be sure to make a reservation at this hotel to experience its impeccable service, amenities, and its cheese!

Kids Rock at the Sunset Marquis

By: Oksana Balytsky

The Sunset Marquis Hotel and Villas is a private, Mediterranean-style, all-suite luxury hotel located in West Hollywood. It provides guests with luxurious accommodations and an opportunity to escape the craziness of LA and enjoy its five acres of lush gardens, ponds, waterfalls, brick paths, and tropical foliage. Accommodations range from 100 junior and 1 bedroom suites to 52 detached, private villas with private patios. Along with its bar, restaurant, spa, 2 pool areas, and private cabanas, the Sunset Marquis Hotel and Villas also goes above and beyond for its young travelers. Upon arrival, kids receive a black or pink backpack with a nametag attached. Inside it there’s a ‘Kids Rock’ pink or black t-shirt, crayons, a Sunset Marquis passport for coloring, a Hollywood themed mad lib, and a scavenger hunt on the property. Whether you’re a rock star looking for an escape or a family looking for an adventurous vacation, the Sunset Marquis Hotel and Villas certainly has something to offer you!

Newly Renovated Garden Wing at the Shangri-La Hotel Singapore

By: Oksana Balytsky

The Shangri-La Hotel Singapore is set in the lush tropical gardens near the renowned Orchard Road business and shopping district of Singapore, and its newly renovated garden wing is perfect for leisure and business travelers looking for a peaceful retreat. Each room features a large balcony and an interior design inspired by nature. Take advantage of the 15 acres of gardens at this consistently top ranked luxury hotel while staying in luxurious accommodations located in one of three distinctive wings. A few of the superb amenities available to guests at the Shangri-La Hotel Singapore include 2 ballrooms, 23 smaller function rooms perfect for meetings, 3 fine dining restaurants on site, an exotic free-form pool, a children’s pool, and a luxurious spa offering post-flight therapy and other treatments. Whatever your travel purpose, consider staying at this idyllic luxury hotel for a truly relaxing and unforgettable experience.

Hotels with a History: The Betsy Hotel

By: Oksana Balytsky

Certain hotels have a story behind them, a culture that seeps through the walls and a personality that emanates from every room. Every city has an appreciated and valued history worth exploring, and certain hotels have become a part of that rich and interesting past. For this reason, we’d like to introduce you to our blog series, Hotels with a History where we’ll be featuring unique hotels that have a little more to them than a comfortable bed and superb amenities.

Opened in South Beach in 1942, the Betsy Rose Hotel stood out from the traditional style of architecture with its Florida Georgian façade in an Art Deco dominated neighborhood. This luxury hotel underwent an extensive renovation in 2009 while maintaining its original design and timeless style. This boutique hotel has 63 private, beachside rooms and suites equipped with the latest technology. The Betsy Hotel offers its guests ample opportunities to relax on the white sandy beaches, play a round of golf, partake in water sports, and much more!  The Betsy Hotel has also gone green and is committed to making eco-friendly decisions without sacrificing luxury, ensuring that its guests get the most out of their stay while keeping the environment in mind. Be sure to check out this historic and beautiful luxury hotel for your next trip down to South Beach!

Four Seasons Sharm El Sheikh Is A Sleek Retreat

By: Christopher Roney

Sharm El Sheikh is a name that's synonymous with alliteration. When you put it together with the Four Seasons to make a five-star luxury hotel, it loses some of its linguistic harmony but becomes synonymous with instead with affluence. The Four Seasons resort in Sharm El Sheikh takes the shows the best side of the seaside with breathtaking views of the Red Sea from its sandy shores. An outdoor pool with island bar serves the adults while the children have their very own pool with, presumably, fewer alcoholic drinks floating in the middle of it. Dining is split between two very fine restaurants that serve the flavors of the Mediterranean: Lebanese, Moroccan, and Italian. A spa facility with open massage areas, four tennis courts, and an underwater park complete the trifecta of outdoor amenities.

Indoors, the rooms and suites of the Four Seasons are exactly what you'd expect from one of the core brands of the luxury world. Many rooms have views of the Red Sea and its twelve suites even have private plunge pools. Just an hour from Cairo and only 15 minutes from the international airport, this resort may be a retreat, but that doesn't mean it's impossible to get to. Having a stress-free trip to the hotel is the first step on the journey of relaxation afforded you by a stay at the Four Seasons Sharm El Sheikh, and its importance should not be underestimated. This is a resort that comes highly recommended and still manages to live up to those expectations.

Stay Like Royalty at the Copacabana Palace

By: Oksana Balytsky

The Copacabana Palace opened in 1923 in front of the world famous Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. This traditional hotel was designed by the French architect Joseph Gire, and it is considered to be one of the most luxurious hotels in Rio. Its long established reputation for exceptional service has attracted celebrities, politicians, royalty, business travelers, and vacationers. A few of the hotel’s highlights that keep visitors occupied and entertained include 14 meeting rooms, 2 restaurants, 1 bar, a semi-Olympic sized pool for all guests, a private pool for guests on the 5th and 6th floors, a 3 floor spa, and a rooftop tennis court. The 5th floor is more geared towards business travelers while the 6th floor penthouses are more for folks looking to indulge in lavish comforts. Be sure to check out this incredible hotel option for your next trip down to Brazil!

New Luxury Hotels Opening in 2012: Palais Namaskar

By: Oksana Balytsky

We at Five Star Alliance are all about the best and most luxurious hotels. We certainly keep up with the happenings in the luxury travel world and take pride in bringing our clients the latest luxury travel news. Keep up with our newest blog series where we’ll be featuring luxury hotels opening in 2012 to stay on top of the trends and make your reservations at the newest hotspots.

The Palais Namaskar in Marrakech, Morocco recently opened. Its situated between the Atlas Mountains and the Djebilet Hills, commanding more than 12 acres of seclusion. This luxury hotel has exceptional views of the mountains, lakes, and beautiful gardens. It features 41 rooms including 3 kinds of rooms, 4 types of suites, 2 styles of luxury villas, and 2 extraordinary palaces. The Palais Namaskar also houses a private jet to shuttle guests to and from various airports, allowing guests to hop on the jet for a quick trip to another country and then be back in time for dinner at the Palais Namaskar!