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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.

Toe-Testing the Waters at the Regent Bal Harbour

April 2, 2008
By: Madelyn Giblin

For those guests who are tired of getting into the shower only to find the water is not the temperature you wanted, the brand new Regent Bal Harbour has the ultimate amenity for you. Its palatial showers, with floor to ceiling views of the Atlantic Ocean also have custom "toe testers." Each shower has a faucet groove for guests to dip their toes in to test the temperature of the water before turning on the head to enjoy a relaxing shower. Enjoy the oceanfront Regent Bal Harbour - the first luxury hotel to open in Bal Harbour Village in over 50 years.


Suite Package Deal in Prague at the Hotel Palace Praha

March 25, 2008
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Hotel Palace PrahaDating from 1909, the Art Nouveau-style Hotel Palace Praha is smack dab in the middle of Prague, just a stone's throw from Wenceslas Square. In addition to the 114 guest rooms, combining traditional elegance with all the modern comforts, the hotel boasts some to-die-for suites with marvelous views of Prague Castle: 3 Junior Suites, 2 stylish Old Town Suites located on the 6th and 7th floors, the Opera Suites with white Carrara and Rosso Verona marble bathrooms and state-of-the-art entertainment systems (and views of the State Opera), and the 5th floor Art Nouveau Suite. Our favorite is the 6th floor Palace Suite with its private sauna and balcony. When you book the Suite Package at the Hotel Palace Praha, you'll experience pure luxury in the heart of Prague with some excellent add-ons including a 3-course candle-lit dinner in Gourmet Club Restaurant-- awarded one of "The Top 10 International Restaurants in Prague." Priced from just EUR 335 per night in a Junior Suite and available through the end of 2008, the package includes luxurious accommodation in one of the suites, daily full buffet breakfast in L'Epoque Restaurant, welcome drink upon arrival, home made chocolate pralines in-room, 3-course candle-lit dinner, free access to the hotel sauna and business center, and a voucher to the nearby Fitness center (use of fitness, indoor pool, whirpool and steam bath).


Suite Luxury: Fabulous Faena’s 3 New Lavish Suites in Buenos Aires

March 24, 2008
By: Courtney W. May

Faena Hotel + UniverseThe opulent and gorgeous Faena Hotel + Universe in Buenos Aires is just one distinctive part of the Faena Art District in BA, Argentina. With lavish restaurants and bars, authentic theater spaces, an exceptional wine cellar, world-class spa, and top-tier accommodations, the hotel has topped itself once again. At the end of 2007, 3 over-the-top, extremely lavish suites were introduced to the property – F Suite, Tower Suite, and Imperial Suite (click on the images below for the bigger pictures).

F Suite Living Room The F Suite, the most exclusive suite in Latin America, is a wholly private and impeccably appointed 1,291 square foot residence located on the 6th floor of Faena Hotel + Universe featuring two bedrooms (1 pictured), three bathrooms, living (pictured) and dining rooms, a kitchen, a library and outstanding panoramic views of the Faena Art District, embankment and city center of Buenos Aires. Additional amenities include a marble bathroom with rain forest shower and Jacuzzi and a state of the art in-room entertainment center with three 42-inch plasma screens.

Atop Faena Hotel + Universe is the Tower Suite, a triplex suite with exceptional views of Rio de la Plata and the MicaelaBastidas Park. The centerpiece of the suite is a fiber optic teardrop crystal lamp that shifts from amber to blue to green to purple, located at the foot of the stairway and specially created for the suite. Imperial Suite terrace The two bedroom, two bathroom suite also includes living and dining rooms, marble bathroom with jacuzzi and relaxation area, an outdoor terrace and flat screen home theaters in the living room and bedroom.

Imperial Suite living room.jpgWith two outdoor terraces, offering double 180-degree views that face east and west, supplying idyllic panoramic views of city and river, sunrise and sunset is the Imperial Suite. Inside, a spacious living/dining room with sliding glass windows, kitchen, cloakroom and one super king-sized bedroom and bathroom make the Imperial Suite perfect for honeymooners or any other romantic escape.  Imperial Suite bathroom The marble-floored bathroom features a Philippe-Starck designed jacuzzi and separate shower, while the living room and bedroom each boast home theaters with flat screens and surround sound.

All suites include one of Faena Hotel + Universe's famous personal Experience Managers, high-speed wireless internet connections and automatic red velvet curtains with Venetian blinds.

Faena Hotel + Universe is known for ultimate luxury and the F Suite, Tower Suite and Imperial Suite continue the tradition of welcoming guests with exceptional service and luxe comforts.


The New Bottega Veneta Suite at St. Regis Grand Hotel, Rome

March 18, 2008
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

St. Regis Grand Hotel RomeThe St. Regis Grand-- the opulent icon in Rome-- is known for its sumptuous interiors. And now guests can choose to stay in the seductive Bottega Veneta suite, designed by Tomas Maier and unveiled in October 2007. Appointed with a mix of furnishings from the Bottega Veneta home collection and traditional pieces, the suite is even perfumed with a signature room fragrance. The expansive space is comprised of a foyer, three bedrooms (two with separate sitting areas), three baths, and a living room with a fireplace. Guests can expect the legendary service for which the hotel is renowned; 24-hour butler service is the norm for all guest rooms.


Luxury Fairytale Resort in the Himalayas at Wildflower Hall

March 14, 2008
By: Madelyn Giblin

Wildflower HallIf you want to experience the magnificence of the Himalayas while staying in style, Wildflower Hall, located in Shimla, Himachal Pradesh, India, is the place to be. Situated at 8,350 feet in pine and cedar forest, Wildflower Hall offers a variety of activities for those who love the outdoors and those who love to be pampered. The surrounding area offers hours of entertainment in hiking, biking, horseback riding, and even a fully stocked archery court. In addition the hotel also offers a tranquil and relaxing spa, with a variety of therapies from around the globe. Rooms are furnished with exquisite decorations, and offer spectacular views of the surrounding countryside. The hotel also offers a full list of business amenities, including meeting rooms, board rooms, and fully equipped business center to meet all of your needs. For a truly grand stay, check out Wildflower Hall's exceptional Lord Kitchener Suite, named for the former resident of the hall; it features a four poster bed and separate second bedroom.


A Las Vegas Wedding - Not Always What You Expect

March 12, 2008
By: Christina Vasquez

the ventianWhen many people think about Las Vegas weddings they think of a quick ceremony officiated by an Elvis impersonator, in a drive-through chapel on the old Vegas Strip. However within the walls of the fine luxury hotels on Las Vegas Blvd. are hidden gems of amazing wedding options that break the stereotypical mold of a Las Vegas wedding. For me personally my best hotel experience by far has been at The Venetian. Granted I am very partial to this property as it holds wonderful memories of the day when my husband and I were married within this charming Las Vegas hotel. Our wedding day was far from the typical Vegas wedding; it was elegant, intimate and included all the personal touches that we asked for. We were pleasantly surprised at the amount of options that the hotel offers for weddings, including a personal wedding planner, suites and ballrooms for receptions of every size, and floral and video services available on site to ensure our every expectation was met. The specialized treatment that we received from the wedding planners and hotel staff was impeccable and the romantic setting and accommodations provided to us by The Venetian made our wedding day even more memorable. You will find great wedding packages offered at many hotels such as Caesars Palace, Bellagio and the Venetian. These hotels have created customized wedding packages that range from small intimate ceremonies to grand traditional ceremonies-- and everything in between!


The Colony Villas at Half Moon Bay

February 27, 2008
By: Madelyn Giblin

Colony Villas at Half MoonLocated in the exclusive Rose Hall area in Jamaica, the Colony at Half Moon, scheduled to open in 2010, offers unparalleled views overlooking beachfront property near Montego Bay. Located within the Half Moon Resort, the Colony will feature 30 luxurious villas offering a choice of three, four, or five bedroom villas, all with personal pool, dining area, gardens, terraces and verandas. The Colony at Half Moon is an experience unlike any other in the Caribbean. Each bedroom will have a private bathroom, and each villa is provided with its own personal cook, gardener, housekeeper, butler and laundress. In addition to the wealth of activities to do at your personal villa, the Colony at Half Moon also offers a variety of services and facilities including a spectacular golf course, the Spa at Half Moon, multiple bars and restaurants, a dolphin lagoon, equestrian centre and a shopping village. Enjoy a unique Jamaican vacation in style.

Publisher Update: I just received the following note from the hotel with updates:

Much in the spirit of the founding families of Half Moon, The Colony is a singular opportunity for visitors to our treasured resort to become a part of the Half Moon heritage through ownership of a luxurious villa at The Colony at Half Moon.

These opulent, spacious three-, four- and five-bedroom villas will offer both villa owners and guests an unparalleled level of comfort, service and amenities. Planned for 14 acres of Half Moon's 400-acre estate, visitors to The Colony at Half Moon will enjoy an even deeper sense of home with the attentive care of a butler, cook, housekeeper, laundress and gardener in surroundings designed to offer the very best of gracious Caribbean living.

The Colony at Half Moon signals the final phase of a vision that began in 2003 to bring about a renaissance at Half Moon that would see our beloved resort being a part of the legacy for another generation of guests. Step by step with your unwavering support, we have renovated, refurbished and upgraded the facilities, services and amenities offered at Half Moon. The feedback from you and your clients have been invaluable in helping to shape and guide the direction we have taken over the years. With this new offering and all that The Colony villas promise, we are confident that we will have a product to which you will be even more proud to send your clients.

Equally, we are mindful of the treasured clients you will continue to send to Half Moon while The Colony is being erected. Let me assure you that every measure is being planned to ensure that any work relating to The Colony will have minimal impact on the comfort, enjoyment and experience you and your clients have come to expect of Half Moon. Thanks to the vast space and layout of Half Moon, The Colony has been planned for a small area of our 400 acres that is away from guest accommodations. We are confident that our mutual clients will continue to have memorable experiences at Half Moon and will enjoy even more the experience The Colony will offer.

For your information, please find attached aerial views of the resort that outline the space designated for The Colony at Half Moon. Also attached are renderings of the aesthetic hoardings and pathways planned for the site. We have also included for your interest architectural renderings of The Colony villas. While work is scheduled to begin within the next 16 months, much of that is contingent on the success of the project's pre-sale efforts. The response to this offer has been very positive and we believe the project should remain on schedule with an estimated completion in late 2010.


The Taj Tashi in Bhutan Opens its Doors

February 21, 2008
By: Guest Writer

[Courtesy of our friends at Goldarth's Review] Taj Tashi BhutanNext to Nepal, the Kingdom of Bhutan is probably the most sought-after destination for adventurous travelers yearning for an exotic and perhaps spiritual experience deep in the seclusions of the Himalayas. Now, you can take in the charms of this isolated Buddhist nation in luxurious environs, with the opening of the Taj Tashi in Thimpu. The latest jewel in the crown of the Indian-owned Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces, it features 66 luxury rooms and suites (including 2 duplex suites), restaurants serving Bhutanese and Continental fare, lounges, bars, spa, a heated indoor swimming pool and fitness center, and Bhutan's first golf course. Be spellbound by spectacular views of majestic mountains and centuries-old Dzong temples from the comforts of your suites. After all, you're in "The Last Shangri-la on Earth". The Taj Tashi, Thimphu is situated in the centre of the capital city, has adopted age-old Bhutanese traditions in its architecture and offers panoramic views of neighboring mountains.


Shangri-La Hotel Bangkok 21st Floor Guest Room Video

February 21, 2008
By: Editorial AdvisoryBoard

The Shangri-La Hotel, Bangkok comprises 799 luxurious guestrooms in two adjacent towers, the Shangri-La Wing and the Krungthep Wing. All rooms have river or city views, and are decorated with classic Thai touches, including silk and teak finishings. The below video offers a tour of a Conrad room on the 21st Floor of the Shangri La Hotel in Bangkok. [Video courtesy of youtube's gman2004k. Taken in October 2007.]


Raffles Grand Hotel Suite, Singapore Video

February 18, 2008
By: Editorial AdvisoryBoard

Distinguished by their premier location in the Main Building, each of the seven Raffles Hotel Singapore's Grand Suites are elegantly appointed with tastefully selected antiques and artwork. All suites feature private parlours, dining areas and verandas.

Among these Grand Hotel Suites are the Raffles Grand Hotel premier suites which include the Sir Stamford Raffles and Sarkies Suites, each featuring two bedrooms, a private dining room that seats ten guests, a private parlour, pantry and veranda.