Five Star Alliance
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
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.

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.


Luxury for Less: The Suite Life at The Peninsula Hotels

February 13, 2008
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Peninsula Hong KongTime is running out to take advantage of a suite winter deal at The Peninsula Hotels! Now's the time to live large and experience the sumptuous suites for which Peninsula is renowned... at a fantastic value. When you book the Suite Life promotion at Peninsula Hotels, you pay for the first night and you get the second for free! This deal is only available until March 31, 2008, so act fast! Participating hotels include The Peninsula Hong Kong, The Peninsula Chicago, The Peninsula New York, The Peninsula Beijing, The Peninsula Tokyo, and The Peninsula Bangkok. Other perks include complimentary Internet, local calls, use of the fitness center, and at some locations: continental breakfast, daily fruit basket and newspaper, and flexible check-out.


River Views in Memphis

February 12, 2008
By: Lucy LeTourneau

River Inn MemphisLocated just steps from the Mississippi River in downtown Memphis's award-winning Harbor Town Community, the River Inn's 28 luxurious guest rooms and suites are situated in two buildings; a four-story and a three-story, divided by a narrow street surrounded by tasteful landscaping. The Inn offers a rooftop terrace with sweeping River and skyline views; 24-hour concierge and valet services; library-style sitting areas on each floor; port wine and chocolate truffle service during evening turn-down; a full complimentary , gourmet breakfast; and a modern fitness center. Six different accommodation packages are available, ranging from standard rooms at $245 to penthouse suites at $595. Book the River Inn at Harbor Town through Five Star Alliance and receive a room upgrade at check-in, based upon availability as well as a glass of champagne or wine upon arrival.


The ZaZazoo: 18 Karats and the Magnificent Seven at Hotel ZaZa Houston

February 11, 2008
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Hotel ZaZa HoustonHouston's decadent urban resort, brilliantly located in the Museum District, has established quite the following, welcoming dealmakers, fun-lovers, trendsetters, and romantic couples to a glamorous, sybaritic paradise. Celebrated for its gracious and attentive service, the Hotel Zaza Houston takes pleasure in the details, like the Magic Carpet (a.k.a. complimentary car service to neighborhood locations), butler pantries located on each floor, in-room grab & go gourmet refreshment bars, Italian linens and down-filled pillows, and the happening poolside retreat and outdoor bar with private cabanas. Did we mention the Peep Show (ZaZa's twist on a gift shop)? And pets are most welcome.

But the best part about the Hotel ZaZa is the Magnificent Seven, the most exquisite of the hotel's luxury accommodations. These suites come with all the lavish excess and little ZaZa surprises you'd expect at ZaZa. The names say it all: Rock Star, Fatal Charms, For Your Eyes Only, Outlaw, Tycoon, Black Label, Bella Vita. They come with whirlpool tubs, amazing views, balconies, and private access to the twelfth floor. And get this: you and 25 of your best friends can actually take over the entire twelfth floor and all the Magnificent Seven suites! The 18 Karats package is pure indulgence. Imagine: gourmet dinner including wine and champagne for 26 people prepared by the ZaZa chef and served in the Rock Star Suite, breakfast for 26 served in Black Label, valet parking, 3 private cabanas at Urban Oasis pool, 26 ZaZa robes for lounging, complimentary bath butler service, and candlelit turn-down. All for just $18,000.

Image Via Houstonist


Porto Zante’s De Luxe Villas on Zakinthos Island

February 7, 2008
By: Madelyn Giblin

Porto Zante GreecePorto Zante is a luxurious Villa-Hotel located on a private beach west of the Greek mainland. Private villas offer gorgeous poolside views overlooking spectacular sandy beaches and the open ocean. Located only 8 kilometers from the international airport, Porto Zante is both a remote get-away and accessible vacation scene.

Porto Zante De Luxe offers four different options for villas, accommodating anywhere from two to twelve people. Villas include bathrooms complete with Jacuzzi bathtubs and hydro jet showers. Each villa comes with living rooms and is fully air conditioned with a private parking area. Many of the villas also come with fireplaces and verandas. Enjoy a spectacular view of the surrounding area, providing a relaxing environment to kick back and enjoy the many delights this culturally rich area has to offer.

Rates start at 500 Euros ...


The Signature at MGM Grand Wins

February 5, 2008
By: Courtney W. May

MGM Signature TowerTripAdvisor.com has officially chosen The Signature at MGM Grand in Las Vegas as the No. 1 "Best Luxury Hotel in the U.S." The TripAdvisor's 2008 Travelers' Choice Awards also recognized The Signature among the "Top 100 Best Luxury Hotels in the World" and the "Best Hotels in the World's 25 Most Popular Destinations." What makes the win so interesting is that the Signature does not offer a casino, is non-smoking only, and all-suites - no standard rooms here. While it is true guests can still use the MGM Grand for gambling and smoking, by booking the Signature, they get to enjoy a gated entrance and suites with balconies.

Note Bene: At 550 square feet, the MGM Signature Junior Suites are big on style and are the most basic, standard room category.


Ocean Front vs Ocean View Room Descriptions

January 30, 2008
By: Editorial AdvisoryBoard

People are frequently confused over the terms "ocean view" versus "ocean front" as found in hotel room descriptions. Cambridge Beaches oceanfrontMost beach resorts will try to best describe the room views to make sure guests are fully informed. In the rate terms, oceanfront (Cambridge Beaches pictured at left) means that you will have the best possible ocean views from your windows and, if available, balcony. Your room will be directly facing the ocean - frontage views. Of course, ocean-front rooms are always the most expensive as well. But if your idea is to lay in bed and look out over the ocean, these are the rooms that will guarantee you that opportunity.

 

On the other hand oceanview rooms (Cambridge Beaches pictured) will have some possible view of the ocean - whether it is out certain window to the side, available at an angle, or seen from the side of your balcony. Cambridge Beaches Ocean ViewOcean-view usually guarantees at least a sliver of ocean will be seen from somewhere inside, or even directly outside, your room. If seeing the ocean is really important to you - then you definitely need to reserve an ocean front room to be on the safe side and get the best possible views.