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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.

Trip Dreamin’: The Beauty of Muscat with Shangri-La’s Barr Al Jissah Resort


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Shangri-La's Barr Al Jissah Resort, MuscatBringing you a daily dose of vacation exoticism during this coldest winter in recent memory... (whether you're under piles of snow in D.C.'s Snowmageddon, or bundled up against the cold in Chicago) Today we're traveling to a far-off, sun-drenched land at the edge of the glittering bay of Al Jissah in Oman. The word's out: Shangri-La's Barr Al Jissah Resort and Spa, a luxe three-hotel resort village in the Sultanate's capital of Muscat, is a stunner. It's not just the setting that will take your breath away (though there's a lot to be said for the dramatic mountainscape edged against sandy beaches). The resort is an oasis of lush landscaping and expansive facilities from scuba diving center to the spa. Want to plop down and catch some rays on the beach? A private butler will attend to your every whim. The resort is currently offering an "Arabian Adventures" package from OMR 154 per night which provides a free fifth night plus daily breakfast and free Broadband Internet Access. Available until April 30, 2010.


Buzz: Victoria Beckham to Design a Hotel in Dubai?


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Victoria BeckhamUPDATE: Sources confirm that this newsworthy tidbit was just the Internet rumor mill at work...

Move over, Armani. Victoria Beckham may be getting her own hotel in Dubai. Word on the street is that Posh was invited (for a whopping 25 million British pounds) to design a luxury property:

The hotel would be on Isla Moda, a fashion-themed isle off Dubai being developed with the help of top designer Karl Lagerfeld... Isla Moda is one of nearly 300 islands in Dubais man-made archipelago called The World because the isles are arranged in the shape of a map of the globe.


Burj Khalifa, Dubai Opens as the World’s Tallest Building with First Armani Hotel


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Burj Dubai, world's tallest buildingAt long last, the Burj Khalifa* has opened at a cost of $1.5 billion. We've been keeping tabs on its construction over the past five years as the spire reached higher and higher; Conde Nast Traveler has even nominated the building as one of the "new seven wonders of the architecture world." As the world's tallest building, the Burj Khalifa soars 2,717 feet above the ground, allowing views of 60 miles for lucky visitors to the top floor. Yesterday's opening ceremony unveiled the tower that's billed as a "global icon." Though other worldwide construction projects-- namely the International Commerce Center in Hong Kong-- may soon eclipse the Burj Khalifa. Home to the first Armani Hotel, the Burj Khalifa also houses "the world's highest swimming pool, on the 76th floor; the highest observation deck, on the 124th floor; and the highest mosque, on the 158th floor."

*The building was formerly called the Burj Dubai.


50 Percent Off Weekends in 2010 at Conrad Hotels and Resorts


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Conrad Mount JulietThis just in. Take advantage of a January sale with Conrad Hotels & Resorts and get 50 percent off weekends throughout 2010! Book by January 31st, 2010 at more than 200 destinations across Europe, Asia, and the Middle East, including the Conrad Brussels, Conrad Cairo, Conrad Centennial Singapore, and Conrad Mount Juliet in Ireland's County Kilkenny (pictured at right). Your Minibreak includes a lazy breakfast until 11 a.m. and a late checkout until 6 p.m. Kids stay and eat for free.


Ring in the New Year at the Kempinski Hotel Ajman in Dubai


By: Daniel L. Moses

Hotel Ajman The luxury Hotel Ajman in Dubai is offering a 5-night package for you and a guest to ring in the New Year in style. The package includes a Deluxe room, breakfast at the Cafe Kranzler, and dinner and drinks for two on New Year's Eve at one of three delectable on-site, award-winning restaurants. The New Year's bash will include a glass of premium champagne, and a fireworks display for the ages over Hotel Ajman's private beach. The package runs from December 29, 2009 – January 5, 2010, so book today for your luxury New Year's celebration.


Dream Trips: Enter the Big Prize Draw from One Aldwych and Campbell Gray Hotels


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

One AldwychYou could win a dream vacay to London, the Caribbean, or Beirut when you enter the new prize drawing offered by Campbell Gray Hotels. To celebrate the launch of their new website, Campbell Gray is giving you the opportunity to win a prize worth GBP 10,000 at their hotels: five nights' accommodation for four people in a top suite with fabulous meals, bespoke excursions and money-can't-buy-experiences. Here's the list of prizes:

One Aldwych, London

The definitive contemporary luxury hotel in buzzing Covent Garden offers a 'Moët Grand Vintage Collection' Dinner in a suite, a tailor-made day out with chauffeured car, theatre tickets, dinner at Cecconi's…

Carlisle BayDukes, London

The much loved English classic set in the heart of St. James's offers a wine tasting at Berry Bros. & Rudd, dinner at Le Caprice, a Cristal Champagne dinner in the Penthouse Suite…

Carlisle Bay, Antigua

Caribbean barefoot luxury set on a secluded beach with a backdrop of lush rainforest offers a day on a racing yacht, dinner on the hotel's jetty, a private cookery class…

Le Gray, Beirut

The newly opened Le Gray with stunning views of the city, Mediterranean and mountains offers wine tasting in the Bekaa Valley, exquisite dinners and spa treatments...

Enter the drawing before December 31, 2009 for your chance to win!


Abu Dhabi on the Map: Book Your Stay at Beach Rotana Hotel And Towers


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Beach Rotana Hotel and TowersMove over, Dubai. The UAE's capital city of Abu Dhabi is making headlines as both a cultural mecca and an environmentally-friendly metropolis. The dramatic Frank Gehry-designed Guggenheim Museum is slated for the Saadiyat Island development which also includes the first branch of the Louvre outside of Paris. And Abu Dhabi has ambitions to create the world's first carbon neutral city. Currently under construction, Masdar City will run entirely on renewable energy, and boast car-free streets. The two Emirates cities couldn't be any more different; one is a symbol of glitzy development and excess, the other, of culture and intellectualized projects. Eager to check out Abu Dhabi? Check into the Beach Rotana Hotel And Towers, right on the shores of the Arabian Sea. Venture out from your luxurious, sea-facing room and you'll find 10 (count em, 10!) restaurants and a private beach. Home to the Abu Dhabi Trade Center complex, the Beach Rotana - Abu Dhabi is directly linked to the 1 million square foot Abu Dhabi Mall, the most prestigious mall in the capital, via an exclusive passageway.


Live the Suite Life: Get Upgrades with Jumeirah’s Hotel in Dubai, London, New York


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Jumeirah Essex House, New YorkHere's an offer you can't refuse. Jumeirah Hotels & Resorts has announced a promotion called "Live the Suite Life" at properties across the globe. Book your suite in London at Jumeirah Carlton Tower or Jumeirah Lowndes Hotels in the heart of Knightsbridge and they'll trim up to £100 off the best available rate. Across the pond, at the beautifully-renovated Jumeirah Essex House, you can escape the hustle and bustle of the city in a Junior Suite from just $337. The Suite Life with Jumeirah Essex House is valid until February 15, 2010, for new bookings only, minimum three-night stay required.

Jumeirah Bab Al Shams Desert ResortWhile in Dubai, you can get all sorts of upgrades and amenities with "The Suite Life." At the seven-star Burj Al Arab, you can enjoy a host of personalized services for only 500 Dirhams extra: take fresh breakfast every day of your stay, indulge in a delicious buffet dinner for one of your nights, relax with a spa treatment on the house, get pampered with an in-suite Aroma Therapy Bath menu for two guests, get airport transfers in a signature Burj Al Arab white Rolls Royce. Other possibilities in the glitzy city of Dubai: Get complimentary breakfast and a dinner for two under the starry Arabian night sky at the open-air restaurant, Al Hadheerah, when you book a suite at Jumeirah Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa. Get an upgrade from a Club Executive Room to a one bedroom Ocean Suite for only 800 Dirhams more at the Jumeirah Beach Hotel. Get the second night free when you book a suite at Jumeirah Emirates Towers, or score a suite upgrade in one of the three enchanting hotels at Madinat Jumeirah the Arabian Resort (Mina A' Salam, Al Qasr, and Dar Al Masyaf).


By the Sea in Tel Aviv at the Dan Hotel


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Dan Hotel Tel AvivLooking for accommodations in Tel Aviv? Why not choose a picture-perfect location on the lively seafront promenade? The Dan Tel Aviv, a member of Leading Hotels of the World, overlooks the soft sandy beaches and the Mediterranean blue, within walking distance to the city's attractions like picturesque Old Jaffa and the trendy Tel Aviv Port area. Also nearby: the Camel Market and pedestrian streets of Nahalat Binyamin. Whether on business or looking for some beach time, the Dan Tel Aviv has got a superb location in this exciting metropolis. Facilities include several fine dining options, kids club, spa, outdoor sea water pool, indoor freshwater pool, sun deck overlooking the beachfront, Jacuzzi, sauna, and fitness center.


Four Seasons Beirut: Hot Hotel Openings of the Year


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Four Seasons BeirutThe cool Lebanese capital is getting another luxury hotel addition. (We've been excitedly anticipating the opening of Le Gray, from the hotelier behind London's One Aldwych and Carlisle Bay in Antigua). The other hotel that's crossed our radar? Four Seasons Beirut which is slated to open in December 2009. HotelChatter says that "all you Four Seasons loyalists out there... will have a new reason to visit Beirut." The city's known for its vibrant social scene and Four Seasons is planning to attract the crowds to a sky-high, "see-and-be-seen" rooftop pool lounge. Soaring above Beirut's Corniche, the glass-and-steel landmark building has views of the Mediterranean from private terraces adorning each and every room. Noted designer Pierre-Yves Rochon created the French-inspired interiors, showcasing polished maple, bronzed wallpaper and chinoiserie lamps. With a prime location in "the Paris of the Middle East," the Mediterranean gateway that links Europe to the Middle East, Four Seasons Beirut will feature a full-service spa, meeting and event spaces (including a grand ballroom), and two restaurants and three bars.