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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.

New Luxury Hotels Opening in 2012: Four Seasons St. Petersburg

February 22, 2012
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 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 Four Seasons St. Petersburg is expected to open mid 2012! This brand new Four Seasons hotel is located within a 19th-century royal palace whose entry is guarded by 2 marble lions. This beautiful hotel is located just 2 blocks from the Hermitage Museum and near the Nevsky Prospekt. It features 177 luxurious guestrooms, including 26 suites, offering phenomenal views of Saint Isaac’s Cathedral, Alexandrovsky Garden, and the landmark Admiralty. The Four Seasons St. Petersburg also has 2 restaurants and a glass-topped spa, so you’ll have everything you need conveniently accessible. Can’t quite wait until opening day? Then be sure to check out the other luxury hotels in St. Petersburg!

Photo courtesy of Four Seasons


Conrad Sells Seashells by the Iberian Seashore: New Conrad Algarve Opening 2012

February 17, 2012
By: Christopher Roney

I'm afraid of new things.  When someone gives me a food that has even an accent mark over the vowels, I scuttle back into my shell like a timid hermit crab.  But something's got me poking my little eyestalks out of my snail shell home. Just on the horizon is the opening of the next Conrad hotel in the Algarve region of Portugal and the crabby world of its sun-soaked southern coast is is all atwitter with talk of its guest rooms that would put any shell to shame. Coming in fall of this year, the new luxury hotel will be right at home in the Ria Formosa National Park, home to as many Roman ruins as it is sandy barrier islands. 158 rooms leave ample space around lakes and gardens that play host to the very best in Iberian flora.  Moving inside, you'll find balconies and marble bathrooms aplenty.  Eat with Gusto at the signature restaurant (guess the name?), offering the only grilled-to-order meat and seafood that the region is so famous for.  And would it be a luxury hotel if it didn't have a spa that claims to be one of Europe's best? You'll just have to come try it out to see if it stands up to the hype when this regional beauty opens its doors.  I might even come out of my shell to visit.

In the meantime, why not check out our other hotels in the Algarve region?


W Paris Opera Set to Open on Valentine’s Day

February 10, 2012
By: Oksana Balytsky

The clever W Paris Opera is set to open its doors on the most romantic day of the year, Valentine’s Day. The City of Love will have a new luxury hotel in its collection starting February 14th, 2012, adding a bit more excitement to this already lively city. Make your reservations for Valentine’s Day and be among the first to experience everything the W Paris Opera hotel has to offer.

The W Paris Opera is perfectly located in the heart of all the action in Paris. Take a stroll with your loved one down the Rue de la Paix and indulge yourselves in sparkling jewelry shops, and explore the Granier Opera House, a Parisian landmark. With 91 guest rooms and suites equipped with plush pillows, 350 thread count sheet, and Bliss bath products, you may never want to leave your room! This luxury hotel will steer away from the traditional hotels in Paris and have a backlit digital wall projecting abstract patterns through space, utilizing various colors to create different moods. The public areas of the hotel will have mosaic floors, marble staircases, and stained glass windows while the guest rooms will feature local art and original light fixtures designed specifically for the W Paris Opera.

Explore everything this hotel has up its sleeve and make your reservations today!


Hotels with an Edge: JW Marriott Marquis Dubai

February 9, 2012
By: Oksana Balytsky

In today’s competitive world, everyone needs a way to stand out from the crowd. Luxury hotels certainly are not any different and are always looking for ways to outshine their competitors and attract more visitors. We understand that our travelers look for the best of the best, and we would like to introduce you to our blog series, Hotels with an Edge. We’ll be highlighting and featuring a few hotels we feel truly stand out and offer their guests more than is expected. Be sure to check in with us to explore various hotels that deserve recognition for their supreme levels of luxury.

Our second featured hotel is the soon-to-be tallest hotel in the world, the JW Marriott Marquis Dubai. The Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong is to relinquish its tallest hotel crown and take the seat behind this new property in Dubai. The JW Marriott Marquis Dubai has announced that its two towers will stand 1,164 feet tall, and it will offer 1,608 rooms. Unlike other exceptionally tall hotels, this property will be dedicated to hotel operations only. It will offer 9 restaurants, 5 lounges, a 16,000 square foot spa, 24 meeting rooms, private event space, and more.  This hotel is scheduled to open in two phases starting in October, and it will have 804 rooms ready for guests. If you can’t wait until then, check out the other luxurious properties we have in Dubai!

Missed our first feature, the current tallest hotel in the world? Check it out here! Be sure to keep up with our blog series for a little inspiration on where to stay next!

A look into the presidential suite; photo courtesy of HotelChatter


Trump Comes to DC, but Maybe Not Like He Imagined

February 8, 2012
By: Christopher Roney

The news broke at the Washington Post yesterday that ex-presidential hopeful Donald Trump has turned the long-reaching tendrils of his well-coiffed hair towards the Old Post Office in Washington, DC, by buying it up as a hotel property. While he may be moving in next door to his dream house like an overzealous ex-boyfriend, this is undeniably good news for the hotel industry and for DC as well. The Old Post Office, while home to a few government offices, is also well-known for being a just a little bit abandoned and run down. And since it's on prime real estate in the middle of the city, hearing that Trump and investors are willing to put down a cold $200 million to renovate and revitalize the building should put a spring in the step of anyone looking to stay near 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. or even just walk by on the way to work.

The hotel will likely open its doors to more than 250 rooms for guests in 2016. Importantly, the Vice-Trump, daughter Ivanka, who headed the acquisition, said that the reconstruction is committed to preserving the historic facade of the original 1890s post office. Making way for the hotel will be National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities, which probably holds some kind of metaphorical significance, but maybe they'll get swankier offices elsewhere. The hotel itself should be an interesting take on an unorthodox space. The pavilion in the interior makes for a central space that itself has a lot of aesthetic possibility but also limits the floor design. I'm intrigued to see what Mr. Trump's team will do with the place. In the meantime, there are plenty of other Washington hotels within a stone's throw of the White House. [Editor's note: Do not throw that stone.]

Photo via Old Post Office DC Pavilion


New Luxury Hotels Opening in 2012: Trump Toronto

January 30, 2012
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 Trump International Hotel and Tower Toronto is set to open tomorrow, January 31st, 2012! This brand new Trump hotel towers over downtown Toronto’s financial district, and it delivers a superior level of contemporary convenience. From two floors of meeting and event facilities to two levels devoted to its luxury spa and wellness facility, the Trump International Hotel and Tower Toronto certainly exceeds the luxury standard. Staying true to the Trump reputation for excellence, this hotel has been designed to provide you with incredible city and Lake Ontario views, and each of the 261 rooms and suites has been modernly designed in a cosmopolitan style. Be sure to make your reservations today to experience the newest luxury hotel in Toronto!


The New Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World Resort Set to Open in 2014.

January 27, 2012
By: Daniel L. Moses

Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World
I go to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida quite often. As a seasoned traveler and travel writer, many people ask me why I would even bother visiting a place that many feel is... less challenging. It's a good question, I always say, and it is true that trekking across East Africa while trying to remember how to negotiate a bus fare in Swahili makes for a good adventure and an even better story. Nonetheless, sometimes I don't want to work when I travel, rather I prefer the ease of a place that takes that burdenaway, and just let's me relax and enjoy. That place, often as not, is Walt Disney World.

Yet while Disney offers a fine selection of on-site hotels to choose from, the latest announcement got me all in a tizzy. Amazingly, a world-renowned luxury hotel brand was given permission to open up its own property among the Mouse House's best, and just steps away from the theme parks. Ladies and gentelmen, I present to you: Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World!!!

No, that is not a mistake! The one and only Four Seasons brand is bringing their unique luxury to Walt Disney World, allowing my perfect, relaxing stays to get that much better. Not only will I have the wonder of Disney Magic, but also the luxuriousness of the Four Seasons. Opening in 2014, the new property will be spacious at 444 rooms, with all the amenities like golfing, spas, and fine dining that they're known for. Plus, being on-site at Disney World allows easy access to all four theme parks and Downtown Disney with the comfort and speed of Disney's transportation network. Oh yeah, and if that isn't enough, you get to stay late in Disney parks as part of the on-site Extra Magic Hours privileges! Of course, with the plush Four Seasons rooms to come home to, coming back for a nap just got a little more inviting.

So look for the Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World as it opens in 2014. Be sure to book ahead, as the place will certainly fill up fast. And look for me when you get there. I'll probably be relaxing by the pool, daydreaming about that bumpy ride on potholed roads in Tanzania, and darn glad that I'm somewhere a little less challenging.

The New Four Seasons Resort Disney World will include:

  • Several dining venues including a rooftop restaurant with Magic Kingdom views
  • 14,000 square foot (1,300 square metre) spa with 18 treatment rooms and fitness center
  • Three pools and a “lazy river”
  • Sports facilities including tennis courts, basketball court and climbing wall
  • Two recreational centres for children, teens and families
  • Approximately 37,750 square feet (3,500 square metres) of meeting and event space plus a business centre.

From the Four Seasons press release: "The development will encompass the existing Tom Fazio-designed Osprey Ridge 18-hole championship golf course, which will be renovated and subsequently managed by Four Seasons. Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World Resort is an enclave located within the Golden Oak residential community, created and master-planned by Disney."

 


Grand Opening of the St Regis Bal Harbour Resort

January 10, 2012
By: Oksana Balytsky

The St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort in Florida is set to open on January 19th, 2012. This exclusive resort is directly across from the Bal Harbour shops and only a few minutes from the excitement and energy of South Beach and Miami. This resort features 243 elegant rooms and suites, including 36 condominium hotel suites in 3 all-glass towers. Stroll along the beach, enjoy a cocktail poolside, and utilize the services of the St. Regis butler to plan your perfect adventure.

Make your plans today to experience the newest luxury hotel on the Miami block and experience all of the luxuries it has to offer!


(L)audible Venture: Hotel BPM Set to Open in April

January 9, 2012
By: Christopher Roney

Hotel BPMBrooklyn's next big hotel, the Hotel BPM, was dreamed up by a young DJ and business grad who is probably more excited about the project than anyone else.  DJ Bijal quickly made a name for himself in the celebrity DJ scene, and he's looking to expand his reach as host to a hip new hotel location.  Doubling as weekend destination, the club-like lobby will take on a more neon lighting scheme and the music will be at a higher BPM.  The black, green and white logo and design features accentuate the auditory experience.

A recent contest to name the 76 custom mattresses in each of the hotels rooms came up with "The Sound Sleeper," making me change my title pun.  And if you like it enough when you stay, you can even buy the mattress yourself.  King and Double rooms will start at $160 and $180 respectively, so make a stop by Sunset Park when this one opens up to experience a hotel that has its finger on the pulse of the Brooklyn nightlife.  

Photo courtesy of Gadling. As reported by HotelChatter.

 


New Hotel Openings in 2012: Kimpton Hotels

January 3, 2012
By: Courtney W. May

Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants plans to open 3 new luxury boutique hotels during 2012. Located in distinctly different markets, they include a new Hotel Palomar, Hotel Monaco and a renovated Hotel La Jolla. 

The Lafayette Building aka Future Hotel Monaco PhiladelphiaThe Hotel Palomar Phoenix, AZ was originally planned to open in 2010, but with building delays the newest timeline shows a 2012 opening in the downtown Phoenix area's new mixed-use development CityScape. The 250-room luxury boutique hotel will anchor one end of CityScape in a 34-story tower including office space and a retail plaza.

Construction on The Hotel Monaco Philadelphia, PA began in spring 2011 to convert the 11-story Lafayette Building across from the Liberty Bell into the 271-room, four-star hotel. Built in 1906, the Lafayette office building is located directly across from Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell and projected to open in Q3 2012. According to the press release, Hotel Monaco Philadelphia will feature a "chef-driven, 120-seat restaurant and bar and approximately 12,000 square feet of meeting space, including a 3,200 square foot ballroom located on the ground floor with windows facing Independence Square. In addition, it will feature Philadelphia's largest rooftop bar. The hotel's 271 guestrooms will include 23 suites and 25 King Spa rooms." (Lafayette Building photo to the right courtesy of author MrFox at NakedPhilly.com.)

Hotel La JollaThe Hotel La Jolla in La Jolla, California just outside San Diego is a recently renovated 110-room property boasting the only view of its kind in the area. Reopening in Spring/Summer 2012 as a Kimpton property, Hotel La Jolla offers panoramic ocean views and is within a short stroll of the beautiful beaches of La Jolla Shores. According to Kimpton the "11-story property will feature a newly created lobby and reimagined top floor restaurant by Gulla Jonsdottir of Los Angeles based G+ Design. The top floor will also include dynamic, convertible event space that can accommodate up to 100 for parties of any style. The garden level will be transformed into an outdoor lounge area featuring an inviting, family friendly pool scene by day and enticing lounge space by night complete with fire pits and outdoor bar. This retreat just off the beaten path of the shopping district of La Jolla Village is a place where even being at work can feel like a vacation." (Pictured at right is a current photo of Hotel La Jolla.)

We'll update you with more information as construction progresses.