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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.

The Top 20 Hotels in 2011: #9 Jumeirah Essex House

December 23, 2011
By: Five Star Alliance

In the final days of 2011, Five Star Alliance is counting down the Top 20 Luxury Hotels & Resorts Jumeirah Essex HouseWorldwide, as decided by our guests.

In the #9 spot, we have the Jumeirah Essex House, a premiere Manhattan hotel.

Quick facts about the Jumeirah Essex House:

- With stunning views of Central Park, the hotel offers a uniquely quieter perspective on the bustle of New York City.  Its 509 guest rooms and suites range from 300 to 2,500 feet and newly include such features as interactive touchscreen displays to adjust lighting, mood, and temperature.

- Just north Broadway, the Essex House gives easy access to the world-class theater on display in the Big Apple.  

- The in-house spa offers personal trainers, a sauna and steambath, and full massage treatments to help you relax and enjoy the city.

One & Only Maldives at Reethi Rah- The rooms, suites, and lobby were all recently renovated in an $90 million dollar project to revitalize the charming Art Deco style.

- The Essex House's storied history dates back to 1929 when construction first began just prior to the stock market crash. Opening finally in 1931, the hotel hosted a number of attendees of the 1939 World's Fair before being acquired for military use during World War II.  It is one of only 200 hotels in America recognized by the Historic Hotels of America for maintaining its historic and cultural integrity for its 80 years of operation.

View photos, learn more about the hotel, and check availability at the Jumeirah Essex House >>

Be sure to keep up with our countdown as we spotlight a new hotel every day until the New Year!


Conde Nast Traveler Gold List 2012: Andaz Wall Street

December 19, 2011
By: Christopher Roney

We understand that no one aims to come in second place; there is no recognition for mediocrity. We at Five Star Alliance know 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 Traveller Gold List 2012.

The Condé Nast Traveller 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.

This entry in the Gold List is a special property indeed. The Andaz Wall Street is a boutique hotel located in the heart of Lower Manhattan, and it stands at the forefront of a design renaissance sweeping the area.  Rather than a traditional lobby, the Andaz features a lounge space that combines the check-in counter with a contemporary conversational feel. You don't check-in, you relax and even have a drink with a concierge.  This transformation from business to leisure is precisely what the hotel embodies; its clean lines and remarkable efficiency are always the result of impeccable design. In many ways, the Andaz Wall Street is the iPod of New York hotels: It's not that it's fundamentally redesigned the hotel experience, but at every turn it's just a little bit more intelligently designed, a little smoother, and a little more elegant.


New Mondrian Hotel to Open in London

December 5, 2011
By: Oksana Balytsky

The sixth Mondrian Hotel will be coming to the South Bank of the London Thames River in 2014. This hotel is expected to have 100 more rooms than the Mondrian in New York, and it will be the first Mondrian hotel in Europe. This swanky hotel will reportedly have a restaurant, a ground floor bar, and a rooftop bar. This hotel is expected to bring a new excitement to the already exciting city of London, so keep an eye out for its grand opening in 2014!

Don’t want to wait until 2014? Then we encourage you to check out a few other Mondrian properties including the Mondrian Soho in New York City, the Mondrian South Beach in Miami Beach, and the Mondrian Hotel in West Hollywood.


New York Hotels near Central Park

December 5, 2011
By: Oksana Balytsky

New York City can be a bit overwhelming, and we understand the desire to be located near the trees, grass, and open spaces. We’ve received a number of inquiries about which hotels are located near Central Park, and which of those hotels we would recommend to our luxurious travelers. You ask, we listen and respond, so here are five of our favorite hotels near Central Park!

The Carlyle, a Rosewood Hotel is located in the heart of Manhattan and offers sweeping views of Central Park. The Surrey New York is nestled in Manhattan’s Upper East Side, and it’s both a familiar destination and unexpected delight. The Jumeirah Essex House is perfectly located at Central Park and it’s recognized throughout the world as a model of graceful elegance. The Trump International Hotel Tower overlooks Central Park, and it is the only Forbes Five-Star hotel with a Five-Star restaurant in New York. The Mark New York is just steps from Central Park, and it is sophisticated, chic, and stylishly comfortable.

Looking for something different? With 93 luxury hotels in New York City, we guarantee you’ll find a hotel perfect for you!


Peninsula New York is Decking Its Halls

December 2, 2011
By: Oksana Balytsky

The Peninsula New York is located on Fifth Avenue and 55th Street, in the heart of New York City’s shopping, cultural, and business neighborhood, in Mid-town Manhattan. This luxury hotel features 185 spacious guest rooms and 53 suites, recently renovated and decorated in a modern style. Specifically designed with convenience in mind, all of the rooms utilize state-of-the-art technology, allowing guests to control their environment with the touch of a button.

The Peninsula New York invites you to celebrate the holidays amidst wonderful decorations and fabulous dining at its restaurants and bars, including the popular Salon de Ning Rooftop Bar and Terrace, which offers breathtaking views of New York. Be sure to participate in the annual Children’s Gingerbread House Decorating class, and enjoy the holidays in good cheer with your loved ones.

 


Girls Getaways: Moet Champagne Slumber Party at Mandarin Oriental New York

November 28, 2011
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Mandarin Oriental New YorkWe've seen our fair share of glam girls' getaway packages, but this might just take the cake. Who needs over-the-top Vegas revelry when when you can have Moët (and manis!) in Manhattan?! The Mandarin Oriental New York-- home to Nutcracker Afternoon Teas this holiday season-- has partnered with one of the world’s finest champagne houses to create a bubble-licious "Moët Champagne Slumber Party" for up to four friends. Celebrate NYC's best time of year with Christmas shopping, pampering, and bonding with your best friends over flutes of Moët Imperial Champagne. Here's what the package includes:

*One night in a suite for up to two people, or one night in a suite with a connecting room for up to four people

*Two bottles of Moët Imperial Champagne per suite/room

*Manicures and pedicures in the hotel’s five-star spa

*Saks Fifth Avenue VIP shopping experience with a Personal Style Consultant

*A selection of ‘girls’ night in’ movies

Package rates start from $3,250 for one night of suite-only accommodations for up to two people, and start from $5,000 for one night of suite with connecting room accommodations for up to four people. This package is available until April 30, 2012, is based on availability, and cannot be combined with other offers.


Loews Hotels Prolonging the Thanksgiving Feast

November 23, 2011
By: Oksana Balytsky

If you, like us, wish that the incredible Thanksgiving feast could last longer than one day, then be sure to check out the following luxury hotels that have embraced the concept of leftovers. The Loews Hotels will offer a turkey sandwich menu addition all week long, and these properties can be found all over the U.S. and Canada. These hotels have found a way to embrace both the Thanksgiving tradition of turkey and a bit of creativity to offer creations such as turkey sushi rolls at the Loews Lake Las Vegas, a Cuban-style sandwich at the Loews Miami Beach, and a trio of sliders with gravy and mustard-cranberry mayonnaise at the Loews Regency in New York. Post-Thanksgiving travels not in the plan this year? Then check out Loews’ Facebook page for a full collection of their recipes and photos of each incredible dish!


Luxury for Less: Black Friday and Cyber Monday Hotel Deals

November 17, 2011
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Lorien HotelGearing up for Black Friday? Planning your strategy for Cyber Monday (the biggest online shopping day of the year)? Expect deals galore, especially if you're looking to travel. Hotels are catering to travelers looking for internet savings. We've been keeping tabs on the great online deals available. And the offers keep flooding in! Here's a sampling.

Marriott’s Florida Resorts (like Eden Roc Renaissance Miami Beach and Doral Golf Resort & Spa, a Marriott Resort) are joining together to offer up to 25% savings on Cyber Monday with rates starting from $95 to $186 per night. Available online on Monday, Nov. 28 only, the savings can be applied on stays from Nov. 29, 2011 through Jan. 8, 2012.

Kimpton is holding a 72-hour Cyber Monday Sale, starting 12 am on Monday, November 28, 2011, for 12 Mid-Atlantic region hotels in DC, Virginia and Maryland, giving away top suites and specialty rooms for the price of a standard guestroom. Hotels include Hotel Palomar Washington DC and the Lorien in Alexandria, where you can nab an overnight stay in the one-of-a-kind Diplomat Suite, featuring a 550-foot private furnished balcony, wet bar, and oversized bathroom for just $159 per night.

Trump ChicagoThe newly-renovated Warwick New York Hotel is offering a four-day Black Friday deal of 30% off the best available rate with savings extending through Feb. 29, 2012.

The Trump Hotel Collection is offering 30% off all suites that are booked on November 28, 2011 only. Available for travel January 1- March 31, 2012 at all Trump Hotel Collection properties – New York (Central Park and SoHo), Chicago, Las Vegas, Waikiki, Panama and Toronto (opening Jan. 31, 2012).


Betsey Johnson Designs "Eloise"-Themed Christmas Tree for The Plaza, New York

November 16, 2011
By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Eloise Christmas Tree at The PlazaIn other festive news: We hear that fashion designer Betsey Johnson has partnered with The Plaza in New York to design the hotel’s first official Christmas Tree this holiday season. And guess her inspiration? Eloise, of course! The fictional heroine of Kay Thompson’s 1955 classic book already has her own suite at The Plaza, but now she'll be honored with her very own tree- prominently displayed in the Fifth Avenue foyer. See Betsey Johnson's sketch for the tree here, but if you want to take a gander at the Christmas tree with your very own eyes, book a table for the special ‘Tree Lighting Tea’ in The Palm Court on November 28 at 5pm, hosted by The Plaza and Betsey Johnson. The iconic New York City hotel-- recently honored as a member of Historic Hotels of America-- is excited to welcome the designer’s first holiday ‘popup’ shop, which opened its doors on November 14th and offers an exciting collection of giftable items.


Calling All Food Lovers in D.C. and New York

November 11, 2011
By: Oksana Balytsky

If you’re a food connoisseur looking for a true epicurean experience, then check out the East Coast Travel package put on by the Westend Bistro, a Ritz-Carlton Washington D.C. restaurant and Le Bernardin, Chef Ripert’s New York restaurant.

The dine and travel weekend will kick off with a 3-course lunch at Le Bernardin in New York City. After an incredible meal by Chef Ripert, participants will hop on the Acela Express train to D.C. and check into the Ritz-Carlton with accommodations on the hotel’s Club level. For dinner, participants will enjoy dishes at Westend Bistro, which is located in the lobby of the hotel. Guests will savor a 3-course meal with a behind the scenes view into the kitchen to participate in an intimate and stimulating dining experience.

This package is priced from $1,025, and we encourage you to visit www.westendbistrodc.com for more information.