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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.

Upping the Tempo: Tempo Miami Rechristened Casa Moderna

April 9, 2012
By: Christopher Roney

In the spirit of the holiday, the Tempo Miami has rechristened itself as the Casa Moderna Miami. The new hotel is celebrating the name change in style, and there's not been a better time to stay in one of its 56 rooms and suites on gorgeous Biscayne Bay. Enjoy the view from its 14th-floor sky pool deck or lounge in its 8,000 sq ft spa.  The boutique resort is perfect for someone who wants to get out to the beaches of Miami without the bustle of the larger hotels.  

Casa Moderna is making a concerted effort to upgrade its dining experience as well. For the month of April, you can even text 'fresh' to 84700 in order to receive a coupon for a free Tea Forte cocktail at their delicious restaurant, Amuse. They are celebrating the addition of the new Executive Chef, Kenneth Williams, to their team, and I'm looking forward to the great things he'll be up to.  He was wonderful at the Fisher Island Club and Gotham Steak.  It will be great to see if the rebranding efforts will run deeper than the new website and new name to the essence of the hotel. At the very least, the new leadership for Amuse should provide an interesting change of pace.  Learn more about the Casa Moderna here.


Luxury Hotels near the San Francisco Convention Center

April 9, 2012
By: Oksana Balytsky

This blog series is for all of the business travelers who are looking for a luxury hotel that is located near the Convention Center of specific cities. We understand that you have places to be, people to meet, and conferences to attend, so we try to make your travels as stress-free and convenient as possible without forgoing luxury.

The Moscone Center in San Francisco is our center of focus for this blog post. The following are 5 and 4 star hotels located less than one mile from the Convention Center. We’ve listed them in order of proximity, and they are all a short walk or a speedy cab ride away!

Intercontinental San Francisco – 187 feet from the Convention Center

Hotel Palomar San Francisco – 0.4 miles from the Convention Center

St. Regis Hotel San Francisco – 0.4 miles from the Convention Center

W San Francisco – 0.4 miles from the Convention Center

Four Seasons San Francisco – 0.5 miles from the Convention Center

Hotel Monaco San Francisco – 0.6 miles from the Convention Center

Campton Place Hotel – 0.6 miles from the Convention Center

Clift – 0.6 miles from the Convention Center

The Palace – 0.7 miles from the Convention Center

Ritz Carlton San Francisco – 0.8 miles from the Convention Center

The Fairmont San Francisco – 0.9 miles from the Convention Center

The Huntington Hotel – 0.9 miles from the Convention Center

Four Star Properties:

Parc 55 Wyndham San Francisco Union Square – 0.3 miles from the Convention Center

Hotel Nikko San Francisco – 0.4 miles from the Convention Center

JW Marriott San Francisco Union Square – 0.6 miles from the Convention Center

Sir Francis Drake Hotel – 0.6 miles from the Convention Center

The Prescott San Francisco – 0.6 miles from the Convention Center

InterContinental Mark Hopkins San Francisco – 0.8 miles from the Convention Center


Little Italy: The Venetian Las Vegas

April 6, 2012
By: Christopher Roney

Las Vegas is one of the few cities in the world where the ethnic districts are not marked out by a cultural difference in the food or architecture, but rather wholly created by casino hotels. The Venetian Las Vegas has carved out its own special place in Vegas for the other city that starts with V and has quite a bit more of a storied history to it.  The Venice on the strip offers a facsimile of the canaled streets, narrow buildings, and thousands of years of Italian history that come with the real thing. While you might not see the authentic purveyors of Murano glass in this Venice, you will dine on amazing italian food while staying in any of their all-suite rooms.  The grand canal shoppes are practically a mall in and of themselves, but with all the charm of old Italian streets, with over 80 international boutiques to choose from.

19 restaurants feature in the Venetian, with an unprecedented six James-Beard-award-winning chefs from Emeril Lagasse to Wolfgang Puck. Madame Tussauds' famous wax museum is a part of the resort, as is the Guggenheim Hermitage Museum for those who prefer their art to be a little less malleable.  It's hard to call anything an authentic Las Vegas museum, when so much is built upon the pageant of mimicry, but it is certain that no one does that better than, or on the same scale as, the Venetian Las Vegas.


A Hotel Love Letter: To the One and Only Palmilla

April 6, 2012
By: Christopher Roney

Dear Palmilla,

You are the Only One for me.  The curve of your beaches, your brilliant blue skies, the way your service always comes with a smile. It's enough to make a man blush.  Your beauty is unparalleled. I would write a poem describing it, but my awkward turns of phrase would pale in comparison to the raw, unadulterated perfection you embody, and I fear I would only stumble over my words, as graceful as my inner child, still going through the uncontrollable acne of his middle school years.

When I'm trapped at work, the spreadsheets morph inexplicably into images of your pristine beaches.  I just can't stop thinking about you. I would cross the oceans, travel to the very beaches of Los Cabos itself, just to be with you.  I know a longer relationship could never be, and our time together was always destined to be fleeting, too short to blossom into its full potential. But I hope that as time goes on my memory of you will become all the more poignant for its ephemeral nature. The possibility of seeing you again keeps me going as I slog through the world of faxes and memos; it is a spark of life that I will carry with me always.  May I see you again soon. You are the One and Only, my Palmilla.

With all my heart,

Chris


Special Offers and Packages at the JW Marriott in Cancun, Mexico

April 6, 2012
By: Oksana Balytsky

The JW Marriott Cancun Resort is a beautiful five star property located on the eastern most tip of the Yucatan right on the beach in Cancun. It is one of the most exquisite hotels in Cancun with 448 beautifully decorated rooms featuring private balconies and stunning views of the white sand beaches and bright blue water of the Caribbean. Check out the following phenomenal specials and offers that are too good to pass up, and get ready for a phenomenal vacation!

Sand Dollars Package, 4th Night Free!

Available for ocean view rooms with private balconies, a living/sitting area, and 1 king or 2 double beds as well as junior suites with pool and ocean views, a balcony, 1 king bed separate sitting area, sofa bed, and a dining area . These rooms have a maximum occupancy of 4 people, and for every 4 nights you stay, you get the 4th night free, to be discounted at the front desk.

Escape for 2 Package!

This package is perfect for honeymooners or couples looking for a romantic getaway. It features a premiere ocean view room with a private balcony, 1 king or 2 double beds, and a living/sitting area. This package includes transportation to and from the airport for 2 adults, breakfast buffet for 2 adults at Sedona Grill, wireless internet access, 24 hour room service, unlimited domestic alcoholic beverages by the glass, and 3 course lunch for 2 adults at the Beach Walk Market Place or Sedona Grill.

Escape Connecting Rooms Package!

This is a perfect option for family vacations. It features a premiere ocean view room with a private balcony, 1 king or 2 double beds, and a living/sitting area. This package includes $100 daily resort credit, daily internet access for one device in 1 room, and the rate includes 2 interconnecting rooms.

Escape Spa Package!

This package features a premiere ocean view room with a private balcony, 1 king or 2 double beds, and a living/sitting area. This package includes daily $50 resort credit, daily internet access for 1 device, early bird special treatments (1 per day), 1 spinning class per day, and a 25% discount on treatments at the JW Marriott Spa not applicable to packages, beauty salon services, or treatments less than 50 minutes.


The Best Luxury Hotel Pools Now Open in Las Vegas

April 5, 2012
By: Oksana Balytsky

With the summer rolling in and temperatures on the rise, the luxury hotels in Las Vegas are combating the heat by opening their pools for their guests! Check out the list of the best luxury hotels in Vegas to find the perfect pool to swim, lounge, and tan!

Wynn Las Vegas and Encore

These two sister properties have 6 pools total, so you have your choice between a variety of options and styles. There are two semi-secluded European pools which allow topless sunbathing and feature black jack tables or bars, and the Encore Beach Club is a lively scene with Djs and lily pads for lounging.

Vdara Hotel and Spa

This is a four star hotel and it is a casino-free and smoke-free property, which can offer a pleasant break from the craziness of Las Vegas. This hotel has a 40,000 square foot pool deck for guests only, and it is lined with chaise lounges and daybeds available for rent.

Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas

There are 2 lap pools and a Jacuzzi on the 8th floor of the hotel perfect for families as well as a plunge pool and a hot tub set up in a quiet zone for adults. Only guests can access the pool on weekends, but anyone can reserve a cabana Monday through Thursday, which come with drinks, fruit, soft robes, and a flat screen TV.

The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas

This hotel’s three pools are considered to be the center of the hip and trendy. Its Marquee Dayclub has 3 story bungalows with private infinity edge plunge pools. The Bamboo Pool is a quiet, more relaxing scene, and the Boulevard Pool is the largest one which has activities such as ping pong and foosball available for its guests.

The Venetian and The Palazzo Resort Hotel Casino

These sister properties have the perfect pool options for partiers and loungers alike. Tao Beach and Azure are the pools for the party crowd, and the rest of the pool options offer a calm and relaxing atmosphere, featuring a children’s pool.

 


Hotels with a History: Keswick Hall at Monticello

April 5, 2012
By: Oksana Balytsky

Certain hotels have a story behind them, a culture that seeps through the walls and a personality that emanates from every room. Every city has an appreciated and valued history worth exploring, and certain hotels have become a part of that rich and interesting past. For this reason, we’d like to introduce you to our blog series, Hotels with a History where we’ll be featuring unique hotels that have a little more to them than a comfortable bed and superb amenities.

This landmark estate is framed by the Blue Ridge Mountains and offers 600 acres in the heart of Keswick, Virginia. No other place combines the equestrian lifestyle, wine making, and American history together quite like this luxury hotel. Keswick Hall is a beautiful mansion surrounded by the most beautiful scenery and home to horse races, hunts, and vineyards. It has its very own Arnold Palmer Signature 18-hole golf course and a lavish spa. Enjoy the plethora of activities available on site or nearby including swimming, fly fishing, hiking, horseback riding, winery tours, with the list going on and on! Located a short drive from Washington DC, make your reservations for a weekend escape from the hustle and bustle and learn the true meaning of rest and relaxation at the Keswick Hall at Monticello!


What Transpired at the Hotel Wilshire?

April 4, 2012
By: Christopher Roney

Jenna Talackova is a controversial figure and an amazing one at that. A symbol of the movement for trans rights, the famous transgender was recently removed by Donald Trump from his Miss Universe competition after it was made public that she entered the competition as a transgender, a complicated move to arbitrate since she clearly identifies wholly as female, so to speak of her as subverting the rules of the competition misunderstands it.  And it's certainly not a case of taking advantage of anti-discrimination; Miss Talackova is gorgeous and everything that the Miss Universe pageant looks for, which in and of itself challenges negative preconceptions about transgendered people.  Fortunately, after a public outcry, they reinstated Jenna Talackova in the competition.

Now Jenna Talackova is out and about, furthering her modeling career at the Hotel Wilshire, and she's been barred from something else. Only this time, it has nothing to do with discrimination, just an unauthorized photo shoot.  She and her entourage arrived at the Hotel Wilshire with cameramen in tow, ready to take some model shots. However, the room they had been offered was not ready for them, so they moved up to the pool deck without authorization and began a shoot alongside the hotel's lovely restaurant.  The hotel shut it down for the sake of the guests dining in their establishment and Miss Talackova had to move inside to another prepared room where she could continue her photo shoot.  This is a star I'm following with interest, and I'm happy to see her making use of a great Los Angeles establishment in the Hotel Wilshire.

Via HotelChatter.


Experience the Festival of Flowers at the Grand Bohemian Hotel

April 4, 2012
By: Oksana Balytsky

The Grand Bohemian Hotel brings boutique comfort to the beautiful town of Asheville, North Carolina. This welcoming, Tudor-style hotel is located in the famous Biltmore Village and it’s set among the lovely Blue Ridge Mountains. Be sure to stay at the Grand Bohemian Hotel between April 7th and May 20th to take part in the Festival of Flowers. The gardens of the Biltmore Estate come alive with thousands of azaleas, tulips, and other flowers reaching full bloom! The Festival of Flowers is an annual event featuring live music and complimentary garden seminars. Experience the best of spring from the luxurious and art-filled setting of the Grand Bohemian Hotel where exceptional service and gourmet cuisine come together.


Hapuna Matata: A Beach Hotel with the Best Beaches

April 3, 2012
By: Christopher Roney

Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel: It means no worries for the rest of your days.  At least while you're there. Which probably means that if you stay there, you'll end up extending your vacation indefinitely until you forget to return home, abandoning life as you know it to sit on a Hawaiian beach, relaxing to the soft sounds of waves lapping at your ankles as the wind ruffles your thematically appropriate tropical shirt.  That sounds pretty good actually.  Maybe we should all take a little more vacation. I know when I do, my next one will be to the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel.

On the Kohala Coast, the Hapuna Beach Hotel shares 1,839 acres of beachfront property with the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, another gorgeous five-star property.  With that much space, you're practically lost in the wilderness. The rooms and property itself are wonderful, modern and understated, allowing the natural beauty of the surroundings to shine through and carry the experience of the true escape.  The Hapuna Beach Hotel is the perfect Hawaiian getaway.