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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.

Your Questions Answered: Can You Recommend a Family and Pet-Friendly Santa Barbara Hotel?

March 24, 2014
By: Betsy LeTourneau

Fess Parker's Doubletree Resort
We at Five Star Alliance work tirelessly to ensure we bring you the best luxury hotels selection and information regarding amenities, location, and highlights so you are confident that the hotel you choose will exceed your expectations and serve your needs. Sometimes, however, you are left with a few questions that go unanswered, and that’s why we’re here. Be sure to explore our new blog series Your Questions Answered to find answers to real questions submitted to us by our clients regarding traveling with kids, pets, the best beach hotels, and much more.

QUESTION: We are a family of 6 looking for a pet friendly place in Santa Barbara, Ca. What resort offers the best accommodations for our family?


ANSWER: Fess Parker's Doubletree Resort 

Come enjoy the paradise of Fess Parker's Doubletree Resort - a dramatic mission-style Santa Barbara hotel on 24 beautiful beachfront acres. Delight in the rich amenities and extensive array of activities - perfect for any age. Lounge by the pool. Walk along the soft-sand beach Dine on delicious cuisine at one of four restaurants. Relax in your restful guest room or suite. Take pleasure in the down-to-earth setting of this enchanting Santa Barbara beach hotel. 

Fess Parker's Doubletree ResortFess Parker's Doubletree Resort is the perfect locale for a truly unique Santa Barbara family vacation. Encircled by mountains and set along the Pacific Ocean, the resort is near an array of activities for all ages. Year-round, explore the Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens. Learn about sea life at the Ty Warner Sea Center. Go whale watching. This impressive Santa Barbara family resort is an idyllic destination, offering entertaining pursuits for both children and adults. The luxurious Santa Barbara pet-friendly accommodations comprise 360 guest rooms on 24 beautifully landscaped acres. Each room includes a furnished patio or balcony, high speed internet access, mini bar and personal coffee maker.

Pet Policy:
Pets of all sizes are welcome. Step outside your door of this Santa Barbara pet-friendly hotel, where you both can enjoy miles of landscaped walking paths along the beachfront and parks. Want to go for a swim? Take your dogs with you. There are dog-friendly beaches a short drive away. The concierge can assist with directions to dog-friendly beaches and off-leash parks as well as hiking trails in the local mountains.  In addition to the spacious rooms and a special treat bag, pets enjoy acres of landscaped grounds and pet menus for in-room dining.

For Your Family's Needs, We Recommend Booking:
-Ocean View 1 King Bed connecting to an Ocean View 2 Queen Beds: These spacious accommodations offer striking views of the Pacific Ocean from a own private patio or balcony.
Or
-Resort View 1 King Bed connecting to a Resort View 2 Queen Beds: 

View rates, details, and more images of Fess Parker's Doubletree Resort >>

All rates are based on double occupancy and extra person charges may apply. Please be advised that the rates, availability, as well as any extra person charges are subject to change depending on the hotel’s policies.

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Interactive Art at The Quin

March 21, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

The Quin Hotel
The Quin
,
the newest luxury hotel in Manhattan, is located on the corner of 57th Street and 6th Avenue. The legendary hotel has long been a home away from home for countless painters, writers, dancers, choreographers, musicians, and conductors. Doubtless, this is due to both The Quin's elegant beaux-arts architecture and its proximity to Broadway, Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, and the Museum of Modern Art. Thanks to the hotel's Quin Arts initiative, the tradition continues today. Quin Arts is an interactive arts program that celebrates the property's rich heritage and produces exciting new spaces for contemporary artists. Quin Arts seeks to inspire suspended moments of reflection amid the bustle of urban life with engaging and immersive new work in New York City. The Quin invites progressive contemporary artists to make their mark through its residency program.

The Quin Hotel

The artistic  and cultural legacy of The Quin was laid by such art world luminaries Georgia O’Keeffe, Ignacy Jan Paderewski, and Marc Chagall. Quin Arts presents an ongoing series of culturally significant events, exhibitions, salons, lectures, film premieres, book debuts, musical performances, and artist receptions. This multi-media initiative extends to a substantial permanent collection, along with an artist-in-residence program; grand displays on the lobby's 15-foot abstract video art wall, which are specifically created for the hotel; and intimate salons with participating artists.

The Quin currently houses 18 original pieces by artists from around the world. The collection includes works by Blek le Rat, the Paris-based "Godfather of Street Art;” YZ; Eric Zener; Wulf Von Treu, "the German Basquiat;" and renowned Irish painter Patrick Graham. This collection now includes 15 new pieces from Bristol-based street artist, Nick Walker, and will continue to grow with original works commissioned through the Quin Arts' artist-in-residence program.

Current exhibits and artistic endeavors include:

-Heritage, an immersive photography exhibit presented in conjunction with Magnum Photos. It celebrates what Magnum co-founder Henri Cartier-Bresson calls "a community of thought, a shared human quality, a curiosity about what is going on in the world, a respect for what is going on, and a desire to transcribe it visually." Heritage features the work of Burt Glinn, Erich Hartmann, Dennis Stock, and Elliott Erwitt and was co-curated by Darren Johnston and Gary Hoenig.

-Quin Artist in Residence Rosemary Siemens. Violinist Rosemary Siemens has mesmerized audiences the world over since the age of three. Equally comfortable with Classical and Pop music, her diverse talents and improvisational skills have led to countless performance opportunities, including concerts at New York's Carnegie Hall, performing as the first instrumentalist ever at St. Peters Basilica at the Vatican and playing at the Latin Grammy's in Miami. Rosemary's latest visit to New York includes a performance at Carnegie Hall as Concert Master for National Sacred Honor Choir and an intimate private recital in the Quin Lobby for guests and New York music aficionados.

View rates, details, and more images of The Quin >>

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Family Fun Rules at Paradise Point Resort and Spa

March 20, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Paradise Point Resort and Spa


If you are looking for a family-friendly luxury resort near San Diego, look no further than Paradise Point Resort and SpaThe resort is on a private 44-acre island located in Mission Bay, minutes from the heart of downtown San Diego and adjacent to SeaWorld Adventure Park. The Southern California resort features 462 Balinese influenced bungalow-style rooms, including 73 hotel suites. Each open and airy ground-floor guestroom offers garden, lagoon or bay views, with a refreshing, tropically elegant color scheme of coral, turquoise, chartreuse and gold.

A Few Family-Friendly Reasons Families Love Paradise Point Resort and Spa  

• Insulated setting where older kids (teens and tweens) can safely explore without constant parental supervision
• Just 10 minutes away from top San Diego attractions such as Old Town, the San Diego Zoo, Balboa Park, and the Gaslamp QuarterParadise Point Resort and Spa
• Kid-friendly activities include Paradise Surf Academy, dive-in movies, poolside games, watersports camp, scavenger hunts, fishing, 18-hole putting golf course, croquet course, tennis, basketball, and the Island Adventure Club
• Five pools to choose from: Main pool, lagoon pool, adult lagoon pool, meadow pool, and waterfall pool
• All family members, even the four-legged ones, are welcome at the resort
• One mile of sandy white beach, perfect for digging in the sand, building sandcastles, playing horseshoes, or having a game of Bocce Ball. The surrounding Mission Bay is less crowded than nearby beaches, and the waters are calm and inviting
Paradise Point Resort and Spa• Beach cruiser and surrey quadracycle rentals available, there are 14 miles of bike paths nearby
• Segway tours of the 44-acre island
• 60-minute boar tour of Mission Bay, means a chance to witness sea lions, pelicans, and other sea life in their natural habitat and gaze at picturesque views of the Pacific Ocean, SeaWorld, Fiesta Island, and the striking downtown San Diego skyline
• Sailing lessons in one of the resorts 14 to 25 foot sloops
• Speedboat, Jet-ski, kayak, and paddleboards for rent and use
• Spa services for kids, including manicures, ice cream pedicures, "Mom & Me" mother-daughter spa package, and "Girls' Night In" teen spa events

Paradise Point offers a private island escape with all the comforts and activities of a San Diego waterfront hotel. It's a luxury resort the whole family is sure to enjoy.
 
View rates, details, and more images of Paradise Point Resort and Spa >>

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Cool Pools: Windsor Court Hotel

March 19, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Windsor Court Hotel's pool is an expansive 18 x 65 outdoor pool with a large Jacuzzi whirlpool. Both have a bird's-eye view of New Orleans.

Windsor Court Hotel
View rates, details, and more images of Windsor Court Hotel >>

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Your Questions Answered: Can You Recommend a Family-Friendly Napa Valley Luxury Hotel?

March 17, 2014
By: Betsy LeTourneau

We at Five Star Alliance work tirelessly to ensure we bring you the best luxury hotels selection and information regarding amenities, location, and highlights so you are confident that the hotel you choose will exceed your expectations and serve your needs. Sometimes, however, you are left with a few questions that go unanswered, and that’s why we’re here. Be sure to explore our new blog series Your Questions Answered to find answers to real questions submitted to us by our clients regarding traveling with kids, pets, the best beach hotels, and much more.

QUESTION: We are a family of 4 and looking to stay is Napa, CA. What resort offers the best accommodations for our family?


ANSWER: Westin Verasa Napa

Westin Verasa NapaNestled on the banks of the Napa River, in the heart of North America's premiere wine growing region, The Westin Verasa Napa is a serene, relaxing haven seamlessly blended with natural beauty and rich cultural heritage. Explore Napa's beautifully restored architectural gems, attend outstanding performances in the renowned Napa Valley Opera House, frequent fine art exhibitions, drop in on jam sessions, and sample world famous cuisine.
At The Westin Verasa Napa, each of the stylish suites encourages you to unwind with soft Heavenly® Beds and inspiring views of historic downtown or the Napa River. Channel your energy in the 24-hour WestinWORKOUT® fitness facility or dive into the calming essences of the heated outdoor pool. Indulge in award-winning cuisine at La Toque or savor a nightcap at our newly designed wine bar—Bank Cafe and Bar.

For Your Familys Needs, We Recommend

2 Bedroom Suite Non-smoking
-The two Bedroom King Suites feature deluxe living and dining rooms, bathrooms, kitchens, and luxurious bedroom accommodations. Each kitchen features oak slab cabinets with stainless steel finished pulls on lower cabinets, and solid granite slab countertops and granite tile backsplashes complete the kitchen's sleek look and feel. All of the kitchens boast stainless steel appliances including a dishwasher, refrigerator, electric range, and microwave, making it easy for each guest to recharge at their leisure. The functional breakfast bar includes stools, making for plenty of space for family or friends.
Westin Verasa NapaThe modern living room is flanked with comfortable custom built furniture, accented in a dark walnut finish, while the upholstered sofa bed provides pleasingly aesthetic colors inspired by the Napa landscape. Sip your favorite glass of wine as you spend each evening unwinding on the expansive balcony found in every Two Bedroom Suite. Each of the two bedrooms features legendary Heavenly Beds® and luxurious white bed linens, while two signature Heavenly Baths® leave you well-rested and restored at the beginning of each day.

View rates, details, and more images of Westin Verasa Napa >>

All rates are based on double occupancy and extra person charges may apply. Please be advised that the rates, availability, as well as any extra person charges are subject to change depending on the hotel’s policies.

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Image of the Day: South Seas Island Resort

March 17, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

South Seas Island Resort is a 330-acre full service destination resort on tropical Captiva Island in Southwest Florida. South Seas combines a natural wonderland with modern resort amenities and accommodations.

South Seas Island Resort

View rates, details, and more images of South Seas Island Resort >>

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New to Five Star Alliance: Generations Riviera Maya

March 16, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Generations Riviera Maya by Karisma is Mexico's premier all Suite, all Butler, all Gourmet beachfront resort where couples, wedding parties and families savor a Gourmet Inclusive® experience, a vacation that fosters togetherness. This all-suite hotel stretches along a secluded beach, providing indulgences from gourmet cuisine, to luxurious suites with butler service. Families can relax knowing that their little ones are in good hands with the certified team of professionals at Eko Kids Club. Generations Riviera Maya features 144 luxurious suites decorated in a forward looking style and divided into 10 categories.

Generations Riviera Maya 

View rates, details, and more images of Generations Riviera Maya >>

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Image of the Day: LaPlaya Beach Resort

March 11, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

LaPlaya Beach Resort is the only luxury beachfront resort on the Florida Gulf Coast. The resort promises an experience of rejuvenation, whether under a white cabana, by a cascading-falls pool, through the fine cuisine at Baleen Naples, in exotic SpaTerre, out on the Bob Cupp golf course, or simply in your guestroom.

LaPlaya Beach Resort

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The Beverly Hills Hotel Debuts the Marilyn Monroe-Inspired Suite 100

March 11, 2014
By: K. Clare Johnson

The Marilyn Monroe-inspired Suite 100 at The Beverly Hills Hotel

Known as the "Pink Palace," The Beverly Hills Hotel is famous for legendary service and legendary guests. Over the past one hundred years, Hollywood stars have enjoyed the timeless glamour of this dramatically beautiful setting, attracted by the relaxed resort-feel and seamless service. Located on Sunset Boulevard in the center of Beverly Hills, the hotel is surrounded by 12 acres of lush, tropical gardens and exotic flowers.

The Beverly Hills Hotel has introduced a special suite inspired by film icon Marily Monroe. The suite is part of the Suite 100 promotion, which showcases five redecorated suites, each one in a select Beverly Hills hotel, reflective of different decades from the past 100 years and showcasing the legendary style of one of the world's most glamorous cities. 

Guests staying in The Golden Age Inspired by Marilyn Monroe suite, priced at $3,795, will find the following amenities:

• A display case showcasing original artifacts from her estate, courtesy of Julien Auctions. Artifacts include: 
-A signed model release form from Marilyn Monroe's second modeling session with photographer Joseph Jasgur
-An Erno Laszlo plastic container that once held Active pHelityl soap owned by Marilyn Monroe The Beverly Hills Hotel
-Original contact sheets from her starring role in Some Like It Hot
-A three-panel sterling silver custom-made Cartier frame gifted to Marilyn Monroe by Nedda and Joshua Logan. The center frame houses a black and white silver gelatin print of the portrait Cecil Beaton took of Monroe in 1956, while the left and right frames house a handwritten letter from Cecil Beaton describing Monroe.

• Media Library featuring classic Marilyn Monroe films and books, including Norman Mailer Marilyn Monroe Bert Stern and Andre de Dieme, Some like it Hot, and Gentleman Prefer Blondes.

•True Monroe fans can opt for the additional Marilyn Monroe Champagne Bath Bubble Menu featuring a Some Like it Hot bubble bath, bath pillow, wood back brush, bath mitt, and a bottle of Dom Perignon.

• For dinner, there's Marilyn's Menu, inspired by an interview that appeared in the 1952 issue of Pageant Magazine., in which Monroe described her diet. ''My dinners at home are startlingly simple. Every night I stop at the market near my hotel and pick up a steak, lamb chops or liver, which I broil in the electric oven in my room. I usually eat four or five raw carrots with my meat and that is all.'' Marilyn did enjoy the occasional sweet treat, such as ice cream sundaes. Items from Marilyn's Menu include: Prawn Cocktail, Heirloom Carrot Salad, DiMaggio's Spaghetti and Meatballs, Grilled New York Steak, and Marilyn's Ice Cream Sundae.

• Turn down service includes a selection of 50s hits, including You Send Me, Tutti Frutti, Hound Dog, and Summer Wind.

The Beverly Hills Hotel
Marilyn Monroe enthusiasts who want an enhanced transformational stay may select the Norma Jean Experience for an additional $1,914.

The Norma Jean Experience includes:
• Roundtrip airport transfers in a vintage car
• Welcome amenity including Marilyn Monroe themed gifts and a bottle of Dom Perignon
• Bottle of Chanel No. 5
• Two Diamond Perfection body treatments in the hotel's Spa by La Prairie
• Marilyn's Menu for Two 
• Two specialty "Norma Jean" cocktails in Bar Nineteen12 (vodka, Navan, honey, lemon, and sparkling wine)
• Breakfast for two one morning
The Beverly Hills Hotel - The First 100 Years Commemorative Book
• Marilyn Monroe Taschen Coffee Table Book Norman Mailer Marilyn Monroe Bert Stern
The Norma Jean Experience must be reserved 72 hours in advance. Select items from this list will also be available to purchase a la carte for guests who do not purchase the Norma Jean Experience.

Suite 100 - The Golden Age inspired by Marilyn Monroe, and the Norma Jean Experience, may be reserved though December 31, 2014. 

View rates, details, and more images of The Beverly Hills Hotel>>

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Cool Pools: Willows Lodge

March 10, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Willows Lodge is made of timbers that are 100 years old that have come from a Portland seaport. Each lodge room comes with a fireplace, a soaking tub, and Australian lamb's wool bedding. Popular activities include the nightly wine tastings in the lobby, art walks and nature walks. The hydrotherapy pool is nestled amidst the tranquil and beautiful surroundings of a hidden courtyard adorned with Japanese maples, ferns and sedums.

Willows Lodge 

View rates, details, and more images of Willows Lodge >>

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