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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: What's a Family-Friendly Resort in Miami for a Family of 5?

November 5, 2014
By: Betsy LeTourneau

Grand Beach Hotel


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 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: What is a family-friendly resort in Miami for a family of 5, children ages 8, 9, and 11?


ANSWER: Grand Beach Hotel in South Beach, Florida is in a terrific location, overlooking more than 200 feet of beautiful white sandy tropical beaches on the Atlantic Ocean. Built in 2009, this super-modern Miami hotel offers the highest levels of luxury and comfort. Leisure facilities include two heated Jacuzzi's, a well-equipped gym with unbeatable panoramic sunset views, as well as three different swimming pools, including 2 beach level family pools and a top floor tranquility pool for adults, offering something for everyone. The luxury doesn't end there, with all suites including 2 gorgeous marble bathrooms, private balconies, and panoramic floor-to-ceiling sliding glass windows, with breathtaking ocean, bay or Miami city views. All visitors enjoy a lounge area within their suite, large flat screen TVs with free movie channels, and complimentary Wi-Fi.

For Your Family's Needs, We Recommend
King Family Suite - The Grand Beach Hotel gives guests the opportunity to connect two suites to provide more space for families and small groups. They offer three different alternatives for these Miami Beach Family Suites. Please book two rooms in their respective categories and add a Request for Connecting Rooms. Final room assignment is subject to availability at the time of check-in. Contemporary furniture conveys an atmosphere of casual elegance and provides ample storage space for a romantic Miami Getaway or an extended Miami beachfront vacation. Private balconies allow business travelers or leisure guests alike to take advantage of Miami’s near perfect weather. Complimentary internet access and state-of-the-art amenities create the perfect retreat for an unforgettable Miami vacation experience. The Grand Beach Hotel features twenty-four suite combinations with one King and two Double Beds. Guests have the opportunity to book Bay Views or Ocean Views on the South side of the hotel. Approximately 940 square feet. Maximum occupancy 8 guests. No Roll-away beds available. Baby Cribs available upon request.
Grand Beach Hotel
For your utmost comfort and convenience, standard features of King & Double Family Suites in Miami Beach include:

Ocean or Bay View
Pillowtop mattresses
350-count cotton bed linens
Four 42-inch flat screen TVs
48 complimentary Premium TV channels with 7 international channels
Complimentary high-speed internet access
Alarm/clock – CD player and iPod cradle
Three bathrooms in all suites
Two Queen sleeper sofas
Four telephones
Self Check-in kiosk
USA Today delivered every weekday
Two Private Balconies
Two Wet-bars, refrigerators and coffee makers
Work desk with desk level ethernet and power access
Iron & ironing board
Hair dryer
Bathrobes
In-room Spa treatments
Laundry and Dry Cleaning Services
Voltage 110/ 120 V
In-room Dining

Book your family stay at Grand Beach Hotel >>

 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.


Cool Pools: Four Seasons Hotel des Bergues Geneva

November 4, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Four Seasons Hotel des Bergues Geneva has a rooftop pool with sky domes and amazing views over the old town of Geneva. There's even underwater music.

Four Seasons Hotel des Bergues Geneva

View rates, details, and more images of Four Seasons Hotel des Bergues Geneva >>


Image of the Day: Esencia

November 3, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Esencia is a 50-acre private estate, with an awe-inspiring beachfront, two swimming pools, day spa, gourmet restaurant, and an indulgent atmosphere fitting of royalty. In fact, the property and many of the buildings once served as the exclusive beach-side retreat of an actual Italian duchess.

Esencia 

View rates, details, and more images of Esencia >>


Belmond Charleston Place: A Unique Balance Between Historic Charm and Modern Luxury

November 3, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Belmond Charleston PlaceTake a step back in time, exploring centuries-old gardens and antebellum architecture while staying in the heart of one of the most romantic and vibrant cities in the world.

There are few cities in the world that have been able to preserve its past like Charleston. History abounds on every street corner with beautifully maintained architecture from houses to churches to historic sites like Fort Sumter, the famous open-air market and the gardens and plantations, which are some of the country's oldest.

While the past is still very much alive in Charleston, the city has become a vibrant, cosmopolitan destination, tempting travelers around the world to experience its rich culture, boutique shopping and arguably one of the best culinary scenes in the country. Condé Nast Traveler has ranked Charleston the Number 1 City in the US for 4 years in a row and no hotel in Charleston better represents the city's unique balance between historic charm and modern luxury than Belmond Charleston Place.Belmond Charleston Place

One of the grandest properties in the Belmond collection, Belmond Charleston Place is consistently ranked among the best hotels by the readers of Condé Nast Traveler and Travel + Leisure. The hotel evokes the feeling of a grand, 17th century residence, from lush personal suites to the Italian marble lobby with a signature Georgian Open Arm staircase and 12-foot crystal chandelier. More than 200 rooms at Belmond Charleston Place have recently undergone a complete revitalization, resulting in modern, luxurious accommodations with slick in-room technology. The rooms feature new furniture, distinctive pieces of artwork and Carrera marble bathrooms.

The staff of Belmond Charleston Place is dedicated to indulging its guests with the finest in Southern hospitality. Guests can enjoy the hotel’s full-service European-style spa, horizon-edge swimming pool with retractable glass roof, upscale shops and the Charleston Grill, the on-site restaurant that’s been consistently recognized with an AAA Four Diamond Award, Mobil Four Star Award and "Best of Award of Excellence" from Wine Spectator. Executive Chef Michelle Weaver presents a menu that is a unique balance of Southern, French and Contemporary cuisines highlighted by favorites like the Charleston Grill Crab Cake or Okeechobee Catfish & Fried Shrimp. The sight of local fine art and sounds of live, world-class jazz featured nightly at Charleston Grill accompany the unparalleled culinary experience.
Belmond Charleston Place
Surrounded by historic homes and buildings, strolling distance to the city's delightful shops, galleries and restaurants, and close to pristine beaches, Belmond Charleston Place is the perfect place for guests to experience the unrivaled charm of Charleston, SC in a setting unlike any other.


Imagine being able to explore all Charleston has to offer you this season with an exceptional discount. Belmond Charleston Place's Upgrade Your Stay Offer includes a 20% discount on luxurious Club Level or Suite accommodations for a limited time. 

Book your stay at Belmond Charleston Place >>


Dining al Fresco: The Trafalgar

November 2, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Given the name of this hotel, we are pretty sure you know what square The Trafalgar overlooks.

The Trafalgar 

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


Your Questions Answered: Can You Recommend a Family-and Surfer-Friendly Tahitian Resort?

November 2, 2014
By: Betsy LeTourneau

InterContinental Resort Tahiti
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 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 looking to stay is Tahiti. What resort offers the best accommodations for our family and is near one of the surf spots and surf schools?


ANSWER: InterContinental Resort Tahiti 

The InterContinental Resort Tahiti is the premier international resort of Tahiti, the main island of French Polynesia, which is situated between California and Australia in the South Pacific. The resort has a total of 263 units, comprising of 170 fully renovated lagoon and garden view rooms, an extension of 60 panoramic view rooms with a Presidential Suite, and 32 over the water bungalows located in 32 acres of gardens. The Polynesian style resort with its own private sand beach and lagoon, offers views of unforgettable sunsets over the Volcanic peaks of sister island Moorea, just 12 miles across the sea of moons.

TOPDIVE Tahiti Diving center, located at the very heart of the hotel, offers numerous exciting and unique activities, from PADI 5-Star SCUBA diving,to discovering the lagoon by kayak, to whale watching, all in a safe environment that will make your stay both thrilling and fun.

For Your Family's Needs We Recommend:

The Overwater Bungalows located at the Lotus end of the resort, with sweeping views of the lagoon, reef and ocean beyond. The bungalows have a private sundeck and platform - ideal for sun bathing or watching the magnificent sunset. Intercontinental resort tahiti

All rooms and bungalows have the following amenities : a terrace or a private balcony, a bathroom with bath tub and shower, an individually controlled air conditioning system, a flat screen Cable TV, a direct dial international phone, an Internet connexion (wireless in public areas), a private safe, a refrigerator restocked on request, some 110V/220V outlets,tea and coffee making facilities, a hair dryer, an iron and ironing board, etc.

The resort makes available to its clients a laundry and dry cleaning service (express or regular), some self-service laundry facilities located throughout the hotel and some transit rooms with individual shower for early arrivals and late departures.
Moreover, children younger than 15 can share their parents room without supplement (within the limits of the room capacity).

Book your family vacation at InterContinental Resort Tahiti >>

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.
 


Dining al Fresco: Gray d'Albion Hotel

November 1, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

At Gray d'Albion Hotelguests can dine against the backdrop of the resort's private beach.

Gray d'Albion Hotel

View rates, details, and more images of Gray d'Albion Hotel >>


Food and Wine Indulgences at Steamboat Bay Fishing Club

November 1, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Steamboat Bay Fishing Club
Steamboat Bay Fishing Club, the 
elite luxury Alaska sport fishing lodge, is the only resort on the unpopulated Noyes Island. The exclusive club accepts reservations for groups up to sixteen during the summer fishing season. The location’s remote privacy makes it the perfect venue for both intimate gatherings of friends and family, and for high end corporate events.

The world-class fishing and accommodations  at the club are matched by the world-class dining. The cuisine at Steamboat Bay Fishing Club is designed to invoke the great Alaskan wildnerness. The regionally inspired cuisine includes quality ingredients like wild game, prime cuts of meat, local seafood, and organic greens grown in The Club's gardens.

Steamboat Bay Fishing Club

The kitchen at Steamboat Bay is an open display-style, so guests can observe and interact with the Chef and his staff. Gourmet dining at The Club is all-inclusive and customized to guests’ individual tastes. Guests with food preferences or restrictions are easily accommodated with advance notice. The fine dining starts as early as 5am. Guests can fuel up for the long day of fishing. Lunch options include a picnic-style lunch on the water, which means no break in the fishing, or guests can return to the lodge from nearby fishing spots. The guides even call in lunch orders on the way back so the meal is ready as soon as the fisherman hit the shore. 

Guests are treated to an evening reception. The Club's open bar is amply stocked with Pacific Coast wines, local microbrews and brand name beers, and premium spirits and mixers. For dinner, bay-side table service is available. There's also a special five-course Taste of Alaska option. Menus are updated daily, and personalized to accommodate guests individual tastes. 

Book your stay at Steamboat Bay Fishing Club >>


Image of the Day: Palihouse Santa Monica

October 31, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Palihouse Santa Monica is a boutique beach lodge offering 37 generously appointed classic rooms as well as stunning studios, one and two-bedroom guest suites featuring fully equipped kitchens. In continuous operation since 1927, Palihouse Santa Monica (formerly The Embassy Hotel Apartments) is an outstanding example of Moorish-influenced Mediterranean Revival Architecture. The hotel dates back to a time when Santa Monica was the last Los Angeles rail stop and travelers from all over the world came for seaside vacations all year round.

Palihouse Santa Monica

Book a stay at Palihouse Santa Monica >>


Countdown to the Most Haunted Hotel: The Stanley Hotel

October 31, 2014
By: K. Clare Johnson

The Stanley Hotel

Two words: The Shining. The Stanley Hotel was made famous by the Stephen King book and Stanley Kubrick film. King wrote much of the novel while staying in Room 217 at the hotel. The film wasn't shot there, and the hotel in the film is called Overlook Hotel, but a later TV movie was. The hotel fully embraces its haunted history. In fact, it might be the world's only hotel that offers an upgrade to a haunted room. The Ghost Adventure package includes a  guaranteed 4th Floor room, a K2 Meter per reservation, a glow-in-the-dark Stanley Hotel squishy ghost per person, and a REDRUM mug per person.

No one knows when the ghostly happenings started at The Stanley, but virtually all the rooms have had unexplained experiences reported. but unlike the movie, all the instances reported involve friendly, rather than malevolent, spirts.

Here's a few of the sightings:

- In 1911, the chief housekeeper was involved in an explosion in what is now room 217. She wasn't killed, but her ghost is known to perform extra housekeeping duties in the room. Expect unexplained unpacked bags and tidying. This is the room Stephen King occupied during his stay at The Stanley.

- Children are heard running and giggling in the hallway of the 4th floor. Somes guests will be tucked in by ghostly nannies. Room 418 is said to be the most haunted room in the hotel. 

- Frequent guests F.O. and Flora Stanley haven't let death stop them from regular visits. It is de rigeur to see F.O hanging around the lobby and Flora often plays the piano in the Music Room. 

- The Earl of Dunraven, the former owner of the land on which the hotel is built, haunted room 407. The scent of his tobacco is often smelled in the air, and a ghostly face has been seen at the room's window. 

Do you dare to check in to The Stanley Hotel?