LUXURY HOTEL INSIDER
As the economy takes a nose-dive and folks are less likely to travel, we've been witnessing lots of unprecedented deals at luxury hotels. Case in point: The "Escape to the Spa" package with participating Ritz-Carlton hotels, where guests are enticed to stay during the month of October with a hefty spa credit. You can get an oceanfront massage at the Ritz-Carlton Cancun (pictured), experience a massage in the moonlight at the Ritz-Carlton Lake Las Vegas, relax in a spa sanctuary in the center of the Mile High City at the Ritz-Carlton Denver, immerse yourself in a Roman mineral bath at the Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay, tone your physique with a haute couture body treatment at the Ritz-Carlton South Beach, or luxuriate with a Voodoo Love Massage at the Ritz-Carlton New Orleans.
Turkey day is fast approaching. Why not start a new trend and spend the holiday at The Breakers? The Palm Beach luxury resort is now booking for their Thanksgiving Tradition. Enjoy Thanksgiving dinner with all the trimmings, a bonfire on the beach, sandcastle creation, a seashells and shark tooth scavenger hunt, harvest festival, wine tasting, pajama party, teen lounge, and glow in the dark laser tag. You can also enjoy The Breakers 20,000 square-foot spa with ocean view, 10 tennis courts, 5 swimming pools and 8 restaurants. The BreakersThanksgiving Tradition is being offered from $399 per night.
We're so in love with the Regent Bal Harbour (pictured at right- home to North America's first Guerlain Spa), that we can hardly wait for the proposed Puerto Rico property to open its doors. If the amenities are anywhere near as swanky as the Regent Bal Harbour (shower toe-testers, anyone? to get the bath temperature right), we're in for a treat. The Regent Palmas del Mar Puerto Rico is scheduled to open on the beach approximately 30 minutes southeast of San Juan in December 2011. The 150 rooms-- including 96 guestrooms, 52 suites, a 5,500 square foot Presidential Suite, and Presidential Beach Cottage with views of the island Vieques-- will be designed by Trish Wilson who is known for the fine interiors at The Palace of the Lost City Hotel (South Africa) and Little Dix Bay. Also in store: a signature restaurant (with a celeb chef), three pools, preferred tee times at nearby championship golf courses, and a spa with five over-water suites.
Montego Bay luxury resort Half Moon is offering a golf deal that will delight both duffers and pros. Now through Dec.14, 2008, golfers who book a minimum three-night stay can take advantage of the Total Golf Experience package. Golfers will get their own cart and caddy to golf daily on the "Best Walking Course in the Caribbean." They'll also get unlimited golf green fees (18-holes daily), welcome gift of champagne, sleeve of Half Moon Logo Balls and Logo Hat, luxurious accommodations, 5 star dining, and airport transfers. Rates begin at $395 per person per night.
Half Moon is a luxury resort situated on crescent-shaped white sand beaches, with 398 rooms including suites, cottages and villas. In addition to luxurious accommodations, Half Moon also features a recently renovated Robert Trent Jones Sr.-designed 18-hole golf course, and the Half Moon Golf Academy.
It's not just the kids who get spoiled at Loews Hotels. Four-legged family members are welcomed with special amenities (even pooper scoopers). In fact Halogen Guides recently gave a shout out to Loews Hotel as a "Top Luxury Brand for Families" for its Fisher-Price welcome gifts, free game libraries, and supervised kids' activities. What's more? The Loews Portofino Bay Hotel in Orlando unveiled suites this summer that capture the spirit of the Dr. Seuss stories. Characters like the Cat in the Hat, Horton, and the Grinch come to life in the children's bedroom, part of the two-room Dr. Seuss suite which also features a king bedroom for the 'rents.
In Toronto, the magic number is 502. That's the number of the Hazelton Hotel's super-exclusive and refined luxury suite. If the words Sub-Zero, Miele, Baker, and Crestron mean something to you, than this just might your new home away from home. The suite consists of an eye-popping 4,300 square feet and has its own private elevator. Relax in front of one of the eight flat panel HDTVs, or sip cocktails around the 7-foot long linear fireplace covered in imported slab marble. In warmer weather, enjoy the 600 square foot outdoor terrace features custom irrigated planters, built-in BBQ, and stainless steel outdoor kitchen.
Hazelton Hotel's celebrity chef Mark McEwan (of Toronto's One Restaurant), will even cater a private party for you in the suite. Or, if you tire of the three-bedroom, four-bathroom suite with a wine cellar, butler's pantry, and steam shower, reserve the hotel's Silver Screening Room for a private screening of your favorite movie or private business meeting. But we have a feeling leaving the suite will be the last thing on your mind.
Get Breakfast when you book. Dylan Hotel New York is offering a breakfast special when you stay with them. The breakfast package offers a voucher upon check-in good for the Full Breakfast Buffet. The buffet boasts a wide range of goodies from eggs to sausage to yogurt and fresh fruit.
The Midtown Manhattan hotel is a short walk from Grand Central Station, Jacob Javits Convention Center, Times Square, Central Park, and Fifth Avenue Shopping. Dylan Hotel New York offers 107 spacious guest suites with 11-foot ceilings. The rooms come equipped with complimentary wireless and high-speed internet access, bathrobes and slippers, and in-room refreshment center. Dylan Hotel New York offers business services, valet laundry and dry cleaning, valet parking, and a fully-equipped fitness center.
This Just In: Starwood Slashes Rates, Get 50 Percent Off Your Second Night at Le Meridien, W, St. Regis and Westin
This is almost too good to be true. Starwood just launched a promotion called "Better Tomorrows" wherein you get a second night at 50 percent off at hotel properties through March 31, 2009. This includes the swanky St. Regis San Francisco, pictured at right, easily the finest offering in the City by the Bay.
Talk about service. Old Pfister himself comes back from the dead to make sure his guests are well taken care of at his namesake hotel, Milwaukee's finest, the Victorian masterpiece called The Pfister. During the Halloween season, the Historic Hotels of America talk up their ghostly visitors. And The Pfister, celebrated for its 23rd floor martini lounge, Victorian art collection, and indulgent Well Spa, has confirmed sightings of its founder, Charles Pfister:
A "visitor" has been spotted surveying the lobby from the grand staircase, strolling the minstrel's gallery above the ballroom, and passing through the ninth floor storage area. He is always described in roughly the same terms: "older," "portly," "smiling," and "well-dressed." Upon seeing a portrait of Mr. Pfister, witnesses have sworn it was him. If the visitor is Charles Pfister, then he seems to be pleased with the current state of his hotel.
All the campaign fervor (just weeks before the election) certainly inspires curiosity about the nation's highest public office. Head to Boston to check out the timely new exhibit at the John F. Kennedy Library and Museum. "The Making of a President" examines candidates' motivations for running for President, and focuses on JFK's journey to become the 35th president of the United States and his role in one of the nation's most prominent families and their commitment to public service. The elegant Fairmont Copley Plaza, just steps away from Beacon Hill and Newbury Street, has put together a package so that you can experience Boston's culture and history, and satiate your curiosity at the "Making of a President" exhibit. Priced from $339, the package includes tix to the museum. Plus you get to enjoy accommodations that are, well, downright presidential. (Just check out the photo of the Presidential Suite.) Or you can book the John F. Kennedy Library and Museum Suite, developed in conjunction with curators and archivists at the JFK Library as a mini museum that celebrates the public and private life of our 35th president. (It costs an additional $400 a night.)
PS. The Fairmont Copley Plaza has one of the best steakhouses in Boston, The Oak Room, plus a "Canine Ambassador" for guests to walk and/or run.