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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.

Rev It Up: Introductory Rates at The Iron Horse Hotel, Milwaukee from $149


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Iron Horse HotelIt's here. The bikers' hotel that everyone's been talking about-- Milwaukee's hottest new boutique hotel-- is about to open its doors. A member of Desires Hotels (the collection includes the hip San Juan Water & Beach Club Hotel), The Iron Horse Hotel promises to be one of the most buzzed-about hotel debuts in years. You can test drive the hotel's stunning new accommodations, and enjoy all those special amenities for motorcycle enthusiasts, with Rev It Up! Introductory rates starting from just $149 per night in a spacious loft room. Available October 1-31, 2008. Hurry, availability is limited!


The Encore: Steve Wynn Shakes Things Up in Las Vegas (Again)


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Wynn Las VegasWhen Steve Wynn first opened his casino-resort on The Strip in 2005, he ushered in a new phase of glitzy, over-the-top development in Vegas. The Wynn boasts the Strip's only golf course, a three-acre man-made lake, a Maserati/Ferrari dealership, an upscale shopping promenade, and opulent guest rooms. And now Wynn goes head to head with other Vegas developers with another grandiose project, The Encore. Here's how the New York Times recently described the project:

Later this year, Mr. Wynn, 66, will open his latest project: the $2.3 billion Encore casino resort, a fantasy land featuring 2,034 luxury suites, a glass-encased casino overlooking several pools, and penthouse baccarat tables for high rollers. The Encore is also an outsize gamble by a man who has made a lucrative, freewheeling career out of such moves, and it comes just as an economic malaise that has been seeping across the country is starting to slam the gambling industry.

Wynn is rolling the dice again, taking a gamble on this grand new resort. He's done it before, and he'll do it again. After all, this is "the man credited with changing the landscape of the Strip and bringing a semblance of class to Sin City."


Market Pavilion Hotel: The Best of Charleston, South Carolina


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Market Pavilion HotelHistoric Charleston, South Carolina is consistently ranked as one of the top tourist destinations in the U.S. It's not just the art galleries, lively restaurant scene, and pretty boutiques. The city oozes Southern charm and sophistication, with loads of historic-listed buildings and Antebellum mansions. Plus, the elegant hotels are some of the top in the U.S. Case in point: The Market Pavilion Hotel, just picked up by Daily Candy on a trip to Charleston. Here's what D.C. says about the ville itself:

Drop the hoop skirt and step away from the juleps. With a booming food scene and a subtropical climate that invites four-season travel, Charleston makes a Southern drawl seem cosmopolitan, from the shaggy East Bay to the snooty Battery.

And the gorgeous hotel? Known for its personal butlers and complimentary amenities? To quote Daily Candy:

A View with a Room: You're in the thick of it at the posh Market Pavilion Hotel (225 East Bay St.; 843-723-0500) at the corner of Market and East Bay. Head to the rooftop bar for great views of the water and Old Market.


$69 Per Person: Girls Night Out in South Beach at Miami’s Sagamore Hotel


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Sagamore Hotel, MiamiTake the girls for an end-of-summer fling to South Beach and score an awesome deal with The Sagamore, one of the hottest hotels in South Beach. You'll love the outdoor pool, striking suites (with whirlpool tubs), and private collection of art and photography at this unique beachfront address. Even better- the hotel has a great location in the middle of all the action. The Sagamore Miami Beach, selected by Conde Nast Traveler in 2003 as one of the top twenty hottest beach resorts in the world, has designed a "Girls Night Out" plan for the month of September 2008, priced at just $69 per person (slightly higher on weekends, at $95 per person). This rate is based on 4 gals sharing a private, two-story poolside bungalow, and also includes: continental breakfast, disposable cameras (to record your late-night carousing), a round of martinis at the hotel's bar, and VIP admission to three local clubs- Opium Garden, Prive, or Mansion- with access to the VIP room.

Via Travel and Leisure


The Peninsula New York Opens Fitness Center and Pool As Part of Spa Renovation


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

The Peninsula New York poolCheck out this beauty. The award-winning Peninsula New York has completed the first phase of its spa renovation, and the new fitness center and pool (pictured) will open on September 8, 2008. The light-filled fitness center, located on the 22nd floor, will be stocked with all the latest in cardio and strength training equipment. The pool is enclosed by glass, and accented by teak columns and a cool black tile floor. And in December 2008, the hotel will unveil the chic Peninsula Spa by ESPA, featuring12 treatment rooms (including a spacious couples' suite), men's and women's private relaxation lounges, and locker rooms featuring luxurious thermal experiences. While you're visiting The Peninsula New York, be sure to check out the rooftop Salon de Ning, a gorgeous spot to soak up the dog days of summer.


Wellness Yoga Retreats at the New Mandarin Oriental Riviera Maya


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Mandarin Oriental Riviera MayaNow there's another reason to check out the new luxury resort everyone's been talking about. The Mandarin Oriental Riviera Maya, situated on Mexico's pristine Yucatan Peninsula, has introduced a series of four-day holistic yoga programs-- featuring guided meditations, yoga classes and yogic diet and nutrition sessions. The next one will take place from September 25-28, 2008, followed by a program on October 23-26, 2008. Both novices and experienced yoga students will enjoy these retreats led by fabulous instructors. Embark on a peaceful journey of renewal and enlightenment while indulging in Mayan and Oriental spa treatments, and taking advantage of all the luxurious facilities in this naturalist's paradise. Surrounded by mangrove reserves and crystal clear lagoons, the resort is the ideal place to partake in a restorative yoga retreat. Plus, it is conveniently located just 10 minutes north of Playa del Carmen and just a 30 minute drive south from the Cancun airport. Leading the Yoga Retreat is Yoga Instructor Rishi Bhardawaj, who comes from a family of yoga experts and has been teaching yoga for almost 15 years. The retreat begins on Thursday evening with a welcome group dinner and opportunity to meet with instructors and fellow guests. The "Wellness Yoga Retreat" is priced from $2465 (single) and $3340 (double occupancy) and includes: three-nights accommodation, Yogic breakfast daily and one group dinner, choice of one spa treatment (Aromatherapy massage, Aromastone or Thai massage), morning and evening yoga sessions, daily meditations, diet and nutrition classes, participation in daily fitness activities, complimentary use of Heat and Water Therapies (including Steam, Sauna, Vitality Pool), and round-trip airport transfers.


Deal at Ritz-Carlton New York: Snag a Pair of “Something Blue” Pumps by Manolo Blahnik


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Something Blue pumps, Manolo BlahnikShoe fanatics, rejoice. You can get your very own pair of cobalt blue satin pumps-- just like Carrie Bradshaw's in the Sex and the City movie-- signed by designer Manolo Blahnik at an afternoon reception at Bergdorf Goodman. (Retail value: $945). This one-day deal with the Ritz-Carlton New York, Central Park happens on September 12, 2008 and includes a bunch of cool extras. Starting at $1,999 (double occupancy), the "Something Blue" package includes martinis in the Ritz-Carlton's Star Lounge, an autographed copy of "Manolo Blahnik Drawings," a $50 Bergdorf gift card, one La Prairie spa pedicure with champagne, and one pair of shoes. When you add up the list price of all these extras, you realize what a super deal this is. Rooms alone usually start at $895.

Via Washington Post Travel


Buzz: St. Regis Resorts Brings Its Butler Service to Bali


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

St. Regis Resort BaliPersonal butlers for every guest is a hallmark of the St. Regis brand, famed for refined elegance and peerless service. And now St. Regis is importing this unique tradition to the tropical island paradise of Bali, when the St. Regis Resort Bali opens this month. Overlooking the ocean and Bali's premier golf course in the exclusive enclave of Nusa Dua, the beachfront resort has 125 luxurious suites and villas. The St. Regis butlers are known to provide ever-present, unobtrusive service while anticipating guests' needs. It goes beyond preparing coffee or tea and packing/unpacking suitcases; the butlers are more like experienced personal assistants. The St. Regis Bali is the first in the island to have an international Chief Butler, Tony Sharp, and Assistant Chief Butler, Robert Johnson, winner of 'Butler of the Year' award, an international award conferred by the International Butler Association. Trained in wine by the resort's chief sommelier, the butlers are also incredibly technologically savvy, as the resort is the first in Bali to feature Internet Protocol (IP) phones in all suites and villas.


Best Wishes for a Fun Labor Day Weekend


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Hotel Caruso, ItalyWhether you jet to the Caribbean, book a fabulous last-minute package at a nearby city hotel, or stay close to home over the long weekend, we wish you happy and safe travels-- and a fantastic Labor Day. We'll be back soon with more news and deals from the world's best luxury hotels!

--all of us at Five Star Alliance


Hotel and Spa des Pecheurs: Paradise on Earth Near Corsica and Sardinia


By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Hotel and Spa des Pecheurs, CorsicaThis exclusive hideaway could easily be one of the most beautiful on all the Mediterranean Sea. Between Corsica and Sardinia in the sparkling emerald sea, lies a stunning archipelago called Lavezzi. Of this string of islands, the small Cavallo Island, extending just one mile, is the most beautiful. On this island, there is just one hotel- surrounded by all the summer homes of the international jetset. Completely serene, scented with myrtle and juniper, surrounded by breathtaking seascapes and beaches, the island of Cavallo allows only bicycles and electric cars. In this paradise, the Hotel and Spa des Pêcheurs has 50 rooms overlooking the white sandy beach and reef just offshore.

Hotel and Spa des Pecheurs, CorsicaThe reviews on TripAdvisor sum it up nicely: "LOCATION!" "Secluded paradise!" This is the best kept secret on the Med. The hotel was built in an environmentally responsible way- built with local rock and showcasing marvelous terraces, sundecks, gardens, and a beautiful pool. Enjoy the freshest Italian and French cuisine at the restaurant, and don't miss a massage at the spa or in the comfort of your own room.