LUXURY HOTEL INSIDER
June 9, 2008
By: Mary Winston Nicklin
Singing the blues about climbing airfares and gas prices? Loews Hotels to the rescue. After the announcement by American Airlines about new luggage fees, Loews decided to offset the fees with a "baggage buy back rebate." When you check into any of Loews 18 properties in the U.S. and Canada-- including the fabulous Regency in New York and Loews Hotel Vogue in Montreal-- you can get a hotel credit for any bags you had to check. Just present your airline bag fee receipt at the front desk, and Loews will give you back the $15 per bag. (Loews will offer credit for up to two bags for a max of $30 per stay.) Available through Labor Day.
Just minutes from the historic city of Charleston in the charming village of Summerville, South Carolina, the Woodlands Resort and Inn combines Southern hospitality and Old World charm in a beautiful setting: surrounded by palmettos, moss-draped oak, and towering magnolias. Set amidst 42 acres of parkland, the immaculately restored 1906 classic revival mansion features 18 luxurious guest rooms. Here guests delight in the outdoor swimming pool, red-clay tennis courts, croquet lawn and day spa. Plus, guests enjoy golf privileges at nearby courses. A member of Relais & Chateaux, Woodlands-- awarded the Mobil Five-Star award for both dining and lodging-- is renowned for its sophisticated cuisine, epitomizing the good life. It's no surprise that a resort of this caliber recently snagged the No. 1 ranking in the Continental U.S. and Canada (and No. 3 worldwide) in the 2008 Best Service Awards by the readers of Travel + Leisure magazine. (Notably, Woodlands is the only U.S. property to make the worldwide Top 10 List.) Woodlands offers the highest caliber of personalized service in a destination that's recognized as the nation's most mannerly and gracious.
Snag a deal at one of the most opulent hotels in the world, the legendary King George Palace, the hotel of choice for visiting royalty and presidents since 1936. Situated on Syntagma Constitution Square in the heart of downtown Athens, the King George II boasts views of the Acropolis and Lycabettus Hill from its posh interiors. A member of Leading Hotels of the World, the King George has an impressive list of accolades. Rack rates start around $905 per night, but with the Special Summer Offer, you can get a room for as little as EUR 198 ($311 per night) in July and August. This includes free Wifi and a bottle of wine. Minimum two-night stay required.
Ranked No. 2 in the "Top 10 Asia Resorts" category of the Condé Nast Traveler 20th Annual Readers' Choice Awards, the Banyan Tree Phuket is bordered by the golden sand and turquoise waves of the Andaman Sea. This tropical paradise is offering exclusive rates during June and July to encourage guest to visit Thailand, the "Land of Smiles," this summer. The special starts at just $200 per night for Deluxe Villa accommodations and includes daily breakfast. There's no better time to experience Banyan Tree Phuket, the 150-villa resort that exudes luxury and romance.
Pssst. Don't miss a treatment at the award-winning spa!
Enjoy Independence Day in Seattle with Pan Pacific Hotel's Independence Day Package. Guests enjoy a room with a view of Lake Union, and if guests stay on July 4, the room provides an up-close look at the fireworks. The room also includes parking and sparkling wine and chocolates upon arrival. Package is valid from June 29th through July 6th, rates start at $255 per night.
In correlation with American Independence Day, Pan Pacific is also offering specials for Canada Day at their Canadian properties. Guests staying at Pan Pacific Vancouver can enjoy discounted rates, at $141 CAD per night and complimentary upgrade to a Harbor View Room, along with a bottle of chilled wine, and milk and cookies for children upon arrival. Pan Pacific Whistler also offers a discounted rate on One and Two Bedroom Suites, bottle of sparkling wine and chocolates upon arrival and complimentary parking and breakfast during the stay. Rates at Pan Pacific Whistler start at $249 CAD. Offer valid June 29 through July 6.
Explore Xian to the fullest with Shangri-La Hotel's special Xian Indulgence package. Get discounted rates on single and double rooms, and you'll also receive a round trip airport transfer, complimentary breakfast and in-room tea and coffee facilities. The package includes a half-day guided tour of the Terra Cotta Warriors Museum, a one-hour Spa treatment at the Shangri-La Spa, and optional tours to the Bell Tower, Wild Goose Pagoda, or Muslim Street/Famen Temple/Huashan for only an additional RMB480 per person. A Deluxe City View Room is only RMB3,380 for 3 days and two nights, and Horizon Club room is RMB 3,980.
Special Offer from Five Star Alliance: Five Star Alliance guests staying at the Shangri-La Xian will receive a welcome platter of fresh fruit.
East of Madagascar in the Indian Ocean, you'll find an island paradise fringed by the green Bambou mountains and impossibly blue waters. Here on Mauritius, Four Seasons is opening a new resort with an Ernie Els golf course and over-water spa. Nestled in a wilderness preserve, this private sanctuary is the essence of romance, with 123 spacious villas and residences with seamless indoor-outdoor living, plunge pools, and inspiring views in all directions. In fact, the Lagoon Pool Villas and Presidential Suite are located on a private, 11-acre island, Ile aux Chats! But this resort won't be limited to couples seeking romance. There is an extensive children's program at the Hobbit Club, so your kids will be occupied (and having a blast) while you relax on the serene lagoon beaches or indulge with a Mauritian lomi lomi massage at the spa, hovering over the waters of the lagoon. Now confirming reservations for arrival from October 1, 2008.
Just in time for the summer season, the Peninsula New York-- recipient of the AAA Five-Diamond Award for eight consecutive years-- has opened a spectacular rooftop bar and lounge. Salon de Ning offers panoramic views over 5th Avenue and the glittering skyline from Midtown Manhattan. There is an intimate interior bar with antique Chinese timber screens and eclectic art, complemented by two outdoor terraces with Chinese-style day beds. In this stunning setting, guests can sample the Asian-inspired light fare and exotic cocktails. Salon de Ning's West Terrace is also available for private events. This is the first Salon de Ning signature venue for Peninsula Hotels. Based on the fictitious tale of Madame Ning, a Shanghainese salonnière, this innovative lounge/bar concept reflects the glamour of 1930s Shanghai, the Paris of the East. Salon de Ning will open at The Peninsula Hong Kong in October 2008, and at The Peninsula Shanghai in autumn 2009.
Morocco has moved onto travelers' radar screens recently, and Marrakech is one of the year's hottest destinations. With its alluring souks, mystical gardens, ancient buildings, and heart-stopping views of the High Atlas Mountains, the fabled city makes for an exciting (and exotic) getaway. The place to stay is Amanjena, the ultra-luxury property from Amanresorts set in an oasis of palm and olive trees. Decorated with Berber carpets and the most sumptuous of furnishings, the 32 rose-colored pavilions have outdoor soaking tubs and private courtyards. There's a gorgeous swimming pool, tennis courts, a gym, spa, and two hammams. It doesn't get much better than this. That is-- unless you snag a deal like this one. From June 15- September 15, 2008, bookings of five nights or more in a Pavilion Bassin at Amanjena will be upgraded to a Pavilion Piscine (with private pool). The Pavilion Bassin goes for $1,000 a night, and the Pavilion Piscine for $1,600-- so this upgrade means some serious savings at Amanjena.
June 5, 2008
By: Madelyn Giblin
This year's Ciclo de Chefs brings five top Brazilian chefs to Ponta Dos Ganchos to give guests a taste of some of Brazil's finest cuisine. The annual event brings top chefs from around the world to guest-chef at Ponta Dos Ganchos for visitors to experience new flavors and tastes. This year's event features Carla Pernambuco on July 4th-6th (awarded Best Contemporary Cuisine in 2006); Danio Braga from July 25th -27th (whose restaurant has been awarded 3 stars in the Quatro Rodas Guide since 1982); Roberta Sudbrack on August 1st-3rd (the Brazilian Chef of the Year in 2007); Sergio Arno from August 8th-10th (elected Best Italian Cuisine Chef in Latin America); and Roland Villard from August 15th -17th (the 2008 Chef of the Year in Brazil). This year's event is sure to delight the palate!
Ponta dos Ganchos is located 40 km north of Florianopolis and South-east of Sao Paulo, situated on a small point nestled between two charming fishing villages and surrounded on 3 sides by the sea of the Emerald Coast.