The 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.
Forget mildewed tents and crummy sleeping bags. Today's luxury travelers are opting for glamorous camping experiences, called "glamping" in a recent AP article. As I've oohed and ahhed about before, Four Seasons has opened a tented camp in the Golden Triangle of Thailand, where lucky guests are pampered with wifi and multi-line phones in their "tents," seductive spa services, five-course dining, and a free-form pool. Another example of this trend in "rustic luxury" travel: glamping it up at Clayoquot Wilderness Resort in British Columbia, where tents are outfitted with Persian carpets, down duvets, antique dressers, pressed-glass oil lamps, heirloom accessories, and-- in addition to wireless Internet-- a remote-controlled propane wood-stove.
Spring is in the air on Lake Geneva. The stunning Beau-Rivage Palace, one of the most beautiful palace hotels in the world, is celebrating the arrival of spring with two special packages. Overlooking Lake Geneva, this iconic landmark boasts the cutting-edge Cinq Mondes Spa, rated by Forbes as one of the most luxurious spas in the world. Escape to Switzerland and frolic in the spring temperatures. With the Spring Promotion, available from April 1-June 30, 2007, guests enjoy a fantastic daily room rate of CHF 450 (double occupancy) which includes breakfast. Or head across the pond for a pampered Easter break, where the kids will go gaga over the elaborate Easter egg hunt. From April 6-April 10, 2007, rates are as low as CHF 395 per night including breakfast.
Visit the Maroma Resort & Spa within 20 miles south of Cancun's international airport and 45 minutes from Cancun on the Mexican Caribbean, at the Riviera Maya and enjoy the 25 acres of jungle preserve this secluded, luxurious hideaway sits on.
Full daily a la carte breakfast in the resort Restaurants or Room Service
Welcome Margarita cocktail upon arrival (the famous Maroma Margarita)
High-speed internet access in all the rooms
One snorkeling trip per guest, per stay, to the world's second largest barrier reef
Round-trip airport transfers for two (private transportation can be arranged at additional cost)
Use of fitness center
Keep in mind (whether you have children or avoid them), that no children under 12 are allowed at the property year round, and between January 1 to April 30 and December 22 to 31, no children under 16 are allowed on property.
The Octagon Bar has been a favorite Dublin watering hole throughout the hotel's 15 year history. After all, this joint belongs to Bono and The Edge of U2. (They purchased the hotel in 1992 and restored it into the city's premier boutique hotel. The Clarence is now on Conde Nast's Gold List. It's got the U2 stamp all over it.) The hotel's chic bar, which features an octagon-shaped dome, is adored by both locals and visitors. The award-winning cocktails are flavorful and fun, and run the gamut from Bubbly to Clarence Cocktails. (Highly-recommended: the apple strudel martini.) Of course there are plenty of tasty nibbles to accompany the libations.
As featured in Vogue magazine, the twelfth century Castello di Vicarello is a hidden gem nestled within olive groves, lavender fields, and vineyards in Maremma, the heart of Tuscany. Travel like royalty and discover this magical retreat. For the ultimate in privacy, there are only five suites, distinguished by thick stone walls and wood beams, and furnished with antiques and art from the owner's extensive travels. The property features two infinity edge pools, orchards cultivated since Roman times, and beautiful gardens from where vegetables are picked for exquisite meals. (Most of the food is grown on the grounds, following strict organic guidelines.) At Castello di Vicarello, enjoy traditional Tuscan fare with only the best and freshest ingredients.
"I have a hobby. I have the world's largest collection of sea shells. I keep it scattered on beaches all over the world. Maybe you've seen some of it." - Steven Wright Coastal Living Magazine has come up with their list of the top 10 shelling beaches in North America - "Winter storms stir up a bounty of prize specimens. Here's where to hunt." See if you agree with their assesment:1. Sanibel Island, Florida2. Ocracoke Island, North Carolina3. Bandon, Oregon4. Galveston, Texas5. Tunnels Beach, Kauai, Hawaii6. Flag Ponds Nature Park, Lusby, Maryland7. Cumberland Island National Seashore, Georgia8. Eleuthera Island, The Bahamas9. Great Peconic Bay, Long Island, New York10. Stinson Beach, California
Read more about each location over at Coastal Living or leave us your own thoughts below.
Charleston Place, the stunning Orient-Express property located at 205 Meeting Street in historic Charleston, is easily one of the world's finest hotels. Elegant guest rooms and warm Southern hospitality evoke the ambience of a private residence straight out of the Old World. Consistently ranked in the "Top 10 Hotels in North America" by Conde Nast Traveler, Charleston Place offers the sumptuous European-style Spa, clay tennis court, heated horizon edged swimming pool, and the Charleston Grill, one of the best restaurants in the country. And now Charleston Place has devised a special value-added package for business travelers. Amenities include complimentary Continental breakfast in the Palmetto Cafe or through in-room dining, local phone calls and long-distance access, valet parking, shoe shine, daily newspaper, and business center services including faxing, copying, and use of on-site personal computers and clerical support. The package, with deluxe accommodations for Sunday through Thursday night stays, is available for $378 per night. Subject to availability.
Going to Seoul? Without a doubt, the place to stay is the W Hotel Seoul-Walkerhill. Located on the slope of Mount Acha overlooking the Han river, W Seoul is only 15 minutes from the bustling financial and business district, yet a world away in a natural paradise of 180 acres of parkland. Listed on the Conde Nast Hot List in 2005, the W Seoul-Walkerhill is a sight to behold. In addition to the chic accommodations (with bathrooms guaranteed to wow), the hotel features truly world-class facilities. Gorgeous indoor pool (with sweeping city views), a Turkish Hammam and legendary spa treatments at Away Spa, the first of its kind in Seoul. Golf driving range. Two kilometer jogging course, located on the hotel grounds, which winds through the mountain forest. Two outdoor asphalt tennis courts equipped for nighttime play. Full-service fitness facility. And the best part of all? Airport pick-up in the exclusive Red Jaguar XJ, specially made for W Seoul-Walkerhill.
The Hay-Adams is almost exactly a mile from the Cherry Blossoms at the Tidal Basin and on the walk over you'd get to pass 1) The White House, 2) Old Executive Office Building, 3) Washington Monument and 4) The National World War II Memorial. This year, the predicted peak bloom will be April 4th (although they start to bloom around March 30th).The Hay-Adams "Cherry Blossom Package" includes a minimum of 2 nights, Cherry Blossom Fesitval information, a special amenity, and complimentary parking (normally $35.84 per night with the valet). Rates start at $369 for the package and will sell out quickly (check real-time availability here).
Other packages available to welcome back spring to the area include "Spring Break" (low rates, breakfast and accommodations) and the "Sake Dinner Package" (five-course Asian influenced dinner, 5 different Japanese sake, breakfast, free parking, and of course the room).
If you live in the area or are visiting and not staying at the Hay-Adams (shame on you) but want to partake in the "Sake Dinner" the night before the Cherry Blossom Parade and Festival, the cost for two is $150 plus tax and gratuity. Call the Lafayette Room at 202-220-4853 to make reservations - 6:30 pm Reception, 7:30 pm Dinner.