The 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 Chicago Hotel for a Family of Four?

December 18, 2014
By: Betsy LeTourneau

Waldorf Astoria Chicago
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 new 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: Can you recommend a Chicago hotel suitable for a family of 4, children ages 8 and 11? 

ANSWER: Waldorf Astoria Chicago 

Ranked the #1 US Hotel in 2014 by Conde Nast Traveler readers, the Waldorf Astoria Chicago boasts stunning interiors, expansive rooms, gracious service, and unique amenities that combine to create a travel experience like no other. The luxury hotel located in Chicago's Gold Coast neighborhood, which features exclusive shopping, dining, nightlife, and the Windy City's most famed attractions. 

Indulge in sanctuary of tranquil spa treatments, thoughtful relaxation and wellbeing at Spa & Health Club. The spa offers treatments such as facials, massages, spa gatherings and men's atelier. A lap pool adorned with thousands of mosaic titles is available for leisure or intense swims, as well as for water classes. 
Waldorf Astoria Chicago
Savor inspired American and French cuisine in captivating restaurants featuring intimate dining experience. RIA, a Michelin Two Star restaurant highlights seasonally driven menu in a sophisticated tone. While Balsan offers refined yet rustic fare with an American sensibility. Rich suede walls and classic cocktails await at Bernard’s Bar.

Luxurious accommodations at Waldorf Astoria Chicago are intended for all guests, even four-legged friends. The hotel offers family-friendly packages such as American Girl Place hotel offer.

For Your Family's Needs, We Recommend Booking:
Astor Suite (1 King) connects to Gold Coast Suite (1 king or 2 Queen)
Spanning across 915 spacious square feet of first-rate living, the Astoria King Suite is a fitting title for these exquisite living areas, as each suite with separate King bedroom overlooks the prestigious north end of the Gold Coast neighborhood. Of course, while staying in this suite, the inspired view can be enjoyed from the furnished outdoor terrace, which is located right off the parlor. Additionally, the Astoria Suite offers a fireplace, queen sleeper sofa and king-size bed. Additional enhancements include: Wireless internet access, two 42-inch high definition LCD televisions with DVR, Bowers & Wilkins virtual surround system with iPod integration, and wet bar including refrigerator, freezer and microwave. 

The 1,264 square Gold Coast 2 Queen 1 Bedroom Suite offers a fireplace, separate bedroom with two queen size beds, elegant living room with dining table and queen sleeper sofa, full master bath with a soaking tub, as well as a separate powder room. Additional enhancements include: Wireless internet access, 42-inch high definition LCD television, Bowers & Wilkins virtual surround system with iPod integration and wet bar including refrigerator, and microwave.  Accessible guest rooms all comply with current ADA regulations.

Book a stay at Waldorf Astoria Chicago >>

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.

Ziggy Stardust Hits Thompson Chicago

October 10, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Thompson Chicago
David Bowie fan? You'll want to head to Chicago's Museum of Contemporary Art. The hotel is hosting the first retrospective of the extraordinary career of David Bowie. More than 400 objects, most from the David Bowie Archive—including handwritten lyrics, original costumes, photography, set designs, album artwork, and rare performance material from the past five decades—are brought together for the first time.

So, where should you stay? Try Thompson Chicago. Located in the heart of Chicago's exclusive Gold Coast , it offers luxurious accommodations and sophisticated guest services. Right now, if you book the Five Star Alliance rate, you'll receive a complimentary upgrade based on availability.

Book your stay at Thompson Chicago >>

The Talbott Hotel Chicago Loves American Girls

August 8, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

American Girl Place
If you've got a kid obsessed with American Girl dolls, you'll want to check out the American Girl Packages at The Talbott Hotel Chicago. The hotel blends the charms of a gracious bygone era with opulent accommodations, impeccable service, and unexpected delights. The Talbott Hotel is located walking distance from Michigan Avenue and the Magnificent Mile. Built in 1927 and recently renovated, the AAA Four Diamond, European-style Talbott Hotel provides everything one expects from large, world-class brands along with everything desirable about an independent boutique hotel—streamlined check-in and check-out, top-of-the-line amenities, a welcoming staff that takes personal pride in delivering unequaled service and behind-the-scenes hotel technologies that ensure guest security and comfort. 

Located at the nearby Water Tower Place, the Chicago American Girl Place features specialty shops, private dining, and more. The in-house cafe offers brunch, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner, and parties.  Children can pose for a picture at the Photo Studio and take home a souvenir issue of American Girl® magazine with their face on the cover. Dolls can even get a makeover at the Doll Hair Salon. 

The Talbott Hotel has three different American Girl packages to choose from. 

American Girl Dream Package
With the American Girl Place Dream Package, guests wake up to breakfast in bed for two. After a long day of shopping at the Water Tower Place, children come back to the hotel and receive a personalized pink twin sized blanket. There's also guaranteed late check-out of 3pm.

American Girl Spirit Package
This package embodies everything that American Girl Place has to offer. Amenities include a personalized welcome letter, keepsake American Girl Place fold-out doll bed, access to the girl blog @ the talbott, a $15 Breakfast Credit per person at Little Market Brasserie for a maximum of two people, and one entry into the American Girl Place quarterly drawing for a doll. The two Sprinkles cupcakes and milk at turndown provides a perfect ending to a perfect stay at The Talbott Hotel. 

American Girl Imagine Package
Imagine an American Girl Place experience that will last a lifetime. The Imagine package offers everything from the Spirit package, but also includes personalized Talbott Hotel stationary,
personalized guest room keycard, six personalized photo postcards by the fireplace, and a personalized room service menu.

View rates and book an American Girl Package at The Talbott Hotel >>

Dining al Fresco: MileNorth Hotel

July 6, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

MileNorth Hotel

Visit 52EIGHTY Rooftop Lounge at MileNorth Hotel for a stunning view of the iconic Chicago skyline. Elevating 563 feet above sea level, 52EIGHTY Rooftop Lounge is an intimate and decidedly chic indoor/outdoor experience. Capping off the 29th floor and just steps away from the Magnificent Mile, the 52EIGHTY experience provides soaring skyline images of downtown Chicago on a new level. 

View rates, details, and more images of MileNorth Hotel >>

Image of the Day: The Whitehall Hotel

April 12, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

The Whitehall Hotel remains a landmark destination in Chicago, offering a very European sense of grace and grandeur. The Presidential Suite offers this terrific view of the Chicago skyline.  

The Whitehall Hotel 

View rates, details, and more images of The Whitehall Hotel >> 

Share this article:


Enroll at Peninsula Academy at The Peninsula Chicago

February 14, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

The Peninsula Chicago

Located in the center of downtown Chicago on Magnificent Mile, The Peninsula Chicago is just steps from the best shopping, dining, cultural activities and a few blocks from the business and financial district. The luxury hotel takes full advantage of its location to show guests the city, through it's innovative Peninsula Academy program. Explore architecture, art, theatre, car-racing, and neighborhood tours. Kids get their own programs as well.

Here's what's on offer at The Peninsula Chicago: 

Princess for a Day: How to be a Perfect Princess
This programme is perfect for young ladies aspiring to be a princess. A fairy tale experience awaits, complete with princess attire and tiara, a horse-drawn carriage ride to a shopping spree, and a princess etiquette class. The day culminates with Her Royal Highness receiving a visit from Prince Charming for a glass slipper fitting.

Broadway in Chicago: Exceptional Seats to Preferred Performances
Experience the best of Broadway in Chicago with VIP access to premier house seats to all performances, including sold-out shows, and a three-course dinner at the hotel.

Private Architectural Boat Cruise: River Tour of Chicago's SkyscrapersThe Peninsula Chicago Princess for a Day Program
Birthplace of the skyscraper and world-renowned architecture, there is no better place to experience Chicago’s remarkable structural design than from the Chicago River. This private river cruise will guide you through the labyrinth of the city's skyscrapers, weaving history and trivia into a modern day story, all while you and your guests enjoy a lovely lunch and beverages aboard a private yacht.

Historic Chicago Neighborhoods: Guided Cultural Tour
Discover Chicago, a city of neighbourhoods. Lifelong residents and first-time guests of the Windy City will visit notable Chicago landmarks such as Millennium Park, the Willis Tower, President Obama’s home, historic mansions on Astor Street, and the Buckingham Fountain. Take in the sights along Lake Shore Drive before heading to Chicago’s up-and-coming, trendy Wicker Park/Bucktown and other notable neighbourhoods.

Chicago Fire House Excursion: For Young Firefighters in Training
This programme is ideal for aspiring firefighters who wish to experience what it’s like to be a firefighter in an urban environment. Frequently called into action, Chicago Firefighters must be ready to respond to a variety of emergency situations. Your little ones will learn what it takes to be a firefighter in an active city setting and have the chance to tour a working firehouse.

The Peninsula Chicago Private Tours of the Art Institute of chicago

Exotic Car Adventure: From Roadway to Racetrack
Get behind the wheel of an exotic car with this exciting raceway experience! You will enjoy scenic shoreline driving and urban roadways via Chicago’s Lakeshore Drive. This two-day programme begins when you select the exotic car of your choice followed by a decadent steak dinner and a unique scotch-flight experience. The following morning at the Autobahn racetrack, you will receive exclusive one-on-one driving instruction on a closed course and have the opportunity to drive five different high-powered vehicles on an Autobahn raceway format.

Little Bakers: Pastry Class for Aspiring Chefs
This experience is perfect for youngsters who want the opportunity to get a “taste” of the Pastry Kitchen – including making marshmallows and cakes, decorating cupcakes, cookies and more.The Peninsula Chicago River Tour of the Chicago Skyline

Art Institute of Chicago: Private Tour of Revered Art Collection
Art Institute of Chicago is a national treasure, offering the country’s leading collection of impressionists’ paintings, among many other prized pieces. Experience unprecedented access to the museum’s revered collections with a customised tour tailored to the your selected art preference.

View rates, details, and more images of The Peninsula Chicago >>

Share this article:


New to Five Star Alliance: Millennium Knickerbocker Hotel

December 17, 2013
By: Five Star Alliance

Nestled at the gateway to Chicago's famed Magnificent Mile, the Millennium Knickerbocker Hotel is within walking distance of most major attractions. Just steps away from renowned Rush Street, this four-diamond Chicago hotel offers stylish accommodations with luxury amenities, modern event facilities, irresistible dining options and gracious service.

 Millennium Knickerbocker Hotel


View rates, details, and more images of Millennium Knickerbocker Hotel >>

Share this article:


Say Hello to Thompson Chicago

October 7, 2013
By: Five Star Alliance

Thompson Chicago
Thompson Chicago
made its grand debut October 1, 2013.  After a full renovation, the 247-room hotel (formerly the former Sutton Place Chicago) specializes in personalized service and presents a signature restaurant from One Off Hospitalit, six bi-level penthouse lofts, a 10,000 square foot fitness center, and a winter garden.Thompson Chicago


Thompson Chicago sits just steps from Chicago’s best shopping and an array of enticing bars and restaurants in the exclusive Gold Coast neighborhood, located at the north end of downtown Chicago.

Each accommodation features modern rain showerheads, upscale bath and spa products by REN, and robust Internet service. On-site amenities and experienced staff ensure each stay is seamless: From complimentary luxury car service to valet parking to 24-hour in-room dining, each aspect of the Thompson experience is tailored to surpass every guest's expectations.

View rates, details, and more images of Thompson Chicago >>


Share this article:


Image of the Day: Hotel Sax Chicago

August 31, 2013
By: K. Clare Johnson

The 36-foot video wall on the fourth floor of Hotel Sax Chicago can be programmed to display your choice of images.  

Hotel Sax Chicago

Nightly Fall rates at Hotel Sax Chicago start at $190 >>

Share this article:


Ease Family Travel With The James Hotel's Lil' James Program!

August 3, 2013
By: Elaine Lee

The James

The James has recently announced their launch of their property’s new children’s program: Lil’ James, available at The James Chicago Hotel, The James Royal Palm, and The James New York. An answer to all parents’ travel woes, The Lil’ James program provides kids with an array of creative activities and services as well as recommendations for family-friendly destinations during your stay. The program eliminates planning and researching for parents by doing it for them, and allowing parents to them to relax and enjoy themselves. Some of the fun activities and amenities for your young traveler on offer, include a fun welcome James back pack filled with kid-friendly healthy snacks and beverages, a wide selection of books and board games, kid-friendly dining menus, milk and cookie turndown service, Nintendo Wii games, bikes and helmets for kids, coloring kit, and much more! With these services and amenities being available on request, leaves only one thing for parents to do, making a quick call to the hotel in advance to request the Lil’ James program before your arrival!

View rates, details, and more images of The James Chicago Hotel, The James Royal Palm, and The James New York>> 

Share this article: