October 20, 2016
By: Rachael Weir
Across the street from Hyde Park in a 1920s townhouse, The Wellesley offers an elegant Art Deco setting in the upscale Knightsbridge neighborhood. Beautifully restored, the hotel is named after Sir Arthur Wellesley, the first Duke of Wellington, who served as the Prime Minister twice between 1828 and 1834, and later served as the leader of the House of Lords. The building was originally built by architect Lesley Green as the Hyde Park Corner underground station, and is the former home of Pizza on the Park - an iconic jazz and cabaret venue.
Tranformed into a chic boutique hotel in 2012, the property offers guests a modern Art Deco setting with an exclusive location steps away from Hyde Park, Green Park, and Buckingham Palace. Guest rooms combine vintage influences with contemporary styling, including tufted headboards, crown molding, sleek wood furniture, and elegant Art Deco-inspired artwork. Carrara marble bathrooms have walk-in showers, TVs recessed into the mirrors, and exclusive Hermès Eau d’Orange Verte toiletries. Luxurious amenities and modern conveniences include integrated room controls, 24-hour butler service, and Samsung tablets. Plus, the hotel's team is known for it's impeccable knowledge and unparalleled discretion. Continue reading below the photo for our favorite experiences.
Here are five things we love about The Wellesley:
1. Complimentary Rolls-Royce drop-off service within 1.5 miles of the hotel. What better way to start a shopping trip at Harrods, Fortnum & Mason, or Harvey Nichols?
2. The Running Butler. Available during the summer months upon request, the Running Butler tends to runners' every need including waiting with refreshments, homemade protein snacks, or drawing post-run aromatic bubble baths.
3. Live at The Wellesley jazz nights. A unique Knightbridge opportunity to enjoy live Jazz in an Art Deco setting while dining on fine Italian cuisine.
4. The Private Cigar Terrace. Offering inviting leather chairs within a heated outdoor terrace, the hotel offers an extensive cigar collection to please aficionados and novices alike, plus an on-site humidor specialist to guide guests through the process.
5. Magical Christmas Memories. These packages provide guests with special amenities such as Christmas stockings and a full English breakfast. Plus, the hotel offers opulent holiday decor, and a prime location close to Hyde Park's Winter Wonderland, as well as the city's finest boutiques and department stores.
Did we mention that the hotel offers a yacht experience with the same bespoke setting? MY The Wellesley is available for private charters in the Mediterranean during the summer months, and in the Caribbean during the winter. Built in the Netherlands by Oceanco, the yacht's interiors were designed by Dennis Irvine Studios, and feature the 1920s glamour that epitomizes the hotel.
Check rates and availability at The Wellesley >>
October 18, 2016
By: Rachael Weir
Nestled amongst its own park overlooking the lake, the Baur au Lac is a historic hotel steeped in 170 years of tradition, enhanced with modern styling and state-of-the-art technical amenities. Luxurious guest rooms have modern styling, and marble bathrooms have heated floors and high end amenities. Learn more below the image.
Showcasing the finest of Swiss traditions, the hotel's on-site 1844 Chocolat offers exclusive Swiss chocolate creations using a selection of handpicked cocoa varieties. A short stroll from the Paradeplatz financial district and the celebrated shopping street of the Bahnhofstrasse, the elegant property is close to Zurich's landmark destinations, yet removed enough to offer an upscale retreat with views of the Alps. Continue reading below the photo.
The hotel's Le Hall offers a celebrated traditional afternoon tea from October to April, and the Christmas season is particularly festive with a Christmas Tree Lighting celebration, Chalet au Lac with fire tongs punch and mulled wine with Swiss dishes, and the New Year's Eve Ball ends with a fireworks display over the lake.
Five Star Alliance Perk: All guests that book the "Best Available Rate" with Five Star Alliance will receive complimentary breakfast for two at Pavillon, $100 food and beverage credit, fruit amenity, and homemade chocolate from 1844 Chocolat.
Check rates and availability at Baur au Lac >>
October 12, 2016
By: Five Star Alliance
Closed for an extensive renovation project, the Royal Mansour Casablanca, formerly Le Royal Mansour Méridien, is a luxury hotel in the Old Medina of Casablanca, Morocco. Opened in 1952, it has 7 Presidential Suites - so it is no surprise that the five star property is the preferred hotel of the Moroccan Royalty and Nobility.
Le Royal Mansour, situated centrally in the country's largest city and economic capital, is an oasis of calm. In the heart of the economic capital of the Kingdom of Morocco, it offers a palatial blend of traditional Moroccan architecture with contemporary comfort and modern technology, surrounded by deep-cushioned luxury. The hotel prides itself on its elegance, style and warmth of service, combined with luxurious amenities and excellent cuisine.
October 11, 2016
By: Rachael Weir
Situated in the heart of the city, close to the Royal Palace and National Theater, the Hotel Continental Oslo is a historic landmark hotel. Offering 155 elegant guest rooms and 23 suites, the landmark property combines Scandinavian style with contemporary trends for a welcoming and upscale feel. The hotel's famous restaurant, Theatercaféen opened in 1900, and is part of Norway's cultural history with a rich ambiance that features arched ceilings and a Nordic-inspired international menu. There's also a sidewalk cafe to enjoy during warmer months, Eik Annen Etage is an upscale dining room featuring Baroque furnishings, and Caroline serves classic European breakfasts. Continue reading below the photo.
Five Star Alliance Perk Alert: All guests making reservations with Five Star Alliance (excluding the standard room category), receive a $100 USD food and beverage credit per room and VIP status. Plus, based on availability at check-in: room upgrades, early check-in, and late check-out.
Check rates and availability at Hotel Continental Oslo >>
October 7, 2016
By: Rachael Weir
With four beautiful seasons of scenery and activities, Denver makes a great weekend getaway at any time of the year. But autumn at The Ritz-Carlton, Denver is top on our list. Offering an ultra-luxe setting in the heart of the Mile-High City, in the scenic Larimer Square, the luxury hotel is close to the Denver Convention Center, as well as boutique shops and upscale restaurants. Blending modern design with natural materials, the lobby has a breathtaking glass-blown chandelier, and guest rooms have plush interiors and spacious bathrooms with marble bathtubs. In addition to the city's natural beauty, and visiting must-see attractions like the U.S. Mint, here are two can't miss autumnal experiences at The Ritz-Carlton Denver. Read more below the photo.
1. Dining at ELWAY'S
Named after legendary Denver Bronco's hall of famer, John Elway, the hotel's signature restaurant is a six-time recipient of the Award of Excellence from Wine Spectator Magazine. Part of downtown Denver's innovative dining scene, the menu features the finest meats including ahi tuna and tender Buffalo ribeye, in an elegant dining room inspired by the American West with supple leather furnishings, wood accents, and an impressive wine wall. During football season the restaurant offers the "Game Day" Brunch Buffet with a home team-inspired spread that includes USDA prime steak & potatoes, breakfast burritos, pastries, and bottomless Bloody Mary or Mimosa options. Continue below the photo.
2. The "Flavors of Fall" package at The Ritz-Carlton Spa
Love all things pumpkin spice? Get ready to take it to the max with this pampering package. The session begins with a 50-minute aromatherapy massage, followed by a 50-minute Pumpkin Enzyme Facial. Then it's time for a Pumpkin Spice Pedicure that begins with an apple cider soak, followed by a honey sugar scrub and pumpkin spice mask for the toes. To top it off, guests are given a warm "Pumpkin Spice" cocktail to sip and savor during the experience. Read more below the photo.
Click here to check availability at The Ritz-Carlton, Denver
October 4, 2016
By: Rachael Weir
Originally built in the 13th century as a castle, then rebuilt as a hunting and fishing lodge in the 1800s, Ashford Castle was once the estate of the Guinness family, and the filming location of the classic movie, "The Quiet Man". Situated in County Mayo, the castle is one of Ireland's most luxurious hotels. The award-winning property is part of Red Carnation Hotels, offering a cinema, spa with an indoor pool, fishing, falconry, ziplining, shooting & archery, horse riding, wine tastings, luxury charters, and lake cruises on Lough Corrib. Continue below the photos.
Five Star Alliance Perk: All Five Star Alliance guests reserving the "Best Available Bed & Breakfast Rate" will receive full Irish breakfast for two daily, 85 Euro food and beverage credit, complimentary green fees, and VIP status. In addition, based on availability at check-in, room upgrades, early check-in, and late check-out.
Click here for rates and availability at Ashford Castle
October 4, 2016
By: Lucy LeTourneau
Le Nolinksi, a newly opened deluxe boutique hotel under the EVOK brand, recently opened at the spectacular location of 16 Avenue l’Opera. The hotel offers a prime location within easy walking distance to many of the sites of Paris including the Louvre Museum, which is just a five minute walk away.
The hotel, a former apartment residence, has eclectic design elements and a muted color palate of grays, blacks, and golds, with fun pops of bright colors in the hallways and elevator lobbies. There's also a “Grand Salon”, the Rejane Brasserie, indoor pool, and full service spa to round out the hotel's offerings. In addition, a deli-style food outlet is currently under construction.
The small street level lobby is intimate, and the service is top notch as the staff gets you settled in and provides a nice orientation of the property.
A Classic room facing Avenue l’Opera was our home for two nights. The room was not very large, but high ceilings and substantial entryway doors gave it a cozy residential feel. Amenities included a welcome pastry and mineral water. The retro-style Marshall music player was a nice feature. Continue reading below the photos.
Complimentary smartphones are provided to each room, and they can be taken with you outside the hotel. The phone allows for direct access to the concierge and other sightseeing services. International calling is also included - a very nice perk, especially if your own mobile phone isn't set up for international data roaming and calling.
Our stay coincided with the Grand Opening reception on September 20, 2016. The party had a “Folie” or Parisian cabaret theme which was quite the event with attendees and entertainers spilling out in the streets.
Five Star Alliance Perk: Guests that book through Five Star Alliance receive a welcome pastry or appetizer upon arrival, along with use of a smartphone with unlimited international calls and internet.
Check rates and availability at Le Nolinski Paris >>
*The content of this article is editorial content based on experience during a sponsored stay at Le Nolinski Paris.
By: Lucy LeTourneau
September 30, 2016
By: Rachael Weir
Originally built as The Colonial Apartments and Hotel in 1913, the Grande Colonial Hotel La Jolla is the California seaside town's oldest original hotel. Over the last century, the property has hosted movie stars, military personel, and guests from around the world. But do some guests never leave? Read more below.
Yes, no, maybe? Guests and staff alike have reported a variety of paranormal sightings and haunted happenings, including 2:00 AM phone calls to the front desk from occupied rooms, and the appearance of a couple in formal attire that disappears without leaving through a door or window. There's also been stories of a glowing presence in the hotel, a woman named Abigail who has appeared in rooms, played with toys, and reportedly brushed a young boy's hair. The kitchen has been the location of many stories collected over the years, with the unexplained opening and closing of kitchen doors, frying pans moving around unexpectedly, and stoves turning on and off. (Rumor has it, since the restaurant was transformed into Nine-Ten a few years ago, the happenings have quieted.) Many guests who've stayed above the bakery in the North Annex have reported the sounds of loud voices, people running down the stairs, and doors swinging open and slamming shut in the bakery--all after it has closed.
Haunted? Someone lurking in the hallways or some guests that never want to leave? You can be the judge. Continue reading below.
The Grande Colonial Hotel La Jolla underwent an extensive renovation in 2012, to celebrate it's 100th Anniversary in 2013. Today, the historic hotel offers 93 guest rooms and suites, many with ocean views, an outdoor pool, indoor and outdoor event spaces, and the award-winning Nine-Ten restaurant. Within walking distance to La Jolla's beaches, the property is a short drive from highly-regarded golf courses, and San Diego tourist attractions.
Check rates and learn more about the Grande Colonial Hotel La Jolla >>
September 27, 2016
By: Five Star Alliance
An exclusive haven for life’s perfect moments.
For those seeking a more intimate private experience, Beach Village at The Del is an exclusive enclave of cottages and villas, a resort within the resort, and portal to Southern California oceanfront luxury living. While the architecture nods to the iconic beauty of Hotel del Coronado, the 78 breezy-and-bright cottages and villas echo the beach setting and greet the modern with lavish amenities and high design. Continue reading below the photo.
A recent refresh of all guestrooms brings the warmth, hue, and magic of the outdoors inside. Neutral tones like cream, beige and sand are accented with bursts of teal to reflect the sand and sea. Swirling patterns, paisley and geometrics pay homage to the movement of light and motion of the water. Circles of abalone shells trim the window shades, sparkling and mimicking the sunlight dancing across the sea. In addition to plush beds, divine linens, the finest appliances, sunken tubs, ocean view terraces, and more, some suites feature outdoor fire pits or soaking tubs for dipping. And every villa and cottage has a full or partial ocean view of one of the most beautiful beaches in America. Continue reading below the photo.
The Beach Village Experience:
- Unparalleled oceanfront living
- Unscripted genuine service
- 3 private pools and 3 secluded spas
- Hi-tech cabanas with full service
- A private section of Del Beach with lounge chairs and umbrellas
- Underwater music at the main family pool
- Dedicated hosts who will choreograph your stay
- Exclusive access to Windsor Cottage for gourmet meals, socializing, sunset views, and fireside cocktails away from the energy of the main resort
“Dream it up and we will make it happen.” That’s the Beach Village mantra. Beach Village has welcomed dignitaries, celebrities, multi-generational families, distinguished guests and more; and the staff knows a thing or two about creating memorable moments and heart-stirring adventures—everything from a multi-generational, clambake and lobster feast on the beach or sunset sailing trip on a sleek yacht, to a private wine tasting with a top sommelier or romantic moonlit dinner for two prepared by a private chef. The Beach Village Host Concierges are committed to exceeding the expectations of every esteemed guest. Once a reservation is made, a host contacts the party (weeks ahead of their arrival) to create a custom itinerary for the guests, and fulfill any requests like stocking the villa with personal amenities and luxuries, or adding any special touches to the guestrooms or suites.
The private main pool at Beach Village is dotted with six luxurious cabanas, colorful shaded oases with lounge furniture, flat screens, refrigerators, and full service. The team from Breezes restaurant will happily deliver gourmet poolside bites like surf-n-turf nachos with carne asada and shrimp; smoked chicken and pesto flatbreads with goat cheese and arugula; or local seabass fish tacos with smoked tomato salsa and guacamole. The bartenders are schooled in the art of the cocktail and whip up tasty refreshers like watermelon pisco sours, muddled mint mojitos or coconut coolers. Continue reading below.
Once the Coronado home of socialite Wallis Spencer Simpson, the woman for whom King Edward of England abdicated his throne, Windsor Cottage is now a part of The Del legacy. Saved from demolition and placed next to the Windsor Lawn in 2000, the charming 1905 California bungalow serves as a private oceanfront retreat for Beach Village guests exclusively and a nod to the main hotel. Beach Village guests can enjoy complimentary daily breakfast, gourmet fireside dining or classic cocktails during a fiery Coronado sunset on the sprawling deck. Or when it’s time to relax, grab and book and tuck inside this cozy cottage where the Duchess of Windsor (and frequent Del guest) once lived.
Check rates and learn more about the Hotel del Coronado >>
*The content of this sponsored article was provided by Hotel del Coronado. Offers and packages are subject to change.
September 20, 2016
By: Rachael Weir
Situated on an oceanfront bluff, Cap Maison Resort and Spa is a luxury resort in Cap Estate, St. Lucia. Set amongst three acres of landscaped gardens, the property has a romantic feel with a secluded beach, and villas with private terraces, including some with pools. Popular with honeymooners and couples, the resort offers foodie events, private dining, and cooking classes. Restaurant options include Cellar Maison with wine pairing dinners, fine dining at the Cliff at Cap Restaurant, and casual dining at the Naked Fisherman Bar & Grill. Continue reading below the photo.
Five Star Alliance Perk: All guests making reservations with Five Star Alliance receive daily breakfast for two at the Cliff at Cap Restaurant, lunch for two once during stay, VIP status, and guests staying 4 or more nights get a $100 resort credit per room. Subject to availability, room upgrades, early check-in, and late check-out.
Check rates and availability at Cap Maison Resort and Spa >>