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.

Ritz-Carlton Lake Tahoe Tees Up Its Golf Experience

August 12, 2016
By: Five Star Alliance

The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe is offering its guests a new luxury golf experience. The ultra-plush mountainside resort has a 17,000-square-foot slope-side spa, multiple fine dining options, outdoor adventures led by the Tahoe Adventure Company, and evening "Art of the S'more" fire pit experiences. Read more below about the High Sierra Golf Experience from our sister publication, Luxury Travel Advisor, written by Bob Curley

The Ritz-Carlton Lake Tahoe is bringing back a luxury golf experience for clients who think a weekend on the links should be about more than a caddy and a cart.

High Sierra Golf Experience at The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe

The High Sierra Golf Experience includes accommodations, two rounds of golf at the resort’s Gray’s Crossing or Old Greenwood courses, and the services of the resort’s Mountain Concierge, which include golf-club storage and booking tee times. The concierge can even steer golfers to other links in the area once they’ve played through the two featured courses.

Old Greenwood is an 18-hole, par-72 course designed by Jack Nicklaus, while Gray’s Crossing is a par-72 Audubon International Gold Signature Sanctuary course, designed by Peter Jacobsen and Jim Hardy to blend in harmoniously with the local environment. Both are set amid mountain pine forests in North Lake Tahoe; in fact, the two courses are right across the street from each other, while the Ritz-Carlton is located at the Northstar ski area, about 15 minutes away.

Package choices at the 170-room resort include deluxe king and deluxe two-queen rooms, mountain-view kings, mountain-view two queen rooms, and one-bedroom suites. Rooms have floor-to-ceiling windows to let in the summer sun, and gas fireplaces to take the chill off the mountain evenings. The resort features a 17,000-square-foot spa and five dining venues, from the Manzanita restaurant to the laid-back Backyard Bar & BBQ. In addition to golf, optional summer activities include mountain biking, private guided hikes, kayaking and stand-up paddle boarding on Lake Tahoe, yoga, and a winemaker dinner series. Read more below.

Suite at The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe

The package is good through Sept. 30 and starts at $599 per night.

Check rates at The Ritz-Carlton Lake Tahoe >>


Five Star Perks at Cheval Blanc Saint-Barth

August 12, 2016
By: Rachael Weir

Set along Flamands Beach, one of the prettiest stretches of beach on St. Barthélemy, Cheval Blanc St. Barth Isle de France is a luxury boutique hotel in the Caribbean. Combining French and St. Barth's style, the resort offers La Case de L'Isle - an al fresco restaurant along the beach specializing in locally-inspired French cuisine, the Cheval Blanc Spa with outdoor treatment pavillions, children's programs, and tailor-made island experiences.

Five Star Alliance Perk: All guests that book through Five Star Alliance receive complimentary continental breakfast for two daily, and a 50 Euro food and beverage credit per stay. Also, based on availability at the time of check-in/departure, an upgrade, early check-in, and late check-out.

Check rates and escape to Cheval Blanc St. Barth Isle de France >>

Main Pool at the Cheval Blanc St. Barth Isle de France




Chesterfield Mayfair's Charlie and the Afternoon Tea Service

August 11, 2016
By: Five Star Alliance

Just off Berkeley Square in an exclusive neighborhood close to the Bond Street designer boutiques, The Chesterfield Mayfair offers regency style and an elegant setting. For a limited time, the hotel's Butlers Restaurant is offering the "Charlie and the Afternoon Tea" service, which features a whimsical and sweet twist to traditional afternoon tea. Read more below from our sister publication, Luxury Travel Advisor.

Candy lovers are in for a sweet treat at The Chesterfield Mayfair Hotel thanks to the launch of their new afternoon tea, inspired by the Roald Dahl beloved classic "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory". Piled high with Wonka Bars, Everlasting Gobstoppers and even golden tickets, Charlie and the Afternoon Tea transports guests from London to Wonka’s very own Chocolate Factory.

Other indulgences guests can snack on include Oompa Loompa cupcakes, Golden Eggs, blueberry macaroons, Fizzy Lifting cake, chocolate chip scones and fruit scones served with clotted cream and jam.

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Tea at the Chesterfield Mayfair

Along with the treats come savory finger sandwiches and a golden ticket, granting each guest the opportunity to win prizes ranging anywhere from a two-night weekend stay in a Junior Sweet to complimentary magnums of Champagne. Every ticket is a guaranteed win, but keeping with the mystery and tradition of the Factory, tickets may only be opened on the guests’ next trip to the hotel.

And if you and your sweetie are still craving more after your time at the Chesterfield, we suggest a trip to "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory", the stage musical, now playing at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane, having opened this June.

The tea, held at Butlers Restaurant, is available through September.

Learn more about The Chesterfield Mayfair >>



Escape to Viceroy Bali in a Private Villa

August 10, 2016
By: Rachael Weir

Bali is a true tropical paradise, and the Viceroy Bali takes the meaning of a romantic hideaway to a new level. The all-villa property offers 25 private villas each with their own heated pools, luxurious Balinese furnishings including island-produced natural bath products, and views of the Valley of the Kings. Read more below.

Villa with a private pool at the Viceroy Bali

Villa at the Viceroy Bali

The resort's award-winning CasCades Restaurant offers an idyllic, poolside fine dining experience with a menu that combines contemporary French cuisine with exotic Asian flavours. Plus, a one-of-a-kind setting overlooking the Petanu River Gorge, and an extensive wine menu for a truly memorable evening.

CasCades Restaurant at Viceroy Bali

To end the night, the Viceroy Bar offers artfully served cocktails, unbeatable views, and an extensive selection of fine wines and spirits from around the world. Continue reading below.

Viceroy Bar at the Viceroy Bali

To recover from the long journey, or to feel truly pampered, the Lembah Spa offers a calm and soothing tropical open-air environment. Guests can choose from a variety of treatments created by a certified Swiss therapist, that combine traditional Balinese wellness techniques with Western knowledge and natural products. 

Lembah Spa at the Viceroy Bali

Check rates and plan your escape to Viceroy Bali >>




Five Star Alliance Partners with Signature Travel Network

August 9, 2016
By: Five Star Alliance

WASHINGTON, DC ─ Five Star Alliance, the leading site for luxury hotel recommendations and reservations, has recently partnered with leading luxury consortia Signature Travel Network.

Through this partnership, Five Star Alliance will tap into Signature's collection of member hotels and resorts worldwide to enhance the "Five Star Alliance Perks" program, which offers clients added value amenities to their bookings. Examples include breakfast for two daily, a dining or resort credit, spa credits, complimentary round of golf, airport transfers, in-room/welcome gifts, VIP welcome and more.

Courtney W. May, General Manager of Five Star Alliance, said the partnership is a key strategic move for the brand.  

"We are delighted to collaborate on this advantageous endeavor with Signature Travel Network," said May. "As one of the strongest luxury communities in the marketplace, the pairing of our two luxury brands together will help us offer greater travel opportunities around the world to our discerning audience of travelers - including new cruise and tour packages."

Signature Travel Network is a member-owned cooperative comprised of the travel industry's leading retail agencies representing more than 6,000 professional travel consultants — and generating more than $7 Billion in annual sales.

Part of the Questex Travel Group, Five Star Alliance launched in 2005 as the leader in luxury hotel and resort recommendations worldwide and offers a comprehensive editorial listing of reviews, rates, reservations at more than 3,000 luxury hotels and resorts worldwide. 

August 2016

Signature Travel Network

Relaxing Retreat At The Umstead

August 8, 2016
By: Rachael Weir

Nestled amongst the Carolina Pines just a few miles from Raleigh-Durham International Airport, The Umstead Hotel and Spa offers a peaceful retreat-like setting. Surrounded by 12 acres of wooded land, with gardens, fine art, and a shimmering lake encircled with a trail, the property feels worlds away from it all, yet it's just minutes away from the Triangle.

Five Star Alliance was invited to visit The Umstead Hotel and Spa to discover all the property has to offer. Read more below.

Exterior of The Umstead

Walking into the entrance, we were greeted by friendly doormen, along with a soothing lobby featuring a view of an exquisite piece of art by glass artist, Dale Chihuly, piano music, and sunshine flowing in from the hotel's expansive patio. 

Dale Chihuly Sculpture at the Umstead Hotel

Our spacious spa-inspired guest rooms offered a peaceful setting with large windows, plush beds with fluffy goosedown comforters, and a neutral color palette. The large marble bathrooms have soaking tubs complete with a bath caddy and bath salts, separate showers, and an array of Lather bath products, plus a special black towel designated for makeup removal. Continue reading below the guest room images.

Guest Room at The Umstead Hotel

Bathroom at the Umstead Hotel

Bath caddy and makeup towel at the Umstead

The Umstead Spa is an ideal setting for relaxing and melting away the stresses of daily life. Featuring a variety of massages, skin treatments, the air is filled with soothing botanical fragrances and soft music. Visitors are provided with a plush robe, along with access to separate men's and women's relaxation lounges with therapeutic whirlpools, eucalyptus saunas and steam rooms, and an outdoor meditation courtyard. There are teas and fruit-infused waters, along with cool towels and cucumber slices to add to the overall rejuvenating environment. Plus, a boutique filled with pampering products to add to one's spa experience.

Lake at the Umstead HotelSurrounded by trees and overlooking a 3-acre lake, the Umstead offers a retreat-like feel with manicured gardens and a lakeside 1/4-mile walking/jogging trail. There are bicycles, helmets, and trail maps available to explore the trails around the property leading to the William B. Umstead State Park. For added relaxation, the hotel's outdoor swimming pool is set amongst the serene setting with large sundeck, lounge chairs, cabanas, and poolside food and beverage service. 

Pool Deck at the Umstead Hotel

For an elegant dining experience, Herons, the hotel's signature Forbes Five Star, AAA Five Diamond restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch, dinner and weekend brunch. On select days, afternoon tea service is served in the lounge area along with a harp serenade. If you're looking for casual dining, there's an outdoor patio overlooking the gardens and lake. During the evenings, there is live music and crafted cocktails in the bar & lounge - an ideal spot to sip and reminisce about the day's events. Feeling like staying in? We recommend room service.

Tip: Be sure to inquire with the concierge about morning yoga, bike, and art tours as the property offers a variety of events for guests.

On a side note, we noticed the hotel is very pet-friendly, with special accommodations for canine guests and the DogWoods enclosed play area. 

Check rates and plan your relaxing retreat at The Umstead Hotel and Spa >>

The Umstead Hotel




Screening Suite at W London Leicester Square

August 6, 2016
By: Rachael Weir

Watch in-room movies like never before within the Screening Suite at the W London Leicester Square. This unique and seductive space offers a private bedroom cinema with a Sony 3D HD video projection system, 3-meter screen, ambiant ceiling lighting, in-bed movement system, media hub with surround sound, and open movie pass. (Read more below)

The Bedroom in the Screening Suite of the W London Leicester Square

When you're not lounging in bed watching movies, you can relax in the suite's contemporary spa-inspired bathroom which includes a deep-soaking tub, separate steam shower, and Bliss bath products. Plus, plush robes and slippers to add to the overall spa-like feel. (Continue reading below the photos.)

W London Leicester Square Screening Suite Spa Bathroom

W London Leicester Square

If you're ready to hit the town, the hotel's designer wardrobe room service can assist you with just the right look for exploring London in style.

The W London Leicester Square is 192-room contemporary boutique hotel in London's West End. Steps away from the city's theater and entertainment hub, the property is ideally located for exploring London's cultural scene.

Check rates and learn more about the W London Leicester Square >>


Explore the National Parks at Enchantment Resort

August 4, 2016
By: Five Star Alliance

In honor of the U.S. National Parks 100th Anniversary, the Enchantment Resort is offering an “Over-the-Top Grand Canyon Adventure Package”, which includes a private helicopter ride for four people from the resort to the Grand Canyon. Ideal for families, the Sedona Resort is surrounded by natural vermillion-colored rock formations, with hiking trails, Camp Coyote kid's club, Mii amo spa, outdoor swimming pool, golf, and tennis. Read more below about this special package from our sister publication, Luxury Travel Advisor, written by Ruthanne Terrero.

Enchantment Resort and Mii Amo Spa

A Southwest getaway for the family should include active experiences plus some quality downtime. We say Enchantment Resort in Sedona might just fit the bill, especially with the program it's created for the 100th anniversary of the National Parks Service. The “Over-the-Top Grand Canyon Adventure Package” provides for a private helicopter ride for four people to take a flight from Sedona to the Grand Canyon. When it's time to come home, a clay wrap spa treatment is included, at Enchantment's sister property, Mii amo. Which room works best for families? We're thinking it's the two-bedroom “Full Hacienda Suite,” which has a living room (think high ceilings and a fireplace) with two queen pull-down beds. If a family member likes to barbecue, a nice big deck has a built-in grill and lots of seating for the family to sit around and critique the cook. There's a kitchen inside as well and a dining room area for six. There's no arguing over who gets the best bedroom since both are masters (some with king beds, some with two queens, just ask). All told, there are plenty of private bathrooms for all, including one off the living room.

Enchantment Resort and Mii Amo Spa

Enchantment, a member of Preferred Hotels & Resorts, has a program for children ages four to 12, which provides nature walks, pottery classes, star gazing, scavenger hunts, cooking classes and yoga. Older children and teens can also participate in tennis camp clinics. They can also take a Pink Jeep tour and visit Native American ruins in the area.

Family Dining Tip: Enchantment has two restaurants. Tii Gavo has a more casual Southwestern vibe while Che-Ah-Chi is the fine-dining venue. Reservations can be made at any time for either, but do know that both have great views of the red rock canyon. We suggest making reservations at least two weeks out for a window seat or outdoor table for optimal views. 

Enchantment Resort and Mii Amo Spa

Good to know: Families sometimes want to relax and not worry about disturbing guests around them, so, we suggest a private room at Che-Ah-Chi for parties of six to 12. Another fun option is to request in-room dining served on your private patio. Enchantment has plenty of other venues for larger groups.

Tip: Spring and summer are peak seasons at Enchantment Resort, so management recommends booking six to 12 months in advance.

Check rates and learn more about Enchantment Resort and Mii Amo Spa>>

Enchantment Resort and Mii Amo Spa




Grande Colonial La Jolla's NINE-TEN Restaurant

August 3, 2016
By: Five Star Alliance

Sponsored Post*

NINE-TEN Restaurant at the Grande Colonial Hotel La Jolla

NINE-TEN Restaurant, located at the landmark Grande Colonial Hotel in La Jolla, California, was recognized by the California Restaurant Association with "San Diego's Best Hotel Fine Dining Restaurant Award". This is the seventh consecutive win for NINE-TEN, recognizing the restaurant's excellence in Evolving California Cuisine. Celebrating more than a decade of service, NINE-TEN offers the perfect combination of sophistication and casual elegance. Diners enjoy the best of the harvest from local farmers, where produce is selected daily for the restaurant's farm-to-table menus.

Click here to visit the NINE-TEN Restaurant website >>

Welcoming guests since 1913, The Grande Colonial Hotel is a 93-room historic hotel overlooking the Pacific Ocean. One-block from the beach, the property offers can outdoor pool, meeting space, and the award-winning NINE-TEN Restaurant featuring a Wine Spectator-recognized wine list.

Check rates and learn more about the the Grande Colonial Hotel La Jolla >>

Grande Colonial Hotel

*The content of this sponsored article was provided by Grande Colonial Hotel. 


Savor Life Slowly at SLS South Beach

August 3, 2016
By: Five Star Alliance

Sponsored Post*

Savor Life Slowly at SLS South Beach. Indulge your senses at The Bazaar by José Andrés, featuring a vibrant mix of sophisticated cuisine and a playful indoor-outdoor environment. The Bazaar menu blends Andrés' Spanish heritage, tradition and ingenuity with influences from South Beach's local Latin flavors. Read more below.

Bazaar by Jose Andres at SLS South Beach

Katsuya South Beach infuses traditional Japanese cuisine with a provocative twist as Master Sushi Chef Katsuya Uechi unleashes his culinary artistry with a menu of innovative sushi and robata dishes uniquely adapted for the American palate. For the perfect nightcap, Bar Centro by José Andrés is where cocktails become adventurous undertakings with a variety of fresh herbs, fruits, and vegetables, as well as modern tools of liquid nitrogen and organic emulsifiers to create Manhattans with liquid cherries and margaritas with salt air that accompany delightful selections of caviar and Andrés' signature snacks. Continue reading below.

Katsuya at the SLS South Beach

Click here to visit the SLS South Beach website >>

Set in the heart of South Beach, the SLS Hotel combines impeccable design, imaginative dining, and a luxurious atmosphere with an outdoor pool that transforms into a chic evening lounge. Offering direct beach access and city views, the high-style property is steps away from upscale boutiques, dining and nightlife.

Five Star Alliance Perk: Guest that book through Five Star Alliance receive a $50.00 resort credit during their stay.  

Check rates and learn more about the SLS South Beach >> 

SLS South Beach

Guest room at the SLS South Beach

*The content of this sponsored article was provided by the SLS South Beach.