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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.

Condé Nast Traveler Hot List 2012: Jumeirah Zabeel Saray

By: Christopher Roney

Conde Nast Traveler, purveyor of fine hotel reviews and travel advice, has just released its 2012 edition of the Hot List, a list of hotels that are setting the hotel world aflame with fresh designs and new concepts, or maybe just a solid new look at classic luxury. 41 reporters embedded themselves anonymously in hotels across the globe to review their targets. What results is a list of 121 hotels around the world that are so on fire they should be put on your watch list, just in case they end up burning down.

 The Jumeirah Zabeel Saray is a 405-room beach hotel built to look like an imperial palace, and it's very much exactly what you imagine when you think of the opulent luxury of Dubai. In most other places, a luxury palace hotel would be converted from an old royal residence, but at the Jumeirah Zabeel Saray, it was built just to evoke that measure of royalty. It's covered in silks and gilted furnishings, and its marble tubs are the size of a room in some smaller hotels. It has spared no expense and very much wants you to know that. The Talise Ottoman Spa and numerous fine dining establishments ensure that you never have to leave the premises unless you'd like to. The Jumeirah Zabeel Saray is one of the first in a flurry of constructed resorts on its man-made island, and it's doing its best to establish itself as the favorite before the others encroach on its territory.

New Dubai Hotel Announced to be Under the Sea

By: Oksana Balytsky

Sebastian certainly sang it best, and we’re taking it from him that ‘under the sea, darling it’s better down where it’s wetter.’ It has been announced that an underwater hotel is to be built off the coast of Dubai. This extremely unique hotel concept has not yet been confirmed, but we’re crossing our fingers that it’ll get built. Designed by Deep Ocean Technology, the ‘Water Discus Hotel’ would have 2 discs comprising the main part of the hotel, and it would be connected by 3 vertical shafts and another shaft that would hold the elevator and stairs. One disc would rise above the water while the other would be fully submerged. The disc above water would have the lobby, restaurant, spa, and pools, and the disc below water would have 21 luxurious rooms and a bar. We’ll certainly keep you updated on any development on this new hotel concept, but in the meantime, be sure to check out the various 5 star properties located in Dubai!

Photo courtesy of HotelChatter

Condé Nast Traveler Gold List 2012: Armani Hotel Dubai

By: Oksana Balytsky

We understand that no one aims to come in second place; there is no recognition for mediocrity. We at Five Star Alliance understand better than anyone the importance of offering the most luxurious resorts in the world, so we notice what’s going on in the industry, and it matters to us, because it matters to you. We work hard to offer you the best in the industry, and we’d like to welcome you to our second blog series where we feature the best and most luxurious resorts in the world. But don’t take our word for it. These resorts have been recognized as the best in the business and have made the prestigious Condé Nast Traveler Gold List 2012.

The Condé Nast Traveler Gold List 2012 is the eighth of their annual lists, and the hotels chosen by their team of editors and experts are the best for service, food, location, rooms, leisure facilities, ambiance and design.

The Armani Hotel Dubai is featured on the Gold List 2012: Best for rooms. This luxury hotel soars high above downtown Dubai in the beautiful Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest tower. This is the first hotel designed and developed by Giorgio Armani, and it reflects the pure elegance, simplicity, and comfort that define Armani’s signature style. Every detail in the hotel’s 160 luxurious rooms bears the Armani signature, from the Italian-style hospitality to stone floors to the zebrawood panels. Every guest is appointed a Lifestyle Manager to guide him/her around the hotel’s impressive facilities including a nightclub, 7 restaurants, a spa, and several boutiques.

Check rates, availability, photos and more at the Armani Hotel Dubai here!

Dubai is Getting 3 New Hotels in 2017!

By: Oksana Balytsky

The luxury hotel market is going to get a makeover in Dubai, with a brand new W, Westin, and St. Regis coming in 2017. All three of these luxury hotels will be built in the same complex, a one million square foot property, with 1,675 rooms in total! Each of the hotels will share the same name, ‘Sheikh Zayed Road,’ and they will all have distinguished characteristics that represent their individual brand. The complex will also have an ‘entertainment theatre’ and a tranquil and beautiful 500,000 square foot landscaped garden. We will certainly be following the progress and further developments of these luxurious properties, but if you can’t wait until 2017, then be sure to check out the other phenomenal properties available in Dubai!

Photo of the Burj Al Arab in Dubai

It's Business Time: Jumeirah Emirates Towers Best Business Hotel Dubai

By: Christopher Roney

There's a very interesting split in the travel industry between business and leisure travelers. And if you're one of the business types, you know well that you're on the road constantly and the things that matter to you, travel convenience, efficiency, and connectivity, are almost the opposite of what a leisure traveler might want. If the word 'secluded' ever appeared in a hotel description, you'd cross it off the list immediately. So I'm here to use some adjectives you might appreciate hearing in describing some of the world's best business hotels. Today? Dubai.

In a city filled with tower hotels, stretching upward as if to be the first to reach the heavens, one stands out from the rest as a place for the businessman who finds himself in the world's aspiring international mecca of finance. The Jumeirah Emirates Towers spear the sky in the center of the city's bustling business district and serves an architectural marker for the city's great success. Two towers, side-by-side, serve as a dual home for offices and residences, everything the traveling businessman needs, connected by a central shopping podium.

The rooms and services of the hotel are also tailored specifically with the international businessman in mind. Even the standard rooms of the Jumeirah Emirates come with an IT workstation, including 24-hour tech support. An entire floor is reserved specially for female travelers who are looking for a more private, comfortable atmosphere, and rooms there come standard with a cosmetics fridge, in-room yoga mat, and a line of Chopard products. Fine dining is available on-site, and due to the great variety of options in its 15 restaurants, lounges, and bars, you'll never have to travel far for an exquisite meal. Next time you're heading to Dubai to close a business deal, look to The Jumeirah Emirates Towers as the premiere place to stay.

Hotels with an Edge: Burj Al Arab in Dubai

By: Oksana Balytsky

In today’s competitive world, everyone needs a way to stand out from the crowd. Luxury hotels certainly are no different and are always looking for ways to outshine their competitors and attract more visitors. We understand that our travelers look for the best of the best, and we would like to introduce you to our blog series, Hotels with an Edge. We’ll be highlighting and featuring a few hotels we feel truly stand out and offer their guests more than is expected. Be sure to check in with us to explore various hotels that deserve recognition for their supreme levels of luxury.

Today’s featured hotel is the Burj Al Arab located in Dubai. This luxury hotel has received a significant amount of recognition and has quickly become one of the most famous luxury hotels and one of the most photographed structures in the world. Its unique architectural design has caught the eyes of travelers, making it easily distinguished from all other hotel properties. It is designed to resemble a wafting sail; this all-suite luxury hotel soars 321 meters and dominates the Dubai skyline. It is illuminated at night by choreographed lighting representing water and fire, and it has a private beachfront, opportunities to embark on a desert safari, and some rooms offering phenomenal views of the Arabian Sea.

Explore this luxury hotel and make your reservations here! Be sure to keep up with our blog series for a little inspiration on where to stay next!

Hotels with an Edge: JW Marriott Marquis Dubai

By: Oksana Balytsky

In today’s competitive world, everyone needs a way to stand out from the crowd. Luxury hotels certainly are not any different and are always looking for ways to outshine their competitors and attract more visitors. We understand that our travelers look for the best of the best, and we would like to introduce you to our blog series, Hotels with an Edge. We’ll be highlighting and featuring a few hotels we feel truly stand out and offer their guests more than is expected. Be sure to check in with us to explore various hotels that deserve recognition for their supreme levels of luxury.

Our second featured hotel is the soon-to-be tallest hotel in the world, the JW Marriott Marquis Dubai. The Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong is to relinquish its tallest hotel crown and take the seat behind this new property in Dubai. The JW Marriott Marquis Dubai has announced that its two towers will stand 1,164 feet tall, and it will offer 1,608 rooms. Unlike other exceptionally tall hotels, this property will be dedicated to hotel operations only. It will offer 9 restaurants, 5 lounges, a 16,000 square foot spa, 24 meeting rooms, private event space, and more.  This hotel is scheduled to open in two phases starting in October, and it will have 804 rooms ready for guests. If you can’t wait until then, check out the other luxurious properties we have in Dubai!

Missed our first feature, the current tallest hotel in the world? Check it out here! Be sure to keep up with our blog series for a little inspiration on where to stay next!

A look into the presidential suite; photo courtesy of HotelChatter

Uniquely Suited: Armani Hotel Dubai

By: Christopher Roney

Here at Five Star Alliance, we have a number of superlative hotels, in a very literal sense of the word.  The Armani Hotel Dubai's claim to fame is that, as the name suggests, it is the very first hotel designed by the world famous Giorgio Armani.  Epitomizing the stylistic elegance of the fine suits the same Armani is well known for, the hotel is sleek, modern, minimal, and luxurious.  It's hotel that feels comfortable in its clothes, and it knows it.  From the Eramosa stone floors to the zebrawood panelling, you'll find the Armani brings a unique understanding of unorthodox pairings that somehow feel natural together.  

While you're there, enjoy any one of eight restaurants and relax in a 12,000 sq ft spa whose thermal suites will melt the tension in your muscles like the chocolate from the Armani/Dolci sweets store will melt in your mouth.  

Of special note is the personally designed Armani Dubai Suite with breathtaking views of the Arabian Gulf from your 390 sqm. space 39 floors above the streets below.  Two bedrooms, a spacious living room, and a bathroom with separate shower and bathtub are all uniquely laid out to maximize luxury, and that's not even to mention the full-service bar and pantry.  

The Armani Hotel Dubai is sleek, stylized, and hip and makes every effort to tailor your stay to the exact fit.  In a city made of luxury, the Armani somehow manages to stand out from the crowd, and that's certainly worth a second look.

The Top 20 Hotels in 2011: #8 Atlantis the Palm Dubai

By: Five Star Alliance

In the final days of 2011, Five Star Alliance is counting down the Top 20 Luxury Hotels & Resorts Atlantis the Palm DubaiWorldwide, as decided by our guests.

In the #8 spot, we have the Atlantis the Palm Dubai, an aquatic Dubai resort.

Quick facts about the Atlantis the Palm Dubai:

- The entire Atlantis is built around an oceanic tribute to a mythological age where sharks and dolphins roam the seas and Poseidon invites guests to enter his realm of aquatic beauty.

- On the coastline of the largest man-made island in the world, Atlantis the Palm is surrounded by the sea of the Arabian Gulf at the very tip of the palm island crescent.

- With over 1,500 rooms and suites available and 16 restaurants, the sprawling Atlantis never lacks for entertainment, fueled by 15 million gallons of salt and freshwater attractions.

Atlantis the Palm Dubai- Aquaventure, the waterpark, includes a 30-meter ziggurat that sends swimmers down waterslides that pass through shark-infested waters (with glass safely in between, don't worry).  

- Its pool/aquatic experience came up #2 on our list of the Ten Best Hotel Pools in the World, and here's what we had to say about it:

'Atlantis the Palm Dubai may just be the best thing ever. If you got all the things together in one place, and made me pick, I’d say, “I want that thing. It looks like the best thing.” So what is this thing I’m so excited about? Well, it just might be a standard luxurious hotel pool, only it’s attached to a full water park! I don’t bandy about with exclamation points lightly, but this seems to be worth one. If you, like me, have ever thought, “wow, this vacation is really relaxing, but what I’d really like is to go launching out of a ziggurat at high speeds into a pool of water,” then this is the destination for you. And even more than that, much of the hotel is themed around this aquatic experience. There are underwater mazes, a four-and-a-half hectare dolphin habitat, and something they just call Aquaventure.'

- Atlantis the Palm even includes a specialized kids program through the Atlantis Kids Club and Club Rush, where your children can go to enjoy the aquatics either with their parents or supervised by specialized Atlantis staff, so you can enjoy some more adult vacation time.

View photos, learn more about the hotel, and check availability at the Atlantis the Palm Dubai >>

Be sure to keep up with our countdown as we spotlight a new hotel every day until the New Year!

Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates Bakes 800 Loaves of Christmas Stollen for Charity

By: Mary Winston Nicklin

Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates, christmas stollenNow that's a lot of Christmas stollen. The chefs at the Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates have been hard at work preparing for the 6th Annual Stollen Charity Cake Sale which will take place on Friday, December 9th at the Mall of the Emirates' Galleria. They've been churning out loaf after loaf of the German yuletide cake- just check out the photo! The fundraiser will benefit the children of the Dubai Center for Special Needs. Buy a morsel of stollen for AED 5, or an entire loaf for AED 100, and revel in the charitable spirit of the festive season. There will be all kinds of fun and games for kids, to boot. Try face painting, music, and a special appearance by Santa Claus. Shop til you drop in the Mall of the Emirates, one of Dubai's landmark retail destinations, or hit the slopes- in the middle of the desert! The Kempinski is the only hotel with direct views onto Ski Dubai-- a unique indoor ski destination with five different runs and a 3,000 square-meter Snow Park featuring a snow cavern. When you tire of the snow, hit the hotel's infinity pool to bronze in the sunshine.

Photo via Facebook