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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.

New to Five Star Alliance: Grace Marrakech

March 30, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Grace Marrakech is a haven of exquisite taste with a unique aura. This luxury boutique hotel in Marrakech, due to open in summer 2014, brings out the true "art-de-vivre" of Morocco - its hospitality, the warmth of its people, as well as the beauty and variety of its landscapes. Grace Marrakech is for those who seek a luxury hotel in Morocco that is an escape into a rural retreat with easy access to the vibrant culture, nightlife and entertainment that Marrakech is famous for. Grace Marrakech harmoniously embraces: urban and rural; body and soul; luxury and authenticity.

Grace Marrakech

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New to Five Star Alliance: Grace Panama

March 29, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Grace Panama is Grace Hotels' first property in Central America and occupies the ground floor plus six upper floors of the Twist Tower office and hotel development in the heart of Panama City. This magnificent example of contemporary urban architecture lies in the exclusive Obarrio residential and commercial district, home to numerous prestige shops and restaurants. Twist Tower, just minutes from the city's financial center, provides the perfect luxury hotel in Panama for business and leisure travelers. Luxury accommodation at this boutique hotel comprises 60 bedrooms including seven ultra-luxurious suites, a fine dining restaurant and bar at ground level and, on the 12th floor, a business center with four boardrooms plus a bistro and a health club with outdoor pool and whirlpool offering spectacular views of the city.

Grace Panama

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Win a Free Meal at One of the World’s Best Restaurants

March 29, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Villa Soro
Food and travel enthusiasts, listen up! Want to win a meal at one of the best restaurants in the world?  The Mugartiz is known alongside Noma and the nowed -shutterEl Bulli as one of the best restaurants in the world. The restaurant, helmed by Chef Andoni Luis Aduriz, is located near San Sebastian, Spain. The winner of this online competition will get a exclusive preview of never-before-tasted dishes from the upcoming 2014 menu. The restaurant was closed for four months in order to develop the new dish. Chef Aduriz worked with scientists, musicians, artists, and fellow chefs to create the new menu. A typical prix-fixe-only menu here starts at 180 euros, according to the restaurant's two-Michelin star writeup (the highest star rating is three).

Unlike other world-class restaurants found in major food cities like New York, Milan, and Paris,  Mugaritz is found in the small town of Errenteria (about 20 minutes from the San Sebastian airport).  If you are lucky enough to win, we suggest booking a stay at Villa Soro.

Villa Soro is a charming 25 bedroom hotel located in a renovated 19th century villa which has been declared a Historical Heritage Building of San Sebastian. Villa Soro is an outstanding address for the discerning traveller, offering a harmonious balance between the warm and familiar atmosphere of a century-old home and the comfort and services of a luxury hotel. Even if you don't win, Villa Soro is a great choice for a sophisticated and private getaway. 
 
Enter the You Open the Doors of Mugaritz contest on the restaurant’s website. Submissions will be accepted until March 31, with winners (allowed one companion) announced on April 1.

View rates, details, and more images of Villa Soro >>

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Spotlight on Babuino 181

March 28, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Babuino 181Babuino 181 is a luxurious boutique hotel with 24 rooms and suites located in two historical buildings in the heart of the upscale Spanish Steps quarter on the fashionable Via Babuino. It's the ideal base from which to explore many of Rome's historical sites. 

Here's just a few to check out:

-The Villa Borghese is Rome’s answer to Central Park. The largest green space in the historic center of Rome, the Villa Borghese dates back to the 17th century, when it was created as a pleasure garden for Cardinal Scipione Borghese. Turned over to the public in the early 19th century, it’s filled with faux-ancient temples, fountains, an amphitheater, and even a small lake.


-Within strolling distance is Piazza Navona, one of  Rome'’s most beloved piazza. Once home to medieval jousts and carnivals, the square is now where Rome’s annual Christmas market takes place. 

 

Babuino 181

-St. Peter's Basilica is just three metro stops from the hotel. The basilica is  not technically in Rome, but rather in a separate country, Vatican City—the smallest country in the entire world. The basilica at the heart of this country is actually the second St. Peter’s Basilica. The first, built by Emperor Constantine in the 4th century A.D., was glorious… but decrepit by the Middle Ages. In 1506, Pope Julius II tore it down. The "new" basilica he commissioned took 120 years to build. Still one of the largest churches in the world, the basilica also is one of Rome’s most breathtaking. 

-The most famous fountain in Europe, if not the world, the Trevi Fountain is another Rome must-see. Just at the edge of the Spanish Steps neighborhood, it's within a 10-minute walk from the hotel. 

-The Spanish Steps are a Baroque masterpiece—and one of Rome’s main icons. (They’re also where Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck met in the 1953 film Roman Holiday). Today, travelers flock to the steps from all over the city. The Spanish Steps are located within a 5-minute walk of Babuino 181. Located a stone’s throw from the hotel, this world-famous staircase was built in 1723. Although funded by the French and designed by an Italian, the Spanish Steps get their name from the Spanish Embassy that is located at the bottom.

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New to Five Star Alliance: Ritz Carlton Aruba

March 28, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Overlooking the Caribbean Sea with miles of azure waters to explore, experience, surprise and delight at every turn is The Ritz-Carlton Aruba, one of the newest Aruba luxury hotels to rise along the island’s spectacular Palm Beach. With its exclusive location and remarkable offerings of dining,wellness and recreation, The Ritz-Carlton, Aruba makes each vacation experience more memorable than the last.

The Ritz-Carlton Aruba 

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Sunday Night Film Club at Le Royal Monceau Raffles Paris

March 27, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Le Royal Monceau Raffles Paris

 

 

 

 

 




 





Guests at Le Royal Monceau Raffles Paris will find themselves with access to the chicest theaters in town. The 99-seat private cinema was designed by the legendary Philippe Starck. The luxury hotel has recently launched a Sunday Night Film Club so that guests can end their weekends with a flick. Complete with comfortable leather seats and state-of-the-art equipment including 3D, our Katara Cinema room is the cultural jewel of the hotel. It is also the only cinema theatre in the world where you can enjoy the most moreish of movie snacks: caramelised pop-corn by Pierre Herme, the "Picasso of Pastry."

The schedule through May is:
-Sunday, March 23: Casino. Martin Scorsese directs Robert De Niro, Sharon Stone and Joe Pesci
-Sunday, March 30: Ocean’s 11. Las Vegas, Steven Soderbergh and an all-star cast: George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts and Matt Damon
-Sunday, April 6: Pretty Woman. The modern-day Cinderella tale with Julia Roberts and Richard Gere
-Sunday, April 13: The Thomas Crown Affair. Faye Dunaway stars opposite ‘King of Cool’ Steve McQueen in this 1968 classic
-Sunday, April 20: Some Like it Hot. The 1959 Hollywood classic by Billy Wilder, with Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon
-Sunday, April 27: Scarface. The ultimate gangster movie by Brian de Palma, with Al Pacino and Michelle Pfeiffer
-Sunday, May 4: Casablanca. One of the most famous love stories of all times, with Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman (3 Academy Awards)
-Sunday, May 11: Leon, the Professional. Film culte de Luc Besson, avec Natalie Portman, Jean Reno et Gary Oldman
-Sunday, May 18: Pulp Fiction. Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival in 1994, by Quentin Tarantino
-Sunday, May 25: The Godfather Part II. By Francis Ford Coppola, starring Al Pacino and Robert de Niro

View rates, details, and more images of Le Royal Monceau Raffles Paris >>

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New to Five Star Alliance: Grace Santorini

March 26, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Grace Santorini is an exclusive luxury boutique hotel in a spectacular location high on Santorini’s Caldera. It has been designed to integrate perfectly with its unique geography. From its setting on the exclusive Imerovigli hillside in northwest Santorini, guests can enjoy famed Aegean sunsets over the Cyclades. This graceful property with its individually-styled suites and bedrooms appeals to those seeking the ultimate romantic escape and indulgence.

Grace Santorini

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New to Five Star Alliance: Grace Mykonos

March 25, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

An exclusive boutique hotel in Mykonos, Grace Mykonos is located just north of Mykonos town, with a sea view above the sandy and protected beach of Agios Stefanos.

Grace Mykonos 

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Your Questions Answered: Can You Recommend a Family and Pet-Friendly Santa Barbara Hotel?

March 24, 2014
By: Betsy LeTourneau

Fess Parker's Doubletree Resort
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: We are a family of 6 looking for a pet friendly place in Santa Barbara, Ca. What resort offers the best accommodations for our family?


ANSWER: Fess Parker's Doubletree Resort 

Come enjoy the paradise of Fess Parker's Doubletree Resort - a dramatic mission-style Santa Barbara hotel on 24 beautiful beachfront acres. Delight in the rich amenities and extensive array of activities - perfect for any age. Lounge by the pool. Walk along the soft-sand beach Dine on delicious cuisine at one of four restaurants. Relax in your restful guest room or suite. Take pleasure in the down-to-earth setting of this enchanting Santa Barbara beach hotel. 

Fess Parker's Doubletree ResortFess Parker's Doubletree Resort is the perfect locale for a truly unique Santa Barbara family vacation. Encircled by mountains and set along the Pacific Ocean, the resort is near an array of activities for all ages. Year-round, explore the Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens. Learn about sea life at the Ty Warner Sea Center. Go whale watching. This impressive Santa Barbara family resort is an idyllic destination, offering entertaining pursuits for both children and adults. The luxurious Santa Barbara pet-friendly accommodations comprise 360 guest rooms on 24 beautifully landscaped acres. Each room includes a furnished patio or balcony, high speed internet access, mini bar and personal coffee maker.

Pet Policy:
Pets of all sizes are welcome. Step outside your door of this Santa Barbara pet-friendly hotel, where you both can enjoy miles of landscaped walking paths along the beachfront and parks. Want to go for a swim? Take your dogs with you. There are dog-friendly beaches a short drive away. The concierge can assist with directions to dog-friendly beaches and off-leash parks as well as hiking trails in the local mountains.  In addition to the spacious rooms and a special treat bag, pets enjoy acres of landscaped grounds and pet menus for in-room dining.

For Your Family's Needs, We Recommend Booking:
-Ocean View 1 King Bed connecting to an Ocean View 2 Queen Beds: These spacious accommodations offer striking views of the Pacific Ocean from a own private patio or balcony.
Or
-Resort View 1 King Bed connecting to a Resort View 2 Queen Beds: 

View rates, details, and more images of Fess Parker's Doubletree Resort >>

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.

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Image of the Day: The Langham Yangtze Boutique Shanghai

March 24, 2014
By: Five Star Alliance

Ideally located in the heart of Shanghai’s entertainment hub, The Langham Yangtze Boutique Shanghai is also adjacent to the retail utopia of Huai Hai Road, known as the Champs Elysees of the East. Shanghai’s underground rail network is nearby, and foreign consulates, must-see museums, and the key business district are all within close proximity.

The Langham Yangtze Boutique Shanghai

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