The 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.
The very first W Sound Suite from W Hotels is available at the W Retreat & Spa Bali, in the vibrant Seminyak neighborhood. W Hotels plans to unveil additional sound studios in the W Hollywood, W Barcelona, and W Seattle, but for now, check out what the W Bali can exclusively offer:
Designed by New York-based Josh Held Design, the W Sound Suite is a private, soudproof recording studio and writing room available to both professional musicians and hotel guests. A private vocal booth overlooks the hotel's tropical garden.
W Sound Suite is the idea of Chicago-based producer DJ White Shadow, W's North American music director. The DJ affixed the large soundproof studio with sound equipment and helped determine its layout. The studio has locally sourced wooden furniture, hand-carved wooden blocks and handwoven rugs. Other touches include an oversized print of a 1980s boombox by artist Lyle Owerko and a photography print spanning the entire room.
Coca-Cola also contributed to the development of the studio, which has subtle touches of red, a chandelier made from melted Coke bottles and oversized wall text featuring lyrics from the 1970s "I'd like to teach the world to sing..." advertisement.
Perched between the mountains and the lake, The Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni is a luxurious retreat. Originally built as a private estate in the 1850s, the historic hotel has been popular with royalty and celebrities from around the world for more than 100 years. Featuring a prime setting in Bellagio, the resort has an indoor and outdoor pool, fine dining, full-service spa, lavish gardens, and ornate interiors.
Here are three of our favorite experiences at the property:
Spa Serbelloni: open from April to October, the spa is located within a historic villa. Adjacent to the indoor pool, guests can enjoy a variety of treatments designed to create harmony between the mind and body, including the Beauty Day program which includes a remineralizing body treatment, massage, facial, and light lunch. Plus, there are integrative options that combine Pilates and Fitness Center sessions with spa treatments.
The Mistral Restaurant offers the ultimate dining with a view experience. Featuring cuisine by Michelin Star Chef Etorre Bocchia, the restaurant has a terrace with stunning views of Lake Como, plus live music.
Taxi Boat excursions are the perfect way to experience the breathtaking beauty of the area. The hotel offers a variety of options including transfers from the property's private dock to Villa D'Este and Centro Lago, or guests can choose rides around the lake for a specific amount of time.
The Palais Sheherazade and Spa, in the heart of the heights of Fez Medina, is a XIXth Century Palace composed of two Riads. In April 2015, the Palais opened an exceptional 700 m2 Spa by Anne Sémonin.
The Anne Sémonin Spa Fez features a covered aquatonic pool with chromothreapy, massage station, cascade and hydromassing seats. The exterior pool is surrounded by a luxurious XIXth century Andalousian garden with century old palms, orange threes, jasmin flowers and a stunning giant vegetable wall. The 10 spa treatment rooms offer the following: Balneotherapy with chromotherapy; Experience shower with chromotherapy; Affusion shower; Jacuzzi with chromotherapy; Traditional moroccan Hammam with chromotherapy, steam generator and starry sky; Massage room; Private VIP Spa Suite with jacuzzi, massage tables et traditional moroccan hammam; and Esthetic and body wrap cabin. There is also a hairdressing salon and fitness center.
Enjoy a five star stay with the Five Star Alliance Rate at the Armani Hotel Milano in the heart of Quadrilatero della Moda, Milan's world famous fashion district. The Armani style and philosophy defines every detail of the 95 guestrooms and suites, where even the smallest is 45 square meters.
The Five Star Alliance Rate offers the unique amenity of one cocktail per person (per room reservation) at the panoramic Armani/Bamboo Bar. Overlooking the skylines and terraces of the city, the Armani/Bamboo Bar has a double volume ceiling, louvered window wall and is the perfect place for a business lunch, informal get together, afternoon tea, pre-dinner apertivo, or Sunday brunch. Five Star Alliance guests can enjoy the complimentary cocktail while the rate is available from now until the end of the year.
A string of pearl-like island atolls, the Maldives are a natural phenomenon that was once part of the mountainous landscape below the crystal-clear waters of the Indian Ocean. Jumeirah Vittaveli is a short 20-minute ride on board a luxurious motorized catamaran from Male and the International Airport.
From up in the air, it is easy to appreciate the 89 villas and suites - each with their own swimming pool and direct access to the beach or lagoon. The private and spacious villas are available with one or two bedrooms making them the ideal accommodation for both families and couples.
Centrally located a destination unlike any other, Sedona Rouge Hotel & Spa, with it's distinctive Mediterranean design, began an expansion project on October 27, 2014 and it is now ready for guests to enjoy. Features include a new two-story building of 32 incredible rooms and suites. Lush gardens and an outdoor venue were included in the expansion, all while preserving the Sedona red rock views.
Sit with a glass of wine on the patio, overlooking the Almeria Garden, or journal your day's activities inside with the warm glow of a fire feature that invites dim lighting and romantic conversation.
Once a plantation, Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, located in Puerto Rico, gives couples an option to celebrate their big day a quick plane-ride away. The private estate resort offers a variety of venues to exchange vows, including the Surf Room, a 4,558-square-foot luxury ballroom streaming with natural daylight provided by floor-to-ceiling windows that open onto an outside terrace overlooking the Atlantic Ocean; Su Casa, an 8,000-square-foot private waterfront Spanish-Colonial hacienda; and several outdoor venues that highlight the lush grounds and ocean views. (Note: Su Casa, referred to as "the crown jewel of Dorado Beach," is a historic seaside home that was once owned by Clara Livingston and comes with five bedrooms, a gourmet kitchen, vast outdoor space, wraparound verandas with oceanfront views and its own private pool, perfect for families and friends looking to share accommodations.)
After the last toast is given and the final dance takes place, honeymooners can retreat to the popular Tranquility Suite, which has a rooftop lounge area with a private plunge pool. Each room is designed to cater to the bride and groom's individual wishes, so they can choose which accommodation suits them best.
Couples can celebrate their special day at the seaside sanctuary - Bacara Resort and Spa in Santa Barbara - that offers both romance and relaxation for newlyweds and their friends and families.
Bacara Resort & Spa is an ideal destination for couples that are California dreaming. The resort can accommodate wedding requests ranging from a private ceremony in one of the Mediterranean-style guestrooms to a ballroom wedding, hosting up to 1,250 guests and many options in-between.
The 11,300-square-foot Bacara Ballroom features 23-foot-high ceilings and six balconies and can be divided into three separate areas, each accommodating up to 350 wedding guests. The ballroom also has 8,700 square feet of additional event space, including a vaulted foyer with fireplace, an adjacent ocean-view terrace and an expansive lawn, where guests can enjoy cocktails and hors d'oeuvres prior to the ceremony.
Pictured: The Ocean Lawn at Bacara Resort & Spa affords panoramic ocean views for a wedding ceremony and is surrounded by the resort's lush landscaping.
Other options include the Rotunda and Rotunda Terrace, a 1,734-square-foot circular area atop Bacara's main lobby offering views of the ocean, along with an outdoor area perfect for an al fresco celebration. For a more intimate wedding, Bacara's wine cellar features a display of 12,000 wines from around the world, along with a private dining room that can seat up to 40. Those looking to take in the natural beauty of the resort can choose from The Bluff, an expansive lawn area with ocean views that can accommodate up to 300 guests for a seaside wedding ceremony or reception; the Ocean Lawn, which affords panoramic ocean views; or the Residence Lawn, a more intimate, oceanside venue that can be reserved in conjunction with The Residence, Bacara's 3,700-square-foot retreat. This option can accommodate up to 120 guests for outdoor wedding receptions and includes a two-night stay in The Residence. Finally, the Oval Lawn offers couples a private and enclosed garden area, accommodating up to 300 guests.
After the tying the knot, newlyweds can retire to one of the rooms right on property. The Residence, which is the closest accommodation to the ocean on the bluff and includes ocean views, three wood-burning fireplaces, a patio for private dinners and its own workout area, is one of the top two options for honeymooners. The other is The Terrace Suite, which features ocean views, a master bedroom area with a fireplace, a wrap-around terrace overlooking the ocean and a relaxing soaking bathtub.
When the new couple is ready to venture out, many options are right at their fingertips, including a visit to the 4,200-square-foot, 36-room spa that offers private treatments, or they can reserve the roof deck area, where they can host a group get-together with their wedding guests, enjoying treatments such as a private mud bar and private massages, overlooking the ocean. While it is recommended to make reservations as far in advance as possible, the spa will do its best to make last minute arrangements.
For outdoor enthusiasts, Bacara offers a variety of ocean sports, including surfing, body boarding, ocean kayaking and sailing. Also available is horseback riding, cycling, mountain biking and hiking. Those looking to hit the links are in luck. There are three nearby 18-hole championship golf courses: Sandpiper Golf Club, Glen Annie and Rancho San Marcos.
For those with kids, Monarch Kids' Club offers fun activities and exploration options for children ages five through 12. The program was designed especially to reflect Bacara's surroundings and rich Chumash history.
On the tip of the Baja Peninsula, discerning travelers now have a new villa accommodation to choose from when traveling to the One&Only Palmilla in Los Cabos. Villa One is complete with four bedrooms and an additional Butler Suite (for that top-notch service). By day, the guests will have 14,000 square feet of both indoor and outdoor space to venture through, complete with an infinity-edge pool and fire pit. Seeking a wellness experience? We suggest making an appointment with the villa's dedicated fitness trainer or spa therapist, who will, of course, provide treatments onsite.
For a taste of adventure, the Villa Team can plan custom experiences, including deep sea fishing excursions, full-day surf lessons and cruising on One&Only Palmilla's Catari Yacht. In fact, travelers that stay at least four nights in Villa One will get to choose between a complimentary private yacht cruise or art walk tour. During the cruise, guests will explore the Sea of Cortez complete with a spin to Medano Bay - the view of the coastline will amaze. Meanwhile, an Art Walk takes guests to San Jose del Cabo to check out the Gallery District from the months of November to June. Guests will peruse different galleries like La Sacristia and Galeria Corsica.
Back at Villa One, the culinary staff can create custom meals to fit all tastes. We suggest asking for a themed dinner like taco night or barbeque. Tip: Complimentary sunset margaritas and Mexican canapés are served daily.
This accommodation is ideal for multigenerational families - the bedrooms come in several configurations, including an 870-square-foot master suite, a second bedroom with a king size bed and a secluded sun deck, a third room with two queen size beds and private patio and a fourth guestroom with bunk beds. When it comes time for those special family moments, convene in the great room. There, the doors open 30 feet wide to reveal views of the infinity-edge pool, the gardens and the sea. The prime views continue throughout the guesthouse, thanks to floor-to-ceiling glass doors.
The Cabo Azul Resort, in Los Cabos, Mexico, is an all-villa masterpiece on more than 12 oceanfront acres. The resort and spa stands out from the standard Cabo San Lucas resorts and hotel choices in the San Jose del Cabo area because of the Studio, 1-bedroom, 2-bedroom, and 3-bedroom luxury villas.
Each and every one of the villas offers:
- King-size bed - Living area with sleeper sofa - Polished natural stone floor throughout - Private patio terraces - Fully-appointed kitchen with stainless steel appliances - Entertainment center with DVD and flat-panel TV - Individual climate control w/ ceiling fans - Bedroom with in-Room spa tub - Full bathroom with two sinks & shower