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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.

Exciting Expansion at Sedona Rouge Hotel & Spa


By: Five Star Alliance

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.

Learn more about the hotel and spa and make your reservation >> 

Suite Bedroom at Sedona Rouge Hotel & Spa


Weddings & Honeymoons at Dorado Beach in Puerto Rico


By: Five Star Alliance

This article about having the perfect destination wedding or honeymoon at Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, in Puerto Rico was originally posted in our sister publication, Luxury Travel Advisor, and was written by Nanci McArdle.

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.

Learn more about Dorado Beach, a private estate resort >>

Dorado Beach in Puerto Rico


Whimsical Wedding at Bacara Resort in Santa Barbara


By: Five Star Alliance

This article originally appeared in our sister publication, Luxury Travel Advisor, and was written by Nanci McArdle.

Exterior of the Bacara Resort and Spa in Santa Barbara

Bacara Resort & Spa in Santa Barbara is one of our World's Best Destination Wedding Resorts for 2016. Find out why ...

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.

The Ocean Lawn at Bacara Resort & Spa affords panoramic ocean views for a wedding ceremony and is surrounded by the resort's lush landscaping.

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.

Outdoor Pool at Bacara Resort and Spa, Santa Barbara

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.

Click here to learn more and check availability at Bacara Resort & Spa in Santa Barbara, CA >>


The New Villa One at One&Only Palmilla


By: Five Star Alliance

This article was first published in our sister publication, Luxury Travel Advisor, by Natalie Maneval, under the title "The Villa Experience."

One&Only Palmilla Villa One

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.

One&Only Palmilla Villa One

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.

Click here to learn more about One&Only Palmilla >>

One&Only Palmilla Villa One


Unique Amenities: The Villas of Cabo Azul


By: Five Star Alliance

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

Book your stay at Cabo Azul Resort and Spa>>

Cabo Azul Villas


New to Five Star Alliance: Asia Gardens and Thai Spa


By: Five Star Alliance

Barcelo Asia Gardens Hotel and Thai Spa embodies serenity, peace, and quiet. Its lush tropical gardens with more than 3,000 species brought from Asia, 8 spectacular swimming pools, 4 of which are heated, the choice of 8 restaurants, and a Thai Spa where one can lose all sense of time and regain vital energy, are just a few of the reasons.

Barcelo Asia Gardens Hotel and Spa

Book a stay at Asia Gardens and Thai Spa >>


Image of the Day: Grand Hotel Quellenhof Bad Ragaz


By: Five Star Alliance

The view from the Penthouse Balcony Suite at Grand Hotel Quellenhof Bad Ragaz is is of the mountains in Switzerland's Heidiland holiday region.

Grand Hotel Quellenhof Bad Ragaz

Book a stay at Grand Hotel Quellenhof Bad Ragaz >>


Unusual Activities: Moonlight Spa Remedies at Alila Ubud


By: Five Star Alliance

Moonlight Spa Remedies at Alila Ubud

Alila Ubud offers its guests the opportunity to enjoy spa treatments al fresco and under the stars. Every new and full moon (which occurs on the 1st and 15th day of the lunar month) Spa Alila at Alila Ubud offers  Moonlight Remedies. During the period of a new moon or full moon the moon’s energy is believed to be at its strongest, the massage treatments are conducted outdoors in a custom spa tent, open to nature yet completely private, harnessing good lunar energy to promote healing and spiritual growth.

The Moonlight Remedies begin with the Spa Concierge personally escorting guests from their room to the garden and into the caring hands of a Spa Alila therapist. Guests enjoy a cup of herbal tea while the therapist reveals the healing secrets of the moon. Then, in the spirit of Balinese tradition, treatment begins with a prayer that is meant to relieve stress, calm fears and reduce anxiety. The therapist's healing hands draw upon the lunar energy to relax and rejuvenate. Each session ends with the therapist harmonising. the body through methods rooted in the spiritual traditions of Reiki.

Currently, four destination-inspired massage therapies are offered by moonlight: Balinese Massage, an ancient therapy that combines gentle stretching, long therapeutic strokes and pressure techniques to alleviate stress and tension; Alila Recovery Signature Massage, which combines Balinese long soothing strokes, Swedish deep tissue massage techniques and acupressure for a complete body re-awakening; Reflexology, which improves the flow of energy around the body through pressure applied to specific points on the feet and hands; and Indian Head Massage, dating back nearly 400 years, which reduces stress and boosts vitality through the stimulation of pressure points on the head, neck, shoulders and face. 

Moonlight Remedies are exclusively available during the full moon period, for $125 per person.

Book a stay at Alila Ubud >>


Cool Pools: Houstonian Hotel Club and Spa


By: Five Star Alliance

The Houstonian Hotel Club and Spa's award-winning Aquatics department, recognized as the #1 aquatics program in Texas and the #1 program among hotels, offers programs in instruction, recreation, competition, exercise, and education. The Club's state-of-the-art pool complex features a large Resort Pool, 25-meter by 25-yard Sports Pool, a beautiful Garden Pool, and a shaded children's wading pool that are heated year round. 

Houstonian Hotel and Spa

Book a stay at Houstonian Hotel Club and Spa >>


Cool Pools: Pilgrimage Village


By: Five Star Alliance

Pilgrimage Village is a delightfully rustic resort where skillful artisans create beautiful items in front of your eyes and comfortable villas and bungalows come hand-in-hand with a delightful spa, a variety of bars and restaurants, swimming pools and Vietnamese cooking classes.

Pilgrimage Village

Book a stay at Pilgrimage Village >>