March 9, 2012
By: Christopher Roney
Bucket lists. We've probably all got one, and I can't get over my slightly morbid fascination of the idea of making the list of the things you'd like to live framed around dying. Maybe it's that the finitude of life creates a sweet sense of urgency that makes experience all the more poignant. But I'm not here to philosophize; I leave that to the well-bearded among us. I'm here to tell you about the second edition of 1,000 Places To See Before You Die with the much more uplifting subtitle: A Traveler's Life List.
A coffeetable book if there ever was one, 1,000 Places lays out some of the most unique and gorgeous places the world has to offer. And one of the things about the luxury hotel industry is that we've done a pretty good job of making sure that most of these places have the accommodations for you to experience them. Heading to the Amalfi Coast? Why not stay at the Palazzo Sasso, which has a breathtaking view of the ocean stretching out from its feet, 350 meters below. Or perhaps you're interested in Paris. The Plaza Athenee or Hotel de Crillon have you covered. It's really quite incredible when you step back to think how easy it is to experience the unique gems this blue-green sphere has to offer. So pick up your copy of 1,000 Places To See Before You Die and pick out your next vacation destination. We have certainly have some suggestions for you.
March 8, 2012
By: Christopher Roney
If any of the iconic hotels in Paris were going to suffer the collateral damage of a nearby underground garage going up in flames, it's probably just as well that it was the Ritz Paris. While unfortunate for anyone in the hotel industry, the Ritz is fortuitously scheduled to undergo an extensive two-year renovation coming up in August, so if anything was damaged by the smoke billowing out from the garage, you can be rest assured that the hotel was looking to replace it. No news yet on whether the interior of the hotel was affected in any way, and no one appears to have been injured in the fire, so as flaming conflagrations go, this might not be so bad. In any case, our hearts go out to the hotel, the nearby Place du Vendome, and to anyone whose things were caught in the blaze. Hopefully, we'll hear more soon. As of now, the hotel is still slated to be open up through its August closing, and unless we hear otherwise, with no reports of damage yet, future guests need not fear for the quality of their stay.
Photo via Le Parisien.
February 28, 2012
By: Oksana Balytsky
Paris, a thriving, bustling city with over 70 luxury hotels located throughout its districts can be a bit overwhelming for folks deciding on where to stay to get the most out of their experience. We understand that travelers visiting Paris for the first time have different interests and desires than frequent visitors, so we’ve put together a short, sweet and to the point guide for you to ensure that you choose the perfect hotel for your trip!
Hotel du Louvre is the perfect luxury hotel for first time visitors to Paris looking to be in the heart of the attractions. The beautiful décor of the hotel was inspired by the Napoleon III style, and all of the guest rooms have modern comforts while retaining a traditional feel. The draw of this hotel is certainly its location, perfectly situated in the heart of old Paris with easy access to the fashion and business districts, steps from the Brasserie du Louvre, and immediately opposite the Comedie Francaise. Just steps from the Louvre Museum, certain rooms and suites at the Hotel du Louvre offer views of the exhibits! The Opera Granier is set to one side of the hotel, and the Palais Royal is on the other side. The area is busy with authentic cafes and is a short walk from the bustling shopping street of Rue St. Honore. It also offers interconnecting rooms, perfect for a family vacation.
Hotel Lutetia is a phenomenal hotel option for travelers who have been to Paris before, who have explored the famous areas in Paris, and who are looking for a much more detailed look into the city. It’s a very modern hotel with a contemporary style and artistic surprises. The bustling lobby has an edginess with displays of art by renowned contemporary artists including Arman, Cesar, Perrin, and Thierry Bisch. The Hotel Lutetia has an artistic and elegant culture that is clearly visible in the Art Deco architecture, period furniture, crystal chandeliers, and live jazz music flowing through the Lutetia Bar. It’s located on the left bank in Saint-Germain des Pres, in the heart of the fashion, art, and literature district. What sets this hotel apart is that if you make a reservation for a suite, you are guaranteed an Eiffel Tower view! (We do ask, however, that you request an Eiffel Tower view ahead of time)
Hotel de Crillon is a very royal, elegant 18th century style luxury hotel situated in the famous Place De la Concorde in the heart of Paris. This hotel is for new travelers as well as frequent visitor to Paris, perfect for those who are looking for the absolute best and most royal hotel in the City of Love. It is only a few steps from the Champs-Elysees and the Fabourg Saint Honore. It is decorated in a Louis XV style, and its guest rooms and suites are decorated to represent the rich history and culture of Paris. Similar to the Hotel du Louvre, the Hotel de Crillon has connecting room options as well, making it another perfect hotel for a family or group vacation.
February 27, 2012
By: Oksana Balytsky
Le Burgundy Paris is a 5-star boutique hotel located where the rue Duphot meets the rue Saint-Honore, in the Golden Triangle of Champs Elysees-Madeline-Opera. This historic property was built in 1800, remodeled in 2010, and has 59 luxurious rooms including 8 suites. Aside from inspirational architecture, a phenomenal restaurant offering delectable cuisine, and a relaxing spa, Le Burgundy Paris is also currently offering a special Five Star Alliance package, providing the perfect reason to make your travel plans today!
The Five Star Alliance Package provides the perfect way to pamper yourself for 1 hour and 30 minutes with a facial or body care option for ultimate relaxation. This package is available for 1 person and is not valid with groups or conventions. Take advantage of this incredible package and treat yourself to a much needed and deserving escape from it all!
February 13, 2012
By: Oksana Balytsky
The Hotel Plaza Athenee is an incredibly romantic and beautiful hotel ideally located between the Avenue des Champs and Elysees and the Eiffel Tower. This luxury hotel features 188 luxurious guest rooms including 43 suites and offers views of the elegant Avenue Montaigne, the west side of the Eiffel Tower, or the courtyard. The Hotel Plaza Athenee takes service to a new level with hotel staff outnumbering guests 3 to 1, giving guests an extremely personal and unforgettable experience. If the location, phenomenal décor, and service aren’t enough to add this to your list of hotels worth visiting, then consider this. The Hotel Plaza Athenee has recently installed a NightCove Sleep Solution in the Art Deco Suites. According to HotelChatter, “the sleep clinic at Hotel-Dieu Hospital developed this device, and it is a unique bedside lamp that helps improve the quality of sleep by bathing guests in selected light wavelengths and sound frequencies that are specially adapted for the physiological needs of sleep. Click on ‘Sleep/Anti-jetlag/Nap’ to stimulate melatonin with a red glow and the hush of waves, then greet the day with a ‘Wakening’ of soft music and blue light similar to early daylight.’
Wow! We’re certainly impressed by this technology and would love to ease the pains of jet lag as quickly as possible. Make your reservations at this, let’s face it, perfect Parisian hotel and stay bright eyed and bushy tailed for the entirety of your stay!
February 10, 2012
By: Oksana Balytsky
The clever W Paris Opera is set to open its doors on the most romantic day of the year, Valentine’s Day. The City of Love will have a new luxury hotel in its collection starting February 14th, 2012, adding a bit more excitement to this already lively city. Make your reservations for Valentine’s Day and be among the first to experience everything the W Paris Opera hotel has to offer.
The W Paris Opera is perfectly located in the heart of all the action in Paris. Take a stroll with your loved one down the Rue de la Paix and indulge yourselves in sparkling jewelry shops, and explore the Granier Opera House, a Parisian landmark. With 91 guest rooms and suites equipped with plush pillows, 350 thread count sheet, and Bliss bath products, you may never want to leave your room! This luxury hotel will steer away from the traditional hotels in Paris and have a backlit digital wall projecting abstract patterns through space, utilizing various colors to create different moods. The public areas of the hotel will have mosaic floors, marble staircases, and stained glass windows while the guest rooms will feature local art and original light fixtures designed specifically for the W Paris Opera.
Explore everything this hotel has up its sleeve and make your reservations today!
January 31, 2012
By: Christopher Roney
When Confucius declared the five pillars of filial piety, he hardly could have anticipated the sixth relationship that matters above all else, the one of blogger to his readers. In honor of that lasting bond, I have come bearing gifts to solidify our friendship. I hope you like them; I was going to make you a papier mache model of the Burj Al Arab, but my crafting abilities are on par with a baby elephant's, and I don't even have a prehensile trunk.
So instead, I'm happy to declare that Five Star Alliance have partnered with the Ritz Paris and the Carlyle in New York to bring you special amenities with reservations made under the Five Star Alliance rate. For a limited time, the Ritz Paris is offering free champagne with FSA reservations. The saccharine taste of bubbly effervescence is the perfect way to sweeten an already great deal for a hotel in the heart of the city of bread, wine, love, and cheese. And it's the perfect time to catch this Parisian gem before it goes off the radar for an extensive renovation.
If New York is a little bit more your style, the Carlyle is looking to show off its exquisite Rosewood Spa by offering FSA guests a $50 spa credit. Simply select the "Welcome Offer" rate code, and you'll be well on your way to enjoy a sumptuous soak in one of New York's finest spas. And don't forget that if you're friend of Five Star Alliance on Facebook by the beginning of March, you could win two nights at the Carlyle for free.
January 27, 2012
By: Christopher Roney
Valentine's Day is coming up, and, as such, it's time to think about where you'd like to spend the day with that special someone. Whether you're enjoying a cozy night in or an adventure on the town, a night in a luxury hotel can be the perfect gift to the both of you, a chance to escape to another world where no expense will be spared in giving you the night of a lifetime. What follows is just one in a series of our favorite romantic hotels, and, we think, a great place to take him or her this February the 14th.
For a city like Paris, its romantic image the stuff of fairy tales, it is almost impossible to pick our favorite romantic hotel. Whether an iconic mainstay of the cityscape or a small boutique hotel tucked away in a charming neighborhood, each jewel in the Parisian crown has its sparkle. So instead of evaluating by some arbitrary metric, like roses/sqm or candles of candlelight, I just thought to myself, "Where would I take my girlfriend if I found myself in Paris just a few weeks from now?" And once I stopped troubling myself with the details, the answer came quickly: The Hotel Plaza Athenee. It's everything you could desire for your romantic evening, a dream of a hotel within a dream of a city. And for the girl of your dreams, how could you ask for anything less?
Whether you're staying in the Eiffel Signature Exclusive Suite with a view onto the tower itself or a cozy room tucked away for perfect privacy, the Hotel Plaza Athenee promises to make a night you'll forget in the moment but remember forever. And with staff members outnumbering rooms nearly 3 to 1, you'll be sure that every detail is inch-perfect.
To set the evening off right, simply go downstairs to experience the cuisine world-renowned chef Alain Ducasse. The lightest brush of your lips against the bouquet of flavors in each of his dishes will create a never-before experienced synesthesia, a fusion of light and color emanating from your taste buds. Savor each bite as time itself begins to slow to a rest. And when you pair your meal with a bottle of the finest French wine, well, I don't even have to tell you.
It's a rare hotel indeed that I can recommend without reservation, but I guarantee that the Hotel Plaza Athenee will give you the Valentine's day experience you didn't even know you were looking for.
January 10, 2012
By: Oksana Balytsky
We can’t think of a better place to celebrate the most romantic holiday of the year than the City of Love, and we can’t think of a better luxury hotel to embrace the romance than the Ritz Paris. From its grand lobby and luxurious suites to its beautiful décor and charming dining rooms, this historic hotel never fails to enchant and inspire all who stay here. Decorated in classic French style and located in one of the loveliest squares in Paris, this hotel has welcome guests such as Marcel Proust, Elton John, Oscar de la Renta, and Coco Chanel.
On February 14th, 2012, the Ritz Paris is offering an unforgettable celebration. Enjoy a romantic gourmet dinner at the L’Espadon Restaurant which will have live piano music and an exquisitely romantic menu. One lucky lady will win a jewel, and every couple will receive a beautiful floral arrangement and a bottle of Ritz rose Champagne. In the evening, the Ritz Paris will offer guests a romantic ride through the Place Vendome in beautiful horse-drawn carriages. For the entire month of February, guests will be given extra attention and special treatment. Upon arrival, all guests will be offered an elegant rose and a chocolate surprise specially made by the Ritz Paris pastry chef. Each room will have all of the ingredients to make a “Miss Bonde,” the iconic cocktail from the Hemingway Bar made from Ritz Champagne and strawberry liquor. To remember the special weekend you and your special someone shared, each couple will receive pillowcases embroidered with their initials and a copy of The Ritz Paris: Mixing Drinks, a Simple Story by Colin Field, the head bartender of the Hemingway Bar.
Can’t make it to the Ritz Paris for Valentine’s Day? Then be sure to plan your trip sometime this year because this beautiful hotel will be closing down in the summer of 2012 for an extensive two year renovation.
December 29, 2011
By: Five Star Alliance
In the final days of 2011, Five Star Alliance is counting down the Top 20 Luxury Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, as decided by our guests.
In the #3 spot we have La Tremoille, located near the center of Paris's Golden Triangle.
- The 93 rooms and suites are decorated in 30 different patterns and color schemes, accenting the personalized and unique stay of every guest.
- Renovated for 15 months in 2002, La Tremoille leapfrogged much of its competition as one of the traditional deluxe Paris hotels.
- Rooms feature a special "Hatch" foyer that offers ultimate privacy by separating guest rooms further from the hallway and allowing wait staff to bring room service and amenities without actually entering your room.
- Not only the hotel has been upgraded, the restaurant has been renovated even more recently than the hotel and has reopened under a new name, Le Louis2, offering wonderful French cuisine.
- The suites give a panoramic view of Paris rooftops and offer both living rooms and armchairs so comfortable, you find it hard to get yourself back out of them.
- The spa includes a sauna, hydro-jet shower, two private massage rooms, and beauty care rooms, not to mention the much-coveted jet-lag recovery therapy.
View photos, learn more about the hotel, and check availability at La Tremoille > >
Be sure to keep up with our countdown! Check back to see our top two hotels for the year!