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LUXURY HOTEL INSIDER

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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.

| By: Rachael Weir

Happy 2020! It's the start of a new year and a new decade. Where will you go this year? This decade? If you're like us, your list is long. We've put together our top 20 picks for this year. From the Mayflower 400th Anniversary Celebrations in England and Massachusetts, to the Olympics in Tokyo, we've gathered some of the world's most exciting events and happenings, along with luxury hotel suggestions in each locale. 

Happy Travels!

20. Manchester, England

20 Places To Go In 2020 ManchesterOne of Europe's fastest growing cities, Manchester is a popular base for digital and media companies. Blending history and design, the city is experiencing a growth in new development, including the Cultureplex, a railway goods house transformed into a restaurant, bar, and cafe. The revolving program of film, performing arts, and visual arts provides a constant array of entertainment options, and epicurians flock to the city to dine at Mana, the city's first Michelin Star recipient with a Nordic-influenced menu.

A few luxury hotel options ideal for exploring Manchester include The Lowry Hotel, Macdonald Manchester Hotel, and the Doubletree by Hilton Hotel Manchester Piccadilly.

Explore Manchester Luxury Hotels

19. The Big Island, Hawaii

20 Places To Go In 2020 Big Island Hawaii

Following the 2018 volcanic activity on Hawaii's Big Island, the five-month eruption has stopped, and the blue skies have returned. The Halemaumau crater is now three times as wide and four times as deep as it was prior to the 2018 eruption, and a freshwater lake has started to form on the crater's floor. The Thurston Lava Tube is expected to reopen in early 2020 with a redesigned parking area, and roads outside of the park have recently reopened. In November, the Kona Coffee Cultural Festival will celebrate its 50th Anniversary. There are multiple hotels on the island offering exclusive Perks, including the all-new Mauna Lani luxury resort, which will debut in January 2020 with a new era of experiential luxury. As well as the beachfront Fairmont Orchid Hawaii and the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel.

Explore Big Island Luxury Hotels

18. Vienna, Austria

20 Places To Go In 2020 Vienna

There's much to explore in this Germanic destination with cutting-edge art museums and music halls. The Musikverein concert hall will celebrate its 150th anniversary and events will be held throughout the city celebrating Beethoven's 250th birthday. While the classic city is known for its Baroque architecture and classical music venues, the contemporary art venue was transformed into the Belvedere 21, the Freud Museum will reopen in May following a major renovation with nearly 40,000 adds to its library, and the Belvedere Palaces with an extensive classical art collection have been completely renovated.

Luxury hotels in Vienna offer historic charm blended with contemporary amenities, such as the Hotel Sacher Wien, The Ring, and Park Hyatt Vienna, all with exclusive Five Star Alliance Perks. 

Explore Vienna Luxury Hotels

17. Cape Town, South Africa

20 Places To Go In 2020 Cape Town

Beginning this year, United Airlines will offer non-stop service from Newark to Cape Town, saving travelers up to eight hours of travel time from the United States. In addition to new air routes into the Mother City, there's a constantly evolving art scene, and the nearby Winelands offer plenty of vineyards to explore for wine enthusiasts. 

Cape Town is also home to an array of luxury hotels offering exclusive Five Star Alliance Perks including the One&Only Cape Town, Belmond Mount Nelson, and Taj Cape Town

Explore Cape Town Luxury Hotels

16. Buenos Aires, Argentina

20 Places To Go In 2020 Buenos Aires

Currently, travelers can stretch their travel dollars in the land of tango, beef, and Malbec, due to the devaluation of the Argentinian peso. The city is in the midst of a gentrification process with areas like the Old Market expanding with wine bars, cafes, and patisseries, and the Plaza Dorrego neighborhood is bustling with newness. There's a variety of luxury hotels within this South American city, many with exclusive Five Star Alliance Perks including The Park Hyatt Buenos Aires, Alvear Palace Hotel, and the Sofitel Buenos Aires Recoleta Hotel

Explore Buenos Aires Luxury Hotels

15. Edinburgh, Scotland

20 Places To Go In 2020 Edinburgh

Scotland's capital city serves up plenty of history, a multitude of festivals, and the famous Edinburgh Castle. But this year the city is debuting several new attractions including the three-story Johnnie Walker Experience, which will feature a museum, event space, and whiskey shop. The city's ever-expanding selection of luxury hotels provide unique lodging options occupying historic buildings such as the Kimpton Charlotte Square within seven Georgian townhouses, the Waldorf Astoria Edinburgh - The Calendonian Victorian Railway hotel, and the Rocco Forte Balmoral Hotel with its landmark clocktower. 

Explore Edinburgh Luxury Hotels

14. Kyoto, Japan

20 Places To Go In 2020 Kyoto

While Tokyo is hosting the Olympics, Kyoto is another trending destination within Japan. The city's imperial history is evident throughout, providing travelers with a glimpse into the past. There are temples, gardens, and tea houses for an authentic feel, along with museum expansions at the Fukuda Art Museum and the Kyocera Museum of Art.

Kyoto has a variety of luxury hotel options with exclusive Perks ranging from the countryside Suiran within the grounds of the Tenryuji Temple to the contemporary Hyatt Regency Kyoto and the riverside The Ritz-Carlton, Kyoto

Explore Kyoto Luxury Hotels

13. Maine

20 Places To Go In 2020 Maine

2020 marks 200 years of statehood for the state of Maine. In honor of the Bicentennial year, the state is hosting a year of special events. To experience coastal life, the Cliff House Maine has an oceanfront location where travelers can enjoy the waves hitting the rocky coast from the comfort of their room, plus exclusive Five Star Alliance Perks. For a private cottage, Hidden Pond offers a charming setting with access to the Tides Beach Club situated two miles away at Goose Rocks Beach. While the White Barn Inn offers rustic luxury with the hotel's restaurant occupying two restored barns from the 1860s. 

Explore Maine Luxury Hotels

12. Galway, Ireland

20 Places To Go In 2020 Galway

This bohemian city with an arts-focused feel on the west coast of Ireland has long been a destination for creatives. Named a European Capital of Culture for 2020, the city by the sea is home to an array of festivals throughout the year, as well as forward-thinking luxury hotels like The G Hotel and The Galmont Hotel & Spa. For a unique and completely Irish experience, the nearby Ashford Castle is about a 30-minute drive from Galway City with creative cuisine, spa, and exclusive Five Star Alliance Perks. 

Explore Galway Luxury Hotels

11. Macau

20 Places To Go In 2020 Macau

On December 20, Macau will celebrating its 20th anniversary as a Special Administrative Region of China. Macau is an international destination mixing Asian and European cultures, providing travelers with luxe hotels such as the Four Seasons Hotel Macao Cotai Strip, Wynn Macao, and the Banyan Tree Macau. In addition to fine hotels, Macau offers travelers an array of world-class dining options, casinos, and cultural experiences. 

Explore Macau Luxury Hotels 

10. Tel Aviv, Israel

20 Places To Go In 2020 Tel Aviv

Experience a destination where modern living merges with ancient history. In 2020, the Ben-Gurion Airport will expand to accommodate additional aircraft. Tel Aviv's White City Zone is a UNESCO-designated site and home to over 4,000 Bauhaus-style buildings, the largest collection of its kind in the world. The area will take center stage this year, as Tel Aviv commemorates the 100th Anniversary of the Bauhaus architecture movement. The beach city along Israel's Mediterranean coast offers an array of luxury hotels including three with exclusive Five Star Alliance Perks: The Setai with a seafront location, beachfront Dan Tel Aviv Hotel, and the InterContinental David Tel Aviv

Explore Tel Aviv Luxury Hotels

9. Vancouver Island, Canada

20 Places To Go In 2020 Vancouver Island

From the capital city of Victoria on the harborfront to the surf town of Tofino, Vancouver Island offers land and sea experiences along with local cuisine. Afternoon Tea at the Fairmont Empress is a classic institution. Travelers can experience Native traditions as the island is home to 50 First Nations communities, or book a cycling tour in Ucluelet. Spring is an ideal time to visit the island, with the West Coast Trail opening for hiking season May 1. Watch for whales from Prestige Oceanfront Resort Sook, or dine at the Pointe Restaurant offering ocean views at the Wickaninnish Inn. Located about 70 miles west of Vancouver, the island is reachable via ferry or flight into Victoria's International Airport. 

Explore Victoria Luxury Hotels

8. Doha, Qatar

20 Places To Go In 2020 Doha

In preparation for hosting the 2022 Fifa World Cup, Doha introduced a brand-new underground railway system, and the city is expanding its arts and culture scene with the opening of new museums including the National Museum of Qatar. Getting from the airport to the palm-lined Corniche is more convenient than ever with the new transportation system, Old Doha provides a historic feel, and Souq Waqif is a must-see open-air street market. Choose from an array of luxury hotels in the city including the InterContinental Doha, JW Marriott Marquis City Center, and The St. Regis Doha

Explore Doha Luxury Hotels

7. Melbourne, Australia

20 Places To Go In 2020 Melbourne

Providing a European feel in the land of Oz, Melbourne is a cosmopolitan city known for its street art, constantly changing landscape, and live music. There's a strong coffee culture throughout the city, and it is the capital of the Australian state of Victoria. Ideal for foodies, coffee lovers, and art enthusiasts, Melbourne is considered the Culture Capital of Australia. Cobbled laneways in the city center have coffee shops, cafes, and one-of-a-kind boutiques ideal for exploring, while the Queen Victoria Markets is the largest open-air market in the Southern Hemisphere.

The city will be hosting a number of major events throughout the year, including the Australian Open January 20 - February 2, the ICC Women's T20 World Cup 2020 will February 21 - March 8, and the ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2020 will be October 18 - November 15.

Melbourne is home to an array of five star hotels, including several with exclusive Five Star Alliance Perks such as The Langham Melbourne, InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto, and Park Hyatt Melbourne

Explore Melbourne Luxury Hotels

6. Nashville, Tennessee

20 Places To Go In 2020 Nashville

While this trend-setting destination has been popular for the past few years, Nashville is continuing to grow, adding new draws to the city beyond country music. In the summer of 2020, the National Museum of African American Music will open along Broadway, right in the heart of downtown. The museum will feature five interactive galleries showcasing the 50 genres of African American Music. Plus, the city is constantly expanding its hotel selection with new additions like the JW Marriott Nashville, Thompson Nashville in the growing neighborhood of "The Gulch", and the newly-renovated Hutton Hotel with writer's rooms and a 5,000-square-foot live music venue.

Explore Nashville Luxury Hotels

5. Dominica

20 Places To Go In 2020 Dominica

Paradise for outdoorsy travelers, Dominica is a 290-square-mile teardrop-shaped island with the world's second-largest hot spring, plus 300 miles of hiking trails, 365 rivers, and a dozen waterfalls. The recently opened Cabrits Resort & Spa Kempinski is a luxury five star resort with a spa designed to create a greater connection to nature and the island's ecosystem. The massive Spa at Kempinski Dominica offers mud baths sourced from the island's ten volcanoes, and a water temple surrounded by rainforest trees. There's also four restaurants and bars each with a local-focused approach, four hot and cold water pools, tennis courts, and easy access to the island's eco-tourism opportunities. Plus, exclusive Five Star Alliance Perks. 

Book a stay at Cabrits Resort & Spa Kempinski

4. Porto, Portugal

20 Places To Go In 2020 Porto Portugal

Ideal for wine lovers and foodies, Porto offers idyllic weather along with great food and wine. As the home of Port wine (and the city's namesake), Porto is perfect as a starting point for exploring historic Port Wine houses and the vineyards of Douro Valley. Offering travelers a good value for their monty the city center of Porto is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and an easy trip from Lisbon.  

The city is also home to several luxury hotels including several with exclusive Five Star Alliance Perks: The Yeatman, InterContinental Porto Palacio Das Cardosas, and Infante Sagres

Explore Porto Luxury Hotels

3. Plymouth, England & Plymouth, Massachusetts

20 Places To Go In 2020 Plymouth

2020 marks the 400th anniversary of the Mayflower's voyage from Plymouth, England to Plymouth, Massachusetts. In celebration, both cities are hosting an array of events to commemorate the pioneering voyage and the group of travelers that would go on to have more than 30 million United States descendents. In England, the Mayflower 400 celebrations focus on the towns and cities along the national Mayflower Trail. While the Plymouth 400 events in the United States will be centered in the town of Plymouth, located 40 miles south of downtown Boston. 

Interested in partaking in these commemorative events? In England, travelers could consider basing themselves in London and taking daytrips via train to various towns on the Mayflower Trail. An additional option would be the Lime Wood in Lyndhurst, a Regency country house hotel located a short drive from Southampton, a key destination on the Mayflower Trail. For participaing in events near and around Plymouth, Massachusetts, we recommend a luxury hotel in Boston such as the Fairmont Copley Plaza or Fifteen Beacon

2. Dubai, UAE

20 Places To Go In 2020 Dubai

Beginning in October 2020, Dubai is hosting the World Expo. Lasting for 6 months, the city has designed the metropolis of the future with 130 buildings connected via smart technology. Later this year the Museum of the Future designed by a computer algorithm and the Aladdin City will also open.

For accommodations in this world-class city in the desert we have three key recommendations, each with exclusive Five Star Alliance Perks: One&Only Royal Mirage, Taj Dubai, and Burj Al Arab

Explore Dubai Luxury Hotels

1. Tokyo, Japan

20 Places To Go In 2020 Tokyo

Hosting the XXXII Olympic Summer Games, Jul 24 - Aug 9, Tokyo is a business and cultural megacenter. Known for extreme attention to detail, the cutting-edge destination is home to world-class art galleries and museums, as well nightlife. With 234 Michelin-starred restaurants (the most of any city in the world), Japan's capital city is an ideal destination for foodies.

The Aman Tokyo offers an urban sanctuary setting on the top six floors of the recently-built Otemachi Tower, plus exclusive Five Star Alliance Perks including daily breakfast. For a landmark stay, The Peninsula Tokyo is an iconic destination in the prestigious Marunouchi financial district with sophisticated facilities including a wedding chapel, indoor pool, outdoor pool with views of the Imperial Palace Gardens, and exclusive Five Star Alliance Perks. While the Cerulean Tower Tokyu Hotel is located directly above Shibuya Station with a modern design, entertainment venues, and perks for Five Star Alliance guests.

Explore Tokyo Luxury Hotels


| By: Rachael Weir

Providing a regal setting overlooking the gardens, the Royal Suite with Plunge Pool at The Leela Palace New Dehli is an opulent retreat, complete with exclusive Five Star Alliance Perks. The living area of the indulgent suite has an exquisite chandelier, floor-to-ceiling windows, plush sitting area, flat-screen TV, and an entrance to the suite's own private pool. Continue reading below the photo. 

The Royal Suite with Private Plunge Pool at The Leela Palace New Delhi

One of the Royal Suite's most unique and indulgent features is the private plunge pool. The open-to-the-sky temperature controlled in-room plunge pool with Jacuzzi is surrounded by casual seating, ideal for lounging in the welcoming air. Plus, the space has large windows perfect for taking in views of the city while relaxing in private luxury. Continue reading below the photo to learn more about the hotel and an exclusive Five Star Alliance Perks offer.

Private Plunge Pool in the Royal Suite at The Leela Palace New Delhi

The Leela Palace New Delhi at Chanakyapuri is located within the Diplomatic Enclave. Featuring legendary Lutyens' design and architecture, the hotel has gleaming chandeliers, carved viceroy elephants, hand-woven carpets, and an eclectic art collection. Guest rooms and suites are equipped with state-of-the-art luxuries, and the hotel's iconic dining destinations include an award-winning Italian restaurant and Le Cirque, a modern Japanese restaurant. Plus, The Leela Palace New Delhi has a rooftop weather-controlled swimming pool. Learn more about exclusive Five Star Alliance Perks below the photo. 

Rooftop Pool at The Leela Palace New Delhi

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also receive full breakfast for each guest daily in The Qube, roundtrip airport transfer in a luxury sedan, Palace Art Walk, complimentary WiFi, and an automatic room category upgrade at booking, based on availability.

Check availability at The Leehla Palace New Delhi


| By: Rachael Weir

Hosting the 2020 Olympic Games, Tokyo is a city of contrasts. From Zen-like gardens to Shiodome's skyscraper jungle, travelers to the city can explore an array of styles and destinations within the city's' eclectic neighborhoods. 

For those seeking to get in touch with nature and culture, Ueno Park is one of the city's largest parks, and the destination for springtime cherry trees. Within the park, visitors will find the Tokyo National Museum, National Museum of Western Art, National Museum of Nature and Science, and the Shitamachi Museum with a bird sanctuary. There's also the Toshogu Shrine built in 1651, as well as the Kiyomizu Kannon-do Temple. 

Consumerism plays a prominent role within Tokyo, making it a hot spot for shopping. From the hip shops on Takeshita Street in Harajuku to designer boutiques on the ultramodern Omotesando Avenue, the city offers shopping destinations for all styles and personalities.  For a local experience, visit Tsukiji Fish Market to see local fish in the morning, or enjoy fresh sushi. 

5. Park Hyatt Tokyo

Park Hyatt Tokyo Dining

Featuring 360-degree views of the city and Mount Fuji, Park Hyatt Tokyo offers an oasis of calm. Occupying the top 14 floors of the 52-story tower, the hotel is a luxury residence with 177 guestrooms, each designed to feel like a private urban residence with original artwork and books. The Club on the Park Spa and Fitness Centre has a 26x65-foot indoor swimming pol with floor-to-ceiling glass walls as well as aqua classes. Plus, the New York Grill offers fine dining in a contemporary setting on the 52nd floor. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also include full breakfast for two daily in Girandole or through room service and a $100 food and beverage credit per room/per stay (excluding minibar). 

Check availability at Park Hyatt Tokyo

4. Mandarin Oriental Tokyo

Mandarin Oriental

Towering over the city, guests enter the Mandarin Oriental Tokyo via an entrance on the 38th floor. Offering a renowned spa, impeccable service, and contemporary style, the five-star hotel features exclusive views. Plus, there are innovative dining options with showstopping views such as Sense with Cantonese cuisine, Signature with fine French dining, and Tapas Molecular Bar. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also include American Breakfast for two daily, a $100 hotel credit per room/per stay valid at the restaurants (excluding Gourmet Shop) or in-room dining or spa treatments (no cash value), personalized welcome amenities, and complimentary high speed internet access. 

Check availability at Mandarin Oriental Tokyo

3. The Shangri-La Hotel, Tokyo

Shangri-La Hotel Tokyo

Adjacent to Tokyo Station, Shangri-La Hotel, Tokyo features panoramic city views of the Imperial Palace, central business district, and the new landmark Tokyo Skytree Tower. Offering 200 rooms, the hotel has three restaurants and one bar, as well as a 24-hour health club, CHI The Spa, heated indoor swimming pool, Jacuzzi, and sauna. Occupying the top 11 floors of the 37-floor mixed-use Marunouchi Trust Tower Main Building, giving guests one-of-a-kind skyline views.

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking  the "5 Star Signature Package" rate or "Best Available Rate" will also receive full breakfast for two daily in Piacere, complimentary WiFi, USD 100 hotel credit per room/per stay (not valid on room rate, transportation, CHI The Spa retail products, Shangri-La Boutique and no cash value), a welcome amenity that includes fruits and chocolates. 

Check availability at The Shangri-La Hotel, Tokyo

2. The Peninsula Tokyo

Guest Bath t The Peninsula Tokyo

Opposite the Imperial Palace and Hibiya Park, The Peninsula Tokyo is located in the Marunouchi district, a short walk from the shopping capital of Ginza. Featuring legendary service and commanding views of the Tokyo skyline, the property's Peninsula Spa received Forbes Five-Star status for the fifth year in a row, whilethe Hei Fung Terrace restaurant serves authentic Cantonese specialties with skyline views. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also recieve American Breakfast for two daily at The Lobby, complimentary WiFi, a seasonal welcome amenity, and a per room 10,000 JPY food and beverage credit per stay valid in all restaurants or in-room dining with the exclusion of Kyoto Tsuraya, mini-bar items and retail merchandise. 

Check availability at The Peninsula Tokyo

1. Aman Tokyo

Aman Tokyo

Adjacent to the Otemachi Forest, Aman Tokyo is located in the prestigious financial district of Otemachi. Set on the top six floors of the Otemachi Tower, the luxury hotel is a sanctuary rooted in ritual with a mix of urban dynamism and cultural sensibility. The boundary between indoors and out is blurred with Ikebana displays and engawa platforms. While ryokan-style rooms have views of the Tokyo skyline, the Aman Spa is one of the city's largest wellness facilities, and the property's bars and restaurants serve as a social hub.

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also receive full breakfast for two daily in the restaurant and a $100 food and beverage credit per room/per stay (excludes minibar and no cash value).

Check availability at Aman Tokyo


| By: Rachael Weir

Set within an iconic 25-story building, The Murray, Hong Kong is a luxe retreat with five elegant dining destinations including a rooftop restaurant and bar. Perched along Cotton Tree Drive, the contemporary urban sanctuary was originally built in 1969, and transformed into a luxury hotel in 2017 with terraces showcasing views of the city, Hong Kong Park, and the Hong Kong Zoological Botanical Gardens. 

Situated between the 19th and 22nd floors of the hotel, Explorer Suites are corner units measuring 75 square meters/807 square feet. Featuring contemporary urban chic styling, each of the suites has a separate living room with views of either the cityscape or Hong Kong Park. Along with seamless technology, coffee and tea making facilities, personal bars, and in-room safes. Learn more about the Explorer Suites below the Living Room photo.

Explorer Suite Living Room at The Murray, Hong Kong

Providing additional space and privacy, the Explore Suites have master bedrooms with plush beds topped with 1,000-thread-count linens, walk-in closets, state-of-the-art technology, and bathrooms with bath amenities by Grown Alchemist. Learn about exclusive Five Star Alliance Perks below the Explorer Suite Bedroom photo.

Explorer Suite Bedroom at The Murray, Hong Kong

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests making reservations through Five Star Alliance will receive a complimentary welcome beverage.

Check availability at The Murray, Hong Kong


| By: Rachael Weir

Taj Lake Palace

Offering a contrast of cultures, religions, and history, India provides a range of experiences for travelers. In this edition of Featured Journeys, we're highlighting royal palace hotels on this multi-destination trip to India. We begin in Hyderabad at the Taj Falaknuma Palace, next we head to a palace in the middle of a lake at the Taj Lake Palace (shown above), and we end our journey in Mumbai, the Gateway to India. 

Hyderabad, India

One of India's former princely states, Hyderabad was once one of the country's largest and wealthiest states. More than 400 years old, the city built its fortune on pearls, gold, steel, fabric, and diamonds. At one time, the city and the Golconda Fort was the most famous dining mining area in the world, as Golconda is where the Koh-i-Noor and Hope diamonds were excavated. Today, the city is the capital of Andhra Pradesh, and it is known for thriving information technology and biotech research industries. There's a vibrant culture here with luxury hotels and regional cuisine. 

Taj Falaknuma Palace

Green palace bedroom at Taj Falaknuma Palae

Formerly the palace of the Nizam, Taj Falaknuma Palace was built in 1894. Perched 2,000 feet above the City of Pearls, the grand palace offers guests a royal experience. Visitors arrive via a horse-drawn carriage, and butlers attend to their needs while staying at the palace. Spread over 32 acres, the palace hotel has 60 guest rooms and suites where opulence, excess, and historical details are honored and revered. Adaa provides a gastronomic experience with fine Indian cuisine, the Jiva Spa has an array of treatments rooted in traditional Indian practices, and afternoon tea is served on the Jade Terrace. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests making reservations through Five Star Alliance receive full breakfast daily and one dinner at Adaa per person, per stay. Also, subject to availability at the time of check-in/departure: a room upgrade, early check-in, and late check-out.

Check rates at Taj Falaknuma Palace

Explore more Hyderabad Luxury Hotels

 

Udaipur, India

This picturesque area in Rajasthan is set around Lake Pichola with the purple-hued Aravalli Range of mountains in surrounding the city in every direction. Here travelers can visit colorful bazaars to shop for local goods, take in a lively arts scene, go for a boat ride, and explore city's palaces, temples, and traditional decorated residences called havelis

Taj Lake Palace

Spa Boat at Taj Lake Palace

Built as a pleasure palace by the the young prince, Maharana Jagat Singh II of Udaipur in 1746, Taj Lake Palace is a heritage hotel situated in the middle of Lake Pichola. Restored to its pristine and elegant glory, the hotel's 65 luxe guest rooms and 18 grand suites feature views of the lake, Aravalli Hills, Machla Magra Hills, and Jag Mandir. The site of a variety of movies including the Bond film "Octopussy", this regal property is popular for weddings and honeymoons, as well as travelers seeking a royal experience at the Jiva Spa (including the spa boat shown above) or authentic Rajasthani at Neel Kamal. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also receive lunch or dinner for two once during stay, a Heritage Walk of the property followed by a glass of sparkling wine, a 15% discount on spa services, Butler Service, daily a la carte breakfast for two in Jharokha Restaurant, and a traditional welcome amenity. 

Check rates at Taj Lake Palace

Explore more Udaipur Luxury Hotels

 

Mumbai, India

Once known as Bombay, Mumbai is a fusion of cultures and time periods. Reminders of its colonial past are never far away, and new malls mix with historic sites like the UNESCO-protected Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus. The fast-growing city has been the Gateway to India for centuries due to its strong port location, and it continues to evolve while maintaining its spiritual roots. Babulnath Temple is a serene destination for Hindu pilgrims, and Muslims walk to the white marble Haji Ali shrine via the seafront causeway.

The Taj Mahal Palace Mumbai

The Taj Mahal Palace Mumbai

Within walking distance of the Colaba Causeway, The Taj Mahal Palace Mumbai was recently trademarked. Built in 1903, the property has been a landmark in the city's harbour, welcoming kings, dignitaries, and prominent figures from around the world since its opening. Overlooking the Gateway of India, the hotel is strategically located in the city's historic and commercial hub. Close to the financial hub, parliament, stadium, shopping, and office districts, as well as museums, churches, and synagogues, the palace hotel harkens the glamour of a bygone era. Golden Keys Concierge can assist guests with exclusive experiences, authentic cuisine is served at Masala Kraft, and Golden Dragon offers Chinese specialties. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also receive buffet breakfast for two daily at Sea Lounge and a one way airport to hotel transfer in a Mercedes car on a sharing basis. 

Check rates at The Taj Mahal Palace Mumbai

Explore more Mumbai Luxury Hotels


| By: Rachael Weir

Featured Journeys: Thailand

Featured Journeys: Thailand

From world-class cuisine to luxury retreats, Thailand is a country offering a bounty of arts and cultural experiences, fresh flavors, Michelin Star restaurants, and picturesque beaches. In this edition of Featured Journeys, we highlight a multi-destination itinerary beginning in the northern region of Chiang Rai where guests can explore the Golden Triangle, then on to the cosmopolitan destination of Bangkok, and finishing on the island of Phuket. 

Chiang Rai

The northernmost province in Thailand, Chiang Rai is a broad valley with tree-lined riverbanks. Separated by Laos to the east and Myanmar to the west by the Mekong River, Chiang Rai offers a lush setting for travelers to relax and unwind before or after trekking trips to the Golden Triangle and Chiang Saen. 

Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort

Country Suite at Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort

Overlooking the border of Myanmar and Laos, Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort is a luxury resort perched on a ridge in northern Thailand. Offering a tranquil jungle setting, the property is home to an award-winning elephant camp for rescued elephants with scientific and conservation programs. There are 40 room and 15 suites, including 6 family suites, all of which feature indigenous artworks, teak furnishings, and modern comforts like rain showers, soaking tubs, and balconies with daybeds. Guests of the resort have access to an array of one-of-a-kind experiences including cooking and cultural activities, spa services, and elephant encounters. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate or "Best Available Rate" will also include a $100 Resort Credit per room/per stay (not combinable, not valid on room rate, no cash value), complimentary WiFI, and full breakfast for each guest daily. 

In addition, this hotel offers exclusive 2019 FIVE STAR ALLIANCE SUITE & VILLA PRIVILEGES that can be combined with the FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK (if requirements are met). 

2019 FIVE STAR ALLIANCE SUITE & VILLA PRIVILEGES: Guests booking a stay of 2 or more nights in a villa or suite receive a $100 Spa Credit per stay. This offer is valid for stays of at least two nights through December 31, 2019 in Deluxe Suites. 

Check availability at Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort

Explore more Chiang Rai Luxury Hotels

Bangkok

From palaces to street markets such as Chatuchak Weekend Market, Sampeng Market, and Pahurat Textile Market, Bangkok is a city with a variety of tourist attractions. There are famous temples including the well-known Wat Phra Kaew, Wat Pho, Wat Arun, Wat Phu Khao Thong, Wat Ratchanadda, Wat Traimit, Wat Benchamabophit, Wat Bowon, and Wat Sutat, as well as popular museums in west Bangkok like Don Kai Dee Benjarong Village, Phra Pathom Chedi, Sanam Chandra Palace, Don Wai Floating Market, Sampran Riverside, and Thai Human Imagery Museum. While in Bangkok, visitors will also want to explore the city's prime nightlife scene. 

The Siam Hotel

The Siam Hotel Pool

In the historic district of Bangkok, The Siam Hotel is set amidst 3 acres of lush gardens on the Chao Phraya River. Close to the city's top historical sites and cultural attractions, the property offers guests a private urban retreat with an extensive arts and antique collection, luxurious suites and villas, award-winning Opium Spa, Muay Thai fighter program, and Sak Yant tattoos, which are a sacred Thai tradition. Plus, the property offers the Chon Thai Restaurant serving traditional Thai cuisine within a cluster of three 100-year-old Thai teakwood houses, Deco Bar & Bistro with international comfort cuisine, and the poolside Bathers Bar overlooking the Chao Phraya river. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests making reservations with Five Star Alliance will also receive a $100 food and beverage credit per room/per stay (not combinable, not valid on room rate, no cash value if not redeemed in full), a selected welcome drink for two on the first evening at the pier or Deco Bar, an afternoon treat from 3 – 4 PM at Deco Bar or swimming pool for guests staying in a pool villa.

Check availability at The Siam 

Explore more Bangkok Luxury Hotels

Phuket

Located in Southern Thailand, Phuket is a beach destination on an island in the Andaman Sea. Easily reachable via a one-hour flight from Bangkok, Phuket offers some of the world's top beaches including Rawai, Patong, Karon, Kamala, Kata Yai, Kata Noi, and Mai Khao. For one-of-a-kind sunsets, visitors should head to Laem Phromthep Viewpoint, considered to offer some of the most picturesque sunsets in Thailand. Strongly influenced by the Chinese, travelers to the island will see Chinese shrines and Chinese restaurants around the city, and there is a Chinese Vegetarian Festival held yearly, as well as an array of international influences and trendy nightlife scene. 

Amanpuri

Amanpuri

Set on a hillside, Amanpuri is a luxurious place of peace. Interiors feature original artworks, hand-loomed silks, fragrant orchids, and custom-crafted furniture. Elegant dining options highlight Thailand cuisine, as well as fresh Japanese sashimi at Nama restaurant, Italian cuisine at Arva, along with Mexican snacks and cocktails at the Latin American Bar. There's a black-tiled pool, as well as the beach and water sports in the Andaman Sea such as snorkeling, kayaking, and jet-skiing. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also include continental breakfast for two daily in the Dining Room or through room service and a $100 USD hotel credit per room/per stay. 

In addition, this hotel offers exclusive 2019 FIVE STAR ALLIANCE SUITE & VILLA PRIVILEGES that can be combined with the FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK (if requirements are met). 

2019 FIVE STAR ALLIANCE SUITE & VILLA PRIVILEGES: One lunch for up to two people per room, excluding alcoholic beverages and gratuities, once during their stay (value $100). Note: Nama, Amanpuri Japanese restaurant is not included. This offer is valid for stays of at least two nights through December 31, 2019 in Ocean Pool Pavilion, Premium Ocean Pavilion, 2 Bedroom Pool Pavilion, 2 Bedroom Garden Villa, 2 Bedroom Ocean Villa, 3 Bedroom Garden Villa, 3 Bedroom Ocean Villa, 4 Bedroom Garden Villa, 4 Bedroom Ocean Villa, 5 Bedroom Garden Villa, 5 Bedroom Ocean Villa, 6 Bedroom Garden Villa, 6 Bedroom Ocean Villa, 7 Bedroom Garden Villa, 8 Bedroom Garden Villa, 8 Bedroom Ocean Villa, or 9 Bedroom Ocean Villa. 

Check availability at Amanpuri

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| By: Rachael Weir

Mandarin Oriental Singapore in the harbor

Destination Spotlight: Singapore

Considered one of the safest cities in the world, Singapore offers an eclectic mix for visitors. Situated on an island at the tip of the Malay Peninsula, Singapore (officially the Republic of Singapore) is a city-state. For centuries, its location made it a natural meeting point on sea routes, which was a popular destination for Arab dhows, Portuguese battleships, Chinese junks, and Buginese schooners.

Today, Singapore is "The Lion City" with its name coming from the Sanskrit words "simha" (lion) and "pura" (city). Modern Singapore was founded in the 19th century by Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles. After being ruled by various nations, Singapore became an independent country in 1965. 

Travelers to the city-state will find an array of multi-cultural influences, as well as preserved pieces of the country's colonial and wartime past. Visitors interested in history will want to take a walk along the heritage trail for a real trip through time, while visiting monuments, museums, and memorials along the way. 

Throughout the year, Singapore hosts a variety of events including the Singapore Jazz Festival, Neon Lights: a three-day event with music, creative workshops, and art installations, as well as Asia's largest outdoor beach party ZoukOut.

Visitors to the city may want to begin the day at the Botanic Gardens for tai chi amidst rainforest trees, check out a cricket match at Padang, or step back to colonial days at the Supreme Court. Sentosa Island is a popular destination for outdoor recreation, the Sri Mariamman Temple showcases the city's spiritual side in Chinatown, and the Chinatown Night Market is a known for stalls filled with red lanterns, Chinese calligraphy, and traditional clothing. For those that like to shop, Orchard Road is the spot for designer fashions and the latest electronics, Demsey Hill is a haven of antique stores, and Haj Lane in the Arab Quarter has bold textiles and tailored dress shirts. 

5. Andaz Singapore

Rooftop pool at Andaz Singapore

Featuring floor-to-ceiling windows in all guest rooms and suites, Andaz Singapore is a modern urban retreat. The rooftop outdoor pool has incredible views, there are four dining options including Alley on 25 with a street-dining-inspired menu on the 25th floor of the hotel, and the destination bar Mr. Stork on Level 39. For visitors with a love for sweets, Pandan puts a spin on Singapore's national cake, the pandan chiffon. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the “5 Star Signature Package” rate will also receive full American breakfast for each guest daily in Alley on 25, $100 food and beverage credit, per room/per stay (not combinable, not valid on room rate, no cash value if not redeemed in full), and a welcome amenity. 

Check availability at Andaz Singapore

4. Fairmont Singapore

Fairmont Singapore

Home to one of Asia's largest spas, the Fairmont Singapore provides an idyllic location in the heart of downtown. Featuring 15 distinctive restaurants and bars, guests can choose from a variety of dining options from casual to fine dining, authentically local or international. Set at the crossroads of the central business district, world-class shopping and entertainment, the hotel is located above the City Hall Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) train station. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also receive daily full breakfast for two, $50 food and beverage credit, per room, per stay, and complimentary internet access.  

Check availability at Fairmont Singapore

3. The St. Regis Singapore

Grand Deluxe King Room at The St. Regis Singapore

Home to one of Asia's finest private collections, The St. Regis Singapore offers unsurpassed luxury, with signature St. Regis Butler Service available any time of the day or night. The landmark property is situated at the crossroads of the embassy district, prime shopping along Orchard Road, and the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Singapore Botanic Gardens. Guests can relax at the Remede Spa, dine at Brasserie Les Saveurs, LaBrezza, or Yan Ting, and sip a cocktail at the Astor Bar. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate or "Best Available Rate" will also receive full breakfast for two daily and a $100 USD food and beverage credit per room/per stay. 

Check availability at The St. Regis Singapore

2. Shangri-La Hotel Singapore

Soaking tub at Shangri-La Hotel Singapore

This luxe city resort is located amidst a tranquil setting with 15 acres of lush gardens and a large free-form pool. Guest rooms and suites at Shangri-La Hotel Singapore are situated within three distinct wings. Family-themed rooms are available with an array of dedicated family-focused amenities, plus there are 11 restaurants and bars. Singapore's first Chi, The Spa is located within the hotel, and the designer shopping malls along Orchard Road are steps away.

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also receive daily full breakfast for two, $100 USD Hotel Credit per room, per stay valid for food, beverage, and spa (excludes room service and minibar), Welcome Chinese Tea and Fruit in room. Subject to availability at time of check-in/departure: room upgrade, early check-in, and/or late check-out until 4 PM.  

Check availability at Shangri-La Hotel Singapore

1.  Mandarin Oriental Singapore

Bay Suite at Mandarin Oriental Singapore

Showcasing Marina Bay and skyline views, Mandarin Oriental Singapore has a prime waterfront location with an outdoor swimming pool, private cabanas, and contemporary wet deck. There is a wide range of dining options on-site including Morton's the Steakhouse, Teppan-Ya, MO BAR, and Cherry Garden. While [email protected] has an exclusive setting for cocktails and sunset views. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE: Guests booking the 5 Star Signature Package rate will also receive daily international breakfast buffet for two at Melt Cafe, $100USD Food & Beverage or Spa Credit, oner per room, per stay (except Morton's Steakhouse & Teppan-Ya), welcome chocolates, and WiFi. Based on availability at booking, a room category upgrade (upgrades are up to City Suite tier), and subject to availability at check-in/check-out: early check-in and late check-out.  

Check availability at Mandarin Oriental Singapore

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| By: Rachael Weir

Recognized as the legendary "Grande Dame of the Far East", The Peninsula Hong Kong blends the finest luxuries and hospitality of the East and West. Since opening in 1928, the property has welcomed celebrities and dignitaries from around the globe, and guests of the hotel can re-live the glamour of a by-gone era through the property's collection of antiques and historical artifacts on display throughout the hotel. In addition, guests booking through Five Star Alliance receive special Perks. Continue reading below.

The Peninsula Hong Kong

For panoramic views of Victoria Harbor, Deluxe Harbor View Suites feature a one-of-a-kind retreat. Providing a residential experience within the Peninsula Tower, these suites have living rooms with fireplaces, L-shaped sofas, and fully-equipped audio-visual centers with Blu-Ray LED TVs. The master bedrooms have luxury beds with high-end linens, plush armchairs, and telescopes for viewing the harbor. There's also large walk-in dressing rooms, and marble bathrooms have unique corner deep soaking bathtubs. Learn about a special Perks offer for Five Star Alliance guests below the photo. 

Deluxe Harbor View Suite Living Room at The Peninsula Hong Kong

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK:  Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate or "Best Available Rate" receive full buffet breakfast for two daily at The Verandah and a $100 hotel credit per stay (excludes Imasa, banquet, Peninsula Academy Program, Peninsula Boutique or spa products).

Check availability at The Peninsula Hong Kong

 


| By: Rachael Weir

Siem Reap is a luxury destination in western Cambodia, known for five-star hotels and resorts, boutiques, spas, and galleries. Situated about 3.5 miles south of Angkor, Siem Reap is an ideal destination for exploring the temples and ancient city, as well as rejuvenating at one of the area's top spas, or trying the local cuisine served in one of the city's restaurants. To fully explore this area, we recommend four to five days, and be sure to catch a sunrise over Angkor Wat to see its towers aglow in red and orange. 

Referred to as the "City of God Kings", the ancient city of Angkor was the capital of the Khmer Kingdom from 802 to 1295. The UNESCO World Heritage Site is a vast complex of towers and sculptures, that was abandoned for nearly 600 years. Hindu mythology believed kings were gods, and this was the home of the kings who were considered gods. In 1861, French naturalist Henri Mouhot stumbled upon the ancient city, transforming it into a major tourist attraction.

Today, visitors to this region can explore a stone skeleton of a city amidst a lush jungle. The Angkor Wat temple complex covers about 60 square miles of land, with moats, temples, palaces, and passageways. Guests to the site may want to consider visiting with a guide for a greater understanding of the Khmer history, architecture, as well as the significance of the site to Buddhism and Hinduism. Angkor Thom was founded in the 12th century by Jayavarman VII, and remained the capital of Khmer cities until the 17th century. For a state-of-the-art experience, the Angkor National Museum is an ideal destination for guests to learn more about the Khmer civilization and legacy.

In the markets, guests can shop for traditional foods and souvenirs, and the downtown area of Siem Reap offers an increasing number of evening entertainment options along Pub Street. 

Here are 5 Top Siem Reap Luxury Hotels 

5. Anantara Angkor Resort and Spa

Anantara Angkor Resort and Spa

Providing easy access to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Angkor, the Anantara Angkor Resort and Spa is an all-suite luxury resort. Accommodations mix contemporary styling with handcrafted teak furniture, local textiles, and hand carved sandstone. Suites include butler service, arrival foot rituals, pillow menus, and Anantara luxury bedding. While guests can customize their visit with bespoke experiences such as going to the nearby historic village via traditional Tuk Tuk service, lounging in the outdoor saltwater pool, private market tours, or cooking classes. 

Check availability at Anantara Angkor Resort and Spa

4. Park Hyatt Siem Reap

Park Hyatt Siem Reap

Featuring 104 contemporary rooms, including 13 suites with private gardens or plunge pools, Park Hyatt Siem Reap provides a modern setting in the heart of the ancient city. There are two swimming pools--a lap pool surrounded by parasols and cabanas, and a free-form pool with a lagoon design ideal for relaxation. The spa has Cambodian hand and foot rituals, there's a fully-equipped fitness center, and the Dining Room serves a selection of French Provincial and Cambodian cuisine. 

Check availability at Park Hyatt Siem Reap

3. Raffles Grand Hotel D'Angkor

Raffles Grand Hotel D'Angkor

Set within 15 acres of landscaped French gardens, Raffles Grand Hotel D'Angkor is a grand historic hotel. The landmark property elegantly blends contemporary amenities with the grandeur of a bygone era. Next to the Angkor National Museum, the hotel has an original timber elevator that takes guests to their rooms, as well as a Raffles Spa, two outdoor pools, and iconic Cambodian experiences at the Apsara Terrace and Elephant Bar. 

Check availability at Raffles Grand Hotel D'Angkor

2. Belmond La Residence d'Angkor 

Belmond La Residence d'Angkor

Featuring traditional Khmer styling, Belmond La Residence d'Angkor has an intimate setting. Accommodations have large bathrooms with spacious free-form baths, air conditioning, satellite TVs, and minibars. The outdoor salt water pool is set amidst lush foliage, there's a library with board games, travel guides, and reference books, plus the Kong Kea Spa offers treatments infused with local traditions. 

Five Star Alliance Perk:  Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate or "Best Available Rate"  receive a complimentary 50 minute massage for up to two people per room once during stay.

Check availability at Belmond La Residence d'Angkor

1. Amansara

Outdoor Pool at Amansara

Formerly the residence of a king, Amansara features modern stying with a curvilinear pool and monochrome minimalism. Following a careful restoration, the single-level retreat is a showcase of 1960s New Khmer architecture. Guests can book custom itineraries to visit ruins crowd-free, meditate in the ancient forests, or cruise through the floating villages of Tonle Sap lake. The Dining Room is a sleek space with soaring ceilings and Khmer-centered cuisine, and the resort's traditional Khmer village house offers rustic meals prepared over charcoal. 

Five Star Alliance Perk:  Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also receive continental breakfast for two daily in the Dining Room or through room service and a $100 USD hotel credit per room/per stay.

Check availability at Amansara

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| By: Rachael Weir

Mixing local culture with indoor tropical gardens, Shangri-La Hotel Singapore is a lush urban retreat. Accommodations are spread throughout three distinct wings: the resort-like Garden Wing, the recently rejuvenated contemporary Tower Wing, and the prestigious Valley Wing. The property is the original property for the Shangri-La Brand, and features CHI, The Spa at Shangri-La with Asian-inspired holistic treatments, an outdoor swimming pool, tennis courts, and fully-equipped health club. Continue reading below the photo.

Blue Bar at Shangri-La Hotel Singapore

One of the hotel's unique suites is the Honeymoon Suite. Situated in the Garden Wing, the Honeymoon Suite has interiors inspired by nature, a pillow menu, and a large balcony with sun loungers, outdoor Jacuzzi, and barbecue area. Read more below the photo. 

Honeymoon Suite Balcony at Shangri-La Hotel Singapore

The spacious living room has large floor-to-ceiling windows with city views, dining area for romantic dinners, and a plush living room for couples to relax. Continue reading below the photo.

Honeymoon Suite Living Room at Shangri-La Hotel Singapore

In the bathroom, there's a deep-soaking tub, soothing lighting, and an ideal spot for a bottle of chilled Champagne. Learn more about special Perks for Five Star Alliance guests below the photo. 

Honeymoon Suite Bathroom at Shangri-La Hotel Singapore

Five Star Alliance Perk: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also receive daily full breakfast for two, a per room SGD 100.00 food and beverage credit (not valid for room service or minibar), and in-room welcome Chinese Tea and Fruit.

Check availability at Shangri-La Hotel Singapore


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