Quantcast The Luxury Hotel Insider | Five Star Alliance

LUXURY HOTEL INSIDER

IntroIcon

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

Situated in the heart of the historic district, Belmond Charleston Place evokes the feel of a 17th century villa with an enchanting Georgian staircase that welcomes guests to the lobby, Italian marble floors, and a glistening chandelier. Providing an urban setting with a chic and serene environment inside its walls, the luxury hotel recently unveiled the Elysian Salon and completed renovations at The Spa at Belmond Place. Learn more about what's new at the hotel below the photo of the Elysian Salon. 

Elysium Salon at Belmond Charleston Place

Focused on creating a unique style for every client, the Elysium Salon is located in the East Gallery of The Shops at Belmond Charleston Place. Featuring a luxurious setting for haircuts, coloring, specialty treatments, wedding and special occasion hair, as well as makeup applications and lessons, the salon adds to Belmond Charleston Place's exclusive amenities. Since launching her career in the hair and makeup industry in 2001, Salon Director of Elysium at Charleston Place, Charlotte Belk--a South Carolina native, has been focusing on traditional cuts, natural & dimensional hair color, as well as specialty services. Read more below the Elysium Salon photo. 

Elysium Salon at Belmond Charleston Place

In addition to the Elysium Salon, The Spa at Belmond Charleston Place recently completed renovations. The newly transformed environment offers a tranquil setting with a clean and crisp color palette, and a more seamless connection to the mineral swimming pool. The men's and women's locker rooms were refreshed to provide a more relaxing mood, and there's a variety of new products and treatments available for guests including TaTa Harper's 100% natural line of beauty products from Vermont, anti-aging hand and feet products by Margaret Dabbs, Lafco Reed diffusers and candles, and FarmHouseFresh goods. Read more below The Spa at Belmond Charleston Place photo. 

The Spa at Belmond Charleston Place

Belmond Charleston Place mixes Southern charm with timeless elegance, steps from the city's historic sites, shopping, and restaurants. There's award-winning cuisine at the Charleston Grill, modern gastronomy at Palmetto Cafe, and gourmet pub fare in Meeting at Market. Plus, there's upscale shopping boutiques within the hotel and a rooftop pool. 

Check availability at Belmond Charleston Place


| By: Five Star Alliance

Soaring above the 600-acre beachfront resort of Anse Chastanet, Jade Mountain Resort offers an exclusive and private retreat with bold architectural design and sweeping vistas of St. Lucia's Pitons World Heritage Site. Designed to compliment St. Lucia's scenic beauty, the resort has bridges leading to infinity pool sanctuaries, stone-faced columns, and accommodations where the fourth wall is completely absent for a one-of-a-kind setting. For a limited time, guests can book the Take Five at Jade Mountain offer that includes the fifth night free on select dates. Read more about the offer below the Jade Mountain Sky Suite photo.

Jade Mountain Sky Suite

One of only seven Caribbean resort properties with a AAA 5 Diamond Rating, Jade Mountain Resort is currently offering a 5th night Free. Valid for stays through December 19, 2018, the Take Five at Jade Mountain offer includes a fifth night free on select dates for guests reserving a Sky Jacuzzi Suite or a Star or Moon Infinity Pool sanctuary. 

Check availability at Jade Mountain Resort


| By: Rachael Weir

Destination Spotlight: Nashville

Known as "Music City, U.S.A." Nashville is the home of Country Music. The famous honky-tonks along Broadway are known for live music from morning until late at night by talented performers with big dreams, along with surprise appearances of some of the music industry's biggest names. The Ryman Auditorium, known as the "Mother Church of Country Music" is an iconic red building just off Broadway that originally opened as the Union Gospel Tabernacle in 1892. Later, it was the original home of the "Grand Ole Opry" and today it is a destination for intimate performance in a one-of-a-kind setting known for out-of-this-world acoustics. Throughout the city there's a number of museums and attractions dedicated to preserving the history of the city's music industry including the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, RCA's Studio B, The Johnny Cash Museum, and the Patsy Cline Museum. 

But there's much more to Nashville beyond the music industry. History enthusiasts can explore a variety of sites including Belle Meade Plantation (complete with a winery), Civil War Battlefields near Franklin, and Andrew Jackson's Hermitage provides guests the experience to go back in time to visit the former president's entire estate. Love wine? There's vineyards and tasting rooms nearby. Interested in seeing a full-size replica of the Parthenon? There's one right in the Nashville city limits.

And of course there's the food scene in Nashville. As the city expands, so does the choice of restaurants. From long-time local favorites like the Loveless Cafe and Puckett's serving classic Southern dishes, to new Southern cuisine at The Southern, to fusion dining options and culinary experiences, Nashville offers foodies a one-of-a-kind destination.

When visiting Nashville, there's a variety of luxury hotels throughout the city. For those attending events at the Bridgestone or Music City Center, or looking to take in live music at Broadway's honky-tonks, downtown and SoBro hotels offer ideal locations. If the food scene and luxury boutiques is of interest, The Gulch is a prime location situated right between downtown and Music Row. While the Vanderbilt area is close to Music Row's publishing houses and recording studios, as well as multiple universities and Vanderbilt Hospital.

Here are 5 Top Nashville Luxury Hotels:

1. Thompson Nashville

Suite 701 at Thompson Nashville

Located in "The Gulch", the trendy and upscale neighborhood set between downtown and Music Row, Thompson Nashville is a modern boutique hotel. Offering guestrooms and suites that mix contemporary, industrial, and classic design, the hotel provides a residential feel. Steps from some of the city's top restaurants, boutiques, and condominiums, the chic retreat is around the corner from the iconic Station Inn. The Marsh House Restaurant serves Southern-infused seafood specialties for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, plus the rooftop L.A. Jackson has small plates, crafted cocktails, indoor and outdoor seating, and a see-and-be-seen environment.

For an insider's perspective, checkout our Content Manager's article Residential Retreat at Thompson Nashville

Check availability at Thompson Nashville

 

2. Omni Nashville

Suite at the Omni Nashville

Situated in SoBro, the Omni Nashville is connected via an indoor walkway to the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. Throughout the hotel there is an array of locally-produced artwork, guestrooms and suites have Nashville-infused decor, and the heated outdoor pool is open year-round with stunning skyline views. There's three on-site dining options ranging from the casual Kitchen Notes with modern Southern cuisine, Bob's Steak and Chop House with a music-infused classic steakhouse setting, and Barlines with live music, gourmet bar foods, and a cocktail menu highlighting Tennessee libations. 

For an insider's perspective, checkout our Content Manager's article Music City Views at Omni Nashville

Check availability at Omni Nashville

 

3. The Hermitage

The Hermitage Nashville

Since opening in 1910, The Hermitage (named in honor of Andrew Jackson's estate) has been an iconic destination in downtown Nashville for traditions, weddings, political, and social events. Offering elegant Southern style, guestrooms and suites have an average of 500 square feet, as well as traditional furnishings with dark woods and gold accents. The hotel's Capitol Grille is a destination restaurant known for creative interpretations of Southern specialties, while the adjacent Oak Bar has Nashville's largest collection of bourbons. 

Check availability at The Hermitage

 

4. Hutton Hotel

Hutton Hotel Analog Music & Cocktail Lounge

Offering fully-equipped Writer's Rooms and creative spaces, Hutton Hotel is a boutique hotel in Nashville's West End neighborhood. Close too Music Row and Vanderbilt University, the property provides guests with an immersive journey into the city's music industry with the 5,000-square-foot Analog music and cocktail lounge (shown above). For dining, the WestEnd bar and restaurant serves innovative Southern cuisine, and recently redesigned guestrooms and suites have residential styling, granite bathrooms, and Triumph & Disaster bath amenities. 

Check availability at The Hutton

 

5. 21c Museum Hotel Nashville

21c Museum Hotel Nashville

Situated within the historic Gray & Dudley building, 21c Museum Hotel Nashville offers reimagined spaces with contemporary guestrooms and suites, including rooftop suites with outdoor terraces. Located along 2nd Avenue in downtown, the property is set amidst dining and nightlife destinations, including Broadway's honky-tonks. There's a contemporary art museum within the common areas of the hotel, providing more than 10,500 square feet of exhibition and event space, plus the Gray & Dudley restaurant and bar by executive chef Levon Wallace. 

Check availability at 21c Museum Hotel Nashville

 

Explore all Nashville Luxury Hotels

 


| By: Rachael Weir

Recently I had the opportunity to spend two nights at the Thompson Nashville. Located in "The Gulch" the city's trendy new neighborhood set between downtown and Music Row with upscale apartments, condominiums, shops, and restaurants, the Thompson Nashville offers a convenient location for both business and leisure travelers. 

From the moment I arrived at the Thompson Nashville, I felt like I had my own private residence in the city. Set amidst modern apartments and condominiums, the Thompson offers a warm and inviting atmosphere with a lobby that feels like a chic living room with seating areas, a large table for working remotely or a casual meeting, the Marsh House Restaurant, and Killebrew Coffee with crafted espresso drinks and fresh-baked treats. Continue reading below the lobby photo.

Thompson Nashville Lobby

The cordial staff at the reception desk offered welcoming greetings from the moment I stepped through the revolving doors, check-in was quick, and I soon found myself at ease in my suite (701) with floor-to-ceiing windows on two sides overlooking The Gulch. Read more below the photo.

Suite 701 Living Room at Thompson Nashville

In the entry there was a closet, table, and bench, providing a residential-like feel. The spacious living room had wood floors, chic velvet couch and chair, wet bar, custom honor bar with Thompson signature items and locally-curated snacks. There was also an industrial-style shelf with a Marshall Bluetooth Speaker, bistro table with two chairs, and a 55-inch flat-screen TV. An added bonus...there were plug-ins throughout the suite, including in the floor making it easy to charge an array of electronic devices. Read more below the living room and wet bar photos.

Living room at Thompson Nashville

Living Room at Thompson Nashville

Beyond the living room area was the bedroom with a plush king bed topped with SFERRA linens and a tall wood headboard with built-in individual reading lights. There was also a modern chair to sit by the window, flat-screen TV, and a large closet with a laptop-size safe and oversized Thompson signature bathrobes. Continue reading below the bedroom photo.

Bedroom at the Thompson Nashville

But perhaps my favorite part of the suite was just off the bedroom through sliding barn doors...an extra-large master bathroom with a claw foot bathtub--complete with a wooden tray for a glass of wine and bath salts! 

/luxury-hotels/nashville-tn/thompson-nashville

There was also separate state-of-the-art double rain shower, exclusive DS&DURGA bath amenities, and a double vanity. The brushed brass fixtures as well as the wood vanity and accent wall added a warmth to the beautifully tiled space, making it an idyllic sanctuary for relaxing after a day of exploring Music City. 

Suite 701 Bathtub at the Thompson Nashville

Another highlight at the Thompson the Marsh House Restaurant. Offering Southern cuisine with an emphasis on fresh seafood, breakfast at the Marsh House was an ideal start to a day in Music City, complete with buttery, flaky, biscuits! The restaurant also serves chef-prepared lunch and dinner, as well as crafted cocktails and an extensive wine list in a modern setting with bronze hardware and plush seating spaces. 

Entrance to the Marsh House at Thompson Nashville

During my stay I found myself visiting the Killebrew Coffee shop multiple times for crafted lattes (complete with foam art), and a few sweat treats. Read more below the photo of the Thompson's Killebrew Coffee.

Killebrew Coffee at the Thompson NashvilleI found the Thompson's rooftop bar, L.A. Jackson to be a stylish way to end a wonderful day in Nashville. The venue had large windows with skyline views, as well as a spacious outdoor patio. There was a grand bar in the center to see-and-be-seen, as well as cozy seating areas for crafted cocktails, small plates, and intimate conversation. Continue reading below the photo of the rooftop patio.

L.A. Jackson's Rooftop Patio

In addition to my inviting suite and multiple dining options, the luxury boutique hotel offered a second floor event space with stylish meeting venues and a fitness center. Just outside the Thompson was an array of upscale boutiques, and restaurants such as the popular Biscuit Love, and the iconic Station Inn with live Bluegrass music. The property is about a 20-minute walk to the Music City Center, Country Music Hall of Fame, and Broadway's legendary Honky Tonks. Or the Music City Circuit bus stops less than one block from the hotel with complimentary transportation throughout downtown. 

Check availability at the Thompson Nashville


| By: Five Star Alliance

Ready for a beach retreat? For a limited time, the Monarch Beach Resort is offering a special promotion. Book two nights at the Best Available Rate, and receive the Third Night Free! The special offer requires a Three Night Minimum Stay, and cannot be combined with other offers or promotions, blackout dates apply. Read more about the resort below the photo. 

Guest bath at Monarch Beach Resort

The Monarch Beach Resort epitomizes the California Coastal lifestyle. Set along Salt Creek Beach, about five miles north of San Juan Capistrano, the resort is located about halfway between Los Angeles and San Diego. Featuring redesigned rooms by Rodrigo Vargas Design, a Miraval Life in Balance Spa, and private beachfront dining at Michael Mina's Stonehill Tavern, the  family-friendly luxury resort has an expansive pool complex. Read more below the photo.

Swimming pool complex at the Monarch Beach Resort

For recreation, the Monarch Beach Golf Links is a Robert Trent Jones, Jr.-designed 18-hole golf course. Featuring traditional Scottish-inspired style, the beachfront course has a golf shop, lessons, and the Club 19 restaurant on the first tee. There's also a private beach club with surf lessons led by the resort's Surf Host, paddle boarding, bonfires, and trail hikes.

Check availability at Monarch Beach Resort


| By: Rachael Weir

18 Places to go in 2018 by Five Star Alliance

Happy 2018! The start of the new year is the perfect time to start planning adventures near and far. From bucket list destinations to weekend getaways, we've put together a list of our top 18 picks for places to go in 2018. 

1. Florence, Italy

18 Places to go in 2018 Florence, Italy

Following a two-year renovation, the half-mile-long Vasari Corridor will reopen this year. The 16th century passageway was built by the Medicis to move unseen across the Arno River between the Pitti Palace and the Uffizi Gallery offices. The Renaissance city also recently celebrated the opening of the Franco Zeffirelli Center for the Performing Arts in Plaza San Firenze with a lineup of classical music and Italian film events. In October, the Uffizi will unveil Codex Leicester, featuring a special collection of scientific drawings and writings by Leonardo da Vinci (on loan from Bill Gates). For views of Il Duomo (and special perks for Five Star Alliance guests) Brunelleschi Hotel Florence is located in the city's pedestrian-only historic center with an upscale Italian restaurant and traditional trattoria. Hotel Il Salviatino is set within a 15th century villa that features views of Florence and the rolling Tuscan hills, while Belmond Villa San Michelle is located on a hillside overlooking the city in a former monastery with suites, Tuscan dining, pool, and special perks for Five Star Alliance guests. 

Explore more Florence Hotels

 

2. New Orleans, Louisiana

18 Places to go in 2018 New Orleans, Louisiana

Celebrating its 300th birthday in 2018, the city of New Orleans will be hosting more than 160 events throughout the year to commemorate the tricentennial year. Always a haven for jazz lovers, history buffs, and foodies, there's a variety of events taking place annually including Mardi Gras in February, April welcomes Jazz Fest, and July is the time for Tales of the Cocktail where bartenders from around the world show off their skills in the city where cocktails were invented. The W New Orleans French Quarter is steps from Jackson Square, as well as live Jazz venues and popular restaurants. For historic charm along with an Oyster Butler, Crawfish Concierge, and Snowball Sommelier, The Ritz-Carlton, New Orleans offers a classic setting in two historic buildings on Canal Street. The NOPSI Hotel provides a boutique setting in the heart of the business district with Spa Suites, local cuisine, and a rooftop pool and lounge. While Le Meridien New Orleans features contemporary design with French-inspired amenities and a rooftop pool in downtown. 

Explore more New Orleans Hotels

 

3. Vienna, Austria

18 Places to go in 2018 Vienna, Austria

Known for classical music and the festive ball season, in 2018 Vienna is celebrating Modernism, as four of the art movement's most important artists--Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele, Otto Wagner, and Koloman Moser passed away 100 years ago. The Beauty and the Abyss celebration of Modernism will celebrated with with special exhibitions at a variety of venues including the Leopold Museum, Lower Belvedere, MAK--Austrian Museum of Applied Arts/Contemporary Art, Wien Museum, Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna, and the Jewish Museum Vienna. The historic Hotel Sacher Wien provides a central location in the heart of the city, opposite the Vienna State Opera House and next to the Albertina Gallery with a traditional Austrian coffeehouse and fine dining. Nearby, The Hotel Bristol Vienna, a Luxury Collection Hotel offers a historic setting with fine dining at the Art Deco Bristol Lounge, fitness center, and meeting venues. Built in 1863 for the prince of Württemberg, Hotel Imperial provides world class service and a unique location on the famous Ringstrasse next to the Musikverein Vienna. 

Explore more Vienna Hotels

 

4. Buenos Aires, Argentina

18 Places to go in 2018 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Home to an array of art galleries, Buenos Aires is partaking in the inaugural, yearlong Art Basel initiative, which will include art lectures, workshops, as well as showcase local and international artists. In October, the city is hosting the Youth Olympic Games. The trendy Tegui restaurant in the Palermo neighborhood made the list of the World's 50 Best Restaurants. Situated in El Porteno Building, Faena Hotel Buenos Aires allows guests to experience the city like a Porteno in an atmosphere dedicated to art and fine living. Decorated in Empire and Louis XV style, the Alvear Palace Hotel serves classic Afternoon Tea at L'Orangerie and the Cigar Bar with an exclusive selection. While the Park Hyatt Buenos Aires is located along the Avenida Alvear with fashionable shopping and a luxury spa. 

Explore more Buenos Aires Hotels

 

5. Minneapolis, Minnesota

18 Places to go in 2018 Minneapolis, Minnesota

Offering four distinctive seasons of outdoor activities, Minneapolis will be hosting the Super Bowl on February 4. Surrounding the Big Game festivities, there will be concerts, ice sculptures, and an Ice Palace in nearby St. Paul. While the city is known for cold winters, spring, summer, and fall provide idyllic weather for exploring the state's multitude of lakes, biking trails, and parks. Plus, Prince's Paisley Park recently opened for tours, the Walker Art Center recently remodeled their outdoor sculpture garden, the Uptown Art Festival the first weekend in August showcases local and international artists, and the annual Minnesota State Fair (August 23 to September 3, 2018) attracts visitors from all over the world. The W Minneapolis - The Foshay is an art deco landmark transformed into a chic boutique hotel, Loews Minneapolis is connected to the downtown area's skyway system and steps from Target Center and Target Field, and the Marquette Hotel is located in the inconic IDS Center. 

Explore more Minneapolis Hotels

 

6. Cairo, Egypt

18 Places to go  in 2018 Cairo

Not far from the Great Pyramids, The Grand Egyptian Museum is set to open in 2018. Designed by Heneghan Peng Architects, the new museum will showcase more than 100,000 artifacts, as well as an atrium with a floor-to-ceiling glass wall with panoramic views of the Pyramid of Menkaure and the Great Pyramid of Khufu. The Nile Ritz-Carlton features exclusive Nile views with a rooftop bar, Afternoon Tea, and Egyptian-infused spa. Situated thirty minutes from the Sphinx and Great Pyramids of Giza, The Fairmont Cairo, Nile City is located within the Nile City Corporate Complex and offers a full-service Willow Stream Spa and a rooftop poolside sky bar with panoramic views of the city and pyramids. For a boutique setting, Kempinski Nile Hotel Garden City Cairo blends European luxury mixed with regional influences on the eastern bank of The Nile River.

Explore more Cairo Hotels

 

7. London, United Kingdom

18 Places to go in 2018 London

There's another royal baby due in the spring, and it's time for another Royal Wedding! Making London one of the places to be this year. Plus, there's a new movie about Winston Churchill, giving visitors the perfect reason to check out Churchill's War Rooms, and other historic sites throughout the British capital. Overlooking Hyde Park, The Wellesley is a boutique hotel close to Buckingham Palace with the Crystal Bar, Oval Restaurant, and one of Europe's largest Cigar Humidors. Combining English heritage with contemporary styling, Rosewood London offers fine dining, spa, and sophistication where the city meets Covent Garden and the West End on High Holborn. Situated in Belgravia, The Goring Hotel offers an unbeatable location close to Buckingham Palace with a Michelin-starred restaurant and classic English style. 

Explore more London Hotels

 

8. Los Cabos, Mexico

18 Places to go in 2018 Los Cabos

Booming with hip restaurant openings, new luxury resorts, and major renovations, the Baja Peninsula's San Jose del Cabo and Cabo San Lucas offer beachfront retreats. In addition to new resorts and dining options, the farm-to-table food scene is hot, as are the region's beaches and chic nightclubs. The recently opened Chileno Bay Resort & Residences provides a bayfront setting within a resort community with a swimmable beach, open-air dining, multi-level infinity pool, and championship golf. The Cape - A Thompson Hotel provides beachfront luxury with bi-level suites with private rooftops, private stairway to the surfing-friendly Monuments Beach, and regionally-inspired cuisine. While The Resort at Pedregal is reachable only via a private tunnel with 24 acres of mountainside property, featuring newly opened villas and revitalized culinary offerings. 

Explore more Los Cabos Hotels

 

9. Mauritius

18 Places to go in 2018 Mauritius

This year, the island nation of Mauritius is celebrating 50 years of independence after years of colonization by the United Kingdom, France, and the Netherlands. The airport is expanding and transforming into a hub for traveling to Asia, English is the dominant language, and the architecture and culture mix African, French, Chinese, and Indian traditions. Known for relaxed resorts and tropical mountain peaks, the country offers a retreat surrounded by the Indian Ocean. For privacy and luxury, Constance Le Prince Maurice has 64 Junior Suites, plus Family Suites, villas, and a Princely Suite, as well as the U Spa, Kids' Club, shopping, and two 18-hole golf courses. The Residence Mauritius provides a beachfront setting with accommodations in turn-of-the-century-inspired plantation houses, with family-friendly and adults-only pools and special perks for Five Star Alliance guests. While the oceanfront Constance Belle Mare Plage has a variety of water-focused recreation, four swimming pools, seven restaurants, and five bars within a tropical setting. 

Explore more Mauritius Hotels

 

10. Malta

18 Places to go in 2018 Malta

This island country is the designated European Capital of Culture in 2018, where the arts will be celebrated in a country that mixes Sicilian, North African, and Colonial England cultures. There's ornate architecture throughout the island, including the baroque St. John's Co-Cathedral, pre-historic ruins, and the must-try Stuffat tal-fenek--the national dish of rabbit stew. In January, Valetta's National Baroque Festival is held, and the Grand Excelsior Hotel makes an ideal base for exploring the capital city with indoor and outdoor swimming pools, Le Grand Spa, and a marina. The InterContinental Malta provides a modern island retreat with a casino, six restaurants and bars, spa, conference center, and spa close to Valetta, while The Xara Palace features a boutique setting in the medieval city of Medina. 

Explore more Malta Hotels

 

11. Oslo, Norway

18 Places to go in 2018 Oslo

This Nordic capital city is marking two important events in 2018. Norway's King and Queen are celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary, and the modern Oslo Opera House is marking it's 10th year with a season of celebratory performances. The Hotel Continental Oslo offers a historic setting next to the National Theater, and close to the city's revitalized harbor with special perks for Five Star Alliance guests. While the Grand Hotel Oslo offers a grand setting along Karl Johan's  Gate close to shops and sidewalk cafes. For a contemporary setting, the Radisson Blu Plaza Hotel Oslo soars 37 stories above the Oslo Fjord. 

Explore more Oslo Hotels

 

12. San Antonio, Texas

18 Places to go in 2018 San Antonio

Marking its 300th anniversary this year, San Antonio has recently unveiled a variety of new developments, including the Bottling Department (the city's first food hall), the iconic barges along the River Walk were upgraded with electric models, and San Pedro Creek Culture Park transformed an old drainage ditch into a waterfront promenade with performance and art spaces. Special Tricentennial commemorative events will take place May 1-6, including events at each of San Antonio's five missions. On the historic River Walk, the Omni La Mansion del Rio is celebrating it's 50th anniversary of being transformed from a Catholic School into a luxury hotel for the 1968 World's Fair. The Grand Hyatt San Antonio overlooks the River Walk with an outdoor pool, sundeck, and special perks for Five Star Alliance guests. For those seeking a resort setting overlooking Texas Hill Country, La Cantera Resort and Spa recently underwent a complete renovation, and offers furnishings inspired by the area's ranch heritage, two championship golf courses, and five pools about 30 minutes from downtown. 

Explore more San Antonio Hotels

 

13. Sevilla, Spain

18 Places to go in 2018 Sevilla, Spain

In the midst of reinvigorating its artistic past, Sevilla is currently celebrating the 400th anniversary of Bartolomé Esteban Murillo, a homegrown Baroque painter with special one-of-a-kind exhibitions. The city is also hosting the 31st European Film Awards, and the historic center provides an enchanting blend of architectural styles including a Gothic cathedral, medieval lanes, Flamenco clubs, baroque churches, and Mudéjar palaces. Once the Moorish capital, today Sevilla is the capital of Andalucia, offering luxury hotels such as the historic Hotel Alfonso XIII in the historic center with traditional architecture, courtyard, and regional cuisine. Nearby, Gran Melia Colon is furnished with reproductions of artwork by Spanish masters, a boutique hotel with RedLevel service within the hotel, and dining venues serving modern Andalusian cusine. For a well-preserved example of Spanish Renaissance architecture, Casa de Carmona is located about 20 minutes north of Sevilla and offers accommodations within a palace built in 1561, and fine dining in the former stables. 

Explore more Sevilla Hotels

 

14. Iguazu Falls, Argentina and Brazil

18 Places to go in 2018 Iguazu Falls

Millions of visitors go to this famous UNESCO World Heritage Site with 275 roaring waterfalls straddling the border of Argentina and Brazil. To accommodate the influx of visitors, Cataratas del Iguazú Airport is expanding and modernizing. Within the national park, the Ecological Jungle Train that takes visitors on a 25-minute journey to the Devil's Throat Cascade is being converted from gas to electric, and multiple luxury resorts are set to open later this year. On the Brazil side of the falls, Belmond Hotel das Cataras offers guests exclusive access to the falls as well as a pastel-pink hideaway with gardens, fine dining, and a luxe outdoor pool. While The Iguazu Grand Resort Spa and Casino is located on the Argentina side of the falls with a full-service resort setting including authentic Argentine dining at La Terraza and the Spa del Parasiso providing treatments infused with natural ingredients like yerba mate and chocolate from nearby sources. 

Explore Iguaza Falls Hotels

 

15. Toronto, Canada

18 Places to go in 2018 Toronto

Last year Canada celebrated 150 years, and Toronto continues to add to the city's cosmopolitan "it" factor with new luxury hotels like the Bisha Hotel Toronto, along with hip restaurants with an understated Canadian vibe are taking the city to a new level. In 2018, the Museum of Contemporary Art is relocating to a former factory in the Junction Triangle, and VIKINGS: The Exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum runs through April 2, 2018. The Thompson Toronto offers a modern residential style with floor-to-ceiling windows and a rooftop pool with skyline views. While The Ritz-Carlton, Toronto provides a classic downtown retreat along Wellington Street. 

Explore more Toronto Hotels

 

16. Bangkok, Thailand

18 Places to to go in 2018 Bangkok

In 2016, Bangkok was the most visited city in the world, with more than 21 million guests. Its popularity is sparking a rise in new luxury hotels and restaurants. In 2018, The Michelin Guide will debut, giving even more attention to  the city's creative culinary atmosphere. For art enthusiasts, Warehouse 30 is opening in  transformed World War II warehouses, ChangChui is a new entertainment complex constructed from upcycled materials, and the Thailand Creative & Design Center is moving to the iconic Charoen Krung Road in a space that was once a post office. To stay in the heart of Bangkok's historical palaces and temples, The Siam Hotel is set along the River of Kings with bespoke cultural amusements and an urban resort design with spacious suites, pool villas, and open-air roof terraces. Soaring 39 stories, The Peninsula Bangkok features panoramic city views on the banks of the Chao Phraya River and a three-tiered swimming pool. For contemporary style, Anantara Bangkok Sathorn is located within a 37-floor twin tower with an infinity pool and holistic spa treatments. 

Explore more Bangkok Hotels

 

17. Salzburg, Austria

18 Places to go in 2018 Salzburg

Referred to as the "City of Mozart" and the "Rome of the North" , Salzburg was a church state for more than 1,100 years. Symbols of the Catholic Church can be discovered throughout the historic Old Town of Salzburg, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In 2018, the City of Salzburg will celebrate the 200th anniversary of "Silent Night", which was written and first performed in the village of Oberndorf near Salzburg on December 24, 1818. The special exhibition "Silent Night 200 - History. Message. Present." will be open September 28, 2018 to February 3, 2019, and the musical "My Silent Night" will be performed at the iconic Felsenreitschule on November 24, 2018. Hotel Sacher Salzburg provides idyllic views of the Hohensalzburg Fortress, as well as fine dining at the Zirbelzimmer, and the Original Sacher-Torte cake in the Sacher Cafe. In the baroque city center, Hotel Goldener Hirsch combines a historic setting with Austrian style and state-of-the-art amenities, while Schloss Fuschl Resort and Spa features a lakeside setting in the Archbishop of Salzburg's former hunting lodge. 

Explore more Salzburg Hotels

 

18. Melbourne, Australia

18 Places to go in 2018 Melbourne, Australia

As the events capital of Australia, Melbourne is a growing city offering a cosmopolitan core that serves as an ideal gateway to exploring a variety of Australia's attractions, including the Phillip Island penguin walk which is 90 minutes from the city, and an hour and a half north of the city is the Nagambie Lakes, one of the country's oldest viticulture areas with renowned wineries and outdoor activities. For a grand setting opposite Parliament, The Hotel Windsor was built at the top of Collins Street in 1883. For panoramic views of the skyline and Yarra River from the hotel pool, Langham Hotel Melbourne provides an elegant setting on the Southbank Promenade, and the Art Series The Olsen is a luxury boutique hotel on Chapel Street. 

Explore more Melbourne Hotels


| By: Rachael Weir

No tricks here, just Travel Treats! This Halloween we've gathered some of the top perks offers for Five Star Alliance guests around the globe. No need for anything scary here, just fabulous deals waiting for you. 

1. Taj Dubai

Taj Dubai

Soaring 35 stories over downtown, this opulent retreat features the Jiva Spa, luxe outdoor pool, stylish dining options, traditional Afternoon Tea, and creative activities for children.

Five Star Alliance Perk: Guests booking through Five Star Alliance receive daily breakfast for two at Tesoro, $100 Food and Beverage Credit per room, per stay. Plus, complimentary WiFi, and based on availability at check-in/departure: a room upgrade, early check-in, and late check-out. 

Check availability at Taj Dubai

2. Oceana Beach Club Hotel

Oceana Beach Club Hotel

Overlooking Pacific Palisades, this Southern California hotel offers wellness activities, locally sourced regional cuisine, and an outdoor pool with a fireplace. 

Five Star Alliance Perk: Guests booking through Five Star Alliance receive daily full American breakfast for two at Tower 8, in-room welcome amenity, and a welcome prosecco upon arrival. Also, subject to availability a room category upgrade, early check-in, or late check-out. 

Check availability at Oceana Beach Club Hotel

3. Nolinski Paris

Nolinski Paris

Set within a Haussmann building, this Parisian hotel is steps from the Comedie Francaise and the Palais Royal gardens with a spa, Grand Salon, and residential-style accommodations. 

Five Star Alliance Perk: Guests booking through Five Star Alliance receive a welcome pastry or appetizer, smartphone with unlimited international phone calls and internet to use during their stay, and guests staying between October 30, 2017 and February 25, 2018 receive a $100 spa credit per stay. 

Check availability at Nolinski Paris

4. Sumaq Machu Picchu Hotel

Sumaq Machu Picchu Hotel

Infused with genuine Inca culture and a location at the foot of Machu Picchu, this hotel offers Peruvian Cooking & Bar Classes, Andean Weddings, and ecological excursions. 

Five Star Alliance Perk: Guests booking through Five Star Alliance receive a 50-minute massage for up to two people, and based on availability, an upgrade on arrival and early check-in/late check-out. 

Check availability at Sumaq Machu Picchu Hotel

5. Rosewood Castiglion del Bosco

Rosewood Castiglion del Bosco

In the heart of Tuscany's Brunello winemaking region, the majestic estate with an 800-year history offers a Gothic chapel, 12th century castle fortress, and focus on wine. 

Five Star Alliance Perk: All guests making reservations with Five Star Alliance receive $100 USD resort credit (not combinable, not valid on room rate, no cash value if not redeemed in full),  welcome amenity, and in-villa dinner delivered on arrival day. Also, based on availability at check-in/departure: room upgrade, early check-in, and late check-out. 

Check availability at Rosewood Castiglion del Bosco

Looking for more exclusive offers? Explore all Five Star Alliance Perks


| By: Rachael Weir

Love a good ghost story? So do we. This Halloween we've gathered a list of five luxury hotels known for eery experiences and legendary ghost stories. From London to Vancouver, here are five of our favorites. 

1. The Langham London

The Langham London

Built in 1865, this luxe hotel with a world-reknowned Afternoon Tea is also known for sightings of the paranormal kind. From a German prince in a military jacket that jumped to his untimely death, to a Victorian-era doctor who killed his bride and himself while on their honeymoon, the majority of the paranormal activity happens in Room 333.

Check availability at The Langham London

2. Hotel del Coronado

Hotel del Coronado

In 1892, a young woman arrived on Thanksgiving alone and never checked out. After five lonely days, Kate Morgan took her own life. To this day, the Ghost of Kate Morgan continues with stories of lights flickering, objects mysteriously moving, along with unexplained voices and footsteps. Paranormal researchers have documented supernatural activity from Kate's room on the third floor, and there have been Kate sightings along the seashore and in the hotel hallways. 

Check availability at the Hotel del Coronado

3. Fairmont Hotel Vancouver

Fairmont Hotel Vancouver

Known as the "Castle in the City" the legendary Canadian National Railway hotel that first opened as a hotel in 1939, is also home to the Lady in Red, a friendly ghost. Often spotted on the 14th floor in an elegant red evening gown, she's also been seen on the first floor and gliding through the hallways. Security cameras have picked up strange sounds and disembodied footsteps, guests have reported sightings over the years, and a special cocktail is served at the lobby lounge in her honor. 

Check availability at Fairmont Hotel Vancouver

4. Emily Morgan Hotel

Emily Morgan Hotel

Next to the Alamo, the hotel was originally constructed as the Medical Arts Building on the Alamo Plaza. Featuring a copper roof with wood ribs, the building is lined by an array of gargoyles, each depicting a medical ailment. Believed to be one of the most haunted hotels west of the Mississippi, there have been stories of guests' phones ringing in the middle, lights and TVs turning on mysteriously, bathtubs being filled on their own, and sightings of women dressed in white. The most common sightings have seemed to occur on floors 12 and 14, which were once surgery and crematorium floors. 

Check availability at the Emily Morgan Hotel

5. Taj Mahal Palace Mumbai

The Taj Mahal Palace Mumbai

Featuring old world grace and charm, W. A. Chambers was one of the designers behind the opulent hotel. He left for a trip to England once the blueprints were completed, and returned to discover the design was not being carried out as planned. According to legend, he jumped to his death from the fifth floor, and stories have told he's been spotted roaming the halls of the hotel to this day. 

Check availability at the Taj Mahal Palace Mumbai


| By: Rachael Weir

Featuring two-story beach view villas, Saman Villas is an all-suite luxury resort set between two golden-sand beaches. Offering a luxurious setting, the property's suites provide guests with an authentic Sri Lankan experience with architecture inspired by ancient temples, traditional design, and modern comforts. Within many of the suites there are private plunge pools, as well as outdoor lounge areas. Continue reading below the photo of the Grand Deluxe Suite. 

Grand Deluxe Suite at Saman Villas

The resort offers the Sahana Spa with an all-suite garden setting, as well as an infinity-edge swimming pool with Indian Ocean views. For dinining, the main restaurant serves gourmet cuisine infused with Sri Lankan, Asian, and Western influences, and there are six private dining locations available for guests. The property also has a well-stocked library with Sri Lankan books, CDs, and DVDS, guided walking and cycling tours, and a jewelry boutique. Learn more about special perks for Five Star Alliance guests below the photo. 

Infinity swimming pool at Saman Villas

Five Star Alliance Perk Alert: Guests booking through Five Star Alliance receive a 45 minute spa treatment per person, for up to two guests, along with a guided walking or cycling tour of the historic village of Auturuwella. 

Learn more about Saman Villas

Overview of Saman Villas


| By: Rachael Weir

Introduced in 2017, the new Pool Premium Overwater Villas at InterContinental Bora Bora Resort & Thalasso Spa are an ultra-romantic addition to the property's collection of luxury overwater bungalows. The recently unveiled one-bedroom villas have sundecks with shaded terraces, sun loungers, freshwater showers, private plunge pools, and direct lagoon access. Featuring contemporary design infused with Polynesian accents, the villas offer 1,507 square feet of space, which is able to accommodate up to three adults or two adults and two children using the sofa bed as bedding. Within the luxurious bathrooms there are showers, double washbasins, and a range of complimentary amenities. Plus, there are soaking tubs with picture windows providing idyllic views for guests as they soak in the tub. While the living rooms have large picture windows overlooking the beach, as well as glass coffee tables that reveal views of the colorful tropical fish below. Continue reading below the photo of the Pool Premium Overwater Villa.

Pool Premium Overwater Villa

The InterContinental Bora Bora Resort & Thalasso Spa recently completed a multi-million dollar renovation, adding the Pool Premium Overwater Villas and Two-Bedroom overwater villas, as well as refreshing amenities and accommodations throughout the property. The Deep Ocean Spa was the South Pacific's first thalassotherapy center, which incorporates seawater into wellness treatment, along with a fitness center, and relaxation lounge. Continue reading below the spa photo.

Deep Water Thalasso Spa

For dining, the Sands Restaurant offers beachfront casual dining, the Reef Restaurant has authentic Polynesian and Mediterranean cuisine, and Le Corail (pictured below) provides a sophisticated setting for romantic dinners. While the Bubbles Bar mixes contemporary style with Polynesian materials for a stylish cocktail destination. 

Check rates and availability at InterContinental Bora Bora Resort & Thalasso Spa

Le Corail Restaurant at InterContinental Bora Bora Resort & Thalasso Spa


Pages