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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

Featured Journeys: Florida Holiday

Providing a mix of recreation and relaxation, Florida is an ideal destination for families, couples, adventure-seekers, theme park-lovers, and beach goers. In this edition of Featured Journeys, we explore a multi-destination itinerary through the Sunshine State. Beginning in Orlando, home of the "Happiest Place on Earth". Next up, Palm Beach known for luxury boutiques, beaches, and glittering estates. Finally, our journey ends in Miami, in the South Beach area recognized for Art Deco architecture, nightlife, and some of the world's best beaches. 

Orlando

Situated in central Florida, Orlando is known for its theme parks including Disney, Sea World, and Universal Studios. A haven for families, this region also offers resorts with full-service spas and championship golf courses. Popular at all times of the year, visitors may want to plan their visit based on special events at the theme parks like Halloween or Christmas festivities. 

Waldorf Astoria Orlando

Waldorf Astoria Orlando

Surrounded by Disney, the Waldorf Astoria Orlando is an ideal gateway destination for Orlando's theme parks. Close to it all, the property offers a relaxing retreat with two resort pools and private cabanas, top-rated 18-hole Waldorf Astoria Golf Club, spa, and the WA Kids Club with organized activities for young travelers. Plus, an array of dining options inspired by the Waldorf Astoria New York with signature restaurants like Bull & Bear and La Luce.

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also receive continental breakfast for two daily, a $100 resort credit which may be applied towards spa or golf or recreation per room/once per stay, and a guaranteed late check-out at 4 pm.

Check availability at Waldorf Astoria Orlando

Explore more Orlando Luxury Hotels

Palm Beach

Located on the southeastern coast of Florida, Palm Beach is about 65 miles north of Miami. Along the Atlantic Ocean, this area has been a popular traditional winter home for American aristocrats for generations. There's upscale resorts, the world-class Norton Museum of Art, bird watching, and a variety of dining and nightlife options. 

The Breakers

The Breakers

Since opening in 1896, The Breakers has been an iconic destination for generations. Providing seaside glamour with Italian styling, the property continuously modernizes and revolves to meet the needs of contemporary guests with an indoor-outdoor fitness facility, newly unveiled spa, four pools, private beach, and nine restaurants. As the only oceanfront resort in the heart of Palm Beach Island, the hotel provides guests with an array of recreational and relaxation opportunities. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also received full American breakfast buffet for two daily at The Circle or The Beach Club Restaurant and a $100 resort credit per room/per stay (not applicable to room rate, taxes and gift cards).

Check availability at The Breakers

Explore more Palm Beach Luxury Hotels

 

Miami

Infused with Cuban culture, Miami is a diverse destination with a vibrant downtown, one-of-a-kind nightlife, array of shopping, and top-notch museums. The diversity of the city provides visitors and locals alike with a never-ending variety of dining options ranging from the trendiest foodie destinations in South Beach to down-home Cuban bodegas. For an urban setting, stay in downtown Miami, or if you're looking for a beach experience, choose a property along South Beach, which is filled with Art Deco buildings, stunning beaches, and an ideal people-watching scene.

Royal Palm South Beach

Terrace View at the Royal Palm

Offering direct beach access, the Royal Palm South Beach is a luxury hotel featuring Art Deco architecture with contemporary interiors. Just off Collins Avenue, the hotel is a short stroll from the boutiques and restaurants along Lincoln Road. Within the hotel, guests can relax at two pools, enjoy beach service, get a treatment at the full-service spa, or dine at Byblos serving Eastern Mediterranean cuisine. 

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

Check availability at Royal Palm South Beach

Explore more Miami Luxury Hotels


| By: Rachael Weir

Destination Spotlight: Charleston

Ranked by Conde Nast Traveler as the #1 Small U.S. City for eight years running, Charleston, South Carolina is a city steeped in history and culture. The walkable city offers well-preserved architecture with ironwork balconies, antebellum styling, and colorful stucco, amidst streets lined with sidewalk cafes and boutiques ideal for meandering and exploring. 

Founded by English colonists in 1670, Charleston is one of the best-preserved cities in the "Old South" where visitors can hear church bells ringing, ride in a horse-drawn carriage, and see more than 600 buildings erected prior to the 1840s, including 73 Colonial buildings. The city has withstood a number of hardships including Yankee bombardments during the Civil War, earthquakes, and fires, yet many historic sites remain including St. Michael's Episcopal Church and the Calhoun Mansion. Plus, there are plantations like Boone Hall where guests can gain a greater understanding of the city's history. 

Foodies will find plenty of flavors to discover within the city, including low country favorites like She-Crab Soup and the area's classic morning dish of shrimp and grits. Charleston's vibrant food scene includes chic cafes, fine dining, food festivals, and locally-infused Southern cuisine. 

For outdoor enthusiasts, the region provides an array of top-ranked golf courses, as well as beaches, parks, and nature tours of the area's beaches, marshes, and rivers.

Here are 5 Top Charleston Luxury Hotels:

5. The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island

The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island

For travelers seeking a resort-style getaway within a short drive of the city, The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island is an ideal destination. Situated 21 miles from downtown Charleston, the property is an oceanfront hotel providing Southern hospitality, The Sanctuary Spa, luxury shopping, tennis packages, golf, and multiple dining options. There's also an array of recreational activities such as bicycle rentals, Kamp Kiawah for young vacationers at Night Heron Park, fitness classes, and nature programs. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also receive a daily full buffet breakfast for two in Jasmine Porch or a la Carte through room service, VIP status, a one time $100 resort credit per room (not valid towards the room rate), complimentary WiFi, and one bottle of Simonet Sparkling Wine from the mini-bar per room/per stay.

Check rates at The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island

4. The Dewberry

The Dewberry

Tucked within a historic Mid-Century Modern building (formerly the Mendel Rivers Federal Building), The Dewberry is a luxury boutique hotel featuring "Southern Reimagined" by a group of architects, designers, and preservation specialists. Guest rooms and suites feature floor-to-ceiling windows with views of Charleston Harbor and the Arthur Ravenel, Jr. Bridge, as well as Irish mattresses and linens, artwork by local artists, and minibars curated seasonally by the hotel's executive chef. The Spa provides low country-inspired signature treatments infused with local ingredients, and Henrietta's French Brasserie overlooks Meeting Street with Southern-influenced cuisine. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate or "Best Available Rate" will also receive breakfast for two daily ($30 per person and $60 max per day), a guaranteed room category upgrade at booking based on availability, complimentary WiFi, and a $100 spa credit per room/per stay.

Check rates at The Dewberry

3. Hotel Bennett

Hotel Bennett

Opening in late 2018, Hotel Bennett is situated at the intersection of Marion Square and King Street. Transformed by native Charlestonians, the authentic retreat is located within the former Charleston County Library and The Citadel. Offering a two-tiered signature restaurant and Camelias Bar, the hotel also has a patisserie, signature spa, and rooftop pool, steps from King Street shops, restaurants, and museums. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the  the “5 Star Signature Package” rate will also receive full breakfast for two daily in Gabrielle (max $30 per person, max $60 per day), and a $100 hotel credit per room/per stay.

Check rates at Hotel Bennett

2. Belmond Charleston Place 

Belmond Charleston Place

Evoking the feel of a 17th century European residence, Belmond Charleston Place is an iconic luxury hotel in the heart of Charleston's historic downtown. Offering high-end shopping, full-service spa, and a rooftop indoor/outdoor pool, the property is an ideal place for exploring the city, or a relaxing retreat. Popular with celebrities, princes, and politicians, the hotel has award-winning dining at the Palmetto Cafe and the Charleston Grill.

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK:  Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also receive breakfast for each guest daily (maximum of $30 per person/per day), a $100 food and beverage credit per room/per stay, and a welcome amenity.

Check rates at Belmond Charleston Place

1. The Beach Club at Charleston Harbor

The Beach Club at Charleston Harbor

Set on Patriots Point in the upscale community of Mount Pleasant, The Beach Club at Charleston Harbor is an upscale waterfront resort with panoramic views of Charleston Harbor and the downtown skyline. There are three on-site dining options including the waterfront Charleston Harbor Fish House, and The Bridge Bar with an open-air setting. For relaxation The Estruary Spa and Salon offers a range of treatments, and there are three outdoor pools including one with a Tiki Bar. There's also a custom theater, full-service marina, seaside bocce court, and the College of Charleston Sail School is located on-site. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also receive continental breakfast for each guest daily at The Fish House, a $100 resort credit per room/per stay (not valid on room rate and no cash value), and a welcome cookie amenity.

Check rates at The Beach Club at Charleston Harbor


| By: Rachael Weir

Showcasing New Zealand colonial architecture, the Chalet Suites at Blanket Bay provide a luxe setting. Complimenting the Main Lodge, the suites incorporate schist stone and old steamer wharf timber beams. Offering air conditioning and super king-size beds, the suites also have complimentary WiFi internet connection and international direct dial phones. Continue reading below the Chalet Suite Entrance photo. 

Chalet Suite Entrance at Blanket Bay

Blanket Bay offers four Chalet Suites. Within each of the 700-square-foot suites is a private courtyard, spacious bedroom, walk-in closets, and bathroom with separate steam shower and soaking tub. Plus, a living room with a stone fireplace, satellite and apple TV, Bluetooth soundbar, and exclusive views of the surrounding scenery. Read more below the photo. 

Chalet Suite at Blanket Bay

Surrounded by Alpine scenery, Blanket Bay is an elegant, yet rustic lodge on the shore's of New Zealand's Lake Wakatipu. Celebrating the art of pure relaxation, the property offers a spa, fine dining in the dining room or intimate Wine Cave for private meals, and a location along the Wine & Arts Trail. There's fly-fishing and heli-skiing nearby, as well as hiking, boating, golfing, and kayaking, or flight-seeing over the World Heritage Fiordland National Park and Milford Sound. Learn about an exclusive Five Star Alliance Perk below the photo.

Jacuzzi View at Blanket Bay

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Reservations booked under the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also receive lunch for two per stay.

Check availability at Blanket Bay


| By: Rachael Weir

Featured Journeys: California Wine Country

From rolling vineyards to tasting rooms, to picnics amongst the vines, a vineyard vacation offers a relaxing, and perhaps romantic retreat. In this edition of Featured Journeys we're heading to Northern California's Wine Country with a multi-stop itinerary to Sonoma, Napa, and Monterey. 

There's a variety of airport options for this trip. Travelers could choose to fly roundtrip to San Francisco International, or another option would be to fly into Charles M. Schulz - Sonoma County Aiport (STS) and fly out of the Monterey Regional Airport (MRY). Regardless the itinerary, the drive between each stop is sure to provide panoramic scenery.

Sonoma

Situated about 45 minutes north of San Francisco, Sonoma County offers a genuine wine country experience, with 76% of tourism businesses being small businesses, and 91% percent of the tourism businesses are locally-owned. This area is all about local cuisine, local growers, and of course, local wines. The area has a thriving art and food scene, and there's an array of outdoor opportunities like exploring the redwoods, hot air balooning, and vineyard hikes. Love the Peanuts Gang? A visit to this region wouldn't be complete without a trip to the Charles M. Schulz Museum with a collection dedicated to providing an in-depth look into the life and legacy of Peanuts comic strip creator, Charles M. Schulz. 

Farmhouse Inn

King Dux Room at Farmhouse Inn

Situated in the Russian River Valley about 1.5 hours north of San Francisco, the Farmhouse Inn is family-owned, by owners with Sonoma roots dating back five generations. Surrounded by the towns of Healdsburg and Santa Rosa, the boutique property's restaurant is the recipient of a Michelin Star, there are Sommelier-led wine tours, and rooms have feather beds and curated wine refrigerators.

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK:  Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate or "Best Available Rate" will also include full breakfast for two daily - a maximum daily credit of $50 per room, a $100 spa services credit per room/per stay, an in-room welcome amenity, and complimentary WiFi.

Check rates at the Farmhouse Inn

Explore more Sonoma Luxury Hotels

 

Napa

From tasting rooms to stylisth boutiques, Napa Valley is haven for wine lovers and foodies alike. There are 6 Napa Valley restaurants that have received the prestigious Michelin Star, there's an array of cooking schools and five star accommodations in the heart of the vineyards, and the area is a hot spot for bakeries, chocolatiers, coffee, and gelato shops for those that want a little something sweet to pair with the wine. Music enthusiasts will want to note the area's music events which include Yountville Live (March), BottleRock Napa Valley (May), and the Robert Mondavi Concert Series which begins in July. 

Las Alcobas Napa Valley

Las Alcobas Napa Valley

Across from Beringer Vineyards, Las Alcobas Napa Valley is a luxury boutique hotel nestled in St. Helena. Set within a stately Victorian-style farmhouse built in 1907, the property offers accommodations designed by Yabu Pushelberg, with custom-crafted furniture and minimalist design. The signature restaurant, Acacia House serves award-winning California cuisine led by Top Chef Master Chris Cosentino. While the atrio spa offers a rejuvanating spa experience within a former farmhouse, and the outdoor pool provides one-of-a-kind vineyard views.

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking with Five Star Alliance receive daily full breakfast for each guest at Acacia House, a $100 spa credit per room/per stay, and a seasonal welcome amenity.

Check rates at Las Alcobas Napa Valley

Explore more Napa Luxury Hotels

 

Monterey

Located about 150 miles south of Napa, Monterey County is home to more than 175 unique vineyards. The Monterey Wine Country experiences a "thermal rainbow" making the area ideal for growing grapes for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, but it's diverse climate of ever-warming micro-climates helps the region support 42 wine varietals. 

Ventana Big Sur

Ventana Big Sur

From a daily Sommelier-led wine and cheese reception, to the Alila Experience Program offering a range of activities such as photography hikes and charcoal drawing classes, Ventana Big Sur is an adults-only retreat designed to provide guests with opportunities for self discovery, wellness, and finding one's place in the world. There are daily morning yoga classes and guided hikes, as well as two outdoor pools (one is clothing-optional), chef created cuisine, and a social house. The property makes an ideal base for rest and rejuvenation or exploring the vineyards of the Monterey area.

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also receive continental breakfast for two daily (maximum $30 credit per person/per day), a $100 resort credit per room/per stay, a welcome amenity, and an automatic room category upgrade at booking based on availability.

Check rates at Ventana Big Sur

Explore more Monterey Luxury Hotels


| By: Rachael Weir

The season of sweaters, changing leaves, and all things Pumpkin Spice is here! In honor of #NationalPumpkinDay we have gathered three hotels where you can getaway and indulge your love of all things pumpkin. 

Here are 3 Hotels with Pumpkin-Infused Amenities:

1. The Hotel Hershey

Hotel Hershey

Known for being the home of the famous chocolate factory, The Hotel Hershey offers an idyllic destination for enjoying all things autumnal. Pumpkin Glow at Hershey Gardens features more than 150 carved & illuminated pumpkins, pumpkin-carving demonstrations, and trick-or-treating events. Plus, at The Spa at The Hotel Hershey, guests can book the "Fall Pumpkin Package" (available October 1, 2018 to November 30, 2018), which includes three special pumpkin treatments: Pumpkin Spice Scrub, Pumpkin Souffle Wrap, and the Great Pumpkin Facial. 

Check availability at The Hotel Hershey

2. Inn on Biltmore Estate

Inn on Biltmore Estate

Offering a luxe setting on the grounds of the Biltmore House, the Inn on Biltmore Estate provides a unique destination for fall. The Dining Room serves award-winning cuisine crafted with estate-grown produce, eggs, beef, and lamb from its field-to-table program. There's a winery on-site, plus the spa features "Healthy Harvest" treatments infuses with sustainably-grown botanicals. Guests can reap the benefits from the menu of Healthy Harvest Treatments, which includes massages, pedicures, and facial upgrades as well as packages from September 1, 2018 to November 30, 2018.

Check availability at the Inn on Biltmore Estate 

3. The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay

The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay

Situated in the "Pumpkin Capital of the World" about 30 minutes south of San Francisco, The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay provides the ultimate oceanside destination for pumpkin lovers throughout the month of October. In the newly re-concepted Conservatory there's pumpkin culinary delights like Half Moon Bay Signature Pumpkin Soup, and at Navio there's Pumpkin Caramelle featuring sage, ricotta, and pumpkin pistou, and Roasted Pumpkin Bisque with lobster, pain d’epices, and shiso. Guests can also enjoy pumpkin-infused beverages, plus there is the Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Facial at the Ritz-Carlton Spa, designed to smooth, plump, and hydrate the skin.

Check availability at The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay


| By: Rachael Weir

Nestled amidst the rolling foothills of Mount Meru where the aroma of coffee scents the air, lies the Arusha Coffee Lodge. Hidden in one of Tanzania's largest coffee plantations, the property offers coffee tours where visitors can learn about the bean-to-cup process, the Bacchus Restaurant with chef-prepared local cuisine, and the Peaberries Spa with a variety of treatments. Read more below the photo.

Restaurant at Anusha Coffee Lodge

There's also an indoor pool, picnic lunches are available for guests looking to dine outside while exploring, and there is a Traders Walk where visitors can discover five gourmet and retail boutiques showcasing local traditions. Situated about five minutes from the Arusha Airport, the property offers a luxe setting ideal for before and after East African safaris. Continue reading below the photo. 

Pool at Arusha Coffee Lodge

Comprised of 30 plantation houses nestled amidst the coffee fields, the property offers Plantation Rooms and Plantation Suites. The rooms feature a cozy setting with in-room log fires and verandas overlooking the coffee gardens. For a larger setting with additional amenities, Plantation Suites provide a home-away-from home retreat. There are plush beds with netted canopies, living areas with large sofas, and 32-inch TVs with satellite access. Read more below the photo.

Plantation Suite Living Room at Arusha Coffee Lodge

Bathrooms in Plantation Suites have large soaking tubs and separate rainfall showers. Continue reading below the photo.

Plantation Suite Bathroom at Arusha Coffee Lodge

In addition to the interior space, Plantation Suites have private outside terraces with log fires. Read more below.

Plantation Suite Exterior at Arusha Coffee Lodge

Featuring an omnipresent coffee theme, the Arusha Coffee Lodge was designed around the original landowner's home, which dates back to the early 1900s. The main Plantation House has an 'a la carte' restaurant and an intimate cafe bistro, each with open log fires for guests to relax after a day of exploration. 

Check availability at Arusha Coffee Lodge

 


| By: Rachael Weir

Situated in a historic building in the heart of the city's historic center, Brunelleschi Hotel Florence offers a luxury setting in the shadows of Il Doumo Cathedral. Named after the Renaissance artist author, Filippo Brunelleschi, the hotel occupies the Torre della Pagliazza, a unique building from 541-544 AD that is now home to the property's Pagliazza Tower Suite, the Santa Elisabetta gourmet restaurant on the first floor, and the Osteria Pagliazza on the ground floor. Read more about the hotel below the Pagliazza Tower Suite photo.

Tower Suite at Brunelleschi Hotel Florence

Throughout the Brunelleschi Hotel Florence, there's a variety of historic artifacts and works of art to discover. At the hotel's Museo della Pagliazza, guests may be accommpanied by the concierge to explore the archeological finds uncovered during the excavation in the basement of the Torre della Pagliazza. Used as a sauna in ancient times, the hotel has a Roman calidarium (a hammam), as well as Roman era fragments, and a Renaissance collection of Montelupo ceramics. 

Osteria della Pagliazza at Brunelleschi Hotel Florence

In addiiton to historic elements, the boutique hotel recently renovated the buildings in a way that respects its past while enhancing the environment with a revitalized hotel facade, main glass staircase, new suites, restructuring of the lobby, reception, breakfast hall, meeting halls, and lifts, as well as outdoor spaces for events. Learn more about special Five Star Alliance Perks for Five Star Alliance guests below the suite photo.

Suite at Brunelleschi Hotel Florence

Five Star Alliance Perk: Guests making reservations with Five Star Alliance receive a $70 USD food and beverage credit per room, per stay, a welcome bottle of Prosecco, complimentary WiFi, and full breakfast daily. Also, subject to availability at check-in, a room upgrade, early check-in, and late check-out.

Check availability at Brunelleschi Hotel Florence


| By: Rachael Weir

Set along Ireland's Wild Atlantic Way, the Sheen Falls Lodge is a 300-acre estate set amidst heather-covered mountains. Throughout the estate there is a variety of pathways for walks along the rivers and through the woodlands, fishing for salmon along a private section of the River Sheen, clay pigeon shooting, kayaking, guided hawk walks, and photography excursions. The Relais & Chateaux property makes an ideal base for exploring the Ring of Kerry, and offers guests one of the area's finest restaurants with a seasonal chef-created menu highlighting local ingredients and modern Irish cooking. Continue reading below the photo for more about the luxury Irish Lodge and special Five Star Alliance Perks. 

Sheen Falls Lodge

Throughout the property, guest rooms and suites feature views of the surrounding landscape, but perhaps one of the most striking rooms is The Falls Master Suite. The octagonal drawing room has an oculus set in the ceiling twenty feet above the sitting area, and the wide windows showcase the River Sheen as it meanders down to a waterfall, which flows under the historic stone bridge into Kenmare Bay. Plus, there's a fireplace, and private bar with vintage brandy. Read more about the suite below the photo.

The Falls Master Suite at the Sheen Falls Lodge

The Falls Master Suite has opulent styling with a dining table for six, extra bathroom, and a balcony overlooking the gardens and river. In addition, the suite has a side entrance, personal check-in service, and its own parking space.

Five Star Alliance Perk: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also include continental breakfast for two daily, a private tour of the wine cellar, and a private tour of Kenmare in a vintage Buick.

Check availability at Sheen Falls Lodge


| By: Rachael Weir

Featured Journeys: Spanish Experience

Our newest Featured Journeys highlights three of Spain's top destinations: Malaga, Madrid, and Barcelona. From Mediterranean breezes to bodegas buzzing with locals and tourists, Spain offers adventures for culinary and enthusiasts, as well as one-of-a-kind nightlife options. Learn more about top luxury hotels in these Spanish cities below. 

Malaga

Set along Spain's "Gold Coast", Malaga is an Andalusian destination for Mediterranean sunlight, beaches, buzzing tapas bars, and palm-lined promenades. Picasso's original hometown offers art enthusiasts the Picasso Museum. Nestled in a 16th century palace, the museum showcases Picasso's late 1970s paintings. The city's Renaissance cathedral is an ornate masterpiece, and the Moorish Alcazaba are two of the city's iconic architectural highlights. 

La Malagueta beach and the coves at El Palo are the must-visit spots for sunshine. The Paseo del Parque promenade is an ideal place to meander and cool down under the shade of palms, and La Concepcion Botanical Gardens is brimming with tropical flowers. 

Dining in this region is all about tapas. Malaga is home to 1,001 tascas (tapas bars), and these bars are an ideal spot to mingle with the outgoing locals while having fresh anchovies, Serrano ham, and calamari. Pedralejo and La Caleta are popular destinations for beach cafes, fried fish, and cocktails at sunset. While the Old Town is a nightlife destination with live music bars, clubs, and bodegas.

Puente Romano Beach Resort & Spa 

Puente Romano Beach Resort & Spa

About 50 minutes southwest of Malaga in Marbella, Puente Romano Beach Resort & Spa offers a traditional Andalusian retreat along the "Golden Coast". From Afternoon Tea on the terrace to a round of golf or relaxing poolside, the luxurious property provides a relaxing setting for travelers looking to soak in the sun and local culture. There's 14 different restaurants on-site, an open-air courtyard ideal for cocktails, spa & wellness facilities, tennis courts, and botanical gardens. 

Five Star Alliance Perk: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate or "Best Available Rate" will receive full breakfast for each guest daily at Alhambra Restaurant and a $100 USD resort credit per room/per stay.

Check availability at Puente Romano Beach Resort & Spa

Explore more Malaga luxury hotels

Madrid

Modern Madrid is a diverse destination where cobbled lanes and historic chapels meet contemporary boulevards lined with skyscrapers. Locals and tourists alike can revel in the centuries-old sport of bullfighting at the city's largest bullring--Plaza de Toros, or browse the Prado's extensive collection of art from around the world as well as Spanish masters like Goya and Velazquez, and every Wednesday and Saturday, the Changing of the Guard happens at the Royal Palace.

Madrid offers an eclectic food scene along Ventura de la Vega, Plaza de Santa Ana, and the Plaza de Santa Barbara where Madrilenos begin the evening at tapas bars serving manchego cheese, stuffed peppers, chorizo, and Spanish wine, then dine on dinners highlighting Spanish flavors like Valencian paella, Andalusian gapacho, and the Cocido--Madrid's own lamb and vegetable stew. 

For shopping, Rastro has been the destination for locals and bargain hunters for 500 years. While the Gran Via is the city's trendy shopping neighborhood with Art Deco shops selling the latest styles including handbags made from Spanish leather. To get a panoramic view of the city, Faro de Moncloa is a former transmission tower that has been reimagined into an observation deck 92 meters above the city. 

Looking for a night on the town? Madrid's biggest clubs are set along Calle Arenal, while the bars of Chucca and Huertas are popular after Midnight.

Gran Melia Palacio de los Duques

Premium King Guest Room at Gran Melia Palacio de los Duques

Inspired by the paintings of Velazquez, Gran Melia Palacio de los Duques is located in the heart of Madrid. Nestled within a 19th century palace, the hotel has a historic garden, and guest rooms and suites are infused with touches on the Velazquez masterpiece, Las Meninas. Situated in the former palace stables, the Michelin-starred Restaurant Dos Cielos Madrid by Hermanos Torres with a locally-inspired menu and exclusive location. There's also a seasonal rooftop pool and Thai Room Wellness Center. 

Five Star Alliance Perk: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also receive buffet breakfast for each guest daily in Coroa Gallery Lounge & Gardens, a 40 Euro food and beverage credit per room/per stay (excludes Dos Cielos Restaurant), and a welcome amenity.

Check availability at Gran Melia Palacio de los Duques

Explore more Madrid luxury hotels

Barcelona

Offering a cosmopolitan destination on the Mediterranean Sea, Barcelona is a vibrant city with Gothic and Modernist architecture. Effortlessly cool, the city is known for the turrets of Sagrada Familia, La Boqueria Market's Iberian ham, olives, and goat cheese, El Born's clubs where partiers dance 'til dawn, and hidden courtyards. 

La Sagrada Familia cathedral is one of the city's top destinations. Gaudi's masterpiece is full of symbolism. Started in 1882, the church has iconic turrets, stone carvings, and grand facades. The tree-lined La Rambla is ideal for a walk to the maze-like alleyways in Barri Gotic that lead to Santa Maria del Mar Church, and Montjuic's gardens are an ideal spot for those seeking some shade. At the Picasso Museum, visitors can see some of the artist's finest works from early sketches to Blue Period works.

For beaches and no-frills fish restaurants, Barcelonta is the place to go. Barri Gotic serves up Catalan fare including Los Caracoles (the snails), salted cod salad known as esqueixada, and pan tomaquet (tomato bread). For Michelin-starred restaurants that put the city on the gastro map, Eixample and El Born offers a variety of gastronomic experiences. In the evening, head to the jazz clubs and tapas bars of Placa Real.  

Seeking some retail therapy? Passieg de Gracia is known for designer lables, El Corte Ingles is one of Barcelona's top department stores, and boutiques in Barri Gotic, El Born, and El Raval sell unique finds and art.

Neri Hotel

Suite Bat at Neri Hotel

Situated on Sant Felip Neri Square, the Neri Hotel is a Relais & Chateaux property in the heart of the city's Gothic Quarter. Next to the church where Gaudi prayed daily, the boutique hotel has the Neri Restaurant with a creative Mediterranean menu as well as outdoor seating on San Felip Neri Square. For a unique outdoor setting, the Roba Estesa has a rooftop setting for casual cuisine and cocktails overlooking the Gothic Quarter. 

Five Star Alliance Perk: Guest booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate will also receive full breakfast for each guest daily, private transfer from the airport, and a welcome bottle of Spanish olive oil.

Check availability at Neri Hotel

Explore more Barcelona Luxury Hotels


| By: Rachael Weir

Featured Journeys: British Countryside Escape

Venture beyond London in our newest Featured Journeys: British Countryside Escape. Highlighting three top luxury hotels, venture to Bath, The Midlands, and York for history, Medieval architecture, theater, and natural beauty. In Stratford-upon-Avon, visit Shakespeare's hometown, unwind in the modern baths at Thermae Bath Spa, go on hikes through nature in The Cotswolds set within The Midlands, and meander through the walled city of York. Of course along the way you'll want to take time for traditional Afternoon Tea, and a pint or two in local pubs waiting to be discovered. 

Bath, England

Situated in southwest England, Bath is known for 18th-century honey-colored Georgian architecture and natural hot springs. A destination of well-being since Roman times, the waters are still a draw for travelers today. Featuring a compact setting, Bath offers a collection of museums and galleries, including the Roman Baths, which are located in the heart of the city's World Heritage Site and one of the country's most popular tourist attractions, as well as the modern Thermae Bath Spa where visitors can bathe in the natural thermal hot springs. There's also the Bath Abbey, festivals, and sports, plus nearby attractions include the Somerset countryside, Stonehenge, Avebury, and the Longleat Safari Park. 

The Royal Crescent Hotel

Spa at The Royal Crescent Hotel

Considered one of Bath's finest addresses, The Royal Crescent Hotel dates back to 1775. Designed by John Wood the Younger, the UNESCO World Heritage Site is considered one of the best pieces of Georgian architecture in the United Kingdom. Featuring uninterrupted views over the River Avon, the property was transformed into a luxury hotel in 1971. Today, the hotel is surrounded by manicured gardens with regal furnishings, fine dining, traditional Afternoon Tea, and a spa. 

Five Star Alliance Perk: All guests making a reservation with Five Star Alliance will receive a $100 food and beverage credit per room/per stay and daily full breakfast. The following are subject to availability at the time of check-in and departure: upgrade, early check-in, and late check-out. 

Check availability at The Royal Crescent Hotel

The Midlands, England

Situated in central England, The Midlands is known for natural beauty as well as being the home of William Shakespeare. Stratford-upon-Avon is Shakespeare's hometown, and throughout the area visitors can see inspirations for some of his most loved plays, including in Leicestershire where the battlefields and tomb of Richard III are located. Birmingham, England's second city is located in this region where travelers can meander amidst streets lined with Victorian redbrick houses, heritage museums, mega arenas, and contemporary stores. Nottingham has Medieval castles, underground caves, royal concert halls, and chic shopping areas. For outdoor enthusiasts, Peak Distict National Park has the tallest peak reachable by way of canals, secret caves, woodlands, and natural springs. 

The Lygon Arms

Torrington Suite at The Lygon Arms

Situated in the town of Broadway, The Lygon Arms is a historic British inn surrounded by an idyllic countryside. The Cotswold luxury hotel is steeped in history with roots dating back to the 1300s, including stays and visits by Oliver Cromwell and King Charles I. There's a Great Hall with a vaulted ceiling, log-burning open fireplaces, and rooms combine old world glamour with modern luxuries. The inn has a traditional Afternoon Tea, The Lygon Bar & Grill serves a seasonal British menu, and The Lygon Wine Bar has Italian bites and wines with a relaxed setting. 

Five Star Alliance Perk: All reservations booked with Five Star Alliance receive one Champagne Afternoon Tea, per person, per stay, along with 10% off spa treatments. Also, subject to availability at check-in, a room upgrade, early check-in, and late check-out. 

Check availability at The Lygon Arms

York, England

Founded by the ancient Romans, York is located in northeast England. The walled city is home to the York Minster, a 13th century Gothic cathedral with medieval stained glass and two working bell towers. The visitable Clifford's Tower is all that remains of the York Castle, which has housed a prison and mint throughout the years. The National Railway Museum showcases vintage trains and exhibitions, the reimagined Jorvik Viking Centre highlight's the Viking's legacy in the area, and the York Castle Museum offers visitors the chance to see hundreds of years of history in one place with historic artifacts, actors that bring the past to life, and interactive exhibits. Plus, Shakespeare's Rose Theatre open in 2018 from June 25 to September 2. 

Grand Hotel and Spa York

Grand Hotel and Spa York

Originally built for the North Eastern Railway Company in 1906 as a "Palace of Business", the Grand Hotel and Spa York offers a luxurious setting with fine British dining, Afternoon Tea, and a spa. Restored to it's Edwardian splendour, the property infuses history with modern elegance. Guest rooms and suites feature plush beds with Egyptian cotton bed linens, and bathrooms have Molton Brown toiletries, bathrobes, and slippers. For upscale dining, the 3 AA Rosette Hudsons by Craig Atchinson provides a unique fine dining experience, there's classic Yorkshire dishes at The Rise Restaurant, the 1906 Bar has signature cocktails & local ales, plus the property offers a traditional British Afternoon Tea. 

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