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The Moana Surfrider Hotel of Waikiki, Hawaii—Elegance for the Ages

“Proud as a Peacock” is a phrase sometimes used to describe individuals who, deservedly or not, carry themselves with a distinct air of pride. Since the Moana Hotel was the vision of W.C. Peacock, a prominent Honolulu businessman, this luxury edifice justly deserves such a description. When we walked into this elegant hotel, we felt like we were transported back in time, yet surrounded by present day luxury. Peacock saw that Waikiki, the Honolulu suburb, needed a first rate luxury hotel. He made this decision in 1896. At that time, Hawaii was not yet a territory of the United...

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Saint-Tropez’s Fairytale Castle: Chateau de la Messardiere

Saint-Tropez, or “St. Trop” as it is often called by those who frequent southern France’s playground, started off quite humbly as a port city and fishing village. By the early part of the last century, Bohemian artists from Paris made it their summer playground and soon jet setters from around the world flocked to this Mediterranean gem. Made famous by Brigitte Bardot, Saint-Tropez has become the ultimate summer playground. One of the best places to call home while visiting the charming town on the French Riviera is Château de la Messardière. Perched on a hillside overlooking not only the...

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The Arizona Biltmore Resort and Spa—A Historical Icon Flourishing with Time

by Norman Hill This venerable gem of Arizona hotel establishments is getting stronger than ever. As a child growing up in the Chicago area, I studied two hotels that possessed quite a mystical, ultra luxurious quality, even though it would be years before I visited them: The Grand Hotel, Mackinac Island in upper Michigan and the Arizona (Wrigley’s) Biltmore in Phoenix. The Biltmore was built in the late 1920s, starting from the insight of two visionaries, Charles and Warren McArthur. They saw that Arizona, the last state to join the Union, was ready to transform itself from a Wild...

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Raffles: Where Extraordinary Luxury Is Expected

by Maralyn D. Hill Raffles in Singapore had been on my dream list for years, based on movies and books. On my first visit to Singapore in 1989, my hopes were dashed, as it was closed for renovations. But all was forgiven when I returned in 2001  to enjoy its classic charm, attention to detail, wonderful history and naturally, a Singapore Sling. During our initial Singapore visit, not at Raffles, my husband and I spoke with the grandson of the bartender who allegedly invented the classic Singapore Sling. He proudly made our drinks (they were good) and later we...

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