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Take a Culinary Tour of LA’s 6 Finest Restaurants

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A mix of long-held tradition and inventive experimentation mark LA’s exquisite restaurant scene. In this culinary mecca, you’ll find captivating dining experiences unrivaled in the United States. First-class fare dominates the landscape, transcending culture and style and ultimately presenting tourists with unlimited and enticing options. Luxury Home Rentals Los Angeles presents the top five best restaurants in LA.

1. Koi

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If you’re looking for a restaurant that offers mouth-watering Japanese dishes, then visit Koi. Upon entering the restaurant tucked within green privacy hedges, you will be greeted by lush bamboo and a serene Buddha illuminated by a row of candlelight. The ancient wooden doors open to a dimly lit interior. Orchids, bamboos, and light sheer curtains decorate the walls.

While the restaurant’s interior maintains earthly colors, the dishes served appear in stark contrast. Colorful and vibrant, the dishes, served in pristine, white plates,  include spicy, crunchy yellowtail tartar, hamachi fusion with soy yuzu and truffle essence, and Kobe-style filet mignon. Indeed, Koi’s menu will satiate your cravings for Japanese cuisine.

2. Providence

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Seafood’s delicate flavors are fully realized at LA’s Providence. Chef Michael Cimarusti prepares his dishes with only sustainable wild-caught fish to massive critical acclaim. Generating not one but two Michelin stars, Providence’s menu dabbles in cod, salmon, and tuna selections while also featuring lesser-known catches such as abalone (a type of shellfish) and uni (the edible part of a sea urchin.)

Low lighting and warm colors invite guests into Providence’s intimate atmosphere. Petals decorate the walls, adding a peaceful floral vibe to the décor. All in all, those looking for satisfying seafood with delightful surroundings should visit Providence.

3. Bestia

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Though it’s only been open less than a decade, Bestia has amassed astounding reviews for its exceptional cuisine. Husband and wife team Ori Menashe and Genevieve Gergis combined their love of locally grown food and fine desserts to create this beloved Italian restaurant that continues to satisfy critics. Their spaghetti rustichella, served beneath crab, citrus, and Thai basil is a particular stand out while their alla ‘nduja, a spicy sausage concoction topped with Tuscan kale and mozzarella, will delight pizza fans.

The restaurant’s interior may look like a fancy bar, but it’s so much more than that. Take a seat near the counter and be greeted by the ongoing sights, sounds, and smells of a working Italian kitchen. Surrounded by low-hanging lights and comfortable booths, it’s frequently booked so get a reservation while you can!

4. N/naka

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Visit N/naka if you are searching for a truly authentic kaiseki experience. For those unfamiliar, kaiseki is a popular Japanese multi-course dinner that is often inspired by the season in which it’s prepared. Food involved in the meals are picked at the peak of freshness, which, in Japanese, is known as shun, and placed in an orchestra of varying platters.

At N/naka, fish range from calamari to conch to jellyfish so only those with a daring appetite should visit. Fruit permeates the dessert menu, ranging from passion fruit cheesecake to pineapple caramel. A quiet atmosphere with simple furnishings envelops your experience, one guaranteed to surprise you at every course.

5. Petrossian

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When you think of expensive cuisine, caviar most likely comes to mind. Petrossian redefines the dish. With ossetra and kaluga-huso hybrid on the menu among others, caviar connoisseurs will enjoy the refined selection at this popular French-inspired establishment. Petrossian’s caviar is so highly regarded, in fact, that if you’re looking for a less pricey alternative while still having a quality meal, LA Weekly rated it as the top place to get caviar at happy hour in 2013.

In addition to its stylish menu, Patrossian’s interior brims with class and sophistication, apparent in its light décor. The bright appearance adds to the quality of the offerings, making a lunch or dinner here a special occasion.

6. Melisse

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And finally, we come to Melisse. A Santa Monica staple, Melisse turns French cuisine into an art form. Since its inception, it has become one of the best, and also one of the most expensive, restaurants in LA. Coming here, you’ll be treated to either a 4, 7, or 10-course meal of your choosing. Coffee-rubbed beef strip Loin, truffle risotto, and egg caviar are just a few of the superior samplings.

Once you’re inside, the cozy and romantic dinner ambiance begs couples to dine within. Not too lavish or elaborate, you’ll find yourself close to your partner, savoring the wine, the food, and the company.

Choosing a place to dine in LA seems like a Herculean task. The amount of unique regional and international options can be overwhelming, to say the least. These five restaurants remain some of LA’s most memorable and intriguing dining hot spots. Now all you have to decide is which one you’ll try first!

Taste Some of California’s Best Wines

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Wine lovers know the value of tasting a vintage before buying the bottle, and visiting vineyards and tasting rooms has become an enjoyable past time. You no longer have to go to Europe to find great wine or visit a winery. California has taken the lead in introducing Americans to the delights of strolling the vineyards, sampling the wine in tasting rooms, and selecting the perfect wines for their tastes. At Mansion Vacation Rentals, we have compiled a short list of vineyards and tasting rooms in California that will delight your senses.

Navarro Winery

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As the grapes ripen, the air becomes heavy with fermenting juices and the vines turn a luminous gold. Navarro Winery offers daily one-hour tours at 10:30 a.m. and 2 p.m., which include free tastings of 15 award-winning wines, and picnic fixings at the deli. Many wine lovers make a day of it: sipping wine, eating cheese, and nibbling on deli meats in the refreshing, green Anderson Valley where the vineyard is located. Picnic tables invite visitors to linger and relax. In the last 30 years, Navarro has produced late-harvest wines from Riesling and Gewürztraminer grapes.

The wines at the Navarro Winery are so consistently delicious year after year that one wine reviewer proclaimed, “…this is a natural treasure.” The soil is clay-based, similar to vineyards in Beaumes-de-Venice in Southern France where some of the best sweet Muscat wines in the world are produced.

Navarro wines are seldom found in stores as most bottles are sold from the tasting room or through phone and mail orders.

Dashe Cellars

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You will be enveloped in the sweet smell of wine aging in rows of oak barrels in this urban tasting room of Dashe Cellars. This family-owned artisan winery was founded in 1996. The husband-and-wife winemaking team focuses on producing exceptional, single-vineyard wines using a traditional, non-industrial approach to winemaking. They ferment grapes in small batches, use indigenous yeasts, and employ little to no filtration.

The company partners with some of the finest small growers in Sonoma and Mendocino counties to craft wines with a distinctive sense of place. They seek out that perfect balance of steep vineyards, older vines, and ideal growing conditions. One of the most aromatic Rieslings that they have crafted uses organically-grown grapes from 30-year-old vines grown high in the mountains of Potter Valley.  Just off-dry, the wine has a firm structure and a hint of sweetness in the finish. With its lush texture, perfect balance of fruit and acidity, and complex minerality, this wine is great to drink today and ages well in your cellar.

Their Single-Vineyard Zinfandel (2015) won a double gold medal in the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition, and their classic reds are favorites among wine enthusiasts. You can taste the fruits of several small California vineyards in this easy to reach—even by public transportation—urban tasting room.

Open Thursday to Sunday noon to 6 p.m. With an appointment, you can visit Monday through Wednesday.

Beckman Vineyards

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Meander through the redolent vineyards and stroll through the cool, cavernous winery to see how grapes are turned into wine at Beckman Vineyards. Then, enjoy the best wines the estate has to offer in the tasting room, on the upper terrace, in the picnic area, or the gazebo where you are welcome to bring lunch and snacks.

The Beckmens’ family commitment to creating a world-class vineyard led them to purchase a ranch in Ballard Canyon more than twenty years ago. Today, the estate has two vineyards flourishing in this wine-friendly soil.

Their 365-acre Certified Biodynamic Purisima Mountain Vineyard is clay and clay loam with varying amounts of gravel and limestone subsoil. Found in wine-famous Rhône regions such as Côte Rôtie and Châteauneuf du Pape, this type of soil produces smaller vines with lower yields and more intensely flavored fruit. This is the source of their white wines that include Sauvignon Blanc, Marsanne, Grenache Blanc, Viognier, and Chardonnay, as well as our Syrah, Grenache, Mourvedre, and Counoise.

The Winery Estate vineyard is 25 acres of rolling hills in a wide valley. This smaller vineyard produces Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache, Mourvedre, and Syrah. Through years of experimentation, the Beckmens have found the perfect soil and microclimate for each variety of wine they produce.

Their 2007 Estate Grenache was served at a White House State Dinner in 2009 paired with the main course. Their wines have won many awards.

Open Daily 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Saturdays 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Closed New Year’s Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas Day.

11 Vital Packing Hacks

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Packing your bags to go on vacation is both exciting and frustrating. You can’t wait to get to your destination, but you also want to bring your belongings with you in as little space as possible. Whether you’re traveling by plane and trying to fit everything in a too-small bag or you’re headed off on a big family vacation in a car that has to hold everyone’s gear, try these packing hacks for your next vacation.

Hack #1: Stuff Underwear in Your Shoes

You need every inch of available space, and shoes take up a lot of it! Lessen their impact by putting your underwear in your shoes to help save space.

Hack #2: Wear Your Biggest, Heaviest Shoes

Speaking of shoes, if you’re planning to fly, make sure you wear the biggest or heaviest pair you plan to take with you. This will save substantial space and weight in your suitcase.

Hack #3: Take a Bag for Dirty Laundry

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This will help keep track of your dirty clothes while you’re on vacation, as well as ensuring that your dirty clothes don’t mix with the clean ones still in your suitcase. If you want to lessen waste and help the environment, use recycled plastic bags.

Hack #4: Roll Clothes

Not only do clothes take up less space when you roll them, they’ll also have fewer wrinkles when you take them out of the suitcase.

Hack #5: Place Chords in Compartmental Pockets

Roll them neatly, secure them appropriately, and pack them carefully in their own bag. The last thing you want is a broken charger cord when you reach your destination, especially if you’re traveling to a place where it will be difficult to replace your chargers.

Hack #6: Plan Your Outfits

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Take the time to think about what you’ll wear and when. How many outfits do you really need? What are all the pieces to those outfits? Will you have access to laundry facilities? Planning your outfits ahead of time will make it easier to determine which clothes to bring. Also, this prevents overpacking.

Hack #7: Put Jewelry in a Pill Bottle or Mint Tin

Repurposing these familiar items will make it easy to store your jewelry without bringing your large, heavy jewelry box. Wrap necklaces around an embroidery floss card or store them separately to help reduce knots and tangles.

Hack #8: Know What You Don’t Need to Pack

Every hotel room you stay in will have toiletries. Therefore, you don’t need to bring your own.  Your hotel, if a good one, will also likely have a hair dryer, so you don’t have to bring yours. If you do want your own toiletries, make sure to tuck them into a toiletry bag so that they won’t leak onto your clothes.

Hack #9: Protect Fragile Objects

If bringing a fragile object, like a glass jar or a figurine, wrap them in bubble wrap. If you want to reduce your waste and save space in your suitcase, wrap them in your clothes and socks instead.

Hack #10: Reduce Pill Bottle Contents

Don’t take your entire monster-size bottle of vitamins with you.  Instead, portion medications and supplements. Take only the ones you’ll need for the trip with you and store them in ziplock bags. Make sure, however, that you label each bag to ensure you’re taking the right medication.

Hack #11: Use Dryer Sheets to Eliminate Smell

Your dirty running shoes are taking up space alongside your clean clothes, and it’s even worse when you’re on your way home. To protect your clean clothes, toss in a few dryer sheets.

Packing for vacation can be a daunting process, especially if you’re planning to fly. These simple hacks, however, will make it much easier when you’re preparing for your trip to your luxury mansion rentals.

Thailand’s Enchanting Destinations You Can’t Miss

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Is Thailand on your list of vacation destinations? Phuket Luxury Mansion Rentals has combed the country for places you may want to include during your visit to this beautiful country.

1. Khao Sok National Park, the Oldest Rainforest in the World

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Not many foreigners have experienced this 160 million-years-old virgin forest, Khao Sok National Park. Its dense jungle, shimmering limestone mountains, and Cheow Lan Lake are home to rare species including gibbons and tigers. You can explore the park, spend the night in a floating cottage, and raft through the forest on its many streams. Soft adventure in canoes and kayaks are popular options. And, nearly every visitor jumps in a small stream to bathe and bond with the elephants.

2. Banyan Tree Phuket Hotel for Over-the-Top Luxury

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Many agree that Thailand’s most elegant hotel is the Banyon Tree Phuket that circles a sparkling saltwater lagoon. Roads are lined with palms, and the fields are festive with blooms. The hotel’s 2-mile beach is pristine, white sand. The hotel is built in elegant Thai architecture and includes all amenities including free inter-resort transportation, by shuttle or lagoon boat, so guests easily can visit the lagoon’s 30 restaurants and bars. Pools meander around the villas.

The hotel’s six restaurants and two bars serve signature Thai food, fresh seafood, Japanese specialties, and international favorites. You can dine in a restaurant or have your favorite cuisine delivered to your villa. Eating under the stars beside the pool takes luxury to a new level.

The hotel has the first spa in Asia to re-introduce an exotic blend of health and beauty practices passed down through the generations. The spa celebrates the art of touch and uses natural and native ingredients with a holistic focus.

3. Phuket Elephant Sanctuary to Meet the Majestic Beasts

Phuket Elephant Sanctuary, home for retired working elephants, is in 30 acres of lush tropical jungle. Visitors see how elephants rehabilitate into forest life after decades of abuse. Guests are encouraged to meet the herd and learn their histories. Seventy-year-old Richy, the grandmother of the herd, was rescued just six months ago from a logging company where she carried logs as heavy as she is. She is still recovering from a broken leg but enjoys the comfort of her large shelter, daily strolls through the jungle, and swimming in the lagoon. Guests can book a morning or afternoon with the elephants for close encounters that include feeding the elephants and walking with the herd to the lagoon.

4. The Grand Palace, Home to Kings

In the heart of Bangkok, the Grand Palace was a former residence for King Rama I to King Rama V (1782 – 1910). It is used today for hosting royal ceremonies and welcoming the king’s guests, State guests, and other foreign dignitaries. The Grand Palace has two zones: The Temple of the Emerald Buddha and the royal residence. “Emerald Buddha” is the English nickname for the most sacred object in the Kingdom of Thailand: a small jade Buddha sitting in a meditative pose on a large golden throne. It is said to be the oldest sculpture of Budda. It was found covered in stucco in a temple in Chieng Rai in the early 1400s. The palace complex includes more than 100 buildings in Thai architecture, some with a Renaissance touch. The beauty of the structures, statues, and the grounds are breathtaking.

5. Jay Fai for World-Class Street Food

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Jay Fai recently became the third street food restaurant in the world to win a Michelin star. The 70-year-old chef controls her charcoal-fired woks like a maestro. A favorite dish is her browned, thick crab omelet. Locals recommend the poo phad pong kari, generous chunks of crab scrambled with curry and eggs. Located in the heart of Bangkok, this informal eatery is part of the nightlife.

Thailand is a coveted vacation destination because of its lush scenery, pristine beaches, exotic wildlife, and exquisite cuisine. Thais are one of the most gentle, graceful, and hospitable peoples on the planet and welcome visitors with helpful hands and gracious smiles.

Want to Live Like a Kardashian for a Day? Now You Can

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It’s vacation time again. Where will you go and where will you stay?

If you haven’t decided yet, retreat to the Hollywood Hills in Los Angeles, California for a luxurious vacation.  Situated above Sunset Blvd, seven miles away from the airport, the most stunning accommodations await your arrival.

No. We’re not referring to a hotel or an Airbnb or any other accommodations that offer single to three-person sleeping rooms.  Instead, we’re calling your attention to your home away from home for the duration of your stay—welcome to the remarkable Sunset Hills Estate

What Does the Sunset Hills Estate Offer?

This luxurious mansion features six amazingly large bedrooms suited for anyone escaping the chaos of everyday life or seeking to spend quality time with family and friends. The Sunset Hills Estate expands more than 7,200 square feet, sleeps 14 people, has eight gorgeous full baths and a spa bath, and boasts more amenities than you can imagine.  If you ever wondered what life would be like if you were a Kardashian, here’s your opportunity—everything you need exists here.

This unique property puts you right at the heart of living like a local.  Some amenities you will have in this rental includes

  • Gourmet Kitchen–With ample space, marble flooring and countertops, a center island with benches, recess and track lighting, and beautiful ceiling windows, spending quality time together and preparing meals will be memorable.  Additionally, breakfast bars, stainless steel appliances, large stovetop and oven, microwave, dishwasher, dryer, and a beautiful patio for enjoying meals outside complete this incredible fully equipped kitchen.

  • Spiral Staircase–This unbelievably grand and gorgeous marble staircase with decorative metal railings wind and wind until you reach the top. Your ascent and descent will be magical as you pose for your portrait and pretend to live like a Kardashian.

  • Elevator–Yes, there is one. If the staircase is too tiring a trek, then hop on the elevator for a fast ride to the top in an elegantly polished elevator with recess lighting and charming wood interior.

  • Oversized Bedrooms–With contemporary furniture, floor to ceiling mirrors, plush pillows, and mattresses to cradle you while you sleep, you will have more space than you can handle while you bask in the quiet serenity of this peaceful retreat.

  • Hardwood and Marble Flooring Throughout–You will never have to worry about hurting your feet while walking barefoot on any of these gorgeous shiny and flawless floors. Dark and richly colored wood floors and marbling extend through every room in this mansion.


  • Free Parking and Wifi–This luxury mansion comes with multiple parking spaces and provides WiFi should any work need to be done.  If so, you’re covered.  Likewise, if you want to watch television on the rooftop, you’re covered.  Moreover, if you need to connect one or multiple devices to the internet for any reason (gaming), again, you’re covered.

  • Pool–No need to worry about traveling anywhere to take a refreshing dip. This mansion accompanies a long rectangular pool nestled in the back of the estate beneath lots of plants and trees— privacy will never be an issue.

  • Rooftop Lounge–Enjoy the breathtaking views of the city, the mountains, and the pool while you sip cocktails from a swanky rooftop bar atop this extravagant piece of real estate. You can find everything you need for a great barbecue on this rooftop.

The amenities for this mansion are endless and too many to list here.  Though most delightful are the ceiling windows superbly architected and placed throughout this large property.  Other features include a spacious movie theater, a game room for family entertainment, and a wine room for enjoying family happy hour.  It’s almost inconceivable the level of detail and number of amenities there are in this luxury mansion rental.

If you plan on keeping up with the Kardashians, get used to living in luxury mansions like this anytime you vacation because, after spending time at Sunset Hills Estate, living in a hotel when you travel will officially become obsolete.

Luxury Mansion Rentals understands vacationing with loved ones is precious, and it is an opportunity to relax and connect with one another.  For these reasons, we consistently go above and beyond to make sure we provide our customers with unparalleled service and amazing rentals so they can spend more time enjoying family and less time worrying about the process.

Contact us for more information on how we can assist you with finding the right luxury mansion rental for your next vacation.

5 Exciting Activities to Do in Beverly Hills

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Beverly Hills, a neighborhood full of mansions and celebrities, is synonymous with luxury. If you’re visiting Beverly Hills, don’t miss these high-end, luxurious places and activities while you’re here!

1. Shop on Rodeo Drive

If you’re an avid luxury fashion shopper, visit Rodeo Drive, one of the best places on the planet for buying luxury goods. There are a number of high-end luxury shops such as Brooks Brothers, Bulgari, Cartier, and Burberry. World-renowned for its luxury fashion stores, Rodeo Drive also contains a number of night-clubs and restaurants. Be sure to spend a day shopping and dining here while you’re in town.

2. Take a Trip Down Mulholland Drive

If you’re a fan of breathtaking views and scenery, Mulholland Drive offers stunning scenes of LA’s entirety. Take a drive through the Hollywood Hills and enjoy the lavish mansions in the area. A great place to catch the sunset or spend some time outside, Mulholland Drive is one of the best, most beautiful areas of the entire city. Take some time to explore this luxury neighborhood and steal a view from the hills.

3. Explore the Paley Center for Media

The Paley Center for Media houses the most extensive collection of costumes, video clips, sets, and props from classic television shows, from old black and white soap operas to 80s sitcoms, and everything in between. You can watch anything in the museum’s extensive video libraries, including full episodes of classic television shows. There is also a big screen theater that has a daily offering of classic shows. And, there are a number of special events, forums, and panels with former and current television stars. Check out the museum website to learn more about exhibit offerings and upcoming events.

4. Visit the Academy

The Oscar is the most prestigious award in show business. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the group that awards the Oscars annually, is located in Beverly Hills. You can visit the Academy’s luxurious grand lobby, Tuesday through Sunday. The Academy often rotate and update a number of exhibits. Occasionally, the Academy also hosts public events and screenings. You can find out about more about the exhibits and public events here.

5. Check Out the Robinson Estate

Beverly Hills is world-renowned for its mansions. The Robinson Estate was the first mansion built in the Beverly Hills neighborhood in 1911. The mansion sits on six acres of land. It includes gardens and a large pool area. You can visit this monument of luxury and explore the grounds and gardens.

If you’re coming to Beverly Hills, make sure that you do it right. There is no reason to stay in a hotel when you can stay in luxury mansion rentals—that’s what Beverly Hills is all about.

4 International Airport Lounges Where You Are Treated Like Royalty

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No waiting in busy lines at crowded, noisy gates, no uncomfortable layovers in plastic seats, no noxious food served by harried waiters, no ear-shattering announcements in an airport? Sounds like a first-class airport experience.

If you’re a savvy, upscale traveler, you can find peace and many other amenities not available to other travelers. Los Angeles Luxury Mansion Rentals searched the aviation world to find the best airport lounges for the discerning traveler. These lounges make flying a pleasure, not a marathon of elbows and lines fueled by plastic-wrapped snacks.

1. Etihad Residence Lounge

Location: Abu Dhabi Airport, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

The Etihad Residence Lounges, which include the services of a butler, are private, elegant spaces you can reach by private elevator. You can watch movies from a flat screen HDTV surrounded by Poltrona Frau lounge furnishings. Or you can sit at a dining table, waiting to be attended by the executive chef who will explain dining options and create a special menu for you. If you want alcoholic drinks, coffee, tea, and snacks, they are available at all times.

The residence also includes a private prayer room and a marble bathroom with luxury bath products and bathrobes. The butler will arrange complimentary haircuts, shaves, and spa treatments in the Residence Lounge or in the first class lounge’s spa. You will arrive at your plane in golf carts, greeted by another butler who will attend to you during the flight.

Travelers with First Class Lounge & Spa entrance can book these exclusive rooms for an additional $100 or 11,500 Etihad guest miles.

2. Lufthansa First Class Terminal

Location: Frankfurt Airport, Frankfurt, Germany

You can drive to Lufthansa First Class Terminal and drop your car at the valet. Then, you whisk through check-in and security—never lines—with a whisper. You can wait at several seating areas with comfortable chairs, some with flat-screen TVs on low volume. For longer stays, you can use the lounge’s nap rooms, shower suites, bathtub suites, bars, and cigar lounge. Or, if waiting works up an appetite, you can dine ala cart or feast at the buffet, enjoying cuisine by Michelin-starred chefs. As soon as your departure time approaches, an attendant notifies and ushers you into a Porsche or Mercedes for a ride to your flight.

First class passengers and HON Circle members have access to this exclusive terminal and all-lounge privileges. For use during layovers, you must arrive on a Lufthansa first class ticket and depart on a Lufthansa, Swiss, or Austrian flight.

3. Qatar Airways’ Al Safwa Lounge

Location: Hamad International Airport, Doha, Qatar

You will be escorted from the premium-check-in area, through security, and then to the Arabian grandeur of the high-ceilinged Qatar Airways’ Al Safwa Lounge. The hallways feature art and a soothing water wall. The lounge has a prayer room, spa, nap rooms (for guests with a layover of six hours or more), a duty-free shop, a family area, and a business center with attractive workstations.

The triangular central seating area, ranging from comfortable to ultra stylish, has an eye-catching fountain. The restaurant, whose cuisine is international and Arabic, has an open kitchen, buffet stations, and waiters available if you prefer to order from a menu. The signature, freshly prepared à la carte dishes are made with local ingredients.

This lounge is restricted to Qatar Airways and Oneworld first-class passengers.

4. La Première Lounge

Location: Charles de Gaulle Airport, Paris, France

Porters and escorts, handling your luggage, will greet you at a special airport entry point and take you to La Première Lounge. The lounge is decorated in a sophisticated red-and-white palette with several cozy seating areas and a sultry bar. Work desks are semi-private and include loaner tablets. An app for tablets lets you download your favorite newspapers and magazines at no extra charge to read in the lounge and throughout your flight.

The lounge also includes a library and offers tasty snacks and fine dining with elegant table service. Wines and menu items are selected by French superstar chef Alain Ducasse.

The sleeping area has stylish, comfortable loungers and privacy screens. Shower suites are available. A complimentary 30-minute massage or facial may be followed by other spa treatments such as their signature two-hour massage-facial combo that includes a lifting and firming treatment.

At boarding time, you are chauffeured to the plane in a private Air France’s cars.

Entry requires elite status with Air France/KLM or a first-class ticket booked with Amex Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou Rewards, or Starwood Preferred Guest.

These lounges and their services take the frenzy and fuss out of flying with personal service, superb food and accommodations, and all of the amenities of five-star hotels. We hope you will consider adding first class lounge experiences to your vacation plans.

Explore Europe’s History and Treasures from a Luxury Riverboat

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European river cruises on luxurious longboats are five-star experiences on floating hotels. Surrounded by service and elegance, guests visit several countries or one country in depth. Airport transfers are handled smoothly and effortlessly. Unpacking is a one-time chore. On some boats, if you book a suite, your butler will unpack for you. Gourmet meals are provided three times a day, and drinks and snacks are always available. Cabin choices range from below deck with a small window to above deck with a private balcony. Below-deck passengers enjoy sweeping views of the European countryside from elegantly appointed lounges and sun decks.

Evening entertainment includes live music and games. On nights when the boat is docked, local talent comes aboard for traditional performances. Or, if you’d rather have some alone time, you can relax in your cabin with a movie, enjoy a bottle of wine on your balcony, or star gaze on the sundeck.

The boat docks every day at a historic place so guests can tour the area with local, English-speaking guides. Most cruises offer at least one free excursion a day and one optional excursion. Fitness levels required for each excursion are clearly explained. For guests who explore on their own, the crew supplies maps notated with ATMs, restaurants, and historic sites. The onboard concierge will make recommendations and reservations and arrange transportation.

While each cruise company has its own personality, the service, accommodations, and amenities are five and even six-star. When selecting a cruise, most travelers consider destinations, time, and cost over the cruise company. The following are three of our favorites.

The Rhine River from Amsterdam to Basel, Switzerland: 8 days

This cruise sets sail from Amsterdam after a walking or canal boat tour of the lively, historic city. If your plane lands in the morning, you will have time to visit the Anne Frank House and the Van Gogh Museum. The cruise stops for a visit to working windmills and miles of tulips if they are in bloom. The boat docks for a day in Cologne, a tour of Germany’s best-preserved medieval castle, and continues down through a rich landscape of culture and beauty. Highlights are turreted fortresses, grand cathedrals, historic cities, medieval villages, and the Black Forest. The various culinary traditions of Alsace are explored. An evening at a German pub with traditional food, drinking songs, and tavern games is a popular optional excursion.

The Rhône River from Beaune to Avignon, France: 8 days

The Rhône River was used by Greek and Roman traders, so today’s river cruisers experience antiquity, artistry, history, and some of the finest food and wine in Europe. This exquisite journey through southern France follows in the footsteps of Van Gogh, Cézanne, and Gauguin. Stroll the streets of Arles that Van Gogh made famous and visit Avignon’s majestic Palace of the Popes. A “village day” in enchanting Viviers includes a Bach and Handel recital. Lyon is known as the “City of Silk,” and the ancient art is continued by today’s artisans. If you find Lyon’s silk selections confusing, silk merchants set up shop in the boat’s lounge to help you chose the perfect scarves and ties. More adventurous travelers can kayak on the tranquil Gardon rivers, hike through vineyards, go truffle hunting, and bike around Lyon.

The Danube from Budapest to Bucharest: 11 days

Once hidden behind the Iron Curtain, the eastern Danube now shares its secrets. Bucharest’s 3,000 room Palace of Parliament is the last word in opulent. Belgrade’s Ottoman and European treasures include the 6th Century Kalemegdan Fortress. The grandeur of Budapest explodes at night as castles glitter and gleam on either side of the river while the boat glides beneath historic bridges. The narrated tour of Budapest at night can be enjoyed from the deck (warm shawls are provided) or in the cozy lounge. Continue through Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria, and Romania for traditional food and wine and sights unseen by the Western World until these countries opened their borders.

To find your perfect cruise, we suggest visiting these three websites: Viking River Cruises, AmaWaterways, and Uniworld. Cruises range from several days to two weeks and more. Take note of pre- and post-cruise land excursions if you would like to linger and explore a particular city or region. Special interest cruises include golf, Christmas markets, wine, tulips, and more.

Luxury is more than plush bedding and seamless service although both are provided on luxury riverboat cruises. Waking up to a misty view of a pristine forest and sipping a star-studded nightcap on a private balcony are just two of luxury’s sweet enchantments.

For more information on luxury vacations, please contact Luxury Mansion Rentals.

This Summer’s 6 Best International Vacation Destinations

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For today’s luxury traveler, the world is full of endless possibilities. From the mountainous landscapes of Europe to the bustling cities of Asia, each destination is sure to enrich the senses and offer unforgettable travel experiences. As an avid jet-setter, you may be planning your summer getaway. Where to go?

This year’s top summer travel destinations offer something for everyone. Whether you want to relax on the beach or sip wine at a sidewalk cafe, there is a vacation spot for you. The following are some of the most popular regions and cities creating a buzz this year.

1. Portugal

What better place to start than one of the world’s fastest growing travel destinations. And it’s impossible to choose just one city to visit. From the charming streets of Lisbon, like the quaint Rua do Carmo, to the quiet beaches of Lagos, including the stunning Praia do Pinhão, Portugal has something to offer every luxury traveler. This coastal European country is known for its culinary culture, so pour yourself a glass of local port and indulge in a warm pastel de natas. You are sure to enjoy your time under the warm Atlantic sun.

2. Toronto, Canada

Although this Canadian city is snow-clad during the winter months, Toronto has made lists as a cultural lover’s summer paradise. Locals and travelers line the streets for the TD Toronto Jazz Festival, Toronto’s Festival of Beer, Taste of the Danforth, and other popular summer festivals. Those looking to delight at the city’s art and architecture can visit the stunning Museum of Contemporary Art.

3. Marrakesh, Morocco

For lovers of art, color, and culture, Marrakesh is sure to inspire. One of Morocco’s up and coming cities, Marrakesh is a maze of breathtaking architecture, bustling markets, and delightful food. Visit the Museum de Marrakech to marvel at the intricate tile work and historical displays. The busy Jemaa el-Fna city square is a great place to learn about local culture and purchase unique artisan products. This North African city is also known for its luxury accommodations, such as the beautiful Riad Kniza and Amanjena, so you can travel in complete comfort.

4. Ticino, Switzerland

The Swiss landscape is known for its ski resorts and quaint towns, and now this country is being noticed for its wine region. Ticino is known for its ancient winemaking practices and has become a popular destination for luxury travelers internationally. A few noted wineries are Matasci Vini in Tenero, Agriloro in Genesterio, and the elegant Gialdi in Mendrisio. This region takes on the Mediterranean flare of its Italian neighbor, offering sprawling vistas of the Alps and dreamy blue waters.

5. Bangkok, Thailand

Few cities have drawn more travelers than Bangkok, and its popularity is certainly earned. For those looking to relax and revel in a blossoming cultural center, Bangkok is the place for you. The city’s Grand Palace is a modern marvel, and the markets are full of intriguing flavors. Bangkok is full of delights, as you can relax by the pool at your luxury accommodation and visit elephants at Elephant Nature Park in one day. Visit the city and live like a king in this Phuket Luxury Mansion Rental with up to 12 of your friends.

6. Newport, Rhode Island

There is nothing quite like a charming sea town in the summertime, and Newport is one of New England’s best. Shop for gifts on Thames Street, try your hand at sailing, or simply relax by the soothing seaside. Newport is lined with historic mansions, including the Marble House and Rosecliff, so you can get a taste of luxury from the past.

No matter your taste in travel, this summer’s most popular destinations offer a piece of paradise for everyone, whether you want a romantic getaway with your spouse or a fun and unique family vacation at a mansion from Luxury Mansion Rentals.

What You Need to Know About Accommodations Overseas

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Thanks to online reservations sites, booking a hotel and other accommodations overseas is as easy as booking a room in the United States. But be alert for some different interpretations of written descriptions. Staff, clients, and friends at Luxury Mansion Rentals have some surprises to share gleaned from their global travels.

The First Floor Is the Second Floor

In many European countries, the first floor is located where we would expect the second floor. Instead of the first floor, they instead have the ground floor, also called the piano nobile. Factor in your luggage and fitness level before booking a room above the ground floor. In some countries, electricity is not as reliable as in the United States so the lift may be out of order when you most need it. In any hotel, staff should assist with luggage, but do not depend on it. Expecting the best, be prepared to tip your luggage handlers. But know what floor you will be on in case you have to manage your luggage yourself.

You May Not Get the Ocean View You Wanted

“Ocean view” is a loosely defined term in the real estate and hospitality industries in the United States and overseas. Sometimes a guest can glimpse the ocean by standing on a chair and assuming a difficult yoga position. Sometimes the ocean can be seen from the balcony by people who can twist their bodies like pretzels. Try to find photos of the room you reserve that include the view. Ask questions if you can. Or, just expect to be pleasantly surprised if your ocean view can be enjoyed from your bed or a comfortable chair.

“Ocean front” can be misleading. An oceanfront hotel often does not have all ocean front rooms. Some rooms may face the parking lot, courtyard, a highway, or an unattractive industrial site. Be sure to specify and get it in writing: ocean front room.

Getting a Taxi May Be Difficult

When relying on a taxi, know that the taxi drivers may not speak English. Thus, always carry a card with the hotel name and address plainly printed. Do not expect the driver to be able to decipher your handwriting. Also, while in the airport, use an ATM or currency exchange to get enough funds in local currency to pay for a taxi because taxis only take cash.

The Desk Clerk May Not Speak English

If the desk clerk speaks English, it may be basic but sufficient for check-in conversations and answers to typical questions. If the desk clerk does not speak English, he will know the usual words used during the check-in process. In any case, miming requests and transactions work well. But be sure you know the word for several helpful phrases that will get you by, such as “hello,” “thank you,” “Do you speak English,” “Where is…” etc.

The Country May Not Accept Your Card

Be sure to check which credit cards the country you’re visiting accepts before you leave home. A guest in a five-star hotel in Novgorod, Russia, found that the hotel accepted MasterCard but not her VISA. She used her ATM card to collect a pile of rubles over several days and paid her hotel bill in cash. When traveling, make sure to bring lots of cash with you in case this happens.

Also, be sure your credit card has a chip as most European hotels, stores, and restaurants can no longer swipe cards. Fortunately, most US credit cards have caught up with the need for chips. Swiping credit cards is not as safe as using the electronic chip embedded in credit and ATM cards.

Stress-free travel is a priority at Luxury Mansion Rentals. And hopefully this article has given you enough knowledge to prepaire yourself for your next trip.