Luxe For Less B+ Hotels

[trip style = budget conscious...with a taste for the high life]

{Editor’s Note :: Today is the second post in a two-part series about B+ luxe for less. Last week we carried on about B+ Destinations.}

"A" hotels, aka those that constantly grace Conde Nast Traveler and Travel+Leisure 'best of' lists, usually mean splurge. Steals rarely exist at these world-renowned, high-occupancy, fancy-pantsy accoms.

Hotel Luxe For Less - Two Rules 1/ Find luxury for trip style = budget conscious prices outside multinational hotel mainstays like Four Seasons, Ritz or Relais & Chateaux. 2/ Find luxury within high-end multinational hotel brands in less popular areas.

1/ Though I prefer smaller, boutique-y properties, mixing it up and staying at the biggies is important---even for loyalty program points acquisition as a means of stretching your travel budget. The problem: stay at hotel brands synonymous with luxury in resort areas or major urban centers, and your pocketbook is on a non-stop spend-a-thon at standouts like the Four Seasons Resort in Maui, the Fairmont Savoy in London, the Intercontinental Le Grand in Paris and the Banyan Tree Seychelles.

Go with an independent or less recognized hotel brand that's just as luxurious sans the glitzy brand name, and you'll travel like a king for jester prices. For example, on my recent trip to Thailand I stayed at two ultra-stylish and luxe properties in B+ destinations. Neither hotel was part of a major hotel group, yet both were regularly featured in international design mags and blogs. At the first property I had a beachfront, plunge pool villa with a daily champagne breakfast. At the second resort I had a huge, swanky room with the BEST hotel bed known to man and a 12ft rain shower. PS - both start around $150/night---a far cry from the A properties in nearby A destinations like Koh Samui .....

2/ You want to stay at the Four Seasons for Holiday Inn prices. We all do. It's possible. Vacationing at the Four Seasons Maui will set you back approx. $450/night. Alternatively, take a 45-min boat ride to Lanai {from Maui}, and choose from one of two Four Seasons properties {1 & 2} available for half the price. Banyan Tree is another example of an exquisite hotel group with a consistent hotel product and varied price points. Their first property in North America, located in Mexico's Riviera Maya, goes for a FRACTION of the price of their other properties even though the location and amenities are just as strong.

What are some of your “Brilliant B Hotels”?

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[photo by @tripstyler taken of the Banyan Tree villas in Mexico]