Surprising Things About Five-Star Luxury Hotels in the US, Europe and Canada

After years of camping and booking cheap Airbnbs, I got my first taste of luxury when I stayed in four five-star hotels around the world.

The author at the Vogue Hotel in Montreal (top left), the Versace Mansion in Miami (top right), the Bulgari in Milan (bottom left) and the Fairmont Château Frontenac in Quebec (bottom right) .

Joey Hadden/Insider

Cheap Airbnb, free campsites, and sleepless nights crammed into cars in Walmart parking lots were the norm for me. ‘Cause when it comes to travel, I usually prioritize experiences more than accommodation in order to stretch my money to go to distant places.

But over the past year and a half, I’ve finally been able to break away from that strategy for the first time and got a taste of what it’s like to travel lavishly in hotels luxury.

My introduction to luxury has begun on a train trip to Miami in October 2021. I paid $864 to spend a night at the iconic Villa Casa Casuarina, a luxury boutique hotel with just 12 rooms known as The Versace Mansion as it was once the home of the late fashion designer, Gianni Versace. The hotel hosts celebrities like the Kardashians, according to at People magazine. This was my first experience at a luxury hotel, and once I experienced this level of service, it left me craving more upscale stays.

So in August 2022, when I took a train trip in CanadaI decided to spend $500 for one night at the Vogue Hotel in downtown Montreal, Canada, part of Hilton’s Curio Collection, a selection of high-end hotels from the brand, according to the hotel website.

A few days later I spent $600 on a one night stay at the historic castle Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac in Quebec, Canadawhere the likes of Winston Churchill, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Alfred Hitchcock and Queen Elizabeth II have stayed, according to AFAR magazine. It also claims to be the most photographed in the world, reports the same source.

And recently, on another train journey through four European countries in October 2022, I paid $1,100 to spend a night at the Bulgari Hotel and Spa, which is Italian jeweler Bulgari’s boutique hotel in Milan. With famous guests like Sting, Travel and leisure called it one of the hottest hotels in Italy.

These stays in luxury hotels have been accompanied by many unexpected surprises that have convinced me that the extra comfort and better rest they offer improve my travel experiences – and that it will be quite difficult to go back to sleeping in a tent. .

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