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Luxury Travel Making Slow Rebound

Signs are pointing to a slow rebound in luxury travel, even for businesses.

Sheraton Macao
Source: Starwood Hotels
Sheraton Macao

Travel agencies are experiencing an uptick in high-end bookings for first-class airline tickets and premium hotel accommodations, USA Today reported Tuesday.

Wall Street and other elite business travelers served by high-end travel service Ovation Travel are buying 3 percent more first-class airline tickets this year than a year ago, USA Today reported.

Ovation Travel also said its bookings jumped 15 percent this year over last year, and clients are back to booking four- and five-star hotels for their corporate retreats and other gatherings, the article said.

The uptick in luxury travel comes as the sector tries to recover from a recession. (Read more: What Is a Recession?) Hotel and leisure companies, meanwhile, are rolling out new luxury properties in Asia.

Growth in Asia

Starwood Hotels and Resorts opens two new hotels this week aimed at the luxury segment.

The Luxury Collection, part of Starwood, opened The Royal Begonia on Tuesday located on China's southern tropical island of Hainan. It boasts 142 guest rooms, 18 private villas and an ultra-luxe Spa overlooking the South China Sea.

The Luxury Collection brand is on an aggressive growth campaign with the debut of 10 hotels and resorts in the Asia-Pacific this year alone, including Shanghai, Jaipur and Chennai in India, the Blue Mountains, Australia as well as Koh Samui, Thailand and Jakarta, Indonesia.

"The debut of The Royal Begonia on China’s Hainan Island marks a true milestone for The Luxury Collection as we continue our journey to open a record number of hotels and resorts in Asia Pacific by the end of this year," says Paul James, global brand leader St. Regis and The Luxury Collection Hotels and Resorts, in a release.

New Macau property

And on Thursday, the world's largest Sheraton opens in Macau. The 4,000-room property is located on the Cotai Strip, also known as the "Las Vegas of Asia."

The flagship hotel features three outdoor pools with poolside cafes, three restaurants, the largest Sheraton Club (executive lounge) in the world, and a Spa and holistic fitness center.

The resort also features a children's program including kids-only menus, dedicated family suites, video games and other leisure amenities.

Travel

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  • People walk past a board that announces cancelled flights at LaGuardia airport on the day before Thanksgiving, in New York, Nov. 26, 2014.

    An insurance company is offering payouts if there are delays or cancellations and if luggage is lost.

  • What's goes into the busiest day of travel in the U.S., with Gordon Bethune, former Continental Air CEO, who says a decline of last minute seats is driving current customer behavior.

U.S. News