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January 29, 2013 | By Mary Forgione, Los Angeles Times Daily Travel & Deal blogger
When it comes to top luxury hotels in the U.S., the West seems to be a favorite with the TripAdvisor crowd. More than half of the top 25 U.S. luxury hotels in the Travelers' Choice 2013 picks are located in Hawaii, California, Arizona and other western states. Four Seasons Resort Hualalai at Historic Kaupulehu in Kailua-Kona on the Big Island was the big winner as No. 1 as the best luxury hotel and the top hotel in the U.S. and the world.  In the luxury hotel category, it's followed by the private residence-turned-hotel Wentworth Mansion in Charleston, S.C., at No. 2. Bardessono in Yountville, Calif., where eight wine-tasting rooms in the Napa Valley are within walking distance of the hotel, came in No. 3. Other luxury hotels in the West include: - Four Seasons Seattle at No. 4; - The Grand Del Mar in San Diego at No. 5; - Four Seasons Resort Lanai, the Lodge at Koele in Lanai City, Lanai, Hawaii, at No. 7; - Post Ranch Inn in Big Sur at No. 8; - Allison Inn & Spa in Newberg, Ore., at No. 9; Among hotels in the United States, the Hotel California in Palm Springs was named best hotel for service, the Inn of the Five Graces in Santa Fe, N.M., as the top small hotel; the Point Clear Cottages in Fairhope, Ala., as the best B&B; and SeaCoast Inn in Hyannis, Mass., as best bargain hotel.
February 24, 2014 | By Christopher Reynolds
The other day, when TripAdvisor listed the ten top islands in its new Travelers' Choice poll, I decided I needed to get out more. I'd been to only three. Then I noticed what was missing. So to Hellas (that's Greece) with their list. Since these things are just arbitrary conversation-starters anyway, I'm pretending to be incensed and making my own. No crowd-sourced wisdom, just my memory. I should admit it's been 20 years since I've laid eyes on some of these places, but I have seen them all. One of the reasons we love islands, I think, is that the way they hold onto their own cultures, even as the surrounding world changes by the day. Also, these are not all swimsuit destinations.
January 9, 2012 | By Josh Noel, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Nowhere is the Internet's democratic nature clearer than in the user-generated reviews on such websites as Yelp and TripAdvisor. All it takes to weigh in on a restaurant, hotel, spa, bar, bowling alley - anything, really - is a user name and password. Although they're a boon for consumers sharing unfiltered ideas and opinions, there are obvious hazards: What can be trusted? How do you know a hotel owner hasn't put family members or friends up to clogging sites with positive reviews of his property and negative reviews of his competition?
December 11, 2012 | By Joe Flint
Media mogul John Malone's Liberty Interactive Corp. has acquired a controlling stake in TripAdvisor, the popular travel website, from Barry Diller and the Diller-von Furstenberg Family Foundation. Liberty Interactive is spending $300 million for 4.8 million shares of TripAdvisor at $62.50 per share. Liberty will now hold nearly 60% of voting stock and more than 20% of the company's total equity. The purchase price represents a premium of more than 60%. After news of the change of control was announced Tuesday, TripAdvisor stock was up more than 20% from its Monday close of $38.39.
January 13, 2012
I just read Mark Vanhoenacker's article “A Rest for Restless Spirits” [Jan. 8] about the Mojave National Preserve and must object to the characterization that allowing hunting is “inferior.” Hunting is not at all an inferior use of public land and has a long tradition in the U.S. and California. Long before MNP came into existence, hunters were, and still are, one of the larger user groups of the MNP. The L.A. Times has a long antihunting bias, somewhat surprising considering the history of its publishers.
July 4, 2012 | By Jessica Guynn and Andrea Chang, Los Angeles Times
SAN FRANCISCO - Judging from recent reviews on Yelp, the Center for Counseling, Recovery & Growth was the place to go to turn your life around. The Torrance center racked up 14 coveted five-star ratings on the popular review site for its "warm and friendly therapists" and "beautiful offices. " Many of the testimonials made similar points, sometimes in nearly identical language. That was no coincidence. Acting on a tip, Yelp uncovered what it dubbed a "review-swapping ring" composed of members of a South Bay business networking group.
August 5, 2012 | By Hugo Martin
What are the marketing gimmicks most widely used by hotel operators to lure guests? Room discounts, followed by free Wi-Fi and other amenities. A survey of more than 25,000 hotel owners and managers in North America by the travel website TripAdvisor found that discounted rooms were offered by 58% of the U.S. hotels surveyed. It was 63% in Mexico and 53% in Canada. “Regionally, it seems that the industry tends to use some of the same methods of attracting travelers,” said Kevin Carter, a spokesman for TripAdvisor.
May 11, 2008 | catharine hamm, ON THE SPOT
Question: I stayed at a place in Palm Springs that I didn't like and posted my review on TripAdvisor. I received a letter from an attorney threatening to sue me for libel if I did not remove my negative review within 14 days. I have contacted others who have written reviews for this establishment and they also received the attorney's letter. When I contacted TripAdvisor, I received an e-mail that said the site took the threats seriously, but they didn't even ask for a copy of the attorney's letter.
March 14, 2010 | By Judy Mandell
Bad things can happen at your hotel. Your reservation may be lost. The front desk agent may be rude. The room may be dirty. A naked man may be sitting on the bed. The room may be too hot or too cold, and the thermostat may not work. The TV in the next room may be blasting. The soap or shampoo may be missing. The toilet may flush continually. The tub may not drain. Room service breakfast may arrive an hour late and cold. The line to check out may be long, and the room charges may be wrong.
June 30, 2013 | By Jen Leo
Glamour plus camping equals "glamping. " Thanks to this website, you'll never have to pitch a tent. Name: What it does: Sources glamorous camping options the world over - from floating lodges in Cambodia to luxe treehouses in Italy. What's hot: The site defines different glamping opportunities. I liked that it organized them both by destination and by categories, such as tents, villas and huts; cubes and eco-pods; yurts and tepees; and more. I found tented suites in Kenya, a Four Seasons tented camp in Thailand, solar-powered tents in Australia; and luxury yurts in Britain.
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