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Luxury destinations that don’t break the bank

Updated: 14:16 04-04-2017

Istanbul, Bangkok, and Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam have been identified as some of the international destinations where travellers can sleep like a king on a pauper's budget. 

After crunching the numbers from 2016, online booking site has come up with a list of the destinations where US travellers can find luxury for less. 

That is, stay in five-star hotels for $150 or less. 

A scan of the top 10 cities shows that Asia, Latin America and Europe offer the most affordable luxury accommodations, with a five-star experience available in Istanbul for just $124 a night. 

By contrast, Reykjavik topped the list of most expensive five-star hotels, with nightly rates averaging $572 a night. For that price, US travelers can book four nights at a five-star hotel in Bangkok or Istanbul. 

Travelers  willing to lower their standard of luxury to the four-star level, meanwhile, open up their options to 30 cities, including Las Vegas, Beijing, Berlin, Madrid, Phuket, Prague, Buenos Aires, Mexico City, Dubai and Melbourne. 

It's worth noting, however, that the star system can be a rather arbitrary one, as each country sets its own standard.  

That means that travellers should be wary of holding all hotels to the standards they may be used to back home. 

To avoid disappointment and surprise, experts at recommend reading guest reviews to get a better idea of what you'll be paying for. 

Likewise, if value is more important than location, consider looking for a five-star hotel further afield from major city centers. 

Experts at also point out that hotels with guest ratings that are higher than their star ratings are likely to be trusted as a super value stay. 

Here are the cities where travellers paid the lowest average room rate for a five-star hotel in 2016: 

Istanbul, Turkey, R1 615 
Bangkok, Thailand, R1 850
Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, R1 950
Bogota, Colombia, R2 125
Berlin, Germany, R2 200
Panama City, Panama, R2 280
Beijing, China, R2 345
Prague, Czech Republic, R2 400
Melbourne, Australia, R 2 400
Frankfurt, Germany, R2 490

Source: AFP Relaxnews Published: 05:31 30-03-2017

Posted by on March 30, 2017.

Categories: Accommodation, Travel

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Updated: 23:41 27-May-2018