friday freebies for facebook fans

February 26th, 2010

Calling all Facebookers! COMO Hotels & Resorts is offering an exclusive deal only available to its loyal Facebook fans. Reserve a room at Uma Ubud in Bali and receive a special rate of $160 per night, per room (exclusive of tax).

Uma Ubud

Now it’s easy (and affordable!) for you to take that last-minute breather from winter. Offering is available from March 1-31. Not a COMO fan yet? You still have time, click here. For more information, e-mail the Uma Reservations Team at


…and that’s not all! 

 White Elephant

The picturesque White Elephant hotel on Nantucket is now on Facebook. Become a fan, and you can enter to win access to Nantucket’s “it” event for gourmands and wine connoisseurs alike – The 2010 Nantucket Wine Festival.

One lucky couple will have the chance to win:

  • 4 day/3 night stay in a luxurious White Elephant Suite or a one-bedroom White Elephant Hotel Residence
  • Two tickets to the following events:
    • Thursday: Harbor Gala on the White Elephant Lawn, featuring over 30 wineries and restaurants
    • Friday: The Ultimate Seafood Seminar
    • Friday: Six-course Wine Dinner at TOPPER’S at The Wauwinet featuring Pride Vineyards of Nappa Valley
    • Saturday: Grand Tasting featuring wines from over 150 world-class wineries
  • Sunday Brunch for two at Brant Point Grill at the White Elephant featuring the infamous “Make Your Own” Bloody Mary Bar


Hurry, become a Fan by April 18 to enter to win!

bunny hop to bali

February 25th, 2010


Who can resist a dark chocolate bunny or a colorful row of marshmallow peeps? Escape from the Jelly Belly and those sugary Easter basket temptations by stealing away to COMO Shambhala Estate in Bali for a wholesome, healthful, three-night retreat. Guests will enjoy complimentary nutritious breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and Easter Brunch (excluding some beverages).

Then achieve total health with a holistic Wellness Consultation and 60-minute massage (your choice of treatment!). Feeling rejuvenated, set out for Ubud to explore Bali’s rich Hindu culture and dramatic landscape.

Rates start from $1,440 for a Garden Room (subject to 21% government tax and service charge), valid from March 26-April 7 and must include a stay over April 2. Package is also available in a 5-to-7-night program.

Package includes:
- Three nights of accommodation
- Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
- Easter Brunch
- Wellness Consultation
- 60-minute massage
- Return airport transfers
- One-time drop off and pick up service to sister property in Ubud
- Personal assistant services
- Participation in daily schedule of Estate’s Easter activities
- Use of steam room, sauna, and 25-meter lap pool

sea-sonal savings – mediterranean delight

February 23rd, 2010

Crystal Serenity Penthouse

Despite all the talk nowadays, doesn’t it seem like you can only find good ‘deals’ on the most average of rooms? Well, Crystal Cruises is standing out from the crowd of so-so savings and giving its guests honest-to-goodness bang for the buck.  This May, guests onboard Crystal Serenity can save $3,000 on a 7-day sailing  (Rome to Athens, May 11-18; Athens to Venice, May 18-25) ) or $6,000 on a 14-day sailing (Rome to Venice, May 11-25) when booking a Penthouse fare.  Fares are per person, for double occupancy and must be booked by March 31st.

Ready for the math? Crystal’s 2-for-1 promotion this year brings the Penthouse fare from $20, 510 to $10,255, and on these particular voyages, the fare is knocked down an additional $1,500 per person reducing it to $8, 775 per person. To sweeten the deal even further, Crystal includes free Business class flights and $1,000 per couple worth of shipboard credits. It’s also possible to do these sailings back to back for a 14-day voyage, save $6,000 and get $2,000 in shipboard credits.

Here’s what a Penthouse fare always includes, on its own:

  • 24-hour personal butler service
  • Unpacking and repacking upon request
  • Private verandah
  • Jacuzzi tub and separate shower
  • Complimentary wine and beer, choice of liquor upon embarkation, afternoon canapés and welcome champagne
  • Complimentary pressing and shoe shine
  • Order “in” from our specialty restaurants

Are you sold? We are. Now put in for those vacation days.

Click here for more details.

nutritious nantucket

February 22nd, 2010

Nantucket was just named the healthiest county in Massachusetts according to a new report released this week by the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. With all that the island has to offer, this is certainly no surprise to us!



Nantucket’s small size, flat terrain, and scenic beauty provide an ideal environment for bicycling. There are over 30 miles of bicycle paths on the island. Island bike paths are separated from the adjacent roadways, provide convenient access to many areas of the island, and are an enjoyable way to explore the entire island and closely view its natural beauty.


Nantucket sunrise

Yoga on the Beach is held each morning (except Sundays) at 7 a.m. on Children’s Beach. Islanders and guests can achieve their personal Zen while watching the sun rise over the beautiful waters of Nantucket. 

Fresh, Local Cuisine

Raw Oyster at Toppers  

You will not find a fast-food chain on Nantucket. However, what you will find are remarkable restaurants offering fresh and local ingredients.

Bartlett’s Farm  has a plethora of good eats and its newly-expanded farm market is an easy swing-by to or from a number of the ocean beaches.  While there, choose from ready-made salads and ogle the vast amounts of fresh produce, herbs, and beautiful plants grown on the surrounding acres.  Saturday food tastings and garden classes are available for those who want to dig deeper

The Wauwinet has answered your prayers (and your rumbling stomachs) with TOPPER’S restaurant now serving their infamous breakfast to all of Nantucket! Their new European-inspired Continental breakfast menu includes Wauwinet granola and yogurt, freshly squeezed juices, and more!

Brant Point Grill at the White Elephant’s raw bar offers a creative twist to the old world oyster bar with oysters, fresh catches of the day, and various combinations of delectable lobster dishes.


Stress-free Relaxation 

White Elephant Spa

Simply basking in the natural beauty of the island can be incredibly restorative.  Walking the miles of beach can be an amazing energy rejuvenator (not to mention great for the legs!) as crashing waves boost the mood and relax the mind. For those seeking a more concentrated dose of serenity the White Elephant Spa serves as the perfect location to release tension and return to equilibrium.

alice (marshall) in wonderland

February 22nd, 2010

© NTPL/Cristian Barnett and Andrew Butler; © Walt Disney Pictures

© NTPL/Cristian Barnett and Andrew Butler; © Walt Disney Pictures

You’re late, you’re late, for a very important date! Don’t miss out on an eight-month celebration of Tim Burton’s new Alice in Wonderland movie at The National Trust’s Antony House in Cornwall near Plymouth. The classic, 18th-century mansion was THE ONLY ‘real’ site for the filming of the motion picture.

To commemorate the movie (which debuts on March 5) the National Trust is transforming Antony into the fantasy land envisioned by Lewis Carroll.

In collaboration with the Dodgy Clutch Theater Company, the National Trust has created a family-friendly extravaganza showcasing key elements of the stories of Alice. Visitors will enjoy imaginative installations set amidst the lush Antony gardens, Alice-inspired events, and extended hours.

Take a trip down the rabbit hole for the stunning gardens and vistas that inspired Tim Burton to choose Antony for the film. As always, members of The Royal Oak Foundation – the U.S. affiliate of the National Trust – get in FREE to the grounds and house (although some events may cost a small fee). Read through a selection of wonderland highlights below:

Alice and Alistair Day
March 6
Any child named Alice or the male equivalent of Alastair (American boys might be at a slight disadvantage), or anyone decked out as a character from Alice in Wonderland, will be admitted free. Can’t make it to Antony? Check out the 13 other participating sites across Devon and Cornwall.

Mad Hatter’s Tea Parties
March 6-7, every weekend, and Bank Holidays
Families will enjoy workshops, games, and dressing. Take time for tea and snacks in the tea-party marquee on Antony’s vast Cork Oak Lawn. Cost is an additional £5 per person.

Antony House Opening
When: March 16
Begin at the beginning and go on ‘till you come to the end: then stop. Heed the King’s expert advice and explore Antony House for a sneak peek of the rooms appearing in scenes of the film, including Alice’s bedroom.

The White Rabbit Easter Trail
April 2-9
What: Follow the trail of the elusive White Rabbit throughout Antony’s magnificent landscaped gardens. (Attention chocoholics the trail is hosted by Cadbury so it has to be good!) Cost is an additional £1.50 per child.

Explore Your Own Wonderland
May 29-June 3
I’ve often seen a cat without a grin; but a grin without a cat! It’s the most curious thing I ever saw in my life! Make friends with the Cheshire Cat and the rest of the Alice in Wonderland gang with a week of Alice themed children’s activities. Seek out the giant chessboard and become a queen, king, or knight in your own life-size game of chess.

Weird and Wonderful Tea Parties
June 27
Look for special tea parties being held all across Devon and Cornwall at the following participating National Trust properties: A la Ronde, Castle Drogo, Killerton, Lydford Gorge, Park Estate, and many more.

Croquet Workshops
July 21, 28; August 5, 19, 25
What: Learn how to play croquet on the lawn at Antony (but without a flamingo as your mallet!) Let off some steam in a Caucus Race – no rules or instructions just run at random per Lewis Carroll’s direction.

The Royal Oak Foundation is the United States affiliate of the National Trust of England, Wales and Northern Ireland.  Royal Oak members gain free entry to over 300 important historic houses and gardens. The Foundation supports National Trust conservation projects and offers a series of lectures and other public programs in U.S. cities on topics including British history, architecture, gardens, the fine and decorative arts – as well as other programs in the UK.

elephant tales from the polo pitch

February 17th, 2010

Audemars vs Moet I

Thailand is trumpeting the news of Anantara Golden Triangle Resort & Spa’s annual King’s Cup Elephant Polo Tournament , coming up March 22-28.  Be sure to stake out your spot on the polo pitch as these two-ton players go head-to-head (and trunk-to-trunk!) to win the coveted King’s Cup Trophy.

In just eight years, the tournament has grown from a small two-day affair to a week-long extravaganza featuring international competitors, making it Thailand’s sixth largest tourist event.  It has raised over $250,000 for the National Elephant Institute, which provides medical care, sustenance, employment, and mahout training for Thailand’s elephant population.  Proceeds from the 2009 event helped fund the world’s first ever elephant therapy program, Thai Elephant Therapy Project (TETP), a partnership with Chiang Mai University and the Thai Elephant Conservation Centre (TECC) that investigates the benefits of using elephants as an alternative treatment for children with autism.  This year’s event proceeds will go towards the continued funding of this groundbreaking research.

Reserve your seat and contribute to the cause by booking a Special Spectator Package. The offer includes one night of accommodation at Anantara Golden Triangle in a Deluxe Room or Anantara Suite, daily breakfast buffet, lunch buffet at the Polo Pitch, and transfers to and from the pitch. Package rates for a Deluxe Room start at $335 single occupancy, and $493 double occupancy, per night, inclusive of tax and service charge.  Guests staying four nights or more will also receive a complimentary round-trip transfer from Chiang Rai to the resort.  

maldives gone wild

February 17th, 2010


The 2010 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition has drawn in one of the publication’s highest number of site visitors ever. And we’re not surprised: Anantara Dhigu Resort & Spa is looking pretty sexy on the cover! With snapshots of ultrafine sand, crystalline waters, and luxe overwater suites at both the Dhigu and Naladhu properties – well frankly, the photos leave us a little breathless.

(Ok, so maybe bikini-clad models Brooklyn Decker, Bar Rafaeli, Dominique Piek, and Christine Teigen posing on these enchanting Maldives beaches had something to do with the issue’s popularity, too).

delightfully daffy on nantucket

February 12th, 2010

Photographs courtesy of Nantucket Chamber of Commerce/Michael Galvinphotographs courtesy of Nantucket Chamber of Commerce/Michael Galvin

From early April to mid-May, over three million daffodils of every color, shape and size will bloom on Nantucket. This blossoming, and the arrival of spring itself, is the focal point of celebration during Daffodil Festival Weekend. This year the festival will take place over the weekend of April 23-25. The Festival’s grand event is the Antique Car Parade, which features more than 100 antique cars (decorated with daffodils, of course!) After winding through town and across the island to the charming village of Siasconset, participants join residents and visitors for the Daffodil Tailgate Picnic. This“Nantucket-Style” tailgate picnic showcases traditional New England fare ranging from gourmet meals served on fine china to boxed lunches and burgers.

Other Daffodil Festival Weekend highlights include the Nantucket Garden Club’s Daffodil Show, The Annual Daffy Dog Parade, Children’s Daffodil Parade, and The Daffy Hat Pageant. Not only does springtime on Nantucket bring delightful weather ideal for outdoor activities such as biking, hiking, and fishing, but it also brings delightful deals such as Hot Dates, Cool Rates at the Jared Coffin House with rates starting as low as $125 per night. Book by April 1st and guests will also get the added bonus of spa and dining credits!

For more information about Jared Coffin House and their Hot Dates, Cool Rates Guaranteed promotion, please visit

park hyatt puts spring in your step

February 12th, 2010

Cherry Blossom Festival

Despite the onslaught of ‘Snowmaggedon’ this week, D.C. will surely thaw out in time for the National Cherry Blossom Festival at the end of March!  The breathtaking scene around the Tidal Basin is rumored to coax a smile from even the most steel-hearted of lobbyists.

Spring in D.C. (before the swampy summer sets in) is perfect for the obligatory sightseeing tour of our nation’s capital. With Park Hyatt Washington as your home base, it’s easy to explore everything, from the monuments and museums, to galleries and boutique shops. Book the hotel’s annual Spring Blossom Package available from March 5-April 25.

Take advantage of an upgrade to a Park Deluxe room, a pot of Cherry Blossom Green Tea from the hotel’s Tea Cellar, choice of valet parking or continental breakfast for two, and a backpack for the kids filled with lots of sightseeing goodies!  

Package rates start at $349 plus tax. Maximum occupancy for guestrooms is three people. Guests can reserve the package and a second room for children 16 years and under for an additional $75 a night.

santa fe by day, inn on the alameda by night

February 11th, 2010


Santa Fe’s authentic small hotel, Inn on the Alameda, could not agree more with Henry Shukman’s thoughts on New Mexico’s capital city!  Nestled between historic Santa Fe Plaza and Canyon Road art galleries, the inn provides an ideal and enchanting central location for strolling the streets of Santa Fe. 

Run, don’t walk, to explore this fascinating, all-season destination and discover that ‘something’ that only a personal experience can unveil. Click here to read Mr. Shukman’s full article from The New York Times