2013 Conde Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Award Winners

October 15th, 2013

The Lodge at Kauri Cliffs

The results of Condé Nast Traveler 2013 Readers’ Choice Awards are in. This year, the 26th annual Readers’ Choice Awards boasted its highest-ever participation with 79,268 readers casting 1.3 million votes. The result is a compilation of the best cities, islands, cruise lines, airlines, hotels and resorts in the world.

The #1 spot for Top Hotel & Resort in the World was a tie between The Lodge at Kauri Cliffs in Matauri Bay, New Zealand and La Residence in Franschhoek, South Africa.

Congratulations to all the winners of the 2013 Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards including:

Top 100 Hotels & Resorts in the World: #1 The Lodge at Kauri Cliffs, #7 One&Only The Palm Dubai, #22 (tied) Phinda Private Game Reserve, One&Only Palmilla, #63 Nayara Hotel Spa & Gardens, #75 Park Hyatt Dubai

Top Midsize-Ship Cruise Lines: #1 Crystal Cruises

Top Hotels in the Middle East: #1 Park Hyatt Dubai

Top Resorts in the Middle East: #1 One&Only The Palm Dubai, #2 Anantara Qasr Al Sarab, #5 One&Only Royal Mirage

Top Resorts in Central & South America: #1 Arenal Nayara Hotel & Gardens

Top Resorts in Baja, Mexico: #1 One&Only Palmilla

Top Hotels in Australia & the Pacific: #1 Park Hyatt Sydney

Top Hotels in the Atlantic: #2 One&Only Ocean Club, #4 Parrot Cay

Top Hotels in New England: #3 The Wauwinet, #7 White Elephant Hotel

Top Resorts & Safari Camps: #4 Phinda Private Game Reserve, #25 Lake Manyara Tree Lodge

Top Hotels in Chicago: #4 Park Hyatt Chicago

Top Hotels in Northern Europe: #5 Park Hyatt Hamburg

Top Hotels in South America: #4 Park Hyatt Palacio Duhau

Top Hotels in Washington, D.C: #5 Park Hyatt Washington, D.C.

Top Resorts in the Caribbean: #5 The Caves, #6 Hôtel Saint-Barth Isle de France, #10 Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort

Top Hotels in France & Monaco: #6 Park Hyatt Paris-Vedome, #18 Pavillon de la Reine

Top Hotels in Africa: #7 One&Only Cape Town

Top Hotels in Japan and South Korea: #7 Park Hyatt Seoul, #8 Park Hyatt Tokyo

Top Islands in the Caribbean: #7 St. Barths

Top Hotels in the Southwest: #8 Inn on the Alameda

Top Resorts in Europe: #10 Chewton Glen

Top Cities in the United States: #10 Napa

Top Hotels in Southeast Asia: #13 Park Hyatt Saigon

Top Resorts in Asia: #16 Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp

Top Hotels in Central Europe: #17 Park Hyatt Zurich

Top Hotels in China: #29 Park Hyatt Shanghai, #37 Park Hyatt Beijing


For the complete list of 2013 Readers’ Choice winners, click here: http://www.cntraveler.com/readers-choice-awards

the wauwinet honored by travel + leisure in 2012 world’s best service awards

May 29th, 2012

The Wauwinet, the only Relais & Châteaux property on Nantucket has been named one of the top five resorts and inns in the U.S. and Canada for World’s Best Service by the readers of Travel + Leisure. With an overall score of 97.33, The Wauwinet was the only Inn on the east coast on the top five list. Rankings were based on reader evaluations collected in Travel + Leisure’s World’s Best Awards survey.

No stranger to accolades, The Wauwinet has been recognized in Travel + Leisure’s Top 500 hotels and in Conde Nast Traveler’s US Top 50 Small Hotels. In-house restaurant TOPPER’S has been honored with the Wine Spectator Grand Award, the publication’s highest honor, for 15 years running and is rated the best overall restaurant on Nantucket by Zagat.

The Wauwinet is open for the season with Hot Dates, Cool Rates starting at $195 per night.

For more information visit www.wauwinet.com or call 800.248.2405 or 508.228.2400.

island outpost properties earn tripadvisor certificate of excellence award

May 25th, 2012

All four Island Outpost properties in Jamaica – GoldenEye Hotel & Resort, The Caves, Geejam and Strawberry Hill Hotel, Spa & Gardens have received the 2012 TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence Award.

The highly applauded award honors hospitality excellence and is given only to establishments that maintain an overall rating of four stars or higher (out of a possible five) as reviewed by travelers on TripAdvisor. Approximately 10 percent of establishments listed on TripAdvisor receive this prestigious award.

The accolade comes as no surprise as Island Outpost hotels have long been recognized by travelers worldwide as remarkable properties with exclusive accommodations, unsurpassed service and top-notch amenities.

Each Island Outpost property has its own singular sense of style – GoldenEye offers laid-back luxury on the north coast, The Caves in Negril feels like a secluded castle set above a vibrant town center, while Geejam in Port Antonio is a secret hideaway infused with a cosmopolitan vibe and the newly-renovated Strawberry Hill offers a cool refreshing escape 3,100 feet above sea level in the Blue Mountains.

For more information and summer offers visit, www.islandoutpost.com or call 1(800)-OUTPOST.

toes in the water, toes in the sand

January 20th, 2012

While there is something magical about that first snow of the season, let’s face it, the rest of winter is spent dreaming about sand between your toes and a warm sea breeze. And now, thanks to the National Geographic Top 10 Beaches, we’re dreaming in overdrive. While any beach sounds amazing, we’ve got a couple that we can’t stop thinking about. In fact, we’ve already dreamed up our spring, summer, and next winters’ vacations there.

First on our list, and number two on NatGeo’s list, is the Maldives. With over 1,102 islands, forming 26 atolls, there is plenty of beach to go around. We’re dreaming of a nice long stay in an over-water bungalow at Cocoa Island. Not only does the crystal clear water make for some of the world’s greatest scuba diving and snorkeling, there’s also surfing, fishing, and other incredible water sports to keep you busy. Then again, we’d be happy just to sunbathe on the pristine beach all day.

After spring break in the Maldives, we’re heading to number six, Nantucket, for our summer vacation. This magical little island 27 miles off the coast of Massachusetts is the ultimate place to visit, whether for a weekend or the entire summer. While the island itself is less than 50 square miles, there are over 80 miles of beaches, but our desired beach is located at our favorite inn by the sea, The Wauwinet. There are actually two beaches to choose from – one at the head of the Nantucket Harbor, for shallow water and no waves, and the other on the Atlantic Ocean, with deep, soft sand and gentle waves. Don’t forget to collect some shells, you’ll find some beautiful ones to take home with you.

Next December, we want our early Christmas present to ourselves to be a luxurious cruise aboard Crystal Symphony. The “South Pacific Sojourn” will stop at several incredible ports, but the one we’re most excited about is Bora Bora, number three on NatGeo’s list. Dubbed the “Romantic Island”, this lush little slip of land is protected by a lagoon and has 18 miles of white sandy shore. The beautiful lagoon provides a wide array of activities, from windsurfing to scuba diving, and the two towering peaks of sheer black rock make an impressive backdrop to the dazzling blue waters. While some consider it the most beautiful island in the world, we can’t wait to find out for ourselves!

tripadvisor travelers’ choice awards name island outpost’s the caves and geejam

January 24th, 2011

TripAdvisor, the bible for curious travelers searching for the best vacation, has announced its 2011 Traveler’s Choice Awards winners. Two Island Outpost properties were lauded in these user-generated honors, The Caves and Geejam.

The Caves dominated the list and was ranked #1 for Service in the Caribbean and Mexico. And was also featured as

  • One of the Top Ten All-Inclusives in the World
  • One of The Most Luxurious Properties in the World
  • One of the Top 25 Hotels in the World

Musically-inclined sister hotel, Geejam, was ranked #8 in Top 10 Hotels for Service in the Caribbean and Mexico.

Island Outpost resorts love their guests, and its plain to see that Island Outpost’s discerning world-traveler guests love them right back!

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About Island Outpost

Island Outpost is Chris Blackwell’s collection of award-winning hotels and villas in Jamaica. These include Ian Fleming’s retreat, GoldenEye; Strawberry Hill; The Caves; Jakes and Geejam resorts. Each Island Outpost property has its own singular sense of style – with stunning natural settings and locally-inspired architecture and design – and provides distinct, personalized and authentic local experiences. Guests are treated to only the highest levels of service and a host of beauty and fitness amenities and experiential activities. With sustainable and responsible practices at their core, Island Outpost properties operate in support and harmony with the surrounding environment and the communities in which they are located.

For more information about Island Outpost, visit www.IslandOutpost.com or call 1(800) – OUTPOST.

nantucket cottages = perfect location

January 14th, 2011


The Cottages & Lofts at the Boat Basin has been recognized on the 2011 Condé Nast Traveler “Gold List,” receiving a perfect score with a rating of “100 out of 100” in the location category.  Overall, The Cottages received a score of 90.8 on the 2011 Gold List, which is determined by the magazine’s Readers’ Choice survey and published annually in the January issue.  In addition, The Cottages & Lofts was named #7 in the U.S. in Condé Nast Traveler’s 2010 Reader’s Choice poll for Best Small Hotels.

The Cottages & Lofts at the Boat Basin is the only resort in the U.S. to score a 100 for location on this year’s “Gold List.”  No doubt it has to do with The Cottages’ prime location on Nantucket Harbor,  located on three wharves jutting into the Atlantic Ocean that are part of the Nantucket Boat Basin, the #1 Transient Marina in the U.S..  Not only do most cottages have outdoor patios or decks from which one can take in stunning views of the Nantucket waterfront, but all  29 Cottages & Lofts, which include 12 pet-friendly WOOF Cottages, have full kitchens and are conveniently located just a two-minute walk from Nantucket’s charming Main Street.

With rates starting from $175, The Cottages & Lofts at the Boat Basin opens for the 2011 season on April 7.

The Cottages & Lofts at the Boat Basin is owned and operated by Nantucket Island Resorts, a collection of premier properties on Nantucket also including The Wauwinet, White Elephant, White Elephant Hotel Residences, Jared Coffin House, and Nantucket Boat Basin. The Wauwinet also appeared on the 2011 “Gold List”; this is the sixth consecutive year for the hotel, the only Relais & Chateaux property on Nantucket.

The 2011 Condé Nast Traveler’s “Gold List” hotels are voted on by the Readers’ Choice Awards.  Each score represents the percentage of respondents who rated a property “excellent” or “very good” based on specific criteria.  The winners were announced in the January 2011 issue of Condé Nast Traveler magazine.  For more information about the 2011 “Readers’ Choice Awards,” visit the awards webpage at http://www.concierge.com/tools/travelawards/goldlist/2011.

ask the india expert

December 10th, 2010

Shakti Family Trip

When planning a vacation, it’s sometimes hard to know if you’re really getting the best deal or seeing the most authentic ‘non-tourist’ spots. It’s even more difficult when traveling to a destination for the first time! If India is on your must-see list (for the first time, or a return trip), don’t board the plane without consulting with Lucy Davison of Banyan Tours & Travels.

Not only does  Lucy have clout with India’s top hotels—translating into superior availability during peak travel times—but she has personally selected the best rooms in the palace hotels and will reserve only those rooms for her clients. Her goal is to bring clients into cultural moments ordinarily off-limits to travelers—weddings, school speech days, obscure festivals with costumed cows—and loves to arrange surprises based around her clients’ personal interests: a private Sufi music performance for an aficionado, for instance.

girl power

December 9th, 2010

Park Hyatt Jeddah

Park Hyatt Jeddah is currently hosting the Women in Leadership Forum which focuses on five key pillars for successful entrepreneurship: state aid, finance, knowledge and education, commercialization, and support.  This is the first event of its kind in Saudi Arabia. In the future, the event plans to award female entrepreneurs a number of awards: Saudi Businesswoman of the Year, Leading Woman in the Public Sector, Leading Woman CEO, Leading Woman in a Family Business, Most Innovative Woman Entrepreneur, Most Women-Friendly Employer, and Most Philanthropic Initiative.

The hotel is the perfect setting to unwind after a busy conference schedule. Located on the coast of the Red Sea, the 34.5-acre complex houses the famous King Fahd fountain, which has a more than 1,000-foot-high spray!

kiss (the brains behind) the cook

December 2nd, 2010

Blue Duck Tavern

Achim Lenders, vice present of international food & beverage operations for Hyatt, was the recipient of Food Arts Silver Spoon award in November. The magazine recognized Mr. Lender’s efforts of reinvigorating hotel dining and success by removing barriers between the kitchen and diners.

Among his many accolades, Mr. Lenders is the mastermind behind the first ever on-sight hotel farmer’s market at Andaz Wall Street, Michelin-stared NoMI’s urban chic dining atmosphere at Park Hyatt Chicago, and unique farm-to table display at Park Hyatt Washington, D.C.’s Blue Duck Tavern. While the chefs deserve praise, we are glad to see Mr. Lender’s have a piece of the love too!

cheers to voyage privé

November 23rd, 2010

We know that Voyage Privé was the pioneer in luxury travel sale sites, but it’s great to see that Condé  Nast Traveler agrees!   In the latest issue, Traveler announced that Voyage Privé was the very first “invite-only Web site” to put “grand hotels within reach of an aspirational audience.”  That audience has grown to include over six million members in France, Italy, the UK, and the United States.   For the entire article see p. 58 in the December issue, which hits newsstands this week.

For an opportunity to join Voyage Privé and enter to win a $2500 travel credit, visit the  Dream Travel Sweepstakes page.