News from the Vines: Winter 2020

November 30th, 2020

What’s Happening in Napa Valley


While it’s no secret that Napa Valley has faced some challenges this year, the region is open to visitors and the spirit is stronger than ever. The Glass Fire that broke out in September is now 100 percent contained and most of Napa County’s 45,000 acres of vine were not impacted. For those wondering how to help, the best way to support the community and its members is to visit. And the timing couldn’t be better. As harvest closes out this month, travelers will be welcomed with the start of Cabernet Season – the best time to visit for those in the know. From November through April, summer heat is replaced with perfectly mild temperatures – think warm days, cool nights, and blue skies. The pace slows down and foliage is at eye level as the vines become dormant along Silverado Trail. (Leaf peeping is not just on the east coast!) Brilliant yellow wild mustard flowers are scattered through the vineyards and along country lanes. During this time of year, visitors can more easily nab reservations at Michelin-starred restaurants. Greater access to wineries is another bonus with more opportunities to meet winemakers and receive impromptu glimpses behind the scenes.

What’s New in Wine (and Spirit) Tastings
These tastings are shaking up the scene in Napa Valley, with freshly designed spaces and new experiences with an emphasis on privacy. Napa Valley Distillery, the first distillery to open its doors in the city of Napa since prohibition, opened a new speakeasy tasting salon dubbed the ”Hollywood Room” with cocktails crafted from spirits made just a few feet away. The art deco-designed space is punctuated with tiki bar-like decor.  Animal lovers will gravitate towards Oasis by Hoopes, where wines are accompanied by an animal sanctuary and regenerative farm. The outdoor space, which opened in October 2020, is dotted with airstreams, lounge areas made with recycled materials, a farm stand (with produce for purchase), as well as rescued chickens, pigs, and goats. Faust’s new tasting room, housed in a Victorian home originally built in 1878, opened in September 2020 following a four-year renovation. Known for their Cabernet Sauvignon sourced from organically farmed estates, the new space still features the original cellar from pre-prohibition era. And for travelers prioritizing privacy, Charles Krug, the oldest wine estate in Napa, opened five new private WIFI-enabled outdoor tasting cabanas on the winery’s picnic grounds and Trefethen is now offering a nightly after-hours experience permitting only one booking per evening – meaning guests have the whole estate to themselves. Space to watch: Yountville’s Baldacci Family Vineyards will open a new hospitality center in March 2021, featuring new private tasting rooms, a wine bar, and an outdoor patio overlooking wine country vistas.

Neighborhoods to Watch
Calistoga
Calistoga, the northern most town in Napa Valley – famed as a wine-meets-spa destination thanks to its geothermal waters – is in the limelight thanks to a crop of new hotels and multi-million-dollar resort renovations. Four Seasons Resort & Residences will open this winter with 85-rooms and an on-site vineyard and tasting room – a rarity in Napa Valley.  As a nod to Calistoga’s wellness roots, the property will offer an eight-room spa with steam pods in which hammocks will be suspended above geo-thermal pools for guests to absorb the heated vapor.  Coming soon, Dr. Wilkinson’s Backyard Resort & Mineral Springs, originally built in 1952, will unveil a large-scale renovation. Considered one of the first resorts in Calistoga and known for its mud bath treatments, the property’s new look will include a Southwestern-inspired restaurant, House of Better. This December, Solage, part of the Auberge Resorts Collection, will unveil a $30 million-dollar renovation overseen by architect Howard Backen – considered the creator of “Napa Valley Style” – and Los Angeles-based interior design agency Studio Collective. In addition to 11 new accommodations, Solbar - their signature restaurant – will double the size of the patio for outdoor dining and the new PicoBar, with light bites and cocktails, will sit next to an enlarged pool deck with contemporary loungers and cabanas.

Downtown Napa
Spanning three buzzy blocks in the heart of Downtown Napa, First Street Napa is an ever-growing hub for shopping, dining, and tasting. Known for its locally owned boutiques and independent restaurants and wineries, the district has recently welcomed a surge of new shops like C’est La Paire for chic boots and handbags; The Bennington Napa Valley for vintage finds; and Copperfield’s Books, a mainstay store returning to First Street. The first standalone tasting room dedicated solely to luxury California brandies, California Brandy House, will open on First Street on November 6, 2020 for outdoor tastings. The new concept will debut with two leading brandy portfolios, Germain-Robin and Argonaut. Visitors will be guided through tasting flights, including single-barrel samples that are only available at the tasting space. For those looking for something on the fizzier side, the first and only dedicated Champagne & sparkling wine lounge in Napa Valley, Be Bubbly, has just opened its doors. Over in Napa’s Oxbow Public Market (a 40,000-square-foot marketplace with an expansive outdoor deck along the Napa River), Bar Lucia opened this summer from owner behind Kara’s Cupcakes. Highlights of the bar include rosé and sparkling wines paired with seasonal bites. Founder Kara Haspel Lind named the bar after her great grandmother and her daughter, honoring the traditions passed down through five generations of women in her family. For those visitors who are overwhelmed with options across the region, a brand-new Napa Valley Welcome Center will open on November 12 as a resource for itinerary-planning. New technology will provide visitors insider tips in a no-touch manner, and a 16-foot video wall will offer a taste of Napa Valley travel inspiration to pedestrians along First Street through floor-to-ceiling glass windows.

Looking Ahead to 2021
Black History Month – February 2021
In honor of Black History Month in February, travelers to Napa Valley can explore the roots of BIPOC pioneers in the winemaking business and support local initiatives throughout the region. Leaders in the industry include Brown Estate Vineyards, which was the first Black-owned estate winery in Napa and is now best known as one of Napa Valley’s most well-regarded zinfandel producers. Neighboring Okapi Wines is a micro-boutique winery that produces just a few barrels of wine each year. Founder Dan Johnson limits its production to 300 cases per year to maintain sustainable farming practices. Carneros Resort and Spa is offering a Diversity in Wine Flight featuring four wines by vintners and winemakers of color. The tasting flight is available at two of their onsite restaurants with 10% of proceeds being donated to UNCF. To support diversity in the wine industry, Napa Valley Vintners, a nonprofit association representing more than 500 wineries in the region, has partnered with UNCF to create a new scholarship program for people of color to pursue college degrees in subjects including grape growing and winemaking, with $1 million already invested into the program.

Women Winemakers are changing the way we drink wine (and beer!)
The month of March is all about celebrating women with International Women’s Day on March 8, 2021. As one of the top viticultural regions, Napa Valley is known for its sprawling vineyards, historic wineries and towns that dot the countryside. It is also home to many women who have made names for themselves throughout the area. To name a few, Elaine St. Clair is the only woman in the U.S. to hold the commercial title of both winemaker and brewer. Kathryn Walt Hall is the force behind HALL Wines and WALT Wines in St. Helena and has been in the Napa wine industry for almost five decades, having also worked as an attorney, community activist, and as the United States Ambassador to Austria. During her 40-year tenure in Napa Valley winemaking, Heidi Barrett, who known as “The First Lady of Wine” is behind California’s most notable cult wines, including Screaming Eagle, which has a starting price of $700 a bottle. Today she’s co-founder of her own label, Barrett & Barrett, where she continues to produce some of the top Cabernet Sauvignons.

 

 

top hotel accommodations around the world

September 22nd, 2020

From an experiential work of art in London to the nearly 20,000-square-foot hotel-within-a-hotel in Marrakech, these top suites, villas and standalone accommodations offer the best in amenities, design and privacy around the world.


TOP SUITES

A one-bedroom sculpture, a baby grand piano, the former residence of the last High King of Ireland – there is no stone left unturned in these top suites.

ROOM at The Beaumont

The Beaumont in London is home to Turner Prize-winner Antony Gormley’s inhabitable sculpture called ROOM. Designed as an experiential work of art, the exterior takes the shape of a three-story crouching man made of stainless-steel – an answer to the City of Westminster’s requirement that new buildings contain public art. The one-bedroom suite is a dark space entirely clad in fumed-oak, featuring only a single, all-white bed and can be taken to pitch black darkness and silence at the flip of a switch. The heavily insulated walls create an extremely quiet inside, free from the sounds of the city, and there is a window high up where guests can see the night sky but no surrounding buildings as Gormley wanted views to be unencumbered. There is nothing in the room other than the bed – no TV, minibar, artwork or telephone – so there are no distractions.

Tokyo Suite at Park Hyatt Tokyo

50 floors above Tokyo’s restless streets, Park Hyatt Tokyo’s residence-like Tokyo Suite has floor-to-ceiling views of the city’s skyline from almost every room, with Japan’s highest mountain, Mt. Fuji, peaking up in the distance. Decorated with the aura of a private apartment, this 2,368-square-foot accommodation is adorned with a Miao headdress and washi lanterns by Isamu Noguchi, designer and creator of The Noguchi Museum in New York. From the baby grand piano in the living room to the library collection of 1,000 books on the arts, this suite is a quiet and comfortable escape from bustle below.

Eden Suite at La Réserve Eden au Lac

Located on the third floor of La Réserve Eden au Lac, the Eden Suite debuted earlier this year as part of two-year restoration project helmed by Philippe Starck. The Eden Suite features glass walls separating the living area from the bathroom with natural light pouring in from the large windows and four balconies with charming ironwork. As the only luxury hotel on Lac Zurich, the suite offers sweeping views to allow guests to admire the boats and the Alps in the distance. Taking inspiration from the location, Starck wanted to give guests the feeling of being on a yacht. He lent his signature contemporary touch with neutral tones and sleek metal accents, while honoring the building’s historical elements. Quirky nautical touches include wooden oars, paintings of sailboats and room numbers printed as if they were on a racing sail.

Brian Boru Suite at Dromoland Castle

Named for one of the last High Kings of Ireland and member of the O’Brien family who founded the Castle in the 16th century, the Brian Boru Suite at Dromoland Castle has a bedroom and sitting room overlooking the property’s lake. The bedroom’s canopy bed, sparkling chandelier, and separate dressing room evoke the Castle’s royal heritage, activities like falconry and pony and trap rides celebrate its history and the 18-hole golf course with a flood-lit driving range embrace modern technology.

TOP STANDALONE ACCOMMODATIONS

For those looking for extra privacy and added space, these standalone accommodations – villas, casas and riads – offer private entrances, plenty of outdoor space and even their own dedicated staff.


Grand Riad at Royal Mansour

Of Royal Mansour’s 53 individual three-story accommodations, the four-bedroom Grand Riad is the undisputed crown jewel. Referred to as the “hotel within the hotel,” the nearly 20,000-square-foot residence features a private library, two swimming pools with built-in water current, a cinema, hammam, gym, multiple dining and living rooms, and a glass-enclosed split-level terrace with a retractable roof. With a private resort entrance, the Grand Riad feels more like a private home than a hotel. No detail is overlooked thanks in large part to a dedicated staff that includes a chef, watchman, housekeepers, and butlers.

Casa do Lago at UXUA Casa Hotel & Spa

UXUA just launched a new casa, Casa do Lago, where not a single tree was cut to create the new accommodation. The house reimagines an old fisherman home and its colonial Brazilian style with reclaimed materials, such as wood sourced from an abandoned plantation, and a modern eye. Wilbert Das, founder of UXUA and former creative director of Diesel, filled the casa with Brazilian art, antiques, and custom pieces from the UXUA DAS furniture collection. The defining feature of this casa is a lake surrounded by rainforest and preserved with modern technology to be sustainable and healthy. The mineral-rich water is home to rare fish species and is a perfect place to swim. The casa is just a short walk from the historic Quadrado of Trancoso but feels like its own tropical universe, celebrating indoor/outdoor living.

Stella Maris at Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi

Out of the 121 villas, Stella Maris is a standout option at Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi – accessible only by traditional dhoni boat. The nearly 6,000-square-feet duplex accommodation features an infinity pool, overwater hammocks with direct access to the ocean, and a BBQ station that is available for private chef service. The ‘smart villa’ (with every light, aircon, and curtain controlled from one central iPad) is stocked with still and sparkling water produced at the property’s onsite bottling plant. Laid-back island style is juxtaposed with modern design elements – from a sleek spiral staircase to a bathroom decked out in black-and-white stripes from head to toe. With an ambiance inspired by the Maldivian night sky, the layout offers stargazing opportunities from various points around the villa, allowing guests to spot both northern and southern hemisphere constellations from a different spot every night.

Fleming Villa at GoldenEye

Channel Ian Fleming in celebration of the 25th James Bond movie, No Time to Die, in the aptly named, five-bedroom Fleming Villa at GoldenEye in Jamaica, where he penned all 14 James Bond novels. Today, his writing desk still remains. The main bedroom looks onto his sunken garden, where he entertained the likes of Kathryn Hepburn and Prime Minister Sir Anthony Eden. Guests have access to his private beach and can snorkel in his beloved reef. The grounds also feature a private screening room in what was Fleming’s former garage.

andBeyond Ngala Treehouse at andBeyond Ngala Safari Lodge and andBeyond Ngala Tented Camp

Three miles away from the nearest lodge and 39 feet in the air is the new andBeyond Ngala Treehouse. The completely private, four-level accommodation – surrounded by nothing but the South African bush – opened in February 2020 as a new accommodation at andBeyond Ngala Safari Lodge and andBeyond Ngala Tented Camp. Fully solar-powered, the treehouse has a rooftop deck with an outdoor bed and lounge for al fresco sundowners and dinner for two, an indoor bedroom, and a full bathroom with an outdoor shower – all with uninterrupted views of the bush below. Couples pack up just what they need for the night and are escorted on a game drive to the treehouse for an unforgettable sleepover, complete with a stocked bar and jars of midnight snacks. Surrounded by a thorn boma fence and just a phone call away from the dedicated treehouse attendant, travelers can feel safe in this otherwise intimidating setting.

Palazzo Vendramin at Belmond Hotel Cipriani

Separated from the main hotel by an ancient courtyard and flowered walkway, Belmond Hotel Cipriani’s Palazzo Vendramin is housed in a 15th-century former palace with views overlooking Venice’s St. Mark’s Square. When booking the new Exclusive Places offer, the 16-room-and-suite palace offers complete seclusion for groups with a separate entrance and private dock along with 24-hour concierge service and daily a la carte breakfast. The top suite, the Dogressa Suite, offers views over both St. Mark’s Square and the Doge’s Palace via floor-to-ceiling windows throughout the sitting room. Build out a fulsome itinerary with private experiences including a sailing aboard Belmond’s Edipo Re, a meticulously restored, 16-meter vintage 1960s sailboat to explore the lagoon; or a mixology masterclass with beloved head barman Walter Bolzonella.


COMING SOON!

We’re looking ahead to exciting debuts in 2020 including the largest penthouse suite in Washington D.C. overseen by Clodagh as well as a new boutique hotel in Palm Beach with a private 1,200-square-foot rooftop terrace.

Penthouse Suite at The Dupont Circle

The pièce de resistance of the largescale, top-to-bottom renovation at The Dupont Circle hotel in Washington, DC is the Penthouse Suite, designed by Clodagh. Debuting this month, it can be booked two ways: as a one-bedroom or two-bedroom. When expanded into two-bedrooms, the suite is one of the largest in the city at 1,980 square feet. The heated outdoor terrace, which overlooks Dupont Circle and has views of the Washington Monument, also adds an additional 590 square feet. For the ultimate private experience: guests can also book the entire penthouse floor with its 12 suites and private elevator. Many also featured heated terraces, and all have been completely redesigned by Bernie Gallagher, the Chairman of the Doyle Collection who is very invested in the design of each property, imbuing them all with a unique sense of style and place.

Park Suite at White Elephant Palm Beach

White Elephant Palm Beach, sister hotel to the White Elephant on Nantucket, will open on November 4, 2020 with 32 rooms and suites. Ideal for friends and multi-generational families, the 3,000-square-foot penthouse Park Suite is a three-bedroom that can be expanded into four, complete with a fully equipped kitchen and spacious living room. With views of Bradley Park, the penthouse includes a 1,200-square-foot rooftop terrace for entertaining. Other decorative accents such as bronze elephant door knockers, bold patterned throw pillows, rattan ceiling light fixtures, and black and white striped side tables are sprinkled throughout.

 

ampr march newsletter

March 6th, 2019

What’s New?

The Grand House

Shou Sugi Ban House is a new kind of wellness sanctuary offering three-, four-, and seven-night retreats focusing on transformation, healing, and an exploration of one’s self, and it’s opening this May in Water Mill. This is not a spartan retreat model; guests’ days comprise many forms of wellness ranging from beach hikes, reiki, spa treatments, sound healing, and meditation punctuated by gourmet cooking demonstrations (menus curated by Mads Refslund, formerly of lauded Noma restaurant in Copenhagen).

Nayara Tented Camp will open in Fall 2019 in Costa Rica. Each tent – designed by veteran luxury safari tent company Luxury Frontiers – will have a private plunge pool filled with naturally warm water from the nearby Arenal volcano’s hot springs, with open views of that volcano and surrounded by a sloth sanctuary.

Inspired by the anticipated live-action Lion King coming out this summer, andBeyond’s new itinerary lets kids live out their own adventures in hakuna matata style through the Masai Mara, Serengeti, and Ngorongoro Crater.

The Grand House, a hybrid venture between a luxury hotel and a home rental service will debut in March 2019 with a portfolio of maisons particulières situated in central Rome. Additional properties in Florence and Milan are scheduled to open by 2020.

Napa Valley’s Louis M. Martini Winery will re-open in March 2019  following an extensive restoration of the historic space. One of the first wineries to open at the end of Prohibition, the new space will seamlessly integrate indoors and out and feature 30-foot-high glass walls with views into the barrel cellar.

The Kensington is getting guests into nearby Victoria & Albert Museum’s Christian Dior – Designer of Dreams exhibit with The House Of Kensington Experience, a new three-night package including a stay in a Signature Suite, two tickets to the exhibition (hard to come by due to the show’s popularity), and a round of exclusive Dior-inspired cocktails at the hotel’s K Bar.

With its announcement of the most popular spring travel destinations, global luxury travel network Virtuoso revealed that Americans are staying closer to home and seeking sun in Los Angeles, Miami, and Orlando. European destinations including Italy, France, and the UK remain popular while Switzerland, Greece, Morocco, and Japan are seeing the largest growth year-over-year.

The Falconry Vineyard Tour is a new tasting offering at Bouchaine Vineyards in Napa Valley. Guests interact with owls, hawks, and falcons and learn how to call birds to land on their arm. The experience concludes with a wine-tasting in the garden.

This summer, GoldenEye is introducing new guest experiences including yoga and guided meditation sessions that conclude with vibrational healing ‘sound bath’ using Tibetan singing bowls; as well as complimentary excursions to Firefly, Noel Coward’s hill home and rumored to be Captain Morgan’s lookout.

Families traveling with little ones can explore London with a helping hand from their very own Mary Poppins with The Kensington’s new Suite Nannies package. A nanny from the UK’s leading nanny agency will arrive each day equipped with her own carpet bag filled with toys and surprises.

Belmond British Pullman continues its celebrity chef pop-up dinner series including a July 20th event with Raymond Blanc of Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons and a zero-waste menu with Michelin-starred chef Merlin Labron-Johnson. Beloved British baker Mary Berry will kick of the series with two afternoon tea journeys May 3 and 4th.

CREST (Center for Responsible Travel) will hold its annual World Tourism Day forum on September 27, focusing this year on Impact Tourism.

 

Spring Forward

Daylight Saving Time starts March 10th – here are a few outdoor activities to take advantage of that extra hour of sunshine

Azimuth Rooftop Bar

Located in the heart of Manhattan, The Chatwal, New York offers complimentary Chatwal-red bicycles for the active traveler to explore the city, armed with a bespoke NYC Bike Map and a picnic dinner.

The Grand House will offer its guests the opportunity to fly an Agusta Westland 109 helicopter from Rome to Bolgheri Vineyards where Gelasio Gaetani d’Aragona Lovatelli, oenologist extraordinaire, will lead a private tour of the vineyards and cellars of Castello di Bolgheri and Argentiera. The tour ends with catching the sunset while flying over Monte Argentario on the way back to Rome.

Guests can enjoy the varied landscape in and around Viceroy Riviera Maya with horseback riding, ATV tours, cenote (sinkhole caves) tours, bird watching, and jungle hikes.

The Kensington’s Slice of the City tour, Snapshots of Kensington, brings guests to the most Instagram-worthy locations in the neighborhood. The local host will double as both a guide to the best photo ops and a personal photographer to help travelers get the shot.

La Réserve Geneva’s private and super chic Venetian Motoscafo boat gives guests the most stylish was to get to the city center – a 15 minute cruise across Lake Geneva.

Guests at Nantucket Island Resorts have complimentary access to Priority Bicycles to cruise the 30 miles of scenic flat bike trails on the island. Explorers are provided with a map of popular sites, including the oldest house on Nantucket –  built in 1686; Sankaty Lighthouse – located in the historic fishing village of ‘Sconset; and Cisco Brewery – known for their local beers and live music.

In downtown Napa, visitors can explore the Rail Arts District (RAD) – the 1.7-mile outdoor art gallery showcasing murals, sculptures, landscapes, and parks – beginning at Napa’s Oxbow District and continuing along the Napa Valley Vine Trail bike and pedestrian path and the Napa Valley Wine Train tracks.

Settle into one of the coral cocoon-shaped chairs at Azimuth rooftop bar at Alamanac Barcelona for a sunset cocktail while taking in the 360 views of the city.

 

Shaking Things Up

Instead of a cooking class, guests are learning from the experts how to craft local libations

Guaro Sour at Nayara Springs

andBeyond Bateleur Camp’s new gin bar gives a nod to the gin and tonic tradition dating back to colonial East Africa, when the classic choice for sundowners originated as a medicinal tipple to fend off malaria. With 16 different types of craft gin to pick from, guests can learn from the expert bartenders to create the perfect G&T with ingredients grown in the lodge’s organic vegetable garden.

The Bellini, Venice’s signature cocktail composed of peach juice and prosecco, was invented by Giuseppe Cipriani, founder of Belmond Hotel Cipriani, in 1948. Today, guests can learn how to make them at the Gabbiano Bar with beloved bartender Walter Bolzonella, a protégé of Cipriani’s, who has been with the hotel for over 40 years.

Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort offers rum tastings led by the in-house rummelier who teaches guests about the island’s rum history including Sugar Beach – the property sits on a former sugar plantation that produced the key ingredient for 17th century rum makers.

No visit to Peru is complete without a Pisco Sour (or two), and guests of Belmond Hotel Monasterio can learn how to make the traditional cocktail with pisco lessons led by the resident barman. While tasting the different types of pisco, guests will learn the history and distillation techniques of the national drink before mastering their favorite variation.

Sidecar, the Art Deco cocktail bar at The Westbury in Dublin, recently launched mixology classes with their white dinner jacket-clad head bartender (who also happens to be Daniel Craig’s doppelgänger).

Resident mixologist at Nayara Springs, Karla Elizondo Castro, teaches guests a lesson in mixology the Costa Rican way – adorning cocktails with flowers and herbs from the on-property garden at this adults-only resort tucked in the rainforest. Her signature Guaro Sour (made with a local rum-style spirit) is garnished with Borraja and tarragon flowers.

Guests at Viceroy Riviera Maya can participate in a hands-on Artisanal Cocktail Coaching class at the beachside Coral Grill & Bar and learn how to make property favorites like the Xcalacoco Wish (made with a crème tequila liqueur).

Bartenders at The Christopher teach guests to make St. Barth’s potent Ti Punch with sugar, lime, and rum. 

 

Guests Get Involved

Environmental programming

andBeyond Vamizi

Travelers can join a six-day Oceans Without Borders Small Group Journey to andBeyond Vamizi Island to participate in fish tagging, measuring, and monitoring reef systems.

Guests of UXUA Casa Hotel & Spa are invited to become students again at MAMA Trancoso, an education initiative teaching the skills to identify environmental threats and the actions needed to combat these abuses. As part of the daily instruction, guests can collaborate with the small class of students on awareness campaigns and political activism through social media, short films, and community events.

Guests aboard PONANT can join beach clean up excursions in the Seychelles through the brand’s new partnership with the Aldabra Clean Up Project (with its goal of combatting plastic pollution and preserving the Aldabra Atoll in the Seychelles).

In 1997, Chris Blackwell of Island Outpost hotel established the Oracabessa Foundation, a nonprofit focusing on vocational training and environmental protection.  GoldenEye guests who donate $1,000 to the foundation can have a tree planted on property, joining the likes of Johnny Depp, Kate Moss, and Bill and Hilary Clinton.

andBeyond’s Phinda Impact Small Group Journey is a 7-day journey that combines wildlife conservation (with an experience like rhino notching or elephant collaring), interaction with the local community, and a day-in-the-life of an andBeyond ranger – from learning tracking to rifle training to sleeping out beneath the stars.

 

Calendar

April

March 26 – April 5, 2019: During Easter break, Sugar Beach offers a variety of children’s programing including tie-dye, chocolate making, boat tours, and an Easter egg hunt

April 2019The Dupont Circle completes the final stages of its multimillion-dollar renovation of the bar, restaurant, lobby, and suites

April 2019: Throughout April and early-May, The Woof Cottages at Nantucket Boast Basin will waive pet fees and provide a special dog-friendly turndown treat

April 2019: Napa Valley’s 8th annual Arts in April celebrates the region’s cultural offerings with more than 50 events taking place at wineries, museums and galleries throughout the month.

April 2, 2019: andBeyond’s first Endangered Eight Impact Journey departs to search for eight threatened species in India’s wildlife sanctuaries

April 15, 2019: PONANT’s newest vessel, Le Bougainville, departs on its inaugural sailing

April 18, 2019: The Wauwinet reopens following a multi-million-dollar renovation

April 20, 2019The Wauwinet will host the Easter Brunch Adult Egg Hunt where one lucky duck will find a golden egg with a surprise gift inside

April 20, 2019: Belmond Eagle Island Lodge hosts a performance by the London Philharmonic Orchestra

April 26-28, 2019: The Nantucket Daffodil Festival Weekend honors the more than three million daffodils that bloom every spring on Nantucket. The Wauwinet will offer a Daffy Tailgate Lunch at TOPPERS and a Daffy Tailgate After Party.

April 28, 2019: Whether a London Marathon participant or spectator, The Doyle Collection’s trio of London hotels provide the perfect home base to enjoy the race

 

May

May 2019: Shou Sugi Ban House will open in Water Mill as a wellness haven offering multi-day programs.

May 3 and 4, 2019: Mary Berry will host two afternoon teas aboard Belmond British Pullman

May 5, 2019: Guests can celebrate Cinco de Mayo at Viceroy Riviera Maya with a Mayan Cuisine Class and learn to cook the indigenous fare of the Yucatan Peninsula.

May 11, 2019: andBeyond’s Bhutan Yoga Retreat departs to travel through Asia’s spiritual heartland and to achieve balance of mind, body, and soul with guided yoga and deep meditation

May 12, 2019: andBeyond’s Phinda Impact Journey embarks to explore South Africa through game drives, ranger training, sleeping out under the stars, and visiting the local community

May 18, 2019: Visit Robert Mondavi Winery for their Fume Blanc Release and Lobster Feed Party, set among the vines of the famous To Kalon Vineyard

May 21-25, 2019: The Chelsea Flower Show takes place in London, stay nearby at The Kensington to usher in the spring season

 

June

June 20-25, 2018: The 23rd annual Nantucket Film Festival

 

 

ampr january newsletter

January 25th, 2019

January AMPR Newsletter


What’s New?

For the first time in its 30-year history, The Wauwinet on Nantucket will undergo a multi-million-dollar renovation including a complete overhaul of all 32 guestrooms and bathrooms and updates to the property’s three intimate cottages and the lobby’s library, reopening in April 2019.

Surrounded by the mountains and sand dunes of the Namib Desert, andBeyond Sossusvlei Desert Lodge will reopen after a complete refurbishment on October 15, 2019 with floor-to-ceiling glass walls to take in the dramatic desert landscape.

Fresh off a top-to-bottom refurbishment, The Christopher Hotel will launch three new villas in 2019, each featuring four bedrooms and a private swimming pool.

Belmond British Pullman is hosting a Mary Poppins Returns-inspired afternoon tea journey on February 16, 2019. Families will enjoy balloon artists, face painters, and magicians as the train passes through the British countryside.

This spring, The River Lee in Cork, Ireland will unveil a new look for the lobby, restaurant, bar, and terrace, spearheaded by O’Donnell O’Neill Design.

PONANT will host a gastronomy and wine cruise in partnership with Ducasse Conseil and Chateau Latour aboard L’Austral from April 13-22, 2019. The ten-day sailing, ‘Gastronomy, Vineyards, and Grands Crus’ from Lisbon to Portsmouth will feature ports of call in Porto, Bordeaux, and Pauillac and two gala dinners hosted by chefs Xavier Boireau and Francis Fauvel.

Guinot launched its Anti-Dark Spot Serum this month, a new two-week treatment that uses pure Vitamin C to reduce and brighten dark spots caused by sun exposure and aging.

Carneros Resort and Spa in Napa has completed a renovation of its 94 cottages and suites – all featuring redesigned interiors and exteriors, new furnishings, and relaunched outdoor terraces that are complete with gas fire pits, portable mini-projectors, and telescopes.

La Maison du Chocolat has created a new line of Valentine’s Day confections for this season’s Parisian Dream collection available in boutiques and online on January 24.

Cool Hangout Spots for the Littlest Travelers

Suspended in the treetops amid the 10-acre park at La Réserve Geneva is La Petit Réserve. Free for kids ages six-months to 13-years, including local day guests, the kid’s club has a wooden obstacle course, swings and slide, and a suspension bridge that connects to a treehouse complete with a fireman’s pole, game tables, toys, puzzles, and a coloring station.

Royal Mansour’s dedicated Kids Club, Le Jardin de Lila, turns little ones into global citizens with Moroccan art activities, Arabic lessons, and a complimentary children’s book following Lila, a young girl exploring the hotel’s winding passageways and gardens.

Belmond Reid’s Palace on Madeira welcomes its younger guests to partake in fun activities housed in a traditional Santana cottage with a private kids’ swimming pool where swimming and gymnastics classes can be arranged.

andBeyond’s Bateleur Camp on Kenya’s Maasai Mara offers their fun and educational WILDchild program for the smallest safari-goers. Kids can learn to identify animal tracks and droppings, learn to build a fire the Masai way, and do some fun games and activities while learning about conservation and the role they can play in protecting the world’s fauna.

With treasure hunts and coconut bowling for the 4-12 set and ping pong tournaments and sailing school for tweens and teens, St. Lucia’s Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort’s Sugar Club and Spice Club offer kids their own version of paradise.

AMPR’s Guide to Wellness Travel for 2019

Thanks to its relaxing and mood-enhancing effects, CBD is a trending ingredient in spa treatments, especially prevalent in Napa Valley. Travelers in the region can choose from a selection of CBD wellness massages at Spa Terra at The Meritage Resort or enjoy a sound healing therapy paired with a CBD-infused wrap at Mount View Hotel & Spa.

Viceroy Riviera Maya’s resident shaman oversees the Jardin Pak’al, the garden where he grows herbs used to treat guests at the Wayak Spa. In the K’óben (Mayan herb kitchen), he has individual consultations with the guests to determine their preferences and needs, before creating a personalized healing experience for them held next to a waterfall.

andBeyond’s new Bhutan Yoga Retreat Small Group Journey allows travelers to immerse themselves in the spiritual heartland of Bhutan. Highlights of this 10-day journey include yoga and meditation, hiking Tiger’s Nest monastery in Paro, and exploring the fortresses and temples of Thimphu and Punakha, all led by an expert guide and specialist healing facilitator to help guests find balance of the mind, body, and soul.

Located on the shores of Lake Geneva, La Reserve Geneve’s Nescens Spa is the city’s largest spa, at 20,000 square-feet. Travelers looking to improve their ski, tennis, or golf performance can take part in the special Fitness Preparation Program, which combines coaching, treatment, and nutrition.

Royal Mansour has introduced Bespoke Hammam Treatments where each step of the traditional technique is personalized to the specific skincare needs of each guest using locally sourced ingredients – including purifying clay from the Atlas Mountains and roses from the Kalaat Megouana valley.

Guests at Sugar Beach can get fit with the Piton Recovery, which starts with a hike of the Gros Piton. After descending from the peak, hikers are met by one of Sugar Beach’s personal trainers for a stretching session, rehydration with coconut water, and revitalizing snack of potassium-rich bananas before have a muscle releasing massage back at the spa.

As part of The Chatwal, New York’s partnership with yoga and spiritual guru Eddie Stern, travelers will enjoy a new wellness program featuring nine 12-minute yoga sessions focusing on breathing techniques that balance the central nervous system, available complimentary through the in-room iPads.

Guests at The Marylebone have complimentary access to Third Space, an on-site members-only health club. Guests can snag a coveted spot in the popular group fitness classes and use the 60-foot indoor lap pool – finishing with a healthy smoothie from The Juicery.

Nayara Springs’ new Wellness Program incorporates healthful menus, yoga and meditation, and spa treatments so guests return home thoroughly relaxed and restored.

Not Your Typical Spring Break Destinations

Instead of the Caribbean or skiing, here are places you may not have considered…

Travelers who want an authentic St. Patrick’s Day experience can avoid the Dublin crowds and visit The River Lee in Cork, where a family-friendly three-day festival from March 16-18 offers parades, food, and music.

In March 2019, travelers can join a six-day Oceans Without Borders Small Group Journey to andBeyond Vamizi Island to participate in fish tagging and measuring and monitoring reef systems. Guests will learn what it takes to be an andBeyond dive instructor or a marine biologist, spend time in the local community, and enjoy water sports such as kayaking and snorkeling – with all proceeds supporting Oceans Without Borders.

Almanac Barcelona opened in February 2018 just steps from buzzing Passeig de Gracia. While Azimuth, the penthouse bar with 360-degree views of the city, is popular with locals, the rooftop pool and sun lounge are reserved for guests only. March and April temperatures are in the mid-60’s and it’s just before the summertime tourist rush.

Nearing the end of rainy season, safari-goers will enjoy the greener landscape and abundance of wildlife in Botswana at Belmond Savute Elephant Lodge. The newly reimagined lodge now features a viewpoint overlooking the watering hole in Chobe National Park, where guests can enjoy breakfast with a front-row seat to the passing elephants.

Dallasites can take advantage of the new direct Air France flight route launching on March 31, 2019, between Dallas/Fort Worth and Paris, and stay in the city’s 16th arrondissement at the La Réserve Paris Apartments. Families staying in the Apartments have the option to cook at home in the large chef’s kitchen, have exclusive access to the Roland Garros tennis courts (home to the French Open), and can ride bikes to enjoy an al fresco picnic lunch along the Seine.

Napa Valley continues to celebrate Cabernet Season through April. For adults in the know, this is the best time to visit – think smaller crowds, special hotel deals and winery experiences, and brilliant yellow wild mustard flowers, purple lupine, golden California poppies, and crimson clover are scattered through the vineyards and along country lanes.

Tokyo turns pink during the Cherry Blossom Festival from March 23 – April 27. Park Hyatt Tokyo is near several parks where guests can stroll under the pastel petals.

For an adventurous and warm spring break destination, visit Costa Rica’s Arenal Volcano Park. Guests at Nayara Springs can have tours organized for ziplining, white water rafting, and waterfall hikes, among others, observe a variety of wildlife including sloths at the on-site sanctuary, and then relax on property with daily yoga, by their private plunge pool, or at the spa.

…and don’t forget to get a sun-kissed glow before heading out for vacation with Guinot’s AutoBronze, an easy-to-apply tinted gel creating an even and natural-looking bronze without leaving streaks.

 

Calendar

February

February 14, 2019: Belmond British Pullman’s Valentine’s Day lunch

February 8-16, 2019: In celebration of New York Fashion Week, Jacques at The Lowell will be offering a Fashion Week-inspired cocktail menu with drinks inspired by famous designers such as Oscar de la Renta, Chanel, and of course, Yves Saint Laurent (former owner of the Majorelle gardens).

February 16, 2019: Belmond British Pullman’s Mary Poppins Returns-inspired afternoon tea journey

February 2019: Guinot launches its new Lift Summum Treatment designed to firm and smooth the delicate skin of the face, neck, and chest.

 

March

Spring 2019: The Dupont Circle in Washington, D.C. relaunches its new bar, lobby, and Dupont Suite after a multi-million dollar renovation.

March 2019: Guinot launches its new Clean Logic Range, a cleansing skincare regimen formulated with anti-aging properties suited for fragile skin.

March 2019: andBeyond’s first Oceans Without Borders Small Group Journey departs for andBeyond Vamizi Island

March 3, 2019: Napa Valley Marathon

March 15-18, 2019: Yountville Live is a four day event celebrating music, food, and wine with programming including cooking classes, wine-paired dinners, a red carpet gala, a street festival, and live music throughout the weekend.

March 21-24, 2019: Stay with The Christopher Hotel during the annual St. Barth Bucket

March 26 – April 5, 2019: During Easter break, Sugar Beach offers a variety of children’s programming including tie-dying, chocolate making, boat tours, and an Easter egg hunt.

March 27 – April 7, 2019: Tokyo turns pink during the Cherry Blossom Festival

 

April

April 2019: The Wauwinet reopens following a multi-million-dollar renovation

April 2019: Napa Valley Arts in April

April 1, 2019: andBeyond’s 11-day Southern Chile Islands & Lakes Expedition kicks off in Santiago and travels to Chiloé Island, south into the Chilean Lake District, and ends with a stay at the new andBeyond Vira Vira.

April 2, 2019: andBeyond’s first Endangered Eight Impact Journey departs to search for eight threatened species in India’s wildlife sanctuaries.

April 15-22, 2019: PONANT’s newest EXPLORER ship, Le Bougainville, departs on its inaugural cruise

April 26-28, 2018: Nantucket’s Daffodil Festival

 

 

 

 

ampr december newsletter

January 2nd, 2019

What’s New?


andBeyond Tengile River Lodge opens on December 1 as a completely new property in South Africa’s Sabi Sand Game Reserve with nine suites raised above ground level, designed to give a floating impression over the riverbed.

The Dupont Circle will relaunch in Washington D.C. in Spring 2019 unveiling a multimillion-dollar hotel transformation in collaboration with Martin Brudnizki Design Studio and Clodagh with the new Doyle bar and new restaurant.

Jamaica’s GoldenEye will unveil its new FieldSpa this month with two new spa huts, a new hammam and yoga deck, and a selection of elixirs, juices, and healthy bites incorporating fresh ingredients from the hotel’s farm, Pantrepant.

Belmond Cap Juluca in Anguilla and Belmond La Samanna in St. Martin will reopen in December 2018 following top-to-bottom renovations. Cap Juluca will have a new sea-view infinity-edge pool and a rustic beach bar dubbed The Cap Shack. La Samanna will have a new restaurant, two bars, a spa, and the largest private wine cellar in the Caribbean.

Following a top-to-bottom refurbishment, The Christopher’s formal dining restaurant,Christo, led by Chef Nicolas Tissier recently relaunched with a focus on organic meats and vegetables.

A gastronomic adventure through Southeast Asia, Eastern & Oriental Express is collaborating with four international chefs throughout 2019 to introduce immersive culinary experiences onboard the train. Highlights include edible art during a chocolate painting workshop with Singaporean pastry chef Janice Wong and a spices lesson with French chef Didier Corlou who combines the flavors of East and West.

PONANT will host a new itinerary titled, “History, Art, and Architecture Along the North Sea” led by the General Director of the Municipal Museum of Bruges onboard the newest addition to the EXPLORERS series, Le Dumont d’Urville, departing August 25, 2019, exploring exhibits in Holland and Belgium.

In December, Almanac Barcelona’s rooftop bar transforms into the Azimuth Winter Rooftop Lounge, a glassed-in winter wonderland with mulled wine inspired by the brand’s hometown of Vienna.

With the Very Lowell Holiday Package, suites are decked out with custom holiday décor(stockings hung above the fireplace, trees lit, and holiday books in-room) and families can enjoy the city with VIP Tickets to Wollman Skating Rink and a Holiday Afternoon Tea in the Pembroke Room.

 

In The Spirit of Giving

andBeyond’s new seven-day Phinda Impact Small Group Journey offers conservation-minded travelers the opportunity to experience rhino notching or elephant collaring, interaction with the local community, and a day-in-the-life of an andBeyond ranger – from learning tracking to rifle training to sleeping out beneath the stars.

With the firm belief that children are more receptive to the environmental challenges society faces today, UXUA Casa Hotel & Spa has launched a local initiative, MAMA Trancoso, for children between 10 and 12 years old to teach the importance of sustainability and respect for the environment. Guests are invited to join the students in their daily instruction before collaborating on creative content in the form of photography, music, and video to raise awareness of the threats to their surrounding environment.

In 2005, Chris Blackwell, of Island Outpost hotels, established the Oracabessa Foundation, a nonprofit focusing on vocational training and environmental protection. Guests who donate $1,000 to the foundation can have a tree planted at GoldenEye, along with the likes of Johnny Depp, Kate Moss and President Bill and Hillary Clinton.

Guests staying at Nayara Springs and Nayara Resort, Spa & Gardens in Costa Rica can visit The Proyecto Asis Wildlife Rescue Center to volunteer and help care for and feed a variety of animals. Back at the resorts, guests can also observe more than 15 native sloths at the on-property Sloth Sanctuary on property.

For guests looking to support the local Mexican community, the artisan soaps offered byViceroy Riviera Maya’s Soap Concierge are made by local Mayan communities following ancient tradition with organic ingredients found on the Yucatan Peninsula.

At Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort, guests can volunteer their time to give back to the community in the nearby town of Soufrière at the local soup kitchen.

Tea Time

To celebrate 100 years of its exterior rosy hue, Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel‘s famed afternoon tea will serve pastel-pink treats, including raspberry-filled white truffles, wild berry tea Turkish delight, and pink pavlova paired with their  own Mount Nelson Tea – a blend of six teas and rose petals from the on-property gardens.

Guests of Royal Mansour can enjoy a traditional Moroccan afternoon tea featuring nos-nos coffee, a plate of sweet pastries, and a selection of Moroccan pancakes with thyme honey created by Royal Mansour’s pastry chef.

Dalloway Terrace at The Bloomsbury has transformed into a cozy winter haven with seasonal tea offerings such as English Peppermint and 2nd Flush Muscatel, harvested high in the Indian Himalayas in the region of Sikkim. Guests can escape the cold with hot water bottles and Foxford woolen blankets, while sipping on warming tea in the fully covered and heated patio.

andBeyond’s Tea & Tastes of Sri Lanka journey begins in the country’s capital of Colombo before traveling into Tea Country. Travelers will experience the tea-making process from the experts and sip on varieties of tea native to the region.

At the newly-renovated Pembroke Room at The Lowell, the Tea Sommelier can recommend a tea to each guests’ liking from French purveyor Dammann Frères, paired with elegant bites including tea sandwiches, caviar blinis, scones with homemade lemon curd and Devonshire cream, and macarons.

Guests at Park Hyatt Tokyo can enjoy tea while taking in views of Mt. Fuji from the hotel’s Peak Lounge on the 41st floor of the Shinjuku Tower. The leaves are picked from the hotel’s very own plot 300 miles away in the Inokura tea fields in the city of Nara.

The Ackerman Heritage House in Napa offers a traditional Sunday tea with finger sandwiches, pastries, and cakes all served on period-correct silver, linens, and tableware from when the house was built in 1888.

The new Shou Sugi Ban House, a wellness retreat opening in The Hamptons this coming spring 2019, will begin each day with a tea ceremony.

 

Catching Zzzs

In addition to private sessions and a treatment at the spa, The Chatwal‘s Dip Into Wellbeing meditation sessions by Donna D’Cruz come with Sleep Kits with a fragrant candle, incense, power stone bracelet, a sleep mask, and a notepad with pen for journaling for a restful sleep.

Travelers can unwind at Bardessono Resort & Spa with the Peaceful Sleep treatmentwith an essential oil bath, a calming body butter, and a warmed herbal pillow in their beds with smell of an aromatic candle to lull them to sleep.

Park Hyatt Tokyo’s Good Night Sleep Stretch, a complimentary 30-minute program, is designed to prepare the body for restful sleep. It consists of slow stretches and breathing exercises to loosen muscles and bring the body into equilibrium.

Nayara Springs, tucked below the Arenal Volcano in Costa Rica, offers evening yoga classes by candlelight in the yoga pavilion cantilevered over the rainforest. The soundtrack (chirping tree frogs and a babbling stream below) sets the audio scene for low-impact poses designed to relax the body in preparation for sleep.

Solage Calistoga is a contemporary oasis with a spa that offers evening floating meditation called Aqua Vibrations in which a guest sits in a mesh chair, partially submerged, in the open-air geothermal mineral pool (96 to 98 degrees), gazing at the stars and moon, before heading off to bed more centered and relaxed.

Guinot’s Crème Night Logic works throughout the night to relax the skin, creating a rested and refreshed complexion – as if waking up after a good night’s sleep. This moisturizer specifically acts at night (when the skin is in its resting and repairing phase) to neutralize the effects of stress, reduce tension, and deeply hydrate.

 

Calendar

January

Winter 2019: The River Lee in Cork, Ireland unveils an expansive renovation with an updated bar and restaurant.

January 2019: Guinot launches its new Anti-Dark Spot Serum, a two-week treatment that works to reduce and brighten dark spots caused by sun exposure and aging.

January 1, 2018: Belmond Cap Juluca offers a ‘Surf & Bubbles’ New Years Day Brunch

January 1, 2018: Guests at Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort can enjoy ‘Recovery Brunch’ with fresh food and hydration for a little revitalization to start off the year right.

January 11, 2019: andBeyond’s Snow Leopard Expedition will depart to track the elusive snow leopard through the Himalayan region of Ladakh.

January 12-20, 2019: The Napa Lighted Art Festival takes place throughout Downtown Napa showcasing lighted art displays.

January 20-27, 2018: Napa Valley Restaurant Week offers multi-course prix-fixe menus for lunch and dinner at restaurants throughout the Napa region

 

February

February 14, 2018: Belmond British Pullman’s Valentine’s Day lunch

February 2019: Guinot launches its new Lift Summum Treatment designed to firm and smooth the delicate skin of the face, neck, and chest.

 

March

Spring 2019: The Dupont Circle in Washington, D.C. relaunches its new bar, lobby, and Dupont Suite after a multi-million dollar renovation.

March 15-18, 2019: Yountville Live is a four day event celebrating music, food, and wine with programming including cooking classes, wine-paired dinners, a red carpet gala, a street festival, and live music throughout the weekend.

March 21-24, 2018: Stay with The Christopher Hotel during the annual St. Barth Bucket

March 2019: Guinot launches its new Clean Logic Range, a cleansing skincare regimen formulated with anti-aging properties suited for fragile skin.

 

 

 

the wonderful world of belmond

December 18th, 2017

As 2017 comes to a close, Belmond is moving full steam ahead with a host of year-end celebrations, fresh dining experiences, new packages highlighting the brand’s iconic heritage and its famed Hollywood connections.

THE ART OF BELMOND:

As the final installment of Belmond’s series of films celebrating ‘The Art of Savoir-Vivre, ‘A Fond Farewell’ illustrates the brand’s promise to make every journey with Belmond an unforgettable experience. Further reinforcing this concept is the new partnership with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, which launches in Madeira on December 7, 2017 and will continue throughout the collection with additional dates and locations still to be announced.

Belmond’s ‘Exceptional Music in Exceptional Locations’ program begins at Belmond Reid’s Palace with a three-night package inclusive of London Philharmonic Orchestra concert tickets for two, dinner at the hotel’s Michelin-starred William Restaurant, and a short-drive to the soaring Pico do Arieiro to enjoy breakfast during sunrise. Priced at €380 (approx. $447 USD) per night, based on double occupancy.

‘TIS THE SEASON:

The festive season is upon us, and celebrations are underway at Belmond properties around the world:

Bringing together two hospitality legends, a replica of the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express train plays a starring role in the holiday lobby display at Belmond Charleston Place. Open to the public November 29, 2017-January 2, 2018, the fully-operational display features miniature European alpine homes, realistic stables and a blacksmith shop that guests can spy through little open doors. After watching the train make its way around the track, visitors are encouraged to spend the evening enjoying a contemporary Southern supper serenaded by jazz musicians at Charleston Grill.

For the month of December, Oxfordshire’s Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons will host a series of Christmas Carol Concerts with featured performances by top choirs from across the country. Priced at approx. $342 per person, the evenings include a Champagne Laurent-Perrier reception, concert at St Mary’s Church, and a four-course dinner at the property with accompanying wines, coffee and petits fours.

Belmond’s famed Eastern & Oriental Express train will host a festive three-night New Year’s Eve journey from December 29, 2017 – January 1, 2018. Following an evening departure from Singapore, the train’s first stop is Malaysia’s lively capital, Kuala Lumpur. Here guests can choose between the Cultural Tapestry tour – visiting historical sites such as Independence Square and the Jamek Mosque – or the Kampong Traditions and Crafts tour which includes a look at the city’s best handicrafts. On December 31, travelers will spend the day in Bangkok touring colonial Georgetown or taking a tour highlighting the region’s culinary heritage, before returning to the train for a celebratory dinner complete with live Thai dance performances, a DJ, and fireworks. Priced at $4,730 per passenger based on double occupancy.

A BEAR’S LIFE:

Ahead of the January 12, 2018 release of PADDINGTON 2, guests are invited to celebrate “A Bear’s Life with Belmond” across the brand’s Peruvian collection of six hotels and day train, and aboard the Belmond British Pullman – the UK day train guest-starring in the new film:

In Paddington’s homeland of Peru, Belmond has created new four- and seven-night packages that include family-friendly activities such as bear-shaped cookie making, a Paddington-themed movie-under-the-stars night, afternoon tea in a secret garden, and of course plenty of marmalade to go around. Rates begin at $3,158 per person for the four-night package, and $4,804 per person for the seven-night; both offers include stays at Belmond properties across Lima, Peru, Machu Picchu, and the Sacred Valley as well as select meals and domestic transfers.

Across the pond, Belmond British Pullman will host three steam-hauled Paddington Afternoon Tea journeys on December 2, 2017 as well as on February 16 and April 7, 2018. While onboard the 1920s and 30s carriages – which are featured in the movie – parents and their little cubs will be treated to live musical entertainment along with an array of sweet and savory snacks including mini-cakes and marmalade sandwiches.  For each adult traveling, one child under 16 travels free; rates begin at $721 for a group of two adults and two children for the afternoon.

THE ART OF CINEMATOGRAPHY:

With properties in over 24 countries, Belmond provides ample opportunities for travelers to follow in their favorite film stars’ footsteps:

The Belmond Hiram Bingham train offers daily roundtrip service to Machu Picchu and was named for the famed explorer upon whom the Indiana Jones character is based. Similarly, Belmond Hotel das Cataratas is the only hotel located within Iguassu Falls, Brazil – the setting of “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.”

Located in idyllic St. Michaels, MD, the Inn at Perry Cabin by Belmond provided the setting for the wedding reception and touch football game in the 2005 comedy, “Wedding Crashers.

At Belmond Villa Sant’Andrea, The Godfather Tour brings guests on a mobster-approved tour of Sicily in a Fiat 500 with stops including the St. Lucia church where Apollonia and Michael Corleone were married; the village of Forza D’Agrò where Michael Corleone first arrives in Sicily; and Francis Ford Coppola’s favorite Bar Vitelli.

DESTINATION DINING:

Embracing the art of savoir-vivre, dining at a Belmond property is an unforgettable experience in and of itself:

Rio’s iconic Belmond Copacabana Palace has unveiled a new look for its famed restaurant, Pérgula, designed to embrace the city’s Carioca culture. Highlights from the relaxed, tropical space include a dedicated Tapioca Pancake Counter – perfect for a sweet and savory breakfast – and a new Copa Caipirinha Trolley that brings Brazil’s most famous cocktail right to the tableside. The Pérgula Poolside Verandah & Pool Bar, which overlooks the world-famous ‘Copa’ swimming pool, doubles as a chic all-day dining spot and by night transforms into a glamorous setting under the stars for upbeat tunes and the best caipirinhas in town. In early 2018, the restaurant will also boast the Pérgula Outdoor Ocean View Terrace giving all-day diners front row seats to Rio’s dreamlike views over Copacabana Beach.

Belmond Miraflores Park has created a new private rooftop dining experience, aptly named “Romance on the Rooftop.” Suspended on a clear platform over the hotel’s 11th floor pool, guests will be surrounded by flowers and candlelight while dining on a four-course menu and listening to a live violin performance.

 

extreme makeover: cruise ship edition

June 19th, 2012

Sure, Ty Pennington may be able to remodel a home in one week, but could he do the same for a 77,319 square foot cruise ship in two? Well, the interior designs teams at Adfecto and SMC Design from London and KNA Design from Los Angeles have done just that to Crystal Cruises’ award-winning ship, Crystal Symphony.

The completion of the recent $15 million dry dock reveals chic new public spaces aboard the ultra-luxe ship, including the Avenue Saloon, Palm Court Lounge, Galaxy Lounge, Hollywood Theatre, Bridge Lounge, Fantasia and Waves “junior cruisers” entertainment centers, and the Tender Landing/passenger boarding area.  The final step in a five-year plan, Crystal Cruises has now redesigned every room aboard the prized ship, to the tune of $65 million.

Now that the dry dock is complete, Crystal Symphony is showing off her new look while she explores the Baltic and Northern Europe before crossing the Atlantic in September to experience the brilliant foliage and infamous beauty of fall in New England and Canada.

For more information on Crystal Cruises and upcoming itineraries, please visit www.crystalcruises.com.

inn at the white elephant village to open in nantucket summer 2012

April 3rd, 2012

The Inn at the White Elephant Village will open summer 2012* with 20 units, including 14 deluxe suites and six guest rooms. Located on South Beach Street, the new Inn and existing White Elephant Residences will comprise the newly-created White Elephant Village, a natural extension of the award-winning White Elephant hotel that continues to be rated among the top hotels in the world by Travel + Leisure and Condé Nast Traveler magazines.

As part of the expansion, the Village will have its own lobby, including reception area, concierge, fireplace, gift shop, and business center. The lobby will serve morning coffee, pastries, all-day snacks, and late-afternoon port and cheese – creating a natural hub for guests. All guests of the White Elephant Village will continue to enjoy exclusive use of the Village’s heated pool and cabanas, fitness center, and complimentary bicycles.

Celebrated Nantucket interior designer Kathleen Hay will bring a warm, neutral palette to the Inn, providing a sophisticated and comfortable décor. Reflecting the ambiance of its island location, the Inn will feature oversized windows, allowing natural sunlight to illuminate the rooms, and quintessential Nantucket wainscoting detail throughout the lobby and corridors. Each of the suites and deluxe guest rooms will be replete with HD flat-screen TVs and miniature refrigerators as well as linens by Pratesi, plush turkish towels, bathrobes, and cozy slippers. Ideal for families, the 14 suites will offer sofa beds to accommodate couples traveling with children and four of the suites will feature fireplaces.

Managing Director of Nantucket Island Resorts Khaled Hashem sees this expansion as a positive sign that tourism in Nantucket is continuing to grow. “We are excited with the addition of the Inn that will further enable us to host families and groups in the award winning accommodations these travelers expect from the White Elephant.”

*The iconic White Elephant hotel and White Elephant Hotel Residences will open for the season on April 19. Guests can book now for suites and guest rooms this summer at the Inn at the White Elephant Village.

For more information visit www.nantucketislandresorts.com or call 800.475.2637.

 

About Nantucket Island Resorts

Nantucket Island Resorts is a collection of premier hotels on Nantucket that specialize in bringing the unique Nantucket lifestyle to all guests. From boating to fine dining to a large number of island festivals and events, Nantucket Island Resorts caters to its visitors and offers vacation planning that lets you get the most out of a Nantucket vacation while staying in a fantastic array of accommodations. Properties include The Wauwinet, ideal for romance with access and views of both bay and ocean beaches and home to the award-winning TOPPER’S restaurant, White Elephant, the iconic hotel located right on Nantucket Harbor that offers a lovely arrangements of rooms, suites, cottages, and a stunning loft as well as the Brant Point Grill, the White Elephant Village offers one-, two-, and three-bedroom Residences and the new Inn, Jared Coffin House, a historic and charming inn located in Nantucket Town, The Cottages & Lofts at the Boat Basin, waterfront cottages with full kitchens located on three wharves jutting out into Nantucket Harbor and featuring 12 pet-friendly accommodations, and Nantucket Boat Basin, a 240 slip full-service award winning marina.

a light show down under!

January 5th, 2012

Image courtesy of http://www.airlinesanddestinations.com.

Sydney, Australia, already voted one of the Top 10 Most Beautiful Cities at Night by TripAdvisor, becomes even more stunning this spring (or shall we say fall?). From May 25-June 11, Sydney Harbor will once again transform for Vivid Sydney, the largest celebration of light, music, and ideas in the Southern Hemisphere. For these 17 days, the Sydney Opera House sails will be illuminated by more than 50 light-art sculptures and large-scale installations and projections.

Catch the best views of the event at the newly redesigned Park Hyatt Sydney in the Rocks District, reopening in February. With its incredible views of the Sydney Harbor, you can have the best seat in the house in your own room!

The festival will also feature contemporary music performances at Vivid LIVE at the Sydney Opera House; international creative-industry conferences; and the new Vivid Ideas Exchange, a hub for creative ideas, discussion, and debate at the Museum of Contemporary Art. For more information on Vivid Sydney, visit www.vividsydney.com

For more information on Park Hyatt Sydney, click here.

new name, new look

November 15th, 2010

Anantara Bophut

Anantara Bophut Resort & Spa has exciting changes in the air! Formerly Anantara Koh Samui, the new name isn’t the only thing new going on. In January, the resort will have 20 additional executive suites and villas available for guests seeking a little R&R along the Gulf of Thailand.

The new suites will be spread among a new three-story villa with panoramic views not too far from the five new, intimate Pool Villas and new one- and two-bedroom Beach Villas.  Decisions, decisions!

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