Who says an active vacation must deny the creature comforts? Backroads, the California tour experts, organize upscale adventures in exciting destinations worldwide. Unique itineraries include New Zealand, Croatia, Belize, the vineyards of California, the chateaux country of France, and the scenic mountains of Italy's Dolomite region. This summer, head to Yosemite and California's dramatic Sienna Nevada range. Hike and bike through dense forests and flowering meadows and enjoy the natural wonders of one the nation's most stunning national parks. It's no wonder Ansel Adams went gaga snapping photos here. Choose the "Premiere Inns" Family Adventure with Backroads and stay in superior accommodations while getting a taste of the Wild West in Cali's Gold Country. Backroads chooses inns which are among the world's best; the tour operator works closely with distinguished alliances like Relais & Chateaux and Small Luxury Hotels of the World, and guests are spoiled with award-winning facilities. This summer's 6 day/5 night tours start at $2,998.
The Easter Bunny, along with his assistant, Chickie, will be celebrating springtime in style at the Four Seasons Chicago this year. Hotel and brunch guests will be able to join them for a very festive Easter Candy Hunt at 10:00 am on Sunday, April 8th. The fun will then continue with an Easter Egg Roll in the hotel's State Room. All of these activities will definitely put everyone in the mood for the amazing brunch Executive Chef Kevin Hickey has planned. Over 100 delicious items, such as Leg of Spring Lamb with Mint Pesto, Tomato Crusted Filet of Halibut, and White Chocolate Lavender Creme Brulee, will be prepared and spread over six different stations. Seating will begin at 11:00 am and reservations are 95 USD per adult and 25 USD per child, plus tax and gratuity.
Of course, a good night's sleep is always required in order to be at peak performance for the Easter Candy Hunt. Families may wish to take advantage of the Four Season Chicago's special Easter weekend packages starting at 305 USD per night, with the purchase of Easter Brunch. Each child staying overnight on April 7th will also receive an Easter basket filled with adorable treats. Good thing the Easter Bunny and Chickie will be close at hand!
Ooh-la-la. Brown's Hotel in London, Rocco Forte's stylish and utterly-charming boutique hotel, has announced the latest seasonal pedicure offered in the Spa. The Chocolate and Champagne pedicure is 90 minutes of pure indulgence. Sip a glass of Taittinger Champagne while enjoying a super pedicure: soothing calf massage with warm melted chocolate, brown sugar exfoliation, foot soak in hot chocolate milk and paraffin wax foot wrap. Available until April 30, 2007. Priced from GBP 85 per person.
Construction has begun at the Sutton Place Hotel Vancouver, but not the kind that will drive guests away with closed guest rooms and amenities. The "Sutton Place Wine Merchant" is at the corner of Smithe and Burrard Street in Vancouver and will be an exclusive, retail wine boutique. Scheduled to open in July of this year, the "Wine Merchant" is on the ground level of La Grande Residence tower of the Hotel and will feature imported and domestic wines - many exclusive to Sutton Place. For the
winos oenophiles out there-
Regular wine tastings will take place, along with seminars and information sessions on wine making and the wine industry. Membership on a mailing list will keep customers informed of new products, special events and activities at the boutique. The Sutton Place Wine Merchant will be open seven days a week in order to serve the community and guests of the Hotel.
It's not too late to plan a fun-filled Easter weekend the whole family will enjoy. The Homestead is offering bargain rates and a slew of themed activities-- Easter brunch, egg dyeing for the kids, traditional Easter Egg Hunt with more than 4,000 eggs filled with toys and candy, and of course, a visit with the Easter Bunny-- for the coming weekend. Rates begin at just $249 for the weekend of April 6-8, 2007. Nestled in Virginia's beautiful Allegheny mountains, The Homestead is a National Historic Landmark which is ranked among the world's top Spa and Golf resorts. Since 1766, the historic hot springs have enticed guests to the naturally-heated pools at The Homestead, where one can also indulge in world-class facilities and an endless array of recreational activities.
On the edge of the Marais district, Murano Urban Resort has lured trendsetters and hedonistic hipsters to a cool, cutting-edge city oasis since its opening in late 2004. In a city where the grand Palace hotels have set the standard for luxury, this minimalist design hotel has been most welcome. Named for the Murano glass chandeliers, mirrors, and sculptures that adorn the 52-room hotel, Murano Urban Resort is a sensual delight of spectacular interior design: the bedrooms can be lit in six different colors to suit the mood, bathrooms are canvassed in black slate, and the fantastic lobby features a chesterfield sofa in white leather. And did we mention the impossibly cool gadgets, like the electronic fingerprint scanners to access the guest rooms? It comes as no surprise that the bar is one of the trendiest spots in the city, "lit by thousands of stalactite-shaped lights suspended from the ceiling." Open seven days a week until 2 a.m., the bar-lounge offers light meals in addition to aperitifs and cocktails.
PS. Coming soon: an Anne Semonin spa with swimming pool and hammam.
April 2, 2007
By: Editorial AdvisoryBoard
It is truly a family affair in London and it's about time. In an unprecedented move, Claridge's (the luxury hotel within easy reach of Hyde Park, Park Lane, Bond Street and Oxford Street) is offering a Family Package with two rooms for the price of one which are interconnecting or adjacent. During the family holidays what better way to treat the family than to spend it with Claridge's in London? And of course, while you are there, don't forget to take advantage of the specially created children's menu available from room service, children's bathrobes and slippers, kids gift pack, board games, children's books or any of the other specials the hotel provides for the kids. Check rates and availability for your family's travel dates and look for room description that includes the words "Family Accommodation" to get 2 rooms with just one reservation (and price)! But make sure you reserve soon, it's almost too good to be true.
Forget seven-star hotels or underwater resorts. Floating pyramids are "the new dimension in luxury lodging," to quote CNN. The Swedish-based Oceanic-Creations is in the business of designing floating buildings. Their first project? The $209 million Maya Hotel located south of Cancun, slated to open in 2010. This pyramid-shaped hotel will float in the crystal clear Caribbean waters with the help of a new composite material, normally used in the defense industry, which is billed as six times lighter and ten times stronger than steel.
March 30, 2007
By: Mary Winston Nicklin
Discover an oasis in the middle of Dubai. Desert Palm polo estate, with four championship polo fields, riding school, stables for over 300 horses, and vast green landscapes, is the setting for a chic boutique resort and spa. The grounds are meticulously manicured; beautiful gardens and swaying palm trees rise from the dramatic desert landscape. The resort is impossibly cool, with ‘naturally modern’ guest rooms and villas, a sensuous spa experience at Lime, gorgeous infinity pool, and excellent dining (fresh produce is flown in daily from around the world). But polo fans will really swoon. (After all, the owner's Dubai Polo Team has won both the two most prestigious and world-renowned high goal events in England: The Queens Cup and The Gold Cup.) Desert Palm Retreat showcases Dubai as a key destination in the world of international polo, hosting key polo tournaments such as the Cartier International Challenge Cup.
March 30, 2007
By: Editorial AdvisoryBoard
Here's a challenge to test your luxury travel savvy. Do you know this hotel? Take a guess, leave us a comment letting us know which hotel you think this photo belongs to, and check back next week for the answer and new image.
Helpful Hints: A 'Complex' Desert Oasis, Paradise on the Gulf, Three in One ...
Thanks to everyone who guessed last week, and yes, the hotel is in New York City, but no one guessed the hotel correctly -