Kick off those ugg boots and give your cold, scaly, winter feet a break at the Cheeca Lodge and Spa. After all, their motto is "Barefoot Elegance." The resort is set on 27 lush acres on Islamorada, the most perfect little island in the Florida Keys archipelago. Besides its proximity to the only tropical coral reef in the continental U.S., the island is plugged as the sport fishing capital of the world, with 600 species of fish in the surrounding turquoise waters. But this is not just a paradise for anglers and snorkelers; Cheeca's got a heavenly spa with lap pool, Jack Nicklaus-designed golf course, six lighted tennis courts, saltwater lagoon stocked full of fish, a myriad of water sports, brand new Deluxe Beachfront Bungalows with private balconies and gardens, and award-winning dining.
Hawaii's luxurious Princeville Resort—the gorgeous destination hotel on the north shore of the paradise of Kaua'i—touts their customized Hawaiian Sensory Room Experience, designed to "enhance smell, sight, touch, sound and taste to create a harmonious environment." This means your room is flooded with Maile Mist, an in-room aromatherapy program derived from the Maile vine indigenous to Hawaii, while a CD of traditional Hawaiian music floods your ears. Isn't it enough to be surrounded by some of the most exquisite natural scenery on the planet? Why have to recreate the Hawaii experience in the guestroom too? You might as well be at home in Tucson blasting Hawaiian tunes and slathering Maile lotion after a shower.
Just when I thought there was no more real estate available on the strip. Shangri-La announced plans today to manage a new 400 room hotel scheduled to open in 2010. To quote their regional Vice President:
We believe that Las Vegas offers great potential for us. It is a market that is evolving quite rapidly and radically [and] we are beginning to see brand name hotels coming to Las Vegas.Hmm. But just when will the boom go bust? Can Vegas really sustain this kind of growth? (Hell- where is the water coming from in the middle of the desert? Will LA really continue to put up with this pillaging of water rights? Let the battle begin.)
Act fast. The Sofitel Lafayette Square just announced record-low rates for January. Like $175 low. (That's a whopping 65 percent off!) But hurry- there's a limited number of rooms available! A gorgeous historic landmark building in a killer location, luxurious comfort, and superior service: this is the spot for your next business meeting in DC.
Sofitel Lafayette Square, Official Site
Sofitel Lafayette Square, Five Star Alliance
Is Aujourd'hui really all that? Sure, it's got a choice spot as the dining room for the old-world-elegant Four Seasons Boston, views of the Public Gardens, a French menu as decadent as the decor. And it's one of only two in Massachusetts to receive the AAA Five Diamond Award, Zagat drools over it (#1 in Boston in almost every category), and both Food and Wine and Gourmet magazines claim it's the best restaurant in Boston. I still need convincing.
From now until the end of March, stay at participating Conrad hotels and you'll receive double points. Valid at all 19 of Conrad's award-winning hotels—spread around the globe from Chicago to Bali to Tokyo to Istanbul. Heading to Chitown on business? The latest addition to the Conrad family-- the Conrad Chicago-- awaits on the Magnificent Mile. Desperate for a beach-break? The Conrad Bali is a stunning sanctuary among lagoons, cascading waterfalls, and gorgeous gardens. Or discover the modern luxury of the Conrad Tokyo. The choice is yours.
Bye, bye Fairmont Kansas City. Intercontinental's taking over the AAA four-diamond property. Consistently rated as KC's best hotel, the name-in-transition hotel is opening soon as the Intercontinental Kansas City at the Plaza. The team at IC hotels group has planned all sorts of marvelous upgrades to the property, including room renovations, which will take place throughout 2006 and 2007. It's got a kick-ass location in the Country Club Plaza area, just minutes away from the city's entertainment district with outdoor museum and oodles of boutiques and restaurants. Additionally, the hotel boasts a fantastic fitness center with spa treatment rooms, outdoor pool, fine dining at the Oak Room, and balconies on all 366 guestrooms.
Have some romantic recs for Valentine's Day? (Don't be jaded, now....) Bursting at the seams to share your favorite romantic destination, story or restaurant? We'd love to hear 'em. Send in your stories or hotel suggestions and we'll publish them here or in our monthly newsletter.
January 4, 2006
By: Guest Writer
By Luxury Larry of World Extravagant
One of the biggest movies to hit the screens this year will surely be the Da Vinci Code, based on the best selling novel, starring Tom Hanks and directed by Ron Howard. Many people do not know, but the chateau which is featured extensively throughout the book, Chateau de Villette, actually exists and parts of the upcoming movie were filmed on location.
Only 35 minutes outside Paris, Chateau Villette does exist and is one of the most historical chateaux in all of France. The property was built in the late 1700s by Jules Hardouin Mansart, and has 17 bedrooms each with its own private bathroom on 185 acres of gorgeous grounds which were landscaped originally by the Sun King's personal gardener, Andre Le Notre, complete with lake, swimming pool, tennis court, and hunting grounds.
Even though you feel as if you were in the 17th century, there is a modern telephone system accessible from each room, in addition to wireless Internet connection. The chateau is a spectacular location for family vacations, weddings, seminars, product promotions, business meetings, elegant parties and other special events.
By: Guest Writer
Thank God for the Washington Post, which put together this sweet list of global happenings for the new year, including the Turin Olympic Winter Games and the centennial of the San Francisco Earthquake.