August 31, 2011
By: Mary Winston Nicklin
Just because Labor Day weekend is right around the corner, doesn't mean you need to start mourning the end of summer. Several beach resorts in Saint Lucia are inviting travelers to extend the holidays with the "Endless Summer" promotion. Soak up the sunshine, fruity rum cocktail in hand, while sprawled out on some of the prettiest (and most pristine) beaches in the Caribbean. Here's a sampling of the packages:
*The Jalousie Plantation, Sugar Beach is offering reduced rates on the Luxury Villa and Superior Luxury Villa categories—a savings of close to US$100 per night. Guests will also enjoy complimentary breakfast and dinner daily for two adults (excluding drinks). Room rates start at US$499 and US$599. (Rates exclude 18% tax and service charge). Valid for travel up to September 30, 2011.
*Guests can enjoy savings up to 50% at the Discovery at Marigot Bay Hotel when they visit between October 1st and December 19, 2011.
*Anse Chastanet Summer Early Promotion. Enjoy a 4th and 7th night free. Rates, per couple, in Standard, Superior, Beachside Deluxe accommodation respectively are: US$330/$420/$525. Add breakfast and dinner for US $160 per couple daily. Add an all inclusive meal plan for US$310 per couple daily. Travel through October 15, 2011.
*Cap Maison's "Caribbean, Here I Come" offer means 30% off stays of 4 nights or more, with a Food and Beverage credit of US$200 included. Travel through December 19, 2011. Book by August 31, 2011!
Good news for all you toiletry hoarders out there. The Four Seasons hotel chain has announced that it will be changing to paraben-free toiletries after numerous studies have linked the chemical paraben to certain cancers. As The USA Today Hotel Check-In blog reports, Four Seasons is rolling out a new line of bath products by L'Occitane: "The move coincides with the Four Seasons chain's broader effort to use more natural products in its spas." City hotels have already started to replace their toiletry inventory, and Four Seasons resorts will start receiving their shipments in September. And by the end of this year, all Four Seasons hotels will feature an organic, chemical-free product in their spas.
Pictured: The Four Seasons Punta Mita in Mexico.
The owners of the Waikiki Edition changed their locks overnight, according to The Wall Street Journal, installing new management, kicking out Marriott International Inc., even changing the signs. Marriott partnered with hotel pioneer Ian Schrager to launch the trendy new brand, but since the debut of the Waikiki property, it has floundered. The owners filed "a lawsuit in New York Supreme Court that Marriott had failed to make the flashy new Edition hotel brand a success, resulting in the Waikiki location underperforming relative to its market." Marriott has also opened an Edition hotel in Istanbul, and planned to open additional properties in London and Miami Beach. What's next in this dramatic hotel saga? Will Marriott regain control of the Edition? Only time will tell...
Escape to a private island resort in the South Pacific for a romantic getaway. Turtle Island, a favorite haunt of celebrities, is giving away an $1,000 air credit when you book a five-night stay. What's more, they'll throw in two extra nights for free. With over 500 acres for just 14 couples at a time, Turtle Island is the ultimate honeymoon hideaway. Discover what Andrew Harper calls "as close to heaven on earth as you’re likely to get." Rates include all meals, drinks, and activities like sport fishing and scuba diving. The Washington Post researched the rates: A seven-night stay is $12,495 in a two-room beachfront cottage. Stay December 1, 2011-April 30, 2012.
Whether you're looking to tear it up on the slopes in Colorado, lounge by the beach on St. Lucia, go snorkeling in Jamaica, or savor some Southwestern flavor in Santa Fe, RockResorts is giving you the chance. Score lavish accommodations at affordable prices with a 96-hour sale with rooms starting from just $96 a night. Available for travel seven days a week through April 8, 2012, this offer must be booked by Wednesday, August 31, 2011, at Midnight MDT. Check out some of these fab destinations: The Osprey at Beaver Creek, The Pines Lodge in Beaver Creek, Hotel Jerome in Aspen, Keystone Lodge and Spa, The Lodge at Vail, The Arrabelle at Vail Square, The Landings St. Lucia in the West Indies, Half Moon in Jamaica, Snake River Lodge & Spa in Wyoming, Tempo in Miami, and La Posada de Santa Fe.
Where are Americans lusting to travel to right now? According to a recent poll by Harris Interactive, Italy is the top choice for vacations. When 2,183 American adults were surveyed about their top pick for travel outside of the U.S. (irrespective of cost), the No. 1 pick, for the second year in a row, was Italy. The poll results are not new; Italy has been a top pick for Americans for some time - it has ranked as either the first or second choice for the past 8 years in The Harris Poll. Coming in No. 2: Great Britain, followed by Australia in 3rd place. Rounding out this year's top 5 are Ireland (4) and France (5).
Pictured: The Grand Hotel Vesuvio in Naples.
Turquoise water, crescent-shaped beaches, a perfect Mediterranean climate... Paradise found in the Greek Isles. Porto Zante Villas and Spa is located on the island of Zakynthos, the third largest of the Ionian Islands, just west of the Greek mainland. Its contemporary-style villas-- some equipped with private pools-- all face the sea, and boast dreamy amenities (like Bulgari bath products and Valentino robes). No wonder this place is frequently named one of the "best hideaways" in the Greek isles.
There's a new hotel on the block in Baltimore. Four Seasons is building a temple to luxury on the water in Harbor East, "the city's hippest new district" (to quote the hotel's official website). Billed as a "chic, five-star, resort-like getaway," the new urban retreat is now accepting reservations starting November 20, 2011. There will be a spa to be sure (this is Four Seasons we're talking about), and a restaurant by chef Michael Mina called Wit and Wisdom, a Tavern. Forget what you see on "The Wire" (the HBO hit); Balty's getting a makeover! The city was ranked by Forbes as America's third best shopping destination in 2010.
In the very heart of the City of Light, the buzzing of urban bees makes for a particularly magical sight. The Westin-Paris Vendôme has installed six beehives on its rooftop, from where bees dart over to the nearby Jardin des Tuileries and pollinate the trees and flowers. With no pesticides and a diverse flora, Paris sets the perfect scene for bees and honey production. Executive Chef Gilles Grasteau uses the honey produced at the hotel for his own culinary creations; plus, guests get a local alternative when it comes to choosing a little souvenir from Paris to take home. Rich in minerals and vitamins, honey is a natural antibiotic also known for its therapeutic and food values, and is the ideal ingredient for a healthy pause in the heart of buzzing paris. The Westin Paris-Vendôme offers a honey menu at the restaurant Le First, as well a honey facial treatment in its Six Senses Spa. Check out the video of the first honey harvest!
Too many rum drinks this summer? Don't fret. Parrot Cay is gearing up for Wellness Month in September, where guests can partake in juice cleanses to rejuvenate and detoxify their bodies. Participate in daily yoga and Pilates classes, learn healthful tips at cookery demonstrations featuring COMO Shambhala Cuisine by Executive Chef Daniel Moran, and get access to some of the world’s leading experts and therapists. You’ll come back feeling better than when you left! Book the "Fabulous Five" spa package-- five friends, five days, a new you-- for some serious post-summer rejuvenation. Here's what's included: five nights’ accommodation, breakfast, lunch and dinner including the choice of our healthful COMO Shambhala Cuisine menus. There is also one private supper for your group at the COMO Shambhala spa cottage provided. Your group of five will have full complimentary access to the schedule of daily activities at Parrot Cay, which includes private yoga sessions. Costs are from US$500 per night, based on two people sharing.