Archive for February, 2018

Snow.com 96-Hour Sale Offers Best Values on Mountain Getaways Across Vail Resorts Destinations

February 27, 2018
Park City UT_20170326_743e2 (c) Karen Rubin

Park City, Utah: Take advantage of Vail Resorts’ 96-hour vacation sale, Feb. 27-March 2 at snow.com © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

BROOMFIELD, Colo.– Beginning at 12:01 a.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 27, the Snow.com 96-Hour Sale clock starts ticking with the best values on mountain getaways across Vail Resorts and RockResorts destinations, including Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Keystone, Park City, Lake Tahoe, Whistler Blackcomb and Grand Teton National Park. http://www2.snow.com/info/96hoursale

COLORADO

Vail is a premier mountain resort where vibrant alpine villages are surrounded by the snow-capped peaks of the Rockies. Combined with exceptional terrain, award-winning dining and unique lodging options, Vail provides an incomparable experience that suits every taste and budget. Discover a lively mix of locals and guests from around the world, and enjoy a quintessential mountain resort experience in Vail. 96-Hour Sale lodging rates start at $279 per night or up to 40 percent off at The Lodge at Vail, A RockResort.

Skiers flock to Beaver Creek year after year to enjoy legendary service, world-class skiing, and an intimate alpine village. Beaver Creek’s terrain for all abilities and on-mountain gourmet dining combined with boutique shopping and lodging make for unforgettable vacations. 96-Hour Sale lodging rates start at $199 per night or up to 30 percent off at The Pines Lodge, A RockResort.

There’s something special about Breckenridge – it’s more than the mountain, and it’s more than the town. Skiers and snowboarders choose Breck for the feeling, the experiences, and the unique culture and the spirit of the community that can’t be found anywhere else. 96-Hour Sale lodging rates start at $99 per night or up to 40 percent off at the Village Hotel.

Keystone Resort is the ultimate family resort destination offering three incredible peaks, five bowls, night skiing, and in-bounds cat skiing. It is also known for its Kids Ski Free program, where kids 12 and younger can ski and ride for free every day with just two or more nights of lodging booked through the resort. Enjoy a Spring Break to remember with March vacation savings, plenty of sun and snow and the Kidtopia Music Experience event, March 2-10, featuring family-friendly concerts, free Kidtopia daily activities, a village parade, fireworks shows and more. 96-Hour Sale lodging rates start at $116 per night or up to 40 percent off at Keystone Resort properties.

Keystone Mountain Resort

Skiing Keystone, Colorado. March brings not only vacation savings, but Kidtopia Music Experience event, March 2-10, featuring family-friendly concerts and free Kidtopia daily activities, © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Getting around the pedestrian-friendly resort towns of Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge and Keystone is easy, so there’s no need to rent a vehicle when guests can take advantage of the friendly and convenient transportation service offered by Colorado Mountain Express. Book during the 96-Hour Sale to save 20 percent on shared shuttles, private SUVs for up to five guests, or private vans for up to 10 guests. Rates from Denver International Airport for travel through April 16 start at $54 to Breckenridge or Keystone; and $69 to Vail or Beaver Creek. All shuttles include complimentary Wi-Fi on board.

UTAH

Located just 35 minutes from the Salt Lake City International Airport, Park City is a world-class mountain destination providing more than 7,300 skiable acres of diverse terrain suited for every skier and rider. With the forecast calling for spring sunshine and great snow, Park City is the place to be this spring. 96-Hour Sale lodging rates offer savings of up to 40 percent and start at $119 per night at DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Park City or $157 per night at the Silverado Lodge.

CALIFORNIA / NEVADA

With a wide selection of vacation homes in beautiful South Lake Tahoe, Lake Tahoe Lodging Company has everything skiers and snowboarders need to plan a winter escape. With mountain chalets, slopeside condos or executive homes, guests will be located close to Heavenly and all that the South Shore of beautiful Lake Tahoe has to offer. 96-Hour Sale lodging rates offer savings of up to 30 percent and start at $107 per night at Aston Lakeland Village or $299 at Zalanta.

World-class conditions on a pristine mountain high above beautiful Lake Tahoe paired with a vibrant slopeside village filled with shopping, dining and family fun make up Northstar California, what Travel + Leisure named one of the Top Ski Resorts Perfect for Families. 96-Hour Sale lodging rates start at $96 per night or up to 30 percent off at Aspen Grove Studios.

Kirkwood offers small town attitude with big mountain skiing and riding in the deepest, driest snow around and some of North America’s most diverse and challenging terrain. 96-Hour Sale lodging rates start at $96 or up to 30 percent off at the Meadows.

Kirkwood e (c) Laini Miranda

Skiing Kirkwood in Tahoe, California © Laini Miranda/goingplacesfarandnear.com

WHISTLER BLACKCOMB

Spanning 8,171 acres, the vast and varied terrain of Whistler Blackcomb will entice first-time skiers and seasoned shredders alike. Two side-by-side mountains are connected by the Guinness World Record-holding PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola and supported by one of the largest networks of high-speed chairlifts in the world. And with one of the longest ski seasons on the continent, it has all the makings of a top-ranked resort for a reason. 96-Hour Sale lodging rates are available at up 30 percent off across multiple properties, including Lodging Ovations.

VERMONT

Stowe Mountain Resort, now part of Vail Resorts, is also offering the 96-Hour Sale Save up to 50% on lodging stays through the end of the ski season (April 15, 2018).

BOOK IN ADVANCE FOR MORE MOUNTAIN VACATION VALUES

Skiers and snowboarders looking for the best prices on lift tickets can use their smartphone or computer to purchase tickets online in advance at www.snow.com/lifttickets. By purchasing lift tickets seven or more days in advance online, guests will receive the biggest savings – up to 25 percent – and the lowest price, guaranteed. Advance purchase tickets can be sent directly to a guest’s mailbox, allowing them to bypass the ticket window. Or guests can easily pick up their tickets at the resorts’ Epic Day Express windows. Once a guest has a hard card ticket, they can even load more days onto the card by purchasing additional days online. Guests can also save by booking ski school lessons online in advance at www.snow.com/skischoolSki and snowboard rentals across Colorado, California and Utah can be booked online to save up to 20 percent. Many locations also offer complimentary delivery to your hotel, condominium or residence. www.rentskis.com

WYOMING

Acclaimed for its spectacular wildlife viewing, Grand Teton Lodge Company provides a mountain experience not soon to be forgotten. Located within the park are lodging options ranging from cozy campgrounds to charming full-service lodge rooms, cabins and cottages, open seasonally from late-May to early-October. Enjoy rustic elegance in one of 36 cabins and five-star dining at Jenny Lake Lodge; visit the historic Jackson Lake Lodge with 385 guest rooms; get closer to nature with quaint cabins and tent cabins at Colter Bay Village; or unplug at Headwaters Lodge & Cabins at Flagg Ranch. With each accommodation, guests can listen to elk bugle outside their door and spot bison, moose, bear and other wildlife roaming free among the majestic backdrop of the Tetons. Rates start at $198 per night or up to 30 percent off at Headwaters Lodge & Cabins. www.GTLC.com

Vail Resorts, Inc., through its subsidiaries, operates 11 world-class mountain resorts and three urban ski areas, including Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge and Keystone in Colorado; Park City in Utah; Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood in the Lake Tahoe area of California and Nevada; Whistler Blackcomb in British Columbia, Canada; Perisher in Australia; Stowe in Vermont; Wilmot Mountain in Wisconsin; Afton Alps in Minnesota and Mt. Brighton in Michigan. Vail Resorts owns and/or manages a collection of casually elegant hotels under the RockResorts brand, as well as the Grand Teton Lodge Company in Jackson Hole, Wyo. Vail Resorts Development Company is the real estate planning and development subsidiary of Vail Resorts, Inc. For information, visit www.snow.com.

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Regent Seven Seas Adds New Immersive Luxury Cruises to Cuba for 2019

February 21, 2018
Regent Seven Seas Navigator, in New York City

Regent Seven Seas Cruises, the only North American luxury cruise line to be granted permission to offer voyages to Cuba, is adding more visits to the Caribbean island on two itineraries in 2019 and 2020. Havana is also being added into Seven Seas Navigator’s April 25, 2020 voyage, here during a recent call in New York City © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

MIAMI – Regent Seven Seas Cruises, the only North American luxury cruise line to be granted permission to offer voyages to Cuba, is adding more visits to the Caribbean island on two itineraries in 2019 and 2020. Seven Seas Mariner will offer the line’s first immersive Cuba itinerary on her October 15, 2019 voyage, calling on Havana, Cienfuegos and Santiago de Cuba, providing guests more opportunities to engage in group, people-to-people activities intended to enhance contact with the Cuban people, and to immerse in the island’s culture. Havana is also being added into Seven Seas Navigator’s April 25, 2020 voyage.

“We are proud to have been the first North American luxury line to call on Cuba and are delighted to offer more opportunities for travelers to visit such a historic and culture-rich destination,” said Jason Montague, president and chief executive officer of Regent Seven Seas Cruises. “On these eight future sailings that visit Cuba, guests will be treated to informative presentations from experts and scholars, as well as enjoy our distinctive, highly personalized service from every member of our exceptional staff and crew.”

As part of Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ most-inclusive luxury experience, guests have the widest selection of free and unlimited, expertly crafted Cuba shore excursions in compliance with the Office of Foreign Assets Control’s (OFAC) regulations. Guests can meet with the people of Cuba and explore the island’s music, art, history and culture while enjoying as many shore excursions as their time allows.

In Havana, guests can walk in the storied steps of Ernest Hemingway and learn about the city’s Baroque, neoclassical and Renaissance architecture. From Cienfuegos, guests can visit Valle de los Ingenios (Valley of the Sugar Mills) and Trinidad, both deemed World Heritage sites for their well-preserved, Colonial-era architecture, and learn about traditional pottery methods at a family-owned workshop along the way. Santiago de Cuba will offer even greater context to events that changed the course of Cuban history, where guests can visit San Juan Hill and learn about the 18th century battle which led to the end of Spanish rule.

Seven Seas Mariner made Regent’s maiden call on Havana in April 2017. Travelers can choose among eight future itineraries that offer guests an opportunity to visit Cuba. Seven Seas Mariner’s October 10, 2018 voyage, will call again on Havana on its trans-Panama Canal voyage to the South Pacific, while the ship’s new October 15, 2019 voyage will offer three Cuban ports. Caribbean itineraries that also visit Havana are Seven Seas Navigator’s November 11, 2018 and April 25, 2020 voyages; and Seven Seas Voyager’s December 6 and 16, 2018, February 6, and March 5, 2019 voyages.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises offers one the world’s most inclusive luxury experiences with a four-ship fleet that visits more than 450 destinations around the world. Seven Seas Mariner’s upcoming 2018 drydock refurbishment will conclude Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ $125 million refurbishment program to elevate the elegance of the whole fleet to the standard set by Seven Seas Explorer. In early 2020, Regent will launch Seven Seas Splendor. The cruise line’s fares include all-suite accommodations, round-trip business-class air on intercontinental flights from U.S. and Canada, the largest collection of free, unlimited shore excursions, unlimited internet access, highly personalized service, exquisite cuisine, fine wines and spirits, prepaid gratuities, ground transfers and one-night, pre-cruise hotel package for guests staying in Concierge-level suites and higher.

For more information about the world’s most inclusive luxury experience, or to make a reservation, contact a professional travel agent, visit www.RSSC.com, or call 1-844-4REGENT (1-844-473-4368).

 

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Iceland, Colombia, Vietnam Top List of Emerging Destinations for 2018, US Tour Operators Say

February 12, 2018
I

Iceland was named top emerging or “off-the-beaten-path” destination for 2018 by US tour operators © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

NEW YORK – In a survey of US tour operators, Iceland was named top emerging or “off-the-beaten-path” destination for 2018, moving to the top spot from second in last year’s member survey.  Colombia followed in second, with Vietnam named as third.

When asked for the five most popular or “hot” international destinations for travelers in 2018, members of the US Tour Operators Association (USTOA) named Australia, Spain, Iceland and Italy (tied for third), France, and Japan.  On the domestic front, USTOA members forecast California, Florida and Hawaii (tied for second), New York, Alaska and Nevada (tied for fourth) and Washington DC as the most popular U.S. destinations for clients in 2018.

Members were also asked to name the destinations/sites most “at risk” from disappearing (from over-tourism, climate change or other factors) that travelers should see now. The top three chosen were Antarctica, Cuba and Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.

Arts and culture, adventure, family, and culinary were cited as the most popular travel categories for passengers by survey participants.

In the annual survey of travel forecasts and trends, the tour operators report a strikingly positive outlook for the industry in the year ahead.  Nearly all (95%) USTOA tour operator members anticipate growth in sales for the year ending in 2018. Two thirds (64%) of members are “optimistic” and forecasting a “boom year” with growth anywhere from seven to 10% or higher.

After strong sales increases in 2017, “Member confidence levels for continued growth in 2018 are high,” said Terry Dale, president and CEO for USTOA.  “The reported growth and positive projections the year ahead are particularly encouraging. It speaks soundly to the remarkable resilience of both our industry as well as today’s traveler, who continues to explore, despite the challenges of an ever-changing world.”

While USTOA tour operator members view the forthcoming year with strong optimism, they also addressed the global risks that could impact potential growth in 2018. Terrorism is cited as the biggest threat to consumer confidence, followed by political instability, and global financial instability named third.

In addition, when asked which global events could have the greatest impact for the travel industry in 2018, more than one third (38%) named the sharing economy; a little more than a quarter (28%) cited the Chinese market.

Representing nearly $15 billion in revenue, the member companies of U.S. Tour Operators Association provide tours, packages and custom arrangements that allow 8.6 million travelers annually unparalleled access, insider knowledge, peace-of-mind, value and freedom to enjoy destinations and experiences across the entire globe.   Each member company has met the travel industry’s highest standards, including participation in the USTOA’s Travelers Assistance Program, which protects consumer payments up to $1 million if the company goes out of business. As a voice for the tour operator industry for more than 40 years, USTOA also provides education and assistance for consumers and travel agents. For more information on USTOA, visit www.ustoa.com.

 

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Timely Couponsforfun Savings at Family and Cultural Attractions for Presidents Day Weekend, Spring Break

February 12, 2018
nashville-082307 007e2 (c) Karen Rubin-Jackson-Hermitage

Visit The Hermitage in Nashville, Tennessee to walk through Andrew Jackson’s life and home with Couponsforfun discount © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Presidents Day is a time to remember past Presidents and also kicks off Spring Break around the country. Couponsforfun.com is a family and cultural attractions website, where you can take advantage of timely savings at Presidential libraries, historic homes and museums to thrilling theme parks, zoos and sport adventures.

Though new attractions are added all the time, especially in time for Presidents Day weekend, visitors will find savings at many Presidential libraries and homes.  For May’s Memorial Day weekend there are savings at many other patriotic sites including historic battleships, aviation museums, war museums and sites that played a part in America’s freedom. And visitors will find historic homes from many of America’s movers and shakers of their time.

Couponsforfun.com has savings coupons for attractions in California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and Wisconsin. No registration, or prepayment, is required. Simply choose the state or theme, then print out the coupon—some allow coupons to be shown on smartphones (noted on coupons).

Many of of the attractions included in Couponsforfun.com are not found on other discount websites, which take commission. Participating family and cultural attractions do not pay to participate, but are encouraged to supply good offers.

Find savings for youngsters at many children’s museums, zoos and aquariums; for school age kids at science and discovery museums, caverns, Indian villages, dinosaur museums, historic ships, air museums and theme parks; adventurers will find zip lines, white water rafting, whale watching,  kayaking and Everglade rides; and those more culturally inclined will find many museums, gardens, historic homes and sites. And many more types of family and cultural attractions.

Here are details of timely offers at Presidential Libraries and homes currently on couponsforfun.com:

ABRAHAM LINCOLN

ABRAHAM LINCOLN PRESIDENTIAL LIBRARY & MUSEUM – Springfield, IL – A visit to the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum, the heart of the Lincoln legacy, is an inspiring experience for all ages. In a stunning combination of scholarship and showmanship, the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum immerses you in Lincoln’s world and time. From a rustic Indiana cabin to the White House, follow the fate of America’s 16th president and share the joys and sorrows of a family – and a nation.

ABRAHAM LINCOLN LIBRARY & MUSEUM – Harrogate, TN – The Library and Museum is situated in the area’s First Frontier region and houses one of the finest Lincoln and Civil War collections in the world. Over 30,000 items rotate in displays telling the life story of our revered 16th President, his personal rendezvous with history, and the devastation of war. Lincoln helped shape our nation during this country’s Civil War. This story of tragedy and triumph is included in exhibit areas and Museum programming.

THE LINCOLN MUSEUM – Hodgenville, KY – Kentucky’s official Lincoln Museum, the main exhibit includes twelve dioramas (life-size wax figures set in three dimensional displays) showing pivotal times in Abraham Lincoln’s life-from his boyhood in Kentucky to his assassination. Other exhibits include rare newspaper clippings, campaign posters and Lincoln memorabilia. An art gallery on the second floor features original paintings, drawings and other artwork portraying Lincoln.

MARY TODD LINCOLN HOUSE – Lexington, KY – The family home of Mrs. Lincoln opened to the public in 1977. Mary Todd, born in December 1818, resided at the house until she moved to Springfield, Illinois in 1839 to live with her elder sister. There she met and married Abraham Lincoln, whom she brought to visit this home in the fall of 1847. Today, the 14-room house contains period furniture, family portraits, and furnishings from the Todds as well as the Lincolns.

ANDREW JACKSON

ANDREW JACKSON’S HERMITAGE – Nashville, TN – Visit The Hermitage in Nashville, Tennessee to walk through Andrew Jackson’s life and home. Explore a beautiful, vintage Tennessee farm and experience an important piece of Nashville and our nation. Rated the third best Presidential Site in the nation by USA TODAY, this is a must see for any visitor to Music City! Don’t miss “Andrew Jackson: Born for a Storm,” the all new visitor experience and exhibit.

HARRY S. TRUMAN 

HARRY S. TRUMAN PRESIDENTIAL LIBRARY & MUSEUM – Independence, MO – One of 13 U.S. Presidential libraries administered by the National Archives & Records Administration, the Library & Museum features interactive exhibits on the life and times of Harry S. Truman and his presidency. Among the exhibits, find a replica of the White House Oval Office and Truman’s working office in the Library. See the grave sites of Harry and Bess Truman, a Thomas Hart Benton mural, and a 45-minute documentary.

RONALD REAGAN

RONALD REAGAN BOYHOOD HOME – Dixon, IL – Tour the home where our 40th president grew up, a 4 room presidential timeline of photos, quotes and trivia and a 10 minute video (includes footage of Ronald Reagan talking about his youth here). More than 8,000 visitors a year – from across the country and around the world come to explore and to learn more about the roots of one of America’s most beloved leaders. Seasonal: April – December.

GEORGE W. BUSH 

GEORGE W. BUSH CHILDHOOD HOME – Midland, TX – Listed on the National Registry of Historic Sites and restored to the 1950s period when the Bush family lived in the home, this home is a unique landmark as the home of two future American presidents. You’ll see a 1950s restoration with period furnishings, learn about Midland in the 1950s and hear about the Bush family and their impact on Midland and the country. Visit our gift shop for interesting souvenirs, gifts, books and clothing.

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15 Restaurants Offer Meal Deals for Kids Night on Broadway Feb 27

February 6, 2018
NYC-Broadway_20160216_213147786e2 (c) Karen Rubin

Fifteen Times Square area restaurants will be participating in the 22nd Kids’ Night on Broadway, which will take place Tuesday, February 27, 2018 © Karen Rubin/ goingplacesfarandnear.com

New York, NY – Fifteen Times Square area restaurants will be participating in the 22nd Kids’ Night on Broadway, which will take place Tuesday, February 27, 2018, The Broadway League announced. Each eatery will offer specials for Kids’ Night on Broadway ticket-holders, including free entrees for young theatergoers. Check KidsNight.Broadway for more dining details, as well as parking offers.

Christy AltomareEthan Slater, and Lea Salonga will serve as ambassadors. Christy Altomare is appearing in the role of Anya in Anastasia. Ethan Slater can now be seen making his Broadway debut in the title role in SpongeBob SquarePants the musical. Lea Salonga, a Tony Award® winning actress, is currently starring in Once On This Island in the role of Erzulie.

Participating 2018 restaurants include: Basera Indian Bistro, Glass House Tavern, Ikinari Steak, Nizza, Planet Hollywood, Playwright Celtic Pub, Playwright Tavern, Schnippers, Sen Sakana, Southern Hospitality Restaurant, Toloache Restaurant, Tony’s Di Napoli, Utsav, Virgil’s Real Barbecue, and 5 Napkin Burger (subject to change). 

Participating 2018 shows to date include: AladdinAnastasiaThe Band’s VisitBeautiful: The Carole King MusicalA Bronx TaleCome From AwayChicagoFarinelli and the KingKinky BootsThe Lion KingOnce On This IslandThe Phantom of the OperaThe Play That Goes WrongSchool of RockSpongeBob SquarePants, and Wicked (subject to change).

Kids’ Night on Broadway is an annual event where kids 18 and under can attend participating Broadway shows for free when accompanied by a full-paying adult. A Kids’ Night on Broadway ticket includes restaurant discounts, parking discounts, activities, and more. On Tuesday, February 27 2018, select shows will offer in-theatre activities for kids including talkbacks, Kids’ Night on Broadway activity books, and more events still to be announced!

Kids’ Night on Broadway will also take place in multiple cities around the country, with different shows and venues putting their own spin on the event, on numerous dates throughout the year.

Kids’ Night on Broadway is a program of The Broadway League. It is generously presented by The New York Times and is sponsored by WABC-TV with additional support from Turnstyle and Westchester Family.

 

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Romantic Dining Spots to Take Your Valentine in NYC, Hamptons

February 6, 2018

This Valentine’s Day 2018, demonstrate your love by treating your special someone to an unforgettable dining experience. Here are some of the best dining ideas in New York and the Hamptons this February 14th.

New York, NY

♥   MAMO NYC

This Valentine’s Day, dine at charming SoHo Italian Provencal Restaurant MAMO. The New York outpost of Mamo Le Michelangelo located in Antibes, France, MAMO NYC will delight couples looking to dine in a rustic chic atmosphere, with its regular menu and Valentine’s Day specials including: Pan seared foie gras, apples, mache salad and truffle; Home-made lobster ravioli with fresh herbs; Roasted halibut, seasonal vegetables and champagne sauce; and White chocolate cake, raspberries, almonds and marinated pineapple for dessert.

MAMO is comprised of two distinct spaces, an intimate downstairs lounge and a comfortable 100-seated dining room upstairs. The multi-level space boasts rustic Provencal décor with old family images and movie posters that make guests feel instantly transported to the French Riviera. The menu is derived from Mammoliti family recipes passed down through generations and integrate market-fresh specials. The extensive wine list includes hand-selected bottles from Italy and France, and the cocktail list features special concoctions with an Italian twist.

MAMO
323 West Broadway (Btwn Canal & Grand Sts)
New York, NY 10013
646-964-4641
www.mamonyc.com

♥   Russian Samovar

This elegant eatery is the perfect spot to celebrate Valentine’s Day. Owned by Roman Kaplan and managed by his daughter Vlada Von Shats and her two sons Michael and Nicholas, this upscale establishment offers some of the finest Russian cuisine in New York. Located in the Theater District, Russian Samovar boasts a 19th-century feel, complete with picturesque green and red shades and Russian folk prints.

Aside from its authentic Russian dishes, it is known for its 26 flavored vodkas prepared in-house, including ginger, horseradish, lemon and cranberry. Delectable appetizers include Beluga and Osetra caviar, Blinis filled with salmon or caviar, the Assorted Fish Platter (in-house cured Salmon Gravlax with dill, Smoked Atlantic Salmon and Smoked Butterfish), Vol-au-Vent (a wild mushroom puff pastry), traditional Borscht, a Pate Russe laced with brandy, and Pelmeni Stroganoff, veal or chicken with sirloin tips in a creamy mushroom sauce. It is its signature entrees, however, that have put Russian Samovar on the culinary map. House specialties include Shashlik Karski (rack of lamb marinated in Georgian spices), Beef Stroganoff, Veal Pojarksi (ground veal and breast of chicken cutlets), Chicken Kiev and Pelmeni (veal, beef and chicken dumplings).

Russian Samovar Restaurant & Piano Bar 
256 West 52nd Street (At 8th Avenue)
New York, NY 10019
Facebook.com/RussianSamovarNY

♥   Demarchelier

Authentic French Bistro Demarchelier, owned by artist Eric Demarchelier (brother of famed fashion photographer Patrick Demarchelier), is sure to impress your date this Valentine’s Day. Demarchelier brings a little piece of France to New York City. Every meal that leaves its kitchen aims to capture the essence of authentic French bistro fair. The family owned and run Upper East Side restaurant radiates a comfortable, colorful, warm and familial spirit that has made it a neighborhood fixture for a quarter-century. Ideal for a quick bite to eat, a romantic rendez-vous, or a simple family meal. The traditional French menu is paired perfectly with a wide range of predominantly French wines.

Signature dishes include the Moules Mariniere Au Vin Blanc; Duck Confit served over a hearty mix of tomato and tarragon scented flageolets; and Pan Sautéed Sole Meuniere, accompanied by mixed vegetables. Demarchelier’s decadent dessert menu features flavorful dishes such as Tarte Fine Au Pommes, a flaky tart filled with warm apples and served with fresh vanilla ice cream; and Crepe Suzette, a classic French pancake drizzled with Grand Marnier.

Demarchelier
50 East 86th Street
(Between Madison & Park Ave)
New York, NY 10028
www.demarchelierrestaurant.com

♥   La Pulperia

The perfect spot for a romantic meal, La Pulperia Midtown serves rustic Latin cuisine with a contemporary twist. La Pulperia opened their first location in Hell’s Kitchen in 2014, followed by two additional locations on the Upper East Side and Midtown East. The restaurant is the creation of Victor Medina and Carlos Barroz, who also serves as the Executive Chef.  Named after the general stores found throughout South America, La Pulperia offers Barroz’s simple yet refined cuisine from the countries of Latin America with contemporary culinary influences from Spain and Italy.

This Valentine’s Day, La Pulperia’s three locations offer a special 3-course menu which includes a complimentary glass of cava per person. Dishes include a choice of Pan-Seared Diver Scallops (Cape May diver scallops, fried plantains, chipotle hummus, avocado) or Rib Eye Tiradito (grass-fed rib eye, aji amarillo, pickled red cabbage, avocado) for First Course; Stuffed Skate wing (lump crab meat stuffed skate wing, caramelized carrot risotto, truffle aioli) or Grilled Rib eye (grilled grass-fed rib eye, oven roasted potatoes, baby arugula, chimichurri) for Second Course; and Mezcal Chocolate Mousse (caramel glaze, 24k Gold leaves, expresso soil, hazelnut toffee, dulce de leche ice cream) or Tres Leche Pisco Latte (pisco-infused tres leches cake, strawberry mousse, yogurt chantilly, lucuma ice cream) for Dessert.
For more information, call 212 933 0757, or visit www.pulperianyc.com

La Pulperia UES
1626 Second Avenue
(Between 84th & 85th St)
New York, NY 10028

La Pulperia Midtown East
151 E 57th St
(Between 3rd Ave & Lexington Ave)
New York, NY 10022

La Pulperia Hell’s Kitchen
371 W 46th St
(Between 8rd Ave & 9th Ave)
New York, NY 10036

♥   Bobby Van’s Central Park South

For the steak lover, visit esteemed Bobby Van’s Steakhouse this Valentine’s Day. Bobby Van’s has earned its place as a venerable New York institution, thanks in part to a continued commitment to cooking techniques perfected years ago by the founding fathers of New York steakhouse cuisine. Bobby Van’s has grown from its original home in Bridgehampton, NY, and now includes a repertoire of ten fine restaurants that offer the refined style of a classic New York City steakhouse. The newest addition is Bobby Van’s on 40 Central Park South, a highly coveted location just steps away from the Plaza Hotel, and overlooking Central Park. It invites diners to the same exquisitely prepared dining experience as its sister restaurants, in addition to a special Saturday and Sunday brunch.

Bobby Van’s a la carte menu features favorites such as Crispy Calamari, Lemon Pepper Shrimp and Maxie’s Meatballs for Starter and Veal Milanese, Chilean Seabass and N.Y. Sirloin Steak for Entrée. The restaurant also offers a wide variety of dining options outside of prime beef and seafood, including supremely-prepared pastas, wood-fired pizzas and freshly tossed salads. To accompany the meal, diners have a choice of delicious sides, which include Cauliflower Carbonara, Thick Cut Applewood Bacon and Sautéed Mushrooms.

Bobby Van’s CPS
40 Central Park South
New York, NY 10019
(212) 369 4000
www.bobbyvans.com

♥   T-Bar Steak & Lounge

T-Bar Steak and Lounge is the popular spot for couples looking for a romantic dinner with outstanding cuisine in a casual yet elegant space. The restaurant’s charm is brought to life by a stylish, dark-wood accented dining room, frosted glass details and subtle back lighting. This Valentine’s Day under the watchful eye of Restauranteur Tony Fortuna, T-Bar will offer its regular a la carte menu, which features its signature prime beef steaks along with a mélange of grilled fish, chopped salads and pastas. Swoon over the decadent desert menu crafted by Executive Chef Ben Zwicker, which includes the famous Banana Parfait Mille Feuilles with coconut and caramel sauce.

T-Bar Steak & Lounge
1278 Third Avenue
New York, NY 10021
212-772-0404
www.tbarnyc.com/

Southampton, NY

♥   Union Cantina

For those who spend Valentine’s Day in the Hamptons, Union Cantina offers a romantic, intimate atmosphere, combined with a modern Mexican menu crafted by award-winning Executive Chef Scott Kampf. The year-round eatery sits in the iconic Bowden Square, and features a festive atmosphere, combining dark woods balanced by the bright cerulean colored walls, which are also decorated with Mexican artwork.

Valentine’s Day couples craving Mexican with a spin will enjoy Union Cantina’s A La Carte Menu, featuring delectable dishes such as Avocado Fries, Hearts of Palm Salad, Baja Tacos, Skirt Steak Tacos, Spicy Guava BBQ Baby Back Ribs, Adobo Chicken Deconstructed Enchilada and Charred Shrimp. Do not miss the popular Guacamole En Molcajate, prepared mild or spicy. A selection of Chef Specialties will also be offered on the day. Union Cantina’s winning Everyday Happy Hour is offered as usual from 4:00pm to 7:00pm.

Union Cantina
40 Bowden Square
Southampton, NY 11968
631.377.3500
http://www.unioncantina.net/

♥   Southampton Inn

Will You Be “Mi” Valentine?
February is Romance Month at the Southampton Inn! Book a King Room with a bottle of “Mi”onetto Prosecco and a box of Artisan Chocolates for $175 (plus tax). Call 631-283-6500 to book.

A Presidential Getaway
Book Friday, February 16th through Tuesday, February 20th, and get an adjoining room free.* A five day, four night family getaway with two rooms for the price of one! Call 631-283-6500 to book (not available online).

With several acres of manicured lawns and gardens in the heart of the Village of Southampton on Long Island’s stunning East End, Southampton Inn provides an idyllic, year-round escape for visitors from all over the world. Winner of numerous awards, including “Best Breakfast,” “Best Hotel,” and “Best Wedding Location,” Southampton Inn is a warm and welcoming haven with an exemplary reputation that is richly deserved. It is within walking distance of movie theaters and repertory theatre perfect for a romantic evening. Southampton Inn’s Claude’s Restaurant will serve its famous breakfast, which guests can enjoy in the restaurant’s club-casual atmosphere.

*Double occupancy, plus tax

Southampton Inn
91 Hill Street, Southampton, New York
631-283-6500
www.southamptoninn.com

18 Hotels in The Palm Beaches Receive Highest AAA Diamond Ratings

February 6, 2018
Fla PalmBch-Eau_011214_159e2(c) Karen Rubin-nite

The ultra-luxurious Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa in tony Manalapan was one of three resorts in the Palm Beaches that received the coveted AAA 5 Diamond Rating. © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – Eighteen hotels within The Palm Beaches have been awarded Five Diamond and Four Diamond Ratings from AAA for 2018. The coveted ratings are the highest honors from the travel group, which represents an exclusive designation in the hospitality industry. Each year, AAA reviews more than 27,000 hotels, with only 0.4% making the AAA Five Diamond list, and only 5.9% making the AAA Four Diamond list.

“The Palm Beaches’ image as America’s First Resort Destination originated with the legendary hotels and resorts gracing our shores since the 1890s,” said Jorge Pesquera, president and CEO of Discover The Palm Beaches, the official tourism marketing organization for Palm Beach County. “This grand tradition of hospitality carries to the present, and is further reaffirmed by the 18 award-winning properties we are so proud to showcase to customers far and wide.”

“For those of us who are fortunate to visit these hotels on a regular basis, it is easy to see why they’ve become regular recipients of these awards in recognition of their beauty and exemplary service,” Pesquera continued. “We are grateful to the management teams of these hotels who’ve worked tirelessly to provide memorable experiences for our visitors, reaffirming our brand promise as ‘The Best Way to Experience Florida’.”

Three of the 10 Florida properties that received AAA Five Diamond Ratings are located within The Palm Beaches and include:

Properties within The Palm Beaches that received AAA Four Diamond Ratings are:

Discover The Palm Beaches, formerly the Palm Beach County Convention and Visitors Bureau, is the official tourism marketing corporation that promotes the collection of 39 cities and towns and 15 tourism districts spanning more than 2,200 square miles and 47 miles of pristine beaches from Boca Raton to Jupiter and Tequesta, commonly referred to as “The Palm Beaches.”  The Palm Beaches are home to nearly 17,000 hotel rooms, ranging from historic resorts to boutique inns. The destination features more than 100 family-friendly attractions, world-class luxury and antique shopping experiences, 125 miles of peaceful waterways for on- or in-the-water activities, more than 150 artificial reefs that line the Atlantic Ocean’s Gulf Stream current, 160 golf courses, award-winning restaurants, and a thriving entertainment scene boasting more than 200 art and culture organizations. For more information about The Palm Beaches, visit www.ThePalmBeaches.com and connect on social media via FacebookTwitter and Instagram @PalmBeachesFL, YouTube at Discover The Palm Beaches and the hashtag, #ThePalmBeaches.

See:

Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa’s Secret for ‘New Fashioned’ Luxury: Playfulness, Surprise, Touch of Whimsy and Wit, and Surprise

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WalletHub: Top 20 Places to Celebrate Valentine’s Day

February 5, 2018
SF_033115_1479e2(c) Karen Rubin-GoldenGatePk

Golden Gate Park, San Francisco. San Francisco tops the list of Top 20 Places to Celebrate Valentine’s Day © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner and America’s sweethearts planning to spend an average of $143.56 each on the occasion, the personal-finance website WalletHub today released its report on 2018’s Best Places for Valentine’s Day along with interesting stats about the holiday in its Valentine’s Day Facts infographic.

To determine the most romantic yet affordable cities for celebrating the Day of Hearts, WalletHub compared 100 of the largest U.S. cities across 23 key metrics, ranging from florists per capita to forecasted precipitation to cost of a three-course meal for two.

Top 20 Places for Celebrating Valentine’s Day    
1 San Francisco, CA   11 Austin, TX  
2 San Diego, CA   12 Scottsdale, AZ  
3 Las Vegas, NV   13 Denver, CO  
4 Orlando, FL   14 Washington, DC  
5 Chicago, IL   15 San Antonio, TX  
6 New York, NY   16 San Jose, CA  
7 Portland, OR   17 Minneapolis, MN  
8 Seattle, WA   18 Atlanta, GA  
9 Honolulu, HI   19 Phoenix, AZ  
10 Los Angeles, CA   20 Houston, TX  

To view the full report and your city’s rank, visit: https://wallethub.com/edu/best-and-worst-cities-for-valentines-day/10056/

Valentine’s Day Facts

  • $19.6B: Total Valentine’s Day spending projected for 2018 ($143.56 per person celebrating).
  • $191 vs. $99: Men plan to spend nearly twice as much as women, on average, for Valentine’s Day 2018.
  • $8.5 Billion: Amount Americans will spend on jewelry ($4.7B), flowers ($2B) and candy ($1.8B).
  • 9 Million: Number of marriage proposals made each Valentine’s Day.

For the full infographic, visit: https://wallethub.com/blog/valentines-day-facts/10258

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Follow in Footsteps of ‘Outlander’ in Revolutionary War-Era Philadelphia

February 3, 2018
Museum of the American Revolution, Philaelphia

To put yourself in the setting of Revolutionary War-era Philadelphia with Outlander’s Claire and Jamie Frasier, visit the Museum of the American Revolution © Karen Rubin/ goingplacesfarandnear.com

By Karen Rubin, Travel Features Syndicate, goingplacesfarandnear.com

I am a huge fan of Outlander, the TV series on Starz of author Diana Gabaldon’s bestselling eight-book adventure/romance/fantasy series about a World War II British army nurse who travels through time to meet an 18th-century Scottish Highlander. So I was beyond myself while visiting Philadelphia’s historic district to learn that the last two editions (not yet televised) bring the Frasers’ quest here.

Revolutionary War-era Philadelphia is the setting for Gabaldon’s most recent novels, An Echo in the Bone and Written in My Own Heart’s Blood. (The first, Outlander, was published in 1990.) Within and around the original city, the couple meets Dr. Benjamin Rush, Thomas Paine and Benedict Arnold. Claire Fraser chats up both General George Washington and the Marquis de Lafayette. Jamie Fraser serves under Washington in the Continental Army.

Among the deaths, weddings, reunions, life-saving surgeries and life-threatening battles—exactly what fans have come to expect from Gabaldon—much of the action takes place in and around Philadelphia’s Historic District, between the Delaware River and 7th Street, Vine and Lombard Streets. Here are the real Philadelphia sites where the Frasers and other fictional Outlander characters spent time, and attractions that recall the events they experienced. Spoiler alert: There are lots of spoilers.

Philadelphia

Independence Hall is a focal point of historic Philadelphia © Karen Rubin/ goingplacesfarandnear.com

Outlander Sites In The Historic District:

  • An Echo in the Bone arrives in Philadelphia around July 4, 1777, when the city is in rebel hands—and celebrating. Some of the deepest dives into our nation’s origin story come via visits to the must-visit Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell, both part of Independence National Historical Park. Hall: 6th& Chestnut Streets; Bell: 6th & Market Streets, (215) 965-2305, www.nps.gov/inde/index.htm.
  • Is there a doctor in the house? Wherever Claire Fraser is, yes. But colonial Philadelphia was home to another famous surgeon, Declaration of Independence signer, Benjamin Rush, who, in the series, aids a character’s battle-wounded relative in 1777. Today, Rush’s house is gone, but an 18th-century-style garden gracefully marks its footprint in Independence National Historical Park. Other notable 18th-century homes nearby include the Dolley Todd House at 4th and Walnut Streets. Benjamin Rush Garden: 3rd & Walnut Streets, www.nps.gov/inde/index.htm.
  • Billed as “our nation’s oldest residential street,” Elfreth’s Alley, between 2nd Street and the Delaware River, appears 18th-century picturesque because much effort has gone into keeping it that way. It’s quiet now, but back in the day this section lived up to its “Hell Town” nickname. A heartsick William Ransom, the titled son of Jamie Fraser, ventures here in search of a pleasurable escape from torment, but finds trouble instead. One of the tiny houses is a museum open to the public (no. 124-126), and there are private and special-event tours. (215) 574-0560, elfrethsalley.org
  • A house at “17 Chestnut Street” is the center of much of the action in Written in My Own Heart’s Blood. The location was fictional, but a sense of what a city neighborhood was like in the 18th century is never far away in the neighborhood of Society Hill, with its brick-fronted period mansions, cobblestone alleys and a recreated Headhouse Square that’s home to a year-round farmers’ market. This picturesque neighborhood is bordered by the Delaware River and 8th Street, Walnut and Lombard Streets.
  • Spoiler alert! Also in the latest book in the series, Young Ian Murray, who is Jamie Fraser’s nephew, and Rachel Hunter, a Quaker physician’s assistant, and Denzell Hunter, Rachel’s brother and Continental Army surgeon and nurse Dottie Grey are wed in a double ceremony at a fictional church that physically and historically resembles St. George’s United Methodist Church. St. George’s is open for services, tours and weddings. 235 N. 4th Street, (215) 925-7788, historicstgeorges.org

Outlander Themes in the Historic District:

  • Sassenach’s got to eat. (“Sassenach” is an old Gaelic term that’s pejorative for outsider; in Outlander, it is also Jamie’s pet name for Claire.) City Tavern,  a Colonial dining establishment based on the restaurant frequented by John Adams, Benjamin Rush, Benjamin Franklin and their compatriots, recreates through-the-Stones authenticity. The staff wears period costumes and chef Walter Staib’s menu tweaks 18th-century dishes for today’s tastes. 138 S. 2nd Street, (215) 413-1443, citytavern.com
  • The Franklin Court Printing Office belonged to Benjamin Franklin, but the Historic District replica of the 18th-century print shop strongly resembles that of Outlander printers and couple Fergus and Marsali Fraser. Among the Frasers’ customers was a dour fellow by the name of Thomas Paine. Franklin Court, with entrances on Market and Chestnut streets between 3rd and 4th Streets, (215) 965-2305, gov/inde (See: 72 Hours in Philadelphia: Ben Franklin, America’s Revolutionary ‘Elder Statesman,’ Would Have been Quite at Home in 21st Century)
  • The Museum of the American Revolution houses artifacts, documents and art from the era the two novels cover. Powder horns to muskets to cooking gear, flags and uniforms are all like those the Frasers might have seen or used. Perhaps Claire and Jamie were in General Washington’s headquarters tent, also on display. 101 S. 3rd Street, (215) 253-6731, amrevmuseum.org (See: Philadelphia’s New Museum Immerses You into Drama of America’s Revolutionary War)
Philadelphia

The Franklin Court Printing Office belonged to Benjamin Franklin, but the Historic District replica of the 18th-century print shop closely resembles that of Outlander printers and couple Fergus and Marsali Fraser. © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Outlander Beyond The Historic District:

  • Armed with a 20th-century medical degree but 18th-century medical supplies, Claire relies heavily on herbal remedies. So of course she restocks her medicinal larder at Bartram’s Garden. It’s also the scene of a thunderous reunion with her husband. The garden takes up 45 acres along the Schuylkill River and has both a rolling meadow and medicinal plant display. 5400 Lindbergh Boulevard, (215) 729-5281,  bartramsgarden.org
  • The 18th-century Cliveden Housein Germantown has an intriguing Outlander  The estate was the site of the decisive Battle of Germantown in October 1777, part of the British reoccupation of Philadelphia. The house, now open for tours, displays authentic period furnishings (once the provenance of the resident Chew family), including two ornate mirrors and other mementos from the Mischianza, the notoriously posh British ball of 1778 honoring British General William Howe and his brother, Admiral Richard Howe. In the book, Claire attended the affair, naturally. On the first Saturday October, Cliveden hosts a reenactment of 1777’s Battle of Germantown. 6401 Germantown Avenue, (215) 848-1777, cliveden.org
  • The Continental Army encampment at Valley Forge during the winter of 1777-78 is a somber backdrop for many events in Echo in the Bone. Characters tend to the sick and wounded—approximately 2,000 soldiers died, though no battles were fought—and a Redcoat Fraser relative courageously seeks aid here. Valley Forge National Historical Park commemorates our founders’ sacrifice with educational displays and interpretive programs, a restored Washington’s headquarters, statues and other memorials. The park’s 3,500 acres offer multi-use and horse trails, picnic areas and more. 1400 N. Outer Line Drive, King of Prussia, (610) 783-1000,  nps.gov/vafo
  • Rittenhouse Square’s popular British pub The Dandelion gives a culinary nod to Claire’s 20th-century roots, especially when the menu features Eton Mess, a dessert she serves at a dinner party in the third season of the TV show, along with sticky toffee pudding, a perennial (although comparatively modern) dessert favorite. 124 S. 18thStreet, (215) 558-2500,  thedandelionpub.com
  • The Frasers cross paths numerous times with notorious Revolutionary War General Benedict Arnold (before he turned traitor). Claire also meets Peggy Shippen. Arnold and Shippen married in 1779, the same year he purchased Mount Pleasant, one of the historic Fairmount Park mansions along the Schuylkill River. Mount Pleasant closed temporarily for renovation in 2017, but visitors can tour other period homes in Fairmount Park. parkcharms.com
  • Many scenes in Written in My Own Heart’s Blood—including one of the saddest—take place “perhaps two hours’ walk outside the city,” according to the book. This would place the Frasers and other characters approximately five miles from the Historic District, in the heart of Fairmount Park.The Park’s Wissahickon Valley Park evokes the grandeur of America’s great forests and features 50 miles of multiuse trails and history. Along the Wissahickon Creek, the easy-to-navigate five-and-a-half-mile Forbidden Drive—“forbidden” because cars can’t drive on it—lets visitors walk, bike, run or meander on horseback. Friends of the Wissahickon has the details, plus guided hikes and other activities. fow.org/

Philadelphia’s Historic District campaign, from VISIT PHILADELPHIA®, showcases the city’s incomparable place in early American history and the still vibrant neighborhoods of Old City, Society Hill and the Delaware River Waterfront. The campaign celebrates America’s most historic square mile in the country’s first World Heritage City, as designated by the Organization of World Heritage Cities. Funded by The Pew Charitable Trusts, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s Department of Community and Economic Development and H.F. (Gerry) Lenfest, the initiative runs through September 2018.

Between Memorial Day and Labor Day weekends, visitors can engage with costumed history makers, hear stories of the real people of independence and take part in colonial reenactments. And every day of the year, they can tour, shop, dine and drink in the area just like the founding fathers and mothers once did. For more information about all there is to see and do in Philadelphia’s Historic District, go to visitphilly.com and uwishunu.com.

See also:

National Museum of American Jewish History is Unexpected Revelation in Philadelphia 

Philadelphia’s New Museum Immerses You into Drama of America’s Revolutionary War

72 Hours in Philadelphia: Ben Franklin, America’s Revolutionary ‘Elder Statesman,’ Would Have been Quite at Home in 21st Century 

72 Hours in Philadelphia: Meet Betsy Ross: A Thoroughly Modern Woman

72 Hours in Philadelphia: A Visit to the National Constitution Center Exposes Contradictions in ‘We the People’

At  Sonesta Philadelphia Rittenhouse Square, Art is More than a Theme, but a Mission

 

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Red Carnation’s Hotel 41 and Oyster Box Hotel Earn Top Honors in TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards

February 1, 2018

RedCarnatonHotels_TripAdvisor e2

DELRAY BEACH, Fla.– The annual TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards have been announced, and The Red Carnation Hotel Collection was honored with 32 awards in 2018, including top honors for four properties in the United Kingdom and South Africa.

London sister properties Hotel 41 and The Milestone Hotel and Residences were ranked No. 1 and No. 2 consecutively in the ‘Top 25 Hotels – United Kingdom’ category, and The Oyster Box in Durban was named No. 1 in the ‘Top 25 Hotels – South Africa’ category. The Egerton House Hotel in Knightsbridge was also ranked No. 1 in both the Europe and UK ‘Top 25 Luxury Hotels’ categories.

TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice award winners are based on the millions of reviews and opinions collected in a single year from TripAdvisor travelers worldwide. This year, the awards celebrate hotel winners across 10 categories including: Top Hotels Overall, Luxury, Bargain, Small, Best Service, B&Bs and Inns, Romance, Family, All-Inclusive and Value for Money. The hallmarks of Travelers’ Choice hotel winners are remarkable service, value and quality.

The Red Carnation Hotel Collection continues to perform strongly in the TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards with top recognition year after year. This is the third year in a row The Oyster Box has been honored as the No. 1 Hotel in South Africa, and the second consecutive year Hotel 41 has ranked No. 1 in the UK.

Situated in the heart of central London overlooking the Royal Mews, Hotel 41’s five-star credentials make it a fantastic choice for tourists looking to be swept up in London’s royal heritage. The intimate hideaway in the heart of London comprises just 30 luxurious rooms, all of which are complemented by a personal butler and room service available 24 hours a day. The second consecutive win for the hotel further solidifies London as a tourist hotspot and must-visit location in the UK for the upcoming year.

Standing majestically on Umhlanga’s beachfront overlooking the Indian Ocean and the iconic lighthouse, The Oyster Box Hotel in Durban is considered a national treasure in South Africa. The hotel’s 86 luxurious rooms and suites are designed with timeless elegance, and the hotel’s numerous dining venues are an extraordinary experience in themselves. Guests can spend their days relaxing by the pristine pools or indulging at the award-winning spa.

“We are enormously proud to see so many of our hotels recognized in the 2018 TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards,” said Jonathan Raggett, managing director of The Red Carnation Hotel Collection. “Year after year, Red Carnation Hotels continue to rank highly in the review driven accolades, and what an honor to see Hotel 41 and The Oyster Box recognized once again this year with No. 1 rankings.”

“The transparency of online guest reviews is something that benefits everyone and allows us to continuously evolve as a business and ensure the delivery of excellence at every stage of our guests’ experience,” Raggett continued. “Our success in the TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards is a true recognition of the staff that go above and beyond to make every guest’s stay truly remarkable.”

“This year’s Travelers’ Choice Awards for Hotels recognize thousands of exceptional accommodations that received the highest marks for overall experience, including service, amenities and value, from travelers worldwide,” said Brooke Ferencsik, TripAdvisor senior director of communications. “The global TripAdvisor community informed this list of winners that will inspire and help travelers find the hotel that’s right for them as they plan and book their next amazing trip.”

For the complete list of 2018 TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice hotel award winners, visit www.tripadvisor.com/TravelersChoice-Hotels.

Red Carnation Hotels are a collection of family-run, award-winning boutique hotels in the UK, Ireland, South Africa, Switzerland and the USA. Each hotel is a landmark of history and tradition; from the recently restored Ashford Castle in Ireland, to the Milestone, a historic mansion hotel in the heart of London, to the truly iconic Oyster Box in South Africa – hotels are unique and full of character with a personal approach to hospitality. For more information about these award-winning hotels and the rest of The Red Carnation Hotel Collection, visit www.redcarnation.com

 

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