Archive for the ‘hotels and resorts’ Category

Fall Foliage Getaway in Williamsburg, Virginia

September 25, 2021
Kingsmill Resort, Williamsburg VA (Photo by Kim Kiely Photography)

People typically think of New England for fall foliage, but the fall colors usually come early (as in September) whereas in Virginia, where the climates are more temperate, the leaves turn later, peaking in late October.  Here are favorite ways to enjoy fall in Williamsburg:

Go Leaf Peeping: From the Colonial Parkway to Waller Mill Park to the Island Loop around Jamestown Island, there’s a plethora of places to admire fall foliage. From ash, poplar, and maple to wildflowers such as goldenrod, asters, tickseeds, and thoroughworts, the pageant of blazing reds and brilliant yellows is dazzling. Late October through early November is usually the best time, but it depends on the weather so check Virginia’s fall foliage updates. 

Take a Hike: Take in the season’s majesty while hiking on one of many trails through forests, wetlands, and fields. Start on the scenic four-mile walking path that winds its way through Kingsmill itself. Then head to The Greensprings Greenway Interpretative Trail, which links history and nature over more than five miles (with several loop options) in Jamestown Settlement. Explore a different landscape on the dozen short trails of the coastal estuary at York River State Park.

Sample the Bounty of the Season: Feast on produce, prepared foods, and farm products grown or made in Virginia by some 40 vendors at the Williamsburg Farmers Market in Merchants’ Square every Saturday morning (8 a.m.- noon) through December. Or shop for produce, baked goods, and arts and crafts at Yorktown Market Days, another Saturday morning option, at Riverwalk Landing. Special themed markets in historic Yorktown include Harvest Market (Nov. 20) with log-carving demonstrations, bluegrass music, hayrides; Virginia Living Museum’s 9th annual Oyster Roast on Nov. 13, where you can enjoy all-you-can-eat local Virginia oysters, fried seafood, chowder, craft beers, live music, raffles. Explore colonial cooking techniques of 17th- and 18th-century America during Foods & Feasts of Colonial Virginia, Nov. 26-28 and at the Yorktown Victory Center learn about the typical grub served to soldiers during the Revolution. 

Go for Halloween Thrills and Chills:

Haunted houses and ghost walks, and creepy carriage rides, oh my! Get your spook on in Greater Williamsburg. Take a one-hour candlelit Haunted Williamsburg tour at 7:00 each night, with exclusive access to historic outdoor spaces and costumed storytellers who share their unnerving tales. 

Screaming is an Olympic sport during Halloween and the blood-curdling horror happens at Busch Gardens Howl-O-Scream. On Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from Sept. 10 to Oct. 31, five haunted houses, four terror-tories, four sinister shows, two party zones, and surprise horrors await at every turn. Go ahead, start shaking in your boots now. Little ones can celebrate not-so-spooky fun with a costume party and trick-or-treating at The Count’s Spooktacular.

Listen to tales of paranormal activities on a guided tour through the 1726 Berkeley Plantation mansion in Charles City followed by a lantern-led walk through the gardens, grounds, cemetery, and corn maze. The Twilight Ghost Tour of one of Virginia’s most historic plantations takes place Oct. 9 and 22.

Jamestown Settlement hosts Family Frights, a Halloween-themed program for the whole family on Oct. 23 and 24 featuring trick-or-treating, ghostly tales, haunted houses and ships, and grisly games.  

Dig Into Thanksgiving

The nation’s first Thanksgiving? It’s not what you think. It took place at Berkeley Plantation when the first settlers celebrated “a day of thanksgiving to Almighty God,” but without a grand meal. In fact, they likely fasted. On Nov. 7, you can celebrate the event with a living history program, tribal dancers, arts and crafts, choral music, and a reenactment of the landing of 38 British settlers on Dec. 4, 1619 — two years before the more famous festivities in Plymouth, Mass. But because fasting isn’t fun, the celebration features smoked turkey legs, Brunswick stew, BBQ, Virginia ham biscuits, hot dogs, kettle corn, and funnel cakes throughout the day.

Get a Jump on Christmas Shopping at Williamsburg Premium Outlets, with 120 stores including Ann Taylor, Banana Republic, Michael Kors, Calvin Klein, and Nautica.

For a luxurious resort stay, look to  Kingsmill Resort, the only AAA Four Diamond resort in Williamsburg, and the only resort on the majestic James River.

The 2900-acre gated resort features a massive indoor pool, a million dollar spa, two championship golf courses and miles of hiking/biking trails make it the perfect getaway base camp for all the area has to offer in the fall months. It also boasts a plethora of one and three-bedroom condo style accommodations with separate bathrooms, large living rooms, kitchens, dining areas, washer and dryer and even working fireplaces.  It’s ideal for families and friends traveling together.

Located on the James River off I-64 between Richmond and Norfolk the property is within minutes from Williamsburg’s numerous destinations including Busch Gardens, Colonial Williamsburg, The College of William & Mary, Jamestown Settlement and Yorktown Victory Center. To plan your trip to Kingsmill, visit www.kingsmill.com.

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Kingsmill Resort Williamsburg VA Offers Long-Term Stays with Unlimited Golf

September 25, 2021
Kingsmill Resort, Virginia’s only AAA-four diamond resort in Williamsburg is offering long-term stays ©2012 Scott K. Brown Photography, Inc.

WILLIAMSBURG, VA –Kingsmill Resort, Virginia’s only AAA four-diamond resort in Williamsburg, VA is now offering 30 day or longer stays, complete with unlimited play on 36 holes of championship golf. Rooms are move-in-ready with fast and secure wi-fi, a desk, dining table, living room, full kitchen, washer, dryer and plenty of video meeting-worthy backdrops that are perfect for remote work or learning environments. 

Housekeeping services are provided weekly, giving guests more time to spend enjoying the resort. Business services such as printing, notary, private conference rooms and shipping are also available.

Whether you are remote working or not, take in fresh air and a wide variety of on-site recreational activities from a full-service marina to tennis to newly renovated million dollar spa and several dining options. 

Rates start at $3,000 a month.

All guest rooms, restaurants, public spaces and activities meet and even exceed the health and cleanliness standards and guidelines put forth by the CDC and the Commonwealth of Virginia. Kingsmill is also implementing the American Hotel & Lodging Association’s Safe Stay industry-wide initiative

Kingsmill features:

•           No elevators

•           Each unit features outside entrances

•           No hotel hallways or corridors

•           Parking directly in front of the guest room

•           A campus style layout with vast space between the various buildings

•           Windows that open and private outdoor patios

•           Pet friendly condos available

•           Social distancing golf, tennis, pickle ball, walking and bike trails, marina with motorized and non-motorized water sports

•           Indoor and outdoor pools

•           Full service spa

•           Dining delivery directly to rooms and outdoor seating overlooking the river, golf course or tennis complex

Reservations accepted online only through www.Kingsmill.com

Located on the James River off I-64 between Richmond and Norfolk the property is within minutes from Williamsburg’s numerous destinations including Busch Gardens, Colonial Williamsburg, The College of William & Mary, Jamestown Settlement and Yorktown Victory Center. To plan your trip to Kingsmill, visit www.kingsmill.com.

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Club Med Launches ‘Fall Into Savings’ Sale, Extends Ski Getaways Sale With Up To 45% Off All-Inclusive Escapes

September 9, 2021
Book an all-inclusive ski vacation at Club Med’s first resort in Canada, Club Med Quebec (opening December 3, 2021), with rates up to 45% off thanks to Club Med’s extended Ski Getaways Sale.

Club Med, a pioneer of the all-inclusive resort concept, invites families, couples, and solo travelers to take advantage of up to 45% off all-inclusive escapes, plus perks, at Club Med’s top mountain and beach resorts from Canada and Florida to Mexico and the Caribbean. From now through November 2, 2021, Club Med guests can Fall into Savings when traveling to their favorite Club Med beach-side resorts from September 4 to May 6, 2022. Guests looking to book their next ski escape can take advantage of the extended Ski Getaways Sale when booking now through October 18, 2021 for travel to Canada through April 10, 2022 and the Alps for travel through April 30, 2022.

Whether looking to lounge in the sun or partake in over 25 land and water sports, travelers can capitalize on Club Med’s Fall into Savings Sale and enjoy up to 45% off, plus added incentives such as free room upgrades and no single supplements at Club Med’s all-inclusive beach resorts in Florida, the Caribbean, and Mexico. Kids under 16 can receive up to 50% off stays while kids under 4 can stay for free at Club Med’s family favorite resorts, including the eco-chic, five-star, Club Med Michès Playa Esmeralda, the first and only resort in the undiscovered region of Miches, Dominican Republic, featuring four distinct boutique villages (resorts within the resort), unlimited refined culinary options, and family-friendly activities such as flying trapeze, movies under the stars, and discovering the Secret Chocolate Room – a speakeasy ensuring fun for the whole family.  

Those who prefer snow over sand will find all-inclusive mountain escapes with Club Med are more luxurious and offer significantly lower prices than a do-it-yourself ski vacation. Travelers can book an all-inclusive ski vacation at Club Med’s first resort in Canada, Club Med Québec (opening December 3, 2021), with rates up to 45% off thanks to Club Med’s extended Ski Getaways Sale. A Club Med mountain vacation includes accommodations, lift tickets, group ski and snowboard lessons, all-day dining, après-ski activities, and ski-in, ski-out access to ensure peace of mind when conquering the slopes. Guests over age eleven can elevate their ski experience through Club Med Québec’s all new Ski Workshops, a curated program that aims to enhance guests’ ski and snowboard skills while exploring the wonderous ski domains of Le Massif de Charlevoix.

Club Med’s spacious low-density resorts are surrounded by nature, spread across 50 acres, and operate at a limited capacity. Paired with Club Med’s enhanced safety and hygiene protocols, free onsite antigen testing, and flexible policies, guests will enjoy total peace of mind and the freedom to unwind while creating cherished memories together. Guests will also enjoy unlimited culinary options on single plated dishes, premium accommodations, and activities for all interests – from skiing and snowboarding to standup paddle boarding and snorkeling – and families will particularly enjoy Club Med’s Amazing Family program, a fun-filled agenda of weekly activities designed to help families reconnect and experience a greater sense of reunion.

For full details on the Fall into Savings Sale, visit https://www.clubmed.us/o/best-all-inclusive-vacation-deals.

For full details on the Ski Getaways Sale, visit https://www.clubmed.us/o/early-booking-ski.

Fall into Savings Sale

  • Up to 45% off* all-inclusive escapes at participating Club Med resorts in Florida, the Caribbean, and Mexico
  • Booking window: Today through November 2, 2021
  • Travel window: Select dates from September 4, 2021 – May 6, 2022 (blackout dates apply)
  • 45% off* plus perks:
    • Free room upgrade
    • Kids under 4 stay free
    • No single supplement
    • Free Antigen testing
    • Flexible Cancellations^

Ski Getaways Sale

  • Up to 45% off* all-inclusive ski packages to Canada & the Alps
  • Booking window: Today through October 18, 2021
  • Travel window:
    • Club Med Québec: Select dates through April 10, 2022
    • Club Med’s Alpine Ski Resorts: Select dates through April 30, 2022
  • Perks include:
    • Lift tickets
    • Ski/snowboard group lessons
    • Kids under 4 stay free
    • Flexible Cancellations^

Participating Club Med Resorts
Travelers looking for opportunities to reconnect and create cherished memories with their families and loved ones on their next vacation will find that peace of mind is a destination at several Club Med resorts, including:

  • Club Med Michès Playa Esmeralda, Dominican Republic: The first and only operating resort in the undiscovered region of Miches – and Club Med’s only Exclusive Collection (5 Star) resort in North America – offers a luxury experience wrapped in an all-inclusive vacation. The eco-chic resort features four boutique villages specializing in wellness, adventure, kid-friendly, and adults-only concepts, catering to an array of travelers seeking a boutique hotel-within-a-hotel experience. Enjoy unlimited refined culinary options, Zen moments with treatments at the on-site Club Med Spa by Cinq Mondes, yoga in the Tree Top Wellness Canopy, and relaxation at the naturally-filtered Zen pool, and also Must-Try Experiences for families from learning how to plant and compost ingredients at the on-site community garden to the Boho chic Sunset Ritual, the perfect way to end the day in paradise. Families can also satisfy their sweet tooth when discovering a Secret Chocolate Room – a first-of-its-kind kid’s speakeasy featuring unlimited sweets crafted with locally-sourced cocoa (and adults can get in on the fun, too!).
     
  • Club Med Québec, Canada: Opening December 3, 2021. The four-season, all-inclusive mountain resort will be Club Med’s first in Canada, just an hour and a half away from Québec City in the Le Massif de Charlevoix region. With over 300 rooms spread across 300+ acres, the family-friendly resort will feature locally inspired culinary experiences, a private Exclusive Collection (5 Star) space, sweeping views of the scenic St. Lawrence River and surrounding mountains, and unlimited ski-in/ski-out access on the biggest vertical slope east of the Rockies. Families can enjoy year-round activities, including skiing, biking, and hiking, as well as activities traditional to the region like ice skating and dog sledding. For added Zen, the resort offers an expansive wellness area with a 25-yard heated pool overlooking the river, an outdoor jacuzzi, and a variety of à la carte wellness experiences inspired by Nordic spas.
      
  • Club Med Cancún, Mexico: An ideal location for families looking for some much-needed R&R, the only resort in Cancún with three private beachfronts, offers families a variety of opportunities to reconnect. Enjoy exhilarating land and water activities, from wind surfing and snorkeling to flying trapeze and archery, before partaking in outdoor activities as part of the new Club Med Amazing Family programming. Relax in the refreshed Aguamarina family oasis area, which features spacious two-bedroom oceanfront family rooms and a dedicated family pool, before kids head off to their respective kids’ club while adults enjoy treatments at the newly renovated Club Med Spa by L’OCCITANE. For added exclusivity, guests can book an ocean view suite located in the resort’s Exclusive Collection (5 Star) space. Families looking for an added sense of adventure can explore the Mayan ruins at Chichén-Itzá (at an additional cost) or discover life under the sea by snorkeling through the world’s second-largest coral reef surrounding the resort with Club Med’s all-inclusive water sport activities.
     
  • Club Med Punta Cana, Dominican Republic: On a 2,000-foot stretch of beach, Club Med Punta Cana caters to solo travelers, couples, and families alike with unlimited land and water sports, from golfing on an oceanfront PGA green to learning how to shoot with a bow and arrow at archery school. Adults can indulge in treatments at the Club Med Spa by L’OCCITANE or relax in the adult-exclusive Zen Oasis area, where intimate cabanas, an oversized pool and dedicated Zen Beach await. Families can partake in the new Club Med Amazing Family program, featuring a fun-filled agenda of weekly activities for families to bond and create memories, like Club Med CREACTIVE by Cirque du Soleil, an interactive playground with more than 25 acrobatic and artistic activities for guests of all ages.
     
  • Club Med La Rosière, France: From its perch at 1,950 meters above sea level overlooking the entire Tarentaise Valley, Club Med’s newest resort in the Alps features sweeping 180-degree mountain views and 395 spacious rooms emanating the cozy atmosphere of a refined alpine Chalet. The resort also offers a variety of accommodation styles catered to all travelers, including some interconnecting rooms for larger groups and some rooms offering private balconies. Guests can enjoy a variety of locally inspired culinary experiences, daily entertainment, and unlimited daily activities like skiing, snowboarding, Nordic walking, and yoga workshops.

Additional participating resorts include Club Med Sandpiper Bay, Port St. Lucie, Florida, Club Med Caravelle, Guadeloupe, French Caribbean, Club Med Buccaneer’s Creek, Martinique, French Caribbean, Club Med Turkoise, Turks and Caicos, Club Med Valmorel, France, Club Med Val Thorens, France, and Club Med Peisey-Vallandry, France.

Flexible Policies
To ensure added flexibility and peace of mind for travelers, Club Med also offers:

  • Flexible Cancellation Policy: for travel through December 31, 2021.
     
  • Emergency Assistance Program: All guests traveling before December 31, 2022 will receive coverage for emergency medical expenses during their stay, including those related to COVID-19. 
     
  • Safe Together protocols: Implemented in all of the brand’s resorts as they reopen, including those in Florida, Mexico, and the Caribbean, these newly enhanced hygiene and safety measures were developed through recommendations from the World Health Organization, local health authorities, and the advice of an International Scientific Committee comprised of a specialized team of doctors and professors.
     
  • PCR + Rapid Antigen Testing: As required for re-entry into the United States from international destinations, Club Med offers complimentary Rapid Antigen COVID-19 tests on-site. PCR testing is also available at an additional cost.

Full details on the above policies can be found here.

Club Med, founded in 1950 by Gérard Blitz, is a pioneer of the all-inclusive concept, offering approximately 70 premium resorts in stunning locations in 30 countries around the world including North and South America, Caribbean, Asia, Africa, Europe and the Mediterranean. Each Club Med resort features authentic local style and comfortably upscale accommodations, superior sports programming and activities, enriching children’s programs, gourmet dining, and warm and friendly service by its world-renown staff with legendary hospitality skills, an all-encompassing energy and diverse backgrounds.

For more information, visit www.clubmed.us, call 1-800-Club-Med (1-800-258-2633), or contact a preferred travel professional. For an inside look at Club Med, follow Club Med on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

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Sun, Shore and Spirit Salons: Driveable New England Summer Getaways

July 11, 2021
The Shore House, Narragansett, RI,  a historic, boutique inn situated directly on the beach.

Travelers seeking a fun, summer getaway need look no further than these New England destinations, from a revamped historic hotel overlooking the sparkling ocean in Narragansett and a newly opened family-friendly destination resort on Block Island, to spiritual wellness workshops at a boutique Nantucket hotel and an activity-packed destination resort in a quaint New Hampshire lake town. 

Champlin’s Marina & Resort – Block Island, RI isa newly renovated 9- acre property that aims to be a fresh destination for all — families, couples and even solo travelers. The property features one of New England’s largest marinas with 120 fixed slips, a destination restaurant, 46 guest rooms and special event venue overlooking the Great Salt Pond. Guests will enjoy al fresco dining at Galley House for the freshest seafood around, a Café Boutique with grab n’ go pastries, pizza, and more, as well as a new onsite ice cream parlor. Interior Designer Giovanna Lucy of New England-based Giovanna Lucy Design, and David Ashen, founder of Dash Design, envisioned the new resort to be reflective of Block Island.

The Shore House – Narragansett, RI,  a historic, boutique inn situated directly on the beach debuted last month following a complete renovation of its 31-rooms and a beautiful new lobby. Enhancing the overnight experience, the Shore House opened a new, sophisticated beachside restaurant, Sea Craft, overlooking the sparkling blue sea. Menu highlights include an elevated take on a lobster roll, locally caught day-boat fish and creative ceviche and crudo plates, as well as a crafted approach to traditional beach cocktails. Sea Craft’s outdoor patio will see the addition of an outdoor bar, fire pits and beautiful new landscaping. The patio will also be elevated so that visitors can enjoy even better views of the ocean. 

Nantucket Resort Collection – Nantucket, MA: Regatta Inn, part of Nantucket Resort Collection — an iconic collection of three luxury boutique hotels on Nantucket — just unveiled six newly renovated guest rooms this season, featuring modern, beach inspired decor from the vision of interior designer Giovanna Lucy of New England-based Giovanna Lucy Design. Nantucket Resort Collection will also be hosting exciting onsite activations this summer including: a pop-up with Chelsea’s own Bottino NYC on July 17 with elevated Italian dishes from Michelin Star Executive Chef and Partner, Jamie Kenyon, a set of intimate Spirit Salons on July 11 with Intuitive Psychic Medium, Gurdeep Bhogal, and a pop-up shop with Tuscan designer UASHMAMA  featuring gorgeous, eco-sustainable lifestyle products from June 29-July 3.

Mill Falls at the Lake – Meredith, NH is a timeless, all-season resort located on Lake Winnipesaukee in Meredith, New Hampshire. The resort is comprised of four unique hotels & inns and varied dining venues that offer something for everybody. With its lakeside location, Mill Falls is the perfect summer destination for families, offering antique speed boat rides, pontoon boat charters, paddle boarding, kayaking, visits to local wineries, hiking and more. The Mill Falls Marketplace is open year-round and features boutique shops including Lee’s Candy Kitchen, the Innisfree Bookshop, Voila Salon, and the Great Northern Trading Company. 

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Marriott Opens First Resort in Belize: Alaia Belize Offers Four Diamond Luxury on Amergris Caye

May 23, 2021
Set among the beautiful and culturally rich southern part of the island of Ambergris Caye in Belize, Alaia debuted as the first Marriott International Autograph Collection hotel in Belize.

AMBERGRIS CAYE, BELIZE– For those with a zeal to discover the outdoors and live with purpose, owner and developer Andrew Ashcroft, in partnership with Autograph Collection Hotels, announces the grand opening of boutique resort Alaia Belize, Autograph Collection. Spanning over 20+ acres and the first in San Pedro Town to sit on more than 1,000 feet of beachfront access, Alaia Belize is a 155-unit complex operating as the first true four diamond resort on Ambergris Caye. The eco-luxury development is the first-ever Marriott International property in the country and evokes the founder’s passion, thoughtfulness of design, inherent craft and connection with the locale.

“With deep family roots in Belize and the hidden gem being my home for over 20 years, I wanted to ensure that Alaia Belize captured the lively spirit, genuine hospitality and friendliness of the destination and locals. My team and I worked closely with the Marriott International team to bring it all to fruition and allow our future guests and owners an opportunity to immerse themselves into the Belizean culture,” said Andrew Ashcroft. “No detail went unnoticed as we wanted to ensure that our travelers will be able to experience a new level of luxury on one of the world’s most photogenic yet untapped destinations. We are now ready to show the world all that Alaia Belize has to offer and take the country to new heights.”

Eco-Luxury Aesthetics 

Situated in the historic town of San Pedro – dubbed La Isla Bonita after the 1987 Madonna’s song about the island – Alaia Belize enables hotel guests and residential owners to intimately connect with their surroundings as it was designed to stimulate all five senses. With interiors curated by renowned Brazilian designer Debora Aguiar, the boutique resort is meant to invite guests to touch, stay and feel connected to Mother Nature, from the warm and harmonious ambiance, woven textures, natural fibers and touches of greenery. The design-forward hotel features 155 guest rooms and suites, ranging from studios to three bedrooms, with a natural color scheme to complement the stunning oceanfront views. Seamlessly blending the indoor and outdoor settings, the rooms offer an average of 1,200 square feet indoors and almost 900 square feet in open air, per unit. 

On the residential end, Alaia Belize is comprised of 71 stylish studios, two- and three-bedroom condominiums and eight oceanfront villas. Owners who don’t live full-time in Belize can put their condominiums or villas into a rental program booked through Marriott International’s reservation system and allow guests to live with a backdrop of deep blue waters. With exterior designs led by International Environments, the branded development features vertical green walls, specialty textured walls and crystal-clear glass windows to not interrupt any views of the tranquil Caribbean Sea and wild tropical foliage.

Autograph Collection Hotels advocates for the original, championing the individuality of each of its 200+ independent hotels located in the most desirable destinations across more than 30 countries and territories. Each hotel is a product of passion and a personal realization of its individual founder’s vision, making each hotel singular and special:  Exactly LikeNothing Else. Hand-selected for their inherent craft and distinct perspectives on design and hospitality, Autograph Collection hotels offer rich immersive moments that leave a lasting imprint. 

First of its Kind Experiences

Raising the luxury bar in Belize, hotel guests and owners have full access to first-of-its-kind amenities in the country, including Belize’s first-ever suspended rooftop pool and lounge with 360-degree views, the only luxury resort in Belize with a dive shop that also allows guests to receive a PADI certification onsite, K’in Spa & Wellness Center, a piano bar with a self-playing baby grand piano, kids’ club, adventure concierge, swimming pools with live DJs, branded golf carts and bicycles, and a live art gallery with local weavers, woodworkers and pottery makers to create custom handicrafts for guests to take a piece of Belize home with them.  

Catering to foodie travelers, Alaia Belize has endless dining and bar options with five different concepts. Sea Salt is the crown jewel of the property with fresh catches of the day, high-quality seafood and meat with a Belizean twist. For those looking to enjoy the tropical weather and gorgeous 360-degree views of the Caribbean Sea, Alaia has a Vista Rooftop restaurant concept with small plate offerings, such as sushi, poke bowls and conch for lunch, dinner and late nights. The beachfront hotel also has The Deck and Beach Bar restaurant for those looking for an open-air beachside lunch or dinner with local favorite dishes, such as tacos, ceviche, burgers, fish sandwiches, wraps, salads, pizza and classic cocktails. Alaia Belize also has a Piano Bar to offer an upscale lounge setting for breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night with small pastries, cocktail snacks and high-end wine and cocktails offerings from Alaia’s very own mixologist. Lastly there is the The Terrace Bar for lunch and dinner with flavorful items, such as burgers, sandwiches, salads, ceviche and more. In true Belizean celebratory fashion, this area of the hotel has a lively spirit with DJs and in-pools cabanas for a VIP experience.

Un-Belize-Able Destination

“My team and I had a chance to visit with Andrew Ashcroft at the Alaia Belize earlier this year, while the property was still under construction. I am pleased that the day has finally come to open the doors of this beautiful four-diamond resort on the island of Ambergris Caye. It is a great milestone for the team and the country, as it is a testament of our growth to see high-end brands like Autograph Collection from Marriott International migrating into Belize, elevating our travel scene,” said Hon. Anthony Mahler, Belize’s Minister of Tourism and Diaspora Relations. “The government is fully supportive of hotel developments and legacy projects such as Alaia Belize, and we are incredibly proud of all the positive steps the Belize tourism industry is making to restore the confidence in travel among our international visitors.”

In October 2020, Belize officially reopened Philip Goldson International Airport to international visitors for leisure travel. As of January 2021, Belize moved on to Phase 4 of its reopening plan with the full reopening of the overnight tourism sector and allowing visitors to move around the country freely. In December 2020, Belize received a Safe Travel Stamp by the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) in recognition of the country’s enhanced health and safety protocols. To uphold the certification, the Belize Tourism Board created the Tourism Gold Standard program to ensure that all hotels, restaurants and tour operators adapt and maintain health and safety policies, including sanitation practices, social interactions and standard operating procedures while ensuring minimal impact on the guest experience.

Known as the hidden gem of Central America and Caribbean, Belize’s clear blue waters and Caribbean culture is home to endless historic offerings, a variety of adventures and a melting pot of cultures. Just moments away from Alaia, owners and visitors can experience more than 200 caves filled with several preserved Mayan Temples, including Xunantunich (the second tallest ruin in the country), lush jungles, rainforest canopies, and archaeological sites including the Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave. For those looking to take a deeper dive and explore the beauty of Belize’s natural underwater locations, Alaia is 600 meters away from the world’s second largest barrier reef and a few minutes away from the ultimate world-class and unrivaled destination – The Great Blue Hole.

Ambergris Caye and Alaia Belize can be reached via Philip Goldson International Airport in Belize City. Then, travelers have to take a short 10-minute flight to San Pedro Airport or book tickets for a water taxi. Alaia Belize’s hotel concierge is available to help all guests book travel arrangements. A location for every traveler and every generation, Alaia Belize is offering an Un-Belize-Able Offer with special rates on a Vista Studio King Room, starting at $299.

For more information about Alaia Belize and/or to book your reservation, visit www.alaiabelize.com. For information on Marriott International’s Autograph Collection Hotels, visit www.autographhotels.com.

Autograph Collection participates in Marriott Bonvoy, the global travel program from Marriott International. The program offers members an extraordinary portfolio of global brands, exclusive experiences on Marriott Bonvoy Moments and benefits including free nights and Elite status recognition. To enroll for free or for more information about the program, visit MarriottBonvoy.marriott.com

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Club Med All-Inclusive Resorts Offer Splash into Summer Sale

May 6, 2021
Learning to scuba dive at Club Med Sandpiper Bay, Florida, one of Club Med’s most family-friendly resorts. Club Med was a pioneer in the all-inclusive resort concept. © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

MIAMI  — Club Med, a pioneer of the all-inclusive resort concept, invites families, couples, and solo travelers alike to take advantage of up to 45% off, plus perks, at its top resorts in the Caribbean, Mexico, and Florida. The Splash into Summer sale is open for bookings now through June 30, 2021, with select travel dates from now to December 17, 2021. Perks include a free water view room upgrade and free stay for kids under 4. Club Med offers guests an all-inclusive experience tailor-made for any travel style, whether they’re seeking a family-friendly vacation or an adults-exclusive getaway.

Club Med’s spacious low-density resorts are surrounded by nature, spread across 50 acres, and operate at a limited capacity, allowing guests peace of mind and the freedom to unwind while creating cherished memories together. Guests will enjoy an all-encompassing vacation with unlimited culinary options, premium accommodations, and activities for all interests – from flying trapeze and sailing to poolside yoga and oceanfront spa treatments. Families will particularly enjoy Club Med’s Amazing Family program, a fun-filled agenda of weekly activities designed to help families bond, reconnect, and experience a greater sense of reunion. Club Med’s enhanced safety and hygiene protocols, free onsite antigen testing, and flexible policies also allow travelers to feel confident and protected while booking an upcoming getaway.

Splash into Summer Sale

  • Booking window: Today through June 30, 2021
  • Travel window: Select dates from May 5, 2021 – December 17, 2021 (blackout dates apply)
  • 45% off plus perks:
    • Free water view room upgrade
    • Kids under 4 stay FREE
    • No single supplement
    • Free Cancellations^
    • Free Emergency Assistance Program ^^
    • Free Onsite Antigen Testing

Participating Club Med Resorts
Travelers looking for opportunities to reconnect, unwind, and create cherished memories on their next vacation will find that peace of mind is a destination at several Club Med resorts, including:

  • Club Med Punta Cana, Dominican Republic: On a 2,000-foot stretch of beach, Club Med Punta Cana welcomes travelers to unwind under the Caribbean sun through: a newly renovated Tiara Exclusive Collection space featuring spacious oceanside suites with upscale, personalized services such as a dedicated concierge and poolside champagne service at the dedicated infinity pool and bar. The new Club Med Amazing Family program features a fun-filled agenda of weekly activities for families to bond and create memories like Club Med CREACTIVE by Cirque du Soleil, an interactive playground with more than 25 acrobatic and artistic activities for guests of all ages. Guests looking for additional serenity can indulge in lavender treatments at the Club Med Spa by L’OCCITANE before escaping to the sophisticated adult-exclusive tropical hideaway, Zen Oasis, where intimate cabanas, an oversized lagoon pool and bar, and a dedicated Zen Beach with canopies and lounge chairs await.
  • Club Med Michés Playa EsmeraldaDominican Republic: Reopening June 2021. The first and only operating resort in the undiscovered region of Miches – and Club Med’s only Exclusive Collection resort in North America – offers a luxury experience wrapped in an all-inclusive vacation. The eco-chic resort features four boutique villages specializing in wellness, adventure, kid-friendly, and adults-only concepts, catering to an array of travelers seeking a boutique hotel-within-a-hotel experience. Enjoy unlimited, refined culinary options, Zen moments with an on-site Club Med Spa by Cinq Mondes, treetop yoga, and a naturally-filtered Zen pool, as well as must-try family experiences from learning how to plant and compost ingredients at the on-site community garden to discovering a Secret Chocolate Room – a first-of-its-kind kid’s speakeasy featuring unlimited sweets crafted with locally-sourced cocoa (and adults can get in on the fun, too!). 
  • Club Med CancúnMexico: Club Med Cancún is the perfect location for families looking to reconnect after spending a long year apart. The resort’s Aguamarina family oasis area features spacious two-bedroom oceanfront family rooms, exhilarating water games at the dedicated family pool, and outdoor activities as part of the new Club Med Amazing Family programming. For added R&R, indulge in private oceanfront massages on the beach, private spa treatments at the newly renovated Club Med Spa by L’OCCITANE, and a variety of refined, locally inspired cuisine. Guests looking for an added sense of adventure can explore the Mayan ruins at Chichén-Itzá or discover life under the sea by snorkeling through the world’s second-largest coral reef surrounding the resort.
  • Club Med Sandpiper BayFlorida: The spacious family-friendly resort, located in between Miami and Orlando, offers an all-inclusive getaway – sans passport – with a variety of activities for all interests, like kayaking, paddle boarding, sailing, pickleball, and the flying trapeze. Golfers of all levels can enjoy an elevated experience at the newly renovated championship golf course reopening this summer, while wellness seekers can enjoy some R&R at the new 6,000-sq-ft Club Med Spa by Sothys, the only Sothys Spa in the U.S. While kids enjoy time at the children’s clubs with unlimited all-day activities, adults can relax by the adults-exclusive pool or on the beach situated alongside the St. Lucie River. Beginning June 2021, guests can elevate their family dining experience atop the new open-air terrace at Riverside Steakhouse, featuring diverse cuts of top-quality meat, an array of vegan culinary options, and a curated selection of international wine and spirits with spectacular views of the glistening sunset over the river.
  • Club Med QuébecCanada: Opening December 2021. The four-season all-inclusive mountain resort will be Club Med’s first resort in Canada, just an hour away from Québec City in the Le Massif de Charlevoix region. With over 300 rooms spread across 300+ acres, the family-friendly resort will feature locally inspired culinary experiences, a private 5-Trident (5-star) Exclusive Collection space, sweeping views of the scenic St. Lawrence River and surrounding mountains, and unlimited ski-in/ski-out access. Families can enjoy year-round activities including skiing, biking, and hiking, as well as activities traditional to the region like ice skating and dog sledding. For added Zen, the resort offers an expansive wellness area with a 25-yard heated pool overlooking the river, an outdoor jacuzzi, and a variety of à la carte Nordic spa-inspired treatments.

Additional participating resorts include Club Med Caravelle, Guadeloupe, French Caribbean, Club Med Buccaneer’s Creek, Martinique, French Caribbean, and Club Med Turkoise, Turks and Caicos.

Flexible Policies
To ensure added flexibility and peace of mind for travelers, Club Med also offers:

  • Free Cancellation Policy: For new bookings made on or after May 18, 2020, guests can receive a full refund should they need to cancel their stay (up to 15 days prior to the anticipated travel date) for stays on or prior to December 16, 2021.
  • Emergency Assistance Program: All guests traveling before December 31, 2022 will receive coverage for emergency medical expenses during their stay, including those related to COVID-19. 
  • Safe Together protocols: Implemented in all of the brand’s resorts as they reopen, including those in Florida, Mexico, and the Caribbean, these newly enhanced hygiene and safety measures were developed through recommendations from the World Health Organization, local health authorities, and the advice of an International Scientific Committee comprised of a specialized team of doctors and professors.
  • PCR + Rapid Antigen Testing: As required for re-entry into the United States from international destinations, Club Med offers complimentary Rapid Antigen COVID-19 tests on-site. PCR testing is also available at an additional cost.
  • Club Med, founded in 1950 by Gérard Blitz, is the pioneer of the all-inclusive concept, offering approximately 70 premium resorts in stunning locations around the world including North and South America, Caribbean, Asia, Africa, Europe and the Mediterranean. Each Club Med resort features authentic local style and comfortably upscale accommodations, superior sports programming and activities, enriching children’s programs, gourmet dining, and warm and friendly service by its world-renown staff with legendary hospitality skills, an all-encompassing energy and diverse backgrounds. 

Club Med operates in more than 30 countries and continues to maintain its authentic Club Med spirit with an international staff of more than 23,000 employees from more than 110 different nationalities. Led by its pioneering spirit, Club Med continues to grow and adapt to each market with three to five new resort openings or renovations per year, including a new Alpine ski resort annually. 

For more information, visit www.clubmed.us, call 1-800-Club-Med (1-800-258-2633), or contact a preferred travel professional. For an inside look at Club Med, follow Club Med on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube

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Resorts Gear Up for Families Seeking Escape

March 19, 2021
Mayan dancers at Xcaret, an archaeological theme park. Families who stay at the all-inclusive Hotel Xcaret resort on Mexico’s Riviera Maya on the Caribbean have unlimited access to Xcaret parks: Xel-Ha, Xplor, Xplor Fuego, Xavage, Xoximilco, Xenses, and the Xenotes and Xichen tours. © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Domestic and international resorts are gearing up to provide secluded and unique getaways for families bursting to get out and be together in new and exciting locales.  From educational programming, plenty of outdoor fun (ice-fishing in Wisconsin, learning about the Florida keys, SUP boarding in Turks & Caicos), suites or cabins with full kitchens, these resorts are sure to make all members of the family happy while helping to create new memories in a much-needed change of scenery.

Many of the resort destinations are also providing flexibility in cancellations due to the current travel climate. Additionally, these international resorts have begun implementing onsite testing for COVID-19 to meet reentry requirements to the U.S.

FAMILY FUN IN THE U.S.

Hawks Cay Resort in Duck Key, Florida Keys

Hawks Cay Resort, a one of a kind destination resort in the Florida Keys, offers families looking for a safe spring break getaway this year, the ideal location to spread out and find entertaining programming for everyone in the family. From the full-service marina, guests have access to snorkeling and fishing charters, as well as kayaking and standup paddleboarding. The onsite Dolphin Connection offers families both in-water and dockside experiences, and for those who want to participate in activities together, the resort has a wide variety of new COVID friendly activities including an environmental education class and astronomy lesson. The resort offers guests a variety of room categories including 177 hotel rooms and 250 two- and three-bedroom townhome-style villas that come equipped with washer and dryer and a full kitchen for guests who prefer dine in, and multiple dining outlets that are offering both outdoor and grab and go options. For more information, visit www.hawkscay.com.

Sand Valley, Nekoosa, Wisconsin

Sand Valley resort, a short road trip from many Midwest states, is the ideal back-to-nature getaway for families who are looking for a secluded and safe spring break destination. With a variety of outdoor activities, cozy lodging options that are thoughtfully spaced out for added safety, stunning views, and a culinary experience to match, Sand Valley is the perfect Midwest spring break escape. Outdoor adventures available include hiking, fat-tire biking, bird watching, fishing, yoga, star gazing and snow activities when the weather permits (i.e., snowshoeing, ice skating). Since most Sand Valley cottages are furnished with a full kitchen for cooking and dining, pre-packaged meal kits with local Wisconsin ingredients and recipes curated by Sand Valley chefs await guests upon request. Guests can also arrange for a chef-curated meal in the comfort of their cottage or villa, private dining and in-home meals. From lodging options to greatly enhanced housekeeping procedures to frictionless delivery options, Sand Valley takes the health and wellbeing of visitors incredibly seriously. Find information on the resort’s COVID protocol linked here.

ADVENTURES IN MEXICO

Grand Residences, Puerto Morelos, Mexico

Grand Residences is a secluded coastal resort located about half an hour outside of Cancun and home to its own private beach area. The resort offers an array of onsite activities (i.e., Zumba class, Spanish lessons) and immersive experiences for guests of all ages. Through their Kids Club programming, younger guests, ages 12 and under, are able to learn about local culture and traditions through interactive games and art projects. Some of the activities include learning how to create and play an authentic Mexican lottery game called La Lotería, creating Piñatas, masks and bracelets, treasure. All-inclusive and stay alone travel packages are available and children 12 and under stay free. Grand Residences is also providing complimentary antigen testing for guests.

Hotel Xcaret México, Quintana Roo, México

Hotel Xcaret Mexico is located by the azure blue Caribbean Sea and verdant Riviera Maya jungle.  The premier all-inclusive resort has 900 spacious guest suites, 12 distinct dining destinations, multiple swimming pools, a world-class spa and wellness center.  The resort offers guests all the perks of its exclusive All-Fun Inclusive concept, where travelers have unlimited access to Xcaret parks: Xel-Ha, Xplor, Xplor Fuego, Xavage, Xoximilco, Xenses, and the Xenotes and Xichen tours. In addition to food and beverages, the resort offers  transportation between parks and airport shuttle.  

Rates for the All-Fun Inclusive package range from $285 – $358/night  through April 30. Guests can cancel without any penalty up to seven days prior to their arrival. 

COVID-19 Testing: Hotel Xcaret Mexico has implemented the 360 Xafety model assisting guests with COVID-19 detection tests at the company’s resort and parks.  Guests staying at the hotel have access to a complimentary COVID-19 antigen test, with results delivered the same day, or a PCR test for $140, with results delivered within 24 to 48 hours.

CARRIBBEAN AND CENTRAL AMERICAN GETAWAYS

The Buenaventura Golf & Beach Resort, Riviera Pacifica, Panama

The Buenaventura Golf & Beach Resort is a destination resort on the Pacific coast of Panama and a short flight from major cities in the U.S.  It is the perfect family getaway offering travelers a quick, yet exotic getaway with miles of uncrowded beaches, unique rainforest experiences, and plenty of activities for all ages to enjoy while properly social distancing.  The 118-room luxury resort seven swimming pools, a complimentary Kid’s Club, Nicklaus designed 18-hole championship golf course, biking, tennis, a zoo, sports club, and many other nearby experiences. 

Families can take advantage of the resort’s Family Experiences package with rates starting at $249 that includes daily breakfast, complimentary stand-up paddle boards and kayak, daily activities in the Kids Club, a visit to the on-site Zoo, complimentary Wi-Fi and the use of tennis and volleyball courts.  Guests can book from now until Dec. 8, 2021 using promotional code: MAJ.  The resort offers guests the flexibility to change their reservations without any penalty or restrictions with added benefits to reschedule for a future stay. 

COVID-19 Testing: Guests have access to an on-site private clinic, Vidatec, which offer COVID-19 PRC tests for $95, quantitative antibody tests for $35, and antigen tests for $45.  Results are delivered by email within 24 to 48 hours. 

Ocean Club Resorts, Providenciales, Turks & Caicos

Located directly along the world-renowned Grace Bay Beach, sits Ocean Club Resorts, two all-suite properties that provide the ideal open-air setting and direct beach access for guests to enjoy without going overbudget. Suites at both locations feature a kitchen, washer/dryer and enclosed private porch area, providing each visitor with the comforts of home. Watersports, bike rentals, tennis courts, beachside activities and an interactive learning game for younger guests known as Seafari can all be found at the resorts and are included in each stay. Ocean Club Resorts has also begun implementing complimentary breakfast. The resorts have offered guests in the new state of travel a flexible cancellation policy, discounted travel offers and a concierge service that assists with the coordination of regulations in travel to the island. With the news of the latest travel restrictions, Ocean Club Resorts has begun extending their concierge services to now include helping U.S. travelers with ensuring they receive testing on-island. See here for additional details.

PRIVATE ISLAND FAMILY TRAVEL

Cayo Espanto, Belize

Home to seven villas total and located three miles off the coast of Belize, Cayo Espanto is a private island resort perfect for a luxe family getaway. Each villa comes equipped with a personal butler, private dock area and customized meals set by the on-island world-renowned chef – allowing everyone’s tastebuds to be satisfied. The resort’s ability to tailor activities based on guest preferences enables families to ensure all members of their traveling party has the time of their life. Fishing lessons on a private dock a tropical spa treatment set to the sounds of the Belizean waters watch a movie under the stars. Strong WiFi and private docks attached to spacious villas, also allot for extended virtual work/school stays to provide a much-needed paradisal change of scenery. To adhere to new CDC travel guidelines, the resort has arranged for the island physician to begin administering COVID testing from the convenience of each guest’s villa.

Coco Collection, Maldives

Comprised of two different boutique island resorts, Coco Bodu Hithi and Coco Palm Dhuni Kohlhu, each create a unique Maldivian experience ranging from luxe amenities to eco-forward initiatives for families to indulge in during their stay. The secluded resorts offer the ideal dreamy escape and provide opportunities for families to learn about the local marine life through guided marine biologist adventures, taking a peek at the progress of Coco Bodu Hithi’s coral nurseries initiative or simply enjoying the vast underwater life through snorkeling. Guests of all ages also have the option to become immersed in Maldivian culture through spending an afternoon with locals on a neighboring island. From simply relaxing in your villa or along the private island’s shores, delighting in incredible cuisine, enjoying water activities both below and above (i.e., SUP boarding), Coco Collection is a dream-come-true private island escape. In response to the new CDC regulation, Coco Collection has begun offering guests PCR testing at the resorts.

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Club Med Launches Flash Sale For Up To 55 Percent Off All-Inclusive, Warm-Weather Escapes Through Summer 2021

January 15, 2021
Learning to scuba dive at the all-inclusive Club Med Sandpiper Resort in Florida. © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com.

Club Med, a pioneer of the all-inclusive resort concept, is kicking off the new year with new opportunities to save on all-inclusive getaways at its spacious resorts in Mexico, the Caribbean, and Florida – from last-minute winter escapes to planning ahead for spring and summer travel.

The January Flash Sale, open for bookings now through January 19, 2021 with travel dates through August 27, 2021, offers guests up to 55 percent off stays, free room upgrades and additional perks, unlimited land and water activities, extensive culinary options and premium oceanfront accommodations.  

Offering more room for guests to roam freely and comfortably, Club Med’s open-air, low density resorts are integrated in and respectful of the surrounding nature and feature low-rise buildings spread across 50 acres. Each resort is currently operating at a limited capacity in order to enable social distancing and exclusivity. In addition to creating a sense of privacy and freedom, Club Med’s enhanced safety and hygiene protocols allow travelers to feel confident and protected when booking their upcoming getaway.

For full details on the Flash Sale, visit www.clubmed.us/flashsale.

January Flash Sale

  • Booking window: Today through January 19, 2021
  • Travel window: Select dates from January 12, 2021 (check-in) through August 27, 2021 (check out by August 28, 2021; Blackout dates apply including President’s week & Easter/Passover weeks)
  • Up to 55% off* plus perks:
    • Free room upgrade
    • Up to $400 air credit
    • Kids under 4 stay free
    • No single supplement
    • Flexibility and protection with free cancellation and more (see Terms & Conditions below)

Participating Club Med Resorts 

  • Club Med Sandpiper Bay, Florida: Now Open. Recently named one of the top ten family resorts in the U.S. by USA TODAY 10Best‘s 2020 Readers’ Choice Awards, the resort – located in between Miami and Orlando – offers an all-inclusive getaway sans passport with a variety of land and water sports fit for the entire family, like kayaking, paddle boarding, sailing, pickle ball and the flying trapeze. While the kids have their own adventure, adults can relax by the adult-exclusive pool, on the beach that is situated alongside the St. Lucie River, or at the Club Med Spa, while kids enjoy time at the children’s clubs with unlimited land and water activities.
  • Club Med Cancún, Mexico: Now Open. Located at the tip of the iconic Riviera Maya surrounded by white sandy beaches and the world’s second largest coral reef, the family-friendly resort is perfect for those looking to create life-long memories. The resort’s recently expanded Aguamarina family oasis area features 120 oceanfront family rooms, exhilarating water games at the dedicated family pool, and outdoor activities as part of the new Club Med Amazing Family programming. For added R&R, rediscover wellness through one of our personalized beauty or relaxation treatments at the L’OCCITANE Spa.
  • Club Med Punta Cana, Dominican Republic: Now Open. On a 2,000-foot stretch of beach, Club Med Punta Cana welcomes all travelers to enjoy reconnection and relaxation through: a newly renovated Tiara Exclusive Collection space featuring 32 oceanside family suites, a dedicated infinity pool and bar, and morning room service; the new Club Med Amazing Family program, a fun-filled agenda of weekly activities for families to bond and create memories; Club Med CREACTIVE by Cirque du Soleil, an interactive playground with more than 25 acrobatic and artistic activities for guests of all ages; and treatments at L’OCCITANE Spa and men’s barber shop. Adults can stay or access the resorts’ Zen Oasis, an adult-exclusive area featuring an oversized lagoon pool, spacious Jacuzzi and private cabanas.
  • Club Med Michès Playa Esmeralda, Dominican Republic: Now Open. Located in the unspoiled beaches of Miches on the Dominican Republic’s northeast coast, the Exclusive Collection (5 star) eco-chic resort is the first in the region and features four boutique villages specializing in wellness, adventure, kid-friendly and adults-exclusive experiences catering to travelers seeking a boutique, hotel-within-a-hotel experience. Club Med Michès Playa Esmeralda was recently selected as winner of the ‘Best Hotel Over 200 Rooms Americas/Caribbean’ category in the 2020 International Hotel and Property Awards.
  • Club Med Turkoise, Turks and Caicos: Now Open. Nestled into Grace Bay Beach, consistently ranked as one of the best beaches in the world by TripAdvisor, the adults-exclusive resort is an all-inclusive paradise offering freshly renovated accommodations including deluxe ocean-front guestrooms with balconies, infinity edge pool, a wellness center and a wine cellar, as well as unlimited activities including sailing, kayaking, and flying trapeze.

Additional participating resorts include Club Med Caravelle, Guadeloupe, French Caribbean and Club Med Buccaneer’s Creek, Martinique, French Caribbean.

To ensure added flexibility and peace of mind for travelers, Club Med also offers:

  • **Free Cancellation Policy: Cancel for free up to 15 days prior to departure for bookings made before February 28, 2021 and for travels on or prior to September 3rd, 2021. For complete cancellation policy details, see here.
  • Emergency Assistance Program: All guests traveling before April 30, 2021 will receive coverage for emergency medical expenses during their stay, including those related to COVID-19.
  • Safe Together safety and hygiene protocols: Implemented in all of the brand’s resorts as they reopen, including those in Florida, Mexico, and the Caribbean, these newly enhanced hygiene and safety measures were developed through recommendations from the World Health Organization, local health authorities, and the advice of an International Scientific Committee comprised of a specialized team of doctors and professors.

Full details on the above policies can be found here.

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Hilton Sandestin Introduces Home at Hilton Extended Workcation

January 10, 2021
Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa in South Walton, Florida, is debuting a new Home at Hilton work-from-hotel program catering to remote workers interested in moving their home office beachside for an extended “workcation”.

SOUTH WALTON, Florida –With millions of Americans still working from home, Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa is debuting their new Home at Hilton work-from-hotel program catering to remote workers interested in moving their home office beachside for an extended Florida workcation this winter. 

Home at Hilton offers business professionals seeking a warm-weather relocation two discounted package options, a 14-night Change of Scenery and a 30-night One Month Life Swap, both providing amenities and benefits to create a home-away-from-home setting at Hilton Sandestin. Available for bookings now through February 28, 2021, each of the Home at Hilton packages include spacious beachfront accommodations with a workspace, off-property shuttle service, access to the business kiosk, as well as free reign of the resort’s white sand beach to use for a morning run, mid-day meditation break, or as the backdrop for Zoom calls. Additional benefits for those who choose the extended month-long stay include daily breakfast, a complimentary cocktail every afternoon, beach rentals and laundry service. 

“We’re making it easy for anyone who is remote working or learning to switch up their virtual living situation and move to our beautiful beachfront resort for an extended working vacation,” said Gary Brielmayer, Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa General Manager. “It’s a chance to escape the cold and enjoy some warm weather, fresh air, and our charming beach town experience. We look forward to welcoming guests for a break from everyday life in the new normal.”

Hilton Sandestin sits along the white sand beach of Northwest Florida’s Gulf Coast and provides guests with easy access and shuttle service to nearby attractions, including golf, cultural centers, state parks, shopping outlets, and the vibrant Village at Baytowne Wharf, which is known for its array of boutiques, galleries, restaurants, and nightlife. The resort also offers a variety of on-property activities such as bike rentals, watersports, tennis courts, a world-class spa, as well as dining options, including the area’s only AAA Four Diamond steakhouse, Seagar’s Prime Steaks & Seafood. 

Guests who choose the 14-day stay will receive a 30 percent discount on the best available nightly rate. Pricing begins at $90 per night for those who choose to swap homes for the longer 30-day time period. For more information on the Home at Hilton program visit www.hiltonsandestinbeach.com/home-at-hilton or call 850.267.9500 to make a reservation.

Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa, managed by Sandcastle Resorts & Hotels, is located on the sugar-white sands and emerald-green waters of Northwest Florida’s Gulf Coast near Destin in South Walton, Fla. Northwest Florida’s largest full-service beachfront resort hotel boasts 602 spacious accommodations, more than 40,000 square feet of award-winning meeting space, a world-class spa and state-of-the-art fitness center, six on-site seasonal dining venues – including the Emerald Coast’s only AAA Four-Diamond steakhouse – abundant resort recreation options, access to championship golf courses, and close proximity to the area’s best attractions. A place where moments become memories that last a lifetime, there is only one Hilton Sandestin Beach. For more information on the premier hotel, visit HiltonSandestinBeach.com, or stay up to date with its latest news and promotions on its FacebookTwitter or Instagram.

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White Elephant Palm Beach Hotel Opening Nov. 4, 2020

October 16, 2020
The 32-room White Elephant Palm Beach, which is opening November 4, 2020 and is the sister property to the famed White Elephant resort in Nantucket,  is housed in the former Bradley Park Hotel – originally constructed in 1924 as one of the first resorts on Palm Beach’s Main Street. 

From one vacation destination to another, Nantucket’s White Elephant resort will welcome a sister property in Palm Beach on November 4, 2020. The 32-room White Elephant Palm Beach is housed in the former Bradley Park Hotel – originally constructed in 1924 as one of the first resorts on Palm Beach’s Main Street. During its century-long history, it was initially owned by Colonel Edward R. Bradley, who ran a private and celebrated Beach Club casino on land that is today Bradley Park. For more than 20 years, the hotel served as a magnet for business tycoons and high rollers who frequented the salon. Over the decades that followed, the hotel remained a mainstay for seasonal visitors. In 1980, in part to its architectural significance, the hotel was listed with the Landmark Preservation Commission.  

The footprint of the structure and the facade remains, while the interiors have been stripped to the bones and rebuilt by Boston-based Elkus Manfredi Architects. The nationally recognized firm, known for their projects with The Peninsula Chicago and Four Seasons Residences, Boston, worked closely with the Town of Palm Beach to create a new hotel that showcases the history of the existing building while incorporating a contemporary interpretation of Mediterranean-revival architecture. White Elephant Palm Beach will maintain the welcoming feel of a private residence with 13 rooms and 19 suites spread across four stories.  

The hotel stands one street north of Royal Poinciana Way, Palm Beach’s original Main Street, less than two blocks from the Atlantic Ocean and one block from the Intracoastal Waterway. White Elephant Palm Beach is adjacent to Bradley Park, which will serve as a grand lawn to the hotel, and is less than a half mile from the newly redeveloped Royal Poinciana Plaza shopping complex.   

The layout of the property takes advantage of the South Florida sunshine and features a U-shaped outdoor courtyard that is the social heart of the hotel – a place to relax and recharge, whether lounging on the patio or around the pool. The landscaping features mature, local flora whose lush colors and tropical fragrances envelop guests.  Previews of what’s to come started earlier this year, when White Elephant Palm Beach’s signature restaurant Lola 41– a Nantucket staple – began serving its globally-inspired dishes and local seafood specialties.  

The design captures the spirit of a grand home while maintaining the ambiance of a landmarked boutique hotel. Breaking from the bright pinks and greens that dominate the Palm Beach aesthetic, the White Elephant Palm Beach features a neutral color palette with sleek metal accents and vibrant pops of color. The hardwood floors, Carrara marble, elegant tiles and woven rugs are all interpreted with contemporary style.  Outside, the Mizner-style facade is painted a light, creamy-white color with classic black-and-white striped awnings, terracotta roof tiles, and black trim to bring a fresh, sophisticated look to the classic structure. Guests will be welcomed onto the property by a seven-foot white elephant statue by Santa Fe-based artist Fredrick Prescott. (A “sister” elephant statue, Trunket, is on the grounds of White Elephant in Nantucket.) 

The statue is just one of 120 original pieces of colorful modern and pop art personally curated by the owners and Elkus Manfredi. The museum-worthy collection will be on display throughout the rooms and common spaces. Featured artists include Robert Rauschenberg, whose early creations in the 1950s anticipated the pop art movement, and Jennifer Bartlett, known for her small, square steel plates that are combined in grid formations to create large-scale works. Several pieces by painter Kenzo Okada, the first Japanese-American artist to receive international acclaim using abstract expressionist style, will be on display, as will works by Donald Baechler, part of the East Village, New York 1980s art movement. A 54-inch round acrylic work by Orit Fuchs was specifically created for the hotel and is a focal point of the lobby; while six prints by Yinka Shonibare, who will unveil a new public sculpture installation in West Palm Beach in 2021, will be found on the second-floor corridor. Doodle Boy, a 10-year-old British artist, was also commissioned to create 30 exclusive pieces for the powder rooms. Using clean black lines hand drawn with a thick marker, he incorporated a hidden signature elephant in each of his drawings.  

Guestrooms and suites range from 510- to 3,000-square feet featuring custom-designed furniture. King-size beds will be outfitted with Pratesi by Rivolta linens with upholstered backboards accented in a colorful palm and flower print. The same fabric will be found on the back of the desk chairs and on the throw pillow piping. Other noteworthy pieces include console tables by Selamat Designs in collaboration with the heritage brand, Morris & Co, which are wrapped inside and out with authentic William Morris “Strawberry Thief” covering. The pattern was originally created in 1883. Each of the suites will be furnished with plush grey and cream armchairs and couches. The custom-designed wooden arches that frame the entrance to some of the rooms are a defining architectural element of the hotel. 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. The bathrooms feature marble tiles, double sinks crafted from stone, a dry vanity and glass-enclosed walk in showers with L’Occitane bath amenities. 

The two penthouse suites are ideal for those who want to entertain, with large living rooms, fully equipped kitchens, and terraces ranging between 800- to 1,200-square-feet. With views of Bradley Park, the Park Suite is a three-bedroom that can be expanded into four, and the ocean-facing Palm Suite is a two-bedroom that can be expanded into three.  

Among other amenities, guests will have complimentary use of BMW courtesy vehicles, Priority Bicycles and Radio Flyer Wagons as well as exclusive access to Barton & Gray yachts for excursions. A shuttle will be offered to transport guests between the beach and property, and complimentary sweet treats from the White Elephant ice cream cart will be available poolside daily.  

“Our main mission is to combine our vision of hospitality with the ethos and style of casually elegant Palm Beach,” comments Douglass Karp, President of New England Development. He notes, “We are pleased to combine our promise of service excellence with the exciting tradition of hospitality in this legendary resort destination. We feel right at home in Palm Beach.” 

New England Development   (NED) is one of the nation’s premier real estate development and management companies, led by Chairman Stephen R. Karp, Vice Chairman Steven S. Fischman and President Douglass E. Karp. As part of NED’s national portfolio that includes retail, mixed-use and hospitality assets, plus marinas and golf courses, the company operates luxury hotels on Nantucket, MA, including White Elephant and The Wauwinet. Both are recipients of Conde Nast Travelers’ Readers’ Choice Award. In 2019, TOPPER’s was also named AAA’s only “Five Diamond” restaurant on Nantucket and has been a recipient of Wine Spectator’s “Grand Award” for 24 consecutive years. In addition, NED was a major part of the team that developed the Westin Boston Waterfront Hotel adjacent to the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center. 

New England Development also developed and manages the 440,000 SF Palm Beach Outlets in West Palm Beach and the adjacent 300,000 SF Marketplace at the Outlets, located directly off Interstate 95 on Palm Beach Lakes Boulevard in West Palm Beach, FL.  

Reservations are being taken now; rates start at $650 for a guest room and $995 for a suite. (280 Sunset Avenue, Palm Beach, FL )

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