As the auspicious Year of the Dragon draws to a close, and we prepare to welcome the Year of The Snake, LUXE City Guides launches the brand new Asian Grand Tour Box in honour of this celebration. Featuring two of the Chinese zodiac’s strongest symbols – the powerful dragon and wise snake swirl in bold, matt carbon black lacquer over a glossy, scarlet peony background complete with red velvet flocked LUXE logo and the Chinese seal for longevity on the back. The Asian Grand Tour Box gives you access to eight of our favourite cities in Asia with the latest collection of LUXE City Guides to Bali, Bangkok, Beijing, Hanoi, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Singapore and Tokyo.
Developed especially in time for the most important of Chinese celebrations, the Chinese New Year, the Asian World Grand Tour is available exclusively online at www.luxecityguides.com and will hit retailers later in the spring. (Retails US$75)
Famous for their ultra short, sharp and snappy reviews and highly personal and selective entries, LUXE City Guides have sold well over one million copies – no padding, no maps, no daft pictures and graphics, just super-curated, highly opinionated quickfire speed reads from resident editors and contributors who REALLY know their city, so you can spend time enjoying the city not head down in a book. Packed from concertina cover to cover with snazz, snark and snap, if it’s in LUXE, it’s IN. For smart and savvy travelers LUXE City Guides have gone mobile. More than 20 cities are now available as apps which come with a year of free updates sent directly to your mobile. Whether you have a few hours or a few days, LUXE really is all you need.
Long stays with family, extended families or friends is a luxury travel trend projected for 2013.* In keeping with both the trend and demand, InterContinental Samui Baan Taling Ngam Resort has announced its latest addition to its existing guest residences -
The 3-bedroom Napa Reserve Villa.
Located 110-metres above sea level amidst lush tropical landscape with panoramic views of the Gulf of Thailand, the 320 square-metre accommodation offer expansive residential style space ideal for families or a small group of friends seeking the ultimate in exclusive getaway on the idyllic
Thai Island of Koh Samui.
Each of the three Thai-inspired bedrooms comes with luxurious en-suite bathroom with premium amenities, which includes his or hers Sothys beauty products alongside premium bathroom toiletries from Thai-brand Harnn.
The separate dining and living area offer all the comforts of a home; from fully integrated Bose entertainment system to a wine cellar of selected fine wines from around the world, a full cocktail kit as well as a selection of gourmet TWG teas and an espresso machine.
The villa’s spacious sundeck leads to a 15-metre private pool, from where guests have direct access to, and exclusive use of, the Spa Suite. Here guests can indulge in a wide array of bespoke treatments and services, provided by the resort’s Baan Thai Spa, which was recently named one of Top 5 Asian Spas by Condé Nast Traveler 2012.
Outside, the expansive lounge area with a show kitchen is conducive to a splendid dinner party, which can be arranged with the assistance of your butler – who is on hand to arrange various activities for the duration of your stay, including a day boat trip on the resort’s sleek James Bond style speedboat to the nearby Ang Thong National Park where guests can enjoy a gourmet BBQ lunch on a secluded island.
General Manager for InterContinental Samui Baan Taling Ngam Resort, Mr Arnaud Girodon said: “Many of our discerning guests are choosing to extend their length of stay with us, and want to ensure optimum comfort with
luxury services and products to give a feeling of staying at a home-away-from-home. Our state-of-the-art Thai style Napa Reserve Villa, with a dedicated butler to provide the highest standard of personalised service can provide just that.”
To maintain the guests’ well-being during their extended stays, the resort can arrange daily private yoga classes at the villa, or take advantage of the healing qualities of the tea ritual at the resort’s Baan Thai Spa; where personalised concoction of herbal tincture can counter the effects of stress and pollution from today’s urban lifestyle and environment.
For families staying with children, dedicated children’s amenities complete the little guests’ stay, with custom made bathrobe, slippers and Bliss Monkey turndown gift and In-room service for small guests offer a selection of healthy snacks.
Special opening rate for The Napa Reserve is available from 45,000 Thai Baht per night until 21st December 2012.
For rates thereafter, please refer to the resort’s website http://samui.intercontinental.com/
An innovate scheme in Shropshire, based on ‘green’ and sustainable principles, is being highlighted as a guide to where locals and visitors will find the very best value-for-money in the Shropshire Hills.
Members of the initiative tend to be ‘cottage industries’, where overheads are low, and where personal service and quality are valued more highly than profit margins.
As a result, the directory which maps-out where people can ‘go, buy, eat, and stay’ not only offers its customers the chance to support some of the most sustainable businesses in Shropshire, but to also find some of the best value-for-money.
Many of the businesses are tourism-related – including B&Bs, guest houses, holiday cottages and inns where, for a fraction of the cost of staying in a chain hotel, guests can enjoy award-winning breakfasts, cosy log fires, and professional hospitality.
The restaurants, cafés, tearooms and inns, meanwhile, are where it’s possible to enjoy afternoon teas, pub lunches and wholesome dinners made with locally-sourced produce.
The food producers themselves are where customers will find a fabulous array of food-and-drink to take home with them – including artisan breads, home-made sausages, jams, cheeses, honey and beer.
And for visitors, in particular, there are a number of activity providers who can use their knowledge and expertise to offer fresh experiences and ways of enjoying and exploring some of the more secluded corners of The Shropshire Hills.
Eco, green and sustainable, the scheme has so far been able to sign-up more than 100 local businesses who have pledged to reduce their impact on the environment, to enhance wildlife and landscape, to involve both locals and visitors, and to support the local economy.
The project as a whole has been running for almost five years, and is becoming increasingly visible across the Shropshire Hills. Most of the B&Bs, guest houses, farmhouses, cafes, restaurants, pubs, shops, food producers and activity providers now proudly display the “Buy Local – Be Sustainable” logo in their windows and front doors.
Businesses which have signed-up to the scheme are asked to sign a Sustainability Pledge, which is then displayed on their walls – showing their customers all of the activities they are carrying out to become more sustainable.
For full details about the Shropshire Hills Sustainable Business Scheme, visit www.shropshirehills-buylocal.co.uk . OR, follow it on Twitter @ShropSustainBiz.
There’s a lot to love about the City by the Bay. With it’s laid back vibe, commitment to equality, diversity and all things eco-friendly, offbeat neighbourhoods and choice of stellar restaurants it’s easy to see through the fog to one of the coolest cities on Earth. With more speakeasies, farmers markets and Victorian rooflines than hipsters can click their iPhones at, San Francisco is a haven for globetrotting hedonists.
With so much to choose from, Hg2 have stepped in to offer their helping hand with the launch of Hg2| A Hedonist’s Guide to San Francisco. Hg2 San Francisco showcases the very best on offer in the foggy city, including the quirky boutique HOTELS, mouth-watering RESTAURANTS, underground BARS, cosy CAFES, hip-shaking CLUBS, unique SHOPS and fun THINGS TO DO.
Available online at www.hg2sanfrancisco.com and as an iPhone/iPad application (from December 2012) so you can access this little travel bible in just a few clicks, whether you’re planning weeks in advance or already on-the-ground.
You can also:
Search and plan your trip to your specific taste with Hg2′s fun filters, whether you are going for ACHINGLY HIP, BUDGET CHIC, EXPENSE ACCOUNT, NEIGHBOURHOOD VIBE, OLD SCHOOL or UNIQUELY LOCAL.
Keep up-to-date with venues through our live Twitter feeds pulling straight from the venues themselves.
Take some intellectual cues from the Reading List to get you inspired before you travel.
Read through the latest features on the city including interviews with local insiders and trendspotting pieces by in-the-know authors from our blog, Hg2 Magazine (www.hg2magazine.com).
Browse through eye-wateringly beautiful images for every single venue.
Incorporating music, fashion, and fresh ideas, Hg2.com has grown beyond a travel guide series into a lifestyle brand for the modern traveller, making it one of the most exciting websites of 2012.
For more information and images please contact Marilyn MacDonald
Phone: +44 (0) 207 221 9668
Hg2 was born from frustration, after its founder, Tremayne Carew Pole, lost a weekend in Budapest trying to find a genuinely good bar. Recognizing that many people experience the same disappointment, he decided to create a new type of city guide – combining engaging destinations and stylish design with unsurpassed local knowledge, to offer the ultimate handbook to a city break.
Bound is stylishly discrete snakeskin-like flexi-bound covers the guides all follow the same format, covering the best places to Sleep, Eat, Drink, Snack, Party, Shop, Play and take in Culture in each city. Considered reviews, ratings and photography throughout ensure the reader knows exactly what to expect before they go ensuring no disappointments.
In December 2012, Hg2 will be re-launching their mobile apps in tablet and smartphone format for Apple and Android, with Blackberry and Windows 8 arriving in January 2013.
get lost travel magazine and UK adventure holiday group Exodus have joined forces in a bid to spread the travel bug.
Exodus are specialists in adventure, walking, trekking, cycling, wildlife holidays and winter activities. They offer the option to travel in a small group with like-minded people, or, on selected departures dates, on an Independent Trip with friends.
Under the partnership, get lost will be delivered to Exodus’ 2000 Australian database, boosting the magazine’s circulation. The deal also enhances Exodus’ profile as the group seeks to expand its presence down under.
get lost publisher Justin Jamieson said the deal was a win-win for the magazine and Exodus.
“It’s a fantastic value-add for Exodus and a great way of taking get lost to a broader, captive market of active travelers,” he said.
“By tapping into Exodus’ database we can inspire readers with unique and exciting travel ideas, and this will feed into bookings.
“We provide the inspiration for travel and Exodus takes people there.”
The Exodus partnership comes hot on the heels of the Intrepid My Adventure Store deal in July, which saw the magazine distributed to 11 stores across Australia.
get lost issue 35 is on sale now, featuring the 25 best boat journeys from around the world.
Pick up a copy today and we’ll see you out on the water.
Healing Holidays are proud to annually sponsor the Tatler Spa Guide, showcasing the finest Retreats and Resorts on the planet. If you missed your copy of the Spa Guide with the November issue contact Healing Holidays to request your free copy.
Whether its Thailand or the Swiss Alp’s or even the Himalayas, we understand each deliver a plethora of unique charm, products, and treatments. A weekend to escape to the stress and rigours of daily life or a week’s weight loss programme, Healing Holidays will help discover your perfect Spa break.
To request your copy or view our exclusive offers please visit www.healingholidays.co.uk/tatlerspa or call us on 020 7843 3597
Toronto based Authentic Cuba Travel, the leading provider of escorted tours to Cuba, is pleased to announce a new website dedicated to providing travelers with a simplified directory of the most important attractions that Havana has to offer. The directory is not comprehensive.
Instead, it is a guide to help those on short education trips or research Cuba tours decide what to visit in Havana when staying only a few days.
Havana, the capital and cultural center of Cuba, offers many attractions and activities for visitors to the island.
While the list of cultural and historic sites is long, many travelers find that it is difficult to pick out the activities and attractions that will give them the most authentic experience of the islands rich culture and history.
Authentic Cuba Travel has created this new website in order to help travelers determine the best places to experience while they are in Havana.
It is especially important for US citizens who wish to travel to Cuba from USA for study or research in their professional fields to be able to quickly determine the sites that will give them the most authentic travel experience possible.
For over 50 years, USA Cuba Travel has been essentially barred, but under President Barack Obama, these travel restrictions have been eased to allow students and professionals to study and conduct research in the country.
Through this new website, Authentic Cuba Travel helps visitors learn about important Cuban landmarks and activities. The firing of the 9 O’clock Cannon is one of Cuba’s longest standing traditions.
In Havana, visitors can experience important historical events like this, tour the famous Revolution Square, and study pristine examples of Spanish Colonial architecture. Old Havana is an important historical center that researchers and historians alike will find fascinating and educational.
Those who wish to study and explore Cuban art and culture can find in-depth descriptions of various sites where they can find prime examples of the works of Cuban artists.
The National Museum of Fine Arts holds an extensive collection of Cuban art, as well as important pieces from the ancient world and European artists.
By providing this new website, Authentic Cuban Travel is giving travelers a great guide to some of the most unique and valuable sites and attractions that Cuba’s capital city showcases.
While travel to Cuba by US citizens is now available legally under many circumstances, the regulations are continually changing.
It’s uncertain how long Americans will have the opportunity to experience and learn about Cuban culture. For those who are able to acquire a General License to travel to Cuba, this may be a rare opportunity to study the history and culture of this diverse island nation.
In an effort to make it easier for those who are able to obtain a license to travel to Cuba, Authentic Cuba Travel offers the Things to Do in Havana in Havana website as an important resource for travelers who wish to experience as much of the culture and history of Cuba’s capital city as possible in a short stay.
Bella Travel Group Ltd. (Authentic Cuba Travel Group/ Hello Cuba Travel Group) is a full service travel agency based in Toronto, Canada that organizes cultural, educational and adventure tours for schools, NGOs, business and community groups.
Even though each year more than 2 million tourists travel to Cuba, they hardly have the chance to get to know the authentic Cuba that lies beyond the confines of all-inclusive full-packed tourist resorts.
Once back home, those travelers realize they have hardly “traveled” to Cuba. It might have been a nice and low cost package vacation from the cold weather, but they do not know much about Cuba’s culture and its people.
Authentic Cuba Travel votes for a different kind of tourism for those travellers who demand more from their vacations. With over 30 fully escorted Cuba tours announced for 2012- 2013, ranging from educational and cultural to arts and architecture and festivals and events,
Authentic Cuba Travel captures the Cuban identity that defines the island as a unique Caribbean nation.
Have a Go News is Western Australia’s leading lifestyle newspaper targeted at the mature market.
Published for 21 years this newspaper has a strong and loyal readership state wide which reaches more than 188,000 people monthly.
The paper interacts regularly with its readership and this includes its Talking Travel session for readers held monthly to discuss travel, share stories, tips and information.
From these events Travel Editor Jen Merigan has seen the need to offer a new service to their travelling readers of a mid month email listing the many travel specials available that often only run for a short time between publications.
The new service was launched in the October issue with a strong response.
The email service will include timely specials from airlines, wholesalers and agents.
Industry are invited to send their special offers to the travel editor – Jen Merigan – Jen@haveagonews.com.au or contact 0414 882 938.
Have a Go News is available in hard copy with a CAB audited circulation of 65,433 and online through our website at www.haveagonews.com.au
The Insight Guides World Cities app for iPhone and iPad features 10 cities, each with hundreds of attractions, recommended itineraries, an audio phrasebook and offline maps
According to consumer research* over two thirds of smart-phone owners use their device when travelling or planning to travel. Now Insight Guides have introduced a new series of city guide apps that allow travellers to plan their trip and make the most of the city once there. These apps for iPhone and iPad combine Insight’s insider knowledge and trademark evocative travel photography with GPS technology to give travellers the very best of 10 fabulous cities. Just download the free Insight Guides World Cities app, and then choose from Barcelona, Berlin, Bruges, Hong Kong, London, New York, Paris, Rome, San Francisco and Shanghai (£3.99 each). For those who want to try before they buy, the World Cities app also contains a free sampler which allows the user to explore one entire area from each of the 10 different cities, such as Kensington and Chelsea in London or Prenzlauer Berg in Berlin.
These sophisticated apps are perfect for planning a trip – even for armchair travel – as well as for use in the city itself. The user simply has to adjust the location setting on the app according to where they are. If the user is in the city, the app prioritises showing all the interesting sights and places nearby. If the user is planning a visit, the app serves up top recommendations by category.
The apps are packed with useful features, including an itinerary builder that allows users to create their own city walks and tours. There’s also a selection of Insight Guides’ own tried-and-tested routes to get the traveller started.
Another unique feature is the audio phrase book. Each app has around 180 audio clips, designed to take the pain out of communicating in a foreign language once abroad. Just press play, and the app can do the talking for you… This language content comes courtesy of Berlitz, the language experts.
Importantly, too, travellers won’t run up high charges when using these apps overseas, because they are fully usable offline.
Other great features include the following:
• Especially impressive on the iPad: Insight’s apps are tailored to maximise the screen space of the iPad, but also to fit the economy of the iPhone display, looking great on both devices.
• Introduction and essentials: The apps include an overview to the city, a concise history, essential practical information and transport advice.
• Area lowdown: Each city is divided up into around 10 key areas, each with an informative overview.
• Select listings: Users don’t have to plough through thousands of irrelevant listings. Insight Guides knows its discerning readership and has carefully selected around 400–500 themed listings with them in mind. As with Insight’s print travel guides, the information in the apps has been thoroughly researched by local experts. Listings can be filtered and sorted useful categories (hotels, restaurants, children, shopping and many more) and by area.
• Photo gallery: All the images in each app are also showcased in a photo gallery. This looks particularly stunning on the iPad.
• Detailed mapping: The apps include Insight’s own cartography to show the overall city areas, as well as mapping from OpenStreetMap for greater detail.
Insight Guides World Cities is available as a free download from iTunes. Each individual city is available as an in-app purchase priced at £3.99. For further information, visit www.insightguides.com/shop/apps
Bradt Travel Guides has published its first guidebook to Jordan. Written by Carole French, the guide discusses Jordan’s history and culture, eco projects, wildlife and marine life, desert treks, markets and malls. The release of the guidebook comes at an exciting time for Jordan, in a year when the country is celebrating the 200th anniversary of the rediscovery of Petra, Jordan’s most famous tourist attraction.
The insightful guide provides a perfect introduction to Jordan for first time visitors, from advice for getting the most out of a day trip to the ‘red rose city’ of Petra to ideas for experiencing true Bedouin hospitality in Wadi Rum. There are also tips for discovering more off-the-beaten track destinations such as the Eastern Desert and the Decapolis Cities.
The 282-page guide boasts a full-colour picture guide to unmissable Jordan highlights, from floating in the Dead Sea to discovering Jordan’s ancient past in the capital Amman. Helpful Arabic phrases are also included, along with information on luxury, up-market, mid-range, budget and shoestring eating and accommodation options.
Carole French, author of the Bradt Travel Guide to Jordan commented: “I’ve long admired Jordan and have constantly urged friends and family to visit the country – providing them with both motivation and advice. This drove me to want to share my experiences of, and my passion for, this captivating country, and so the Bradt guide to Jordan was born.
“This is Bradt’s first guide to Jordan and so it’s jam packed with information for both the first time visitor and regular travellers to the region. I hope that the guide suitably reflects my passion for this inspirational, vibrant and colourful kingdom.”
The Bradt Travel Guide to Jordan is now available for purchase for £16.99 from www.bradtguides.com as well as from Amazon worldwide, Waterstones and Stanfords.
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