When we’re talking about travel economics there’s nothing more blinding than all inclusive holidays. Finally, what’s more luxurious than having everything planned out for you? Because everybody just seems to want to jump right in and grab a hold of discounted travel packages. You’re not ready to mingle with and very limited time to yourself because your travel itinerary has been too cramped up. You need to be wary about all inclusive holidays, though, unless you want to be stuck in canned tours, food you don’t really want to eat, strangers.
You should still know what your options are, while all inclusive holidays aren’t automatically bad (for some people, these packages do work). What you can do is to look at all inclusive holidays from different travel agencies, know how much you’re losing for choosing to let them arrange everything, and look at all of the inclusions in the package. Don’t jump right into buying all inclusive holidays because you’re planning the trip at the last minute and you don’t have the time to shop for other things, or to arrange your accommodations and your itinerary on your own.
These inclusions can range from visits to the city or the beach, free meals, spa visits, sports tickets for water sports. Whatever the inclusions are, make sure they are things you really want for your trip. If you’re included in a tour assemble, be equipped to mix with people who do not necessarily know. If this is fine with you, then go ahead and subscribe to it. If your idea of all inclusive holidays is spending all afternoon on the beach with free massages and room service at night, then talk to your travel agent about it. It could be an all-inclusive travel package included in your itinerary to suit your taste and budget.
Another thing you have to worry about is the location of your hotel. The inclusive holidays may be published on the internet prices too low, but if the hotel is too far from the beach, you may lose much of their time traveling from one end to another. It may not be all-inclusive after all also whether transfers from the hotel to the beach are not covered by fees from your travel agent.
Lastly, check your flight hours. Make sure they’re not scheduled too far from your hotel. You don’t want to have plane tickets home booked too early, either. Just because you’re purchasing all inclusive holidays doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have the option to maximize your time out-of-town. Just look at the cost of the travel inclusions and gauge if the savings you will make are suited to your holiday style.
Luxury hotels that shine throughout the year.
Chosen from a collection of nearly 900 luxury hotels and resorts on Virtuoso’s annual list of the very best.
HOTEL OF THE YEAR
The Goring, London
Each and every year a few new luxury hotels and resorts turn heads and some of them sprawl landscapses while others are towering skyscrapers. This tiny 71-room hotel has been quietly wowing the world for a century. Royalty, rock stars, and conservative British businessmen all find their comfort zone here. Traditionally British it is also not afraid to be a little quirky. Yes, The Goring’s CEO Jeremy Goring (great-grandson of the man who built it) brought in the big guns in British design – Nina Campbell, David Linley, and Tim Gosling – but he didn’t give the heave-ho to those fleece-covered wooden sheep that stand at the foot of the beds and in the lounge- guests just love them like family pets.
The Armani Hotel, Dubai
Giorgio Armani’s first hotel met his goal of wanting to make it feel like home. Known for his classic style, Armani, handed the execution of his concepts to Fino International and had his hand on everything from the A-shaped swimming pool to the zebrawood paneling – even the florist, nightclub, and spa are Armani branded. This hotel speaks and breathes Armani style; classic and chic.
MOST INNOVATIVE GUEST EXPERIENCE
AmanFayun Hangzhou, China
Aman resorts rebuilt a village dating back to the Tang Dynasty. When creating this new village it had a clear cut mission; to save a bit of history and offer the experience of rural China of centuries past. Guests at the 42-room Amanfayun enjoy luxuries that the tea farmers who once lived here could not have imagined. They can feel the living spirit of an ancient Chinese village.
Aman never deviated from the buildings’ original foundations or style, nor did it close off a path that’s always given locals access through the village. Forging a bond with the monks at the fourth-century Temple of Goodness, guests can now hike up the mountainside to join them for prayers before sunrise and afterward share a traditional vegetarian breakfast.
BEST HOTEL DINING
The Dorchester, London
Master chef, Alain Ducasse has been called a culinary genius, perfectionist, and overachiever. With 27 restaurants and a total of 19 Michelin stars, he may run a culinary empire, but his establishments are one of a kind. Guests who book Table Lumière, a table for six surrounded by a shimmering curtain of 4,500 fiber-optic lights, choose their own tableware, silverware, and crystal from Hermès, Puiforcat, and Saint-Louis. With its menu of contemporary French cuisine, the restaurant won a third Michelin star this year, making Ducasse the first chef to hold three stars in three different cities.
BEST FAMILY PROGRAM
Verdura Golf and Spa Resort, Sicily
More than 500 acres on the prized stretch of coastline, two championship golf courses, a standout spa, and food based on the freshest Sicilian ingredients, this sleek 203-room Rocco Forte resort hits the sweet spot with couples. Sicily life is all about family, so naturally Verdura even though a luxury hotel and resorts company, thinks like a parent. Kid-size bicycles, a shallow children’s swimming pool, and free organized activities every day like the little ones who can enjoy mime classes, treasure hunts, and biscuit making and a teenagers club that offers rugby, beach volleyball, football, and golf this resort has something for everyone.
luxury hotels and resorts
Grand Velas all suites and spa resort, Riviera Maya, Mexico
Grand Velas is an all-inclusive resort with a spa that is so impressively sized –89,000 square feet – it’s the largest spa in the Yucatán. The real attention-getter is its organic style, starting with a towering palapa-style roof and wall of two-story windows that make the lush vegetation outdoors feel like part of the spa. A cavernous lower level takes its inspiration from the region’s underground water pools, or cenotes. A hand-hewn rock wall emerges from a winding chlorine-free pool that’s outfitted with water-bubble beds, cascades, different jets for massaging neck and shoulders, and a gurgling volcanic geyser. We also love the clay room, ice room, rain showers, and sensory water walkway with pebbled bottom.
The most socially responsible of all the luxury resorts and hotels is the Four Seasons in Costa Rica, it is also a perfect example of Citizen diplomat.
Its amazing what can happen when people change the world one destination at a time.
Four Seasons employees and guests built a fence around a rural Costa Rican school, the principal was happy that he could now keep cows out of the classroom. The volunteers saw classrooms with no furniture, so they created a fund to buy desks and chairs. Since 2001, the Four Seasons’ owners have been the backbone of the Growing Together program, which benefits rural communities on the Papagayo Peninsula through customized volunteer experiences that support local schools and conservation efforts. Now 12 staff ambassadors match guests who want to volunteer with communities that have the greatest need – one family planted a garden at a school to show children how to eat healthfully. Another way guests at the 155-room hotel can reach out is through the resort’s Backpack Buddy program, donating or delivering school supplies to children.
For these and other great stories about citizen diplomat please do not hesitate to check out our blog located at http://www.luxetraveldeals.com/luxury-travel-guide.