Traveling is important for the soul. We have a chance to rejuvenate and reconnect with ourselves and our loved ones. Let’s plan to make 2015 the year to take a trip with family, friends or just the two of you. Depending on what you are looking for wanderlust, fitness, sleep, delicious food. The possibilities are plentiful and can range from Los Angeles, London, Denver, Hawaii, Turks and Caicos to Montauk and more. Where do you want to go in 2015?
Around the globe, hotel guests are checking out of leading properties armed with new skills, new experiences and often a new mindset, based on the impressive experiences hotels are now offering. The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota has partnered with Big Cat Habitat to provide guests a thrilling opportunity to come face to face with lions, tigers and bears (oh my!) while volunteering their skills to this organization. In New Orleans, the Davenport Lounge at The Ritz-Carlton offers guests private trumpet lessons from Jeremy Davenport himself, the hotel’s headline entertainer. Half Moon, A RockResort in Montego Bay, Jamaica offers new one-of-a-kind day adventures where guests can experience ‘living like a local’ and are welcomed into the homes of notable, working Jamaican families and invited to learn alongside them. Regent Palms Turks & Caicos offers guests the opportunity to experience conch diving, post-trip divers delight as their conch is turned into delicious ceviche prepared by Executive Chef Lauren Callighen. In San Francisco, guests can hit the open waters of Richardson Bay and learn to sail while staying at the Mansion at Casa Madrona in Sausalito, CA with three days of sailing lessons on a beautiful 31′ sailboat. Gurney’s Montauk Resort & Seawater Spa has teamed up with the Bear Grylls Survival Academy to offer an all-inclusive experience for guests and groups to learn how to start a fire, purify water, catch, prepare, and eat wild food, navigate without a compass, avoid hypothermia, and ultimately learn to self-rescue using Bear’s famous techniques as seen on his TV show on NBC.
Traveling fitness enthusiasts are enjoying properties that now offer guests outdoor activities that draw upon the destination. In the fishing village of Port Soller in Mallorca, Jumeirah Port Soller Hotel & Spa guests have the rare opportunity to cycle through a UNESCO World Heritage Site and challenge themselves everyday cycling the rugged yet jaw droppingly gorgeous northwest coast of the island. The hotel is now equipped with its own bike repair shop and mountain bike rentals. At The Ritz-Carlton, Key Biscayne, Miami guests can explore the exclusive five-mile long barrier island and all of its rich history with the Atlantic Walk. Triumph Hotels is offering exclusive walking tours of historic New York City neighborhoods in partnership with Streetwise. Situated in beautiful Red Rock Country, L’Auberge de Sedona recently implemented a brand new GM Jog program where guests can meet General Manager Jesse Alexander in the morning for a heart-pumping off-property run through Arizona’s scenic trails and vistas. Using what Mother Nature has provided, families staying in O’ahu at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa take part in Palm Tree TRX on the beach.
Taking Workouts to New Heights
Cardio is getting heart’s pumping this year, as hotels, spas and now nightclubs are boosting their fitness offerings. First of its kind, the High Altitude Suite at Madinat Jumeirah offers hypoxic training which can improve aerobic and anaerobic performance. To spice up workout routines, Grand Geneva has added POUND® classes to its workout schedule. POUND®/Fit Ball fuses the most challenging series of core, leg and upper body conditioning moves with cardio interval training, and most importantly – fun. In San Diego, patrons are trading in their cocktails for intense cardio at FLUXX nightclub. Debuting this Spring, FLUXX SPIN – an upbeat spin class is performed in a nightclub setting complete with a DJ spinning tunes from state-of-the-art sound systems, lasers, theatrical lighting system and a new LED wall and chandelier. THE MODERN HONOLULU recently launched Poses empower, a daylong yoga and music event with acclaimed yogis paired with top local and national musicians and DJ’s playing into the mix.
Solo female travelers have taken center stage and hotels and resorts are creating customized offerings and programs to cater to this demographic. Female travelers at the Jumeirah Emirates Towers can stay on the exclusive Chopard ladies floor, which is solely serviced by female colleagues. The rooms were carefully designed for the sophisticated woman traveler and each includes in-suite yoga facilities, a cosmetics fridge, the softest bathrobe and kimono and lavish Chopard bathing products. In Tucson, Arizona Tanque Verde Ranch invites solo women travelers to rejuvenate their souls with the Celebration of One package. Guests can discover themselves along with the great outdoors with all inclusive rates including horseback riding through cacti-laden trails, guided nature hikes and mountain biking, as well as several other outdoor activities and three daily meals. World-renowned destination fitness resort and spa in Tecate, Mexico, Rancho La Puerta, is a magical and transformative place for solo female travelers. Guests can immerse themselves in the all inclusive program with energetic fitness options, delicious organic cuisine, morning hikes, lectures and find solitude in these activities or meet new friends throughout the stay.
Connectivity is key, as traveler’s needs have steadily increased for access to technology and the ability to be wired in during their stay. At Hotel Abri in San Francisco, the hotel makes it easy with its Tech Bar, offering a variety of cool tech toys and tools to borrow complimentary during your stay, including phone chargers, earbuds, mini speakers, laptop chargers and flash drives. The Ritz-Carlton, Westchester has a “resident genius” that is available to teach groups how to use innovative apps tailored towards their interests. Harrah’s Resort SoCal just partnered with Brightbox to add stations to their property for secure phone charging. Known as the world’s most luxurious hotel, at the opulent Burj Al Arab guests staying in 202 luxury duplex suites receive a 24-karat gold iPad to use during their stay. Four Seasons Resort Lana’i at Manele Bay recently debuted RFID wristbands for room access, perfect for active travelers that are out exploring the island and enjoying outdoor activities.