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Glitz and Glam at The Ritz London

Inspiration, Lifestyle, STAY

As I walk up the steps of Green Park Station, the iconic The Ritz London hotel comes into view. There are few hotels in the world that have the capability of stopping you in your tracks. The Ritz London is one. People walk around me quickly, some even huff as they go past the woman who has decided that stopping in the middle of a busy London street is a good idea. I arch my head, looking up toward the pavilion roof and the large green copper lions that adorn it.

Finally, my feet start working. I walk between the archways and the exterior of the Ritz Club and Bar, before turning the corner to the hotel entrance. In a momentary lapse of complete cliché, I start humming ‘Puttin’ on the Ritz’. The doorman smiles warmly at me as I step through the revolving doors, forgetting the song and the world outside The Ritz London.

Image courtesy of The Ritz London

The Hoshinoya Kyoto brings the Edo period of nobility alive in exquisite luxury

Adventure, CITY, STAY

“Domo arigato,” I say to the taxi driver who smiles, bows twice and says “Hai. Hai.” I wheel my bag along a pathway by the Ooi river just over the Togetsukyo bridge heaving with crowds of tourists who clot in Kyoto’s Arashiyama district. Some are in rent-a-kimino taking selfies, others are in school uniform giggling and smiling and then there’s the occasional western tourist biting into a Miffy shaped donut.

This side of the bridge is much quieter. My quest is to find the private boat ramp for the Hoshinoya Kyoto. I see the sign just ahead written in English and Japanese and stop and breathe a sigh of relief. ‘No. No. This way,’ says a Japanese man with a camera hung around his neck gesturing downstream. I smile. Perhaps I should have donned a pair of Blahniks and a flowy Camilla for this journey. “You have to be a very special Japanese person to stay at the Hoshinoya,” my taxi driver confided before he dropped me off.

Image courtesy of Hoshinoya Kyoto

Top Five Luxury Cycling Holidays

Adventure, Lifestyle, TravelManagers

On a cycling holiday you’re immersed in the landscape. Life doesn’t whiz by as you watch from the coach, car or train window: you become part of the landscape through which you are passing. Conversations with locals happen. Amazing photos happen because you can stop when and where you want. No deadlines, except getting to your bed for the night. Opting for the luxury version of a cycling holiday means you fully supported every kilometre of the journey, so all you have to do is ride, enjoy those leisurely breakfasts, long lunches and delicious dinners along the way, knowing that your luggage will be transported to your next destination daily.  You can choose from guided or self-guided options, and your trusty mount will be a well-maintained bike (or e-bike), with back up support if you get a flat tyre or the weather turns bad.

TravelManagers’ Helen Rolton shares some of her favourite luxury cycling holidays, which are designed to make your time on two wheels as enjoyable as possible.

Image courtesy of Northland Experiences

Flower baths and Balinese bells in a ‘glamboo’ retreat

EARTH, Inspiration, Lifestyle, STAY

On the banks of the Ayung river, bounded on one side by an ancient nutmeg forest and on the other by the village of Mambal, lies Fivelements Retreat Bali, a luxurious eco-sanctuary that puts the glam into bamboo. This is the perfect place to get healthy and go back to nature in comfort and style. 

Sakti Dining Room at Fivelements Healing Center. The soaring roofline, sculpted from bamboo and thatch, resembles a banana leaf, symbol of nourishment.
Image courtesy of Djuna Ivereigh, Fivelements

Ultimate Guide to Luxury Winter Cruising

Adventure, CRUISE, Inspiration, SNOW

Whoever said luxury cruises are best in summer has obviously not read this list of exceptional luxury winter cruises. Time to swap your swimmers for a scarf, and set a course for the world’s most remote regions. Discover the Northern Lights, one of the world’s largest king penguin rookeries and walls of looming glaciers. Dare to be different, cruise in winter.

Image courtesy of Silversea

7 Beautiful Bookstores You Need to Know About

Inspiration, Lifestyle, SHOP

From fighting dragons to navigating the world of an awkward fashion editor’s assistant, books have the power to transport us to another world. But what about the places that house those books? All over the world there are unique and fascinating bookstores with their own story to tell. Discover the most beautiful bookstores in the world, and pick up a rare or exciting book along the way.

The newly open San Angel store of Cafebrería El Péndulo, Mexico City
Image courtesy of Cafebrería El Péndulo

In the Pink at the Langham Melbourne

Inspiration, Lifestyle, STAY, Travel

I have a room at the Langham. It’s on the twenty-second floor So it’s going to be a great stay. Twenty-two is my birth date and my special number along with seven which is the number you get when you add up my whole birthdate. And my room is 2217. Zero seven would be better but 2217 is pretty auspicious.

Image courtesy of Langham Melbourne

Luxury Guide to Berlin

CITY, Lifestyle, Vegan

Forget New York, Berlin is the true embodiment of the ‘city that never sleeps’. It has a vibrant culture, tumultuous history and exciting nightlife. There is something for everyone in Berlin. From midnight spa treatments to underground bars, discover the perfect combination of glamour and grit with our Luxury Guide to Berlin.

Image courtesy of Blue Jay Photo

At Home with Sir Richard Branson

Adventure, Inspiration, STAY

Private islands, Moroccan magic and African safaris; discover a world of luxury with Sir Richard Branson and the Virgin Limited Edition (VLE). Travel to the world’s most spectacular destinations across the British Virgin Islands, South Africa, Kenya, Mallorca, Swiss Alps and Morocco. Sir Richard Branson has hand-selected each luxury hotel and destination retreat to ensure a truly unique experience.

Discover your next home away from home with Sir Richard Branson and Virgin Limited Edition below.

For more personalised information tips and advice, or to book this incredible holiday contact your local TravelManagers’ personal travel manager here.

How I Overcame my Snake Phobia at Aro-ha NZ

EARTH, STAY, Vegan

I hate snakes. I hate them so much that when I was 38, I learnt to surf, jumped out of a plane (Point Break style) and crossed the Gobi desert with just one can of coke. Ok I might be exaggerating about the can of coke. Despite my feats that year, I couldn’t eat one of those jelly snake lollies. (Although I did eat a squirm – no big jelly head.) So when I land in Queenstown, New Zealand where the scariest thing is a hungry bird called a kea, snakes are nowhere in my thoughts. That is until I meet Adam at Aro-ha.

Image courtesy of Aro-ha
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