Issue 20
New Year's Travel News
Looking for somewhere new and different to travel to in 2016? Well, look no further!
Edited by Jo Kromberg  ·  2016-01-15  ·   Source:

The Maldives:

 Sun Aqua Maldives

- Sun Aqua Vilu Reef, Maldives--Now Open!

The visionary Sun Aqua brand is delighted to announce the opening of its second property, the Sun Aqua Vilu Reef, a stunningly refurbished resort found on the beautiful bite-sized gem of Meedhuffushi Island in the heart of the South Nilandhe Atoll. The crème de la crème of indulgence takes form with the glittering Grand Reef Suite, where traditional Maldivian architecture and modern design meld. The resort will also boast destination dining and organic delights, as well as a fully refurbished spa with six private treatment pavilions. www.sunaqua.com/vilureef

The Sun Siyam

- The Sun Siyam Iru Fushi, Maldives Introduces Military Pilates, Spa by Thalgo and an All-Inclusive Package

The Sun Siyam Iru Fushi, already recognised as a leading health and wellness destination in the Indian Ocean is once again offering it’s guests the most cutting edge health and fitness trends, whether in the form of unique Spa Journeys or Military Pilates classes. Taken by seasoned instructor Joji Chacko, Military Pilates will include the key traditional Pilates concepts of slow deliberate movements and stretching to develop full body strength and long lean muscles. The property has also introduced a brand new all-inclusive offering, boasting signature cocktails, international cuisine and access to the Spa by Thalgo. www.thesunsiyam.com

Italy:

Tuscany Now & More

- Tuscany Now & More, Italy --Rebrand & New Curated Itineraries

After 25 years of success, Tuscany Now is thrilled to announce the launch of Tuscany Now & More for the 2016 season. The company has introduced a collection of 30 curated experiences in Tuscany with intentions to expand across Italy, enriching their portfolio of exquisite rental properties and intuitive service. Guests will be mesmerised as Italian hospitality meets bespoke, ultra-personalised and once-in-a-lifetime experiences, such as viewings of the Sistine Chapel by moonlight and an 800 year old Sienese tradition from a prestigious terrace. The essence of these itineraries assures guests will not simply be offered a place to stay, but rather a directory of must-see experiences for a truly avant-garde Italian break.www.tuscanynowandmore.com

Greece:

Skiathos Princess

- Skiathos Princess Hotel, Greece Introduces Wellness Retreats

An idyllic island escape on Skiathos Island, The Skiathos Princess Hotel continues its focus on health with new and exciting wellness retreats. A brand new, curated itinerary of activities will also be introduced in 2016, drawing on the involvement of the local community with Mum’s Bootcamp, equestrian classes and tennis club. www.skiathosprincess.com

Thalatta Hotel

- Thalatta Seaside Hotel, Greece--World’s First Beach Library & Family Run

Located in Evia, Thalatta Seaside Hotel is home to the world’s first beach library. Guests are encouraged to leave behind books after they have finished reading and are free to take books to enjoy during their stay. At the end of every season, all the books are collected and generously donated to a local school, supporting learning and education in the local area. In 2016, the hotel are offering evenings dedicated the richness of ancient Greek philosophy and will be home to the inaugural family beachside run, which welcomes the entire family, prams and all. www.thalattahotel.gr

- Aristi Mountain Resort & Spa, Greece - Mushroom Hunting, Hiking, Canyoning

A picturesque retreat in Greece, Aristi Mountain Resort & Villas is now offering guests a curated foraging expedition and feast prepared with gathered ingredients as part of their new Mushroom Hunting Package. Mushroom orientated dishes will draw on traditional recipes and be complemented by wild boar brought in by local hunters, greens collected from the mountainside, cheese from nearby farms and a cellar brimming with extraordinary Greek wine. Hardly on the tourist radar, the surrounding Zagori region is currently under consideration for the UNESCO world heritage list and home to a myriad of hidden enclaves. Guests will also be thrilled by the array of activities on offer, including hiking, canyoning and kayaking. www.aristi.eu 

- Ikos Resorts

2015’s hottest all-inclusive opening, Ikos Resorts (Ikos Olivia and Oceania) are located on a gorgeous private beach in Halkidiki, Greece. Not only are both resorts ideal for family getaways, Ikos Resorts are boldly re-defining the all-inclusive experience with infinite lifestyle, providing truly luxurious family holidays and the chance to create unforgettable memories full of excitement and fun. This focus can be seen from the initial booking and beyond with the first child in all parties up to the age of 12 staying for free, a range of purpose built family accommodation and the new Beach Life concept -- including all-day waiter and childcare services in addition to bespoke beachfront dining--all while enjoying the sun’s rays on their very own tranquil, private beach.www.ikosresorts.com

The United Kingdom:

- Belfast Grand Central Hotel--Hastings Hotels, Northern Ireland

Hastings Hotels, Northern Ireland’s leading hotel chain, has unveiled its plans for the latest addition to its portfolio which will see a £30M investment and the creation of over 150 new jobs for Belfast. In 2015, Hastings Hotels announced the purchase of Windsor House, one of the tallest buildings in Ireland, which it will transform into a 200 bedroom hotel. www.hastingshotels.com

- Hastings Hotels

Hastings Hotels, Northern Ireland’s finest independent hotel collection, are thrilled to launch a NEW Couples Retreat at the luxurious Slieve Donard Resort & Spa, as well as a NEW Massage Masterclass Package and Private Couples Suite at the 5* Culloden Estate & Spa. Whether finding sanctuary by the Irish Sea or comfort in palatial surrounds, couples are bound to depart relaxed and romanced. For added luxury, guests can choose the services of a Spa Butler and a glass of Prosecco and nibbles before sinking into the famous cloud beds at Slieve Donard Resort & Spa. Meanwhile, at the Culloden Estate and Spa, guests can select the ‘Time for Two’ Spa Package and enjoy full use of the Health Club including the Zest Juice Bar, eucalyptus steam room and Jacuzzi. www.hastingshotels.com

Sri Lanka:

Sun Aqua, Sri Lanka

- Sun Aqua Pasikudah, Sri Lanka--Steamy Jungles, Hot Springs, Wreck Diving

The newly launched Sun Aqua Pasikudah lies on the east coast of Sri Lanka, serving up gorgeous pristine coastline with tropical wilderness. A unique five-star property, it is also the only Maldivian owned hotel in Sri Lanka and home to the famous HMS Hermes shipwreck and an array of cultural gems. Guests can wade through the mists of Minneriya National Park spotting elephants, birds and butterflies while learning of the ancient Ceylonese history. The nearby Maha Oya Hot Springs are also of interest - the hottest springs in Sri Lanka with the warmest reaching 56C. The bottom of the wells are also formed of quartz, offering a picturesque, crystal clear view and an idyllic place for travellers to soothe their bodies and minds. www.sunaqua.com/pasikudah

Switzerland:

- Kameha Grand Zurich, Switzerland Awarded with Michelin Star & Fifteen Points by Gault&Millau

Situated in the developing Glattpark region, Kameha Grand Zurich has positioned itself as not only a design hotel, but a new gourmet destination in Zurich. The team are thrilled to announce Chef de Cuisine Norman Fischer and his team have been distinguished with 15 points by Gault&Millau and one Michelin star for the hotel’s fine dining Restaurant YU NIJYO, which combines French cuisine with Japanese influence.

The same hotel as also now launched what it calls"Space Suites"Kameha Grand Zurich Hotel, Autograph Collection's first property in Switzerland, has recently launched eleven themed suites designed by Marcel Wanders, praised as the"Lady Gaga of design" by The New York Times . In October, the hotel also launched its very own Space Suite, immersing immerse guests in an out of this world experience with features such as Universe motifs, a zero gravity bed and steam bath with artistic views into space. The creative flair behind the Space Suite stems from Michael Najjar - a visual artist and adventurer who will be the first contemporary artist in space as one of Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic Pioneer Astronauts.www.kamehagrandzurich.com

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