Orient-Express offers exciting and authentic ways to discover new destinations
8th September 2010 - Converting to the ways of a beach-bum can be great, but sooner or later, each sandy memory will become more indistinct than the last. Why not experience something exceptional, a voyage of discovery to a certain part of the world you’ve always dreamed of visiting? Orient-Express’ properties offer just that – from crabbing in Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay, to meditating with Monks in Cambodia, or even learning the art of seduction in Italy – each experience is as unique as the hotel that created it. So take some time away from the grind – and the beach – and connect with your holiday destination in a way you never thought possible. www.orient-express.com
Become a Modern Day Romeo
Learn the art of love in one of the world’s most romantic settings through the ‘Art of Seduction’ classes offered exclusively at the Hotel Caruso. This unique package features ‘Dolce Vita Seduction’ classes with renowned Italian playboy Dr. Michele Fiorentino, as well as ‘Serenading’ lessons with Piero Flauto, ranging in price from Euro 500 – 1,000 per person (approximately £433 - £866). The classes last one or two days and prices do not include hotel accommodation. Both teachers are local masters in the art of romance, and help guests unravel the art of Italian seduction. Hotel Caruso, located at the highest point of Ravello, is a haven of relaxation, surrounded by terraced 17th Century Belvedere gardens and offering an unparalleled open-air infinity pool. Set on a cliff top 1,200 feet above sea level, the hotel offers breathtaking 360-degree views of the romantic Amalfi Coast. Now that’s amore!
La Residence d’Angkor
Siem Reap, Cambodia
Find spirituality and relinquish the material at La Residence d’Angkor’s new Kong Kea Spa by partaking in complimentary meditation sessions with Buddhist monks. Offered at 7:30 a.m. every Wednesday and Sunday, each meditation session is followed by a monk chat where guests will have the opportunity during breakfast to find out what monkhood is like in Cambodia. The intimate gathering is limited to eight guests, so guests must register with the Spa Reception beforehand to secure a space. Applying the same formula used at “Roman Themae” (antique version of a spa), these rituals follow the special formula path of cleansing, heating, treating, resting to experience total body rejuvenation. The 2.5-hour “Supreme Formula” which starts with a 30-minute foot cleansing celebration, followed by a 20-minute sauna or steam, a 25-minute herbal or salt bath, a 60-minute body treatment of choice, and ends with a 15-minute relaxation session by the indoor swimming pool (approximately £74 per person).
A Walk on the Wild Side
Hotel das Cataratas
Iguassu Falls, Brazil
Hotel das Cataratas has one of the most impressive and enviable locations in South America, with the world famous Iguassu Falls just a two minute stroll from the property, and is surrounded by almost 1,850km² of Brazilian national park. As the only hotel within the national park, Hotel das Cataratas has an unbeatable location, allowing guests to enjoy exclusive access to the falls each morning, before the park opens at 9am, and after 5pm. Join Wilson Fernandes, the hotel’s Resident Biologist, on an exclusive walking tour along the private Forest Trail. Lasting approximately 90 minutes, the tour will conclude with a walk along the spectacular Falls platforms with unparalleled views before the Park opens to the public. The Forest Trail gives a rare insight to the variety of flora & fauna found in the Iguassu National Park. The tour departs daily at 7:15am from the hotel main lobby, and is subject to weather conditions. Superior rooms at Hotel Das Cataratas start from $305 (approximately £198) per room per night.
World’s Largest Fish? Dive Right In
Maroma Resort and Spa
Riviera Maya, Mexico
Weighing in at 21 tons and a just over 40 feet in length, the Whale Shark, equipped with a menacing title and intimidating appearance, has rightfully earned the nickname “gentle giant of the sea.” Ironically however, the world’s largest fish has been difficult to find… until now. Available exclusively at Maroma Resort and Spa, the “Whale Shark Adventure” includes an unforgettable journey by plane to Holbox Island, followed by a private-boat cruise in search of these majestic creatures. Guests will enjoy a full service crew, snacks, soft drinks and fresh ceviche made on board the 33-foot vessel before gearing up in full snorkel attire to swim alongside these fascinating creatures. Don’t miss this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to witness the world’s largest fish frolic among the second largest reef in the world. Rates start from approximately £480 per room, per night. Valid through June - September.
Donkeys Lead the Way
La Residencia has welcomed three new members of staff this season – three donkeys whose task it is to accompany guests along a brand new nature trail created on the picturesque hillside that forms the backdrop to the historic Mallorcan manor house. Guests will pass through pinewood forests and olive groves where they will be able to take in the breathtaking views of the Tramuntana mountains and the Mediterranean Sea, pausing by a rustic shepherd’s house to enjoy a traditional Mallorcan picnic lunch, entirely made from locally sourced produce. The donkeys, Pancho and his sisters Alba and Lluna, will escort guests on their trek up the mountain, carrying the picnic fare in their panniers. The price for the excursion which includes a guide and the packed picnic is 65 euros (from £59).
Explore the Venice of the North
Grand Hotel Europe
St Petersburg, Russia
The Grand Hotel Europe in St. Petersburg has a new addition to its extensive transport fleet — a new ultra-fast luxury speedboat, the Katarina. The speedboat cost 180,000 Euros and was brought over especially from Venice for the hotel. The boat meets all the latest standards of comfort, making it perfect for excursions along the rivers and canals of the Venice of the North and around the Gulf of Finland.
The Grand Hotel Europe offers both locals and guests of St. Petersburg the opportunity to enjoy a fascinating boat excursion along the rivers and canals of the Northern capital and the Gulf of Finland on board the Katarina. During an excursion on the Katarina, guests will be offered refined hors d’oeuvres along with both classic and exclusive drinks prepared by the Grand Hotel Europe’s executive chef, Dominique Ferchaud. A boat trip is a wonderful way for tourists to get to know the history of the city, its sights and traditions, and to lose themselves in the enthralling atmosphere of the era of Peter the Great. Excursions include “The Melodies of St. Petersburg’s Bridges”, a nighttime excursion to watch the opening of the bridges, and the City and Yusupov Palace Tour. The Katarina costs from RUB 7,000 (approximately £135) per hour.
Jump into The Lion’s Den on Your Morning Country Safari
Johannesburg, South Africa
The Westcliff offers an extraordinary opportunity for guests – a chance to play with lion cubs. The Lion Experience will delight nature loving travellers as well as offer a safari-filled adventure when visiting Johannesburg, South Africa. The experience begins with a short lesson featuring some intriguing facts on lion behaviour followed by a walk with the lions to the reserve dam where the group can feed and interact with these fascinating creatures. The experience concludes with an adventurous horseback safari where possible animal sightings include giraffe, zebra, blue wildebeest, eland, waterbuck, kudu, ostrich, blesbok, impala, red hartebeest and warthog. The experience costs R2500 (approximately £219)per person and includes transfers from the hotel to the safari, lunch, and a 45 minute walk with the lions.
The Inn at Perry Cabin
For the avid sailors amongst you, The Inn at Perry Cabin, home of the Offshore Sailing School, is the perfect setting for a sailing school vacation. First converted into a luxury country house in 1980, The Inn at Perry Cabin is set on 25 acres of lush manicured gardens. Located on Chesapeake Bay, the luxurious manor house offers its guests a range of sailing courses designed to accommodate students at every skill level. Guests can choose between half-day, three-day or even five-day sessions where you will learn how to steer and handle the sails while sailing a sleek Colgate 26 sailboat. Classes are limited to only four people per class, ensuring students get focused tutorial. Each day is a new adventure as you take the helm and work as a team. Alternatively, book for two people and make it a truly unforgettable experience. Two-day Learn to Sail packages at The Inn at Perry Cabin, including the course with eight hours of hands-on learning and accommodations start at $550 (approximately £356) per person per night, based on double occupancy including tax. Two-hour sailing lessons are $150 per person (approximately £97).
Notes to Editors
Orient-Express, (NYSE: OEH, www.orient-express.com) the name behind an elite collection of travel experiences, first came into being in 1883 as one of the world’s most exciting and indulgent train journeys. Today those same two evocative words also embrace hotels, cruises and other luxury rail adventures in 25 countries, across five continents. The Company has offered exceptional luxury travel experiences since 1976, when it first purchased Hotel Cipriani in Venice and then shortly afterwards, recreated the celebrated Venice Simplon-Orient-Express, linking London, Paris and Venice, along with other European cities. Today, the company owns or part-owns and manages 50 businesses, 41 of which are highly acclaimed hotels, each unique in style, from the Mount Nelson in Cape Town and Rio’s Copacabana Palace, to the Grand Hotel Europe in St. Petersburg and Maroma Resort & Spa on Mexico’s Riviera Maya. There is a restaurant, ‘21’ in New York, as well as two river cruise operations and six luxury trains.
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