Travel news: this month (February 2016) in luxury travel

Friday newsletters always feature luxury travel contests, tips, series, or news.

Today (February 26, 2016): February luxury travel news.

Every last Friday of the month, you can read my news round-up of what’s happening in the world of luxury travel. In this issue:

  1. Dubai’s iconic Burj Al Arab hotel adds pool deck
  2. Dragonair will become Cathay Dragon
  3. Soneva Fushi opens the largest villa in the Indian Ocean
  4. SWISS receives its first Boeing 777-300ER
  5. Lufthansa Airbus A350 fleet is coming to Munich
  6. Etihad Airways will fly its Airbus A380 to India
  7. Four Seasons opens its Casablanca property
  8. Starwood Hotels hits the slopes with W Aspen
  9. Shangri-La Doha is now open
  10. Emirates goes non-stop Dubai-Auckland from next week

1. Dubai’s iconic Burj Al Arab hotel adds pool deck

According to Arabian Business, Dubai’s iconic Burj Al Arab hotel is to unveil a new manmade outdoor deck area, which will include two pools, a restaurant and a bar, in the second quarter of this year. The new pool deck, designated ‘North Deck’, will consist of 10,000 square metres of private luxury deck space stretching 100 metres into the sea and will include 32 cabanas, 400 sun loungers, a 612 sqm fresh water pool, 828 sqm salt water pool, a restaurant and a bar. Build by Finnish firm Admares, which specialises in the construction of cruise ships and yachts, the main components of North Deck left the shipyard in Finland on January 9 for the 8,000 nautical mile sea journey to Dubai and will arrive at the hotel in mid-February. For a teaser of the new North Deck at Burj Al Arab, click here.

BURJ AL ARAB'S NEW POOL DECK

BURJ AL ARAB’S NEW POOL DECK


2. Dragonair will become Cathay Dragon

Cathay Pacific’s wholly owned sister airline Dragonair is to be rebranded as Cathay Dragon, although the two will remain as separate airlines, operating under their own licences. By more closely aligning the two brands, this rebranding will capitalise on Cathay Pacific’s high international brand recognition and leverage on Cathay Dragon’s unique connectivity into Mainland China – one of the world’s fastest-growing business and leisure travel markets. The airlines’ customers will benefit from greater convenience and a more seamless travel experience. Since Dragonair became a wholly owned subsidiary of Cathay Pacific in 2006, it has added 23 new destinations and the number of passengers travelling across both carriers has grown five times to more than 7 million in 2015. The combined annual passenger number of the two airlines grew from 22 million to more than 34 million last year.

CATHAY PAFICIC AND CATHAY DRAGON LOGOS

CATHAY PAFICIC AND CATHAY DRAGON LOGOS


3. Soneva Fushi opens the largest villa in the Indian Ocean

Soneva Fushi, the Maldives’s original hideaway and most exclusive resort, has completed the refurbishment of its largest accommodation, the 9 bedroom Private Reserve, the largest villa in the Indian Ocean. Soneva’s vision of a playfully luxe deserted-island mansion comes to full fruition on an oceanic scale in this villa. No luxury is spared. At the same time, guests will escape in a world of jungle fantasies with the palm-frond roofs, woven ropes and tree-branch banisters. Guests can host dinners in the sunken dining area, gaze out from balconies and gangways, or spend the day lazing in and around curves of the massive, lagoon-style pool. You can read my review of Soneva Fushi here. And if you want to buy your own slice of paradise, Soneva offers a limited number of private villas for sale.

SONEVA FUSHI 9-BEDROOM JUNGLE RESERVE

SONEVA FUSHI 9-BEDROOM JUNGLE RESERVE


4. SWISS receives its first Boeing 777-300ER

Swiss International Air Lines (SWISS) took delivery of the first of nine new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft, which offers 340 seats: eight in First Class, 62 in Business Class and 270 in Economy Class. The carrier’s first B777-300ER aircraft depicts images of its 2,500 employees worldwide. The totally newly-designed cabin interior of the new SWISS fleet flagship offers top comfort and visual appeal in all three classes. The 62 lie-flat Business class seats are an enhanced and refined version of SWISS’ current seats (click here for my review). Boeing 777 passengers will also enjoy wireless internet connectivity aloft, the first time this has been offered on SWISS flights. SWISS’s new Boeing 777-300ERs will gradually enter revenue service from the start of the 2016 summer schedules. They will largely be deployed on services to Hong Kong, Bangkok, Los Angeles, San Francisco, São Paulo and Tel Aviv.

SWISS' FIRST BOEING 777-300ER

SWISS’ FIRST BOEING 777-300ER


5. Luftansa Airbus A350 fleet is coming to Munich

Lufthansa has published more details on its forthcoming Airbus A350-900 fleet. The first ten aircraft of the type Airbus A350-900 will be based in Munich from January 2017. This will equip Lufthansa’s second-largest hub with the world’s most modern long-haul passenger aircraft. The A350-900, one of the most environmentally friendly aircraft, will gradually replace the A340-600. Lufthansa has ordered a total of 25 Airbus A350-900 aircraft with a list price of around 310 million US dollars each. The deployment of the remaining 15 aircraft has yet to be decided. The aircraft will accommodate 293 passengers: 48 guests in Business Class, 21 in Premium Economy and 224 in Economy Class.

LUFTHANSA AIRBUS A350

LUFTHANSA AIRBUS A350


6. Etihad Airways will fly its Airbus A380 to India

According to Business Traveller, Etihad Airways will operate its A380 on the Abu Dhabi-Mumbai route from May 1. The airline will join Singapore Airlines and Emirates, which already fly the superjumbo to the country. This will add Mumbai to the list of destinations served by Etihad’s A380, which includes London, New York and Sydney. The Etiihad Airways Airbus A390 features 496 seats which are divided into four classes: The Residence, First Apartments, Business Studios and Economy Smart Seats. “We serve more destinations in India than any other country on our network. We service 11 Indian cities directly. India is a burgeoning and exciting market for leisure, MICE and business segments,” says Calum Laming, VP, Guest Experience, Etihad Airways. To read my review onboard Etihad’s A380 First Class Apartment, click here.


7. Four Seasons opens its Casablanca property

Cool and avant-garde on the beachfront of Morocco’s largest city, Four Seasons Hotel Casablanca enjoys a prestigious resort-style setting, just a short distance from the business district and the historic city centre. The new hotel is part of the master-planned Anfa Place community, combining residential, business, shopping and entertainment. Only five storeys in height, the intimately scaled Casablanca hotel features 186 ultra-spacious guest rooms, including 29 suites – most with private balconies overlooking the ocean or gardens. The hotel is ideally located to explore the city’s vibrant social scene. It features four Casablanca restaurants, an outdoor pool and club-like spa, and fitness centre. Meetings and events will unfold in the ballroom and five function rooms, open to outdoor terraces that will celebrate Morocco’s year-round warmth and sunshine.

FOUR SEASONS CASABLANCA, MOROCCO

FOUR SEASONS CASABLANCA, MOROCCO


8. Starwood Hotels hit the slopes with W Aspen

The scene in Aspen just got a little more après. W Hotels, part of Starwood Hotels & Resorts, announced it will debut its first alpine escape in North America, the W Aspen and The Sky Residences at W Aspen, which is slated to open for the 2017 winter ski season. W Aspen, formerly the Sky Hotel, will be ideally situated at the base of Aspen Mountain and provide skiers the ability to ski right into the hotel for craft cocktails and more after an exhilarating day on the slopes. Locally-inspired, this modern day mountain chalet will offer 88 guestrooms (including six suites) and 11 W-branded fractional residences. An oversized split level Living Room (the brand’s alternative to the staid hotel lobby) reimagines the traditional hotel dining scene with a modern approach to dynamic cocktails and cuisine. The hotel will also feature an outdoor patio and a foot rooftop bar and pool, overlooking Aspen Mountain and creating the ultimate experience for après-ski and warm-weather events.

W ASPEN, COLORADO, USA

W ASPEN, COLORADO, USA


9. Shangri-La Doha is now open

The new Shangri-La Hotel, Doha, designed to resemble a falcon’s head in recognition of Qatari falconry – the country’s historic and elite pastime – is adorned with museum-quality art pieces honouring the rich heritage of the Qatari peninsula which are on loan from the Sheikh Faisal Collection. Strategically located close to the business and diplomatic areas, Shangri-La Hotel, Doha offers a direct link to the City Centre Mall, the city’s largest mall, and is only five minutes from the waterfront promenade. Light-filled luxury accommodation includes 272 guestrooms and suites and 42 serviced apartments.  The guestrooms, all with floor-to-ceiling windows and spectacular views of the city and Gulf, feature warm earth tones and amenities including a 47-inch Wi-Fi-enabled smart TV and Shangri-La’s signature mattress. An aquamarine lagoon-shaped pool lies invitingly on the 2,000-square-metre deck dotted with loungers – ideal for luxuriating in the year-round sunshine. I will soon publish my review of this splendid new hotel.

SHANGRI-LA DOHA, QATAR

SHANGRI-LA DOHA, QATAR


10. Emirates goes non-stop Dubai-Auckland from next week

Emirates will start its first non-stop service from Dubai to Auckland next week, on 1 March 2016, bringing many of its 38 European destinations and cities within just one-stop range of New Zealand through direct connections in Dubai. This means that Emirates will then have five services daily into New Zealand – three A380 double-decker services to Auckland via Australia, a daily Christchurch service with a Boeing 777-300ER, and the new non-stop service operated with a Boeing 777-200LR. This will be one of the longest air routes in the world by distance, but Emirates will be using flexible routes, which can vary by day, taking advantage of tail winds and avoiding head winds to reduce the time in the air. The new non-stop service should typically take just under 16 hours from Dubai to New Zealand and 17 hours, 15 minutes in the other direction. To read my trip report in an Emirates B777-200LR, click here.

EMIRATES B777

EMIRATES B777


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Review: Soneva In Aqua, the Maldives’ first floating villa

Wednesday newsletters always feature a luxury hotel and/or flight review.

The first week of February 2016, I traveled to the Maldives and enjoyed one of the best holidays of my life. You can read my trip reports here:

Today (February 24, 2016): Review of Soneva In Aqua (Maldives).

Soneva in Aqua is the first floating villa in the Maldives. The ultra-luxurious and highly refined yacht sails from Soneva’s flagship resort, Soneva Fushi, in the Maldives (you can read my review of Soneva Fushi here). The pioneering new concept elevates the guest experience by offering a boat villa which combines all the benefits of the iconic resort’s services and amenities with the freedom and exclusivity associated with a private boat charter. I did not stay overnight on the boat, so this review is not written according to my ‘pros and cons’ concept. Instead, I was offered a tour of Soneva In Aqua, which swept me off my feet and left me speechless.

Soneva In Aqua features in my lists of the top 10 best honeymoon hotels in the world and the 40 hottest luxury hotel openings of 2015.

In this review (more info and photos below my Youtube clip and slideshow):

  • Facts
  • My verdict
  • Tips for future guests & save money
  • Best time to visit
  • How to get there

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

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FACTS
  • The two-cabin yacht has a maximum occupancy of four adults and two children. As such, it provides the ultimate sense of exclusivity and privacy.
  • The boat was built last year in Taiwan. It measures 19.25 meters (63 feet) in length and 6.40 meters  (21 feet) wide and has a cruising speed of 8 knots.
  • Whilst supported by engine power, the yacht’s suit of sales relies on nature (wind) to provide the majority of its energy. The engines have been built to the highest specification with regards to fuel saving efficiency.
  • The boat’s interior features Soneva’s signature, rustic, eco-chic design, with use of natural materials such as rich brown leathers, woods and organic cottons, in addition to bright-colored cushions.
  • The yacht has 3 spacious outdoor decks: a lower level sun deck which has a jacuzzi; a raised and shaded deck with bar and comfortable lounge seating; and a small sun deck above the Captain’s cabin.
  • The main deck is located below the Captain’s cabin and features a dining area, plush daybeds, a library, a computer corner (WiFi on the boat is complimentary), and a large tv screen (with a view from the camera installed in the yacht’s mast).
  • At the rear of the main cabin, you’ll find the ‘smaller’ of the 2 bedrooms, located in its own spacious cabin, with king-sized bed, day bed, and en-suite facilities.
  • From the main deck, a stair leads down to the yacht’s main cabin, a spectacular bedroom, still located above the water level. The bedroom features a king-sized bed, his and her sinks, a shower, and a restroom.
  • One of the most amazing features of the boat is the jacuzzi in the main cabin (located in front of the king-sized bed) which has a glass bottom so you can take a bath while watching the fish swim beneath you. How cool is that!
  • The yacht is anchored in front of the shore of Soneva Fushi, my favorite luxury hotel in the Maldives (you can read my review of Soneva Fushi here). The Captain sets the destination and itinerary according to the guests’ daily desires, allowing freedom and flexibility.
  • Most of the times, the yacht will cruise within the vicinity of the remote Baa Atoll, which is a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve because it supports one of the largest groups of coral reefs in the Indian Ocean. As such, Soneva In Aqua offers its guests the freedom to explore the Maldives’ most exceptional reefs, providing unforgettable and unique experiences to both divers and non-divers.
  • An overnight stay on Soneva In Aqua is inclusive of all meals (afternoon tea, a bespoke dinner menu paired with the best wines, and a sumptuous breakfast), a one hour massage, guided snorkeling, and a star-gazing session.
  • When you set sail on Soneva In Aqua, you will be in trusted hands: besides the Captain and his crew, there is also an onboard chef, an onboard therapist, and a personal butler (designated Mrs or Mr Friday) who will make sure that your stay on Soneva In Aqua will be an unforgettable one.

TIPS FOR FUTURE GUESTS  &  SAVE MONEY 
  • Soneva In Aqua can only be booked directly through the resort and selected travel agents around the world. You can always contact me to get the best rates (and amazing offers) for Soneva In Aqua.
  • Read my tips for preparing your trip in time.

BEST TIME TO VISIT

The best weather in the Maldives is between January and April, which also means high season (and high hotel prices). The monsoon runs from May to October, peaking in June. It is worth paying higher prices and sticking to the dry season as there is nothing to do on a rainy day except drink, eat, work out or scuba dive. Especially November and December, which are often labelled as dry season months, have been very unsettled in recent years.

WEATHER MAP MALDIVES


HOW TO GET THERE

Soneva In Aqua sails from Soneva Sushi, which is located a 30-minute waterplane trip from Male International Airport (UVF). Check the Wikipedia page of Male International Airport for an updated list of airlines that offer flights to Male International Airport:

  • From/via Asia: Bangkok Airways (via Bangkok), Tigerair (via Singapore), Singapore Airlines (via Singapore), Cathay Pacific (via Hong Kong), Air India (via Bangalore, Chennai, Thiruvanathapuram), China Eastern Airlines (via Colombo, Kunmnig), Cina Southern Airlines (via Guanghzou), Hainan Airlines (via Bejing), Korean Air (via Colombo and Seoul), Shanghai Airlines (via Shanghai), Srilankan Airlines (via Colombo), Maldivian (Chennai, Chongqing, Colombo, Dhaka, Thiruvanathapuram), Mega Maldives (via Bejing, Hong Kong, Shanghai).
  • From/via Middle East: Emirates (via Dubai), Flybudai (via Dubai), Qatar Airways (via Doha), Etihad Airways (via Abu Dhabi), Oman Air (via Muscat), Turkish Airlines (via Istanbul).
  • From/via Europe: Austrian Airlines (via Vienna), British Airways (via London), Thompson Airways (via London), Monarch Airlines (via London), Condor (via Frankfurt), Edelweiss Air (via Zurich), Meridiana (via Rome or Milan), Neos (via Rome or Milan), Transaero Airlines (via Moscow).

SONEVA IN AQUA

SONEVA IN AQUA

SONEVA IN AQUA

SONEVA IN AQUA

VIEW FROM YACHT ON SONEVA IN AQUA

VIEW FROM YACHT ON SONEVA IN AQUA

ARRIVAL DECK

ARRIVAL DECK

SUN DECK

SUN DECK

SUN DECK - CAPTAIN

SUN DECK

SUN DECK

SUN DECK

SUN DECK & CAPTAIN

SUN DECK & CAPTAIN

LOUNGE DECK

LOUNGE DECK

LOUNGE DECK

LOUNGE DECK

LOUNGE DECK

LOUNGE DECK

LOUNGE DECK

LOUNGE DECK

LOUNGE DECK

LOUNGE DECK

LOUNGE DECK - JACUZZI

LOUNGE DECK – JACUZZI

LOUNGE DECK

LOUNGE DECK

LOUNGE DECK

LOUNGE DECK

CAPTAIN'S CABIN

CAPTAIN’S CABIN

CAPTAIN'S CABIN

CAPTAIN’S CABIN

LOWER DECK

LOWER DECK

MAIN DECK

MAIN DECK

MAIN DECK

MAIN DECK

MAIN CABIN

MAIN CABIN

MAIN CABIN

MAIN CABIN

MAIN CABIN

MAIN CABIN

MAIN CABIN - CAMERA IN THE YACHT'S MAST

MAIN CABIN – CAMERA IN THE YACHT’S MAST

MAIN CABIN - ENTRANCE TO MASTER BEDROOM

MAIN CABIN – ENTRANCE TO MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM

MASTER BEDROOM - TV WITH UNDERWATER CAMERA

MASTER BEDROOM – TV WITH UNDERWATER CAMERA

GLASS BOTTOM JACUZZI

GLASS BOTTOM JACUZZI

MASTER BEDROOM - SHOWER

MASTER BEDROOM – SHOWER

MASTER BEDROOM - RESTROOM

MASTER BEDROOM – RESTROOM

SECOND BEDROOM

SECOND BEDROOM

SECOND BEDROOM

SECOND BEDROOM

SECOND BEDROOM

SECOND BEDROOM

SECOND BEDROOM

SECOND BEDROOM

SECOND BEDROOM - BATHROOM

SECOND BEDROOM – BATHROOM

SECOND BEDROOM - BATHROOM

SECOND BEDROOM – BATHROOM

SUN DECK

SUN DECK

SONEVA IN AQUA SUNSET

SONEVA IN AQUA SUNSET


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Top 10: world’s best airline Business Class lounges

Monday newsletters always feature top 10 travel lists to inspire.

Today (February 22, 2016): Top 10 best Business Class airport lounges around the world. 

Access to an airline’s lounge is considered one of the best perks of booking a Business Class ticket. However, the privilege of waiting for a flight in a lounge has always eluded me. Airport lounges are often located in dark and cramped spaces, most of the time they are far away from the gate, and the food is mediocre at best. But that is not the case at the 10 lounges listed below, which are oases of tranquillity, privacy, and first-rate amenities. In fact, you might even want to get to the airport early to while away the pre-flight hours in my pick of the world’s top 10 best Business Class lounges.

There is more information below the slideshow. Do you agree or have a favorite lounge that didn’t make my list? Leave it in the comments or take my poll below.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

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10. BRITISH AIRWAYS GALLERIES LOUNGE, LONDON

British Airways ’s Business Class lounge at Heathrow ( designated ‘Galleries Lounge’) is definitely a step up from most airline lounges. The lounge is very spacious, features Osborne and Little exclusively designed fabric, and embraces the daylight with very large windows that offer nice tarmac views. It has plenty of food on display, with a fresh soup bar, hot and cold entrees, lots of snacks, full coffee stations with all sorts of cappuccino and lattes, and a very broad selection of wines, beers and spirits. There is also an Elemis Travel Spa on site, which provides 15 minutes complimentary treatments.

I have reviewed the Galleries Lounge in the following trip reports:

  • Review: British Airways A380 Business Class from London to Los Angeles.
  • Review: British Airways B747 Business Class from London to San Francisco.
BRITISH AIRWAYS GALLERIES LOUNGE, LONDON

BRITISH AIRWAYS GALLERIES LOUNGE, LONDON


9. SINGAPORE AIRLINES SILVERKRIS LOUNGE, SINGAPORE

The SilverKris Lounge is Singapore Airlines’ main Business Class lounge at Changi Airport. There is no shortage of seating variety as guests can choose from meeting rooms, café/bars or 13 Italian-leather slumberettes. It has one of the widest variety of lounge foods in the world, and the food quality will satisfy even the pickiest of palates. There is always a good selection of vegetarian cuisines, western dishes, pastas, Chinese stir-fried classics or Indian curries, in addition to Singaporean classic dishes like carrot cake, fried noodles, and chicken rice. Singapore Airlines has plans to upgrade the lounge and introduce its new ‘home away from home’ SilverKris Lounge concept, with unique spaces modelled after living, dining rooms and kitchens, featuring tastefully selected art pieces.

SINGAPORE AIRLINES SILVERKRIS LOUNGE, SINGAPORE

SINGAPORE AIRLINES SILVERKRIS LOUNGE, SINGAPORE


8. ETIHAD AIRWAYS PREMIUM LOUNGE, ABU DHABI

Etihad’s spacious Premium Lounge at Abu Dhabi International Airport features a chic decor that you would expect in a boutique hotel rather than an airport lounge. There is a wealth of services and facilities on offer in the lounge, including shower rooms, champagne bar, cigar lounge, children’s play area staffed with qualified nannies, work and relaxation areas. Several food stations display an impressive, frequently replenished international buffet including a wide variety of meats, cheeses, pastries, fruits, and hot items. The lounge’s Six Senses spa, dedicated to ambient relaxation, provides an urban sanctuary where guests can enjoy a range of complimentary express treatments. At Style & Shave, men can enjoy a wet shave or haircut whilst ladies can book eyebrow shaping, nail treatments or a blow dry.

I have reviewed the Etihad Airways Premium Lounge in the following trip report:

  • Review: Etihad Airways Airbus A330 Business Class from Brussels to Male.
ETIHAD AIRWAYS PREMIUM LOUNGE, ABU DHABI

ETIHAD AIRWAYS PREMIUM LOUNGE, ABU DHABI


7. FINNAIR PREMIUM LOUNGE, HELSINKI AIRPORT

Finnair’s ultra-white, swanky Premium Lounge is designed by the Helsinki firm dSign Vertti Kivi & Co and features a classic Nordic design with dynamic changes in lighting, inspired by the Finnish outdoors. Video projections on the walls and ceiling are in tune with the seasons and time of day. The lounge features design furniture such as Tulip and Wombs chairs created by Finnish American architect and industrial designer Eero Saarinen. Food & beverage selection are plated on Marimekko tableware or served in Iittala Ultima Thule glasses, first designed for Finnair in 1968 by Tapio Wirkkala. The Premium lounge also features a children’s play area, Apple computers, a staffed bar and even a unisex sauna for those wanting to experience real Finnish culture before boarding the plane.

I have reviewed the Finnair Premium Lounge in the following trip report:

  • Review: Finnair Airbus A330 Business Class from Helsinki to Phuket.
FINNAIR PREMIUM LOUNGE, HELSINKI AIRPORT

FINNAIR PREMIUM LOUNGE, HELSINKI AIRPORT


6. QANTAS HONG KONG LOUNGE, HONG KONG

Qantas relatively new Hong Kong Lounge (opened in 2014) is stylish and contemporary, designed to reflect the colour, vibrancy and luxury of Hong Kong. Tiling, screens and trees delineate the lounge which seats 300 and there’s a gorgeous cocktail bar area with impressive views across the airport. Qantas has partnered with Sofitel to offer new services in the lounge, including shirt pressing, shoe shining, priority access to showers, and enhanced dining experiences. Menus have been designed by chef Neil Perry based on his Rockpool and Spice Temple restaurants using regional flavours and served from the Spice Temple BBQ Bar, buffet and trolleys. The rich food pickings are designed to leave those on the flight to Australia sated and ready for sleep on the overnight flights.

QANTAS HONG KONG LOUNGE, HONG KONG

QANTAS HONG KONG LOUNGE, HONG KONG


5. VIRGIN ATLANTIC CLUBHOUSE, LONDON

Virgin Atlantic’s Clubhouse in Heathrow features a design that is inherently Virgin, providing a welcome escape from the hustle and bustle of the UK’s busiest airport. Here, you can freshen up pre-flight with power showers and complimentary spa products, or visit the Clubhouse Spa for a haircut or manicure. The Clubhouse also offers a sumptuous range of dining options from the brasserie restaurant to an extensive a la carte menu. Passengers looking to unwind can visit The Lodge with its après-ski vibe. Or if you’re looking for peace and quiet, the specially designed Viewing Deck offers great views of the runway and the setting sun, with comfortable seats making it the perfect place for a preflight snooze.

VIRGIN ATLANTIC CLUBHOUSE, LONDON

VIRGIN ATLANTIC CLUBHOUSE, LONDON


4. STAR ALLIANCE LOUNGE, LOS ANGELES

The stunning, award-winning Star Alliance Lounge Los Angeles at LAX’s Tom Bradley International Terminal is created and managed by Air New Zealand in consultation with its Star Alliance partners. The lounge’s main attraction is an outdoor terrace which invites guests to enjoy views over the airfield and distant Hollywood hills. By day you can enjoy Southern California’s famous sunshine and by night a sophisticated and cosy fire lit ambience. The lounge has a serviced bar with complimentary cocktails and refreshments available. Its numerous areas allow guests to relax, work, dine or be entertained as they wish. Well-appointed shower suites are available for guests wishing to freshen up before their flight.

4. STAR ALLIANCE LOUNGE, LOS ANGELES

STAR ALLIANCE LOUNGE, LOS ANGELES


3. CATHAY PACIFIC THE WING, HONG KONG

The Wing is Cathay Pacific’s flagship lounge at Hong Kong International Airport. It is split over two floors including a space adjacent to The Wing First Class lounge. It comes with a whopping 24 shower suites on the lower floor, along with six workstations, a buffet counter with cold food and four Asian and Western hot dishes. But you’ll want to head upstairs for the Noodle Bar, serving freshly made Asian dishes, such as dan dan noodles, char siu buns, dumplings, and regional specials, or for sipping a glass of premium champagne or a fine wine at the iconic Long Bar, made with gleaming, white marble with scenic overlooks of the tarmac.

I have reviewed the Cathay Pacific The Wing lounge in the following trip report:

  • Review: Cathay Pacific B777 Business Class from Hong Kong to Beijing.
CATHAY PACIFIC THE WING, HONG KONG

CATHAY PACIFIC THE WING, HONG KONG


2. TURKISH AIRLINES LOUNGE ISTANBUL, ISTANBUL

Turkish Airlines’ Lounge Istanbul, which covers an area of 6000 square meters and seats 1,100 people, blends the modern with the traditional. A great range of services and activities— including a realistic racetrack providing the excitement of a car race, video game consoles, a cutting-edge golf simulator, private resting and showering areas, media wall, cinema, a play area for children, a library, a pool room, a prayer room, a teleconference hall, and massage service— are at arm’s reach. For those interested in Turkish cuisine, the lounge provides some of the unique tastes of Turkish and global dishes you’ll be hard-pressed to find elsewhere, such as “mantı” (Traditional Turkish beef ravioli).

TURKISH AIRLINES ISTANBUL LOUNGE, ISTANBUL

TURKISH AIRLINES ISTANBUL LOUNGE, ISTANBUL


1. QATAR AIRWAYS AL MOURJAN BUSINESS LOUNGE, DOHA

Qatar Airways’ Al Mourjan Business Lounge at Hamad International Airport is the best Business Class lounge that I ever encountered during my extensive travels. It simply outclasses all the current competition out there. The physically stunning space with its high ceilings has a refreshing resort-like ambience. The lounge is adorned with marbles, designer furniture, and bronze walls featuring traditional Arab calligraphy. It offers a variety of dining areas, with a choice between an extensive buffet and a la carte menu, as well as as fully equipped business centres, private workstations equipped with personal display screens, shower rooms, prayer rooms, and game rooms (all of them state-of-the-art and incredibly well designed).

I have reviewed the Qatar Airways Al Mourn Business Lounge in the following trip report:

  • Review: Cathay Pacific B330 Business Class from Doha to Hong Kong.
QATAR AIRWAYS AL MOURJAN BUSINESS LOUNGE, DOHA

QATAR AIRWAYS AL MOURJAN BUSINESS LOUNGE, DOHA


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Superyacht GENESI’s Beach Club Unveiled in New Video

Photo/Video: Wider

Wider announced that their new $28 million GENESI superyacht cleared for the next stage of testing just last month and now the vessel has been given the full green light. To commemorate its completion of sea trials, Wider released the above video unveiling the vessel’s spacious Beach Club. In the short clip you can watch the area transform from a tender bay to a club space that includes a seven-meter pool and an expansive deck with lounge chairs.

According to the company, the yacht has maintained her assumed speed of 15 knots (17 mph) and her fuel consumption levels are indeed 15 percent lower than the competition. Experienced captain Claudio Candelaresi even described GENESI as being “spectacular.”

Superyacht GENESI’s Beach Club Unveiled in New Video

Photo/Video: Wider

Wider announced that their new $28 million GENESI superyacht cleared for the next stage of testing just last month and now the vessel has been given the full green light. To commemorate its completion of sea trials, Wider released the above video unveiling the vessel’s spacious Beach Club. In the short clip you can watch the area transform from a tender bay to a club space that includes a seven-meter pool and an expansive deck with lounge chairs.

According to the company, the yacht has maintained her assumed speed of 15 knots (17 mph) and her fuel consumption levels are indeed 15 percent lower than the competition. Experienced captain Claudio Candelaresi even described GENESI as being “spectacular.”

Buy your own slice of paradise in the Maldives or Thailand

Friday newsletters always feature luxury travel contests, tips, series, or news.

Today (February 19, 2016): Travel tip: buy your own slice of paradise in the Maldives or Thailand.

If you’ve ever dreamed about owning your own slice of paradise in the Maldives or Thailand, this article is for you.

You probably know by now that Soneva is my absolute favorite hotel brand in the world. The iconic hotel brand aims to create unforgettable, innovating, and enlightening experiences in the planet’s most pristine surroundings. The ethos and values it is run by are what sets Soneva on different footing as compared to other high-end hotel brands. At the moment, Soneva has 4 ultra-luxe properties in its portfolio:

  • Soneva Fushi in the Maldives, where guests have included Madonna and Sir Paul McCartney (read my review here).
  • Soneva In Aqua, the first floating villa in the Maldives (review to be published soon).
  • Soneva Jani in the Maldives (opening later this year).
  • Soneva Kiri in Thailand, by far the best luxury resort in all of Asia (read my review here).

I have to warn you though that once you have lived a holiday at a Soneva resort, all your other trips will pale in comparison. However, there is good news (at least for the lucky few) since Soneva offers private villas for sale so you can make the brand part of your lifestyle. These villas are fantasy properties in fantasy settings and ownership includes the following benefits:

  • 20% off of all Soneva resort services including treatments taken at the Six Senses Spa, diving and leisure services, and from any of our food and beverage outlets.
  • 20% off on all flight transfers (round trip) to/from Malé (or Bangkok if vacationing at Soneva Kiri).
  • Income sharing in a Villa Rental Program, enabling you to earn a return on investment.
  • Possessing the only residences available to foreigners in the Maldives.
  • Special “Soneva Villa Owner” benefits at all Soneva Resorts.
  • Exchangeability of owner’s days within all Soneva Resorts, subject to availability.

1. SONEVA FUSHI RESIDENCES

The Maldives 1190 coral islands barely break the surface of the Indian Ocean along the Equator in an archipelago of 26 atolls. Located in the pristine Baa Atoll – a UNESCO’s marine conservation heritage site about sixty nautical miles northwest of the capital Male – Soneva Fushi’s home of Kunfunadho Island is one of the Maldives’ largest, being  just under 1.5km (0,9 mi) long and 0,5 km (0,3 mi) wide. Everything about Soneva Fushi feels right, the exotic palm trees, the verdant jungle, the pristine reef, the dolphins at sunset, the impossibly white sand and the crystal clear water. For the first time in Maldavian history, you can stake a claim on your own corner of paradise by owning one of only a handful of Private Residences that are currently being built on the island. Residential villas and their plots sprawl up to 8,000 square meters, each with uninterrupted views over their own stretch of private beach out to the picture perfect horizon. These magnificent homes are built with the owner’s utmost privacy in mind, so you won’t have to worry about the neighbors.

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2. SONEVA KIRI RESIDENCES

Remote yet accessible by a 90 minute flight from Bangkok on the resort’s private plane, Soneva Kiri sits on Thailand’s 4th largest but least populated island, Koh Kood, in the Gulf of Siam. One of the most exclusive beach resorts in the world, Soneva Kiri offers an unrivalled combination of luxury, environmentally friendly design and unforgettable, authenticThai experiences. Here, the Soneva group has built spectacular private residences alongside the resort to fully live the Soneva Kiri dream. Incredible luxury villas from two to six bedrooms, 600 to 1800 square meters (6500 to 20000 ft), come with stunning beach, bayview of cliff views, as well as world renowned service levels. Built in Soneva’s iconic eco-style, with light, open, airy and spacious interiors, these residences offer barefoot luxury at its best.

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Review: Soneva Fushi, the Maldives’ original hideaway

Wednesday newsletters always feature a luxury hotel and/or flight review.

The first week of February 2016, I traveled to the Maldives and enjoyed one of the best holidays of my life. You can read my trip reports here:


Today (February 17, 2016): Review of Soneva Fushi (Maldives).

Soneva Fushi, the Maldives’ original desert island hideaway, is located in the stunning Baa Atoll, a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve. Massive, Robinson Crusoe-style, multi-bedroom luxury villas and private residences are hidden among dense tropical foliage. In keeping with the castaway theme, many are built to resemble tree houses. All open to their own private stretch of sugar white sands, and most boast their own private seawater swimming pools. Intuitive service is provided by Mr./Ms. Friday butlers who know what you want before you want it.

Soneva Fushi features in my top 10 lists of the best luxury resorts in the Maldives, the most astonishing beach retreats in Asia, the best family hotels in the world, and the world’s most insanely beautiful hotel beaches.

In this review (more info and photos below my Youtube clip and slideshow):

  • Pros & things I like
  • Cons & things to know
  • My verdict
  • Tips for future guests & save money
  • My reviews of other luxury hotels in the Maldives
  • Best time to visit
  • How to get there
  • Photos

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PROS & THINGS I LIKE
  • After collecting your luggage at Malé International Airport, you will be greeted by the lovely Soneva staff and whisked away to the dedicated Soneva Fushi first-class airport lounge (featuring Soneva’s signature eco-chic design), where you can wait for the connecting seaplane transfer to the resort. At the lounge, you will be offered a refreshing drink and some snacks, while a Soneva Fushi host will take care of your check-in.
  • The 30 minute seaplane transfer to Soneva Fushi is a breathtaking sightseeing trip in itself. The plane flies quite low across the Indian Ocean, offering an amazing view of tiny, sugar-white island rings sparkling atop turquoise colored lagoons and the brilliant sapphire blue ocean. The watertaxi lands at Soneva Fushi International Airport, which must be one of the most amazing airports in the world: a small wooden deck just off the island’s shores. From there, it’s just a 5 minute speedboat ride to the arrival jetty of the magnificent resort.
  • The (sea)plane transfers arrangements are very well-organized. Soneva Fushi has a privileged relationship with the watertaxi operator (since this is one of the oldest resorts in the Maldives) which means that waiting time at the airport on your day of arrival or departure seldom exceeds one hour. Water taxis only operate during daylight, but if you arrive or departing well after the seaplanes dock at sunset, then you will be flown by jet to Dharavandhoo airport, which serves the Baa Atoll and is a mere ten minutes by speedboat from the resort.
  • Soneva Fushi comes the closest you can imagine to what a tropical paradise must be. The entire island is covered by a magnificent verdant, dense jungle and surrounded by blinding-white, palm-fringed beaches and a ridiculously clear, sparkling turquoise lagoon. From a scenic perspective, this is the most idyllic island that I have visited in this Indian Ocean archipelago nation, and its fabulous, soft-sand beaches easily rank amongst the best in the world.
  • Besides being insanely beautiful, Soneva Fushi is also one of the largest islands in the Maldives, being  just under 1.5km (0,9 mi) long and 0,5 km (0,3 mi) wide. Upon arrival, you will be given bicycles for the duration of your stay to get around. It’s a pure delight to cycle along the many sandy paths in the jungle and to enjoy the wonderful varieties of trees and foliage, as well as the wildlife, ranging from impressive fruit bats to cute rabbits hopping around.
  • Soneva Fushi’s ‘no news, no shoes’ policy encourages a casual atmosphere among all the guests. On the speedboat to the resort, your shoes will be removed and they will be stored for the duration of your stay.
  • From the moment you touch down (barefoot) on Soneva’s Fushi’s shores, your personal butler – called a Mr. or Ms. “Friday” – will be on hand with a smile and assist you throughout your stay. These Fridays are obviously handpicked for their extreme likeability and their level of discrete, intuitive service – you only have to think it, and your wish has materialised! Faali, my Mr Friday during my stay, deserves a special mention, as he is fantastic!
  • The resort’s eco-chic design melts in with the Maldivian surroundings and adds to the sense of being at one with nature. All hotel buildings, including the villa accommodations, are built using local materials, topped with a palm-leaf roof, decked out in stylish bright cushions, and decorated with simple but chic furniture. This is barefoot luxury at its best, albeit in a low-key and environmentally conscious way.
  • The resort’s 65, thatched-roof, multi-bedroom luxury villas and private residences are scattered along the coastline. While they are hidden among dense foliage (and hardly visible from the beach), they all overlook the Indian Ocean. The elegant and sophisticated villas are massive in scale and among the world’s largest hotel accommodations. They come in several categories, ranging from one-bedroom Crusoe villas to the 9-bedroom private reserve. Each villa aims to provide a sort of Robinson Crusoe experience, as it feels as it’s marooned on its own private island, with its own garden and stretch of white sand beach just steps away. In keeping with the castaway theme, many villas are built to resemble tree houses.
  • I stayed in a spectacular Soneva Fushi family villa suite with pool, located on the sunset side of the island. The spacious bedroom featured a desk, kitchenette and a king-sized, four-poster bed with frames made with local coconut, while the open-plan living room brought the outside indoors with floor-to-ceiling glass windows. Modern conveniences like CD stereo systems and televisions with DVD players were hidden from view. The villa’s star attraction was the luxurious open-air garden bathroom with water garden, outdoor shower, indoor shower and oversized bathtub. In addition, the villa also had a separate children’s room, an observation deck on the first floor (with plush daybed), a private veranda, and a plunge pool.
  • IMHO, Soneva Fushi is the best resort in the world for families with children. The newly opened children’s club, designated ‘The Den’, is nothing less than a spectacular jungle villa and a playground for the imagination, where children can explore a pirate ship, splash in two pools, and even have their own bar (for moctails). The villa also features a lego room, dress-up area, cinema, library, learning area, a music room filled with instruments, and a channel clad in roots, branches and hidden surprises, that leads to gardens filled with flowers, swings and nests tucked into the trees.
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner at Soneva Fushi are stellar culinary experiences, because of the lovely restaurant settings, the top-quality service, and the divine food (which wouldn’t be out of place in a Michelin starred gourmet restaurant in a cosmopolitan city). Mihiree Mitha, the resort’s main restaurant that serves breakfast and lunch, means “here it is” in Maldivian, and indeed, almost any dish you crave is here. The breakfast buffet is the most generous one I have ever seen at a hotel, with ovenfresh pastries, home-made jams, egg-cooking stations, and even a dedicated ham and cheese room, featuring sumptuous homemade cheeses, ham and cold cuts. At lunch, Mihiree Mitha transforms into a grazing feast with barbecue, stir fry, and salad stations, as well as wood-fired pizzas and a fresh pasta bar. Adjacent to Mihiree Mitha, you find the Down To Earth restaurant, which serves dinner and features lavish buffets (the Indian food was the best I have ever sampled around the globe). The resort’s third dining venue, By The Beach, is located on the sunset side of the island, where you can linger over Japanese and Korean inspired cuisine to the sound of rolling waves and with your toes in the sand. My favorite restaurant however is Fresh In The Garden, which is located above the resort’s herb and vegetable garden with sublime panoramas stretching beyond the jungle’s canopy, and which serves mouth-watering, Mediterranean-inspired dishes.
  • A stand out among the resort’s fine dining venues is the exquisite Sobah’s restaurant, built on the uninhabited island, just 30 minutes by boat from Soneva Fushi. Sobah’s is lead by Chef Sobah, who won the ‘Best Chef in the Maldives’ Award, and serves traditional Maldivian cuisine with modern twists using traditional cooking methods. Getting to Sobah’s is half the fun, as you often spot dolphins on the way.
  • Soneva Fushi has a fantastic, subterranean wine cellar. The collection of 7,000 bottles, including rare champagnes, grand cru clarets, vintage cognacs, organic and biodynamic wines, rivals the world’s finest wine collections.
  • The resort has its own chocolate & ice cream parlour, which is open from noon till late night and complimentary to all guest. You can choose of over sixty constantly changing flavours of homemade ice creams and sorbets at the ice cream room. Inside the adjoining chocolate room, you can indulge in every child’s dream of never-ending chocolate: you can sample cardamom chocolate truffles, passionfruit pralines, and a continually changing profusion of confections.
  • One of my favorite spots at Soneva Fushi must be the lovely Bar(a)bara, where you can sip on a coctail in cushioned hammocks suspended over the Indian Ocean while enjoying the sunset or watching the fish in the water.
  • Soneva Fushi is located in the heart of the remote Baa Atoll. The latter has been declared a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve, because it supports one of the largest groups of coral reefs in the Indian Ocean. As such, it should come as no surprise that Soneva Fushi is a diver’s dream, as it offers easy acces to the world’s most breathtaking stretch for scuba diving. The resort has its own PADI-certified dive center, and the professional scuba diving instructors guide excursions to more than 30 sites with great visibility.
  • If you are not comfortable with or don’t feel like diving, then you will be happy to know that snorkeling at Soneva Fushi’s house reef is superb. I even saw turtles on multiple occasions. The dive center provides diving masks with optical lenses, which was a welcome surprise (and a first) for me for me as I wear glasses.
  • As explained above, the waters surrounding Soneva Fushi hold a tremendously high biodiversity and incredible array of sea life, but the absolute highlight takes place from June to November, when you have a chance to spot (and even swim with) the graceful manta rays and elusive whale sharks in the vicinity of the resort.
  • At Soneva Fushi, you can watch classic movies under the stars in a return to the old traditions of Hollywood enjoyment. The magnificent resort’s Cinema Paradiso screens classic movies in an open-air theatre, a jungle-enshrouded auditorium with cushioned loungers. Popcorn and ice cream are served complimentary.
  • Hidden among the island’s wild jungle foliage, the excellent spa is a haven of calm for the mind, body and soul. You can choose from a variety of body treatments, specialist traditions and wellness therapies, ranging from soothing scrubs and oils of local coconuts to Tibetan hot stones. The spa is operated by Six Senses, a brand that’s world-famous for its wellness programs & facilities. I had a massage and it was phenomenal.
  • Its remote island location in the midst of the Indian Ocean means that the  Soneva Fushi has one of the best locations on earth for visibility and gazing at the stars. The resorts takes full advantage of this by having itw own observatory, where you can peer through the lenses of a state-of-the-art telescope into space.
  • Environmental and social responsibilities are at the core of the resort’s philosophy. For example, Soneva Fushi has one of the largest solar power plants in the Maldives, its food is grown and sourced locally where possible, it recycles waste materials, and it preserves ecosystems (Soneva Fushi has two nature reserves on site, where turtles can nest).
  • A brilliant initiative in line with Soneva Fushi’s ecofriendly policy is the stunning Glass Studio, where the Maldives’ waste glass is turned into valuable works of art. Here, you can watch world-renowned glass artists create glass art, participate in art exhibitions, learn the art of glass blowing in special courses, or even personally design your own masterpiece to take home at the Maldives’ first glass studio.
  • The resort is managed by Soneva, my absolute favorite hotel brand in the world. The acronym SLOW LIFE (Sustainable-Local-Organic-Wellness Learning-Inspiring-Fun-Experiences) explains the Soneva philosophy: it aims to create unforgettable, innovating, and enlightening experiences that illuminate their guest’s lives whilst treading lightly on the earth. The ethos and values it is run by are what sets Soneva on different footing as compared to other high-end hotel brands. In addition, there’s also a lot of love and romance in the story of Soneva, which was founded in 1995 by Sonu Shivdasani, an Indian-British hotelier, and his wife Eva Malmstrom, a Swedish fashion model. I have previously reviewed the fabulous Soneva property in Thailand, Soneva Kiri (you can read my review here).
  • The resort offers an abundance of activities that cater to all ages and even the most discerning of tastes: a wide selection of water sports (including catamaran sailing, sea kayaking, and windsurfing) and a variety of  excursions (including a visit to local villages, cooking classes, private picnic on a desert island, sunset Cruise by sailing dhoni, and private sandbank overnight experience) are available to guests, in addition to tennis, mountain biking, and astronomy classes.
  • Pre-arrival communication with the resort is excellent: all my emails were answered within 24 hours (which is a blessing when you want to create your own itinerary).
  • The wonderful service at Soneva Fushi is an art form. For example, room cleaning and turn down service always take place when you are in the restaurants having breakfast or dinner. The staff is the happiest and kindest I have encountered in the Maldives, and they make you feel at home. Many of the staff members have worked for Soneva Fushi since day one (more than 20 years ago) – that is testament to how they are treated and in return how they treat you as guests and friends. I can understand why Soneva Fushi has the highest number of repeat guests of all the resorts in the Maldives.
  • Soneva Fushi recently launched the first floating villa in the Maldives, Soneva In Aqua. This pioneering concept combines all the benefits of the iconic resort’s services and amenities with the freedom and exclusivity associated with a private boat charter. The two-cabin boat features a spacious main cabin with a glass bottom spa and shower facilities. The second cabin offers a king-sized bed and en-suite facilities. Other features include an external raised sun and dining deck, a lower level bar and dining area plus daybeds, lounge seating and a jacuzzi. You can read my review of Soneva In Aqua here.

CONS & THINGS TO KNOW

Soneva Fushi is hand’s down one of the best resorts in the Maldives, and my absolute favorite one in this island nation (and that means something since this paradise country is known for harboring several of the world’s most luxurious hotels). There is very little to say against Soneva Fushi as its beauty, accommodations, food, service, and amenities will sweep you off your feet and leave you speechless, but there are a few things it’s worthwhile noting to ensure you have the perfect stay:

  • Sunsets may be spectacular at Soneva Fushi, but about 500 meters (1600 feet) off the sunset side of the island is the populated island of Eydhafushi, the capital of the Baa Atoll, which is clearly visible at the horizon (with some concrete building and high antennas). This somewhat dispels the feeling of being a castaway on an island. However, do not let this put you off, since the sunset side is still my preferred part of the island with wide beaches and superb snorkeling. And of course, there are always numerous villas on the sunrise side of the island, which are blessed with uninterrupted views of the ocean (but the beach here is narrower).
  • Soneva Fushi is ultra-luxurious but this is not the place to visit if you like glitz and bling. The resort identifies itself with understated barefoot luxury.  It is a laid-back lifestyle, a world of bamboos and bicycles and slow living, where everyone goes shoeless 24 hours a day.
  • There’s no communal pool on the island, so make sure you splash out on a villa with a private seawater pool.
  • As part of its eco-conscious commitment, Soneva Fushi does not offer over-water villas, due to the damage their construction causes to the coral. All accommodations are beach villas.
  • While it is currently the Maldives best luxury resort (and has been for more than 20 years), it may loose that privileged title later this year to its soon-to-open sister resort, Soneva Jani. Expected to open in autumn 2016, the fabulous Soneva Jani resort will comprise 57 phenomenal villas, including 24 overwater villas which will only be reachable by boat and which will all have an enticing choice of either a sunrise or sunset view. There will be a further 20 one-bedroom Crusoe homes on land plus a choice of 13 three bedroom villas on the beach.
  • Be warned: all your other trips will pale in comparison to the memory of a Soneva Fushi vacation.

MY VERDICT

This is the second time I have given a resort the maximum score of 10 out of 10 (the other being Soneva Fushi’s sister resort, Soneva Kiri in Thailand)!

  • Location: 10/10
  • Design: 10/10
  • Rooms: 10/10
  • Food: 10/10
  • Service: 10/10
  • Overall experience: exceptional: 10/10

TIPS FOR FUTURE GUESTS  &  SAVE MONEY
  • Contact me to get a complimentary room upgrade at the time of booking.
  • Save money: read my tips for getting the best deal at a luxury hotel like Soneva Fushi (and/or receive many free perks).
  • Save money: I recommend to book a stay at Soneva Fushi through a Virtuoso travel agent, which has the benefit of complimentary VIP perks (e.g. villa upgrade, breakfast, early check-in , late check-out, welcome Champagne with Maldivian tapas on arrival, one lunch for two, original handcrafted arrival and departure mementos, shoreline beach dinner, private sunset sailing by Dhoni at Baa Atoll, and a cooking class for two).
  • All villas at Soneva Fushi are phenomenal. But if unobstructed ocean views are what you are looking for, then be sure to book or request a villa on the sunrise side of the island.
  • Book a villa with a pool, since the resort has no communal pool (although the the island is surrounded by the world’s largest swimming pool).
  • Read my tips for preparing your trip in time.

MY REVIEWS OF OTHER LUXURY HOTELS IN THE MALDIVES

BEST TIME TO VISIT

The best weather in the Maldives is between January and April, which also means high season (and high hotel prices). The monsoon runs from May to October, peaking in June. It is worth paying higher prices and sticking to the dry season as there is nothing to do on a rainy day except drink, eat, work out or scuba dive. Especially November and December, which are often labelled as dry season months, have been very unsettled in recent years.

WEATHER MAP MALDIVES


HOW TO GET THERE

The resort is located a 30-minute waterplane trip from Male International Airport (MLE). Check the Wikipedia page of Male International Airport for an updated list of airlines that offer flights to Male International Airport:

  • From/via Asia: Bangkok Airways (via Bangkok), Tigerair (via Singapore), Singapore Airlines (via Singapore), Cathay Pacific (via Hong Kong), Air India (via Bangalore, Chennai, Thiruvanathapuram), China Eastern Airlines (via Colombo, Kunmnig), Cina Southern Airlines (via Guanghzou), Hainan Airlines (via Bejing), Korean Air (via Colombo and Seoul), Shanghai Airlines (via Shanghai), Srilankan Airlines (via Colombo), Maldivian (Chennai, Chongqing, Colombo, Dhaka, Thiruvanathapuram), Mega Maldives (via Bejing, Hong Kong, Shanghai).
  • From/via Middle East: Emirates (via Dubai), Flybudai (via Dubai), Qatar Airways (via Doha), Etihad Airways (via Abu Dhabi), Oman Air (via Muscat), Turkish Airlines (via Istanbul).
  • From/via Europe: Austrian Airlines (via Vienna), British Airways (via London), Thompson Airways (via London), Monarch Airlines (via London), Condor (via Frankfurt), Edelweiss Air (via Zurich), Meridiana (via Rome or Milan), Neos (via Rome or Milan), Transaero Airlines (via Moscow).

SONEVA FUSHI LOUNGE AT MALE AIRPORT

SONEVA FUSHI LOUNGE AT MALE AIRPORT

SONEVA FUSHI LOUNGE AT MALE AIRPORT

SONEVA FUSHI LOUNGE AT MALE AIRPORT

SONEVA FUSHI LOUNGE AT MALE AIRPORT

SONEVA FUSHI LOUNGE AT MALE AIRPORT

SONEVA FUSHI LOUNGE AT MALE AIRPORT

SONEVA FUSHI LOUNGE AT MALE AIRPORT

SONEVA FUSHI LOUNGE AT MALE AIRPORT

SONEVA FUSHI LOUNGE AT MALE AIRPORT

SONEVA FUSHI LOUNGE AT MALE AIRPORT

SONEVA FUSHI LOUNGE AT MALE AIRPORT

SONEVA FUSHI LOUNGE AT MALE AIRPORT

SONEVA FUSHI LOUNGE AT MALE AIRPORT

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE TRANSFER TO SONEVA FUSHI

AERIAL VIEW OF SONEVA FUSHI (ISLAND ON THE RIGHT)

AERIAL VIEW OF SONEVA FUSHI (ISLAND ON THE RIGHT)

AERIAL VIEW OF SONEVA FUSHI

AERIAL VIEW OF SONEVA FUSHI

AERIAL VIEW OF SONEVA FUSHI

AERIAL VIEW OF SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE LANDING NEAR SONEVA FUSHI

WATERPLANE LANDING NEAR SONEVA FUSHI

SPEEDBOAT TO THE RESORT

SPEEDBOAT TO THE RESORT

SPEEDBOAT TO THE RESORT

SPEEDBOAT TO THE RESORT

SPEEDBOAT TO THE RESORT

SPEEDBOAT TO THE RESORT

ARRIVAL JETTY

ARRIVAL JETTY

ARRIVAL JETTY

ARRIVAL JETTY

ARRIVAL JETTY

ARRIVAL JETTY

ARRIVAL JETTY

ARRIVAL JETTY

ARRIVAL JETTY

ARRIVAL JETTY

ARRIVAL JETTY

ARRIVAL JETTY

ARRIVAL JETTY

ARRIVAL JETTY

ARRIVAL JETTY

ARRIVAL JETTY

RECEPTION DESK

RECEPTION DESK

ISLAND SCENERY

ISLAND SCENERY

ISLAND SCENERY

ISLAND SCENERY

ISLAND SCENERY

ISLAND SCENERY

ISLAND SCENERY

ISLAND SCENERY

ISLAND SCENERY

ISLAND SCENERY

SUNRISE SIDE: VIEW

SUNRISE SIDE: VIEW

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNRISE SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: VIEW

SUNSET SIDE: VIEW

SUNSET SIDE

SUNSET SIDE

SUNSET SIDE

SUNSET SIDE

SUNSET SIDE

SUNSET SIDE

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

SUNSET SIDE: BEACH

TURTLE BEACH ON THE ISLAND'S NORTHERN TIP

TURTLE BEACH ON THE ISLAND’S NORTHERN TIP

TURTLE BEACH ON THE ISLAND'S NORTHERN TIP

TURTLE BEACH ON THE ISLAND’S NORTHERN TIP

TURTLE BEACH ON THE ISLAND'S NORTHERN TIP

TURTLE BEACH ON THE ISLAND’S NORTHERN TIP

TURTLE BEACH ON THE ISLAND'S NORTHERN TIP

TURTLE BEACH ON THE ISLAND’S NORTHERN TIP

TURTLE BEACH ON THE ISLAND'S NORTHERN TIP

TURTLE BEACH ON THE ISLAND’S NORTHERN TIP

TURTLE BEACH ON THE ISLAND'S NORTHERN TIP

TURTLE BEACH ON THE ISLAND’S NORTHERN TIP

TURTLE BEACH ON THE ISLAND'S NORTHERN TIP

TURTLE BEACH ON THE ISLAND’S NORTHERN TIP

RESORT MAP

RESORT MAP

RESORT MAP

RESORT MAP

RESORT MAP

RESORT MAP

WELCOME LETTER

WELCOME LETTER

WELCOME LETTER

WELCOME LETTER

WELCOME LETTER

WELCOME LETTER

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: ENTRANCE

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: ENTRANCE

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: ENTRANCE

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: ENTRANCE

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BEDROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BEDROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BEDROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BEDROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BEDROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BEDROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BEDROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BEDROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BEDROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BEDROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BEDROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BEDROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BEDROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BEDROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: CHILDREN'S BEDROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: CHILDREN’S BEDROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: KITCHENETTE

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: KITCHENETTE

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: KITCHENETTE

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: KITCHENETTE

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: KITCHENETTE

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: KITCHENETTE

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: BATHROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: DRESSING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: DRESSING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: DRESSING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: DRESSING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: DRESSING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: DRESSING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: DRESSING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: DRESSING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: LIVING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: LIVING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: LIVING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: LIVING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: LIVING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: LIVING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: LIVING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: LIVING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: LIVING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: LIVING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: LIVING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: LIVING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: LIVING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: LIVING ROOM

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: VERANDA

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: VERANDA

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: VERANDA

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: VERANDA

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: VERANDA

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: VERANDA

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: VERANDA

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: VERANDA

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: LOUNGE AREA

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: LOUNGE AREA

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: GARDEN

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: GARDEN

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: GARDEN

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: GARDEN

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: GARDEN

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: GARDEN

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: GARDEN

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: GARDEN

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: PRIVATE GARDEN

FAMILY VILLA SUITE WITH POOL: PRIVATE GARDEN

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

BAR(A) BARA

DIVE CENTER

DIVE CENTER

ICECREAM ROOM

ICECREAM ROOM

ICECREAM ROOM

ICECREAM ROOM

ICECREAM ROOM

ICECREAM ROOM

CHOCOLATE ROOM

CHOCOLATE ROOM

CHOCOLATE ROOM

CHOCOLATE ROOM

CHOCOLATE ROOM

CHOCOLATE ROOM

CHOCOLATE ROOM

CHOCOLATE ROOM

CHOCOLATE ROOM

CHOCOLATE ROOM

CHOCOLATE ROOM

CHOCOLATE ROOM

CHOCOLATE ROOM

CHOCOLATE ROOM

DIVE CENTER

DIVE CENTER

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

THE SPA

GIFT & JEWELRY SHOP

GIFT & JEWELRY SHOP

GIFT & JEWELRY SHOP

GIFT & JEWELRY SHOP

GIFT SHOP

GIFT SHOP

JEWELRY SHOP

JEWELRY SHOP

JEWELRY SHOP

JEWELRY SHOP

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE GLASS STUDIO

THE DEN (CHILDREN'S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN’S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN'S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN’S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN'S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN’S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN'S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN’S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN'S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN’S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN'S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN’S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN'S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN’S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN'S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN’S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN'S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN’S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN'S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN’S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN'S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN’S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN'S CLUB)

THE DEN (CHILDREN’S CLUB)

BY THE BAR

BY THE BAR

BY THE BAR

BY THE BAR

BY THE BAR

BY THE BAR

BY THE BAR

BY THE BAR

BY THE BAR

BY THE BAR

BY THE BAR

BY THE BAR

BY THE BAR

BY THE BAR

BY THE BAR

BY THE BAR

SONEVA FUSHI'S HERB & VEGETABLE GARDEN

SONEVA FUSHI’S HERB & VEGETABLE GARDEN

SONEVA FUSHI'S HERB & VEGETABLE GARDEN

SONEVA FUSHI’S HERB & VEGETABLE GARDEN

SONEVA FUSHI'S HERB & VEGETABLE GARDEN

SONEVA FUSHI’S HERB & VEGETABLE GARDEN

SONEVA FUSHI'S HERB & VEGETABLE GARDEN

SONEVA FUSHI’S HERB & VEGETABLE GARDEN

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

FRESH IN THE GARDEN RESTAURANT

THE OBSERVATORY

THE OBSERVATORY

THE OBSERVATORY

THE OBSERVATORY

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT:

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT:

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: BREAKFAST BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

MIHIREE MITHA RESTAURANT: LUNCH BUFFET

DOWN TO EARTH RESTAURANT

DOWN TO EARTH RESTAURANT

DOWN TO EARTH RESTAURANT

DOWN TO EARTH RESTAURANT

DOWN TO EARTH RESTAURANT: INDIAN DINNER

DOWN TO EARTH RESTAURANT: INDIAN DINNER

DOWN TO EARTH RESTAURANT: INDIAN DINNER

DOWN TO EARTH RESTAURANT: INDIAN DINNER

DOWN TO EARTH RESTAURANT: INDIAN DINNER

DOWN TO EARTH RESTAURANT: INDIAN DINNER

DOWN TO EARTH RESTAURANT: INDIAN DINNER

DOWN TO EARTH RESTAURANT: INDIAN DINNER

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT: DINNER

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT: DINNER

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT: DINNER

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT: DINNER

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT: DINNER

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT: DINNER

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT: DINNER

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT: DINNER

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT: DINNER

BY THE BEACH RESTAURANT: DINNER

VEGETABLE GARDEN

VEGETABLE GARDEN

VEGETABLE GARDEN

VEGETABLE GARDEN

VEGETABLE GARDEN

VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

SRI LANKAN LUNCH AT VEGETABLE GARDEN

CINEMA PARADISO

CINEMA PARADISO

CINEMA PARADISO

CINEMA PARADISO

BARBEQUE AT CINEMA PARADISO

BARBEQUE AT CINEMA PARADISO

BARBEQUE AT CINEMA PARADISO

BARBEQUE AT CINEMA PARADISO

BARBEQUE AT CINEMA PARADISO

BARBEQUE AT CINEMA PARADISO

BARBEQUE AT CINEMA PARADISO

BARBEQUE AT CINEMA PARADISO

TRIP TO SOBAH'S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH’S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH'S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH’S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH'S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH’S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH'S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH’S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH'S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH’S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH'S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH’S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH'S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH’S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH'S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH’S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH'S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH’S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH'S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH’S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH'S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH’S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH'S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH’S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH'S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH’S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH'S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH’S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH'S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH’S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH'S RESTAURANT

TRIP TO SOBAH’S RESTAURANT

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER'S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

MANAGER’S COCTAIL ON THE SANDBANK

THE RESORT'S PRIVATE YACHT, SONEVA IN AQUA

THE RESORT’S PRIVATE YACHT, SONEVA IN AQUA


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Top 10: best honeymoon resorts around the world

Monday newsletters always feature top 10 travel lists to inspire.

Today (February 15th, 2016): world’s best honeymoon resorts.

It’s that time of the year again to celebrate love and romance all over the world. If you accepted a wedding proposal yesterday on Valentine’s Day and want to have a truly romantic honeymoon, then I am sure that you will appreciate my recommendations for the world’s most amazing honeymoon hotels. From posh overwater villas to secluded rooms with private plunge pools, from spectacular outdoor suites to your very own private villa yacht, here is my list of the 10 most romantic and idyllic honeymoon hotels in the world.

There is more information below the slideshow. Do you agree or have a favorite that didn’t make my list? Leave it in the comments or take my poll below.

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10. ALILA VILLAS ULUWATU, BALI, INDONESIA

Alila Villas Uluwatu is located in the dry savannah landscape of the Bukit Peninsular in the South of the island. Poised on an elevated plateau that meets with limestone cliffs sweeping down the Indian Ocean, the view from the hotel is nothing less than breathtaking. Blending in with these spectacular surroundings, the architecture of the hotel combines the delights of traditional Balinese pavilion architecture and rural landscapes with modern dynamic treatment of space and form. The spectacular yet serene, open-plan rooms with minimalistic interiors are designed to impart comfort and space.

ALILA VILLAS ULUWATU, BALI, INDONESIA

ALILA VILLAS ULUWATU, BALI, INDONESIA


9. SONG SAA PRIVATE ISLAND, CAMBODIA

With 9 overwater villas in addition to 18 Garden and Beach Villas, this resorts is pure 5-star-plus luxury that you might not expect in Cambodia. Certainly not cheap, the resort operates on an all-inclusive basis for all guests, including extras like free laundry service, so it’s a better value than it might otherwise seem. The Overwater Villas here are all huge and each has a private pool out on the deck, and all the super-luxury amenities you’d want as well. Even so early in its life (the resort opened in 2011), Song Saa has earned a reputation for impeccable service and excellent cuisine.

SONG SAA PRIVATE ISLAND, CAMBODIA

SONG SAA PRIVATE ISLAND, CAMBODIA


8. GRACE SANTORINI, GREECE

Located in the romantic setting of Imerovigli in the northwest of the Greek island, high above Santorini’s Caldera, Grace Santorini is the perfect vantage point from which to enjoy the famed Santorini island sunsets that envelop Greece’s Cyclades Islands. With its jaw-dropping location, spectacular infinity pool, heart-stopping views, and luxurious accommodations, Santorini Grace may be the ultimate expression of a boutique hotel in the iconic Greek Island and the perfect spot to spend your honeymoon.

GRACE SANTORINI, GREECE

GRACE SANTORINI, GREECE


7. NALADHU, MALDIVES

Imagine paradise. Tropical island sands. Swaying palms. Endless turquoise waters. Open your eyes and you will be in Naladhu, a gorgeous resort sharing a ridiculously clear lagoon with its sister resorts Dhigu and Veli. Maldivian for ‘beautiful island’, Naladhu offers a mosaic of timeless moments on the blue waters of the Indian Ocean. The resort is very exclusive as it has only 20 expansive villas and houses, each with a magnificent private pool fronting the azure Indian Ocean, unsurpassed comfort, and a graceful elegance that never goes out of style.

NALADHU, MALDIVES

NALADHU, MALDIVES


6. IVORY LODGE LION SANDS, SOUTH AFRICA

At Ivory Lodge Lion Sands, you can experience the African Bushveld in lavish comfort and in a perfect setting for your honeymoon. Each of the 6 suites is surrounded by untamed African Bush and are operated as a private villa.  They all  include a private rim flow pool, exquisitely appointed large dedicated bedroom and lounge, and simply more of everything. For the more adventurous souls, a once in a lifetime experience (and that is what a honeymoon is supposed to be), and the ultimate African bush experience, you may prefer to stay at one of the ultraluxurious and romantic treehouses.


5. AMANERA, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC

Nestled within more than 2,170 acres of pristine Caribbean jungle, Amanera overlooks the ocean from Playa Grande, whose golden sands make it one of the region’s most beautiful beaches. The resort is located alongside the lauded fairways and greens of Playa Grande. Amanera has 25 free-standing Casitas, that all come with ocean views from an expansive terrace, as well as a private garden and biodiverse roof that seamlessly blends with its surroundings. Thirteen casitas have a private pool, and these are the one to choose for your honeymoon.

AMANERA, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC

AMANERA, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC


4. FOUR SEASONS BORA BORA

Wrapped by majestic views, Four Seasons Resort Bora Bora is surrounded by sand-fringed islets on an outer coral reef that enclose a turquoise lagoon. The resort offers 121 spacious hideaways with 100 over-water bungalows and 7 beachfront villas, all overlooking the lagoon’s crystal clear waters and some with spectacular views of Mount Otemanu. Inspired by local architecture, all guest accommodations offer a restful, airy ambience. Special touches that accentuate the feel of Polynesia include striking works of art, private pools and deep bathtubs with panoramic views of the lagoon.

FOUR SEASONS BORA BORA

FOUR SEASONS BORA BORA


3. SONEVA IN AQUA, MALDIVES

Soneva in Aqua is the first floating villa in the Maldives and every honeymooner’s dream. The pioneering new boat villa concept of the ultra luxe Soneva hotel group combines all the benefits of the group’s iconic resort’s services and amenities with the freedom and exclusivity associated with a private boat charter. The two-cabin boat features a spacious main cabin with a glass bottom spa and shower facilities, as well as a second room with a king-sized bed and en-suite facilities. Other features include an external raised sun and dining deck, a lower level bar and dining area plus daybeds, lounge seating and a jacuzzi.


2. NORTH ISLAND, SEYCHELLES

The island has only 11 opulent hand-crafted villas overlooking the pristine, powder-white sands and turquoise waters of the Ile Du Nord eco-reserve. Raised off the ground to catch the cooling Indian Ocean breezes, all villas open up onto a private garden and the beach, and come with plunge pools and outdoor showers. The island’s lounge and dining areas, scenically located health spa and gym, library and dive centre, and a rim-flow swimming pool are all built into a granitic outcrop. The resort was the decor for honeymoon of Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge in 2011.


1. JADE MOUNTAIN, ST LUCIA

The impressive design, with individual bridges leading to exceptional infinity pool suites and rugged stoned-faced columns reaching towards the sky, makes Jade Mountain one of the Caribbean’s most mesmerizing resort experiences, especially for honeymooners. With the fourth wall entirely absent, Jade Mountain’s 29 suites (called “sanctuaries”) are stage-like settings from which to embrace the full glory of  St Lucia’s twin peaks, the Pitons World Heritage Site, and of course, the eternal Caribbean Sea.

JADE MOUNTAIN, ST LUCIA

JADE MOUNTAIN, ST LUCIA


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Travel tip: book a hotel room with a Best Rate Guarantee

Friday newsletters always feature luxury travel contests, tips, series, or news.

Today (February 12, 2016): Travel tip: book a hotel room with a BRG.

Best Rate Guaranteed (BRG) programs are increasingly used by hotels chains around the world to guarantee that a hotel guest is given the lowest available rate for a night or a multiple-night stay. If means that if you find a better, publicly available rate on another website than the official hotel website, you can submit an online BRG claim. If your claim is approved, not only will the lower price be matched, but you will also receive an additional 10 to 25% discount (depending upon the hotel chain). Important: a BRG will only be approved for a booking of an identical room type, date and length of stay, and reservations must be made directly on the hotel websites (not on third-party websites). Finding a better rate than the one on the official website is not difficult at all, as you can read in my tips for finding the lowest hotel price.

I hereby present you a list of the BRG programs of the major luxury hotel chains (including their details and links to the BRG claim forms). For a summary, click here.


BRG program of the Starwood hotel group
  • Luxury hotel brands: St Regis, W hotels, The Luxury Collection.
  • BRG: If you find a better, publicly available rate on a non-Starwood site, not only will that price be matched, but you will also receive either an additional 20% discount or 2,000 Starpoints.
  • Terms & conditions: You must submit an online claim within 24 hours of booking your hotel room on a Starwood website.
  • Disadvantage : Starwood used to have one of the very few BRG programs that allowed you to submit a claim before making a booking (a major advantage in the case of a non-refundable rate). Unfortunately, they changed their policy in 2015, and now you need to make a booking before submitting a BRG claim. So always make sure that you book a refundable rate in case that your claim is not approved and you want to cancel the booking.
  • Link: BRG program of the Starwood hotel group.
ST REGIS LHASA RESORT, TIBET

ST REGIS LHASA RESORT, TIBET


BRG program of the Hyatt hotel group
  • Luxury hotel brands: Park Hyatt, Andaz.
  • BRG: If you find a better, publicly available rate on a non-Hyatt site, not only will the price be matched, but you will also receive an additional 20% discount.
  • Terms & conditions: You must submit an online claim using, prior to, or within 24 hours of, booking your hotel room on the Hyatt website.
  • Advantage: Hyatt offers the only BRG program that allows you to submit a claim before making a booking (a major advantage in the case of a non-refundable rate). Their discount is substantial (20%).
  • Link: BRG program of the Hyatt hotel group.
PARK HYATT HADAHAA MALDIVES

PARK HYATT HADAHAA MALDIVES


BRG program of the Kempinski hotel group
  • BRG: Should you find a lower rate on another website, within 24 hours of completing a reservation at Kempinski.com, Kempinski will match the lower rate found and will discount it even further by an additional 25%. In addition to that, you’ll be upgraded to the next higher room category, subject to availability at the time of check in at the hotel.
  • Terms & conditions: You must email the Kempinski group within 24 hours of booking your hotel room on the Kempinski website.
  • (Dis)advantage: Kempinski offers the most generous BRG program of all luxury hotel chains, with a 25% discount and (potential) room upgrade, but you can only submit a claim after making a reservation.
  • Link: BRG program of the Kempinski hotel group.
HOTEL ADLON KEMPINSKI BERLIN, GERMANY

HOTEL ADLON KEMPINSKI BERLIN, GERMANY


BRG program of the Mandarin Oriental hotel group
  • BRG: Should you find a lower rate on another website, within 24 hours of completing a reservation at mandarinoriental.com, Mandarin Oriental will match the lower rate found and will discount it even further by an additional 10%.
  • Terms & conditions: You must submit an online claim within 24 hours of booking your hotel room on the Mandarin Oriental website.
  • Disadvantage: You can only submit a claim after making a reservation.
  • Link: BRG program of the Mandarin Oriental hotel group.

MANDARIN ORIENTAL NEW YORK


BRG program of the COMO hotel group
  • BRG: Should you find a lower rate on another website, within 24 hours of completing a reservation directly with COMO hotels, the lower rate found will be matched and it will be further discounted by an additional 10%.
  • Terms & conditions: You must email the COMO hotel group within 24 hours of booking your hotel room.
  • Disadvantage: You can only submit a claim after making a reservation.
  • Link: BRG program of the COMO hotel group.
COMO SHAMBHALA ESTATE BALI, INDONESIA

COMO SHAMBHALA ESTATE BALI, INDONESIA


BRG program of the Jumeirah hotel group
  • BRG: Should you find a lower rate on another website, within 24 hours of completing a reservation directly with Jumeirah hotels, the lower rate found will be matched and it will be further discounted by an additional 15%.
  • Terms & conditions: You must submit an online claim within 24 hours of booking your hotel room directly with Jumeirah hotels.
  • Disadvantage: You can only submit a claim after making a reservation.
  • Link: BRG program of the Jumeirah hotel group.
BURJ AL ARAB, DUBAI, UAE

BURJ AL ARAB, DUBAI, UAE


BRG program of the Trump hotel collection
  • BRG: Should you find a lower rate on another website, within 24 hours of completing a reservation directly with Trump hotels, the lower rate found will be matched and it will be further discounted by an additional 10%.
  • Terms & conditions: You must submit an online claim from within 24 hours of booking your hotel room.
  • Disadvantage: You can only submit a claim after making a reservation.
  • Link: BRG program of the Trump hotel collection.
TRUMP HOTEL CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, USA

TRUMP HOTEL CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, USA


BRG program of the InterContinental hotel group
  • Luxury hotel brand: InterContinental.
  • BRG: Should you find a lower rate on another website, within 24 hours of completing a reservation at IHG.com, IHG will provide the first night’s room price free and match the lower average nightly room price found for that stay for the rest of the nights of your stay (in case of a prepaid room, the difference in price will be refunded).
  • Terms & conditions: You must submit an online claim within 24 hours of booking your hotel room on the IHG website.
  • Disadvantage: you can only submit a claim after making a reservation, and not all rates are eligible for a BRG.
  • Link: BRG program of the IHG.

INTERCONTINENTAL HONG KONG


BRG program of the Hilton hotel group
  • Luxury hotel brands: Waldorf Astoria, Conrad.
  • BRG: Should you find a lower rate on another website, within 24 hours of completing a reservation through an official Hilton Worldwide booking website, Hilton will match the lower rate found and take an additional 25% off the room rate for each night of your stay.
  • Terms & conditions: You must submit an online claim within 24 hours of booking your hotel room on an official Hilton Worldwide booking website.
  • Disadvantage: You can only submit a claim after making a reservation.
  • Link: BRG program of the Hilton hotel group.
WALDORF ASTORIA EDINBURGH (THE CALEDONIAN), SCOTLAND, UNITED KINGDKOM

WALDORF ASTORIA EDINBURGH (THE CALEDONIAN), SCOTLAND, UNITED KINGDKOM


BRG program of the Marriott hotel group
  • Luxury hotel brand: JW Marriott
  • BRG: Should you find a lower rate on another website, within 24 hours of completing a reservation using any Marriott reservation channel (Marriott.com, Marriott Hotel Telephone Reservations, or directly at a hotel), Marriott will match the lower rate found and will discount it even further by an additional 25%.
  • Terms & conditions: You must submit an online claim within 24 hours of booking your hotel room on an official Marriott reservation channel.
  • Disadvantage: You can only submit a claim after making a reservation.  And while the BRG program includes the upscale Marriott JW hotels, it does not cover Marriott’s most exclusive brands, being the Bulgari and Ritz-Carlton hotels.
  • Link: BRG program of the Marriott hotel group.
JW MARRIOTT ESSEX HOUSE NEW YORK, USA

JW MARRIOTT ESSEX HOUSE NEW YORK, USA


BRG program of the Langham hotel group
  • BRG: If within 24 hours of your booking on the Langham website, you find a lower rate on each night of the stay, for the same accommodation on another website, Langham will match it. Plus, they will award you an additional 25% off.
  • Terms & conditions: You must submit an online claim within 24 hours of booking your hotel room on the Langham website.
  • Disadvantage: You can only submit a claim after making a reservation.
  • Link: BRG program of the Langham hotel group.

LANGHAM CHICAGO


BRG program of the Fairmont hotel group
  • BRG: Should you find a lower rate on another website, within 24 hours of completing a reservation directly with Jumeirah hotels, the lower rate found will be matched and it will be further discounted by an additional 10%.
  • Terms & conditions: You must call the Fairmont reservation center when you want your price to be matched.
  • Disadvantage: You can only submit a claim after making a reservation.
  • Link : BRG program of the Fairmont hotel group.
FAIRMONT PACIFIC RIM, VANCOUVER, CANADA

FAIRMONT PACIFIC RIM, VANCOUVER, CANADA


BRG program of the Four Seasons hotel group
  • BRG: If you find a lower qualifying rate within 24 hours of making your reservation, Four Seasons will match the lower rate.
  • Terms & conditions: