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January 01 2021
As a new year gets underway, we are hopeful that the many challenges we all faced in 2020 will reward us with some much-needed opportunities in 2021. What better time to plan a getaway you might have missed out on, or a trip you’ve been dreaming of making - here are 21 travel experiences to inspire you for the months ahead.
Published: January 01 2021
It seems ironic that this time last year our ‘20 Trips for 2020’ compilation talked about how climate change would play a vital role in steering our future travel decisions. Little did we know that global travel in 2020 would come to a complete standstill! This year will certainly look different for the travel industry, and we are as committed as ever to planning as many lovely trips as possible for our clients – flexibility and security will play an even more major role in how we operate. One thing is certain – there have been so many missed travel opportunities in 2020 that will need to be made up for in the coming months and years.
Whether you are looking to consolidate your holidays into one extra special experience each year, or if you decide you’d like to explore your home turf a bit more, we would love to help and advise you. The challenges of travel post-Brexit will also be something to consider in 2021 so it is times like these that booking with an independent agent like us really has its benefits in offering tailored guidance every step of the way – be it information on PCR testing, airport regulations or the latest FCO guidelines. Here are 21 unforgettable experiences which are ranking highly on our travel wish list for 2021 and beyond.
Go off-grid at Vancouver Island’s celebrated luxury outpost Clayoquot Wilderness Lodge. Accessible only by seaplane, the journey to Clayoquot is symbolic of a real departure from the everyday. Set among magnificent conifer forests, the lodge offers guests an unforgettable experience of the landscape and its wildlife. Adventure-filled days are bolstered by local produce-driven, sustainable dining by Executive Chef Asher Blackford, fine wines and the chance to unwind in one of twenty-five luxuriously appointed tents on the banks of the Clayoquot Sound.
The communities and wildlife of Africa will need support more than ever after the collapse of tourism in 2020 and the knock-on effect on the multiple conservation projects. There are so many wonderful lodges to choose from for different budgets and levels of adventure. We are longing to experience Xigera Lodge, situated in the western reaches of Botswana’s iconic Moremi Game Reserve – a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Gazing out on the seasonal floodplains of the Okavango Delta, guests benefit from its unique location and unrivalled access to extraordinary safari experiences.
Marvel at some seriously spectacular landscapes in this fascinating country – from the awe-inspiring Atacama Desert, to the glaciers, lakes and valleys of Patagonia – as well as experiencing the undeniable buzz and heritage hotspots of Santiago. Combine your stay at one or more of Tierra’s wilderness hotels - Tierra Atacama, for stargazing and desert adventures and Chiloé, for kayaking and culture - with a stint at andBeyond Vira Vira Lodge in the picturesque Araucanía region of Chile’s Lake District, both the gateway to Patagonia, and a thrilling adventure haven. Enormous windows at the lodge frame exquisite outlooks, while vibrant wall tapestries, hand-woven textiles and other traditional artefacts colour the interior décor. Signature features include a modern working farm, organic farm-to-table vegetable garden, on-site boutique cheese factory and two outdoor hot tubs.
Book in for a restorative break at the new Ikos Andalusia, opening its doors in April 2021. Located on the tranquil shores of Playa de Guadalmansa near Marbella, it is the first Ikos resort to open outside of Greece and promises distinctive touches all included such as Michelin-starred menus in resort, fantastic Kids’ Clubs and sporting activities for the whole family. 15% savings on stays from 1st April 2021 – 10th July 2021.
If 2020 has got you wanting to plan something incredibly special and indulgent - then a trip on the Amān private jet will tick all the boxes. We are loving the October 2021 experience - departing 23rd October - which will take you through Greece, Montenegro, Italy and Morocco on a 9 day trip which will see you staying at some of the most beautiful Amān properties in Europe and North Africa.The Amān Private Jet is ideal for groups, families or corporate travel - the fully staffed, spacious aircraft provides exceptional levels of comfort for up to 12 passengers.
Argentina’s diverse and beautiful landscapes include the high peaks of the Andes and the extraordinary scenery of Patagonia - a passionate land ripe for discovery as well as thrilling wildlife encounters. Argentina fizzes with culture, history and vibrant contemporary lifestyle, and is one of the most exciting countries to visit in South America. Two cities that should be top of the list on any visit to Argentina are Buenos Aires and Salta, which provide a fascinating contrast of fast-paced chic and centuries-old Incan heritage and tradition. In the south, discover Argentina’s Lake District, including Parque Nacional Los Glaciares, Perito Moreno National Park and Parque Nacional Nahuel Huapi. Bariloche makes for a truly stunning base in Nahuel Huapi and boasts astounding Alpine-like scenery. Further north, Parque National Iguazu rainforest straddles the border between Argentina and Brazil and has as its centrepiece the breathtaking, UNESCO-listed, Iguazu Falls. It boasts 250 spectacular waterfalls - take an eco-train trip to Devil’s Throat Falls, the largest and most breathtaking gorge, or a four wheel drive trip along the eight-kilometre-long Yacaratia Trail, culminating in a thrilling boat-ride upstream to the mesmerising main falls: a glimpse of Mother Nature at her very best.
For those seeking a dose of magical château living, Les Sources de Cheverny is a beautiful estate in the heart of the Loire Valley. It opened its doors in 2020, and is the sister property of Les Sources de Caudalie by owners Alice and Jerome Tourbier. Surrounded by nature, guests can really unwind here and spa fans can enjoy signature Caudalie treatments in the Spa des Sources, not to mention locally sourced gourmet delights and vintage wine tastings from the hotel’s own vineyards. This would make a lovely bolthole for a driving trip through France!
It goes without saying that we’ve all missed group gatherings in 2020, which makes luxury retreats like this even more appealing. Available for exclusive hire, La Nava del Barranco is located in Castilla La Mancha within an easy 2 hour drive from Madrid airport.The 14 bedroom estate is quite spectacular and comes fully catered, with rigorous Covid-19 procedures in place to keep guests safe. From the fabulous setting to the cuisine, and meticulous attention to detail, La Nava is an ideal choice if you’re looking for seclusion in a private house with the impeccable service of a world-class hotel. The estate encompasses thousands of hectares of beautiful landscape, populated by all manner of wildlife including wild deer, eagles, rams and of course the horses residing in the stables which can be taken on a horseback safari.
This is one for those seeking castaway luxury and adventure! Fringed by white sand beaches and coral reefs, Time + Tide Miavana has 14 secluded villas with private pools overlooking the sea, a butler service and a well-stocked kitchenette. Time + Tide Miavana is located in the Nosy Ankao archipelago, which is part of a 15,000 hectare protected marine area on the northeastern coast of Madagascar. The largest of five islands in the archipelago, Miavana was actually used by ‘pirates’ in the 1990s as a way to avoid police control on the roads between the Sava and Diana regions of northern Madagascar. Only a 30 minute boat ride away, guests have exclusive access to this untouched haven of abundant wildlife. Embark on guided lemur treks for rare and endemic species or dive beneath the waves to discover a world of pristine reefs teeming with life, including sea turtles and manta rays.
This exclusive private wilderness of dreams is a must for the Bucket List! Set in 300 acres within the Arctic Circle of Finnish Lapland, Octola is a place where you can be at one with nature and also experience the highest level of service, where nothing is too much trouble. With a luxury 10-bedroom fully catered chalet and a separate 2-bedroom villa, it is available for a partial or full takeover for groups. There are so many outdoor adventures to enjoy here including Northern Light Safaris, snowmobiling, husky sledding, ice swimming and even an after party with Santa if you book over the festive period.
Private homes and villas have become even more desirable since the arrival of the pandemic, whether a cosy seaside retreat or a beautiful villa for groups/bubbles to enjoy safely together. We are partnered with fabulous suppliers around the world and we can source the perfect home from home for you in which to relax and unwind either with family or friends. Catering can be organised for you through our concierge service so you can arrive to a full fridge, and a private chef at your disposal if you wish. We are working with the most flexible terms possible with our suppliers so you can book with confidence knowing that we can amend your dates during these uncertain times.
We are big fans of the Atzaró Group’s properties in Ibiza, so we were very excited to learn of their latest venture in Cape Town. The Residence by Atzaró is an exclusive mountain-side villa spread across four floors with 7 beautifully appointed suites, all framed by stunning views. There is so much to explore here - from hiking, mountain biking, wine tours, or even a Western Cape safari, this would be the perfect base for a South African adventure.
A getaway to Paris is always a good idea and boy, will we lap up every second when we can! Book a stay at Le Bristol, one of Paris’ most iconic hotels, just steps away from the bustle of Rue Faubourg Saint-Honoré. The hotel’s long-standing commitment to sustainability has earned it Green Globe certification and we can’t wait to visit the revamped garden designed by Lady Arabella Lennox-Boyd in 2020. We’ll also pay a visit to the Spa Le Bristol by Le Prairie which overlooks the gardens - experience the 100% natural philosophy of Tata Harper’s skincare rituals from an exclusive treatment menu she has designed for the hotel, including the Hydration Booster Treatment which will almost certainly revive skin after these winter months and endless days of lockdown with the heating on full blast!
Voted Number One Hotel in the World, Nihi Sumba is located on the remote island of Sumba, 400km to the east of Bali and was born of a vision to protect and preserve the unique culture and empower the local communities. Experience world-class surfing, hiking through waterfalls, stand-up paddleboarding down the Wanukaka River and a thriving marine ecosystem for days spent diving or fishing. This is one adventure you won’t ever forget.
2020 was a wash-out for the many planned hotel openings around the world so we are looking forward to seeing doors open in 2021. Here are just a few of some hugely anticipated new additions to the UK hotel scene:
- The Newt in Somerset will add The Farmyard in Spring 2021 in a secluded corner of the estate with 17 bedrooms across an old farmhouse, cider mill, apple loft and cheese barn.
- Beaverbrook Town House will land on Sloane Street in Summer 2021with 14 suites and a fabulous Japanese restaurant and interiors designed by print lover Nicola Harding.
- The Pig will open two more of its lovely litter - one in Cornwall, and the other close to Arundel in West Sussex, boasting its own vineyard.
- The iconic Hotel Costes will be opening in London in 2021 at One Sloane Gardens in Chelsea, the first project to open outside Paris.The beautiful building was designed by architect Edwin Thomas Hall, who the creative force behind London’s iconic Liberty department store and well known for championing the arts and crafts movement.
- Mayfair Townhouse did actually open its doors briefly in December 2020 so we are eagerly anticipating when it is able to open its doors permanently. Spread across seven buildings on Half Moon Street, just one block away from Green Park, this is the sibling to the Iconic Luxury Hotels’ Cliveden House and Chewton Glen.
A trip to Ibiza is always a good idea in our office! We are eagerly anticipating the opening of OKU Ibiza in May 2021. OKU is derived from the Japanese spiritual and architectural concept meaning ‘inner space’ and the brand’s ethos is exactly that - to provide relaxing sanctuaries inspired by nature. OKU Ibiza is just a moment’s walk from Cala Gracio bay and home to one of the largest pools on the island. The hotel has 189 beautifully designed guest rooms and suites, as well as a luxury 4-bedroom private villa to rent. The hotel accommodates children over 12 years and its sister hotel OKU Kos in Greece is adult-only, great for a weekend escape away from the kids!
Book a restorative trip to The Dolomites to the beautiful, harmonious retreat, Forestis, in the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the South Tyrolean Dolomites. Located in a densely wooded area, 1,800m above sea level, this is ideal for recharging the flagging 2020 batteries. Think fresh mountain air and stunning landscapes all year-round. The beauty of the Puez-Geisler Nature Park is also perfect for activities such as snowshoe hiking and ski-ing in Plose - that’s if you can tear yourself away from the Forestis Spa or the refuge of your own Suite with floor-to-ceiling windows!
North Island epitomises the freedom that complete privacy allows, extraordinary experiences, perfectly personalised to your preferences, and service that is generously big-hearted. The Island’s abundance naturally extends to the luxury of choice that a peerless all-inclusive offering provides. Experience a true barefoot-luxury escape on North Island - a place of tranquil beauty and refuge, for the indigenous wildlife whose habitats are being rehabilitated and for guests seeking to escape from the rush of the modern world. At the same time, the sense of space, the pure air and water, and the surrounding natural beauty can easily prove to be a stimulation to exercise body and mind, to try something new, hone a skill, or explore the granite peaks or coral reefs. We’re dreaming of the Craft Gin Tasting on the beach at sunset, with the waves lapping in the background!
With 31 individually styled rooms and suites, three swimming pools, a 7000 square foot roof terrace, a spa, and 2 cocktail bars - plus a family of resident tortoises - El Fenn is the perfect boutique hotel from which to discover the beauty of Marrakech. Regularly snapped on Instagram, El Fenn’s interiors are also something to behold - no two rooms are the same yet they all share the hotel’s signature style: a blend of mid-century European furniture with the iconic elements of Moroccan design including hand-carved plasterwork & cedar wood ceilings. Some rooms have private plunge pools or terraces and works by contemporary artists including Fred Pollock & Antony Gormley hang throughout the hotel in bedrooms & public spaces. Located by the Bab El Ksour gate, El Fenn is a three-minute walk from Djemaa El Fna square and its bustling souks; the bars and restaurants of Gueliz, Hivernage and the Palmeraie are a quick taxi ride away. The hotel does accommodate children but we’d say this is probably one for a cheeky long weekend away!
Six Senses New York, the group’s first North American property, is set to open in 2021 over ten floors of the highly anticipated The XI - two unique, twisting towers designed by world-renowned architect Bjarke Ingels in an unparalleled location in between Manhattan’s Hudson River and The High Line. Guest rooms and suites have been designed by celebrated Parisian firm Gilles & Boissier offering every modern convenience wedded to a calm ambiance of natural-hued fabrics and furnishings. Two restaurants will showcase the brand’s popular culinary approach to wellness by serving fresh, seasonal, and locally-sourced produce and ingredients. Residential owners, hotel guests and local club members will have access to some of the most pioneering wellness programming in the world, along with large spaces for working and entertaining and innovative culinary options. Look no further than the club roof, which will double as an organic veg patch, or dance floor, depending on how the mood takes you. What’s more, the XI will have dedicated children’s and teen’s rooms to ensure kids go VIP in New York too!
Transport yourself and a loved one to the elegance of the Golden Age of travel with a trip on the Belmond Venice-Simplon-Orient Express. Defined by incomparable service, the Belmond experience is unique, magical and indisputably romantic. Hop aboard the Belmond British Pullman at London Victoria, enjoy the magnificent scenery and some very special cuisine before you arrive in Venice the following day where you can disembark and spend a night or two at the exquisite Belmond Hotel Cipriani exploring the City of Canals. From the vintage carriers to the refined wines on-board, this is one trip guaranteed to become a treasured memory.
Please get in touch to have an informal chat about any of the above experiences, or to pick our brains on a special trip or holiday which you’d like to plan! Call us on 020 8935 5779 or you can email Louisa at email@example.com / Olivia at firstname.lastname@example.org / Hanna at email@example.com
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