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Friday, 3 July 2015

Experience Deluxe Chilean Patagonia and Save $690 with Contours Travel!


Australia's longest running Latin America operator, Contours Travel, has released its next Deluxe Latin American deal to mark their 40th anniversary celebration – this time to the wild and rugged Chilean Patagonia.

This exclusive 9D/8N package will expose travellers to the spectacular magellanic forests, majestic Chilean Fjords and surrounding glaciers, where wildlife sightings of sea elephants, dolphins and penguins are common. The tour includes a three-night cruise aboard the M/V Via Australis, three nights at the luxurious Singular Patagonia Hotel and another two nights at the equally lavish sister property, Singular Santiago.

This exclusive offer is priced at $6,679, a savings of a whopping $690 per person from the usual price. It also includes internal economy flights between Santiago and Punta Arenas; airport transfers; daily excursions, a welcome dinner paired with the best Chilean Wines, daily breakfasts and dinners and most lunches.

Departure dates are every fortnight from Wednesday 7 October until 23 March 2016. Terms and conditions apply. For more information, visit www.contourstravel.com.au or call 1300 135 391.



Emirates Asia Fare Sale

Economy class airfares from $719 return



This July, explore endless possibilities from the bustling hawker centres of Singapore to the relaxing beaches of Kuala Lumpur and canals of Bangkok with special fares from Emirates.

Return Economy flights start from as little as $719 from Melbourne and Brisbane to Singapore. While Economy flights to Kuala Lumpur from Melbourne return begin at $720. From Sydney, Economy flights to Bangkok return are on sale from $799.

Emirates operates one service daily from Sydney to Bangkok. One service daily operates from Brisbane to Singapore. While from Melbourne, Emirates operates a daily service to Singapore and Kuala Lumpur. All flights to Asia fly onto Emirates hub in Dubai providing connections to 146 destinations in 81 countries and territories.

Valid for ticketing and sales from now until 20 July 2015. Some blackout periods apply for dates of travel. For flight information and bookings contact Emirates on 1300 303 777, visit your local travel agent or go to www.emirates.com/au.

Terms and conditions for the offer:

·         Airfares are inclusive of taxes and surcharges correct as of 26 June 2015.
·         Offer ends 20 July 2015.
·         Return fares quoted are for Economy Class low season travel.
·         Economy Class travel period to Singapore and Kuala Lumpur: 9 July to 11 September 2015, 21 September to 13 November 2015 and 18 January to 20 March 2016.
·         Economy Class travel period to Bangkok: 3 October to 15 November 2015 and 18 January to 20 March 2016.
·         Seats are subject to availability.
·         Offer subject to change. Surcharges will apply for departures on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
·         Amendment and cancellation fees apply.


Saddle Up for the July/Aug/Sep Issue of Vacations & Travel – Australia's Longest Running Travel Magazine

Vacations & Travel – Australia's Longest
Running Travel Magazine
The new issue of Vacations & Travel magazine is out now, and it is star spangled with a USA theme delivering five stories in what we call our 'Apple Pie' edition. Americans are the greatest cultural exporters since the Romans ruled the world. Over 1.25 million Australians cross the Pacific annually, staying longer and spending more than most, delighting hoteliers, retailers and service industries everywhere.

In this issue we fall in love with Chicago, discover the New York that hipsters know and love, tuck into some amazing food in New Orleans' French Quarter, check out the western snow scene at Jackson Hole and the slopes of Mammoth Mountain in California.

We also check out the snow on Hokkaido, Japan, and have a sneak peak at the ski resorts that will host the Winter Olympics in Korea.

With 252 pages of essential holiday ideas and information, our team of respected writers travel far and wide and we also update readers on the latest news in spas, hotels, cruising, travel books, restaurants, galleries and museums, street food, shopping, street markets, travel apps and ways to give back through travel in our global village.

This issue also covers the following stories:

- a round up of spectacular rail journeys from around the world
- a walk around beautiful Maria Island
- advice on how and where to get married in Bali
- the vast array of markets around Bangkok
- a poignant look at what to expect when visiting the hallowed ground of Gallipoli, Pozieres, Bullecourt and Ypres in Europe
- ten of Europe's hottest cities
- a behind-the-lens look at Madras (Chennai) in India
- a look at London's dining scene with celebrity chef Michel Roux Jnr
- the culture of Mauritius
- what's on in Singapore
- the past and present in the Solomon Islands
- Rio – the magnificent city
- New Caledonia on two wheels
- Rabaul, rising from the ashes

That's 252 pages of essential holiday ideas and information … for just AU$9.95.

PLUS: One lucky subscriber to Vacations & Travel will win a five-night vacation in Santa Monica staying at the Fairmont Miramar Gardens & Bungalows, along with flights. To enter, visit vacationsmag.com

Vacations & Travel is out now at newsagents. For subscriptions visit vacationsmag.com; call Morris Media on +61 2 9555 7477; or download our digital version via the App Store or Google Play. Also visit vacationsmag.com to subscribe to our free fortnightly newsletter.

Southeast Asia cruise aboard Silversea Silver Shadow

VOYAGE OF THE WEEK – 03 JULY 2015

Indulge in the beauty of Southeast Asia with Silversea

Experience the rich splendours of Southeast Asia from the glimmering temples of Myanmar, to the picturesque beaches of Thailand, on a 12-day voyage, aboard Silversea's ultra-luxurious Silver Shadow.

Departing from Singapore on 29 October 2015, Silver Shadow docks in the bustling city of Port Klang (Kuala Lumpur), before cruising to the island of Penang.  Here, guests can explore Penang's spice trail, sampling the unique spices and tantalising flavours of Malaysia or, stroll through the capital of Georgetown, a stunning UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Continuing her voyage, Silver Shadow ports in Phuket, Thailand, an island paradise of splendid natural beauty, cultural landmarks and colourful history.  Silver Shadow spends the next three nights in Yangon, offering guests ample time to explore the city's landmarks via rickshaw or venture to farther-flung areas such as the strikingly beautiful Bagan.  Silver Shadow then sails to the Malaysian archipelago of Langkawi, a destination renowned for its long stretches of powder white beaches and stunning array of sea life, and Malacca, Malaysia's most historic city, before returning to Singapore.  Guests disembark on 10 November 2015.     

Prices are per person starting from AU$7,150 in a Vista Suite double occupancy. Silversea fares include: all-suite accommodation with butler service; gourmet meals with menus inspired by Relais & Châteaux; complimentary wines, Champagne and spirits served throughout the ships; and all gratuities.

This voyage is subject to availability.  Terms and conditions apply.  For more information, contact your travel professional or Silversea Cruises on +61 2 9255 0600 or 1300 306 872, or visit www.silversea.com

Thursday, 2 July 2015

Hotels.com deal of the week: Vibe Savoy Hotel, Melbourne, Australia


Vibe Savoy Hotel, Melbourne, Australia
Save 30% on your stay

Visit Hotels.com for more details or call ‎1800 912 386

Vibe Savoy Hotel, Melbourne 4.5*

Save 30% on your stay

Book by: 30 September 2015

Stay by: 30 September 2015

Prices from: AUD $109 per night

Immerse yourself in the cultural hub of Melbourne, and lose yourself in the bustling city. Visit this August for the iconic Melbourne international film festival, or head to the National Gallery of Victoria to witness masterpieces from the Hermitage. The Vibe Hotel makes it easy to enjoy your time in Melbourne with their complementary airport shuttle, and free Wi-Fi to keep in touch with all your friends and family. Head downstairs and experience Bar Nacional for Chef Scott Spence's reinterpretation of classic Spanish cuisine, it's a foodies dream.

Follow Hotels.com on Twitter @hotels_com_ANZ for more travel inspiration

^Hotel Deals: Price quoted is per room per night based on two people sharing and is inclusive of all fees and taxes. Rates are subject to availability. Minimum stay requirements and black-out dates may apply. Prices are available as of 2 July, 2015. Prices may fluctuate due to changes in taxes, fees and currency. Visit http://au.hotels.com/ for full terms and conditions.

© 2015 Hotels.com, LP. Hotels.com and the Hotels.com logo are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Hotels.com, LP in the U.S. and/or other countries. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners. CST # 2083949-50


RCL Deal of the Week - Double the fun on Royal Caribbean International




Enjoy your very own private balcony for the price of an interior stateroom on your next cruise holiday with Royal Caribbean's Free Balcony Upgrade offer, valid for new bookings on select Asia, Australia, New Zealand and South Pacific voyages that depart between August 2015 and April 2016, when booked and deposited before 31 July 2015.*

Plus, for guests who choose to holiday onboard the recently revitalised Explorer of the Seas, Royal Caribbean will offer a bonus US$200 onboard credit for sailings that depart between 3 November 2015 and 23 April 2016.*

Choose to explore Australia on Explorer of the Seas' 16-night voyage from Fremantle to Sydney, departing 13 November 2015 and priced from just $1,799 per person – interior pricing for a Balcony Stateroom – including $200 onboard credit per stateroom. Calling at Adelaide and Melbourne in Australia as well as Milford, Dusky and Doubtful Sounds, Dunedin, Wellington and Picton in New Zealand, the open-jaw sailing offers the chance to explore the unique landscapes, flora and fauna of southern Australia and New Zealand's South Island.

The sailing is at the commencement of Explorer of the Seas' maiden Australian season, allowing travellers to experience the newly revitalised ship before anyone else. The multimillion dollar facelift, completed in April 2015, has equipped the ship with a host of brand new features, including new specialty restaurants, virtual balconies for interior staterooms and a FlowRider surfing simulator.

For more information about Royal Caribbean International or to book a cruise, visit royalcaribbean.com.au, call 1800 754 500 or contact your travel agent. Travel professionals can call 1300 754 500 or visit cruisingpower.com.

*Terms and Conditions for the offer: Conditions apply and prices are subject to change. For full terms and conditions, visit: www.royalcaribbean.com.au. Upgrade offer is available for bookings made from 1 July – 31 July 2015 on selected sailings and ships in Australia, New Zealand, Asia and the South Pacific. Some blackout periods apply. Offer not applicable to Quantum Class ships or pre-existing bookings. Onboard credit offer is applicable to Explorer of the Seas only. Offer is subject to availability and changes without notice and may be withdrawn at any time.


Royal Caribbean AU & NZ Instagram: instagram.com/royalcaribbean_aunz

Royal Caribbean AU & NZ Facebook: facebook.com/rciaustraliaandnz

Royal Caribbean AU & NZ YouTube: youtube.com/rciaustraliaandnz



34-night Mediterranean itinerary aboard the luxurious Azamara Journey

Cruiseco is delighted to offer travellers an expansive 34-night itinerary aboard the luxurious Azamara Journey.  Departing Nice on 20 April 2016, guests will visit some of Europe's most exquisite countries, stopping at unusual destinations along the way to Venice.

Amber Wilson, International Marketing Manager at Cruiseco:

"This exceptional voyage features five overnight stays and 30 ports of call, showcasing an incredible selection of destinations, coastlines and cuisines.  The Mediterranean is a place of rich history and profound beauty, which continues to entice and amaze travellers." 

"Azamara Journey takes guests closer than other ships can, enabling guests who embark on this luxurious voyage to visit the less-frequented gateways of this spectacular part of the world.  In addition, guests will benefit from longer days in port, providing them with more time to explore and uncover the hidden delights of each destination."

Guests can expect to visit some of the more unusual ports of the Mediterranean, including: Sanary Sur Mer, a relaxed resort along the Riviera with a beautiful yacht harbour and fascinating outdoor produce market; Sete, where guests can take an optional tour to the World Heritage Listed walled city of Carcasonne; Olbia, the economic capital of North East Sardinia with a history that dates back centuries; and Trapani, which was badly damaged in World War II but has been redeveloped as an incredible resort city that plays homage to its rich history.

Prices start from AU$11,500 per person, based on twin share.  This 34-night charter includes: all meals aboard Azamara Journey; house wine and beer served with lunch and dinner; bottled mineral water throughout the cruise; full on board programme of entertainment, enhancement and port lectures; gratuities to dining room and stateroom staff aboard Azamara Journey; arrival and departure transfers, port charges and taxes.

To book whilst cabins are still available, or for more information, visit www.cruising.com.au, call (02) 9492 8520 or visit your local Cruiseco agent. 

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Seadream’s Less-Visited Southern Caribbean In 2016

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SEADREAM Yacht Club is to broaden its reach into the Caribbean by taking-in its less-visited southern islands between January and April 2016, including making three round-trip sailings from colourful Bridgetown in Barbados, and nine between Bridgetown and historic little Marigot on French colonial St Martin.

The mega motor-cruiser SeaDream I, that carries a maximum of just 112 guests served by 95 crew, will include St Vincent, the Grenadines, Martinique, Guadeloupe, Nevis, St Barts, Isle de Saints, St Lucia and others on various sailings, and on some the tiny private island of Mustique with its holiday mansions for such rich and famous as Mick Jagger and Tommy Hilfiger.

As well as beaches, shopping and shore-side dining, optional shore excursions will offer horseback riding along remote beaches, visits to colonial-era settlements dating back to the 1700s, an open-air jeep ride into a picturesque valley with spectacular waterfalls, and a museum whose artefacts date back to 1800BC and the history of the islands’ sugar-cane slavery period.

SeaDream’s famed Champagne and Caviar Splash will also be a highlight on all southern Caribbean sailings… guests wading into sparkling turquoise waters off white sandy beaches to enjoy Champagne and caviar off a linen-draped surfboard  –followed by a mammoth beach BBQ, swimming and snorkelling.

Sailings begin from as low as US$3535pp twin share for a 6-day Bridgetown round-trip sailing on January 3 2016; for other prices, detailed itineraries and further information contact Julie Denovan, Director of Business Development Australia on (02) 9958 4444, jdenovan@seadream.com or go to www.seadream.com

Grand Hyatt Taipei Cuts Room Rates by 40% July and August

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Grand Hyatt Taipei is slashing prices by 30% for leisure travelers who book rooms during a four-day window July 4-7 for stays between July 11 and Aug. 31.

And the hotel is cutting rates for Hyatt Gold Passport members by 40% during a three-day booking window July 1-3 for stays between July 8 and Aug. 31. Travelers who enrol in the Hyatt Gold Passport program at the time of booking will be eligible for the discount.

The discounts apply to all of the hotel’s room stock, but the number of rooms available for the booking may be limited. Full payment at the time of booking is required and all bookings will have to take place at the following links:


In April, Grand Hyatt Taipei celebrated a Grand Relaunch after a renovation that took all 853 rooms and suites of the hotel down to their concrete fundamentals. Beyond the rooms, Grand Hyatt Taipei redesigned its Club Lounge, opened a new restaurant in February, Yun Jin, and is looking forward to the debut of Café, after its renovation this October.

The flash sale will be in effect at all Hyatt hotels across the Asia-Pacific region.

For more information, please visit taipei.grand.hyatt.com or contact Grand Hyatt Taipei room reservations at 02-27201200 ext. 3158

Australia’s Largest Cruise Ship Floats First Block During Construction

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Ovation of the Seas, the fourth largest cruise ship in the world and the largest, newest and most technologically advanced ship to ever call Australia home has had one of her blocks floated out of the construction hall at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany.

The ship is constructed in blocks which will then be joined together for the next stages of construction, with delivery expected to be complete in mid-2016.

The float out of her first blocks marks less than 18 months to her maiden Australian arrival where she will claim the title of the largest cruise ship to ever sail in Australia. Ovation of the Seas will also claim the title of equal fourth largest cruise ship in the world when she launches – eclipsed only by sister ships Harmony of the Seas, Allure of the Seas and Oasis of the Seas.

 Royal Caribbean recently opened bookings for Ovation of the Seas’ first Australian season. The US$1 billion will offer three Australia and New Zealand sailings and a repositioning sailing all departing Sydney from December 2016.

Ovation of the Seas is the third ship in the ground-breaking Quantum Class. She will introduce a new set of first-at-sea onboard experiences to Australia including the Ripcord by iFLY, a heart-pounding skydiving experience; North Star, a thrilling adventure that will transport guests as high as the Sydney Harbour Bridge; cutting-edge transformative venues including SeaPlex, the largest indoor sports and entertainment complex at sea with bumper cars, a circus school and more; and the robotic Bionic Bar. Ovation has also reimagined dining onboard with the introduction of “Dynamic Dining” where guests can choose from 18 unique restaurant concepts, including Jamie’s Italian, Michael’s Genuine Pub, the enchanting Wonderland and Royal Caribbean favourites including Chops Grille steakhouse and Izumi Japanese.

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Technology has also been amped up on Ovation of the Seas with high speed internet offering more bandwidth than all other cruise ships combined so guests can stream, video call and more as fast as they would onshore. New radio frequency smart bands also mean you can get into your stateroom and make onboard purchases without the need for the cruise card. While the Royal iQ app makes keeping track of your onboard schedule simple with all bookings and cruise details stored and updated automatically.

Fares for Ovation of the Seas’ Australian season start from just $1,999 per person for her 10-night New Zealand New Year cruise departing Sydney on 30 December 2016. For further information or to make a booking, visit www.royalcaribbean.com.au, phone 1800 754 500 or see your local travel agent.

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