Thursday, 30 September 2010

Get Active and Inspired with Bali Health

Bali Health is Bali's newest and most exciting professional provider of flexible fitness options that can be delivered in the privacy of your own villa, hotel or on the magnificent beaches of Bali.

Bali Health's qualified and experienced trainers can tailor a program to your level of fitness to support your goals including weight loss, relaxation, general fitness or athletic training.

According to Technical Advisor to Bali Health Duncan Hall, former Australian Wallaby and professional sports coach, "Holidays and business trips need not mean fitness regimes are put on hold and it can often be the perfect time to start something new. Bali itself provides the inspirational setting for change and Bali Health provides the professional support and guidance."

The idea for Bali Health grew out of Duncan's own experiences travelling over the years. "Having been a professional athlete in my younger days with the Wallabies & NSW Waratahs, I am still an active person so staying fit and healthy is important to me. When I started to travel regularly to Bali, I often stayed in Villas, most of which provided no gym facilities and there were few fitness provider options to choose from that I would recommend to friends and family".

"Bali Health was created to provide a convenient and safe way to explore fitness and health options while in Bali. Clients can be confident and have peace of mind they are getting the highest quality advice and guidance from some of the best trainers, health and fitness professionals from around the world, whether it's for a single session or a daily commitment either individually or in a group format."

Choose from personal training, yoga, Pilates, tai chi, hip-hop dancing, box-fit, swimming and stroke correction, aqua-fit, kids programs, surfing and even sport specific training such as soccer and tennis.

The team at Bali Health work both with individuals and groups and create a fun and supportive environment. They even keep the kids occupied and active. Accommodating everyone from the beginner and novice, to athletes of all levels, Bali Health can also accommodate those with injuries and special fitness needs.

Whether you want to keep up your training regime while on holidays or start something new, Bali Health has something to meet your needs. Get back to nature and realise your fitness and health potential with Bali Health.

For more information visit or call +62 81 999 111 019 before you arrive.

Hilton Adelaide Spring-Summer Events 2010

From the Seriously South Australian® food and wine at The Brasserie to the Friday buzz of The Clic in The Lobby Lounge and elegant affair of High Tea on weekends, Hilton Adelaide presents even more delectable events for food and wine lovers to enjoy.

Hilton Adelaide Proudly presents An Intimate Dinner with Matt Moran
Saturday 9 October 2010
Meet Matt Moran, celebrity chef and owner of award-winning restaurant Aria in Sydney, for an exclusive and intimate four-course dinner presented by Hilton Adelaide in association with the Good Food & Wine Show. What's more, guests will also have the opportunity to meet celebrity chef and Masterchef host George Calombaris, who will join Matt for an interactive and entertaining Q&A session.
Tickets to this exclusive event are $175 per guest, including a four-course dinner with matched wines and a signed copy of Matt's latest cookbook "When I Get Home" To book, call Hilton Adelaide Event Sales on 08 8237 0633.
Tickets are strictly limited.
Terms & Conditions Apply, refer to attached.

Enjoy the glamour of Melbourne Cup
Tuesday 2 November
The Brasserie - Lunch
See parades, watch the race live and enjoy a lavish 4-course
Seriously South Australian® lunch, 12 noon until 3pm.
$119 per guest includes beer, wine & soft drinks.

The Lobby Lounge - High Tea
For a more casual setting, book High Tea in The Lobby Lounge from 12pm.
$59 per guest includes glass of Sparkling on arrival.

After Race Party
Enjoy great drink specials and entertainment in both The Lobby Lounge and Charlies Bar from 3pm till late.
For bookings call 8237 0697
Terms & Conditions Apply, refer to attached.

The Festive Season
Festive Lunch In The Brasserie
29 November - 24 December
Available Monday - Friday is The Brasserie's renowned buffet lunch, featuring a variety of salads, hot dishes, seafood, mouth watering Desserts and all the festive favourites. $49 per person
Special Offer, book your lunch between Monday - Wednesday and receive a complimentary glass of sparkling on arrival.
To book call 8237 0697

Social Club Christmas Celebration
Friday 18 and Saturday 19 December
Celebrate with your colleagues at Hilton Adelaide's White Christmas Dinner in the Grand Ballroom.
$115 per person including 3-course dinner, beverage package and entertainment.
To book call 8237 0633
For a full list of events including Christmas Day and New Years Eve visit or call Hilton Adelaide on 8217 2000
Terms & Conditions Apply, refer to attached.

High Tea
An Elegant Affair
Served in the Lobby Lounge
Every Saturday & Sunday 2.00pm to 4.30pm
Live Entertainment
Bookings are preferred
Visit The Brasserie or call 8237 0697

Sea World Turns Spooky in October!

Every weekend in October Sea World's Sesame Street Beach precinct will be transformed into a spooky spectacle of fun for the park's first ever family Halloween celebrations.

The Halloween celebrations will feature an exciting array of special activities including trick or treat, face painting, live appearances by Count Von Count and a fancy dress celebration for the kids.

Sea World's Attraction Manager Bianca Sammut said that the Sea World Halloween event is a great way for families with young kids to celebrate Halloween in 'spooktacular', but not too scary fashion.

"As part of the Sea World Halloween event, kids can dress-up as their favourite Halloween characters and participate in the fancy dress celebration with Count Von Count on the Sesame Street Theatre stage," she said.

Sea World Halloween is included in the normal entry price and will be a spooky spectacle of fun for the whole family.

The best way to experience Sea World Halloween is with a VIP Pass which offers unlimited entry to Sea World, Movie World and Wet'n'Wild until June 30, 2011 for just $99.99.

Ascend The Race Of A Lifetime At The Swissôtel Vertical Marathon 2010 - The Ultimate Championship - Sunday, 21 November 2010

Asia's most exhilarating vertical race - the Swissôtel Vertical Marathon blazes back to Swissôtel The Stamford on Sunday, 21 November 2010. Soaring to a height of 226 metres, Swissôtel The Stamford, Southeast Asia's tallest hotel, has been the site for Asia's most gruelling Vertical Marathon since its inception in 1987. From its humble beginnings over two decades ago with only 180 participants, the country's premier vertical race garnered a record-breaking 1,600 stair runners in 2009.

In line with Swissôtel Hotels & Resorts' 30th Anniversary, this year's vertical challenge scales new heights locally and internationally with the Ultimate Championship. Witness world-class competition at its peak as more than 2,500 participants are expected to climb 1336 steps over 73 storeys in the shortest time possible. Whilst the various age categories and Lovebird's Challenge remain as hot favourites amongst participants, 3 new categories, namely the Swiss Tribute Challenge, Nation Fighter's Challenge and the Ultimate Championship will debut in this year's Marathon. The Swiss Tribute Challenge celebrates Swissôtel Hotels & Resorts' Swiss heritage, whilst the Nation Fighter's Challenge salutes heroes and heroines who safeguard the security of Singapore. At the top of the league, the Ultimate Championship beckons elite athletes or champions of previous Vertical Marathons to pit their skills against the best for the cash prize of S$2500, whilst champions in the Open category flies to New York for the prestigious, by-invitation only Empire State Building Run Up 2011. All participants who successfully complete the race to the top will receive a personalised certificate and a medal.

In line with Swissôtel The Stamford's mission of giving back to the community, this year's Vertical Marathon will raise $40.000 for The Spastic Children's Association of Singapore (SCAS) and Children's Cancer Foundation (CCF). SCAS, which was established in 1957 provides special education, rehabilitation services, vocational training and gainful employment for children and adults with cerebral palsy in Singapore and whilst the Children's Cancer Foundation improves the quality of life of children with cancer and their familes through enhancing their emotional, social and medical well-being and the different stages of illness and recovery.

In 2009, amidst a field of a record-setting 1,600 stair runners, German Thomas Dold, the world's fastest stair climbing phenomenon claimed his second STS Vertical Marathon crown and proved why he is reigning undisputed king of stair racing with another mercurial performance, blazing through 73 storeys to the top of the iconic Swissôtel The Stamford in record-breaking fashion. The athlete beat his 2008 record by a blistering 6 seconds in a new World Record time of 6mins 46secs. Singaporean Balvinder Singh held the record for two decades (since 1989) until Thomas Dold demolished it by an amazing 6 seconds n 2008

Meanwhile, women's champion Suzanne Walsham will not be defending her crown this year providing other female stair racers a priceless opportunity to win the Women's title. Considered the ultimate vertical sporting event for runners, the Swissôtel Vertical Marathon had attracted a strong following amongst avid athletes including Suzanne Elizabeth Walsham, reigning Champion of the Vertical Marathon and the Empire State Building Run-up for the last three years, and Pedro Ribeiro, a professional tower climber, who clinched the championship in 2003, 2005 and 2006.

For more information, please visit or email

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Smith Slips Between the Sheets in South-East Asia

Fix yourself a Singapore Sling and settle in for that characteristic Smith mix of wry humour and need-to-know detail with the release of Mr & Mrs Smith Hotel Collection: South-East Asia.

The seventh book in the bestselling series of hotel guides by intrepid style-hunters Mr & Mrs Smith, it's a coffee-table essential for the discerning traveller.

Mr & Mrs Smith Hotel Collection: South-East Asia is a carefully curated selection of the region's most gorgeous getaways ranging from beach hideaways in Thailand, Malaysia and Bali, to Indochine-chic retreats in Laos and Cambodia, and slick city bolt-holes in Singapore and Vietnam.

Expect witty reviews, seductive photography and 19 insightful destination guides to:





Each hand-picked property featured in the book has been visited anonymously by respected reviewers from an international talent pool of fashion, design, media and the arts - so you'll get the insider lowdown on every detail, from the best beaches to the most romantic rooms.

We dispatched some 30 Tastemakers (Smith super-sharp reviewers) to glean the nitty-gritty on each hotel and then report back to Smith HQ. Internationally renowned master of Thai cuisine David Thompson, respected restaurateur André Chiang, Singaporean fashion designer Jo Soh, and film-makers Tony Ayres and Krissada Sukosol Clapp all share their stories, alongside travel writers and musicians, every one of them inspired by the sights, sounds and smells of South-East Asia.

Perfectly partnered with evocative photography, Mr & Mrs Smith's honest and entertaining content brings you the kind of wisdom and wit you'd expect from a well-travelled friend.

The book also contains an exclusive membership card that gives guests life-enhancing extras at each hotel featured as well as special offers at Smith's worldwide collection of more than 700 hotels and luxe self-catering stays.

Typical treats for Mr & Mrs Smith members include a champagne breakfast or a spa treatment on the house.

So find your favourite, pick your partner and pack your bags!

Mr & Mrs Smith Hotel Collection: South-East Asia has an RRP $45 and is available from independent book stores nationally or from, from November 2010.

Brand New Attraction - AquaLoop Opens at Wet'n'Wild Water World!

The new ride AquaLoop begins when the trap door is released and the rider plummets, accelerating into a massive vertical free fall drop and then up into a full looping slide! The slide is gut wrenching, heart-pounding and gravity-defying and takes riders to speeds of up to 60 kilometres per hour!

Riders' anticipation begins the moment they start climbing the steps of the tower, and enter the door to the capsule at the top. The capsule is a vessel containing a trap door within the floor which creates the ultimate thrust start.

Facing forward with looks of anticipation and a view overlooking the spectators below the excitement builds as riders place their arms across their chest and then wait for the countdown.

3 * 2 * 1

The trap door is released and the rider plummets while accelerating down a 10 metre vertical free fall drop with maximum force into the full looping slide of speed and exhilaration. AquaLoop will leave crowds and riders breathless!

Product Features:

*0 to 2.5 g's in less than two seconds

*Highly accelerated start takes riders into the looping slide
reaching speeds up to 60 kph

*The first attraction of it's kind in the world to have four full looping slides

Wet'n'Wild Water World is set in 16.6 hectares of lush sub-tropical gardens with a slection of over 36 slides and attractions. Located on the sunny Gold Coast and provides the perfect setting for a fun filled day out the whole family will enjoy this school holidays.

Now with even more reasons to visit Wet'n'Wild why not look at purchasing an unlimited VIP Pass? This awesome new pass gives you unlimited entry to Wet'n'Wild, Movie World and Sea World until June 30 2011 for only *$99.99 per person - that means huge savings for the whole family.

With fully qualified lifeguards throughout the park, Wet'n'Wild Water World also provides one of the safest forms of aquatic recreation available.

Let's make this the National Year of Fun!
Visit for more information or call 133 FUN

Soak In Your Private Estate On A Private Island

Discover what makes these private estates on the Island of Pangkor Laut feel like the Rolls Royce of paradise, as YTL Hotels offers guests the ultimate package perfect for a seven-night getaway - including a ride on the newly acquired AgustaWestland 139 twin-engine helicopter that will take you direct to the island, relax at one of our eight Estate homes, and be pampered with a host of activities on land and sea.

Pangkor Laut is a privately owned island located three miles off the west coast of Malaysia along the Straits of Malacca. In a small secluded cove on Pangkor Laut Resort rests eight stylishly designed Estate homes, which blends beautifully into the natural island environment. Each Estate offers a private infinity-edge pool, pavilions and total privacy - a de rigueur for many celebrities who regard this their private island sanctuary.

The Estates at Pangkor Laut Resort is offering a week of luxed-out indulgence. Enjoy a scenic two-way ride by helicopter from Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA), which will take you direct to the island. With butlers at your service throughout the entire stay, enjoy the daily aromas of fresh baked breads, exotic tropical fresh fruit, fresh herbs being dressed on fish and seafood literally just caught, and a gourmet adventure from Thai, Malaysian, to Chinese and Western cuisine - whatever your heart's desire. Experience a variety of dining options around the island, an overnight stay at sea on the YTL Lady, a day filled with spa treatments at the award-winning Spa Village, deep sea fishing expedition or a leisurely cruise on our two newly purchased Flybridge Princess Yachts. Venture in the virgin rainforest with resident naturalist and turn up at Emerald Bay for a private breakfast spread on the beach. Or spend your day kayaking, snorkeling or sailing. For those feeling 'in the zone', try your hand at Tai Chi, or perhaps combining it with a spot of yoga.

This seven-night package for up to six guests is at the special price of US $35,000 per Estate, which includes all food and beverage, private bar and use of all the facilities at Pangkor Laut Resort.

Email to book.

Gazing into the Stars

Grand Pacific Tours, the New Zealand Luxury Coach Holiday specialist, is offering travellers the opportunity to enjoy an amazing stargazer's experience combined with the scenic beauty of New Zealand, a land blessed with some of the clearest skies in the world.

Available for the first time ever, departing 12 June 2011, the 9 Day Astronomy Tour offers avid stargazers and those with an interest in the celestial heavens the chance to learn more about the fascinating skies visible from New Zealand, whilst providing the ideal environment for viewing the Southern Hemispheres eclectic array of satellites, constellations, planets, moons and celestial objects.

Grand Pacific Tours has been fortunate to secure the services of experienced astronomer and space presenter 'Astro' Dave Reneke to lead the tour and share his intimate knowledge with you. Dave is a respected editor and writer for a number of publications including Space News Magazine and the Australasian Science Magazine. With over 40 years' experience in astronomy and links to some of the world's leading astronomical institutions, Dave has developed a unique and interesting style of presenting guaranteed to enlighten your knowledge and engage your awareness of the night skies and beyond.

A feature of the tour will be the visit to Tekapo, where Astro Tourists are flocking to see why this boutique township is seeking approval from UNESCO to be the first "Starlight Reserve". Its purpose is a commitment to preserve and defend the quality of the night sky and its associated values - be they cultural, scientific, natural or landscape related. The concept of a Starlight Reserve goes further than the mere protection of the site's astronomical integrity. It aims to recover and identify existing values related to the night sky, encompassing landscape, nature, opportunities for science, astrotourism and in general, the vast arena of cultural heritage — tangible and intangible.

A unique inclusion of the tour is visits to 3 amazing observatories throughout New Zealand, The R.F. Joyce Observatory in Christchurch; Mt John Observatory in Tekapo and the Carter Observatory in Wellington where a farewell dinner is included.

In Wellington a visit to Te Papa, the National Museum, is also included where Guides will explain the relevance of 'Matariki' a cluster of stars also known as Pleiades and what is referred to as the traditional Maori New Year. This event is becoming more and more important on the New Zealand astronomical calendar and one that will leave visitors with a deeper impression of Maori Culture. Another unique eco attraction included is Zealandia, located just minutes from the central city, where New Zealand's incredible natural history & conservation movement are brought to life with a state of the art indoor exhibition & 225ha eco-sanctuary.

For more information on these packages contact Grand Pacific Tours on 1800 622 768 or

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Top marks in the Berlitz Cruise Guide: MS EUROPA is awarded highest distinction for the eleventh time

- MS EUROPA still the world's best
- Guide to appear in November in Germany

MS EUROPA, the flagship of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises, has been distinguished by the renowned cruise guide "Complete Guide to Cruising & Cruise Ships" as the only cruise ship worldwide with the highest evaluation for the eleventh consecutive time. In the latest issue for 2011 the EUROPA is the only one out of more than 270 tested cruise ships to be awarded the 5-star-plus classification. The other three ships operated by Hapag-Lloyd Cruises have also achieved excellent ratings in each of their segments.

With 1,853 out of a maximum of 2,000 points the EUROPA has reached the highest evaluation among all tested ships. The HANSEATIC, with 1,746 points, enjoys third place among the "boutique ships" category (5-star), the second expedition vessel BREMEN was awarded 1,461 points (4-star) and the intimate COLUMBUS attained 1,398 points (3-star-plus).

Author Douglas Ward and his team tested more than 270 cruise liners throughout the world and assessed them under six categories: ship, accommodation, cuisine, service, entertainment and cruise experience. In this year's edition of the "Complete Guide to Cruising & Cruise Ships" they have again only awarded the rating "5-star-plus" once – to MS EUROPA.

In his guide Ward justified the highest number of points for the Hapag-Lloyd Cruises' flagship by her particular love of detail and the great attention paid to the personal wellbeing of her guests.

Sebastian Ahrens, spokesman for the management of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises: "We are very pleased about the distinction of our ships. Top marks for the EUROPA confirm that we are on the right path and show that we are not resting on our laurels. Thanks to consistent modernisation, the EUROPA still meets the highest demands even after eleven years."

"Complete Guide to Cruising & Cruise Ships 2011" by Douglas Ward, 720 pages. Available on the market from November onwards.

For more information on Hapag-Lloyd Cruises' exciting destinations and itineraries visit For bookings, inquiries or to request a brochure, please look here for the nearest sales agent in your country.

Travelodge Super hot holiday deals from $98*

Travelodge Hotels
Great Value. Rest Assured.

Book online for our best online rates guaranteed!

School holidays are here! A simple sentence which sends kids across the nation jumping for joy, but can strike fear into the hearts of parents.

Searching for a way to keep them entertained these holidays? Rest assured Travelodge have a plan that won't break your budget!

Check out our latest discounted accommodation deals and our top pick of budget friendly activities to enjoy in all of the Travelodge locations:









Palmerston North

Book a hotel:
Gift certificates:
Follow us on Twitter:


Best Deals of the Week


+++ Travelodge Docklands +++

At Travelodge Docklands, you'll be in prime position to explore Melbourne's latest hot spot - the dynamic Docklands waterfront! Also Melbourne's classic attractions such as Crown Casino, Melbourne Aquarium, Federation Square, Rod Laver Arena and the Melbourne Exhibition Centre will be right at your fingertips.

Travelodge Dockland from AU$104*


+++ Travelodge Rockhampton +++

Overlooking the picturesque Fitzroy River, Travelodge Rockhampton is the ideal place for your next family holiday in sunny Central Queensland. It's also a great stopover before exploring the famous Great Keppel Island and other wonderful local coastal spots.

Travelodge Rockhampton from AU$117*

*Subject to availability & excludes peak periods. Travelodge Chooseday package must be booked to receive bonus gift upon check-in.


Take a break out of the city


+++ Travelodge Macquarie North Ryde +++

Take advantage of the hotel's close proximity to Homebush, Sydney Olympic Park, DFO & Top Ryde Shopping Centre. There's also plenty to do at Macquarie Shopping Centre, only minutes from the hotel, including ice-skating, the latest flicks and enough shops to satisfy even the most dedicated of shoppers.

Travelodge Macquarie North Ryde from AU$98*


+++ Travelodge Manly-Warringah +++

Conveniently located opposite the Manly-Warringah Rugby Leagues Club, all guests at Travelodge Manly-Warringah enjoy complimentary (temporary) membership with access to a wide range of facilities including a gym, pool, bars, restaurants and entertainment.

Travelodge Manly from AU$110*


+++ Travelodge Newcastle +++

Escape for the weekend to the Hunter Coast's best kept secret! This is a great launch pad to the Hunter Valley Wine region and Port Stephens. Surrounded by brilliant beaches and a breathtaking coastline, Travelodge Newcastle is an ideal choice for your next break.

Travelodge Newcastle from AU$135*

*Advanced purchase restrictions or minimum night stays may apply, rates are subject to availability & excludes peak periods.


School Holiday Inspiration


Travelodge has Great Prices, Rest Assured AND we're also making it easy for you to get the most out of your next destination. Holiday activities don't have to cost the earth! Check out our website to read about all the holiday activities we've found to entertain the whole family. Plus we've included a comprehensive list of free activities - you can't get better value than that!

T: 1300 886 886

New Zealand
T: 0800 101 100 (NZ)


CRUISE from Auckland to Sydney in January and February of next year aboard the ultimate in luxury, the 5-star Seabourn Sojourn that carries just 450-guests in all-suite accommodation and with gourmet dining that includes complimentary wines and Champagnes with lunches and dinners.

Seabourn Sojourn will sail 12-nights from Auckland on January 25 2011 for Wellington, Akaroa, Lyttleton for Christchurch, Port Chalmers for Dunedin, a cruise of the Fjordland, and across the Tasman Sea to Hobart and then Sydney where there is a night aboard ship.

A fly, cruise and stay package through Cruiseco includes one-way economy class airfares and taxes from Sydney, 2-nights pre-cruise at The Westin Lighter Quay in Auckland with breakfasts, airport/hotel/port transfers, and all gourmet dining, nightly entertainment and gratuities aboard Seabourn Sojourn.

The 30,000-tonne Seabourn Sojourn has a choice of four gourmet restaurants, and six bars and cafes including a Poolside Grill.

Cruiseco's 14-night Auckland to Sydney fly, cruise and stay package is priced from $8770pp twin-share; for full details, prices from all capital cities and the names of Cruiseco's 200 cruise-specialist travel agencies visit

Emirates Unveils European Earlybird Fares

-Fly to 25 European destinations from $1710 return-

Emirates has launched its European Earlybird fares for 2011, with competitive Economy Class airfares to 25 destinations across Europe.

Emirates operates 70 flights per week from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth, to Europe via Dubai.  Travellers enjoy service from an international crew, gourmet food and wine menus, an award-winning inflight entertainment system, and a generous 30kg luggage allowance.

Earlybird fares start from $1710 return to new destination, Madrid. Return airfares are also available to Emirates' other new destinations of Amsterdam, $1738, and Prague, $1727.

Fares to the UK start from $1857 return. Emirates flies to six UK airports: London Heathrow, London Gatwick, Birmingham, Manchester, Newcastle, and Glasgow.

Earlybird fares to Italy start from $1720 return to Venice, Milan and Rome.

Lead-in return airfares to other European cities include Paris $1761; Nice $1742; Frankfurt $1745; Athens $1756; Istanbul $1714; and Vienna $1732.

All fares are inclusive of all taxes and charges.*

Bookings must be completed by 30 November 2010.  Earlybird fares are available for travel between 1 February and 31 October 2011, fare levels vary during this period. Flight restrictions apply.

For flight information and bookings contact Emirates on 1300 303 777, visit your local travel agent or go to

Terms and conditions apply - see your agent

Eat, Pray, Love your way to Novus Bali Villa Resort & Spa

Experience a piece of Elizabeth Gilbert's self-discovery journey in Bali, as seen in Eat Pray Love the movie. It is time to let yourself Novus Bali Villa Resort & Spa, Kerobokan.

This stunning 4 ½ Star all Villa property is a fusion of culture and style. Offering 20 free standing villas with thatched rooves and chic interiors, the Resort is set amid lush Balinese gardens. Just 3 minutes away from central Seminyak, Novus Bali Villas is a private sanctuary focusing on wellbeing and indulgence.

Based on 7 nights in a Private Pool Villa guests will receive the following benefits for just USD$1810 per person if travelling alone, and USD$2180 per couple if travelling with a partner or friend.

Rate inclusions
~ Daily Gourmet Breakfast
~ Daily Morning Yoga Class
~ 6 x 90 Minute Body Massage
~ 6 x 45 Minute Body Treatments
~ 2 x 60 Minutes Foot Massage
~ 1 x Traditional Gourmet Cooking Class
~ 1 x Gentle Trails Tour - Village Cycling
~ 1 x Water Spirit - White Water Rafting Tour
~ Welcome drink and refreshment upon arrival
~ Return Airport Transfers
~ Fruit basket upon arrival
~ Afternoon tea daily
~ Daily shuttle to Discovery Shopping Mall allowing stop at Petitenget beach (Seminyak)

These Rates are valid for travel through to 31 March 2010, and there will be a surcharge of @ USD30 per villa per night for travel in high season. Travel is not permitted during peak season (27 Dec 10 - 5 Jan 11). Price is inclusive of taxes and service charge. Conditions apply. Standard nightly Villa rates starting from USD246 per villa per night.

For more information on this gorgeous Resort, or the packages on offer please contact Tess Willcox at WRD on tess@wrd.comau or 07 5524 5222

Make a Pit Stop with Mantra or BreakFree During Gold Coast 600

If you're still racing to find a great accommodation deal for the Armour All Gold Coast 600, Mantra and BreakFree can deliver some winning last-minute specials.

Finding the right accommodation in a great location can be crucial for enjoying the V8 Supercar Championship Series, which this year is part of a decadent schedule planned for fans over a three-day super carnival of entertainment from October 22 to 24.

Accommodation in Surfers Paradise is selling fast for the event, but luckily for race enthusiasts, there is still some availability. For example: The beachside Mantra Legends Hotel has hotel rooms from $166* including breakfast for two. For bookings phone 13 15 17 or visit

While BreakFree Beachpoint, just metres from Surfers Paradise Beach and a short stroll from the vibrant atmosphere of Cavill Avenue, has two bedroom apartments from $228* per room per night. For bookings phone 132 007 or visit

Not only is the Armour All Gold Coast 600 bound to entertain during the day with a high-speed street circuit, but revellers can celebrate each night with the 600 Sounds music festival held over three nights at the Broadwater Parklands entertainment precinct, featuring such acts as award-winning Australian trio Empire of the Sun.

With such great value from Mantra Group, and three-day Gold Coast 600 passes available from $136 online at, there's no excuse to miss the waving of the chequered flag.

*Subject to availability. Valid for travel from 21/10/10 - 24/10/10. Minimum night stays apply.

"NEW" Small Exclusive Group Cycling and Winery Tours in the Varra Valley

Commencing October 2010

Now with "Vine Tours" you can enjoy a delightful (small group) cycle tour through the beautiful Yarra Valley on back roads surrounded by exceptional scenery as you ride.

From morning tea at a spectacular look out over the Yarra Valley you then begin cycling on back roads and sections of the Warburton Rail Trail through the beautiful rolling countryside of the Yarra Valley

You won't want to stop riding, but once the cycling is over you will enjoy a relaxed gourmet lunch that will whet your palate for the afternoon's indulgences.

Our support vehicle follows while you are cycling, and if you wish to stop cycling at any time you can simply hop onboard.

You finish our morning cycling tour and stop for a gourmet picnic lunch while enjoying the views over the nearby Warburton ranges.

The Yarra Valley is internationally recognized as a leading cool climate wine region and the home to some very fine produce. Our lunch stops are at a boutique wineries, where after enjoying a gourmet lunch we can also take an informative tour around the winery.

Learn about the winemaking process in an entertaining and informative way and get insights into a winery at work and see winemaking in progress

Your next stops are at a boutique Vineyards such as Medhurst, Killara Estate and cellar door at Coombe Farm, which was once home to the famous Dame Nellie Melba. Then on to a delicious cheese tasting session at the Yarra Valley Dairy and to finish off a magical day at small rustic winery Yering farm.

To see the full details of "Vine Tours" one day Varra Valley tour and details on the vineyards visited please go to.

Suitable for anyone of reasonable fitness and confidence in riding a bike.

One of Australia's leading cycle tour operators, RAW Travel, has operated small group cycling and walking tours world wide since 2002

Lantern - Stylish Waterfront Oasis Destination at The Fullerton Bay Hotel Singapore

Lantern is a stylish rooftop bar and pool oasis with enthralling panoramic views of the Marina Bay waterfront and the world-famous Singapore skyline.

Located on the rooftop of The Fullerton Bay Hotel Singapore, this urban oasis with breathtaking views of the Lion City, is the coveted destination for the sophisticated chic where one can relish delectable gourmet snacks and tantalising grilled meats, accompanied with fine champagnes, signature cocktails, wines and beverages. For an idyllic afternoon respite, take an invigorating swim in the pool while enjoying the tranquil waterfront sea breeze or the sultry cocktails conjured by the bar's mixologist. View the beautiful sunset at Lantern with your partner or friends as it transforms into a dazzling rooftop bar illuminated by glittering lights, ideal for a romantic tête-à-tête, glamorous cocktail parties or fashion launches.

Set amidst the resplendent skyline of the Marina Bay waterfront, Lantern is the launch pad for ultimate picturesque moments. Framed by a luxuriant backdrop of greenery, Lantern adds to its captivating atmosphere with vibrant and sensual beats from the 'live' Latin band. Mr Giovanni Viterale, General Manager of The Fullerton Bay Hotel Singapore says "Lantern derives its name from Clifford Pier's historical Chinese name - "Red Lantern Pier". It was a landing point for Singapore's first immigrants and red lanterns used to hang from the pier as a guide to seafarers." One of three food and beverage destinations at the hotel conceptualised by Asia's highly sought-after design wunderkind Andre Fu, Lantern's turn-of-the-century charm caters to the trendy chic and promises an inviting décor in hues of rustic sienna and olive green. Set foot at the rooftop and be welcomed by the stunning five-metre bar positioned at the far end of the 2 swimming pool. Tastefully crafted with swirling bronze fins in the shape of a glowing lantern, the sleek iconic bar acts as the focal point of the venue. Surrounding the bar and pool is an eclectic collection of bespoke luxurious outdoor vintage-inspired furniture, in discreetly positioned alcoves amidst lush tropical landscaping.

Prominently positioned in the heart of Singapore's Central Business District and arts and cultural precinct, The Fullerton Bay Hotel Singapore caters to well-heeled travellers and jetsetters. The luxury design hotel is the latest addition to the sparkling Marina Bay with a prime waterfront location, offering breathtaking architecture and stunning interiors alongside spectacular views of the Marina Bay and Singapore skyline.

Lantern is open daily from 12.00pm to 2.00am and for enquiries, please call (65) 6597 5299.

For more information on The Fullerton Bay Hotel Singapore, please visit

Monday, 27 September 2010

Best Western Offers Triple Rewards This Spring

Best Western is making it even easier and faster to earn rewards points with its spring promotion, Kick-Start. Spend two nights at any Best Western between September 27 and December 7, 2010 and receive double points on each subsequent stay or triple points if you book at

Bank your points or cash them in for store gift cards products from house, garden and lifestyle categories or free room nights worldwide.

For every five nights (cumulative) you stay at any Best Western, receive a AU$25.00 Best Western Travel card, free. Best Western Travel Cards can be used worldwide to pay for accommodation and have no expiry date.

"Best Western Rewards is one of the industry's few truly international frequent guest programs, offering a wide range of exciting awards to our valued members," said Kimi Anderson, General Manager of Sales and Marketing for Best Western Australasia.

With more than 4,000 locations in 80 countries, Best Western makes it easy for members to earn points that can be redeemed for global free room nights, gift cards, home and lifestyle merchandise and more.

* Registration required prior to the first two registered stays which are eligible for points. Refer to to register and for full terms & conditions.

Peppers Coorabell Retreat Opening Special

Peppers is celebrating the launch of its newest retreat, Peppers Coorabell Retreat in NSW's Byron Hinterland, with an opening special of $200* per night including breakfast.

Formerly known as Casuarina Lodge, it officially became Peppers Coorabell Retreat this month after the completion of a substantial refurbishment program.

Peppers Coorabell Retreat offers 18 tastefully decorated Rainforest and Hinterland View Suites and is situated at the heart of 66 acres of luscious hinterland and sub-tropical rainforest delivering the perfect escape from the trappings of modern life.

Like all Peppers retreats, Peppers Coorabell Retreat is dedicated to providing a personalised and unique experience which flows through to their dining facilities, where fine cuisine is coupled with great service at the retreat's onsite restaurant Wilson's by the Creek.

First class facilities include a swimming pool and heated outdoor spa, chill-out area, barbeque area, boules and rainforest walking tracks for the more adventurous.

Peppers Coorabell Retreat is located just 30 minutes north of Ballina / Byron Airport, 60 minutes south of Gold Coast Airport and two hours south of Brisbane's Domestic and International Airports.

For bookings or further information phone 1300 987 600 or visit

*Subject to availability. Valid until 22 December, 2010.

Friday, 24 September 2010

Win a Trip to Paris with the Great Netball Shootout!

Netballers and sporting enthusiasts of all ages are invited to test their skills in the "Great Netball Shootout" at the National Sports Museum (NSM) and go into the draw to win one of three amazing journeys - including a trip for two to Paris!

Launched today by the Minister for Public Transport, Martin Pakula MLC, the competition will start on October 2 and run until April 29, 2011.

The "Great Netball Shootout" offers the chance for three lucky winners to travel to Paris, Hong Kong or Central Australia to experience the trip of a lifetime.

Sponsored by UGL Rail & Infrastructure, each prize includes a unique rail component - a trip on the High Speed Train in Paris, a visit to the state-of-the-art rail train simulators in Hong Kong, and a trip for two on the Ghan across central Australia.

The competition involves shooting as many goals as possible in one minute for the chance to 'play off' in the Grand Final, held at the MCG in May 2011.

"Netball is one of the most popular sports in Australia and this is a great opportunity for players to challenge themselves and be rewarded with some amazing prizes," said Sharelle McMahon, captain of the Australian Netball Diamonds, co-captain of the Melbourne Vixens and official ambassador of the Shootout.

UGL Rail & Infrastructure will also offer free entry to the National Sports Museum for all Shootout entrants 18 years and younger - what better reason to come down and test your shooting skills?

"The National Sports Museum is thrilled to be hosting this exciting initiative,' said NSM General Manager, Margaret Birtley.

"We encourage everyone to come along and test their shooting skills against our countdown clock, and stay on to enjoy all that we have on offer at the NSM."

All contestants will receive a copy of "A Network of Opportunities: Your new rail career" published by the Australasian Railway Association, which will highlight the exciting and rewarding careers on offer in the rail industry.

Prizes are provided courtesy of Alstom Ltd, Metro Trains Melbourne, and Skilled Group Ltd.

There are also weekly prize draws of Metcards (valued at $85) to be won, courtesy of the Victorian Department of Transport.

The competition will take place in the Netball Interactive, located in the Game On gallery on the lower level of the National Sports Museum at the MCG.

Entry forms and terms and conditions are available from

Escape To Paradise This Christmas At Eskaya Beach Resort And Spa

This year, avoid the wintry Christmas weather and escape to Eskaya Beach
Resort and Spa in the Philippines, for a sunshine filled break in luxurious

For ultimate privacy and luxury during the festive period, stay in the
resorts exclusive Presidential villa and tuck into Christmas dinner next to
the infinity pool, whilst being served by a private butler. The night
before, on Christmas Eve, guests can enjoy a traditional cultural show and
live band with fireworks at midnight to mark the arrival of Christmas Day.

Alongside the Presidential villa, the resort also has 14 other private,
luxury villas set in 40 acres of lush tropical gardens on Panglao Island,
Bohol, with 11 of the villas offering private swimming pools.

Guests at Eskaya Beach Resort and Spa can also indulge in the Handuraw spa
which is based on the tribal healing traditions of the Eskaya tribe. The
signature treatment is the Kahimsog Therapeutic Massage offering a 90
minute healing treatment, using heated medicinal leaves gently placed on
the body to remove imbalances.

For those looking for a longer pampering session, the spa offers the six
hour Handuraw healing journey including a foot ritual, massage, mud wrap,
herbal soak, as well as lunch, access to a private swimming pool, steam and
sauna and a seaside waterfall experience.

A seven night package from Bamboo Travel costs from £2,900 per person. This
includes international flights to Cebu departing on December 23rd 2010,
return transfers from Cebu, return ferry crossing to Bohol, return
transfers from Bohol to Eskaya Beach Resort, seven nights accommodation in
a whirlpool bath villa and breakfast daily.

To book visit or call 020 7720 9285.

For more information about Eskaya Beach Resort and Spa, visit

Oktoberfest Traditions Travel Two Centuries and 12,000 kilometres to Australia's Outback

A TINY outback Australian town, more than 12,000 kilometres from Germany, will host its own Oktoberfest 200 years to the day since the now world-famous festival was first held in Munich on October 18, 1810.

Jundah - population 68 - is preparing to party Bavarian-style and people are driving and flying hundreds, even thousands of kilometres to join the celebrations.

Time to oompah in the Outback

GRAB your leather duds and braces, dust off the felt hat, snip some goat hair and charge your stein. Oktoberfest is on its way to the outback!

Travellers passing through Jundah on Monday October 18 will wonder if they have somehow been transported from the bush to Bavaria as the tiny town hosts its inaugural Jundah Outback Oktoberfest Bier Festival.

The historic event will exactly mark the 200th anniversary of Germany's renowned Oktoberfest which began as a celebration of the marriage of King Ludwig 1 and Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen.

Launched as part of the 2010 Angel Flight Outback Trailblazer fundraising trek through central western Queensland (October 17 - 23), the Jundah Oktoberfest is expected to attract festival goers from throughout the Barcoo Shire and beyond.

With German language street signs, locals dressed in German costume and Big Helga and Erdinger beer flowing at the Jundah Hotel, it promises a party worthy of the famed European event.
Authentic oompah-pah band, Rudi and the Continentals, is even being flown in fresh from appearances at Brisbane's German Club.

Barcoo Shire 'Burgormeister' (Mayor) Bruce Scott said it all began when a town meeting was called earlier this year to discuss how Jundah might contribute to the annual Trailblazer fundraiser for volunteer remote area medical transport organisation, Angel Flight Australia.
"Virtually the entire population of Jundah turned out and threw their support behind the idea proposed by Trailblazer event manager, Lance Smith," Mr Scott said.

"They had been involved in the extremely successful inaugural Angel Flight Outback Trailblazer in 2009 and were really keen to expand Jundah's participation into something for the whole district, something everyone could enjoy."

Keen backers include Jundah Hotel proprietor, Monique Rayment, who is providing the venue and catering, and general store owner, Katarina Zelenko, who brings direct insight because of her European heritage.

Jundah State School principal Joanne Coyne is even helping her excited pupils prepare for a special festival performance ... singing in German!

Trailblazer event manager, Lance Smith AM, said he was blown away by the support and enthusiasm of the Barcoo Shire community.

"This will be a fantastic event for the 'outback angels' participating in Trailblazer and tremendous fun for the whole community.

"To help everyone get into the spirit of the Outback Oktoberfest, we are running a special costume competition."

Mr Smith has invited all comers to dress in German costume for the chance to win an authentic Bavarian cuckoo clock.

The action-packed 2010 Angel Flight Outback Trailblazer adventure which will see a convoy of more than 50 fundraising teams in 4WDs cover thousands of kilometres in the central west from October 17 to 23.

As well as Jundah's 'oompah' Okterberfest, their trek will take in raft races on Muttaburra's Broadwater, yabbie races at Aramac and dining with the dinosaurs on a Winton plateau.

Established in 2003, Angel Flight co-ordinates free non-emergency flights for financially and medically needy people to assist patients, family and carers travelling to and from medical appointments anywhere in Australia.

Volunteer pilot 'angels', who donate their time, skills, aircraft and the bulk of their costs, have so far flown more than 8000 missions helping over 1800 people.

For further information about 2010 Trailblazer nominations and public event tickets, visit, or call Andrea Lingard at Barcaldine Regional Council, telephone 07 4651 5600.

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Escape to Cocoa Island Maldives for a Post Party Season Recovery

Cocoa Island Maldives, a COMO Hotel and Resort, is offering 7 nights for the price of 6 to rejuvenate in the New Year.

Cocoa Island is a small private island resort that has brought COMO's vision of privacy and stylish beach living to the Indian Ocean and is built on South Male Atoll in the clear, warm waters of the Indian Ocean.

Only 40 minutes from Male by speedboat, white sandy beaches, perfect solitude and understated luxury combine to create an environment of natural elegance and a foot-in-the-sand experience. Cocoa Island will help weary travellers shake off the post Xmas and New Year celebrations and re-energise after the party season.

With organic, locally sourced produce on the menu, personalised yoga instruction available throughout the day and spa treatments including massage, reflexology and facials at the COMO Shambhala Retreat, it is the ideal escape for mind, spirit, body and rejuvenation.

A contemporary resort with a Maldivian soul offering a combination of over water villas and Dhoni suites that sleep between 2 - 4 people, Cocoa Island is relaxed enough to cater for children but offers a level of sophistication sought out by single travellers and couples who want to leave their busy lives behind. Wake up to the empty horizon and watch the sun set as a tiny fishing boat potters over the cobalt ocean.

Cocoa Island in the Maldives is offering exceptional value in 2011 for guests of 7 nights for the price of 6 in a Dhoni suite including daily breakfast, if they travel from 1 February to 30 April 2011.

Packages include return airfares on Singapore Airlines to Male via Singapore, return speedboat transfers to Cocoa Island Resort, daily breakfast and all taxes prepaid.
* Sydney: $5059 per person
* Melbourne: $5039 per person
* Brisbane: $5062 per person
* Adelaide: $5052 per person
* Perth: $5055 per person

Bonus: Based on earlybird discount of 5% if booked 60 days or more prior to arrival.
To book see you local travel agent or call Singapore Airlines Holidays on 1300 666 772

New Joey Hops into Sydney Wildlife World

From September 25, 2010 visitors will be able to meet Sydney Wildlife World's newest resident a six-month old red-necked wallaby joey. Each day of the school holidays, the joey will take up residence in the Sydney Wildlife World nursery under the close watchful eye of Sydney Wildlife World staff.

Arriving from Blackbutt Reserve today the joey was named Bluey based on the old Australian slang tradition of calling a red-headed male 'Blue' or 'Bluey'.

Visitors will be able to witness Bluey being fed twice a day at 11.00am and 2.00pm, hopping in and out of his pouch (a duffel bag lined with a jumper) and resting throughout the day. In the evenings keepers will take Bluey home to ensure he is fed and cared for around the clock.

Michael Drinkwater, Mammal Department Supervisor said "Bluey is doing great he's very alert and really enjoys jumping out of his bag and having a hop around. He's become a favourite among the keepers and I'm sure he'll be just as big a hit with the public."

The red-necked wallaby ranges throughout the eastern parts of Australia from the Queensland - New South Wales border area, right through to South Australia. It is also found in Tasmania. Found in subtropical, cool temperate, wet and dry sclerophyll forests, and woodland with adjacent grassy areas.

Sydney Wildlife World is one of the worlds largest animal encounters under one roof featuring interactive world-class displays of all-Aussie animals set in the heart of Sydney on Darling Harbour and is open from 9am to 5pm daily (tickets sold after 4pm are valid till 12pm the next day).

HOW MUCH: Adult $34.99, Child $17.99 (aged 4-15), Concession $22.99. With the Unlimited Adventure Pass you can visit Sydney Aquarium, Sydney Wildlife World, Sydney Tower and Oceanworld Manly as many times as you like until June 30, 2011. The sooner you buy, the better the value. Child $39.99 / Adult $59.99

Spring Breaks On Queensland's Fraser Island

Spring into the warmer months on Queensland's Fraser Island with a great deal that's fit for the whole family.

Right now Kingfisher Bay Resort, on Fraser Island's sheltered western side is offering SPRING BREAK accommodation with ferry transfers for just $158* per room per night. PLUS kids travel and stay for free - that's a massive 40% saving on a family holiday!

Add an Adventure Bundle which includes full day, guided 4WD bus tour, unlimited walks and talks and fishing clinics or spend your time flat out by the pool. Call Kingfisher Bay Resort on 1800 072 555, email and quote SPRING BREAK.

* The offer is valid until 17 December 2010. Conditions apply. Maximum of two children per room; rollaway included.

EURONG BEACH RESORT: For holiday-makers wanting a holiday on the surf side of Fraser, Eurong Beach Resort offers real value for money.

The 'On The Beach' package includes Return barge transfers via River Heads (just south of Hervey Bay) or Inskip Point, two nights in a motel room and daily buffet breakfasts and dinners. Prices start from $242 per person twin share.

Upgrades to two bedroom apartments, which can accommodate six people, are available.

Call 1800 111 808 or visit to book.

*The offer is valid until 17 December 2010. Some conditions apply.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Yorke Peninsula All Set for an Action Packed School Holidays and Spring

Yorke Peninsula is gearing up for an influx of visitors for the school holidays and October long weekend. With an action-packed event calendar featuring a diverse choice of events, there's something to suit everybody and any taste. Yorke Peninsula Regional Tourism Manager Jo Barrie says that it is a brilliant time to visit the region, with the events throughout October & November set to attract visitors from across South Australia and interstate.

"From South Australia's most prestigious surfing event, the Cutloose Coopers Yorke's Classic to the Copper Coast Show n' Shine to markets, country shows and a rubber duck race, there is something for everyone during the school holidays."

"The line-up of things to see and do continues throughout spring, with the Moonta Open Gardens Festival, Minlaton Strawberry Fair, Maitland Art & Craft Fair and the Moonta Antiques & Collectable Weekend to name just a few of the great events that the whole family can enjoy," Ms Barrie says.

"In 2010, the Copper Coast is celebrating 150 years since copper was discovered and one of the key events is the Opera in The Mines, which will be held on location at the Moonta Mines rather than in a theatre. This event features one of the most loved operas, I Pagliacci, and an event of this caliber is not to be missed!'

"And of course in addition to all the events, there's a great array of beaches and attractions to explore around the region, with some great fishing action to be had from boat, jetty or shore, which all combine to make a fantastic holiday."

Events on the Yorke Peninsula over the coming weeks include:

* The Rotary Farm Shed Markets, 25th September, 30th October and 27th November
* Copper Coast Show n' Shine, 2nd October
* Stansbury Seaside Markets, 2nd October and 6th November
* Stansbury Country Bazaar, 2nd & 3rd October
* Cutloose Coopers Yorke's Classic, 2nd - 4th October
* Port Broughton Rubber Duck Race, 3rd October
* Station Markets, Moonta, 3rd October
* Southern Yorke Peninsula Agricultural Show, 6th October
* A Taste of Opera - Highlights of Carmen, Barley Stacks Wines, near Maitland, 9th October
* Moonta Open Gardens Festival, 16th & 17th October
* Minlaton Uniting Church Strawberry Fair, 6th November
* Copper Cove Marina Festival, 13th & 14th November
* Opera in The Mines - I Pagliacci, Moonta Mines, 25th - 27th November
* Maitland Art & Craft Fair, 27th November
* Moonta Antiques & Collectables Weekend, 27th & 28th November

For more information on Yorke Peninsula and events happening throughout the region, or for a free copy of the Yorke Peninsula Visitor Guide or Yorke Peninsula Fishing Guide visit or call 1800 654 991.

A Baby Dolphin for Sea World!

Spring is in the air at Sea World with the birth of a female Inshore Bottlenose dolphin on September 2.

The newest member of the Sea World dolphin family was approximately 80cm in length at birth. The calf's proud mum is Zippa, a 10 year old dolphin, who is proving to be a very good mum.

The yet to be named calf is doing very well, and has been observed swimming strongly and suckling milk from its mother.

Sea World Marine Mammal Trainer Erin King said that it was wonderful to have a new dolphin calf at Sea World and all the trainers are very excited by the birth.

"On the morning of September 2, we went to check on Zippa and we were delighted to discover that she had calved overnight."

"The calf was actually born a few weeks earlier then we were expecting - Zippa might have known that spring was in the air."

"The Sea World dolphin breeding program is one of the world's best and showcases how the extensive natural sandy bottom lagoon systems promote social enrichment and interaction, breeding and nursing by the dolphins", she said.

Sea World visitors can see the new mum and calf in the park's Dolphin Nursery pools located opposite the Sea Lion theatre.

The best way to see Sea World's newest dolphin is with a VIP Pass which offers unlimited entry to Sea World, Movie World and Wet'n'Wild until June 30 2011 for just $99.99.

Media are invited to come and meet Sea World's new baby dolphin.
Underwater footage and stills of the new calf and mother will be available on the day.


Date: Thursday 23 September 2010

Time: 10am

Place: Sea World (meet Renee Soutar at Reception)

Go the Distance in San Francisco

In Going the Distance, Drew Barrymore and Justin Long's characters try to keep their long distance relationship alive by regular commutes between New York and San Francisco. If you're heading to San Francisco to re-kindle a long distance relationship, spend a special holiday with a long-term partner or just indulge in a holiday fling, the city has no shortage of romantic spots. Here are some of our favourites:

- If you time it right, a walk along the waterfront in Crissy Fields will provide romance-inducing views of the sun setting behind the Golden Gate Bridge.

- Stroll through the Golden Gate Park's Conservatory of Flowers. What better place than a flower sanctuary to nurture a budding - or full-flowered - romance?

- Don't be put off by David Lynch's odd television town Twin Peaks - the San Francisco version is named for the nearly identical summits, one of which is the second highest point in town. Pack a picnic and take your lover to enjoy sweeping views across San long as the city isn't shrouded in fog.

- Clanging cable cars climbing the steep streets of San Francisco. It's the image everyone associates with the city so why not jump onboard and sneak a kiss with your partner as you watch the city roll by.

- Booking a room in any one of San Francisco's many historic grand dame hotels is sure to impress a partner. Try the Fairmont, the Huntington or The Palace San Francisco.

- Catch the ferry to quaint Sausalito and while away an afternoon sipping a local pinot gris at a bayside restaurant.

For more romantic San Francisco ideas visit

Discover the Delights of Africa and India with Princess Cruises

Princess Cruises is offering Australian travellers the chance to explore the stunning wilderness and rich history of India and Africa from the comfort of its superliner Sun Princess on a special 46-night voyage to the two continents.

Departing Fremantle on May 3, 2011, the cruise sails first for India, via bustling Singapore, Kuala Lumpur and Penang in Malaysia and Phuket in Thailand, with fares priced from $7999 per person twin share.

Passengers will visit Cochin, Mumbai and Goa in India, with the chance to see the striking Taj Mahal on a shore excursion to Agra from Mumbai and the UNESCO World Heritage site of Old Goa.

From Goa, Sun Princess sails to the exotic shores of the Maldives and the Seychelles before visiting four ports in South Africa, including Richards Bay, an overnight call in Cape Town, Port Elizabeth and Durban.

The gateways to some of Africa's oldest and finest game parks, Richards Bay and Port Elizabeth will offer passengers their fill of African wildlife spotting before Sun Princess returns to Fremantle via tropical ReuLarissa Kayenion Island and Mauritius.

Princess Cruises Executive Vice President Jan Swartz said Africa and India were filled with the magnificent sights so many travellers dreamed of visiting.

"Open spaces filled with roaming wildlife, colorful civilisations and rich history never fail to capture the imagination in these exotic ports," Ms Swartz said.

For more information about Princess Cruises' program, phone a travel agent, call 13 24 88 or visit

*Prices are per person, twin-share and subject to availability. Conditions apply.

Passion! Power! Muscle! Glamour!

As wrestling maintains its strangle-hold around the world there's no better way for Australian fans to experience it than live in Atlanta for Wrestlemania XXVII.

Elite Special Event Tours has put together an 8 night package departing 28 March 2011 from Sydney or Melbourne with two nights in Los Angeles and six nights in Atlanta. Priced at $5,790 per person twin share the tour includes airfares, a day in Disneyland and tickets to Wrestlemania XXVII, Hall of Fame night and Monday night RAW. Also included is entrance to the AXXESS interactive fan event, and two sightseeing tours in Atlanta.

About Elite Special Event Tours:

A niche operator specialising in fully escorted music and lifestyle tours throughout the UK and America. Their diverse offers include (but are not limited to) the US Golf Masters, Wrestlemania in Atlanta, NASCAR Daytona 400, the South Dakota Sturgis Rally and a Country Music Tour to Nashville, escorted by Melinda Schneider.

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Seeing Red in the Southern Highlands

Acclaimed UK singer Mick Hucknall and his soulful band Simply Red will farewell their fans in the NSW Southern Highlands next month as part of worldwide tour to end a 25-year career on a high note.

Don't miss this chance to be part of the party atmosphere when they take the stage on October 4, 2010, for the Labour Day Holiday at Centennial Vineyards in Bowral, as part of the winery concert series 'A Day on the Green'.

To ensure you have somewhere close to stay and make the most of this memorable event, look to the charming country retreat of Peppers Craigieburn on the outskirts of Bowral, which has especially created the Simply Red Farewell Southern Highlands package for guests.

The package includes two nights accommodation at Peppers Craigieburn, breakfast daily and two gold tickets to Simply Red at Centennial Vineyards, priced from $459* per couple, per night.

Enhance your stay with fine dining at the on-site signature restaurant, Montfort's, or make relaxing use of facilities including a private nine-hole golf course, fishing lake, gymnasium and tennis courts.

To book accommodation call 02 4862 8000 or visit

For Simply Red event details go to

*Conditions apply. Available for minimum 2 night stays between October 3 to 5, 2010.

Enjoy England's Spring

Explore beautiful English gardens in spring 2011.

Riotous colour, acres of green and a Members Only day at the Chelsea Flower Show make this Elite Special Event Tours' package irresistible. Escorted by Elizabeth Swane, a lady with quite a name in rose growing circles, this 10 night tour has accommodation at 4 star hotels and includes all breakfasts and four dinners. Highlights include visits to Great Dixter, Sissinghurst, Abby House and Bath and free time in London.

Priced at $5990 for a twin share room and membership of the Royal Horticultural Society the tour has gently paced daily itineraries.

Book and pay in full by 30 November 2010 and save $500 off the published price.

The only thing left to do is pack a cardigan, a sun hat and convert your Aussie dollars to English pence - it's a good rate right now!

About Elite Special Event Tours:

A niche operator specialising in fully escorted music and lifestyle tours throughout the UK and America. Their diverse offers include (but are not limited to) the US Masters, Wrestlemania in Atlanta, NASCAR Daytona 400, the South Dakota Sturgis Rally and a Country Music Tour to Nashville, escorted by Melinda Schneider.

Island Escape Cruises Release New Specials

Luxury small ship cruise operator Island Escape Cruises are offering year round incentives and special deals to travellers who book quickly.
Their ship - the 'Island Passage' is a purpose built luxury expedition vessel that carries a maximum of 24 passengers in 11 luxurious & spacious staterooms and suites.

Island Escape Cruises will offer all 'Single passengers travel at Twin Share rates' for all 'Expedition Cabin' bookings(Excludes Luxury Golf Afloat).

They are also offering 'Early Bird' deals whereby clients can save AUD$500/NZD$600 per person for all bookings made 6 months in advance.

Return passengers are being offered a 10% discount on all future cruises.

Island Escape Cruises have availability and special deals over their 'Seasons of New Zealand' voyages which offer soft adventure cruise expeditions with unique itineraries.

The 5 Night Marlborough Sounds 'Gourmet Wine & Food' Cruises (Departures 14 & 21 November 2010) offers a bonus of one nights free accommodation pre or post the cruise in Picton or Wellington.
Prices start from A$3196.00 per person twin share.

The 8 day / 7 night 'Luxury Golf Afloat' cruise (Departure 29 January 2011) offers luxury cruising in the Bay of Islands along with four great games of golf on stunning golf course. Golf fee and carts are included plus helicopter transfers are included to and from 3 of the 4 golf courses. Private vehicle transfers and luxury pre and post accommodation at the Sebel Suites in the Viaduct in Auckland are included.
Prices start from A$4875.00 per person twin share.

On our brand new 5 night 'Great Escape' Bay of Island Cruise, we are offering last minute availability on the following cruises - 9, 16, 23 Jan & 6, 13 February 2011.
Prices start from A$2150.00 per person twin share.

Island Escape Cruises finish their New Zealand season with a 5 Night' Treasure Islands of Auckland' cruise (Departures 28 Dec 2010 & 6,13, 20 & 27 March 2011) and we are offering one free nights' accommodation at the Sebel Suites in the Viaduct in Auckland pre or post the cruise.
Prices start from A$2150.00 per person twin share.

2011Season of vanuatu.
Vanuatu - May to September 2011. The 'Secrets of Bali Hai' cruise has been extended from 5 nights to 6 nights.
May & June departures include a visit to see the amazing Pentecost Land Divers.

Prices start from A$3995.00 per person twin share.
Early Birds deals on this cruise expire 01 November 2010.

Available from all major cruise & travel agents or Island Escape Cruises.

Monday, 20 September 2010

Cruise Los Angeles-Miami Via Mexican Riviera And Central America

A 15-night cruise from one side of America to the other by way of the Mexican Riviera, Central America and the Panama Canal is all the more enticing through that's including a hotel night pre-cruise in Los Angeles, another post-cruise in Miami - and three nights in Las Vegas at the famed Caesar's Palace.

And with return airfares and taxes from Sydney to Los Angeles, as well as to Las Vegas from Miami and then on to Los Angeles, 15-nights with all meals, nightly entertainment and even gratuities aboard the glamorous Norwegian Sun, this 20-night package is priced from just $2899pp twin-share... nearly 40 per cent below what was originally advertised.

Norwegian Sun sails from Los Angeles on November 20 this year for Cabo San Lucas, Acapulco and Huatulco in Mexico, Puerto Quetzal in Guatemala, Puntarenas in Costs Rica, a transit of the Panama Canal, Cartagena in Colombia, Key West in Florida and Miami.

After an overnight in Miami, there are three nights at Caesar's Palace including air and taxes, and with airport/hotel/airport transfers in Las Vegas.

For full details phone toll-free 1300 369 848 or visit

MORE: Norwegian Sun offers Norwegian Cruise Lines' famous Freestyle Dining, a choice of nine restaurants, and no fewer than twelve bars and lounges; there is also a casino, two pools, five hot tubs and a sauna, spa and 24-hour fitness centre, a jogging/walking track, basketball and volleyball court, internet café and Kid's Crew and Teen Club.

NO BOYS ALLOWED: Boutique Brisbane Hotel Launches Australia's first "Ladies Only" floor

Call them sexist, but one Brisbane hotel is giving female guests preferential treatment - by offering them access to their very own, gorgeously girlie "Ladies Only" floor.

In what is believed to be an Australian first, The Portal Hotel is one of a handful of international hotels catering for the growing number of independent female travellers who demand luxury and security in equal measure.

According to owner Georgie Woods, the decision to ban boys - from one floor at least - was based on demand within the market. "These days, women account for around 40 percent of Australia's business travellers - that's a lot of ladies travelling alone, often in unfamiliar cities without a good working knowledge of the area," Ms Woods said.

It's not surprising, then, to learn that 60 percent of women identify safety as their main concern when choosing travel accommodation.

"It goes without saying that security on our Ladies Only floor is paramount - but as we don't have to worry about appealing to male guests, we've also had a lot of fun designing a feminine haven packed with girlie treats that only a female guest could truly appreciate!"

Heightened security is provided by secure access elevator keycards and even the hotel staff employed to carry out duties on the floor are exclusively female. Rooms have been designed with a female aesthetic in mind and each features a fresh seasonal bloom, scented candle, waffle robe and slippers, complimentary women's magazines and a refresher unwind pack featuring organic beauty products and MOR bathroom products. Hair straighteners and yoga mats are available on request and can be purchased at the end of the stay.

In place of the standard minibar is the Portal PamperBar, featuring an extensive range of Yuva organic beauty products, Yealands Way Carbon Zero wine range made by award-winning female winemaker Tamra Washington and hair dressing services available from leading Brisbane salon Vogue Nationale.

Conveniently located within a stone's throw of Brisbane's central business district, The Portal Hotel boasts 84 individual rooms - 11 of which are dedicated Ladies Only accommodation. The hotel itself has just undergone a quarter of a million dollar refurbishment, transforming it from humdrum city lodgings into a stylish boutique destination filled with bespoke furniture and antique pieces.

Antique solid steel gates, once 'the portal' to a 19th century Parisian mansion, provide an intriguing front entrance, while original artwork and cleverly contrasting interiors ensure every corner of The Portal has been thoughtfully designed.

Free wireless internet, iPod docking stations in every room and a specialised turndown service also come as standard. Guests can also enjoy the culinary delights on offer at the "O" Bar and Restaurant, the latest venture from the restaurateurs behind Brisbane's favourite breakfast venue the Gunshop Café.

Rates for the Ladies Only floor start at $235.

The Portal Hotel is located in Spring Hill, 52 Astor Terrace, Brisbane.

For enquiries or reservations
phone (07) 3009-3400 or email:

Sail Away on a Queensland Holiday

Now's the ideal time to find your sea legs on Queensland's tropical waters with some of the best-value stay and sail holiday packages on offer.

Local hero Jessica Watson is no stranger to the sea and even she couldn't resist the opportunity to promote Queensland's perfect year round sailing conditions, when she came onboard as Queensland's Season of Sailing ambassador during the recent Hamilton Island Race Week.

"It is still cold in most regions of Australia which is why the Season of Sailing campaign is so attractive," said Jessica.

"You can visit these beautiful destinations and the weather is perfect for both sailing and just getting away for a break."

You don't have to be a professional sailor to enjoy the packages. Whether it's learning to sail on a bareboat adventure or joining a crewed charter, there is an experience that is sure to suit. Take your pick from a range of charter boat experiences ranging from catamarans to 20 foot racing yachts; day sail options including reef and sunset cruises; and sail and stay packages that include accommodation at some of Queensland's best tropical island resorts and luxury beachfront apartments.

The Seven Night Sail & Island Stay Bonus Deal for example includes two nights on Daydream Island Resort & Spa plus five nights on a fully 'skipper yourself' vessel with Whitsunday Rent a Yacht allowing you to explore the hidden bays of the Whitsunday Islands.
Or perhaps the Peppers on Blue Magnetic Island and Providence Day Sail Cruise Package from $1,050 per couple is more your style. It includes three nights' accommodation in a deluxe room on beautiful Nelly Bay (including breakfast) and a magical day sailing around Magnetic Island on a beautiful 62 foot tall ship. There's even time to anchor at a secluded bay for a picnic, swim and bushwalk and the package is valid until February 8, 2011.

Starting at $402 per night, the four-and-a-half-star Beaches on Lammermoor Apartments at Yeppoon in Central Queensland is offering accommodation for two adults and two children plus a full day's sailing around the beautiful Keppel Islands on the luxury yacht 'Grace'. The whole family can snorkel in crystal clear waters, enjoy a delicious lunch and discover the 18 unspoiled islands of the Keppel Group. This package is valid to March 31, 2011.
Proposed race event dates for Queensland's Season of Sailing 2011 include:

Brisbane to Gladstone: 22 - 24 April
Brisbane to Keppel: 30 July - 3 August
Airlie Beach Race Week: 12 - 18 August
Hamilton Island Race Week: 19 - 27 August
Magnetic Island Race Week: 3 - 6 September

For more information on Queensland's Season of Sailing and to book packages visit

Castaway Bay Opens at Sea World

Sea World will today officially launch its brand new interactive adventure playground, Castaway Bay.

The exciting new $6 Million family attraction caters for kids of all ages and features an amazing themed ride and fun filled child friendly play areas.

Sea World Director of Operations Dianne Rigg said that Castaway Bay is a wonderful addition to Sea World and will be a great success with both local and interstate guests.

"Castaway Bay has been specially designed for the family market with three exciting and innovative attractions spread over a huge 8000 square metre area," she said.

An Australian first, the Battle Boats ride features pirate themed boats, each armed with eight water cannons. Kids will be able to spray fellow Battle Boats passengers as well as unsuspecting parents as they watch their kids on the new ride. Get set to get wet!

The Sky Fortress is a huge fort like attraction featuring five fun filled levels of rope bridges, tunnels, slides, games and puzzles. The attraction stands six meters off the ground and is sure to be a hit with the kids.

The best way to experience Castaway is with a VIP Pass which offers unlimited entry to Sea World, Movie World and Wet'n'Wild until June 30, 2011 for just AUD$99.99.

Peppers Hosts Spiritual Retreat in Byron Hinterland

Peppers is playing host to the Sovereign Journey self-awareness event in November - a spiritual retreat covering topics such as self-healing, increasing your soul's energy and gaining a better understanding of your genetics and connections in your family tree.

Enjoy the retreat's program and workshops from November 12 to 14 while staying at Peppers Coorabell Retreat in the peaceful Byron Hinterland, with a package for early bird bookings before October 22 that includes all accommodation, food and activities from $565* twin share from Friday to Sunday, and from $765* for single accommodation from Friday through to Sunday.

Situated at the heart of 66 acres of luscious hinterland and sub-tropical rainforest, Peppers Coorabell Retreat delivers the perfect escape from the trappings of modern life.

The tranquil rainforest retreat, where guests can spot wildlife such as koalas and platypus, has a selection of Rainforest and Hinterland View Suites and is dedicated to providing a personalised and unique experience.

When you're not discovering tools for self-healing and self-love, step out into nature and enjoy a network of rainforest walking tracks, the retreat's swimming pool and heated outdoor spa or relax with a massage or beauty treatment in the comfort and privacy of your room.

Peppers Coorabell Retreat is located just 30 minutes north of Ballina / Byron Airport, 60 minutes south of Gold Coast Airport and two hours south of Brisbane's Domestic and International Airports.

For bookings or further information phone 02 6684 7348 or email

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