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Saturday, 28 February 2015

Hotels.com deal of the week: Hotel Duquesa de Cardona, Barcelona


Hotel Duquesa de Cardona, Barcelona

Save 50% on your stay

Visit Hotels.com for more details or call ‎1800 687 236‎

Hotel Duquesa de Cardona, Barcelona 4*

Save 50% on your stay

Book by: 14 May 2015

Stay by: 14 May 2015

Prices from: AU $158 per night

Located in the heart of Barcelona amidst the bustling gothic quarter, Hotel Duquesa de Cardona provides the perfect base to explore this vibrant city. Start your Spanish fiesta with a welcome glass of wine, followed by a dip on the rooftop pool terrace or dinner at the hotel's stunning La Duquesa restaurant. Once settled, explore the maze of narrow streets filled with bustling bars, café's and artisan stores or stroll down to the station to catch a train to further explore what Barcelona has to offer.

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 27 February, 2015. Prices may fluctuate due to changes in taxes, fees and currency. Visit http://au.hotels.com/ for full terms and conditions.

Thursday, 26 February 2015

2015 Australian Luxury Travel Survey

Insights from the inaugural 2015 Australian Luxury Travel Survey revealed

High net worth travellers unveil the true definition of Australian Luxury


Australia’s luxury travel market is evolving. According to the 2015 Australian Luxury Travel Survey, as commissioned by qualia and Virtuoso, 74 per cent of high net worth (HNW) travellers believe Australia has become more of a luxury travel destination over the past five years.

No longer is luxury travel defined purely by the level of opulence or an expensive price tag. According to the research, 85 per cent of HNW travellers believe luxury travel is defined by a property’s personalised attention to detail, followed by understated elegance, exclusivity and privacy (75%) and an extraordinary natural location and sense of place (59%) respectively.

Hamilton Island Chairman, Sandy Oatley said it is gratifying to know more than seven years on, the family’s vision for qualia continues to align with what luxury travellers are looking for today.

“When opening qualia in 2007, our aim was to create an understated luxury oasis which maximises the sheer beauty of its Great Barrier Reef location along with a uniquely Australian standard of service that would meet and exceed the expectations of the most discerning travellers from around the world. The 34 accolades the resort has received over the past three years are testament to our qualia team who continue to perfect this vision daily,” Sandy continued.

An ardent vision of this nature is essential for Australian luxury property owners as competition strengthens within the domestic luxury market. When it comes to researching the abundance of luxury travel options, close to 1 in 2 (47%) HNW travellers rely predominantly on the power of word of mouth, secondly to inspiration found in traditional media outlets such as newspapers and magazines (44%) and thirdly to online travel reviews (41%) such as Tripadvisor and Mr + Mrs Smith.

Interestingly, whether the rich and famous have graced a particular resort is neither here nor there to HNW travellers with 58 per cent of respondents revealing they aren’t influenced at all by celebrity endorsements when researching a luxury holiday.

Furthermore, the research revealed luxury lodges (less than 60 rooms) as Australian HNW travellers’ accommodation type of choice (42%), followed by boutique hotels (less than 20 rooms) (25%) and luxury hotels (100+ rooms) (16%) respectively, with Australian owned properties preferred over those backed by a global brand. Only three per cent of travellers nominated this latter style of property as their preference when travelling in luxury domestically.

Sandy Oatley said: “Our family is exceedingly proud to be Australian and as such, we want every qualia guest to savour an authentic and extraordinary Australian experience. From the use of Australian materials and native plants, to encouraging our guests to explore our renowned Great Barrier Reef backyard, from the wallabies frequently spotted around the resort to the Australian food and wine gracing our menus, every detail contributes to qualia’s Australian heart and soul – a point of difference which we feel sets the resort apart.”

This attention to detail is becoming increasingly imperative with Australian luxury properties no longer able to solely rely on their lavishly appointed and generously sized rooms to woe potential guests.

As revealed in the 2015 Luxury Travel Survey, 22 per cent of HNW travellers identify a luxury property’s authentic, unique experiences as the factor holding the greatest influence on their final booking decision, followed secondly by a property’s established reputation and/or award winning history (20%) and thirdly by an impeccable standard of service (19%). Only four per cent of travellers believe the size and design of the property’s rooms hold the same weight.

The research revealed HNW travellers are craving these unique travel experiences often with 1 in 4 exploring their own backyard in luxury on average 4 – 5 times per year. Hamilton Island’s CEO, Glenn Bourke says over the years, this number has been on the rise.

“At qualia, we’re noticing the quick 2 – 4 day luxury getaway becoming increasingly popular. The 2015 Luxury Travel Survey revealed over the past five years, 2 in 3 people have found themselves taking shorter domestic luxury holidays more often. We’re noticing for many, the cost of these short breaks simply isn’t an issue with the majority willing to spend big to ensure each getaway is memorable,” said Mr Bourke.

According to the 2015 Luxury Travel Survey, 46 per cent of travellers allocate an average annual luxury travel budget of $10,000 – $30,000. One in 10 (10%) travellers allocate $30,000 – $50,000 per year, topped only by the expenditure of the fortunate 8 per cent who revealed they’re prepared to spend $50,000 or more on travelling the world in style.

Explore Eastern Europe



EXPLORE the historic European cities of Krakow, Budapest, Bratislava, Vienna and Prague on this 14 day tour from $2,311* per person twin share. Departing from Krakow, on the Highlights of Eastern Europe tour you will discover the medieval town of Banska Stiavnica, admire ancient architecture in Krakow and wander through cobbled streets in Budapest. Enjoy walks through the spectacular scenery of Slovakia’s Tatras Mountains and raft through the vast gorge on the Dunajec River. Walk the streets of Budapest with a local guide discovering Castle Hill, Old Town, Fisherman’s Bastion and the Royal Palace and in Prague uncover the mysteries of its Castle, Charles

Bridge and visit the Jewish Quarter and famed Astronomical Clock with detailed guided tours.

Book now to EXPLORE these fantastic destinations.
Contact Explore on 1300 439 756, email res@exploreworldwide.com.au
www.exploreworldwide.com.au


Explore Sri Lanka


EXPLORE stunning Sri Lanka staying in stylish and comfortable hotels on this 14 day Secrets of Sri Lanka tour departing Negombo from $3,428* per person twin share. As you travel to Sri Lanka's greatest sights from ancient Buddhist monuments to tea plantations and historic cities you will be absorbed by the history and culture of these people. Search for elephants and leopard in Willpaththu National Park on safari. In Dambulla, see the painted caves of this temple complex. In Polonnaruwa see the Royal Palace and be amazed at the dramatic sculptures of this ancient city. Climb to the top of Lion Rock in Sigiriyia and enjoy the stunning views from this ancient palace complex. In Kandy visit the famed Temple of the Tooth and enjoy a cultural show. Visit Galle and soak up the history of this famous port and in Beruwala enjoy time to relax on the beautiful coastline.

Book now to EXPLORE these fantastic destinations.
Contact Explore on 1300 439 756, email res@exploreworldwide.com.au
www.exploreworldwide.com.au
 


Monday, 23 February 2015

Eurail enhancements for International Rail



RAIL specialists International Rail have welcomed the new enhancements introduced by Eurail for its 2015 program, with many options offering even better value for money across the network.

One that will benefit the Australian market is the new Eurail Global Flexi Pass for five days rail travel in 10 days, allowing greater flexibility for passengers who ate travelling for shorter period.

The introduction of Flexi and Consecutive German Passes by DB Bahn for 2015 has come with a promotion of 20 percent discount on all Flexi passes for five, 10-day and one month and Consecutive pass for five and 10-days.

The offer is available for adult, youth and twin passes in both First and Standard class and must be purchased by March 30 and start from $398.

It is important for Australian travellers to know that seat reservations are not included in the cost of the Eurail Passes and are compulsory on most high speed trains in Europe. Seats can often be limited in numbers, so be sure to reserve as many trains as possible in advance to avoid disappointment. International Rail is able to pre-book as many trains as required before departing Australia.

All Passes must be validated within six months of date of issue.

For a full list of new Eurail Pass options visit www.internationalrail.com.au or call International Rail on 1300-387-245.

Saturday, 21 February 2015

Hotels.com deal of the week: ACCESS Resort & Villas, Phuket



ACCESS Resort & Villas, Phuket

Save 63% on your stay

Visit Hotels.com for more details or call ‎1800 687 236‎
                                                                                                                      

ACCESS Resort & Villas, Phuket 4*

Save 63% on your stay

Book by: 31 March 2015

Stay by: 31 March 2015

Prices from: AU $95 per night


Take a well-deserved break at ACCESS Resort & Villas, Phuket, and enjoy every minute of this luxurious getaway. This tropical sanctuary is located just minutes away from beautiful Karon Beach and a wide range of restaurants for your exploration. With direct pool access from each terrace, spend your days basking on plush sun lounges with a refreshing afternoon cocktail from the swim–up bar, followed by room service delivered by boat! Let the Senses Spa massage, scrub and steam your troubles away as you bask in this secluded paradise of Thailand.


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 20 February 2015. Prices may fluctuate due to changes in taxes, fees and currency. Visit http://au.hotels.com/ for full terms and conditions.

 
 

Friday, 20 February 2015

Uluru Family Fun Holiday Package with Flight Centre and AAT Kings

Forget about kids arguing in the backseat, eye spy and endless 'are we there yet?', AAT Kings and Flight Centre are making family holidays a whole lot more fun – and dare we say educational, with their exclusive new Uluru Family Shindig.



Designed specifically for those travelling with kids in tow, the 4-day package highlights the best of the Red Centre including Uluru, Kata Tjuta, Walpa Gorge and plenty of Aussie outback.

The itinerary has been designed by parents, for parents with those all-important details catered for such as earlier tours to allow for bedtime, free time to take advantage of the resort pool and kid-friendly food and drink options. Exclusive to the Uluru Family Shindig, young guests will receive an AAT Kings water bottle, bucket hat, backpack and work book full of relevant activities.

As well as plenty of family bonding, sightseeing highlights include:

  • Parents can relax and reconnect while watching the sunset over Uluru with a glass of wine in hand while kids are met by a National Park Ranger who'll entertain and educate them about what they'll be seeing and experiencing over the coming days.
  • See if there are any budding artists in the family. Join local Indigenous artists for an interactive dot-paining workshop. The artists talk through the symbols used before you can paint your own masterpiece.
  • The more refined taste buds can tuck into prawns while little ones may prefer sausages at the award winner Uluru Barbecue Dinner.
  • Spend a morning exploring Uluru – watch the sunrise with a cuppa or hot chocolate, enjoy an interpretive walk around parts of the Rock and see ancient rock art and waterholes.
  • A trip to the Red Centre isn't complete without a camel ride through the desert.


AAT Kings' 4-day Uluru Family Shindig short break is priced from $3,275 for two adults and two children (land only) and is available exclusively to Flight Centre customers. Price includes three nights' accommodation, National Park entry fee, three breakfasts, one dinner, camel ride, hat and water bottle and a backpack, educational workbook, stationary pack and sunscreen for every child. Five departure dates available in 2015: 29 June, 6 July, 17 August, 21 September and 28 September. Alternative options available depending on family size.

Visit http://www.flightcentre.com.au/promotions/uluru-family-shindig for more information or visit in-store to talk to your local Flight Centre travel consultant.

Need convincing or just your daily dose of cute?
• See the Uluru Family Shindig get road tested here.
• Want to know the top ten kid-friendly activities at Uluru? Watch here.
• Read all about one family's experience on the Uluru Family Shindig tour here.

Rome to Barcelona with Silversea aboard Silver Spirit

#silverseacruises


CRUISE IN CLASSIC EUROPEAN LUXURY WITH SILVERSEA

Indulge in the history and sun-soaked beauty of the Mediterranean as you sail from Rome to Barcelona on this seven day cruise on board Silversea’s Silver Spirit.

Departing from Rome on 7 May 2015, Silver Spirit sails to the Italian Riviera, stopping at the picturesque coastal village of Portofino. Silver Spirit continues to Livorno, gateway to some of Italy’s finest attractions. Enjoying an overnight stay in Livorno, guests are free to explore the beautiful landscapes of Tuscany, embrace the wonders of the Renaissance whilst strolling through Florence and witness the world-famous Leaning Tower in Pisa. The final port of call in Italy is Sardinia, a mountainous island that lies west of the mainland, known for its dazzling beaches, captivating bays and adventurous coastal trails.

Leaving Italy behind, Silver Spirit sails to the Balearic Islands in Spain, stopping at Menorca, the northernmost Balearic, surrounded by exquisite white-sand bays and home to numerous prehistoric sites and forts. Guests also visit Palma de Mallorca, an island filled with dramatic cliffs and landscapes, glistening bright-blue seas and deserted coves and bays, perfect for kayaking and snorkelling.

Reaching her final destination on 14 May 2015, Silver Spirit sails into Barcelona, Spain, with guests free to continue their Mediterranean journey at leisure, exploring the historic city and famed architecture.

To enhance Silversea’s all-inclusive pricing, guests are able to take advantage of complimentary Silver Shore Select excursions, which are offered in every port of call. In addition, guests onboard this Silversea voyage through the Mediterranean also have access to two hours of Wi-Fi per day, and unlimited Wi-Fi in premium suites (Medallion and higher categories).

Prices are per person starting from AU$4,550 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, 19 February 2015

Rail Europe Exclusive French Deals


Rail Europe has rolled out their exclusive deals on the Thalys, Eurostar and France Rail Pass for the upcoming European Spring and Summer seasons.

Available from now until 30 March '15, 1st Class train fares on the Thalys between Paris and Brussels, Cologne and Amsterdam as well as the service between Brussels and Amsterdam start from as low as AU70. Travel must be completed between 1 March and 30 June '15.

Prices on the Eurostar now start at AU57 in Standard Class and AU146 on services running from London to Paris, Lille and Brussels. Bookings must be made by 24 March and travel completed between 2 March and 27 August '15.

Finally, travellers can also enjoy 20% off France Rail Passes booked by 8 April '15 in both 1st and 2nd Classes. Passes must be used within six months of issue. Visit www.raileurope.com.au for more details. Terms and conditions apply.

Sofitel Brisbane Central Celebrates 10 Years With Luxury Anniversary Package

It was the first international hotel to open in Brisbane, and has long been established as the city's crème de le crème of luxury accommodation. Now, one of Brisbane's most iconic five-star hotel addresses is celebrating 10 years of wearing the French inspired Sofitel name in 2015.



Sofitel Brisbane Central is celebrating its milestone anniversary with an indulgent 10th anniversary accommodation and dining package for guests past and present to reminisce and celebrate the hotel's grand history in style.

Sofitel's 10th anniversary package includes overnight accommodation, breakfast for two, and a $60 food and beverage credit to use towards a dining experience in one of the hotel's restaurants, Thyme² or Privé249. The offer also features two 10th anniversary cocktails to enjoy in the Sofitel's luxurious lounge bar, Cuvee.

The package offer is priced from $289 per room per night (for two people), and is valid for bookings and stays until the 30th of April 2015. To find out more, call the hotel on 07 3835 3535 or email h5992@sofitel.com for bookings.

About Sofitel Brisbane Central

Sofitel Brisbane Central located above Brisbane's Central Rail Station at 249 Turbot Street, and is a visual landmark on Brisbane's skyline. At 30 storeys high, its rooms boast some of the city's best views over Anzac Square, the central business district, Brisbane River and surrounding hinterlands. Its many attractions include 433 elegant rooms, a fitness centre, heated pool and spa, Day Spa, plus award winning restaurants and bars. Sofitel Brisbane Central is also the largest meeting facility in Brisbane with 11 conference rooms accommodating up to 1000 people.

For more on Sofitel Luxury Hotels, visit www.sofitel.com.

Win a Six Day Trip to Korea with Samsung NX Traveller

Korea Tourism Organization is a supporting partner of the 'Win a six day trip to Korea', an exciting photographic journey through the country being sponsored by Samsung NX Traveller. Stand a chance to win a trip to Korea with professional photographers and amateur photography enthusiasts to enjoy photography in many scenic locations in Korea.

Korean Temple Roof
Copyright: Korea Tourism Organization

On this trip which takes place from 13-18th April, 2015, you will not only get to experience the height of the cherry blossom season in Korea but also have a chance to discover the many hidden gems along the way.

The competition is organised for amateur photographers as well as professionals. Amateur photographers must register online and explain why they would like to have the opportunity to join the trip.

Professional photographers are offered the chance to trial the latest Samsung NX camera and must submit a portfolio of their photographs online to be considered.

Selected participants will receive a six day all expenses paid trip to Korea.

The deadline for Australian entrants in the competition is the 15th March, 2015.Join us on a 6-day all expense paid trip to Korea. (13 – 18 April 2015).

Full terms and conditions are available on the website: https://www.smartphotography.asia/nxtraveller

Like us on facebook: http://www.facebook.com/SeeKorea

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ktosydney

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Top Ten Must-Dos for the Northern Territory with Apollo Motorhome Holidays


 


DO THE NT – WITH APOLLO

Apollo Motorhome Holiday are celebrating their 30th anniversary in 2015 with great deals including this one to help you tick the NT off your bucket list. Get free outdoor equipment and 10% off all motorhome, campervan and 4WD camper hire to or from Apollo's Alice Springs or Darwin branches. Couples can travel for as little as $110 per day in a two-berth campervan, while families can enjoy the space and convenience of Apollo's six-berth Euro Deluxe motorhome, which includes on board kitchen, shower, toilet, air conditioning and TV/DVD player.

Journey through the Northern Territory for unlimited opportunities for adventure and unique experiences.  You'll swim in nature's infinity pool in Kakadu, cruise billabongs to view iconic crocodile, ride camels to dinner at Uluru and watch the sunrise over red desert landscapes from a balloon over Alice Springs.

Experience the Territory at the pace that best suits you – follow the sealed main highways to find the world-famous attractions, or head-off road for amazing four-wheel driving adventures through spectacular landscapes.  Whether you follow one of the themed drive itineraries or create your own adventure, you'll find excitement at every turn.

The deal applies for all new bookings received until 10 June 2015, for pick up and drop off between 13 April – 15 June 2015. For full terms and conditions visit http://www.apollocamper.com/DOtheNT  or call 1800 777 779 and quote the promotional code APAUNT14.

Top Ten MUST Dos in the NT

1 Hit the road for your self-drive adventure along the Red Centre Way from Alice Springs to Uluru and Kings Canyon, spending the nights under the canopy of a million stars.

2 Do one of Australia's greatest icons and visit the Karlu Karlu/Devils Marbles - colossal boulders that hold enticing secrets of Dreamtime creation stories.

3 View Kakadu National Park from nature's infinity pool at Gunlom.

4 Explore the spectacular gorges of Nitmiluk National Park, near Katherine, by paddling a canoe, on a guided cultural cruise or high-powered speedboat.

5 Plunge into crystal-clear waterholes or be refreshed under thundering waterfalls in Litchfield National Park, just a short 90-minute drive from Darwin.

6 Discover a true outback pub, filled with fun, quirky experiences, when you stop for a cold drink at Daly Waters Historic Pub on the Explorers' Way.

7 Jump on the back of a camel for a trek through the desert landscape, or take a guided walking tour with the traditional owners, to create your own Uluru experience.

8 Explore the adventure playground of the West MacDonnell Ranges near Alice Springs with its famous hiking trails, swimming holes and four-wheel drive tracks.

9 Take on the four-wheel drive challenge of the Arnhem Way, and head to East Arnhem Land, where you'll find world-class sports fishing action and rich Indigenous cultural experiences.

10 Stay an extra day in Darwin and do the Mindil Beach Markets to enjoy the famous Top End sunsets and tropical outdoor lifestyle while you choose from over 1200 exotic dishes.

Savings on roundtrip Alaska Cruise aboard Holland America Line's ms Statendam

SAVINGS of more than $3000 per person twin share are available through ecruising.travel on an 20-night Alaska cruise package on board Holland America Line's ms Statendam.



Costing from $6679 (was $9709), the package also includes return air fares from Sydney and a comprehensive 14-night cruise around Alaska. Prices include all meals aboard the recently enhanced ms Statendam, which has had all staterooms upgraded, as well as remodeled public spaces and opened an exciting new entertainment destination called Mix featuring three distinctly themed bars.

The roundtrip voyage departs Seattle on August 10 and includes all the highlights of an Alaskan cruise and some of the less frequented ports. Sail around Vancouver Island to Ketchikan, Juneau, Icy Strait Point and Anchorage, then call at smaller ports like Homer, Kodiak, Hubbard Glacier, Sitka and Victoria before arriving back in Seattle.

The price also includes a three-night stopover at Honolulu's famous Hilton Hawaiian Village in Waikiki Beach and a Pearl Harbour, Arizona Memorial and City tour plus transfers and port and government charges.

Prices are based on flights from Sydney with other capital cities from $6899 for Melbourne and Brisbane, from $6999 for Adelaide passengers and from $7199 for those travelling from Perth.

More information from ecruising.travel on 1300 369 848 or visit http://ecruising.travel/Details.aspx?id=22369.

Friday, 13 February 2015

Silversea cruise to Western Canada and Alaska



SAIL WESTERN CANADA AND ALASKA WITH SILVERSEA

Sail through the rugged inside passage, past evergreen forests and across the placid waters of an Alaskan fjord on this 10 day voyage from San Francisco to Vancouver onboard Silversea's Silver Shadow.

Setting sail from the 'City by the Bay', San Francisco, on 4 May 2015, Silver Shadow voyages to Astoria, Oregon.  Surrounded by water and tall evergreen Douglass Fur, Hemlock and Spruce trees, Astoria is rich in scenic beauty, with a vista to the Pacific Ocean from the top of Astoria's historic Column.  

Continuing her voyage north, Silver Shadow sails to Wrangell in Alaska, a hidden jewel in the heart of the Tongass National Forest, before journeying to Sitka. Here, guests explore the dramatic hillside setting and the region's history in Sitka National Historical Park.

Silver Shadow's next port of call is Juneau, Alaska's capital, located on the North American mainland but unable to be reached by road.  Guests will have the opportunity to enjoy the Mt. Roberts Tramway, densely forested wilderness areas, quiet bays for sea kayaking and the famous drive up Mendenhall Glacier.

Sailing to the northern finger of the Inside Passage, Silver Shadow docks in Skagway, a seaport that sits on a deep-water fjord at the head of Lynn Canal, before visiting Ketchikan.  This part of Alaska is famous for its vibrant totem poles, steep streets and lush island setting, where guests glimpse the rugged frontier spirit that once permeated the town.

Silver Shadow spends her final day traversing the Inside Passage, a coastal route which weaves through the islands on the Pacific coast of North America. Concluding her journey in Vancouver in Canada, guests disembark on 14 May 2015.

Prices are per person starting from AU$5,050 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, 12 February 2015

Thailand's Ko Kut named as one of world's most romantic destinations for Valentine breaks




The Thai island of Ko Kut was recently voted among the top ten places to spend Valentine’s Day by influential the media website The Huffington Post. The eastern island in the province of Trat was named alongside global destinations; such as, the Amazon, Nepal and Peru.

TAT Governor, Mr. Thawatchai Arunyik said, “It’s great that Ko Kut has been named among the world’s most romantic destinations and a perfect Valentine’s retreat. Here courting couples and honeymooners, young and old, will find all the elements that will make a memorable holiday. As well as the warm seas, soft sands and scented evenings, there is a real sense of privacy as the island is home to only a few friendly fishing families.”



The Huffington Post listed destinations that were pristine and offered privacy, tasty cuisine, lovely scenery, and unique traditions.

Ko Kut was singled out for being an intimate island hideaway, which, despite its size, is less populated than other Thai islands and offers privacy for couples seeking a romantic break. The island’s palm-fringed beaches, lush rainforest and charming fishing villages are among the romantic attractions that make it a perfect Valentine’s destination. Suggested activities for courting couples include exploring underwater dives sites and taking a sunset cocktail cruise.

TAT Governor said, “On Ko Kut, there are also several luxury pool villas which offer romantic views of the stunning sunsets over the Gulf of Thailand. It’s a distinctly “Thai” setting and most people leave having falling in love with Thailand as much as they have with each other”



Other romantic destinations named alongside Ko Kut were the Seychelles, Tanzania’s South Serengeti, South Africa’s Garden Route, the Northern Amazon in Peru, Norway’s Lyngen Alps, Bagan in Myanmar, Patagonia in Argentina and Dhulikhel in Tibet.




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The Tresor d'Angkor Villa & Resort Siem Reap - special package offer

Luxury Nine Villas Tresor d'Angkor Villa & Resort Opens in Siem Reap

Special US$99 per night promotion package for early bookers


The opening of the nine villas, 18-room Tresor d'Angkor Villa & Resort in Siem Reap provides travellers to Cambodia with a new benchmark in stylish, romantic hotel accommodation in the 'Kingdom of Wonder'.

The Tresor d'Angkor Villa & Resort is surrounded by lush tropical gardens 10 minutes-drive to the airport and two km away from the city centre.  It offers easy access to the city's must-see destinations including Angkor Wat and a short Remarque (Tuk Tuk) ride to restaurants, the Old Market and Pub Street.

Managed by Cambodia's leading locally owned hotel operators, Asia Initiative Corporation (AIC),  the Tresor d'Angkor Villa & Resort provides high value, affordable luxury for couples, families and independent travellers.  All rooms and suites are spacious and fully appointed with luxurious in-room amenities, teak wood floors as well as private terraces, romantic indoor pools and Wi-Fi internet access.

A special US$99 promotion package is available for on line bookings for the Premier Deluxe Villas made from now until April, 2015 with stays taken by September 2015. Included in the high value package is daily breakfast, airport transfers, Remarque (Tuk Tuk) shuttle services to the Old Market and Pub Street, complimentary Wi-Fi, and car parking.  The discount is only available if booked at: central.booking@asiainitiativecorp.com |info@asiainitiativecorp.com or by telephone +855 77 332 168.  

Packages are also available for the Premier Deluxe Family room and the intimate Tresor Suite Private Pool Villas that feature their own private plunge pool.

All rooms have been luxuriously appointed with bathrooms featuring bathtub and separate shower.  Complimentary toiletries, fluffy towels and bathrobes are standard as are multi choice AC, telephone, television, and bottled water. Whether you're a fitness enthusiast or simply looking for a way to unwind after a day exploring temples, you can enjoy superb recreational facilities including large outdoor pool, fitness center, spa, steamroom, massage, and sauna.

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Silverseas Silver Wind cruises in Asia




 

INNUMERABLE ASIA CHARMS WITH SILVERSEA LUXURY CRUISES

Sail through oriental Asia, from Singapore to Hong Kong, on this 11 day voyage onboard Silversea's Silver Wind.

Departing Singapore on 27 February 2015, Silver Wind sails to Thailand, through the tropical beach paradise of Koh Samui, before docking in the bustling capital of Bangkok for an overnight stay. By day, guests can discover the vibrant colours and flavours of this ancient city while drifting through the floating markets, before catching a tuk tuk through the city to marvel at the exquisite temples and lively nightlife.
 
Silver Wind continues her journey to Ho Chi Minh City, docking overnight in the fascinating city, located in the south of Vietnam on the Saigon River. Filled with remnants of its colonial French rule, the formerly christened 'Paris of Asia' is graced with beautiful villas, wide boulevards and traditional pagodas.

Sailing along the coast, Silver Wind then travels to Nha Trang, a destination famous for its impressive Cham Towers, which offer magnificent views of the picturesque seafront and the bustling city centre. Silver Wind then visits Chan May, the gateway to Da Nang, Hoi An and Hue, where guests can explore beautiful beaches, art galleries and historic buildings.  Silver Wind concludes her journey in Hong Kong, with guests disembarking on 10 March 2015.

Prices are per person starting from AU$6,650 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

 

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Helen Wongs Tours Shanghai


 

IT'S GOLF OR SPA TREATMENT – THE CHOICE IS YOURS

YOU don't have to be a golfer to enjoy the spoils of a day at a Chinese golf resort.

That's the message from Helen Wong's Tours, which has created a four-day Golf and Spa in Shanghai itinerary for its Surprising Shanghai program for 2015-2016.

"While one person is testing out the fairways, the other can expect to be pampered at a luxury day spa," said company founder and managing director Helen Wong.

"It's a perfect fit for couples who have different thoughts on how to spend their holiday time – golfing or relaxing," she said.

The leading China specialist of 28 years is offering the choices on an itinerary, priced from $970 per person, twin share, which also offers plenty of leisure time to explore Shanghai's fascinating shops, bars, restaurants and attractions.

Package includes accommodation with daily breakfast and transfers to and from the hotel and private transfers where specified.

In addition, Helen Wong's Tours has a five-day Shanghai Sensation package which, from $1030pp, twin share, includes accommodation with daily breakfast, two half-day guided tours (one to the historic water town Zhujiajiao with lunch), transfers to and from the hotel, and private  transfers where specified.

In each program, guests are transferred to the international airport aboard the Maglev, the world's fastest train.

The release of the new flyer follows Helen Wong's Tours launch of its new-look China and Vietnam brochure for 2015-2016 aimed at appealing to a wider audience of Australian travellers.

The refreshingly modern 92-page brochure combines value journeys to China with those in Vietnam and features a series of photographs taken by Australia's highly acclaimed panoramic photographer Ken Duncan on his two recent journeys with Helen Wong's Tours.

Details: Helen Wong's Tours, phone 1300 788 328 or (02) 9267 7833, www.helenwongstours.com Also check out our Facebook page.

 


P&O One Week Sale with Ecruising

Ecruising.travel has just released an exclusive sale promotion in conjunction with P&O sale week. Book a selected P&O sailing before February 12 and receive not one but three bonuses for booking through ecruising including, a free upgrade to an Interior Oceanview cabin, up to $100 bonus on board spending credit and a 50 percent reduction on the required deposit.



There are more than 200 cruise/land/air packages available. Destinations include Australia, South East Asia, Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia, Papa New Guinea, Solomon Islands, South Pacific and many more.

The majority of packages range in duration from seven nights to fourteen nights to suit those looking for a quick getaway to those with more time.

For more details check out http://www.ecruising.travel/results.aspx?d=1262 or speak to a reservations consultant on 1300-369-848.

Cape Town's Table Bay Hotel Food Foraging



A Bespoke Foraging Experience for Urban Hunter – Gatherers

Cape Town's The Table Bay hotel is introducing a new guest experience to allow food connoisseurs to discover authentic South Africa experiences and explore Cape Town's flora and fauna with the hotel's Executive Chef – Jocelyn Myers-Adam. The Table Bay guests will be able to join Jocelyn as she hosts customised 'foraging' expeditions on Table Mountain to be followed by her own cooking workshop to utilise the fruits of the expedition.

“The Cape's exquisite ecosystem boasts a diverse array of native plants that can be used creatively to enhance the flavours of food and even define dishes,” says Jocelyn who is recognised for putting The Table Bay hotel's new restaurant Camissa firmly on the Cape Town fine-dining map. “It is great to be able to highlight South African cuisine by sourcing beautiful local products and creating dishes that will showcase them in their full glory.”

The foraging experiences are guided by recognized local urban hunter-gatherer Charles Standing, who has developed an intricate knowledge of the Cape's landscape and its opportunities to harvest wild plants for culinary use.

Sherwin Banda, General Manager at the Table Bay Hotel comments: “Foragers, depending on the season, are taken on informative and scenic tours of some of Cape Town's beautiful areas, from Rondebosh and Tamboerskloof, to Sea Point and Cape Point. Each experience is unique and will leave lasting memories.”

Jocelyn regularly forages for herbs and plants for use in Camissa's kitchen, incorporating seasonal plants into her cooking to add unique flavours to dishes. For instance, edible flowers like hibiscus blooms, with their cranberry-like flavour and citrus overtones, are used as a colourful and delightful addition to salads, while Nasturtium blossom with their sweet yet spicy flavour, are an ideal ingredient for open sandwiches and savoury appetisers.

Num Nums foraged from the nearby V&A Waterfront are innovatively used on a compote for her signature pork belly dish, while Dune Spinach, with its interesting meaty texture and sea flavour, foraged in Sea Point, can be used to draw out flavours in a variety of meat and fish dishes.

Jocelyn says: “In November I love to add buchu to dishes. Its leaves release an amazing aroma similar to the blackcurrant which add a unique flavour to savoury and sweet dishes.”

The Table Bay hotel foraging expeditions will appeal to the innate hunter-gatherers who are keen to participate in interactive experiences to learn more about reaping the fruits of our natural environment to be creative in the kitchen.

The foraging expeditions are run for groups of about four people and available for all Table Bay Hotel guests subject to availability. Price on request.

For reservations, please contact www.suninternational.com or Tel: +27 11 780 7878.


Hotels.com calls on Aussies to put the ‘hot’ back in their hotel rooms this Valentine’s Day



Aussies fizzle not sizzle in the sack

Aussies aren’t as spicy between the hotel bed sheets as their Latin counterparts, but aren’t as boring as the Japanese, according to new research conducted by hotels expert Hotels.com.

Apparently you’re more likely to find Aussies watching TV or movies in their hotel bed than making love, with almost three-quarters of us admitting to finding the tele more titillating.

According to the Hotels.com global survey of 25 countries, besides sleeping, 70% of Spanish respondents admit to spending time in their hotel bed making love compared to only 39% of Australians (in 19th position with China). Coming in last place, only 15% of Japanese admitted to heavy petting in their hotel room.

Highlighting the extent of the romantic mediocrity of Australians’ hotel escapades, 26% said the quirkiest thing they’ve done in a hotel lift is pass gas, with only 6% admitting to making love in a hotel lift. Twenty per cent of Indian respondents admit to love making in a hotel lift, the highest group in the survey.

On a slightly more encouraging note, if we did have one guilt-free day to spend in a hotel, spending time in bed with a partner would be top of the list for Australians (34%) followed by ordering the room service menu in its entirety (27%). A whopping sixty-five per cent of Brazilian respondents said they would choose to spend time in bed with a partner when staying in a hotel.

Commenting on Australians’ lacklustre ratings in the hotel romance department, Katherine Cole, Regional Director for Australia, New Zealand & Singapore, said: “This Valentine’s Day, we’re calling on Aussies to put the ‘hot’ back into their hotel rooms and lift the nation’s reputation in the romance stakes. With a wide range of accommodation choices,Hotels.com is offering some red hot Valentine’s Day hotel deals, so there’s no better time to surprise your partner with a romantic hotel getaway.”

For Aussies planning on travelling to one of the nation’s top 10 domestic destinations this Valentine’s Day weekend,Hotels.com has rounded up the best deals to get hot with their other half:

Uluru, Northern Territory

Fall in love all over again under the desert sky with a romantic dinner for two with the Sounds of Silence. You’ll be sure to impress your date as your unique outback experience begins with canapés and chilled sparkling wine served on a viewing platform overlooking the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. As the sun sets and darkness falls, listen to the sound of a didgeridoo and immerse yourself in ancient Aboriginal culture as you sample delicious outback inspired cuisine.

Rooms at Sails in the Desert in Yulara start at $A460 per room per night (14.02.2015)*. To book a stay at Sails in the Desert in Yulara, visit: http://au.hotels.com/ho401328/sails-in-the-desert-a-member-of-pullman-hotels-yulara-australia/ or call 1800 687 236

Sydney, New South Wales

Get wild this Valentine’s Day with a romantic dinner under the stars at the Wild Life Sydney Zoo in Darling Harbour. Enjoy canapés, dinner and beverages alongside some of Sydney’s cutest Koala’s, Wallabies and Kangaroos. If you would prefer something a little more intimate, why not soak up the ambience and style of Woolloomooloo Wharf and indulge in a three course meal at Otto Ristorante or China Doll, some of Sydney’s finest eateries. Or for something a little more casual indulge in a romantic picnic and get back to nature at the magical Sydney Botanical Gardens or Centennial Park.

Rooms at The Westin in Sydney start at $A370 per room per night (14.02.2015)*. To book a stay at The Westin in Sydney, visit http://au.hotels.com/ho150943/the-westin-sydney-sydney-australia/ or call 1800 687 236

Hobart, Tasmania

For those couples looking for something a little different, Hobart has the answer. Start your date with a relaxing ferry ride down the Derwent River and visit the infamous Museum of Old and New Art (MONA). While you’re there enjoy a romantic sunset beneath the recently opened Skyspace by James Turrell, which is sure to take sunsets to a new level. This wonderfully quirky Valentine’s Day experience can be topped off with a hand-in-hand stroll around the harbour or a visit to the Nant Whiskey bar for authentic Tasmanian highland whiskey.

Rooms at the Hotel Grand Chancellor Hobart start at $A299 per room per night (14.02.2015)*. To book a stay at Hotel Grand Chancellor Hobart, visit: http://au.hotels.com/ho140856/hotel-grand-chancellor-hobart-hobart-australia/ or call 1800 687 236

Melbourne, Victoria

This quirky city, filled with endless laneways never ceases to inspire the romantic in all of us. You’ll be sure to woo your Valentine with a romantic dinner for two at Neil Perry’s Rosetta. This lavish Italian ristorante screams luxury and is the perfect place to confess your love this Valentine’s Day. But make sure you make an early reservation so you can head over to the Moonlight cinema’s and catch a screening of Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Couples can get cosy under the stars and enjoy this classic romantic flick in the Royal Botanic Gardens.

Rooms at The Langham in Melbourne start at $A550 per room per night (14.02.2015)*. To book a stay at The Langham in Melbourne, visit: http://au.hotels.com/ho227601/the-langham-melbourne-southbank-australia/ or call 1800 687 236

Port Douglas, Queensland

A Valentine’s Day in Port Douglas will be one to remember. Kick off your romantic adventure with a cruise out to the Great Barrier Reef and discover a whole other universe below the water’s surface or better still, explore it from the sky with a helicopter ride giving you the perfect opportunity to cuddle up to your date. Visit the majestic Daintree Rainforest and get up close to native Australian wildlife or hit the beach with your beau and soak up the relaxing atmosphere in this charmed corner of the world.

Rooms at the QT Port Douglas start at $A159 per room per night (14.02.2015)*. To book a stay at the QT Port Douglas, visit:http://au.hotels.com/ho258193/qt-port-douglas-port-douglas-australia/ or call 1800 687 236

Scoot’s first B787 commercial service arrives in Perth

#flyscoot

Dream Start to Perth!




Scoot's first Boeing 787 Dreamliner "Dream Start" welcomed with a water cannon salute

Inset: Dream Start's touch down at Perth Airport



Scoot, Asia/Pacific's Best Low Cost Airline[1], yesterday launched commercial service with its first Boeing 787 Dreamliner service from Singapore to Perth.

Scoot's first 787-9, named "Dream Start", touched down as scheduled at Perth Airport at 6:15pm, 5th February, and was welcomed with a traditional water cannon salute.

Officials from Perth Airport and Tourism Western Australia were among the welcome party to receive Dream Start and its guests from Singapore.

"The entry into commercial service of Scoot's 787 Dreamliner is the culmination of many years of preparation. It is an historic occasion for Scoot, and it is wonderful to be welcomed with such enthusiasm by the city of Perth," said Campbell Wilson, Scoot's CEO.

Campbell added, "Dream Start, like the 19 other 787s to follow over the next few years, is a game changer for Scoot. These aircraft will triple our fleet size, allow us to launch new destinations, add frequencies and continue offering unbeatable value airfares. With newly designed seats, inflight Internet connectivity and in-seat power, as well as larger windows, better humidity and cabin pressure, larger overhead luggage bins, Scoot's 787 sets a new standard in low-cost travel."

In addition to Perth, Scoot's 787 will be deployed to Hong Kong from today. All other Scoot destinations will progressively convert to 787 between now and August 2015, at which point Scoot will become the first airline in the world to operate an all-787 fleet.


Scoot's 787 Milestones:

With Dream Start's first commercial flight to Perth, it marks another significant moment in the series of milestones of Scoot's fleet renewal to the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

October 2012 : Scoot signs order to acquire 20 Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft

June 2013 : Scoot selects Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engine to power 787 fleet

September 2014 : Scoot starts 787 pilot training in Singapore

: Scoot's first 787 enters production in Seattle, USA

October 2014 : Scoot's Japan-built fuselage section blessed at a traditional Shinto

ceremony in Nagoya, Japan

: Roll out of Scoot's 787 in Seattle, USA (Watch video)

January 2015 : Unveiling of Scoot's Roll-Royce Trent 1000 engine built in Singapore

: Scoot's first 787 delivered in Seattle, USA

February 2015 : Arrival of Scoot's 787 in Singapore

: First commercial service from Singapore to Perth and Hong Kong


To access promotional fares, visit www.flyscoot.com. To take part in Scoot's future promotions and get advance notice of special fares, "Like" Scoot on Facebook at www.facebook.com/flyscoot or sign up to the mailing list at www.flyscoot.com.


[1] Scoot was voted 2015 Best Low Cost Airline (Asia/Pacific) by AirlineRatings.com.

Monday, 9 February 2015

Most Romantic Location in Sydney This Valentine's Day

Second isn't going to cut it this year so Centennial Parklands is pulling out all the stops to take over Royal Botanic Gardens as the most romantic location in Sydney, as voted by Sydneysiders. Here are a few of the great reasons why you should take your loved to Centennial Park on Valentine's Day.



From romantic horse rides, one-stop-shop gourmet picnic hampers, and outdoor moonlit movies, Centennial Park offers some of the most picturesque landscapes to spend quality time with your partner. Book one or more of the offers below online, hassle-free and spend the day exploring the timeless Centennial Park.

Idea #1: Enjoy a special gourmet picnic in the Park

Let us do everything for you! We have partnered with Sydney Pop Up Picnic to bring you a very special Centennial Park Valentine's Picnic package. With a choice of two menus, this great offer includes not only a gourmet feast, but comes with a hamper, picnic rug, plates, cutlery and champagne flutes. We've even arranged for a picnic pick-up point right in Centennial Park!
Find out more and book a memorable picnic in Sydney's most romantic park.

Idea #2: Visit our #GrassyHeart for a romantic selfie

Love birds are invited to share the love and take a #GrassyHeart romantic selfie in Centennial Park. We're creating a 16 metre wide grass heart, etched in the beautiful setting of the stunning Column Garden.
Don't forget to share your images with us by using the #GrassyHearthashtag on social media.

Idea #3: Cuddle up with a movie under the stars

What better experience to enjoy on Valentine's Day than one of the most romantic movies under the stars - Breakfast at Tiffany's. Moonlight Cinema will be screening what is considered perhaps the greatest of all romantic-comedies. Starring Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard, tickets to the night will include a complimentary glass of Lindeman's Early Harvest sparkling on arrival!
Find out more and book your tickets online now.

Idea #4: Horse ride and hamper

Step up your romantic picnic game a notch and add a couples horse ride around Centennial Park. Thanks to Sydney Pop Up Picnic and Eastside Riding Academy, for $300 you can purchase a 2-person Park Ride and a gourmet hamper.
Find out more and book by phoning (02) 9360 7521 or info@eastsideriding.com.au

WIN a Valentine's Day picnic hamper for two, worth $149!

Centennial Parklands is offering a lucky couple the chance to win one of Pop Up Picnic's gourmet hampers so all you need to do on the day is bring your sweetheart! Enter here. Entries close Tuesday 10 February 2015.

For more information about Centennial Parklands visit www.centennialparklands.com.au/valentine

Saturday, 7 February 2015

Hotels.com deal of the week: Jag Escape Franz Alpine Retreat



Jag Escape Franz Alpine Retreat

Save 40% on your stay

Visit www.hotels.com for more details or call ‎1800 912 386‎
                                                           
Jag Escape Franz Alpine Retreat Rooms & Accommodation 4*

Save 40% on your stay

Book by: 31 March 2015

Stay by: 1 March 2015 – 31 March 2015

Prices from: AU $228 per night


Set amongst the foothills of one of New Zealand's most best kept secrets, the Jag Escape Franz Alpine Retreat offers a peaceful getaway where you can soak up the atmosphere in the Southern Alps. Just a short five minute drive to Franz Joseph town, you have endless dining options and adventure activities at your fingertips. Clip on your crampons and take a walk on the icy side with a hike up the Franz Joseph Glacier, or indulge in a helicopter ride which is set to take your breath away with miraculous views from above. With fully equipped modern kitchens, satellite TV and tea and coffee making facilities the Jag Escape Franz Alpine Retreat is the perfect place for a cool, peaceful getaway.

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


 

Sculpture at Scenic World 2015 packages


Arts and nature packaged into one memorable family escape for Sculpture at Scenic World 2015

Take a creative family escape to the Blue Mountains for Sculpture at Scenic World 2015 and explore 32 unique sculptures curated within Scenic World's Jurassic rainforest.

Ken Unsworth's commissioned sculpture, Harlequin's Shuttle,
featured at Sculpture at Scenic World 2014
Now in its fourth year, the exhibition (15 April – 10 May 2015) has partnered with leading Blue Mountains hotels and resorts to offer a range of accommodation packages for this major Australian cultural event. From the iconic Hydro Majestic to the landmark Carrington Hotel, or the Fairmont Resort, Lilianfels Resort & Spa, Echoes Boutique Hotel, and Parklands Country Gardens and Lodges, visitors can book an overnight stay, experiencing both the exhibition and autumn in the Blue Mountains.

The exhibition's 2015 Public Program offers exciting opportunities for art lovers, enthusiasts, children and families. Participants will learn new skills, gain insights, and engage in open forums. Highlights include free guided tours for the general public – including a tour tailored for families – and Artist Talks providing an opportunity to engage in lively discussions with a selection of exhibiting artists including New Zealand artist Lang Ea, Wollongong artist Greer Taylor, and Northern Beaches artist Jane Gillings.

This year, the Sculpture Projects initiative presents an in depth look at materials artist use to create their works in a program called metalheads. Featuring notable sculptors working with metal, works will be exhibited at three Katoomba venues: the Carrington Hotel, the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre forecourt, and Scenic World's plaza.

The highly anticipated Sculpture for Small People returns with an exciting new program. The hour-long workshops are aimed at children aged 3 to 6 years and 6 to 9 years. The workshops are a great opportunity for children to engage with the exhibiting artists in a fun atmosphere. There is a range of skills children can learn, from clay sculpture with Upper North Shore based artists Amanda Hale and Karen Farrell, to totem pole design and creation with local Blue Mountains artist Hannah Surtees.

The program will also include an all-day family drop-in 'Mini Miner's Hut Workshop' on the 19th of April. Families are encouraged to come along and create a colourful, three-dimensional cardboard cubby-house to take home, based on the wonderful attraction of the historic Miner's Hut on the rainforest walk.

In another first the indoor component of the exhibition, Sculpture Otherwise, will show in the Blue Mountains City Art Gallery's main gallery space. Ticketed entry into Sculpture at Scenic World will include entry into the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre with guided tours available.


Scenic World entry prices:
Sculpture at Scenic World ticket prices are $35 for adults, $18 for children (3-14 years), $88 for a family (2 adults + 5 children) and $32 concession. Multiple entry season passes are available for Adult $59, Child $25 and Family $143.

Ticket price includes exhibition entry; unlimited rides on the Scenic Railway, Skyway, Cableway and Walkway; and entry into the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre. Pre-purchased tickets to Sculpture for Small People are $10 per workshop including materials.


Sculpture at Scenic World 2015 Accommodation Packages
All packages are subject to availability. Family packages are based on 2 x adults & 2 x children under 14.

Fairmont Resort
Family packages from $329;

·       Sculpture at Scenic World pass - includes unlimited rides on the new Scenic Railway, Skyway, Cableway + entry to the Exhibition;
·       Sculpture at Scenic World pass includes entry to the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre;
·       Accommodation Standard room;
·       Buffet breakfast in Jamison's Restaurant;
·       ^Family package based on 2 x adults and 2 x children under 12.

The Carrington Hotel

Colonial package $207.50 for 2 adults or $299 for Family
Premier package $257.50 for 2 adults: or $349 for Family;

·       Sculpture at Scenic World pass - includes unlimited rides on the new Scenic Railway, Skyway, Cableway + entry to the Exhibition;
·       Sculpture at Scenic World pass includes entry to the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre;
·       Overnight accommodation in a Premier View Spa Room or Colonial Room (standard ensuite room );
·       Continental Breakfast in the Grand Dining Room;
·       Hotel wide wifi.

Lilianfels Resort & Spa

Packages from $359 for 2 adults and from $439 per night for Family;

·       Sculpture at Scenic World pass - includes unlimited rides on the new Scenic Railway, Skyway, Cableway + entry to the Exhibition;
·       Sculpture at Scenic World pass includes entry to the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre;
·       Overnight accommodation for two adults;
·       Full buffet breakfast for two in Orangery Restaurant;
·       Complimentary WiFi access and daily newspaper;
·       Complimentary use of all Resort leisure facilities.

Echoes Boutique Hotel

Packages from $409;

·       Sculpture at Scenic World pass - includes unlimited rides on the new Scenic Railway, Skyway, Cableway + entry to the Exhibition;
·       Sculpture at Scenic World pass includes entry to the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre;
·       Overnight accommodation for two adults;
·       Full breakfast for two in Echoes Restaurant;
·       Complimentary WiFi access and daily newspaper;
·       Complimentary use of all leisure facilities at Lilianfels Resort & Spa.

Parklands Country Gardens & Lodges

Packages from $359;

·       Sculpture at Scenic World pass - includes unlimited rides on the new Scenic Railway, Skyway, Cableway + entry to the Exhibition;
·       Sculpture at Scenic World pass includes entry to the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre;
·       Overnight accommodation for two adults;
·       Full breakfast for two in Lakeview Restaurant;
·       Complimentary WiFi access and daily newspaper.

Hydro Majestic

Packages from $339;

·       Sculpture at Scenic World pass - includes unlimited rides on the new Scenic Railway, Skyway, Cableway + entry to the Exhibition;
·       Sculpture at Scenic World pass includes entry to the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre;
·       Overnight accommodation for two adults;
·       Full breakfast for two in Belgravia Lobby Lounge;
·       High tea for two in the Wintergarden;
·       Complimentary WiFi access and daily newspaper.


For exhibition information, ticketing and packages visit www.scenicworld.com.au/sculpture



Save on these SkiJapan offers



SkiJapan.com has taken an additional 10% off its selected apartments on selected dates in Hirafu Village from 7 March – 6 April 2015.

Marcus Williams General Manager Australia & Hong Kong and Global Business Development Manager said:"Now is a great time to book one of our 'Springalicious' ski holidays. One good example is a very affordable package at one of our popular properties in the ski town that services the interconnected Niseko ski areas. This holiday would have cost $1,100 per person in peak season so its about a saving of $300 per person.

"Plus Kids under 6 years of age get free ski lift passes and any children aged between 2-14 years can obtain free ski rental if booking in conjunction with adult rental for same duration.
"Seven nights accommodation for four guests staying at Yotei Cottage (one bedroom + loft) located in picturesque costs from $809 per person. Also included in this 'Springalicious' special is a six day all mountain ski lift pass, return airport transfers, airport meet & greet and the services of SkiJapan.com's Tour Office.

For more details SkiJapan.com – The Japan Snow Specialist

Phone: 1300 137 411 Web: www.SkiJapan.com

Friday, 6 February 2015

Solo Sailors Save $1000 on Japan Fly-Cruise Packages



Cruise Express has shaved $1000 off solo traveller fares for three fly-cruise tour packages in Japan this July and August.

The three packages all offer flights to Japan, a cruise to Japanese ports aboard the Japanese-built Diamond Princess and a hosted land tour that includes iconic Mt Fuji, rides on three bullet trains and the temples and gardens of Tokyo and Kyoto.

The three packages are:

* A 17-day itinerary departing Australia August 22, 2015, including return flights to Tokyo, a seven-day land tour with 12 meals in Japan and a nine-night, round-trip cruise from Tokyo aboard Diamond Princess to the Japanese cities of Akita, Aomari and Hakodate and also Vladivostiok in Russia, with a free Cruise Express shore tour also offered at each of the four ports. The package is now available for solo travellers from $7690 in an inside cabin– a $1000 saving. Fares are also available from $6790 per person, twin-share.

* A 39-day itinerary departing Australia August 22, 2015, which will see passengers sail back to Australia after their nine-night cruise in Japan. The package includes a six-day land tour with 12 meals in Japan and the nine-night, round-trip cruise from Tokyo aboard Diamond Princess to the Japanese cities of Akita, Aomari and Hakodate and also Vladivostiok in Russia - with a free Cruise Express shore tour also offered at each of the four ports. Passengers then remain aboard Diamond Princess for another 23 nights as they cruise back to Sydney via Osaka, Xiamen in China, Hong Kong, Nha Trang and Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam, Singapore, Bali and Darwin. The total package is now available for solo travellers from $12,490 in an inside cabin– a $1000 saving. Fares are also available from $8990 per person, twin-share.

* There is also limited availability on an 18-day itinerary departing Australia July 11, 2015, including return flights to Tokyo, an eight-day land tour with 12 meals in Japan and a nine-night, round-trip cruise from Tokyo aboard Diamond Princess to the Japanese cities of Kushiro, Otaru, Hakodate and Aomori and also the remote port of Korsakov in Russia, with a free Cruise Express shore tour also offered at each of the five ports. The package is priced for solo travellers from $7990 in an inside cabin– a $1000 saving. For twin-share, fares are from $6990 per person.

All fares are available until sold out.

Call Cruise Express on 1300 764 509 or visit www.cruiseexpress.com.au.

Bali's Wedding Destination, Semara Luxury Villa Resort, has a New Range of Packages for Couples

One of Bali's most exquisite wedding destinations, Semara Luxury Villa Resort Uluwatu, has unveiled a new range of packages for couples lucky enough to get engaged over the New Year and Valentine's Day period.


The breathtaking cliff-top retreat where supermodel Jennifer Hawkins and Jake Hall famously wed in 2013 offers flexibility for all kinds of weddings, catering for parties of 12 to 150.

A perfect venue for both the ceremony and reception, the tropical sanctuary of Semara Uluwatu overlooks stunning white sandy beaches and the crystal clear water of the Indian Ocean.

Weddings can range from one special day to a week long celebration where friends and family can also enjoy a fantastic holiday as destination weddings continue to grow in popularity as an alternative to formal weddings at home.

Bali is one of the most desirable destinations for weddings worldwide due to its accessibility, amazing beauty and the stunning venues on offer.

Semara Uluwatu's specialist events team can tailor wedding packages to exact specifications to ensure a unique and memorable event from world class catering and service, entertainment, even ice sculptures and fabulous fireworks – nothing is too much trouble.

The exclusive private resort has a choice of seven sensational and unique villas plus Selatan cliff top restaurant and Finns Beach Club.

For couples getting married in 2016 the resort is offering 2015 accommodation and event pricing if booked before 31 March 2015.

The savings by booking the early bird offer mean extra cash in budget to splurge on those personalised special touches for the big day and more poolside cocktails when the ceremony's over.

For bookings or further information visit http://www.semarauluwatu.com/events



SEMARA LUXURY VILLA RESORT

Jalan Pantai Selatan Gau, Banjar Wijaya Kusuma

Ungasan 80362 Bali, Indonesia

P +62 (361) 848 2111 | E : events.uluwatu@semararesorts.com
www.semarauluwatu.com

Thursday, 5 February 2015

Travel Deal: A Wild Jungle Safari in North Sumatra

For the month of February, we've 10-15% of our small group Wild Jungle Safari in North Sumatra leaving in March 2015. This 12-day RAW traditional adventure has it all – walking with orphan elephants into the lush jungle, river tubing down the beautiful rivers, exploring the famous Bat Cave to getting up close and personal with the 'man of the forest', the orangutan!

Copyright: Raw Wildlife Encounters

The safari begins at Tangkahan, famous for its community-based ecotourism. On the way, you'll stop off at Batang Sarangan to explore the local markets and experience the colour and richness of the Karonese culture. At Bukit Lawang, you'll aim to witness the wild orangutans in the area.

Throughout the tour, you'll stay in comfortable eco lodges, jungle caves and a campsite at Bukit Lawang, which is the home of several species of primates, including the Thomas Leaf Monkey and endangered Orangutan.

This 12-day tours includes:

  • Bathing and hand-feeding elephants
  • Witnessing of wild orangutans
  • River tubing from village to village
  • Walking with orphan elephants through jungles to secluded waterfall caves
  • Exploring Bat Cave
  • Overnighting under a waterfall cave
  • Immersing yourself into village life and enjoying the gracious hospitality of the Karonese people
  • Observing a multitude of wildlife, including gibbons, monkeys, elephants, birds and of course the gorgeous orangutans.


There is so much on this jungle safari to experience and learn, as you attune your senses to the wonderful sights and sounds of the stunning Sumatran landscape. Your guide for the tour is a wildlife professional, and she will be supported by the local guides of Tangkahan. So escape to the jungles of North Sumatra this March for only $3240 single or $2993 twin share.

To book, visit http://www.rawildlife.com.au/tours or emailinfo@rawildlife.com.au.

*Conditions apply. Flights additional. Bookings from now until 28th February, 2015. Six spots only.

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