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COPENHAGEN p. 64 COSTA RICA p. 74 MONACO p. 66 NEW ZEALAND p. 70 OKINAWA p. 62 PRETORIA p. 65 SEATTLE p. 58 STOCKHOLM p. 52

THE WELLNESS ISSUE Embark on a quest for wellness at the world’s finest spas. p. 40


letter from the editor ®

EDITORIAL Editor in Chief KIMBERLY KROL kim.krol@globaltravelerusa.com

MIND, BODY AND SOUL WELLNESS CAN MEAN MANY THINGS to people. For some, it’s as simple as hearing the sound of crashing waves and connecting with nature, while to others it is a yoga retreat in India or a strict diet. Whichever way or ways you define wellness in your own life, this issue is here to deliver to you the top WORK AND PLAY: Kimberly Krol in Branson, Mo., attending the North American Travel Journalist destinations around the globe Association conference for seeking balance in mind, PHOTO: © KIMBERLY KROL body and soul. On a recent trip to Branson, Mo., to attend the North American Travel Journalist Association conference, I was reminded of the importance of seeking peace. On the last day, after several mornings of sessions and other activities — including riding the world’s fastest, tallest, steepest and newest spinning roller coaster — I was pleased to find myself in the center of Dogwood Canyon Nature Park, surrounded by flowing water, blooming foliage, animals and a peaceful calm. After the adrenaline rush of the previous day, it was nice to find a balanced center once again. For suggestions on where you can definitely get your Zen on, turn to pages 40 and 44, where we explore the world’s best spas (tough assignment to research for Debra Bokur) and wellness festivals around the globe, respectively. For more on some of the healthiest, wellness-focused hot spots on the planet, we take a look at Perth, Stockholm, Seattle, Okinawa, Copenhagen, Pretoria, Monaco, New Zealand and Costa Rica on the following pages. Next month, in the thick of the summer travel season, we give you something to consider for your next vacation as we look at Airbnb versus hotels. Delve into the pros and cons before jetting off with us to Dubai, Cabo San Lucas and PyeongChang, just to name a few. Namaste!

Vice President/Digital Director KATIE SKRZEK katie.skrzek@globaltravelerusa.com Senior Editor JANICE HECHT jan.hecht@globaltravelerusa.com Associate Editor/Copy Editor PATRICIA VANIKIOTIS patty.vanikiotis@globaltravelerusa.com Associate Editor ANGELIQUE PLATAS angelique.platas@globaltravelerusa.com Associate Digital Content Producer DEBRA BOKUR debra.bokur@globaltravelerusa.com News Editor ALLIE MOORE allie.moore@globaltravelerusa.com Intern NIA SCOTT intern@globaltravelerusa.com

ART Art Director TRACEY CULLEN tracey.cullen@globaltravelerusa.com Staff Photographer CHRISTOPHER P. OTTAUNICK christopher@globaltravelerusa.com Special Events Video Editor VANCE PICCIN

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er South Try tend ef at African be ll & Bar, Forti Gri ender Turn ’n T Cloud and Red , ak Ranch Spur Ste Central located in ead more Square. R toria on about Pre page 65.

Circulation Director MICHELE SHANNON Circulation Manager ANNA PUDZIANOWSKI Research Consultant SHARON STERNE ADVISORY BOARD Chairman MICHAEL DONAHUE, COO MICHAEL KIELY, President CARLOS CAPPUCCIO, Executive Vice President GARY OSWALD, Deputy Vice President Aviation EDWARD JEFFERSON, Deputy Vice President Accommodations STEPHEN DOHERTY, Deputy Director Destinations WAYNE TALLMAN, Vice President Special Events/Photography CHRISTOPHER OTTAUNICK, Secretary MARK LANE, Research Director FRANK LOVERME, Treasurer KEVIN RYAN, Director of Technology BOB HANCOCK, Director of Digital Advancement JARED TORGAN

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GET UP AND GO WITH 16 ISSUES A YEAR AND three digital platforms (globaltraveler usa.com, trazeetravel.com and whereverfamily.com) and now touring recommendations through FX Excursions, we have a busy summer ahead of us. Our first FX Excursion is up on all digital platforms and available to book through our esteemed new partner, Goway Travel. This October I will host a trip to IN GOOD COMPANY: Antalya, Turkey, for a combination Francis X Gallagher out for dinner in Seoul, joined by Zion and of historic touring of ancient cities Franco X. Hwang, children of Gabshin Hwang, GT's South Korea and civilizations and some of the best representative little-known golf courses on the side. PHOTO: © FRANCIS X. GALLAGHER To date, we have as many golfers as non-golfers on this trip and have a packed schedule. What better way to travel than on Turkish Airlines (which flies to more countries than any other airline in the world) and spend some quality time with yours truly? Please check out FX Excursions from any of our platforms and book now — this will be a trip of a lifetime. After the most recent Korean Air incident, there has to be an intervention. First there was “Nutgate,” in which one of the Korean Air “royals” forced a commercial passenger jet to return to a U.S. gate because the macadamia nuts were not served on a dish. Now another member of the “royal family” flew off the handle in a marketing meeting and tossed water in the face of an advertising agency executive. Enough is enough! As a frequent traveler to Korea and as a person who loves the Korean people and their culture, these “royals” are not representative of them at all. Something must be done; sweeping this under the carpet is not the answer. I recently flew Asiana Airlines’ Airbus A380 business class from JFK to Seoul (see my review in this issue), and as a passenger I was treated like a royal. Having flown Asiana’s first-class product many times, I can tell you the business class is not a letdown, but first class is a special treat. So support those who treat you like royalty and enjoy a top flight to Asia on Asiana. Our team is gearing up for the Trazee Awards, presented Aug. 14 in San Diego during the Global Business Travel Association conference. We will hold our reception at the University Club Atop Symphony Towers. You are all welcome to attend — with or without nuts, and we will have water for all (for drinking purposes only). Soon we will also announce the Wherever Awards, reader-voted awards from whereverfamily.com, the only American-based family travel platform. Comparing all these travelers’ favorites from business to millennials to family would make for an interesting article! Enjoy your flights, and select those who treat you well.

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contents

June 2018 40

44

52

FEATURES

BUSINESS DESTINATIONS

40 State of Bliss Embark on a quest for wellness at the world’s finest spas.

52 Destination One: Stockholm The Swedish capital embraces entrepreneurship and livability.

44 Good Vibrations Focus on fitness and find like minds at wellness festivals around the world.

58 Stateside: Seattle Upgrades and initiatives put Seattle at the forefront of healthy living.

48 Sunny Side Up All’s well in Perth, where business is always a pleasure.

62 9–5: Okinawa Merge business and leisure in a city of style and comfort.

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64 After 5: Copenhagen Copenhagen combines good times with good health.

JUNE 2018

ON THE COVER globaltravelerusa.com | $4.99

June 2018

COPENHAGEN p. 64 COSTA RICA p. 74 MONACO p. 66 NEW ZEALAND p. 70 OKINAWA p. 62 PRETORIA p. 65 SEATTLE p. 58 STOCKHOLM p. 52

THE WELLNESS ISSUE Embark on a quest for wellness at the world’s finest spas. p. 40

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COVER PHOTO: © ADLER THERMAE

PHOTOS: © ADLER THERMAE, © WELLFEST/MARC O'SULLIVAN, © SCANRAIL | DREAMSTIME.COM

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June 2018

66

74

26

LIFESTYLE

CONNECTIONS

LEISURE DESTINATIONS

26 Technology 28 Wine & Spirits 30 Wealth 31 Tours 32 Spas 34 Golf 36 Chefs 38 Cruising 78 LGBTQ 80 Health

10 13 16 20

65 Neighborhoods: Pretoria Explore the harmonious lifestyle of Pretoria’s Menlyn Maine.

Mail Call News Reviews One on One Hyatt 22 One on One Ponant Cruises 79 Airport Update 82 Past & Present

66 Friends & Family: Monaco Wealth and well-being set the stage for a memorable getaway in Monaco. 70 Bucket List: New Zealand Beginning to end, New Zealand’s Te Araroa Trail proves an epic journey. 74 Kicking Back: Costa Rica Recharge in Costa Rica’s lush playground of beaches, rainforests and volcanoes.

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FX E X P R E S S

P U B L I C AT I O N S , I N C .

Global Traveler and Globility are registered trademarks of Global Traveler magazine and of its parent company, FXExpress Publications, Inc. Global Traveler is not affiliated with any commercial interests within the travel industry. The opinions expressed by contributors are not necessarily those of the publisher, nor can the publisher accept responsibility for errors or omissions. The magazine cannot accept responsibility for unsolicited articles, photographs or other material. AAM member 04-0361-2. AAM audited circulation 111,517. ISSN 1551-7187 ©2018 FXExpress Publications, Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part of text, photographs or illustrations without permission of the publisher is strictly prohibited.

PHOTOS: © HUGOHT | DREAMSTIME.COM, © MARCEL DE GRIJS | DREAMSTIME.COM, © ORAL-B, © KETEL ONE VODKA

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mail call APRIL Q&A WITH JULIE HAUPIN, ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE

Q&A WITH KIMBERLY KROL, EDITOR IN CHIEF

In our April 2018 issue, account executive Julie Haupin talked about her new puppy, Lacie, and the growing number of pet-friendly hotels and airports. Her story inspired the questions: Have you taken a pet on an airplane? If so, do you have any tips on how to make it a smooth ride?

Email us: letters@globaltravelerusa.com

packed dog food, a water canister and plenty of pee pads (for the dog, not me!). I am putting all my faith in Delta and hope I covered all scenarios. Should I be lucky enough to have my letter printed, I will send a follow-up with the day’s events. ADRIENNE SIMNOCK, Boca Raton, Fla., via email

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December 2017

COLOMBIA p. 96 DOHA p. 76 ITALIAN RIVIERA p. 98 MUMBAI p. 84 OSLO p. 86 PORTLAND p. 82 RHODES p. 90 TOKYO p. 92

CELEBRATE! Announcing the winners of the 14th annual GT Tested Reader Survey awards. p. 44

LETTER TO THE PUBLISHER An avid reader wrote in with a few words.

We haven’t met, but I wanted to say congratulations on your wonderful December 2017 publication. I live in Sydney, Australia, and subscribed to your publication for many years. My original subscription resulted from my United Airlines membership promotion, and I have never looked back since that time! I hope you don’t mind my reaching out to you directly, but I did want to reflect on your One on One articles and travel-related awards in particular. Your narratives are incisive and refresh my mind as to the endless possibilities out there for a better travel experience based on your team’s commentary. Once again, congratulations on the editorial and fact-based quality of your magazine. I hope one day our paths may cross as we continue our wonderful travels around this amazing globe.

OVERTOURISM STRIKES ASIAN GEM

JOHN MCLEOD, via email

SAM WARRINGTON, via email

In our April 12 eFlyer USA, we discussed the overtourism of Asia and what could be next for these trending locales. With such hot spots as Koh Phi Phi Leh and its surrounding Maya Bay forced to temporarily close due to mass tourism, it got a few of our readers thinking. The problem with these incredible islands and far-off destinations is everyone wants to see them and experience the beauty firsthand. This is certainly occurring in Asia and across the rest of the world as well. The quaint town [sic] of Cinque Terre, Italy, was also forced to limit tourist visits. Part of the charm of these small towns and beaches is they are remote and off-the-beaten-path, [which is] also why they can’t accommodate the flood of tourists. Seems like the only solution for now is to limit travel.

CONTACT GT Do you have a story to share? Thoughts on a recent GT article? Email us: letters@globaltravelerusa.com or write to Letters to the Editor, 310 Floral Vale Blvd., Yardley, PA 19067 Letters must be written exclusively to Global Traveler and must include your full name, mailing address and contact phone number. Letters become the property of Global Traveler. We cannot respond to every letter. Global Traveler reserves the right to edit letters to the editor for length and clarity. The opinions expressed in Mail Call are not necessarily those of Global Traveler, and Global Traveler cannot accept responsibility for errors or omissions.

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PHOTOS: © MDOROTTYA | DREAMSTIME.COM

I read with interest and nervous anticipation the Q&A in April’s GT. I just bought a beautiful, small Havanese puppy, and today is his first flight, plus mine with a puppy. We are traveling to LaGuardia Airport from Fort Lauderdale, only a three-hour flight. “What can go wrong?” I ask myself. The answer is, “Lots!” So far I purchased a puppycarrying backpack, bought a first-class seat (more room), paid $125 each way for the puppy and registered him as an emotional support animal. But reading all of the recent blurbs on the subject, I decided not to take a chance and paid for a ticket for him. To add to my advanced state of anticipation, LGA just announced weather-related delays, so I

This month marks our second annual Wellness Issue. Wellness travel and tourism is becoming increasingly popular — from exceptional spas to walking and cycling tours. Hotels are hopping on the trend; last year, I stayed in a guestroom equipped with a Peloton bike. How do you incorporate wellness into your travels? What wellness initiatives have you encountered while traveling recently?


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HANGZHOU

IMMORTALIZED BY PAINTERS AND POETS ALIKE kicking back | COOK

ISLANDS

fine vines

TEL AVIV

Torrontés Tango

FAMILY BUSINESS MEETS ROMANCE IN THE WHITE CITY

Argentina’s signature white will have all your senses dancing.

I

n an attempt to describe Torrontés, Argentina’s signature white wine, some have compared it to Pinot Grigio, Viognier, even Riesling. But none come close. Made from the grape of the same name, Torrontés is like no other. It begins with an aroma that conjures up a bouquet of flowers (the honeyed, perfumed Muscat of Alexandria is one of its ancestors), hinting that a sweet wine will follow. But no, Torrontés goes toward dry and fruity with a tangy and spicy edge. It is the perfect aperitif and equally right with shellfish, Niçoise salad, chicken, other whitemeat dishes, lightly flavored cheese and many Asian foods. As Americans discover this intriguing wine, they will also discover that, with a myriad of choices, even the most attractive Torrontés usually costs under $20. And what are the most attractive Torrontés? Among two dozen that I’ve recently tasted, these are my favorites. Xavier Flouret Flaca 2008 ($18) is one of the most elegant Torrontés, with a delicate floral nose that hints of apricot and peach; a dry, Powered by round, well-structured body; a fruit-filled taste and vibrant acidity; and a long, delicious finish. Its Muscat ancestor comes to the fore in Lo Tengo 2009’s ($11.50) vivid, flowery aroma. It goes on to be a clearly focused, intensely flavored, bright and satisfying wine. IN THE COOK ISLANDS, on Rarotonga, I’m walking along a dusty path, edged There is a suggestion of by a plethora of plants and trees. Fat papayas hang from their umbrella-like sweet mint and an evocation trees; bananas, still green on the stem, invite; and mangos, ripe and ready, have of orange and peach in Finca fallen from their roost. Blossoming bushes waft a perfume, butterflies circle halos La Linda 2009’s ($11) aroma, around my head, and a stream gurgles nearby. A mother sow and her family of followed by a relatively full body cartoonish piglets join me on the road. Not one but 10 roosters crow in competing symphonies — though early morning is long past. The sea lies nearby, but and excellent balance. Altogether a here, hiking inland, surrounded by steep hills and much vegetation, I feel like the pleasing, inviting wine. only person left on Earth. Finca El Origen Reserva 2009 ($12) Luckily, I’m not. I share this walk with one of the Cook Islands’ most Ease body, mind andoffering soul ain is clean, crisp and refreshing, famous residents, a larger-than-life figure known as Uncle Pa, once a world typical Torrontés floral flavor with pear the natural goodness of the surfing champion. Though an octogenarian, he wears long dreadlocks, treks and peach overtones and a gentle reminder shirtless and sports a colorful sarong. With rippling muscles and the physique of citrus fruits in the A particularly of a 30-year-old man, he belies aging and serves as the metaphorical poster Cook Islands. BY mouth. BECCA HENSLEY harmonious wine. child for his role as this island nation’s most famous healer. An herbalist or The delightful Pascual Toso 2009 ($15) kahuna, he learned from his grandmother about the power of the plants that BEACHSIDE BLISS:herbal notes grow on these less-traveled islands. Intuitive, fearless, with a foot in both the combines keen fruit flavors, Spa treatment on the beach at and a fresh lemony acidity with a trace of past and the modern world, Uncle Pa has helped thousands of people regain Aitutaki Lagoon their health over the years. As we walk, he picks leaves, flowers, berries and honey and floral tones. PHOTO: © STEVE ALLEN | DREAMSTIME.COM Following its aroma of fresh flowers and ripefruit. He tells me how he makes elixirs or poultices from them; he lets me taste fruit, Colomé 2009 ($15) is a graceful wine with notes reminiscent of grapefruit. 72citric globaltravelerusa.com JUNE 2017 The pale-shaded Dominio del Plata’s Crios 2009 ($13.50) has a lilac-scented aroma with peach overtones followed by a dry, tangy taste. 

Art of Healing

THE WINE ISSUE

GT presents the winners of the 13th annual Wines on the Wing airline wine competition.

BROOKLYN p. 58 FINGER LAKES p. 66 GUJARAT p. 64 INCHEON p. 60 JINJIANG p. 52 POMPEII p. 70 SALZBURG p. 62 TAHITI p. 72

BY EUNICE FRIED | PHOTOS BY GLOBAL TRAVELER

CITY WINERY IS JUST WHAT its name says: a working winery in the heart of a city — New York City, in fact. Opened in 2009 by wine enthusiast Michael Dorf, it offers the rare urban setting where wine lovers can make their own wine from grapes chief winemaker David Lecomte selects in California, New York state, Oregon and Argentina. They can bottle their

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wine and add custom labels. They can attend wine and food courses, wine tastings, wine seminars and wine dinners. And they can celebrate the joy of it all with music programs in the evening in City Winery’s adjoining large social space. So successful has the concept become, Dorf now has a City Winery in Chicago, Nashville and Atlanta and is scheduled to open one in Boston in September. And so, what more appropriate place to hold a wine competition than at the working winery within City Winery? And that is just where Global Traveler hosted its 13th annual Wines on the Wing International Airline Wine Competition. Seated amid tanks and winemaking equipment, 21 judges examined wines from 25 countries and three American states — California, New York and Washington — sampling wine currently being served on international first- and business-class airline flights throughout the world and, in a smaller, third, North American category, wines served on first- and business-class flights beginning and ending in North America. The judges, all wine professionals, were served the wines in numbered glasses and told only the general type they were to taste — Pinot Noir or

AUGUST 2017

In our August 2017 issue of Global Traveler, our wine director, Eunice Fried, delved into the details and winners of our annual Wines on the Wing survey. Each year, competing airlines submit their North American, International Business Class and International First Class wines to be judged in a blind tasting by 20–25 sommeliers and wine experts. After this article, and many others, a reader wrote to share a few thoughts. Having traveled through virtually every corner of dozens of countries, I am continually astounded by what our superb planet has to offer. For business, pleasure or anything else, life is ephemeral. Waste none of it. Keep traveling. P.S. I am still awaiting any class of service on an airline that might offer me something like a 1985 or 1996 Krug Champagne! But I’ve always been a bit of a dreamer. Excerpts from a letter from reader LEON HOFFMAN, via mail

particularly devastating in recent memory, the Caribbean has always been a territory that can bounce back. Most islands find a way to persevere and come back better than before, more prepared and almost as if the devastation never happened.

In our April 18 eFlyer USA, we wrote about the Caribbean comeback after hurricanes Irma and Maria ravaged many of the islands. We spoke about the strong effort to recover, renovate and expand a wide variety of popular hotel and resort brands, vacation properties and the natural habitats surrounding them. A few readers wrote in to discuss. Although this hurricane season seems

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GT is more than just a magazine. If you

have a computer or smartphone, you

The new GT a

can connect with GT.

now avail

Available for iPhone and iPad, the GT app lets you search archives, read the current issue, bookmark favorites and more. Download the GT appapp, today the With the new youfrom will be able to read G App Store.

anywhere your business takes you, right on your globaltravelerusa.com Visit our website to access past and present articles, reports, guides, hot travel links and deals and video interviews, as well as forms for subscribing to the magazine and our eFlyer newsletters.

WHAT’S HAPPENING ON GT BLOGS? Updated daily, our blogs offer readers an inside look at the lives and travels of the GT staff. Last month we featured blogs about everything from discovering Branson, Mo., to culinary highlights of Lisbon.

NANCY WRIGHT, via email

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I have already been back through Anguilla on a trip we booked well before any storms came through, and you can see the improvements and the remnants of destruction in some areas. A lot of hotels won’t reopen until the fall, but our resort was gorgeous, and there was still plenty to do and picturesque beaches.

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It seems a bit unfair to keep individuals from traveling somewhere they wish to go, especially within their own country of residence. Maybe the tourism industry could come up with incentives for travelers to vacation in the offseason to help with overtoursim during one time of year.

ICELAND

ADVENTURE AWAITS IN THE LAND OF FIRE A

May 2011 | Global Traveler | 35

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Wines on the Wing 2017

INFO TO GO

A variety of international airlines fly to Rarotonga International Airport on the Cook Islands’ main island. In December 2016 Air New Zealand began weekly non-stop flights on its comfortable Boeing 777-200 aircraft, which offers a new premium-economy option, from Los Angeles (LAX), making the trek from the United States easier than ever.

BEN THOMPSON, via email

Visit our website to vote for your favorites in the 2018 GT Tested Reader Survey.

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news Ultra-Long-Haul Business Travel

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WEB-BASED BOOKINGS INCREASE FOR SMALLER MEETINGS With the complications and high prices involved in organizing large-scale meetings, an increasing number of businesses turned to planning such gatherings on a smaller scale. Recent data from Meetingsbooker.com revealed 95 percent of meetings planned are for fewer than 20 attendees, and most of the meeting spaces booked in 2017 were reserved online as little as two weeks before the scheduled date. These lastminute reservations are beneficial to hotels with unsold space. Booking meetings of this size not only requires less money and pre-planning, but also it’s easier to arrange for both the meeting planner and the venue. The data also showed an increased interest among hotels and venues to switch their event space booking process to a more automatic method. Reserving a venue space using the traditional method of calling the hotel’s event manager can occupy precious time that could be devoted to other aspects of planning or that the venue could dedicate to planning larger events. meetingsbooker.com

WANT MORE NEWS ON THE GO? SIGN UP FOR GT NEWSLETTERS Global Traveler’s weekly newsletters keep you up to date with info on the go. Sign up for newsletters at globaltravelerusa.com/newsletter.

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Since the launch of Qantas Airways’ inaugural 17-hour, 9,000-mile flight from London (LHR) to Perth (PER), Australia, the concept of the ultra-long-haul flight has become more commonplace. Business travelers consider it a more time-appropriate way to travel, as it removes the necessity of changing planes midway to a destination, and this group of travelers is willing to pay a premium for this service, which increases demand. In order to complete these lengthy routes, airlines had to alter aspects of the aircraft and cabin to make the experience tolerable for passengers. Changes to long-haul aircraft include improved cabin pressurization capabilities, humidity control and management of air flow in the cabin, all three of which contribute to a more pleasant experience for travelers and a less likely chance for symptoms of jet lag.

The Ritz-Carlton Luxury Yachts Set Sail

After announcing the launch of a series of yachts into the passenger cruise space, The Ritz-Carlton anticipates the first of these vessels to set sail in late 2019. The line of yachts will combine elements of private yacht charters with a small cruise vacation, offering the level of luxury Ritz-Carlton guests expect. The vessels will offer 149–170 suites, carry up to 298 passengers and be small enough to access areas of the world larger ships cannot access, such as clandestine Greek islands and Caribbean Sea inlets. On board, passengers can dine at one of five restaurants; one will feature a menu from Michelin-starred chef Sven Elverfeld. A wine bar, performance space, solarium, infinity pool and interactive activities also will be available for guests, as will 24-hour in-room dining service. The seven- to 10-day yacht excursions began accepting reservations in May and offer priority booking to The Ritz-Carlton Rewards members. ritzcarlton.com

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news

The city of Detroit is undergoing a sort of renaissance: UNESCO named Detroit a City of Design, and brand-new buildings sprouted up in hip downtown neighborhoods, reviving the once-bankrupt metropolis. As interest in the city increases, boutique hotels are beginning to establish a footing in the Motor City, opening doors to a new Detroit. With an expected opening date of 2019, home furnishings company West Elm’s hotel will be located in Midtown Detroit by the Museum of Contemporary Art, while the Element Detroit hotel will represent Marriott’s portfolio of properties and offer extended stays and focus on green technology. The Siren Hotel moved into what was once the Wurlitzer Building, a space empty for 36 years. Now guests can choose from seven dining and drinking venues within

the hotel and awaken their inner performer at the piano karaoke bar. In November the Shinola brand of leather products and bicycles will open its first hospitality accommodation, a transformation developers hope will permeate the entire downtown block. westelm.com marriott.com shinola.com

(SDF), from Denver (DEN) to Memphis (MEM) and El Paso (ELP), and from Oklahoma City (OKC) to Nashville (BNA). Meanwhile, Allegiant Air will begin service to Nashville from Destin, Fla. (VPS); Myrtle Beach (MYR); Richmond (RIC); and Savannah (SAV). Cross-country routes to come from Allegiant include non-stop flights from Denver to Asheville (AVL) and from Oakland (OAK) to Memphis. Finally, Delta Air Lines removed its LaGuardia– Dayton (DAY) service and will instead fly from the New York airport to Chattanooga (CHA).

New Domestic Summer Routes

A bevy of new domestic air travel routes will debut for the summer season and offer Americans access to new destinations within the United States. Southwest will introduce five new non-stop routes: Houston (HOU) to Columbus (CMH) and Louisville

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southwest.com allegiantair.com delta.com

Airbnb Appeals to Smaller Properties

In the constant fight for online booking space, Airbnb took measures to inch its way forward, past the likes of Booking.com and Expedia. In March the online accommodation booking platform sent a letter to smaller properties like independent boutique hotels and bed-and-breakfasts. In the letter, the home-sharing site explained the advantages of registering with it in order to advertise and rent out their spaces. The persuasive arguments included its wide reach to all audiences, from millennial to international travelers, with a year-to-year user increase of 30 percent. Airbnb’s commission for property listings can range from 3 to 5 percent, far less than other sites with commission fees of up to 30 percent. Additionally, properties do not need to sign a binding contract to advertise on Airbnb and thus won’t have to compete with the larger hotel chains. airbnb.com

PHOTOS: © THE SIREN HOTEL, © AJDIBILIO | DREAMSTIME.COM,

Detroit Welcomes Boutique Hotels


deals & rewards

Alaska Airlines, Aer Lingus Combine Programs

Aer Lingus announced an eventual partnership with Alaska Airlines that will join the two airlines’ frequent-flyer programs and allow members to earn points when flying the Irish airline to places like Dublin and beyond. Aer Lingus serves certain U.S. West Coast destinations such as Los Angeles (LAX) and San Francisco (SFO) and plans to expand to Seattle (SEA) as part of the new agreement. As of the past two years, Alaska Airlines also welcomed other international airlines as part of its loyalty program such as Singapore Airlines, Japan Airlines and Icelandair. In welcoming these agreements with new partners, the American airline will terminate relationships with past partners like KLM and Air France, mainly due to Delta Air Lines’ increasing presence in Seattle.

Miami Wellness Spa Specials

This month the Carillon Miami Wellness Resort offers three new spa specials to prep the body for the summer season. The resort’s 25-minute Aloe Skin Treatment includes a wrap and lotion that hydrate the skin, available for a special price of $99. Men can enjoy the Gentleman’s Facial, a 50-minute oxygenating facial featuring a mask that cleanses and steams the face for $125. Lastly, the Thai Tension Melt treatment provides relief both inside and outside the body as it improves circulation, contributing to an improved immune system and a faster metabolism. The 80-minute experience costs $199. carillonhotel.com

PHOTOS: © CARILLON MIAMI WELLNESS RESORT, © MANDARIN ORIENTAL

Mandarin Oriental’s New Guest Program

As of March, guests who book stays at one of the 28 luxury international properties under the Mandarin Oriental name will be able to sign up for the hotel group’s new guest recognition program, Fans of M.O. When checking in, Fans of M.O. can opt to modify their arrival and departure times, select a daily breakfast service, choose a dining or spa credit to use during their stay and upgrade to a different room. Unlike other loyalty programs, Fans of M.O. members will not accrue points they can redeem for free nights, but the program is open to anyone and does not feature status tiers for longtime members. mandarinoriental.com

alaskaair.com aerlingus.com

2018’s Best Frequent-Flyer Program

A recent study conducted by WalletHub — a personal finance website — revealed this year’s best airline rewards programs in a range of categories. The study analyzed various factors such as the overall availability of flights, destinations, the expiration policy for points, blackout dates and the possibility of upgrading or earning free flights. For the third year in a row, Delta Air Lines’ SkyMiles program ranked at the top of the list, followed by Alaska Airlines and Hawaiian Airlines, the latter offering the most value for its reward points. WalletHub’s website offers a frequentflyer calculator that lets users enter their traveling frequency and the approximate annual dollar amount they spend on airfare. The tool then suggests the best frequent-flyer programs based on this information. wallethub.com

JUNE 2018

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GT tested

CONRAD FORT LAUDERDALE BEACH Reviewed by Ashley Richards

TOP TAKEAWAYS:

Guest Quarters: Entering my junior king suite, I felt like a queen. Immediately to my right was the bathroom with a double sink and large shower. The shower had an extra bar to put your feet on — smart! The other end of the bathroom held a beautiful, deep, granite tub and — you guessed it — a robe for afterward. I am a robe snob, and this one was super-soft but not too fluffy. (You can buy this robe online if you like it as much as I did.) To the left of the bathroom was a kitchen area. I didn’t have time to whip up any meals, but it’s nice to have even a microwave in a guestroom, great for leftovers. What would a junior king suite be without a California king-sized bed? This one featured a plush down comforter and pillows and faced a TV and bar area. To the right of the bed

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was a handy work area, in a good position since I was in Florida on business and it inspired me to get some work done before starting my day. A sitting area with another large-screen TV and a large sectional offered plenty of room for guests to wind down from the day with friends or family. I utilized it as I watched the Philadelphia 76ers win their third playoff game against the Miami Heat. The end of the suite opened to a balcony, where I sat most of the time. After appointments all day it was nice to sit, listen to the ocean and unwind. Perfect. Services/Amenities: This newly renovated Conrad was absolutely gorgeous and perfectly placed along the beach. Terra Mare, the tapas restaurant on the ocean side of the hotel, offered a great breakfast menu. My colleague and I enjoyed plates like avocado toast, smoked salmon Benedict and an acai bowl. If you need a little heat, the restaurant provides mini Tabasco bottles, which I love. The Cornucopia gourmet market is conveniently open 6 a.m.–9 p.m., with a morning and market menu for everyone on the go. I also stopped by Atlas, the contemporary lobby bar, and enjoyed watching the bartender make “art pieces” of cocktails; I had to try one for myself. Looks were not deceiving, as the colorful cocktail was perfect for this Philly girl with the summer blues.

◆ Wake up with 8 a.m. yoga on the beach. ◆ Cornucopia makes homemade gelato! ◆ Beach chairs, towels and umbrellas are included. ◆ Soon to come: Underwater spin class. CONRAD FORT LAUDERDALE BEACH 551 N. Fort Lauderdale Beach Blvd. Fort Lauderdale, FL 33304 tel 954 414 5100 conradhotels3.hilton.com

PHOTOS: © CONRAD FORT LAUDERDALE BEACH

Check-In: I must start with praise for the valet service. As soon as we pulled up, the valet was attentive and made sure my Cadillac Sixt rental was well taken care of. Walking into the lobby, I noticed how absolutely beautiful it is; between the chandeliers and the floral arrangements, it really couldn’t get much better. The check-in service was just as welcoming. The helpful front desk staff checked me in within five minutes. They even walked me to the elevator. I’ve never experienced this before, so I thought it was a nice touch.


GT tested

THE PLAZA SEOUL Reviewed by Carly Allen

PHOTOS: © THE PLAZA SEOUL

Arrival/Check-In: Incheon Airport is a good hour’s drive from the heart of Seoul, so be prepared for traffic. I got into the city during rush hour, but at THE PLAZA Seoul everything slowed to a nice pace as the valet helped with my bags and escorted me to reception. There was a bit of a wait, but it allowed me to enjoy the ultra-modern lobby with its high ceilings, dark wood and unique art spanning the marble space. A huge bouquet of flowers sitting on the center table offered a charming touch, along with the signature eucalyptus fragrance used throughout the property. Soon the staff realized my room was on the Club Floor and whisked me to the 20th floor for a quicker, more personalized check-in at the Club Lounge. Guest Quarters: My Plaza Suite was even better than expected; its modern and chic aesthetic charms you the minute you walk in. As I closed the room door, I noticed its entire back was a full-length mirror, a perfect use of the space. A closet in the hallway had white curtains rather than doors, making for a unique touch. I was delighted to see windows spanning the entire length of my room, giving amazing natural light and views of City Hall and Deoksugung Palace. A large, LCD flat-screen sat over an electric fireplace and cozy cream couch, perfect for relaxing. A unique desk spanned almost half the room, with lots of places to charge a USB device; however, it held only one universal outlet, so bring an adapter. On a raised platform (watch your step!) the king-sized bed featured the signature COMFORT bedding and provided a great night’s sleep. The nightstand held a tablet to control the lighting, dimmers, drapes

and temperature — it took a day to get used to but became intuitive. The bathroom, though quite small, still fit all the amenities. The bright lighting was by far the best I have seen in a room recently and made the space feel larger. A full spa tub sat to the right, and the marble single-sink vanity held Hermès bath amenities that had a strong masculine aroma. The modern toilet/bidet sat awkwardly close to the vanity and halfway into the shower door space, forcing you to open the shower door inward. Despite the tight space, the large, glass-enclosed rainforest shower was a delight. Services/Amenities: When staying in Asia I recommend choosing a room with Club Floor access, and THE PLAZA Seoul’s is a great example. The staff is available 24/7 to help with printing, tickets, restaurants and more to make your day a bit easier. It serves a full breakfast, afternoon tea and happy hour on the 18th floor, giving you quick access, a place to meet colleagues and stunning views of the city. One lazy evening I chose its kimchi stew hot pot soup for room service, presented in restaurant-style pottery and tasting wonderful. The property offers four dining concepts ranging from Korea’s take on Chinese at Taoyuen to Murasaki for sushi and Tuscany for a bit of Italian. The fitness club and Belle Spa are in the PLAZA-owned building next door, but I promise the facility is worth the trek. Spanning two stories, it offers dozens of cardio machines with views of the Seoul skyline, along with a class studio, a driving range and an indoor Olympic-sized swimming pool bathed in natural light.

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TOP TAKEAWAYS: ◆ The best amenity is the central location across from City Hall and Deoksugung Palace and a few blocks from Namdaemun Market for local shopping and street-style food. ◆ Make your stay even more pleasant by booking a Club Floor room with added amenities and convenience. THE PLAZA Seoul, Autograph Collection 119 Sogong-ro Jung-gu Seoul, 04525 South Korea tel 82 2 771 2200 marriott.com

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GT tested

ASIANA AIRLINES | BUSINESS SMARTIUM CLASS

SEOUL (ICN) TO NEW YORK (JFK)

Reviewed by Francis X. Gallagher

Pre-Flight: The flight team greeted passengers and offered reading material — newspapers and, of course, Global Traveler (other copies were proudly housed in business class). They hung up my sport coat and offered a pre-flight drink, Laurent Perrier Brut Champagne, along with warm nuts. Amenity kits branded with L’Occitane products included a nice selection of all the amenities one desires on a flight, including a toothbrush and toothpaste, ear plugs, eye mask and lotions. The huge onboard bathrooms, a signature of the A380, also offer a fine selection of lotions and sprays. Takeoff was on time and smooth, another A380 signature.

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In-Flight: The first thing I do to get organized is to plug in all my electronics, simple on the Asiana Business Smartium Class seat. A briefcase fits under the footrest for takeoff, which I find important. The tray tables are easy to put into place and to pivot when you want to exit your seat for the restroom. Electronic controls are easy to use, and audio and video options are plentiful. Once the menus were distributed and I was served a Chivas Regal on the rocks, I set my plan for the 12-hour flight: Watch a movie or two, work and have dinner, then sleep as much as I could on the flat-bed seat. My business-class section was located at the front on the A380 on the upper level in a 1/2/1 configuration. I was located on the left in a single window seat. The TV screen was large enough for viewing, and I enjoyed several movies and caught up with some work and writing. Passengers in business class can choose the traditional Western menu, which included beef tenderloin or codfish with starters of lobster and other canapés. I chose the Korean menu with bibimbap, a traditional meal of rice, vegetables and meat served with Gochujang red pepper paste. Cheese and fruit as well as dessert followed the meal, with Port wine to finish. After my meal, I took full advantage of the comfortable seat and slept until it was time for a light breakfast before landing. Asiana Airlines has always had wonderful service, and its flight attendants are known as the best in the world (as per our GT Tested Reader Survey). Add the A380-800 Business Smartium seat, and it is a traveler’s dream come true. If you think business class is superb, I encourage you to also try Asiana’s first-class suite.

TOP TAKEAWAYS: ◆ Asiana flight attendants always smile and make passengers feel welcome. ◆ A380 bathrooms are larger than those in many homes. ◆ Traditional bibimbap helps you connect with Korean culture.

ASIANA AIRLINES flyasiana.com

PHOTOS: © ASIANA AIRLINES

On the Ground: The Signel Seoul concierge was kind to arrange a car for my transfer to Incheon Airport. As my flight was at a tricky time, close to 10 a.m., a driver and early departure were recommended. At Incheon I checked in at Asiana Airlines’ business-class desk and was swiftly taken care of. I was anticipating my first flight on Asiana’s Airbus A380-800 in its business-class service, as previously I flew its first-class product. I went through security without issues and decided to buy some of the award-winning Johnnie Walker Blue GT readers voted Favorite Liquor Brand in our annual Leisure Lifestyle Awards. (See the 2018 Leisure Lifestyle Edition.) I have been to the Asiana first- and business-class lounges many times; they are well-run and staffed by friendly employees. At Incheon the business-class lounge offered an array of hot food, scrambled eggs made to order and salads as well as plenty of drinks. Each seat had sufficient electrical outlets, and the WiFi operated properly. At boarding time I walked to the gate and boarded with the business-class passengers. The A380 is a huge plane, but it never felt crowded and there were no delays in boarding or disembarking.


GT tested

HILTON BRANSON CONVENTION CENTER Reviewed by Kimberly Krol

PHOTOS: © HILTON BRANSON CONVENTION CENTER

Arrival/Check-In: After departing Philadelphia International Airport at 5 a.m. (which meant a 2:30 a.m. wake-up time), transferring through Chicago and then driving nearly an hour from Springfield to Branson, I don’t think I’ve ever been happier to hear from a hotel my room was ready before the guaranteed check-in time. The lobby was quiet, and after waiting a few minutes for the couple in front of me to check in, I was on my way to my fifth-floor guestroom in no time. Guest Quarters: My guestroom was generously sized, allowing me ample space to spread out. I unpacked immediately, as I was traveling for business and wanted to hang up my clothes. The bathroom, also a nice size, was to the right as I entered. I did find the amenities a bit lacking and was annoyed to find that, in order to turn on the shower, you basically got blasted with a cold spray of water. I was eager to shower but received a notice upon check-in that the water was being worked on just during the time I was in my room. A small closet stood next to the bathroom before the space opened up to the bedroom. One large piece of furniture served as a TV stand, dresser and desk and sat across from the king-sized bed, incredibly comfortable and flanked by nightstands and plenty of outlets. In the corner next to the bed sat a sofa and a coffee table. I had floor-to-ceiling windows lining the outside wall of the room, and I appreciated the natural light but wished I had more of a view than the parking garage across the street. Services/Amenities: I enjoyed breakfast one morning at Level 2 Steakhouse; the breakfast buffet was wellstocked. I was pleased to find a “build-your-own-parfait” section. I overhead people in the lobby talking about

TOP TAKEAWAYS: ◆ I was in town for a conference, and the hotel is conveniently connected to the convention center. ◆ I dropped an earring behind a large — and heavy — piece of furniture in the room. I called for assistance, and maintenance quickly and easily retrieved the jewelry for me.

the wonderful dinner they enjoyed at the restaurant the evening before and hoped I’d be able to sample the dinner menu. While far too chilly to enjoy during my visit, the hotel does offer a pool and pool bar, as well as a fully equipped fitness center. Meeting rooms are also available along with the facilities at the nearby convention center. As Branson is a family-friendly destination, it made sense to see the hotel offers cribs and high chairs and a children’s menu.

◆ The hotel is located across the street from Branson Landing, full of stores, restaurants and entertainment outlets. HILTON BRANSON CONVENTION CENTER 200 E. Main St. Branson, MO 65616 tel 417 336 5400 hilton.com

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one on one

HEATHER GEISLER Vice President, Global Brands, Full Service, Hyatt

Name: Heather Geisler Title: Vice president, Global Brands, Full Service Company, city: Hyatt; Chicago, Ill. Number of employees: 110,000 colleagues Recent project: We recently launched (ANDAZ)RED Cabanas across Andaz hotels in West Hollywood, Mayakoba, Costa Rica, Scottsdale and Maui, with a portion of each cabana booking going directly to support (RED)’s fight to end AIDS. And, for the Hyatt Regency

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brand, we launched the Portraits of Understanding initiative that brought cancer survivors to the Chicago hotel for empowerment, healing and to help them move on. First job: I bagged groceries in Chicago at age 15. Little-known fact about you: I am a yoga devotee.

AS A TRAVELER Favorite travel memory or story: My parents were public school teachers, so in the summers we took amazing family road trips. I’d been to every state in the country besides two by the time I went to college. One travel tip you cannot live without: Figure out what you need to stay balanced on the road. I’m a structure person — I do yoga at home, so I always make time for it on the road. Also, always pack flip-flops.   Best advice for business travelers: Again, it’s about balance. You are disconnected from work and your family while you travel for business, so carve out time to maintain those connections.  

ABOUT YOUR BRAND Tell us about Hyatt’s brands. Differentiating our portfolio is always a priority. We aim to establish relevance for travelers through each brand and the experience it offers, from our luxury Park Hyatt brand to our all-inclusive Hyatt Ziva and Hyatt Zilara brands. Which brand is right for which traveler? It comes down to your type of trip. But the idea of care is prevalent throughout every Hyatt brand, providing the reassurance that no matter which brand you choose, you will receive a high-quality, genuine and trusted experience you’ve come to know from us. What can we expect from Hyatt brands in the next five years? Growth, of course. Select-service hotels continue to be an area of focus. The Hyatt Centric brand is expanding in Latin America. You’ll also see more expansion in China across our portfolio. We also want to continue getting better at what we do. What amenities can premium travelers expect from a stay at Hyatt’s more upscale brands? The Park Hyatt brand provides an exemplary art, food and beverage experience. Its Masters of Food & Wine program offers top-of-the-line experiences. Within the wellness sphere, there’s an opportunity to expand our definition and offerings, especially as Miraval and exhale join our portfolio.

PHOTO: © HEATHER GEISLER

YOUR BUSINESS What innovations/initiatives do you foresee in the industry over the next years? I see the most innovation opportunity in the health/wellness space. All hotels do it in different ways; at Hyatt, it’s connected to our purpose: We care for people so they can be their best. You may see wellbeing come to life differently at the Hyatt Regency brand than at the Park Hyatt brand. Travelers like to feel a balance while remaining connected. Initiatives like Hyatt’s acquisition of Miraval enable us to expand in the health and wellness arena. Best career advice you’ve received: Don’t boil the ocean. Pick the most impactful things that make the most difference in a rapidly changing industry. What advice would you give someone starting out in the field? I always tell my teams: Be smart about what you’re doing. Focus. We don’t have to be as large as long as we have loyal customers. Less is more when it is impactful.


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one on one

EDIE RODRIGUEZ Americas Brand Chairman and Corporate Special Advisor, Ponant Cruises converter on all your travels and make sure your passport is not close to the sixmonth expiration mark from your return date home. Best advice for business travelers: Download Mobile Passport on your phone. This allows you to ease through immigration and is often even faster than Global Entry. It’s a game changer. ABOUT YOUR BRAND Tell us about the Ponant ships and routes. We lead the way in exploration cruises, with routes to all seven seas and seven continents, with seven new ships coming soon with itineraries taking you through the Amazon to Asia. In 2021 the Icebreaker will take you to the North Pole in the first-ever electric hybrid ship running on liquefied natural gas. With only 135 staterooms, it still has ultimate quality luxury service into the poles with Clean Ship certification and environmental friendliness.

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First job: Telemarketer Little-known fact about you: I have been to 257 Rod Stewart concerts on four different continents. He sang “Happy Birthday” to me on stage for my 50th birthday.

What advice would you give someone starting out in the field? Know your brand’s experiences firsthand and know your clients or guests. Find out what the clients want, not what you think they want.

YOUR BUSINESS What innovations/initiatives do you foresee in the industry over the next years? Clean Ship technology will see great strides. Overall, cleaner ships will offer safety, giving back to the communities we travel to and making us better global citizens.

AS A TRAVELER Favorite travel memory or story: I have so many amazing experiences, but a special memory is taking my 2-yearold son to the Blue Grotto in Sorrento. I remember looking at his face full of wonder as our row boat entered the grotto. It reminds me to share experiences and the joy of seeing things for the first time.

Best career advice you’ve received: Get a great education, find your passion and then follow your passion.

One travel tip you cannot live without: Bring an international

What wellness options are available on Ponant cruises? For Ponant guests, wellness is a lifestyle they indulge in every day, so our amenities cater to that. With onboard state-of-the-art gyms and Sothysbranded spas with hammam treatments, our guests keep in shape and enjoy relaxation. Our itineraries offer activities like kayaking and snorkeling and on-land excursions with walking tours and hiking. Gastronomy is part of the French culture, and Ponant shares fresh products, select ingredients and inspired dishes that are healthy and memorable. What can luxury travelers expect from a Ponant experience? Luxury means options. Ponant offers itineraries on a customized cruise with every detail dictated by our guests, from the shore excursions to dining experiences. Ponant delivers a truly customized experience with themed cruising from golf excursions to exploring the great mythologies of Greece and Jordan.

PHOTO: © EDIE RODRIGUEZ

Name: Edie Rodriguez Title: Americas brand chairman and corporate special advisor Company, city: Ponant Cruises; Marseille, France Number of employees: We have 30 within the United States and 1,000 worldwide, with many more coming as we grow. Recent project: The most exciting is our Blue Eye lounges coming to our six Ponant Explorers-class vessels and debuting first on Le Lapérouse. It is the first-ever multisensory lounge located below the waterline, using biomimetic design along with the ability to hear the sea life and the water’s natural rhythms up to three miles away. This will give our guests a truly unique experience.


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SPECIAL PROMOTION SECTION

American Express and Boingo Offer Travelers With An Eligible American Express Card

Free Worldwide Wi-Fi

Industry Buzz

Benefits Program Features Unlimited Wi-Fi at Over 1 Million Hotspots

A

merican Express and Boingo Wireless give eligible Card Members the ultimate perk. Thanks to the Boingo American Express Preferred Plan, eligible Card Members can enjoy fast and free Wi-Fi around the world at more than one million hotspots. Whether streaming, sharing or catching up on work while away from the office, this Boingo benefit is an easy way to get connected with blazing-fast speeds at places like airports, hotels, restaurants, cafés and retail locations. The Boingo perk is part of a roster of travel benefits that Platinum Card® Members can take advantage of to help save time, money and hassle. The Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express is among the Cards that offer free Boingo Wi-Fi. Once enrolled in the plan, Card Members can have simultaneous

internet access for up to four devices without worrying about data caps or roaming fees. “Travelers continue to take advantage of the Boingo AMEX program because Wi-Fi is the ideal travel companion,” said Dawn Callahan, chief marketing officer, Boingo. “In addition to accessing premium hotspots globally, the program includes connectivity through Passpoint, a Next Generation Hotspot (NGH) technology that automatically connects travelers to Wi-Fi networks with no log-ins or passwords required—an incredible feature that makes public Wi-Fi easy, seamless and secure.” Boingo is an eight-time winner of “Best WiFi Service” in Global Traveler’s GT Tested reader survey awards. To enroll in the Boingo American Express Preferred Plan, check eligibility, or view full benefit terms, visit www.boingo.com/americanexpress.

“ … a great perk for road warriors and other frequent travelers, as it’ll save you the hassle and potential expense of finding Wi-Fi between flights, meetings or sightseeing.” – The Points Guy

“[A] perk that’s useful while traveling is the Boingo Wi-Fi subscription. It’s comforting to know I’ll have internet access nearly anywhere I go.” – Million Mile Secrets


VOTED WORLD’S BEST WI-FI SERVICE

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& Counting With Boingo as your trusty travel companion, getting online is a snap at more than 1 million hotspots worldwide.

There’s a reason why travelers around the world rely on Boingo to stay connected on the go—and we suspect it has nothing to do with our good looks or charming personality. Maybe it’s our awesome network of more than a million Wi-Fi hotspots. Or it could be our insanely-fast speeds, now up to 20 times faster. How about Boingo Passpoint for a revolutionary, seamless and secure Wi-Fi experience? Then again, it might be the convenience of fast, friendly customer care at your service 24-hours a day, every day of the year! Whatever the reason, we’d love to show you why the readers of Global Traveler have voted us the best Wi-Fi service for a record eight years and counting. Get to know Boingo at www.boingo.com


technology

BETTER ALL THE TIME Smart gadgets help you renew, recharge and reconnect.

BY JACK GUY

LECTROFAN SOUND MACHINE Getting a good night’s sleep can be difficult for myriad reasons, especially in unfamiliar surroundings when you’re on the road. Technology companies devote increasing amounts of attention to finding solutions, and the LectroFan Sound Machine promises to help you sleep by producing white noise. Adjust the volume on one of 20 different settings and settle in for a soothing night’s sleep. It’s small enough to pack easily in your hand luggage and easy to operate in the dark. $49.95. soundofsleep.com

HUAWEI E5770S MOBILE WIFI HOTSPOT Unreliable WiFi connections can cause untold stress for business travelers, and dodgy connections are a particular problem in the developing world. With a mobile WiFi hotspot like the Huawei E5770S, you can provide a secure internet connection via a local mobile network. The device is small enough to fit in your pocket; ships unlocked so you can use it with any service provider; and works with 4G LTE bands in Asia, Africa, Europe and the Middle East, as well as most bands in the United States. It also doubles as a portable power supply and offers up to 20 hours of internet on a single charge. $180. huawei.com

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PHOTOS: © ORAL-B, © LECTROFAN, © RICOH, © HUAWEI

ORAL-B GENIUS PRO 8000 ELECTRIC TOOTHBRUSH As electric toothbrushes become mainstream, more models make use of smart technology. This Oral-B brush has all the features you would expect from an electric toothbrush plus tracking capabilities that work with an accompanying app. The brush works with your smartphone to track which areas of your mouth need cleaning, and the countdown feature makes sure you’re giving your pearly whites enough attention. Another good feature is the dental care journeys, pre-programmed routines that help you achieve oral hygiene goals like fresher breath. $199.99–249.99. oralb.com

RICOH THETA V 360-DEGREE SPHERICAL CAMERA Support for 360-degree content is spreading fast, with major platforms such as YouTube and Facebook now on board. There has never been a better time to take your photo and video content to the next level with a spherical camera such as the Ricoh Theta V. With 3,840-by-1,920-pixel video, 14 megapixel stills and high-quality audio capabilities, this little camera packs a punch. Stream your adventures live online, transfer videos to your smartphone via the accompanying app or broadcast remotely to an Amazon Fire TV. $399.95. us.ricoh-imaging.com


An

urban resort in Los Angeles offering luxurious accommodations, California French dining, newly redesigned bar with live entertainment, spacious meeting rooms, complimentary high-speed internet, spa and salon services, fitness center and more.

SOFITEL LOS ANGELES AT BEVERLY HILLS | 8555 BEVERLY BLVD. LOS ANGELES, CA 90048 | 310-278-5444 WWW.SOFITEL-LOS-ANGELES.COM


wine & spirits

Indulge in the exceptional flavor and fragrance of Ketel One Vodka. BY EUNICE FRIED

IT WAS IN 1691 IN THE DUTCH TOWN of Schiedam that Carolus Nolet made his first spirit with the goal of creating an exceptionally fine, smooth vodka. Today, 327 years and 11 generations later, the Nolet family still makes exceptionally fine, smooth vodka, producing the spirit in Schiedam and still using Carolus’ original copper pot still, along with other stills and modern distilling techniques. The vodka, in fact, is named after the origins of the 1691 batch. Taking the Dutch word for “pot still,” distilleerketel, the family named the vodka Ketel One, honoring the pot still used to make the family’s first vodka. Today, the 11th generation continues to combine traditional methods with modern distilling in making Ketel One. It begins with European winter wheat, ground and blended with water to form mash. The mash is fermented and put through a column distillation. Part of the wheat spirit is then re-distilled in copper pot stills. After the eight-hour process, the harsh and weak parts of the distillate are discarded, leaving the prime hearts, then filtered and ultimately blended to create the vodka’s silky character. The Nolet family currently offers three versions of its product. All contain 40 percent alcohol. All are water-clear. And all are likely to be among the silkiest vodkas you've ever tasted. Ketel One Vodka is fine-textured and smooth, slipping seamlessly down the throat. Its body is rich and round and polished — altogether an elegant, inviting vodka that offers a long, satiny finish. The flavors of Ketel One Citroen are highlighted by the essence and oils of two kinds of lemon plus a small amount of lime. They add a clean, zesty fragrance to a silky vodka, and those flavors linger on through a long finish. One whiff of Ketel One Oranje and the aromas of Valencia and Mandarin oranges greet you. The bouquet of these two aromatic fruits gives the vodka a lovely floral tone and adds a minute hint of sweetness to the finish. The prices of Ketel One vary, but most run about $36.

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a it in e f. b , er ink o x h i t m n lent ou ca excel nk y n i a r d s any make e or l also u e m n lO ary, Kete dy M o o l ini, B mart

PHOTO: © KETEL ONE VODKA

SILKY SMOOTH


CANCUN & TULUM

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wealth

PERSONAL IMPACT

IN THE LAST TWO ISSUES, we discussed the tax law changes that impact corporations and addressed international tax law changes. This month’s column focuses on the tax law changes associated with individuals. One of the bigger changes in the new tax law involves tax brackets. The highest tax bracket in 2018 is 37 percent, down from the 2017 high rate of 39.6 percent. Additionally, the brackets have become a bit larger, meaning each rate bracket taxes more dollars than in the past, so it takes longer (more taxable dollars) to reach the highest tax bracket. One of the tax return items no longer around in 2018 is the personal exemption. State and local taxes — which consist of income taxes paid to states and cities and real estate and school income taxes — are still deductible; however, they are capped at $10,000 annually. For many individuals this is a significant cap, as many tax filers’ state and local taxes exceed that amount. Other changes remove the following itemized deductions and miscellaneous deductions: tax preparation fees, investment advisory fees, employee business expenses, moving expenses and business entertainment expenses. However, business meals are still 50 percent deductible, so your dining habits do not have to change. Also, since approximately 50 percent of marriages end in

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divorce, it is important to know alimony income and alimony deductions have also been removed in 2018. The new 2018 tax law brought some significant changes concerning mortgages and interest expense. If you had a mortgage in existence on Dec. 15, 2017, there are no changes for you. For mortgages obtained after that date, home interest deductions are limited to principal mortgage amounts of $750,000. Refinancing of homes after Dec. 15, 2017, is limited to $1 million and only up to the debt level at the date of refinance. Interest is only deductible on home equity lines of credit to the extent the proceeds are used to acquire, construct or substantially renovate the property. Some other changes are positive in nature. Medical expenses remain deductible and they now need to exceed only 7.5 percent of your adjusted gross income, down from 10 percent. The standard deduction almost doubled for 2018 to $24,000 for married couples, which takes away some of the sting from losing the personal exemptions (mentioned above). Also, for those individuals who earn their money from their businesses as opposed to being an employee, business losses are limited to $500,000 per year, and any excess can be carried forward as a net operating loss. Losses are limited to 80 percent of taxable income. In summary, some taxpayers will see some real benefit from the tax law changes, and others will not see their overall tax change materially because there are both positive and negative changes in the new tax law. Bottom line: Speak to your tax advisors and plan ahead as much as possible. The laws are not fully written yet, so there will be more clarity in the coming months, which should allow your tax planning to become a bit easier.

PHOTO: © DAVE BREDESON | DREAMSTIME.COM

Plan for the new tax laws as an individual filer.


tours

TAKE IT SLOW Keep active while seeing more of nature on a biking or walking tour. BY KRISTY ALPERT

I NEVER THOUGHT I WOULD LOOK out my window to a field of snow and think, “Looks like a good day for a bike ride,” until I met Daymon Miller, general manager, Discover Banff Tours. An active cyclist, Miller agreed to join me on a fat bike ride up to Sundance Lodge, a backcountry lodge only accessible by foot, horse or bike, set against the Sundance Mountain Range of Canada’s Alberta province. A fat bike is an agile bicycle made with oversized tires to ensure a smooth ride on unstable terrain like sand or snow, and we put the bikes to the test as we pedaled through snow banks, made tracks within a forest of pine trees and occasionally stopped along the way to catch our breath and take in the scenery. The only sound was the light crunch of the snow as our tires indented a single-lined pattern into the trail. We rode together mostly in silence, the feeling of camaraderie powering our pack as we pedaled onward up the steep mountain. As we made our final approach to the lodge, we let out a collective shout of joy knowing we would soon indulge in a well-earned hot and hearty meal after a day spent immersed in nature. Active travel has grown in popularity over the past few years, with biking and walking tours offered in almost every major city in the world. “In the last six or seven years, walking and biking tours have really picked up,” says Marianne Abraham, a private trip planner, Butterfield & Robinson. “With biking and walking tours, guests still have access to activity but they don’t have to be crazy fit. These tours become more about being part of the landscape as opposed to just sitting on a beach. You see all these amazing things when you’re walking or on a bike, and you just can’t experience the same little details if you’re whizzing around in a car.” Abraham has been with Butterfield & Robinson for nearly two decades, during which she saw huge growth in these types of tours. Butterfield & Robinson began offering biking and walking tours 50 years ago with the mission to encourage people to “slow down to see the world.” Today the company offers a range of active tours in Asia, the Pacific, Europe and

ay get aw o t s r sito t also for vi on, bu igned i s t e u l d l po re mote dges a n light the re e o l o v t e y n r i nd e count entur logy a Back echno e to v t c . , n e a s k h i i c no yb e ng from amazi t or b o n o a f r y b ffe planet they o f the o s n o porti

the Americas, where guests have the chance to book private guided trips, self-guided trips or join in on one of the company’s regularly scheduled group trips for the chance to meet like-minded travelers. “Active travel has a way of bonding people together,” Abraham adds. “Doing activities together with friends, family or even strangers builds a bond that you can talk about for years later. Whether it be walking or biking, activity gets you into the heart of the landscape, and the sights and smells and the people you meet along the way stay with you forever.”

READY TO ROLL:

Daymon Miller on a fat bike ride in Canada's Alberta province ​PHOTO: © KRISTY ALPERT

JUNE 2018

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spas

ISLAND TIME Relax in the natural ambience of Jamaica’s Round Hill Hotel and Villas. BY ANGELIQUE PLATAS

TUCKED AWAY: Aerial view of the spa and fitness center PHOTO: © ROUND HILL HOTEL AND VILLAS

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BEFORE MY TRIP TO MONTEGO BAY, essentially all I knew about Jamaica was my parents had a lovely time there on their honeymoon, more than 30 years ago. Eager to get out of the 40-degree weather and into island vibes, selling me on three full days at a 5-star Jamaican resort couldn’t have been easier. Going through customs in my long pants, sweater and Philadelphia-spring clothes in the dead heat of the West Indies sun was just the shock my body needed to usher me into relaxation mode. Upon arriving at Round Hill Hotel and Villas, I was pleasantly surprised by how natural the resort felt. Tucked away on the hillside — hence the name — surrounded by picturesque cliffs, turquoise-blue waters, sandy beaches and lush jungle-like foliage, it didn’t feel manmade at all, more like someone discovered this oasis in a tropical forest. With rustic bars built around almond tree trunks and most of the shade provided on the beach by the thick,

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woven branches and limbs, guests can easily enjoy sun, shade and comfort without umbrellas lining the sand and blocking the view. While touring the grounds of Round Hill Hotel and Villas, dreaming of my spa treatment later that day was all that occupied my mind — that, and whether my fresh sunburn would hinder my massage. Taking the short walk from the beach to the welcome wharf of the spa, along what is known as the Enchanted Path, provided a pleasant way to ease into the peace and quiet of my spa treatment. I walked by a cove decorated with natural white rocks and stones from the beach, stacked and signed by guests of the hotel, and passed a nearly private beach offering plush bed lounges, chairs and an inviting hammock. Ignoring the siren call of the hammock, I headed into the cottage for my appointment. When Round Hill first opened in the 1950s, spa treatments and


services were not as fashionable as they are today. As the resort’s popularity grew and wellness services improved, the spa cottage went from a room with a bed or two and on-call therapists to a full-service spa, health and wellness center boasting a wide variety of natural scrubs, exotic treatments, skincare therapies and holistic services. All are in keeping with the rustic-meets-luxury and natural appeal of the rest of the resort. After going back and forth with the menu items, from the tranquility treatment to the deep-tissue experience, I landed on the Wellness Massage option, as it was described to me as a bit of both. I walked over to the changing room, found a cubby for my clothes and changed into an oversized robe and rubber sandals before shuffling back to the main cottage for my massage. I grabbed a spa water on the way to my room and got comfortable under plush sheets surrounded by aromatherapy incense. My masseuse was soft-spoken and sweet as she patiently waited for me to get situated, rolling over the wrong way and back again. She began by gently exfoliating my feet, legs, arms and hands, then back — again, after patiently waiting for me to roll over correctly. The exfoliation process woke my skin up from a long winter, helping with circulation and making the lotion and oil process that much more relaxing. Essentially, the wellness treatment is designed to rejuvenate your skin while relaxing your muscles and releasing any harbored deep tension. The massage started with my feet and calves and moved up toward my back, arms, shoulders and neck. The kneading pressure felt amazing and, after just a few minutes, I knew I was going to have a hard time accepting the massage was over. Oil, massage, lotion, massage and repeat, forever. After rolling on my back for more massaging of my feet, legs, chest, head and face, my 50-minute massage was coming to an end. Until my experience at Round Hill, I hadn’t had a professional scalp massage before, and to sneak that in at the end was a welcome, game-changing surprise. Now fully relaxed, near sleep and feeling completely exhilarated and rejuvenated at the same time, I begrudgingly got up from my reverie and prepared to change. After assess-

ing the situation that was my disheveled, oiled-up hair, I was completely unfazed — it was still island time, or irie, mon — as I slid my now slippery feet back into my rubber shoes and headed for my locker of beach clothes. Luckily, the spa and fitness center’s private beach was just steps away, so I easily floated over to lie on the lounge chair for a bit longer in full relaxation mode. Although the spa offers “me time” treatments for teens, it’s one of the only spaces on the resort exclusively adults-only and incredibly quiet. Perfect for my extended wellness treatment and selfmade R&R before walking back to reality — well, a 5-star Jamaican resort reality consisting of infinity pools, high tea and impeccable service.

LIFE'S A BREEZE: Treatment room

PHOTO: © ROUND HILL HOTEL AND VILLAS

Round Hill Hotel and Villas John Pringle Drive Montego Bay, Jamaica tel 876 956 7050 roundhill.com

JUNE 2018

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golf

A FRIENDLY GAME Enjoy a fun but challenging round at TPC Myrtle Beach. BY FRANCIS X. GALLAGHER

OUT FOR A SPIN: Hole 11

PHOTO: © FRANCIS X. GALLAGHER

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TPC MYRTLE BEACH REMAINS ONE of the must-play courses for any serious golfer on an excursion to the Grand Strand. It is the site of the Senior PGA Championship won by Hall of Famer Tom Watson. Another Tom — Tom Fazio — designed the course in 1999. Fazio is considered one of the best golf course architects alive, and of the 120plus courses he designed, more remain in the top 100 than do those of any other designer. That Fazio is a Philly native and a graduate of Lansdale Catholic High School was not lost on our nearly all-Philadelphian foursome as we played TPC. LCHS honored Fazio in 2007 at a great homecoming event, entering him into the school’s Hall of Fame. We started on the 10th hole when we teed up on a beautiful April day in Myrtle. The foursome included Mike Donahue (president, GT Advisory Board), who had great action off the tee during his game; Jimmy “The Cop” Spratt, serious and focused but often distracted (maybe the Blue Angels flying over for the Myrtle Beach Air Show were too much); my brother, Gerry “Gerbils” Gallagher, who warmed up to the course; and myself, playing my regular game of double bogeys, bogeys and pars (fewer pars than I’d like to admit). I found out later Gerry took some lessons in his hometown of Dallas, evident mainly in his drives off the tee box.

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HOLE 11 | 425 yards, par 4 “A New Way to Tee Off”

Besides scoring a par (and Gerry a birdie) on Hole 11, I witnessed the most remarkable shot off a tee by Mike. Racing to be the first to show us he could clobber the ball, he swung hard, catching the ball on the hozel of the club and sending it screaming wildly low to the right. Before having a chance to go out of bounds, the ball crushed the white tee marker (made out of PVC plastic at TPC) and sent it spinning like a top. I thought the marker might drill itself into the ground, resulting in a gusher of oil. The ball bounded furiously off the tee marker but launched forward. We thought this was a riot, but Mike just got up again and crushed his 3-wood with fantastic might. The rest of us played a different game. I drove a little right, putting the trees into my approach more mentally than in reality. I took the ball up the left to the green and two-putted for par. Though I was unable to produce a spinning tee marker, I was pleased with the result. Gerry landed left center and caught a perfect iron to the center of the green and one-putted. Unfortunately, Jimmy — still damaged from witnessing the spinner shot — became tangled in the trees on the left and carded a double bogey.


HOLE 18 | 538 yards, par 5 “Who’s on First?”

Fazio created this wonderful finishing hole to make or break your game. I guess the greenskeeper closes the hole to carts all the time, as the fairway has a drainage issue. The day we played, the course was in great shape, so I ignored any warnings of “cart path only” to help speed our play. My drive was good but slightly less robust than Gerry’s. When I walked out to hit my second shot, Gerry (in a world of his own) started walking on the fairway toward his ball. This got into my head and I shanked the ball into the water left. The fairway is split by a stream only those with exceptional drives can meet. The second shot is to another fairway with a large pond on the left, culminating in the green and the lovely clubhouse beyond. After taking my penalty stroke, I advanced nicely and then chipped onto the green for a bogey, forgiving Gerry for his distractions, of which there are many.

HOLE 1 | 377 yards, par 4 “Off the Bat”

Off the bat, we teed off at Hole 1, listed as the ninth-ranked handicap hole on TPC. Mike, Jim and I drove well-placed shots, in line for our second shots to the green on this dogleg left. The landing area has two bunkers, left and right, and the green is deep, nearly 40 yards. Gerry slapped a ball left and short, bouncing around the trees until it rested, making his comeback impossible. After getting back into play, he landed in a bunker, adding a stroke to his score, while the rest of us carded bogeys and hurried to the carts.

HOLE 2 | 547 yards, par 5 “Wally and Gerbils”

If you are fond of alligators, this is the hole for you! Right near where Gerry drove his tee shot lay a rather large gator looking content and fat. I suggested Gerry simply ask the fella to move, but he insisted on a “drop” due to the man-eater. This beautiful par 5 requires three near-perfect shots to the green as it wraps around the water on the left. The team scored a collection of bogeys and double bogeys. “You’d think by now we would be warmed up and scoring better,” said Mike.

BEWARE THE GATOR: Hole 2

PHOTO: © FRANCIS X. GALLAGHER

HOLE 9 | 472 yards, par 4 “Relief”

Ranked the No. 1 handicapped hole on the front nine, it takes two good shots to make the green while avoiding any mishaps. Your monster drive needs to clear the swampy brush just beyond the tee box and still have enough gusto to take distance away from your approach. A small pond lies on the right side within driving distance. Fortunately, all four of us landed safely, favoring the left side of the fairway. The uphill approach makes it even more difficult; the one lone trap caught me on the fly. We all scored bogeys, one over par — more a relief than a celebration. Fazio included some remarkable and memorable holes in the design. Whether you decide to spin a tee marker or make friends with the wild animals is entirely up to you, but I recommend a round at TPC when you visit Myrtle Beach. For this Philadelphia team, it was like a homecoming!

JUNE 2018

TPC Myrtle Beach 1199 TPC Blvd. Murrells Inlet, SC 29576 tel 843 357 3399 tpcmyrtlebeach.com

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chefs

A FRESH APPROACH Seattle chef Ethan Stowell brings his signature style to Delta Sky Clubs. BY KIMBERLY KROL

and the style of our restaurants. It also complements how we source food — we always start by finding quality, local products to work with. When it comes to our work at Delta Sky Club, our goal has been to create fresh, local offerings that make you feel good when you are traveling, while also sharing with travelers how important food is in the Northwest. WHO TAUGHT YOU HOW TO COOK? HOW HAS THAT IMPACTED YOUR APPROACH TO COOKING? I’m a self-taught chef, and honestly, I still learn every day from my colleagues and team members. When I was growing up, my parents loved cooking, and meals were really important. My dad, in particular, loved cooking as a hobby. Every night, we sat down as a family to have dinner, and that moment of coming together influenced both my cooking style and our approach at our restaurants. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE FOOD CITY? It’s impossible to pick, but I’ll go with Hanoi, Vietnam. It’s the best food city I’ve visited.

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WHICH DESTINATIONS INSPIRED YOU, AND HOW HAS THAT INSPIRATION TRANSLATED INTO YOUR CULINARY CONCEPTS? I’d say the top destinations that inspired my food are Italy, Vietnam, Thailand and, most recently, Spain. Of those, our biggest is definitely Italy — we started traveling there regularly and fell in love not just with the food but with their process. Italians don’t take presentation too seriously, they are approachable, and you can get an incredible meal without it being expensive. For them, it’s more about the experience and bringing people together to enjoy a meal — that approach matches our personality

WHAT DO YOU THINK THE NEXT BIG TREND ON THE FOOD SCENE WILL BE? I think true, real food will always be and continue to become more important. I also think people are going out to eat more regularly for lunch and dinner — instead of only for special occasions, making food more casual. DELTA AIR LINES delta.com

PHOTO: © GEOFFREY SMITH

STOWELL AND SEATTLE ARE SYNONYMOUS. Ethan Stowell, the executive chef and owner of several Seattle-based restaurant concepts, now collaborates with Delta Air Lines to bring fresh, seasonal, locally sourced fare to the Delta Sky Club located on Concourse A at SeattleTacoma International Airport. “The Delta team approached me about partnering on the food at the Club — making it more approachable and localized. During that time, the team has been open to our ideas and thinking. It makes me proud that what we’ve done at Delta Sky Club in Seattle is influencing Delta Sky Club’s approach to food across the country,” said Stowell. The Seattle Sky Club menu includes a variety of salads, a weekly rotation of crudité and dips, pasta served with Stowell’s signature pasta sauce, and fresh-popped popcorn with Stowell’s popular topping. With 16 restaurants in Seattle, Stowell clearly is committed to seeing Seattle recognized nationally as a culinary destination. One of his restaurants, Goldfinch Tavern, is located in the Four Seasons Hotel Seattle, and he also works with the Seattle Mariners and Holland America Line.


cruising

SEA CURE Restore mind, body and spirit on a wellness cruise. IT IS SAID SALT SEA AIR has profound curative powers, so what better place to immerse oneself in these healthful properties than on an ocean cruise? Spas have long been a staple on cruises, but many ships expanded their fitness and beauty facilities to embrace programs dedicated to promoting wellness of mind, body and spirit. This fresh focus on wellness and holistic lifestyles already spawned a wide range of alternative classes, exotic spa treatments, leaner cuisines and New Age activities from meditation to yoga, all designed to return passengers to shore in fitter and trimmer condition — enlightened, rather than bloated. Not surprisingly, the number of specially themed wellness cruises is on the rise. Seabourn Cruise Line, for example, introduced Dr. Andrew Weil’s “Mindful Living” courses to its Steiner Spa lineup. The emphasis is on meditation; yoga; and achieving a more balanced, healthful lifestyle. A special 14-day wellness cruise with the doctor himself (Greece: Origins of Wellness with Dr. Andrew Weil) sets sail Oct. 6. Meanwhile, Lindblad Expeditions’ 62-passenger National Geographic Seabird serves as a floating base camp for wellness training each winter in Mexico’s Sea of Cortez. Power yoga classes on deck, stand-up paddleboarding at sea and nature hikes ashore are topped off by neck massages and group meditation sessions. Nearly every premium and luxury cruise line launched its own wellness program. Regent Seven Seas Cruises conducts Seven Seas Wellness Tours at 10 ports in the Mediterranean, ranging from tai chi in Marseille to yoga in Corfu. Silversea Cruises mounts Wellness Expedition voyages featuring yoga; Pilates; water aerobics; nutritional meals; and holistic therapies focused on aromatherapy, music and art. Celebrity Cruises’ Mindful Dreams program offers healthy lifestyle classes and spa treatments, as well as shore excursions that promote wellness, including a yoga outing in the rainforest. Oceania Cruises also has its own wellness tours, complete with yoga classes and vegan menus for those wanting to jettison carbs and calories along the way. And UnCruise Adventures, staffed by personal trainers and nutrition experts, takes up the theme on its small ships in Alaska, Costa Rica and the Sea of Cortez. This emphasis on wellness and fitness even spawned a new

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BY J.D. BROWN AND MARGARET BACKENHEIMER

BALANCED LIFESTYLE:

Paddleboard yoga with Lindblad Expeditions’ National Geographic Seabird (above), and Mindful Living course on Seabourn Cruise Line (left) PHOTOS: © LINDBLAD/ JEFF LITTON, © SEABOURN CRUISE LINE

Miami-based cruise line, Blue World Cruises, which plans to acquire three 350-passenger vessels and retrofit them with lap pools with retractable roofs, sports medicine clinics and indoor basketball courts, creating the most comprehensive sports and wellness complex at sea. Blue World Voyages hoped to set sail this summer, but it may take another year to hit the open waters. In the meantime, the world’s top luxury cruise lines already created a new age in ocean travel, with wellness cruises the high-water mark for health-conscious passengers.

ess Welln es cruis new chart ways er liv to de , leaner r meane e or but m l fu health s ion vacat . at sea


be privileged. be one. As a ONEworld® traveler, wherever you go, your rewards follow. ONEworld extends many of the exclusive benefits of your preferred ONEworld airline’s frequent flyer program. Emerald, Sapphire and Ruby ONEworld tiers each offer specific benefits which align automatically with your preferred ONEworld member airline benefits. Make a smart choice in traveling with any of our 13 airlines and take advantage of benefits you already have. Learn more at oneworld.com

an alliance of the world's leading airlines working as one. American Airlines British Airways Cathay Pacific Finnair Iberia Japan Airlines LATAM Malaysia Airlines Qantas Qatar Airways Royal Jordanian S7 Airlines SriLankan Airlines

ONEworld benefits are available only to passengers on scheduled flights that are both marketed and operated by a ONEworld member airline (marketed means that there must be a ONEworld member airline’s flight number on your ticket). For information on ONEworld, visit www.oneworld.com. airberlin, American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines, LATAM Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Qantas, Qatar Airways, Royal Jordanian, S7 Airlines, SriLankan Airlines and ONEworld are trademarks of their respective companies. LATAM Airlines (Paraguay) is currently not a part of ONEworld.


feature

State of Bliss Embark on a quest for wellness at the world’s finest spas. BY DEBRA BOKUR SWEET HARMONY:

OH! Spa relaxation room at the Ocean House in Rhode Island PHOTO: © OCEAN HOUSE, RHODE ISLAND

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IN THE LAND OF LONG AGO and far away, resolute travelers in search of well-being trekked for days — or longer — to sites where healing springs spilled from the earth, just to soak in them or to sip the waters. These places still exist, from the collection of bathing temples left behind in Europe by the Romans to modern spas thoughtfully integrated into landscapes distinguished by natural healing elements. The world’s most brilliant spas honor ancient wellness traditions and protocols in settings that also offer superlative comforts and state-of-the-art products and perks. At the romantic Le Terme della Regina Isabella on the volcanic island of Ischia in the Bay of Naples, guests benefit from the island’s multitude of natural thermal springs and mineral-rich mud. Long a coveted retreat for film stars and jetsetters, the spa’s physical location is integral to its


identity, and it maximizes its location with treatments and therapies that celebrate this organic connection. “We are very proud of our treatments that incorporate our local mud and thermal waters, which have been established as a result of our advanced research,” says Costanza Popolano, spa manager, Le Terme della Regina Isabella. “We offer various therapies and treatments as well as a unique spa experience that involves all the senses and is personalized to each guest. We specialize in customized treatments, which are designed to relax the body and mind as well as nourish the spirit.” Despite the truly subjective nature of defining “bliss,” the mindbody connection and authenticity of the spa menu is more essential than it’s ever been, given the ever-growing sophistication of spa-goers. Guests at Aji Spa at The Sheraton Wild Horse Pass, located within Arizona’s Gila River Indian Community, can indulge in indigenous healing rituals drawn from the local Pima and Maricopa traditions such as the Pima Medicine Massage and the Nahtogig (Four Directions) nourishing body therapy, which includes a serving of prickly pear tea as part of the relaxation ritual. The heavenly silence of a Japanese ryokan spa is exemplified in the hot, sea-glass blue waters of Takinoya in Hokkaido, where the stone baths open to the sky; and at the private, landscaped gardens for pre- and post-treatment strolls at the baths in Shizuoka at Sanyo-so. In Moscow, those in search of an authentic Russian bathing ritual can choose the Banya Experience by Natura Siberica at the elegant, historic Four Seasons Hotel Moscow. Here Siberian herbs, berries and mineral-infused mud are incorporated into the treatment. When it comes to that elusive state of bliss, one person’s ideal spa destination may be a snow-covered Nordic setting while someone else’s might entail views of a tropical beach from a flower-bedecked balcony. When it comes to essentials, overall ambience, atmosphere and how these components contribute to a sense of calm and peace is vital. And, regardless of preference or how perfect the landscape, a prerequisite for true brilliance is seamless, superb service. “The team has an integral role to play; even amazing spas in fabulous, serene and exotic settings won’t succeed unless the spa team have a passion for their work,” says Ann Costelloe, spa director, Coworth Park, a sprawling estate in England’s Berkshire countryside. “They must have a natural empathy with every guest, the ability

HEALING WATERS:

Takinoya in Hokkaido (top), Aji Spa at The Sheraton Wild Horse Pass pool (middle), and Hotel D’Angleterre’s Amazing Space Spa pool in Copenhagen (bottom) PHOTOS: © TAKINOYA, © AJI SPA AT THE SHERATON WILD HORSE PASS, © HOTEL D’ANGLETERRE’S AMAZING SPACE SPA

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INNER PEACE:

Hotel Adler Thermae Spa Resort Grotta del Filosofo PHOTOS: © ADLER THERMAE

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to ‘tune in,’ to create a sense of peace and wellness to match the the spa industry, showing an estimated 179–184 million spa visits in surroundings.” the United States 2015–2016. This spa-going demographic ranges Coworth Park’s inspired architecture brings the elements of from wellness warriors to the simply exhausted, while the proliferaspace and light directly into play while connecting guests to nature tion of options can make it a daunting prospect to choose just one with enormous windows and a wide, welcoming sun terrace. The destination. (Germany alone has more than 350 spa towns.) indoor swimming pool is surrounded by real amethyst crystal “I feel what makes a spa experience special is knowing that your sculptures, a stone recognized for its calming and stress-reducing every need is going to be anticipated and met on every occasion,” properties; beneath the surface of the water, guests swim to a offers Lisa Browne, spa manager, Amazing Space Spa at Hotel soundtrack of soothing music. D’Angleterre in Copenhagen. While Coworth Park’s sheer size “This is an opportunity to relax ‘An exceptional spa should make you is impressive, small can be just as and allow your daily concerns effective when it comes to quality of and considerations to be left to feel physically and mentally better.’ experience. If enveloping yourself wait — all while one takes a bit — Ann Costelloe, spa director, Coworth Park in a sanctuary is key to your journey, of time, a deep breath, a slice investigate the intimate settings of of heaven, and enjoys the pamthe spa at The Milestone in London pering they so well deserve.” with its menu of professional services and elegant ambience. Or The outstanding selection of treatments and products at look into the medically supervised, kur-based health and wellness Amazing Space Spa are inspired by Nordic nature and are acprograms offered in the extreme comfort of Kellner’s SPA in companied by what Browne describes as “impeccable service in the Badenweiler, Germany. Each provides a level of personalization most exquisite environment.” with which it’s hard to compete. If you want to make the globe stop spinning, if only for a little Embarking on a quest for well-being has become a competitive while, the world is full of glorious choices. Consider the indoor worldwide industry. Data collected by the International Spa Asveranda with views of the sea, beach stone massages, spa herb sociation for its 2017 report continue to illustrate steady growth in garden and Ocean Glow scrubs at OH! Spa at Ocean House

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BATHED IN TRANQUILITY:

Resort in Watch Hill, R.I.; the outdoor waterfall spa huts at Spa Without Walls at The Fairmont Orchid on Hawai’i Island; the salt cave and winding indoor river at Hotel Adler Thermae Spa Resort in the peaceful Tuscan village of Bagno Vignoni; and the nourishing seaweed wraps, naturopathy and life-enhancing workshops and retreats at Spa Eastman in Canada’s Eastern Townships, which also offers polar bathing, steam baths and Kneipp water circuits. Each is a tribute to the wellness industry’s ever growing resources for those in search of harmony. You can even add a slice of history to your journey. At the Friedrichsbad Roman-Irish Bath in the German town of Baden Baden (once known as Aquae Aureliae), spa travelers can step back in time to a world of watery indulgences left behind by Roman soldiers, built 2,000 years ago at the site of natural springs above the ancient Soldier’s Bath. The original bath ruins and Roman-built walls are still there, with a slightly more modern temple of soaring halls. Guests participate in a circuit of 17 separate stations and professionally delivered services that include soaking in spring waters that range from cold to steamy. In the end, your personal definition of tranquility and the recognition of what lifts you from the dayto-day will determine your own ideal spa. Our best advice: Allow the integration of local elements with healing therapies to offer a gentle link to the wellspring of ancient wisdom practices rooted deep in the past, enabling you to experience a true sense of place and an exceptional escape, whichever address in the world you choose.

Friedrichsbad Roman-Irish Bath at Baden-Baden (above), and treatment room at Coworth Park (left) PHOTO: © BADENBADEN KUR & TOURISMUS, © COWORTH PARK

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feature

Good Vibrations Focus on fitness and find like minds at wellness festivals around the world. BY MARLENE GOLDMAN IN AN AGE WHEN MORE THAN 80 percent of those ages 18–34 spend a quarter of their disposable income on health products and services, the global fitness frenzy has an impact on the nature of festivals as well. Festival-goers wake up to live-music sunrise yoga sessions rather than bleary-eyed from a nasty hangover, splurging for kombucha on tap and indulging in organic foods. The formats may differ, but the concept behind the myriad wellness festivals worldwide runs along the lines of creating community through well-being, whether it’s a week of meditation and yoga or a weekend of DJs and dance parties mixed with lectures and classes promoting mindfulness. “Though there is no way of tracking festivals, wellness festivals are popular — probably more in the last five years,” said Steve Schmader, president and CEO, International Festivals &

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Events Association, based in Boise. The association is a professional body for festivals and events around the world. “I think as people in society deal with so much stress, people are looking for outlets,” he added. “They are looking to get control over their world.” Following are just a handful of the major wellness festivals around the globe.

FOCUS ON FITNESS: Wanderlust

PHOTOS: © WANDERLUST/ AMANDA SENIOR


an inspiration,” Hoess said. “We looked at what they were doing and thought there was an opportunity to make a festival around that, make it fun.” The event itself includes a menu of some 300 activities. Attendees can sign up for lectures, yoga classes and meditation, as well as nightly concerts. Other activities, such as guided hikes or paddle board classes, depend on the festival location, whether in the mountains or at the beach. Speakers included the likes of Deepak Chopra, and musical performances range from acoustic mountaintop meditations to electric main stage performances, from silent disco to Kirtan and sound healing. “Our mission is helping people find their true north, find their best selves,” Hoess said. Wanderlust also produces some 60 events in urban areas worldwide in places like Golden Gate Park in San Francisco and Prospect Park in New York. Called Wanderlust 108, they consist of a 5k run, a 90-minute yoga class and guided meditation — “a mindful triathlon.” wanderlust.com

COMMUNITY CONNECTIONS:

Wanderlust and Shakti Fest PHOTOS: © WANDERLUST/ MELISSA GAYLE, © SHAKTI FEST/ SANDRA GOODIN

WANDERLUST STARTED AS a single event in Squaw Valley, Lake Tahoe, in 2009 and has expanded into a worldwide series of festivals located in the United States, Canada, Chile, Australia and New Zealand. “It’s a celebration, more about balance of life, celebrating community,” said Sean Hoess, CEO. “It started as a largescale music festival built around yoga. From there, there has been a lot of growth.” Hoess and cofounder Jeff Krasno were formerly involved in the music business but were not interested in producing a music event. “At the time, Yoga Journal’s style of conference was

ANOTHER LONGTIME FESTIVAL, Bhakti Fest is held at California’s 425-acre Joshua Tree Retreat Center and features yoga with top-name instructors, Kirtan music, Ayurvedic practices, workshops and vegetarian/ vegan food. There are also seminars on nutrition. “We’re family-oriented,” said cofounder Sridhar Steven Silberfein. “No alcohol, no drugs. The festival focuses on what to do to go deeper inside and find the self … understanding the soul.” Mornings start with meditation and a fire ceremony, or homa, during which a priest opens a fire pit and people sit around chanting. “It’s opening the inner spirit so you can have a better day,” Silberfein said. Shakti Fest started two years after Bhakti and is geared more for women — worshipping the divine goddess, according to Silberfein. There are a number of female yoga teachers and seminars led by spiritual elder women. Bhakti attracts 5,000 with speakers like Deepak Chopra while Shakti, held Mother’s Day weekend, attracts 200. Proceeds from the festivals go to charities, including schools in India. west.bhaktifest.com

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weekend. During the daytime there are wellness presentations as well as movement classes such as yoga, hula hooping and sound meditation classes and hands-on practices like reiki and palm reading. Evenings feature two keynote speakers, with past all-star guest speakers including Deepak Chopra; Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.; Jamie Lee Curtis; and Mariel Hemingway. “Usually there is a music element to get people out and moving, dancing,” Deckard explained. “We had MC Yogi one year; we had Jewel. Last year there was a yoga DJ dance party.” sunvalleywellness.org

PURPOSELY SMALLER IN SIZE than some of the big-name festivals, the annual Telluride WOW (Weekend of Wellness) Festival maintains a relatively straightforward daily schedule, starting with a morning hike and including a music-based fitness class; a session of either Pilates or indoor cycling; and a choice of massage, meditation or a movement class. The festival addresses behavioral health in one-on-one sessions.

telluridewow.live

THE WEEK-LONG INTERNATIONAL YOGA FESTIVAL in Rishikesh, India, regarded as the birthplace of yoga, includes more than 60 hours of varying yoga classes led by worldrenowned masters. Though yoga is the main focus, the festival also presents lectures guided by some of India’s premier spiritual and thought leaders and other wellness specialists. Nearly 2,000 participants from 101 countries descended on the festival last year. The festival takes place at Parmarth Niketan Ashram, the largest ashram in Rishikesh and one of the largest interfaith yoga institutions in India. The day starts at 4 a.m. with kundalini sadhana — a daily spiritual practice — and ends at 9:30 p.m. with traditional cultural song and dance on the banks of the Ganges River. internationalyogafestival.org

BALANCING ACT: WellFest

PHOTOS: © WELLFEST/ MARC O'SULLIVAN

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THE SUN VALLEY WELLNESS FESTIVAL, now in its 21st year in Idaho, was initially created and produced by the Sun Valley/Ketchum Chamber & Visitors Bureau. In 2006 the Sun Valley Wellness Institute took over. “What separates us from most other festivals is we’re a nonprofit organization,” said Heather Lamonica Deckard, festival director. “We have scholarships for people in need.” The organization hosts smaller wellness-oriented events, but the Sun Valley Wellness Festival is its centerpiece. “The focus is wellness of mind, body, spirit and environment,” Deckard said. This year the festival location moved to the Community School Campus in Sun Valley, Idaho. About 3,500 attend throughout the

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ONE OF THE MORE PROMINENT wellness festivals on the scene, Wonderfruit, melds music, arts, family, workshops, talks and adventures for four days at the Fields at Siam Country Club in Pattaya, Thailand, and draws some 13,000 people. Pranitan “Pete” Phornprapha, founder and creative director, Wonderfruit, said in a statement regarding 2017’s event, “… Wonderfruit has been all about showing that living sustainably can be easy, fun, and even decadent, but this time we made a huge step forward as we brought together thousands of likeminded people from four continents to explore, enjoy, and make positive change.”  Produced by Scratch First, the festival includes talks on environmental awareness, conservation and even crystal healing. It uses sustainable materials, including its Living Stage for performers and DJs, made from environmentally friendly bamboo. wonderfruitfestival.com


HELD IN UBUD, THE ANNUAL BaliSpirit Festival attracts more than 7,000 people from all over the world. The six-day, seven-night event offers interactive workshops and seminars, a healing center, a children’s activity zone and yoga classes, as well as an assortment of live music ranging from rock to Balinese contemporary, from devotional to world beat. Just as varied are the talks and workshops, with topics running the gamut: shamanism, African drumming meditation, hula hoop dancing, kundalini tantra yoga and Javanese mysticism. “Healing Huts” showcase healers in the practices of chakra balancing, Balinese healing arts and massage, to name a few. Other workshops focus on yoga and healing practices. balispiritfestival.com

MUSIC AND WELLNESS CONVERGE in the rainforest of Costa Rica at the annual Envision Festival. Started in 2011, the festival draws top-name talent like Bob Moses, performance artists and keynote speakers, as well as hands-on classes teaching how-to skills for permaculture and herbal medicine. In the past it featured talks from the founders of Burning Man as well as the director of the documentary Cowspiracy. Festivalgoers can camp on site or stay at a hotel. envisionfestival.com

DUBLIN DEBUTED WELLFEST in 2015, and it has become Ireland’s largest wellness festival. Held at the Royal Hospital Kilmainham, Dublin City Centre, the festival is based on three pillars of wellness — nutrition and spiritual and physical fitness, with a full lineup of yoga and Pilates classes, talks on mental health, cooking demonstrations and wellness talks. wellfest.ie

HOSTED AT THE ASSEMBLY ROOMS, the Edinburgh Wellbeing Festival features speakers on fitness and nutrition, herbal remedies, physiotherapy and other health-related topics. Also featured are workshops in everything from How to Build a Successful Wellbeing Business to What Type of Yoga Is Best for You. Classes range from power yoga to Zumba. edinburghwellbeingfestival.com

THE FIVE-DAY SPIRITFEST, located at Somerset Gift, a green farm and nature reserve outside Swellendam, South Africa, incorporates chanting, meditation and DJ-led dance parties, as well as various styles of yoga from kundalini to ashtanga. Vendors hawk eco-conscious crafts and foods, and presenters from around the world vary from anatomy experts to shamans.

IN THE SPIRIT:

Edinburgh Wellbeing Festival (top), and Spiritfest PHOTOS: © EDINBURGH WELLBEING FESTIVAL, © SPIRITFEST

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mice | PERTH

Sunny Side Up All’s well in Perth, where business is always a pleasure. BY SUSAN B. BARNES

WARM WELCOME:

(Left to right) Perth CBD at twilight, InterContinental Perth City Centre Gallery Meeting Suites, and Tribe Perth breakout space PHOTOS: © F11PHOTO | DREAMSTIME.COM, © INTERCONTINENTAL PERTH CITY CENTRE, © TRIBE PERTH

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KNOWN AS AUSTRALIA’S sunniest capital city, Perth has been recognized internationally as one of the world’s top 10 most livable cities since 2004 and has undergone an extraordinary revitalization over the past few years in response to increased attention and tourism. Since 2012 2,600 new hotel rooms have been added to the city’s inventory, and another 2,600 are currently under construction. To say Perth is growing to accommodate tourism, as well as the meetings, incentives and conventions industries, is an understatement. Here we take a look at recent developments and what to expect over the next year. Earlier this year, The Westin Perth and The Melbourne Hotel opened, adding more variety when it comes to guestrooms and meeting spaces. Located along the Swan River and at the edge of the Central Business District, The Westin Perth, opened in late April, offers plenty of room for larger groups, with 368 guestrooms and nine meeting spaces encompassing more than 24,750 square feet.

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Though The Melbourne Hotel opened recently, it is, in fact, Perth’s longest-operating hotel within the CBD; the original hotel opened on the same site in 1897. From board meetings to gatherings of up to 225 guests, the hotel’s flexible spaces feature the latest in technology to ensure your events go off without a hitch. In 2017 three additional new hotels came on line — InterContinental Perth City Centre and boutique hotels Aloft Perth and Tribe Perth, the latter two choosing the city for the Australian debut of their brands. The 16-story, 240-room InterContinental Perth City Centre features five Gallery Meeting Suites, terrific for business meetings, seminars and more intimate gatherings. The suites vary in size and offer flexiblity in terms of configurations and the number of people comfortably accommodated. A central lounge for breakout sessions and an outdoor terrace ideal for receptions enhance the meetings experience. Conveniently located between the airport and the CBD, the 224 guestrooms at the 15-story Aloft Perth are complemented by six free-flowing, bright, versatile Tactic spaces featuring state-of-the-art A/V for groups of between eight and 250. Another option, the rooftop ballroom, handles up to 300, with an

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open kitchen concept and large terrace to enjoy the outdoors as well. Designed for a new generation of travelers, Tribe Perth focuses on creating a design-driven experience that is part collaborative workspace, part social club, with an equal focus on its 126 guestrooms and innovative breakout spaces. The hotel’s location at the doorstep of Perth’s growing CBD, as well as close proximity to top restaurants, bars and attractions, provides a terrific opportunity to mix business and pleasure and sets the stage where business does not necessarily feel like work. On the radar is the 18-story, 184-room QT Hotel Perth, scheduled to open mid-year with seven conference rooms accommodating up to 250 people in a variety of configurations. When DoubleTree by Hilton Perth Northbridge opens in October, it will lead as the first in the brand to open in Western Australia. The hotel’s 206 guestrooms and more than 5,000 square feet of meeting space lie within close proximity of the entertainment district, making it easy to combine business with after-hours fun. In addition, The Ritz-Carlton, Perth aims for an opening in mid-2019, marking the luxury brand’s return to Australia. The 204-room property, under development in Elizabeth Quay on Perth’s waterfront, sits adjacent to the Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre.

Traveling through Perth Airport has become more comfortable with the opening of a couple of new airline lounges over the past year. In March Qantas opened its new International Transit Lounge featuring a wellness facility, more than a dozen shower suites and an outdoor patio. The lounge’s opening coincides with Qantas’ new non-stop service between Perth and London. And in December 2017 Air New Zealand opened its first-ever lounge at the airport, accommodating more than 110 guests. The airline’s 4,700-plus-square-foot lounge features a sleek and modern design, with four zones to meet its customers’ needs: café, business, lounge and quiet areas. You know what they say about all work and no play. Perth offers plenty of places to play while in town. Two to consider: the recently opened The Camfield, one of Australia’s largest pubs with 175 beer taps, and the Hi-Line Rooftop Bar, overlooking the city’s skyline. For eats, the food hall-like Yagan Square opened earlier this year with a variety of casual food options and space available to host events. Add to those the nearby pictureperfect beaches, for swimming and strolling, and Kings Park, one of the largest inner-city parks in the world and perfect for running, walking or bicycling to stretch the legs. You will find plenty of options to stay occupied during the off-hours.

UNIQUE VENUES In addition to its dining options, Yagan Square provides ample space to host events right in the heart of Perth’s Central Business District. The Camfield, a bit more than a 10-minute drive from the CBD, also offers plenty of spaces that easily convert into event venues for groups of six to 400. Take your event for 30 to 350 to new heights in The Nest Rooftop Bar at The Aviary. The Nest overlooks downtown Perth for terrific views day and night, and a dedicated event coordinator ensures everything goes off without a hitch. theaviaryperth.com.au For a historic twist, reserve a gallery at the Museum of Perth for your event and be surrounded by the city’s social, cultural, political and architectural history. museumofperth.com.au See the city from the Swan River when your event sets sail on the Crystal Swan. The architect-designed vessel can host up to 100 guests for a formal sit-down meal and up to 200 guests for a stand-up, cocktail-style event, all while providing 360-degree views of the city and its surrounds. crystalswan.com.au

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a City d n a r a Jac named k trees c i a n d n s i a r ria ca Preto s of ja each d n m a o s o u l o b h et ers for th e flow l p r u p . bluehe city t whose t u o h throug spring

BUSINESS destinations

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STOCKHOLM

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SEATTLE

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OKINAWA

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COPENHAGEN

PHOTOS: © DENYS DENYSEVYCH | DREAMSTIME.COM, © DESLOVER | DREAMSTIME.COM

LEISURE destinations

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PRETORIA

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MONACO

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NEW ZEALAND

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COSTA RICA


destination one | STOCKHOLM

Startup Stockholm The Swedish capital embraces entrepreneurship and livability. BY ALLIE MOORE ON A COASTAL ARCHIPELAGO in Scandinavia sits a thriving capital city where wrought-iron spires blend into the oft-gray patchwork skies, and frigid Nordic air coats the region for the majority of the year. But through the darkness, Stockholm emits a heatwave of forward-thinking technology, a progressive social culture and the almighty Swedish coffee to fuel the city’s lofty endeavors. After Silicon Valley, the Stockholm region ranks second in the world for its number of billion-dollar companies and is home to Europe’s largest number of startups per capita, including “unicorns,” or billion-dollar privately owned companies. As such, the city was named Europe’s most

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innovative region by the European Commission. According to SparkLabs Group’s annual ranking of best startup ecosystems, Stockholm tied with Los Angeles for fourth place. With an anticipated population growth of 30 percent by 2040, the city council introduced “Vision 2040: A Stockholm for Everyone,” a mission to encourage support of the city’s sustainable principles and policies across all sectors — social, financial, economic and democratic. At the close of 2017, Stockholm’s market welcomed 96 new listings, 71 of which were initial public offerings. Investments in Swedish startups in 2017 reached $1.2 billion and included 442 new companies. This year Stockholm

COMING AND GOING

U.S. citizens must have a passport valid for at least six months beyond the planned period of stay and do not need a visa for stays up to 90 days.

OFFICIAL LANGUAGE Swedish


BIG PICTURE: Aerial panorama of Stockholm PHOTO: © SCANRAIL | DREAMSTIME.COM

LODGING AT SIX Start with a typical Swedish breakfast at the bakery before plugging into the broadcast/ podcast room. After work, guests are invited to the cocktail bar for Tipsy Tea time. Hotel At Six, Brunkebergstorg 6, Norrmalm $$$ DOWNTOWN CAMPER HOTEL From Scandic Hotels comes a centrally located accommodation with a lifestyle concierge well-versed in the best of Stockholm, plus a rooftop wellness center with a pool and sauna.

plans to introduce Europe’s first 5G wireless network service powered by Ericsson, Telia and Intel. Stockholm has seen a recent influx of companies open satellite branches or move headquarters to the city. Among these is Vistra, a leading international firm that provides administrative and financial services to global corporations. Vistra sees Stockholm as an ideal market due to its growing economic position and the population of asset managers in the city. Following in the footsteps of Facebook’s new Stockholm-based data center, Amazon Web Services plans to open three data centers in Stockholm’s surrounding regions. Companies shifting their focus toward Stockholm join the already existing startup powerhouses like Spotify and Lifesum. With more new subscribers per day than any other tech company besides Netflix, Spotify is the world’s second-largest music streaming service. Last December the tech giant moved its headquarters from one of the busiest streets in Stockholm to Urban Escape, a building complex that encompasses an entire city block and comprises offices, apartments, restaurants and hotels. Urban Escape’s website and Stockholm’s vision as a

whole promote entrepreneurialism among residents and expatriates. If existing residents choose to start their own businesses, they can feel secure knowing their health insurance won’t lapse and their social benefits will stay with them throughout their pursuits. Startup executives also value investing a portion of their successes back into the ecosystem, allowing opportunities for other entrepreneurs and fostering an environment of mutual support. Case in point is the Norrsken Foundation, an investment company that invests in technology to assist startups and entrepreneurs around the world. Stockholm’s startups aren’t concentrated only on business solutions; the Swedish capital pledged to become one of the world’s top innovators in eHealth and digitalization by 2025. City officials plan to use their established footing in the technological sector to improve health care for both providers and patients, starting with a complete restructuring of the current electronic health records system. A handful of Stockholm-based startups are working to help patients manage their health through mobile apps wherein they will be able to make appointments, access test results and view

Brunkebergstorg 9, Norrmalm $$$ HOTEL RIVAL Glamour meets ingenuity at this chic hotel. Rival’s cozy bistro, four dedicated meeting rooms and a 700-seat theater/event space bring business to the other side of Stockholm. Mariatorget 3, Södermalm $$$

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AMAZING ARCHITECTURE: Old Town (Gamla Stan) PHOTO : © SCANRAIL | DREAMSTIME.COM

JUST THE FACTS

Time zone: GMT +1 Phone code: Country code: 46 City code: 8 Currency: Swedish krona Key industries: Timber, hydropower, iron ore

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doctors’ notes. KRY is one such example of a company whose mobile app allows users to find doctors and conduct digital consultations. In the office, Swedish companies make sure their employees are fit, focused and productive by implementing mandatory exercise classes. Björn Borg — a sportswear company created by the country’s legendary tennis star — requires its employees to take part in a one-hour fitness class each Friday at a nearby gym. A study conducted by the University of Stockholm in 2014 revealed exercising in the middle of the workday resulted in higher levels of alertness and improved health, thus decreasing the likelihood workers will need sick days compared with employees who do not exercise. This summer in air travel, Stockholm will welcome Small Planet Airlines to its Arlanda Airport. The Lithuanian carrier based in Vilnius will offer shuttle service JUNE 2018

from Stockholm to cities in Albania, Croatia, Greece and the Canary Islands. Another change coming to Arlanda Airport is the recent sale of an airport-adjacent hotel by Swedish airport and real estate company Swedavia. The $155 million transaction transferred ownership to a company part of Wenaasgruppen and O.G. Ottersland, which will construct a new 215,000-square-foot, 503-room hotel under the Nordic Choice Hotels brand. Scheduled to open in 2019, the 14-story hotel will be the largest airport hotel in the Nordic region and will belong to Arlanda’s future Airport City district comprising shops, restaurants and local transportation links. With a 56 percent increase in passenger traffic since 2010 and 19 new intercontinental routes debuting in the past five years, a new luxury accommodation meets the growing capacity needs of the airport and the burgeoning interest in Stockholm as a business destination.

INFO TO GO

Stockholm has two major international airports: Bromma Stockholm Airport just outside the city, and Stockholm Arlanda Airport, approximately 20 minutes north of the city. From Bromma, the Flygbussarna coach travels to the center every 15 minutes, a journey which takes 20 minutes and costs 75 SEK (about $9.50) for one trip or 150 SEK (about $19) for a round-trip ticket. To reach central Stockholm from Arlanda Airport, travelers can take the Arlanda Express bus that terminates at Stockholm Centralstation and costs 99 SEK (about $12.52) for one trip or 198 SEK (about $25.05) for a roundtrip.


TAKING CARE: Downtown Camper Hotel (top), and Peter Jangbratt (bottom) PHOTOS: © DOWNTOWN CAMPER HOTEL, © PETER KNUTSON

DINING

CHECKING IN WITH PETER JANGBRATT

Country Managing Director in Sweden, Scandic Hotels How has tourism in Stockholm changed in the past five to 10 years? What has been the catalyst for these changes? Swedes in general started to travel a lot more over the last decade. Because of this, we see a lot of changes in domestic travel behavior. Taking a weekend in Stockholm is much more common today, and so we see a lot of Swedes from other cities in Stockholm. On top of that, we have a lot of visitors from the other Nordic countries. What we have started to see, just in the last few years, is the international tourists started to discover Stockholm as well. I think it’s partly because once you’ve been to the bigger European cities, you want to explore other things. Also, I think we now

have a hotel market with properties able to attract the international crowds. And lastly, the trends with Scandinavian design have really contributed to the change. What effect will the new Downtown Camper Hotel have on Stockholm’s tourism sector?  The hotel has been open for just a couple of months, but it’s already become a favorite for the international guests. There is a seamless blend of the rough, urban city and the calm serenity of nature. It’s a perfect basecamp to start exploring the city and to come back to, to recharge the batteries.   How do the Downtown Camper Hotel’s amenities and services contribute to the wellness and health of its guests? We aim for a sustainable lifestyle with this hotel. By offering activities like running clubs, yoga or kayaking around the castle, as well as spa rituals and DIY treatments in our rooftop wellness area, we give our guests the opportunity to take care of both their physical and inner health. On top of that, we fill our menus with both healthy vegan food and comfort food from all over the world.   What makes the Downtown Camper Hotel stand out from other Stockholm hotels? At Scandic Hotels, we believe in designing hotel experiences for everyone. Accessibility is therefore built into the design of our hotels. You won’t see obviously added ramps or railings — they are fully integrated. Like the line in the floor guiding visually impaired guests to the reception. We want our guests to explore what Stockholm has to offer. It’s such a beautiful city, so we have an electric scooter available for guests who struggle to walk longer distances.

LILLA EGO Inventive and aesthetically pleasing plates are on the menu at Lilla Ego, including Scandinavian standouts like sturgeon caviar, kalix bleak roe and blackened Arctic char. Västmannagatan 69, Vasastan $$$$ OPERAKÄLLAREN Step into the dining rooms of 19th-century royalty in this antiquestyle restaurant with cutting-edge cuisine where staff in white tuxedo coats serve plates of edible art. Opera House, Karl XII’s Square, Norrmalm $$$$ TAK Pick the brain of Sweden’s only saké sommelier at this top-floor Japanese restaurant with city views. Tak was named Business Restaurant of the Year by business publication Dagen Industri. Brunkebergstorg 4, Norrmalm $$$$

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SWEDISH DESIGN: Vasa Museum (top right), façade of Stockholm Royal Palace in Gamla Stan (left), and Stockholm Tunnel Rail art (bottom right) PHOTOS: © CATALINA ZAHARESCU TIENSUU | DREAMSTIME.COM, © VITALY TITOV | DREAMSTIME.COM, © SVETLANA DAY | DREAMSTIME.COM

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DIVERSIONS

Stockholm’s best examples of its historic beauty and enchantment can be found in Gamla Stan, the medieval Old Town. Home to the Royal Palace, the Nobel Museum and a handful of churches with sky-scraping bell towers, it’s easy to get lost in the narrow alleyways and colorful façades of alternating warm hues on this tiny island. Across two channel waterways is the Vasa Museum, Scandinavia’s most visited attraction. Museumgoers can marvel in the world’s only almost completely reconstructed 17th-century war ship, Vasa, which sank in 1628. Art abounds in Stockholm, from the modern designs of the rare skyscraper to the depths of the underground rail system, where 90 of the 100 stations’ interiors are painted and designed by more than 100 artists. These works of art make the 60-mile-long Stockholm Tunnel Rail the world’s longest art gallery. For a more concentrated display of art, Stockholm’s Moderna Museet on the island of Skeppsholmen houses modern and contemporary art from Swedish and international artists such as Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dalí and Henri Matisse.


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9–5 | CAPE TOWN

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he new GT app is This cultural crossroads provides endless opportunities for entertaining clients. BY MEREDITH BETHUNE

JOHANNESBURG MAY HAVE THE REPUTATION as South Africa’s business capital, but Cape Town still offers plenty to those traveling for work. The Mother City, as it is commonly known, with its spectacular waterfront setting crowned by the famous Table Mountain, hosts conferences that attract visitors from around the world. You’ll likely arrive at Cape Town International Airport, the second-busiest in South Africa and the thirdbusiest on the entire continent. Located just 12 miles from the city center, it experienced tremendous growth since opening in 1954. More than 10 million passengers

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passed through in 2016 — its busiest year yet. Arranging a car service in advance proves the best way to get into town. Services like Centurion Tours and Citi Hopper greet you at the terminal and run about 270–360 South African rand ($20–27), depending on the number of passengers in the vehicle. Uber is also thriving in Cape Town, so consider hailing a ride with the app if your smartphone works in South Africa. The Uber X service costs R146–189 ($11–15), while the more luxurious Uber Black should cost about R249–324 ($18–25). The 20- to 30-minute ride (depending on traffic) along the highway takes you past some of South Africa’s infamous townships. Although the center of Cape Town is home to fewer than 435,000, the metro area boasts a population of more than 3.7 million. Many live in these makeshift towns consisting of informal housing, a remnant from the days of apartheid, prohibiting non-whites from living in the city center. Cape Town, though, is quickly moving on from those unfortunate days. As you approach the downtown area, you’ll immediately recognize the faces of Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu currently installed on the façade of the Civic Centre. On a clear day, you’ll also spot the flat-topped Table Mountain in the background. Suitable hotels are scattered around the Central Business District and along the waterfront, but the 12-story Townhouse Hotel offers an excellent option for business travelers with its downtown location near City Hall and South Africa’s Houses of Parliament. It boasts seven meeting rooms that accommodate up to 425 people, with its largest holding 300. While your hotel likely includes full breakfast, you might want to organize a morning meeting offsite. Taxis don’t roam Cape Town’s streets, however, so use Uber or ask the concierge to arrange transportation for you. Hemelhuijs, a chic café by Chef Jacques

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stateside | SEATTLE

Positive Outlook Upgrades and initiatives put Seattle at the forefront of healthy living. BY EUGENIA LAZARIS AMONG THE TREES:

Washington Park Arboretum PHOTO: © ALEXANDRE FAGUNDES DE FAGUNDES | DREAMSTIME.COM

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SPEND JUST A FEW MINUTES in downtown Seattle and one thing stands out: New construction appears everywhere. The Emerald City seems to constantly re-invent itself and re-invest in its citizens. From tourist attractions and infrastructure to new ways of thinking, the local government and businesses are hard at work to improve upon a city recently ranked second in the nation in overall health by Wallethub.com. The state of Washington is well-known among locals and tourists for its healthy lifestyle and outdoor fun, and Seattle is no exception. One of the city’s premier attractions, the Washington Park Arboretum, continues to draw visitors with its beautiful native landscapes and peaceful grounds, but the new 1.2-mile Arboretum Loop Trail brings new possibilities to living a healthy lifestyle in

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an urban center. The trail, which began construction in 2016, recently opened to the public in November 2017, with a formal grand opening April 8, 2018. The new loop, free to use and open from dawn to dusk, aligns perfectly with the goals of the arboretum: conservation, education and recreation. It provides visitors with an improved location for walking, jogging or bicycling safely within the city while enjoying the lush surroundings of the arboretum’s 230 acres of natural beauty. With several of the nation’s leading businesses headquartered in Seattle and its surrounding areas, unemployment is low — just 3.6 percent compared to the early 2018 national average of 4.1 percent. Companies like Amazon, Starbucks and Nordstrom not only provide jobs for the community but also help to create a thriving local economy. One of the problems these corporations face is providing a healthy environment for employees and the surrounding neighborhoods. Large metropolitan cities tend to be long on densely populated buildings and short on nature and open spaces. Amazon, headquartered in the heart of the downtown area, has worked hard to combat this problem. On Jan. 29 the city celebrated the grand opening of the Amazon Spheres, a brand-new way of thinking for a healthier work environment. Seven years in the making, these large, plantfilled domes located in the Regrade District aim to provide employees with a park-like environment while working in a heavily urban area. Employees and their guests are free to enjoy the shared spaces of these living domes where they can connect with nature thanks to the biophilic


PROMOTIONAL HIGHLIGHT

Mandarin Oriental, Taipei exterior

Club Lifestyle Suite

Pool

Café Un Deux Trois

Ya Ge Private Dining Room

A New Era of Luxury Mandarin Oriental, Taipei is the leading luxury hotel in Taiwan with unprecedented indulgence. COMMITTED TO DELIVERING legendary and unparalleled services, Mandarin Oriental, Taipei brings the ultimate in luxury, comfort and indulgence to the city. In early 2017, Mandarin Oriental, Taipei was the first and only hotel in Taiwan to be awarded with two Five-Star honors for its hotel and spa by Forbes Travel Guide. Designed with classic inspiration and contemporary touches, its 256 guestrooms and 47 suites, among the most spacious in Taipei, boast the latest in technology, alongside marble bathrooms and walk-in closets. Ultimately, Mandarin Oriental, Taipei elevated and redefined the definition of luxury in Taiwan. Beyond the sophisticated accommodations, the restaurant and bars showcase innovative concepts and exceptional cuisine. The elegantly

appointed Ya Ge, designed by Tony Chi, serves fine-dining Chinese, while all-day dining Café Un Deux Trois offers international favorites. Heartwarming Italian cuisine is served at Bencotto, with indulgent desserts on offer at Mandarin Cake Shop. The Jade Lounge serves the hotel company’s renowned afternoon tea, and an extensive range of cocktails delight at M.O. Bar. The two-floor spa, the largest among Taiwan’s luxury hotels, relaxes with holistic signature treatments and wellness and beauty programs. A fitness center and outdoor swimming pool complement the 12 treatment rooms. Additionally, the property offers a range of function spaces, meeting the needs of a variety of event types. All this and the 5-star ,award-winning

hotel is in a desirable Taipei location, within the city’s most established business district and nearby key city attractions. This is also the reason why Mandarin Oriental, Taipei has become international celebrities and local VIPs’ preferred choice when traveling. International legends including Madonna, Mila Jovovich, Ryan Reynolds, Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart and Tom Cruise; legendary bands The Scorpions, Queens and Coldplay; and the renowned British designer Paul Smith have all chosen to stay at Mandarin Oriental, Taipei as their grand residence in Taipei. To experience Mandarin Oriental, Taipei’s exemplary service, rooms and dining, book the Club Delight offer, designed to pamper travelers at the iconic landmark in one of the world’s great cities. Guests can enjoy luxurious rooms or suites with daily breakfast for two at Oriental Club Lounge, spa service credit of TWD1,000 per stay, complimentary pressing of three garments during the stay and other exclusive benefits. For more information on Taipei’s most desirable address, visit mandarinoriental.com/taipei.


URBAN OASES: Amazon Spheres

PHOTO: © EUGENIA LAZARIS

SCENIC DRIVES

design of the spheres. A full-time horticultural team maintains a green environment of more than 40,000 living plants that transform the spheres into a living forest within the heart of downtown. Tourists can enjoy the unique beauty of these structures that offer a refreshing break in a seemingly endless row of high-rise buildings. According to one Amazon spokesman, the “learn and be curious mentality” fostered by interacting with a living environment inspires creativity and innovation. As one of the nation’s leading employers, Amazon and, in turn, Seattle, could be on the forefront of employee wellness and productivity with this latest advancement. The city’s ever-changing face isn’t limited to new construction and new development. Local initiatives and programs are also on the rise and pushing for a healthier Seattle for everyone. One of the forerunners in this movement is the Seattle Healthy Kids Coalition, which recently succeeded in passing a tax on sugar-sweetened beverages. The tax follows the lead of other cities such as Berkeley and Philadelphia that saw a decrease in sugary beverage consumption resulting from similar taxes. “The attractive thing about Seattle is that it has a reputation for investing in the community. We value our

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natural resources, clean water and clean air,” says Aaron Pickus, spokesman, Seattle Healthy Kids Coalition. The city is famous for its outdoor activities and healthy lifestyle, and the coalition works hard to improve upon that by addressing the correlation between sweetened beverage consumption and the public health challenges presented by obesity. “The economy is booming,” says Pickus, “but not everyone is benefitting equally. This is one way to ensure everyone can benefit equally from a tax on sugary drinks to support those most affected by the marketing and products of the soda industry, especially traditionally underrepresented communities.” Revenues from the new tax are designated to supplement existing community health programs such as the Fresh Bucks Program that matches food stamp programs with vouchers for fresh fruits and vegetables at local farmers markets. Even the iconic Space Needle is getting a much-needed facelift, or “spacelift,” as it is referred to. The $100 million renovation project includes an improved observation deck and a first-of-its-kind revolving glass floor for SkyCity Restaurant, the revolving eatery at the top of the Needle. Renovations are expected to be completed later in 2018.

A little more than 60 miles north of Seattle via Interstate 5 is a winding stretch of State Route 11 known as Chuckanut Drive. This 24-mile-long, twolane road takes visitors through the beautiful evergreen forests of the Chuckanut Mountains before arriving at the rocky coastline of the Salish Sea. This is the only scenic drive through Washington where the Cascade Mountain Range directly meets the sea. Starting at Burlington and ending at the Fairhaven district of Bellingham, the drive takes about 45 minutes, but it is well worth the extra time to make some stops along the way. Plan on at least five to six hours to accommodate for stops at some of the roadside distractions along the route, like watching the sun set over the nearby San Juan Islands. For a shorter trip from downtown Seattle, head north about 25 miles and take a ferry to the little town of Clinton on Whidbey Island for a beautiful drive along Whidbey Scenic Isle Way. This scenic byway leaves the hassles of city life behind while you get back in touch with nature. The 48-mile drive takes just over an hour, not accounting for time to stop and enjoy the beaches and observe local wildlife.


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9–5 | OKINAWA

Okinawa Opportunity Merge business and leisure in a city of style and comfort. BY SHARON KING HOGE ON THE MOVE:

Naha City Monorail PHOTO: © RICHIE CHAN | DREAMSTIME.COM

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STRICTLY SPEAKING, THE PLACE name “Okinawa” designates three different locations. The prefecture Okinawa, the southern part of the Ryukyu archipelago, consists of a string of 160 small islands running south from Kyushu toward Taiwan. Okinawa is also the name of the largest, most prominent of those Ryukyu islands as well as the name of its second-largest metropolitan area, Okinawa City. But visitors to Okinawa tend to mean they’re headed to Naha, the island’s ancient and current capital. Located on the west coast of the island, with a population of 200,000, the center of politics, economy and culture is considered the “heart of Okinawa.” The second-oldest human remains in Japan were discovered in this area that evolved through a period of Chinese influence into the headquarters of the local Ryukyu Kingdom and, ultimately, a prosperous port. Eventually overtaken by the Japanese,

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the island’s strategic location made it the site of vicious battles during World War II — the “typhoon of steel” — until it was occupied by American forces, which still maintain two large bases north of Naha. Razed to the ground after the war, Naha has been rebuilt with its modern streets tracing ruts created by bulldozers that cleared the postwar rubble. Three-quarters of a century after the war’s destruction, this bustling city features modern concrete high-rises intermingled with shops, government buildings and historic sites. An efficient monorail runs from the airport in the southwest seven miles northeast to Shurijo, the ancient head of government. Kokusai Street, Naha’s “Miracle Mile,” bisects the Central Business District, winding past restaurants, souvenir shops and fashion boutiques. An important business hub centrally sited between Japan, East Asia and Southeast Asia, Okinawa is the only Japanese region with


special economic zones offering preferential subsidies, tax breaks and incentives. Major industries include agriculture and fisheries, civil engineering and construction, aviation and petroleum, along with tourism. In fact, 8 million tourists, six times the population, come annually to enjoy the island's beaches and subtropical weather. For business travelers, some of the most appealing lodgings combine resort appeal with professional facilities. Calling itself a “cosmopolitan hideaway” as well as “a premiere MICE destination,” the Naha Terrace City Resort, a white high-rise accented by stacked balconies, is a 20-minute/$10 taxi ride from the airport in the emerging Shintoshin urban planning district. Highlighted by Adan Hall, with theater-style seating for up to 450, the hotel’s flexible function facilities provide resources for hosting events from product launches to corporate conferences. The Nirai Kanai cocktail, featuring the local awamori liquor, and other fancy frozen beverages are served in the Maroad living room lounge beside a luxuriant garden pool and in the cozy, wood-paneled November library bar. The formal Fanuan dining room features fusion Japanese-French cuisine. A fleet of cars is at the service of guests, and a house rule requires all guests to cover body tattoos. Located in front of a pier near the port “where the blessing of the ocean meets the city,” the Kariyushi Urban Resort Naha is similarly suited for both business and leisure. Healthy anti-aging menus are served at Danryumansai, evolving through the day from an early morning breakfast buffet to a tea lounge and bar and, finally, featuring French and Eastern dinners. Another recommendation for breakfast meetings is the Hotel Aqua Citta’s buffet, cooked with an Italian touch and served in front of floor-to-ceiling windows. Newly opened in October 2017, the white block high-rise lies near the Tomari Port with easy access to the Miebashi monorail stop. Beverages embellished with blossoms and umbrellas are served beside the rooftop pool overlooking city views, and additional full-sized umbrella service is provided on the city’s frequent rainy days. Among more conventional urban options, the JR Kyushu Hotel Blossom Naha in the heart of downtown is a landmark of Okinawan style and comfort, blending culture and modern design in a resort inspired by the natural sea and sky. The Blossom’s overwhelming dining options include a 60-dish buffet breakfast with six types of bread, breakfast curry and a salad bar with seven choices of homemade dressings. Thick-cut Australian Wagyu porterhouse steak, aged for 21 days, and Black Angus beef are specialties of the 37 Steakhouse and Bar which includes a bar counter, a private dining room seating up to 12 guests and a 20-foot-high dining hall with 100 seats and a 200-inch screen and audio equipment for presentations. Also outfitted with flexible function space, located midway between Kokusai and the renowned Tsuboya Yachimun district of pottery craft shops, the Hyatt Regency’s second floor accommodates up to 500 and provides a multilingual planning staff to help organize events. Breakfast and lunch feature seasonal ingredients in its Sakurazaka Restaurant, with snacks, teas and pastries available in The Lounge. Two Hilton hotels offer meeting and conference facilities. The

DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Naha, conveniently located near the Okinawa Convention Bureau, Ryukyu Bank and Okinawa TV broadcasting station, provides nearly 500 square feet of space for meetings and special events. Five minutes from the city center by car (a $3–5 taxi ride), the atmospheric DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Naha Shuri Castle sits near the city’s historic Shuri-jo UNESCO site. In addition to 10 meeting rooms and a ballroom for conferences, its Sky View Plaza can seat up to 200 guests.

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MIRACLE MILE:

Famous Heiwadori Street at Kokusai Street boasts many souvenir shops. PHOTO: © NUVISAGE | DREAMSTIME.COM

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after 5 | COPENHAGEN

Art of Living Well Copenhagen combines good times with good health. BY FELICITY LONG

THE TERM “NIGHTLIFE” has a reputation, especially when it comes to travel. Most of us picture bars, dance clubs and partying into the wee small hours when we think of after-5 activities in a new city. Unfortunately, sometimes these activities don’t do much for how we feel the next day, which can be a problem if you have to be presentable at a work-related event. The good news is nightlife and wellness don’t have to be mutually exclusive concepts, and nowhere is that more true than in Copenhagen — a city that elevated spa, clean eating and healthful pursuits to art forms. If you’re all about organic dining, you’ve come to the right city, and at Hahnemanns Køkken’s newest venue, just opened in Østerbro, you can create your own. The brainchild of Chef Trine Hahnemann, the eatery offers lectures on green cuisine and cooking classes hosted by international chefs. Or let someone else whip up a sustainable gourmet dinner for you at Relæ, a Michelin-starred, nearly 100 percent organic restaurant in Nørrebro that also prioritizes recycling and minimizing food waste. Vesterbro, Copenhagen’s hip meatpacking district, is the site of BOB, short for Biomio Organic Bistro. Known locally as the “People’s Green Kitchen,” the restaurant showcases fresh vegetables and only serves meat raised using ethical standards. For a sampling of natural wines and local beers, head

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to Gaarden & Gaden, whose wine cellar boasts a whopping 300 varieties and where beers hail from the Danish breweries Herslev Bryghus and Flying Couch. Of course, there is more to Copenhagen nightlife than food and drink. Danes take spa seriously, and some of the best facilities in the city are open at night. Ni’mat Massage & Spa, for example, the oldest and largest in the city, routinely wins awards for its expansive facilities and its therapists, who work with patrons individually until 9 p.m. On winter nights, La Banchina, a small café on the waterfront in Refshaleøen, morphs into a gourmet restaurant with a private sauna overlooking the harbor. Here diners can sip organic wine, then jump into the freezing water, followed by a warm-up in the sauna. Or check out the seaside Kurhotel Skodsborg just outside the city where, after a healthful dinner of seasonal fare, its Nordic Spa & Sauna Gus offers a Midnight Spa on Friday nights for a mist sauna, hydrojet massage, breathing exercises and a body scrub, followed by a glass of bubbly. Six of you can relax in heated seawater in an anchored barrel or join a larger group to relax in a fire-heated sauna overlooking the city harbor via CopenHot, which also offers daytime excursions. Finally, Nimb Hotel will open Copenhagen’s first heated outdoor hotel pool, overlooking the famous Tivoli Garden, where the spa team offers en-suite treatments.

QUIET NIGHTS: Kurhotel

Skodsborg private jetty (left), and La Banchina sauna (right) PHOTOS: © KURHOTEL SKODSBORG, © LA BANCHINA

keep Danes y a w e On , but cycling y b s i fit les in ese ru h t p e ke night: ay or d d n i m the eet on both f p e e K ands both h d n a pedals bars, handle on the e ur bik ide yo don’t r d alk, an sidew re on the ort mo transp t o n do your rs on e g n e s pas as den it w a h t e bik for. signed


neighborhoods | PRETORIA

Perfect Pitch Explore the harmonious lifestyle of Pretoria’s Menlyn Maine. BY RON BERNTHAL

ARTISTIC FLAIR: People walking around the Nelson Mandela statue at the Union Buildings in Pretoria (left), and Central Square in Menlyn Maine (right) PHOTOS © SOUTH AFRICA TOURISM, © MMIH (PTY) LTD

BOTSWANA

Pretoria

NAMIBIA

Johannesburg

SOUTH AFRICA Cape Town

MENLYN MAINE, SOUTH AFRICA’S first green community, resides in the eastern suburbs of Pretoria, which is part of the City of Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality with almost 3 million residents. Pretoria, one of South Africa’s three capitals, houses the executive branch of government, and while many visitors drive the 35 miles from Johannesburg, they also arrive on the Gautrain, Africa’s first highspeed train. Menlyn Maine’s 33-acre project started in 2006 and includes pricey residential buildings, shops and offices, restaurants and hotels, a casino and entertainment complex, and green space with pedestrian and biking trails. It’s one of the most prosperous and fastest-growing areas in the country, doing so in an environmentally sensitive way. “The stunning new neighborhood is not only wellsituated, it also offers businesses and their employees easy access to a host of world-class facilities while providing a most attractive and convenient environment in which to work,” says Retha Schutte, regional executive, Pam Golding Properties. Menlyn Maine is dubbed “Pretoria’s Sandton,” after the posh area near Johannesburg. “Unlike

Sandton, however, Menlyn Maine has been carefully purpose-designed by renowned architects and town planners to be the ideal urban space,” says Schutte. Central Square opened in 2016 with exclusive restaurants and cafés, boutiques, wellness centers and art galleries, all part of the $674 million Sun International Time Square Urban Entertainment complex. The Time Square Casino opened last year, offering 2,000 slots and 60-plus tables, part of a 107,000-square-foot gaming facility and 8,000-seat, multipurpose arena. Wellness centers include Spa de la Veille, a high-end day spa; and Virgin Active, offering classes, indoor/outdoor pools, saunas, steam rooms and state-of-the-art equipment. From comfortable lounges with WiFi to health food cafés, Virgin Active designed amenities so guests will “not only like coming to the gym, but will love it.” The Capital Menlyn Maine opened last year a short walk from Central Square. The 138-room property offers comfortable executive accommodations, an outdoor pool, spa, conference center, restaurant and rooftop event center, and makes a good base for exploring nearby nature reserves. The $160 million, 26-story residential/retail Menlyn Link project near Central Square, slated to open in 2019, will offer a rooftop swimming pool and tennis court. Seven miles from Menlyn Maine, near downtown Pretoria, Ca Ira Wellness Retreat offers a peaceful stay in seven en suite rooms and includes a spa and wellness center with a gym.

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friends & family | MONACO

Pure Indulgence Wealth and well-being set the stage for a memorable getaway in Monaco. BY KRISTY ALPERT POSH PORT:

Monaco harbor PHOTO: © MARCEL DE GRIJS | DREAMSTIME.COM

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MONACO IS THE LAND OF THE GLITTERATI, where helicopter transfers from the airport are equally as common (and affordable) as taxi rides. The principality’s sparkling shoreline and glamorous offerings make it an exciting place to bring the girlfriends while in town for business. The entire country is roughly half the size of New York’s Central Park, but it’s packed with opportunities for unwinding and indulging alongside your closest girls in the same fashion as Grace Kelley, the American actress-turned-princess who once called Monaco home. The principality is the second-smallest country in the world, located along a sliver of the French Riviera where the sun shines 300 days each year and the year-round

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temperature averages around 68 degrees Fahrenheit. Despite being tucked tightly between France and Italy — and being home to a diverse population of 38,000 representing more than 125 nationalities — the country maintains a distinct Monegasques identity where the same royal family, the Grimaldis, has ruled for more than 700 years. Monaco’s status as a tax haven (zero income taxes and low business taxes) made it an attractive destination for businesses and individuals to work, play or live. The country regularly hosts some of the world’s leading events and summits, including the annual Monaco Yacht Show and the Monaco Grand Prix, drawing in businesses and tourists from around the world who expect nothing less than the best from this glitzy principality. The standard for excellence is exceedingly high in Monaco, so much so the poverty rate continues to chart in as the lowest in the world while the country regularly reports the highest number of millionaires and billionaires per capita each year. The country has always been known for its glitz and glamour, with its most legendary landmarks setting the stage for cinematic masterpieces like Casino Royale and Grace of Monaco, but recently the monarchy expanded its luxurious offerings even more as its destination marketing organization became the first to join the Wellness Tourism Association. The new focus is fitting, as wellness has always been ingrained in the culture around Monaco, where locals can frequently be seen on foot, walking to and from work or the shops. The best way to get around while in town is actually by foot, as every part of the town


WELCOME RESPITE:

Heat Experience at Hôtel Métropole Monte-Carlo's Spa Metropole by Givenchy (top), single treatment room and relaxation (bottom) PHOTOS: © HÔTEL MÉTROPOLE MONTE-CARLO

LODGING HÔTEL DE PARIS MONTE-CARLO This glitzy icon is home to a world-renowned bar and one of the largest hotel wine cellars in the world. Place du Casino, Monte Carlo $$$$$ HÔTEL HERMITAGE MONTECARLO Located just steps from the Casino de Monte Carlo and connected to the Thermes Marins Monte Carlo, this historic property remains one of Monaco’s most precious jewels. Square Beaumarchais, Monte Carlo $$$$

is accessible within only a few minutes thanks to the city’s abundant escalators and public lifts. Monaco also has a rich bathing culture that dates back to the 1860s, when people from all along the Mediterranean came to experience the healing waters of the city as well as its world-renowned thalassotherapy treatments. Today the principality offers a range of luxury spa treatments and healthy dining establishments that act as the sumptuous accoutrements to a relaxing weekend with girlfriends. Start the trip by booking a suite at the Hôtel Métropole Monte-Carlo, the Belle Époque jewel once owned by Pope Leo XIII featuring more than 126 guestrooms and suites. The hotel underwent a complete renovation early in 2004 and now includes four restaurants boasting a total of three Michelin stars and a full-service spa by Givenchy offering a range of massages and body treatments. Architect Didier Gomez designed the spa space and gave it its sleek, nuanced look of sophistication and relaxation. The spa is the perfect place to ensure any girlfriends

or guests are well taken care of during business meetings or while attending to other obligations, and the spa’s Heat Experience acts as a warm welcome for anyone visiting the space. The package includes the use of the sauna, hammam, caldarium, ice fountain and sensory showers. The spa is famous for delivering an experience for all the senses; guests can select a signature scent to follow them around the spa (spa therapists place tissue in the pocket of guests’ robes or on their massage tables) and choose from a range of custom playlists from artist Béatrice Ardisson who created custom background music to enhance each treatment. Every session ends with a cryotherapy ritual that helps prolong the benefits. The spa is famous for its massages — the Anti-Gravity and Divine Harmony are top picks for many guests — but for the ultimate girls’ trip treat, plan to spend time in the Pedi:Mani:Cure studio by Bastien Gonzalez. Gonzalez, better known as the foot specialist to the stars, has made a name for himself with his signature, unique approach to foot treatments.

HÔTEL MÉTROPOLE MONTECARLO Pope Leo XIII once owned this Belle Époque building, now featuring more than 126 guestrooms and suites. 4 Ave. de la Madone, Monte Carlo $$$$$

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ICONIC MONACO:

Helicopter transfer (top), and coffee at Café de Paris (bottom) PHOTOS: © KRISTY ALPERT

DINING CAFÉ DE PARIS MONTE-CARLO This Belle Époquestyle brasserie is centrally located in one of the best people-watching squares in Monaco and is the birthplace of the crêpe Suzette. Place du Casino, Monte Carlo $$$$ QUAI DES ARTISTES This French brasserie specializes in fresh seafood caught daily in the harbor of Monaco and offers an extensive wine list. 4 Quai Antoine 1er, Monte Carlo $$$ YOSHI The first Japanese restaurant from Joël Robuchon resides inside the Hôtel Métropole in an impossibly chic setting perfect for dining with Monaco’s elite. Hôtel Métropole Monte-Carlo, 4 Ave. de la Madone, Monte Carlo $$$$

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Gonzalez uses his background in podiatry to create a fusion of wellbeing that begins with the feet and works its way to the entire body with no nail polish and no water. The treatment includes a relaxing massage that extends from the toes and legs to the fingertips and arms and ends with his signature natural buffing treatment, a technique passed down to him from his grandmother. The ultimate indulgence at the studio is “Bastien’s Duo,” in which four hands work in a synchronized manner to refresh the feet, legs, hands and arms. Spend mornings at the Métropole poolside, overlooking the hotel’s Karl Lagerfeld-designed pool, as yoga instructors lead guests through early morning sun salutations before guests head to a healthy, gourmet breakfast at Odyssey restaurant to feast on light and healthy dishes designed by Michelinstarred chef Joël Robuchon. During the day, most visitors head out to soak in the sun along the pebbled beaches lining the azure waters of the French Riviera. A favorite beach is La Note Bleue Monaco (a portion of the famous Larvotto Beach), and the incredible Villefranche-sur-Mer located a short train ride out of the city. The Monte Carlo Casino offers stunning views of the city and is a great place to stroll and people-watch before heading to the Café de Paris for lunch or an afternoon coffee. This iconic café was the birthplace of the crêpe Suzette, although it’s only available in the evening and in summer. The brasserie offers another fantastic spot for relaxing, surrounded by the glamorous Hôtel de Paris and the Monte Carlo Casino. The infamously ornate gambling environment at the Casino de Monte-Carlo has become the lifeblood of the principality, even though locals are not legally allowed to gamble there. The small cover charge to enter the museum is well worth it to give your luck a chance at one of the world’s most famous casinos. Other must-see spots include the Palais du Prince (one of the few royal residences in Europe that actually allows guests to explore inside), the Princess Grace Rose Garden and the Francis Bacon MB Art Foundation, displaying Bacon’s memorabilia and art in an engaging way that gives insight into this enigmatic artist’s life. After the group comes back together for a healthy dinner at Yoshi (the first Japanese restaurant in the world by Joël Robuchon) or Quai des Artistes, hit the town for a glamorous night spent mingling with Monaco’s elite at Buddha-Bar or Jimmy’z, Monaco’s two most iconic and exclusive clubs. No matter whether the group has to spend time apart for work obligations or the girls’ trip begins once business duties cease, Monaco’s ample number of boutique and luxury shops and its wellness offerings set the stage for a memorable trip of wealth and well-being.

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INFO TO GO Although there is no airport in Monaco, the country is easily accessible via land, air or sea. Nice Côte d’Azur International Airport is the nearest airport to the principality, only 14 miles away. A helicopter gets you there in seven minutes, and a taxi usually runs around 30–45 minutes. Trains stop at the Monaco–Monte Carlo station, and boats from all over the world utilize the harbor for easy docking.


FX Excursions FX Excursions offer a chance for a once-in-a-lifetime experience in a destination around the world. The unique itineraries, exclusively created by and for FXExpress Publications, Inc. and its partners, allow participants to go hands-on at a worldwide event or see an international city in a new way. All the planning and sightseeing is handled for attendees, from the flights and accommodations to the itinerary. Visit our websites — globaltravelerusa.com, whereverfamily.com and trazeetravel.com — to learn more about our three tour options, including suggested itineraries in worldwide destinations and recommended tours travelers can book at leisure through our preferred tour partner. Our Specialty Tours allow you to travel with us on a handcrafted agenda around the globe.


bucket list | NEW ZEALAND

To Great Lengths Beginning to end, New Zealand’s Te Araroa Trail proves an epic journey. BY RICHARD NEWTON

LONG TRAIL: (Left to right) Tongariro Alpine Crossing, public walking path, and Lake Wanaka panorama PHOTOS: © LUKAS BISCHOFF | DREAMSTIME.COM, © DMITRY NAUMOV | DREAMSTIME.COM, © HUGOHT | DREAMSTIME .COM

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BLUFF, AT THE SOUTHERN TIP of New Zealand’s South Island, represents either the end or the beginning. As hikers pose for photographs beneath a signpost pointing to all corners of the world, you can tell at a glance if they’re southbounders (weary but elated) or northbounders (apprehensive but eager). Here we are at one extreme of the Te Araroa Trail, the epic hiking route that spans the length of New Zealand. For those setting off from here, 1,864 miles of coastline, forests, bogs and mountains lie ahead. This is not a walk in the park (though you’ll pass through many spectacular parks en route). Meticulous planning is required to ensure you have appropriate equipment, ample food supplies, sufficient funds and — for non-New Zealanders — a valid long-stay visa. The entire journey can take around six months (approximately three months to walk the length of each island, with a three-hour ferry crossing of the Cook Strait between the two). The trail is one of the world’s greatest longdistance hiking routes, though it was established

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relatively recently. Local walkers worked for more than three decades to link existing pathways and create new ones across public and private land. The full route officially opened in 2011 and instantly became a bucket-list fixture for international hikers. To tackle the entire route at first attempt is a formidable undertaking. Amateur walkers are better off trying a short section or two before committing to the full adventure at a later date. Even in small doses, Te Araroa’s epic nature is readily apparent. One of the most popular sections is the Tongariro Alpine Crossing on North Island, accessible from the coastal town of Whanganui. For fans of The Lord of the Rings movie trilogy, much of the landscape will be instantly familiar; this was the dangerous land of Mordor. Even in reality, danger stirs beneath the surface and occasionally erupts. The route passes among a complex of active volcanoes, including Mount Ngauruhoe, which last blew its top in 1977, and Mount Ruapehu, which erupted in 2007 and

INFO TO GO

Auckland International Airport (AKL) is the entry point for passengers from the United States. Bay of Islands Airport (KKE) is the closest fly-in point for Cape Reinga, the northern terminus of the Te Araroa Trail. The onward journey by road from KKE to the Cape takes 2–3 hours. Invercargill Airport (IVC) offers access to the southern terminus, Bluff, a 30-minute drive away.


continues to rumble fitfully. Access to the Tongariro route can be suspended due to volcanic activity. Volcanoes often give rise to hot springs, and this region is no exception. After trekking the trail for a day or two, what better way to soothe your aching muscles than to soak outdoors in steaminghot water? Tongariro Springs Boutique Suites, a short drive from the trail, offers luxury accommodations and two hot pools. You can arrange transfers to and from the trail in advance with a local family-run company, National Park Shuttles. Another popular section of the Te Araroa threads around Queenstown, on South Island. One multiday option is the hike from the town of Wanaka to Queenstown. The route starts on the shore of Lake Wanaka before ascending and descending through mountain country. The total distance is 56 miles, for which you should allow 4–5 days. Accommodation is in mountain huts along the way. Heading southbound, you are rewarded at the end by arrival in Queenstown, New Zealand’s adventure tourism hub. There’s no shortage of options for pampering your tired body when you reach this scenic lakeshore town. One residential wellness option is The Spa at Nugget Point, with its luxurious guestrooms and spa offering

a range of massages and other treatments. By now you’ll have discovered New Zealand is a hiking paradise. The trails are well-maintained and well-signposted. Locally available maps are detailed, and useful apps keep you updated about weather conditions or route changes. You’ll find plenty of huts along the trail and more comfortable accommodation in towns and villages. New Zealand’s wildlife is predominantly of the feathered variety, so there are no bears, big cats or snakes to worry about. Then again, there was good reason for the hobbits’ quest in The Lord of the Rings to be filmed against this backdrop. New Zealand’s scenery exists on a cinematic scale. The mountains, especially on South Island, are formidable (the trail wends between them), and the moss-draped forests are otherworldly. If there’s a down side, it’s that the Te Araroa Trail is becoming too popular. If you choose to tackle the whole route, you’ll meet plenty of other hikers ticking it off their own bucket lists. The camaraderie is mostly welcome, especially if you run into problems. But in places the trail can feel overcrowded. Soon enough, though, you’ll be on the next remote stretch with only your own sounds for company, making this phenomenal journey one step at a time. JUNE 2018

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2018 GT Tested Reader Survey Awards Ballot Please write in your personal favorites, based on your own experience, on the line next to each of the following categories.

AIRLINE BEST

Overall Best Airline in the World_____________________________________________________ Airline Alliance________________________________________________________________________ Aircraft Type _________________________________________________________________________ Airline Website _______________________________________________________________________ Fastest-Growing Airline – Trans-Pacific______________________________________________ Best Airline for . . . Business Class___________________________________________________________________ International First Class_________________________________________________________ Domestic First Class_____________________________________________________________ Onboard Service ________________________________________________________________ Lounges _________________________________________________________________________ Flight Attendants________________________________________________________________ Flight Attendant Uniforms ______________________________________________________ Airline Cuisine___________________________________________________________________ Security__________________________________________________________________________ First-Class Seat Design_______________________________________________________________ Business-Class Seat Design _________________________________________________________ Best New Airline Service Launch_____________________________________________________ Best Frequent-Flyer Programs Overall Best Frequent-Flyer Program___________________________________________ Elite-Level Program______________________________________________________________ Bonus Promotion_______________________________________________________________ Award Redemption______________________________________________________________ Customer Service _______________________________________________________________

BEST AIRLINE BY LOCATION Best Airline in . . . Africa_____________________________________________________________________________ Australia and New Zealand______________________________________________________ Central/South Asia and India __________________________________________________ China____________________________________________________________________________ Eastern Europe__________________________________________________________________ Europe___________________________________________________________________________ Mexico___________________________________________________________________________ The Middle East _________________________________________________________________ North America___________________________________________________________________ North Asia (excluding China)____________________________________________________ The South Pacific________________________________________________________________ To South America and Central America_____________________________________________ To Japan______________________________________________________________________________ Trans-Atlantic Airline_________________________________________________________________ Trans-Pacific Airline__________________________________________________________________

AIRPORT BEST Overall Best Airport in the World____________________________________________________ Overall Best Duty-Free Shop in the World___________________________________________ Airport Staff/Gate Agents____________________________________________________________ Airport Dining________________________________________________________________________ Airport Shopping ____________________________________________________________________ Fastest-Growing U.S. Airport_________________________________________________________

HOTEL BEST

International Hotel Chain__________________________________________________________ Domestic Hotel Chain______________________________________________________________ Lifestyle Hotel______________________________________________________________________ MICE Hotel _________________________________________________________________________ (Meetings, Incentives, Conventions, Exhibitions) Hotel Club Floor____________________________________________________________________ Hotel Website______________________________________________________________________ New Luxury Hotel in Asia __________________________________________________________ Best Frequent-Stay Programs Best Hotel Rewards Program in the World___________________________________ Elite-Level Program____________________________________________________________ Bonus Promotion_____________________________________________________________ Award Redemption____________________________________________________________ Customer Service_____________________________________________________________

HOTEL BEST BY LOCATION Best Hotel in . . . Asia____________________________________________________________________________ Europe_________________________________________________________________________ South Korea___________________________________________________________________ The Middle East_______________________________________________________________ The United States _____________________________________________________________ Best Hotel Chain in . . . Asia____________________________________________________________________________ Europe_________________________________________________________________________ Latin America__________________________________________________________________ Mexico_________________________________________________________________________ The Middle East_______________________________________________________________

OTHER BEST Overseas Delivery Program _______________________________________________________ Rental Car Company_______________________________________________________________ Tourism Destination_______________________________________________________________ MICE City ___________________________________________________________________________ (Meetings, Incentives, Conventions, Exhibitions) WiFi Service_________________________________________________________________________ Noise-Canceling Headset Brand___________________________________________________ Luggage Brand_____________________________________________________________________ Ride Share__________________________________________________________________________ Hotel App___________________________________________________________________________ Airline App__________________________________________________________________________ Credit Cards Best Overall Credit Card___________________________________________________________ Best Small-Business Credit Card __________________________________________________ Best Credit Card Special Events ___________________________________________________ Credit Card Rewards Program_____________________________________________________ Frequent-Stay Affinity Credit Card ________________________________________________ Promotions____________________________________________________________________ Benefits________________________________________________________________________ Redemptions__________________________________________________________________ Frequent-Flyer Affinity Credit Card_________________________________________________ Promotions____________________________________________________________________ Benefits________________________________________________________________________ Redemptions__________________________________________________________________ Best Cruise Line Affinity Credit Card_______________________________________________

Duty-Free Shops in . . . Asia______________________________________________________________________________ Africa_____________________________________________________________________________ Europe___________________________________________________________________________ The Middle East_________________________________________________________________

PLEASE MAIL THE COMPLETED SURVEY TO:

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kicking back | COSTA RICA

Nurtured by Nature Recharge in Costa Rica’s lush playground of beaches, rainforests and volcanoes. BY STEPHEN JERMANOK NATURAL HABITAT Costa Rican landscape with hills, tropical trees and La Fortuna Waterfall PHOTO: © HUGOHT | DREAMSTIME.COM

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HIGH UP IN THE MOUNTAINS with views of the Pacific coast, the weather in Monteverde’s Cloud Forest Reserve is surprisingly cool for a Central American locale. A perpetual dampness creates a slick layer of moss that covers the branches and trunks of trees. Thick vines drop down from towering ficus trees, and clay-covered trails are laden with fallen passion fruit. As we followed Mauricio Ramirez, an impassioned naturalist who truly loves his job, he gave us cilantro and cinnamon to smell, told us what part of the palm tree to cut to find the meaty heart of palm, stuck a flashlight into a hole to spotlight an orangeand brown-colored tarantula and had us swing from one of the vines à la Tarzan. “This is impressive,” Mauricio said as he set up his telescope quickly. I peered in

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and my jaw instantly dropped as I made out the bushy white eyebrows and wide eyes of a crested owl staring right back at me. “Holy cow!” I blurted out as Mauricio chimed in with “Beautiful, yes, beautiful.” I’ve had the pleasure of returning to Costa Rica a half-dozen times since that initial walk with Mauricio in 1999, and each time I leave, I feel grateful I had another chance to explore this magical country. Blessed with a lush interior that rivals Hawai’i and a tropical setting that’s home to three types of monkeys, slow-moving sloths, vibrant-colored scarlet macaws, toucans and 45 different species of hummingbirds, it comes as no surprise Costa Rica ranks as an increasingly popular getaway. A mix of rainforest, mountainous cloud forest, volcanoes and exquisite Pacific beaches, the country is about the size of West Virginia. For active travelers, Costa Rica offers one


of the best playgrounds in the Americas. A perfect introduction to the landscape, the often-overlooked Central Highlands on the verdant back slopes of Poas Volcano lie less than a 90-minute drive from the international airport outside the capital city of San José. On a visit to the small farming community of Bajos del Toro, I took a horseback ride with my family in meadows that climb the hillside. This was no easy ride on a dirt road at some touristy stable. We rode high up the slopes, trotting through streams and stopping at a dairy farm to milk the cows and feed a 5-day-old calf. Then we galloped through this small farming village of 300 to see the requisite church, school, soccer field and bar. That afternoon, we took a two-hour hike leading to three waterfalls hidden within the cloud forest bordering Poas. Walking along a stream, we picked blackberries, felt soft elephant ear leaves and peered at golden beetles as they crossed the trail. Here during the heart of the green season in mid-summer, torrential downpours can pounce in the late afternoon hours, only enhancing the verdant interior. We crossed a bridge and soon encountered our first waterfall, cascading down a rock crevice. The waterfalls became more picturesque the higher we hiked, especially the final waterfall, named “The Promise,” plummeting some 200 feet

LODGING ARENAS DEL MAR BEACHFRONT & RAINFOREST RESORT On the outskirts of Manuel Antonio National Park spacious suites nestle into the rugged cliffs overlooking the Pacific. On your deck you may find a white-faced monkey peeking out of a branch. Manuel Antonio, Puntarenas Province $$$ EL SILENCIO LODGE & SPA Tucked into the verdant hillside of the farming community

of Bajos del Toro, where we went horseback riding and hiked to the waterfalls, El Silencio makes the ideal first stop in the country. Bajos del Toro, Alajuela $$ THE SPRINGS RESORT & SPA AT ARENAL Home to 28 hot springs; a 14,000-square-foot spa and fitness center; and postcardperfect views of the Arenal Volcano, The Springs proves the place to relax after all your adventure in the region.

COLORFUL CRITTERS:

(Left to right) hummingbird, squirrel monkey, sloth and toucan PHOTOS: © MORTEN ELM | DREAMSTIME.COM, © KOBBY DAGAN | DREAMSTIME.COM, © IGNASI SUCH | DREAMSTIME.COM, © DESLOVER | DREAMSTIME.COM

Arenal, Alajuela $$$

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m in nd swi a h c a e on n the b acific P Chill o e h t f insula ters o a Pen y o the wa c i e N like th rthern s o r n e f e r h t e; su to nacast Fly in a . u e r G e h n i to wells irport tent s A s i l s a n n o o c rnati a Inte i r e b i L on. is regi h t s s acce

ACTIVE ADVENTURE:

Arenal Volcano (left), and zip lining through the canopy (right) PHOTOS: © DENALI55 | DREAMSTIME.COM, © WOLLERTZ | DREAMSTIME.COM

DINING MOYA’S PLACE People flock to Moya’s Place in Arenal for the vegetarian options like mushroom ravioli and thin-crust pizza. Also expect live music on weekends. Nuevo Arenal, Guanacaste Province $ STEVE N’ LISA This restaurant on the road into Jaco from Carara National Park serves consistently good Costa Rican fare like gallo pinto (rice and black beans); chicken; plantains; and fresh fruit like papaya, mangos, pineapple and bananas. Highway 34, Tárcoles, Puntarenas Province $ VICTORIA’S The gregarious owner comes out and greets everyone at this Italian eatery in Manuel Antonio. Start with Caesar salad, then sample the spicy pepperoni thin-crust pizza, chicken pesto or fresh tuna. Cockatoo Building, Manuel Antonio, Puntarenas Province $

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down the rocks into a natural pool of water. “I can’t believe we’re all alone,” said my daughter, Melanie, dipping her toes into the cool waters. A two-hour drive northeast of Poas takes you to Arenal, one of the most active volcanoes in the Western Hemisphere. On a night I remember vividly, my friend Jeff and I watched a river of red flow down from the peak’s crater. Even as we woke the next morning, we could hear the hammering of the eruptions and see puffs of smoke from the smoldering lava. We spent the afternoon mountain biking on dirt roads at the base of this perfectly cone-shaped volcano whose beauty rivals Osorno in Chile and Mount Fuji in Japan. A must-stop on any Costa Rican itinerary is Manuel Antonio National Park, a sliver of a rainforest bordered by a sublime stretch of Pacific coastline and backed by a ridge of cliffs. Only 800 people are allowed to visit this small (a little more than 1,600 acres) national park each day, so it’s best to arrive when the gates open and hire a trusted naturalist with telescope in tow. Everything looks better when viewing creatures with a highpowered telescope: the bulging eyes of a dragonfly,

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the furry hairs of a tarantula, the electric blue coloring of a butterfly’s wings. Yet it’s hard to top the monkeys, which we soon found chasing after one another on the beach. The nearby city of Quepos once housed the workers for the Chiquita banana corporation. These days, palm oil plantations replace the banana fields. We drove through one of these vast plantations and then headed high into the hills to sample the sport of zip lining. The zip line tour, now ubiquitous, originated in this country and can be found in all types of terrain. Cruising above the rainforest or cloud forest canopy, immersed in the greenery, you experience an unparalleled feeling of freedom. For me there are still more adventures at hand. The swells on the Pacific attract surfers from across the globe. A slew of rivers like the Pacuare and Sarapiqui feature whitewater rapids that lead rafters on adrenalin-pumping rides. Caño Island off the coast of Osa Peninsula and the Catalina Islands near the beaches of Guanacaste boast two fine dive sites. Another easy flight from North America and I’ll be back.

INFO TO GO

Less than an hour from San José International Airport, you arrive at the flanks of Poas Volcano and the lush countryside surrounding it. Arenal Volcano sits about a 2.5-hour drive northwest of the airport, while Manuel Antonio National Park lies just outside of Quepos on the Pacific coast, a good three-hour drive with traffic from San José. Monteverde and the cloud forest are also a three-hour drive from San José.


STAND UP FOR US ALL

Clinical trials bring us closer to the day when all cancer patients can become survivors. Clinical trials are an essential path to progress and the brightest torch researchers have to light their way to better treatments. That’s because clinical trials allow researchers to test cutting-edge and potentially life-saving treatments while giving participants access to the best options available. If you’re interested in exploring new treatment options that may also light the path to better treatments for other patients, a clinical trial may be the right option for you. Speak with your doctor and visit StandUpToCancer.org/ClinicalTrials to learn more.

Sonequa Martin-Green, SU2C Ambassador Photo Credit: Matt Sayles Stand Up To Cancer is a division of the Entertainment Industry Foundation, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization.

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lgbtq

Well Aware Healthy retreats in a welcoming environment provide unique benefits. BY MARK CHESNUT

AS TRAVELERS PAY MORE attention to their physical and psychological fitness, it’s no wonder more companies and organizations tout their wellness offerings for LGBTQ globetrotters. “There has been a steady increase in the number of LGBTQ clients looking for wellness retreats,” said Darren Burn, founder and managing director, Out of Office, a London-based travel company. “As more people pay added attention to their health, mindfulness and yoga are becoming really attractive, and hotels and suppliers are now catching on. We offer gay group yoga and mindfulness retreats, and we also sell a trip which includes a mixture of surfing and yoga, as people look to improve their fitness, too.” Mike Heflin, senior vice president of hotels, Travel Leaders Group, a travel agent network, noted more so-called mainstream wellness-oriented hotels pursue LGBTQ travelers. “We have some terrific properties in our Travel Leaders Select Wellness program that are LGBT-friendly,” he said, noting Belmond Inn at Perry Cabin in St. Michaels, Md., and Belmond Maroma Resort & Spa in Mexico’s Riviera Maya are among the popular wellnessoriented properties. For gay-specific wellness getaways, options include the Gay Men’s Spiritual Retreat, which hosts a retreat every June at Camp Stevens, a summer camp in Southern California. Frog Meadow, a bed-andbreakfast in southern Vermont, also offers gay men’s wellness workshops and retreats. Other destinations and properties, meanwhile, include wellness-oriented elements with other LGBTQ packages. El Paseo Hotel in Miami, for example, offers an LGBTQ bachelor/bachelorette package that includes free detox yoga classes. The Hyatt Ziva Puerto Vallarta takes advantage of its location in Mexico’s most popular LGBTQ vacation destination to attract weary travelers to its Vita Mar Spa. And the LGBTQ-owned Purist Villas & Spa Bali includes a free massage for guests who book directly with the hotel. What do LGBTQ travelers look for? “Our clients like a mixture of activities,” said Burn. “People don’t necessarily want to spend a full week doing just yoga or mindfulness. We find that they like to combine those activities with a bit of culture and great food. But there are still not enough products in the market. Destinations should really think about investing in wellness as an option.”

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TRANQUIL RETREAT:

Frog Meadow PHOTOS: © FROG MEADOW


airport update

Fit and Fly BWI breaks ground with fitness and wellness opportunities. BY ALLIE MENZIONE BALTIMORE WASHINGTON INTERNATIONAL THURGOOD MARSHALL AIRPORT, just nine miles south of downtown Baltimore and 32 miles northeast of Washington, D.C., is the busiest airport in the region. The airport, named after Thurgood Marshall, a Baltimore native and the first African American to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court, serves more than 25 million passengers. BWI has shown initiative in providing wellness opportunities and active options for its many travelers. In 2013 BWI worked with the American Heart Association to introduce the BWI Cardio Trail, comprising two marked walking paths inside the terminal that provide travelers with a new option for exercise while waiting for flights. In addition, a 12.5-mile scenic outdoor trail encircles the airport property, offering an outstanding recreational resource for travelers and local residents. BWI was the first major U.S. airport to offer a dedicated hiker/biker trail; guests can rent a bike from Zagster Bike Share, which provides bicycles to travelers, employees and members of the public, with 10 self-serve, reservable bikes available outside the international terminal for $2 an hour. Travelers can purchase an annual membership for $20. In 2014 the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine rated BWI the healthiest U.S. airport, finding 92 percent of the airport’s restaurants featured healthy options, the most among U.S. airports. Food, drink and travel website Thrillist also recognized BWI on its list of “Top 10 Most Surprisingly Great Airports in America,” highlighting its opportunities for fitness, outdoor activities and quality food options. BWI worked with the American Heart Association and the Amerigroup Foundation to open a hands-only CPR training kiosk at Gate B7 inside the airport. A touch screen with a brief video shows how to perform hands-only CPR, followed by a practice session and a 30-second CPR test. With the help of a practice manikin or a rubber torso, the kiosk gives feedback about the depth and rate of compressions and proper hand placement. Travelers can be proactive in emergency preparedness to enhance the safety and well-being of all passengers traveling through BWI. At the end of 2017, BWI opened a full-service fitness facility. The 1,175-square-foot ROAM Fitness Gym features a workout space for up to 21 people, cardio equipment, free weights and designated stretching space. The storage wall includes secure cubbies where travelers can store their belongings while charging their devices. All members have access to private shower rooms with complimentary towels and shower products, plus complimentary rental of lululemon

HANDS-ON LEARNING:

athletic apparel and Brooks Adrenaline GTS 17 running shoes. Membership costs $40 for a day pass, $175 for a monthly pass and $600 for an annual pass. The gym, located post-security in BWI’s D/E connector, operates 5 a.m.–10 p.m. daily. If travelers would rather wind down than wind up, BWI offers a meditation room in a relatively little-known quiet corner of the airport. The room is located in the hallway behind the Delta Air Lines ticket counter on the side closest to the D/E security checkpoint. Guests access the room by calling BWI Landside Operations. BWI makes sure the whole family stays active (or the kids get tired out before their flight) with a children’s play area and recently installed playground in the D/E connector. Parents can watch the active runway from the Observation Gallery as kids play in a model airplane and more. JUNE 2018

Young girl learning hands-only CPR at the American Heart Association hands-only CPR training kiosk. PHOTOS: © AMERICAN HEART ASSOCIATION 2017 / TOMMY CAMPBELL PHOTOGRAPHY

BALTIMORE WASHINGTON INTERNATIONAL THURGOOD MARSHALL AIRPORT bwiairport.com

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health

To Your Health! Good habits help you avoid illness and improve your quality of life. BY MARY B. GALLAGHER, RN, MSN, CCRN MANY FACTORS AFFECT YOUR HEALTH. Some you cannot control, such as age and genetic makeup. But you can make changes to your lifestyle to reduce your risk of heart disease, cancer, stroke and other serious diseases, even when traveling. Get exercise and control your weight. Exercise, a key factor in staying healthy, strengthens your bones, heart and lungs; tones muscles; improves vitality; relieves depression; and helps you sleep better. Talk to your health care provider before starting an exercise program if you have conditions such as obesity, high blood pressure or diabetes. Do not smoke. Cigarette smoking is the main preventable cause of death in the United States. One out of every five deaths each year is directly or indirectly caused by smoking. It is never too late to quit; talk to your provider about smoking cessation programs and medications. Secondhand cigarette smoke can cause heart disease, lung cancer and other pulmonary diseases in nonsmokers. Thirdhand smoke — residual nicotine and chemicals left on indoor surfaces by tobacco smoke — is a relatively new concept, and researchers are still studying its dangers. People, especially children, are exposed to these chemicals by touching contaminated surfaces or breathing in the off-gassing from these surfaces. This residue is thought to react with common indoor pollutants to create a toxic mix. People are likely at risk of tobacco-related health problems when they come in contact with thirdhand smoke. Infants and young children might have increased exposure due to their tendency to mouth objects and touch surfaces. The only protection from thirdhand smoke is a smoke-free environment. Limit alcohol intake. Drinking alcoholic beverages changes brain functions, affecting emo-

tions, thinking and judgment. Continued drinking affects motor control, causing slurred speech, slower reactions and poor balance. Having a higher amount of body fat and drinking on an empty stomach can speed the effects of alcohol. Alcoholism can lead to diseases of the liver, pancreas, esophagus and digestive tract; heart muscle damage; cancer; and brain damage. Talk with your children about the dangers of alcohol. Talk with your provider if you or someone you love has a problem with alcohol. Alcoholics Anonymous offers good support programs for family members. Medications affect people in different ways, and drug interactions can be dangerous. Older people need to be careful of interactions when taking many medications. Inform all your providers, including the dentist, of the medications you take, especially over-the-counter medicines and vitamins. Always take medications as prescribed. Avoid drinking alcohol while taking them since it can cause serious problems. The combination of alcohol and tranquilizers or pain killers can be deadly. See your health care provider at least yearly, and more often if you have a health issue. Know your family medical history. Be involved in your health care and know your numbers: blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar levels, and weight. Stay up to date on vaccinations. Get a flu shot every September/October. Get recommended screenings and examinations. See your eye doctor regularly; if you experience vision problems, make an appointment as soon as possible. Stress is normal. It can be a great motivator and help in some cases. Too much stress, however, can cause health problems such as insomnia, stomachache, anxiety, mood changes and high blood pressure. You may not be able to avoid all

stress, but knowing the source can help you feel in control. The more control you feel over your life, the less damaging the stress. It helps to talk with friends or your provider about stress. Exercise also provides a healthy outlet for stress. Obesity is a serious health concern. Excess body fat can overwork the heart, bones and muscles and increase your risk for high blood pressure, stroke, varicose veins, breast cancer and gall bladder disease. Obesity can be caused by eating too much and eating unhealthy foods. Lack of exercise plays a part, along with family history. A balanced diet is important to good health. Choose foods low in cholesterol and saturated and trans fat. Limit your intake of sugar, salt and alcohol. Stay away from processed foods. Eat more fiber, found in fruits, vegetables, beans, whole grain products and nuts. Consider following a Mediterranean diet. Good dental care and hygiene keep your teeth and gums healthy for a lifetime. Limit sugar intake. Brush your teeth twice a day using fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled or electric toothbrush. Replace your toothbrush when the bristles are bent. Get regular dental check-ups, and ask your hygienist to demonstrate proper brushing and flossing. Visit the “Five Minutes or Less for Health” widget/website/blog from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for quick steps you can take to be safe and healthy. Follow the links for additional steps that take longer but are worth the time. New tips are uploaded weekly. You are never too out of shape, too overweight or too old to make healthy changes. Find strategies that work for you. Change is a process and takes time. Know your habits, make a plan, stay on track, think about the future and be patient. Take care of yourself for you because you are worth it.

The content of this article is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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where would

you rather be?

Featured Property: SACAJAWEA BY THE SEA Directly on the Gulf of Mexico Cape San Blas, Florida — Voted Best Beach

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The Red Door The Red Door Spa has been in continuous operation since the day Elizabeth Arden opened its doors on Fifth Avenue in 1910. She painted the door bright red so it would stand out from the other shops and department stores. Arden introduced cosmetics to women when they weren't accessible (or acceptable) and educated them on diligent skin care, nutrition and fitness. Active in the suffrage movement, she supplied 15,000 suf-

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fragettes with red lipstick as a sign of solidarity during the suffrage march. Arden created a global brand so successful it flourished during the Great Depression, bringing in more than $4 million a year. In 2012 the New York City flagship spa moved to a new, state-of-the-art facility at 663 Fifth Ave., offering guests a modern day spa that exudes the very essence of customization, luxury and elegance. Photos above show a facial treatment, makeup classes, the modern Beauty Bar and a Red Door flagship treatment room.

PHOTOS: Š THE RED DOOR

past & present


FX Excursions

Turkish massage The Gloria Serenity Resort

Gloria Old Course

Perge

Aspendos

Sha Japanese Cuisine Restaurant

FX Excursions Trip to Antalya Reg ion for Golf and Historical Exploration October 4-10, 2018 | Host: Francis X. Gallagher, Publisher & CEO FX Excursions offers a chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world. Join Global Traveler, Trazee Travel and WhereverFamily on our first Specialty Tour this October. Francis X. Gallagher, publisher and CEO, will join the group for a unique golf and history trip to Turkey’s Antalya region. Highlights include rounds of golf at some of Turkey’s best courses, sightseeing in Antalya, a visit to Termessos and more. Reserve your spot today: globaltravelerusa.com/fx-excursions.


June 2018 Global Traveler  
June 2018 Global Traveler