Today: November 2022 luxury travel news
Every last Friday of the month, you can read my news round-up of what’s happening in the world of luxury travel. In this issue:
- The Six Senses brand is coming to the Bahamas
- Six Senses will open its first Australian property near Melbourne
- Ritz-Carlton will debut a luxury resort on Australia’s Gold Coast
- Virgin Atlantic announces new services to the Maldives and Turks & Caicos islands
- GHM celebrates debut in Qatar with unveiling of The Chedi Katara
- Waldorf Astoria debuts in the Mexican Caribbean with the arrival of Waldorf Astoria Cancun
- The Peninsula Hotels will open a dazzling new property in Istanbul
- JetBlue is adding service from the USA to Europe
- Four Seasons Resort Tamarindo, Mexico, welcomes its first guests
- Four Seasons Nashvile, USA, is now open
1. The Six Senses brand is coming to the Bahamas
The Six Senses hotel brand is coming to Grand Bahama as part of a project that will boost local tourism, development, and investment. Under an hour by plane or 2.5 hours by boat from Miami or Fort Lauderdale, Grand Bahama is the gateway to The Bahamas and a short commute to and from South Florida and major international hubs. Designed by architects 3XN, the resort village will comprise 45 waterfront and canal villas enjoying 2,400 ft (732 m) of beach frontage and water on three sides. In addition to the guest accommodations, plans are afoot for a signature restaurant, beach venue, boathouse, and pool bar. Future development of the 36-acre site will see direct access to a new marina. The resort village will host an Experience Center along with artist studios, relaxed meeting spaces, a fitness center, and Six Senses Spa. In addition to the Earth Lab, there will also be a Marine Research and Dive Center focused on coastal resiliency, native plantings, and land restoration. Additional land and sea areas will be designated as preserves, further enhancing the local biosphere.
2. Six Senses will open its first Australian property near Melbourne
Six Senses will open its first Australian property at Burnham Beeches, the heritage mansion and 22-hectare estate designed by architect Harry Norris in 1933 for the Nicholas “Aspro” Family. Located 25 miles (40 kilometers from Melbourne in the fern glades and forested hills of the Dandenong Ranges and neighboring Alfred Nicholas Memorial Gardens, the mansion is one of the finest examples of domestic Art Deco in Australia. The variety of guest rooms, with individual layouts and spread over the mansion’s three main wings, will offer a decadent retreat filled with seductive furnishing, character, and quirky touches. With a rustic-luxe vibe of understated elegance without forgoing indulgence, there will also be a separate two-bedroom cottage with interconnecting one-bedroom suite within the site’s Hilltop Retreat. Adding to the guest rooms and subject to planning applications, the masterplan will incorporate a premium and unique glamping offer to bring the total accommodations to 82. Subject to receiving the support of all stakeholders, Six Senses Burnham Beeches is slated to open in mid-2025.
3. Ritz-Carlton will debut a luxury resort on Australia’s Gold Coast
Marriott International announced the signing of an agreement with Australian property developers Pelligra Group and Giannarelli Group to bring Australia’s third Ritz-Carlton hotel to the Gold Coast by 2026. Situated in the heart of Mariner’s Cove at the prestigious northern end of the Gold Coast, The Ritz-Carlton, Gold Coast, will be a gateway to some of the city’s most popular tourist attractions including a host of waterfront restaurants and bars, the Broadwater, and famed white sand beaches. Expected to feature 150 elegantly appointed guest rooms and suites, the hotel anticipates offering the legendary service and experience the global brand is known for. Guests will also be able to enjoy refined dining establishments with a signature restaurant featuring semi-opened kitchens, a café, and three bars including a Lobby Lounge, destination bar, and poolside bar. An outdoor rooftop pool, fitness center and signature Ritz-Carlton Spa will deliver innovative and revitalizing wellness experiences to leisure guests.
4. Virgin Atlantic announces new services to the Maldives and Turks & Caicos islands
Virgin Atlantic announced that in 2023 it will begin flying to the idyllic islands of the Maldives as well as Turks & Caicos, offering an opportunity to explore the most beautiful beaches and finest snorkelling and scuba diving found anywhere in the world. With crystal white sands and sheltered lagoons, the Maldives redefines paradise, in what is undoubtedly one of the most idyllic holiday destinations, offering luxurious relaxation and adventure. Elsewhere, the stunning islands of the Turks & Caicos offer some of the most pristine white sand beaches, surrounded by the world’s clearest turquoise waters. Virgin Atlantic will launch a winter seasonal three-times weekly service to the Maldives from London Heathrow, commencing on 22nd October 2023. The airline will also launch a year-round twice weekly service to the Turks & Caicos, starting on 1515 November 2023 from London Heathrow. Both routes will be operated on the airline’s Boeing 787-9 aircraft boasting 31 Upper Class, 35 Premium and 192 Economy Delight, Classic and Light seats.
5. GHM celebrates debut in Qatar with unveiling of The Chedi Katara
The Chedi Katara Hotel & Resort, Doha, managed by General Hotel Management Ltd (GHM), has officially opened its doors to guests. Mirroring the dynamic aspirations of Qatar while honouring its storied history as a cultural crossroad, the hotel’s lavish interior represent a blend of Moghul architecture and Ottoman influence accentuated by local hospitality and personalised service. There are 59 elegantly appointed rooms and suites boasting a mesmerising view of the Arabian Gulf. The resort is also home to 32 villas of varying categories, each extending into its own private garden with a private pool, offering complete seclusion and tranquillity in the heart of the city. The dramatic Hills of Katara surround the entire property, offering exceptional privacy for all rooms, suites, and villas. Located along a dramatic shoreline, The Chedi Katara offers guests a fully serviced private beach. The Chedi Pool commands a prime location between the hotel and the private beach, offering phenomenal views and a relaxing environment for guests to unwind. The property is also home to a luxurious spa and four world-class culinary concepts.
6. Waldorf Astoria debuts in the Mexican Caribbean with the arrival of Waldorf Astoria Cancun
The opening of Waldorf Astoria Cancun marks the 200th hotel in the Caribbean and Latin America for Hilton, as well as the first Waldorf Astoria hotel in the Mexican Caribbean and second in the country. The property is situated on 100 acres of coastline south of Cancun’s popular Hotel Zone and north of Riviera Maya. Behind a mangrove nature preserve, on a secluded stretch of beach, the luxury hotel offers the perfect blend of Mexican heritage and modern sophistication with an abundance of choices to create an ideal getaway. The 173 luxurious rooms and suites combine elegance and refinement with privacy and comfort, featuring private balconies with soaking tubs and breathtaking ocean views. With menus crafted by consummate connoisseurs, guests can indulge and imbibe in a wide variety of dining options across five food and beverage venues. With 21 indoor and outdoor treatment rooms, a salon, sauna, extensive thermal area, outdoor spa pool and garden, and exquisite relaxation lounges, the Waldorf Astoria Spaoffers a serene destination for holistic well-being
7. The Peninsula Hotels will open a dazzling new property in Istanbul
The Peninsula Istanbul, the newest addition to The Peninsula Hotels’ portfolio of luxurious worldwide properties, announced that it is now accepting reservations in advance of its opening on 14 February 2023. The waterfront property encompasses four exquisite buildings, three of which are protected historical landmarks dating to the early 1900s, each carefully renovated, set amid a large expanse of blooming gardens along the Bosphorus Strait – the convergence point of East and West in Türkiye’s most cosmopolitan city. The hotel will house 177 gorgeously appointed rooms and generous suites spread among its four waterfront buildings. Many will provide sweeping Bosphorus views from large windows, balconies, or private terraces; others will include direct access to the property’s magnificent gardens, outdoor swimming pool, private boat dock, and stylish luxury boutiques. The hotel’s spa center will include opulent hammams – traditional Turkish steam rooms – along with a dramatically lit indoor swimming pool. The hotel’s featured rooftop restaurant and bar will offer sophisticated Turk-Asian cuisine.
7. JetBlue is adding service from the USA to Europe
JetBlue announced plans to expand transatlantic flying into Continental Europe with new service to Paris starting next summer. Paris will be JetBlue’s second transatlantic destination following the airline’s successful launch of service to London in August 2021, where it has quickly grown its schedule to five daily flights between the United States and the United Kingdom. With service to both London and Paris, JetBlue will play a unique role in disrupting high-fare legacy carriers that have used joint ventures and global alliances to dominate these routes for decades. JetBlue – currently the sixth largest airline in the U.S. – is known for having the most legroom in coach, live television and on-demand entertainment on every seatback, free and fast Fly-Fi broadband internet (b), complimentary snacks and soft drinks and great customer service. JetBlue’s Business Class – called Mint – features 24 fully lie-flat private suites with a sliding door – including two Mint Studios – and a custom-designed seat cushion developed by innovative mattress company Tuft & Needle.
9. Four Seasons Resort Tamarindo, Mexico, welcomes its first guests
Deeply committed to preservation of the natural landscape, celebrating Mexico’s rich heritage and providing the ultimate luxury travel experience, Four Seasons Resort Tamarindo, México is now welcoming guests to a pristine coastal reserve that for centuries has been completely off the grid – until now. Seamlessly blending tradition and modernity, the resort was designed by architects Victor Legorreta and Mauricio Rocha, who came together as LegoRocha specifically for this project. Lead interior designers are Uribe Krayer and Estudio Esterlina, landscaping is by Mario Schjetnan, and restaurant designers are Esrawe Studio and Bibiana Huber. Just 2% of the surrounding 3,000 acre (1,220 hectare) private nature Reserve is being developed, offering endless opportunities for visitors to explore through guided excursions on land and sea. The Resort includes 157 cliffside and beachfront accommodations – many with private pools – along with authentic dining options, an outstanding golf course, transformative spa and wellness experiences, three pools and three nearly-deserted beaches for watersports and long days in the sun.
10. Four Seasons Nashvile, USA, is now open
The Four Seasons Hotel and Private Residences Nashville is housed in a new landmark building in Nashville, rising 40 storeys above the vibrant city. The art and light filled hotel encompasses 235 hotel guest rooms and suites, along with a unique chef-driven restaurant and bar concept, a full-service spa and resort-style pool deck, modern event spaces, and much more. With panoramic city and river views and interiors celebrating local heritage and craftsmanship, the stage is set for an all-new luxury experience befitting of this dynamic city that continues to attract creative talent and an increasing number of visitors from across the country and around the world. Four Seasons has already established relationships within the city’s music and arts communities, including Songwriter City, which has collaborated with the Hotel to offer the Suite Sounds package – an opportunity to meet and spend time with industry professionals in an intimate setting. Guests are also encouraged to experience “songwriters in the round,” wherein a group of chart-topping writers talk – and play – through the artistic process.