Category Archives: Luxury Travel

Discovering Tahiti Part 1

Saturday before last Mink Hippie and I boarded a Hawaiian Airline flight and flew to Tahiti, the largest island in French Polynesia. Tahiti lies in the South Pacific. Our flight arrived at 11pm and we called and were picked up by the German proprietor of Chez Myrna, Mr. Walter Dammeyer ( B P 790 – 98 713 PapeeteTAHITI Tel. / Fax. 42 64 11 Papeete ). Chez Myrna was clean, had nice baguettes and coffee (instant) for breakfast, and served as a perfect launch pad for us to wake up and go to the Sunday farmers market in Papeete, the capital of Tahiti. As we walked through town we saw lots of signs saying ‘silence culte’. We finally figured out that they meant a church was nearby and people should turn their stereos down and not be too loud.

We had an excellent coffee at the airport and met a woman named Dorothy and an apparently unproductive conversation with a Pension we wanted to stay in. Unproductive as the connection was worse than both of our French and the man she said would come get us never did. The woman in the coffee shop said that he was a real ‘flintstone’. We never saw him. Instead we called Pension Vai honu (Tel: 68.87.33 Fax: 68.77.57) and were quickly picked up by a lovely woman named Jocelyn who told us about how when she was a schoolgirl she had been present when the Hawai’ian voyaging canoe Hokulea arrived in the bay at Fare.”]Mairie de Papeete ( Tahiti )

Papeete is a bit of a ghost town on Sundays and after going to the market and the drugstore (as mentioned in a previous post), we crashed the pool at the Sheraton and had a very enjoyable dinner of pizza and pasta in the restaurant there. The pool was surrounded by topless beauties including our Minkie who was gawked at by a fat man in a black thong. We laughed at him. A real creep. The next morning, Walter took us to the airport and we caught a flight to Huahine. Huahine lies 175 km. (110 miles) northwest of Tahiti in the Leeward Society islands.

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - APRIL 13:  The Fijian ...  

More to come later…..

The World’s 7 Most Amazing Hotel Pools

Indulge yourself as you submerge yourself in the world’s most amazing hotel pools

World's Greatest PoolsPicture your dream holiday as you sit behind your desk, in your office, on another endless workday. Picture cloudless blue skies, palm trees swaying in the breeze, and your own personal butler bringing you cocktails as you lounge beside the most incredible infinity pool you have ever seen.

It’s nice to dream… Why not keep on dreaming as you check out the world’s most amazing hotel pools. The world is your oyster and all of these hotels are open for you. You can experience amazing swimming pools yourself.

Anantara Kihavah Villas, Maldives
Indulge in an island fantasy at Anantara Kihavah Villas in the Maldives. Just a stone’s throw from the beach, this hotel’s 49m infinity pool is the longest in the Maldives. Fibre optics light up the pool at night as it rivals the glittering stars, and for something extra, check out what’s happening under the sea from the glass-bottomed bathtub in your Overwater Pool Villa.

Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea, Hawaii
The $9 million infinity pool at the Four Seasons stands out among the numerous other luxury hotels and resorts in Wailea. Located on the southwestern shore of Maui, the 37m salt-water infinity pool seems to disappear into Wailea Bay 16m below. You can swim up to the bar to grab a cocktail, listen to Hawaiian music underwater, and relax in the evening by the glow of tiki torches.

San Alfonso del Mar, Algarrobo, Chile
Saying the pool at the San Alfonso del Mar resort is large is an understatement. Stretching 1km in length, covering 20 acres, and containing 250 million litres of filtered Pacific Ocean water, this amazing pool has been called the largest in the world by Guinness World Records. It holds several man-made sand beaches and reportedly cost $2 billion to build.

Amangiri, Canyon Point, Utah
Hang out in this resort’s U-shaped pool to enjoy panoramic views of Utah’s dramatic mesas, or relax on one of the poolside king-size day beds while you sip on a prickly-pear margarita. You can swim day and night at a pleasant 29 degrees, and you really can’t miss the 80-foot-high, Jurassic-period sandstone escarpment that rises out of the pool.

The Oberoi Udaivilas, Udaipur, Rajasthan
On the banks of Lake Pichola in Udaipur, Rajasthan, the Oberoi Udaivilas showcase majestic India at its best. Built as a traditional Indian palace, this hotel has rambling courtyards, sweeping gardens, and reflection pools. Rooms open out onto terraces and semi-private swimming pools, and some suites have their very own swimming pools. There is also a luxurious spa with its own swimming pool overlooking the lake.

Marina Bay Sands, Singapore
Opened in 2010, this Singapore hotel has one of the most iconic pools in the world. The infinity pool isn’t just three times the length of an Olympic pool, it’s also 55 storeys high and straddles three towers of the hotel. At a cost of $4 billion, the hotel is apparently the most expensive in the world, and allows guests the chance to swim at 650m, while enjoying spectacular views over Singapore.

Golden Nugget, Las Vegas
Ever felt there was something missing in the hotel pools you’ve seen in the past? Perhaps a few sharks? In the Golden Nugget’s $30 million pool complex – The Tank – you can swim alongside sharks, stingrays, huge Queensland grouper, and silvery jack crevalle. Nice idea, and thankfully danger free – as the swimming pool is separated from the shark tank by a six-inch clear acrylic wall. The Golden Nugget is just one of the unique places to stay in Las Vegas.

Do We Favour Luxury Holidays?

The recession may have hit us hard, but our preference for the luxury of a package holiday hasn’t been compromised. Of those who booked holidays in the 12 months to August 2014, 46% booked a package deal for reasons such as convenience and value, according to new research by ABTA.

luxury holiday

And of the package-bookers, 35% said that they booked this way to enable them to go all-inclusive. Of those to respond to the survey, 15% were taking an all-inclusive break in 2014 and 21% were considering taking one in 2014.

 So why is the package holiday gathering such momentum? It could be a financial move as 22% cited their reason for booking as ‘for financial protection’ while 18% said it was to ‘be looked after if something went wrong’.

 An easy alternative

But most people were just looking for an easy trip as 65% of people wanted everything to be taken care of while 60% chose a package that ensured they got good value for money. Meanwhile, 38% of respondents booked as a timesaving move.

There are so many tour operator out there offering packages each year that it can sometimes be difficult to gauge quality when booking. That’s why company reputation was an important factor for a third of holidaymakers (33%) when booking a package. For the over 65s, this figure rose to four in ten (43%).

Making a choice

Club Med is a well-known provider of luxury all Inclusive holidays, and was considered to be the first company to offer them back in the 1950s. Best known for their exotic locations across the world, their packages send holidaymakers to far-flung destinations including the Caribbean, Asia, and the Indian Ocean. Their packages include activities on land and water, and expert tuition to go with them.

They have also become well known for their luxury package ski holidays catering for whole families. They offer ski and snowboard lessons and childcare for all ages, as well as high quality catering throughout the holiday.

Meeting family needs

Childcare is particularly important in a package, as the trend for these holidays is highest in families with children under the age of five. Half of this demographic booked an overseas package holiday in 2014.

 Overall, Brits are taking fewer holidays per person, but ABTA found that this is often to fund a longer holiday. 80% of Brits took a holiday either in the UK or abroad in the 12 months to August 2014, with 21% saying an overseas holiday was a necessity for them. So even with financial worries, it seems that a luxury holiday is a non-negotiable British essential.