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Joined: Jan 2005
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Ok, since nobody has a favorite travel destination--which I find rather interesting LOL--let's go with this question:

What is your idea of Luxury Travel?

Is it something you paid a lot of money to do? Something which gives you an experience you normally wouldn't have?

Let me know <img src="/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

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It's tough, my boyfriend will only wear jeans because he doesn't have any non-jeans that fit him so we can't go on cruises and such that require formal wear. Which cuts down our luxury travel options. But I do love going to Napa Valley and tasting all the high end wines so I find that pretty luxurious <img src="/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />


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That sounds like a lot of fun. <img src="/images/graemlins/laugh.gif" alt="" /> Wine tastings always feel elegant. Do you have any favorite wineries? Or places to stay? Napa Valley is on my list of subjects to cover next year.

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We've been to Napa twice in the past 2 years - I love Arrowood and Cain there. Also Chateau Montelena has a great winery building and grounds. The wine train is in fact one of the things I wanted to try but couldn't because of his jeans-penchant <img src="/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

I like that for free or maybe $5 you can taste wines that cost $100 or more. It's quite a great bargain! And the landscapes are gorgeous out there ...


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Here at Disneyworld in Orlando next month we have the Food & Wine Festival, which you might enjoy. You walk around the World Showcase at EPCOT and sample different wines, beers and snacks from around the world and most items are only $2-5 each. But it's fun standing in the England Pavillion area having an ale and 5 minutes later you can be in France having champagne or port. Not to mention the International "Beer Gateway" area with a free beer school.

But when I plan the Napa trip, I'll definitely have to pick your brain. <img src="/images/graemlins/laugh.gif" alt="" />

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Now, this sounds like luxury travel to me, I found this post in the Spas section of this message board:

"We just returned from a long weekend of enticing relaxation. I organized a group trip for six of my closest friends to the Chateau Elan in Braselton, Georgia. We enjoyed Indulgent spa treatments, Whirlpool, Steam Room, Spa, Afternoon Tea, and even a nice winery tour with tasting. We forwarded our luggage to the Resort with Luggage Forward which took the stress out of travel. Overall, it was an amazing weekend. Let me know if you'd like any of the details."

here is the full [color:"red"]link[/color] !

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Hi,

This is a question that I find really interesting...

But first, I'm a guy, Stephen. Can I stay? I decided to register because I didn't like the idea of "lurking"...

Why do I find this topic interesting? Because I run a website on luxury travel and I'm finding that ALL the decisions are made by women. Okay, except golf... ;-)

Anyway, my idea of luxury travel is when everything works. When the service is discreet, unobtrusive and attentive. When the "infrastructure" is invisible...

It's not necessary that this cost a lot. And often it doesn't. But increasingly to get what we call "service", you have to pay...

Regards,
Stephen


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I've visited many destinations and luxury is defined differently when leaving the US. Some international hotels consider a private bath a luxury. Others are considered luxury because there is a security gate before entering the property.

I like hotels that offer wonderful amenities. Onsite spa, golf course, cigar bar. These are luxuries. Sumptuous bathrooms, turndown service, complimentary champagne. These are luxuries. I toured Stein Erikson Lodge in Park City, UT and I must say that at $2000/night, it better be luxury. I would have loved to stay there.

And welcome, Stephen.


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See, to me luxury travel is partly defined by spending enough money that no one can tell you what to wear. My friend and I recently took a luxury spa vacation to Lanai and Kauai and we distinguished two groups: the Fendi toting, diamond wearing crowd and the casual, used to having money, but tastefully understated crowd. No matter how much money I had, I prefer having the option to dress down or up, as I please.

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Just today I learnt of a travel package from this magazine that I think overqualifies as luxury travel: http://www.goldarths.com/Regulars/RoseGold/Luxe_List/index.aspx.

Look under "experiences" and "restful sojourns".

When I visited the Ritz-Carlton website, I found out the package costs $40,000!!!

FORTY Gs?!

Would you sign up if you could afford it?

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Travel at a leisurely pace (no limit on how long you have to explore a place) with enough money to take a taxi when you get tired, buy the thing you'd really like to take home no matter what it costs, and eat when you're hungry without looking for an inexpensive place. I hate fancy hotels. Used to have to stay in them from time to time when I was a research scientist in an area in which doctors did research too. You couldn't even go down the hall to the little ice room. You had to call (and pay) roomservice for every little thing. There was a beach, but you couldn't go through the lobby in beachwear, so you had to take a much more roundabout way or rent a dressing room on the beach, etc., etc. I've been on one cruise, my parents' 5oth celebration, and wanted more freedom to wander. I like using public transportation, except when I'm tired or carrying a lot. I like to try local cuisine, what the average local person eats.


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I received a brochure in the mail yesterday about cruises and one section was on "luxury cruises" where there are less people booked per square foot, more elegant surroundings and upscale service. I had no idea that you could actually book a cruise that was extra luxurious!


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Right now my obsession is the Bahamas! I have seen so many Bahamavention commercials and i am hoping to book a trip to Nassau soon! I need to lay on the beach!

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Originally Posted By: LuxuryNZ


Anyway, my idea of luxury travel is when everything works. When the service is discreet, unobtrusive and attentive. When the "infrastructure" is invisible...

It's not necessary that this cost a lot. And often it doesn't. But increasingly to get what we call "service", you have to pay...


I have to agree with Stephen. When I was a growing up, my family would stay at very inexpensive motels unless there was a 4 or 5 star hotel or resort in the area where we were going to be staying, in which case we would stay there because my parents wanted us to have the experience (and they enjoyed it too.) I think that Stephen has hit the nail on the head exactly as to the difference. We often stayed in the smaller and/or older rooms in the fine hotels (i.e. double bed two cots for us kids) but the sense of everything just working, the staff who could handle almost any request without turning a hair, and the staff's awareness of every guest, including the children, as a human with preferences and interest are all the signs of luxury to me, much more than any particular facility. My sister was very allergic to wool and down as a child - luxury hotels always had appropriate pillows and blankets for her within 5 minutes (so did a lot of the low end hotels - they were often family businesses where the owner worked the front desk and could do every job in the place.) Mid-range hotels had problems with things like that.

I've found that you can often still get those touches at a very reasonable price at older hotels that were once considered luxury hotels but are now too small to get that label.

Julie

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"Travel at a leisurely pace (no limit on how long you have to explore a place) with enough money to take a taxi when you get tired, buy the thing you'd really like to take home no matter what it costs, and eat when you're hungry without looking for an inexpensive place."

YES! That's luxury to me. Also, for most people in any situation, the ability to get away once in a while is a luxury in itself. It's more about the experience than how much it cost. I don't care if I was a multigazillionaire, I would not be interested in that $40K vacation package. I'd much rather find a really cool place and hang out with the locals and do what they do. And have the luxury to do it as long as I wanted before I moved on the next location. And never have to worry about getting back to work!

DJCNOR, maybe we should start a new thread and talk about the experiences we had in our travels?

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My ideal luxury vacation is when my husband can go about Fishing all day long, my kids can roam around the pool and playgrounds, drive around with their friends on golf carts, and I can relax at the Spa. I used to go to Ocean Reef Club down here in the Florida Keys, but I wanted something a little more exotic and more cultural for my kids. I want them to experience more and perhaps even learn a new language! My husband found a resort on some yachtforum, (funny how everyone in the family chats on forums smile! ) which is where our perfect summers will soon take place! I love how its gated and the beach is right there, but my biggest concern really is the safety of foreign country and I have gone a few times down there and have never had a problem, I have also never heard a bad thing! Anywhoo, I wanted to let you all know my perfect luxury get-away, IslaMoin! check it out, its on the Caribbean coast, my husband gave me their website, its www.islamoin.com. I hope to see you and your kids all there!
Ali Richards

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My idea of luxury travel, this is going to sound odd but, is first and foremost that the bathroom must be gorgeous, new, clean, with lovely little amenities that I will most likely not even use.
For me, the standard of the bathroom affects my overall opinion of a hotel/resort!
Secondarily but still very very important, is the quality of the room. Linens must be fairly new, ventilation must be excellent, cleanliness is obviously a must, and attention to design and decoration is essential.
Of course, the quality of the resort/hotel overall must be really fabulous to qualify as luxurious.
Lastly, luxury requires that I not feel stressed. If I am not helped with my bags, for example, and must carry them long distances - that's not luxury!
Oh, I forgot - the demeanor and attitude of the hotel staff is really quite important when we're talking luxury...


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Luxury is about marrying your interests and passions with travel to create life experiences that are priceless.

Check out this once in a lifetime travel opportunity, if you have ever wanted to live La Dolce Vita in Italy as an insider. Combine unique exclusive experiences with one of the hottest trends in travel today-Spiritual Travel for a personal Renaissance.

The Insider�s Italy Experience : September 30-October 12, 2007
A Privileged & Spiritual Odyssey with Inspirational Author and Motivator, Sheilaa Hite & Randi Winter, Travel Journalist and Passionate Travel�s Specialist in Inspired Pursuits.

Be immersed in the Florentine and Roman art, history and culture, and delve into Italy's artistic soul. Celebrate the true bounty of the harvest season with a special cooking class, a truffle hunt, wine, oil and chocolate tasting and much more. Wine and dine with the baron after we stroll the picturesque gardens at one of Tuscany�s most magnificent baronial castles just a few nights after we are guests at a private dinner party hosted by the Gucci family in their Florentine villa (joined by several of their interesting personal friends), as together we enjoy an unforgettable evening of wine, food, music and brilliant conversation. VIP access to top designers in fashion, jewelry and artisan products abound.

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