LATEST NEWS FROM OUR CLIENTS
3 JUNE 2021
WHERE DISTANCE COMES NATURALLY
Castell Son Claret Announces New Developments for Summer 2021
The team at Castell Son Claret in Mallorca has not been resting on its laurels during the unexpected downturn in the international travel business over the past 12 months. Instead the team has been considering what luxury leisure travellers will be looking for in the future and how the 326-acre country estate can meet the renewed demand for suite accommodation that provides the reassuring comfort of space, nature and privacy. The result is the addition of four new Garden Suites, a new ‘garden service’ dining option, and a fresh new gourmet restaurant, Sa Clastra, named after the traditional central open-air patio or cloister at the heart of Spanish castles such as Castell Son Claret.
Castell Son Claret opened its four new garden suites in time for the start of the season at the end of March 2021. Each of the four 75 square metre suites has a light-flooded living area, large bedroom and spacious bathroom. Floor-to-ceiling windows allow an uninterrupted view of the breath-taking landscape of the Tramuntana mountain range that hugs the Castell estate, bringing nature right to the doorstep. The elegant, modern design and the interior décor of the suites are by the well-known Spanish design firm, Decagono and Juncosa, giving the new suites a modern lightness. Some design highlights, such as the elegant lounge table by the American modernist designer, Warren Platner, or the lounge chair by Cassina, take their inspiration from the mid-Century style of the 50s and 60s, when Mallorca became the glamorous meeting place for the international jet set.
Castell Son Claret’s large estate and the surrounding countryside provides plenty of outdoor space, naturally allowing for ‘distancing’. To complement this, the hotel recently introduced a new dining concept, ‘Garden Service’, whereby guests can order food and drinks from their room service menu to be delivered to one of the many private corners of the hotel’s grounds and gardens.
Aiming to take the stress out of summer 2021 travel arrangements so that guests can take pleasure in planning their holiday, Castell Son Claret offers a ‘door to door’ arrival service; meeting guests at the airport and escorting them directly to their private car for an exclusive 25-minute transfer to the hotel. The team can also arrange for hire cars to be delivered directly to the hotel, negating the need to visit car hire offices. Should guests require assistance with a COVD-19 test before returning home, Castell Son Claret can take care of all the arrangements. PCR tests can be administered at the hotel and sent to a local lab for quick turn-around, with results sent directly to guests’ mobile phone.
“We realize that our British guests might not be ready to return to Castell Son Claret just yet, but it is our heartfelt wish to reassure them that we are here, looking after our historical and human heritage, and preparing for their return to Mallorca whenever they are ready,” commented Björn Spaude, Managing Director of Castell Son Claret. “This year, we have extended our season until the end of November, so there are more opportunities than ever to plan a break.”
An exciting new chapter in Castell Son Claret’s culinary history began last month with the opening of Sa Clastra, an al fresco gourmet restaurant led by talented young chef, Jordi Cantó. From 10 June 2021, local residents and non-hotel guests will be able to dine on the open-air patio of the hotel’s main building. Sa Clastra is a fine dining experience that captures the tastes, sight and aromas of classic dishes from around the world and reinterprets them using ingredients supplied by local producers on the island. Sa Clastra honours the heritage of the slow food tradition, bringing lamb reared in the pastures close to the hotel, oranges from Sóller in the north, cuttlefish from Port Andratx, and lemons from Castell Son Claret’s own estate.
A native of Mallorca and champion of its culinary heritage, Jordi Cantó honed his skills working in the kitchens of some of the most famous restaurants in Spain, including Nerua restaurant at the Guggenheim, Bilbao; DiverXo in Madrid; and the two-star Casa Macial in Asturias. Jordi’s most recent training ground has been Castell Son Claret itself, where he worked for many years in the kitchen of Zaranda, the hotel’s previous two Michelin star restaurant.
“Mallorca has inspired generations of chefs, artists, poets and writers, and this latest generation is no different. Jordi has an exciting and energetic new approach to gastronomy, curating an elegant new dining experience that honours the soul of our historic building and the culinary heritage of the wider island community in Mallorca and neighbouring islands,” commented Björn Spaude, Managing Director of Castell Son Claret.
Sa Clastra at Castell Son Claret serves dinner five nights a week. Two gourmet tasting menus will change according to the rhythm of the seasons and what is available locally. A wine pairing option will continue the exploration of fine Mallorca produce, with suggestions from smaller private and family-run cellars on the island. Sa Clastra will be located in the large central patio at Castell Son Claret, where diners will sit under the night sky, cossetted in the warm glow of soft lights reflected against the ancient stone of the castle walls.
Garden suites at Castell Son Claret are priced from Euro 1,225 (from GBP 1,056) per room per night. Rates include daily breakfast, tax and service. Bookings can be cancelled free of charge up to 72 hours in advance of arrival. www.castellsonclaret.com
2 MARCH 2021
BEHOLD RETREATS LAUNCHES IMMERSIVE LIFE ACCELERATOR PROGRAMME – 7 YEARS OF GROWTH IN 7 WEEKS’
What if you had the power to achieve any goal, every time? In 2021, Behold Retreats, specialists in bespoke psychedelic plant medicine journeys, is giving leaders the chance to elevate their consciousness, gain clarity and fulfil their true long-term potential through a seven-week life accelerator programme. The programme consists of three weeks of guided introspection and preparation, a seven-day guided plant medicine retreat in an idyllic location, and an additional three weeks of post-retreat integration to achieve heightened performance, well being, and long-lasting psychological growth.
A pre-COVID study published by Forbes found that 72% of entrepreneurs are affected by mental health challenges. In the midst of a global pandemic, executives, entrepreneurs, and business leaders the world over are facing similar pressures in the face of unprecedented uncertainty. Recognising that the human experience is limited primarily by conscious thought, it’s possible for leaders to improve mental well-being and consciousness regardless of outside circumstances, and plant medicine is evidenced to help. Therapeutic use enables access to the subconscious to identify and overcome underlying limiting beliefs, gain clarity to achieve personal and professional goals, and enhance quality of life.
Behold Retreats’ journeys are designed to heighten levels of consciousness through self-inquiry, coaching, and the use of science-backed entheogen plant medicine like ayahuasca, psilocybin, and the San Pedro cactus. In modern times, these ancient medicines have been proven by leading academic institutions to facilitate deep introspection, self-analysis, improve emotional processing, and treat conditions such as anxiety and depression. The medicines have also been shown to promote neurogenesis – or the creation of new neurons and neural connections in the brain – which underpins the explanations for these life-changing benefits.
In his book, “the Map of Consciousness Explained,” notable psychiatrist, author, and spiritual teacher Dr. David Hawkins demonstrates the relationship between emotions, levels of consciousness, and human potential. By mapping emotions onto a scale – from low-level emotions like shame and guilt to higher-level emotions like love and joy – Hawkins explains why we enjoy spending time with certain people and sometimes avoid others. He has made tangible the idea that we are typically energised by people who have a higher vibration – those that radiate positivity and an inherent happiness – and can feel drained by those who have lower vibrations, such as those who exhibit negative or anger. As a result, our emotions – and by extension, our level of consciousness, directly reflect our experience of the world. It follows, then, that improving our level of consciousness will directly improve our quality of life.
At the top end of Dr. Hawkins’s scale, people live persistently in emotional states such as love, joy, and peace. As people reach these higher states of consciousness, and experience seismic shifts in associated thought patterns, they often make dramatic life changes, feeling compelled to dive more deeply into topics such as meditation, the arts, writing, movement, and spirituality. Alongside plant medicine, Behold Retreats incorporates many of these modalities – especially meditation, yoga, and guided self-inquiry – providing clients a fast-track path to higher levels of consciousness.
Jonathan de Potter, Founder of Behold Retreats, said: “While it’s not exactly new, the work of Dr. Hawkins’ is truly a game-changer, and establishes a clear link between emotions, levels of consciousness, and human potential, providing a map to guide our thinking and behaviour to reach an elevated state of emotional well-being and consciousness. At Behold Retreats, we guide our clients to deepen self-understanding, gain clarity, and break through to fulfil their true potential, with expert guidance for safety and confidence along the journey.”
- Frontiers in Pharmacology Study, National Center for Biotechnology Information: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4773875/
- Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies Bulleting Article: https://maps.org/news-letters/v23n1/v23n1_p36-40.pdf
- Johns Hopkins Center for Psychedelic & Consciousness Research: https://hopkinspsychedelic.org/#research
1 FEBRUARY 2021
WORK, LEARN & PLAY IN PARADISE
NIZUC Resort & Spa has launched a special ‘Work, Learn & Play in Paradise’ package for stays of seven nights or more. The package includes 35% off room rates, plus an upgrade to the next available room category, and 15% off all food and beverage and spa treatments. This represents an average saving of USD 217 per room per night. Every morning at 8am there is a complimentary 45-minute class for workers to start their day, from tabata training to stretch and meditation. All rooms and suites at NIZUC have spacious desks to work at, coffee machines at the ready and a personal butler on hand to supply more stationary or deliver a healthy salad or plate of ceviche. The resort’s ESPA spa is open well into the evening for de stressing massage or hydrotherapy circuit. This offer is available from now until 19 December 2021. Book at www.nizuc.com
22 OCTOBER 2020
EXPERIENCE MEXICO’S DIA DE MUERTOS AT HOME WITH NIZUC RESORT & SPA’S VIRTUAL FESTIVAL
Are you ready for Mexico’s annual Día de Muertos or Day of the Dead celebrations on 1 & 2 November 2020? Don’t let the skulls fool you – Día de Muertos is a much-needed affirmation of life and a celebration of loved ones near and far, past and present. NIZUC Resort & Spa is encouraging its social media followers and guests who can’t be in Mexico in person this year to hold their own Día de Muertos at home. To help get the party started, NIZUC will be sharing recipes, tutorials, tips and music playlists daily from Monday 26 October onwards so that followers have everything they need to bring one of Mexico’s most important cultural holidays into their home.
Tools for the virtual fiesta include a flower crown tutorial incorporating the Flor de Cempasuchil or Mexican marigold, an important symbol associated with the sun and rebirth; 14 colouring templates based on traditional Día de Muertos illustrations; a Spotify playlist of traditional and modern music; cocktail tutorials; cooking demonstration of a traditional Pan de Muertos, a delicious loaf of sweet bread coated in sugar; and a Calavera Catrina make up tutorial. The Mexican Día de Muertos is an extremely social holiday and dressing up as skeletons is part of the fun. People of all ages have their faces artfully painted to resemble skulls, and, mimicking the Calavera Catrina, they don suits and fancy dresses.
An explosion of colour and life-affirming joy, the roots of the Day of the Dead lie in the ancient religious traditions of Mesoamerica’s indigenous population. In towns and cities throughout Mexico, revellers take part in parades and parties dressed in traditional costumes and make up, sing and dance, and make offerings to lost loved ones. Día de Muertos is one of the most important days in the Mexican calendar and in 2008, Mexico’s Day of the Dead was inscribed in UNESCO’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
All of these materials will be available from 26 October onwards on NIZUC’s Instagram page and IGTV, on Facebook, by searching the hashtag #DíadeMuertosNIZUC, or visiting the resort’s blog https://blog.nizuc.com
Link to Día de Muertos images: https://bit.ly/3kha6ui
19 OCTOBER 2020
HAMBURG MEETS SYLT: TWO GERMAN WATERFRONT HOTELS PARTNER TO OFFER SEAMLESS CITY & BEACH EXPERIENCE
Travellers wanting to explore Northern Germany can now combine a taste of North Sea air with big city flair with a new four-night city and beach experience organised by the BUDERSAND Hotel on the island of Sylt and The Fontenay in Hamburg.
Sylt is Germany’s northernmost island, with direct train links to Hamburg, making it a classic city and beach combination for travellers in the know. The Fontenay and the BUDERSAND Hotel have partnered up to offer a seamless travel experience with their new ‘Hamburg meets Sylt’ package of accommodation and return Deutsche Bahn train tickets.
These two independent luxury hotels have much in common, sharing a focus on art, culture and cuisine, as well as contemporary German architecture and design. They also share the luxury of space and are both waterfront properties, with The Fontenay located at the edge of Lake Alster at the heart of Hamburg, and the BUDERSAND Hotel overlooking the sea and the small harbour in Hörnum.
The new ‘Hamburg meets Sylt’ travel experience starts in the city with two nights at The Fontenay. Located overlooking Lake Alster and within walking distance of the city centre, The Fontenay is a real city resort. Within the hotel, guests can enjoy spacious rooms with balconies, an al fresco garden terrace at the Parkview restaurant and a 500 square metre rooftop bar terrace. Beyond the hotel, Hamburg with its café culture, independent shops, canal district, museums and cultural institutions is all within easy reach on foot or by bike – or even by water.
A speedy and efficient three-hour train journey on the DB Auto Shuttle brings travellers directly to Sylt. The BUDERSAND Hotel – Golf & Spa – Sylt is located on the quiet south of the island with wide sweeping views of the sea and acres of deserted dunes to explore. Here, travellers can enjoy two two nights in a room or suite flooded with natural light. During the day, the rugged kilometre-wide dune landscape beckons for walks. Or with use of a premium electric bike from RIESE & MÜLLER included for one day, there is always tailwind on the 200 km of bike paths.
The ‘Hamburg meets Sylt’ package costs from Euro 750 (from GBP 679) per person in a deluxe double room and includes four nights bed and breakfast accommodation and return train tickets between Hamburg and Sylt. The package is available for stays between 26 October 2020 and 26 March 2021 (excluding period 17 December 2020 to 4 February 2021) and is subject to availability. Bookings can be made through the reservations department of either hotel. Travel can also start on Sylt and end in Hamburg
Reservations can be made by contacting The Fontenay on +49 (0)40 605 6605 850 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or by contacting the BUDERSAND Hotel – Golf & Spa – Sylt on +49 (0)4651 46070 or emailing email@example.com.
5 OCTOBER 2020
JOURNEY WITHIN: BEHOLD RETREATS LAUNCHES ENTHEOGEN PLANT MEDICINE SERVICES
Guided by ancient wisdom and modern science, Behold Retreats is proud to launch its entheogen plant medicine services. Designed to elevate each guest to peak performance and wellbeing, each journey is facilitated in idyllic destinations where plant medicine such as ayahuasca, psilocybin, or the san Pedro cactus are legal.
Behold Retreats create bespoke programs to each guests’ individual needs, goals, and preferences. The programs are holistic and include education, preparation, retreat, and post-integration support with a qualified coach or therapist. In selecting this approach, guests realise the full potential of their experience, and on returning home are supported to make sustained improvements to the quality of their everyday life.
On retreats in diverse locations such as Costa Rica, the Netherlands, and Peru, plant medicine facilitators guide guests into a meditative and expanded state of consciousness, ensuring safety and comfort throughout the experience. In this immersive and highly supported context, guests are granted unparalleled access to their subconscious mind- allowing them to navigate within and to receive salient, memorable insights.
Access to effective treatments that improve mental wellbeing has never been more important. According to estimates1, roughly 1 in 6 individuals, over 1 billion people, were suffering from mental health challenges before COVID-19. As the pandemic impacts our health, the economy, and freedom of movement and human interaction around the world, many of us need additional support.
The scientific evidence for the safety and benefits of plant medicine is compelling. Over the past two decades, John Hopkins School of Medicine, as well as other leading universities, have performed a significant amount of research on psilocybin. In one such John Hopkins2 study in 20113, healthy adults were given psilocybin to promote long-lasting psychological growth. Fourteen months after participating in the study, 94% said the experience was amongst the top five most meaningful experiences of their lives; 39% said it was “the single most meaningful experience”.Interestingly, the participants themselves were not the only ones who saw benefit: their friends, family members and colleagues also reported that the psilocybin experience had made the participants calmer, happier and kinder.
Under these therapeutic conditions, research has also shown plant medicine to be highly effective in treatment of common challenges such as anxiety, depression, PTSD, and a range of addictions. A primary factor in these results is that plant medicine promotes neurogenesis: new neurons form and new neural connections are made, enabling communication and reconciliation between parts of the brain that normally do not exchange information. It is believed that these effects facilitate neurological healing and reset at the root cause, which explains the sustained benefits.
Plant medicine is quickly entering the mainstream, bolstered by the science, heartfelt stories of transformation, forward-thinking investors like Peter Thiel and Tim Ferriss, and successful legalisation and decriminalisation campaigns in Europe and North America. In a recent Goop Lab episode on Netflix, Gwyneth Paltrow’s team goes to Jamaica for a psilocybin retreat. One team member summarised the experience as “five years of therapy”, another as “a turning point in her life”.
Will Siu, MD, DPhil, Oxford- and Harvard-trained psychiatrist and Goop Lab consultant tells Behold Retreats: “Research studies into entheogen plant medicine over the past two decades are leading to a revolution in psychiatric treatment. Results from these studies at the top U.S. academic research universities are demonstrating rates of sustained healing for mental health disorders never before seen in psychiatry.”
Jonathan de Potter, founder of Behold Retreats continues: “We are pleased to introduce this natural evolution in wellbeing and performance in these challenging times. At Behold Retreats, we encourage people to do their own research on plant medicine, to ask themselves whether they may benefit, and to look within and be guided by professionals to make their own educated decision. For those who are ready to open the door to this inner exploration, Behold Retreats are here to start the conversation”.
Jonathan concludes: “Through its network, Behold Retreats is building communities of interest, and to connect with academia, partners, policymakers, psychiatrists, and therapists to begin conversations on if and how to introduce this important science in culturally appropriate ways.”
Behold Retreats is an entheogen plant medicine-based wellness service that facilitates journeys of self-discovery and transformation to elevate clients to their peak performance and well-being, and to realise substantial improvements to their daily lives. The wellness specialist provides bespoke, holistic programs that incorporate high-end, therapeutic plant medicine retreats in beautiful, safe, and legal locations globally. www.behold-retreats.com
- Global mental health stats: https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/statistics/mental-health-statistics-uk-and-worldwide
- John Hopkins Research: https://hopkinspsychedelic.org/index/#research
- Results from psilocybin study: https://healthland.time.com/2011/06/16/magic-mushrooms-can-improve-psychological-health-long-term/
- Multi-Disciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies: https://maps.org/research/ayahuasca
13 AUGUST 2020
NIZUC AT HOME WELLNESS RESIDENCIES CONTINUE
International Pilates teacher and Slings Myofascial Training® Practitioner, Anneke Kruger, is the latest wellness specialist to host a ‘NIZUC at Home’ virtual wellness residency for NIZUC Resort & Spa.
Anneke has recorded two mindful movement exercise sequences for NIZUC on the themes of Vitality and Calm, which can be viewed on NIZUC’s Instagram page. All the exercises are from Slings Myofascial Training®, a holistic body-minded movement concept influenced by Pilates and Yoga. The term Slings refer to internal connections of muscles and fascia that connect us from feet to head and hands to body. These continuities (Slings), balance our posture, modulate movement, and influence our perception.
To close her residency, Anneke will be hosting a live hour-long class on Wednesday 26 August at 8am CDT/9am EDT/2pm BST, streamed through NIZUC’s Instagram account. Find out more about Anneke at www.movementintellect.com
30 JUNE 2020
EXPLORING HAMBURG’S URBAN SHORE & LAKESIDE LUXURY AT THE FONTENAY HOTEL
Hamburg is a cosmopolitan city close to nature and perfect for a long weekend of exploring on foot, by bike or even on the water. At Hamburg’s heart lies a natural ‘green lung’; the glimmering Lake Alster and the lush parkland that skirts it. Located on this urban shoreline is The Fontenay, a lakeside luxury hotel opened in March 2018 that represents the perfect balance between nature and urban living. The hotel is welcoming back guests this summer with an array of suggested activities that combine city culture with al fresco living.
The Japanese call Hamburg ‘the green city in the woods’ – and not without reason: 27% of the city comprises natural areas. From The Fontenay, it is a 20-minute walk along the banks of Lake Alster into the city centre, with its ‘barista triangle’ area, independent shops and cultural attractions, including the historic waterfront HafenCity. The entire lake can be circumnavigated on foot in just over two hours, or longer if visitors linger over cafes, museums and piers en-route. The Fontenay also has bicycles to borrow to explore further afield up the Elbe River to the beach at Elbe. Guided cycle tours can be booked through The Fontenay’s concierge.
Lake Alster itself provides the perfect way to get a different view on Hamburg from the water. There are a huge variety of modes of transport, from canoes, pedal boats, sailboats, rowing boats, Venetian gondolas and even a Dragon boat for larger groups. ‘SUP the City’ tours can be arranged to explore the lake and the Alster canals, where you can observe villas and homes not usually visible to tourists. For a nautical ‘drive thru’, cafes can be found with serving hatches onto the water serving passing rowing boats traditional plum cake and a refreshing beer.
Those who don’t have sea legs can explore Hamburg on foot using a map supplied by The Fontenay, or perhaps taking an alternative guided walking tour, such as a two-hour street art tour. 2020 is the 60th anniversary of The Beatles in Hamburg and heritage tours can be arranged through the hotel’s concierge, exploring the story of the city’s music scene, a rich learning ground where The Beatles first refined their sound and became the band we know today.
Designed to be a reflection of modern Hamburg and the natural urban shoreline that surrounds it, The Fontenay has a free-flowing, sculptural architecture, contemporary interiors and luxury living spaces. Each of its 130 rooms has a spacious balcony, many with views of Lake Alster. Al fresco living continues with a beautiful summer terrace with tables under the trees for all-day dining at Parkview restaurant.
Meanwhile on the roof, a 20m-indoor/outdoor-infinity pool merges into the waters of the lake. Also on the roof is a large 500 m² outdoor bar terrace with a 320° view of the Hamburg skyline. All five of Hamburg’s main churches, the inner and outer Alster Lake, the Elbphilarmonie and the Town Hall can all be seen from here.
British Airways and Eurowings currently offer direct flights from London to Hamburg. www.thefontenay.com
30 APRIL 2020
VIRTUAL WELLNESS RESIDENCIES FROM NIZUC RESORT & SPA
Luxury Mexican spa resort, NIZUC Resort & Spa, has partnered with performance coach, Artur Zolkiewicz, and international breathwork and mindfulness coach, Artur Paulins, to bring their wellness programme to those in isolation with a virtual wellness residency of pre-recorded practices and live classes.
Head over to NIZUC’s Instagram account or their blog, find a quiet space and work out alongside Artur Zolkiewicz as he takes viewers through a sequence of stretching & strengthening exercises inspired by his residency at NIZUC last year. With postures like the bird dog, crab, beast crawl & side clam, you would be mistaken for thinking you were already back on the beach. NIZUC guests will have met renowned performance coach, Artur Zolkiewicz, during his last residency at NIZUC Resort & Spa in September 2019. Artur will be returning to Mexico later this year, but until guests can return to this little corner of paradise, he has filmed an introductory warm-up and three exercise circuits for NIZUC guests to try at home.
These NIZUC at Home strengthening and stretching practices from Artur will be complemented by three mindful breathing practices filmed exclusively for NIZUC by international breathwork and mindfulness coach, Artur Paulins. Each breathwork sequence, entitled ‘Breath of Fire’, ‘Coherence Breath’ and ‘Square Breathing’, is intended to bring calm, stillness, inner strength and contentment.
These will be followed by two more filmed exercise practices from Artur posted over the coming weeks and will culminate in a live class on NIZUC’s Instagram page at 6pm BST on 11 May. Artur Paulins will then lead a virtual mindful breathing class on NIZUC’s Instagram page at 6pm BST on 25 May. The filmed exercise circuits and breathing sequences are designed to be viewed independently or can be put together to create a longer practice at home. The live classes will be available to replay on Instagram for 24 hours after each class ends. www.nizuc.com
29 MAY 2018
INCA RAIL INTRODUCES ‘THE PRIVATE’ TRAIN CARRIAGE FOR AN UNFORGETTABLE & EXCLUSIVE JOURNEY TO MACHU PICCHU
Tribal travellers, extended families and groups of up to eight now have the option to exclusively hire an entire luxury train carriage for their private use for the journey of a lifetime to Machu Picchu. Inca Rail has recently introduced The Private service, a completely remodelled and refurbished parlour car that has been spaciously designed for exclusive use, complete with its own bar, open balcony, lounge seating area, upholstered armchairs and dining tables placed next to wide, UV protected windows.
Operating on the route between Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu, The Private comes with two butlers and a chef, who will prepare a tasting menu using the finest local ingredients paired with South America’s best wines. After checking in for their journey at Inca Rail’s newly opened VIP waiting lounge at Ollantaytambo station, passengers boarding The Private are welcome a with a bottle of champagne as the train departs for the 90 minute journey to Machu Picchu. As their private chef readies their meal, travellers can step out onto the train’s open balcony to drink in the fresh air and views of the Urubamba River and soaring Andes mountain range.
Meals on board are prepared by a dedicated chef for The Private and sample dishes include a smoked trout satay seasoned with lemon verbena, with a hint of creamed coconut and curry; a Peruvian yellow potato gnocchi seasoned with Andean herbs and a chilli cream sauce; and a classic Peruvian chocolate mousse served with cocoa nibs. After their meal, guests can continue to enjoy the open bar stocked with many well-known drinks brands, as they are entertained with live music.
The Private carriage can operate daily according the Inca Rail’s scheduled services and can accommodate up to eight passengers. A round-trip from Ollantaytambo to Machu Picchu costs USD 10,000 (from GBP 7,400) and one-way is USD 6,000 (from GBP 4,440). Rate includes exclusive use of the carriage, welcome champagne, open bar, tasting menu with the best wines of the region and a private transfer from the train station to Machu Picchu citadel.
Commenting on the introduction of The Private service, Armando Pareja, Chief Executive Officer of Inca Rail said, “The introduction of The Private is another step in our plan to transform the trip to Machu Picchu for all our passengers from a simple rail journey into an unforgettable experience on the most up-to-date fleet in the country. Every aspect of The Private, from the colourful textiles we use for the décor to the ingredients in our food is intended to evoke the colours and flavours of the Andean culture.”
Inca Rail is investing approximately USD 12 million in upgrading its entire train fleet and services, meaning it will soon have the most modern train service operating in Peru. The launch of The Private follows the introduction of a new train service by Inca Rail, The 360° Machu Picchu Train, Peru’s most scenic trainthat commenced operations on 1stMarch 2018. The 360° Machu Picchu Train has been custom-designed with dome-like high visibility panoramic windows to give passengers the best possible views of the dramatic landscape through which they pass. The train is also fully inter-connecting, freeing passengers to move between carriages to an open-air observation area at the centre of the train, and has all the connectivity that modern travellers demand, including USB ports at each seat for charging smartphones and other devices. The360° Machu Picchu Train service operates a once a day round trip between Poroy (the station for departures from Cusco), Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu, and twice a day round trip between Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu.
Passengers also have the choice to travel to Machu Picchu in style and luxury aboard The First Class train, Inca Rail’s premium level service. In late 2017, new carriages were introduced to this fleet in a custom design layout. Operating four times a day, the First Class train seats up to 60 passengers in two dining carriages, between which is a luxurious bar car, offering live music, refreshments and an outdoor observation balcony. Passengers dine at tables with comfortable leather chairs and enjoy a gourmet menu prepared using Andean ingredients including trout, quinoa, potato and gold berry, accompanied by a selection of South American wines. Included in the cost of the First Class train is use of a new VIP waiting lounge at Ollantaytambo station, with refreshments, live music and luggage storage facilities. The First Class service operates a once a day round trip between Poroy (the station for departures from Cusco), Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu, and once a day round trip between Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu. Inca Rail also operates The Voyager service between Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu departing five times a day from each location. Tickets for all Inca Rail’s services can be booked online at www.incarail.com
19 MARCH 2018
NEW LUXURY HOTEL, THE FONTENAY, OPENS IN HAMBURG
The Fontenay, a striking new five-star luxury hotel located in the heart of Hamburg, has opened. Considered to be Germany’s most anticipated luxury hotel opening of the past two decades, the 130 room privately owned hotel occupies 14,000m² of prime real estate on the shores of Lake Alster. The Fontenay is set to become a true modern classic, reflecting modern Hamburg and collaborating with many local partners in the city, such as Montblanc, JOOP! and the new Elbphilharmonie concert hall, where the hotel will be offering guests special accommodation packages for upcoming performances.
Designed as an urban luxury resort, The Fontenay is a bold and visionary sustainable building, covered with 1,700 linear metres of white porcelain tiles that reflect the shimmering waters of the lake and the fluid lines of the park that surround the hotel. The fascinating sculptural architecture comprises three intersecting circles. Thanks to 14,000 m2 of windows, the entire building is exceptionally bright and offers incredible views of the parkland, lake and city beyond the glass.
“Everyone has worked with absolute passion on this project and The Fontenay’s opening marks a significant milestone for us,” says owner, Klaus-Michael Kühne. “I feel very close to my hometown of Hamburg and I hope that The Fontenay will excite not only the people of Hamburg and Germany, but add to the appeal of Hamburg as a cultural and gastronomic destination for international visitors.”
Hamburg is an elegant and vibrant city that reflects a modern, dynamic Germany and is considered to be its newest culture capital. The city has recently become a haven for architecture and design aficionados with the arrival of Zaha Hadid’s promenade along the Elbe and the historic Speicherstadt, the 19th Century Warehouse District, which made the UNESCO World Heritage List. Hamburg is also home to the recently opened and much anticipated Herzog & de Meuron-designed Elbphilharmonie concert hall, a 360-foot-tall glass structure which sits atop an old warehouse, its roof evoking the city’s maritime past.
The Fontenay has partnered with the Elbphilharmonie concert hall to curate special two-night packages to performances throughout the year that include accommodation, category 1 seats, private transfers to the concert hall, and champagne back at the Fontenay Bar following the performance. Upcoming dates include the Tunhalle Orchester Zürich & Igor Levit on 11 April 2018, and British composer, Max Richter, on 9 June 2018. Packages are priced from Euro 1,609 per room for two nights based on double occupancy.
The Fontenay’s other Hamburg collaborations:
- At check-in, guests will find pens and desk pads from Montblanc, a company founded in Hamburg in 1906
- The Fontenay’s sales team has been attired in business dresses and suits from the cult modern German fashion label, JOOP! which has its showroom in the hotel’s neighbourhood
- The hotel’s library is filled with more than 1,000 books chosen in cooperation with Hamburg’s Felix Jud Bookshop, founded in 1923
- The hotel has sponsored 30 trees at the Bey Orchard in the Altes Land that will provide guests with various heritage apple varieties
- At The Fontenay Bar, the hotel has partnered up with Ratsherrn, an innovative local brewery that specialises in craft beers, to create ‘The Fontenay Pilsner No. 10’
The 43m² Fontenay Deluxe Rooms are priced from Euro 355 per room (from GBP 310) per night on a room only basis and includes WIFI, non-alcoholic beverages from the mini-bar, tax and service. Reservations for The Fontenay can be made online at www.thefontenay.de, via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, through your preferred travel professional, or by calling +49 40 605 6605 850. Direct flights to Hamburg operate from many UK hubs, including London Heathrow, Edinburgh, Manchester and Bristol.
8 MARCH 2018
INCA RAIL INAUGURATES PERU’S MOST SCENIC TRAIN TO MACHU PICCHU
Travellers and explorers venturing to the ancient Inca citadel of Machu Picchu will have a greater choice of train travel available to them from this week following the inaugural of a new service by Inca Rail, the 360° Machu Picchu Train, which began operations on 1st March 2018. The 360° Machu Picchu Train is Peru’s most scenic train, offering dome-like high visibility panoramic windows with in-built UV protection.
A tourist service for the modern day explorer looking for an authentic journey to the Lost Citadel, the 360° Machu Picchu Train’s windows have been custom-designed to give passengers the best possible views, allowing them to fully appreciate the soaring Andes mountain range above them as they journey to and from Machu Picchu. Another highlight of the new service will be that, unlike most existing services on the route, the carriages of the 360° Machu Picchu Train will be fully inter-connecting, freeing passengers to move between carriages to an open-air observation area at the centre of the train, from which they can step out and breathe in the crisp mountain air and take photos of the dramatic landscape.
The 360° Machu Picchu Train will also have all the connectivity that modern travellers demand, including USB ports at each seat for charging smartphones and other devices. By summer 2018, passengers will be able to download a GPS activated app at the start of their journey, which will give information on the culture, history and countryside passing by the windows. An on-board trolley service will be enhanced with local offerings, with a light snack or light lunch offered during the journey that will change with the seasons and reflect the regions through which the train passes. Organic juices pressed from fruit and vegetables grown in the Sacred Valley will enhance gastronomic experience.
Custom-designed by Inca Rail, the 360° Machu Picchu Train service will consist of two sets of three new carriages, carrying up to 248 passengers a day on two routes between Poroy and Machu Picchu, and between Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu. The 360° Machu Picchu Train is bookable on www.incarail.com and is priced from USD 78 (from GBP 56) per person one way during low season, rising according to the season.
The launch of the 360° Machu Picchu Train follows the recent complete upgrade of Inca Rail’s premium level First Class fleet. As part of this project, new carriages were introduced to a new custom design layout, increasing passenger comfort and doubling capacity. Operating four times a day, the First Class train seats up to 60 passengers in two dining carriages, between which is a luxurious bar car, offering live music, refreshments and an outdoor observation balcony. Passengers dine at tables with comfortable leather chairs and enjoy a gourmet menu prepared using Andean ingredients including trout, quinoa, potato and gold berry, accompanied by a selection of South American wines. Included in the cost of the First Class train is use of a new VIP waiting lounge at Ollantaytambo station, with refreshments, live music and luggage storage facilities.
The First Class service operates a once a day round trip between Poroy (the station for departures from Cusco), Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu, and once a day round trip between Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu. Inca Rail also operates the Voyager service between Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu departing five times a day from each location.