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The Most Instagrammable Pool in the World

Canaves Oia Luxury Resort has long been heralded as one of the best accommodation hotspots in Europe. With exceptional hospitality, world-class cuisine, insanely good views and tip-top service – it’s easy to see why this luxury paradise is a top seller.

Yet, the crème de la crème has to be the incredible infinity pool at the nearby Canaves Oia Suites. The pool, tucked away behind its cave-live infrastructure, boasts the most amazing views of the caldera. It literally meets the sea at the eye-line, showcasing the most beautiful shades of blue.

Views are spot-on, but the whitewashed sun loungers embedded into the pool really take the biscuit! There’s need to jump from sunbed to pool as it provides perfect temperatures of cool and warm. Bask in the sun without having to move an inch, or enjoy cocktails at your beck and call!

“Picture-perfect” could not frame it better. It’s no wonder that the pool was voted one of 2017’s most Instagrammable pictures, with “View Goals” being a repeatable hashtag.

So, if you fancy a stay in Santorini at one of the most beautiful resorts, or if you love a little luxury and seek an Insta-famous shot – be sure to visit Canaves Oia this season to see what all the fuss is about! Prepare to be wowed.

The Seychelles Islands: More Accessible and Affordable Than Ever

Fancy a holiday that won’t cost a fortune? With new transport and accommodation options, the Seychelles is more affordable and accessible than ever. Now the whole family can enjoy 115 spotless islands, the planet’s purest air, and a perfect climate year-round – without breaking the bank.

New Direct Flights from London

The Seychelles is now closer than ever, thanks to direct British Airways flights from London launching on 24 March. Once you arrive, you can easily island hop via domestic flights, fast ferry transfers, and reasonably priced traditional schooners. If that’s not enough, excellent exchange rates make car-hire another attractive transport option.

Affordable Accommodation

Sporting a variety of accommodation options, Seychelles caters to almost everyone. Choose from affordable hotels, quaint Creole guesthouses, beachside bungalows, or self-catering stays – all available from low to middle price ranges. As well as being budget-friendly, these options make for an authentic Creole experience, where life is lead entirely at your own pace.

A World of Adventure

Seychelles offers a ton of low-priced activities in its sapphire ocean, within its stunning natural landscapes, and through its cultural island charm.

With its endless summer, crystal-clear ocean, uncrowded dive boats, and easy-going pace, Seychelles is the perfect place to go diving or snorkelling. Of course, you can also spend your time sailing, fly-fishing, cruising on catamarans, or simply soaking up the sun.

On dry land, you can enjoy guided walks through virtually untouched nature and see some of the rarest life forms on Earth, including giant tortoises.

Also, make sure to explore the island nation’s vibrant art scene, which features renowned painters, sculptors, writers, poets, musicians, and dancers. Throughout the islands, you will also find unique and diverse artisan products, from stained glass and pottery to handmade crafts and precious jewellery.

Visit seychelles.travel for more information.

4 Can’t-Miss Hotels in 2018: The Best of Greece

Longing for summer? No matter your fancy, Greece ticks the boxes for an amazing holiday. Of course, any great adventure starts with a great hotel. And the bluegr collection of hotels and resorts has something for everyone. Check out 2018’s top four can’t-miss hotels for friends, professionals, couples, and families.

For Friends: Minos Beach art hotel

Minos Beach is a 5-star art hotel within walking distance of Agios Nikolaos, a coastal city on the island of Crete. This property features a scenic beachfront location that overlooks Mirabello Bay.

A fantastic hotel for friends, Minos Beach offers a spa, an outdoor swimming pool and many dining options to immerse you in Cretan life. Its art collection boasts over 45 works on land and even underwater.

Each of the 129 whitewashed bungalows and villas come with a balcony or veranda. Private pools are also available. In each room, Jacuzzi showers and VIP amenities add luxury to your stay.

Several villas, including the 3 Bedroom Waterfront Villa with Private Pool, cater to large groups. Invite your friends along to bask in the comfort and privacy of gated terraces, a heated pool, and a full kitchenette.

For Couples Only: TUI SENSIMAR Minos Palace hotel & suites

TUI SENSIMAR Minos Palace is a 5-star resort that features 148 rooms and suites with 360-degree sea views. The couples-only resort is also home to two restaurants, two bars, an outdoor swimming pool, and a luxury spa.

Choose from the Upper Deck Sea View room through to the One Bedroom Suite Sea View with Private Pool. All options come with furnished balconies or terraces for cosy moments. Each room also provides romantic treats for couples, such as Aerospa baths, walk-in wardrobes or fragrant gardens.

For Families: Candia Park village

Set on Mirabello Bay, Candia Park village mirrors an authentic Cretan town with its neighbourhood, central clock square and traditional cafes. Guests can experience the Cretan lifestyle, stroll through the neighbourhood, and unwind on the waterfront at one of the best family resorts in Crete.

Two restaurants and two bars serve a variety of Mediterranean dishes. And during the high season, a kafenio doubles as a supermarket. There are also two outdoor pools, one kids pool, a private beach, and a watersports centre.

For Businesspersons: Life Gallery athens

Life Gallery athens is a 5-star design hotel that combines business with leisure in a natural environment. This property marries modern architecture and the minimalist design of artists such as Gervasoni, Molteni, and Casa Milano.

Business travellers will find state-of-the-art conference venues for events. Glass surfaces and lighting systems in each room provide an elegant vibe while bespoke services ensure that your meeting is both successful and memorable.

A maze of tropical gardens leads to two outdoor swimming pools where you can soak up the sun. Then, when business calls, Life Gallery athens provides easy access to Athens’ main roads and districts.

Visit bluegr.com to book your stay.

Why Celebs Love Mexico’s Pacific Coast

Want to holiday like a celebrity? Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit have become famous as the stars’ favourite destinations. From supermodels to singers to actors and more, find out why celebs love Mexico’s Pacific Coast.

The Coast Celebs Crave

Home to stunning natural attractions, world-class accommodation and year-round sunny weather, Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit have played host to many A-listers over the years.

In the 1960s, the region was admired by such famous faces as Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, who fell in love with the Pacific Coast during the filming of Night of the Iguana. Their affection for the destination led Burton to invest in Casa Kimberly, now a boutique hotel shouldering downtown Vallarta.

Today, celebs still find Puerto Vallarta’s colourful resort towns irresistible. After concluding his ‘One World Tour’ last December, world-star singer Ricky Martin decided to film his next music video in PV’s historic centre, all along the bustling Malecón and on Banderas Bay’s beautiful beaches.

Riviera Nayarit’s natural charm and luxury are just as hard to ignore. Kourtney Kardashian and her boyfriend Younes Benjima enjoyed sunny days at Imanta Resorts Punta de Mita. Kourtney’s Instagram posts had over 5 million likes! It’s not the first time the Kardashians visit Mexico’s Pacific Treasure; they also love the Punta de Mita area, one of Riviera Nayarit´s micro-destinations.

Other celebs who have fallen in love with Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit include Justin Beiber, Selena Gomez, Anna Kendrick, Demi Lovato, Jennifer Lawrence, Joe Jonas, Gwyneth Paltrow, Eva Longoria, Christina Aguilera, Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones.

The region has even become a magnet for top tech companies and personalities. Microsoft mogul, billionaire and philanthropist Bill Gates purchased the 177-room Four Seasons Resort in Punta Mita and surrounding land for $200 million in cash.

It’s fair to say that Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit attract many international stars every year. And it’s easy to see why: exotic landscapes, powder-soft beaches, A-list accommodation, stunningly diverse wildlife and unforgettable experiences can all be found here.

So, what are you waiting for? Discover your paradise, holiday like a celebrity and book a trip to Mexico’s Pacific Coast

The Land of Eternal Spring

When you feel the winter blues and need an escape to warmer ground, then visit La Gomera. The land of eternal spring offers constant sunshine, unspoilt beaches and authentic island villages as well as palm-lined mountains, laurel forests and walking trails for miles. See some of the activities you can enjoy in the second smallest Canary Island.

Head into the Great Outdoors

If you love nature, you’ll love La Gomera. Thanks to its pristine ecosystems, the island was named a World Biosphere Reserve in 2011.

At the heart of the island lies Garajonay National Park. This UNESCO World Heritage Site consists of Europe’s largest laurel rainforest. About 2,000 species of plants thrive in the park, including viñátigos and tiles, which can reach towering heights of 35 metres or more.

Garajonay is also rich and diverse in wildlife, and the park has an excellent infrastructure, including a visitor centre, an information centre and an extensive network of viewpoints.

Soak Up the Sun

Despite its size of only 146 sq mi, La Gomera has more than enough places to soak up the sun. Visit the crescent beach of Playa de Santiago to enjoy crystal-clear waters and a protective jetty that doubles as a diving platform. Or relax on the soft black sands of Playa de Alojera, where many restaurants serve traditional specialities of fresh fish.

To the west, Valle Gran Rey plays host to the Canaries’ best surfing spots. And on the southern coast, Playa del Medio’s calm tides make for a relaxing day on the shore.

Meet the Dolphins

Few sights are more impressive than a school of dolphins playing for an eager audience or a pod of whale’s breaching the water’s surface. And you can see seem them nearly year-round in La Gomera.

The island is among the world’s best spots for whale and dolphin watching, with regular sightings of 30 different species. Six species of dolphins are residents alongside pilot, beaked, sperm, finback, minke and sei whales.

Several companies provide whale and dolphin watching tours. Most excursions start from the port of Vueltas (Valle Gran Rey), but departures are also available from Playa Santiago and San Sebastián.

Walk Your Worries Away 

La Gomera’s vast network of trails attracts hikers from around the world. All trails are well-marked and offer varying degrees of difficulty. Guided tours are also available from a small range of companies. If you’re into walking, the best times to visit are April and November, when temperatures range from 18–25˚C.

In La Gomera’s capital, San Sebastián, you can follow Christopher Columbus’ footsteps before he sailed to discover America. To the south, Alajeró’s walking trails lead through plains peppered with historical landmarks, such as the 17th-century El Salvador church.  Other paths lead from coastal villages and fertile valleys to mountain towns and scenic viewpoints.

Cycling in La Gomera is just as fun as walking, and renting a mountain bike to tour the island is worth every penny.

Discover Canarian Cuisine

Gomeran cuisine combines traditional Spanish recipes with African and Latin American influences. Dishes often feature the island’s local products, including honey, bread, cheese, fish and wine. Others come in the form of stews and sauces, such as potaje de berros, a watercress soup served on Juniper or Holly plates.

Palm honey is La Gomera’s signature product. Farmers extract sap from palm trees and boil it into a dark syrup. Its naturally sweet flavour adds a delicious touch to cocktails and desserts. Many islanders even use palm honey to heal wounds, burns, ulcers and sore throats.

For more travel ideas in La Gomera, visit lagomera.travel

Principote Mykonos: Your Summer Starts Here!

Situated on picturesque Panormos Beach, Mykonos, Principote is well positioned to become the world’s next leading beach club; comprising a 320 cover restaurant, a deck area that is perfect for cocktail parties and a beach area with plenty of space to feel like you can be at one with the clear blue waters, you can be sure that this will become your new favourite summer hangout.

Mykonos has long been established as a world-leading island escape and beach-centric destination for good reason. Powdery sand beaches, uninterrupted views of the glistening Aegean Sea and some of the best food and drink in the Mediterranean. Principote exists to help you make the most of all this and more in ultimate luxury.

VIPs including England footballer Dele Alli, Prison Break actress Tasya Teles and model Yovanna Ventura have all been spotted making the most of Principote’s decadent facilities, and 2018 is set to be the resort’s biggest year yet.

The Principote beach restaurant offers guests a culinary voyage like no other, serving fresh and innovative Mediterranean-fusion dishes with a fine dining flair. Complete your meal with a wide array of wines that will satisfy even the most discerning connoisseurs.

After such an incredible meal, it’s time to put your feet up and relax. Find your ideal bed on the beach and take in the sights, sounds, smells and sensations of Panormos. Indulge further in refreshing, hand-crafted, signature cocktails from the mixology masters at the bar, or a rejuvenating beach massage. This is what a beach holiday is all about, after all.

As the evening draws near, head to the exclusive Principote Boutique, stocking the latest lines from Emporio Armani, Michael Kors, Ralph Lauren and Stella McCartney and get yourself ready for the afternoon of your life. From 4pm, their resident DJ turns up the volume, playing the best ethnic and mainstream vibes along with unique remixes to perfectly soundtrack an evening full of energy and dance spirit.

Principote is the beach club of your dreams. In a prime location and with so many astonishing features, flavours and frequencies, why not make 2018 the year you discover the one and only Principote Panormos.

Fall in Love with Winchester this Valentine’s Day

With Valentine’s Day around the corner, why not treat your special someone to an extra special holiday? Winchester combines the best of city life with the freshness of the surrounding countryside. Only 1.5 hours from London, this ancient British city is the perfect place for an intimate getaway. Try these recommendations for a romantic Winchester retreat.

A Sunset Walk for Two

Winchester’s quaint character is best enjoyed on a romantic stroll, especially in the evening. Starting at the Winchester Tourist Information Centre, the Sunset Walk takes you off the beaten track through historic eastern Winchester and up St Giles Hill, a tranquil spot with superb city views. Bring your camera as you’ll pass some of the city’s oldest buildings and most charming backdrops, including the Weirs River Walk and the floral displays in Abbey Gardens.

Date Night at the Zoo

From loved up lemurs to adoring penguins, Marwell Zoo hosts the sweetest couples for you to see this February. The 140-acre park also features a train, five adventure playgrounds, daily talks, animal feeds and cafes. Enjoy the perfect day out together, or delight your loved ones with gifts that make a real difference to the zoo’s conservation work.

Tour the Hampshire Countryside

Snuggle up as you travel on a restored steam train through 10 miles of unspoilt Hampshire countryside. Hop aboard at the Georgian town of Alresford or the bustling market town of Alton. During your journey, stopover at Ropley and Medstead & Four Marks stations to marvel at their preserved history.

Follow the Footsteps of Literary Greats

If your perfect date is one that embraces history and heritage, you’ll love following the footsteps of literary greats. As you wander Winchester’s cobbled streets, admire the same views that inspired Romantic poet John Keats’s sensuous ode “To Autumn.” This self-guided walk is approximately two miles round-trip, and there are many pretty picnic spots along the way.

Or hit the Jane Austen trail to learn about one of England’s greatest novelists. Walk hand in hand as you discover Austen’s life in Hampshire, visit her house in Chawton and witness the memorial above her final resting place in Winchester Cathedral. With the longest nave and greatest length of any Gothic cathedral in Europe, it’s well worth the trip.

Wine and Dine

When you need a break, indulge a candle-lit dinner by a roaring log fire at the Chesil Rectory, voted one of the most romantic restaurants in Britain. This historic restaurant serves classic seasonal cuisine with fresh local produce, and it will run a special Valentine’s menu every evening from 10­–17 Feb.

If you fancy a dining experience that’s both memorable and unique, Winchester’s first authentic Japanese restaurant will delight your senses. Kyoto Kitchen offers an artfully crafted menu showcasing the pure and delicate flavours of Japanese cuisine. Make sure you try the Winchester Roll—the world’s first sushi roll to pair wasabi leaf from Europe’s only wasabi farm in Winchester with locally sourced oak-smoked trout.

Stay the Winchester Way

Wow your other half with a lovely stay at a country house or boutique hotel in the city. Winchester offers award-winning accommodation to suit your needs.

At the heart of the city, Hotel du Vin Winchester features 24 individually styled rooms and suites. From 10­–18 Feb., Hotel du Vin & Bistro will offer three sumptuous courses and a glass of champagne each for only £100 per couple.

Another great choice is the Mercure Winchester Wessex Hotel, a 94 bedroomed 4-star property with the glorious cathedral and wonderful independent shops next door.

For more romantic ideas in Winchester, visit goo.gl/z1DcmE.

The 5 Dreamiest Villas in Greece

New 5-star Hotel in Crete Springs to Life Through Visual Storytelling

Opening April 2018, Abaton Island Resort & Spa launches an inspiring hotel video, showcasing its USPs through a powerful tale of self-discovery. Watch the video here!

The inspiring design, style and grandness of Abaton are apparent on arrival. Marble staircases, fountains of lights and historic architecture frame the entrance. The hotel is designed in such a way that it reflects a beautiful maze. Each room leads to another and never fails to impress.

However, the feeling and emotion of arriving at Abaton cannot be described in text like its beauty; it has to be portrayed in reality, which is why the hotel decided to mark its opening with a storytelling video showing guests the reality of how Abaton makes you feel.

Owner George Kaloutsakis said: “Rather than simply showcasing our facilities, we wanted to go the extra mile and take viewers on an emotional journey. We provide a personal sanctuary at Abaton for our guests, which formed the main concept of our video.”

The concept was based on a modern take on the Legend of Ariadne’s Thread. “Guests often want to take a break from the stress of everyday life, and Abaton provides a place to unwind, relax and enjoy,” Kaloutsakis added. “We want all our guests to feel their best with us, to explore Abaton and leave feeling refreshed”.

Abaton is already making a name for itself due to its exceptional hospitality and attention to detail in guest relations. Kaloutsakis concludes, “We are not a one size fits all approach hotel. Each guest is extremely important to us. We acknowledge their individual needs and go the extra mile so each visitor can find their personal sanctuary here at Abaton”.

If you’re looking for a new hotspot this summer, watch the brand new video from Abaton Island Resort & Spa, book a stay this year and find your personal sanctuary.

 

BRAND NEW Hotel Video Set to Top the Charts!

Santorini Comes Alive with the Sound of Music

Leading luxury resort Canaves Oia launches heart-warming hotel video, capturing in 2-minutes the importance and impact of the hospitality industry.

Canaves leads the way as Santorini’s most sought-after property, not only due to its impeccable form and idyllic location but most importantly due to its dedicated team.

With Insta-famous pools, lush rooms, fine dining and catamaran excursions, it’s certainly the ideal choice if you’re looking for the wow factor. Yet, the key ingredient that entices guests to return every year is the incredible staff, who ensure their guests receive the highest level of service.

CEO Markos Chaidemenos said: “Our staff forms the heart of Canaves Oia. We wanted to create a video that captures how important our team is to us and how their efforts never go unnoticed.”

The video’s slogan, “Luxury Never Sounded So Good,” highlights the key element of hospitality through the power of sound, portraying the staff like an orchestrated band in a fun, energetic and humorous way.

“This video is not about showcasing our facilities; it’s about the excellence of our team, who, on a day to day basis, go the extra mile while having fun!” added Chaidemenos. “For me, one of the key factors in this industry is hospitality. Our guests are so important to us, and it is essential that our hospitality exceeds expectation.”

If you’re looking for a luxurious escape offering unparalleled hospitality, check out the brand new video and book a stay at Canaves Oia this year.

 

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