Travel

The 'Casual' Habit That Could Get Meghan Markle in Royal Trouble

Travel and Leisure - Thu, 11/01/2018 - 10:01
<p>Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, is one stylish traveler. She’s got all the cheap secrets to <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-tips/meghan-markle-essential-travel-items" target="_blank">successfully flying across the globe</a>, understands the need for <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/style/beauty/meghan-markle-favorite-beauty-products-skincare-for-travel" target="_blank">travel-specific beauty products</a>, and loves to rock a <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/style/fashion/meghan-markle-perfect-airport-outfit" target="_blank">comfy walking shoe</a>. But, apparently, some of her travel styles may be getting her into some royal hot water.</p><p>On her first royal tour alongside her husband, Prince Harry, Meghan has been spotted wearing a few dresses that have every woman’s favorite detail — <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-tips/packing-tips/scottevest-hoodie" target="_blank">pockets</a>. On Sunday, the Duchess wore a white tuxedo dress by New Zealand designer Maggie Marilyn during an event in Wellington. Though she looked picture-perfect to us, one royal etiquette expert is sounding the alarm saying Meghan’s pockets are “too casual” for a royal.</p><p>“We know that Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are pioneering a new, relaxed, tactile branch of the monarchy but having hands in the pocket is a step too far,” William Hanson told the <em><a href="https://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-6329105/Meghan-Markle-hands-pockets-royal-tour-criticised-etiquette-expert.html" target="_blank">Daily Mail</a></em>. “There is good casual and there is bad casual. Placing a hand in the pocket is too relaxed and unprofessional, however dressed down Prince Harry and his wife may have been.”</p><img alt="The Duke And Duchess Of Sussex -- Harry and Meghan -- Visit New Zealand "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540909552/meghan-markle-prince-harry-MEGHANPOCKETS1018.jpg?itok=7mv1pKxN"><p>But as far as we're concerned, Meghan should be allowed to put her hands in her pockets all she wants, especially while traveling. After all, she’s not carrying a purse, and she’s on the go for the second week in a row, and needs <i>somewhere</i> to put her hotel key, right?</p><p>Beyond the need to, you know, be a human and put her stuff somewhere, Meghan may also be sending a subliminal message by putting her hands in her pockets that she’s sort of over this entire royal tour.</p><p>“The classic reason for this very common gesture is that it signals a subliminal desire to hide, especially when the hands are shoved deep into the pockets," body language expert Judi James explained to <em><a href="https://www.ok.co.uk/royal/royal-latest/1428494/meghan-markle-duchess-of-sussex-hands-in-pockets-reason-prince-harry" target="_blank">OK!</a></em>. “It also helps get over the common problem most of us suffer from, which is not really knowing what to do with our hands when we know people are looking at us.”</p><p>You do you, Meghan. This tour will be over soon. And for everyone else, here are a <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/style/fashion/comfortable-travel-dresses" target="_blank">few travel-ready dresses that come with pockets</a> so you can live like this easy breezy duchess too.</p>
Categories: Travel

Apple's New iPad Is so Thin You Won't Even Feel It in Your Carry-on (Video)

Travel and Leisure - Thu, 11/01/2018 - 09:45
<p>Apple is finally <a data-ecommerce="true" href="https://www.apple.com/ipad-pro/" target="_blank">reinventing the iPad</a>.</p><p>On Tuesday, the tech giant unveiled its latest — and potentially greatest — <a data-ecommerce="true" href="https://www.apple.com/ipad-pro/" target="_blank">update to its iPad series</a> since its 2008 debut. And it may just be the <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-tips/cool-gadgets/essential-travel-tech-gear" target="_blank">tech accessory</a> travelers have been waiting for.</p><img alt="iPad Pro 2018 "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540930795/ipad-pro-sizes-IPAPDPRO1018.jpg?itok=Zf8nVOJm"><p>The new product is still known as the iPad Pro, but it’s better than ever. The updated Pro, <em><a href="https://www.theverge.com/2018/10/30/18040208/apple-ipad-pro-hands-on-screen-features-pencil-usb-c-photos-2018" target="_blank">The Verge</a></em> reported, no longer comes with a home button. Instead, it’s simply activated by FaceID. This allows the iPad to be 5.9 mm thinner than its predecessors. It also no longer comes with a headphone jack, which may be displeasing to some, but now perfectly syncs with your wireless AirPods and makes it about as thin as a sheet of paper. And that — for all you frequent fliers out there — means it takes up way less space in your carry-on.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-tips/apple-earpods-secret-camera-shutter" target="_blank">The Secret Use for Apple EarPods You Didn’t Know About</a></p><p>The new iPad will also come with a liquid retina display, which is ideal for gaming, streaming movies, or reading an e-book during <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/airlines-airports/singapore-airlines-worlds-longest-flight-newark-singapore-nonstop" target="_blank">long-haul travel</a>.</p><p>For anyone who also likes to take photos with their iPad, the new one comes with an updated back camera. The company also swapped out its proprietary Lightning connector and replaced it with an industry-standard USB-C. This means travelers can connect their cameras to the port anywhere in the world and download their photos. There is also a handy Siri shortcut that will delete the photos once they are imported to Lightroom for editing to save on storage space.</p><img alt="iPad Pro 2018 "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540930795/ipad-pro-launch-IPADPRO1018.jpg?itok=q48T_OTQ"><p>All these updates add up to one thing: You may no longer need to pack your bulky laptop.</p><p>"We see today's iPad Pro updates as an indication of the blurring the lines between the iPad, the Mac, and the iPhone," Gene Munster, an analyst for Loup Ventures, <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2018/10/30/tech/apple-event-october-2018/index.html" target="_blank">said in a statement</a>. "Adding tech from the iPhone like FaceID, along with full Adobe apps, Xbox-level graphics, and a USB-C port that we usually associate with a Mac makes its 'tablet' categorization more ambiguous. This may increase Apple's addressable market by effectively creating a lower entry point for a full-fledged 'computer.'"</p><p>The <a data-ecommerce="true" href="https://www.apple.com/ipad-pro/" target="_blank">new iPad Pro starts at $799</a> for the 64GB, 11-inch model, and runs up to $1,899 for the 12.9-inch model. But eliminating that weight and space from your bag during your next global adventure may be worth it. It will be available beginning Nov. 7 at <a data-ecommerce="true" href="https://www.apple.com/ipad-pro/" target="_blank">apple.com</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

5 Sleep Tricks for Frequent Travelers, According to Sleep Psychologists

Travel and Leisure - Thu, 11/01/2018 - 09:31
<p>Though I love to travel, I’m a terribly light sleeper. No matter where I am, getting enough z's is a difficult task — so much so that when I was given the opportunity to travel the world for 12 months via <a href="https://remoteyear.com/" target="_blank">Remote Year</a>, I put “sleep” on my pros and cons list before making the decision.</p><p>Remarkably though, after now having lived in 10 countries — transitioning from the single beds of Kyoto, Japan to the split-queens throughout Europe — I’ve been able to become more flexible about where I can nod off. And I’ve developed strategies for getting quality rest, which is more essential to my work than any other habit. With side trips included, I’ve slept in a total of 71 beds (couches, vans, planes, trains) over the past year. I had to figure it out or I’d be a walking, nomadic zombie by now.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/yoga-wellness/best-earplugs-for-sleeping" target="_blank">The Best Earplugs for Sleeping While Traveling</a></p><p>While there is no specific scientific reason why some people can fall asleep anywhere and others can’t, you can improve your sleep quality with practice — whether you’re at home or country-hopping. It isn’t just the shift in time zones that disrupts rest. Sleep has a lot to do with routine, so when <em>everything</em> changes, it makes it harder to get the recommended seven to nine hours.</p><p>As Clinical Psychologist and Fellow at The American Academy of Sleep Medicine <a href="https://www.thesleepdoctor.com/" target="_blank">Dr. Michael J. Breus</a> explained, new environments, unpredictable schedules, and a lack of consistency or comfort can all contribute to poor sleep hygiene, making it essential to implement some important practices. He’s right — to be able to sleep easier over the past year, I found workarounds that somehow led to seven hours of sleep nearly every night. Here, a few I swear by as a sensitive sleeper.</p><h2>Keep a consistent bedtime and morning routine.</h2><p>Living in a new city for a month at a time isn’t always a smooth process, and every destination has its own customs that interfere with your routine. In Japan, the streets are almost always dead quiet. In Buenos Aires, dinner reservations don’t begin until 9 p.m., while in Sydney, you can expect most bars to shut down on the weekdays around 11 p.m. This means my bedtime and morning alarm might shift with each new destination, but I try to maintain it depending on where I am. Though I give myself permission to stay out later or call it an early night when I need it, at least four nights a week, I tuck myself in around the same time. And I almost always get up and get to work at the same time, no matter how much or how little sleep I received overnight. Dr. Breus said this is a smart move, explaining that when sleep has a regular rhythm, our biological clocks will be in sync and our bodies will continue to operate normally.</p><h2>Stay active.</h2><p>Before I started traveling, I was a fitness addict — boxing, running, and bootcamp-ing at least six days a week. Once I packed my bags and headed out to meet the world though, my dedication wavered quite a bit. But even if I’m not working out in the traditional sense, most days are filled with long walks, city tours, renting bikes, exploring downtowns, the list goes on. In other words: I’m nearly always on my feet for several hours each and every single day. Activity in any sense is healthy for sleep, according to Dr. Benjamin Smarr, National Institutes of Health postdoctoral fellow at UC Berkeley and <a href="https://reverie.com/" target="_blank">Reverie</a> sleep advisory board member. “The first part of sleep is mostly about refreshing your body. If your body didn’t get much use, it won’t generate much sleep pressure, and falling asleep will be more difficult,” he said.</p><h2>Invest in sleep accessories.</h2><p>As much as I’d love to be one of those effortless sleepers who can snooze through the rock concert that's physically shaking the bar outside their window, every tiny distraction has the ability to keep me awake. Light peeking in from underneath a door, the sound of a friend shuffling in the bed next to me, the light murmur of technology that should be set to silent. Truth be told: I’m an annoying person to share a room with (sorry, future husband), but I do have a few key accessories that help.</p><p>I swear by earplugs (<a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003LZQGN6/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=tlsleeptips-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B003LZQGN6&amp;linkId=22cf782e5cd690a8d2af2591c5281d09" target="_blank">amazon.com</a>, $4) and a solid eye mask (<a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000WNX21Y/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=tlsleeptips-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B000WNX21Y&amp;linkId=b7a84df66ae5daa1676a888ad0132184" target="_blank">amazon.com</a>, $10) to drown out sensory distractions. Dr. Smarr explains that for light sleepers, setting yourself up for success with these buys is a smart tactic. “A <a href="https://travelandleisure.com/style/beauty/best-sleep-masks" target="_blank">sleep mask</a> doesn't have to be fancy, but it should be comfy and dark. Most bedrooms get a lot of light pollution, and you want to minimize that to convince your brain it's the night time,” he explained. “Moldable, squishy earplugs help cancel noise pollution, creating a good sleep environment.”</p><p>Admittedly, I still haven’t figured out <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/style/travel-accessories/beauty-products-for-sleeping-on-planes" target="_blank">how to sleep on a plane</a>. While I’ll rest my eyes and relax, I never actually fall completely into dreamland at a 90-degree angle. However, one way I’ve managed to feel more rested in the sky is when I use <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/style/travel-accessories/best-noise-cancelling-headphones" target="_blank">noise-cancelling headphones</a> to drown out everyone around me. They’re expensive, but nothing quite compares to Bose headphones (<a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0756CYWWD/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=tlsleeptips-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B0756CYWWD&amp;linkId=c43ff682a059516ee4d901132c7b7bb1" target="_blank">amazon.com</a>, $349) which work some sort of magic on the murmur of snores, baby cries, and chit-chat around you.</p><h2>Use a sound machine, app, or Spotify.</h2><p>Thanks to my travels, my Spotify will never be the same, since my “top song” of the year is ”Box Fan — Medium Speed.” When I lived in Manhattan prior to becoming a location-independent journalist, I had a large, loud air conditioner that took out any noise from the chaos below me. But in the 12 apartments of my past year, very few had a fan of any sort. This made the silence deafening, so I came up with a solution: a downloaded hour-long loop of white noise that I could play as I got used to a new place. Over time, I discovered the <a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/relax-melodies-sleep-sounds/id314498713?mt=8" target="_blank">Sleep Melodies app</a>, which I found helpful, too. I also considered packing a travel-size sound machine (<a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01D50RZQI/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=tlsleeptips-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B01D50RZQI&amp;linkId=17f3f668be4a5c7af2faec56ad088575" target="_blank">amazon.com</a>, $31), but ultimately decided against it for space.</p><h2>Give yourself a break.</h2><p>Even with all of these strategies, sometimes, I still spend a sleepless night, wishing I had a quieter brain. And though the next morning generally requires a few extra shots of espresso, what helps me most is giving myself a break. If I’m not sleeping, I’m keeping my eyes shut and reminding myself I’ll be just fine. When I stop stressing myself out over the fear of not sleeping, more often than not, I manage to squeeze in at least a few hours.</p>
Categories: Travel

The Best Things to Do in Dubai, According to People Who Live There

Travel and Leisure - Thu, 11/01/2018 - 09:01
<p>Dubai is a post-modern mecca, a sci-fi metropolis with an excess of nearly everything. Think Las Vegas by the sea, sans gambling, heavy drinking and prostitution.</p><p>The United Arab Emirates has over 200 nationalities from around the world that call the desert oasis home. According to those who live in Dubai, this is <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-guide/dubai" target="_blank">how you tour the city</a> like a local.</p><h2>Explore Old Dubai</h2><img alt="Courtyard of XVA Hotel & Art Gallery in traditional Dubai building, Bastakia quarter "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540394013/old-dubai-xva-hotel-DUBAILOCAL1118.jpg?itok=Nz_bZcg0"><p>New Dubai is flashy and modern, but Old Dubai is <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/culture-design/architecture-design/low-rise-dubai" target="_blank">where the culture lives</a>. The <a href="https://www.dubai-online.com/sights/bastakia-quarter/" target="_blank">Al Fahidi Historical District</a>, or the Al Bastakiya as it’s commonly known, was built in the late 19th century by Persian merchants. It’s brimming with charm, especially the original wind tower-style buildings and narrow alleyways. Visit <a href="https://www.xvagallery.com/" target="_blank">XVA Gallery</a>, one of the Middle East’s leading contemporary art galleries and the <a href="https://www.visitdubai.com/en/pois/smccu" target="_blank">Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding</a> for a glimpse into local customs.</p><h2>Cruise the Creek</h2><img alt="Abra in Dubai Creek "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540394013/how-to-do-dubai-like-a-local-DUBAILOCAL1118.jpg?itok=Qmq19tMy"><p>Jump on an <a href="https://www.dubai-online.com/transport/abra/" target="_blank">abra</a>, a traditional wooden boat, for just one dirham (.30 cents) to cross the Dubai Creek from Deira, the city center, to Bur Dubai. The trip will take about five minutes, or you can hire a private abra to give you a more in-depth tour. Depart on an early morning boat ride or a sunset cruise to beat the desert heat. If you’re lucky, you’ll get a unique photo opp of abras loaded with everything from car tires to refrigerators. End the boat tour with a drink and a bite at the award-winning <a href="https://www.dubaigolf.com/dubai-creek-golf-yacht-club/dine/boardwalk/" target="_blank">Boardwalk</a> at the <a href="https://www.dubaigolf.com/" target="_blank">Dubai Golf and Yacht Club</a> with the best view of the Creek and the skyline.</p><h2>Shop Like an Emirati</h2><img alt="Mall of the Emirates, Dubai "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540394013/shop-mall-of-the-emirates-DUBAILOCAL1118.jpg?itok=J4yGW4cs"><p>The out-of-this-world <a href="https://thedubaimall.com/" target="_blank">Dubai Mall</a> is 100 percent worth gawking at, especially its aquarium, ice skating rink and fountain show. But if you want to avoid the crowds, do like the locals do and visit the <a href="http://www.malloftheemirates.com/" target="_blank">Mall of the Emirates</a>. Every bit as fabulous, with designer shops and high-end restaurants, but much smaller and with fewer tourists. Once you’ve window-shopped the latest fashions, take a break at <a href="http://www.malloftheemirates.com/dining/dining-restaurants/apres" target="_blank">Après,</a> a chic alpine ski-lodge. Sip on a vin chaud (mulled wine) and watch the skiers at the legendary <a href="http://www.malloftheemirates.com/entertainment/ski-dubai" target="_blank">Ski Dubai</a> in front of a faux fireplace.</p><h2>Eat Like A Local</h2><img alt="United Arab Emirates, Dubai, Dubai Marina, Reem Al Bawadi restaurant, lebanese specialties "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540394013/eat-reem-al-bawadi-lebanese-food-DUBAILOCAL1118.jpg?itok=uCyLgvl1"><p>Much like the people, the food in Dubai is a melting pot of cultures. There are dining experiences from all over the world to suit every type of bank account. Emiratis suggest <a href="https://www.tripadvisor.com.my/Restaurant_Review-g295424-d3921054-Reviews-Woodlands_Restaurant-Dubai_Emirate_of_Dubai.html" target="_blank">Woodlands Restaurant</a> for the most delicious dosa. Other must-tries are <a href="https://m.facebook.com/RAVIRESTAURANT.ae/" target="_blank">Ravi Restaurant</a> and <a href="http://www.reemalbawadi.com/" target="_blank">Reem al Bawadi</a>, serving up authentic Arabic food and shisha that doesn’t cost a fortune. If you want to rub elbows with Dubai’s elite — without going broke — there are some great lunchtime deals at restaurants like <a href="https://www.zumarestaurant.com/zuma-landing/dubai/en/menu/" target="_blank">Zuma Restaurant</a>, a Japanese fusion hotspot, and <a href="https://www.coyarestaurant.com/dubai/#1532704752677-c7c92a0c-c7de" target="_blank">COYA</a>, a trendy Peruvian restaurant.</p><h2>Book A Friday Brunch</h2><img alt="Brunch overlooking the polo grounds at Al Habtoor Polo Club "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540394013/brunch-al-habtoor-polo-club-DUBAILOCAL1118.jpg?itok=wN_eRGcG"><p>Brunch in Dubai is a whole other category of dining. As one local says, “If you haven’t brunched in Dubai, you haven’t brunched.” Nearly every high-end hotel in Dubai has one, and they are ultra-extravagant. Treat yourself to an equestrian-inspired <a href="http://www.habtoorpoloresort.com/brunch.html" target="_blank">Polo Brunch</a> at the <a href="http://www.habtoorpoloresort.com/" target="_blank">Al Habtoor Polo Resort</a> overlooking the playing fields. For a more relaxed dining experience, try the <a href="https://www.barbary.ae/brunch/" target="_blank">Barbary Deli + Cocktail Club</a>. Located in the ever-growing Barsha neighborhood, indulge in stacked Bloody Mary’s in an intimate setting with funky music and a cool crowd.</p><h2>Drive the Dunes</h2><img alt="Sand Dunes in Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540394013/dunes-dubai-desert-conservation-reserve-DUBAILOCAL1118.jpg?itok=MgSZcyqg"><p>For some, the city can get overwhelming, so a romantic retreat to the dunes comes highly recommended. Embark on an Arabian experience into the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve with <a href="https://www.arabian-adventures.com/" target="_blank">Arabian Adventures</a>. Here you can watch a falcon display, try belly dancing, get a henna tattoo, ride a camel, enjoy a buffet meal and watch the sun dip below the dunes as the stars come out.</p>
Categories: Travel

Portland’s Hottest New Hotel is Located in Historic Chinatown — and Rooms Start at Just $115

Travel and Leisure - Thu, 11/01/2018 - 07:59
<p>When British hotel brand <a href="https://thehoxton.com" target="_blank">The Hoxton </a>opened its first North American outpost in New York last month, budget-minded travelers everywhere rejoiced. With room rates as low as $150 a night, the 175-room bolthole brought the brand's signature mix of high-style accommodations and convivial common spaces to the cooler-than-thou Brooklyn 'hood of Williamsburg.</p><p>And now that <a href="https://thehoxton.com/oregon/portland/hotels" target="_blank">The Hoxton’s second location</a> is set to debut in <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-guide/portland-oregon" target="_blank">Portland </a>next month, West Coast travelers can finally see what all the hype is about (for just $115 a night!). </p><p>Below, an exclusive peek inside the forthcoming hotel, which is set to open its doors on November 12.</p><p>Set inside a historic building in the city’s<a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-guide/old-town-chinatown/things-to-do" target="_blank"> Old Town Chinatown </a>— an eclectic neighborhood that’s in the midst of a total revival — the property boasts fashionable interiors straight out of your ‘Design Inspo’ Pinterest board: blush-colored ottomans, leafy plants, edgy artwork and threadbare carpets.</p><img alt="View of tables in the cafe at The Hoxton, Portland "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540997190/hoxton-portland-tables-HOXTONPORTLAND1018.jpg?itok=h_KPi1Di"><img alt="Bar at The Hoxton, Portland "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540997190/hoxton-portland-lounge-HOXTONPORTLAND1018.jpg?itok=y82EMSop"><p>Upstairs, the light-flooded rooms have floor-to-ceiling windows, super comfy beds and a curated library of books handpicked by local residents and artists.</p><img alt="Room at the Hoxton, Portland "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540997190/hoxton-portland-room-view-HOXTONPORTLAND1018.jpg?itok=5IlsgAkg"><img alt="Room at the Hoxton Portland hotel "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540997190/hoxton-portland-room-HOXTONPORTLAND1018.jpg?itok=wWWF8MUP"><p>Mexican-inspired eats will be served at the all-day restaurant, La Neta, and the rooftop taqueria, Tope, where guests can toss back tacos and mezcal cocktails while taking in panoramic city views.</p><img alt="Restaurant at the Hoxton Hotel in Portland "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540997190/hoxton-portland-restaurant-HOXTONPORTLAND1018.jpg?itok=N1j_22bU"><img alt="Communal table at Portland's Hoxton Hotel "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540997190/hoxton-portland-communal-table-HOXTONPORTLAND1018.jpg?itok=s8Yo0P6u"><p><em>Our series <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/reasons-to-travel" target="_blank">Reasons to Travel Now</a> highlights the news, events, and openings that have us scoping out plane tickets each day.</em></p>
Categories: Travel

Daylight Saving Time Is This Weekend — Here's When to Turn Back the Clocks (Video)

Travel and Leisure - Thu, 11/01/2018 - 07:50
<p>Daylight saving time is nearly here once again. Though the clocks only change twice a year, the practice is always a bit confusing for people. And, it’s an especially painful conundrum for travelers. Fear not, we’ve got all your fall daylight saving time answers, like when exactly does the time change and what do to do if you’re flying on Sunday, here.</p><h2>What is daylight saving time and why do we ‘fall back?’</h2><p>Here’s a fun fact: It really is <a href="https://www.timeanddate.com/time/dst/daylight-savings-time.html" target="_blank">daylight saving time</a>, not daylight saving(s) time (so please save your tweets to me). Now, onto the good stuff.</p><p>Daylight saving employs two methods “spring forward” and “fall back.” This, <a href="https://www.sleep.org/articles/daylight-savings-time/" target="_blank">Sleep.org</a> explained, is the “practice of changing standard time with the intention of ‘saving’ (as in, making better use of) natural light.” This means we save more light in the spring when we move our clocks forward by one hour. In the autumn we “fall back” to our regular time.</p><h2>When and how did daylight saving time start?</h2><p>Daylight saving time became federal law way back in 1918, making this year its 100th anniversary. At the time, it was used as a wartime conservation effort. According to <a href="https://www.history.com/news/8-things-you-may-not-know-about-daylight-saving-time" target="_blank">History.com</a>, this move was wildly unpopular with farmers. “The sun, not the clock, dictated farmers’ schedules, so daylight saving was very disruptive,” History.com wrote. “Farmers had to wait an extra hour for dew to evaporate to harvest hay, hired hands worked less since they still left at the same time for dinner and cows weren’t ready to be milked an hour earlier to meet shipping schedules.”</p><p>In 1919, farmers led the fight to end national daylight saving time. They did indeed win, however, national daylight saving returned during World War II. In 1966, the U.S. government passed the <a href="https://www.transportation.gov/regulations/time-act" target="_blank">Uniform Time Act</a>, which finally standardized daylight saving time for everyone.</p><h2>When do we turn the clocks back in 2018?</h2><p>This fall you will turn back your clocks on Sunday, Nov. 4. at 2 a.m. local time.</p><h2>Do we gain an hour or lose an hour of sleep?</h2><p>Though you may think falling back an hour means you’ll gain an extra hour of sleep, the opposite may be true. According to <a href="https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/daylight-saving-time-fall-back-doesnt-equal-sleep-gain-201311016836" target="_blank">Harvard Health Publishing</a>, only a small fraction of people actually get that extra hour of sleep. “During the following week, many people wake up earlier, have more trouble falling asleep, and are more likely to wake up during the night. People who tend to be so-called short sleepers, logging under 7.5 hours a night, and early risers (also known as larks), have the most trouble adjusting to the new schedule,” according to Harvard Health.</p><h2>Which states don’t observe daylight saving time?</h2><p>Currently, Hawaii, Arizona, Puerto Rico, Guam, Virgin Islands, Americana Samoa and the Northern Marianas Islands do not observe daylight saving time. Why? Because they simply do not have to as the federal government doesn’t technically mandate that states observe the time change. <a href="https://lwvc.org/vote/elections/ballot-measures/proposition-7-conforms-california-daylight-savings-time-federal-law" target="_blank">California</a> has a measure on this year’s ballot to do away with daylight saving for good. Florida voted to end daylight saving, but the <a href="https://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/politics/political-pulse/os-daylight-saving-law-20180703-story.html" target="_blank">bill is currently on hold</a>.</p><h2>What if you have a flight on Sunday?</h2><p>You should be OK if you’re traveling domestically from state-to-state this Sunday. Just make sure to double check your clocks before you head to bed (and maybe set a second alarm) so you don’t miss your flight. But, if you’re traveling to, from, or through one of the states that does not observe — like Arizona — double check the local time to ensure you have enough time for a layover. Here’s <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-news/daylight-saving-time-travel-changes" target="_blank">everything you need to know about traveling across the globe during daylight saving</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

Enjoy 30% of Stays at an Eco-Lodge in Myanmar

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 10/31/2018 - 14:01
<p><em>T+L launched Operation Vacation to inspire workers to use their days off and get away, offering exclusive travel discounts as incentive. For the latest deals on hotels, airfare, cruises, and trip packages, visit <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/operation-vacation" target="_blank">travelandleisure.com/operation-vacation</a></em></p><p>Myanmar: 30 perfect off at <a href="https://www.keinnara.com" target="_blank">Keinnara Hpa-An Lodge</a>, a collection of eco-friendly wooden cottages situated amid majestic limestone karsts, rice paddies, nut plantations, and teak forests in the remote Karen State.</p><p>The Rustic Retreat promotion includes:</p>Three nights in a Karen Cottage, which sleeps two people, or a Karen Family Duplex, which sleeps up to five people Complimentary breakfasts each day<p>Original price: $220 per night for stays in a Karen Cottage; $325 per night for stays in a Karen Family Duplex. </p><p><strong>T+L Price:</strong> $154 per night for stays in a Karen Cottage; $228 per night for stays in a Karen Family Duplex. </p><p>Booking details: Email <a href="mailto:info@memoiresgroup.com">info@memoiresgroup.com</a> and mention "Travel + Leisure: Rustic Retreat" in the subject line, or call +9513687703 Ext 8752</p><p>Availability: Valid from November 1, 2018 to January 31, 2019. Subject to availability; black-out dates include Christmas and New Year. </p>
Categories: Travel

India's 'Palace on Wheels' Is One of the Most Luxurious Train Rides in the World (Video)

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 10/31/2018 - 11:00
<p>Travelers looking to take in some of India’s famed cities and attractions can now do it while onboard a luxurious train made for royalty by booking a trip on the <a href="http://www.palacetours.com/r-india/t-palaceonwheels#divOverview" target="_blank">Palace on Wheels</a>.</p><p>The train is designed in a contemporary royal style, with plush furnishings in its corridors and 39 deluxe suites and two presidential suites, and includes amenities to make guests onboard feel like a king or queen themselves.</p><p>Guests are treated to butlers dedicated to each train car and features that include an onboard spa, a lounge bar and two different restaurants.</p><img alt="Exterior of the Palace on Wheels luxury train in India, painted in its signature cream and red "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1539181211/palace-on-wheels-exterior-INDIATRAIN1018.jpg?itok=PAhyd-WZ"><img alt="On board the Palace on Wheels luxury train "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1539812347/palace-on-wheels-red-lounge-INDIATRAIN1018.jpg?itok=xaRxSpdZ"><img alt="Bar on board the Palace on Wheels luxury train in India "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1539812347/palace-on-wheels-aqua-lounge-INDIATRAIN1018.jpg?itok=Gp0PPpUb"><img alt="Bedroom on board the Palace on Wheels luxury train in India "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1539181211/palace-on-wheels-bedroom-INDIATRAIN1018.jpg?itok=GzBaq6O5"><p>Large panoramic windows line the train and its restaurants, where guests can dine on traditional Indian specialties focused on Rajasthan’s cuisine. Each of the restaurants also includes table settings and draped curtains to evoke the glory days of rail travel. </p><p>The seven-night, eight-day journey starts off in New Delhi, where passengers will be treated to a welcome drink before heading off to the first stop in Jaipur.</p><p>In Jaipur, known as the Pink City, thanks to the terracotta pink hue that lines its historic center, guests will see locations that include the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Jantar Mantar (an astronomical observation site) and the area's famed jewelry, carpet, pottery and textile markets. </p><p>Guests will tour various palaces, including the Hawa Mahal palace, which is noted for its pink decor and honeycomb windows. </p><p>Lunch is provided inside a historic palace before heading to the next stop in Ranthambore National Park to observe tigers, panthers, deer, and a wide variety of birds. </p><p>Passengers are treated to views and tours of palaces that arise from lakes in <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/worlds-best/udaipur-india-best-city-in-asia" target="_blank">Udaipur</a>, known as the Lake City. Here, guests can take boat rides on the lakes before shopping for embroidered artifacts and paintings and seeing thousands of bird varieties at the Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary (also known as Keoladeo National Park).</p><p>Next, guests are whisked to the Thar Desert, where they can admire sandstone forts and nearby latticed mansions before exploring the desert's sand dunes. The trip ends with a visit to the <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/attractions/landmarks-monuments/taj-mahal-unique-facts-history" target="_blank">Taj Mahal</a> and stops to take in the marble work, leather good offerings, and jewelry of Agra. </p><p>Prices start at $3,500 for the journey. </p>
Categories: Travel

Why Dubai Is the Perfect Stopover City

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 10/31/2018 - 10:30
<p><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/culture-design/architecture-design/low-rise-dubai" target="_blank">Dubai</a> is the city of superlatives: the biggest, the tallest, the most expensive, even the cheapest. It has something for everyone. Full of glitz and glam, it’s a city to add to your bucket list, even if you only spend a few days.</p><p>With stopover cities becoming a growing travel trend, here’s why <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/island-vacations/dubai-man-made-islands-facts" target="_blank">Dubai</a> makes the perfect pit stop for travelers on a long-haul flight to or from places like Asia, Australia, and New Zealand. </p><h2>Prime Location</h2><img alt="Man in traditional Kandura robe waiting at Dubai International Airport, UAE "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540390601/location-dubai-international-airport-DUBAISTOP1118.jpg?itok=29Qk8Sod"><p>For travelers coming back from Australia or any Asian destination, an extended layover in Dubai is a welcome respite in the middle of a 24- to 32-hour-long journey. From Dubai’s sprawling airport, it’s just a 15-minute drive to downtown and a number of luxury hotels from the <a href="https://www.fairmont.com/dubai/" target="_blank">Fairmont Dubai</a> to the <a href="http://www.ritzcarlton.com/en/hotels/dubai/dubai-beach" target="_blank">Ritz-Carlton Dubai</a>. It also doesn’t hurt that it gets pretty much constant sunshine year round, so your limited time there won’t be spoiled by unruly weather.</p><h2>One-of-a-kind Sights</h2><img alt="Downtown Dubai, At The Top Burj Khalifa, Sky Observation Desk "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540390601/bucket-list-burj-khalifa-observation-deck-view-DUBAISTOP1118.jpg?itok=W3knAsj0"><p>Seeing the world’s tallest building, the <a href="http://burjkhalifa.ae/en/index.aspx" target="_blank">Burj Khalifa</a>, from the airport doesn’t do it justice. Reserve a ticket to go straight to the top, ears popping as you approach the 148th floor. The views are spectacular, of course, and the experience is worth the seriously heavy price-tag. On top of the world’s largest building, Dubai also has the world’s largest human-made island. The Palm trilogy, made up of the Palm Jumeirah, Deira Island, and Palm Jebel Ali, is designed to look like palm trees. This architectural feat is home to <a href="https://www.atlantisthepalm.com/" target="_blank">Atlantis: The Palm</a> and hundreds of apartments. Driving through in a taxi is a mystifying experience, and <a href="http://www.skydivedubai.ae/book-an-experience.html" target="_blank">skydiving</a> above it gives you a once-in-a-lifetime view.</p><h2>Adventures for Everyone</h2><img alt="Omega Dubai Desert Classic at the Emirates Golf Club "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540390601/activity-emirates-golf-club-DUBAISTOP1118.jpg?itok=vKL0y3OD"><p>No matter what you’re into — whether it’s golf, polo, falconry, or surfing — Dubai has an adventurous activity for everyone. The Emirates Golf Club was the first course with grass in the Middle East. Hit the links for half the day then relax by the pool and dine at one of 10 lauded restaurants. Watch Arabian horses trot on the polo green at the <a href="http://www.habtoorpoloresort.com/" target="_blank">Al Habtoor Polo Resort</a> or gallop over the dunes yourself with the <a href="http://www.emiratesequestriancentre.com/" target="_blank">Emirates Equestrian Centre</a>. Get a taste for desert life and try your hand at falconry with the experts at <a href="http://www.babalshams.com/home" target="_blank">Bab Al Shams Desert Resort &amp; Spa</a>. It may be a desert, but there are several human-made beaches, like <a href="https://www.visitdubai.com/en/pois/sunset-beach" target="_blank">Sunset Beach</a>, to sunbath or learn how to surf.</p><h2>An Excuse to Treat Yourself</h2><img alt="Hammam at the One & Only Royal Mirage resort, in Dubai "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540390601/treat-one-and-only-royal-mirage-hammam-spa-DUBAISTOP1118.jpg?itok=26gmL0LL"><p>It’s not nicknamed “The City of Gold” for nothing: Dubai is all about indulgence. If you’ve spent the last month backpacking around Southeast Asia or pinching pennies in pricey Sydney, then this is the place to spoil yourself. Get a plush room at one of the high-end hotels, including the world’s first seven-star hotel, the <a href="https://www.jumeirah.com/en/hotels-resorts/dubai/burj-al-arab/" target="_blank">Burj Al Arab Jumeirah</a>. Make a reservation for weekend brunch (a common activity in Dubai) at the <a href="https://www.jumeirah.com/en/hotels-resorts/dubai/burj-al-arab/offers/al-muntaha-friday-brunch/" target="_blank">Burj Al Arab</a> and gorge yourself on an impressive raw bar, meat carving stations, and a chocolate fountain. Afterward, try an authentic hammam spa experience at the ultra-luxe <a href="https://www.oneandonlyresorts.com/one-and-only-royal-mirage-dubai/spa-and-fitness" target="_blank">One&amp;Only Royal Mirage</a>.</p><h2>Endless Shopping</h2><img alt="Fountain at the Dubai Mall "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540390601/shopping-dubai-mall-DUBAISSTOP1118.jpg?itok=WbzKWyqi"><p>A visit to <a href="https://thedubaimall.com/" target="_blank">The Dubai Mall</a>, one of the world’s largest, is a must. It’s a sight to see, and you could spend an entire day browsing high-end stores like Gucci or more affordable options like Zara. For a slightly less overwhelming experience, head to the <a href="http://www.malloftheemirates.com/" target="_blank">Mall of the Emirates</a> for an equally impressive, yet smaller, selection of stores, with fewer tourists. If you are looking for jewelry you can’t beat, head to the <a href="https://www.goldanddiamondpark.com/" target="_blank">Gold and Diamond Park</a> near the Mall of the Emirates and remember, don’t be afraid to bargain.</p>
Categories: Travel

What It's Like to Come Face-to-face With an Elephant on a Walking Safari

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 10/31/2018 - 10:00
<p>One by one, in tight formation, we tiptoed around the corner. Nobody dared utter a word, or for that matter breathe too heavily. Though it was only 9 a.m., the sun was beating down on our intrepid group as we made our way through <a href="https://www.zambiatourism.com/destinations/national-parks/south-luangwa-national-park/" target="_blank">South Luangwa National Park</a>, in the middle of Zambia — a nation perched in the center of the African continent.</p><p>And suddenly, she was there.</p><p>A proud, dark gray female elephant about the size of a school bus stood before us, ears outstretched, white tusks glimmering and pointed in our direction. She was stunning and slightly terrifying all at once because there was nothing stopping her from running straight at us: This wasn’t any regular safari experience — this was a walking safari.</p><p>Yes, walking — as in, on foot — not in a jeep, not in a van, and not behind the protective fence of a zoo. We were in her home, quiet and still. If you allowed your body to move enough for a deep sniff, you could smell her, though she clearly had the advantage of smelling us out first.</p><p>We lingered, for just one moment, before <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/safaris/become-a-safari-guide" target="_blank">our guide</a>, Fannuel Banda, of the <a href="http://bushcampcompany.com/" target="_blank">Bushcamp Company</a>, (one of<i> </i><em>Travel + Leisure’s </em><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/worlds-best/safari-lodges-in-africa" target="_blank">2018 World’s Best Safari Outfitters</a>) motioned for us to quietly, but quickly, move it along, behind a line of trees. In all, the moment maybe lasted 20 seconds. But it was perhaps the most thrilling 20 seconds of my life. And that’s exactly the feeling a walking safari is intended to invoke.</p><p>Zambia, and more specifically South Luangwa National Park, are often regarded as the birthplace of the walking safari. Some three decades ago, <a href="http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/obituary-norman-carr-1262524.html" target="_blank">British conservationist Norman Carr</a> started offering the close encounter service to guests from around the world as part of the nation’s first safari company, Norman Carr Safaris. Since then, walking safaris have remained an under-the-radar option for those looking to not just be <em>close</em> to nature, but to immerse themselves in it completely.</p><p>On our walks, our group of four diligently followed all of Banda’s commands and hung on his every word; the laser focus of his voice made it hard not to. He talked about everything from animal behavior to patterns in bird flight with the knowledge and distinction of a seasoned pro.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/worlds-best/safari-lodges-in-africa" target="_blank">The Top 5 Safari Lodges in Africa</a></p><img alt="Walking Safari "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1539718953/safari-africa-guide-WALKSAF1018.jpg?itok=lmhMRSJA"><p>Along the walk, Banda could point out a paw print from several yards away. He’d slowly walk up to it, have us circle around, and ask us what we thought it was.</p><p>“A wild dog?” one would guess.<br />“A lion?” another would venture.</p><p>Actually, it was a hyena, and you can tell because of its angled interior edges and distinct claw marks as it strikes the ground, Banda effortlessly explained. At one point he held up his hand to stop as we were all unknowingly in the path of one of Zambia’s greatest predators: quicksand. You know, the kind you thought was only real in <em>Indiana Jones.</em> </p><p>He’d wave us on, stopping along the way to point out plants you could eat or vines where you could find water if you ever found yourself stranded alone in the African bush. But I had no fear of abandonment on this walking adventure accompanied by Banda and a gun-toting park ranger, there to protect both me from the animals and the animals from me.</p><img alt="Walking Safari "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1539718953/safari-africa-leopard-WALKSAF1018.jpg?itok=EtzRqeWd"><p>Walking through the African wilderness even in the wee hours of the morning may sound like a daunting task, but with The Bushcamp Company, visitors are able to fill their trip with plenty of luxury. </p><p>They may choose to stay at its main lodge, known as <a href="http://bushcampcompany.com/mfuwe-lodge-index.php" target="_blank">Mfuwe</a> (from $420 per person per night), and venture out each day from there. Inside guests will find a world-class restaurant serving up dishes like roasted salmon and steak for dinner, along with a library fit for Hemingway and spacious bungalows lining the property’s border. That includes a few overlooking a lagoon teeming with hippos who will chat with you all night long.</p><p>For the more adventurous in the crowd, the company also offers stays at its <a href="http://bushcampcompany.com/mfuwe-lodge-index.php" target="_blank">six bushcamps</a> (from $570 per person per night) — the only bushcamps located within the national park.</p><p>At each one, guests will stay in comfort and solitude as they each house a maximum of eight guests. In every bungalow, guests will find plush beds protected by mosquito nets, sitting areas, solar-powered lights and fans, and outward-facing showers so they can bathe while giraffe-spotting. What you won’t find, however, is any cell service or WI-Fi. And that was fine with us. </p><img alt="Walking Safari "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1539718953/safari-africa-tent-stay-WALKSAF1018.jpg?itok=BpZ4G-CI"><p>A typical day while staying in the camps involves getting up before the sun, sometime around 5:30 a.m. Don’t worry, tea, coffee, and a light breakfast are already waiting for you. By 6:15 a.m. you’re on the road for your adventure. From here, guests can choose to spend the morning in the outfitted Land Rovers, perfect for traveling far distances in the 3,500-square-mile park, or to get out and walk for a bit with a guide.</p><p>By 10 a.m. it’s tea time. At that time, your guide will find the perfect location to get out, sit on a blanket, and sip on some tea provided by a sherpa along with freshly baked cookies.</p><p>At 11 a.m. you’re back on the road to the bushcamps, spotting a few animals along the way. There, you and your fellow guests will dine on a surprisingly decadent lunch (considering you’re a good two- or three-hour drive from any town) before drifting off for an afternoon nap.</p><img alt="Walking Safari "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1539718953/safari-africa-dinner-WALKSAF1018.jpg?itok=d3BKs2ir"><p>At 4 p.m., following a change of clothing, you’re back on the road for an evening drive. At this point, you’ll stop again, not for tea, but for “sundowners” — safari lingo for happy hour. Like tea time, your guide will find the ideal location to watch the burnt orange and red sunset over the wilderness, as a few elephants cross through the river, or a pride of lions meanders by with a kill.</p><p>A night drive usually follows as you make your way back to camp for dinner, which could involve Nshima, a local dish made of corn that is similar to grits. It’s eaten with your hands as you pick up goodies with it like roasted carrots, tomatoes, and spinach.</p><p>Finally, guests will head off for their slumber sometime after dinner, to the sound of a troop of baboons blathering on, a bloat of hippos snorting up a storm, and a cackle of hyenas howling in the distance.</p><p>Both the bushcamps and the walks give you what you came on safari for in the first place: intimacy with the land. Over a week-long stay, you’ll see things you didn’t even know were real, and understand animal behavior in a whole new light. And, you’ll get the chance to get to know yourself without the ever-present connection to email, Instagram, and cell service.</p><p>With The Bushcamp Company, you’ll be doing some good, too. Each year, the company uses $150,000 from bushcamp bookings to fund its local projects, like the “<a href="http://www.bushcampcompany.com/conservation_community.php" target="_blank">Commitment to Clean Water Program</a>,” which has dug dozens of boreholes around the community to provide safe, clean drinking water for all.</p><p>So go ahead. Get out of your comfort zone. Get out of your jeep. Get out of yourself for a moment and stare down an elephant. It will be one of the most heart-pounding, electrifying, and awe-inspiring moments of your life, too.</p>
Categories: Travel

This New Hotel Brand Has Its Own Social Network So Solo Travelers Never Get Lonely

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 10/31/2018 - 07:43
<p>It's hard enough to approach strangers in your own hometown, let alone on the road. Not only are there roadblocks like language barriers and cultural differences, there are also very real concerns about safety and getting around in an unfamiliar place. </p><p>But now that <a href="https://www.lifehousehotels.com" target="_blank">Life House</a> hotels has broken out onto the scene, solo travel struggles may soon be a thing of the past. The millennial-facing brand — the first Silicon Valley-backed hotel to arrive in the U.S. — is going beyond offering open-concept living areas, buzzy cocktail bars and on-site activities by rolling out its own social network. </p><img alt="Life House hotels social messaging platform "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540918399/lifehouse-social-messaging-LIFEHOUSE1018.jpg?itok=SZYvUAsm"><p>The mobile app (which is still in beta) allows guests to interact with each other, as well as locals who have been vetted by the community. Whether you want to meet up with other guests for a drink or hang out with a local in a cool part of town, the app makes it easier than ever to make spontaneous plans with like-minded travelers.</p><p>Today marks the launch of the tech-centric brand, which is set to open its first location in <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-guide/miami" target="_blank">Miami’s</a> Little Havana neighborhood in December, followed by a second location in South Beach in April 2019. The Little Havana property has stylish rooms with Le Labo toiletries, a rooftop pool, and one of the only bars and restaurants in Miami with panoramic skyline views.</p><p>Life House's hotels will feature amenities and programming that are specific to the vibrant communities they’re set in, but all will share design-forward interiors (think: herringbone floor, vintage furniture and edgy artwork) and a mix of shared and private accommodations.</p><p>Another selling point: there will always be an option that costs less than $150 per night no matter the location or season.</p><p>With more than 20 hotels slated to open in the U.S. by the end of 2019, this affordable yet luxurious hotel brand is one to keep an eye on.</p>
Categories: Travel

Save 30% off Stays at the Time Hotel, a Glamorous Sleep in New York's Theater District

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 10/31/2018 - 07:30
<p><em>T+L launched Operation Vacation to inspire workers to use their days off and get away, offering exclusive travel discounts as incentive. For the latest deals on hotels, airfare, cruises, and trip packages, visit <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/operation-vacation" target="_blank">travelandleisure.com/operation-vacation</a></em></p><p>New York City: At least 30 percent off the <a href="https://www.thetimehotels.com/new-york/default-en.html" target="_blank">Time Hotel</a>, a newly reopened gem in New York's Theater District. The 193 guest rooms feature oak paneled flooring, custom-made print rugs, and slate bathrooms.</p><p>Your Body is a TMPL includes:</p>One or more nights in an Deluxe King (upgrades available) A personal training session at TMPL gym from David BartonA week-long membership to TMPL An in-room juice and maskDiscounts on additional training sessions<p>Original Price: From $895 per night</p><p><strong>T+L Price: </strong>From $469 per night; valid for travel through March 31, 2019. </p><p>Booking details: Book <a href="https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/#search/TMPL/FMfcgxvzKbPwgklbmTMXBkHPhxGQBXfn?compose=DmwnWsLRBJkHbrXcVLFKcjrNfrqLrKMljNzCNnwvLXzmsChcQffbkvsQzlTnTBdKwrFCHJrtpwfL" target="_blank">online</a>. </p>
Categories: Travel

You Can Now Get a Virtual Reality Spa Treatment in Las Vegas

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 10/31/2018 - 06:44
<p>“Observe carefully what may be happening right now in your brain,” the voice says, just as the dazzling cosmos I’ve been floating in dissolves into the skull’s interior. Neurons pulse. Synapses crackle. And my actual brain wraps itself around its beautifully abstracted and digitized representation inside a virtual reality headset.</p><p>The VR is part of an opulent spa treatment just unveiled at <a href="https://www.caesars.com/nobu-caesars-palace/things-to-do/qua" target="_blank">Qua Baths &amp; Spa</a> inside <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-guide/las-vegas-nevada/hotels/caesars-palace" target="_blank">Caesars Palace</a> on the Las Vegas Strip, marking the fifth anniversary of <a href="https://www.caesars.com/nobu-caesars-palace" target="_blank">Nobu Hotel</a>. The boutique tower on the Caesars campus was the first property in the exploding hospitality brand from celebrity chef Nobu Matsuhisa and partner Robert De Niro, and their Oct. 19 celebration at its rooftop villa extended to the kickoff of <a href="https://www.caesars.com/nobu-caesars-palace/things-to-do/qua#.W9TpQS-ZMdU" target="_blank">Nobu Go</a> at Qua.</p><p>Go is the Japanese word for “five,” and the 100-minute treatment’s 10-minute VR journey honors five fundamental elements: earth, water, fire, air and metal. It was created by Barcelona-based <a href="https://www.naturabisse.com/en/us" target="_blank">Natura Bissé</a> (the exclusive skincare partner of Nobu Hotels) and showcases an increasingly popular industry trend: virtual reality. </p><p>Called <a href="https://www.naturabisse.com/en/news/the-mindful-touch" target="_blank">Mindful Touch</a>, the video transports clients to a realm of raw nature, eye-popping vistas evoking the elements through wind-whipped clouds and lush forests, cracked earth and molten rock. The world is reduced to pure elements that seamlessly morph, like some hypnotically gorgeous, non-freaky version of Stanley Kubrick’s <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ou6JNQwPWE0" target="_blank">“Star Gate” sequence</a> from "2001: A Space Odyssey" mashed up with "Planet Earth<em>."</em></p><p>Clients experience the VR after Natura Bissé detoxifying seaweed masks are applied to their feet and the skin over their spines. Instructed by the soothing, disembodied voice, they embrace “thoughtful awareness” to heighten both relaxation and sensation.</p><img alt="Detail of Nobu Go Spa Treatment "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540910179/nobu-go-qua-spa-treatment-NOBUGOQUA1018.jpg?itok=XlFS1a5Q"><p>“Now breathe in deeply. Acknowledge how, in this precise moment, the aromas, along with the power of touch, are boosting your sense of wellbeing,” it tells me. Sweet lemon and warm patchouli hit the air, and the massage therapist, Amra Lear, presses her strong hands into the back of my head where tension pools. She moves down my arms and legs and up the other side as the voice continues: “You can see how each contact with your skin triggers a release of neurochemicals linked to serenity, tranquility and happiness...”</p><p>Lear, an aesthetician and massage therapist with Qua for 11 of her 22 years in the industry, worked with Natura Bissé and fellow treatment coordinator, Yuki Asami, to design a cutting-edge facial that would capture the spirit of Nobu-style luxury. Lear called on her background in Japanese shiatsu and holistic traditions as she and Asami conceived the all-consuming luxury escape.</p><p>“When your body is at rest your skin is at rest, and that’s when it functions better. So when you’re resting, all of these products will penetrate more,” Lear says.</p><p>Following the detox masks and immersive sights, sounds, smells and therapeutic bodywork of the Mindful Touch experience, hydrating cream and paraffin are applied to the feet and hands while the multi-step facial works its magic. Skin is double-cleansed and toned in preparation for a peel of malic, tartaric, citric, lactic and glycolic acids to strip dead cells. That is followed by a lifting peel with botanical extracts and acid that brightens and tightens. Natura Bissé’s proprietary serum (that works like non-injectable Botox) gets rubbed into problem areas, which are then covered with a luxurious filler and gel mask with hyaluronic acid to lock in moisture. The Mindful Touch voice pops in throughout, reminding the client to focus on the moment.</p><img alt="Mask during a Nobu Go spa treatment in Las Vegas "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540910864/nobu-go-qua-spa-mask-NOBUGOQUA1018.jpg?itok=UMT9uLhE"><p>Next, a mask of 24-carat gold dust, crushed pearl and rose is painted on the face, neck and décolleté (upper chest and shoulders). Lear says the gold is a natural anti-inflammatory that calms the skin. Once that is removed, along with the paraffin from the feet and hands, a product with the power of snail mucin (essentially snail slime) is applied to enhance all the lifting and firming.</p><p>The finale is a Natura Bissé travel gift to help maintain the Nobu Go effect. The package runs $555 (a nod to the anniversary) and is the only Mindful Touch experience on the <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-guide/las-vegas-nevada" target="_blank">Las Vegas Strip</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

How Detroit's Oldest Buildings Became the Coolest New Spots to Visit

Travel and Leisure - Tue, 10/30/2018 - 11:00
<p>You may have read headlines about <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/trip-ideas-detroit" target="_blank">Detroit’s</a> resurgence as the center of new American cool. There's certainly truth to that, but Motor City has never forgotten its history.</p><p>Whereas other rust belt cities tore down their classic architecture to make room for parking garages, Detroit left the buildings. Although much of its historic architecture fell to ruin in the late 20th century, the bones of the buildings remained.</p><p>Artists and forward-thinkers moved into the beautiful, dilapidated spaces and fixed them up. Detroiters petitioned to revitalize their old buildings. Little by little, the city put itself back on the map — and it’s nowhere near done.</p><p>Even today, business owners are taking over old spaces and repurposing buildings into something utterly modern. But there’s always a nod to heritage.</p><p>When you first started noticing pictures of Detroit on the internet a few years ago, it was likely thanks to the <a href="https://www.heidelberg.org/" target="_blank">Heidelberg Project</a>. Headed by artist Tyree Guyton, the project aimed to revitalize a neglected area of eastern Detroit by repainting buildings in bright polka-dotted colors and attaching found objects to the structure. The project has been ongoing for 30 years and Guyton said he plans to take it to other parts of Detroit. If you’ve got time, drop by <a href="http://www.secondbestdetroit.com/" target="_blank">Second Best Bar</a> to pay homage. The neighborhood bar used to be the Heidelberg Project’s former offices.</p><p>The bartenders at <a href="http://www.goldcashgolddetroit.com" target="_blank">Gold Cash Gold</a> still have to let some visitors know that they can’t sell their belongings there. The bar and restaurant took over a former pawn shop and left the historic signage, causing confusion for some. Even the interiors are a nod to the past: the restaurant floor was ripped out of a high school gymnasium, the tabletops are reclaimed from bowling alley lanes and the artwork contains old photographs of the owners’ ancestors. The menu, in contrast, is wholly modern — think ravioli with goat cheese, a salad of foraged mushrooms and a hearty cauliflower roasted with turmeric.</p><p>The elegant dining room of <a href="http://wrightdetroit.com/" target="_blank">Wright &amp; Company</a><b> </b>feels almost like a library you would expect to find in an old-school mansion. The space has actually been used as a music shop selling instruments, a jeweler and luxury lofts. Now it serves a host of fancy cocktails and small-plate meals, perfect for a high-class evening that feels like it’s from another time.</p><p>The new-aged way to take a business trip to Detroit is to sleep in a former office building. The glamorous lobby of the <a href="https://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/dtwal-aloft-detroit-at-the-david-whitney/" target="_blank">Aloft Detroit at the David Whitney</a> is a historic look back on Detroit’s days gone by. As you walk to your room, which was once somebody's office, you’ll notice small details like water fountains, mail chutes and old elevator call buttons up and down the hallways. <b> </b></p><img alt="Library Street Collective, The Belt, Detroit "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1539117939/Library-Street-Collective-DETROIT1018.jpg?itok=7s3O5MbO"><p>In it's golden age, Detroit learned to make do with small spaces, including alleyways. One of the most successful transformations has been an old alley known as <a href="https://www.thebelt.org/" target="_blank">The Belt</a>.<b> </b>The alley has transformed into one of the city’s trendiest spaces for public art, bringing in installations and murals from internationally-recognized artists curated by the uber-cool Detroit art gallery <a href="http://www.lscgallery.com/" target="_blank">Library Street Collective</a>. Be sure to come thirsty, bars abound throughout The Belt. Make a stop at the newly-opened basement club <a href="http://www.deluxxfluxx.com/" target="_blank">Deluxx Fluxx</a> for the hippest parties, concerts and dance nights in Detroit. The space itself is worth a visit alone as it’s an immersive art installation from art duo <a href="http://www.faile.net/" target="_blank">Faile</a>.</p><p><a href="https://www.easternmarket.org/" target="_blank">Detroit’s Eastern Market</a> has gone through many iterations in its 125 years. But its current evolution is arguably the most fun. The market started off as a space for hay and wood sales and, by the end of World War II, became a wholesale food spot. Now, its got some of Detroit’s most interesting retail spaces for cheese, vintage clothing and even <a href="http://www.peoplespierogi.com/" target="_blank">pierogis</a>.</p><img alt="Mosaic Ceiling Above the Banking Hall in the Guardian Building "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1539117939/guardian-building-art-deco-DETROIT1018.jpg?itok=ZcKmT5Eq"><p>Stop by the <a href="https://guardianbuilding.com/" target="_blank">Guardian Building</a> to view a stunning example of Detroit’s finest architecture. The landmark skyscraper has a stunning Art Deco interior that causes visitors to stop dead in their tracks, look upwards and give the ceiling a slack-jawed gawk. Completed in 1929, the downtown landmark has had various tenants over the years, including the U.S. Army during World War II. The building only opened to the public in 2002. Today, you can wander through the lobby and into one of the Guardian Building’s new shops, grab a coffee and pick up some classic Detroit memorabilia to bring home.</p><p>Whatever your reason for visiting Detroit, <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/detroit-first-us-unesco-design-city" target="_blank">UNESCO's very first offical 'City of Design,'</a> you have to take a moment to appreciate the city's commitment to honoring its past while staying fresh and new. </p>
Categories: Travel

32 Cute Instagram Captions for a Girls’ Trip

Travel and Leisure - Tue, 10/30/2018 - 10:30
<p>Escaping with your best friends is truly one of the most freeing feelings in the world. A romantic <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/photography/couple-instagram-captions" target="_blank">couples' beach trip</a> is a blast, as is taking your family on a <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/road-trips" target="_blank">cross-country road trip</a>. But there’s something about the comfort and unadulterated fun on a <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/slideshows/americas-best-cities-for-girlfriend-getaways" target="_blank">girls’ trip</a> that can’t be beat. As you and your best friends adjust to not living next door to each other, the way you did in high school, college, or in the first apartment you shared in the city, celebrating your friendship with a trip becomes more and more appealing. Whether your besties live a 10-minute drive or subway ride from you, or you’re in a cross-continental, long-distance friendship, leaving real life behind with your BFF is, simply put, the best.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/photography/best-beach-captions-quotes-for-instagram" target="_blank">27 of the Best Beach Captions and Quotes for Instagram</a></p><p>When you’re stopping to post all your girls’ trip photos while running around <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/the-new-barcelona" target="_blank">Barcelona</a> or <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/new-england-fall-foliage" target="_blank">enjoying the foliage in Vermont</a>, these <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/photography/best-beach-captions-quotes-for-instagram" target="_blank">Instagram captions</a> are here to help. From song lyrics and empowering lady quotes, to unforgettable puns, these captions will suit any girls’ trip you take.</p><h2>Clever beach puns</h2><p>Girls just wanna have sun. *insert sun emoji*</p><p>(A group pic on the pier) Pier pressure.</p><p>We run this beach.</p><p>Basic beaches. *insert bicep emoji*</p><p>Working on our tans and our resting beachface. *insert beach umbrella and bikini emojis*</p><p>Feelin’ Nauti *insert ship anchor emoji*</p><p>No buoys allowed.</p><p>(For a boat pic) Knot today, gentlemen.</p><p>(For a boozy night) Let’s get ship faced.</p><h2>Song lyrics and quotes</h2><p>“Laugh until we think we’ll die, barefoot on a summer night.” - Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros</p><p>“If you wanna be my lover, you gotta get with my friends” - The Spice Girls</p><p>(For a moody sunset shot) “She acts like summer and walks like rain” - Train</p><p>“Happy girls are the prettiest girls” - Audrey Hepburn</p><p>“Oh yes, it’s ladies night…” - Kool &amp; the Gang</p><p>“I don’t care, I love it.” - Icona Pop</p><p>“Here’s to the nights we felt alive.” - Eve 6</p><p>“The rest of the world was black and white but we were screaming in color.” - Taylor Swift</p><h2>Best friend captions that are just a little cheeky</h2><p>Don’t mess with my clique.</p><p>In squad we trust. *insert prayer hands emoji*</p><p>Vacation squad goals. *insert dancing emoji*</p><p>Yes, we like pina coladas and getting caught in the rain. *insert cocktail emoji*</p><p>Chase sunsets, not men. *insert sunset emoji*</p><p>Beach bummin’ best buds. *insert twins emoji*</p><p>Too glam to give a damn.</p><p>You might call it girls’ vaca, I call it therapy. *insert shoulder-shrugging emoji*</p><p>Not sold separately.</p><h2>Heartfelt captions</h2><p>There’s no better group to escape with. *insert heart emoji*</p><p>Running wild and unstoppable.</p><p>Toes in the water, stars in our eyes. *insert star emoji*</p><p>These girls tame my wild heart.</p><p>Adventuring with the yins to my yang. *insert heart emoji*</p><p>Good times, tan lines. *insert bikini emoji*</p>
Categories: Travel

How to Use Your Vacation to Make You Happier at Home, According to Psychologists

Travel and Leisure - Tue, 10/30/2018 - 10:00
<p>The majority of Americans receive just <a href="https://www.cnbc.com/2018/07/05/heres-how-many-paid-vacation-days-the-typical-american-worker-gets-.html" target="_blank">10 paid vacation days</a> a year. That means you’ve likely got a mere two weeks off of work — which accounts for just three percent of your year — to visit family, take a self-care day, or to finally take that dream vacation.</p><p>But there are ways to strategically use those rare <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/culture-design/funny-out-of-office-messages" target="_blank">out-of-office days</a> to prolong that vacation-induced happiness. Here are a few ways to use your vacation to make you a happier person at home all year long.</p><h2>Actually enjoy yourself on vacation.</h2><p>The first step in bringing your happiness home with you is to actually have a delightful vacation in the first place. And that happiness simply comes down to knowing who you are, what you like, and just doing exactly what <i>you</i> want to do on your trip.</p><p>According to research by Jordi Quoidbach, a psychological scientist at the University of Liege, Belgium, people tend to ignore their own personalities when they think about what lies ahead — be it on vacation or in life — and miscalculate their own needs.</p><p>“It might be worthwhile, before you make a big decision, to think about your personality and how you usually react,” Quoidbach told the <a href="https://www.psychologicalscience.org/news/releases/people-neglect-who-they-really-are-when-predicting-their-own-future-happiness.html" target="_blank">Association for Psychological Science</a>. While thinking about vacation, he noted to not “focus too much on the event; think about who you are.” In other words, if you want to go skiing, head to Vail. If you <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/nature-travel/best-hiking-national-trails-system-anniversary" target="_blank">like hiking</a>, go to Machu Picchu. Don’t force a beach vacation just because Instagram tells you it’s popular.</p><h2>Make a post-vacation resolution you can stick to.</h2><p>Before you check out, think deeply about what made you happy during your trip. Was it the activities, the relaxation time, the food, or something else? Then, make a resolution to bring a piece of that magic back with you.</p><p>For example, if you found the relaxation to be the best part of your trip, make a resolution to find more time to meditate in your day-to-day life.</p><p>“Vacation is a really great time to initiate healthy habits that you just don't have the time or energy to start during your day to day life,” Dr. Megan Jones Bell, a clinical psychologist and chief science officer at meditation and mindfulness app <a href="https://www.headspace.com/" target="_blank">Headspace</a>, <a href="http://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/how-to-enjoy-vacation" target="_blank">previously told </a><em><a href="http://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/how-to-enjoy-vacation" target="_blank">Travel + Leisure</a>.</em> As she noted, people are much more likely to pull healthy routines back into their lives if they can start them in a happy, conducive environment, like on a vacation.</p><h2>Buy a few key items to keep the happiness going at home.</h2><p>Along your journey, pick up one or two (or three or four) <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-tips/offbeat/reddit-best-vacation-souvenirs" target="_blank">souveniers</a> that will help you remember the happy vacation for years to come. It could be something as small as a piece of locally crafted jewelry, a textile, or even a few delicious treats to snack on at home that will remind you of your happier vacation days. Better yet, pick up a local cookbook with recipes from the region so you can go home and recreate those amazing meals.</p><h2>Share your memories with your friends.</h2><p>According to a series of studies published by <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com.au/vacation-stories-make-you-happier-2017-7" target="_blank">Cornell University psychologists</a>, people found more enjoyment in discussing experiences they had than discussing the things that they bought. And it was a happiness that could last for both the short- and long-term.</p><p>"Although our material goods 'disappear' through habituation," the scientists wrote, "our experiential purchases live on in the memories we cherish and, as we have shown here, in the stories we tell."</p><p>To share your experience with friends without making it sound like a brag, plan a special night where you cook all your buddies a dish from that <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/culture-design/books/cuban-cuisine-cuba-cookbooks" target="_blank">local cookbook</a> you bought. That way their tummies will be full as you regale them with your adventure.</p><h2>Start planning your next vacation ASAP.</h2><p>Sure, you may have just gotten back from your last trip, but there’s no time like the present to begin planning your next outing. And, as it turns out, this is when you’ll find the most happiness too.</p><p>According to a 2010 study <a href="http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs11482-009-9091-9" target="_blank">published in the journal Applied Research in Quality of Life</a>, planning and anticipating a vacation will make you happier than actually taking one.</p><p>According to the researchers, that’s because this is the time when vacationers could dream of what their trip would be like. When some people deem their vacation as unsuccessful or stressful, they aren’t as happy during or after the trip.</p><p>"The practical lesson for an individual is that you derive most of your happiness from anticipating the holiday trip," Jeroen Nawijn, the study's lead author, told <em><a href="http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/02/18/how-vacations-affect-your-happiness/?_r=2" target="_blank">The New York Times</a></em>.</p><p>Need a little inspiration? Here are <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/slideshows/travel-bucket-list" target="_blank">28 trips</a><a href="http://www.travelandleisure.com/slideshows/travel-bucket-list" target="_blank"> from our bucket lists</a> you may want to add to your own.</p>
Categories: Travel

Experience South Carolina Lowcountry with 33% off Stays at Montage Palmetto Bluff

Travel and Leisure - Tue, 10/30/2018 - 09:43
<p><em>T+L launched Operation Vacation to inspire workers to use their days off and get away, offering exclusive travel discounts as incentive. For the latest deals on hotels, airfare, cruises, and trip packages, visit <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/operation-vacation" target="_blank">travelandleisure.com/operation-vacation</a></em></p><p>South Carolina: 33 percent off at <a href="https://www.montagehotels.com/palmettobluff/" target="_blank">Montage Palmetto Bluff</a>, a family-friendly resort nestled on a coastal nature preserve in the Lowcountry. </p><p>Travel + Leisure Exclusive includes:</p>Three nights for the price of two in an inn room, guest house, or cottageUse of two bicycles during your stay<p>Original Price: From $340 per night</p><p><strong>T+L Price:</strong> From $227 per night; book by November 30 for travel from December 1 to February 28, 2019. </p><p>Availability: Available on select dates. </p><p>Booking Details: Use booking code PROTL3NF when booking <a href="https://www.montagehotels.com/booking/palmettobluff/?promo=PROTL3NF&amp;utm_source=Travel%2BLeisure&amp;utm_medium=Exclusive%20Offer&amp;utm_campaign=3rd%20Night%20Free#step=1" target="_blank">online</a> or calling 866-706-6565.</p>
Categories: Travel

Why Fall Is the Perfect Time of Year to Plan a Dream Scottish Highlands Road Trip

Travel and Leisure - Tue, 10/30/2018 - 07:39
<p>Stopping to lean on his staff, Peter Cramb surveyed the steep, heather-covered hill we had just climbed, his eyes sparkling, his weather-scoured cheeks aglow. “When the weather is fine, there isn’t a place more bonny than Scotland,” the 78-year-old gamekeeper said, looking out over the land on which he has worked for more than 50 years. “On a good day, you feel like the whole world is at your feet.”</p><p>Cramb and I were in Perthshire, in the foothills of the <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-news/tourists-stacking-stones-scottish-highlands" target="_blank">Scottish Highlands</a>, on a swath of land next to the <a href="http://www.gleneagles.com/" target="_blank">Gleneagles estate</a>, and I did indeed feel on top of the world — both physically and emotionally. Below us, a pair of young huntsmen clad in sage-green tweed led three stocky white ponies carrying a picnic lunch in wicker baskets on their backs. Streams burbled in the golden heather. In the distance, a hawk rode thermals above a jagged peak. And around us stretched mile upon mile of rust-colored moorland broken only by the occasional loch, in which the dappled yellows and reds of autumn foliage were reflected.</p><img alt="Exterior of Gleneagles luxury retreat, in Scotland "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1539700332/gleneagles-exterior-scotland-WILDSCOTLAND1118.jpg?itok=5-47MEOq"><p>It was the first day of a weeklong <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/road-trips/scottish-road-trip" target="_blank">road trip through the north of Scotland</a>, on which I was to take in some of its finest new hotels and traverse some of its greatest tracts of wilderness. Having arrived at Gleneagles that morning, I was eager to get out and explore the nearby glens, but, this being Scotland, it wasn’t long before clouds closed in and a steady drizzle began to fall. When, after an hour or so, my walking boots started to squelch with thick, peaty mud, even Cramb had to concede that it was time to call it a day. “What you need,” he said with a mischievous grin, “is a Sloegasm: a shot of sloe gin, topped off with champagne. That should warm you up.”</p><p>A Sloegasm would have undoubtedly raised a few eyebrows at Gleneagles a few years ago; then, it was more of a straitlaced, scotch-and-haggis kind of place. But since its new owner, the 38-year-old Indian-born entrepreneur Sharan Pasricha, embarked on a multimillion-dollar redesign, which wrapped up this summer, it has become a new center for fun and sophistication in the Highlands.</p><p>Reclining on a jewel-colored sofa in the Century Bar and sipping Chablis from a crystal glass, Pasricha told me that his love affair with Scotland began on a tour with his Glasgow-born wife, Eiesha, the daughter of Indian telecom billionaire Sunil Mittal. His dream for Gleneagles, he said, was for it to again become a great Scottish playground — or, as it was once known, the Riviera of the Highlands. When the hotel first opened, in 1924, “people used to race up in their cars or on the train to be part of the social calendar,” he said. “It was all glamorous gowns and cocktails. We want to return to that, and show people of all ages what Scotland has to offer.”</p><img alt="Gleneagles luxury retreat, in Scotland "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1539700332/glenagles-hunters-horses-tree-WILDSCOTLAND1118.jpg?itok=rDE-f3Dy"><p>Certainly, the hotel feels fresh and updated, with its fern-colored walls, airy loft rooms, and marble-lined bathrooms. It’s buzzy, too: in the Century Bar, young <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/food-drink/celebrity-chefs/anthony-bourdain-drinks-whiskey-with-ice" target="_blank">whisky lovers</a> sampled the contents of an impressive wall of bottles, while in the tearoom, families shared Scottish fruitcake and scones. Over in the black-lacquer and plum-velvet American Bar (its design was inspired by the underground bars of the Prohibition era) a couple had snuggled up beside a silver champagne bucket.</p><p>Although it was wet outside, the grounds were also alive with activity. In the Clubhouse, with its gallery of Ryder Cup tournament photos, rowdy golfers were drinking craft beers. At the falconry center, children were flying hawks and being taught how to handle ferrets — and screeching with laughter as the creatures insisted on wriggling up their sleeves.</p><p><strong>Related</strong>: <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-news/scotland-hebridean-whisky-trail" target="_blank">Scotland’s New Whisky Trail Takes You to Some of Its Most Stunning Remote Islands (Video)</a></p><p>When Ken Keith, a jovial 57-year-old guide with Wilderness Scotland, picked me up at Gleneagles, he wasn’t at all surprised by how busy it was. Tourism to Scotland is booming, he said — and more Americans are visiting than ever before. That’s not just because it is seen as a safe destination, a place associated with luxury products such as cashmere, whisky, and smoked salmon, and one of the most outward-looking and progressive parts of the United Kingdom. It’s also because, in recent years, international investors, including France’s Xavier-Louis Vuitton, the Swedish Tetra Pak heiress Sigrid Rausing, and a tranche of wealthy Russians and Danes, have snapped up run-down estates and castles — attracted by favorable exchange rates and the romance of owning a stately <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-news/scotland-private-island-for-sale" target="_blank">Scottish property</a>. Unlike traditional landowners, primarily Scottish or English aristocrats who used the estates as hunting retreats, several of these new lairds are foresters and conservationists, keen to replace hunting with tourism and showcase the landscape of the Highlands in all its raw beauty. Some have taken former farms and hunting lodges and turned them into hotels — and it was to three of these properties that I was traveling north to explore.</p><p><img src="http://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/orange-line-3.jpg" /></p><p>There are few other places in Europe that contain such large expanses of wild, open land as Scotland. This remarkable landscape is the legacy of the Highland Clearances of the 18th and 19th centuries, during which tens of thousands of Scots were evicted from their land to make way for large, more profitable sheep farms. In that era, more than 6 million acres of the country were carved up into just a few hundred private properties.</p><p>As Keith and I drove north, we passed mile after mile of heather-carpeted moors, lochs, and misty, glacier-gouged mountains, recognizable from starring roles in TV and film titles including <em>Outlander</em> and the <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/food-drink/bars-clubs/jk-rowling-pub-scotland" target="_blank">Harry Potter</a><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/harry-potter-trip-edinburgh" target="_blank"> series</a>. We were headed to an estate named Glenfeshie, which, since having been bought by Danish fashion billionaire Anders Holch Povlsen in 2006, has become something of a model of conservation in these parts. His efforts have been so successful, in fact, that during my visit the movie <em>Mary Queen of Scots</em> was being shot there — in part because many glens are still covered in the Caledonian pine trees that would have dominated the landscape in the 16th century. Some are original, and some have been replanted.</p><p>Glenfeshie’s head of conservation, Thomas MacDonell, explained that before the Industrial Revolution, and the surge in shipbuilding and large-scale farming that came along with it, much of the country was thick with trees. The bleak, heather- and bracken-covered landscapes that have come to be thought of as typical of the Scottish wilderness are, in fact, a relatively recent phenomenon; over the centuries, the tree cover has been destroyed by humans and by deer, which feed on saplings.</p><p>That’s one of the reasons Povlsen decided to step in, MacDonell explained. “After the first Earth Summit in 1992, people started to talk across Europe about protecting the environment.” Since Povlsen took over Glenfeshie, he has acquired 11 more estates in the region, totaling 218,364 acres and making him the second-largest landowner in Scotland. While his purchases have made him unpopular in some quarters — neighbors who make a living from hunting deer and nationalists who resent foreign ownership of Scottish land, in particular — Povlsen has not only overseen the planting of millions of new trees but has also injected much-needed capital and a healthy dose of chic into the Highlands.</p><p>Ten years ago, it was pretty difficult to find accommodation anywhere north of Edinburgh that was contemporary or luxurious. Old-fashioned was the prevailing aesthetic, and the farther outside the cities one traveled, the more spartan the options became. So the arrival in 2016 of <a href="http://killiehuntly.scot/Killiehuntly/Killiehuntly_Home.html" target="_blank">Killiehuntly</a>, Povlsen’s elegant early-19th-century farmhouse hotel adjoining the Glenfeshie estate, has been something of a game changer for Scotland.</p><p>The vision of Povlsen’s wife, Anne Storm Pedersen, and her designer friend Ruth Kramer, the four-bedroom farmhouse is <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/syndication/scottish-hygge-cosagach-cozy-trend" target="_blank">the embodiment of <em>hygge</em></a><i>,</i> the Scandinavian concept of coziness. Simple Orkney chairs are draped in snug sheepskin. A hall table is piled with Norwegian sweaters to ward off the Scottish chill. On rustic wooden tables sit Scandi-inspired lamps and handblown glass decanters filled with fresh spring water. Meals are served on rough Danish stoneware, and the walls are adorned with stylish contemporary art.</p><p>The idea behind it, explained Kaddi Freudenberg, the wife of Killiehuntly’s chef, was to create a more feminine type of hideaway than is usual in Scotland. “Anne wanted to make it very different from the typical, very male shooting-and-hunting wilderness, so it had to be beautiful, but also simple and calm, to balance out the raw Scottish nature,” she explained.</p><img alt="The chef at Killehuntly Farmhouse, in Scotland "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1539700332/killehuntly-chef-freudenberg-WILDSCOTLAND1118.jpg?itok=4Cv8gBZw"><p>The nature around Killiehuntly is certainly raw. Located inside Cairngorms National Park — the biggest reserve in the U.K. — the farmhouse is surrounded by uninterrupted forests, glens, and moors, all overhung by moody gray skies. On my first morning, I woke early and tore myself from the Lithuanian bed linen and soft woolen blankets. As dawn broke over the hills, I found a dirt track leading away from the vegetable garden and for two hours walked silently, inhaling the scent of pine and black, peaty soil, listening to the trickle of brooks, and soaking in the almost lurid autumnal hues in which the trees had cloaked themselves.</p><p>Back in the farmhouse kitchen, over a breakfast of just-baked sourdough bread and orange-yolked eggs, I learned that most guests arrive at Killiehuntly intent on exploring the estate on the hotel’s bicycles, fishing the lochs and rivers for trout, wild swimming in freshwater pools, and hiking the hills. But many get so seduced by the warm farmhouse that they never leave, and instead spend their stay browsing art books and pondering life from soft, velvety sofas.</p><p>While I was sorely tempted to do the same, after breakfast it was time for me and Keith to set off again. Winding past stone villages and great expanses of golden bracken and heather, we headed north to our next estate: <a href="http://alladale.com/" target="_blank">Alladale Wilderness Reserve</a>, in the heart of the Highlands. Owned by the English furniture magnate Paul Lister, this 23,000-acre property stands out not for its accommodation or food — both of which are warm and comforting — but for its groundbreaking work to restore native species, a process known as rewilding that has been employed in swaths of open land across Europe.</p><p>Inspired by the wildlife reserves of southern Africa, Lister has set out to reintroduce the plants, trees, and animals that once defined the Highlands. Since he acquired the estate in 2003, more than 800,000 Scots pines have been planted at Alladale. A family of Scottish wildcats is now housed in an enclosure on the estate; more controversial schemes to control the deer population by introducing larger predators, including wolves and lynx, remain in the planning stage.</p><p><strong>Related</strong>: <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/road-trips/scottish-road-trip" target="_blank">A Drive Through the Scottish Highlands Brings You Face to Face With Ancient Ruins, Nessie’s Home, and Plenty of Sheep</a></p><p>Besides a main lodge, Alladale has a handful of stone cottages scattered around its grounds. Ours was at the foot of Glen Alladale, one of five great valleys on the estate. En route, the scenery was so majestic that the amenable Keith had to keep stopping so I could take photographs of the Tolkienesque terrain: the waterfalls tumbling from rocks like silver ribbons, the long-fringed Highland cows, even the spongy earth, which was spotted with lichen in bright red and pistachio green.</p><p>That afternoon, we went fly-fishing in the wide, shallow waters of the Alladale River. From where I stood on the riverbank, it was hard to imagine more dramatic views. My sight lines stretched not only down the surrounding glens, where slithers of river snaked through emerald pastures, but rose to the top of the giant granite mountains that loom over the valleys.</p><p>We didn’t have the time — or the energy — to hike up one of these ancient outcrops, so instead accepted the offer of a ride on the estate’s all-terrain Argonaut to the peak of a ridge looking west to Bodach Mòr, from where we could see both the Atlantic and the North Sea. It was a treacherous ascent on an impossibly steep, rocky track, but the views from the top were worth every bone-wrenching jolt. We could see for hundreds of miles, yet other than the cottage where we were staying, there was not another building in sight. The distant tinkle of the Alladale River was the only sound, and because we were the only guests on the property, it was all ours. That night, having filled my lungs with pure Scottish air, I slept like a stone, lulled by the whistle of wind on the moors outside my loft window.</p><p>Just when you think you have experienced the best Scotland has to offer, another highlight comes bowling by. <a href="https://www.wildernessscotland.com/" target="_blank">Wilderness Scotland</a> has spent the past 17 years scouting the country for glorious spots for its clients to explore, and after a two-hour drive on the dramatic Kyles of Sutherland and through misty expanses of flat, peaty bogland, Keith had a surprise for me. Beside Loch Meadie we met a guide with a wide wooden canoe, who was to gently paddle me toward our next destination while Keith gallantly transported my luggage by car.</p><p>After many hours on the road, the change of pace and setting was an immediate tonic. For the next hour I gave myself over to soaking up the emptiness of the broad valley and watching the ripples created as our oars broke the loch’s mirrored surface. Other than a passing fish eagle and a gaggle of ducks swimming in the clear, peat-filtered water, there was nothing to focus on but mountains and sky.</p><p>When planning my trip to the Highlands, I had asked if I could spend as much time as possible in the wilderness, and on this particular day, my wishes were more than granted. We were due to spend that night at <a href="http://www.kinloch.scot/Kinloch/Kinloch_Home.html" target="_blank">Kinloch Lodge</a>, another of Anders Holch Povlsen’s acquisitions. But instead of driving me straight there, Keith pulled up outside a stone outbuilding known as a bothy, which had been newly repurposed as a rustic dining venue. Inside, we found lunch laid out beside a fire, with views out over the towering, snowy peaks of Ben Loyal.</p><img alt="Luxury resort in the Scottish wilderness "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1539700332/gleneagles-bar-kinloch-lodge-dining-WILDSCOTLAND1118.jpg?itok=ODCMTmS-"><p>Just like at Glenfeshie, every detail had been considered. In fact, the handsome wooden dining table was laid so artistically that it felt wrong to disturb it, from the rustic boards of charcuterie and Kilner jars of rich liver pâté to the vase of wild foliage, all arranged beside natural linen napkins and Danish ceramics.</p><p>The feast had been arranged by the cheery Lavinia Turner, who heads up hospitality for all of Povlsen’s properties in Scotland. “What I love is that Povlsen and his wife are so relaxed,” she said. “They want what we do to be warm and hospitable. They want other people to fall in love with Scotland, like they have.”</p><p>Because the seven-bedroom Kinloch Lodge can be booked by only one group, Keith and I had the whole estate to ourselves, so we could do what we wanted, when we wanted — which, after lunch, was to spend the three remaining hours of daylight hiking from the bothy to the main house, soaking in the great expanses of moorland and the chilled, plant-scented air as we walked.</p><p>It was a good thing we did exert ourselves that afternoon, because the food at Kinloch is sublime. Formerly a shooting lodge, the house has been turned into a super-comfortable Highland home with bedrooms decked out in sheepskin and neutral fabrics, each containing a fireplace and a desk with forest views. After a soak in a capacious, perfumed bath, the scent of roasted herbs lured me down to dinner.</p><img alt="Luxury hotels in Scotland "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1539700332/killehuntly-farmhouse-kinloch-lodge-room-WILDSCOTLAND1118.jpg?itok=TviCJDZu"><p>Kinloch’s visiting chef, Richard Turner, ensures Scottish produce is given pride of place at all of the Povlsen properties. That night, in one of the hotel’s many elegant rooms, with their dramatic, dark gray walls and original Danish art, we feasted on lobsters, chicken with house-made gnocchi and chanterelle mushrooms, and an intense dark chocolate mousse with whisky and cherries. Retiring to my beautifully turned-down bed as the rain drummed outside, it was hard to suppress a sense of sadness that this was the last night of my trip.</p><p>Driving south along the western coast the next morning, we passed some of the most magnificent scenery yet: dramatic mountains that dropped straight into the sea, long white beaches, and hundreds of miles of moorland. As we drove, Keith and I discussed the issue of foreigners’ buying Scottish estates. “What you have to remember is they can never truly own the land. They are just caretakers of Scotland,” he said. “It will always be ours — yours and mine and everyone’s who loves it.”</p><p>Later that day, when we stopped for a cup of afternoon tea, Keith read a passage from Scottish poet Norman MacCaig’s “A Man in Assynt.” “Who possesses this landscape? The man who bought it or I who am possessed by it? False questions, for this landscape is masterless and intractable....” Those words reverberating in my head, I boarded the sleeper train at Inverness. As it clunked south through the night, I dreamed of moors and mountains and never-ending skies, owned by no one and possessed by many.</p><h2>Plan Your Own Dream Drive Through Scotland</h2><p>Set aside 10 days to tour the Highlands’ scenic lochs and moors on this 400-mile road trip, which stops in at the region’s pioneering hotels and estates.</p><h2>Getting There</h2><p>This driving route from Gleneagles to Inverness will take you 10 days and 11 nights. All times listed below are without stops.</p><p>The most leisurely way to get to Gleneagles is by train; the hotel has its own station, a few minutes’ drive away. The trip takes six hours from London and about 1¼ hours from Edinburgh. Alternatively, the property is an hour drive from Edinburgh airport.</p><p>On the return journey, I took the Caledonian Sleeper (sleeper.scot; from $65) from Inverness to London Euston. The service will be upgraded in the spring of 2019, with simple but comfortable berths, plus private toilets and sinks.</p><h2>Hotels</h2><p><strong>Gleneagles</strong></p><p>This 1924 institution was relaunched earlier this year after an extensive renovation. Take tea in the Glendevon lounge, have cocktails in the sultry American Bar, or test out the world-class golf course. <em><a href="https://www.gleneagles.com/" target="_blank">gleneagles.com</a>; doubles from $508.</em></p><p><strong>Killiehuntly Farmhouse &amp; Cottage</strong></p><p><em>Distance from Gleneagles: 88 miles; 1¾ hours by car. </em></p><p>A 19th-century farmhouse in Cairngorms National Park that is now owned by Danish fashion mogul Anders Holch Povlsen. With just four bedrooms, it’s a snug and very private base for walking, fishing, and exploring the surrounding wilderness. <em><a href="http://killiehuntly.scot/Killiehuntly/Killiehuntly_Home.html" target="_blank">killiehuntly.scot</a>; doubles from $423; cottage rentals from $1,634 per week. </em></p><p><strong>Alladale Wilderness Reserve </strong></p><p><em>Distance from Killiehuntly: 92 miles; 2 to 3 hours.</em></p><p>Set in 36 square miles of reforested landscape, with good fishing and deer on the hills, the pioneering estate of furniture magnate Paul Lister has a baronial stone house, as well as several stone cottages for rent. <em><a href="https://alladale.com/" target="_blank">alladale.com</a>; doubles from $390, three-night minimum; cottage rentals from $1,660 per week. </em></p><p><strong>Kinloch Lodge </strong></p><p><em>Distance from Alladale: 65 miles; 2 hours.</em></p><p>Stay at this beautifully designed seven-bedroom lodge with a private chef and staff for fishing, hunting, walking, kayaking, and climbing trips up the nearby Ben Loyal mountain. <em><a href="http://www.kinloch.scot/Kinloch/Kinloch_Home.html" target="_blank">kinloch.scot</a>; exclusive lodge rental from $7,815, three-night minimum.</em></p><p><em>Distance to Inverness via a scenic coastal route: 155 miles; 4 hours.</em></p><h2>Tour Operator</h2><p>My trip was organized by Wilderness Scotland, a specialist outfitter that arranges fully guided, customized itineraries in the Highlands and islands of Scotland. <em><a href="https://www.wildernessscotland.com/" target="_blank">wilderness​scotland.com</a>; from $9,415 per person for 11 nights, all-inclusive. </em></p>
Categories: Travel

35 Cute Instagram Captions for a Destination Bachelorette Party

Travel and Leisure - Mon, 10/29/2018 - 13:00
<p>If you don’t post pictures from a bachelorette trip, did you even go to one? Well, of course, but let’s be honest: part of the fun of showering your best girl with love before she gets married is posting bachelorette pictures. And <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/destination-weddings/international-bachelorette-party-planning-tips" target="_blank">bachelorette parties</a> are now more Instagrammable than ever before. From inflatable ring pool floats to matching t-shirts, bathing suits, and sun hats, there have never been more photo ops.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-tips/mobile-apps/selfie-captions-quotes-for-instagram" target="_blank">The 37 Best Selfie Captions and Quotes for Instagram</a></p><p>On top of that, <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/austin-bachelorette-party-itinerary" target="_blank">destination bachelorette parties</a> are hugely popular, which means the trip options (and the photo options) are limitless. Whether you’re planning a classy <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/weekend-getaways/weekend-in-napa-valley" target="_blank">Napa wine tour weekend</a>, going wild in Las Vegas, or taking your squad on an <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-tips/how-to-travel-to-iceland" target="_blank">Icelandic adventure</a>, these captions have you covered. From bridal zingers to squad puns, here are 35 essential Instagram captions for a bachelorette trip:</p><h2>Captions for the bride:</h2><p>A drink in one hand, a ring on the other. *insert ring emoji*</p><p>Buy me a shot, I’m tyin’ the knot.</p><p>Engaged AF.</p><p>Wife of the party. *insert champagne emoji*</p><p>Nacho average bride.</p><p>I’m not a regular bride, I’m a cool bride.</p><p>Feyoncé.</p><h2>Captions for the group photos:</h2><p>I do crew.</p><p>Bride Tribe.</p><p>Hit me baby one more wine. *insert wine emoji*</p><p>(For a beachy bachelorette) Getting Nauti with my crew. *insert sailboat emoji*</p><p>Bride gang.</p><p>He/she popped the question. We’re popping bottles. *insert champagne emoji*</p><p>(For a bar crawl or brewery outing) Brews before I Dos. *insert beer emoji*</p><p>(For a Hawaii bachelorette) Aloha bride, aloha beaches. *insert palm tree emoji*</p><h2>Captions for the sappy friendship pics:</h2><p>Together is a beautiful place to be. *insert twins emoji*</p><p>To love, laughter, and happily ever after.</p><p>Red, bride, and blue. *insert American flag and bride emoji*</p><p>Celebrating her forever. *insert heart emoji*</p><p>Last sail before the veil. *insert anchor emoji*</p><p>#BRIDESIDE</p><p>Raising a glass to our favorite couple. *insert champagne glasses emoji*</p><h2>Captions for when you’re up to no good:</h2><p>I solemnly swear that I’m up to no good.</p><p>Raising hell before the wedding bells.</p><p>Sip happens. *insert shoulder-shrugging emoji*</p><p>We be all night.</p><p>Something borrowed, something blue, we party harder than you.</p><p>She said YAAAS.</p><p>“Trust me, you can dance.” – Alcohol</p><p>Te amo, Tequila. *insert cocktail emoji*</p><p>Look like a beauty, party like a beast.</p><h2>Wine captions for a bachelorette trip:</h2><p>Rise and Wine. *insert sun emoji*</p><p>One last syrah. *insert wine emoji*</p><p>Wine flies when you're having fun.</p><p>Wine is my spirit animal. *insert unicorn emoji*</p>
Categories: Travel

How to Drink Champagne Like Jay-Z on Your Next Trip to France

Travel and Leisure - Mon, 10/29/2018 - 10:00
<p>The cellars of Armand de Brignac are dripping in gold. If not literally, then at least it appears that way.</p><p>Buried 30 feet beneath the earth, the cellars of the champagne house (located, of course, in the Champagne region of France) reflect the style of the man everybody in the house calls “our owner.” The owner in question just happens to be <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-news/beyonce-jay-z-blue-ivy-cannes-photos" target="_blank">Jay-Z</a>.</p><img alt="Champagne Armand de Brignac "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540502177/Champagne-Armand-de-Brignac-Reims-JZCHAMP1018.jpg?itok=qI-qptx7"><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/attractions/museums-galleries/beyonce-jay-z-louvre" target="_blank">The Louvre Is Offering Jay-Z and Beyoncé Tours</a></p><p>After a now-famous feud with Cristal back in 2006, Mr. Carter began investing in Armand de Brignac. In 2014, he became its owner — and one of the brand’s most loyal supporters.</p><p>If you’re looking to select champagne like Mr. Carter, here’s what you should look for, as determined by the men who produce his favorite.</p><p>First off, Jay-Z seems to prefer a champagne brand with heritage. Armand de Brignac is helmed by the Cattier family whose history of growing champagne grapes dates back to 1763. Today, the operation falls to Jean-Jacques and his son, Alexandre, the 12th and 13th generations of champagne producers.</p><p>Their production could be called artisanal, or perhaps small batch, champagne. The house only produces about 60,000 bottles of champagne per year. (For reference: Cristal produces anywhere <a href="https://www.dn.no/superelegant-kjendis-champagne/1-1-1164142?WT.mc_id=dn" target="_blank">between 300,000 and 400,000 bottles</a> every year.) This is due, in part, to the house’s old-school techniques.</p><p>Armand de Brignac boasts that only 18 people will have touched your champagne from harvest until it’s shipped out. Processes that could be automated are “kept traditional,” Alexandre told <em>Travel + Leisure</em> during a recent trip to the vineyard. The bottles are riddled (rotated to kick up sediment) by hand. The vines, which are about 30 years old, are never treated with pesticides. Horses pull tills to turn over the vineyard land. “We’ve been managing our vineyard in an eco-friendly way for 24 years,” Alexandre said.</p><img alt="Champagne Armand de Brignac "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540502177/Armand-de-Brignac-Reims-JZCHAMP1018.jpg?itok=SBYb-qAV"><p>The famous “Ace of Spades” pewter label — by which the brand is colloquially known — is applied by hand. It’s because of this that each bottle is considered unique and individual. As Jean-Jacques, who has a penchant for metaphors, explains: “each bottle has a touch of soul.”</p><p>All the champagnes are available in a magnum-sized bottle, and the growers suggest you opt for that size. Not only is a magnum a particularly cool order, the size is particularly good for aging the champagne, according to Alexandre. Compared to a standard-sized bottle, about half the oxygen gets into a magnum during <a href="https://www.champagne.fr/en/from-vine-to-wine/wine-making/disgorgement" target="_blank">disgorgement</a>. This means the champagne will mature more slowly, resulting in a more complex taste.</p><p>When selecting your champagne, don’t be put off by the term “blend.” According to the family, a well-selected blend can take individual flavors and add them to make something greater than the sum of all its parts. “A vintage blend is like all the instruments of an orchestra playing together,” Jean-Jacques explained. When creating new blends (the directives of which all come from Jean-Jacques and Alexandre), Armand de Brignac tends to favor new combinations that create a complex flavor that plays across the entire palate.</p><p>Once you’ve purchased your champagne, by all means, save it for a special occasion. But you won’t want to wait as long as you might for a fine wine. For example, a magnum bottle of Armand de Brignac can be kept and stored for up to 30 years while maintaining its flavor.</p><img alt="Champagne Armand de Brignac "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1540502177/Champagne-bottles-JZCHAMP1018.jpg?itok=H360zxnO"><p>And you didn’t hear it here, but rumor has it “the owner” prefers the ultra-rare Blanc de Noirs (a blend of 2008, 2009, and 2010 vintages) called A2. The champagne house only produced 2,333 bottles of the stuff and there are only a couple hundred left in the world, and supposedly, <a href="https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-04-03/jay-z-s-new-champagne-costs-850-a-bottle-armand-de-brignac-a2" target="_blank">quite a few are in the owner’s personal cellar</a>. The bottles originally priced at $850 but have since disappeared from the market.</p><p>But, at the end of the day, the best way to choose your champagne is just to enjoy it fully — whatever that means to you. If you’re looking for the ultimate Armand de Brignac experience, take a hint from Beyoncé and pour a bottle in the hot tub <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YjtsaXwDcF0" target="_blank">when you’re feeling yourself</a>.</p><p><em>Armand de Brignac provided support for the reporting of this story. </em></p>
Categories: Travel

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