travel style

 

Luxury travel ~ an evocative phrase that holds different meanings for each of us.  It may connote indulgent accommodations, memorable meals, comfortable transportation, or privileged access.  But, most importantly, luxury signifies impeccable service and freedom of choice.

 

With a seemingly infinite number of options, most travel can be placed into one of several broad categories.  Some itineraries will feature several travel “styles” but understanding these primary designations is helpful in choosing the best product for your needs.

While there are certainly opportunities to cycle across the countryside, kayak down rivers, and hike over mountains, we typically move from place to place by air, land tour, or cruise.  Also, we choose to travel alone, as a couple, as a family, or with groups of various sizes.

While all the journeys we feature are appropriate for most travelers, some itineraries do lend themselves especially well to solo, family, or group travel, and we try to spotlight noteworthy programs that are particularly well-suited to certain types of travel parties.

Remember that almost any pre-planned itinerary can be configured as a Bespoke program with inclusions that are specifically tailored to the ages and interests of the guests.

 

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Touring

 

Convivial ~ Scheduled Small Escorted Groups Forget everything you think you know about group travel – these luxury arrangements feature the finest accommodations, sublime dining, and exceptional personal service.  From the moment you arrive at your destination, an experienced staff of professionals will handle the logistics of your stay.  Your every need is anticipated and met.  Discover the world’s most amazing destinations in the company of a small group of like-minded individuals who share your passion for travel.

Today’s luxury groups allow travel to remote areas in comfort and safety; particularly attractive when considering visits to some of the newly emerging destinations.

These are fully inclusive programs with very small groups, often as few as 12 or 14 guests. Select from hundreds of itineraries featuring destinations around the world.  Enjoy the company of interesting people as part of an intimate, convivial gathering and take advantage of luxury travel at great prices with the flexibility that only a small group can enjoy.  Many of our Journeys of Note include all meals, gratuities, entrance fees, transfers, intra-tour transportation, a dedicated tour director, and often, a destination specialist as well.  These programs offer a deeply immersive, educational, and enlightening travel experience, filled with the sights, sounds, and tastes of the regions and offering exceptional access and wonderful surprises.

Convenient ~ Orchestrated Private Travel The ideal solution for those wishing to explore at their own pace and still take advantage of the cost benefits that pre-planned, pre-priced private itineraries can offer.

Custom ~ Bespoke Arrangements The ultimate in privileged travel ~ all components are custom-tailored to accommodate individual preferences, with endless options available to satisfy the most demanding requirements.

 

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Cruising

 

Ocean Cruising Enjoy the timeless transatlantic experience aboard a Cunard ship, the world’s only true ocean liners; escape winter’s chill on a tranquil Caribbean cruise; explore fascinating destinations from the comfort of a floating hotel; sail on a once-in-a-lifetime journey around the world.  Choose a larger vessel for a more ship-centric experience, or consider a smaller, more nimble ship for visits to many exotic ports of call.

River and Niche Cruising Whether a stand-alone voyage, or as part of a land and cruise package, specialized ships afford the traveler a unique opportunity to sail to destinations which are inaccessible to most cruise ships.  Boasting features such as reinforced ice-class hulls, shallow drafts, and river-lock-friendly builds, these vessels are designed to deliver an outstanding niche experience.

Full-Ship Charter From yachts that accommodate a dozen guests, to large cruise ships with staterooms for thousands, leasing an entire vessel may be the perfect option.  Explore the Hawaiian Islands for an unforgettable family reunion; arrange a corporate retreat sailing the coast of Australia; plan a wildlife adventure for a birding society; float down the Amazon with a photography group.  The possibilities are only limited by the imagination!  Large groups preferring a big-ship experience but not wishing to buy out the entire inventory of a major cruise ship can choose to block space on an existing itinerary and still enjoy significant benefits and specialized arrangements.

 

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Expeditions

 

Luxury Adventure Visiting the world’s more adventurous destinations no longer means sacrificing comfort.  Luxurious expedition ships and indulgent safari properties promise extraordinary experiences in tandem with pampering surroundings, great food, and unsurpassed service.  Even in emerging travel destinations which may not have a broad hospitality infrastructure, every effort is made to secure the finest available accommodations and deliver an exceptional service standard.

Soft Adventure These exciting travel programs offer an authentic experience while remaining accessible to the majority of travelers in good health.  A variety of relatively gentle physical activities such as  hiking, biking, snorkeling and diving, sailing, horseback riding, and kayaking, afford travelers a unique and very intimate perspective.

Extreme Adventure Generally requiring exceptional fitness for participation, these itineraries typically include arrangements which range from rustic to challenging.  Extraordinary opportunities include camping in Antarctica, trekking over the glaciers of Iceland, or climbing Mount Kilimanjaro.  You can travel to Norway and try your hand at the biathlon, bobsledding, cross-country skiing, curling, downhill skiing, luging, and tobogganing.  Perhaps you’re ready to live the life of a Bedouin in Wadi Rum, heli-ski in British Columbia, or spend some time in New Zealand bungee-jumping, paragliding, and white-water rafting.

 

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Private Jet Travel

 

The pinnacle of  luxurious travel, private jets offer supreme comfort, convenience, and freedom.  No longer tied to commercial flight schedules, private jet travel allows guests to go around the world in three weeks, or visit more extraordinary destinations in two weeks than most people see in a lifetime.

Enjoy the expertise and enthusiasm of world-renowned specialists ~  historians, anthropologists, naturalists ~ who accompany you, along with a private flight crew and a dedicated expedition staff including a physician, chef, and luggage handler.

Pursue your own interests. Participate in scheduled activities and events, or take a different path and choose alternate programs and excursions.

Expect privileged access and expedited customs and immigration, the finest hotels in the world, and amazing surprises. A private jet journey is your entrée into an extraordinary world of diverse cultures, legendary destinations, and unsurpassed service.

 

 

 

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Luxury Rail Travel

 

Once the benchmark for the high-end overland experience, luxury train travel is enjoying a rebirth after having been out of favor for a number of years.  Amazing train journeys are available on six continents and offer a travel experience unlike any other.

Travelers can experience everything from a 3.5-hour climb to Machu Picchu aboard the wonderful Hiram Bingham, to Rovos Rail’s extravagant two-week trek across Africa, or an extraordinary sweep over Australia and New Zealand on the Ghan and Indian Pacific.

The interiors typically lean toward the elegantly traditional with lots of polished wood and cozy accoutrements.  Accommodations range from snug cabins to over-the-top suites; the Presidential Suite on the Maharajas’ Express in India is the largest in the world, occupying a complete car.

Meals are special affairs with crisp white linen and sparkling china and crystal. Menus often reflect the destinations, taking advantage of locally-available meats, fish, produce, wines and spirits, with dishes prepared according to the traditions of the area.  On the Royal Scotsman, for example, scotch tastings are one of the most popular activities. Many luxury train lines encourage formal dress at dinner and most have some type of dress code, making each meal a memorable occasion.

Setting a pace that is different from other modes of transportation, trains connect the traveler to his surroundings in a uniquely intimate fashion.  Rail travel is the definition of the adage “it’s not the destination, but the journey.”

 

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Solo Travel

 

Single travelers represent one of the fastest-growing segments of the  luxury traveling population as more and more people recognize the joys of the independent experience.  In recognition of this trend, an increasing number of tour companies and cruise lines are making an effort to offer more reasonable pricing.

Historically, solo passengers have always had to pay 200% of the published per-person fare for cruises and, often, nearly as much for tours.  Happily, there are now a number of ships with single staterooms, offers for many voyages which feature a lower single supplement, and luxury tours with much lower premiums.

Also, companies such as Travcoa deliver an experience that is absolutely the equal of that offered to couples.  Solo guests get the same wonderful rooms, cabins, and amenities rather than having to settle for a lesser standard, as was often the case in the past.  There are dedicated “single traveler desks” and extra efforts are made by tour directors to ensure that those traveling alone feel very much a part of the group experience.

For women in particular, small luxury tours offer a wonderful sense of security and comfort, especially when traveling in remote parts of the world, visiting emerging destinations, or places where the language and customs may be challenging.

 

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Family Travel

 

Great family vacations almost always include two important elements ~ activities that appeal to a wide variety of ages, and the ease of well-planned, uncomplicated logistics.   Parents want everyone engaged and excited; they also need a program that offers a well-paced schedule with easy access to  the services and conveniences a young family may require.  We carefully review packages, destinations, and ships to identify those which fulfill these criteria.

A number of travel suppliers offer itineraries specially designed for the family.  They present history, culture, and natural wonders in ways that are fun, interesting, and educational for children of all ages.  Engaging activities and child-friendly programs keep everyone entertained.

Specific destinations, such as the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, offer literally hundreds of attractions, shows, parades, recreational activities, and dining opportunities; choices to please every age and interest.

Cruises are another great choice for family groups.  Many cruise lines have outstanding children’s programs which allow parents to enjoy adult pursuits knowing their children are safe and happy.  Today’s parents view travel as an important part of both the childhood experience and the family dynamic.  Multi-generational groups are also hugely popular, encouraging grandparents to share the joy of extended family vacations.

 

 

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Couples

 

When speaking of couples as a separate category, we are referring to vacations that have a special emphasis on romance, or destinations that offer certain activities identified with the notion of a “romantic getaway.”

These might include very remote locations or couples-only properties; perhaps resorts which promote such things as dinner for two at the ocean’s edge, couples massages, or private outdoor Jacuzzis.  Couples will find all of our journeys are appropriate for adults, but some offer a particularly couples-oriented experience.

There are dozens of destinations and cruises that lend themselves beautifully to both wedding ceremonies and vow renewals.  Anniversaries are another perfect reason to plan a wonderful celebration.  These same venues also work well for groups of several couples, offering a nice mix of time spent together, as well as more private pursuits.

Whatever itinerary you choose, always advise your Travel Director if you are celebrating something special.  Travel is an unforgettable way to commemorate life’s important events.  Let us help you make the occasion a memorable one!

 

 

 

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