Cherry blossom season in Tokyo

From March to May every year, Japan is transformed into a pink wonderland with a plethora of colorful cherry blossoms (‘sakura’ in Japanese). This is the best time to visit the country’s fascinating capital. Baroque Travel tells you what to do and where to stay


With the onset of spring, the weather in Tokyo is glorious and there’s plenty to do in this vibrant city, which is a heady combination of traditional and futuristic lifestyles. For starters, to see the cherry blossoms at their best, make sure to visit the city’s largest park, Ueno-Koen, home to more than 1,000 cherry trees. There you can enjoy a lively traditional Hanami party, a flower-viewing event that involves a picnic and sake under the cherry trees.


The view of snow-topped Mount Fuji from Tokyo is quite spectacular, and offers a more traditional side to this magical city. We suggest you climb to the top of Mount Fuji for a view of the city of Tokyo covered with cherry blossoms. No climbing experience is necessary, and you’re in for an unforgettable experience – not to mention the breathtaking city views.


If you’re planning to visit Tokyo in cherry blossom season, we suggest you stay at the magnificent Peninsula Tokyo. From 22 March right through to the end of the month, the hotel celebrates the season with hundreds of 3-meter high cherry tree boughs transforming the lobby into a pink wonderland. If you’re planning to visit a little later, don’t despair – from 2 to 14 April, the spectacular sakura blooms are displayed at the hotel’s main entrance.


Staying at the Peninsula Tokyo is a luxurious experience anytime of the year, but it’s an extremely unique experience in the springtime. One of the hotel’s most popular events is the colorful Sakura Afternoon Tea, available every day from 1 March to 15 April from 2.30 pm to 9 pm. Guests enjoy a glass of Deutz Sakura Rosé Champagne before being presented with a variety of delectable items for afternoon tea, presented on a silver stand. Choose from savory finger foods and sakura-inspired desserts to classic savory Croque Madame and smoked salmon sandwiches. Everything is decorated to celebrate sakura season, including the handmade scones adorned with salted cherry petals. Let’s not forget the choice of 20 exquisite teas on the menu, or the exquisite floral arrangements, and the live music. This is a really unique experience.


The hotel’s Lobby Restaurant features a special prix fixed menu at this time, and guests can also order the Hanami Picnic set to enjoy in one of the city’s many beautiful parks, including Hibiya Park, Chidorigafuchi, the Imperial Palace East Gardens, Euno Park, mentioned above, and many more.


Guests can also savor a traditional Chinese sakura-inspired feast at the hotel’s Cantonese restaurant, Hei Fung Terrace or a unique meal at the grill restaurant, Peter, on the premises. And that’s not all. Peter: The Bar offers two original sakura cocktails to sample, including the gin-based Anniversary Bouquet with chamomile, elderflower and sakura liqueur, and The New Journey, a champagne concoction mixed with herbs of dry bergamot and three different flowers.

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Not to be outdone, the Peninsula’s award-winning Spa offers a one hour and 50 minute Cherry Blossom Ceremony, that begins with cherry blossom tea and a pink macaron, and includes a foot scrub, exfoliating body scrub and wrap, cleansing facial, refreshing scalp massage and a body massage. Pure bliss!

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If you would like to book a stay at this extraordinary luxury hotel during sakura season, let Baroque Travel assist. Mail us right away,, and we will organize a reservation for you. If you need assistance with any other travel arrangements, such as flights, transfers, sightseeing, etc, we can assist with those as well.

48 hours in Cape Town

The sun is shining on South Africa’s Mother City, and with a new President elected mid-February the country is full of goodwill. There is no better time to visit this beautiful city, which boasts glorious weather right through till May. Baroque Travel finds out all the details


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Unless you’re one of the lucky few to have a pied á terre in Cape Town, you have to stay in a hotel. Baroque Travel recommends the One&Only Cape Town, because it’s so luxurious and is close to the city’s best sights, and the iconic Silo Hotel, which we featured recently, that opened in March 2017; it’s located on top of the city’s latest highlight, the brand new Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art (Zeitz MOCAA), the largest museum of contemporary African art in the world.



Both hotels offer superb breakfasts, so we suggest you enjoy a veritable feast before exploring the city. Then enjoy a drive along scenic Chapman’s Peak. It’s definitely a photographer’s dream – there are viewpoints along the route so you can stop and take pictures of the cliffs, seascapes and surrounding mountains. Continue your drive to the tiny fishing village of Kalk Bay, a charming place to explore. Browse the fascinating little shops before heading for lunch at Harbour House, an elegant, relaxed seafood eaterie with a deck offering stunning views.

Head back to Cape Town to explore Zeitz MOCAA with its spectacular architecture. The museum collects, preserves, researches and exhibits art from all over Africa and its Diaspora. There are over 100 galleries, spread over nine floors, just waiting to be explored. You don’t have to go far for sundowners; head upstairs to the Rooftop of the Silo Hotel with its breathtaking city views and great-tasting cocktails.

For dinner, we suggest the extraordinary Duchess of Wisbeach in Sea Point; it’s reminiscent of a Paris café. The menu is classic (Bloody Mary, Avocado Ritz, Roast Chicken) and music plays softly in the background. The bar is always packed and you’re sure to get caught up in the party atmosphere.



Have breakfast at Truth Coffee Roasting in the city centre – it’s not called ‘The Best Coffee Shop in the World’ for nothing. The store specialises in selecting and roasting the most exclusive coffees on earth. The menu offers mouth-watering delights from the patisserie, including pastries baked fresh every morning.

After breakfast, drive of town to Babylonstoren, an historic Cape Dutch farm just over an hour away. This historic farmstead is located on one of the best-preserved farms in the Cape. Leave early so that you get there by 10.30am to tour the estate’s magnificent gardens. Note: Booking in advance is essential.

After explore the beautiful garden, spend some time in the Farm Shop and Bakery – the goods are sublime. There’s also an hotel and a spa on the premises, which you can visit. The ultimate dining experience here is at the iconic restaurant Babel, housed in an old cowshed. The menu is farm-to-fork so the food is seasonal, a gourmet’s delight. But if you can’t get a table here, lunch at the Greenhouse is also a joy. Tucked away between oak trees, it offers delicious home-baked treats, as well as more substantial dishes.

Once you return to Cape Town, why not take a stroll along Sea Point Promenade, or soak up the sun on one of the city’s glorious beaches. Alternatively, stroll around Die Waterkant with its colourful houses, eclectic shops and restaurants. You can also do some shopping at the V&A Waterfront.

Then it’s on to La Parada in Constantia Nek for pre-dinner drinks and tapas before enjoying a superb gourmet meal at La Colombe in Constantia, one of the country’s most iconic restaurant’s (it’s always on the Top 10 list of restaurants in the world).


If you would like to find out more about travelling to the beautiful Cape, let Baroque Travel assist. Mail us right away,, and we will assist you with all your travel arrangements, including flights, hotel reservations, car hire, restaurant bookings, etc.

Book your luxury summer vacation in this paradise location in Cinque-Terre

Italy’s best-kept secret, Cinque Terre is a string of five old seaside villages on the rugged Italian Riviera. And one of the nicest places to stay is the Grand Hotel Portovenere. Baroque Travel investigates



This luxury boutique hotel is located in one of the five picturesque fishing villages that make up Cinque Terre in Eastern Liguria, called Portovenere. The area is famous for its colorful houses that cling to the cliff, harbors filled with fishing boats and numerous trattorias beckoning you to savor their delectable seafood specialties that include Liguria’s famous pesto sauce.



Portovenere is a charming little village, the start of the famous Cinqe Terre. The village has been in existence since Roman times, offering a safe harbor to those who sail the Mediterranean Sea. Many celebrities and famous poets lived here, or visited during the summer months, so the village was nicknamed ‘The Gulf of Poets’.



The hotel has one of the best locations in town, and is literally an eight-minute walk from the beach. It’s located right on Portovenere’s little seafront and boasts a terrace that overlooks the small port as well as Palmaria Island in the distance. The 16th Century hotel building was originally a Franciscan monastery, and is located literally just a few steps from the center of the little town.



Grand Hotel Portovenere has been meticulously restored to its former glory and offers just 54 guest rooms and two suites, each with air-conditioning, free WiFi, TV, minibar, and some with spectacular sea views. Each has an en suite private bathroom with bath or shower. Guests enjoy a buffet breakfast on the terrace with its panoramic views, and can enjoy fresh fish and traditional Cinque Terre specialties at lunch and dinner at the hotel restaurant. A highlight of a visit here is having a meal by candlelight on the terrace. Pure magic! The Venus Bar is also located on the terrace, and the cocktails are renowned.



For those who enjoy the beach, the hotel has partnered with one of the most exclusive beach clubs in town, the Sporting Beach. Guests enjoy comfort even by the seaside at this luxury beach club, which has its own restaurant and bar along the waterfront.



The entire area is a joy to explore, and aside from the colorful fishing villages, pristine waters and marine reserves, Cinqe Terre is also famous for its variety of hiking trails. Portovenere is the ideal base from which to explore this scenic area.

You can explore in small fisherman’s boats or in a luxury speedboat – the hotel ensures that every trip is made to suit your desires. Aside from Cinqe Terre, both Portofino and Santa Margherita are just a short boat ride from Portovenere, and further afield across the gulf are two charming villages, Lerici and Tellaro, offering breathtaking views and scenic little coves. There’s also the historic town of Sarzana with its flower-lined streets and great shopping, and Carrara, famous for its marble.


If you would like to book a stay in Cinqe Terre this summer, at the luxurious Grand Hotel Portevenere, let Baroque Travel assist. Mail us now to secure your booking,

Romance in the Caribbean at Jade Mountain

Valentine’s Day is upon us, but if you can’t get away right now, why not take that special someone to the most romantic resort in the Caribbean, Jade Mountain in St Lucia? Baroque Travel has all the details


St Lucia is one of the Caribbean’s many glorious gems, and there’s a stunning, intimate resort on the island’s south-west coastline, right on the beach in Anse Chastanet, called Jade Mountain Resort, which is just waiting for you to visit. With its unique organic architecture and a design that ensures privacy and relaxation, the resort is the perfect spot to enjoy a relaxing getaway with somebody special.


The architectural design of this unique luxury hotel is bold as well as beautiful, featuring individual bridges that lead to exceptionally beautiful private sanctuaries containing infinity pools. The guest rooms are spacious and include a bedroom, living area and extravagant private infinity pool of your own. Open to the elements, the rooms only have three walls, creating a dramatic setting, the perfect place to enjoy the magnificence of St Lucia’s Pitons World Heritage Site in all its beauty, and the magic of the Caribbean Sea.


Dining is another sensory experience in the restaurant, which wraps around another infinity pool that boasts a kaleidoscope of colors. Here, award-winning Chef Allen Susser offers ‘Jade Cuisine’, a gourmet’s delight. Right above the area, which is called the Jade Mountain Club, one finds the Celestial Terrace, the perfect spot for sunset cocktails or enjoying the beautiful night sky.


The hotel also offers an excellent boutique spa which houses a fitness studio, and the staff is on hand to ensure that guests are well taken care of.


As Jade Mountain is located right next to its sister resort, Anse Chastanet, guests at Jade Mountain get to enjoy the facilities of two luxury hotels and all their facilities, including a variety of water sports, scuba diving, cycling and soaking up the sun on two beautiful beaches that boast pristine coral reefs just offshore. Part of the entire estate also includes the historical plantation of Anse Mamin and Emerald Estage, where the hotels grow their own organic produce.


But Jade Mountain is the hotel with the best view on the island, a view that includes the exquisite Piti and Gros Piton mountains in the distance. The views from your private suite are spectacular, and create the perfect ambience for an unforgettable, romantic sojourn in the Caribbean.


If you would like to find out more about this exceptional hotel and resort, or would like to book a romantic stay there, let Baroque Travel assist. Mail us immediately, and we will make a reservation for you. In addition, we can also make all your travel arrangements, including flights, transfers and anything else you may require.

Explore Dubai

Baroque Travel comes up with some great things to do and sights to see if you’re visiting Dubai



Yes, it’s for real, this ultra-modern city in the midst of the desert with hundreds of skyscrapers soaring up to the bluest skies, including the tallest building in the world, Burj Khalifa. Dubai is a high tech oasis in the desert, a city with a skyline that is ever-changing. From the top of Burj Khalifa, you can see these new developments taking shape, shifting the skyline.


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Spend time getting to know the culture of the United Arab Emirates, specifically the Muslim people who live here. To do this you need to visit the souks, located in the old part of the city. Dubai’s Gold Souk is legendary for its amazing gold jewelry and these tiny stores that line a few narrow streets are treasure troves full of every type of jewel imaginable, from classic pieces to distinctively Arabic items and some beautiful modern pieces, too.


Then there’s the Spice Souk, where Arab men in their spotless white tunics ply their wares. Purple, orange, pink, white, black, green and yellow are all juxtaposed to make up a kaleidoscope of Middle Eastern treasures for the kitchen and the medicine cabinet.


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To get to the other side of the Dubai Canal, where the modern city center is located, take a ride on a traditional boat called an ‘abra’. The trip is short and gives you a different perspective of Dubai from the water. Once ashore, head to the Cultural Centre and explore the narrow winding streets of this part of Dubai, where the houses are all built on skinny walkways to keep them cool in the desperately hot Arab summers. Have a traditional Arab lunch feast at the Emirati Cultural Centre, where you are seated on comfortable cushions and can learn all about the people of this clean, modern, well-run city, their cultures and traditions.


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You can’t visit Dubai without embarking on a desert safari. For this you’ll head out of the city in 4x4 vehicles, to embark on a dune-bashing roller coaster ride, followed by a much slower, more sedate camel ride. As the sun sets, it’s time for dinner and entertainment that includes falcons on display, shisha experiences, Arabic clothing to dress up in and henna painting. A traditional barbecue with plenty of Arab accompaniments follows.



To enjoy the modern side of Dubai, start with a trip up the tallest building in the world, Burj Khalifa. The ride upwards is a dramatic one, with music and pictures showing your ascent, which is incredibly fast. Before you know it you’re on the 124th floor of the building, looking down at Dubai below you, a hazy cream-colored mass of high buildings, many of which are still being built, with the sea an endless pool in the distance. You can spend as long as you like up there, but if you’re pressed for time, head back down again and through Dubai Mall, which is located at the bottom of this tall edifice, to the Aquarium and Underwater Zoo.


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An unexpected treasure in the midst of the mayhem of the busiest shopping mall in the world, the Aquarium takes you under the sea to another world entirely, where you are encircled by the magic of sea life. Your walk through an underwater tunnel is your first experience of life under the sea; it’s quite eerie seeing sharks of all shapes and sizes gliding by, stopping to nibble at something in a seabed before heading onwards. The Aquarium and Underwater Zoo has all sorts of exciting adventures on offer, including scuba diving for the more adventurous.


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You can’t visit Dubai without spending time in Dubai Mall. If you’re not interested in purchasing anything, you can go ice-skating at the Dubai Ice Rink. Otherwise, head right into the mall which offers every type of store imaginable. For starters, there are department stores from every corner of the globe: Galleries Lafayette in Paris, Bloomingdales in New York, Debenhams in London. Whatever you want, you’ll find it, and then some, from designer fashion, watches and accessories to chocolates and confectionary, electronics and computers, sports and outdoor gear, jewelry, furniture and décor items… the list is endless.


If you are visiting Dubai shortly, and need assistance with any of the sightseeing mentioned above, let Baroque Travel assist. Mail us right away, If you need us to make all, or any, of your travel arrangements, such as flights, transfers and hotel accommodation, we can do this for you as well.

Onwards and upwards - Dubai’s tallest tower to open in 2020

Move over Burj Khalifa! There’s going to be a new, taller skyscraper in town! The Dubai Creek Tower will be opening in two years’ time. Baroque Access has all the details


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If you have been lucky enough to take the elevator to the top of the tallest building in the world, Burj Khalifa, then you have an idea of how tall the Dubai Creek Tower is going to be. And if you have had the enviable experience of viewing the city from the vantage point of Burj Khalifa, let’s take a moment to imagine what it’s going to be like in two years’ time, when you can see the city from even higher up.


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The stunning, new Dubai Creek Tower, which has been under construction since October 2016, will be a record-breaking 928 meters in height, making it 100 meters taller than Burj Khalifa, which opened in 2008 and is 828 meters tall.

A project by Emaar Properties and Dubai Holding, the mastermind is acclaimed Spanish-Swiss architect and engineer Santiago Calatrava Valls. He is famous for his futuristic structures that include New York City’s new World Trade Center transportation hub which opened in 2017, ad the City of Arts and Sciences complex in Valencia, Spain.


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The design of the new tower was inspired by the lily flower and the traditional minarets that are intrinsic to the Arab world. It’s a magnificent vertical column accentuated with more modern architectural lines, a unique structure that is set to become one of the world’s most iconic structures when it’s completed. And there’s no doubt that its shape will shift the Dubai skyline into an even more science-fiction-like vision.


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Located close to the city’s International Airport, Dubai Creek Tower will feature not one, but several, stunning observation decks offering 360-degree panoramic views of Dubai Creek Harbor and the city, including a VIP Observation Garden Deck that has been designed to resemble the ‘Hanging Gardens of Babylon’, which was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.

The tower will overlook the Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary and will be linked directly to the city’s vibrant retail district.

Currently, a model of Dubai Creek Tower is on display at The Dubai Mall, and visitors are offered an exceptional light and sound experience at the Mall’s Grand Atrium. Show times are on weekdays at 5pm, 8pm and 11pm ad at 3pm, 5pm, 8pm and 11pm on weekends.

Interestingly enough, the Dubai Creek Tower is a tower; it has not been built to be used for offices or accommodation.


If you would like to find out more about the Dubai Creek Tower, let Baroque Access assist. Mail us now,, and we will provide you with all the information you require on Dubai Creek Tower.

Rent a villa on Italy’s spectacular coastline in summer 2018

It’s time to plan your summer vacation, and while there’s still time, Baroque Villas suggests you consider renting a magnificent property on the breathtaking Amalfi Coast


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Book early if you want to ensure a dream vacation in one of Europe’s most desirable locations, the breathtaking Amalfi Coastline. Remember, many people have already booked their villa of choice, often more than a year in advance to ensure an idyllic summer getaway. And we’re not just talking about during the summer months; the Amalfi coastline is often booked up throughout spring as well, and into the Fall.


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Why is it so popular? It’s the sensational scenery for starters. Imagine picture-perfect pastel-colored villages that have existed for centuries. Here, life goes along at a much slower pace, and the simplicity of the lifestyle is what makes it so attractive. It’s an authentic, traditional Italian experience at its very best, where you can enjoy living in another, more relaxed, less frenetic world and literally have the time to stop and smell the roses. The Amalfi coastline is famous for its historic, charming buildings that are reminiscent of a time long gone, for superb cuisine, great resort life and a choice of fun activities.

Renting a villa in this stunning location has become increasingly popular as it offers a level of luxury and privacy that is unsurpassed. Add the experience of living like a local, and you get to understand why so many people are offering to exchange their hectic lifestyles for a vacation in a little slice of European paradise.

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Baroque Villas has extensive experience in finding exceptional villas for rental during the warmer months, not only in Italy and on its spectacular coastline, but all over Europe. We will find you the exact size villa to suit your needs, whether you’re traveling as a couple, or as a small family, or with a group of friends. We will arrange everything for you, so that you can go on vacation with no worries at all – everything will have been taken care of for you.

Villa rental usually includes a staff complement that take care of your every whim – we’re talking about drivers, chefs, cleaning staff, and in some cases, even a concierge who takes care of arranging restaurant bookings, sightseeing and anything else you may require.


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Also, remember – the Amalfi coastline is full of exquisite locations, including scenic and historic Amalfi, vibrant Positano and romantic Ravello. Choose a location based on the type of vacation you want to have, whether it’s close to the beach, or on the outskirts of town, near shops, restaurants and museums or further out in the country. Choose the time of your vacation based on whether you enjoy being in the thick of the summer season or prefer a quieter, more relaxed getaway in spring or in the Fall.

Whatever type of villa you require, Baroque Villas can arrange it for you. And if you’re keen on a vacation along Italy’s spectacular coastline, we urge you to contact us now, to ensure you are able to book for an unforgettable stay in one of Europe’s most exquisite locations. Mail us right away, and we will show you a selection of stunning villas to chose from.

Tour Britain in 2018 on the most exclusive steam train

To mark the 10th anniversary of the legendary Tornado steam locomotive, it will embark on an exclusive two-week tour round Britain in October 2018. Baroque Access finds out all the details


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Only 38 passengers will enjoy this exclusive rail tour on the celebrated steam locomotive pulling 10 plush carriages belonging to the Belmond Royal Scotsman. The route will take them on an exciting journey to see some of the most famous sights in Britain including special access to some private locations that are usually not open to the public.



The journey, which sets off from Edinburgh on 14 October 2018, stretches for 2,200 miles, covering everything there is to see in this beautiful country, from popular cultural destinations like Stonehenge and Oxford to the resort town of Bath, and everything in between. The Tornado steam train is legendary. It took 14 years to build this coal-fired steam train, the first locomotive to officially reach 100 miles per hour in Britain. Tornado has only ever pulled a sleeper train once before this; that was in 2012, with His Royal Highness Prince Charles on board.



On the upcoming epic journey, Tornado will not be the only steamer train in use. While it will be used for around 2,000 miles, other steam engines, including King Edward I and Royal Scot, will also take the helm. Although Tornado has journeyed on tracks in other countries, this is the train’s UK debut, and it’s setting off to show its lucky passengers the very best that Britain has to offer.

The Belmond Royal Scotsman is undoubtedly the most luxurious train in the country as well as one of the most luxurious in the world, offering luxurious en suite cabins with plush beds and tartan décor. The Edwardian-style carriages were inspired by the old Pullman coaches and include a spa (yes, a spa on a train!), an Observation car and two dining carriages.


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Aside from travelling the length and breadth of Great Britain on the train, passengers will also enjoy numerous exciting excursions as well as three black-tie dinners. Starting off in Edinburgh, Scotland, the train heads for the Highlands and a dinner at the 14th Century Cawdor Castle, inspiration for Shakespeare’s Macbeth. That’s just the start of a lavish adventure that includes a ride on a vintage train to enjoy a tour of the J&G Grant’s Glenfarclas Distillery with Scottish whisky tasting and dinner and a visit to Edinburgh Castle to see the Scottish Crown Jewels and a dinner on the castle grounds. In Chester, the passengers will dine at Peckforton Castle and there’s a side trip to North Wales to the Cambrian Coast, over Aberglaslyn Pass to Caernarfon. Passengers then re-join the Belmond Royal Scotsman in Holyhead and travel along the North Wales Coast.
There’s dinner at one of Cornwall’s finest restaurants, an excursion to Salisbury and Stonehenge and finally, a private dinner at the National Railway Museum that passengers also get to explore.


The approximately $40,000 per person tour includes nine nights on board the train, 2 nights at the luxurious Balmoral Hotel in Edinburgh and two in St Ives. It’s a wonderful way to explore Britain’s many spectacular highlights while enjoying every possible luxury on board an historic steam train.

If you would like to enjoy this very exclusive railway journey through Britain, or would like to find out more about it, let Baroque Access assist. Mail us now,, and we will provide you with all the information you require. If you are keen to book a place on this trip, our sister company, Baroque Travel, can assist. You can mail them on

Sir Richard Branson makes waves in the luxury cruise business

Virgin’s Sir Richard Branson has launched Virgin Voyages, a luxury cruising experience with a $3.9 billion fleet of cruise ships. Baroque Travel finds out all the details



Founder of the legendary Virgin Group, Sir Richard Branson launched a keel laying ceremony for the first ships in the luxury fleet at the end of October at Fincantieri’s shipyard in Genoa, Italy. He hosted a ‘ship tease’ party where he revealed some of the details regarding the first three luxury cruise ships in the cruise line, which will take to the seas in 2020 from Miami, with an expected 2,700 passengers and a crew of 1,150.



Branson arrived on stage by being dropped by a 200-foot crane. He expressed delight that construction was finally starting and called it “a very big day for Virgin Voyages, an exciting new holiday option for travelers”. Details regarding the cruise ships and the vacation experience were also explained. Ships will be built with great attention to detail, apparently, in the same way that shipbuilders create super yachts. On the Virgin cruise ships, 86% of cabins will have a sea terrace and 93% will boast an ocean view.



Interestingly enough, the cruise ships will not provide facilities for children, but are being designed for adult-only cruising, something that Virgin Voyages calls ‘Adult by Design’. To be a guest on one of these ships, guests will have to be 18 years or older. These cruises are expected to appeal to a younger crowd eager to experience a luxury, more premium experience. Of course, Branson will ensure that there are a few surprises added into the mix, something that is a Virgin trademark.



The ships themselves will certainly stand out from the crowd, with sleek silver-grey hulls, smoked glass, and distinctive Virgin red touches. The funnels of these vessels will be in iconc Virgin red. The first fleet to be built will be known as the ‘Lady Ships’, a play on the words ‘your ladyship’, which was inspired by the company’s British heritage. An eye-catching mermaid design will adorn the bows of these ships, inspired by figureheads on historic ships.



In addition, the fleet will be ecologically minded. Virgin Voyages has already signed up with Scanship, who provide advanced waste management systems, to explore high-tech systems to reduce ocean discharge and turn waste into energy.

Most of the details about the cruise ships are still being kept under wraps, although CEO Tom McAlpin did promise a “sophisticated ship and a transformational experience”, with “rejuvenating day-life” and “exciting nightlife”. Before the ships are even constructed, Virgin Voyages is offering future passengers a $500 refundable deposit for access to cruises.


If you are interested in finding out more about the Virgin Voyage cruise line, or would like to make a deposit so that you can secure a cabin on their first voyages in 2020, let Baroque Travel assist. Mail us right away, and we will provide you with all the information you require.

New York City is about to get a touch of the East

Come 2020, Aman Hotels and Resorts will open one of their luxury Eastern establishments in New York City – and this one will boast a penthouse worth $100 million. Baroque Access finds out all the details


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The next lavish property to be opened by Aman group will be on Fifth Avenue and 57th Street in Manhattan. Currently this is where the Crown Building stands, but over the next four years this iconic structure will be transformed into an extraordinary Aman property, with all of the hotel group’s signature trimmings.


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This urban sanctuary will be a first for Aman, as most of the hotels and resorts in its portfolio are located in exotic locations, not in the city. The Crown Building, which was built in 1921, is a 26-story structure lining fabulous Fifth Avenue. Its windows and terraces overlook Central Park and New York’s magnificent skyline.

The building’s 22 upper floors (the other four accommodate retail stores) will form the new hotel. There will be 83 exquisite guest rooms and suites, each 750-square feet in size, with working fireplaces. In addition, the Aman New York will boast a series of residences that include 20 luxury condo’s located on the upper floors of the building and the piece de la resistance – a one-of-a-kind five-story penthouse with a terrace all the way round, and both indoor and outdoor swimming pools.


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This extraordinary penthouse is believed to be valued at $100 million, while the condo’s will be valued at $5.9 million for a one-bed apartment to around $53 for one with four-bedrooms.

Both private residents and guests at the Aman New York will all enjoy the facilities of the hotel, a refined experience when it comes to relaxing, dining and drinking. Aside from the Garden Terrace which wraps around the building and offers spectacular views over Central Park, there will be an Italian restaurant, Arva, a Japanese washoku restaurant called Nama, a piano bar, cigar bar, wine library and subterranean jazz club.

The Aman Spa will take up three floors and feature a 25-meter indoor swimming pool surrounded by fire pits and day beds. Guests can enjoy a complete spa journey in double treatment rooms and numerous facilities such as sauna and steam rooms and an outdoor terrace with cabana, fireplace and daybed.


If you would like to be involved in every stage of the evolution of this brand new hotel, let Baroque Access assist. Mail us on and we will provide you with all the information you require on both the hotel and the Residences, including the extraordinary penthouse.

Ritz Carlton New York – NYC Marathon special

Two of the Ritz-Carlton hotels in New York, the Ritz-Carlton New York, Battery Park and the Ritz-Carlton New York, Central Park, are offering a great special for those who are planning to run the New York City Marathon on 5 November. Baroque Travel finds out all about it


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The annual New York City Marathon is almost upon us, a race with a route through all five boroughs of New York City. This is the largest marathon in the world, with an expected 98,247 applications in 2017. If you are one of these applicants, or are coming to the city to cheer on the multitudes, we want to tell you about a great special that is being offered by two of Ritz-Carlton’s New York City hotels.



This one-of-a-kind New York Marathon package will take care of everything for you when you take part in this legendary race in 2017, or are a bystander. You’ll be looked after literally from start to finish, ensuring a successful race day. The hotels have organized assisting guests prepare for their big race, and will also replenish runners and bystanders staying with them after the race. But that’s just a taste of what’s in store…


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The Ritz-Carlton hotels of New York plan to take care of every detail so that all their guests participating in the New York City Marathon in some way can enjoy the day to the full. The package includes overnight accommodations at both hotels. The adventure begins at Battery Park the night before the race. The hotel, which is located a short walk from the starting line at the Staten Island Ferry, is located in the city’s financial center, offering the best of both worlds. During the day (when they’re not running, of course!) they can enjoy the buzz and vibrant energy and at night they can relax in the quiet. This five star hotel offers an American bistro, luxury spa and plush accommodation with water views.


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That evening, you will enjoy a special carbo-loading meal at the Hotel’s 2 West Restaurant where a ‘Carbo-Load Live Pasta Making Station’ has been specially prepared for you.

If you are participating in the race, your luggage will be transported for you during the race from Battery Park to the Ritz-Carlton Central Park, where you will spend the night after the race. The hotel is situated literally a few steps from the finish line.


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This historic luxury hotel in the heart of Midtown is charming and elegant with breathtaking views of the skyline and a stunning location close to all the shops on Fifth Avenue and Madison Avenue, as well as numerous sights such as Radio City Music Hall, the Museum of Modern Art, Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall.


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Of course that evening you will be far too exhausted to do much more than enjoy the post-race three-course pre-fixe meal at the hotel’s Auden Bistro. Your meal will include protein-packed dishes that will aid your recovery after the race. Another surprize is waiting in your room in the form of a personalized welcome amenity.

Wait… there’s more! Those weary runners can also unwind and relax their tired muscles with an hour-long Muscle Repair Massage at the hotel’s La Prairie Spa. This exceptional rejuvenating massage features deep tissue and Swedish techniques to loosen those exhausted legs, soothe tired muscles and restore you to good form.


The Ritz-Carlton NYC Marathon Package is available from 4 to 6 November 2017. If you would like more information, or to reserve your place, contact Baroque Travel immediately to avoid disappointment,, and we will assist you in every way possible.

Super yacht marina to open in Zanzibar

Although Africa is not yet a super yacht hub, it’s about to get much more popular, thanks to a brand new marina opening on the Indian Ocean Island of Zanzibar. Baroque Access finds out all the details



Expected to be up and running by 2019 and fully open by 2020, the Zanzibar Amber Resort will not only feature five luxury hotels (including a Ritz Carlton and an Anantara establishment), numerous lavish offerings such as a championship golf course, aqua park, a fully-equipped equestrian center, international polo club, underwater restaurant and a nightclub, traditional shopping market… but it will also boast a super yacht marina. Oh, and did we mention that there are plans for a private airport for the island with an almost 10,000 foot runway?

The resort will also include a world-class state-of-the-art medical facility and a private international school, so that visitors can reside there permanently if they wish, in a selection of permanent residences in the resort, apparently around 1,900 luxury villas and more than 3,400 equally luxurious apartments that will be priced between $700,000 and $10 million.


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The resort is being developed by Pennyroyal Gibraltar and it’s expected that the first residential property may open before the end of 2017. The championship golf course, designed by Ernie Els, and several of the hotels are expected to open in 2018. Once it’s completed, this exceptional island resort will be the largest in East Africa.

This extraordinary estate will not only offer penthouse condo’s and beachside villas; apparently a few private islands will also be available for purchase. But if you decide you’d rather spend a vacation than stay permanently in Zanzibar Amber Resort, and are keen to sail to Zanzibar, the Marina awaits.



Once complete, it will be the largest recreational marina in the Zanzibar region, the departure point for sailing and fishing charters as well as to explore the magnificent Zanzibar archipelago. It will boast more than 100 berths, built inshore of the ocean surge for protection, and easily accessible through a specially dredged approach channel. Support facilities will be top class, including sub-contracted specialists in all areas of yacht repairs, plus accommodation for crews and, of course, the above-mentioned airport facilities.



Aside from spending glorious days sunbathing on Zanzibar’s golden beaches or exploring the historic main town, Stone Town, visitors will soon also be able to enjoy the brand new Waterpark at Zanzibar Amber Resort, with its exciting slides, flumes, waves, fountains and the Lazy River.

Golf enthusiasts who visit the island can also enjoy the new 18-hole championship golf course, unmatched in Africa for its challenging offerings for golfers of all levels.


If you would like to find out more about Zanzibar Amber Resort and its brand new marina, why not contact Baroque Access right away? Mail us now, and we will provide you with all the information on the marina, as well as anything you wish to know about Zanzibar Amber Resort – its hotels, residences, golf course and waterpark.

Enjoy Dia de los Muertos in Mexico

Why not experience a traditional Mexican festival in San Miguel de Allende? Baroque Travel arranges a stay at Hotel Matilda so you can enjoy Dia de los Muertos


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Every year in Mexico, people celebrate Dia de los Muertos, the Day of the Dead, a chance to get together and pray for those friends and family who have passed on and support their spiritual journey. This year, Dia de los Muertos falls on 1 and 2 November, so if you’re planning to visit Mexico at that time, you can join the celebrations that include parades, art installations and interactive cooking classes.


There are numerous locations where one can celebrate Dia de los Muertos in style, but our choice for 2017 is San Miguel de Allende, a UNESCO Heritage Site in its own right, home to various important sights including locations from the Mexican War of Independence as well as some very well preserved Colonial architecture. Aside from its rich history and stunning architecture, this colorful town is famous for its great food.

On Dia de los Muertos there will be a market, Expo Catrinas, held at the venue La Casona in San Miguel de Allende, where one can pick up all sorts of dresses and festive hats as well as plenty of food and drinks. The highlight is the annual Catrinas Parade, which winds through the town’s main streets and ends in the main square. If you like, you can enjoy a traditional Mexican buffet and open bar at the popular Luna Rooftop Tapas Bar.


And where should you stay? We’ve found the perfect luxury destination, Hotel Matilda, known for its modern, edgy décor. The town is an artist’s haven and this exceptional hotel fits right in with its contemporary décor and eclectic modern art pieces. Although many of the pieces are temporarily on display and rotate, there are signature pieces of art that are on display permanently, too, such as a portrait of the owner’s mother, Matilda, after whom the hotel is named, which was painted by Diego Rivera. This stunning piece hangs in the lobby of the hotel, welcoming guests from all over the world.


The hotel also boasts a very famous gourmet restaurant, Moxi, that it owns in partnership with Mexico’s most celebrated chef, Enroque Olvera. Gourmet dinners are thus as much a part of a stay at Hotel Matilda as the exceptional art pieces hanging on the walls.


Hotel Matilda offers just 32 spacious rooms including 9 suites, all with oversized en suite bathrooms with both shower and bath, 100 percent Egyptian cotton linen on the beds, flat screen LCD TVs and automatic lighting with dim control. Other facilities include an infinity pool, gym and a holistic spa with indoor/outdoor relaxation lounge and an authentic hamman.


The hotel is a lively place throughout the year, as it also holds various special events including DJ dance parties, exhibitions by noted artists, art festivals, tequila tastings… you name it. No wonder Travel & Leisure named it Best City Hotel in Mexico! Hotel Matilda prides itself on being pet-friendly, so if you want to bring your pooch with you, you can, as long as he or she weighs less than 20 pounds! Certain rooms are pet friendly, and water bowls are provided.


If you would like to celebrate Dia de los Muertos in Mexico and stay at the exceptional Hotel Matilda, let Baroque Travel assist. We can make a booking for you in early November, or any other time that you wish to visit. We can also assist with any other travel arrangements you may require, including flights, transfers, car hire and sightseeing. Contact us at

The Orient Express gets a makeover

Taking a train journey on the legendary Venice Simplon Orient Express just got a whole lot more luxurious, thanks to three new Grande Suites that have just been completed. Baroque Travel finds out all the details



It’s no surprise that traveling in luxury on a train has made such a comeback recently. Not only do we get to experience luxury in its original form, but we have the bonus of being able to step back in time to a slower, more tranquil pace. On the legendary Venice Simplon Orient Express, time stands still. The cabins are as luxurious as ever, the champagne flows as freely as it always has, and the views never change… they are unbeatable.



Owners of the this legendary train, Belmond, who also boast numerous plush hotels around the world that are as legendary as the train, have just released three brand new ‘Grande Suites’ on the Venice Simplon Orient Express, which will be available to guests from March 2018. The train, which travels between London, Paris and Venice from March to November every year, and from Paris to Istanbul once a year, will now boast even more plush accommodations than ever.

Each of the brand new Grande Suites is decorated in 1920s Art Deco style, with an en suite private bathroom with shower. The bedroom features double beds and there’s also a living area so that guests can relax in privacy. London’s Wimberly Interiors are responsible for the restoration of these three exceptional Grande Suites. They have taken the concept of luxury travel to a new level which retaining the history of the train. The cabins have been transformed into even more luxurious iterations of their previous selves and the results speak for themselves – hand-carved wood, embossed leather and Venetian glass all combine to create the perfect symmetry.



On the iconic Orient Express, your vacation starts the moment you step onto the train. The three new Grand Suites, named after the destinations that the legendary train visits every year – Venice, Paris and Istanbul – also offer special privileges to their guests. They enjoy private transfers to and from the train, are welcomed by a personal cabin steward and then left to enjoy themselves by slipping into complimentary Art Deco bathrobes with a glass of champagne to enjoy the view. This is the golden age of travel reinvented in the 21st Century. And it’s everything you would imagine it to be.

Each of these three Suites has been individually designed. The Paris Suite features a light, crisp color palette that pays homage to Paris’ haute couture and gastronomy. This is channelled through delicate fabrics and Lalique crystal panels. In the Istanbul Suite, one finds exquisite marquetry panels that reflect the richness of the Ottoman Empire and the patterns found in the Topkapi Palace. The Suite features amber crystal-ware, embossed leather and mother of pearl to evoke a feel of this exotic destination. Finally, in the Venice Suite, damask silk, Murano chandeliers and blue and silver hues evoke the magic of the city of canals and the Venetian mirrors and antique tapestry reflect a Baroque and Renaissance history.


If you would like to find out more about this exceptional train and its journeys throughout 2018, or wish to know more about the brand new Grande Suites, let Baroque Travel assist. Write to us, and we will assist you in any way possible. We can also book your 2018 journey on the train, on one of these Grande Suites if you prefer.

Fashionable London

If you’re heading for London to enjoy the 2017 Fashion Awards this December, then you need a really fashionable place to stay. Like The Milestone Hotel. Baroque Travel fills us in on all the details


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The 2017 Fashion Awards will be held on 4 December at the Royal Albert Hall in London once again. And if last year’s extravaganza is anything to go by, this year’s is going to be one of the fashion highlights on the London scene.

The Fashion Awards are considered a major industry event and celebrate London’s global fashion industry. They attract some of the biggest stars in the world – in 2016, guests included Anna Wintour, David Beckham, Kate Moss, Lady Gaga, Naomi Campbell, Karlie Kloss and Tom Ford. For 2017, the Fashion Awards honors the best talent in fashion design, creativity and business and at the same time will raise funds for the British Fashion Council’s (BFC’s) Education Foundation charity.



This year’s main sponsor at the Fashion Awards is Swarovski. The award categories will be voted for by a panel of fashion industry heavyweights. Awards include British Designer of the Year for Womens wear and Menswear, Accessories Designer of the Year, British Emerging Talent – Womens wear and another award for Menswear (both include accessories), Business Leader, Model of the Year, Urban Luxury Brand and Designer of the Year. In addition there will be three special-recognition awards – The Outstanding Achievement Award, The Swarovski Award for Positive Change and the Isabella Blow Award for Fashion Creator.

In 2016, Swarovski set a goal to raise £10 million (US$13.5 million) in the next decade for educating talented young people in the fashion industry. Last year’s awards were a resounding success, and included a spectacular gala to honor many individuals in the fashion industry. According to BCF chairman Natalie Massent, Swarovski and the BFC share the same goal, which is to promote, support and educate talented young people. This year, Swarovski has pledged £300,000 (US$405,000) towards education. The funds are to give “young talent access to the best education available, regardless of financial background”. In addition to Swarovski, the event has secured sponsorship from American Express.


Baroque Travel can offer those traveling to London to attend the Fashion Awards a very special getaway, staying at the luxurious The Milestone Hotel, which has been voted as one of the best hotels in Europe (No 2 in London and No 3 in Europe in the Travel and Leisure ‘World’s Best Awards’ 2017).

This historic hotel, which is located in a Grade II listed mansion, offers just 44 deluxe guest rooms and 12 luxury suites. It’s located opposite Kensington Palace and Gardens and with its fine dining restaurant, Cheneston’s, and award-winning Afternoon Tea offerings in the Park Lounge, exceptional facilities and 24-hour butler service, the hotel sets the standard for an exemplary stay.

Especially for those attending the Fashion Awards, visitors can spend the night at the Milestone Hotel with VIP access to the Awards. The special offer is for four guests (four friends, or two couples) who not only enjoy VIP access to the Awards, but also enjoy an overnight stay full of VIP perks.

Aside from luxury accommodation in Deluxe King Rooms, guests will enjoy full English breakfast, a pre-theater set menu, champagne sabrage with dinner or upon arrival, chauffeur service to and from the Awards at the Royal Albert Hall, premium box tickets at the Awards overlooking the ceremonial dinner with direct views of the stage plus red carpet access, bubbly on arrival and a selection of beverages during the event, gourmet hot and cold snacks, tasting plates and hot dishes. There’s also a pre-ceremony dessert and, of course, a dedicated butler service.


If you would like to enjoy an overnight stay, or longer, at the magnificent Milestone Hotel, let Baroque Travel assist. Mail us right away to ensure your reservation,  and we will make all the arrangements for you, including any travel assistance you may require.

Ferrari experience in Florence

Full throttle in a Ferrari of your choice through the Italian countryside? You’d better believe it! Baroque Ground and sister company Baroque Travel have all the details of a vacation of a lifetime for those who love luxury, and speed


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Which would you choose? The Ferrari 388 Spider, Ferrari California T or the Ferrari 458 Spider? They are all up for grabs in this exciting luxury trip through Italy, a journey that invites the privileged few who are mad about sports cars the opportunity to drive through Italy from Florence to Verona.

Of course, the luxury doesn’t stop there. The bespoke program, which can include all sorts of activities, from hot air balloon rides to golfing, cooking lessons and wine-tasting experiences to yachting and shopping, is luxury personified.


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This exclusive self-drive getaway, called the ‘Italy Full Throttle Experience’, offers those who can afford it a combination of a unique Gran Turismo travel experience with stays at two exceptionally lavish hotels – Il Salviatino, a perfectly preserved 15th Century villa in the Tuscan hills overlooking Florence, and a 14th Century palace in Verona, Palazzo Victoria, which boasts ancient Medieval and Roman ruins integrated into its exquisitely refurbished design.

This is a three-day, two-night adventure, although we’re sure if you wish it can be extended for as long as you wish. You start off with a night at Il Salviatino, exploring the property’s magnificent gardens before enjoying an indulgent, authentic Tuscan dinner at the hotel restaurant, La Cucina del Salviatino.


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The next day you’re introduced to the world of Ferrari, and have the choice of three magnificent beasts, mentioned earlier. Then it’s off on the journey of a lifetime in the Ferrari you’ve chosen, driving yourself through the exquisite Tuscan countryside, passing medieval villages and exquisite scenery as you savour the excitement of driving an Italian super car in its home country. The entire two-day 180-mile self-drive adventure is guided by a tour director via a sophisticated mobile radio system, takes you through the world-famous Mugello area, famous host of the Moto GP Grand Prix of Italy.

It also includes stopping off at the Passo della Raticosa for coffee, then roaring off to your next destination, Villa San Donnino, a traditional balsamic producer where you enjoy a tasting. Then it’s onwards to Maranello to explore the famous Ferrari Museum, before heading for your hotel in Verona, the exclusive five-star Palazzo Victoria, where you enjoy a sumptuous three-course dinner.



Il Salviatino

Luxury has no limits in this grand establishment, with sumptuous, comfortable suites and rooms, each individually decorated, with hand-crafted Tuscan linen bedding, WiFi, Nespresso coffee machines, Plasma TV and en suite rain showers. The restaurant creates dishes from the hotel’s organic vegetable garden, and other plush facilities include a spa with treatment rooms offering a selection of excellent treatments and a lavish pool area for when the weather is good.


Palazzo Victoria

This splendid palazzo is located in the center of the ancient part of Verona on Corso di Porta Borsari, that is lined with delightful cafés, restaurants and shops. The hotel has its own museum full of medieval frescoes directly underneath it. Decorated in a contemporary style, it boasts the original Zen garden and a charming inner courtyard. Accommodation is in spacious rooms and suites, some offering incomparable views over the city. The restaurant, Borsari 36, offers a gastronomic journey with a unique concept… the kitchen is in the center, making it the heart of the dining experience and the food is sublime.


If you would like to find out more about this exclusive experience, including which of the stunning Ferrari vehicles to choose from to drive in Italy, let Baroque Ground assist you. Mail us right away, If you’d like to enjoy this exceptional Ferrari adventure, our sister company, Baroque Travel, can make all your travel arrangements for you. Mail them on

The top 25 travel experiences in the world

At the annual Virtuoso Travel Symposium in Las Vegas this month, a new listing was announced, denoting the 25 most luxurious travel experiences in the world. Baroque Travel finds out all the details


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We have a Michelin Guide for restaurants, a travel guide that rates hotels, and now, thanks to an innovative travel advisor, we have a Certified 25, a list of travel experiences that are exemplary. Compiled by US travel advisor Chad Clark, this brand new list rates the top luxury experiences to enjoy around the world. The new program will list the top 25 travel experiences to enjoy every year. Of course you need the funds, but if you’re one of the 1%, that privileged few who can afford it, here’s what you can experience in 2017…


What to experience in 2017 if money’s no object

Let’s start with what’s available in the US…

New York experiences include staying at the Chatwal Hotel, once home of the oldest theatrical club in the country. This luxury hotel is offering guests an opportunity to enjoy an insight into life on Broadway by actually being part of the cast in a Broadway show. Another New York hotel, the Greenwich, offers an exceptional complimentary selection of snacks in the guest rooms, including vintage favorites and trendy new snacks. They also offer all-natural, vegan and gluten-free options for those with special dietary requirements. If you’re heading for Wyoming, why not stay at beautiful Bush Creek Ranch? They offer an exclusive camping experience that includes private outdoor activities, gourmet meals and plush tepees with decks overlooking the North Platte River.


Wait, there’s more. Your experience at Colorado’s Dunton Hot Springs is “only limited by the imagination”, so you can enjoy a bespoke experience depending on your own interests and wishes, including cattle driving and horse riding. And if you head to Utah and stay at the Waldorf Astoria in Park City, aside from the breathtaking mountain views over the largest ski resort in the country, you get a complimentary signature vanilla mint chap stick to take with you on all of your adventures.


Italy offers two exclusive experiences to enjoy, including staying in one of the country’s most idyllic locations on the Amalfi Coast at the exquisite Hotel Palazzo Avino. Aside from being scenically breathtaking, perched on a cliff 1,000 feet above the Med, it’s also extremely romantic. The private candlelit dinner and boat trip, entitled the ‘Sea of Love dining experience’ is unrivalled. The Dolomite mountains in the summer months are just as exquisite when they’re not covered with snow, and the stunning Rosa Alpina Hotel offers a unique hiking experience in this exquisite setting, that includes gourmet food and wines.


There are so many more refined experiences to enjoy, including staying at the fairy tale Ashford Castle in Cong, Ireland, where guests enjoy an authentic Irish experience, a chance to enjoy access to what goes on behind the scenes at the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace in London, and a delectable, over the top do-it-yourself ice cream sundae at the luxury Beaumont Hotel in the British capital. There’s spiritual luxe in Bhutan, where you dine in a rustic potato shed when you stay at the Amankora, opportunities to enjoy a photographic shoot in more than 200 worldwide locations with a professional photographer, helicopter rides to see the volcano up close on the Hawaiian island of Hualalai and stay at the Four Seasons Hotel there, a gourmet banquet on the Great Wall of China, gourmet French dining experiences in France, and equally rare and exciting experiences in Ecuador, New Zealand, Mongolia, Peru, India and Australia.


For more information on any of these exceptional travel experiences, let Baroque Access assist. Contact us right away, and we will give you all the details you require. We can also make all your travel arrangements for you.

The future of luxury travel

The 21st Century has brought many surprises, and now there’s another in store… the Hyperloop Hotel, where you travel to different exciting destinations without ever having to leave your hotel room. Baroque Travel has all the details


Who would have believed it possible? A hotel room that is actually a pod in which you can travel from one city to the next without ever having to pack? Well, it’s about to happen. It will cost in the region of $130 million to build, but the Hyperloop Hotel could well be the next generation of luxury travel, the opportunity to vacation without ever having to pack up, take a plane or a bus or a train…


This concept is the brainchild of graduate architectural student Brandon Siebrecht, from the University of Nevada in Las Vegas. His innovative Hyperloop Hotel concept would connect to 13 of the USA’s largest cities, including San Francisco, New York, Boston, Chicago and Washington. The ‘hotel’ is designed so that it will connect to hotels in all of these cities via a high-speed transit system that Siebrecht suggests be developed by Elon Musk. The concept aims to transport travelers to the city of their choice without them ever having to leave the comfort of their hotel room. No packing, not much effort… it sounds like a dream come true.


Siebrecht entered a competition together with 64 other aspiring architects earlier in 2017. He received the ‘Radical Innovation Award’ for his innovative concept, an annual award given to the person who comes up with the most imaginative, futuristic hotel design. Siebrecht’s inspiration was DevLoop, a test track that was made functional for a project called Hyperloop located just outside Las Vegas. Apparently, Elon Musk and his team have been conducting trials to estimate the capacity to transport people from one Hyperloop hotel to another in a pod like vehicle in a vacuumed pod at a speed of up to 750 miles per hour. If the system proves successful, it would transport passengers from, say, Philadelphia to New York in just 10 minutes.


What’s more, this won’t cost a hefty sum. It’s expected that there will be a flat fee for guests to travel from one city to the next of $1,200. This does not include the cost of spending a night in the hotel room, of course. That’s extra. It’s estimated that it will cost in the region of $10 million to build each pod, or room. These will be made from recycled shipping containers, transformed into luxurious hotel rooms complete with office area, living area with flat-screen TV, spacious bedroom and luxury bathroom.

At the present time, the technology to build this futuristic system has still to be created. According to Siebrecht, it should be possible within the next five to 10 years. The entire project would be managed via a customized app, so that travelers can visit a number of cities in a day if they wish.


If you would like to find out more about this innovative project and the man who created it, as well as keep up to date about what’s happening regarding the Hyperloop Hotel, let Baroque Travel assist. Mail us now, and we will keep you updated with all the details.

Bucket list adventures in the Masai Mara, Kenya

Viewing the Big Five twice over in a matter of days is an expected experience when you visit Kenya’s magnificent Masai Mara. Viewing wild animals from a hot air balloon is another experience entirely. Baroque Travel visits this special part of Kenya and shares a few bucket list adventures


Karen Blixen was the author of the famous book about her life in Africa, called Out of Africa, which was made into a movie that was just as legendary, with Meryl Streep as the star. One of the best places to stay in the Mara is a safari lodge named after her – Karen Blixen Camp is a luxury tented camp that has the added advantage of being completely eco-friendly (solar energy is just one of its many energy-efficient projects). It also boasts an unmatched location next to a river, where animals come to drink. Here, overlooking the African plains, one sees buffalo basking in the sun, crocodiles fast asleep, giraffe bending their skinny legs into an awkward V to reach the water with their long necks and drink.


In the Mara, visitors spend their days exploring the plains, viewing warthogs and zebra grazing, lions like fat cats asleep with full bellies, hippo, buffalo, leopards, lions, elephants, cheetah...  The Mara is a treasure trove, the Big Five just some of its gems.


Kenya is a safari heaven, the vast variety of wildlife its biggest treat. And when you come to the Mara in winter, the weather is still balmy, the Masai people just as colorful and friendly, and the spectacle even more breathtaking. This is the time of the migration, when vast herds of wildebeest and other animals head from the Serengeti in Tanzania to Kenya through the Mara. Of course, like any main attraction in the wilds, there are setbacks. There’s no times set for the migration. Some days it happens, and on others the animals aren’t seen at all. It’s a waiting game with the prize a chance to see hundreds or thousands of animals crossing a river fast and furiously.


This time round, it’s early in July and the migration isn’t in full swing yet. There are more than a hundred wildebeest grazing peacefully in a field, but the highlight is more likely to be a leopard sunning its belly after a kill, a herd of zebra dancing in the tall grass, a mother lion and her cubs playing on a hilltop.


A highlight of a visit to this beautiful slice of paradise is a very early morning wake up call followed by a drive to Governor’s Camp in the Mara. From here, you embark on a glorious 45-minute game-viewing journey up in the sky, in a hot air balloon. As the sun rises, the colors of the landscape lighten, the animals below you come out to play, to graze, to drink, to wander.


You have a bird’s eye view of one of the greatest spectacles on earth – animals living in their natural habitat enjoying their daily life. There is nothing more satisfying, nothing more beautiful, nothing more fulfilling.


From gourmet meals under a starlit sky to breakfasts in the bush, dancing with Masai warriors to showering in the outdoors, a visit to Kenya’s Masai Mara is an incomparable bucket list experience.


If you would like to find out more about a vacation in Kenya at any time of the year, or about a trip to the Masai Mara, let Baroque Travel assist. Contact us right away, and we will give you all the information you require to enjoy a superlative safari experience,

Dubai’s new Marsa Al Arab project

Dubai is to get a brand new project, the Marsa Al Arab located near the famous Burj Al Arab, which will include two luxury islands on either side of the hotel. Baroque Access finds out all about it


The brand new Marsa Al Arab project in Dubai will see the famous Burj Al Arab hotel become even more of a landmark, as it will include two luxury islands located on either side of the hotel. The project, which breaks ground in June, will include hotels, theaters, shops, a marina, an entire business district plus luxury villas and residences, is expected to be complete by late 2020.


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Marsa Al Arab will spread across four million square feet of land including the two islands, one of which will comprise a family friendly tourist destination with hotels and entertainment including Wild Wadi Waterpark, which already exists and will be relocated, while the second luxury island, which will be private, will be built on the left-hand-side of the Burj Al Arab hotel, which is operated by Jumeirah. It will feature 140 luxury villas, a boutique hotel and a private marina.


Also part of the project is a Marine Park that will feature a theatre with seating for 1,000 people. There, visitors will be able to interact with aquatic animals and fish. There will be a second theatre on the island that can seat up to 1,700 people – this will be home to Cirque du Soleil. In addition, the Dubai Pearl Museum showcasing rare and ancient pearls from the region will be built on the island. It will include a functioning pearl farm and a boutique hotel that is pearl-inspired.


Marsa Al Arab’s shopping area will be built where the Wild Wadi Water Park is currently located. Aside from numerous shops, it will also include 300 seafront residential apartments on the island’s 2.2km beachfront. All of the hotels in the new project are expected to add 2,400 hotel rooms to Jumeirah Group’s portfolio of hotels.


If you would like to find out more about this innovative and extraordinary new project, let Baroque Access assist. Contact us right away, and we will provide you with all the information you require, whether you’re interested in purchasing one of the residential properties or villas, starting a business or store on the island, or just want to know about it.