Shermanstravel Blog

Smart Luxury

MetropolitanbyCOMOSure, most travelers book a trip to Miami Beach with a single plan in mind — drink all day, party all night. But everyone needs to cool off and chill out at some point. Even Miami, which we rate as one of the world’s party capitals, has plenty of options for relaxing, refreshing, and (maybe) replenishing your body in preparation for another night out. Here’s how:

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Lake Atitlan, Guatemala

Cyber Monday is too long to have to wait for snagging great hotel deals, so we are pleased to see that a group of hotels have put together their own promotion and are calling it CyberSummer. On June 21, starting at midnight, 21 hotels and resorts in the United States, Latin America, and the Caribbean will be offering online deals, including four-diamond resorts for $99 a night, five-star hotels offering 50 percent savings, and free nights. Featured hotels include Casa Palopó in Lake Atitlan, Guatemala (pictured above); the JW Marriott, Cusco, Peru, and the Marco Island Marriott Beach Resort in Florida. Read more

LongboatKeyFor many Americans, a winter trip to Florida is a yearly ritual. But many don’t realize that it’s worthy of a visit any time of year. While it’s hot throughout most of the country come summer, Florida boasts beautiful beaches and tropical tranquility. Even better: when you go off-season, you can indulge in the luxuries you might not be able to afford at in spring or fall.

The state’s two coasts are unique, each offering charm and beauty all their own. Pick a coast, grab a fantastic off-season deal at a luxe property, and then relax and enjoy the views, smaller crowds, and ocean breezes. Read more

Chewton

When it comes to hotels, it’s always refreshing to see new takes on the four-walls-and-a-bed formula. In these five treehouse suites, woodsy interiors, jacuzzi tubs, and floor-to-ceiling windows give the idea of a childhood hideout a creative update. If you’re ready to stay among the treetops, and shell out some major cash, you too can have this once-in-a-lifetime experience.

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RitzStThomasThe U.S. Virgin Islands offer some of the easiest opportunities for a Caribbean escape. As U.S. territories, no passport is required to visit the islands of St. Croix, St. Thomas, and St. John, which are reachable within four hours from many cities on the East Coast and in the Southeast. The U.S Virgin Islands Department of Tourism are making it even easier this summer with a new deal that saves at least $500 on a stay of five or more consecutive nights at 26 participating properties on the islands. Read more

1431 Ludlow HotelWhile New York City is well known for its astronomical hotel rates, new properties are opening at an incredible speed. Whether this will lead to lower rates is anybody’s guess, but we’re hopeful. Here is a selection of four of the most recent openings in the city (with rates that begin at an affordable $165 a night) and four more to look forward to later in the year: Read more

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAlthough it may seem far off, we are already keenly plotting our winter getaways. This year, we are looking far south, inspired by this deal from Adventure Life that offers up to $925 in savings on their Wildlife and Glaciers expedition cruise through Patagonia, Chile.

Cabin rates for this four-day cruise start at $951 per person (a savings of 35 percent) and the trip includes a visit to a newly discovered elephant seal colony, Brookes fjord, Ainsworth Bay, Marinelli Glacier, Almirantazgo Bay, Parry Glacier, and Magdalena Island. Passengers depart from Punta Arenas and cruise aboard the 136-passenger Via Australis. There are also plenty of opportunities to explore the beautiful trails, shores, and glaciers of the area with daily included excursions.

This offer is good until June 30th for travel September 2014 through April 2015. Book via the company’s website.

SplashHouseSummer festival season is upon us once again. If you’re a music fan, but would rather spend your time by the pool instead of in the middle of a field, you might want to consider a couple of new deals for the Splash House festival in Palm Springs. Read more

WaldorfParkCity

Just because summer is fast approaching, that doesn’t mean that America’s ski towns are closed for business. In fact, lots of them are offering great deals to fill rooms in the off-season, including some high-end properties. The 4.5-star Waldorf Astoria Park City, the first ski resort in the luxe brand’s portfolio, is offering summer rates starting at $211. This special rate is for a 1-bedroom suite with a king bed and a sofabed (sleeps 4), which takes 15% off current rates. We saw rooms as high as $275 per night on other sites. There’s also an additional $35 per night resort fee, which covers internet access and a local shuttle. Read more

Grenada

Last week we gave you the low-down on the new Sandals LaSource, the all-inclusive brand’s first venture into Grenada. While it may be tempting to while away all your time on the resort, and on Pink Gin beach, you shouldn’t miss getting off the property for a day of exploring. Here are a few highlights of this manageable and easygoing “spice island”:

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SandalsExterior

One of our favorite off-the-beaten-path Caribbean islands just got a lot more accessible, thanks to the recent opening of Sandals LaSource Grenada. The brand’s first outpost on Grenada, the resort brings 225 guestrooms to the island; not to mention increased, and more competitive, flight options which are highly likely to follow.  Read more

RouletteWhile Pennsylvania awaits a verdict on the state’s proposed second casino, a recently-added feature at the ever-popular Valley Forge Casino (about 30 minutes northwest of Philadelphia) is making poker chip-wielding travelers around the country take note. Announced early last month, a new “Points for Miles” program offers gamers the chance to redeem casino player points for – get this – airline miles with US Airways.

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Intercontinental ThalassoMake no mistake, collecting points to use for travel is a hassle. With black out dates and restrictions, actually using them for travel can be an even bigger hassle. That’s why loyalty programs are often overlooked as too conflated or difficult to actually enjoy, but those who put in the effort can be rewarded handsomely. Case in point: I recently used a combination of points to fund a visit to a remote island paradise in the southern Maldives. It wasn’t easy, nor was it straightforward, but it enabled me to travel to a place I could never afford otherwise. Here are five astonishing properties around the globe that may not be so far out of reach after all… Read more

CowboyforaDay

Ever thought about strapping on some boots and hitting a dusty trail? At these three resorts, you can get a taste of the cowboy (or girl) experience while taking in some of the country’s most beautiful surroundings. Read more

Utah Mighty FiveEver heard of the “Mighty 5?” You will this year, if Utah’s tourism office has anything to say about it. This quintet of famous national parks – Zion, Bryce, Capitol Reef, Canyon Lands, and Arches – is the focus of a massive new ad campaign run by the state. Whether you’re newly convinced to head to the rugged West, or you’ve had Utah on your travel bucket list for years, here’s our guide to help you choose where to go first…

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