Luxury Car Rental Service Launches at Melbourne Airport

DriveMyCar
DriveMyCar

The celebrity-inspired chauffeur treatment is in partnership with Mercedes-Benz and is available exclusively at Melbourne Airport

Exclusively for Melbourne Airport travellers, off-boarding passengers can now be picked up in style with a new VIP chauffeur treatment. Starting with car pickup, customers are able to bypass the usually-crowded car rental desks and the hike over to the car park with their luggage. They are instead chauffeured away from the domestic or international terminals and into a Mercedes-Benz car by a personalised valet driver. Customers can additionally choose from A-Class, B-Class, CLA, C-Class, X-Class and GLA vehicles.

This posh rental service is being offered by DriveMyCar, Australia’s largest online peer-to-peer car rental service, in partnership with Mercedes-Benz Melbourne Airport, a member of LSH Auto Australia and part of LSH Auto International – the world’s largest Mercedes-Benz passenger car dealer group.

“We’re excited to work with Mercedes-Benz Melbourne Airport to introduce new ways for people to access some of the best luxury cars in the world. Mercedes-Benz cars are exceedingly popular on DriveMyCar, and providing access to a luxury experience for visitors to Melbourne Airport is yet another example of DriveMyCar innovating in the car rental industry,” Chris Noone, CEO of DriveMyCar stated.

Prices start at $73 a day.

www.drivemycar.com.au/mercedes-benz-vip-melbourne-airport

First St. Regis Opens in Hong Kong

St. Regis Hong Kong
St. Regis Hong Kong

Renowned luxury brand St. Regis brings its signature style to Hong Kong and introduces an eButler service that guests can access 24 hours a day, electronically

Luxury brand St. Regis has arrived in Hong Kong with a property that melds the city’s cultural elements with modern sophistication. A curated mansion with interiors by the acclaimed André Fu (The Upper House), The luxury hotel resides in the bustling Wan Chai area, just steps from the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre and Golden Bauhinia Square, and minutes by car to Admiralty, Lan Kwai Fong in Central, and Victoria Peak.

“Hong Kong has long been considered the point of convergence for East and West, and we are thrilled to open the first St. Regis property in this exciting destination,” said Lisa Holladay, Global Brand Leader for St. Regis Hotels & Resorts. “The hotel’s incredible architecture and design beautifully capture the energy of Hong Kong all through the lens of St. Regis’ signature glamorous spirit and sophistication.”

A residential-inspired retreat designed for business travellers and culture seekers, the 27-storey St. Regis Hong Kong boasts 129 guest rooms and suites. Each guestroom features wood flooring, deep soaking bathtubs, expansive windows with stunning harbour and city views and accents infused with an understated Asian sensibility. An outdoor verandah, heated swimming pool, poolside bar, health club and spa treatment room are additional guest-wide luxuries.

The brand’s signature Butler Service makes the guests’ stays even more immersive. This round-the-clock amenity is a St. Regis tradition and includes private in-room check-in, unpacking and packing, beverage service and garment pressing. Guests can also make plans or arrangements for special occasions simply by informing their dedicated butler, who will then take care of all the details to ensure a memorable celebration.

St. Regis Hong Kong will also be introducing the 24-hour eButler chat – where guests can contact their dedicated butler through the Marriott Mobile App or by scanning an electronic butler contact card that connects the guest to reach the butler via a dedicated line, email and apps like WhatsApp and WeChat.

The hotel’s signature restaurant, L’Envol, is led by the acclaimed Olivier Elzerwho boasts an impressive pedigree with no less than 24 Michelin stars. L’Envol offers guests French haute cuisine in either its main dining room or more intimate private dining salon. Renowned and award-winning chef Hung Chi-Kwong will additionally treat guests to a refined Cantonese menu at Rùn. Other dining options include The Drawing Room for a leisurely afternoon tea overlooking the terrace, and the St. Regis Bar for a more sophisticated after-hours digestif and a choice of over 800 wine labels and 100 champagnes. The latter additionally features the signature St. Regis cocktail, the Bloody Mary, and nightly live jazz performances.

The St. Regis Hong Kong also features nearly 1,114 square metres of event space across five venues, including the sophisticated Astor Ballroom, which is 518 square metres with a cathedral-high ceiling design and exclusive direct lift access from the 72-bay private car park.

stregis.com

Daydream Island Welcomes Guests After Two-Year Rebuild

The iconic Whitsundays resort has been transformed and now offers new restaurants, bars and expansive suites with views looking out to the Whitsundays

Daydream Island has finally reopened its doors today following an extensive, two-year renovation and rebuild. The resort was forced to close down in 2017 after damages inflicted by Cyclone Debbie left the resort unfit for operation.

Located in the heart of the Whitsundays, Daydream Island spans 1km long and is marked by its coral and sand beaches, tropical rainforest and its own living reef teeming with marine life. The resort itself has been transformed with new restaurants, bars, expansive suites with views looking out to the Whitsundays, an all-new pool and even a new underwater observatory.

The new look for the resort was designed by Hunt Design and pays homage to the beauty of the region and the heritage of the classic Queenslander house. Public spaces such as the Atrium have been created to be welcoming and with colonial shutters, vibrant colour and an alfresco area looking out to the Living Reef.

“We’re thrilled to welcome our returning and first-time guests to Daydream Island as we share with them the reimagined architecture, design and dining offerings,” said Dawsan Tang, General Manager of Daydream Island Resort. He added that the resort has a special connection with the Great Barrier Reef through its Living Reef – a free-form coral lagoon spanning 200 metres throughout the resort. The Living Reef holds over 1.5 million litres of fresh water and is home to hundreds of fish, coral, stingrays and sharks.

For the first time, guests can now explore the Living Reef up close and personal on a guided snorkel with Daydream Island’s marine biologists, while a new underwater observatory also allows guests to view four metres below the water’s surface to watch the marine life in action. “[We] can’t wait to have guests experience the marine life from our new Underwater Observatory,” Tang said.

Kids will have the chance to become eco-warriors at Kids Club as they explore and learn about the Living Reef while playing and feeding the animals who call it home, amongst a range of other activities around the island. The Living Reef has a focus on education and will also feature an Exploration Centre with information on conservation and local marine life for guests to learn more about the Great Barrier Reef.

Accommodation-wise, the resort now features 277 rooms and suites with views of either tropical gardens or pool and ocean fronts. The rooms and suites have a modern feel with touches of wood, stone and marble surfaces, touches of turquoise round out space for a relaxed feel. The resort’s suites all feature expansive views of the ocean with the Serenity Suite looking out to Daydream’s famed Lover’s Cove.

Three new restaurants and three bars, each with their own distinct design, have also been unveiled. Infinity is the resort’s premium dining offering with an Asian fusion menu, wrap around balcony, private Teppanyaki Suite and expansive views over the Whitsundays. Inkstone Kitchen and Bar focuses on modern Australian cuisine with local produce and Australian native flavours at the heart of the menu, while Tonic is a specialty gin bar located at the Atrium with views looking out to the Living Reef.

Daydream island will be introducing Graze Interactive Dining, Barefoot Bar and Silica in the coming months, further expanding food and beverage items available on the island.

The resort offers a host of activities for guests to experience such as snorkelling, helicopter tours exploring the island and the surrounding Great Barrier Reef as well as sailboat and jet ski hire. The island features an expansive revitalised pool landscape with views across the Whitsundays, coral beaches, gym facilities, and unlimited access to non-motorised water activities. The refurbished outdoor cinema will also be opening in June.

 

https://www.daydreamisland.com/

Seven Seas Splendor’s 15 Suite Categories Unveiled

By Staff Writer

Seven Seas Splendor, Regent Seven Seas’ latest luxury vessel, is offering not one, but fifteen different onboard suite options. Expected to debut in February 2020, the impressive cruise addition stands 4,275 square metres, with each of its 375 suites adorning Italian marble-detailed bathrooms and generous balcony space.

The Master, Grand, Splendor and Seven Seas Suite categories represent the 32 Distinctive Suites on board Seven Seas Splendor. Guests in Distinctive Suites enjoy personalised butler service, guaranteed dining reservations and customised pillows and bath products, among other amenities. The lavish suites are designed by Studio Dado, Tillberg Design and Total Solution Interiors.

 

Master Suite

A Park Avenue-inspired oasis, the Master Suite ranges between 176 and 195 square metres and houses two bedrooms. With only four suites available onboard, each treat guests to unobstructed views of the horizon, an expansive living area, a bar for entertaining, spacious balconies and two full ornate marble and stone bathrooms.

 

Grand Suite

The emerald-accented Grand Suite offers a 118 to 170 square-metre space, complete with a private balcony, two majestic baths and living areas with curated furniture based on haute couture fashion. The unique suite also has an upholstered leather wall and a wrapped-leather floor-to-ceiling bar – perfect for entertaining.

 

Splendor Suite

Standing 76 to 85 metres, the Splendor Suite is an elegant one-bedroom, one-and-a-half-bathroom accomodation. The more intimate setting provides a dining table for in-room service, ample closet space and a marble and stone-detailed bath.

 

Seven Seas Suite

Though the smallest of the four, the Seven Seas Suite boasts a cosmopolitan feel with its oversized bedroom, walk-in closet and sliding glass door-led balcony. Additional features include a comfortable living room, dining area and marble bathroom.

 

Deluxe Veranda and Veranda Suites

The Deluxe Veranda and Veranda suite categories are purposefully designed to maximise ocean views, taking advantage of the ample on-board balcony space. Along with the comfort of Elite Slumber beds, guests can find comfort in the generously-sized closets, plush bathrobes and slippers, an included mini-bar stocked daily and many other prime amenities.

At up to 33 and 28 square-metres respectively, they are among the most spacious entry-level suites at sea. Treating guests to a warm, island-manor feel, each suite includes curtains that separate the bedroom, a vanity and sitting area outfitted with a plush sofa, a coffee table large enough for in-suite dining and a large desk space.

 

Penthouse Suite

Conjuring elegance from floor to ceiling and complete with personalised butler service, the 55 sapphire-inspired Penthouse Suites come in three categories that range up to 60 square-metres, with an entertainment centre that separates the living room and bedroom. Sleek sliding glass doorways in both the bedroom and living room lead to an oversized balcony with comfortable outdoor furnishings.

Even the smallest of luxury details are included such as lined jewellery drawers to designated spaces for designer handbags. This Seven Seas Splendor offering will include even larger walk-in closets with two feasible entries from the bathroom and living room, and bathrooms strategically designed for additional storage and counter space.

 

Concierge Suites

Concierge Suites are backed by a cream and blush-colour palette and come in two different categories. These 43 square-metre suites are particularly prime for sightseeing, with the custom-crafted Elite SlumberTM Beds facing the private balcony for a constant view. Details, such as the shagreen leather headboards and Italian fabric furniture furniture make it an elegant, higher-caliber stay. Guests who opt for this suite or one higher are additionally treated to a free one-night pre-cruise hotel package.

 

Superior Suite

The accurately-named Superior Suite is nothing but spacious and chic. Similar to the Concierge Suite, it is 43 square metres and offers stunning ocean views. Notable additions include the grand balcony, generous sitting area and walk-in closet.

 

In addition to suite designs, the Observation Lounge takes inspiration from an enchanting English garden. A light and airy colour palette fills the space, with a chandelier centerpiece comprised of hand-painted porcelain flowers, peonies and roses as the main attraction. Traditional English architectural molding adorns the walls and hand-painted English roses and flowers on glass screens – an art piece specially commissioned by Gorman Studios – reflect the look of porcelain chandeliers.

 

A limited number of suites are available for sailings during Seven Seas Splendor’s inaugural season.

For more information, visit www.RSSC.com.

Explore Japan’s Hidden Wonders with A&K

By Staff Writer

Abercrombie & Kent’s award-winning expedition team will lead a small ship cruise around Japan in 2020. The Wonders of Japan voyage will take place from 13th to 26th June, sailing Japan’s lesser-known wilderness areas and offering on-board exclusives, such as a private performance of the world-renowned Kodo taiko drummers.

The small-ship setting will allow A&K’s experienced expeditionary team, as well as historical, cultural and scientific experts, to show guests rarely-visited ports and sites that are otherwise impossible to reach by larger ship.

Travellers will begin their two-week journey when they arrive in Osaka to explore the city before boarding the 199-guest Le Soleal on day three. The luxury ship is exclusively chartered by A&K and offers every guest a private balcony, meals, house drinks, gratuities and a desirable crew-to-guest ratio of 1 to 1.3.

A&K’s enrichment specialists will additionally provide fascinating on-board lectures and presentations on Japanese history, art, culture, gardens, nature and culinary traditions. Guests also have the option to delve even deeper and choose from a wide array of included shore excursions that explore the country’s culture, architecture, arts, history, geology, economy and natural wonders.

Spanning multiple cities, the cruise will travel through the culture-rich Kyoto, filled with Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines; Gyeongju, Korea, the ancient dynastic capital and UNESCO World Heritage Site; Hiroshima, where time is spent reflecting on Japan’s turbulent history and miraculous resurgence; the medieval Karatsu village, an early trading post; the arts centre of Kanazawa with its famous Kutani-style pottery; the rice paddies of Sado Island; as well as some unique art experiences during visits to leading museums and strolls through famous gardens, markets and castles.

 

In a special offer, interested travellers can book a room in cabin categories 1-3 on board Wonders of Japan and save $8,960 per couple. Prices start at $24,615 per person twin share, compared to the original $29,095, and the trip is limited to 199 guests.

abercrombiekent.com/wondersofjapan

First-Ever Expedition World Cruise On Sale

By Staff Writer

Travellers can now book their spots for Silversea’s Uncharted World Tour 2021. Spanning 107 destinations in 30 countries, the ocean endeavour will set sail on Silversea’s Silver Cloud ship from Ushuaia, Argentina on 30 January 2021, and is the first-ever expedition world cruise. The 167 day-long expedition will cover a total of 39,000 nautical miles and offer a range of immersive travel experiences along the way.

“The Expedition World Cruise 2021 has been specially crafted to unlock the world’s most amazing deep travel experiences for our guests,” said Conrad Combrink, Silversea’s Senior Vice President Expeditions and Destination Experiences.

In Antarctica, guests will witness incredible landscapes and rare wildlife species, while in the South Pacific, they will meet the descendants of the famous Bounty Mutineers on Pitcairn, after spending two days on Easter Island. The journey continues in the French Polynesia, with Bora Bora and Aitutaki’s lagoon, followed by on-water exploration of Australia’s Kimberley region. The stops continue throughout Malaysia’s Borneo, Egypt — including a sail through the iconic Suez Canal — Greece, Albania, Tunisia, Spain, France and the United Kingdom. The lengthy trip concludes with some of Northern Europe’s most remarkable destinations, featuring Iceland, Svalbard and Norway’s North Cape and more.

Silversea’s 70-member expedition team, Artist in Residence Antony Smith and 20-plus guest speakers will join the voyage, offering workshops, lectures and accompanying shore excursions. Guests include Felicity Aston MBE — explorer, scientist, speaker and author; Tim Severin, explorer and gold medalist of the Royal Geographical and Scottish Geographical Societies; and Jo Ruxton, co-founder of the Plastic Oceans Foundation.

A number of exclusive events will additionally enhance the voyage, allowing guests to gain access and insight into the fascinating cultures across various destinations. The cruise will start off with a special bon voyage reception on the rooftop of Palacio Concha, a grand mansion in Chile’s Santiago. Later special occasions include privileged access to Robert Louis Stevenson’s former home in Apia, Samoa Islands, for a private dinner; a night at the illustrious China Club, where guests will enjoy a private dinner on the 52nd floor of Singapore’s Capital Tower and a bespoke banquet on the walkway of London’s most famous landmark, the Tower Bridge. Concluding the world cruise, a Viking farewell will offer an authentic culinary experience in Iceland’s Kjarnaskogur Forest.

Silver Cloud’s two-bedroom owner’s suite costs AU$704,000 per person for the duration of the 167-day voyage while the ship’s vista suites begin at AU$138,000 per person. As part of the voyage’s all-inclusive pricing, world-cruising guests will each receive complimentary expedition gear delivered directly to their suites. The kit will include a commemorative World Cruise Polar exploration parka, a waterproof backpack, and various other items of clothing and accessories.

See here for more details and inclusions.

silversea.com/world-cruise