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The Ritz-Carlton Ras Al Khaimah, Al Wadi Desert and Al Hamra Beach: Intimate Resorts Boasting Tranquility, Nature, and Relaxation

Nestled at the heart of Wadi Khadeja, within 500 hectares of nature reserve, Al Wadi Desert enlivens the Bedouin lifestyle and Emirati culture by offering a unique all-pool villas concept to guests. Spread across the desert landscape and surrounded by wildlife, 101 pool villas offer the most refined facilities and amenities combined with ultimate luxury touches and Bedouin-inspired décor. Guests can opt for an enclosed villa offering complete privacy, or an open pool with views over the desert landscape to watch the roaming gazelles and oryx passing by while taking a dip in the villa's private pool.

The resort's very own Equestrian Center, located at the heart of the reserve, features stables and paddocks and offers professional horse-riding sessions in the dunes or the closed grounds of the center.
Curated Destination Dining takes guests' culinary experiences to another level, with options to set-up a romantic dinner on top of a traditional Arabian watchtower overlooking the Al Wadi Nature Reserve, or organize a picnic in the dunes while enjoying the sunset over the desert.

Exclusive events, weddings or retreats reach new heights with '1001 lights events', the most spectacular event display on a terrace overlooking the desert landscape, lit up by 1001 lights in the desert. The new Conference Center is also an excellent option for corporate meetings, gatherings, gala dinners and more.

For bookings and reservations, visit

Red Planet Hotels Inks USD13.7M Loan Agreement With BDO

Red Planet Hotels, through its Philippine subsidiary, has signed a USD13.7 million loan facility with BDO Unibank, Inc. to fund planned and ongoing projects in Metro Manila, Philippines. The fundraising is part of Red Planet's vision of continued expansion as the leading developer and operator of budget hotels in Southeast Asia and Japan.
Proceeds of the 7-year facility will be used to finance two new Red Planet hotels currently under development in Metro Manila. Red Planet Manila The Fort is a 245-room property in the key business district of Bonifacio Global City and shall open in early 2020. Opening by mid-2021 is Red Planet Manila Entertainment City, a 330-room hotel located adjacent to Manila's Bayside, proximate to Ninoy Aquino International Airport, casinos, and the sprawling Mall of Asia complex. The ultra-prime locations of the two hotels are expected to appeal to both domestic and foreign business and leisure travellers, generating high returns on capital employed.
On the occasion of the loan agreement signing, Red Planet Chief Financial Officer, Yoshi Ikurumi, said “This new facility with BDO ensures the timely completion of these two large projects in Manila's Bonifacio Global City and the Bayside district of Entertainment City. With these two new hotels, Red Planet will be operating 15 hotels spread across Metro Manila, Cebu, Pampanga, Davao, and Cagayan de Oro, further underlining our brand's growing dominance in the Philippines.”


After an extensive planning and construction period, the long-awaited Arctic Bath Hotel and Spa is now receiving bookings. Travel experts Off the Map Travel and the team behind the famous Treehotel in Sweden are accepting reservations for travel to the floating hotel and spa, Arctic Bath, between February 2020 and February 2021The Arctic Bath Hotel and Spa, designed by architects Bertil Harström and Johan Kaupp, freezes into the Lule River in the winter and floats on top of the water in the summer. The Arctic Bath and Spa offers wellness, mindfulness and cleansing treatments through spa partners Kerstin Florian. The new hotel and spa is located in Lulea in Swedish Lapland.

The Arctic Bath Hotel and Spa offers a distinctive experience with a stay in the Hotel, comprised of six detached floating “cabins” and six additional cabins on land, plus the Arctic Bath inspired by the timber floating era which recalls how felled trees were transported downriver for processing. Both the spa and the rooms float on or are frozen into the water, depending on the season. The spa complex and cabins float on waters ranging from 6.5 to 14 feet deep and are connected by floating walkways. With an eye to sustainability, the Arctic Bath leaves a minimal environmental footprint.

While all Off the Map Travel itineraries are customizable to meet travelers' interests and needs, a sample 3-day Off the Map Travel/Arctic Bath itinerary including the Arctic Bath Hotel and Spa features accommodations in a floating cabin, breakfast daily, nightly five-course dinner, a guided Northern Lights hunt, transfers and spa access is priced starting at £3995 (or $5040 USD at the time of this writing) per person, based on double occupancy. Flights are additional. Families are welcome, and childcare will be available. Summer and winter itineraries are available.

To book an adventure to experience the Arctic Bath, contact Off the Map Travel via email or by phone in the US on 1-646-701-0041,
or in the UK on +44 203 504 6446.

Thailand's Highest Restaurant and Bar Is Now Open at Mahanakhon Bangkok SkyBar

Mahanakhon Bangkok SkyBar, Thailand's highest restaurant and bar is open at Bangkok's landmark destination, King Power Mahanakhon. Located in the heart of Sathorn and directly connected to Chong Nonsi BTS station, the new dining venue is situated on the 76th and 77th floor of the iconic pixelated building. Inspired by the Chaopraya river and the concept of an eclectic journey, a visit to the upscale modern brasserie allows one to step into an exotic escape from the usual hustle and bustle of Bangkok. Tastefully designed indoor and outdoor seating areas, along with exclusive VIP lounges offer a comfortable dining venue for guests to enjoy world-class mixology and unique dishes. As Wilson Associates' latest interior masterpiece led by Tristan Auer, Mahanakhon Bangkok SkyBar is Bangkok's newest iconic dining destination.

Mahanakhon Bangkok SkyBar will be led by Johan Per Simon Davidsson, a legendary force behind the success of multiple unique concept venues in the Bangkok hospitality industry. With over 15 years of high profile management experience and a passion in cocktail innovations, visitors can expect spectacular beverage, entertainment and shows in the near future.

Mahanakhon Bangkok SkyBar is open daily for dinner and drinks from 17.00hrs to 01.00hrs. For more information and to make a reservation, visit or call +66 (0)2677-8722.

The Ritz-Carlton, Xi'an Debuts in One of China's Most Historic Cities, Blending Luxury With Cultural Heritage

The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C today announced the opening of The Ritz-Carlton, Xi'an in one of China's most historic cities, and the home of the country's legendary 2,000-year-old Terracotta Warriors.

Owned by Zhongda Zhongfangxin Proprietary Company Ltd., the hotel elevates luxury by connecting guests to the destination's rich way of life through a contemporary take on local culture, history and cuisine. Known as 'the cradle of Chinese civilization', Xi'an is the ancient provincial capital of Shaanxi located in the central-northwestern region of China.

With a history that spans thousands of years, Xi'an is one of China's four ancient capitals and the former home to thirteen imperial Chinese dynasties. The city marks the eastern end of the ancient Silk Road and today is a key crossroad to one of the country's most important trading corridors.

Ideally located in the business center of the Gao Xin District, The Ritz-Carlton, Xi'an boasts unique access to a variety of historical and cultural sites, including the legendary Terracotta Warriors, Great Wild Goose Pagoda and old City Walls. Designed by Remedios Studio, the hotel is imbued with a spirit of timeless luxury that reveals the distinctive soul of the city. Interiors pay homage to the architecture, history and culture of Xi'an through patterned motifs created by local artisans that offer a thoughtful path towards discovering the hidden parts of the destination. To further unveil the ancient capital, at the transition from day to night, guests will be treated to traditional pipa music and locally inspired drinks and snacks.

The rooms, and state of the art banquet facilities can host a range of events from business meetings to larger social affairs, while the Junior Ballroom, with its access to a beautiful outdoor garden area, is the perfect venue for intimate gatherings and romantic weddings.

IHG to Open Newbuild Holiday Inn in Sepang, Malaysia

IHG® (InterContinental Hotels Group) has signed a management agreement with Warisan City Development Sdn Bhd — part of the Kienta Group of Companies — for a newbuild Holiday Inn within the lively Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) vicinity.

Holiday Inn Sepang will be conveniently located in Kota Warisan, a mere 15 min drive from the airport's main terminal. KLIA handles almost 60 million passengers a year and is a major transit hub for, among others, the AirAsia and AirAsia X brands, as well as national carrier Malaysian Airlines. With its proximity and easy access to the airport terminals, the hotel will be an ideal location for layover passengers as well as airline crew.

Besides the airport, the Sepang area is also growing from strength to strength as a key commercial hub of Greater Kuala Lumpur, with the hotel well-poised to capture the demand from visiting guests and event companies seeking to capitalise on the area's interconnectivity. Motorsport spectators and enthusiasts can visit the nearby Sepang International Circuit, once home of the Malaysian F1 Grand Prix. There are also numerous businesses and industrial zones nearby that leverage their connectivity via KLIA. In 2020, E-commerce giant Alibaba will launch the Digital Free Trade Zone (DFTZ) within the airport compound, serving as a regional logistics hub for SMEs.

Holiday Inn Sepang will open in 2021 and will feature 250 rooms. The hotel will house a vibrant cafe and restaurant, and will feature a daytime lounge that will transform into a cocktail bar come nightfall. The property will also feature a modern restaurant, gym and business corner.

IHG® has 5 hotels operating across three brands in Malaysia, including: InterContinental®Holiday Inn®, and Holiday Inn Express®, with a further 10 in the development pipeline due to open within the next five years.

Mövenpick BDMS Wellness Resort Opens in the Heart of Bangkok

Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts announces the opening of Mövenpick BDMS Wellness Resort Bangkok in the Thai capital.
Nestled in the heart of Sukhumvit, the resort is surrounded by 1.2-acres of lush greenery with trees dating back over a century.  Featuring 293 spacious rooms and suites with balconies that overlook the gardens, guestrooms come equipped with yoga mats, a dedicated health and fitness TV channel and a range of signature in-room amenities.
Health conscious travellers can enjoy a range of organic food offerings at the resort's restaurant Tamarind Natural Dining while Cinnamon lobby lounge offers the perfect evening “wine-down” with friends.
Visiting guests can opt to visit BDMS Wellness Clinic, adjacent to the hotel, for a range of preventive healthcare treatments including physiotherapy, digestive wellness, dental and fertility treatments.
For weddings, corporate events and team building activities, the hotel boasts 2,000 square metres of indoor function space that includes a grand ballroom and six multi-functional meeting rooms. The property also features a picturesque outdoor garden area which serves as the perfect setting to enjoy evening cocktails or an ideal spot to relax and unwind.
Leisure facilities include an outdoor pool and a fitness centre featuring  state-of-the-art workout equipment designed by DAVID Health Solutions. A spa and a Thai specialty restaurant will also open at the end of the year. Offering easy access to explore the city, the hotel is a short 10 minute walk to Ploenchit BTS skytrain station with major shopping malls and restaurants located nearby.

For more information about the hotel, CLICK HERE. Alternatively, to learn more about Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts, please visit

Days Inn® by Wyndham Debuts in New Zealand

Wyndham Hotels & Resorts, the world’s largest hotel franchising company, has introduced its globally-recognized Days Inn by Wyndham brand to New Zealand with the opening of a new landmark hotel, Days Hotel & Suites by Wyndham Hamilton.

The addition bolsters the Company’s presence in New Zealand and in Hamilton, the region’s fourth most-populous city and a key growth market. Since April 1, 2018, Wyndham has opened 34 total hotels in the South East Asia and Pacific Rim region, three of which carry the Days Inn flag. Globally, the brand has more than 1,700 hotels across 25 countries.

A modern hotel set in a historic 19th-century building on the corner of Hamilton’s Collingwood and Victoria streets, the Days Hotel & Suites by Wyndham Hamilton is owned by the Giarn Family Trust and is currently undergoing significant refurbishments to feature a new lobby bar, restaurant and reception area.

Formerly known as the Sudima Hamilton Hotel, a building dating back to 1876, the now Days Hotel & Suites by Wyndham Hamilton offers 69 guest rooms and suites featuring a full range of amenities, including complimentary Wi-Fi, self-controlled air conditioning and heating, flat screen televisions, and environmentally-friendly bathroom amenities. In addition, the studios and two-bedroom suites are fitted with furnished balconies, allowing guests to soak up the sights and sounds of bustling Victoria Street. The hotel also features private meeting facilities, a lounge, guest laundry facilities and onsite parking.

Jetwing Symphony PLC Set to Launch a New Contemporary Boutique Hotel in Kandy

Spanning 1.9 acres, the hotel will feature 26 plush rooms and suites ranging from 52 sqm to 81 sqm with private butler service, exemplary amenities and elegant design with a local touch. The spacious rooms enjoy sweeping views of the Mahaweli River and the hill country and includes a secluded balcony or terrace affording a sense of privacy. Dining will be a gastronomical adventure, with a talented team offering a well-curated menu inspired by the local produce and freshest ingredients.

“As the last royal kingdom of our nation, Kandy has many stories to tell with cultural, religious and architectural significance. Launching in such a unique destination certainly complements Jetwing's spirit, where we continuously aim to create novel luxury experiences for guests to immerse in our rich culture. We are looking forward to welcoming discerning travellers with the genuinely warming, traditional Sri Lankan hospitality synonymous with the Jetwing brand.” said Hiran Cooray, Chairman, Jetwing Symphony PLC.

The four-story hotel has been designed in collaboration with renowned architectural firm, Philip Weeraratne Associates and will be managed by Jetwing Hotels along with 40 resorts and villas across the island. The building is formed by two wings on either side, connected by a semi-public “Gallery Walk” dedicated to the arts and crafts of Kandy. Every element of this contemporary and elegant hotel has been exquisitely designed to complement the location's natural surroundings.

Sneak Peek: First Interior Shots of the Most Advanced Expedition Ship in the World, Aurora Expeditions' The Greg Mortimer

Aurora Expeditions, a world leader in expedition cruising and home-grown polar exploration specialist, has announced it took delivery of the Greg Mortimer. The highly anticipated ship is set to redefine expedition cruising with its revolutionary patented ULSTEIN X-BOW®.  Named after Aurora Expeditions’ adventurous co-founder, the 104m ship is the first expedition vessel to feature the patented Ulstein X-Bow®; innovative marine technology that allows for gentler sea crossings, improved comfort and reduced emissions.
The ship is now ready to make her way to Ushuaia in anticipation of the official christening and inaugural voyage to Antarctica on 31 October 2019.
Letting passengers completely immerse themselves in the destination is of paramount importance to Aurora Expeditions. Their goal is to create lifelong ambassadors for the protection of the wilderness areas they travel to, and education and conservation are integral to Aurora Expeditions’ DNA. 
The twelve-day maiden voyage will depart Ushuaia, Argentina for Antarctica on 31 October 2019.
For more information, contact your preferred wholesaler or Aurora Expeditions: 1800 637 688, +61 (0)2 9252 1033 or

New Underwater Art Installation Designed by British Artist, Jason Decaires Taylor, Unveiled at Fairmont Maldives Sirru Fen Fushi

Fairmont Maldives Sirru Fen Fushi has unveiled a series of new sculptures within the Coralarium - the Maldives' first and only coral regeneration project in the form of an underwater art installation.
Conceptualised by celebrated British environmentalist and eco-artist, Jason deCaires Taylor, the abstract sculptures are inspired by the natural beauty of the coral reef and have been designed to imitate the ethereal formation of coral colonies. Rising from ten, semi-submerged plinths within the Coralarium, the installation aims to raise awareness of the threatened ecosystem, educate guests about the underwater world and rehabilitate the reef. Rising from the sea into the sky, the tessellated sculptures act as a visual connector between the aquatic world, and the land.
Perched in the largest resort lagoon in the Maldives, Fairmont Maldives Sirru Fen Fushi plays home to an abundance of marine life, from manta rays and turtles to bottlenose dolphins and over 250 species of tropical fish. Now, guests can get even closer to nature, as they explore these sculptures and the verdant aquatic life that dwells amongst them, accompanied by a resident marine biologist, or as part of the property's specially curated evening snorkelling tours.

Raffles Maldives Meradhoo Offers an Idyllic Beach Retreat With a Wonderful Overwater World

It seems the adage that good things come to those who wait is true. Following an exhaustive search for a suitably spectacular site, Raffles' first resort in the Maldives, which soft-opened in May, now introduces 16 new overwater villas, set on the southern tip of the Maldives in the remote and pristine Gaafu Alifu Atoll. A palm tree-peppered private island comprising of only 21 villas and residences, a sublime spa, beachside restaurants and world-class dive centre with an on-site marine biologist, Raffles Maldives Meradhoo is a haven for beach lovers.
Just a moment away by boat and just open on 22 September, Raffles Maldives Meradhoo's Overwater Island Experience completes the resort. With its vast overwater villas and residences, sophisticated Nikkei restaurant Yuzu and sunset-facing Yapa pool bar, it will provide unparalleled luxury to those who dream of a life spent on the water. Together these two private islands offer two distinct experiences, bound together by Raffles' legendary service.
All the facilities of the resort – and the very best of the Maldives – will be at their full disposal. A unique offering, a Marine Butler is available to every guest and will happily lead snorkelling tours of the resort's two remarkable and endlessly fascinating house reefs. Gaafu Alifu atoll is one of the world's largest and deepest atolls and the astoundingly clear, blissfully warm waters immediately surrounding the Raffles resort teem with a kaleidoscope of colourful fish.  Guests are encouraged to keep an eye out for Apollo, one of the 20 resident hawksbill and green turtles that regularly swim by to say hello.
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