Virgin Islands, British Travel Guide
Well ladies and gentlemen, the US Tennis Open is in full swing and if you are anything like us, you totally plan on tuning in when it gets down to the nitty gritty. Because let’s be frank unless you are REALLY into tennis, some of what comes before the final days of the competition is a little less engaging than, say, Superbowl.
BUT, if you happen to be someone who does live and breathe the sport, this particular package will knock your socks off. Actually, who are we kidding, you get to hang out with Sir Richard Branson as a part of this deal, so even if you despise the sport, we think you can fake it and just enjoy a killer vacation in the Caribbean. Plus ten percent of the cost goes to charity, so if nothing else just
lie develop a love of the sport for a good cause.
Does anyone else remember when Richard Branson’s private island got struck by lightning and his magnificent mogul-worthy Great House burned to charred cinders? And how Branson told the papers that he “ran naked” to rescue his guests, but then admitted it was actually legendary British stage/screen goddess Kate Winslet who carried Branson’s 90-year-old mum out of the inferno in her arms?
Our trip to Boston last month obviously turned out to be quite horrifying. But before it all went down - before the madness - we were rather impressed by how big of a draw the marathon was for the city. Hotels were full, restaurants were packed, and visitors were welcomed from around the world. It wasn't just a race. It was an attraction.
As far as events go, the Boston Marathon has to be up there with the best of them in terms of its effects on tourism. Maybe it's not quite on the same level as the Super Bowl or Mardi Gras, but the race has certainly served the city well since its inception in 1897.
Marathons, ironmans, and similar competitive events such as Tough Mudder have really gone mainstream over the past few years, so much so that even the most out-of-shape people we know are training for them these days (and bragging about it on Facebook). These events are not just for the athletically inclined anymore - they've made their way onto the bucketlists and social calenders of the masses. In a very sick way, the bombing in Boston has helped to solidify this trend. You can bet your bottom dollar that next year's race will have the most participants ever.
Given that rise in popularity, cities are vying to host their own competitive events and marathons can be found in dozens of destinations in the United States alone. Recently, we received a press release from a resort in the Caribbean that at first made us roll our eyes. A half hour later, something clicked, and we pulled the release out of our archive folder.
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Just because you’re not ready to sign on the dotted line and make a multi-million dollar real estate investment at Oil Nut Bay, doesn’t mean you’re not welcome at all. Instead, guests and potential buyers are more than welcome to stay in one of their rentals and see what this multi-generational residential community is all about, while naturally taking advantage of all the five-star amenities and services (and with a price tag that starts at $1,500 a night, you can bet there are a few).
They always say you should test drive before you buy, and since Oil Nut Bay is only accessible by boat or helicopter, you might want to make sure this is a place you don’t mind disappearing to for a while.
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Well, now the world is saved! Okay, we’re being facetious, of course: It’s a noble thing to take a stand and do some good for the planet and, after all, we all need to do our part.
But we do have to ask: Just how much bottled water are they consuming over there on Necker Island? There are only six houses (aka rooms) holding a maximum of 28 guests. And at a cool $29,000 (single or double) for a seven-night stay during “Celebration Weeks” (the only time you can book individual rooms; otherwise it’s the whole island or nothing for $42,500 per night.
Is his British Virgin Island's nirvana really fully booked all the time to need to make a big deal of letting us know Sir Richard is trying to get green while collecting that green? Forgive us if we smirk just a tad.
It's not hard to love a spa, we know. But we really love the Sense spa at Rosewood Little Dix Bay Resort for delivering on the promise of "total relaxation" that all spas make but few keep. Yes, we've loved the treatments here, and yes, we've swum in their pool. But right now, we're seriously into Sense's newest amenity: a side of coconut water, which is being offered free throughout May and June.
Yes, a fresh coconut plucked from the lush grounds of the resort will be served to any guest--poolside, of course--when they book a 90-minute Caribbean Breeze Spa Treatment.
Dreaming of lounging by a pool at a Caribbean resort this winter? We'd recommend the Rosewood Little Dix Bay, a British Virgin Islands resort with breezy cabins and no locks on the doors ("there are no keys in paradise!"). If you like luxury without pretense, this is your place.
But that whole "popular with families" thing? It almost ruined the poolside afternoon we planned for ourselves on a recent visit. As soon as we saw the large group of kids playing "Marco Polo" and splashing about, we knew we needed a Plan B.
And we found it--up the hill at Sense, a Rosewood Spa. But instead of a candle-lit relaxation room, this spa is open-air, set atop a cliff overlooking insanely blue ocean. There's a two-tier infinity pool and a little jacuzzi tucked away behind palm fronds.
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Boy, that Autograph Collection sure gets around. We've barely finished letting you know that the Marriott group of 'high personality hotels' was going Euro and here comes news that they'll also be hitting up the Caribbean.
Scrub Island Resort, Spa & Marina in the British Virgin Islands will fall under the Autograph umbrella in early 2012—the most appropriate time of year to drop everything and jet off to a small, private island. Start racking up those Marriott Rewards points now!
Where do you go when you're 65, have founded a (we assume) very profitable internet company and want to wed your twentysomething supermodel bride with no press or stalkerazzi?
You go to paradise, where nobody knows your name; more specifically, Rosewood Little Dix Bay on Virgin Gorda, near Isle de Richard Branson (Necker Island). Oh, and you invite Jimmy Buffett to come along, too.
Richar Branson billionaire mogul/hotelier has managed to take time away from his busy space-travel planning schedule to outline a plan for an eco-resort on Mosquito Island in the British Virgin Islands (of course.) The AP reports:
The plan calls for 20 villas and a beachfront restaurant. The resort would be powered by wind turbines and solar panels, while captured thermal flows would cool the buildings. Guests would eat food from an organic orchard, and they would have access to beach buggies that run on biofuels.
Branson's eco-friendly plans are being reviewed by the government but the word is they "seem to like" his ideas. More on the eco-resort can be found here.
Branson is in the midst of planning a bunch of "Urban" Virgin Hotels and he already has a few luxury resorts in his portfolio including Necker Island. Although the latter might not be as eco-friendly with its helicopter landing pad.
Say "Bonaire," that laid back little spit of land in the Caribbean, and people will respond, "diving paradise."
For decades, the island has been a world-class diving destination with a gorgeous reef. Go to Flickr and you'll get just a small taste of astonishing shots of the island from the underside.
But you're thinking there's no WAY you can take pictures like that, right? This can be remedied.
Sometimes billionaire nerds are the worst hotel wedding crashers. This Saturday, Google co-founder Larry Page will tie the know with his fiancee on Necker Island, the private Caribbean island owned by Virgin's Richard Branson.
Necker Island is pretty extravagant place that can house 26 of your closest friends. But Page obviously has more than 26 "friends" so he has rented the nearby island of Virgin Gorda for his wedding guests, including the entire Little Dix Bay Resort:
No one except Page's guests is staying at Little Dix Bay resort on Virgin Gorda "so that Page's wedding could be completely private," said an insider. "They rented all of Virgin Gorda. They took over the island."
The source also said "boats and ferries for hundreds of guests were ordered to ship them from Little Dix Bay to the ceremony."
Page is also flying guests in from all over the world on private planes. Expected to be in attendance are Bono, and other millionaires and billionaires.
· Google Wedding Seizes Island [Page Six]