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Cork: Often enjoyed, rarely appreciated before itís cruelly cast aside in favor of opening another bottle. But one hotel is out to change all that. The Conrad Algarve, in Portugal, wants you to reevaluate your relationship with cork.
There are two things we like about its new Cork Route Experience. One is that itís weird and intriguing, and thatís the best kind of hotel excursion. In fact, it follows on from their popular clam-picking excursion - no words. The other is that itís affordable: Ä100 ($112) for a half day or Ä132 ($147) for a full day Ė for an entire family.
It's been a while since we've heard from Viceroy Hotels but today's announcement is rather grand--Viceroy Algarve at Quinta Da Ombre will open in Portugal in 2017.
The resort will have 147 "stylishly-curated hotel guest rooms" along with 99 Viceroy-branded residential units in apartment, villa and townhouse configurations. There will also be seven dining venues, two outdoor swimming pools, an 18-hole golf course with designated clubhouse, a spa, a children's center a library lounge and over 6,000-sq.ft. of event and meeting space. The property will be designed by architectural design firm WATG, with interiors done by Wimberly.
All we have right now to look at is a watercolor painting of the area but Viceroy promises the resort will mix a "classic villa aesthetic" with "sleek, modern decor." As for Quinta da Ombria, it's a major development project by Pontos Group in the Algarve region, Portugal which is about two hours south of Lisbon and just 25 minutes from the Faro airport. It's still under construction but Viceroy is already hyping up its proximity to neighboring villages which are described as "centuries old." And that's what this Viceroy seems to be about--mixing the very old with the very new.
Now that Viceroy has broken into the European market, we expect more locations to be announced. We've also heard a rumor that Viceroy Hotel Group might be creating another brand.
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You may or may not know Nealís Yard Remedies, the original organic, slightly hippy UK skincare brand. If you have, you donít need us to sell it to you. If you havenít, get hold of some, now Ėit produces some of the most wonderfully scented, naturally made products youíll ever find, as well as herbal teas, supplements and all that hippy jazz.
Although a few of the Nealís Yard branches in London do spa treatments, itís more of a buy-to-use-at-home range, which is why this news is so important: The first non-UK Nealís Yard spa has just opened at Vivenda Miranda on the Algarve in Portugal.
The hotel is on a bit of an eco crusade, focusing its food on local and seasonal produce, introducing vegan, gluten free and raw food dishes, and revamping the spa, which opened June 1. Theyíre also introducing ďlifestyle retreatsĒ focusing on meditation and raw food, in conjunction with Nealís Yard Ė from £1395 for a week, see here for further details.
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Are you a parent who prides themself on being cool, not frumpy? Does your heart sink if you check into a family-friendly-but-mediocre resort? Do you have too much self-awareness to run the gauntlet of wrathful looks if you chance it with the kids in a trendy place?
If so, you need to get to Portugal. Specifically, Praia Verde, in Castro Marim, on the eastern coast of the Algarve. Itís the latest property for the Design Hotels portfolio, and itís family friendly. No, apparently thatís not a contradiction in terms.
The all-suite property opened in April, and goes for a look that will complement, rather than dominate the landscape: a low-rise building with neutral colors and natural materials Ė wood, slate, even straw Ė to keep the focus on the outside, even when inside.
One of the challenges of visiting a country for the first time is deciding where to spend your time. Do you hit the big cities, small towns, or cruise to the coast?
Jaunted recently filled us in on the gory deets surrounding American travelers' lack of love for Portugal, but two hotels have teamed up to help visitors get the best of both worlds on their first trip to the country: The Four Seasons Hotel Ritz in Lisbon and the Martinhal Beach Resort & Hotel in Sagres (South Portugal).
The package is a total of eight days/seven nights and includes three nights at the Four Seasons Hotel Ritz Lisbon, four nights at Martinhal Beach Resort & Hotel, one 25 minute massage at Martinhal and free breakfast at both.