Just north of the bustling city of Jacksonville on Florida’s East Coast, historic Amelia Island is a slower, dreamier destination — especially for food lovers. Fresh catch is always a great place to begin, but the island also offers a wide selection of specialty food shops, brewpubs and great restaurants well worth exploring.
At Salt Life Food Shack, sit outside on the open-air deck and enjoy ocean views while sipping a tropical cocktail and noshing on sushi, Bahamian fish chowder, wood-grilled mahi tacos, crab baked grouper or seared ahi tuna salad. Better yet, go local at the raw bar, where the menu includes a variety of oyster choices.
Don’t miss Wicked BAO, where proprietor Nathalie Wu welcomes dining guests at the door of the historic building housing her eatery, personally guiding them through menu choices and helping diners have an outstanding experience. Featuring Asian fusion street food, the can’t-go-wrong menu includes handheld baos — think soft, bun-like tacos —stuffed with fillings like adobo pulled pork, buttermilk fried chicken and bulgogi beef. The bao is served with sides including Sichuan dumplings, shrimp spring rolls and crispy rice tots. Mains range from crispy pork chop rice and Singapore-style chili shrimp to daily chef specials.
A bookstore with adult story time and a fabulous café? That’s what you’ll find at Story & Song Neighborhood Bookstore Bistro, where the two-story space brims with colorful books and cards. The menu offers book title-themed soups, sandwiches and salads, such as the Little Paris Bookshop Slice of Quiche and Eat, Pray, Love Hummus & Flatbread. Try the Seasonal Secret Garden Salad with a heavenly salad dressing whipped up with Champagne vinegar and citrus juices, then browse to your heart’s content — or at least until you’ve stocked up on great summer reads. Or settle in for an author talk, storytelling session or musical jam.
For something else special, plan a catered picnic on the beach (or your choice of location), prepared by Luxe Picnics by Les. The small, locally owned company prepares grazing boxes and picnic repasts as beautifully presented as they are delicious. Guests can also take part in pop-up charcuterie board workshops, private wine- and whiskey-pairing experiences and picnic packages for small groups of up to 12 guests that can be added onto activities like sunset horseback rides, intimate meeting gatherings, bridal parties and much more.
Go home with a bespoke tea or a basket full of spice blends, perfect for augmenting your favorite recipe, made up fresh at The Spice and Tea Exchange. From the seasoning department, try the Florida Sunshine, a grinder blend concocted with a recipe including orange zest, green peppercorn, ginger and rose petals. Heavenly teas include Strawberry Clouds White Tea and Blue Raspberry Crush Herbal Tea. While you’re browsing the wide selection, wander the shop while sipping a freshly brewed cup of your favorite hot or cold tea from the shop’s own Tea Bar.
Local brewpubs include Mocama (a local Timucuan word meaning “big water where the sun is born”) and First Love Brew Pub, where husband-and-wife team Kevin and Jessie (who holds a master’s degree in brewing science) created a relaxed and welcoming space that serves up handcrafted brews and a delicious comfort food. including family recipes and pizzas made from imported Italian flour. Pizza-beer pairings are also offered.
Prefer spirits? Head to Marlin & Barrel Distillery for a tour, tasting or relaxing cocktail. In case you’re wondering, the business name refers to the marlin fish, with an additional nod to an Ernest Hemingway character. Handcrafted, organic-ingredient spirits include espresso rum, smoked pepper vodka, seasonal apple-spice rum and tangerine-flavored Blossom — a cordial similar to limoncello that’s a great addition to flavored summertime margaritas and martinis.
With the launch of Octantis in Antarctica last winter, Viking dipped a toe into the growing expedition cruising market and will jump in with both feet when its twin, Polaris, launches later in 2022. The pair bring the total number of Viking ships — river, ocean and expedition — to 97 cruising all seven continents.
From 24-Hour Butler Service to a Sky Pool: Boutique Luxury Awaits at Vista Encantada Spa Resort & Residences in Los Cabos
Set on a seaside bluff overlooking Land’s End in Cabo San Lucas, Vista Encantada Spa Resort & Residences is a Baja paradise specializing in serene vistas and impeccable hospitality, offering a Pacific coast lifestyle with authentic Mexican touches. Guests can now earn a fourth night free at the stunning resort, plus a $100 resort credit, when booking through March 20, for travel through June 15.
The legendary Venice Simplon-Orient-Express, a Belmond Train, now features a new luxurious cabin accommodation. Eight new suites will grace the train in June 2023 to further elevate the train experience.
Hyatt Regency Salt Lake City comes to Utah this October, conveniently located adjacent to Salt Palace Convention Center. The new hotel features 60,000 square feet of meeting space, one of the largest hotel ballrooms and the most expansive outdoor rooftop event terraces in the city.
ISN’T IT TIME? It's time to treat yourself to the vacation you deserve, and Celebrity Cruises® offers the perfect escapes. With an award-winning fleet of ships that sail to more than 300 destinations around the world, Celebrity will take you almost anywhere you want to go in style. Enjoy stunning staterooms and suites, culinary experiences imagined by Michelin-starred chefs and intuitive service. Celebrity makes sure your vacation is effortless from the start, which is why drinks, WiFi and tips are Always IncludedSM on every sailing.
Red Rock Casino Resort and Spa in Summerlin, Las Vegas, recently announced plans to completely transform its dining space, entertainment offerings and gaming experiences with new additions. Currently underway, new concepts like the famed Thai restaurant Lotus of Siam and the new Greek restaurant Naxos Taverna will soon join the resort.
Italy’s Regina Isabella Resort recently expanded its thermal spa program to include treatment for those suffering from long COVID-19 or “post-COVID syndrome.” Sufferers of long COVID-19 display symptoms months after their initial recovery from the virus, with some of the most common symptoms including brain fog, headaches, shortness of breath, fatigue and loss of taste and smell.
United Airlines remains firmly committed toward sustainability in aviation. The latest development in its eco-conscious goals includes working with Oxy Low Carbon Ventures to commercialize the production of sustainable aviation fuels (SAF) with biotech firm Cemvita Factory. Cemvita looks to develop a revolutionary new way to produce SAF by using carbon dioxide and synthetic microbes. Additionally, United Airlines Ventures (UAV) recently announced an equity investment in Fulcrum, and United has invested more in SAF production than any other airline in the world.
Slated to open this December, Six Senses Crans-Montana will soon offer ski-in/ski-out access from its location just above the main gondola in Crans, Switzerland. Embracing a Swiss chalet feel, the 45 terrace rooms and one- and three-bedroom suites overlook views of the mountain and pine forests.