Arrival/Check In: Turning off the narrow dusty streets of Hoi An and entering the tropical garden setting of the Life Heritage Resort, I felt like Dorothy encountering the suddenly Technicolor scene in The Wizard of Oz. Through masses of glossy green plants, shaggy-headed palms and pink and purple bougainvillea we headed to the breezy reception pavilion where a chilled towel and a welcome drink awaited. Fishing boats putt-putted along the Thu Bon River, just yards away, as the check-in formalities were quickly dispatched and we were on our way through the gardens to our room. (19/20)
Guest Quarters: All 94 accommodations are housed in 2- and 3-story townhouses whose archways and balconies reflect the colonial influences of the early traders who called at the bustling port of Hoi An. The two grand suites and 44 junior suites overlook the river. Many of the 48 superior rooms face the interior gardens and have “front porches” with upholstered daybeds hidden behind overflowing flowerboxes. Because there are no elevators, I opted for a ground floor room. In keeping with Life Resorts’ mission statement of harmony with nature, cool floors and gleaming teak shutters accented the soothingly pale walls. The entry sitting area included a desk, a sofa and chairs piled with pillows, and a coffee table. The bedroom was comfortably minimal (firm king-sized bed, night-tables with good reading lamps, teak ceiling fan, and a wall of louvered closets). And behind the teak-framed frosted doors was a bathroom with huge step-down tub and shower, double sinks, and two large windows that swung open onto an interior rear garden. (14/15)
Services/Amenities: In a nod to its European owners, Life Heritage Resort Hoi An is home to the Vienna Cafe (yummy pastries, strong coffee and Mozart on the sound system) and the Amsterdam Bar (a frosty Jenever or Heineken while you shoot some snooker). At Senses Restaurant the international breakfast buffet showcases everything from Chinese congee to cinnamon buns; while at dinner, it turns a la carte and formal, featuring “Life Cuisine,” an East-West fusion focusing on fresh seafood.
At Life Wellness, the poolside spa, stress-reducers range from massages to personalized advice from a Chinese healer. The pool’s bar features light snacks, great drinks, and up-close views of the river. (43/45)
The Experience: In the midst of all this serenity, if you’re still feeling compelled to work, the only computer is in the Amsterdam Bar: It’s free, but dial-up is pokey. Much better to just relax, say “om,” and watch the river flow by. (18/20)
Total Score: 94/100
LIFE HERITAGE RESORT HOI AN
01 Pham Hong Thai St.
Hoi An Town, Quang Province, Vietnam
tel 84 510 914 555
Corsica with steep, gray cliffs overlooking the Mediterranean and sandy beaches attracting summer visitors, is a French-governed island sometimes confused with Sardinia and Sicily, Italian islands to the south. Fortunately, all three islands share the same love for good wine, food and sun-splashed beaches.
The Islands of Tahiti offer a range of captivating activities for travelers with diverse interests, from hiking to breathtaking waterfalls, riding horses on secluded beaches; swimming with sharks; or immersing in Polynesian culture through traditional dance, music and art. For watersports enthusiasts, the crystal-clear lagoons offer exhilarating experiences like surfing, kiteboarding and paddleboarding. And if you’re looking to relax, the pristine beaches, overwater bungalows and tropical sun offer the perfect setting. With 118 islands and atolls to explore, island hopping is an excellent way to experience the full diversity of The Islands of Tahiti. With its blend of adventure, culture and relaxation, The Islands of Tahiti offer a truly unique travel experience.
If you’re ready to do a little holiday catch-up with your besties, make a beeline for Conrad New York Downtown. The lobby metamorphosed into a holiday forest of heavenly scented, decorated Virginia Spruce trees. Make your first stop ATRIO Barista Station in the lobby for a complimentary hot spiced apple cider (until Dec. 3) or hot chocolate (Dec. 22–24).
United Airlines is in the midst of a major initiative to modernize its fleet over the next several years. After first announcing the plan in 2021, planes fitted with United’s signature interior are finally beginning to appear across the airline’s narrowbody fleet of Boeing and Airbus planes. United flyers are sure to notice these enhancements from the moment they step on board: Each new or updated plane sports remodeled seats, seatback entertainment screens for everyone, Bluetooth connectivity and more, all adding up to a better experience on every journey.
London welcomes its newest boutique hotel just in time for the holiday season. The Chelsea Townhouse, located on Chelsea’s exclusive Cadogan Gardens, sits within proximity to its sister hotel, 11 Cadogan Gardens, and joins the Iconic Luxury Hotels portfolio.
One affordable plan can protect an entire year of trips: business or pleasure, short or long, domestic or international.
The Tampa EDITION recently launched two new offerings this festive season. Book the Holiday in the Sun promotion and receive complimentary valet, $50 in food and beverage credit, $50 in spa credit, and a signature EDITION Le Labo amenity. This offer runs through Jan. 5. Book here.