Arrival/Check-In: Having passed through Israel and dealing with one of our party who had to secure an “on-the-spot” Jordanian passport, we stopped at the historic Roman city of Jerash on the way to Petra with our guide from Isram Tours. The Isram staff members are spectacular, and I made huge points showing them pictures of Queen Noor and me at an event I hosted in New York many years ago. Queen Noor is much-loved by the Jordanians; she is largely responsible for the fine relations between the United States and Jordan.
We arrived late to the Mövenpick, in time for dinner, which we enjoyed in the great room of the property under a magnificent Turkish brass chandelier. This room connects several of the hotel’s restaurants and acts as a lobby lounge.
We made our goodbyes to our guide, Amjad Sonqret, and driver, Firas Al Qasem, and arranged to meet early in the morning to tour the ancient Nabataean city of Petra. We were ready to join Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade to discover the mysteries of the city. Petra once fell out of favor for the city of Palmyra (in present-day Syria), which was partially destroyed by ISIS this year.
Check-in was swift, and everyone was so kind at the Mövenpick — the hotel went beyond my expectations. The buffet dinner was lovely, as was the team at the Al Saraya Restaurant, where we also enjoyed breakfast the next morning. The maître d’ fawned over us, making sure we were comfortable as well as fed.
Guest Quarters: We stayed in room 222, a lovely suite with views from a balcony to the Petra entrance. The suite boasts a living room, large bathroom with double sinks, a separate large shower and tub, and any amenity you may have forgotten or given up to TSA. To boot, the room has a free minibar and a lovely Mediterranean but modern décor which follows throughout the hotel. Standard features include a king-sized bed, a walk-in closet, HD TV and comfortable outdoor furniture on the balcony.
As you enter the suite, a short hallway takes you to the living room, with a convenient desk on the far left wall and a sectional sofa on the right with accompanying chairs, tables and a coffee table. A nice spread of fruit, desserts, nuts and a bottle of wine was laid out from the acting general manager, Rania Bawalsa, who has since been promoted to general manager. She is the first Jordanian woman in such a position. I took note of her welcoming guests from table to table while we dined.
Services/Amenities: Petra’s entrance is literally out the front door of the property. We started early to beat the hordes that descend on Petra from the cruise ships; they arrive about 11 a.m., and we encountered them making their way down and kicking up dust to blur the view of the Treasury, the famous main tomb at Petra.
Mövenpick offers five restaurants to choose from, and each has its own personality, from a more causal atmosphere to the more sophisticated, award-winning Mediterranean Al Iwan.
Sad to say, our one day here did not allow us time to see the fully equipped gym and spa, but the trek down and back to the Petra ruins is enough exercise for a day!
The Experience: What can I say? I was not well-versed in the Mövenpick brand, and if the Petra property is a sample of their work, I am a fan: friendly and helpful staff; wonderful restaurants; and location, location, location. Jordan is a must-visit destination. The people smile and are warm, even at border control, asking us to please return. I hope to come back soon and visit Aqaba; there is a Mövenpick there!
[item check=yes]Less than 10 minutes for check-in[/item]
[item check=yes]Separate tub and shower[/item]
[item check=yes]Large vanity[/item]
[item check=yes]High-quality towels[/item]
[item check=yes]Powerful, unattached hair dryer[/item]
[item check=yes]High-quality bed linens[/item]
[item check=yes]Large, flat-screen television[/item]
[item check=yes]Large desk with convenient outlets[/item]
[item check=yes]Large, complimentary laptop safe[/item]
[item check=yes]Complimentary in-room WiFi[/item]
[item check=yes]Complimentary bottled water[/item]
[item check=yes]Stocked minibar[/item]
[item check=yes]Ample lighting[/item]
[item check=yes]In-room coffeemaker[/item]
[item check=yes]Iron and ironing board[/item]
[item check=yes]On-site restaurant[/item]
[item check=yes]24-hour room service[/item]
[item check=yes]24-hour state-of-the-art fitness center[/item]
[item check=yes]Turn-down service[/item]
Mövenpick Resort Petra
Petra 71810, Jordan
tel 962 3 215 7111
Airplane travel evokes a lot of emotions these days: excitement, anticipation, uncertainty and nervousness, just to name a few. But when you do take to the skies again, the giddiness of getting pampered at 35,000 feet can most certainly wash away the surrealness of the past year and a half — at least for the duration of a long- haul flight — as you sip Champagne and slip your feet into plush slippers. While some global airlines have paused or pushed back plans for upgrades and refreshes to their premium cabins, others have introduced exciting changes that await in your pod or lie-flat bed in first and business classes. What’s more, amenities like privacy screens, sliding suite doors and space to spread out all serve a dual purpose as methods to luxuriate in the air while keeping social distance. Here are some nice- ties to expect now and in the near future, from retrofitted seat configurations to updated décor to Michelin-starred meals:
The Global Business Travel Association’s (GBTA) Convention 2021 will be unlike any other convention before it, as we come together in person for the first time since the business travel industry drastically changed and look forward to rebuilding and reshaping the future. GBTA Convention 2021 will bring all of us together to learn from experts and each other, in-person at Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, Nov. 17–19. The safety of our attendees is our top priority. View health and safety protocols.
United Airlines is making international travel more accessible. United announced the largest trans-Atlantic expansion in its history, including 10 new flights and five new destinations including Amman (AMM), Jordan; Bergen (BGO), Norway; Azores (PDL), Portugal; Palma de Mallorca (PMI), Spain; and Tenerife (TFS) in the Spanish Canary Islands. All new routes, set to begin in spring 2022, are not served by any other North American carrier.
Galataport Istanbul, a new cruise and lifestyle destination on the Bosphorus in Istanbul, welcomed its first ship, SeaDream II, on Oct. 1. Approximately 150 passengers and crew from Bulgaria Varna arrived at 10 a.m. for a two-day homeport operation before continuing to Bulgaria Burgaz.
This holiday season, escape to the Caribbean with Celebrity Cruises and reconnect with family and friends in luxurious accommodations that make you feel right at home. Savor globally inspired cuisine designed by our Michelin-starred chef, paired with the most awarded wine collection at sea. Elevate “me time” with a soothing spa treatment sure to renew. With both long and short cruises to celebrate in December, and even three special Ultimate Holiday Cruises that sail over Christmas and into the New Year, the time to gift an experience and create unforgettable memories is now. Celebrity Cruises’ Always IncludedSM pricing — drinks, WiFi and tips — ensures a seamless, carefree vacation with the ones you love.
The countdown to Halloween weekend is on! Are you are still unsure about plans? Do you go to a house party? Stay in to hand out candy? Try something different this year and join Philadelphia’s The Mütter Museum at its 6th annual Mischief at The Mütter.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and Walker Hotel Tribeca is blushing pink with an exclusive offer benefitting the National Breast Cancer Foundation. Throughout the month, guests can book an all-pink guestroom, among additional amenities.
History and culture are etched into every corner of Greece. Beginning with its language, the oldest written language still in existence, and moving from the traces of passing civilizations and religions to pre-historic findings and works from many movements, there’s a wealth of culture to discover on your next trip to Greece.
Insight Vacations, Tourism Ireland and Tourism Northern Ireland are offering the chance to win a free trip to Ireland for two, valued at $6,000. Oct. 18–22, The Road to Ireland contest page will be updated daily with a new clue and question that contestants will need to answer for a chance to win a trip for two on Insight’s Country Roads of Ireland tour in 2022. Contestants have until 11:59 p.m. PST Oct. 29 to submit answers.