While a mention of Napa Valley may just manifest a longing for a world-class glass of wine, the small town of Yountville in Northern California is also a perfect location for a relaxing spa-centric getaway. At the airy North Block Hotel on Washington Street (the main boulevard), the intimate Francis & Alexander Spa at North Block Hotel is located below street level, and offers a number of signature treatments that include Un-Corked. The 50-minute therapy is an indulgent foot and back exfoliation with freshly ground grape seeds, and a massage that combines the use of fingertips and corks. The hotel boasts Mediterranean architecture with elegant, beautifully appointed rooms opening to a central, fountained courtyard with a fireplace. Each of the 20 guestrooms (some with private fireplaces) features either a private balcony (upper level) or terrace (lower level), oversized bathrooms with heated floors, deep soaking tubs and separate rain showers, mini-fridges and espresso machines. A gated pool and hot tub open to the Napa Valley sky offers incentive for a swim and stargazing. On-site dining includes Redd Wood by acclaimed chef Richard Reddington. The menu offers handcrafted pasta dishes, wood-fired pizzas, plenty of wine choices and a selection of artisan cocktails.
The lineup of tasting rooms in Yountville includes Stewart Cellars, conveniently located directly across the street from North Block. The family-owned and -operated small-batch winery features a central property of imposing stone buildings with a new Tasting Hall with soaring ceilings and sweeping, horseshoe-shaped tasting bar; plus a beamed Nomad Heritage Library with a terrace, gigantic wood-burning fireplace and an interior ambience that conjures an Old World explorer’s club. Relax and enjoy a private tasting from the collection of library vintages with Stewart Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon and NOMAD Beckstoffer Las Piedras Cabernet Sauvignon, served up with cheeses and tasty small bites. Stewart Cellars also offers a Wine Club so you can get curated deliveries wherever you happen to be located. Reservations for tastings are required, but feel free to stop by the café counter at your leisure. Chef Sarah Heller serves up light to-go meals, fresh juices, delectable salads and fresh, yummy Belgium waffles.
All airplane flights begin on the ground. An airport is the starting point, but airspace issues continue to expand from the terrestrial to the aerial. Altitude is no barrier when countries claim sovereignty from the Earth to beyond the stratosphere.
IHG® Business Edge provides small- to midsized enterprises with benefits and confidence to navigate the evolving business travel environment.
Flanked by the ski resort-studded Balkan Mountains and situated directly downwind from the fragrant pine forests of the Vitosha mountain, Sofia’s gorgeous landscape and strategic location between Asia and Europe put it at a crossroads where business and pleasure intermingle effortlessly. In recent years Bulgaria’s capital city has ranked as one of the top 10 best places in the world for startup businesses, and the onslaught of new tax exemptions for businesses looking to invest in the country make it an attractive option for many corporations to begin operations within the city.
It’s been almost three years since Category 5 Hurricane Maria made landfall on Puerto Rico, wreaking havoc on the island and leaving most residents without electricity and clean water. Tourism, which accounts for 6.5 percent of Puerto Rico’s gross domestic product, took a beating, with hotels closed for year-long repairs, airlines cutting service and cruise lines shifting itineraries to other Caribbean destinations. Timing for the hurricane couldn’t have been worse, coming on the heels of the government’s announcement in May 2017 that it was unable to pay more than $70 billion in public debt and thus forced to file for bankruptcy. Large protests and a change of government would follow. Then, in January 2020, a 6.4-magnitude earthquake rocked the south side of the island, forcing San Juan restaurants to close while power was restored. And as we write this story, coronavirus runs rampant across the globe with severe economic implications for all destinations, including Puerto Rico.
According to the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy, small businesses create two-thirds of net new jobs and account for nearly 48 percent of the U.S. private sector workforce. And small- and medium-sized businesses outpace all other sectors as one of the fastest-growing in the United States. InterContinental® Hotels Group (IHG) goes above and beyond to create opportunities for this segment with its IHG® Business Edge program, voted Best Small- to Mid-Sized Business Program in Global Traveler’s 2019 GT Tested Reader Survey awards.
Climbing along the coast, I was trying to snap pictures of the cool-blue Puerto Vallarta waters outside my car window (I know, it never works) when we started winding along stone walls draped in jungle-like foliage. Annoyed my view was blocked, I looked around to see where we were just as we were parking at Hotel Mousai — I audibly gasped. The all-glass, chic and incredibly grand entrance was so well-secluded, it somehow snuck up on me.
Noble House Hotels & Resorts debut Tropical Distancing, a newly trademarked term to connote social distancing in an idyllic setting at its U.S. beach properties, including San Diego Mission Bay Resort; Kona Kai Resort & Spa; LaPlaya Beach & Golf; Ocean Key Resort & Spa; Pelican Grand Beach Resort; The Portofino Hotel & Marina; Solé Miami; L’Auberge Del Mar; and Little Palm Island Resort & Spa.
Though air travel slowed as airports temporarily closed and borders shuttered to stifle the spread of coronavirus, the airline industry — led by oneworld alliance member airlines — enacted enhanced protective measures to reduce risk and protect passengers.
The 1985 song “One Night in Bangkok” mentions many of the overindulgences of this city. One of them is massage parlors. Today, however, a Thai massage is considered an activity that improves one’s physical and mental well-being. The city has shed its former reputation as a place of wild nightlife and decadence, over the past few decades emerging as a major center for international commerce, wellness initiatives and tourism.