Category Archives: Luxury Destinations

The Best Places to Enjoy a Luxurious Weekend in Bedforshire


In your quest for breathtaking landscapes and sumptuous retreats this year, give the city of Bedford some thought, as you may be surprised to find that it caters to even the most exceptional tastes.

Woburn Abbey
Weekend in Bedforshirejimbowen0306 / Foter / CC BY

Attractions in Bedforshire

Bedford is home to The Higgins Art Gallery and Museum, with a range of decorative art exhibits housed in the annex to a Victorian brewery donated by the Higgings family. Acclaimed British artists are featured here in Cecil Higgins’ private collection, such as Turner and Cotman, in appreciation of their masterful renditions of national landscape in watercolour. The Bedford Corn Exchange, which has recently been converted into an entertainment venue, where the Philharmonia Orchestra has been residing since 1995. Such globally adored personalities as Marlene Dietrich, Bing Crosby, Humphrey Bogart and Glenn Miller performed and were welcomed here during World War Two, and the venue continues to host concerts and events by contemporary artists.

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Bedford Corn Exchangefotdmike / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

Bedforshire Accommodation

For a luxurious stay in Bedford, it would be foolish to overlook the Luton Hoo Hotel, Golf and Spa, with its awe-expiring architecture and magnificently lavish suites, each of them charmingly unique and royally adorned.

Dining

Dine at Chez Jerome’s restaurant serving the most delectable contemporary French cuisine, or enjoy Paris House’s fine dining on the Duke of Bedfordshire’s Woburn Estate. The Bedford Swan’s River Room Restaurant, overlooking the River House, serves an array of modern dishes, but the most exquisite dining will undoubtedly be provided by the Wernher Restaurant, which gives modern dishes an exciting twist.

Adventure

Bedford will delight you with its indoor skydiving centre, where the rush of jumping from an aeroplane or even from the edge of space is simulated indoors, offering you the excitement of a death-defying sport, but without the risk.

Another thrilling experience for the young at heart is the simulated driving centre in Bedford, where a wide selection of vehicles and an array of world renowned racing tracks are put at your disposal.

MacBraynes Bus - 1961 Restored Bedford Coach 603CYS - used by Northern Constabulary Pipe Band
city of Bedfordconner395 / Foter / CC BY

The city of Bedford will be hosting its 150th Amateur Regatta this year, so if you want to witness the skills of the country’s future Olympic athletes, make plans to attend on the 10th of May.

In July, the city should also be organizing its River Festival, an excellent opportunity to admire a parade, a fireworks display, and to possibly even join in the race.

A top-class venue, The University of Bedfordshire Theatre will provide a glimpse into acting students’ efforts and achievement on stage, and will offer shows to suit even the most critical of audiences.

Wrest Park (EH) 27-05-2013
BedfordshireKaren Roe / Foter / CC BY

Finally, a medieval must-see, Bedford Castle will answer your historical curiosities, exhibiting the mottle and vestige of its bailey walls, a lime kiln, and various war craft peculiarities.

Hopefully, its range of exclusive venues, coupled with the myriad of pleasant leisure activities on offer, has kindled your interest in the fascinating city that is Bedford.

 

Vineyards, Villas and Vivacity: A Road Trip on the Italian Riviera


There are few better peninsulas to choose for a road trip in Europe than the one that makes up Italy. From the northern, Alpine regions to the far South and Sicily, Italy has so much to offer. However, one of the undiscovered gems – certainly so far as many British holiday makers goes – is the Italian Riviera which lies chiefly along the Ligurian coast. It is easy to navigate your way around the Riviera. You simply have to follow shoreline.

Road Trip on the Italian Riviera

Road Trip on the Italian Riviera

Starting Out

Many start in the south and head northwards from La Spezia, but it is a good idea to the journey in reverse, commencing in France. From the UK it is quite easy to book a cheap flight to Nice and from there rent a car from one of the hire operators at the airport, like National Car Rental. From Nice pick up the E80 westbound in the direction of Monaco and the Italian border. Crossing into Italy takes little more than half an hour from Nice along some stunning roads. Once you are over the border head on to San Remo, the first town on the coast that has a true Italian flavour. San Remo has plenty of accommodation in the town and it is well worth stopping overnight to enjoy its delights. There is a great beach, but San Remo is best known for its nightlife and music scene. There is a well-respected annual jazz festival held in the town and a good theatre that has regular operatic productions.

Nice Port 1
Nice Foter.com / CC BY-SA

Savona

From San Remo, drive on to the seaport of Savona. This should take you under two hours on a good run. There are some great tourist sights in this ancient place and the Palazzo Delle Palle should not be missed. You can also seek out the former home of Christopher Columbus in Savona. In terms of cuisine, Savona offers typically Ligurian dishes. One of the most famous of these is the region’s pesto sauce. It is thick and green and usually served on top of freshly prepared pasta. In this western side of Liguria, the red wine producing region of Dolceacqua is predominant. Try a glass or two Sangiovese – it is what the locals tend to order to accompany a bowlful of home-cooked pasta.

Fortezza del Priamar dalle alture Savonesi
SavonaBasilico / Foter.com / CC BY-SA

Moving On

If you continue to drive east along the coast you will soon come to Genoa. Given that this University city is such as wonderful place to visit in its own right, it doesn’t really fit in with a road trip. Unless you choose to spend a few hours exploring its huge aquarium or the Pallazzi dei Rolli, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, you are better off pushing on to Rapallo. Smaller than its more famous neighbour, Rapallo has some great eateries, including the Lord Byron restaurant. In this area you can easily find holiday villas for hire and you may want to spend a few days based here before heading on. That way you can enjoy the daily farmers’ market before a day trip to the beach or a local vineyard.

Porto Genova 0038
GenoaFoter.com / CC BY-SA

The Cinqueterra

As a final destination, progress to Levanto – just to the north of the so-called cinqueterra, or five lands. These famous fishing villages sprawl along the Riviera and some can be accessed by boat only. Leave the car behind for a day and enjoy exploring them before heading back the way you came.

Sunset over Manarola, Italy
CinqueterraJoel Bedford / Foter.com / CC BY-NC-ND
 

Luxury by the Sea in Israel


By definition, living by the sea means having the basic ingredients to live in luxury. It would not be too far off the mark to say that as far as the prime rule of real estate investment – location, location, location – determines that living by the sea is deemed universally as one of the best locations around. As to whether the property itself lives up to the location is another question all together; however, should your land be by the sea, you are a major step toward attaining luxury by the sea.

נמל יפו העתיקה | The old port, Jaffa, Israel
The old port, Jaffa, Israelronsho © / Foter.com / CC BY-NC-ND

Israel is no different to the rest of the world other than the fact that it has been blessed with absolutely superb weather (unless you prefer the cold) and some incredible beaches. Read more

 

Luxury Beach Breaks in Sussex, UK


If you’re looking to treat yourself to a sumptuous, stylish seaside getaway within the UK then head for Sussex on the East Coast. Here you’ll find some of the UK’s finest examples of lavish, luxurious coastal comfort in the shape of high end beach houses, shabby chic beach cottages and deluxe apartments located in fashionable locals like Angmering-on-sea, Camber Sands and Rye.

Colorful rhododendrons and azaleas in full bloom in the rock gardens at Leonardslee Gardens, West Sussex, UK

Colorful rhododendrons and azaleas in full bloom in the rock gardens at Leonardslee Gardens, West Sussex, UK

Angmering On Sea

Starting with the elegant Angmering-on-sea – a small but very smart seaside resort in West Sussex that has always attracted the good, the great and the glitterati of England, especially since the turn of the century. However, it was during the war that it gained its ‘Riviera’ status for the rich revellers, with its fashionable lidos, tennis clubs and royal and famous following.  Today its coastline boasts England’s grandest and most luxurious beach accommodation and you only need to visit once to understand why this beautiful spot has gained such a following. Apart from being only an hour’s drive and direct train ride from London, it has much to offer. The area is filled with interesting places to visit and sights to see. It posses beautiful countryside, including the South Downs and lovely villages, all steeped in history, the evidence of which are easy to stumble upon.  Pick from prehistoric graves, Saxons sites, Roman remains, medieval monuments and even smugglers haunts for a choice of exciting family days out or romantic gateways.

Camber Sands

On the other side of Sussex is another equally stunning but slightly more trendy resort called Camber Sands, named after what could be Britain’s best stretch of sand. For a resort beach it has a unique wild and unspoilt quality, perhaps due to its tremendous rolling dunes, wide expanse of golden sand and very eye-catching cool beach houses that are perfectly positioned along the sea front. There’s a reason why this natural beauty has attracted so many producers and directors to its shores in search of an idyllic backdrop to both films and television programmes. In the summer this place comes into its own thanks to the crowd it attracts and the great relaxed beach hangouts on offer. Also the very size of this beach makes it an ideal spot to enjoy much needed freedom, sun and games, with or without kids!

Camber Sands

Camber Sands

While the action heroes can choose from a roster of every type of water sport, the more chilled sunbathers can enjoy relaxing, picnicking or barbecuing because there is enough space for all. Nestling close by is Camber village filled with cool cafes, gastro pubs and restaurants generally filled with trendy Londoners who enjoy the ease of this perfect one hour away seaside fix.

Rye

Last but not least and a little further east is the ancient coastal town of Rye, a beautiful historic spot which offers days of cultural and historical activities, fun for the kids and some very tempting beach retreats. Rye promises Norman forts, Roman battle sites, ancient art, antiques even the odd museum. For the wildlife lovers there are some amazing woodlands to explore where you might even catch a glimpse of some local wild deer or boar! One things for sure… If it’s luxury mixed with some seaside chill, the choice of luxury beach cottages to rent in Sussex is sure to please the most discerning traveller.

 

Family-Friendly NYC


Planning a family vacation can be tricky, particularly with more than one child in tow.  It can be costly, as well as challenging, to accommodate the interests of the kids and the grown-ups.  But it is possible to plan a fun, exciting, educational trip that everyone in your family can enjoy.  You don’t have to travel out of the country, or to a resort or amusement park.  The vacation of a lifetime is waiting for your family in New York City.

Big Apple

Big Apple

Sure, New York is famous for its gourmet dining and night life.  But many people don’t realize how much fun visitors of all ages can have in The Big Apple.  No matter how old your children are, there are lots of attractions and landmarks that they will love to visit.

  • Museums – Make learning fun at the many kid-friendly museum exhibits in New York.  SoHo’s Children’s Museum of the Arts offers fun craft projects for visitors to do, and the dinosaur fossils at the American Museum of Natural History are a hit with kids of any age.
  • Parks and Playgrounds – Children need to play, and New York has plenty of opportunities.  From the fabulous playgrounds of Central Park to the indoor facility at the DiMenna Children’s History Museum, they’ll have lots of space to run around.
  • Zoos – Animal lovers, young and old, will love visiting the city’s famous zoos.  Central Park Zoo features animals in realistic re-creations of their natural habitats.  Kids can learn about animals up close at the Tisch Children’s Zoo.  The expansive Bronx Zoo houses more than 600 species of animals from all around the world.
  • Toys, Toys, Toys – New York’s world-famous toy stores are sure to make everyone in your family smile.  Times Square is home to the flagship location of Toys R Us, which boasts a 60-foot Ferris wheel.  America’s oldest toy store, the famed FAO Schwartz flagship store greets you as you exit Central Park.
  • Eats and Treats – All this sightseeing is sure to wear the kids (and the parents) out.  Refuel their energy with a slice of New York pizza from one of the city’s many amazing pizza shops.  You can also enjoy some confections you can only get in New York.  Treat the family to a scoop or two at the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory, or let the kids pick their own candy at Dylan’s Candy Bar.

With so much to do and see, New York is the ideal destination for your family vacation.  All it takes is a little planning to create a memorable and enjoyable trip.  If you’re worried about navigating the streets of New York, or fighting the traffic, let Star City Limousine take care of you.  We have a fleet of beautifully maintained vehicles that can comfortably accommodate your family, no matter what its size.  Our professional, courteous drivers will make sure you get around the city with ease.

 

Vacation Like a King in Israel

The history of the Holy Land is replete with stories of kings – King David and King Solomon being two of the better known kings associated with Israel. Although Israel may no longer be ruled by kings, that doesn’t mean that you can’t vacation like a king in Israel.

Here comes the flood
Tel Avivronsho © / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

In fact, it can be confidently stated that you can holiday today in a far superior manner to the luxuries afforded the kings of yore. Not only will you be able to see sites that were extant thousands of years ago but you will also be able to enjoy all the developments that have taken millennia to come to fruition. And even though Jerusalem is affectionately known as the City of Kings, that doesn’t mean that luxury apartments in Tel Aviv will afford you any less of a royal vacation than the King David Hotel in Jerusalem.

In fact, given the Biblical stories filled with intrigue and debauchery are perhaps better set in modern day Tel Aviv than the magnificent yet more sober and conservative environs of Jerusalem. Okay, perhaps not intrigue given that Jerusalem is the home of the Israeli parliament – the Knesset, but definitely debauchery; not that I am writing from personal experience, of course.

If it is wonderful beaches, excellent fine dining, vibrant cafes, and international class shopping, then Tel Aviv cannot be beat. And although it may be tempting to return at the end of the day to one of Tel Aviv’s five star hotels, apartments in Tel Aviv offer a more independent and hands on way of exploring the city.

For those who may think that this article is biased toward Tel Aviv, fear not. Jerusalem, whilst only one hour drive from Tel Aviv, is seemingly a world away. It has its own charm which appeals to many even though it doesn’t have an inch of coastline.

Jerusalem is a stunning city. History cries out from its every path, and its significance to Christian, Jew, and Muslim alike is evidence of its importance on the world map. In Jerusalem, you can literally follow the paths of kings and princes, and touch the same stones that were used to build edifices that have withstood wars and everything else that man and nature could throw at them.

Just to add some variety to your options, Israel is more than Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. You will find luxury accommodation from the Hermon in the north to Eilat in the south, where you may fancy a stay at Herods or, perhaps as a nod to female royalty, the Queen Sheba.

 

Luxury by the Sea in Israel


When I hear the world, “Israel,” the first think I think of are the incredible beaches, incredible food, and amazing weather. And I dare say that those familiar with the country would have similar thoughts.

Luxury Tel Aviv Holiday
Luxury Tel Aviv HolidayAna Paula Hirama / Foter.com / CC BY-SA

There are three seas in Israel – the Dead Sea in the east, the Red Sea at Israel’s northern most point, and the Mediterranean Sea that runs along much of the country’s west. And although the Dead Sea and Eilat are on most tourist itineraries, it is the magnificent Mediterranean coastline that attracts most of the locals, tourists, and people looking for the better things in life.

As Jerusalem has no coastline, those seeking luxury by the sea in Israel usually start in Tel Aviv and work their way north. Although there are beautiful beaches south of Tel Aviv, the prestigious suburbs are located in Tel Aviv and north of Tel Aviv. And even among those seeking sea land apartments Israel, the choice is basically centered around Tel Aviv and its environs and Herzliya Pituach, approximately 15 minutes drive north of Tel Aviv. For those seeking a house in proximity to the sea, the choices are more extensive.

Although it is no secret that accommodation by the sea is highly sought after in every country in the world, it is only a reasonably recent phenomenon that has seen Israeli developers building luxury apartments across from the Mediterranean foreshore. That it has taken so long is even more surprising given Israelis’ love of the beach and beach culture. No doubt local council bureaucracy ad much to do with this. However, developers are now making up for lost time although, given Israel’s tiny land mass, there are only so many prime locations available for development.

For those seeking luxury houses by the sea, the prime addresses are (once again) Herzliya Pituach, Arsuf, Ceaseria, Shefer, Michmoret, and Beit Yanai. All these suburbs are between 15 and 45 minutes drive north of Tel Aviv and each are a haven for beach lovers and those who appreciate the better things in life. As is to be expected, property in these premium locations does not come cheap.

The time has finally come for those not familiar with Israel to do themselves a favor and familiarize themselves with a country of great history, beauty, friendly locals, and don’t forget the stunning beaches, , incredible food, and amazing weather.

 

A Luxury Travel to the Holy Land


When people first think of Israel it is doubtful whether they think of it as a luxury destination. More than likely what first springs to mind is desert and heat and Arabs and wars. Fortunately that is not the case, although, yes, all those things do exist in the Holy Land. However, when you look at things logically, you realize that your those initial thoughts may have been misconstrued by the popular press and not formed objectively.

Jerusalem, by Edward Lear
Travel to the Holy LandMartin Beek / Art Photos / CC BY-NC-ND

The fact is that Israel is the Jewish state; a country dominated by approximately 6.5 million Jews out of a total population approximating 8 million. It is the only pluralistic democracy in the Middle East that allows complete and total freedom of religion. And, not meaning to generalize, but when you look at virtually every country in the world with a Jewish population, the Jews are disproportionately successful and “know how to live.” Knowing how to live means not only having the wherewithal to do so but also the desire to do so.

So logic dictates that a country with the largest Jewish population in the world would be more than a camel infested desert. And indeed it is. If it is luxury travel you are after, look no further than the Holy Land.

From five star hotels to luxury apartments, Israel luxury real estate has been on a tear over the last five years. And when the great financial crisis of 2007/2008 sent the world’s economies into a tailspin, Israel barely flinched.

With a climate that is the envy of many – it barely rains between May and December – and winters that are very temperate, Israel is the perfect destination to indulge. Whether it be taking in the sunset with a coffee or cocktail on the Tel Aviv foreshore or eating at one of the plethora of international standard restaurants serving every type of food imaginable, there are all the tools and facilities in Israel to make your trip unforgettable.

And don’t get me started on the wine. Israel has come in from the wilderness in the wine world and is now a great destination for oenophiles. There are numerous boutique wineries just waiting to be discovered.

Some say the best things in life are free and they may be correct but having the means should you have to pay never hurt anyone. Yes, the magnificent, clear waters and powder sand of the Mediterranean may be available to be enjoyed for free but experience them from a locale with multi-million dollars houses and the crowd these properties attract and it is a completely different feeling.

Should you want to indulge in a visit to a spa for a massage and to generally unwind, there are world standard spas to cater to your every whim. And being such a small country, it means that you don’t have to travel very far to enjoy these luxuries. It also doesn’t hurt that by world standards these spas are relatively cheap.

Great food, great wine, great weather, world class accommodation and spas; what more could you ask for? The luxury of the Holy Land is waiting to indulge your every sense.

 

A luxurious destination guide to Dubai


Dubai is a pretty beautiful place to head away on holiday. It has everything; a beautiful modern city, great beaches, amazing hotels, fantastic shopping, world-class restaurants and bard and romantic spots to be enjoyed. If you’ve ever been to Dubai –  you’re in for a treat because this city will sweep you off your feet.

Al Quasr Guestrooms.
Dubai Madinatelvis_payne / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

I’ve always thought Dubai would make a great honeymoon destination, but it also makes a fantastic family destination too –  or simple romantic getaway for a couple seeking something a little more special. There are some great experiences here, some of which I’ll introduce you to now:

  1. Burj Kalifa

Known as the tallest building in the world – if you’ve seen the new Mission Impossible film you’ll know which I’m talking about. Whilst most tourist’s head to the top of the building to experience the sheer height – you can avoid the tourist trail and add a little bit of luxury, by visiting the sky high bars in the hotel instead. Enjoy a cocktail, enjoy the views, without all the queuing up.

  1. Burj al Arab

This is the famous 7* hotel that sits on the waterside. I’ve had the pleasure of having a meal here (you have to book well in advance) and it is just beautiful. You should book yourself in and enjoy either High Tea (which scones, desserts, cake and sandwich’s) or Cocktail hour in the evening. It is pricy compared to other attractions, but it’s one of the most luxurious experiences you’ll ever have and it’s worth every penny for the incredible food and impressive service.

  1. The One and Only

This hotel is definitely one of the best for tourists. If you want to stay somewhere that feels traditional –  and yet has every modern amenity you’d ever need then this is for you. The hotel is beautiful and has different sections that are all designed slightly differently too. You’ll obviously have access to beautiful beaches and restaurants whilst staying here – and you’re close to the city centre too.

  1. Dubai Madinat

This traditional-style mall is designed like an old-style Arabian mall. You’ll find all kind of stores in here (as well as Dubai’s only theatre) but most importantly you’ll find some pretty luxurious bars and restaurants to enjoy. The views are beyond incredible, and you’ll be overwhelmed by the beauty of this little resort. Make sure you take your camera as you’ll definitely want some photographs!

  1. Charter your own boat

If you have the money, then hiring your own boat to leave from one of the marinas is a great idea. Enjoy the sunshine as you sail around the city’s ocean – and take in the incredible views and cityscapes too. You could even pack some lunch to enjoy whilst you’re out there – now that’s what I call dining in style! Don’t forget to soak in the sunshine too – sunbathing on your private boat is truly living in style! Read more

 

Dubai: The Ultimate Luxury Destination


Dubai is a city and one of the seven emirates of UAE. It is located in the south east of the Persian Gulf on the Arabian Peninsula. At present Dubai has become a global city with major businesses in the field of tourism, financial services aside from their oil industry. It has emerged as an economic power which attracted the world with its major construction projects and having host world sporting event.

DOWNTOWN : DUBAI : United Arab Emirates : ICON : AMAZING : WORLD : SENSE : What an adventure of creativity! ENJOY! :)
Luxury Travel Dubai|| UggBoy?UggGirl || PHOTO || WORLD || TRAVEL || / Foter / CC BY

Dubai now has been a gateway of the world to elegance and luxury in travel and a premier destination to distinct travelers with such class and sophistication. This city is now an embodiment of the real concept of traveling in luxury. Dubai has magnificent hotels, world class entertainment hubs, high class beach resorts with extraordinary sporting facilities such as an indoor skiing complex and water sports. It also boasts some valuable historical and cultural heritage visible among century old neighborhoods, majestic mosques and exquisite markets that make Dubai an ideal travel destination for fine travelers.

Dubai: Shopping in Pure Luxury

Dubai has now been the shopping Mecca for the rich and famous. The shopping experience here is unmatched to any other premier shopping destinations in the world. There are duty-free commercial shopping centers here that cater to the discriminating taste of the wealthy people with shops that retail only the genuine article from renowned Italian and French designer labels for perfumes, stylish clothes, quality leather goods, delicatessen shops and Swiss luxury watches.

Shop among the luxury malls like the Dubai Mall, Mall of Emirates or Mercato Shopping Mall for the finest jewelries of diamonds and gold, latest electronic gadgets, designer label boutique, international brands, electronics and more for sure you will have a taste and feel of pure luxury. Tourists from all over the world come here by the millions each year to have a piece of luxury and take advantage of amazing deals during shopping festival which can last for a month.

Luxurious Leisure Activities in Dubai

Dubai has a very good tourism strategy that will surely attract well off travelers to this desert metropolis. Exciting activities await those who value the finer things in life. Pick your own pleasure from luxury helicopter tours, hot air balloon rides, yacht cruises, world class golf resorts and spa treatments fit for the royalties. Extraordinary leisure activities like desert safari, camel trekking and falconry are just a few activities that you can try and experience here.

Explore Dubai’s Magnificent Architectural Wonders

Dubai has invested hundreds upon hundreds of million dollars for its advanced infrastructures and architectural wonders that defies buildings standards in terms of design and construction. One monumental example of Dubai’s cutting edge architectural technology is the Capital Gate. An impressive epic structure that leans 18° to the west which has a wave like designed that defies the very law of nature is a sight to behold.

The Grand Mosque is the city’s tallest tower was rebuilt last 1998 and now standing at 70 meters with 9 large domes and 45 smaller ones this mosque is the most grandiose in the world. Built with stained glass panels this has been a notable landmark and a valuable place of worship. Read more

 
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