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    Travel Trends You Need to Know About for 2021

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    NoMad Las Vegas

    NoMad Las Vegas

    Area: Las Vegas, Nevada

    Vibe: Chic and sexy

    Style: City

    Fun Fact: There are 25,000 books in the NoMad Restaurant

    Don’t Miss: The JEMAA pool party

    If you’re ready for something new on your next trip to Vegas, here’s a great option: NoMad Las Vegas. Located inside Park MGM—it calls the top floors home—the hotel has all the makings to truly elevate your Sin City experience: gorgeous rooms, great dining led by a world-renowned chef, a weekend pool party and, of course, a casino.

    Location: A quick 10-minute drive from McCarran International Airport, the hotel is located right on the famed Strip, close to all the action. But in terms of location, this one is unique: The NoMad sits on the upper four floors of the Park MGM hotel, though it has its own private entrance, as well as its own pool, restaurant, bars and casino. Its central location means it’s easy to check out what the rest of the city has to offer, while never having to stray too far from your home base.

    Vibe: Chic and sexy, the hotel has that cool, old-world Las Vegas feel—think lots of wood, antique finishes and velvet textures in jewel-toned colors—while still feeling totally modern. There are close to 300 rooms and suites, from rooms with queen- or king-sized beds to larger suites, like the 1,200-square foot NoMad Suite and the 1,600-square-foot Suite Royale, which sleeps up to four and has its own pool table and dining room. When you’re ready to bring your stay to the next level, check out the Suite Royale Premiere, a two-bedroom, 2,000-square foot suite with a pool table, its own bar, six-person dining room and views of The Strip.

    Why We Love It: Along with the great vintage Vegas vibe and the energy of the city itself, there’s so much to love about this hotel—not least of which is the dining experience, which has Chef Daniel Humm and Restaurateur Will Guidara at the helm. The duo are also behind NoMad’s culinary offerings in New York and L.A., plus the World’s Best restaurant winner, Eleven Madison Park in NYC. In Las Vegas, the hotel is home to both NoMad Bar and NoMad Restaurant. The \restaurant is dark and sexy, with lots of club seating and velvet accents, all surrounded by some 25,000 (!) books. “The robust menu celebrates grand, clubby mid-century dining with a dash of theater—Grande Plateaus of Fruits de Mer, seasonal pastas, our signature black truffle-laced Roast Chicken, and Baked Alaska flambéed tableside,” they say. Also not to miss: The NoMad Casino, which offers “high limit” gaming like blackjack and roulette, as well as its own bar. The NoMad Pool is primed for relaxation on the weekdays—and for partying from Friday to Sunday. That’s when you’ll find the JEMAA pool party, complete with DJs, music, bottle service, and more. Along with these features, there are amenities like a spa and 24-hour fitness center, both of which are accessed through Park MGM, as well as lots of space for meetings and events.

    Why Go F1rst: If you book your stay through First in Service, you’ll receive a slew of extra amenities, including a $100 food and beverage credit, early-check and late check-out and a room upgrade, if available.

    F1S Tips: Want to relax with a spa service? You can head to the spa at the Park MGM—or have the service done right in your room. Also fun: Jazz fans should reserve Sundays for the Jazz Brunch at the NoMad Bar.

    How Our Partners Are Keeping You Safe

    How Our Partners Are Keeping You Safe

     

    Borders and cities are beginning to reopen, and demand for travel is improving.  The result: the travel industry is – slowly but surely – sparking back up. So when you’re ready to travel again, we’re ready to guide you again. Deciding how to get there and where to stay is just as important as deciding where to go in the first place. Which airline should you choose—and are they regularly disinfecting their planes? Should you stick with a car service over public transport once you land? What happens if you forget your mask? Here at F1S, our travel advisors can answer all these questions—and lots more!We partner only with the best of the best, especially when it comes to safety.  And it’s no surprise our partners have stepped up in a big way. Here’s a look at some of the ways three of our select partners are working to keep you safe, across all types of travel.

     

     

    By ground

    EmpireCLS

    “EmpireCLS has always maintained an extremely high level of duty of care to our guests,” says David Seelinger, Chairman and CEO of the company, which provides chauffeur services in more than 700 cities around the world. “While previously this had to do with the safety and security of the driving experience, the Covid situation has prompted us to extend that duty of care to providing the best possible environment from a cleanliness standpoint.”

     

    And they are doing just that—extensively sanitizing their vehicles, car seats, and other communal items, like chargers, between uses. “We have gone above and beyond with our safety and cleanliness protocols, working with International SOS to develop new regimens, which include electrostatic spraying—which lessens the chances of the virus sticking to any surface—outfitting our vehicles with three-layer air filtration, limiting chauffeur-guest contact, and so much more,” explains Seelinger.

     

    Among other measures, drivers wear N-95 masks, use gloves when touching guests’ luggage, provide masks and sanitizers for passengers, removemagazines from vehicles, and skipp the front seat for passengers. (For a full look, the company created a video highlighting many of these updated protocols.)

     

    “We have been the leader in our industry in terms of developing cleanliness protocols for ground transportation,” says Seelinger. “If someone needs to be driven in a car, the ride-share services simply do not have the control [that] we do over the in-car environment or the cleanliness protocols our chauffeurs must maintain worldwide.”

     

    By air

    Delta Airlines

    Whether hopping on a plane was something you did every week for work pre-Covid, or just every few months for fun, you may be hesitant to board a plane these days. But let what Delta is doing ease your fears: “The travel journey from airport curb to baggage claim has been reimagined to provide a safer and cleaner experience, both during and after Covid-19,” explains Matt Kutches, General Manager-Global Sales, Delta Air Lines.

     

    To that end, the airline employed the Delta CareStandard, which includes additional hand sanitizers and plexi-glass shields at boarding, cleaning communal surfaces like kiosks and security bins (they also partnered with Lysol), plus completely sanitizing—via electrostatic spraying—the entire plane. Middle seats are left empty to help with social distancing, pillows are tossed post-use, and you’ll find Care Kits filled with a mask and hand sanitizer and, on some flights, snack bags too.

     

    Also great? Not only did Delta create a Global Cleanliness Division, but they also partnered with the Mayo Clinic. “Deepening our relationship with [the] Mayo Clinic provides additional safety and Covid-19 infection control measures for customers and employees,” says Kutches. The medical center has “developed and will oversee Covid-19 testing of Delta’s full workforce,” he says, as well as advise in a variety of other ways, from helping the customer experience team to creating an advisory council including both Mayo Clinic and Delta execs.

     

    And if you’re still hesitant, Kutches recommends talking with your travel advisor. “Do your research, consult your travel advisor to hear more details on what initiatives Delta has deployed to keep customers and our employees safe throughout the travel ribbon,” he says.

     

    By stay

    Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts

    Ready for a hotel stay—even in your own city? (Us too!) Many hotels have upped their safety game, including Four Seasons. “As the significant impact of COVID-19 on global travel became clear, we very quickly understood that our guests would want measures in place to create a safe, worry-free environment when they decided to travel again,” explains Ben Trodd, Senior Vice President, Sales and Hotel Marketing, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts. “This insight helped guide the creation of our enhanced global health and safety program, Lead With Care, which builds on our already stringent health and safety measures.”

     

    Lead with Care—which is in place in all Four Seasons properties—includes a whole range of different measures, from increased sanitizing (including use of electrostatic spraying and ozone technology) to offering contactless check-in and digital menus at restaurants to “Lead with Care kits” in all rooms, which include masks and sanitizers to (of course) mask-wearing for guests and staff. And to help manage these changes, each property now has a “hygiene officer.” Plus, similarly to Delta, the hotel partnered with Johns Hopkins Medicine International.

     

    “Guests staying at Four Seasons also have the added confidence of being able to control the level of in-person contact and engagement they have with our team through the use of the popular Four Seasons App and Four Seasons Chat,” says Trodd. “Launched in 2015 and 2017 respectively, these well-established digital platforms are a key components of Lead With Care, providing guests with contactless service options, while still fostering connections and creating highly personalized experiences.” Guests can do things like order room service and make spa reservations and, when chatting, real people—on the property where you’re staying—are behind the responses, and they can answer you in upwards of 100 (!) different languages.

     

    “While I can’t speak to other brands, guests should have no hesitation when considering a [stay] at a Four Seasons right now,” says Trodd.

     

    Equinox Hotel New York City

    GFG

    Equinox Hotel, New York City

    Area: New York, New York

    Vibe: Sophisticated wellness

    Style: City

    Fun Fact: Can’t sleep? Ask for the Equinox Sleep Coach

    Don’t Miss: The 60,000-square-foot Equinox Club 

    Fitness and wellness take center stage at this new Hudson Yards hotel—the first for the Equinox brand. That includes access to the 60,000-square-foot fitness center and SoulCycle studio, the signature Electric Lemon restaurant, and guest rooms that help prioritize sleep—plus so much more to make you centered and happy during your stay.

    Location: Set in Manhattan’s newest neighborhood, Hudson Yards, the hotel is located at the corner of 33rd street, between 10th and 11th avenue, at 33 Hudson Yards. And it’s quite the new neighborhood: You’ll also find lots of restaurants and shopping like Dior, Fendi and Neiman Marcus (plus so many more), as well as the climbable Vessel, which is fast becoming a must-see for tourists and New Yorkers alike. The area, on the west side of the city, is accessible by bus and the 7 subway train—and is about an hour from JFK airport, and half hour from both LaGuardia airport and Newark International Airport.

    Vibe: Sleek and modern, the hotel is the place, as they say, “where the science of fitness meets the art of travel.” There are 212 rooms and suites, which are “dark, quiet and cool”—a motto you’ll see carried out throughout. It’s in the contemporary décor and black and white colors, the blackout blinds, the soundproofing, the shower with three showerheads, and the “proprietary sleep system.” All the rooms have floor-to-ceiling windows, some with views of the Hudson River and others with a full-on city view. The largest of the suites is the 1900-square-foot “EQX two bedroom corner suite,” which sleeps up to six and includes a separate living and dining room space.

    Why We Love It: Just as the name implies, this hotel puts fitness and wellness at the forefront—and then takes it one step further. Here’s what we mean: Upon check-in, all guests receive 24/7 access to the huge (we’re talking 60,000-square-feet) Equinox Club. There, you can stick to your usual fitness routine, try your hand at any number of classes (you can even take some on the Vessel!), go one-on-one with a personal trainer or take a SoulCycle class in their dedicated studio. But that’s just the start of the wellness options: The 27,000-square-foot spa features everything from cryotherapy to an infrared sauna to the traditional offerings like facials and massages. Need more? There’s an indoor saltwater pool, an outdoor pool with great views, you can have an in-room IV vitamin drip or hang out in the super-relaxing sounding E.Scape Pods, where you can “enjoy a meditation session incorporating our intelligent audio library and EEG data, developed with sleep scientists, to help you manage stress and switch off.” Now, on to the dining options. Electric Lemon, the hotel’s signature restaurant, sits on the 24th floor—the views from the 8,000-square-foot terrace alone are worth the trip—and offers American cuisine, plus everything from cold-press juices to drinks and dessert. The restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner and there’s also a bar on-site, as well as in-room dining, including the RoomBar, their take on the mini bar, with cocktails, snacks and more.

    Why Go F1rst: If you book with First in Service, you’ll receive daily continental breakfast for two, a $100 hotel credit, and early check-in/late check-out as well as a room upgrade, if available.

    F1S Tips: If you take sleep seriously, then this is the place to be: From the blackout curtains to the “ high-grade STC (Sound Transmission Classification)” for quiet to the lux bedding and the Equinox Sleep Couch on hand, you’ll truly be able to rest and relax.

    Belmond Cadogan

    BELMOND CADOGAN

    London, England

    Modern and historic

    City

    Oscar Wilde often stayed in the Royal Suite

    The hotel’s Swarovski-encrusted peacock, Oscar

    Originally built in 1887, this London hotel recently reopened after a multi-million dollar historic renovation—and the upgrade is evident: With access to gardens, rooms and suites that offer lots of amenities and great dining all in one location, the property feels stylish and fresh while still retaining its historical significance.

    Location:

    Right on Sloane Street, the hotel straddles both the Chelsea and Knightsbridge neighborhoods in London. It’s easy to choose your direction, too: Use one exit in the hotel and you’ll wind up closer to the Chelsea side, use another and you’re on the Knightsbridge end. The hotel itself is only about 35 minutes from Heathrow airport, and the central location make it easy to access the entire city.

    Vibe:

    At this more-than-a-century-old property, you’ll find lots of whites and greys, with golds and reds throughout. There are 54 rooms and suites, including a few one-bedroom “specialty suites,” like the Royal Suite, where a certain famous author with the last name Wilde once regularly called home. And in the rooms themselves—some of which look out onto the garden—there are lots of special touches, from statement headboard pieces above each bed by British female artists, to specialty tea sets to help you really get into the English spirt.

    Why we love it:

    Aside from the enviable location and the impressive history, (The paparazzi would have definitely set up shop outside: It’s said that socialite Lillie Langtry and the Prince of Wales courted there, among other gossip-worthy tidbits) the hotel offers a chance to unwind and relax in fun and unique ways. There’s dining, of course, including the hotel’s signature restaurant, Adam Handling Chelsea, which serves up a contemporary twist on English favorites. There’s also a bar, as well as Afternoon Tea served in the lounge, named Cadogan’s. Private dining options are available—and as you enter one of the dining rooms, you’ll be greeted by a Swarovski-encrusted peacock. (His name is Oscar, in case you were wondering.) But there are even more special touches. Here’s one: Guests have access to Cadogan Place Gardens, which are normally reserved only for residents, and the hotel can provide everything from a tennis set to yoga mats to take into the gardens. Another? “In-room libraries,” where you can kick back with a book from local bookstore, John Sandoe Books Ltd. (which has been around since the 1950s). Then there are the traditional de-stressors, from a spa to a 24-hour fitness center. The hotel caters to family life too, with kids menus and in-room board games.

     

    Why you should Go F1RST:

    When you’re ready to book, doing it through F1S will snag you VIP welcome treats, breakfast for two every day of your stay, your choice of complimentary lunch or quintessentially English tea for two, and a complimentary upgrade, if available.

    The Art of Living in Toronto

    The Art of Living in Toronto

    With its diverse communities, culture and cuisines, a weekend in Toronto is like a quick trip around the world.

    Toronto is a city of neighborhoods. And what ties all these communities together is the love of culture. There are amazing galleries, theaters and concert halls celebrating art all over the city. Surrounded by buildings by internationally renowned architects and restaurants run by top chefs, Torontonians have elevated everyday life to an art form. Even jogging past the city’s exceptional outdoor murals and sculptures is an art experience.

    Here’s an insider’s guide to nearby neighborhoods that you need to explore in The Six.

    THE CROSSROADS OF CULTURE

    The Shangri-La Hotel is the place to begin any explorations of Toronto because it bridges three dynamic neighborhoods: the Financial District with its towering skyscrapers and five star dining experiences; the Entertainment District, and Queen Street West, a unique shopping and dining strip.

    In fact, your first engagement with Toronto’s globally celebrated cultural community begins just outside of the Shangri-La. The exterior of the hotel is home to the iconic sculpture, “Rising”, by Chinese artist, Zang Huan. Bringing the best the world has to offer together is, in fact, the city’s true talent.

    After checking into the hotel, you’ll want to check out of your work week with a relaxing afternoon tea in the Lobby Lounge. The lobby is a hub where visitors and locals come together to take in daily live music performances played on the custom-made Fazioli Piano. It’s always buzzing, but after a busy work week, it also provides a zen-like sense of home, thanks to paintings by famed Shanghainese artist Wang Xu Yuan.

    The Lounge is also home to a rotating exhibition of vintage couture fashions featuring designers such as, Alexander McQueen, YSL, Chanel, Versace and many others.

    Performance Art

    At night, you want to make the Entertainment district your destination. Take in an early dinner at Kojin from David Chang and Chef Paula Navarrete. Located above Momofuku, this vibrant restaurant serves a Columbian influenced lunch and dinner menu.

    Then cross the road to the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts. It is home to the National Ballet Company and the Canadian Opera Company. The opera in particular is known for classic performances done in collaboration with visual and other artists such as performance artist Robert Lepage, director Atom Egoyan, and musician Rufus Wainwright. Just a short walk west down King Street, you can hear the symphony at Roy Thompson Hall. Or stroll over to see some live theatre in the nearby Entertainment District (Elgin and Wintergarden on Yonge Street, or the Royal AlexandraPrincess of Wales, on King).

    In warm weather, you can talk about performances while taking in a nightcap on the rooftop bar at Lavelle for a masterpiece of a gin and tonic. Or return to the lobby for a delicious cocktail or two.

    Good Morning

    Toronto’s many outdoor art installations let you enjoy some inclusive culture while you wake up with a walk, bike, or run. Set your course to take you past the Bentway, the Stackt shipping container market or jog over to the Distillery District for many interactive and experiential installations. The concierge service at the Shangri-La is ultra-connected and can help you make a map of outdoor art (or coffee shops for a post jog pick-me-up.)

    After your morning workout, relax with a pre-lunch treatment at the Miraj Hammam Spa on the fifth floor of the Shangri-La.

     

    Sensory Deco Daydream Miami

    Sensory Deco Daydream Miami

    Tap into your Inner Design Junkie with All your Senses

    When you hear about a weekend in Miami, perhaps neon lights and the pulsating bass of nightclubs come to mind. But there’s another side to Miami — Art Deco history; a science museum; an innovative shopping bazaar; and tasty cuisine — that makes it a sophisticate’s destination — especially for visually oriented travelers. Aside from the beach and bling,  you can curate your own “high/low”  sensory immersion, from lush accommodation to local street tours.  Here’s our prescription for the perfect adventure.

    ROMANCING AT THE FAENA

    Stay at the stunning Faena Hotel to create  the perfect fantasy fairy tale where, depending on the room — whether sleeping quarters; public areas; verandas overlooking the sea; or poolside — you can mentally imagine yourself in a romantic European daydream to a lavish Turkish caravan. Created by Argentinian real estate developer Alan Faena — with interiors collaborators— costume/set designers Catherine Martin and Baz Luhrmann), cherry red accents everything from  opulent chairs to beach umbrellas.   Once you check in and are greeted by the bronze  Damien Hirst  grab a poolside table  for lunch at Los Fuegos, where you can chose from a selection of tasty selection of fish, meat, salads.

    Stimulating the senses in Miami

    In the afternoon,  head over to  Wynwood to see art collections starting with the Wynwood Walls   — an incredible outdoor collection of street and graffiti artists including Kenny Scarf, Swoon, Shepard Fairy and others — that was started by developer Tony Goldman a decade ago. Each year, new international art stars are highlighted.  The  displays are free of charge. Seeing them feels like visual skateboarding.

    Afterwards, take it indoors to the Rubell Family Collection  Contemporary Arts Foundation — housed in the 45,000 square foot former Drug Enforcement Agency — and you’ll see  the work of  Cindy Sherman, Jean Michel Basquiat,  Kara Walker, Jeff Koons and more up close in the permanent collection, as well as other  temporary exhibits.

    In the district itself,  you’ll find folks selling sea shell jewelry and taco trucks on the street. So grab a conch and a snack before heading back to the hotel to indulge in one of the spa treatments at the Tierra Santa Healing House before dinner.    Formulated around South American concepts, in addition to massages and facials, you can opt for  a shamanic healing body ritual.  Think muds, scrubs, stones, sacred oils, and healing butters.

    For a luscious first night taste sensation,  eat at Wynwood Kitchen for  latin spiced cuisine — and  for dining within futuristic paintings by Shepard Fairey, Christian Awe, and sculptures by David Benjamin Sherry. Or try  Alter,  for multi coursed, responsibility sourced local dishes.

    By the next morning, you’ll be ready to strap on your trainers  for the the  Art Deco Walking Tour. Started by the Miami Design Preservation League, it delves into the history of the hotels dotting  the shoreline that  started as stucco cement apartment houses during the Prohibition Era for working class families.  You can stroll with both locals and tourists and imagine yourself in another era,  perhaps as a player in in one of the gambling houses run by mobsters in the 1940’s.  Al Capone was right at home in Miami Beach, as were working class families who moved into these originally cheap and cheerful apartment houses facing the shoreline.  Later, singer Gloria Estefan bought one of the properties. Fashion designer Gianni Versace had to knock one of the original buildings down to make space for his pool.  While the construction seems deceptively simple, with small windows and often four to six floors, they were modeled on rich movements, including  expressionism of the 1920’s; Cubism; and Bauhaus.

    Two post tour options to round out the afternoon are the Perez Art Museum  and  the  Frost Science Museum,  where you can tap your inner child surrounded by  tropical fish and sea horses.  Frost  offers immersion into local sea life  with an aquarium;  a planetarium; and exhibits on evolution from dinosaurs to birds. There are interactive schemes so you can explore the mind/body connection or play engineer for an hour in the design lab.

    The Perez Art Museum —  right next to the Frost —  features  local and global artists of the last two centuries  and a sculpture garden.   You can tap  off the zen vibes after a walk in the art and flora, by tasting some of the “poke bowls” — marinated fish and vegetables over rice— at the museum’s cafe that overlooks both the outdoor installations and the water.

    If you stay the evening in  the design hood,  try  Joey’s Wynwood — located in the Wynwood Art District — for pastas and speciality pizzas.   Or head back to the Faena Hotel for a late afternoon yoga class at the spa. Indulge in  the cooking of  Paul Qui at PAO restaurant, which features  a fusion of Filipino, French,  Spanish, and Japanese flavors. Then try  the spicy margaritas at the Saxony Bar and catch  live music at the Living Room.