Pop-up hotel experiences, sleep amenities, social spa-ing, binge-reading and more… these sexy travel trends are on my list to check out in 2016. Here’s what’s on my list, and where I might go. Want to come along?
Custom service for off-the-rack prices. Just when we were all getting really crabby about paying for everything on traditional airlines, Tradewind Aviation (with routes in the Northeast to Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard along with jumps throughout the Caribbean) is offering all the perks of a private charter (no TSA security checkpoints, complimentary snacks and drinks, free checked bags and a flexible booking and cancellation process) for the price of a seat on regular-scheduled flights on its Signature Shuttle Service. I can get on board with this.
Apartment/hotel alliances. Look out, Airbnb! Madrid-based Room Mate Hotels’ BeMate.com has a roster of stylish apartments that pair with the services of a local hotel (think housekeeping, concierge, and airport transfers, for example). Live like a local, party like a guest. Sounds good to me, and the locations are in very cool coastal cities worldwide, including Barcelona and Miami (this South Beach condo below rents for an average of $249/night!)
Group spa. Everyone into the flotation pool! Loving that spas are getting more creative with services for small groups. The luxury mavens at Montage Laguna Beach are making it easy (and delightful) with their Spa Soiree, which includes a welcome toast, choice of spa treatment and goodies for each attendee. And is there a better hotel pool in the land? I think not.)
Sleep enters the spa. Sleep has to be the number-one amenity that’s trending worldwide, and now it’s not just about sleeping better in your bed. It’s about going to sleep in the spa. At The Spa at Carillon Miami Beach, for example, the Deep Sleep Treatment puts you on a warm and dry flotation spa bed to get you to that alpha wave state. (These happy Carillon guests are copying the therapy outside, plus wine, which doesn’t seem like such a bad idea.)
Binge reading. Okay, I’m a binge-watcher like every red-blooded American (Bloodline, anyone?), but I’m also a huge reader, and LOVE that hotels are wrapping their arms around books in new and creative ways. How’s this for magical? The Nines in Portland, Oregon, has a hidden library just off the lobby stocked with books from nearby Powell’s Books, which is one of the greatest bookstores in the whole, wide world. (And did I mention that this fantasy library is also a bar that serves cocktails all day?)
Pop-up hotel experiences. I love a pop-up shop, a pop-up restaurant, and now, hotels are picking up this fun trend with off-site experiences. For you winter adventurers, how about Hotel Vermont’s on-ice shanty in the middle of (currently frozen) Lake Champlain? This cute little wooden fishing shack is a rustic haven and stocks hot drinks and blankets.
Got the travel bug?