I hope everyone took the time out to get their passports in 2017 because in 2018 we are showing you the best places to travel inside and outside of the United States. To kick this travel year off we have 6 places you should look into for your next trip!
With 365 beaches, one for every day of the year, it’s no surprise that the sister islands of Antigua + Barbuda, have captured the hearts and attention of both American travelers and international hoteliers, including Elegant Hotels Group, the largest hotel owner in Barbados. The newest edition to the company’s rapidly expanding portfolio of gorgeous beachfront hotels is Hodges Bay Resort & Spa, a $100 million resort just 10 minutes from downtown St. John’s. The ultra-chic property, expected to be a flagship development for the island, will open in early 2018 and will offer luxurious accommodations, including spacious one, two and three-bedroom villas. The modern rooms, outfitted with varying beige tones and pops of lemon, coral and turquoise, feature clean design lines and have king-sized beds, in-room yoga mats and more. The beachfront oasis also includes three on-site restaurants, including a swim-up bar and rooftop bar, two swimming pools, a luxury spa, and poolside cabanas. Paired with complimentary motorized and non-motorized water sports, Aqua School, fitness classes, pool/beach service ambassador, and private in-room cooking demos with a chef, Hodges Bay is a stylish, Instagram-worthy vacation that deserves a top spot on travelers’ 2018 wish lists.
For a life changing escape, make your way to Lake Atitlan, Guatemala – famous for its natural beauty, ringed by three mesmerizing volcanoes and 12 colorful Mayan villages, each with its own personality, and only a short boat ride away from one another. Lake Atitlan is the perfect escape for travelers looking to experience a combination of true culture and scenic beauty in a tranquil atmosphere. Or if a little adventure and history is on your radar, head to Flores — a colonial style town surrounded by beautiful lakes, local shops, historic churches, and charming restaurants. The city is best known for both discovered and undiscovered Mayan ruins.
A short drive away from the magnificent Tikal, Uaxactún and Yaxhá ruins, Las Lagunas Boutique Hotel offers more than 300+acres of lush, private reserve that focuses in the conservation of Guatemala’s native species. At this luxe property, you’ll be get to embark on safari-like adventures from daily ATV tours through the jungle where you’ll spot ocelots, boars, and deers, to boat rides to Monkey Island, where you’ll have the opportunity to meet-and-greet friendly monkeys, and even feed them fruits and vegetables for breakfast! Las Lagunas also offers other eco-adventure activities including trekking, bird watching trails, bicycling and kayaking. The hotel comes complete with 19 suites each boasting a private dock with Jacuzzi overlooking views of the jungle, in-house Shultún restaurant, a half-moon shaped swimming pool, and most recently a brand new spa facility and museum (first of its kind in the region)!
A gem among its lush highlands, Lake Atitlan offers a serene getaway that is rich in culture and scenery. Stay at Casa Palopo a private home turned boutique hotel that overlooks the lake and the three volcanoes across the shore. With recent additions to be completed by 2018, the charming hotel that was once a 9 room hotel will now boast 15 new individually decorated rooms and Latin American artworks throughout, so there’s plenty to marvel at without leaving the property. Around the lake, 12 indigenous Mayan towns beg to be explored, each known for a distinctive offering — from handmade textiles to ceramics to healing and meditation. Zero in on Santa Catarina Palopó, one of Lake Atitlán’s towns in which Casa Palopo resides, and watch a community transform right before your eyes. Through the “Pintando Santa Catarina” initiative, the town is undergoing a colorful transformation where its homes and buildings are being covered in vibrant murals and patterns that will capture the eyes (and hearts) of visitors. The project launched in 2017 and while it is projected that it’ll take up to two more years to complete, the beginning stages of the project are already considerably apparent and travelers visiting throughout the next year not only witness the process, but also be a part of it and help paint the homes of the indigenous people. Back at the hotel guests will enjoy paddleboarding, kayaking, and horseback riding, among other activities, plus gourmet cuisine at the intimate in-house 6.8 Palopó restaurant. A brand new spa-room and top notch personal service are among the hotel’s other offerings to ensure a peaceful and revitalizing escape.
When partying Miami-style gets old and you’re looking for a low key, sophisticated and culturally enriching trip for the new year, while still hitting up the most beautiful beaches in Florida, Sarasota is the destination for you. The city’s hotel industry is growing with new hotel properties (an estimated of 1,000+ hotel rooms) in the downtown area — a major development project that hasn’t taken place in the art-driven city in over a decade.
Inspired by Sarasota’s vibrant culture and arts scene, Art Ovation Hotel is a new build on Florida’s Gulf Coast that will officially debut in January 2018. The 162-room boutique hotel is an Autograph Collection Hotel, located in the heart of downtown Sarasota, surrounded by an env