MULTIGENERATIONAL TRAVEL MADE EASY: HOW TO HAVE A GREAT TRIP

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MULTIGENERATIONAL TRAVEL MADE EASY: HOW TO HAVE A GREAT TRIP. Large family with three generations on vacation

The popularity of multigenerational travel just continues to grow

The hottest trend in travel these days? Taking a trip with three or more generations of your family. The Virtuoso Luxe Report crowned multigenerational travel as the top choice for upscale travelers. It’s been big for the past five years, and its popularity just continues to grow.

“People are of the mindset that they want to experience all they possibly can with the people they love,” says Misty Ewing Belles, Virtuoso’s managing director of global public relations. “They’re no longer in this luxury goods accumulation mode. They really want to accumulate experiences, and what better way to do it than with your children and with your grandchildren.”

Belles shared the latest multigenerational travel trends and tips in a recent installation of the Wall Street Journal’s Watching Your Wealth podcast.

Where to Go?

Says Belles, “The tried and true favorite destinations are Italy, Mexico, Hawaii, Orlando, England.”

However, some of today’s multigenerational travelers are looking for further-flung spots. Those more adventurous destinations include Antarctica, Croatia, Iceland and even Mongolia. “One of the reasons they’re so good for multigenerational travel and family travel is that they have so many activities that are just part of that destination so you can really experience it to its fullest,” explains Belles.

She recommends looking for a destination with appeal on different levels: “You want a good mix of activities but not so many activities that people feel overwhelmed. You want one that’s going to be scenically beautiful but then also offer enough activities at different levels for different age groups because in some situations you have people in their 70s traveling with infants and toddlers.“

Old Favorite or New Place?

Another destination dilemma for multigenerational travel: go back to the same place, or try somewhere new?

“There are some who love to go back to a place that has a special meaning to them but then you also have families who do the ‘same time next year’ idea where they pick a time of year where they want to travel, they’ll vary the destination but have a similar type experience,” explains Belles.

They may go with the same people at the same time of year. They may stay in similar accommodations, such as renting a house or villa. Or they might go to the same style of destination: say, the beach or the mountains.

Others may want to sample a variety of different destinations and travel styles.

Best Multigenerational Travel Activities

MULTIGENERATIONAL TRAVEL MADE EASY: HOW TO HAVE A GREAT TRIP. Large family on snowy mountain with snowman

It’s important for families to agree on a travel destination and activities

Travelers don’t just want to sit still anymore. They want to experience a destination. And they want whatever they’re doing to be interesting and enjoyable for everyone.

“Whether it’s some sort of local cultural immersion, whether it’s learning a language, whether it’s learning to cook the local cuisine, whether it’s doing something more like trekking and hiking, it really can be tailored to whatever it is you want,” Belles comments.

Why are activities so important? “People are looking for this very genuine connection to the destination and looking to share that with the people they love,” she explains.

Everyone Has a Say

To determine those activities, Belles recommends interviewing every member of the family who’s going along. “Find out what exactly they want to get out of it,” she explains. “What are they hoping to achieve, what are they hoping to see and do, what are some of the must-haves and what are the things that are sort of nice to have or can slide.”

Decide Who’s Paying

Belles says the number-one rule here is not to assume anything. Talk about who’s paying up front so there are no surprises, awkwardness or hard feelings.

Who typically funds multigenerational travel? “Pre-retirement, people are really more sort of paying their own way,” says Belles. “Once the grandparents get really into their retirement years, then you’re seeing where it’s more and more common for the patriarch or the matriarch of the family to cover the costs.”

Stick to Your Budget

Once who’s footing the bill is settled, the next step is to budget for the trip. How much do you want to spend? Who’s paying for what aspect?

Then, says Belles, “adhere to that budget. That’s a big piece of it because when people get in the moment they start to spend more and then sometimes regret it when they get back home.”

Best Advice: Long-Term Travel Planning

MULTIGENERATIONAL TRAVEL MADE EASY: HOW TO HAVE A GREAT TRIP. Large family standing on rocks with water behind them

The best way to make the most of family time is to create a long-term travel plan

When asked for her best piece of travel advice, Belles recommends thinking big picture. “Look at your travel planning the way you look at your financial planning and set a long-term strategy with a professional advisor,” she says. “At Virtuoso we call it Return on Life travel planning and it’s a way to look at your travel planning five, 10, 15 years out.”

Return on Life travel planning is important for everyone. But families in particular need to make the most of their precious time. “As a parent I can tell you someone once told me, “You only have 18 summers,” and that really resonated,” Belles said. “So set a long-term strategy to make sure you see and do everything you want, especially with your kids.”

Not sure where to start? A Virtuoso travel advisor is here to help. They can help you create a long-term multigenerational travel plan that will create memories your family will never forget. And they can do something you can’t do on your own: “No matter how much money you have, you can’t VIP yourself,” Belles notes.

Adapted from: www.blog.virtuoso.com

To Book Your Trip
Contact our Travel Advisors:1.877.999.4768

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Beat The Clock and Escape The Rubicon

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Adventurous activities abound on Harmony of the Seas and guests can also put their minds to the test while getting some thrills at the same time at Escape the Rubicon, the ship’s Puzzle Break escape room. Competitors work together to find hidden clues and solve a series of high-tech riddles to unravel the mystery of the Rubicon. With only 60 minutes on the clock, the excitement builds with each tick as it counts down!

On Royal Caribbean’s Harmony of the Seas, you will find  unique ways to spend time onboard, but one experience that really stands out is the Escape the Rubicon. 

Beat The Clock and Escape The Rubicon

Escape the Rubicon is an escape room experience, which Royal Caribbean first introduced on Anthem of the Seas (it is also available on Ovation of the Seas). On Harmony of the Seas, the escape room has its own dedicated venue, so it is fully built out for a complete experience.

If you are knew to an escape room game, you might be a little hesitant at the idea of going into a “locked” room for an our and not really knowing what to expect. Take solace in the fact that Escape the Rubicon might have been the most fun we had onboard the ship.  This is truly unlike anything else you have ever done on a cruise ship, and it is incredible appealing.

What to expect

Beat The Clock and Escape The Rubicon

If you are unfamiliar with an escape room game, essentially it is a timed challenge, where you and those in your group have a set time limit to figure out various puzzles and clues to solve an overall solution that provides the means of “escaping” the room. Royal Caribbean teamed up with Puzzle Break to create a special version just for Harmony of the Seas.

When you arrive for your session, a short video will explain some ground rules of the puzzle. A crew member will supervise your group and will go over a few items in the room that are not part of the game, such as fire sprinklers and emergency exits.

The host will then have one member of the team hit the start button and you are off, leaving you with 60 minutes to figure out the puzzles to escape. 

The Puzzle

Beat The Clock and Escape The Rubicon

The game requires a minimum of six players, believe me when I say this, you need at least six to play. During my experience we only had five and the host would play as the sixth person, but only doing what he told her to do specifically.

At a few points in the game we were moving slower than we should to complete the puzzle. The host would give us basic hints like, “what are we looking for” or “what are we trying to complete” in a way to bring the team on task and focus.

Without giving the puzzle away, the key is to work together as a team and think outside the box.  It is very easy to assume certain elements of the room and ideas are “obvious”, but often paying attention to the small details really helps.  In addition, split tasks among members of the group to get things done quicker.  Often there are multiple puzzles to decipher at the same time, so make use of the brain power in the room.

Beat The Clock and Escape The Rubicon

What we liked: A completely different experience from the usual cruise ship activities, and quite challenging too. 

What we did not like: It is not a complimentary activity.

Cost: When we experienced Escape the Rubicon, the game was complimentary but we have heard Royal Caribbean is now charging $8.99 per guest to compete.

Adapted from: www.royalcaribbeanblog.com

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BEST HONEYMOON ACTIVITIES

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It is always tough to choose a perfect honeymoon activity. Everything should be just perfect, and nothing should spoil the atmosphere of love and romance. Calm couples can choose the traditional beach resorts and relaxing getaways, but we have made a list of activities for those who are searching for something more adventurous, involving both partners.

AcroYoga and Partner Yoga

BEST HONEYMOON ACTIVITIES. Beautiful couple doing acro yoga on the beach

This activity is one of the hardest, as it requires partners  to be in good physical condition. However, with a skilled instructor, interesting ways of combining meditative practice will provide you with a common focus or connection.

Acroyaga means close physical contact with your partner, and requires the ability to trust and confide in him/her while doing complex exercises. You will not only learn to maintain balance and relax, but also to feel your partner. The success of the exercise depends on both of you, so it is a great way to feel unity and mutual balance.

Mainly located in Southeast Asia: teacher trainings in Thailand, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore and Indonesia.

Surf Honeymoon

BEST HONEYMOON ACTIVITIES

For those who love being active, we suggest trying one of many honeymoon couples’ favorite sports, surfing. A lot of resorts offer couple’s surfing, in which you both have one surfing instructor and work as a team.

Doing the sport together unites the couple, giving honeymooners time to be involved in a mutual activity, share interests and have positive emotions. Moreover, luxury summer surfing resorts offer incredible beaches, great bars, relaxing spas, high-end restaurants and gorgeous sea life that will leave even greater memories if you include surfing on your activity list.

Tennis/Badminton

BEST HONEYMOON ACTIVITIES

The reason this sport is particularly popular among honeymoon couples is because it only requires two people. It can get competitive, so be prepared to have a winner. However, it has been proven by numerous psychologists that the competitive atmosphere of such games can provide positive emotions for a couple. This sport is very mobile, active and fun. You can also have a conversation while playing.

Hiking/Climbing

BEST HONEYMOON ACTIVITIES

Beautiful views and panoramas, an adventurous atmosphere, feeling the support of your partner and just acting as a team: what could be better for a perfect adventurous honeymoon? Unknown trails, new emotions, fantastic nature and the relaxing atmosphere of this trip will make it an unforgettable experience for both of you. Add romantic overnight camping with a night sky full of stars, sunbathing in the river bank and swimming in the crystal waters of mountain lakes.

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TOP REASONS TO VISIT SOUTHEAST ASIA

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Food

The food is one of the best reasons to visit Southeast Asia. Incredible recipes and tastes of the national cuisines are so delightful that they are bound to inspire you. But be careful, some of the national dishes could be too spicy for you. So it’s better to ask for it it less spicy before you order.

Pan-Asian cuisine is famous all over the world and is trendy now. So don’t miss a chance to enjoy its tastes in the countries themselves.  Street snacks in Bangkok, Vietnamese cafes, Malaysian spices, and Chinese sweet and sour meals can surprise you with the diversity, richness and great taste of the food.

TOP REASONS TO VISIT SOUTHEAST ASIA

People

People is Southeast Asia are often smiling, happy, spontaneous and friendly. The warmest of welcomes await you in these countries.

Hint: learn a few phrases in the local languages, and you will be surprised at how friendly Asian people can be. Southeast China is also famous for its unrivalled service and hospitality.

TOP REASONS TO VISIT SOUTHEAST ASIA. Chinese Family

Chinese Family

Wildlife

The rich wildlife of the region attracts thousands of tourists to the zoos, national parks, wildlife sanctuaries and inhabited territories in Southeast Asia. The region is well-known for its mammals, and you can spot tigers, bears and rhinos.

The most famous places to see diverse animals and enjoy beautiful plants are Thailand, China, Indonesia and Japan.

TOP REASONS TO VISIT SOUTHEAST ASIA

Beaches

The majority of Southeast Asian countries have a coastline. Actually, all of them do, except Laos. Some of the world’s most amazing beaches are located in Southeast Asia. Enjoy some of the best resorts on
Phuket, Indonesia and Bali,  or exciting new island hideaways in Cambodia and Vietnam.

Divers can enjoy stunning underwater scenes of World War II plane wrecks in Northern Sulawesi and swim with whale sharks in Donsol in the Philippines.

TOP REASONS TO VISIT SOUTHEAST ASIA. Gorgeous Kalim Beach at morning, Phuket, Thailand.

Gorgeous Kalim Beach at morning, Phuket, Thailand.

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LONG STAYS IN COSTA DEL SOL, SPAIN

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LONG STAYS IN COSTA DEL SOL, SPAIN

Boasting an ideal location in Torremolinos, directly on the magnificent El Bajondillo Beach, this hotel features 540 spacious ocean-view rooms with a balcony or terrace.

LONG STAYS IN COSTA DEL SOL, SPAIN

By booking a long stay, you’ll fully enjoy the beaches, historic sites, local attractions and a myriad of restaurants, cafés and bars. It’s the perfect formula: unforgettable vacations, at extremely competitive prices!

Meliá Costa del Sol 4*

Hotel Location

  • Approximately 8 km from Malaga Airport – Costa Del Sol
  • Across the street from the beach
  • Torremolinos

Hotel Description

  • 540 rooms
  • Elevator
Services:
1 pool(s)
2 restaurant(s)
1 bar(s)
Fitness center
Internet business center ($)
Live music
Spa ($)
Laundry services ($)
Currency exchange ($)
Shuttle service throughout the resort ($)
WiFi available in :
Lobby
Room
Check-in time : 2:00 PM
Check-out time : 12:00 PM
Golf course nearby ($)
Minimum age to check in without an adult : 18 years old
Convention centre ($)
Car Rental ($)

To Book Your Trip
Contact our Travel Advisors:1.877.999.4768

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ESCAPE TO THE ISLANDS

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There’s something about warm weather getaways that beckons this time of year. As the frost begins to thaw and we see the first signs of spring, inevitably we begin to plan summer vacations. Which is why VIRTUOSO LIFE dedicated an entire issue to the subject, beginning with the cover story on New Zealand.

You’ll also find warm weather inspiration in the article on 25 top beaches. The following are a few examples located in the U.S., but our complete list of 25 encompasses the world.

ESCAPE TO THE ISLANDS

Hawaii
Hanalei Bay Beach

The Vibe: Hawaii unplugged
Read: Tangled Lies by Anne Stuart (set on Kauai)
Eat: Teriyaki burger and banana milk shake at Bubba’s (Kuhio Highway; 808/826-7839)
Stay: The new 252-room St. Regis Princeville Resort scales a jungle-covered bluff overlooking Hanalei Bay.

Nestled near the eastern end of Kauai’s dramatic Na Pali Coast, this eclectic beach curls around a crescent-shaped bay of the same name. The cove attracts more locals than tourists, and the calm, shallow waters lend themselves to surfing, kayaking, fishing, snorkeling, and windsurfing. Scenes from South Pacific (1958) were shot in and around bayside Hanalei town, renowned for its one-lane bridge and taro farms.

California
Venice/Santa Monica Beach

The Vibe: California eclectic
Read: North of Montana by April Smith, a murder mystery set in Santa Monica
Eat: Huevos rancheros with a Bloody Mary at the Sidewalk Café (1401 Ocean Front Walk; 310/399-5547)
Stay: Situated in Santa Monica, Shutters on the Beach is one of the few LA-area hotels whose backyard really is the beach. Its 198 residential-style rooms were recently renovated.

“Carnival by the sea” best describes the shore shared by the Venice and Santa Monica areas of Los Angeles. The spacious sands and copious waves nearly take a backseat to the frenetic action along the boardwalk: chalk artists and street musicians, craft stalls and outdoor cafés, bikini-clad Roller-bladers, and bare-chested weight lifters, even a pleasure pier with thrill rides. The beach is long enough that you can take a lone stroll along the much less populated northern sands.

Florida
South Beach, Miami

The Vibe: Are you cool enough?
Listen: Sound track from Miami Vice
Eat: Rainbow ceviche and rum-vanilla-cured smoked marlin at Ola (1745 James Avenue; 305/695-9125)

Stay: The Tides South Beach, where all of the 45 rooms are suites with beach views.

Star of television, film, and steamy novels, South Beach is more like a living, breathing celebrity than a static stretch of sand. This is beachfront eye candy gone wild – fancy cars and beautiful people. Art deco facades and faces you’ve seen on a million magazine covers. Endless sunshine and all-night dance parties. Everything you love (and loathe) about southern Florida comes together in one place. Yet it’s not just a pretty face: South Beach also lures with superb sand and hardcore beach volleyball, especially the courts at 8th and Ocean.

Georgia
Cumberland Island

ESCAPE TO THE ISLANDS. March VL Cover

The Vibe: Gone With the Wind goes to the beach
Read: Palindrome by Stuart Woods (set on Cumberland)
Listen: Gullah – Songs of Hope, Faith and Freedom by Marlena Smalls and the Hallelujah Singers
Stay: The 444-room Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island sprawls across an enticing beachfront locale eight miles from Cumberland Island.

Once a private getaway for the Carnegies, Georgia’s largest barrier island boasts 18 miles of pristine beach protected as a national seashore. Backed by low dunes, the strand is nearly 1,000 feet wide. Beachcombing is superb, and keep a lookout for dolphins, wild horses, and more than 300 bird species. Visit Dungeness (the ruined Carnegie mansion) near the south end of the beach and the tiny Baptist church where JFK Junior married Carolyn Bessette in 1996.

To Book Your Trip
Contact our Travel Advisors:1.877.999.4768

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1000 IG FOLLOWERS GIVEAWAY

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YYZ Travel company, an affiliated Virtuoso agency, would like to thank our followers for your constant support!

We have reached 1000 IG followers, and we are excited to announce a prize giveaway for all of you!

1000 IG FOLLOWERS GIVEAWAY


To take part in the giveaway, just follow our IG page and make a repost of the giveaway post with the hashtag #yyztravelgiveaway.
We have carefully selected different sets of prizes with our good friend, Tien, a travel blogger and just a great person! Here is a link to his travel blog – acornerkitchen.com.

The 5 lucky winners will get one of the following:

1: Skintelligence® Skincare Value Kit, $100 pre-paid VISA card and a selfie-stick.
1000 IG FOLLOWERS GIVEAWAY


2: $100 pre-paid VISA card and a selfie-stick.
Each of the other three winners will get a selfie-stick from YYZ Travel Group!

1000 IG FOLLOWERS GIVEAWAY

We will pick the winners in two weeks in a lottery drawing.
P.S.: Note that if you unfollow our page, you will be disqualified from the drawing. 


Thank you again and GOOD LUCK!!!

For more information visit out IG page.
Contact our Travel Advisors:1.877.999.4768

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WHY IS SUSTAINABLE TOURISM SO IMPORTANT?

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As one of the largest travel networks in the world, Virtuoso is guided by a philosophy of enriching lives through human connection, and the power of travel and tourism as a force for good. We believe that travel is a powerful catalyst to educate and protect natural and cultural heritage for future generations.

The United Nations has declared 2017 the Year of Sustainable Tourism, which inspired Virtuoso CEO Matthew Upchurch and his family to rethink their vacation strategy. “We decided to focus our family vacations around destinations, hotels, and tour companies known for enlightened environmental practices and cultural preservation,” says Upchurch.

Read more about the Upchurch family’s first trip to The Brando resort

Costas Christ, an award-winning travel writer and pioneer of sustainable travel practices, serves as Virtuoso’s director of sustainability. We asked him about the history of sustainability and what is being done to ensure future generations can travel to the places we love. He also told us six easy ways to travel sustainably.

WHY IS SUSTAINABLE TOURISM SO IMPORTANT?

Why is sustainability an important topic?

One of the most significant transformations underway in travel today is the idea that we can have the trip of a lifetime while also caring for the local people and places that we visit.  Sustainability is not a trend, in that sense, but rather an evolution of travel – and Virtuoso is committed to being on the cutting edge of innovation in the global travel community. Travelers have more places to go and more ways to get there than ever before, and with that comes an even greater responsibility to safeguard the world’s cultural and natural treasures for future generations. There were more than one billion international travelers last year – we believe that provides a billion opportunities to make the world a better place, and the way to get there is by embracing sustainable tourism best practices.

travelers prefer companies that are committed to social good and green practices

That is also why we launched the Virtuoso Sustainable Tourism Leadership Awards in 2011 to shine a spotlight on how the preferred tour companies, hotels, cruise lines, airlines, and other specialty partners in our network are changing travel in innovative and inspiring ways. In addition, a growing volume of recent research studies, including by the World Travel and Tourism Council, indicates that travelers prefer companies that are committed to social good and green practices. Virtuoso travel advisors can attest to this, as many report a rising interest in travel with meaning.

WHY IS SUSTAINABLE TOURISM SO IMPORTANT?

Costas Christ in Western Mongolia, with a Kazakh Eagle Hunter

Whether it is watching a family of wild elephants gathered at a water hole on the plains of Africa or listening to the melodious chanting of monks in a mountain top monastery in Bhutan, when we travel the right way, the sustainable way, we are investing in a better and brighter future for the planet and our children. For Virtuoso clients, the idea that travel can deliver such a personally rewarding and enjoyable experience, while also giving back at the same time – well, that is the travel magic they are seeking.

What are the three pillars of sustainable tourism?

Environmentally-friendly operations: The fundamentals of “reduce, reuse, and recycle” that go with being a travel company that embraces green practices.

Support for the protection of natural and cultural heritage: For example, support for wildlife conservation organizations or collaborating with scientific research projects aimed at protecting nature.  Likewise, safeguarding cultural heritage, whether that means helping to protect archaeological treasures, supporting traditional handicrafts, or promoting authenticity and local character that celebrate cultural diversity.

Social and economic benefits to local communities: For example, hiring local staff as a priority, providing fair wages and benefits, and supporting locally-owned businesses as much as possible.

WHY IS SUSTAINABLE TOURISM SO IMPORTANT?

How does travel as a whole help push sustainability forward?

Twenty-six years ago, a dozen passionate travelers and conservationists gathered in a historic farm house outside of Washington DC. Our aim was to connect conservation and travel in a new and dynamic way. That meeting gave rise to the ecotourism movement of the 1990s – defined as “Responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the well-being of local people.” Ecotourism’s nature-based roots led to the birth of sustainable tourism in 2002 – taking the same caring principles and applying them across all forms of tourism, from urban hotels to cruise lines and more. Combined, this has helped educate millions of international travelers about how we can live more sustainably on a finite planet. It is a growing and evolving movement to make the world a better place – and Virtuoso is proud to be a part of it.

Adapted from: www.blog.virtuoso.com

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3+1 Bonus Night in Hong Kong

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Your fourth night is free at Island Shangri-La, Hong Kong, where rooms sit high above Victoria Harbour with spectacular views. Guests are treated to a room upgrade when booking, if available; breakfast daily; welcome chocolates and signature Jasmine tea; and more. Shopping and sightseeing are pleasingly convenient. Ask about the exclusive Horizon Club guest rooms with added amenities. Connect with your Virtuoso travel advisor for rates. Available until June 30, 2017.

Island Shangri-La

Hong Kong, China

3+1 Bonus Night in Hong Kong (more…)

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