Experiential travel is increasingly on the rise. A term used to coin a way of experiencing a place through authentic immersion, it’s fulfilling a growing sense of adventure amongst today’s contemporary travellers. Outdoor enthusiasts, epicureans, escapists, oenophiles, rejuvenators and snow-seekers take note–these experiential escapes are perfect for you.
Overlooking moss-covered lava fields, surrounded by untouched terrain, this abandoned inn-turned-boutique hotel mixes luxury with nature for an unforgettable Icelandic experience. The perfect base for exploring the splendour of the ethereal country, this eco-luxury accommodation features 45 guestrooms, a warm outdoor pool, indulgent spa, and an onsite restaurant and bar serving up the best of New Nordic cuisine. Beckoning those with a passion for the great outdoors, a stay here opens up endless opportunities for discovery. Year-round activities include day jeep tours, snowmobile adventures, horseback riding, white-water rafting, and of course (best between September and March) a chance to spot the Northern Lights.
Set in the picturesque Oxfordshire village of Great Milton, this 15th century, 32-room manor house is the brainchild of celebrated chef, Raymond Blanc. Steadily setting the standard for haute cuisine since its opening in 1984, Blanc’s vision for the hotel’s restaurant was simple: one of world-class gastronomic flair and outstanding produce. Conjuring up a sensory experience like no other, the menu upholds a garden-to-table philosophy, celebrating up to 90 herbs and vegetables grown onsite at the two-acre kitchen gardens. But the prestige isn’t just limited to the restaurant, making its way through the well-appointed guest rooms, to The Raymond Blanc Cookery School, where budding and established chefs can elevate their culinary passions with half, full and multi-day courses.
Fulfilling, if not exceeding, all escapist fantasies, Minaret Station Alpine Lodge is a premiere display of high country hospitality. Encircled by New Zealand’s Southern Alps and bush-clad mountains, the 50,000-acre property is only reachable by helicopter (20-minute flight time from Wanaka) and has just four luxury standalone chalets, limiting the maximum number of guests at any one time to eight. They stand separately amongst native grassland, dotted around the central Mountain Kitchen which houses two spacious living areas, a cellar, and first-class dining facilities. Remote in every sense of the word, Minaret Station can be visited year round with an activity list that includes heli-skiing, guided hunting, fly fishing, jet boating and mountain biking.
Set on a 55-acre vineyard with the picturesque Andes Mountain range on one side and world-famous wineries on the other, Cavas Wine Lodge is an idyllic South American retreat, perfect for those in favour of fine wine and delicious cuisine. Located just south of Mendoza, the property features 18 villas nestled amongst the vineyards, a fitness centre, sauna, outdoor pool, restaurant, wine-tasting room and onsite spa offering signature wine treatment therapies. Boasting 320 days of sun a year, visitors can enjoy tailored tours of the best wineries in the area, or explore the region by way of rafting, hiking and ziplining.
Revered for its world-class service and relaxed atmosphere, this one-time farmhouse recently underwent a contemporary transformation, cementings its spot as of the most luxurious hotels and spa destinations in the Cotswolds. The farmhouse-chic accommodation features 38 rooms, two dining destinations, and the award-winning House spa, which features an indoor pool, fitness suites, therapy rooms, nail parlour and gym. The recipient of an ever-growing list of accolades–including Small Luxury Hotels Best Spa Hotel, Good Spa Guide Top Five UK Spas, and Condé Nast Johansens Awards for Excellence–is the perfect place to get some well overdue rest and relaxation.
This former cable car station turned luxury ski-in/ski-out mountain hotel sits at the top–2,112m above sea level to be exact–of Switzerland’s Crans-Montana ski resort. Overlooking powdered terrain and hiking trails, the exclusive location is reachable only via shuttle service and snow cat. The eco-friendly hotel features 16 rooms and suites, two restaurants, a meditation room, ski/snowboard lockers, heated and ventilated boots rooms, plus a wellness area complete with steam room, infra-red booth and sauna. Perfect for ski enthusiasts with an appreciation for life’s luxuries, guests savour in knowing they can return from an action-packed day on the slopes to a space of impeccable style and utter relaxation.
Interested in experiential travel? Get in touch with our travel managers for more information, or browse our Experiential Escapes collection here.