Luxury Hotels

Sydney – Rome – Belmond TV – Cadiz – Castelfalfi

Park Hyatt Sydney is, as the image shows above, underneath the city’s famous 1932-vintage Harbour Bridge, designed by  ..  It is 3,777 ft long, 160.1 ft wide and is 134m high.  For about a decade BridgeClimb has offered highly-organised trips over the top of the bridge’s upper arches. Now there is a Climb, Dine & Stay package. This offers groups, couples or up to 10 in one party, it of course includes a climb and a sleepover with dinner (actually at Ovolo Woolloomooloo, which also throws in breakfast and late checkout).  Girlahead really enjoyed her daytime climb over the bridge, and next time it could be a Twilight Climb with arrival and departure by limo or Tesla: every participant can get photos taken at the top and Ali Cassim, Head of Customer Experience at BridgeClimb, can also arrange a bespoke musician.

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In Rome, a multitude of experiences are offered by Rome Cavalieri Waldorf Astoria.  Think about touring the city in  an electric FIAT 500 Spiaggina (“little beach”) – visit theColiseum, the Baths of Caracalla, and the Castel Sant’Angelo, to the highest hills for an amazing sunset experience, or even such modern attractions  as the MAXXI Museum, Eataly or the Auditorium. The hotel can also arrange  an immersive horseback ride through the largest archaeological site in all of Europe, Ostia Antica, followed by an aperitivo with the Giulio II Castle. What really excites Girlahead, however, is understanding art restoration, seeing, close-up, the restoration of a Caravaggio.

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If you want to read about serious physical experiences, check out Major Levison Wood, 38 – he is part of the UK’s Parachute Regiment. He has walked the length of the Nile (its book was Walking the Nile), he has walked the Himalayas, from Afghanistan to Bhutan, and Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula to Colombia (Walking the Americas), and he has circumnavigated the Arabian Peninsula, and so on. So thank you, Belmond, for introducing eternal students to this obviously-fascinating explorer.

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Some luxury travellers want the past. Global specialist Susan Field says Tarifa, near Cadiz, is like stepping back in time. Small alleys and cobbled streets house charming small hotels and restaurants – but, hint of today, sandy beaches attract acrobatic kite surfers.  She overnighted at the charming Riad Tarifa (its website, theriadtarifa.com/es ,  is more appealing than many of those of mega-brands who spend millions more).

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Now is the time to pick up the latest WORLD TRAVEL ESSENTIAL podcast, with fascinating words from Isidoro Di Franco, GM of Toscana Resort Castelfalfi, near Montaione, on golfing in Tuscany.  Access the podcast via your preferred streaming device or direct on https://anchor.fm/agwte