Staying Classic: Southern California, USA

Is there a better way to kick-start a trip through southern California than with a jaunt to a vineyard for breakfast? Of course not. After all, it’s educational.   We start out in Orange County where there are, of course, a number of wineries to choose from. But the private and secluded Newport Beach Vineyards…
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Paradise found: Inside Banyan Tree Bintan

Picture this: A virtually desolate island. Unspoilt views of pristine sand beaches. Gentle waves splashing against rocks dotted in a clear azure sea. Sumptuous luxury at your fingertips. All served with the finest Indonesian hospitality. This place, my friends, is Banyan Tree Bintan. A mere hour’s ferry ride away from the South East coast of…
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Where Moor Is More: La Mamounia, Marrakech

I’d been meaning to visit this ancient place hewn from the sands of the Sahara, in the shadow of the mighty Atlas Mountains, for years. Besides, journeying to the home of sultans, snake charmers and seething souks from London Stansted to Menara takes just three and a half hours by Boeing 737. That’s less time…
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It Sèze It All: Hôtel de Sèze, Paris

Can Paris really accommodate yet another perfectly formed, architect-designed bijou boutique hide away? May wee, as they say in pubs of Bolton.   Madeleine is one of those Parisian areas; an, in-the-know hangout which locals love, but which scarcely flickers on the common tourist radar. And – one says smugly, upon unearthing the secret –…
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House Of Joy: Vila Joya, Portugal

Vila Joya literally means ‘jewellery box’ which is appropriate, given that the boutique hotel is one of Portugal’s hidden gems. Blissfully exclusive, the oriental palazzo overlooks the Albuferia coastline, and as some of the world’s finest golf courses are within eyeshot, if you’re heading there to improve your game you’ve picked the right place. Golf is the main diversion here and head pro Jose Ferriera…
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