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Travel News

fantasy travel NM

By Judy Newell

Mexico News

New Xolumado Inspiration Village

Karisma Hotels and Resorts is opening a new wellness-focused resort this January, Xolumado Inspiration Village. Set away from the beach between Karisma’s El Dorado and Generations Riviera Maya resorts, Xolumado is aimed squarely at the wellness market.

Xolumado consists of 2.5 acres of Riviera Maya jungle filled with meandering, intertwining paths, mangroves, and 41 cottages. Touches of Buddhist culture are present throughout in statues set along the paths and tucked next to the cottages.

There are three suite categories: the Serenity Suite, which has an open terrace and a palm-thatch roof; the Zen Garden Suite, which has its own private balcony; and the top-tier Tranquility Suite, which consists of two adjoining Zen Garden Suites. In addition to the cottages, there are 20 standard Garden View Rooms.


International News

Mauritius Named Golfing Destination of the Year

At an awards ceremony in Slovenia recently, the International Association of Golf Operators recently named Mauritius Golf Destination of the Year for Africa, the Indian Ocean region, and the Gulf States. The nation won the same accolade in 2016.

Known for its tropical island allure, Mauritius’s magnificent golf courses are now also taking center stage in the tourism sector.

In and amongst the undulating volcanic hills and tropical forests, the island is now home to over 12 exceptional golf courses, from 9-hole courses to world-class 18-hole championship courses designed by such golfing legends as Ernie Els, Peter Matkovich, Bernhard Langer, Rodney Wright, Hugh Biaocchi, Tony Johnstone, and now South Africa’s own Louis Oosthuizen.

Cruise News

US$67,000 Per Person for Seabourn’s 2020 World Cruise

Would you embark on a 146-day cruise around the world? The upcoming Extraordinary Destinations cruise aboard the flagship, the Seabourn Sojourn, is set to visit five continents and 62 ports in 146 days in 2020.

Seabourn was recently recognized as the world’s best luxury cruise line by Cruise Critic in its Editors’ Pick Awards.

According to Seabourn, this marks the line’s first world cruise in six years. The Sojourn is scheduled to cast off from Miami in January 2020 and reach its final destination, San Francisco, in May.

The 650-foot Sojourn is registered in the Bahamas and can hold 458 passengers. Its fastest speed is 19 knots. The ship will make stops in 26 countries.


Words of the Wise and Well-traveled

A ship in a harbor is safe, but it is not what ships are built for. —John A. Shedd



Deal of the Week


Neiman Marcus’s Fantasy Travel Gifts

Some say the gift of travel is the best gift of all. Others say Christmas is the spirit of giving. If you share in either of these views, you’ll be happy to learn that Neiman Marcus has released a wishlist of a few travel experiences that will make you say, “Wow!” This reaction could be because of the quality of the adventures, but also because of the cost. But they are also (somewhat) for a good cause.

Discover India, Nepal, Bhutan, and the Maldives US$630,000

A 32-day trip for up to four people, this exploration includes travel by private jet, private safari, nights in multiple five-star hotels, meetings with wellness gurus, helicopter tours, and yacht rides. Damn, Santa! I’ve been so good!


Experience All Four Tennis Majors as a VIP Guest of Sloane Stephens US $555,000

Admission to this trip (for you and a guest) includes an extended hangout session with 2017 US Open Champion Sloane Stephens and her close friends and family in a VIP box for each of the four Tennis Majors. You can expect to spend several nights in “player-only” hotels as part of the package as you travel through Paris, London, New York, and Melbourne for the events.


Stephens will give guests autographed memorabilia and tennis gear. She’ll also host a 45-minute hitting session with you before each event. In addition, US$30,000 of the experience will go to The Heart of Neiman Marcus Foundation, which provides enriching arts experiences to youth.

Custom Candy Bar + One Million Pieces of Sugarfina Candy US$325,000

For all you sweet tooths out there, this is a dream. For up to three years, this package grants you custom Sugarfina candy deliveries, as well as a trip to the Italian Riviera that includes a stay at the

Belmond Hotel Splendido and a private tour of the Sugarfina factory by company founders Rosie O’Neill and Josh Resnick.


Also, $10,000 of the trip will go to The Heart of Neiman Marcus Foundation. And if you’re wondering: the amount of candy over three years adds up to one million. That’s right, one million pieces of candy.


Fulfill Your Fantasy of Becoming a Secret Agent, US$315,000

The name’s Bond. James Bond. Or Jane Bond. Or, actually, whatever your name really is. The purchase of this trip, titled the “Secret Agent Experience” kicks off with you and four others flying to Las Vegas in a private jet. You’re welcomed by a “mysterious man in a tux who will hand over an envelope containing the assigned mission profile.”

From there, you’ll enjoy a three-day adventure that involves jumping out of planes, combatant diving, and sports cars. You’ll be resting up at the Waldorf Astoria Las Vegas, and US$25,000 of the package will go to The Heart of Neiman Marcus Foundation.


Here’s hoping you are beloved by some really wealthy gift-givers this season!


Judy Newell, an international travel consultant for over 40 years, heads Perfect Journeys, and specializes in unique travel experiences to destinations around the world. She custom designs journeys that are tailored to suit your interests, abilities, and budget. Please contact Judy for further information on Travel News topics and around-the-world travel; cell phone 415 111 8765; Vonage 949-300-3682; email Her office is in Rancho Los Labradores, carr a Dolores Hidalgo. View the latest travel specials on the website

Sources: Travel Agent Central, IOL, Seabourn Cruise Line, Fodor’s Travel


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