Author Archive for Alan Hazel

Ferrari to invest Ä100m in Spanish theme park

Ferrari to invest Ä100m in Spanish theme park

Perhaps it’s not surprising that a brand such as Ferrari would be obsessed with earning titles for being fastest, but you might not expect the superlative to be applied to roller coasters and other theme park rides. Yet the elite car maker already holds the record for world’s fastest roller coaster in its existing theme [...]

5 of the best beaches in Andalucia

5 of the best beaches in Andalucia

With biblical flooding in the UK and lingering winter storms battering the US and much of western Europe, it’s not too soon to look forward to beach weather, right? Given that the southern coast of Andalucia boasts the best climate in Europe with many areas averaging more than 300 days of sunshine per year, you [...]

The best culinary destination you’ve never heard of

The best culinary destination you’ve never heard of

The culinary map is, shall we say, peppered with well known and well tread “must see” destinations: cities such as Paris, New York, London, Bangkok and Sydney to name but a few, and more rural or regional destinations such as Provence, Basque Country, Napa Valley and Tuscany. But there’s one rising star on the Spanish [...]

Travel trends for 2014: private vacation rentals on the rise

Travel trends for 2014: private vacation rentals on the rise

As 2013 winds down the travel pundits and industry insiders are making their annual predictions for travel trends that will shape the coming year. Apart from some of the continuing trends, such as the role of social media and technology in informing and shaping travel decisions, a number of this year’s predictions indicate a rise [...]

5 reasons to ski the Sierra Nevada this Winter

5 reasons to ski the Sierra Nevada this Winter

A ski holiday is not the first thing people usually think of when considering a visit to Andalucia; however, the Sierra Nevada ski resort is for many reasons a terrific alternative to the Alps and other European ski destinations. With world class slopes and facilities, this site overlooking the Mediterranean sea and the culture rich [...]

The best Sherry house in Spain?

The best Sherry house in Spain?

Considering that the Jerez D.O. (denominacion de origen) title was the very first designated in Spain, and that even before then Sherry was already internationally popular for centuries, you might expect that by now there would be some very fine bottles of the stuff in production. The process of making this fortified wine has indeed [...]

The world’s most luxurious spa pools and baths

The world’s most luxurious spa pools and baths

Some of the world’s most opulent hotels seem to be competing for bragging rights on the most over the top Jacuzzis and spas. But what really makes a bath or spa pool luxurious?†A key feature of the Presidential Suite at the Intercontinental Hotel in Hong Kong, for example, at more than $14,000 a night, is [...]

Top 5 Autumn experiences in Andalucia

Top 5 Autumn experiences in Andalucia

While most visitors to Andalucia will be sure to include a visit to one of the popular historic sites such as the Alhambra in Granada, the Mezquita in Cordoba or the Cathedral of Seville, countless experiences await the traveler who looks just a little further beneath the surface of this beautiful and culturally rich region [...]

The top 4 Andalucian Summer festivals

The top 4 Andalucian Summer festivals

Nowhere in Europe do they put on a party quite like the Spanish, and the Andalucian festivals are perhaps the most colourful of all. Every village, town and city holds at least two unique festivals each year, providing a veritable non-stop fiesta season from spring all through summer and autumn. While there are numerous dedicated [...]

The top 3Ĺ wineries of La Axarquia, Andalucia

The top 3Ĺ wineries of La Axarquia, Andalucia

Though you may not have even heard of the little region of La Axarquia in the eastern most corner of Malaga Province, this mountainous coastal territory was the renowned global centre of sweet wine production only 150 years ago and production began at least 3000 years ago with the Phoenicians. Since the “phylloxera”Ě aphid scourge [...]

7 of the best restaurants in Malaga Province, Andalusia

7 of the best restaurants in Malaga Province, Andalusia

The recent announcement of this year’s list of the best restaurants in the world has cemented Spain’s place at the top with more Spanish chefs in the top ten than any other country. Not only did the Roca brothers climb to number one with The Cellar de Can Roca in Girona, but Basque restaurants Mugaritz [...]

Table for four? That’ll be $28,000 thank you

Table for four? That’ll be $28,000 thank you

Although Spanish chef extraordinaire Ferran Adria closed his El Bulli restaurant in Catalonia after maintaining three Michelin stars for more than a decade, many still consider him the world’s finest and most innovative chef. However, the price tag on a private dinner for four at an auction in Hong Kong this week is a bit [...]

Ethical luxury: the world’s only organic caviar

Ethical luxury: the world’s only organic caviar

Black sturgeon caviar has been a luxury delicacy for centuries, though it is only in the past couple of decades that our taste for it has driven the sturgeon, an ancient species with a history of at least 250 million years, to near extinction. Despite a temporary and partial ban on wild sturgeon fishing in [...]

4 top tips for today’s personal concierge

4 top tips for today’s personal concierge

As today’s luxury travellers grow ever more discerning and tastes and trends evolve, so must their holiday services evolve to keep them satisfied and to keep them coming back. Based on luxury travel trends identified by a study from the The Future Laboratories for the International Luxury Travel Market (Dec 2012), here are some tips [...]

The top 5 luxury guide to Malaga, Spain

The top 5 luxury guide to Malaga, Spain

The Andalucian port city of Malaga, on Spain’s southern coast, appears to have a bit of an image problem. Why else would a city that has been such a rich and vibrant centre of trade and culture since at least the Phoenician times be so conspicuously absent from the rankings of most desirable destinations? Blame [...]

The Andalucian harvest: sherry, sweet wine and a very good time

The Andalucian harvest: sherry, sweet wine and a very good time

So youíve done the tour of French vineyards and youíre looking for something new, or perhaps youíve been to and done the Tuscan wineries and you want a different take on the grape scene.† Andalucia makes for a surprisingly sophisticated harvest experience; and letís face it, la fiesta is in the Spanish blood so itís [...]

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