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Luxury travel news this week

Here’s a round-up of luxury travel stories that have caught the eye this week. To make sure you receive these new weekly alerts in your web browser, please click on the red bell icon in the bottom right hand corner of the page and click ‘subscribe’ (works on desktop only – for other ways to subscribe, please click here). This will also alert you to any other posts on the blog. Should you wish, you can unsubscribe at any time, by clicking on the icon again and selecting ‘unsubscribe’. New flights open up Napoleon’s hidden Atlantic island to international visitors A tiny volcanic island located right in the middle of the South Atlantic, St. Helena is without a doubt one of the world’s hardest-to-reach places. In fact, its inaccessibility led the British to choose it as a prison island for Napoleon Bonaparte, who was exiled here in 1815. Napoleon never lived to make it off the island, but a new air service from New York is about to make this remote British possession that much easier for international tourists to visit – and to leave. United Airlines has introduced a new nonstop flight service from New York/Newark to Cape Town, beginning December 15, 2019, which will be able to connect to new seasonal flights from Cape Town to St Helena operated by regional South African airline Airlink… [read more] ‘Scary’ glass bridges shut in Chinese province A Chinese province has shut all 32 of its glass attractions – including bridges, walkways and viewing decks – as safety checks are carried out. The attractions, spread across 24 sites in Hebei province, have been shut since March 2018, said state media CCTV. The move had not previously been widely reported. China has seen a flurry of glass attractions spring up across the country – but there have been accidents and at least two deaths… [read more] NCL raises the curtain for new ship Norwegian Encore With more and more ships being built every year (with $65 billion in ships on order over the next 10 years), it can be difficult to stay ahead of the curve as a cruise line. From gourmet cuisine, luxurious spas to top-notch entertainment and high-tech features, cruise lines are going above and beyond to deliver something different at sea. And passengers can certainly expect something unique on board NCL’s new ship, Norwegian Encore… [read more] Inside two iconic sea forts that are now luxury hotels An incredible opportunity to own your own Victorian-era sea fort is being offered – if you have a few million pounds to spend. The nine-bedroom Spitbank Fort and No Man’s Fort, which boasts 23 rooms, are both on the market after being transformed into luxury hotels. The 19 Century structures were originally built more than 150 years ago to repel the threat of a French invasion, but now boast multiple bars, rooftop terraces, a lighthouse, a restaurant, a helipad and a spa. The iconic forts are on the market for a combined £8million and both offer stunning views across the south coast of England… [read more] This new Porsche-designed catamaran superyacht has more curves than your 911 Nobody picks a Porsche to blend in. Known for its legendary sports cars, the marque has now taken its singular design ethos to the high seas with a new eye-popping catamaran. The futuristic 135-foot vessel—which was built by Kockums shipyard in Sweden and delivered earlier this year—is the brainchild of the Singapore-based Royal Falcon Fleet and Porsche Design Studio. Dubbed the Royal Falcon One, the unequivocal showstopper features a unique multihull design hailing from the brains at naval architecture firm Incat Crowther… [read more] We really enjoy hearing from our readers and would love to hear your views on any of these stories! Please click on the comments below and share your thoughts. Thank you. Have a story you’d like to share? Please contact us for details.

Paul Johnson

Paul Johnson is Editor of A Luxury Travel Blog and has worked in the travel industry for more than 30 years. He is Winner of the Innovations in Travel ‘Best Travel Influencer’ Award from WIRED magazine. In addition to other awards, the blog has also been voted “one of the world’s best travel blogs” and “best for luxury” by The Daily Telegraph.

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  1. It’s rather worrying that the Chinese didn’t conduct all their Health and Safety checks prior to designing and opening the glass bridges, possibly avoiding the loss of two lives.

    Though it would be sad if all of these bridges remain closed. Although I’ve not got the greatest head for heights I would love to walk some of them.

  2. As much as I would like to visit St Helena I think a windy landing would freak me out.

    Merely coming in to Heathrow last week, during the tail-end of one of these autumn hurricanes, was bumpy enough for me. Due to the adverse weather conditions Heathrow had already closed one runaway and we had a pretty scary landing.

  3. I read about the glass decks in China being closed, but I hadn’t realised they’d been shut since March last year. They really do know how to keep things under wraps! If they’ve already been closed for so long then I wonder when the safety checks will be complete and they’ll be re-opened? Those sea forts are pretty cool, but crazy expensive as they’re such a novelty. I wonder what chain will pick those up, or how much it would cost to stay in one of the rooms. A very impressive effort to make them so luxurious though. The article shows the exterior and a little from above, but I’d love to see what they’re like on the inside.

  4. Have heard that the total population of the island is just around 4000 people!!! Hailing from Mumbai, which is like the fifth largest city of the world (in terms of population), I wonder how it would feel to visit such a remote and barren place. Would I love the solitude or the isolation would feel awkwardly creepy?

  5. Closing down all 32 bridges?? What an uncalculated step!! I mean these glass bridges are now constructed in every other developed country and are major tourist attractions. Instead of increasing the security and preventative measures, the authorities seriously decided to shut them down for the public? I hope its only for the time being and they re-open soon with some kick-ass improvements and revamp!

  6. Spending $65 billion on cruise ships in the next 10 years? Wow, I wish had that sort of money to put into the NHS! A 1,110ft ‘world’s longest race track at sea’, that’s certainty a novelty to have. I’ve never considered a race track on a cruise. Actually, I find the idea a bit off-putting to be whizzing around on that, even if there are decent barriers around the side of the ship. I also noticed they have a laser tag arena which is pretty cool! Considering all of this newness and big crazy exciting developments, it made me laugh when they said the Starbucks inside is ‘truly a novelty’. I thought Starbucks was pretty standard anywhere and everywhere, but it’s not every day you find a race track & laser tag on a cruise ship, I’d say those are the novelties!

  7. I am badly addicted to caffeine. For me it’s life. I need it the first thing I wake up in the morning, with lunch, then after I return home and even when I am off to bed to get a sound, blissful sleep. Yup! That’s how bad my addiction is! And I have read that St. Helena produces the most expensive coffee in the world which is impossible to find anywhere else (heard that a couple of years back the St Helena Coffee Beans were sold in London at £60 per 100g- this is like upto 60 times more expensive than a normal coffee price). Have checked Amazon a couple of times to buy the Sea Island Coffee or the famous Midnight Mist Coffee Liqueur but they are always out of stock!!
    This direct flight have made it easier to travel to the island and satisfy my craving with uncountable exotic mugs.

  8. It’s taken a while for the cruise industry to get there but NCL are definitely getting it right with their Freestyle concept. Let’s face it this is 2019 and consumers demand total freedom of choice. I’m a big cruise fan but a lot of my friends are reluctant to even try a cruise once. They worry that they will be herded about as if they are kids on a school trip being told where to sit and when. Though NCL certainly seem to be on the right track with their approach to customer service.

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