ampr january newsletter

January AMPR Newsletter

What’s New?

For the first time in its 30-year history, The Wauwinet on Nantucket will undergo a multi-million-dollar renovation including a complete overhaul of all 32 guestrooms and bathrooms and updates to the property’s three intimate cottages and the lobby’s library, reopening in April 2019.

Surrounded by the mountains and sand dunes of the Namib Desert, andBeyond Sossusvlei Desert Lodge will reopen after a complete refurbishment on October 15, 2019 with floor-to-ceiling glass walls to take in the dramatic desert landscape.

Fresh off a top-to-bottom refurbishment, The Christopher Hotel will launch three new villas in 2019, each featuring four bedrooms and a private swimming pool.

Belmond British Pullman is hosting a Mary Poppins Returns-inspired afternoon tea journey on February 16, 2019. Families will enjoy balloon artists, face painters, and magicians as the train passes through the British countryside.

This spring, The River Lee in Cork, Ireland will unveil a new look for the lobby, restaurant, bar, and terrace, spearheaded by O’Donnell O’Neill Design.

PONANT will host a gastronomy and wine cruise in partnership with Ducasse Conseil and Chateau Latour aboard L’Austral from April 13-22, 2019. The ten-day sailing, ‘Gastronomy, Vineyards, and Grands Crus’ from Lisbon to Portsmouth will feature ports of call in Porto, Bordeaux, and Pauillac and two gala dinners hosted by chefs Xavier Boireau and Francis Fauvel.

Guinot launched its Anti-Dark Spot Serum this month, a new two-week treatment that uses pure Vitamin C to reduce and brighten dark spots caused by sun exposure and aging.

Carneros Resort and Spa in Napa has completed a renovation of its 94 cottages and suites – all featuring redesigned interiors and exteriors, new furnishings, and relaunched outdoor terraces that are complete with gas fire pits, portable mini-projectors, and telescopes.

La Maison du Chocolat has created a new line of Valentine’s Day confections for this season’s Parisian Dream collection available in boutiques and online on January 24.

Cool Hangout Spots for the Littlest Travelers

Suspended in the treetops amid the 10-acre park at La Réserve Geneva is La Petit Réserve. Free for kids ages six-months to 13-years, including local day guests, the kid’s club has a wooden obstacle course, swings and slide, and a suspension bridge that connects to a treehouse complete with a fireman’s pole, game tables, toys, puzzles, and a coloring station.

Royal Mansour’s dedicated Kids Club, Le Jardin de Lila, turns little ones into global citizens with Moroccan art activities, Arabic lessons, and a complimentary children’s book following Lila, a young girl exploring the hotel’s winding passageways and gardens.

Belmond Reid’s Palace on Madeira welcomes its younger guests to partake in fun activities housed in a traditional Santana cottage with a private kids’ swimming pool where swimming and gymnastics classes can be arranged.

andBeyond’s Bateleur Camp on Kenya’s Maasai Mara offers their fun and educational WILDchild program for the smallest safari-goers. Kids can learn to identify animal tracks and droppings, learn to build a fire the Masai way, and do some fun games and activities while learning about conservation and the role they can play in protecting the world’s fauna.

With treasure hunts and coconut bowling for the 4-12 set and ping pong tournaments and sailing school for tweens and teens, St. Lucia’s Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort’s Sugar Club and Spice Club offer kids their own version of paradise.

AMPR’s Guide to Wellness Travel for 2019

Thanks to its relaxing and mood-enhancing effects, CBD is a trending ingredient in spa treatments, especially prevalent in Napa Valley. Travelers in the region can choose from a selection of CBD wellness massages at Spa Terra at The Meritage Resort or enjoy a sound healing therapy paired with a CBD-infused wrap at Mount View Hotel & Spa.

Viceroy Riviera Maya’s resident shaman oversees the Jardin Pak’al, the garden where he grows herbs used to treat guests at the Wayak Spa. In the K’óben (Mayan herb kitchen), he has individual consultations with the guests to determine their preferences and needs, before creating a personalized healing experience for them held next to a waterfall.

andBeyond’s new Bhutan Yoga Retreat Small Group Journey allows travelers to immerse themselves in the spiritual heartland of Bhutan. Highlights of this 10-day journey include yoga and meditation, hiking Tiger’s Nest monastery in Paro, and exploring the fortresses and temples of Thimphu and Punakha, all led by an expert guide and specialist healing facilitator to help guests find balance of the mind, body, and soul.

Located on the shores of Lake Geneva, La Reserve Geneve’s Nescens Spa is the city’s largest spa, at 20,000 square-feet. Travelers looking to improve their ski, tennis, or golf performance can take part in the special Fitness Preparation Program, which combines coaching, treatment, and nutrition.

Royal Mansour has introduced Bespoke Hammam Treatments where each step of the traditional technique is personalized to the specific skincare needs of each guest using locally sourced ingredients – including purifying clay from the Atlas Mountains and roses from the Kalaat Megouana valley.

Guests at Sugar Beach can get fit with the Piton Recovery, which starts with a hike of the Gros Piton. After descending from the peak, hikers are met by one of Sugar Beach’s personal trainers for a stretching session, rehydration with coconut water, and revitalizing snack of potassium-rich bananas before have a muscle releasing massage back at the spa.

As part of The Chatwal, New York’s partnership with yoga and spiritual guru Eddie Stern, travelers will enjoy a new wellness program featuring nine 12-minute yoga sessions focusing on breathing techniques that balance the central nervous system, available complimentary through the in-room iPads.

Guests at The Marylebone have complimentary access to Third Space, an on-site members-only health club. Guests can snag a coveted spot in the popular group fitness classes and use the 60-foot indoor lap pool – finishing with a healthy smoothie from The Juicery.

Nayara Springs’ new Wellness Program incorporates healthful menus, yoga and meditation, and spa treatments so guests return home thoroughly relaxed and restored.

Not Your Typical Spring Break Destinations

Instead of the Caribbean or skiing, here are places you may not have considered…

Travelers who want an authentic St. Patrick’s Day experience can avoid the Dublin crowds and visit The River Lee in Cork, where a family-friendly three-day festival from March 16-18 offers parades, food, and music.

In March 2019, travelers can join a six-day Oceans Without Borders Small Group Journey to andBeyond Vamizi Island to participate in fish tagging and measuring and monitoring reef systems. Guests will learn what it takes to be an andBeyond dive instructor or a marine biologist, spend time in the local community, and enjoy water sports such as kayaking and snorkeling – with all proceeds supporting Oceans Without Borders.

Almanac Barcelona opened in February 2018 just steps from buzzing Passeig de Gracia. While Azimuth, the penthouse bar with 360-degree views of the city, is popular with locals, the rooftop pool and sun lounge are reserved for guests only. March and April temperatures are in the mid-60’s and it’s just before the summertime tourist rush.

Nearing the end of rainy season, safari-goers will enjoy the greener landscape and abundance of wildlife in Botswana at Belmond Savute Elephant Lodge. The newly reimagined lodge now features a viewpoint overlooking the watering hole in Chobe National Park, where guests can enjoy breakfast with a front-row seat to the passing elephants.

Dallasites can take advantage of the new direct Air France flight route launching on March 31, 2019, between Dallas/Fort Worth and Paris, and stay in the city’s 16th arrondissement at the La Réserve Paris Apartments. Families staying in the Apartments have the option to cook at home in the large chef’s kitchen, have exclusive access to the Roland Garros tennis courts (home to the French Open), and can ride bikes to enjoy an al fresco picnic lunch along the Seine.

Napa Valley continues to celebrate Cabernet Season through April. For adults in the know, this is the best time to visit – think smaller crowds, special hotel deals and winery experiences, and brilliant yellow wild mustard flowers, purple lupine, golden California poppies, and crimson clover are scattered through the vineyards and along country lanes.

Tokyo turns pink during the Cherry Blossom Festival from March 23 – April 27. Park Hyatt Tokyo is near several parks where guests can stroll under the pastel petals.

For an adventurous and warm spring break destination, visit Costa Rica’s Arenal Volcano Park. Guests at Nayara Springs can have tours organized for ziplining, white water rafting, and waterfall hikes, among others, observe a variety of wildlife including sloths at the on-site sanctuary, and then relax on property with daily yoga, by their private plunge pool, or at the spa.

…and don’t forget to get a sun-kissed glow before heading out for vacation with Guinot’s AutoBronze, an easy-to-apply tinted gel creating an even and natural-looking bronze without leaving streaks.




February 14, 2019: Belmond British Pullman’s Valentine’s Day lunch

February 8-16, 2019: In celebration of New York Fashion Week, Jacques at The Lowell will be offering a Fashion Week-inspired cocktail menu with drinks inspired by famous designers such as Oscar de la Renta, Chanel, and of course, Yves Saint Laurent (former owner of the Majorelle gardens).

February 16, 2019: Belmond British Pullman’s Mary Poppins Returns-inspired afternoon tea journey

February 2019: Guinot launches its new Lift Summum Treatment designed to firm and smooth the delicate skin of the face, neck, and chest.



Spring 2019: The Dupont Circle in Washington, D.C. relaunches its new bar, lobby, and Dupont Suite after a multi-million dollar renovation.

March 2019: Guinot launches its new Clean Logic Range, a cleansing skincare regimen formulated with anti-aging properties suited for fragile skin.

March 2019: andBeyond’s first Oceans Without Borders Small Group Journey departs for andBeyond Vamizi Island

March 3, 2019: Napa Valley Marathon

March 15-18, 2019: Yountville Live is a four day event celebrating music, food, and wine with programming including cooking classes, wine-paired dinners, a red carpet gala, a street festival, and live music throughout the weekend.

March 21-24, 2019: Stay with The Christopher Hotel during the annual St. Barth Bucket

March 26 – April 5, 2019: During Easter break, Sugar Beach offers a variety of children’s programming including tie-dying, chocolate making, boat tours, and an Easter egg hunt.

March 27 – April 7, 2019: Tokyo turns pink during the Cherry Blossom Festival



April 2019: The Wauwinet reopens following a multi-million-dollar renovation

April 2019: Napa Valley Arts in April

April 1, 2019: andBeyond’s 11-day Southern Chile Islands & Lakes Expedition kicks off in Santiago and travels to Chiloé Island, south into the Chilean Lake District, and ends with a stay at the new andBeyond Vira Vira.

April 2, 2019: andBeyond’s first Endangered Eight Impact Journey departs to search for eight threatened species in India’s wildlife sanctuaries.

April 15-22, 2019: PONANT’s newest EXPLORER ship, Le Bougainville, departs on its inaugural cruise

April 26-28, 2018: Nantucket’s Daffodil Festival





International Yoga Day

On June 21st, yogis from around the world will come together to celebrate International Yoga Day. While yoga’s easy enough to practice on your own or at your local gym, we’ve been looking for some of the coolest places to find your inner Zen. Here are just a few spots that can’t be beat:

On a Rooftop in Barcelona

At the Majestic Hotel & Spa in Barcelona, you can practice yoga on the roof with panoramic views of the city from the hotel’s prime location on Passeig de Gracia. From there, you’ll see Barcelona’s famous mountains and Gaudi’s modernistic Sagrada Familia, all while staying above the bustle of city life. The Majestic Hotel & Spa offers both group classes and private lessons that can be adapted for any level of experience.

Above the Jungle in Bali

At COMO Shambhala Estate, you can take complimentary classes or schedule private yoga lessons in a studio overlooking the Bali forests and mountains. There they practice Hatha Yoga, which combines asanas (postures), better breathing, and meditation. At COMO Shambhala Estate, a 23-acre property set on the River Ayung, yoga is just one part of the holistic wellness regime that begins the moment you set foot on the grounds.

On a Private Beach in Turks and Caicos

At COMO Parrot Cay, yoga classes are offered right on the beach. There’s nothing like the sound of the surf to soothe your senses and get you in a meditative state of mind, and the resort’s location on a private island is the ideal place to find inner peace. The only thing better than Yoga Day is five yoga days, COMO Parrot Cay offers five-day yoga retreats with top instructors like America’s Rodney Yee to allow you to fully dive into the experience.

In the Rainforest in Costa Rica

Nayara Springs has a pavilion set in the heart of the Arenal Volcano National Park in Costa Rica, where you can relax and enjoy one of the many complimentary group yoga classes or a private yoga lesson with an experienced instructor. When you’re completely surrounded by the forest and fresh air, listening to the humming birds sing, and feeling the warm Costa Rican sun on your body, you’ll feel at peace with the world.

Unlimited Yoga in St. Barth

“Ommm” en Français: Sibarth Guests Receive Personalized Yoga Instruction

Picture it: Morning Kriyas on empty Saline beach, snacking on mangoes in a private villa, and a personal concierge team to arrange it all.  Sibarth, the original St. Barth villa rental company, is offering complimentary passes to the St. Barth Summer Camp Yoga Challenge from July 15-August 18, led by yoga instructor and wellness coach Diana Bourel, who has created programs and yoga retreats for some of the world’s leading luxury hotels and spa properties including Chiva-Som and Kamaata in Thailand.

Guests staying in select villas during this time will enjoy a peaceful island vacation coupled with daily yoga classes on a personalized schedule. Guests arrive to a health and wellness basket packed with fresh produce, health foods, and refreshing drinks. Sibarth’s personal concierge team is also on hand to arrange yoga schedules, deliver organic foods from local shops, or arrange a spa treatment.

To book, visit or call 888 610 1060.

private island pilates

Parrot Cay

Come February, when winter’s cold has really outworn its welcome, jet down to Parrot Cay for a restorative Pilates Retreat. Already known for its amazing yoga retreats, the private isle is kicking off its new offering, continuing to be ahead of the curve when it comes to wellness. The retreat comes after the success of the resort’s mini-Pilates programs last year.

Elizabeth Feltman, instructor at the renowned Manhattan studio Erika Bloom Pilates Plus, is teaching this immersive program. With two classes each day, participants learn to set intention behind each movement for a true body transformation and form a great foundation for an active and balanced lifestyle. Feltman’s love of movement began with dance, and for the last 11 years, along with dancing and integrative nutrition, she has trained using Pilates to deepen her understanding of anatomy and kinesiology (the study of human movement).


While on the island, be sure to take advantage of the white sand beaches, healthy COMO Shambhala cuisine with an Asian flare emphasizing raw foods, and the very Zen COMO Shambhala Retreat and its host of Asian-inspired treatments. Daily group yoga classes are also available gratis!


Dates: February 2-7, 2011

Inclusions: (more…)

with and without the kids

Before school starts, take the kiddies on one last hurrah this summer with a fun family trip. Or, wait ‘til they’re back in school and sneak off for a grown-ups only, post-summer getaway.

Parrot Cay


new year, new you with como hotels and resorts


Make a New Year’s resolution that’s easy to keep: achieve total health in mind, body, and spirit by booking an invigorating yoga retreat with COMO Hotels and Resorts.

Choose between the On Top of the World yoga and meditation retreat at Uma Paro in Bhutan, January 9 – 15, 2010, or Yoga in Balance at Parrot Cay in Turks and Caicos, February 28 – March 6, 2010.

Meditate with top Australian yogi Judy Krupp as she returns for her third encore at Uma Paro. Or join Parrot Cay’s yoga specialist, Andrea Curry, and her sister, Christina, the COMO Shambhala Estate’s resident instructor, for a combined inspiring and nurturing approach to teaching at the Turks and Caicos resort. Guests of the retreats are encouraged to overcome physical and mental barriers to promote balance, energy, and relaxation.

Prices for Uma Paro start at $3,227 single occupancy and include the following:

  • Six-nights of accommodation
  • Up to 21 hours of yoga and meditation instruction
  • Return airport transfers
  • Daily breakfast and lunch (beverages not included)
  • Two dinners – one welcome and one farewell (beverages not included)
  • Cultural excursions to Bhutan’s oldest temple Kyichu Lhakhang, a traditional Bhutanese farmhouse, the Taktsang monastery (Tiger’s Nest), and Uma Paro’s majestic government and monastic center the Rinpung Dzong

Prices for Parrot Cay start at $6,617 single occupancy, $9,605 double occupancy and include the following:

  • Six-nights of accommodation in a Garden Room
  • Five days of yoga and meditation instruction
  • Round-trip airport transfers (for commercially scheduled flights only)
  • Daily American breakfast, lunch, and dinner (beverages not included)

108 salutes to the sun

tree pose

Breathe in…breathe out…breathe deeply. Thousands of yogis and yoginis around the world practiced their pranayama last weekend in celebration of the Global Mala Yoga for Peace Project.  Founded by Shiva Rea, the project brings together the worldwide yoga community for two days of yogic celebration, spanning borders and yoga disciplines in honor of the United Nations International Day of Peace.

Here in New York City, AMPRers unleashed a sea of ujai and performed countless reps of urdhva mukha svanasana at exhale, where a group of nine instructors heralding from different practices and backgrounds guided nimble students through sun salutations A and B… 108 of them!

If you missed this year’s Global Mala Yoga for Peace Project, be sure you mark your calendars for next September’s autumnal equinox.  Om shanti.

pilates for the people

Yoga at Anantara Si Kao

Who says you have to be a celebrity to go on a wellness retreat? Anantara Si Kao Resort & Spa in Thailand thinks everyone deserves some serious R & R, so they have designed two Wellness 360 Sentiré Retreat Packages that, from October 5-12th and 12-19th, include 7 nights for the price of 5.

Experience the powerful rejuvenating effects of Pilates with renowned A-List instructor Kirstin Ferrie, personal trainer to Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York. A ten-year veteran of the craft, Kristin is the first teacher from the UK to be gold certified with the Pilates Method Alliance. Take daily yoga class and learn to meditate with Kate Guthrie, who is known for her creative, playful nature and relaxed classes that are accessible to students of all levels. Whether you need some deep-tissue work or want to try traditional Shiatsu massage, Dale Husted is your man. After an hour of his hands, you’ll be completely energized. And don’t forget your consultations with Naturopath Dr. Gopal and Ayurvedic expert Kavitha Hulmani. They’ll enlighten you about holistic medicine and the body’s ability to heal itself.

All this learning could work up an appetite, but who wants to ruin their new training with a burger and fries? Anantara has thought of everything; this package also includes a cooking class with Kelly Brennan, the resort chef, who will instruct on how to prepare “wellness” cuisine.

For more package details, see our original post.

trips for the waist-conscious traveler…

Fitness programs

There’s a new chill to the wind, with autumn just around the corner, but you can still work up a sweat with these three heart-pumping fitness programs from Crystal Cruises, Anantara Resorts & Spas and COMO Hotels.

Crystal Cruises: Illustrating its commitment to offering innovative wellness programs, luxury specialist Crystal Cruises is introducing Nordic Walking, fitness walking with lightweight poles, aboard its ships. Through an exclusive new partnership with LEKI USA, a leading manufacturer of skiing, trekking and Nordic Walking Poles, Crystal continues to break new ground in fitness options at sea. Specifically designed to engage the entire body, the Nordic Walking poles will be available complimentarily to guests aboard Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity this October. Nordic Walking Poles specialist Rick Deutsch will be on board Crystal Serenity’s October 8 cruise from Athens to Venice, and Crystal Sympony’s October 19 cruise from New York to Montreal to teach the opening classes and train the ships’ fitness instructors, who will lead demonstrations on following voyages.

Anantara Madives: Surf’s up dude! Hang ten and conquer the wild waves with the Anantara Madives’ 5-star service ‘Ticket to Ride’ program. Anantara Resorts & Spas has partnered with the award winning Australian company Tropic Surf to offer an unforgettable experience for all – from beginners, to intermediate and advanced surfers. Your surf-pass entitles you to quite the package: two dhoni boat transfers per day to your designated surfing area, as well as expert guides, board valet, surf reports, movie and information nights, and more. The lessons are intimate, too – only eight surfers are permitted to book the program at any one time to ensure personal, one-on-one coaching and safe, un-crowded seas. Make sure to book in advance to save. Depending on which program you choose, costs can range from $175-$990 for prepaid bookings prior to your arrival, and from $195-$1,120 for payments at the resort.

COMO Hotels: COMO Hotels’ exclusive, luxurious, and life-changing yoga retreats are taught by top yogis in unbelievable settings. Judy Krupp, who led a retreat at Uma Paro in July, was the returning guru this year, joined by newcomers Elena Brower and Sarah Powers. The workshops provide nearly five hours of daily practice with the masters and are held at COMO Shambhala Estate in Bali, Parrot Cay in Bali, and Uma Paro in Bhutan. Students at all levels have unparalleled access to these yoga rock stars, as well as to the renowned COMO Shambhala Retreat spas. The weeklong programs include six nights accommodation, most meals, and airport transfers. Single occupancy rates start at $5,681 at Parrot Cay, $3,515 at The Estate, $4,668 at Uma Paro; and double occupancy rates begin at $8,669 at Parrot Cay, and $7,056 at Uma Paro. All three properties offer daily yoga classes, as do most other COMO Hotels including Cocoa Island in the Maldives, and Uma Ubud, also in Bali. Daily Pilates classes are also offered at COMO Shambhala Estate and Parrot Cay.

yoga retreat with erich schiffmann

This spring, Parrot Cay will be rolling out the red carpet for guest celebrity yoga instructor Erich Schiffmann, who will be joining the resort’s A-List roster of wellness specialists to lead a special six-day COMO Shambhala yoga retreat from May 31st -June 6th, 2009. The LA-based Schiffmann will enlighten guests with his unique Freedom-Style yoga, an intuitive approach to yoga involving meditation and inner guidance within practice poses.

With over 40 years of experience, Schiffmann teaches yoga essentials that foster inner development and deeper self-trust on the distracting West Coast; imagine how much further that development will go in the secluded oasis of private island resort Parrot Cay

For those not familiar with Schiffmann, he is the phenom behind the popular yoga DVDs starring actress Ali MacGraw.

The Essentials of Freedom Style Yoga” retreat Information: (more…)