ampr march 2018 update

April 10th, 2018

What’s New?

The Lowell’s ever-popular Pembroke Room, known for its chic Afternoon Tea and polished service, is relaunching in April 2018 – complete with a new outdoor terrace for alfresco brunching.

PONANT announces the first electric hybrid Icebreaker ship coming in 2021, which will safely cut through ice flow up to eight feet thick and travel to the true geographic North Pole (at 90 degrees North Latitude).

andBeyond Phinda Homestead in KwaZulu-Natal will reopen on September 1, 2018 after a complete rebuild. This standalone safari lodge allows travelers a completely private safari experience, ideal for family or group travel – no sharing safari vehicles and total control over the day’s schedule.

From March 1 through April 30, The Dupont Circle in Washington DC is celebrating the National Cherry Blossom Festival with a special ‘In Full Bloom’ package including a stay at the hotel, the chef’s cherry blossom themed welcome amenity, a $25 dining credit, and complimentary valet parking.

Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort has officially opened two of the five ultra-luxe Beachfront Collection residences. Images of the new homes – complete with infinity pools and floor-to-ceiling glass windows – are available for stays now.

Domaine de Manville in the heart of Provence received its first Michelin Star for its restaurant, l’Aupiho, helmed by Chef Matthieu Dupuis Baumal.

Vista Collina Resort in Napa is projected to open Summer 2018 and will feature 145 guestrooms. Adjacent to the property will be the Village, featuring nine tastings room, a food and wine center, and a 16,000 square foot lawn for concerts and events.

Jamaica’s GoldenEye launches veggie cocktails, featuring local produce from Pantrepant, the hotel’s farm. New elixirs include: the Cucumber Martini; Beetroot, Bourbon, and Scotch bonnet cocktail; and the Arugula and Celery Sour.

Royal Mansour Spa has unveiled a new series of bespoke hammam treatments where each step of the hammam process can be customized beginning with three types of body wraps, two types of kessa gloves, and a variety of Leonor Greyl shampoos for varying hair types.

Belmond has expanded its Italian portfolio with the acquisition of Castello di Casole, a historic castle hotel in the heart of rural Tuscany. The intimate 39-room hotel sits within 4,200 acres of farmland, vineyards, and olive groves – one of the largest private estates in Italy.

Travel to Brazil is easier than ever with a newly-launched e-visa system for American travelers To make the most of a Brazilian vacation, travelers can book Belmond’s ‘Grand Tour of Brazil’ – a five-night itinerary that includes the brand’s properties on Copacabana Beach and in Iguassu falls – or go off-the-beaten-path with a visit to UXUA on the remote shores of Trancoso.

Strawless and Flawless

Hotels are eschewing plastic straws for more sustainable options like paper or bamboo. According to The Last Plastic Straw project, 500 million straws are used and thrown away every day in the US, which is about 175 billion per year.

Nayara Springs, set on the fringes of Costa Rica’s Arenal Volcano, only uses bamboo straws across the property’s restaurants and bars – mixologist Monica Gonzalez is on-hand to whip up poolside cocktails made with local fruits.

The Doyle Collection’s London hotels (The Marylebone, The Kensington, and The Bloomsbury) just officially became plastic-straw-free and are now moving to roll out this policy brand-wide, from Dublin to Cork to Washington DC.

andBeyond Kichwa Tembo Tented Camp and the new andBeyond Bateleur Camp (reopening this month after a complete renovation), both on Kenya’s Masai Mara, have discontinued all plastic straw usage – falling into line with their ethos: care of the land, care of the wildlife, care of the people.

Go Global with Locals

andBeyond’s new philanthropic-focused itineraries in Tanzania, Kenya, and South Africa give guests first-hand experiences with the locals in the community, like participating in school conservation lessons in Tanzania.

Guests of Nayara Springs can visit the source of the resort’s chocolate at a local farm. The owners will teach travelers the process of chocolate-making.

During PONANT’s voyages through the Northwest Passage, guests will have opportunity to meet with locals in charming Inuit villages to learn about the culture.

Majestic Hotel & Spa has an exclusive relationship with local marine biologist Anna Bozzano, the only tour guide approved to visit the Barcelona Fish Market where she teaches about the market’s innerworkings.

Connecting guests with the local community is elemental to every Belmond experience. Highlights include art lessons with Jose Luis Arias, a graduate of the local Instituto Allende, at the newly renovated Belmond Casa de Sierra Nevada, and a walking tour with a former prison guard of Nelson Mandela’s that begins at Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel.

Sugar Beach guests who hike the Gros Piton follow a guide from the local village up the two-hour climb.

Over-the-top Amenities

Guests at La Réserve Paris can create their ownbespoke scent with the help of a professional ‘nose.’

Thanks to Kinloch Anderson, kilt maker to Her Royal Highness the Queen, travelers on Belmond Royal Scotsman are swept to the showroom for a private fitting, and a fully customized kilt arrives at their doorstep 8-10 weeks later in the family tartan or a pattern from the train. During their journey, guests will find a complimentary set of Highland Dress (kilts for men, skirts for women) awaiting them in their train cabin.

One of the new Beachfront Collection residences available to buy or book for stay at St. Lucia’s Sugar Beach will have a waterslide connecting an infinity pool to a lower level hot tub and yoga deck.

Guests who book the top, three-bedroom suite at the White Elephant, White Elephant Village or The Wauwinet will receive the keys to a BMW for the duration of their stay.

Hamilton Princess & Beach Club is the first property in Bermuda to offer two-seat, electric Renault Twizy vehicles to guests, designed by Renault’s Formula One racing team and can travel up to 50 miles on a single charge.

At andBeyond Mnemba Island, instead of your typical tray of room service arriving in your room, the lodge will dig a custom “sand castle” dining room on the beach in front of your suite and serve freshly caught seafood surrounded by lantern light.

Located on the shores of Lac Léman, La Réserve Geneva has its very own Venetian Motoscafo boat that takes guests to go to and from the city center.

Majestic Hotel & Spa’s Royal Penthouse Suite – the largest suite in Barcelona – is home to a Bar Au Parfum stocked with five 200 ml bottles of Atelier Cologne, available for use throughout the stay. Guests can take home a complimentary leather case, engraved with their name and filled with 30ml sized bottles of each of the colognes.



April 2018: Belmond La Residencia will unveil a new suite created by fashion designer Matthew Williamson.

April 2018: Belmond will add two new barges to its Belmond Afloat in France fleet. The two “floating hotels” will travel the rivers of Champagne and Alsace

April 2018: The Pembroke Room at The Lowell completes a renovation

April 7-17, 2018: andBeyond’s Eat, Pray and Love journey departs in India

April 28-29, 2018: Hamilton Princess & Beach Club in Bermuda will serve as the official host hotel for the ITU World Triathlon, the first time it is held in Bermuda


May 4, 2018: In honor of its 100th anniversary, Majestic Hotel & Spa Barcelona will serve a new pre-fixe dinner replicating the hotel’s original restaurant menus

May 19, 2018: The Royal Wedding will be screened all day at The Kensington in London

May 25, 2018: La Maison du Chocolat’s Bien Être collection is available in boutiques and online


June 10, 2018: Sterling Vineyard’s 2nd Annual RoseFest will feature 30+ Napa Valley rose tastings with a portion of the proceeds supporting the Susan G. Komen Foundation

June 15-16, 2018: In honor of the Nantucket Boat Basin’s 50th anniversary, the marina will host its first-ever Father’s Day Fishing Tournament where teams will compete for the top title in categories such as heaviest fish and most fish caught

discover the quiet beauty and urban sophistication of canada from the teak decks of crystal symphony this fall

July 26th, 2012

From the idyllic archipelagos along the St. Lawrence River to the grandeur of the Basilica Notre Dame de Montreal and the unspoiled beauty of the Magdalen Islands, experience the fall foliage, natural wonder, and cosmopolitan elegance of Canada aboard Crystal Symphony’s “Treasures of Canada” sailing. This seven-day, round-trip Montreal cruise, departing on September 30, 2012, is a brand new itinerary for the award-winning cruise line and has three maiden calls, including one in Saint-Pierre and Miquelon, North America’s last vestige of the French Republic and Al Capone’s “home-away-from-home” during the island’s golden era of Prohibition profiteering. Other ports-of-call include Sept-Îles*, Magdalen Islands*, and Quebec City, Canada. With Crystal Symphony fresh from a $15 million “Extreme Makeover,” sailing aboard the très chic ship is more luxurious than ever.

Book by August 31, 2012 for all-inclusive rates as low as $3,055 per person (not including port, security, and handling charges). This cruise-only fare includes all beverages including fine wines, champagne, premium spirits, and non-alcoholic beverages; gratuities for all room categories, dining, and bar staff; specialty on board dining, including Prego and Silk Road and The Sushi Bar by Nobu Matsuhisa; 24-hour room service; fitness and enrichment workshop classes, and much more. For additional information, please visit

*Denotes maiden call for Crystal Cruises

crystal cruises’ short & sweet sailings – book by june 30 for limited time savings!

June 20th, 2012

Shorter can be sweeter! Ultra luxe Crystal Cruises is offering 12 new, five- to eight-day sailings from July through December 2012. To accommodate today’s time-strapped traveler, these shorter sailings showcase the favorite must-see destinations and charm-filled gems of Southern Europe while “tasting” the Crystal difference.

The “Crystal Getaways” sale offers new and returning guests the chance to experience Crystal’s award winning, all-inclusive service for as little as $262/person per day if booked by June 30. The sailings available for this first-time offer are:

Starting at just $1,310 per person, the rate for these all-inclusive sailings includes luxurious accommodations; gourmet dining including Nobu’s Silk Road and Piero Selvaggio menus at Prego; fine wines and premium spirits; gratuities for housekeeping, bar, and dining staff throughout the ship; all fitness classes; inspirational enrichment activities; a variety on onboard entertainment; and much more!

For Crystal reservations, contact a travel agent, call 888-799-4625, or visit

extreme makeover: cruise ship edition

June 19th, 2012

Sure, Ty Pennington may be able to remodel a home in one week, but could he do the same for a 77,319 square foot cruise ship in two? Well, the interior designs teams at Adfecto and SMC Design from London and KNA Design from Los Angeles have done just that to Crystal Cruises’ award-winning ship, Crystal Symphony.

The completion of the recent $15 million dry dock reveals chic new public spaces aboard the ultra-luxe ship, including the Avenue Saloon, Palm Court Lounge, Galaxy Lounge, Hollywood Theatre, Bridge Lounge, Fantasia and Waves “junior cruisers” entertainment centers, and the Tender Landing/passenger boarding area.  The final step in a five-year plan, Crystal Cruises has now redesigned every room aboard the prized ship, to the tune of $65 million.

Now that the dry dock is complete, Crystal Symphony is showing off her new look while she explores the Baltic and Northern Europe before crossing the Atlantic in September to experience the brilliant foliage and infamous beauty of fall in New England and Canada.

For more information on Crystal Cruises and upcoming itineraries, please visit

rocket man: crystal cruise’s tribute to elton john

June 6th, 2012

“Saturday Night’s Alright” aboard Crystal Cruises!  Crystal recently took the idea of entertainment to a higher level with their newest show, “Rocket Man: A Tribute to Elton John.”

British impersonator Jonathan Kane exceptionally mimics Sir Elton’s unique style – from his piano playing, voice, and mannerisms, to his unmistakable on-stage persona (Kane wears a shiny gold tux, a perfectly shaped wig and funky glasses, need we say more?).  Kane’s masquerade is flawless, bringing guests along for an entertaining, sensational ride.

Taking place in Crystal’s award winning showroom, the Galaxy Lounge, the lounge features a hydraulic-rising stage along with comfortable seating, giving everyone a taste of Crystal’s own “Rocket Man.”  Grab your passport and hop on board because Crystal’s taste in entertainment is only becoming more spectacular.

making the world a better place one port at a time

April 18th, 2012

Photos courtesy of and Crystal Cruises

Crystal Cruises is surely doing their part to help make the world a better place. It all started in January 2011, when they introduced the “You Care, We Care” voluntourism program where guests and crew can be directly involved in worthwhile causes in the destinations they visit, including opportunities such as assisting with poverty relief, education, cultural preservation, environmental conservation, animal welfare, and more. In May, Arun Gandhi joins guests aboard Crystal Symphony for a Iberian Peninsula sailing.

Few names in world history evoke such powerful images of integrity, courage, social harmony, and – perhaps most of all – hope. Arun Gandhi carries within himself the same guiding principles as his grandfather, the legendary peace-maker and spiritual leader, Mohandas K. Gandhi, also known as Mahatma Gandhi. A speaker of international acclaim, Gandhi has spoken at hundreds of colleges and universities, and corporate and civic organizations. His unique talents and cross-cultural experiences have brought him before governmental, social, and educational audiences in countries all over the world. Arun is a cultural treasure, offering firsthand insights into one of history’s most influential leaders.

From May 9 – 21, 2012, join Gandhi aboard Crystal Symphony’s  ”Iberian Journey“ sailing from Barcelona to London, with calls in Mallorca/Palma de Mallorca, Valencia, and Málaga, Spain; Tangiers, Morocco; Lisbon and Oporto/Leixoes, Portugal; and Bordeaux, France. You too can help make the world a better place!

travel like a rock star with crystal cruises

February 29th, 2012

Crystal Cruises’ guests can travel like rock stars with the new, 24/7 luxury amenity, “Crystal VIP Airport Service.” With door-to-gate porter and escort services, fast-track processes through security, immigration and customs, and access to VIP and Business Class Lounges, guests will be able to bypass the stress associated with flying and let the luxury begin before they even board the ship.

Bypass the lines and get to the luxury

Crystal VIP Airport Services may include:

-Greeting upon airport arrival (inbound, outbound, and connecting flights)

-Luggage porter service

-Flight tracking and handling, including assistance with delayed or cancelled flights and related lodging, transportation, meals, etc.

-Escorted and expedited check-in, security, customs, and immigration

-Entree to restricted-access airport lounges

-Preferred boarding

-Limousine/town car transfers between airport, home, day room, and/or ship

For more information and Crystal reservations call 888-799-4625 or visit


crystal love stories facebook essay contest

February 15th, 2012

Crystal Cruises launched its “Crystal Love Stories” Facebook contest yesterday, offering Crystal Society members the chance to win a free cruise for two worth up to $15,000.

For two months, Crystal’s past and present guests can submit their 100–500 word personal stories about their most cherished moments with Crystal Cruises. Entrants have until noon PST on April 16 to submit their love story, whether it be a romantic evening onboard, a lovely moment of relaxation at one of Crystal’s onboard spas, or a beloved experience on a shore excursion.  If you loved something about your cruise, make sure to let Crystal know!

Contest Entry Instructions:
1. Like the Crystal Cruises Facebook page.
2. Fill out the brief entry form.
3. Submit your inspiring essay of 100-500 words.

After the two month submission period, Facebook users will read and vote on the loveliest story of all. The two top vote-getters will be guaranteed a spot in the “Final Five” – a panel of Crystal judges will choose the remaining three finalists and the Grand Prize Winner. All five finalists will receive $500 in shipboard credits.

For additional contest details, visit Crystal Cruises’ Facebook page: www.facebook/crystalcruises

cruise the seven seas in downward dog

January 6th, 2012

It’s the beginning of a new year, and a new you! If you’re resolving to be healthier this year, why not kick start your new fitness regimen on board an ultra-luxe cruise ship? Crystal Cruises is now offering complimentary Pilates and yoga programs on board both Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity on nine sailings each throughout the year. Travelers can attend several classes per day during their cruise, or arrange private one-on-one sessions of either interest (for a fee), as well as men- and couples-only yoga instruction.

Every Crystal Cruise offers a host of complimentary classes such as stretch, spinning, abs, circuit training/boot camp, and more. Crystal’s state-of-the-art fitness center, the only Feng Shui spa and gym at sea, features Kinesis strength training equipment, LifeFitness® treadmills with individual flat-screen TVs, cross trainers, recumbent and upright life cycles and steppers, free weights, and other strength-training equipment. Golf instruction, tennis, Nordic Pole walking, WALKVEST® Training, personal trainers, and a bevy of dietary choices offer the perfect opportunity to kick-start, or comply with, your healthy lifestyle.

Here’s to a happy and healthy 2012 aboard Crystal Cruises!

For more information on Crystal Cruises, visit

crystal serenity rescues capsized rowers!

December 14th, 2011

Crystal Cruises’ Crystal Serenity rescued two rowers this morning while en route to St. Maarten from the Canary Islands.  The rowers’ small boat capsized 480 miles west of the Canary Islands after a large wave sunk their boat. Twenty-three-year-old Tom Fancett from the U.K. and Tom Sauer from the Netherlands, competitors in the 2011 Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge Race to row across the Atlantic, were huddled on a tiny life raft for 10 hours before being picked up by Crystal Serenity at 6:00 a.m. local time. The ship was 120 nautical miles north of the rowers when it received the rescue assist call from the Falmouth (U.K.) Coast Guard.

Sailing at full speed to the boaters, Captain Økland maneuvered Serenity through the remaining Atlantic Challenge racers and worsening weather. With lookouts posted throughout the night, Crystal Serenity located the boaters’ flare five hours later, hoisting them directly onto the ship.  After a checkup in the ship’s medical center, the survivors appear to be healthy.  Crystal Serenity expects to arrive on schedule in St. Maarten on Sunday.

“Both individuals are in good spirits and, of course, very happy to be alive,” says Crystal’s President Gregg Michel.  “We are so proud of the quick reaction and skilled seamanship of our crew that enabled them to save these brave men.  While these young men hoped to cross the Atlantic in a most basic fashion, they are certainly experiencing the crossing in the most luxurious environment – an ironic, and heartwarming, turn of events.”