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Travel: Sailor's Delight

Mike Nolan

The ideal way to approach the recently opened Delamar Greenwich Harbor hotel is from Long Island Sound. In good weather, the sun reflecting off the yellow stucco exterior and terra-cotta roof could lead a mariner to believe, if only the water were warmer, that he was approaching a Tuscan villa on the Italian Riviera.

With 600 feet of dock that can accommodate a deep-keel yacht as long as 160 feet, the Delamar seems destined to become a preferred stopover for yacht owners cruising the East Coast. Greenwich Avenue, with its seven blocks of luxury retail shops, lies just around the corner from the hotel, as does the Metro-North train station, which makes it possible to travel from dock to Midtown Manhattan in less than an hour.

Although Greenwich is one of America’s most affluent communities and has a thriving business district (in addition to the retail shops, so many financial firms have moved in recently that the city has earned the sobriquet Wall Street by the Sea), it has a paucity of luxury hotels. “Greenwich as a leisure destination is virgin territory,” notes Delamar general manager Klaus Peters, expressing both a sense of good fortune and a determination that guests view the hotel as part of a safe and enchanting harbor to be returned to again and again.
 
To that end, service is as flawless as the golden light from the harbor, which pours into the lobby, subtly illuminating the Jerusalem limestone floors. Walls of polished Venetian coral plaster, applied layer upon layer, reflect a soft gleam, furnishing the perfect tableaux for the original artworks from a private Greenwich collection—primarily 19th-century landscapes, still lifes, and seascapes—that line the walls of the hotel. Just off the lobby, in the library, complimentary cappuccino and tea await those who would like to peruse the volumes on local history or simply while away an hour in plush leather chairs, watching the boats sail past in the harbor.

A grand staircase leads to the second floor, where a state-of-the-art boardroom is available for meetings and teleconferencing. The strategies of businessmen meeting at the Italian wood–inlaid conference table are sanctified by twin griffins—symbolically significant for their domination of both earth and sky—which are depicted in an oil painting stretching across an entire wall. This kind of sophisticated and informed attention to detail is one of the many pleasures of visiting the Delamar.

Another is the restaurant. With its whimsical chandeliers, 200-year-old terra-cotta floor tiles, and enormous 18th-century stone fireplace brought from France, L’Escale is the perfect setting for serving the distinctive Mediterranean flavors prepared by chefs Frederic Kieffer of New York’s Man Ray and Stephane Canales of La Petite Maison in Nice. In summer, alfresco dining takes place on an adjoining terrace, but regardless of the season, the harbor views from the dining room are captivating.

Equally spectacular is the view from your room’s private balcony, a cozy location for sharing an afternoon campari. Each of the spacious 74 rooms and nine suites contains handmade and handpainted furniture. “Virtually every object in the hotel is custom made,” says Lisa Silver of Silver Contract Interiors, the Greenwich company that furnished the hotel with pieces from around the world. “We didn’t want the Delamar to look like a hotel with a matched set of case goods.” Many of the suites include a Jacuzzi tub from which you can view the harbor and, perhaps, your transportation to and from the Delamar.

The Delamar Greenwich Harbor, 203.661.9800, www.thedelamar.com

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[From Our Partners] A unique travel experience

Singapore air

A unique travel experience

Wherever you’re going, you can expect the very best of comfort and gourmet
cuisine from Singapore Airlines. We go to great lengths to make you feel at home
during your travels. We’ve partnered with Robb Report to offer you tips to enjoy
your stay at your destination. As always with Singapore Airlines, our service is next
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[From Our Partners] British Virgin Islands, An Invitation to a World Of Your Own

BVI

With more than 60 islands and cays, the British Virgin Islands offers something for everyone. But, there is an essence to this destination that you can't quite find anywhere else. It may be the particular turquoise hues of the pristine waters set against dramatic hills filled with lush vegetation. It could be the luxury accommodations, private villas and outstanding cuisine. Most likely it's the sense that every facet of your BVI vacation is tailored to fit your needs, at your pace.

Whether you're seeking a restful vacation at a private villa or you're eager to island-hop through the BVI by chartered yacht, a vacation in this idyllic destination offers the ideal mix of relaxation, excitement and overall, luxury.

The BVI has more private island resorts than any other Caribbean destination, including Guana Island, Peter Island Resort & Spa and Scrub Island. Necker Island, Sir Richard Branson's private island, re-opened its Great House last October following a two-year renovation.

    Necker Island
    Peter Island Resort & Spa
    Scrub Island Resort, Spa & Marina
    Guana Island

The BVI's luxury resorts, such as Biras Creek Resort, Rosewood Little Dix Bay, Bitter End Yacht Club, Peter Island Rersort & Spa, Necker Island, and Oil Nut Bay, offer their own take on island luxury, whether focusing on the spa experience, water sports, exquisite dining or more.

    Biras Creek Resort
    Frenchmans
    Rosewood Little Dix Bay
    Sugar Mill Hotel
    Bitter End Yacht Club

Private villas are also available for vacation retreats and can cater to groups from one to 35. These villas often come with a wide array of personal service options that can be added, from private chefs to in-villa massages, or private poolside yoga to personal drivers. Some of the BVI's premier villas include Katitche Point Greathouse, Villa Aquamare and Baraka Point on Virgin Gorda, and St. Bernard's Hill House, Golden Pavilion Villa, Steele Point Estate and The Refuge on Tortola.

    Baraka Point Estate
    Katitche Point Greathouse
    Villa Aquamare
    Arundel Villa

One of the best ways to experience the BVI is by boat – and Road Town in Tortola hosts the region's largest yacht charter base. Visitors to the BVI can charter a yacht, either with or without crew, and hop from island to island, experiencing what each island has to offer. With reliable trade winds and simple, line-of-sight navigation from one visibly close island to the next, it's easy to enjoy the turquoise-blue waters of the BVI. A chartered yacht – or even one of the BVI's many water taxis or network of ferries – makes it easy to enjoy a leisurely breakfast on one island of the BVI and an extraordinary dinner on another.
Charter catamaran near the Baths

It's not just the winds and calm waters that lend to the BVI being considered by many as the “sailing capital of the world.” The multitude of high-end yacht clubs, charter yacht companies and resorts with slips, moorings and on-land provisions, make boating in the BVI effortless and luxurious. Yacht Club Costa Smeralda, on the North Sound of Virgin Gorda, is a state-of-the-art superyacht marina. Its marina boasts 38 slips for yachts up to 88 meters in length, plus superior amenities and services. It is also host to the annual Caribbean Superyacht Regatta & Rendezvous, which is open to motor and sailing yachts with a LOA of over 80 feet and catamarans with a LOA of over 60 feet, and takes place annually in the month of March. The sheer amenities for yachting throughout the BVI truly make the destination the Caribbean region's epicenter for luxury yachting.
North Sound, Virgin Gorda

The BVI welcomes visitors to experience more than just incredible accommodations and on-the-water wonders. Certainly the waters of the BVI provide a wonderland to explore, with shipwrecks and coral reef dive sites for both scuba divers and snorkelers. However, on-land there are many incredible experiences to be had as well. Authentic Caribbean culture can be found throughout the islands in the form of art, history and music. The land itself, with protected coves, white-sand beaches, and natural wonders such as The Baths on Virgin Gorda (where giant boulders scattered by ancient volcanic activity form a network of shallow pools and grottoes to explore), has many treasures waiting to be discovered. Visitors to the BVI will also enjoy first-class cuisine, whether at one of the restaurants on the BVI's private islands or relaxing poolside at a casually elegant lunch spot. The bars of the BVI are world-renowned as well. Situated on White Bay on Jost Van Dyke is the famous Soggy Dollar Bar, which was aptly named for the wet currency that guests use to pay for their drinks: Visitors coming to the Soggy Dollar Bar from yachts anchor as close to the beach as possible, but then have to hop out and wade in to shore, thereby dousing their dollars along the way. It's said that the original “Painkiller” drink – the BVI's famous mix of dark rum, pineapple and orange juices, cream of coconut and freshly grated nutmeg on top – was invented at the Soggy Dollar Bar. The island of Anegada also offers memorable travel experiences to include dining on sumptuous spiny lobster and relaxing on the powder white beaches of Loblolly Bay or Cow Wreck Bay Beach.

    The Baths, Virgin Gorda
    Snorkeler at the Baths
    Dream bed at Aquamare Villa

Whether it's snorkeling at the caves of Norman Island – the inspiration for Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island – or nearby at The Indians, to relaxing at a luxury resort where your every need is catered, the British Virgin Islands offers true relaxation in your own private paradise.

[From Our Partners] A Reinvented New York City Luxury Hotel

[From Our Partners]

Keywords: NY Palace, NY Pallace, NYC Palace, NYC Pallace, The NY Palace

With a nod to its illustrious past, The New York Palace has taken an ambitious leap into the future. The Palace – a legendary New York City luxury hotel – underwent a thorough transformation from a historic Madison Avenue gem to a Midtown’s premier modern hotel.

The recently reborn New York Palace offers MORE.

The hotel features 909 spacious rooms and suites – including 176 newly renovated exclusive Towers accommodations – which provide the perfect setting for relaxation and inspired stays in New York City. Unique dining venues, developed by acclaimed chef Michel Richard, offer everything from imaginative entrees to signature pastries and creative cocktails. The Palace’s collection of versatile meeting and event spaces is ideal for weddings, corporate events and social occasions. The hotel’s famed Villard Mansion built in 1882 is recognized as a New York City Landmark and gracefully blends with a contemporary 55-story tower. The Madison Avenue Courtyard provides a dramatic entryway to the hotel’s grand lobby.

Revolutionary, innovative and inspiring – welcome to a brand new New York Palace.

 

Harbor’s Edge Luxury Waterfront Condominiums Arrive in the Hamptons

Christina Garofalo

For as long as it has been an elite summer destination, the Hamptons’ iconic shingle-style homes have ranked among the most expensive in the nation. The often centuries-old waterfront bungalows rarely come on the market, and when they do, they move quickly—despite a price tag upwards of $10 million. Now Harbor’s Edge, the area’s first waterside condominium project, caters to those who want to maintain the Hamptons summer lifestyle without the burden of owning a home.  

Located at 21 West Water Street in Sag Harbor, the building is a couple of blocks from Main Street and within walking distance of more than 20 restaurants. Water Street Development in Sag Harbor and Halstead Property Development Marketing opened the 15 condominiums—which include three penthouses—for sale in August. Priced from $2.5 to $6.5 million, the two- and three-bedroom residences feature interiors from Nadine Homann of NH Design Studios and are designed like Manhattan lofts: 10-foot ceilings, custom molding, gas fireplaces, and wide-plank oak flooring. Kitchens are outfitted with stainless-steel appliances, dishwashers, and wine refrigerators, and master baths feature glass-enclosed showers with rain showerheads and adjustable body sprayers. The penthouse units have private garages. 

Each residence at Harbor’s Edge will have a private concierge, like that at any four-star resort, during the summer season. The building has private terraces and balconies as well as a rooftop sundeck that includes a 50-foot lap pool, a wet bar, and a kitchen and may be reserved for private events. All of the outdoor spaces (except the pool area) have views of the water. (www.harborsedge.com)

Sneak Peek: Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp, Skeleton Coast, Namibia

Jennifer Ashton Ryan

Wilderness Safaris’ new Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp accesses a remote oasis within a vast Namibian desert.

Why Go: By historical accounts, the Skeleton Coast does not sound like any place you would want to go. The vast coastal desert sees no more than about 4 inches of rain annually, and its unforgiving surf is responsible for centuries of shipwrecks (hence the coastline’s macabre name). But the ecotourism company Wilderness Safaris is expanding to the region, opening its eleventh camp in Namibia. The new fly-in-only Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp accesses a remote oasis within the otherworldly Kaokoveld Desert.

What to Expect: That any life can survive here, let alone several-ton desert elephants, is baffling. The eight-tent camp (from about $550 per adult, all inclusive) sets up overlooking the bed of the Hoanib River and a waterhole supporting desert-adapted wildlife including elephants, giraffes, zebras, brown hyenas, oryx, and springbok. Guests staying at least three nights at the camp receive a complimentary scenic flight over shifting sand dunes and rocky mountains to Mowe Bay, where a huge colony of Cape fur seals basks and shipwreck debris remains. Evening presentations about the desert-adapted lion and the local Palmwag Concession are held back at the all-solar-powered camp, where guests can relax after game drives in the lounge, bar area, dining room, or library, or outside by the fire pit or swimming pool. 

How to Get There: The only way in is by light aircraft. Wilderness Air flies guests in from the Doro Nawas airstrip, which is the transportation hub of northwest Namibia. (+27.11.807.1800, www.wilderness-safaris.com; available through Journeys By Design, +44.1273.623.790, www.journeysbydesign.com)

From the September Issue: Living Legends

Laurence S. Rockefeller's eco-luxury legacy lives on in these six one-of-a-kind resorts. 

In 1952, while sailing his yacht in the Caribbean, Laurance S. Rockefeller anchored off the coast of Caneel Bay Plantation in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Moved by the serene stretch of sandy beaches and frangipani-filled coves, Rockefeller—an avid outdoorsman and environmentalist—soon purchased the land and set aside 5,000 acres as a national park. His vision for the property also included a low-key luxury hotel where the post–World War II wealthy could frolic among the unspoiled and the uncomplicated. Four years later, along one of the park’s pristine coves, Rockefeller opened Caneel Bay as the Caribbean’s first upscale eco-resort. 

Then as now, to be a Rockefeller was to be terrifically rich. Laurance was, by most accounts, a virtuoso in matters of business. But the third son of John D. Rockefeller Jr. aspired to a more lasting legacy, pouring dozens of years and millions of dollars into protecting undeveloped land and incubating the yet-to-be-defined concept of ecotourism. With Caneel Bay as a blueprint, Rockefeller’s version of do-gooder capitalism focused on low-density, architecturally significant hotels that were sensitive to, and in tune with, their surroundings. The model proved more than a passing fancy, and by 1965 his RockResorts hospitality group presided over an elite collection of properties that included the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel on Hawaii’s Big Island and Little Dix Bay in the British Virgin Islands.

Rockefeller divested himself of RockResorts in the late 1980s, and the majority of his properties were subsequently sold to independent owners. But the eco-entrepreneur’s vision has proved sustainable: His pockets of paradise—many of which are celebrating landmark anniversaries with multimillion-dollar renovations—have remained true to his mission and today stand as authentic outposts in a world where ecotourism has become a catchphrase. Robb Report recently checked in to Caneel Bay and a handful of other retreats where Rockefeller’s legacy lives on. 

Caneel Bay
Little has changed at Caneel Bay since Rockefeller first introduced it to the world in 1956. Spread over 170 acres, it remains the only resort...

Pick up a copy of Robb Report's August issue, on newsstands August 26, or download the digital edition to read the rest of this article as well as all the content from this issue.

 

Sneak Peek: Cape Weligama, Weligama, Sri Lanka

Jennifer Ashton Ryan

Sri Lanka’s Cape Weligama resort is the new jewel of the south coast. 

Why Go: Since the government of Sri Lanka defeated the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam in 2009, a handful of very high-end luxury resorts have begun thriving in the country. Sprawling accommodations, pristine pools, gourmet dining, and privately led excursions through tranquil tea fields and ancient ruins have become the norm, not an exception. The renowned Amanresorts has two outposts on the island, and Ulagalla opened in 2010 to high praise. The group Resplendent Ceylon, owned by the Ceylon-tea brand Dilmah, has been operating Ceylon Tea Trails in the central part of the country since 2005. Its newest project, Cape Weligama, showcases the country’s south coast. Four additional locations are under development.

What to Expect: Cape Weligama occupies a 12-acre headland on Sri Lanka’s southern tip. The complex of 40 villa accommodations (from $605, all inclusive), restaurants, pools, and bars resembles a Sri Lankan village with terra-cotta tile roofs. Intimate wattas, or walled gardens, divide the property; each encloses a pool and two or three villas, where butlers deliver fresh pots of Ceylon tea and juices and arrange in-room spa treatments and daily activities. The area is known for reef and wreck diving, snorkeling, surfing (on nearby Weligama Bay), big-game fishing, and whale and dolphin watching. On land, the resort’s guides take guests by private car to see crumbling forts, cities with cobblestone streets, and national parks. The crown jewel of the resort is the huge crescent-shaped Moon Pool perched above 100-foot oceanfront cliffs.

How to Get There: The drive from Colombo’s Bandaranaike International Airport is three hours; Cinnamon Air runs a daily air-taxi service from the airport to the Koggala airstrip, located 12 minutes by car from the resort. Helicopter transfers are available from Deccan Aviation. Guests can also fly directly by seaplane from Cape Weligama’s sister property Ceylon Tea Trails. (+94.11.774.5700, www.capeweligama.com)

Four Seasons Punta Mita Offers an Ultimate Tequila Tour in Mexico

Carolyn Meers

The Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita, located on Banderas Bay on Mexico’s west coast, is now offering what it calls the Ultimate Tequila Tour, a special day trip that gives four guests a behind-the-scenes look into tequila making at the Jose Cuervo distillery. The family-run brand is largely considered the world’s first tequila maker, having produced the spirit for some 250 years.

The experience begins with a private helicopter ride from the resort to the Jose Cuervo distillery in Tequila, Mexico, about 150 miles east. A Jose Cuervo expert will lead the group on a private tour of the facility, providing samples of the tequila at various stages of maturity. Next, a Four Seasons chef will prepare a three-course lunch, which will be paired with tequila and live music, at the distillery’s scenic grounds—a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site. Lastly, guests will visit Jose Cuervo’s special reserve vault—also known as a cava—to sample aged tequila straight from the barrel.

The Ultimate Tequila Tour is priced at $25,000 for a group of four and will be available exclusively to guests of the Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita through the end of the year. (+52.329.291.6000, www.fourseasons.com/puntamita)

The Best Places to Stay in Napa Valley during Harvest Season

Early fall is the most popular time of the year to visit Northern California’s famous Napa Valley wine country—the weather has begun to cool down after summer, the vineyards are vibrant, and the thriving wine industry conducts its annual grape harvest. Many of the area’s wineries, restaurants, and resorts offer special experiences for the occasion, which typically brings visitors from around the world to take part in the festivities. To help discerning wine lovers prepare for the yearly pilgrimage, we have compiled the following list of our three favorite resorts in the area, all of which will ensure that your stay in Napa for this year’s harvest will be impeccable.

Two New York City Hotel Spas Introduce New Treatments

Christina Garofalo

Living in Manhattan can be fast paced and stressful. Luckily for New Yorkers and visitors to the City That Never Sleeps, two hotels on the island have introduced new treatments to their already world-class spas to help guests rejuvenate. Whether you are looking to refresh your skin or tap into your inner energy, these spa treatments will help fight the stresses of city living.

The spa at the Trump SoHo New York has partnered with the Spanish skin-care brand Natura Bissé to create a set of new facials to combat aging and correct pigmentation. The 90-minute Alternative to Injectables Facial ($395 on weekdays, $410 on weekends) forgoes plastic surgery for manipulation of pressure points as a means of reducing expression lines. Using Octamioxyl, a peptide said to inhibit muscle contractions in the face, the esthetician massages the sites to lift and restore density to the skin. To remove dark spots, the 60-minute Hawaiian Whitening and Brightening Facial ($365 on weekdays, $380 on weekends) includes a triple exfoliant with glycolic acid and carboxytherapy, which uses carbon dioxide to even skin tone and bring luminosity to the face. The Natura Bissé products, which are all made in Barcelona, are priced from $75 to $730 and many are available for purchase at the spa. (212.842.5505, www.trumphotelcollection.com/soho)

Through its Experts in Residence program, the Cornelia Spa at the Surrey is expanding its approach to wellness to incorporate treatments that address the mind, body, and spirit. Several times throughout the year, the spa hosts treatments led by beauty and wellness professionals, such the feng shui stylist Billy Yamaguchi, who—from September 15 to 18—will offer consultations to identify a person’s energy. According to the five elements in feng shui (fire, earth, metal, water, and wood), he tailors the guest’s hairstyle and hair color, makeup, and more to reflect her energy ($150 for shampoo and styling to $800 for a complete consultation that includes cut, color, and style). (646.358.3600, www.corneliaspaatthesurrey.com)