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(2015 - Fall/Winter Issue)


Avianca Brazil is the newest airline partner in Air Canada’s Aeroplan family, bringing the number of airline partners to 34. Avianca operates out of Sao Paulo and offers more than 200 daily flights to 23 domestic destinations, including Brasilia, Rio de Janeiro and Salvador international airports. Aeroplan members can use their miles for Avianca flights through the fixed mileage flight rewards. aeroplan.com

Consider a safari to remote areas of Zimbabwe or Namibia in November 2016 with Jackson’s African Safaris, based in South Africa. November is a great time to visit, says tour leader and co-owner Timothy Jackson, as wild animals congregate at rivers and water holes. The Zimbabwe trip starts at Victoria Falls and continues on to Hwange National Park, Lake Kariba and Matusadona National Park. Then guests descend into the Mana Pools and lower Zambezi Valley for five nights “packed with wildlife action.” The Namibia tour includes early-morning nature drives to the spectacular red sand dunes of Sossusvlei. jacksonsafricansafaris.com

Following a US$5-million transformation, the Flagler Club has reopened in Palm Beach, Florida. The exclusive 25-room boutique hotel within The Breakers luxury resort was designed with every comfort in mind, from private access and use of the swish Club Lounge and Terrace with its gorgeous panoramic views to guest room amenities such as Frette linens from Italy and Jo Malone bath products. Guests will be chauffeured free to the hotel from Palm Beach International Airport in a Tesla. thebreakers.com  

The Marker Waterfront Resort, the first new hotel in Old Town Key West, Florida in 20 years, has opened its doors to host weddings, bachelorette parties, wedding showers and more. Each of the 96 rooms has floor-to-ceiling windows with sliding doors that lead to a private balcony. Nestled on two acres of tropical paradise and steps from the waterfront boardwalk and legendary Duval Street, The Marker promises a laid-back experience reflecting the area’s history and traditions with modern touches. It’s named for the famous mile markers that identify Key West as the most southern city in the continental U.S. themarkerkeywest.com

Ontario golfers have a new place to play this winter thanks to a partnership between the Golf Association of Ontario and the St. Kitts Tourism Authority. To get the ball rolling, Canadian golfers will head to St. Kitts & Nevis December 5 to 12 to compete in a tournament at the Royal St. Kitts Golf Club. With two more courses set to open at Kittitian Hill and Christophe Harbour, the Caribbean island aims to become a premier golf destination. golfstkittsandnevis.com

WestJet recently announced it will launch new non-stop service in spring 2016 to London (Gatwick) from six Canadian cities: Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Winnipeg, Toronto and St. John’s. With the exception of flights from St. John’s, which will operate on a Boeing Next-Generation 737, all Gatwick-bound flights will be operated by one of WestJet’s 767-300ERW extended-range aircraft. The airline will also offer introductory pricing for only an additional $20 one way to connect from select airports into the six Canadian gateways serving Gatwick. The carrier’s overnight flights from Canada to London make it easier for travellers connecting from other regions in Canada as well as for those travelling onward to any of the 200 destinations in 90 countries served by some 45 airlines that operate out of Gatwick. westjet.com

Plan a tropical escape to Hawaii and enjoy great deals at three Aqua Hotels and Resorts in Waikiki on Oahu. Stay two nights or more in a luxury suite at Ilikai Hotel (from US$289/night) and receive a US$50 dining credit at Sarento’s on top of this landmark hotel, featured in the opening shot of Hawaii Five-O. Or plan a romantic getaway at the intimate Luana Waikiki Hotel & Suites, where the Romance Package includes a bottle of bubbly. The cost of a minimum three-night stay starts at US$166 a night. At the Park Shore Waikiki, book a spectacular oceanview room for US$185 a night when you stay four nights or more, now through December 9. aquaresorts.com

Considered the bed-and-breakfast capital of the South and the biscuit capital of the world, historic Natchez, Mississippi, plans to mark its 300th anniversary as the oldest continuous settlement on the Mississippi River with yearlong celebrations in 2016. One of the most anticipated events is the Great Mississippi River Balloon Race in October. Starting with “Balloon Glow” Friday night and continuing through Sunday, this colourful annual event features bright hot-air balloons filling the skies as live music fills the airat the Rosalie Bicentennial Gardens. The Tricentennial will also present historical re-enactments, athletic competitions, musical tributes, parades and powwows. natchezms300.com

Best Western Hotels & Resorts announced the launch of its seventh brand GLō, the only broad-midscale new construction concept designed to smash the suburban cookie-cutter hotel mould in secondary, suburban and highway locations. "We looked at the segmentation of boutique hotels and realized GLō would fill a void because of the lack of a boutique product in the broad midscale segment," said president and chief executive officer David Kong. GLō's architecture and design have signature LED elements, with form and function carried throughout signature furniture elements and durable but stylish finishes. Designed as a four-storey, 70-room new construction hotel, GLō is forecast to cost US$65,000 per room and, depending on the market, generate a healthy average daily room rate of approximately US$90 in the U.S. bestwestern.com

The Richmond Olympic Experience, ROX for short, aims to reignite the excitement of Vancouver’s 2010 Winter Games when it opens this fall at the Richmond Olympic Oval. Along with hundreds of souvenirs ranging from medals and torches to uniforms, high-tech VROX simulators will allow visitors to experience ski jumping, paddling, slalom and bobsleigh the same way Olympic athletes do. Measure your vertical jump, long jump and reaction time, comparing the results to those of an Olympian. Try your hand at broadcasting an Olympic event or buckle up in the Motion Seat Theatre and immerse yourself in the action of the Games. Also stay tuned for the World Rugby Seven Series in Vancouver’s BC Place Stadium in March 2016, featuring 16 of the world’s top men’s teams. therox.ca; bcplacestadium.com

Celebrated Vancouver chef David Hawksworth is partnering with Air Canada to take Canadian dining to new heights. His seasonal signature dishes will be served in the airline’s international business class. High-flying main course selections include tamari-roasted sablefish with bok choy, brown rice and chili miso vinaigrette. For dessert, save room for a decadent dark chocolate fondant with blackberry compote. International Maple Leaf Lounges will feature Hawksworth’s Mediterranean quinoa salad with tomato, olive, cucumber, feta and arugula. aircanada.com

Hornblower Cruises services three of North America’s top attractions—namely, Alcatraz Island in Golden Gate National Recreation Area, the Statue of Liberty National Monument and Ellis Island, and Niagara Falls. Due to their popularity, the company encourages visitors to take advantage of advance bookings for the fall. Alcatraz Cruises, San Francisco, has the only website on which you can purchase tickets at the lowest prices up to 90 days in advance. Visiting the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island is always a memorable experience on Statue Cruises. Visitors can book an audio tour of Liberty Island and Ellis Island and should reserve in advance for Crown or Pedestal Access of the statue and priority entry. On the Canadian side of Niagara Falls, Niagara Cruises has extended its boat tours through the end of November and takes passengers as close as possible to the breathtaking falls. alcatrazcruises.com; statuecruises.com; niagaracruises.com

Visitors to Northern Ireland’s famous Causeway Coastal Route now have the opportunity to experience an exhilarating walk on a spectacular cliff path over the Irish Sea. First enjoyed in 1902 by the Edwardians and offering a thrilling mix of rugged beauty, spectacular views, heritage, flora and fauna, the newly opened Gobbins coastal walk features a series of tubular and suspension bridges, a staircase, and caves and tunnels carved through the basalt coast in County Antrim. Just a 40-minute drive from Belfast, the full Gobbins excursion can take up to three to four hours and leads you through a geologically diverse landscape straight out of the Game of Thrones. ireland.com; thegobbinscliffpath.com

The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair, the world’s largest combined indoor agricultural fair and equine competition, will take place in the heart of Toronto from November 6 to 15. More than 5,000 animals including cows, sheep, pigs, goats and horses compete for the title of Royal Champion. See and learn about animals at work and play in the President’s Choice Animal Theatre; watch top chefs compete and sample the best in local food and wine at the Burnbrae Farms Food & Lifestyle stage; take in the Royal Horse Show where Olympic-calibre riders and horses from around the world compete for top honours; relax at one of five Royal restaurants and bars; shop at one of more than 350 unique vendors; discover the Royal Winter Gallery where top artists create and display their talents daily. royalfair.org

Here’s a wonderful opportunity to immerse yourself in Tahitian culture. Warm hospitality is considered a pillar in Tahitian culture and there’s no better way to experience it than staying at one of many family-operated bed and breakfasts or pensions where you’ll be exposed to foods made from local ingredients, activities unique to the surrounding waters and the individual character of your hosts. A minimum two-night stay is required and return air transportation must be purchased on Air Tahiti Nui. For a limited time only, book a two-night stay at a Tahitian B&B and the third night is free. Prices are per person based on double occupancy; single and children pricing rates apply and arrival and departure fees may apply. airtahitinui.com/us-en/tahitian-bb-experience-les-pensions

Ski and snowboard season pass holders at Horseshoe Resort in Barrie, Ontario, can shred six of the best resorts and snow in the country with the new Ski Canada Card. For an additional $99, avid skiers can enjoy two days of skiing at Fernie, Kicking Horse, Kimberley and Nakiska in the Canadian Rockies plus Mont-Sainte-Anne and Stoneham in Québec. The card also offers 50 per cent off each subsequent day of skiing at the resort of your choice. For those staying close to home, Horseshoe offers alpine day and night skiing seven days a week plus a variety of other winter sports. horseshoeresort.com/ski-canada-card.htm

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