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Jennifer Atkinson | 22 Sep, 2014

Yesterday we were delighted to team up with the exceptional team of journalists at The Sunday Times to publish the the Inspiring Travel Company supplement.

Inside was a whole host of exciting editorial, outstanding offers and top tips from the newspaper’s esteemed travel journalists, with the whole 16 pages making for essential luxury holiday reading.

If you missed it in paper, you can read the supplement here, as well as seeing some of the superb savings on this dedicated page of our website. But to give you an overview, here’s a breakdown of some of my favourite pieces:

Top Ten Luxury Travel Trends... from The Sunday Times and ITC.

1. A new kind of luxury

In this very perceptive article from William Morris, he details the ‘new luxury’; how clients searching for the best want more than Champagne arrivals and private transfers. He says: “The rich are getting younger, and they want different stuff: the latest technical and design innovation, casual dining, staff with personality and brands with a clean conscience, new, exclusive experiences and places they can take the kids — without being gouged on price.”

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He suggests that resorts which offer this new level of luxury include Alila Villas Uluwatu, in Bali; the Peninsula Shanghai; Gili Lankanfushi, in the Maldives; and Pangkor Laut, Malaysia.

2. The Wish List

The world of luxury travel is constantly raising the bar to offer discerning guests even more in the way of first-class experiences. A few detailed here include ‘upmarket Disney’ at the exclusive new Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World Resort and Richard Branson’s new South African venture Mont Rochelle which will offer personalised wine tastings.

3. Family-friendly luxury holidays

The Sunday Times asked five ITC clients – including myself! – to relay their experience of our holidays when taking their children with them. In the article are some superb suggestions, from tots to teens, with Karen Jones for example relaying how much her children loved Jumby Bay, A Rosewood Resort: “The children adored exploring the island on bikes, with Grandma and Grandad taking the lead. There are no cars, so you can cycle in safety — although my four-year-old, who narrowly missed Piers Morgan on the way to breakfast, was scary to watch.”

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4. Romance in the British Virgin Islands

Helena Grey claims that “there’s nowhere better for that under-the-radar, toes-in-the-sand idyll than the British Virgin Islands, a string of 60 lush little dots that gather where the crystal-clear Caribbean Sea meets the Atlantic Ocean”. She suggests staying at Necker Island; Rosewood Little Dix Bay; Biras Creek; Peter Island Resort & Spa or Guana Island for a luxury holiday to remember…just for two!

5. Celebrity spotting in the Caribbean

On an the Inspiring Travel Company holiday you can stay in the famed destination of the A-list, from Rihanna’s favoured haunt of Sandy Lane on Barbados to John Travolta’s Antiguan hideaway Carlisle Bay. Other suggestions put forward by The Sunday Times include St Barths “a little bit of Paris parachuted into the West Indies” and “Parrot Cay by COMO, a resort on a private island in the Turks and Caicos, that can always be relied on for star-spotting.”

6. The Maldives dream half dozen

Six of the very best places in the Maldives to enjoy unique luxury holidays. Whether you’ve been to the paradise islands before and are searching for something new, or perhaps you’re looking to be inspired for your first venture to the Indian Ocean atolls; these six sensational resorts are certain to provide a spot to suit. Shangri-La's Villingili, Lux* Maldives, Cheval Blanc Randheli, Huvafen Fushi, One&Only Reethi Rah, Cocoa Island.

Antigua luxury holidays

7. Middle East inspiration

The Sunday Times journalist Bruno Caldwell recently headed to one of our favourite new destinations in the Middle East, the Alila Jabal Akhdar. In the luxury travel supplement he talks about how he found this cliff-top retreat…“Is it worth the seven-odd hours by plane and two and a half hours by 4x4 it takes to reach it? Blimey, yes. This is a rugged, magical mountain redoubt: villages cling to cliffs; donkey trails follow wadis thick with walnut trees and juniper; canyon walls echo to the liquid chirrup of bulbuls and swallows.”

8. Cricket in the Caribbean

Sports fan? Surely nothing’s better than enjoying cricket in the Caribbean with our sister brand ITC Sports Travel. Ron Ford’s article on our tour to the region next spring for the Test Match is pretty clued up: “The uninitiated often wonder how anyone can possibly enjoy a day watching cricket, let alone an entire Test Match,” he writes, “To which the insider points out that the white-clothed stuff going on in the distance is only a part of it. The fun also lies in the sunshine, the company, the atmosphere, the backdrop. And, dare we say it, the rehydration.”

9. Your questions answered

Here at the Inspiring Travel Company we pride ourselves on our first hand knowledge of destinations and our Travel Specialists are extremely well-travelled. One of the most important aspects of booking through an experienced tour operator like ITC is that these experts will have the personal insight to make honest recommendations. In the 16-page supplement our Travel Specialists have offered their suggestions for a proposal abroad, cooking classes in Asia, ideas for relaxation and activities in the Caribbean, as well as short-haul trips combining culture, shopping and fine dining.

St Lucia luxury holidays

10. Healthy holidays in the Caribbean

The BodyHoliday in St Lucia is the favoured resort of many an ITC client, and in The Sunday Times supplement the properties acclaimed new BodyScience programme has been reviewed. For guests looking for more from their holiday than just a good tan, this health-conscious holiday plan is just the ticket.

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