The World’s Most Luxurious Holidays

The Daily Mail recently published an article about a £1 million cruise. The holiday involved a helicopter, a private jet, a Bentley, a Michelin starred chef and the suite of suites onboard a 6* cruise.

The cruise costs £1 million per couple, and at over £8,000 per day for the 124 day über luxury experience, it is the most expensive holiday I’ve ever come across. Though the trip sounds amazing — I’ll go into more details shortly — it got me thinking, what are the most luxurious holidays in the world?

Silver Whisper

Whether it’s a trip to Sir Richard Branson’s private island, 5* luxury in the world renowned resort of Courchevel, or heading to the Monaco Grand Prix, if money is no object, what would be your ultimate holiday? Whether you are on a footballer’s salary, you’ve just picked up your banker’s bonus, or you’ve got this weekend’s winning lottery ticket, here are a few ways to burn some cash in luxurious surroundings.

The Million Pound Cruise:

Naturally the £1 million cruise has to be the benchmark for this list, so what does £8,000 a day get you? At 124 days long, the £1 million cruise is the most expensive holiday in the list, though not necessarily the most ridiculous.

This cruise excretes luxury and decadence in every direction, from the second you leave home to your eventual return. The bulk of this cruise is spent onboard the luxury 6*, Silver Whisper, one of Silversea’s ships, in the Royal Suite — the 1,000 sq ft suite consists of two bedrooms, two marbled bathrooms, a separate dining space and bar, along with two private verandas. So, you are looking at one of the most comfortable suites at sea, onboard an all inclusive, über luxury cruise line.

But that’s not the reason this cruise costs £1 million. The accommodation, cruising and experience of the cruise may be second to none and the most luxurious way of spending 124 days at sea I can think of, but it’s how you get there, which is completely over-the-top, but quite fabulous part of this holiday. You will be picked up from you home in a Sikorsky helicopter, where you will enjoy Beluga Caviar (this stuff is £4,000 a kilo) while sipping on Da Hong Pao Tea, made from 1,000 year old plants, and, of course, before enjoying a glass or three of Dom Perignon Rose.

Once arriving at a London airport, you will be whisked away to a privately chartered Boeing Business Jet. The luxury jet includes mahogany panelling and gold-plated fixtures, while boasting a lounge area and bedroom — yes a lounge and bedroom on a plane! While enjoying the flight, both to LA and on the way home, you will be personally served a 10 course tasting menu from a Michelin starred chef. On arrival in the US, you will be collected by a chauffeur driven Rolls Royce Phantom. And if all that wasn’t enough, there are four nights in the Beverley Wilshire Hotel in Beverley Hills before the cruise, you will also spend four nights in a £7,300 per night apartment in Miami after the cruise, before embarking on an equally decadent return trip.

Rent A Village

Fancy a few days in the Alps during the summer, surrounded by family and friends, but not tourists? Well, why not hire a village for a week? Yes, I said hire a village.

This may not shout luxury to you, as you’re not surrounded by 5* hotels, there is no butler service and there will be a serious lack of caviar, but you do get an entire alpine resort to yourself. Of the villages on offer, you can take over the Austrian resort of Alpach, or Switzerland’s ski village of Engleberg.

Engelberg

As part of the package, you are not only given exclusive use of the accommodation, but you’ll also have the local villages looking after your every need. Your party will have free reign over the village bakery, the restaurants and the local bars — though you may find the villagers hard to remove from the bar.

So a week of gorgeous mountain scenery, wonderful surroundings and great local fare, all without having to interact with tourists. Ideal for a family retreat, Alpine wedding, or just the desire to have free run over a village in the mountains for a few days.

The Ultimate Ski Trip

Now, this trip has to be my favourite, this is completely fictitious, so there is no price, but it doesn’t mean you couldn’t attempt it.

Skiing is often seen as an exclusive sport to outsiders, full of fur coasts, quaffing Brits and extortionate costs. Some resorts do little to dispel this rumour, hence Meribel’s nickname as Surrey-on-Ski. So, what would be the most luxurious and decent ski holiday?

Luxury skiing means exclusive resorts, luxury hotels and highly unnecessarily expensive skis. So here is the ultimate luxury ski holiday.

Obviously this trip begins with a chauffeur driven trip to the airport, where you’ll head straight to the BA First Class lounge and enjoy a glass of champagne or two, while they fill the plane. After a short flight to Geneva in Switzerland you’ll be met by the concierge, who will escort you to your helicopter, for the short flight the Courchevel in the Three Valleys.

Your first week will be spent in the Hotel des charmes Les Airelles, the Palace class hotel, from where you can enjoy a wonderful week in the world’s largest ski area. While in Courchevel you will pick up a pair of Volant Platinum ski at £1250 a pair, as well as dining in a variety of Michelin-starred and AAA rosette restaurants, both on the mountain and in resort.

After enjoying a week in France’s premier resort, it’s back on the helicopter and a short flight to Switzerland, and one of the world’s oldest and most exclusive resorts, St. Moritz. When staying in St. Moritz, it would be rude not to stay in Badrutt’s Palace, the resort’s oldest hotel and still among its most luxurious. Badrutt’s Palace lays claim to being the original ski resort hotel and this 5* hotel offer understated glamour and elegance.

To finish this holiday off, you will then take another helicopter ride, this time to Austria’s most exclusive resort, Lech. Think champagne ice-bars, on sun-blushed terraces and luxury dwellings in every direction, while residing in the hotel …. Lech is where those with money, who don’t need to shout about it go skiing. The ski area, linked with St. Anton, isn’t bad either!

So, there you have it, three completely over the top holidays, that would cost thousands, but all of which would be pretty cool. Question is which one would you go for?

Twitter & Facebook for Ski Resorts

With social networking taking over the world and every man and his dog using it in one way or another, surely all the top ski resorts will have joined the bandwagon by now. As I am sure you are aware most skiers and boarders see their snow-filled holidays as much a necessity and addiction as anything else in their lives. We love to know where the best snow is, what’s going on in our favourite resort and when our usual traveling companions will be skiing.

With Facebook one of the most visited sites on the internet and the likes of Twitter and Bebo growing by the day, most tech savvy skiers will have access to at least one online social network. With online travel agents making the booking process easier we are spending more time researching and reading about skiing and snowboarding online.

Whether booking holidays, checking our resort reviews, or signing up to snow alerts all the info we need is out there. I decided to have a look into the so called big resorts to see who we can ‘add as a friend’, ‘like’ or ‘tweet’. With growing numbers of people using Facebook and Twitter to organise their holidays with friends there had to be a presence of info out there to help with our choices.

The first thing I noticed is when looking at the big North-American resorts such as Whistler, Breckenrige and Aspen they all use Twitter, Facebook, RSS feeds and weekly newsletters to maximum effect. With minimal effort you can find out where the snow, best deals and biggest parties will be.

In contrast the European resorts are a little further behind. The Three Valleys has so far abstained from social networking, with exception to the independently run LaTania.co.uk (though anyone who knows La Tania wouldn’t expect any less from Toffa). The Espace Killy have joined in the world of Facebook with posts in English, whereas you may need to brush up on your French when looking for your Les Arcs fix.

Below I have complied a list of the ‘big’ resorts social networking, though I will update the list with any comments you may have.

Andorra

  • Grandvalira: Facebook (Catalan/Spanish)

Austria

Canada

France

Spain

U.S.A.