Alle Beiträge von admin

Homepage > admin

A local’s guide to Hawaii

Hawaii is a land full of hidden gems and incredible cultural experiences, to help you find the best of the best we spoke to 6 of Hawaii’s local experts for their views on the places not to miss as well as where to get off the beaten track to help you plan your next stay.

Here we highlight our top 10 best places to explore taken from the full interviews with our local experts below:

1. Hottest restaurant at the moment – MW, Honolulu

“Although the sophisticated restaurant has become known for its modern take on Hawaii Regional Cuisine, I always recommend them because of their stellar desserts. Some people even go to MW just to do a multi-course dessert tasting. It’s that good. While you’re there, try the MW Candy bar with a macadamia nut-praline crunch, salted caramel, and Waialua chocolate. ” Coty of Exploration Hawaii

2. Best beach bar – Dukes, Waikiki

“The bar is located in the heart of Waikiki and is wildly popular with locals and tourists alike. The drink menu is vast and the atmosphere is like no other.” Jeremy of Beyond Honolulu

3. Most popular hotel – Grand Wailea Waldorf Astoria, Maui

“The property itself is beautiful from top to bottom, and they have so many amazing water features that people from other hotels try to sneak in just to try them. Their spa, with several salt pools and massage waterfalls, is one of the most unique. I also love that they have many Hawaiian cultural activities on property so that visitors can learn about true Hawaii traditions in an interactive way. Try their signature restaurant, Humuhumunukunukuapua’a, for a delicious sunset dinner.” Melissa from Frolic Hawaii

4. Best hidden gem beach – Lanikai Beach, windward coast of Oahu

“The water is crystal clear and amazing for snorkelling and kayaking. Two other favourites are Waimea Bay on the North Shore and Cromwells Beach in town — a hidden gem for locals.” Emma from the Aloha Babe.

5. Best surfing beach – Sunset Beach, North Shore of Oahu

“..two most popular places to surf (both locally and worldwide) are Sunset Beach (Pipeline) on the North Shore of Oahu, and world famous “Jaws” on Maui. Both offer incredible surfing experiences and both are very dangerous and famous, bringing the best surfers from around the world.” Jeremy of Beyond Honolulu.

6. Best shopping – Ala Moana Center, Waikiki

“Ala Moana Center is the largest shopping centre in Hawaii, and the world’s largest outdoor shopping centre. They have hundreds of retailers, including department stores and Hawaii-based retailers.” Gem from Hawaii Mom Blog

7. Best hiking – Kuliouou Ridge Trail, Honolulu

“Think that the view from Hawaii’s beaches is great? Imagine the view from a few thousand feet high above.”  Coty from Exploration Hawaii

8. Best festival – Lantern Floating Festival, Oahu’s South shore 

“The biggest and most popular annual event in Hawaii is the yearly Lantern Floating Festival held every Memorial Day. The event garners 40,000 – 50,000 people yearly and is watched by hundreds of thousands more online from Hawaii and Japan.” Jeremy from Beyond Honolulu

9. Best off the beaten track destination –  Molokai 

“The least developed island in Hawaii, Molokai is the perfect off-the-beaten track destination. There are no upscale resorts, no high-end restaurants, no stoplights, no shopping malls or McDonald’s. But it does offer empty white-sand beaches, hikes through native forests, and complete relaxation.” Catherine from the Cat Dish.

10. Best offbeat attraction – Papakolea Beach (Green Sand Beach), Big Island of Hawaii

“Truth be told, the islands of Hawaii are full of “off the beaten path” destinations that tourists have no idea even exist. Each island has several, but one that stands out is located on the Big Island (Hawaii Island). Papakolea, or Green Sand Beach, is located at the southern tip, just west of south point. The green sand is actually caused by past volcano eruptions.” Jeremy from Beyond Honolulu.

Source: http://www.hotelclub.com/blog/locals-guide-to-hawaii/

What is the best Melbourne festival?

Picking a great Melbourne festival is like shooting fish in a barrel; the options are sundry enough to keep even the staunchest festival devotee satisfied. It really just comes down to what it is that makes you feel festive.

For lovers of comedy, it’s tough to top the Melbourne International Comedy Festival as the nation’s premier marathon of mirth. For cinephiles, there’s MIFF as well as the “World’s largest short film festival” Tropfest.

For music fans, indie-centric annual shindig St Jerome’s Laneway festival – which originated in Melbourne’s Caledonian lane – is widely regarded one of Australia’s hottest tickets, and boutique indie offering Sugar Mountain Festival is an emerging force to be reckoned with.

BUT if forced to choose the best Melbourne festival, we’d go for one event that ticks all the boxes (and has the most no-nonsense name): Melbourne Festival.

Combining a world-leading mix of theatre, dance, live music, film, art and a host of free events rolling through the entire city during October, Melbourne Festival is a celebration of the dynamic cultural climate that puts Melbourne up there with global cities like San Francisco, Madrid and London.

Each year the programming team ups the stakes, with the 2015 highlights including acclaimed electronica darlings Flight Facilities live with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Toni Morrison’s landmark reimagining of Shakespeare’s Othello, Desdemona, acclaimed Israeli dance troupe Batsheva and a performance of Patti Smith’s seminal album Horses featuring local rock ‘n’ roll champions Courtney Barnett, The Drones’ Gareth Liddiard and more.

If you’re heading to Melbourne in October start investigating Melbourne Festival tickets now and shop HotelClub’s fantastic selection of Melbourne hotels here.

 

Source: http://www.hotelclub.com/blog/best-melbourne-festival/

The best celebrity travel partners

The results are in!

We know Aussies are a decisive lot when it comes to travel planning and preparation, and it seems that that also stands when it comes to choice of travel partner.

As you may have seen in the media we asked over 1,000 Australian travellers to tell us who they would love to join them on a trip, and who they’d rather stayed at home as far away as possible – and they didn’t hold back!

BEST TRAVEL PARTNERS

Topping the list for dream travel companions on a global scale were Prince Harry and Kate Middleton, whereas closer to home actors Hugh Jackman and Rebel Wilson were chosen as dream partners for Australian travelers.

Actress and UN ambassador Angelina Jolie Pitt was third in the global list (10.2%) after Harry and Kate (15.2% and 10.8% respectively), with U.S. singers Taylor Swift and Katy Perry completing the top five (8.9% and 8.0% respectively).

After Hugh Jackman and Rebel Wilson (17.9% & 6.1%), diminutive pop star Kylie Minogue (5.8%), radio star Hamish Blake (5.4%) and Oscar winner Cate Blanchett (4.9%) completed the top five list of Australian stars they’d most like to travel with.

WORST TRAVEL PARTNERS

On the other end of the scale, wild child Miley Cyrus (9.0%) and Caitlin Jenner (6.4%) followed Justin Bieber (27%), Kim Kardashian (20.7%) and Kanye West (10.9%) in the list of the global stars Australians they’d least like to travel with – the Kardashian family’s high maintenance and media presence perhaps to blame for voter fatigue.

Taking the Aussie top spot for all the wrong reasons, KIIS FM Breakfast presenter Kyle Sandilands (23%) was named the least favourite Australian travel partner, followed by cricketer turned socialite Shane Warne (8.2%) and model and reality TV star Lara Bingle (6.7%) – herself a former face of Tourism Australia (famous for the ‘Where the bloody hell are you?’ adverts of 2006).

Today Show presenter Karl Stefanovic’s recent live streak did little for his case – he was named fourth worst companion (5.9%) whilst recent outbursts from tennis star Nick Kyrgios put him in fifth in the list of shamed Australians (5.6%).

DESTINATION INSPIRATION

When it came to favoured destinations for next holidays, Hawaii topped the list for Australians, ahead of the Gold Coast and Thailand (37.7%, 17.5% and 12% respectively).

Our experiment was even News.com.au’s most-read travel story of the day on August 26. Want more? Check out the full list below:

TOP TEN GLOBAL BEST TRAVEL COMPANIONS:

1. Prince Harry – 15.2 per cent
2 Kate Middleton – 10.8 per cent
3. Angelina Jolie – 10.2 per cent
4. Taylor Swift – 8.9 per cent
5. Katy Perry – 8 per cent
6. Ed Sheeran – 6.9 per cent
7. Jennifer Lawrence – 6 per cent
8. Brad Pitt – 4.9 per cent
8. Leonardo DiCaprio – 4.9 per cent
9. Channing Tatum – 3.9 per cent
10. Mariah Carey – 2.9 per cent

TOP TEN BEST AUSTRALIAN COMPANIONS:

1. Hugh Jackman – 17.9 per cent
2. Rebel Wilson – 6.1 per cent
3. Kylie Minogue – 5.8 per cent
4. Hamish Blake – 5.4 per cent
5. Cate Blanchett – 4.9 per cent
6. Delta Goodrem – 4.7 per cent
7. Russell Crowe – 4.1 per cent
8. Nicole Kidman – 3.7 per cent
9. Elle Macpherson – 3.6 per cent
10. Carrie Bickmore – 3.5 per cent

TOP TEN GLOBAL WORST TRAVEL COMPANIONS:

1. Justin Bieber – 27 per cent
2. Kim Kardashian – 20.7 per cent
3. Kanye West – 10.9 per cent
4. Miley Cyrus – 9 per cent
5. Caitlyn Jenner – 6.4 per cent
6. Jay Z – 3.8 per cent
6. Mariah Carey – 3.8 per cent
7. Prince Harry – 2.2 per cent
8. Brad Pitt – 1.9 per cent
9. Ben Affleck – 1.8 per cent
10. Angelina Jolie – 1.7 per cent

TOP TEN WORST AUSTRALIAN COMPANIONS:

1. Kyle Sandilands – 23.4 per cent
2. Shane Warne – 8.2 per cent
3. Lara Bingle – 6.7 per cent
4. Karl Stefanovic – 5.9 per cent
5. Nick Kyrgios – 5.6 per cent
6. James Packer – 5.4 per cent
7. David Koch – 5.2 per cent
8. Pettifleur Berenger – 4.7 per cent
9. Blake Garvey – 4.1 per cent
10. Russell Crowe – 3.4 per cent

Sour ce: http://www.hotelclub.com/blog/best-worst-celebrity-travel-partners/#sthash.RGcBkTLp.dpuf

The most famous hotel in Hawaii

Famed for its lush coastline, an endless supply of warm rays and world-class waves that march to shore and lure surfers year-round (particularly in the winter months, when the swells are bigger and the stakes higher), Oahu – the most iconic of the Hawaiian islands – is both a postcard landscape and a prized natural jewel that commands respect.

Since the early 20th century, people have flocked to Oahu to sample the Aloha spirit and escape the daily grind. As such, some of the most luxurious and contemporary hotels are nestled within the Hawaiian island chain. And the most iconic of them all is Oahu’s Royal Hawaiian Hotel, known colloquially as ‘The Pink Palace of the Pacific’

Situated right on the Waikiki beachfront in the tourist mecca of Honolulu, the Royal Hawaiian is a giant, fairy floss-coloured, Spanish-influenced luxury landmark, surrounded by a sea of green palms and an actual sea – the turquoise blue Pacific – and is as much a part of the Waikiki skyline as nearby Diamond Head crater.

The striking hotel was built back in 1927 (one of the first hotels to be constructed on Oahu) and represented the height of luxury, featuring 400 rooms with balconies overlooking the sea, surrounded by 15 acres of landscaped tropical greens.

It’s no surprise that it was quickly adopted as the Hawaiian home to the rich and famous, hosting everyone from Clark Gable to The Beatles, Joan Didion and was the honeymoon hideaway for Marilyn Monroe and Joe DiMaggio.

You might recognise the Pink Palace from such TV shows as Mad Men (it now offers a VIP Draper package featuring a personalised concierge service and four nights in the King Kamehameha Suite), or as the hotel in 2002’s Punch Drunk Love where Adam Sandler passionately reunites with Emily Watson in the hotel’s grand arched lobby.

Today, it’s more of a symbol of a bygone era, which, if anything, adds to it’s appeal. The place exudes romance, so it’s likely you’ll be sharing the hotel with a cavalcade of loved-up newlyweds should you choose to stay here. And considering you can walk from the hotel gardens right onto Waikiki beach, it’s top-tier so far as prime locations go.

Even if you don’t choose to stay at the Royal Hawaiian, a visit to the hotel’s chequered terrace is a must for all travellers to Oahu. Grab a cocktail, sink into a chair and let the retro vibes of the Pink Palace pull you back in time for an afternoon. Pastel polo and Clubmasters optional.

Source: http://www.hotelclub.com/blog/most-famous-hotel-in-hawaii-royal-hawaiian/

 

the locals go to eat in Hong Kong

One of the best ways to truly immerse yourself in a new city is to indulge in traditional fare. Put simply, eat what (and where) the locals eat.

Known colloquially as Asia’s most colourful city, Hong Kong is also a veritable trove of culinary delights – and as such, the best place to indulge in some of the world’s most mouth-watering street food, known to locals as Dai Pai Dong.

The go-to spot for some top quality Hong Kong street food? While there are the more well-known spots like the Bourdain-approved Java Road food centre in North Point or Lang Kwai Fong’s notorious ‘Rat Alley’, it’s in the bustling neighbourhood of Tsim Sha Tsui where the city’s best-kept food secrets can be discovered – and no spot in the area does it better than Hau Fook Street.

Need a place to stay in Tsim Sha Tsui post-feed? Try these top hotels

The short, neon-lit street serves up an array of tasty options – everything from “Hong Kong-style” Japanese food (such as the delectable udon at Dai Mon Yokocho – not “street food” per se, but totally worth it), to rice noodle dishes served in a cup at Dou Hua Mei, and sweet soufflés and a range of other dessert creations at Happy Together – while stalls laden with succulent dim sum, roast duck and barbecued meat on sticks are everywhere and will draw you in if you’re inclined to follow your nose.

Be warned: most street food vendors in Hau Fook, and in the more local areas of Hong Kong, don’t provide English menus – so be prepared to choose by politely pointing… which, more often than not, will lead to a more surprising (and delicious) eating experience. And, much like most other foreign countries, you’ll generally find the best street food where the plastic stools and tiny tables are filled with locals, or there’s a line to the counter. But don’t let that deter you from trying somewhere different, away from the crowds.

After you’ve had your fill, crawl down to Haiphong Road and start part two of your Hong Kong street food adventure.

Source: http://www.hotelclub.com/blog/hong-kong-street-food-locals-best-guide/#sthash.j9Ou4OAY.dpuf

 

 

The best surf club on the Gold Coast

The surf life saving club is as iconically Australian as kangaroos and Vegemite, and the Gold Coast offers a stretch of coastline featuring some of the best.

For the 12 million annual visitors to Queensland’s Gold Coast Surfer’s Paradise might be the most regularly name-checked destination for tourists, but if you want to eschew thick crowds, tourist traps and nightclubs, head further south where you’ll find the real gold.

Case in point: the Gold Coast’s best surf club lies another 17km down the highway in beautiful Currumbin.

The Currumbin Beach Vikings Surf Club has all the signatures of a great surf club. It is literally perched over the shoreline with a back deck boasting epic blue-sea views you can settle in with. The locals are friendly, the beer is cold and the menu is jammed with great options including market-fresh local seafood. Did we mention the view?

Other great ocean-front surf clubs include North Burleigh with an awesome beach backdrop and good people-watching, or even further south to the low-key charmer at Rainbow Bay. Really, at the Gold Coast you’re spoiled for choice.

 

Source: http://www.hotelclub.com/blog/the-best-surf-club-on-the-gold-coast/

Unbelievable pool view in Singapore

The best place to score an unforgettable view of Singapore’s sprawling skyline? Waist-deep in water, apparently.

Bucking the standard route of putting the hotel pool on the ground floor, Singapore’s colossal Marina Bay Sands casino opted for a more non-traditional design, planting a 150m infinity pool on the roof of the skyscraper, 57 floors up. The result? The world’s highest pool and a remarkable view like no other.

Designed by Moshe Safdie – famed also for dreaming up Montreal’s Habitat 67 building – Marina Bay Sands is touted as the world’s most expensive casino (it cost AUD$7.8bn to bring into existence), and probably one of the most luxurious: inside, it features a mall, museum, theatre complexes, a handful of high-end restaurants, an ice skating rink, a breathtaking Louis Vuitton flagship, a nightclub and, of course, that pool.

Want to take a dip? It’ll cost you. Entry to the pool is currently available only to guests of the Marina Bay Sands – meaning, you’ll have to fork out for a room (around $400 per night) to score a few unforgettable laps above the city. That said, the (relatively) steep price of admission also gains you access to all of the above, plus one of the more comfortable stays in Singapore (each room comes equipped with floor-to-ceiling views and trimmings, so you’re getting your money’s worth).

But back to the pool. The view itself is a panoramic, unobstructed eye over the ever-rising Singapore skyline, and probably the world (with a close second place to the Gansevoort Park Avenue rooftop pool-and-bar combo overlooking bustling NYC). Grab a towel and make haste.

Source: http://www.hotelclub.com/blog/this-is-the-most-unbelievable-pool-view-in-singapore/

 

The best surf club on the Gold Coast

The surf life saving club is as iconically Australian as kangaroos and Vegemite, and the Gold Coast offers a stretch of coastline featuring some of the best.

For the 12 million annual visitors to Queensland’s Gold Coast Surfer’s Paradise might be the most regularly name-checked destination for tourists, but if you want to eschew thick crowds, tourist traps and nightclubs, head further south where you’ll find the real gold.

Case in point: the Gold Coast’s best surf club lies another 17km down the highway in beautiful Currumbin.

The Currumbin Beach Vikings Surf Club has all the signatures of a great surf club. It is literally perched over the shoreline with a back deck boasting epic blue-sea views you can settle in with. The locals are friendly, the beer is cold and the menu is jammed with great options including market-fresh local seafood. Did we mention the view?

Other great ocean-front surf clubs include North Burleigh with an awesome beach backdrop and good people-watching, or even further south to the low-key charmer at Rainbow Bay. Really, at the Gold Coast you’re spoiled for choice.

Source: http://www.hotelclub.com/blog/the-best-surf-club-on-the-gold-coast/

Sydney’s unique food and drink experiences

From underground dinners to hidden bars even the most seasoned Sydney foodie is sure to discover something new from this quirky list. We chat to 21 of Sydney’s top food and wine experts for their top picks to guarantee you a gastronomic adventure to write home about.

1. What’s the most unique food experience you have had in Sydney? Tell us about it. One of our current favourite haunts in Sydney is The Powder Keg at 7 Kellet Street Potts Point – a bar/restaurant by Grant Collins. Their head chef Elijah Holland is a bit of a forager and a substantial part of their menu consists of foraged ingredients eats and cocktails which makes this quite unique. Their cocktails are also surprising, inventive and next level. We kid you not.

2. What’s the most quirky food and/or drink experience you would recommend to visitors in Sydney? why? Quirky? Head to the green tea centric One Tea Lounge on 73 York Street to eat ramen burger and also Rice Bun burgers. David Yip’s joint also has a matcha (Green tea) Baoger – a fusion burger with green tea baos. It’s a mix and matcher and we’d best describe it as a fusion everything kind of Asian joint. The menu has 70% matcha in their items and its also in their cocktails which says something! And yes, they also have more standard eats like ramen on the menu too.

Why follow Bob: The Jugernauts is one of Sydney’s leading food and beverage blogs and is the best place to read about Sydney small bars, bars, pubs and all manners of eats. They’re in the TOP100 most influential in Australia via Bartender Magazine. If you love going out on the town and eating well, we’re the ones to check out – follow on twitter and instagram @thejugernauts.

Source: http://www.hotelclub.com/blog/sydneys-unique-food-and-drink-experiences/

Sydney’s hidden Aboriginal gems

Some visitors might only associate the beauty of Indigenous Australia with the red sands of ‘the outback’. However, far from remote, the Sydney region is a vastly rich area in which to explore the identity of our first peoples. This year’s NAIDOC Week theme is We all stand on sacred ground: learn, respect, celebrate. Following on from this theme, we take a look at some of Sydney’s hidden Aboriginal gems where you can learn about, respect and celebrate the heritage of our Aboriginal Australians from the past and present to the future.

For a meaningful and memorable experience we highlight a number of Aboriginal-owned and guided, social enterprise-driven and ethical experiences where you can learn more whilst contributing directly to initiatives that respect and support the capacity of Aboriginal peoples.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should be aware that this website may contain images or names of people who have since passed away.

1)The BLAK Markets
Cross the bridge to Bare Island in Botany Bay Kamay National Park on the first Sunday of the month to be part of diverse Aboriginal cultural activities at The BLAK Markets. Experience a traditional smoking ceremony and Welcome to Country, taste the bush-tucker infused meals, admire Indigenous crafts and designs, and watch music and dance performance. In depth workshops offer learning from crafts and spear making, to fishing and the uses of native plants and artefacts.

2) Bangarra Dance Theatre

The internationally renown Bangarra Dance Theatre takes audiences on a journey of connection through deep spiritual storytelling, impressive technique and captivating performance. Bangarra fuses traditional dance with contemporary movement to share the unique stories of respected community Elders. Book performances in Sydney or NSW regions throughout the year directly from the venue.

 

3) Aboriginal Heritage Track,Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park

With over 800 Indigenous sites, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park is a significant place to explore the richness of our Aboriginal heritage. Reflect on the world view of the Guringai Nation on the Aboriginal Heritage Walk, as it guides you to rock art at Red Hands Cave, rock engravings and historic shelters among the beautiful surrounds.

Details: This walk is a 4.5km loop so it’s suggested to allow 2.5 hours to complete.

Cost: The walk is free, but National Park Entry Fees apply.

Don’t miss: See human and animal life through the eyes of the Garrigal people of the Guringai Nation at the Basin Aboriginal art site. Located close to the Aboriginal Heritage Walk, the Basin track detours to one of the most significant examples of rock engravings.

4) Muru Mittigar Aboriginal Cultural and Education Centre

At the base of the Blue Mountains lies a unique opportunity to uncover the history, culture and arts of traditional custodians, the Darug people. Share the imagination of the Darug people at the Muru Mittigar Aboriginal Cultural and Education Centre’s gallery of works and learn from guides about Aboriginal culture, Darug identity and the stories of Darug ancestors.

Don’t miss: didgeridoos sourced exclusively from NSW groups in the retail shop.

Opening hours: Monday-Friday, 9.00am-4.00pm. Bookings available on weekends

5) Boomalli Aborignal Artists Co-operative

Tucked away in the inner west at 5km from the CBD, one of Australia’s longest running Aboriginal-owned and operated galleries, Boomalli, invites visitors to share in ‘contemporary Indigenous cultural expression’. Boomalli’s gallery provides a window into the diversity of Aboriginal identity through innovative, distinct art that goes beyond traditional approaches.

Source: http://www.hotelclub.com/blog/sydneys-hidden-aboriginal-gems/