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Sandals Resorts Wins Big at Travvy Awards

Sandals Resorts - Antiguaa
Sandals Resorts - Antiguaa

Photo Credit: Sandals Resort

One of the biggest winners from the 2018 Travvy Awards was Sandals Resorts International.

The company finished the night with four gold statuettes and added a second place trophy to an already impressive showing.

The Sandals Grande Antigua Resort & Spa earned the No. 1 spot in voting by travel agents at last month’s gala in the Best All-Inclusive Adult/Couples Resort category for the Caribbean and Bahamas.

Sandals took home another gold statuette in the Best All-Inclusive Luxury Resort category for the Caribbean and Bahamas when Sandals La Source Grenada was voted the best. The company also earned the top honors when the Sandals Ochi Beach Resort won the Best Destination Wedding Hotel/Resort category for the Caribbean and Bahamas.

The gold didn’t stop there, as the company also took home the victory in the Best All-Inclusive Family Resort category for the Caribbean and Bahamas with Beaches Turks & Caicos Resort Villages.

In addition to all the gold earned at the 2018 Travvy Award ceremony, Sandals Resorts also took home the silver statuette in the Best Luxury Hotel Chain.

“We’re thrilled to be recognized by the Travvy Awards and to have our hotels singled out among the very best,” Sandals Resorts International chairman Gordon Stewart said in a statement. “We are an established brand that agents can rely upon because their clients love what we do, and we promise not to become complacent.”

“We will continue to get better and better. That is our promise and our mission, from the spectacular rooftop pool and entertainment center we recently unveiled at our newest hotel, Sandals Royal Barbados to an even better Beaches Turks & Caicos,” Stewart continued. “And there is more to come. As the year begins, look for us to expand our golf program, unveil plans for our fourth hotel in St. Lucia and continue the rollout of our enhanced destination wedding program.”

The Travvy Awards are considered the Oscars of the travel industry. It honors dozens of brands across a variety of categories, including destinations, hotels and resorts, cruise lines, tour operators and car rental brands.


Nickelodeon Resort Coming to Mexico

Nickelodeon Mexico Riviera Maya

Nickelodeon Mexico Riviera Maya

Photo Credit: Business Wire

Karisma Hotels & Resorts announced it will open a second Nickelodeon Hotel in Mexico in 2019.

Nickelodeon Hotels & Resorts are designed to bring fun and entertainment to guests in a five-star way and its new Riviera Maya property looks to deliver on that promise in a big way.

The resort will feature one of the destination’s largest water attractions and each suite will have sweeping ocean views.

“Nickelodeon Hotels & Resorts Riviera Maya is destined to become a new favorite vacation spot for guests of all ages,” said Armando Chomat, chief marketing and sales officer at Karisma Hotels & Resorts.

Nickelodeon Hotels & Resorts Riviera Maya will offer 276 oceanfront, swim-up Pad Suites and Flat Suites. The resort will also have four Nickelodeon-themed signature Penthouses located on the top floor of two six-story buildings.

Penthouses will feature favorite Nickelodeon content and characters, including Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and SpongeBob SquarePants. Each will have infinity pool swim-up access and views of the ocean, as well.

“The resort represents our 10th property in the Riviera Maya; it’s a significant and exciting milestone in our portfolio, and it is an honor to be doing it with a renowned partner like Viacom,” Chomat added. “With Aqua Nick, top-notch gourmet cuisine and all oceanfront swim-up suites, this property will take vacationing to the next level.”

At the center of the resort will be Aqua Nick, 500,000 square feet of family fun that has something for everyone, including a lazy river, waterslides, a splash park, an interactive water playground for toddlers and mini relaxation pools.

Nickelodeon Place is another entertainment space for all ages that provides areas for families to meet and mingle with favorite Nickelodeon characters such as Dora the Explorer, SpongeBob SquarePants and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

Club Nick is located inside Nickelodeon Place and is a hangout just for kids. There’s also Planet Orange for music, games and tropical fun and Mainstage, which is a theater space hosting a variety of entertainment experiences.

Other resort amenities include a fitness center and a spa with kids’ treatments, individual suites, couple’s suites, a bridal suite and outdoor treatment areas for al fresco pampering.

Six restaurants offering a variety of cuisines, including the seafront Yacht Club and authentic Mexican food at Espadin. Bikini Bottom will offer gourmet fast-casual food for a midday meal or snack. The property will also have four bars: The Bar, Bikini Bottom Bar and two swim-up bars.

Organic produce will be sourced directly from Karisma’s 76,000-square-foot Greenhouse located next door at El Dorado Royale Riviera Maya, a Spa Resort by Karisma.

“We are delighted to continue our successful partnership with Karisma Hotels & Resorts and open this incredible resort along a stunning stretch of white sand beach, providing guests with an authentic vacation experience centered on five-star luxury, playfulness and the warm hospitality that makes Mexico such a beloved destination” said Gerald Raines, senior vice president, location-based experiences for Viacom International Media Networks. “With Viacom Global Insights reporting that 70 percent of kids find family time one of the most important sources of happiness, we’re excited to offer a fun destination that gives them a world-class family experience they won’t ever forget.”


Dubai Will Have Own Miniature Venice by 2020

The Floating Venice

The Floating Venice

Photo Credit: thefloatingvenice.com

Dubai’s Cityscape Global plans to construct the Floating Venice.

The resort will be located in the World Islands, approximately 2.5 miles off of the coast of Dubai and will have the capacity to host up to 3,000 people in a mini version of the iconic city with four decks that offer a variety of recreational themes.

“As a developer, our vision supports and aligns with Dubai’s ambition to be a leading global destination and home of innovation as the world’s most forward-thinking city,” said Josef Kleindienst, chairman of Kleindienst Group.

“I am extremely excited and proud of The Floating Venice,” Kleindienst added. ”Our aim is to enhance the landscape of real estate and hospitality and deliver a new iconic experience. The Floating Venice is the epitome of this innovation and spirit, the world’s first luxury underwater vessel resort.”

Guests will arrive at the resort by boat, seaplane or helicopter to the Piazza San Marco and will check-in in the underwater lobby.

Gondolas will be imported from Venice and used to transport guests to one of 414 onboard cabins.

The resort will be home to a variety of artisanal shops, elegant boutiques, 24 pools, 12 floating beaches set against the Dubai skyline, 12 restaurants and bars (three of which are underwater), plus amazing views of the resort’s coral nursery, which will be planted underneath the underwater deck and a haven for sea life.

Periodically, the resort will host culture and arts celebrations as well as festivals such as Carnivale di Venezia, Binnale di Venezia and Festa del Rendentore to give guests the feeling of the true spirit of Venice.

New technology and design achievements were developed to create the Floating Seahorse—a series of luxury homes that include an underwater level also located in the World Islands. They have helped to make the creation of the Floating Venice a reality. (The first Floating Seahorse home was recently completed, and more are on the way.)

The Floating Venice will be constructed from a mixture of concrete for the underwater sections and marine lightweight materials for the upper decks. Its lifespan is said to be 100 years.

Construction is scheduled to begin in the first quarter of 2018 and be completed by the end of 2020.