To ring in the Year of the Dog, boutique hotel booking service Mr & Mrs Smith shares 5 special Southeast Asian destinations for a Chinese New Year getaway.
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To kick off this year’s good fortune, spend Chinese New Year at eco-friendly Song Saa Private Island. This luxurious green escape, set over a pair of pristine isles, offers an idyllic environment for relaxation and rejuvenation. The resort rests in a man-made marine reserve, overseen by the hotel’s team of biologists, with numerous recycling and waste-reduction initiatives in place. Here, guests can be earth-kind and indulgent, pampering themselves with a treatment in the Ila Spa Sanctuary, where local herbs and island sand are used for therapy and beauty. Otherwise, spend your days snorkelling through breathtaking reefs and your nights on bioluminescence-lit swims.
If you book through Mr & Mrs Smith: You will each enjoy a 60-minute spa treatment.
NEXT: Ceylon Tea Trails, Hill Country, Sri Lanka →
Ceylon Tea Trails has a quartet of elegant boutique villas with timbered ceilings, panelled libraries, claw-foot bathtubs and bay windows – a restful hideout to retreat to for Chinese New Year. Opt for cosy Summerville Bungalow for panoramas of verdant hills, or Norwood for an elegant and modern feel. Partake in cups of fragrant local tea before roaming the rustic surrounds and visiting nearby tea estates, ravines, and waterfalls – trekking within this plantation offers jaw-dropping views of the lakes. After that, refresh yourselves with a dip in swimming pools fed by mountain springs and an aromatherapy bath.
If you book through Mr & Mrs Smith: You can participate in a complimentary trek for two through the hills with the hotel’s resident naturalist, who will talk about the tea-making process, and the local flora and fauna.
NEXT: Amanoi, Ninh Thuan Province, Vietnam →
Luxurious Vietnamese stay Amanoi lucked out with its breathtaking natural setting: its slate pagodas peek out from lush green hillsides, a marine reserve to one side, Núi Chúa National Park on the other. The hotel’s clifftop perch ensures a sweeping view from most rooms. Settling on a particularly scenic vista could prove tricky; our closely contested favourites are the Ocean Pool Pavilions, which overlook both the East Sea and the Cliff Pool. Feast on local fishermen’s daily catches and authentic Vietnamese dishes at the elegant central pavilion, while admiring Vinh Hy Bay’s natural treasures, before exploring the Núi Chúa National Park. Sun-worshippers have many places to lay out their beach towels, but it’s worth sacrificing an even tan to swim alongside shoals of tropical fish weaving through rainbow coral forests.
If you book through Mr & Mrs Smith: You can enjoy a 60-minute massage for two.
NEXT: Raas Jodhpur, Jodhpur, India →
Both modern and historic at once, Raas Jodhpur is set within Jodhpur’s old walled city and features a luxurious butler-serviced pool and terrace for alfresco dining. The rose-hued sandstone, carved jaali (lattice) screens and splashes of Brahmin blue set the tone for these luxury abodes, promising a truly magical stay. Treat yourself at the white-hot Bandari Restaurant, where Indian classics are served in the elegant indoor dining room or at the sun-drenched poolside. Elevated eatery Dari Khana is a relaxed space with cushioned banquettes, candlelit tables and scene-stealing views of Mehrangarh Fort. Raas lets guests tap into the surrounding region with a choice of cultural experiences. Guided walks are a gentle introduction to this intimate, yet frenetic city, or if you’d rather zip around the streets, book the services of the hotel’s bespoke tuk-tuk.
If you book through Mr & Mrs Smith: You will receive a complimentary fruit basket. Guests staying two nights or more can also enjoy a heritage tour; for three-night stays, a cooking class and dinner set-up (excluding cost of food and drinks). For four nights or more, you will be entitled to complimentary return transfers, as well as receive a bottle of wine.
NEXT: Constance Prince Maurice, Mauritius →
Although the Chinese community in Mauritius is fairly small, it’s been an influential presence on the island; as such, Chinese New Year is celebrated with much enthusiasm here. Luxury resort hotel Constance Prince Maurice offers Chinese New Year revellers the best of both worlds come February; it’s near enough to Port Louis (around an hour’s drive) for partaking in the vibrant festivities, yet secluded enough for some peaceful downtime. Swim in the hotel’s freeform pool, luxuriate in the spa, and eat your fill of fine Mauritian and fusion fare in the spectacular floating restaurant. For a truly indulgent stay, book one of the Junior Suites on Stilts overlooking the lake, or the Princely Suite with its two pools, three terraces, and private garden.
If you book through Mr & Mrs Smith: You will receive a fruit basket, a bottle of wine (champagne for GoldSmith members). GoldSmith members staying five nights or more will also enjoy a 30-minute back or foot massage each.
NEXT: Song Saa Private Island, Koh Rong Islands, Cambodia →
First published on SilverKris.com, January 23, 2018
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