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Carnival to Sail to Cuba


Carnival, the world's largest leisure travel company, today announced it will sail as planned from the U.S. to Cuba with all travelers, including Cuba-born passengers, for the company's week-long voyages to Cuba. Carnival Corporation worked closely with Cuba to allow its cruise ships to operate in a similar manner as current air charter operations to Cuba, starting with its historic inaugural voyage on May 1, 2016.

Last week, in anticipation of this positive outcome, Carnival Corporation announced its new Fathom brand was accepting bookings to Cuba from all travelers, including individuals born in Cuba. Fathom's 704-passenger Adonia luxury cruise ship will begin sailing to Cuba every other week, marking the first time in over 50 years that a cruise ship has been able to sail from the U.S. to Cuba, as well as the first time in decades that Cuban-born individuals will be able to sail to and from Cuba.

"We made history in March, and we are a part of making history again today," said Arnold Donald, CEO of Carnival Corporation. "More importantly, we are contributing to a positive future. This is a positive outcome and we are extremely pleased. We want to extend our sincere appreciation to Cuba and to our team who worked so hard to help make this happen."

"We have already seen tremendous interest in the incredible Cuba journey we have put together, and we are ecstatic that this historic opportunity is open to everyone who wants to travel to Cuba," said Tara Russell, president of Fathom and global impact lead for Carnival Corporation.

Russell added: "Our guests will visit three beautiful and unique destinations on the island all in one week, with the convenience of only having to unpack once while we sail on the Fathom Adonia, our premium small ship with its excellent and diverse dining, service and accommodations. We are looking forward to treating Fathom travelers to an unforgettable experience."

Carnival Corporation's Fathom brand and its voyages to three ports of call in Cuba

During each sailing, Fathom will visit Havana, Cienfuegos and Santiago de Cuba, three ports of call for which Carnival Corporation has obtained berthing approval.

As part of this historic sailing in this inaugural year, travelers will enjoy an exciting Cuban experience and will sail aboard the Adonia, where they can choose to partake in onboard experiences, including Cuban- and Caribbean-inspired food and films, music and dancing, and much more.

Special onboard programming will include a wide variety of activities covering an array of interests, ranging from an orientation of Cuba's history, customs and culture, to geographic-inspired entertainment, to casual and fun personal enrichment activities, along with conversational Spanish lessons.

Seven-day itineraries on Carnival Corporation's Fathom brand depart from PortMiami on Sundays at 4:30 p.m. Eastern Time (ET). The ship will arrive at its first destination, Havana, the following morning (Monday) at 11 a.m. ET. The Adonia returns to its homeport, PortMiami, at 7:30 a.m. ET on Sunday.

Prices for seven-day itineraries to Cuba start at $1,800 per person, excluding Cuban visas, taxes, fees and port expenses and including all meals on the ship, onboard experiences and several on-the ground activities. Prices will vary by season.

To reserve a spot on future sailings, travelers may contact their travel professional or call 1-855-9Fathom. Visit Fathom's "Cruise to Cuba" page to learn more about the brand's weeklong itineraries to Cuba.

Additional information can be found on www.carnival.com.

SOURCE Carnival Corporation & plc

A Chance to own a new Series 1


Well it is as close to new as you can get, professionally restored from the ground up by Land Rover's Classic division. The official launch of the ‘Reborn’ initiative for the iconic Series I was launched today at Techno-Classica in Essen, Germany.


The program will allow 25 customers the chance to own essentially a brand new Series 1 direct from Land Rover Classics. The 25 hand-picked Rovers were sourced from around the world and each one will be completely restored according the original 1948 specifications using Land Rover Classic parts to keep them as authentic as possible.

Buyers may choose from five period finishes including Light Green, Bronze Green, RAF Blue, Dove Grey and Poppy Red. Each Series 1 will be restorated start to finish at Land Rover’s new Classic workshop located within the original Defender production centre at Solihull.


Tim Hannig, Director, Jaguar Land Rover Classic, said: “The launch of the Reborn initiative represents a fantastic opportunity for customers to own a valuable and collectable automotive icon. Reborn showcases Land Rover Classic’s expertise in restoring and maintaining our loyal customers’ prized Land Rovers. It also demonstrates the business’ commitment to supporting customers with original and genuine parts for Land Rover models that have been out for production for longer than 10 years.”

You better hurry if you want one, visit LandRover.com for more information.


Luxury Teepee Resort


Westgate River Ranch Resort & Rodeo announced the expansion of its lodging offerings with the addition of 10 Luxe Teepees, offering the next evolution in all-inclusive glamping luxury (glamorous camping).
The 651-square-foot Luxe Teepees provide guests the pinnacle of luxury living in an outdoor adventure atmosphere. Each Luxe Teepee can accommodate up to four guests and is uniquely designed with décor themed in Native American style with such comforts as a double-sided stone rock hearth fireplace, screened private patio deck, microwave, mini refrigerator, leather chairs, a king bed, full sleeper sofa and air conditioning and heating. The Luxe Teepees also feature their own private ensuite bathrooms with vanity and porcelain cast iron claw bathtub and shower. In addition, every Teepee has a distinctive name, such as "Dancing Warrior," "Roaming Buffalo" and "Soaring Eagle."
The Luxe Teepees are located in an exclusive area of Westgate River Ranch Resort, clustered around a canopy of 100-year-old oak trees. This new area, named Takoda Village, is designed to embody the warm spirit of the Native American word "Takoda" or "friend to everyone".  In addition to the Teepees, Takoda Village features an authentic tribal council pavilion built by the Seminole Tribe of Florida. This pavilion, known as a Chickee Hut, features a palmetto thatch-roof and is the ideal place for gathering together surrounded by naturalFlorida beauty with friends and family, just as the Native Americans of the past did. Complete with outdoor fire pits, swinging hammocks, festoon lighting and outdoor dining tables, Takoda Village offers an idyllic environment for family gatherings, special celebrations or a very special romantic escape.  
Included in a stay in the Luxe Teepees is unlimited access to all Westgate River Ranch & Rodeo activities, which include horseback riding, trap and skeet shooting, access to the adventure park, airboat rides and more. Teepee guests also receive complimentary use of a golf cart for the duration of their stay and VIP seating for the Saturday night rodeo. Overnight all-inclusive rates for the Luxe Teepees start at $450 per night, based on double occupancy (two night minimum).
The introduction of the Luxe Teepees builds upon the success of the introduction of glamping tents at Westgate River Ranch & Rodeo in 2013 and an expansion of the glamping inventory in 2014.
"Following the incredible demand and guest feedback from our glamping tents, our guests told us they wanted an even higher-end, all-inclusive experience offering the finest in amenities, luxury and service," said David Siegel, CEO of Westgate Resorts. "Guests of our Luxe Teepees can expect a five-star hotel experience in a camping setting."
Guests who book their stay in the Luxe Teepees will enjoy a hassle-free vacation from start to finish, with a concierge dedicated exclusively to assisting Teepee guests from pre-arrival through the completion of their stay. The concierge will provide everything from complimentary morning coffee service and pastry delivery to assistance booking ranch activities.
The Luxe Teepees join a variety of accommodations currently offered at Westgate River Ranch Resort & Rodeo, including glamping tents, cabins and lodge suites. For more information, visitwww.westgateriverranch.com.

La Posada Culinary Scene Heats Up With James Beard Dinner


The sizzling culinary team at Julia, a Spirited Restaurant & Bar, recently added to its growing list of accolades with the presentation of a special dinner at the prestigious James Beard House in New York.
Every inventive course, many inspired by the distinctive traditions and ingredients of the southwest, was paired with wines from Cakebread Cellars, the nationally renowned winery that co-hosted the evening.  

"We were most honored by the invitation to present at this internationally respected institution," said Joe Kelley, general manager of La Posada de Santa Fe, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa. "Santa Fe has an increasingly hot culinary scene and we are pleased our interpretation of this cuisine received national recognition."

ROMANTIC WEEKEND GETAWAYS
In one of the nation's oldest and most romantic cities, where sensual chocolate and spicy chiles are frequently paired in culinary dishes and spa treatments, La Posada de Santa Fe, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa, offers getaways hot enough to satisfy any craving.   

Savor Santa Fe indulges all the senses with romantic accommodations, a delectable southwestern breakfast and a $50 discount on treatments at Spa Sage at La Posada, recipient of the USA Today Reader's Choice Award for #4 Best Hotel Spa.

Guests may choose from an array of locally inspired treatments including a Chocolate Chile Wrap or Margarita Pedicure. The first starts with a custom blend of indigenous Chimayo red chile to get the circulation going, followed by a chocolate application that leaves the skin velvety smooth and aromatic The latter involves a tangy lime scrub to treat the feet and an actual margarita to sip.  
Savor Santa Fe getaways start at $235 per night. For information on this and other packages, visit laposadadesantafe.com or call 855-210-7210.

Spring Festival Style


Music festival season is right around the corner, here are three great looks for that perfect boho festival style. Complement the look with natural makeup and messy hair for a fun, free spirited look.




"Find me at the Festival" Halter Top paired with Lucky Brand denim shorts and Lucky Brand Belt. Add a pair of Sustainable Sandals and accessories from Cowboy's Daughter, and floral wreath headband to complete the look. 


Our second look combines an Original Cowgirl "Marfa" halter top with a pair of fitted bohemian print leggings and an open poncho from the LA fashion district. Accessories again help complete the festival look.  



Faded denim shorts paired with a loose fringe halter top and an open tie dye poncho create layers that add movement and style to this simple look. Again accessories help pull it all together with Southwestern inspired bracelets. 


Southwestern Inspired Accessories


Copper and Leather add warm natural colors without being too ostentatious 


Comfortable Sandals are a must, this pair by Sustainable Sandals offer great support for all day music festivals. 

Model: 
Nathalie Navarro

Apparel by:
Cowboy's Daughter
Sustainable Sandals
Original Cowgirl Clothing Co.
Lucky Brand

Photographer:
Mike Satterfield

Cuba with Michael Chinnici


Cuba is becoming one of the most talked about travel destinations of 2016; since restrictions have been eased more Americans have been looking for ways to visit Cuba. In fact nearly 500,000 Americans a month are searching Google looking for information on visiting Cuba. Currently the only way for an American to visit Cuba direct from the USA is with a Cultural Exchange Visa with an organized tour group.


This is where Photo Workshop Adventures and world renowned photographer Michael Chinnici come in. Michael’s photo adventures offer a chance to combine an amazing vacation with a creative learning experience.  Each tour is lead by a Master Photographer including Michael Chinnici and a team of world class photographers who will help you make the most out of your trip and create amazing memories. Tours are kept small with just 6-10 guests in each group, giving you time to work with the master photographer without feeling rushed.


Currently they are offering four tours in Cuba.

Classic Cuba
The 9-day Classic Cuba Photo Adventure includes 6 days in Havana followed by 2 days in Trinidad and 1 day in Cienfuegos, both located on the southern coast of Cuba.

Havana
5-day Havana Photo Adventure includes Old Havana, Central Havana, Vedado and Miramar (including an optional day trip to Pinar del Rio and Vinales).

Eastern Cuba
8-day Eastern Cuba Photo Adventure includes 1 day in Cienfuegos followed by 2 days in Camaguey, 5 days in Santiago de Cuba including a day-trip to Baracoa.

Ultimate Cuba
16-day Ultimate Cuba Photo Adventure includes 6 days in Havana followed by 2 days in Trinidad and 2 days in Cienfuegos, 2 days in Camaguey, 5 days in Santiago de Cuba, including a day-trip to amazing Baracoa.


Visit www.photoworkshopadventures.com for pricing and tour dates, also watch the short video below from a recent photo adventure.



10 Pictures that will make you want to go on a Road Trip

1. Salvation Mountain

Road trips are one of my favorite ways to travel, the road side attractions, the adventure, so when Mazda tossed me the keys to a brand new CX-3 and said go explore Southern California's deserts, I was all in. From Joshua Tree to Slab City here are 10 photos from my recent trip that will make you want to hit the road.

2. Hiking in Joshua Tree National Park
3. Bottle Tree Ranch, Route 66

4. Abandoned Airstream, Route 66

5. Sunrise Joshua Tree
6. Roy's Motel, Route 66, Amboy
7. Art Car, Slab City
8. Cactus Blooms
9. Salvation Mountain Art Car

10. VW Bus, East Jesus

Big Thanks to Mazda USA for loaning me the new CX-3

Destination: Pacaya Lodge & Spa



I recently had the pleasure of visiting the brand new Pacaya Lodge & Spa just outside of Granada, Nicaragua. This new resort's soft launch happened to coincide with my visit to the area, and the buzz about the new Eco Resort was good. The resort was designed with sustainability and bolstering the local economy beyond just bringing tourist dollars to the region. The well appointed rooms are decorated and stocked with items made by local artisans. From the artwork on the walls, to the handmade coffee cups the designers worked to source as much as possible locally.

View from Junior Suite
Each room offers panoramic views of Laguna de Apoyo in the heart of a ecological reserve, but still just minutes away from the historic city of Granada, a top tourist destination in Nicaragua.

Another benefit of booking your vacation at the lodge, is that a portion of the proceeds go back to supporting local education. In a country where fewer than 10% of rural youth finish high school, Pacaya Lodge and Spa is supporting the education of 240 students from surrounding communities by contributing a percentage of all lodge revenues to Emprendedora, a technical high school located 10km from the lodge. The school, which is operated by Opportunity International Nicaragua, offers students technical education in tourism or agriculture, Nicaragua’s two leading industries. In addition to contributing revenues directly to the school, Pacaya Lodge engages school services such as laundry, sources produce from its working farm and offers internships and professional development opportunities to outstanding students.

Casitas with Private Balconies
Casita Room
The resort offers a number of Tours and Excursions that can be purchased on site, including, a tour of historic Granada (see pictures below), Hiking, Horseback Riding, Zip Line Adventures, and Artisan Workshops. 

Rooms start as low as $128  a month in the low season and $160 in the high season with suites ranging between $192-$255 (Prices in USD)


For more or to book your stay at the Pacaya Lodge & Spa visit pacayalodge.com

Granada, Nicaragua












Santa Monica


Once you have driven the entire length of Route 66, you find yourself at a dead end, the "end of trail" but it's not a bad place to end up. Route 66 runs right into the Santa Monica Pier and after a long trek across the USA, 72 degrees in mid February feels great.









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