Whips and handcuffs on Valentine’s Day, plus my Destination of the Day: Sunshine Coast B.C.!

The Sunshine Coast of B.C. is an easy reach from Vancouver. You'll find sensational scenery and a relaxed pace, plus great B & B's and plenty of outdoor activities.

The Sunshine Coast of B.C. is an easy reach from Vancouver. You’ll find sensational scenery and a relaxed pace, plus great B & B’s and plenty of outdoor activities.

In case you hadn’t noticed, the red and white Christmas cards at Shoppers Drug Mart have been replaced with red and white Valentine’s Day cards. V.D. rolls around again on Feb. 14 this year, as it is wont to do.
Hotels consistently try to cash in on husbands and wives looking for a quick getaway, or just a quickie, with package deals for breakfast in bed or flickering candles or chocolates and champagne. This year, they’ve been a sexy gift with the release of the film Fifty Shades of Grey, based of course on the scandalous books of the same name, on Friday, Feb. 13.
Hotels around the world are thrusting Fifty Shades of Grey deals on their customers. In New York, two Kimpton properties Eventi and Ink48 say folks can “dominate the night” and release their inner Christian Grey or Anastasia Steele (the main characters in the books and movie) with such in-room treats as a bottle of bubbly and a kit from a local sex shop that includes satin bondage gear, a paddle, “spanking powder” and a necktie. They also are offering aphrodisiac room service items such as oysters, bananas and avocado (a new one to me), plus a $200 credit to a New York lingerie shop and two tickets to the Museum of Sex, which I found quite boring on a visit many years ago.
At the Nira Caledonia Hotel in Edinburgh (those crazy Scots) you can get a black box in your room with fluffy handcuffs and a feather tickler.
They’re going a lot further at Personality Hotels in San Francisco, where booking a “Fifty Shades of Women … Come Again” package at one of three properties will get you such goodies as a “Minna Limon Vibrator,” “Art of Lust condoms”, “Feel Me Bondaids Handcuffs,” a “silky sash restraint,” a “Lilly Fringe Whip,” “Madame’s Mystique Paddle,” “Les Petits Bon Bon Tickle Me Tickler” and “Wicked Aqua Lubricant.”

Whatever happened to the simplicity of a heart-shaped bathtub in Niagara Falls?
Marriott had to do a little backpedalling last week when it announced it was planning to take over Delta’s hotels in Canada.
When the deal was first announced, I put something out on Twitter. Delta is a major Canadian travel company, and folks were retweeting and checking out the story. It wasn’t clear from the stories I saw online what would happen with the Delta brand, however. I figured they’d be silly to let it go but wasn’t sure. So I sent them a note on Twitter asking for clarification.
The reply I got said that this “is still being determined.” So that’s what I put out on Twitter.
Ten minutes alter my cell phone rang in Las Vegas. It was a Marriott spokesman in suburban Washington D.C.
“We are NOT getting rid of the Delta name,” he said. “We’re Canadian too.”
It was a minor bit of confusion. But it shows Marriott is sensitive to the “Canadian thing” and to how we feel about foreign takeovers.
In case you missed it, Marriott has unveiled plans for itsy-bitsy rooms of some 200 square feet aimed at millennials who want deals in big cities. There are plans for New York and several European cities, where a 200 square foot isn’t all that uncommon if memory serves. I was told they don’t have any plans for Canada as of yet.
Cunard has announced that aging rockers Crosby, Stills & Nash will perform on a trans-Atlantic crossing of the Queen Mary 2. Neil Young, I’m told, will sing on an independently owned inner tube in San Francisco Bay.
Each day on my blog here, and in the Globe and Mail, (it appears online, usually Tuesdays and Thursdays) I’ll give a short shout-out to a favourite destination of the day from my assorted travels. Happy to say my first one is for the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia. You’ll find fabulous resorts such as Painted Boat and Rockwater Secret Cove, plus a great B & B in Sechelt called Absolute Heaven. There are lovely and relatively easy hikes, great restaurants and quiet drives to be had. Try a kayak ride in the Sechelt Inlet with Pedals and Paddles, or take a fun SloCat tour of gorgeous Pender Harbour. Added bonus: you pay in Canadian pesos….

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