swotc-bwc-leaderboard-728x90-3

Ritz Carlton

TORONTO – Sumptuous rooms with wonderful views. One of the city’s best patios. And one seriously sensational restaurant. I had a night recently at the Ritz-Carlton in downtown Toronto, where I hadn’t stayed in years. And I’m happy to report it exceeded expectations on all fronts. I don’t recall the old room style so much, but I loved the feel of the one we had. A lot of modern hotel rooms these days are cold and impersonal, but the one my wife and I shared was warm and inviting, yet quite luxurious. The room had deep, dark wood that was ... continue reading →

{ 0 comments }

That U.S. dollar is right there, smack-dab in front of your face. You’re strong-minded, but this is one staring contest you’re likely to lose, at least in the short term. Luckily, there are tons of great things to see and do here in Canada that don’t involve giving the bank a loonie in exchange for 65 U.S. cents. VICTORIA We’ll start with a city that’s usually among the warmest in Canada this time of year (normally hovering near the double digit mark). This used to be known as a sleepy government town, with tourists nattering on about tea at the ... continue reading →

{ 0 comments }

Few parts of the world do luxury as well as Asia. And few hotels do luxury as well as Ritz-Carlton. Which is why fans of luxury travel and way-cool Asia experiences should be excited by news of two new Ritz-Carlton properties across the Pacific. One is a beautiful resort on the north shore of Koh Samui, a fantastic island off the coast of Thailand with fabulous beaches, glimmering waterfalls and wonderful snorkeling and diving opportunities. The other is a Ritz-Carlton Reserve in Niseko Village, which is set at the base of Mount Niseko-Annupuri, the Japanese ski region. The Ritz-Carlton Koh ... continue reading →

{ 0 comments }

Hotels are going the boutique route. Cruise ships are going the opposite direction. Each year, cruise ship operators seem to be upping their “mine is bigger and fancier than yours game.” And nobody does it better than Royal Caribbean. The cruise line made a big splash, as it were, with its remake of the Oasis of the Seas about five years ago. Then came its ever-so-slightly bigger sister ship, Allure of the Seas. Both ships feature seven distinct “neighbourhoods,” along with a carousel and designer shops, such as Kate Spade, and carry roughly 5,400 passengers. The Quantum of the Seas, ... continue reading →

{ 0 comments }

What a great, progressive step. Hyatt Hotels has announced that, starting February 2015, ALL guests in ALL Hyatt properties will get free Wi-Fi. In a great item posted at skift.com, writer Jason Clampet notes that “the rollout will include all hotel brands, including the select-service Hyatt Place properties and up through its premium Park Hyatt offering. Use of Wi-Fi will not be limited to members of its loyalty programs, as was previously done at some brands. Hyatt Gold Passport members will have access to premium Wi-Fi service at some properties.” “Internet connectivity is no longer an amenity. It has become ... continue reading →

{ 0 comments }