About a year and half ago when I mentioned the word staycation to a hotelier, he shot a “a what?” look at me. I was suddenly the cooler one in the room having this conversation that made me feel like a teen in the travel world who knows every latest buzz word and trend. Soon the term got some fast legs and ran all over the globe with every trendy hotel boasting an offer for that perfect staycation. But staycation as a concept has been conceived out of travellers’ need and cry for some rest and recuperation. Over the last seven years when the economic climate was gloomy and the hours at work were endless with no weekends to enjoy, holiday benefits were last thing on anyone’s mind. Even though the economy may have taken an upswing in some parts of the world, it isn’t yet in its hay days. I see people prefer investing time and money on shorter, more enriching breaks that involve none to little air travel. For the luxury traveller however, the time saved is money saved at the end of it all. In the hustle bustle of everyday corporate life if you could enjoy and splurge every luxury of time and experience on yourself with the family or beloved, it is well worth avoiding the long distance two-week vacation.
What is your staycation type? We all have our specific reasons to go on a staycation and there can be a variety of staycations but I am going for the more obvious and popular ones for now. Maybe later I will come back with the unique ones too.
Romantic Staycation: Why spend more time in travel when you could have some alone time together romancing the Irish Sea or the Scottish vistas.
Château Rhianfa, Wales: Whether you are in a committed relationship or heading towards it you want to etch your romance in the fabric of time while staying in a fairytale chateau. Every fantasy you can imagine will unfurl itself at Chateau Rhianfa in Anglesey, North Wales’ most romantic destination for newlyweds to the ones rekindling the flame of love. The chateau is a grade II listed gothic structure along the Menai Strait and a shout away from Snowdonia. Isle of Anglesey witnessed the marital romance of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge right after their wedding. The bedrooms in Chateau Rhianfa are individually designed and has a character of its own. Laze away in the arms of your beloved or explore Snowdonia or lock into an embrace over the Menai Strait, the realms of your luxurious chateau are romance abound. But then if being romantic doesn’t equate to cuddling up alone then do brace yourself for one of a kind experiences. The team has bundled up activities with accommodation to customise an experience of your taste, I would recommend Anglesey Adventure and if you are extreme adventure couple you’d like the Discovery at Chateau experience as an add on which includes RIB ride and later enjoy enjoy a seven course gourmet dinner.
Carberry Castle, Scotland: Once a royal residence the baronial castle hotel is a romantic retreat the finest you could ask for close to Edinburgh. If you are a resident of Edinburgh this means a world of advantage for the perfect romantic staycation. It was here when Queen Mary of Scots surrendered to the army on Carberry Hill in the mid- 16th century. I have a preference for the Superior King bedroom it has better design and feel to it with gorgeous upholstery and a bed that gulps you in. The freshly sourced produce and meat give an authentic Scottish touch to your gourmet meal. The castle is apt for a staycation because you hardly have time to leave its gates. It is rich in surrounding natural splendour with 35 acres of grounds, enough to venture on leisurely walk holding hands or perhaps engaging in a game of croquet or exploring the castle itself. Take a distellery tour or enjoy the cocktails at the bar and learn new ones too. For the couples who can’t resist togetherness in the outdoors, perhaps some Sea Kayaking and Coasteering or Surfing might do the trick. For reservations please visit Carberry Castle.
Rejuvenation and Retail
When you live in the world’s most bustling capital where time is a rare luxury, sometimes you tend to miss out on that precious ME time or spend hours chatting with your girlfriends or hubby. Be it a weekend of solitude or a catch up with closest buddies every corporate workaholic girl needs some R&R except that this one stands for rejuvenation and retail therapy. Give me a luxurious weekend stay in central London, a day at the spa, stack of classics on Blue Ray or DVD with champagne and some inspiring retail therapy and I am there. Like Joey Tribbiani said ,”Its’s London Baby!” Then again we forget how much London can surprise us if only we take time to look up and explore. After all it is a city that attracts millions of travellers everyday. My choice for an R&R staycation is in the glamourous Mayfair, London which is the epicenter of luxury fashion stores. This is a weekend you deserve for all the endless days of work and ignorance to health and happiness. Self indulgence is the essence of this staycation so don’t leave until your satiated completely – heart, mind,body and soul. I found three of the most lucrative offers right in Mayfair that offer a two night stay. The Dorchester’s Spa and Stay offers two nights with glass of champagne at the Spatesserie, an hour of Spa treatment and breakfast. There is a special staycation just for new moms or mommy-to-be called the Mommymoon, for those who are expecting or just had a new born do take advantage. Don’t forget to treat yourself with the Michelin star dinner at Alain Duccasse and some very traditional afternoon tea at The Dorchester. The Connaught has a similar offer with a two night stay but they also have this amazing Timeless Weekend offer where the stay includes champagne arrival, movies, retail cards for shopping discounts and exclusives at some of the most prestigious stores including Liberty and if that wasn’t all, a late check-out! Don’t limit yourself to the inclusions though this hotel has the eponymous Hélène Darroze restaurant and her Michelin star meal is the indulgence you shouldn’t give a miss. The Mayfair Hotel has an overnight spa and stay offer that includes your spa therapy and afternoon tea. They even offer an in-room spa facility so you could enjoy the therapy in the comfort of your suite or room.
Family Staycation: Even family holidays have seen a turn in the trend of long vacations. Now families are driving up to the coastal ends of UK and optimising their time with maximum fun. You want a location that has it all, the landscape, beach, trails, great food, luxurious accommodation that is pet-friendly too.Devon and Cornwall have peaked as the most preferred destinations for a family holiday or staycation. It makes sense considering the scenic beauty is second to none they are kids and pet-friendly and have something for all ages.
Woolacombe Bay Hotel, Devon – Location on the beach front of UK’s most voted beach for a holiday, Woolacombe Bay Hotel is what you can call as the relaxed luxurious hotel. The Sea View Suites have a breathtaking view of the Bay and a sprawling landscape to go along with it. You can run along to the beach or take hours of leisure time in Bay Lido. There is a great Holiday water park near by if you ever find the time to get away from the fun in the hotel premise. If you wished for the perfect family beach staycation you’ve found the suitable one in Woolacombe Bay, Devon.
Fistral Beach Newquay, Cornwall – Do you need the ultimate bayside morning and evening view where your kids and dog are as welcome as any adult? I have two such splendid hotels very close to Fistral Beach in Newquay Cornwall – The Headland and Lewinnick Lodge. The Headland looks and feels relaxed to accommodate a beach holiday ( sandy dogs and kids on a surf spree) while the Lewinnick is so pure in its design it’s like waking to sunny days come hail or storm. Both have separate pet-friendly accommodation and you need to inform about your four-legged traveller while doing room reservation. Unfortunately, they charge for the pets but the good part is they too have amenities. Lewinnick Lodge takes special requests like touring, champagne and chocolates for birthdays, special cooking classes with Rick Stein or surf lessons before arrival. You can spot dolphins merrily taking a swim sprint from your sea view rooms. The hotels have ample of activities lined up around the venue. Lewinnick Lodge is a bit away from the Fistral beach but they provide a shuttle to and from to the beach.