Solage Biking My Newspaper Route was my First Career in Wellness
How did the hotel capture your interest?
How did the hotel capture your interest?
We have a little secret brewing in Maine. Beyond our buttery lobster rolls, steamy chowders, and pillowy blueberry pancakes, Portland harbors the third-highest concentration of craft breweries in America. Though we’ve been ranked as one of the top 20 beer cities by publications like Travel + Leisure thanks to beer pioneers like Shipyard and Allagash, there’s something we have that those other cities don’t. While you may find craft beers flavored with pecans, bourbon, or even frozen lemonade elsewhere, our taprooms entice small-batch ale connoisseurs with what we know best: sweet and silky maple syrup.
Whenever I travel, a full restaurant is a trusted choice as a place to eat, and Solbar was packed for lunch. Savory scents lured me inside and triggered a rumble in my stomach. With so many options on the menu, I took my seat to scope out the dining room for a view of what others were eating. The answer: fish tacos.
Chocolate is revered all over the world, but perhaps no more so than in Mexico, where it dates back to pre-Hispanic times. Back during the Mayan and Aztec eras, cacao beans were used as currency, and those of the highest ranks were known to have drunk copious amounts of frothy cacao out of clay-wooden vessels. At COMAL, we offer a fun tableside experience that lets diners create their own hot or cold chocolate drink with a molinillo, a traditional wooden whisk that dates back thousands of years. But using the molinillo isn’t just for historical integrity—it’s the secret to soft, almost cloudlike foam.
Wellness seekers have another reason to visit the Auberge du Soleil Spa in Napa Valley. In addition to the spectacular views, zen-like atmosphere and exceptional services, spa guests may now enjoy a signature wellness tea as part of their spa experience. Developed by ERDA, Napa’s ultra-premium organic tea farm, the custom blend features lemon verbena and spearmint, selected for the cleansing and clarity-promoting properties of the herbs. The Auberge du Soleil + ERDA Spa Tea is served at the conclusion of all services to enhance the wellness benefits of each treatment while guests linger and relax within the natural beauty of the Spa Courtyard overlooking the verdant vineyards and Mount Veeder in the distance.
Sailing away from Anguilla on a hand-crafted sailboat, we headed out to explore the small cays that dot the horizon. Looking for dolphins on the way became a game for the kids and us. The first stop brought us to a small sandy beach with nothing but the stunning turquoise water to look at. We swam and relaxed here listening to the stories of our captain about growing up in Anguilla. He tells the kids of the caves he explored as a child, and the kids are enthralled. Not long after, we are off again to explore the caves located on the eastern end of Anguilla.
Santorini is awash in glorious hues: bright white buildings, churches topped with cobalt-blue domes, dusky red cliffs, bright pink bougainvillea, and pops of red geranium. But ask us about our favorite Santorini colors, and my husband and I will immediately tell you they’re black and white. That’s because our wedding at Grace Hotel featured a special unity sand ceremony that incorporated Santorini's famed black and white sands, which we collected from our favorite beaches on the morning of our wedding.
Every morning as I head down to the stables, the first rays of sunrise begin to peak over the crest of the lush mountains of Pérez Zeledón and slowly filter down into the valley creating a golden glow. A carpet of dew blankets the fields and sparkles in the morning sun. A chorus of neighs and hoof stomps let me know that the horses are awake a ready for breakfast. On this morning last November, the 18th to be exact, Buena Noche’s white belly looks like it is about to burst.
I moved to Aspen last summer and soon adopted the same ritual as a lot of locals I know: trekking up Smuggler Mountain for an invigorating morning hike. The usual reward is a sweeping view of the town of Aspen and the Roaring Fork Valley from the observation deck at the summit. But on my last trek, I found another reward far sooner. Just off the first turn, I spotted a wooden swing carved with the words #AspenSwingProject. Whether you use it for a short rest, or pump your legs for a childish thrill like I did, the swing truly is a “random act of kindness.”
Each year, my family and I reunite with friends in the tropical paradise of Costa Rica in celebration of the Easter holiday. Pops of color surround the city paralleled by a dewey rainforest scent as stunning processions sweep through the island’s picturesque towns and scenic cities during Semana Santa (Holy Week) culminating in traditional ceremonies on Easter Sunday. Semana Santa is considered one of the most influential holidays for native Costa Ricans and sparks lively celebrations combining lavish feasts and cultural festivities presented throughout the island.
Like the geothermal waters that rise from the earth of Calistoga’s crust, I arrived at Spa Solage bubbling over with the hope of detoxification. I’d spent half the day tasting Napa Valley wines and was primed for a wellness reboot. What lured me to the bathhouse après spa hours was the concept of purification in restorative waters during a floating meditation under the star-lit sky.
Imagine the best run you’ve ever taken on untouched snow. Now imagine repeating this over and over on snow no one has ever skied. Through a new partnership with Powderbird, the Lodge at Blue Sky has a dedicated helicopter for groups to ski deep in the Uinta and Wasatch Mountain Ranges. I joined a group recently and it was an incredible experience to fly over Salt Lake City, which has more than a million people, then head to what seemed like the middle of nowhere. I can’t remember the last time I felt so removed from it all.
There are seven sea turtle species in the world, and Baja California Sur is home to a remarkable five of them—the hawksbill, loggerhead, leatherback, black turtle and olive ridley—all of which are endangered. These amazing sea creatures can hold their breath for up to seven hours at a time, slow their heartbeat to once every nine minutes, and most can dive to depths of up to 960 ft. (or nearly 100 stories underwater). But there’s another trait that’s even more astonishing, and the reason we give each of our guests a wooden sea turtle when they leave.
Whether it be to mark the moment you proposed or a milestone anniversary date, Hacienda AltaGracia’s Tree For Life offering is a memorable way to bookmark your love story in Costa Rica. Walk hand-in-hand through the wondrous re-forested land that our non-profit initiative has replanted, and adopt a tree to flourish along with your growing love.
The collective, deeply-felt emotion that falls over wedding guests as bride and groom walk down the aisle together—beaming in ear-to-ear smiles as newly-weds—is difficult to put into words. Mariachi, however, seems to capture this overwhelming love exceptionally well through its robust, sonorous music. An unforgettable way to transition from ceremony to reception, couple and guests enjoy the option to be lead by vivacious and talented mariachi dressed in exquisitely-embroidered sombreros and traditional attire.
Auberge du Soleil has long been renowned for its legendary views of picturesque vineyards on the valley floor anchored by majestic mountain vistas in the distance. This natural beauty is exclusively accessible for guests of the hotel in a more up-close and personal form via the property’s expansive gardens and nature paths, which, over the years, have undergone an extensive transformation.
On your wedding day, step aboard a helicopter and soar above the clouds to shout your love from the mountaintops! A 10-minute flight over Utah’s Uintas or Wasatch Mountain Range will only make that walking-on-clouds wedding high feel all the more weightless as you soak in sights as expansive and grand as your love. With two helicopters that are each able to hold up to five passengers, the Lodge at Blue Sky offers a unique experience ideal for those who desire an intimate event. Simple tips for taking flight on your special day? Brides, it’s best to keep your wedding attire on the classic and simple side for safety and ease on the helicopter ride. However, if you have your heart set on wearing a veil, we can affix it once on the mountaintop.
One question that we love to ask our couples is, “what do you look forward to the most with your fiance?” Their response is always centered around a lifetime of blessings and meaningful moments. Our "dime in your shoe" tradition represents just that and more. A custom dating back to our British affiliation, brides receive a special dime from their mother or other loved one on their wedding day. The dime is then placed in the bride’s right shoe before she walks down the aisle, symbolizing blessings of wealth and good fortune for the couple.
A romantic Mexican tradition likely to have your wedding party reaching for the tissues, the wedding lasso is a heartwarming way to symbolize your eternal love and incorporate the rich, local culture into your special day. Whether strung with flowers, made of silver, or consisting of ribbons and rosaries, the lasso can be personalized with a material that is meaningful to the bride and groom. Traditionally placed on the shoulders of the couple by family members, the lasso is wrapped in a figure eight form to represent infinite love.
When your love story takes you to Maine, whether to pop the question or to exchange vows, this coastal town is sure to sweep couple’s off their feet with warm hospitality and abundant local treasures. One of these such treasures, Coastal Jewelers, awaits just a three-minute drive from White Barn Inn. A best-kept secret that will make the romantic in you swoon, this jewelry shop offers the unique opportunity to take a piece of our beloved Kennebunk home with you. Step inside and find gorgeous adornments crafted from natural indigenous Tourmaline gemstones that are native to the town of Kennebunk.