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Me, myself and I

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Having a passion for hotels and exploring new cultures. Giving advice to future guests is invaluable. In this blog, I will be writing reviews about quality hotels and I will be adding some pictures and videos. I will comment on the overall atmosphere, the architecture and the interior. A hotel is more than just a room to stay in: amenities such as the bar, the restaurant and the spa services are equally important. Everyone has their own opinion, but I will provide you with an objective impression to give you a general and clear idea of what is awaiting you.

Enjoy reading and travelling!

Christophe Delcroix

Christophe.Delcroix@gmail.com

Rixos Premium Dubrovnik



Hotelchain: Rixos
Location: Dubrovnik – Croatia
Classification: 5 star hotel
Official website: https://www.rixos.com/en/hotel-resort/rixos-premium-dubrovnik



Located near the old town of Dubrovnik, Rixos Premium Dubrovnik is one of the best five star hotels in the area. First of all, I absolutely love Dubrovnik. This gorgeous medieval town really has charm and will please anyone. Make sure to climb the wall around the city with splendid surrounding views.

Rixos Premium Dubrovnik has a prime location on a cliff on the Adriatic Sea. In only a 15 minute walk you reach the old town. The views when you enter the spacious lobby area are impressive. The lobby area gives a perfect first impression of this wonderful resort. This hotel used to be Hotel Libertas and has been totally renovated. Today it is an up to date luxury hotel that spoils its guests with the best facilities one could wish for.





The reception staff was very accommodating and giving us some useful information about the hotel. And not only during check-in, each time I went to the reception with any request they were super friendly and made sure each request was taken care of.

We were then escorted to our Deluxe Room. Fun fact: no buttons in the elevators here. You just need to use your room card to activate the elevator and it will then take you to your floor. The room we stayed in was luxuriously appointed. The room had a large balcony with direct sea views. The bed was ultra comfortable! We slept as babies.



Bathroom was luxurious too featuring Bulgari toiletries (my favorites!), a bath tub with rain head shower and an oversized sink. Always a bonus: a separate toilet.

Rixos Premium Dubrovnik has two large pools. The indoor pool is very beautiful and it was never crowded when I was there. I would call it the relax pool as there’s a relaxed atmosphere around here and the large soft loungers are the perfect spot to unwind. You can activate some jets. If you are not into relaxing, you can play table tennis which is located next to the indoor pool area.



For tanning make sure to pick a spot around the beach area. Although there’s no real beach, this area is directly located at the sea. You have direct access to the crystal clear water. There are plenty of loungers to choose from and the extra pillows on each seat is great. It makes the lounger even more comfortable. The outdoor pool is very large. It is the perfect way to cool off a bit. Another highlight of Rixos Premium Dubrovnik is the staff. It actually makes this hotel unique. Plenty of staff members are available. I found the pool service to be very efficient and friendly.



Speaking of food and drinks, Rixos Premium Dubrovnik offers several dining options. We had dinner at Turquoise Restaurant and we thoroughly enjoyed it! This buffet style restaurant has something to offer to anyone. The buffet really is out of this world offering freshly prepared meat/fish/.. you name it, they have it. The dessert selection in particular was amazing. This is also the restaurant where they serve breakfast. Breakfast at Rixos Premium Dubrovnik is a treat! Again, the buffet is very large offering only the best food options. A must try are the waffles 😊


An after dinner drink in the bar is the perfect way to end your day.



Other restaurants are Libertas Fish Restaurant where they serve freshly prepared fish. This restaurant is – of course – located on the seaside. Another option would be Umi Teppanyaki that offers the only teppanyaki experience in Dubrovnik!

My favorite place in the hotel is Libertas Terrace & Lobby bar offering stunning panoramic views over the Adriatic sea. It is such a relaxing place. Make sure to order one of their deliciously prepared cocktails. I’d rate the Moscow Mule with a 10/10!



Rixos Premium Dubrovnik is a top notch five star hotel with the best facilities. Although it is a pretty large hotel, they do offer a personalized service. Again, it is the staff that makes this hotel so unique. Rixos Premium is one of Dubrovnik’s jewels! Highly recommended!

La Butte aux Bois

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Hotelchain: Relais & Châteaux
Location: Lanaken – Belgium
Classification: 5 star Superior Hotel – La Source Restaurant (Michelin **)
Official websitelabutteauxbois.be

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One of the best five star hotels in Belgium, la Butte aux Bois is nestled in peaceful Lanaken. As you approach this unique hotel, you’ll hear the sounds of birds and notice the beautiful surroundings. The hotel used to be a great manor house built in 1924. When the Bullens family moved into the manor, they opened a restaurant in 1986. A few years later, they opened the hotel. La Butte aux Bois has undergone several renovations and is one of the very best hotels in Belgium and a member of Relais & Châteaux. 2 years ago, a completely new building has been added with 20 gorgeous rooms and a brand new wellness center, La Forêt.

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As soon as you enter the hotel, you’ll feel a sense of luxury and details. The contemporary décor made a great first impression. There are designer elements all over the place. The wooden details match perfectly with the dark designer floors. The young woman behind the front desk made us feel very welcome and offered a glass of sparkling wine, always a good start! I knew this was going to be a great experience, this place truly has character. Sometimes you immediately feel at home and at La Butte aux Bois they welcome you with a great smile.

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We stayed in a brand new La Forêt room and we were very pleased when we entered the room. Again, the wood and designer elements are just gorgeous. The room had a great size and was built and decorated with eye for detail. The very comfortable couch was perfect for relaxing. I hate to lay on bed when reading a book, so I did appreciate the large couch. On top of that, each La Forêt room has amazing views over the forest. This factor really did make me feel more comfortable and added to the sense of prestige. Everything in the room is incredibly well finished from the furnishings to the art, styling and décor. The bed was very comfortable which enabled an excellent night’s sleep and added this, top of the line amenities are provided and immaculate cleanliness.

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The comfortable and modern bathroom had a tub and separate rainshower. They provide La Forêt toiletries and trust me, they do smell amazing! I must highlight the soft towels!

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La Butte aux Bois has 2 restaurants: Le Bistrot and La Source. We experienced La Source, a gastronomic Michelin rated (**) restaurant and we were blown away by the food. We thoroughly enjoyed our 8 course meal with wine pairing. Do believe me, I have been to many restaurants and I can honestly say that La Source is one of the best places I have ever been. Head chef Ralf Berendsen is an artist. He knows how to combine fresh ingredients. It seemed as if the courses would never stop coming. My favorite courses were the monkfish which came with Iberico Belotta, artichoke, basil and foie gras. Also, the Anjou pigeon was just delicious. Every course we had the most magnificent flavors you could possibly imagine. The pictures will speak for themselves.

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The service was almost unmatched and they really made you feel warm and cozy. Our La Source experience was the exhibition of art in food preparation and presentation. I loved every second of being there.

The next morning, I visited the spa area. I could spend here a whole day. Did you know that you can even visit the spa for a day without actually staying at the hotel. That is right, they have a day spa with a luxurious lounge with fruit and drinks. The relaxation area is absolutely gorgeous and so relaxing. They do offer the most magnificent spa treatments in the most comfortable spa suites. On top of that, the large indoor swimming pool is large enough for actually lap swimming and I’ve found the water temperature to be pretty pleasant. Next to the pool, guests can use a large Finnish sauna, infrared sauna and a large steamroom. The outdoor terrace is perfect for tanning. The outdoor jacuzzi is a treat. I spent a lot of time in there 😊

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Breakfast is served at Le Bistrot and as soon as you enter the restaurant they offer a delicious smoothy and fresh orange juice. The buffet-style breakfast offers a large selection of both hot and cold items and all products are of a good quality. Several à la carte options are available. Sparkling wine is offered to the guests as well. Very nice!

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La Butte aux Bois is a one of the few five star superior hotels in Belgium and I can honestly say I was blown away here. Everything they do, they’ll do it in style. Without being over the top. I could be me and again, I enjoyed each moment in this jewel. Highly recommended for a luxurious getaway!

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Burj Al Arab – Dubai

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Hotelchain: Jumeirah
Location: Dubai – UAE
Classification: 5 star hotel deluxe (some say world’s only 7 star hotel)
Official websitehttp://www.jumeirah.com/en/hotels-resorts/dubai/burj-al-arab/

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Internationally renowned as world’s most luxurious hotel, I had the opportunity to experience the famous Burj Al Arab in Dubai. It is located on a man-made island, 280 meters from the Jumeirah beach. It is the flagship of the Jumeirah hotel group.  Only hotel guests (or guests with a reservation in one of the restaurants) can enter the hotel, so there is no sightseeing here.  This is a good thing, as I saw a number of people at the front gate taking pictures of the hotel.

Location

Located at Jumeirah beach, Burj Al Arab is located between Dubai Marina and Business Bay. There’s a holiday vibe around the area.

When I approached the entrance, I was impressed with the height of the hotel… 321 meters above sea level… Trust me, it is HUGE!  As soon as you enter the Burj Al Arab, you will enter in a completely different world.  I truly was blown away… Gold everywhere.  It is reportedly the only 7 star hotel in the world and I can easily understand why.  After taking the escalator — with a huge aquarium – you can look up 200 meters. A lot of looking up!  Did you know that the Statue of Liberty would fit inside?  Also, there are dancing fountains all over the place with tons of different programs, so you’ll never get bored when watching!

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The suites

There are no rooms in the Burj al Arab, only suites. Starting at 170m² (1,829 sq. ft.), all of the rooms are duplex suites, each with the highest level of comfort one could wish for.  The Burj has 1600 staff members looking over “only” 202 suites.  So that’s… eight members for each suite? Yep! There is a private check-in and butler service for each suite. No waiting times here at the reception. They explain everything you need to know and will do anything you ask — like making reservations in one of the restaurants, booking day trips to the city, making sure you will get the dessert you want, etc.

Every suite in the Burj Al Arab is beautifully decorated. Although the hotel opened back in 1999, the suites look very up to date and brand new. From the marble entrance with large staircase to the oversized living rooms, you will feel like a king or queen while walking around. They have the world’s most expensive mattresses, which can be adapted to customer needs and preferences. These things are making this hotel truly unique; returning guests are assured they will have a wonderful night.

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The bathrooms are huge — they used Italian marble – and you will be so relaxed after spending some time in the oversized jacuzzi.  Oh, a great thing: did you know that Hermès produced a special edition of perfume for the Burj Al Arab?  That is right, full-size Hermès Burj Al Arab amenities (female + male) are offered to guests at no additional charge. Of course, you could take them home as a souvenir.

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Spa facilities

A full spa – the Talise Spa – is located on one of the top floors. I was not able to take pictures of the spa area, but there is an indoor pool, jacuzzi, fitness, etc. Several treatments are offered and after a relaxing massage you can relax in the spa resting area, accessible for guests only, of course. From there, you can look straight down (200 meters!) to the ground level. Very impressive and not recommended when afraid of heights 🙂

Spa treatments are excellent! They exactly know how to make you feel at ease and so relaxed. Just tell them which pressure you prefer and you will enjoy every single minute. The soft music all over the place made it even more relaxing.

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There is also an outdoor pool area — and the Burj has its own beach across the bridge. The recently opened Terrace is stunning! For water fun, there is complimentary access to the Wild Wadi Waterpark, which is located across the bridge.

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The famous Burj Al Arab hotel is one of Dubai’s highlights and one of world’s best hotels… The hotel’s immaculate reputation is well earned and you will be impressed with every aspect of your stay!

Villa Dubrovnik

  

Hotelchain
: Mytha Hotels
Location
: Dubrovnik – Croatia
Classification: 5 star hotel
Official websitevilla-dubrovnik.hr/en

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Villa Dubrovnik is one of the exclusive hotels in Dubrovnik and I couldn’t wait to explore this jewel. Making part of the Leading Hotels of the world, the hotel has a high standard. Villa Dubrovnik has ‘only’ 56 rooms and truly has a boutique feeling. The staff will do their upmost best to make you feel at home from the moment you enter this hidden gem. This ultra luxurious hotel is not just a ‘hotel’, to me it is a destination… Let me tell you why…

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First of all, Villa Dubrovnik has a prime location. Sveti Jakov Beach, one of the most picturesque bathing spots in the region is only a few steps away. The (beautiful!) old town of Dubrovnik itself is only a 15 minute walk away. We walked to the city center in no time!

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You reach the entrance of the hotel by taking an elevator. Upon arrival we were greeted warmly and we were really overwhelmed by the design of the lobby area. Very tastefully and attention to details. We couldn’t have felt more welcomed by the staff. The check-in staff were absolutely excellent, they could not have been more friendly and helpful. Check-in was seamless with zero wait.

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The Deluxe room we stayed in was absolutely breathtaking. It was spacious and decorated with style. The quality of furnishing was excellent. Prior to our arrival, I was asked if I have any special pillow/mattress preferences. I do prefer a soft mattress and informed them. Upon arrival I immediately noticed that everything I requested has been organized according to my wishes. Very impressive. The best thing about the room was the view. Each room at Villa Dubrovnik has a prime sea view.

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Bathroom had double sinks and a wonderful bath tub / shower combination. La Bottega toiletries are offered. They are among the best toiletries I have experienced. They smell amazing!

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A visit to the Villa Spa is a must do when staying at Villa Dubrovnik! The indoor pool area is stunning with one of the nicest swimming pool I have seen in Croatia. The doors can be opened so it actually feels as a semi open pool area. Sun loungers are of a very good quality and they provide bar sevice. Top service! There’s a separate tanning area where you can enjoy sunshine all day long. I loved the fact that the pool is open at 8AM as I love to swim before having breakfast.

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The spa itself is the place to relax after a day of excursions or quite simply because you want to. I let myself enjoy a pure moment of well-being and relaxation. I enjoyed one of their signature deep tissue treatments here. The treatment began with a more traditional relaxation massage. After my muscles were warmed up, my (excellent!) therapist began to work deep into my problem areas (my neck!). The therapist Stella really did an excellent job. I felt relaxed afterwards and my neck felt really good.

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Villa Dubrovnik offers several dining options, from lounges to fine dining restaurants… they have it all! Each night, we had dinner at Restaurant Pjerin where head chef Giuseppe Somma serves Mediterranean dishes which are to die for. The restaurant ifself is beautifully designed and service was top notch! The terrace overlooks the old town of Dubrovnik. This Michelin recommended restaurant only offers the best ingredients. From the prawn carpaccio to the most delicious desserts. The food really is of a great quality. You won’t be disappointed if you book a table here!

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Al Fresco bar Giardino is opened in the afternoon from 1pm – 4pm and is a perfect place for a lunch in style. Overlooking the beach, it has a relaxed atmosphere. This bistro has an outdoor grill. You can actually watch your orders to be grilled right in front of you.

At night, make sure to check out Prosciutto & Wine Bar, a perfect sundowner. This rooftop bar offers splendid views over the surrounding areas. I loved it. Sitting here while enjoying some delicious cocktials, watching the sun going down is a must do! Even if you’re not a guest of the hotel, you’re more than welcome to go up and have a wonderful evening. We enjoyed the sunset from up here more than in the old town.

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Last, but not least, there’s the Library Lounge where guests can relax and unwind all day long while enjoying a drink. Whether you are reading a book or a browsing the internet on your tablet, it is great to hang out here. By the way, each spot of Villa Dubrovik is clean. I should highlight the cleanness of the entire hotel. If you told me that the hotel opened just a few days ago, I would have believed it!

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Breakfast is served at Restaurant Pjerin and as you could expect from such a luxurious hotel, the quality of the food was excellent as was the service! The à la carte breakfast is a treat. It’s one of the most exclusive breakfasts I have been experienced anywhere. Again, service was top notch! Our server – Denis – is one of the best! He’s a true professional!

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Villa Dubrovnik is not just a hotel, staying here truly is an experience. If offers a perfect mix of elegance, history, spacious rooms, delicious food and the most attentive staff. No wonder Villa Dubrovnik is the most awarded Croatian boutique hotel. With its breathtaking position on the cliffs right at the sea and the most luxurious rooms all with stunning sea views, Villa Dubrovnik is one of a kind.

Mandarin Oriental Bangkok

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Hotelchain: Mandarin Oriental
Location: Bangkok – Thailand
Classification: 5 star hotel
Official websitemandarinoriental.com/bangkok

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The famous Mandarin Oriental Bangkok is the flagship of the prestigious Mandarin Oriental Group. The Mandarin Oriental Bangkok was the first hotel in Thailand and is more than 140 years old, it was built in 1876. Today it is still one of world’s best hotels. Actually, it has been rated as world’s best hotel for 10 years and I can easily understand why. I was so fortunate to stay here and truly was and still am blown away by the service and comfort they provide.

Location

You can’t beat the location, the Mandarin Oriental Bangkok is located right next to the Chao Phraya River and the most popular tourist sites are nearby. The public boat will take you to the Grand Palace in just about 15 minutes.

This ultra-luxurious five star hotel offers 324 rooms and 44 suites, a world-class spa and several high end restaurants which I will tell you more about later.

As soon as I entered this palace, I noticed the attention to details. The way they combined the elegant Thai style with seductive modern touches is just wonderful. Mandarin Oriental hotels are known for their hospitality and service. Several staff members actually remembered my name. Those are small things, but they make a world difference. Every single staff member I met, greeted me with a smile and took care of every request in a very kind and professional way. Upon arrival, we were greeted with a traditional Thai flower hand garland.

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Rooms/suites

We stayed in a deluxe room and luxurious it definitely was. They decorated the rooms in a very elegant and very classy way. The leather couch was great for watching television. I could have spent here all day long 🙂 The view over the river and Bangkok’s surroundings was great. I watched the long tail boats floating by while enjoying some drinks. This is what a perfect hotel room looks like. Even the marble bathroom was an eye catcher featuring a separate bath tub and walk-in shower. The silk bathrobes were amazing. Another feature I appreciated very much was the in-room interactive entertainment system which allows iPod/MP3 integration. The high quality audio system was of a very good quality. All rooms at the Mandarin Oriental come with Butler Service, always a bonus! Did you know that the Mandarin Oriental has one of the highest staff to guest room ratio in the entire hotel industry (3 staff per guest room)!

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The recently redecorated rooms at the Author’s Wing are very stylish and the Royal Suite which I visited was the best and most luxurious suite I have ever seen, hands down!

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Restaurants/bars

At night we had dinner at Sala Rim Naam offering an authentic Thai cuisine, but first we had some cocktails at the Bamboo bar. It was pretty hard to choose from the extensive cocktail menu but the very knowledgeable bartender gave us some good recommendations.   While we were enjoying the delicious Thai food (I LOVE Thai food!), we were enjoying a classical Thai dance show. We were in Bangkok for just a few days and this was the perfect evening to experience the true Thai tradition and hospitality. I thoroughly likes the Mussamun Nuea, the southern style beef curry with sweet potato and onion. The menu was prepared in an excellent way and service was top notch! Although there’s a smart casual dress code where they kindly request guests to wear elegant attire, the atmosphere was very relaxed and easy going.

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Pool area

The next morning I started my day with a swim in the stunning pool. There are two pools, a wading pool which is perfect for leisure and a 25 metre long pool which is ideal for swimming laps. As soon as I approached the pool area, staff member greeted me and gave me some plush towels and some water. Although the Mandarin Oriental is right in the middle of Bangkok, it felt like a hidden gem here. It was so quiet here… fantastic way to start my day! Beside the pools, a full fitness center is available 24 hrs. They offer complimentary fitness classes… After your work out you can relax in the sauna, steam room or jacuzzi. And if you are into tennis and/or squash, the Mandarin Oriental has two outdoor tennis courts and one squash court.

Spa facilities

If you just want to relax make sure you visit the Spa facilities which are located in a separate building across the river. The spa of the Mandarin Oriental Bangkok is one of Asia’s leading spa center offering several beautifully decorated treatment rooms and steam facilities. They even have a few ‘specialty suites’ for couples with private steam showers and vitality pools.

I enjoyed a after-jet-lag treatment and absolutely loved it! After selecting my favorite scent I felt so relaxed and almost fell asleep which is a huge compliment. Just take a look at their spa menu as they offer several kind of treatments.

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Then it was time for breakfast! Breakfast is served at the Riverside Terrace and believe me, having breakfast here with such a stunning view is just awesome! Quality of the food was outstanding! The riverside terrace offers stunning views. I enjoyed the long tail boats passing by. Service was great, never was asked for too much. Do try their home made yoghurt and pastries!

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No wonder the Mandarin Oriental Bangkok is well known for its service and overall facilities! The high reputation is well deserved and I can easily understand why this hotel is one of world’s leading hotels! From the personal printed writing paper with your name on it to the fresh flowers all over the room… The Thai hospitality is amazing and I can’t say enough good things about this hotel! Six stars all the way!

Disney’s Newport Bay Club

After several years, it was time to visit Disneyland Paris, Europe’s leading magical theme park. While we visited Disneyland Paris during the Covid19-pandemic, it didn’t stop us to explore and experience my favorite place in the world. Health and safety are Disney’s top priorities. The measures they take to ensure a safe stay are incredible and much appreciated. The attention to detail at Disneyland Paris is incredible.



Ok, let’s start dreaming again and let me take you on my journey …

First of all, location. The park is located near Paris and is therefor ideal to combine a city trip to the city of light and Disneyland Paris. It’s very easy to reach and I must admit, the place is huge! Disneyland Paris is split into several areas. There are two Disney Parks: Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studios Park. The resort offers 6 hotels and one bungalow park. Over the years they renovated most of their hotels. Did you know that the flagship hotel – Disneyland Hotel – where I stayed last time, is currently closed due to renovations? That is right, they are totally renewing this gorgeous Victorian palace. Another Disney Deluxe Resort is Disney’s Newport Bay Club where I stayed this time. I will tell you more about this gorgeous place later. Next up is Disney’s Sequoia Lodge featuring comfortable rooms in a mountain theme. It is like staying in a typical luxurious hotel in an American National Park. The resort also offers two value resorts: Disney’s Cheyenne and Santa Fe. Both are 100% Disney inspired and interestingly priced. Hotel New York – The art of Marvel is the recently opened again offering ultra-luxurious rooms. It is world’s first Marvel-inspired hotel offering the world’s largest collection of Marvel artwork.



The huge advantage of staying at an official Disney hotel are the Magical Hours. Guests who are staying in one of the Disney’s hotels can enter both parks one hour before official opening times. Several popular attractions were opened at 8:30 AM (and yes, we did make use of the Magical Hours!) and we could enjoy many attractions with no waiting line! It was very cool! We enjoyed for example the Big Thunder Mountain roller coaster without any waiting.

Before I speak about both parks, let me tell you about my experience at Disney’s Newport Bay Club. Since I was a kid, this hotel has always been one of my favorite hotels in Disneyland Paris. This hotel is located at Lake Disney and is a destination on itself. Both parks are only a 15 minute walk away. Of course, there are shuttle busses available during the opening hours to/from the parks.
Disney’s Newport Bay Club has been totally renovated and opened back its doors in Spring 2016. This maritime themed four star hotel actually is one of Europe’s largest hotels offering 1093 rooms and 13 suites.




As soon as you enter the hotel, you will feel you are in a seaside resort on the New England coast. From the wooden furniture, to the grand elegant staircase… I just love it all. The elegant atmosphere was very impressive and yet, there’s this typical Disney feeling throughout this hotel. We were welcomed with a big smile and everything we needed to know about the Resort was explained in a very kind way.




The rooms of Disney’s Newport Bay Club are designed in a maritime style with mainly the colors blue and white. Our Superior Room had two queen sized beds, a large desk and a comfortable couch. The small Disney touches such as the suitcase-lookalike cabinet and the wallpaper were amazing. That’s why I like this hotel so much. It’s not over the top, not too childish but still has much character.



Bathroom was comfortable featuring a bath tub and large single sink. Of course, Disney toiletries are available and there’s plenty of storage room.

There’s so much to do in this hotel. First of all, Disney’s Newport Bay Club has the best pool facilities in the resort in my opinion. There’s a large indoor pool with a huge ship play area for the kids. It kind of feels like a ship is sailing through the indoor pool area. The outdoor pool is beautiful too and offers sun loungers. The outdoor hot tub was perfect after a day in the parks. Also available in the Nantucket Pool and Health Club is the fitness room and sauna.



Disney’s Newport Bay Club’s main restaurant is Cape Cod, an all you can eat restaurant where food stations offers fresh dishes. This is also the place where breakfast is served. The large buffet is the perfect start of the day! I loved the large selections and overall quality of the food. A must try are the delicious pastries and the best thing is you do not have to worry about the calories as you will walk the whole day anyway 😊

Another dining facility is Captain’s Quarters, a beautifully designed bar right next to the lobby area where you can enjoy delicious cocktails in a classy nautical themed environment.

During our stay we visited both Disney Parks. The largest park is Disneyland Park. This theme park is divided in several areas. Main Street USA is the main street leading you to the magical world of Disneyland Paris. This street does take you back in time and walking around the shops is a fun activity. A must do: entering the shops and enjoying the beautiful interiors. Literally each shop is designed in a unique way and don’t you agree that fun shopping is a great thing to do? Also, the music in this street even add more magic.



We were traveling with 2 small boys and you should have seen their eyes when they saw Discoveryland which is located right next to Main Street USA. We did take them into Star Wars Hyperspace Mountain which was absolutely amazing.



Fantasyland is where Disneyland Paris is all about. This place takes me back in time and reminds me of my favorite Disney classics such as Peter Pan, Pinocchio, etc. This always reminds me of not being in a regular theme park. Disneyland Paris is – again – all about details. The music, the décors, … it is all there and maintained in an excellent way!



Adventureland is where the pirates live. A must do is Pirates of the Caribbean. The boys (and not only them, but we adults as well) loved it. The huge Pirate Galleon is the main point of this part of the park. It is beautifully integrated.

And then of course, there is Frontierland which brings you to the Wild West. This is where the Big Thunder Mountain is located, one of my favorite attractions. Make sure to also visit Phantom Manor, my favorite goast inspired haunted house.



Disneyland Park is the most beautiful theme park in Europe in my opinion. It truly is a magical place where both kids and adults will have a wonderful time.

Walt Disney Studios Park is the second park at Disneyland Paris. It brings the magic of Disney TV and film to life across 5 zones. The highlight of this park is the Twilight Zone of Terror, the decorations in the ride’s facade are very good and the queue is worth waiting 😊  The ride itself is an imagineering masterpiece. It combines a thrilling adventure with excellent special effects, very impressive and a must do when you visit Walt Disney Studios Park!




Other recommendations are Crush’s Coaster, a roller coaster within the Finding Nemo theme, RC Racer and Ratatouille: The Adventure. Actually, each attraction at Walt Disney Studios Park is beautifully constructed and designed.

We loved our stay at Disneyland Paris. We had one unforgettable adventure, and I couldn’t be happier about it! Between the attractions, the breathtaking entertainment productions and meeting your favorite Disney pals, there’s something for everyone in the family here.

Elaisa Energetic Wellness



An indulgent spa day can be just what you need to rest and recuperate. Whether you’re looking for a particular treatment or just a simple day of indulgence, Elaisa Energetic Wellness will please anyone. I was very impressed with my visit! Let me tell you why…

Elaisa Energetic Wellness is located in the Hoge Kempen National Park, a beautiful place overlooking the beautiful nature, lake and mine. The whole complex is beautifully integrated in the national park respecting the natural landscape. The space is a calm oasis of white corridors. The huge windows increase the natural light and allow visitors to enjoy the natural surroundings.

As soon as I entered Elaisa Energetic Wellness I knew I was going to relax and unwind. The reception staff made me feel at ease immediately. I was given clean fluffy towels and a comfortable bathrobe… I was totally ready to explore and experience this peace of heaven.

I first explored the pools. There are several indoor and outdoor pools available. At Elaisa Energetic Wellness, oxygen water is used instead of chlorine. It was so relaxing to sit in the outdoor jacuzzi and enjoying the lake views.





After the pools, it was time to explore the saunas. There are 7 (!) different kinds of saunas. I suggest you try them all. Each is different, but they all make sure you feel reborn afterwards. From the sunset panoramic sauna to the avatar sauna which is completely devoted to nature, each is impressive. At several times, there’s even live music in the saunas. No heavy metal (can you imagine?), but sound bowls which create a relaxing atmosphere.




You can also add several experiences with your visit which makes the visit even more relaxing. I experienced the Sound Ceremony, a 50 minute relaxing journey where sounds make you feel at ease. If you are into meditation, several sections are organized. A must do is the Honey Session which is included in the admission rate. During this session my body was purified and dead skin cells were removed by a scrub. At the same time, I was pampered with a honey mask. So cool and oh so relaxing! Make sure to check out the gorgeous relaxing area as well!



No smart phones are allowed at Elaisa Energetic Wellness which is a good thing! I always have my smart phone with me but sometimes we just need to disconnect and enjoy the small things of life. And that is what Elaisa Energetic Wellness is all about. This place is both beautifully constructed and designed. It was a very relaxing day and after I left, I felt reborn. I must also highlight the very accommodating staff. I can not say enough good things about Elaisa Energetic Wellness… A must visit!

Unicus Palace Krakow

Location: Krakow – Poland
Classification: 5 star hotel
Official website: https://www.hotelunicuspalace.pl/

Hotel Unicus Palace is one the newest five star hotels in the heart of Krakow. You really can’t beat the location, the hotel is located on one of the most stunning places in Krakow, in the historic city center. Make sure to walk along one of Krakow’s most prestigious promenade. A must see is the famous Market Square, Europe’s largest medieval market square. It’s really impressive and only a few steps away from the hotel.

The historic building is gorgeous and is considered as a historic monument. It used to be a townhouse and is beautifully renovated. Once you enter Hotel Unicus Palace, you enter a top notch five star hotel with great interior designer elements and attention to details whether I’m writing about service or rooms.



The lobby area is beautiful and gives an excellent first impression. It felt like an ultra luxurious boutique lobby with high ceilings and white interior designer elements. Welcome staff is attentive to your entrance and departure and always willing to provide a hand or transport assistance. Our room keys were handed in seconds while they explained everything we needed to know in a very friendly and accommodating way.




Hotel Unicus Palace has 60 luxuriously appointed rooms in different categories. We stayed in a deluxe room which I liked very much. For city hotel standards, the room had a great size and I could spend a whole day in the room without leaving. No bright colors nor shoddy elements … Every room at Hotel Unicus Palace is tastefully decorated with high quality materials. I loved the bed! It felt like sleeping on a cloud… Our room had everything I’d expect from a five star hotel including high quality toiletries, a Nespresso coffee machine and a luxurious bathroom with excellent (rain)shower.




Did you know that Hotel Unicus Palace has several apartments with the same contemporary décors and features? Those apartments are perfect for families and friends when visiting beautiful Krakow! 

For me, one of the key features of Hotel Unicus Palace is the SPA Zone. This is the perfect spot to relax and unwind. The spa area is located on the lower floor of the hotel and the ceilings are pretty amazing. The indoor pool is pretty large for a city hotel and water temperature was just perfect for me (not too cold, nor too hot). On top of that, there’s a traditional sauna and steam room. The whole place is immaculately clean and staff was very kind and informative. Do note that several treatments can be booked here. The gym is well equipped with all the latest technology facilities.




Another highlight of Hotel Unicus Palace is The Unique Taste restaurant. Although we didn’t have dinner there, this restaurant receives lovely reviews and comments. I must highlight the beautiful décor and high quality furniture.



After a great peaceful night, we were hungry again and couldn’t wait to explore breakfast. After our wonderful experiences at Hotel Unicus Palace, our expectations were high and I’m happy to write they were met in a every single way. The buffet style breakfast is large and offers a great selection of fresh ingredients, breads, pastries and fruit. Make sure to try the crêpes, they are delicious!!


 
It would be simple to say the defining factor was having the spa and fine dining restaurant available, but that would not do justice to the other elements which I found of the highest standard. To recap – the location is superb, service is unbeatable and food is outstanding. This definitely is one of my favorite picks in Krakow! Amenities at Hotel Unicus Palace truly are impeccable! I loved every single aspect of our stay!

The St. Regis Mardavall Mallorca Resort



Hotelchain: St. Regis – Marriott
Location
: Mallorca – Spain
Classification: 5 star hotel
Official website: http://www.stregismardavall.com



The St. Regis Mardavall Mallorca Resort is rated as one of the best hotels of Mallorca and I couldn’t wait to explore this luxurious five star resort. What is so unique about the St. Regis Mardavall Mallorca Resort is the personal touch. Every single element seems like it has been curated and vetted to the extent that every experience there seems like you are in a pillow of comfort, midst of tranquility, and bathed in luxury.

The resort is beautifully located on the southwest coast of Mallorca. Make sure to check out the bay area just behind the resort. It is just stunning! 



As soon as you walk into the St. Regis Mardavall Mallorca Resort, you are welcomed with wonderful smiles. Staff made us feel home in just seconds and gave us all the information we needed to know about the hotel. I just couldn’t wait to explore and experience this place. The grand lobby area itself is spacious and very appealing. I love the fact that they do take their time to check-in their guests. There is no large check-in desk here, but separate desks where guests are welcomed in a very personal way. This definitely is the highlight at the St. Regis Mardavall – the high level of personalized service! Each room comes with a personal butler service.






Let’s start with the rooms.

The St. Regis Mardavall has very spacious rooms. Our junior suite was superbly comfortable, very clean and filled with all the right amenities for a relaxing holiday. All rooms are of a very high standard and offer views of the beach or garden. The king sized bed is among the best I experienced. It is all in the details here, of example: I contacted the hotel upfront to request of soft bed. Upon arrival they took care of the request. Each guest is treated as an individual and every single request was suited. Just amazing! Another thing I really appreciated was the sitting area with two good sized couches and electronically controlled drapes. The rooms have been renovated over the last years and all look stunning. They all come with a Nespresso coffee machine, fully stocked minibar and an oversized desk. The view from our balcony was breathtaking!




The bathroom was beautifully tiled and contained many amenities, including a separate large walk in shower for two and a wonderful bath tub. Fancy Remède toiletries are offered, I am in love with those products. Did you forget your tooth brush or shaving products? No problem, each room provides them in case you forgot to bring yours.



Again, do note that a booking at the St. Regis Mardavall Mallorca Resort comes with a butler service that will make sure you will have a great time. Really nothing is asked for too much! We needed some extra hangers for our clothes – for example – and they brought some in just minutes and helped us unpacking. Great! The service level truly is out of this world!  

Every space of this hotel is clean, engaging and inspires you to focus on your wellbeing. Speaking of wellbeing, Arabella spa is quite large and is located on the ground floor of the hotel. The place is designed to relax and forget about your worries. There’s an indoor/outdoor pool with plenty of loungers. I particularly liked the salt water pool with adjoining saunas (Finnish + salt) and steam room. If you are into working out, the hotel offers a large fitness facility.



Make sure to book a treatment here. I thoroughly enjoyed a relaxing full body spa treatment. For me the experience was like returning to balance… it was like an escape from the everyday and physical wellbeing while being in the St. Regis Mardavall Mallorca’s tranquil and welcoming surroundings.




The St. Regis Mardavall Mallorca Resort has several pools and the most stunning gardens. It does look like paradise here! We enjoyed the pools and the surrounding areas. This resort is huge and there’s a lot of privacy for the guests. No party music here, no yelling or screaming. It is very peaceful. Do note that kids are very welcome at this hotel. They have their own place where they can be kids and play and fool around. There’s even a kids club that will make sure children have a wonderful time.






Regarding the food and drinks, choices here are endless!

The St. Regis Mardavall Mallorca Resort offers a wide variety of bar settings from casual at the pools to more formal for the evenings. I loved the Aqua Restaurant. This Mediterranean restaurant has a cool vibe. The food here is outstanding and did not disappoint. We started with a wonderful selection of tapas. The grilled turbot was served perfectly as requested. As always, I saved some space for dessert and luckily I did because the cheese case was to die for. All in all, a wonderful restaurant with again (this is a St. Regis property after all) the best service!




Es Fum is the signature dining option. This Michelin (*) rated restaurant only offers the best. Unfortunately I could not experience this restaurant as it was closed due to Covid19, but that gives me a reason to come back! Based on the pictures of the dishes I saw, it must be quite an experience to have lunch or dinner here.

Breakfast is served at the Aqua Restaurant. It offers a large selection of bread, pastries and yoghurts. The large buffet has something to offer for anyone! The thing I appreciate in particular are the amount of healthy options. I saw a lot of fruit, nuts and vegetables.

I am in love with the St. Regis Mardavall Mallorca Resort! The biggest factor for me are the people who work at the resort. Most of the staff even remembered our names. How cool is that? The St. Regis Mardavall Mallorca Resort is on par with some of the best hotels in the world which I have been fortunate enough to stay at. My senses were completely satisfied beyond anything I could imagine. We were treated like royalty here and cannot wait to return one day. A perfect place indeed!

Es Princep – Palma de Mallorca



Location
: Palma de Mallorca – Spain
Classification: 5 star hotel
Official website: https://www.esprincep.com/en



Rated as Palma’s number one hotel, Es Princep is a top notch five star boutique hotel located near the center of Palma de Mallorca. You can’t beat the location. All the main attractions of this beautiful city are within walking distance. The surrounding areas are just gorgeous: small authentic streets, palm trees, etc. Making part of the Leading Hotels of the World, I immediately fell in love with Es Princep as soon as I entered.

Es Princep is very stylish and cozy decorated. The intimate reception area just beautiful and gives an excellent first impression of the hotel: luxurious couches, high end furniture and most importantly: I was welcomed by the most friendly manager. The welcome drink is a nice touch. This is Spanish hospitality and I love it!




After I received my room key, I couldn’t wait to explore this unique boutique hotel. Walking around in the hotel felt great. The authentic atmosphere throughout the hotel is impressive and much appreciated. Es Princep has a total of 83 rooms. As a small hotel they can offer a very personal service. It feels like a home away from home where you are treated as a guest, not a number.

The executive room I stayed in was absolutely stunning! The design looking rooms are smart designed and I loved the lay out of the room. The wooden floors and open bathroom add extra coziness. The room had all the facilities I expect from a five star hotel such as the Nespresso coffee machine, a very comfortable bed and a cozy sitting area with the most comfortable blue couch.



The open bathroom has a great walk-in shower and separate toilet. Fluffy towels and high end Le Labo toiletries are available as well.



The absolute highlight of Es Princep is their rooftop! The large rooftop offers a restaurant, several lounge areas and a small pool. It was great hanging out here during the day. The full panoramic sea views are amazing. Restaurant Almaq offers delicious food with stunning views over the old town of Palma. We had a wonderful lunch here and the tapas and sea food main courses were to die for. Highly recommended to have lunch or dinner here, even if you’re not a guest of the hotel it is worth a visit!







Do note that there are other dining facilities as well. Bala Roja is another restaurant which offers degustation menus at night.

Another must visit when you stay at Es Princep is the Cocô Spa Oasis. Located on the lower floor, this space has been designed to relax and unwind. The indoor pool is wonderful and offers several jet experiences as well as a sauna and steam room. The Relax & Renew treatment was heavenly. I felt reborn afterwards as the therapist did an excellent job.



Breakfast at Es Princep is something to look forward to! We stayed at the hotel during the Covid19-pandemic and therefor there was no buffet but an à la carte breakfast instead. Each dish was of an excellent quality and again, service was top notch! Really nothing here is asked for too much. I also appreciated the botanical theme throughout the breakfast area.



Es Princep is definitely the place to stay when you are looking for an ultra stylish boutique hotel right near the center of Palma de Mallorca. Check it out yourself and feel the Es Princep vibe! Highly recommended for a romantic getaway!