Lodging options for clients have grown exponentially from the traditional hotel room. New levels of ingenuity are reshaping where clients can rest their heads at night, from over-the-top underwater suites and restored caves to hotels made from salt. This presents travel agents with the opportunity to add a new dimension to their clients’ vacations, plus bolster their sales and customer loyalty by building distinctive, stand-out experiences. Here is Part II from Excite Holidays of some of the most unique places for clients to spend a night or more during their global travel journeys. Check out Part I for even more lodging options.
For a captivating scene from below the surface, the Underwater Suite at Atlantis Dubai features immense floor-to-ceiling windows, providing guests with panoramic views of the Ambassador Lagoon, a three-million-gallon aquarium filled with more than 65,000 marine animals. Guests can watch sharks, stingrays and colorful fish float by from the comfort of their bedroom, bathroom and lounges.
Imagine being able to spot wildlife from your room window at any time of the day while on safari – that’s why location is paramount at the Sarova Salt Lick Game Lodge in Kenya. Set in the heart of the Taita Hills Wildlife Sanctuary and overlooking the vast Tsavo plains, the lodge’s 96 luxury rooms are all elevated and built on two levels for enhanced wildlife viewing. Accommodations are equipped with mosquito netting in the bedrooms and ensuite bathrooms featuring hot and cold water. Services include daily laundry, complimentary WiFi, and an on-site spa.
An engineering marvel over 160 feet high, the Crane Hotel Faralda, set in Amsterdam’s NDSM shipyard, is truly extraordinary. An old industrial crane was transformed into one of Amsterdam’s luxury hot spots with three split-level suites – named Mystique, Secret and Free Spirit – that offer spectacular views of the city and IJ Lake. Suites feature separate living and sleeping areas, dramatic décor and rich fabrics, air-conditioning, and complimentary Wi-Fi. There is also a heated spa pool on the crane’s upper deck affording mesmerizing vistas, especially at night.
Make sure your clients dress warm at Hotel de Glace (the Ice Hotel) in Quebec, the only ice hotel in North America. Accommodations deliver the intimacy of an igloo, and impressive artistry and interior lighting create a dreamy, fairy-tale-like atmosphere. There are 42 themed, finely-sculpted rooms and suites; some have cozy fireplaces. At night, guests get into thermal sleeping bags that are laid atop a solid wooden base and comfortable mattress, which rest on a series of ice blocks. Understandably, the hotel is seasonal.
Ancient abandoned caves in the Sassi quarter of Matera, Italy, an UNESCO World Heritage Site, have been transformed into an architectural hospitality masterpiece – Le Grotte della Civita. Dominating the hotel’s design are preserved original features celebrating the space’s historic soul, from its stone walls and natural colors to dim lights and uneven floors. There are 18 elegantly, yet simply, furnished accommodations, an ancient church now used as a common area, and no shortage of breathtaking views.
Follow in the footsteps of matadors while staying at the Hotel Quinta Real in Zacatecas, Mexico, a luxury property located in the hillside of Cerro de la Bufa that encircles the former San Pedro bullfighting ring. Book clients in one of 49 upscale suites outfitted with original artwork, antiques, high-end linens, and plush bathrobes and slippers. Many suites have private terraces. Guests can stroll cobblestone pathways, dine in the former bullpen, and admire stunning views of Zacatecas, an UNESCO World Heritage Site, while immersing themselves in history amid impressive architectural design.
Those with an adventuresome spirit, or even travelers craving a unique romantic retreat, may favor staying at the Rabeang Pasak Treehouse Resort in Chiang Mai, Thailand, about 90 minutes outside the city. Surrounded by forest and scenic views, the property includes six cottage treehouses (for two people) and two family treehouses (holding four people each), all offering guests the chance to relax and sleep peacefully to the sounds of nature. Treehouses come with fans, electric mosquito repellent, flush toilets and bathing facilities. Some feature rooftop terraces and swings.
Set within a converted 19th-century chapel is the boutique-style Sōzō Hotel in Nantes, France. Its 24 accommodations boast a chic and contemporary feel while paying homage to the property’s historic background. Contemporary art and furniture by international designers blend harmoniously with arched ceilings, stone walls, and original stained glass.
Book clients through Excite Holidays and add a new dimension to their travel journey by suggesting they stay in non-traditional accommodations around the world, enriching their entire experience.