Want to walk (or run frantically) in the footsteps of Katniss and Peeta? Consider venturing to Atlanta, the primary filming location for Hunger Games: Cathing Fire, which opened last night.
The city's convention and visitors bureau has prepared a self-guided, two-day Hunger Games Tour. The CVB even recommends a hotel: The Marriott Marquis, where multiple scenes were shot.
Braver souls might consider the Hunger Games Unoffical Fan Tours, which run Adventure Weekends recreating the book and film trilogy's creepy competition. The weekends include themed accommodations, survival training, a gala banquet, themed food, archery tag, and a Hunger Games simulation. Details of what exactly the simulation entails are scarce—all the better to keep participating Tributes on their guard.
Welcome to the latest installment of T+L's promotional partnership with luxury adventure operator Cox & Kings, where booking a trip to a destination featured in T+L is easier than ever. Here's how it works:
• Every month, T+L editors work with Cox & Kings to develop two trips inspired by destinations we love. • Each itinerary is designed to offer insider access and unique experiences—whether it's a stay at an exclusive hotel, a behind-the-scenes tour, or dinner in a private residence. • For a limited time, T+L readers can take advantage of exclusive savings on this month's featured trips.
Morocco The Highlights: Tour the historic sites of Fez's Old Town, from the 14th-century Al-Attarine Madrasa to the mosaics of Nejjarine Square; browse the stalls in Djemaa el-Fna, Marrakesh's main square, full of fire-eaters and snake-charmers, before exploring the late Yves Saint Laurent's Majorelle Garden by horse-drawn calèche; sunbathe by the pool or take a dip in the blue lagoon at La Sultana Oualidia, a seaside resort on Morocco's Atlantic Coast. The Details: 9 days and 8 nights, from $6,195 per person.**
Optional Extensions: Agafay Desert or the Atlas Mountains The Highlights: Bask beneath the sun at an Agafay desert camp or Richard Branson's Kasbah Tamadot resort in the Atlas Mountains. Available activities may include 4 x 4 excursions, village visits, camel rides, and more. The Details: Agafay Desert, 3 days and 2 nights, from $850 per person.** Atlas Mountains, 3 days and 2 nights, from $1,095 per person.**
All sweat and nerves and butterflies last night, some 30 next-gen travel innovators eagerly awaited the results of this year's PhoCusWright Travel Innovation Summit. Which start-up would be crowned the industry's next change agent? After two days of schmoozing, courting VCs, and convincing the travel industry's top players they they were the Next Big Thing, only one young company would walk away with the coveted top prize: General Catalyst Award for Travel Innovation.
The competition was stiff—and the stakes high. A win all but guaranteed a steady stream of calls from investors.
“This year’s presenting companies are amongst the most exciting we’ve seen present to date at The Travel Innovation Summit,” said PhoCusWright vice president, research Douglas Quinby.
Not surprisingly, it was a tough decision for this year's panel of judges—made up top travel and technology experts—to choose from this already elite group of companies hailing from across the U.S., and as far away as Russia, Melbourne, and India. But there could only be one winner.
SafelyStay, an Atlanta-based start-up that powers safe and instant vacation rental reservations for online travel agencies, vacation rental marketplaces and property managers, walked away with the title, and $250K.
In the season of giving, nothing is more satisfying than knowing your gift is appreciated. Now, Andaz Hotels are ensuring online shoppers that their thoughtful presents will bring smiles near and far with the first-ever Andaz Holiday Bazaar. The boutique hotel group has partnered up with local artists from around the world (think trendsetting cities like New York, London, and Shanghai) to create an eclectic collection of items for purchase on Joyus.com. Not only will your loved one take pride knowing that the hip-hugging Alexander Campaz dress you bought them is one of a kind (seriously—only one was made), but you can take solace that all proceeds from the sale will be donated to Women for Women International (WfWI), a nonprofit organization helping to rebuild the lives of women in war-torn countries like Afghanistan and Rwanda.
Where are you going for the holidays? We recently asked a panel of travel experts in an Airport and Holiday Travel Twitter Chat, and the answers ranged the gamut.
The Weather Channel is having a “Staycation #HomeForTheHolidays.” T+L International Editor, Mark Orwoll, has a similar plan—he said, “Turns out everyone’s coming to MY house this year. Now I guess I have to invite all of you too, to avoid hurt feelings.” What’s for dinner, Mark? We’re not about to turn down that invitation!
The ultimate tool for travel procrastinators has just become a little more democratic. HotelTonight, the pioneer of same-day mobile bookings, has long made their last minute deals available starting at noon on the day of check-in, but now, users will be able to book a full three hours earlier, at 9AM. Given the ever-growing number of competitors that offer same-day deals before noon, we’re not surprised at the news—though it’s a welcome change nonetheless. Especially if it means getting your room settled before boarding that 10AM flight.
Nikki Ekstein is an Editorial Assistant at Travel + Leisure and part of the Trip Doctor news team. Find her on Twitter at @nikkiekstein.
Love exploring cities on your own two feet? These mobile services—each vetted by T+L—put the guide right in your pocket, giving you local expertise wherever you go.
For Spontaneous Adventures: Field Trip This Google-designed app uses your phone’s location services to pick up on what’s cool around you nearly anywhere in the world. (Use the app’s “Feeling Lucky” setting to minimize data-roaming charges.) Wander the streets of Bangkok, for example, and you’ll get notifications about great restaurants, shops, historic sites, and even special deals nearby—each tip pulls information from resources such as Zagat and the American Institute of Architects. Exploring by car? Set the app on “speaking” mode for a hands-free experience. Free; Android, iOS.
Imagine having Breakfast at Tiffany’s to fuel up for an afternoon adventure in Petra, Indiana Jones-style? Then ending the day with a dreamy sunset on The Beach in Thailand? Hardcore (wealthy) movie buffs can now live out their dreams with a 90-day itinerary by Very First To. The extensive trip—which visits 20 famous film sets across 10 countries—costs a hefty $321,000. But the price tag does come with perks: business-class flights for two for the full three months; overnight stays in lavish hotels like London’s The Savoy and the Hotel Bel-Air in L.A.; and of course, serious bragging rights.
Pinterest is a tool for organizing things you love—including travel. Our boards are an amalgam of travel inspiration and bucket-list-worthy destinations from our T+L explorers (writers and editors). Starting today, Travel + Leisure is one of the first to be using Pinterest's new Place Pins.
Place Pins make planning a trip a visual activity. Fans can see details such as addresses, phone numbers, and more next to the pin image. You can view the pin in relation to other pins on the map, to help you plot your itinerary.
Get started by checking out our California Dreams, New York's Finest, and Florida boards. From Brooklyn to Miami and San Francisco, we have the destinations, venues, hotels, and restaurants to include in your visit. This is only the beginning though, we'll be adding more Place Pins all the time.
November means T+L’s annual pre-Thanksgiving trip to the epicenter of travel technology, otherwise known as the Phocuswright conference, being held right now in Hollywood, Florida. And Day 1 of the conference yesterday—the Travel Innovation Summit—is when we get a sneak peak at some of the cool new ideas that these innovators are launching.
One of our favorites: Peek, where you can find things to do in destinations all over the world, then book those activities right from the site. Another cool innovator: What Now, a soon-to-launch destination guide tool you can use in offline mode when abroad (bypassing roaming fees) with some great twists, like pulling in weather, public transportation, and other data that you’d expect to need a signal for.