I don’t know about you, but I need my eight hours of beauty sleep every night, and for this reason I’m pretty persnickety when it comes to mattresses—whether at home or at a hotel.
Hands-down some of my best hotel sleeps have been at Westin/Starwood properties, which was why I was excited to hear the hotel group’s 10th anniversary sale offering 25 percent off its famous beds. The Heavenly Bed made by Simmons is a genius layering of patented pocket coils covered with 13 fluffy inches of pillow-top (yes, 13!). The result is a delicious medium-firm cradle that's guaranteed to send you off to Dreamland in no time.
Has the recession forced you to sell your Gulfstream? If you love to fly private, but the current economic crisis is cramping your jet-set lifestyle, there’s a unique new option in the skies. The Greenjets shared-ride service lets you buy a seat on a private jet at a fraction of the cost normally associated with such a luxury. Flights from New York to Florida are as low as $1,100 each way, a bargain compared to owning or renting your own plane—and you avoid the lines and regular security headaches at the airport. Not to mention the added good karma you get from reducing the number of jets in the air when you “jetpool,” if you will.
This one's for the ladies only, guys. Sweet, recently launched by gay travel guru Shannon Wentworth, is a new tour operator for lesbians who care about the world they live in (which is most of you, right?). Wentworth teamed up with CarbonFund.org to figure out exactly how her trips could be carbon neutral (answer: by helping to reforest a large area along the Tensas River in Louisiana). Wentworth also plans to incorporate humanitarian projects into each of her trips.
Ready to ditch the humid summer heat of the East Coast? Hankering to go on a foodie tour of San Francisco’s North Bay or dine at some of the World’s Best Oyster Bars in the Bay Area or Seattle?
Good news, because West Coast airfares from New York City on Virgin America airlines (voted “Best Domestic Airline” in T+L’s 2009 World’s Best Awards) just dropped to $109 each way. Offers are good to these West Coast cities, and more:
The $109 fare is available for travel on Monday-Thursday and Saturdays between Aug. 28-Nov.18, Dec. 2-16 and Jan. 6- Feb. 10 (Friday and Sunday flights cost an extra $25). Tickets are on sale through September 8, but book quickly as certain flights may sell out.
For more information or to book, visit Virgin America.
Lyndsey Matthews is an editorial intern at Travelandleisure.com
Photo courtesy of Lyndsey Matthews
Our photographers are so terrific. They often give us great ideas, because they are inveterate travelers themselves. Recently we sent a new contributor, Peter Frank Edwards, to Dallas to shoot a story for us. His partner, Sandy Lang, accompanied him. Not only did they produce a beautiful shoot, they also gave me a great tip on a cool affordable motel they found:
This summer, I've been on the lookout for exotic and far-flung experiences within the U.S. And I have another find for you, dear reader: the casual new Los Angeles restaurant Street, where chef Susan Feniger serves up dishes inspired by the food at casual stalls and markets around the globe. (You may know her cooking from LA restaurants Ciudad and Border Grill, but this is her first solo venture.)
In 2006, retired chemistry professor Dr. Dogan Sumengen and his wife opened up Hotel Ada in the heart of Sultanahmet, Istanbul’s old city. My fiancé Josh and I stayed there on our most recent trip. Even in June, the peak of the high season, room rates were very affordable (starting at $83 a night), and the hotel couldn’t have had a better location—a five minute walk to the Blue Mosque and Aya Sofia, and a ten minute walk to Topkapi Palace.
My mission was simple: for my husband and me to get some desperately needed time out of New York City among trees, fresh air and wildlife, and open space for our active toddler boy to run, climb and explore. Also important: finding a reasonably priced place to stay for the weekend near Woodstock, NY, where our friends were getting married.
After much research into different inns and B&Bs (many of which do not allow children), we decided to stay at The Retreat at TreeGap, an eco- and family-friendly B&B about a mile outside town with a focus on organic food (and big breakfasts!) and sustainable living.
As T+L's resident tennis guru, I feel compelled to blog that now is a great time to get US Open tickets. It's a month away!
The only grand-slam tennis tournament to be played at night under the lights, (despite Wimbledon's fancy new roof), New York City's tennis event is filled with lots of amazing distractions during the day in a beautiful venue, but really gets going after dark—just like the city itself. Here, an unscientific list of reasons to get your tickets now, before they sell out:
10. Tickets to both day and evening sessions are affordable, starting at $48
9. Thanks to some new budget hotels, staying in New York is now affordable, too
8. This is world class tennis (look for a Federer-Nadal nail-biter in the final)
7. Daytime tickets are still available for sections 301-304 of Arthur Ashe Stadium. (These coveted seats are in the shade during the whole day session.)
6. One of the many perks for Amex cardholders is a free loan of a nifty hand-held "Vision" TV monitor that streams all the matches in play, with live commentary. It's awesome. (Disclosure: Travel + Leisure is owned by American Express.)
5. Hometown hero John McEnroe is in the house.
Whitney Lawson is a photo editor at Travel + Leisure.
Photos courtesy of Whitney Lawson.
So many great Caribbean resorts are offering hard-to-believe values right now, but your first thought is often "Yeah, but the airfare'll be deadly." Ha! Jump on this and you can have a very affordable vacation indeed.
Air Jamaica is running an amazingly cheap but amazingly brief sale on airfare to Kingston. Book on or before August 4 (this Tuesday), for travel anytime between August 18—November 17, and you can fly roundtrip for prices that start at $128. Here are some sample roundtrip fares:
*Fort Lauderdate - Kingston: $128
*Orlando - Kingston: $168
*New York - Kingston: $188
*Chicago - Kingston: $188
For more information or to book, HURRY to Air Jamaica or call (800) 523-5585.
Ann Shields is an online senior editor at Travel + Leisure.