Escape to… Alexandra Barcelona Hotel, Curio Collection by Hilton | Barcelona, Spain

The Alexandra Barcelona, a designer boutique hotel is where fascinating history, modernist details, and avant-garde meet.  The fully renovated 19th-century building reflects the charm, elegance, and spirit of its Barcelona surroundings. You’ll love the local photography that lines the walls, designer furniture from the ‘50s and ‘60s, original mosaic flooring, framed ceilings and natural oak throughout the hotel.

 

alexandra street view

Hotel Entrance

 

Moments from Passeig de Gràcia – the fashion, culture and commercial heart of Barcelona – this hotel is a quick walk to Rambla de Catalunya, Casa Batlló, La Pedrera and other top attractions.

 

alexandra-barcelona-lobby

Hotel Lobby

 

Location:  Barcelona, Spain
Distance from Airport: Barcelona El Prat International Airport (BCN) approx. 30 mins. away
Distance from Cruise Terminal: Barcelona Cruise Terminal-approx. 20 mins. away
hotel-alexandra-barcelona-a-doubletree-by-hilton-000

Dream Suite

I recently stayed at the Alexandra post my 15-day transatlantic cruise. I absolutely loved the hotel and location.  It’s a small boutique hotel, small corridors, and only 5 floors.  As a Hilton Honors member, I was given my preferred high floor room.  My mother and I stayed in a standard room (room 512) with two twin-sized beds.  The room was small but well appointed, had only one window with a street view.  After all, this is a historical building.  The Alexandra is located in the Eixample district of Barcelona. When my mother and I travel together I am always conscious of where we stay as two women traveling. The Eixample district is a wonderful area.  Our hotel was located right off of Passeig de Gracia street with its high-end shops and restaurants. We were also a short walk from Gaudi’s Casa Mila and Casa Batllo attractions.  Passeig de Gracia metro station was a short 2 block walk from the hotel making easy to take the metro to Placa de Catalunya (City Center) or to Barcelona Airport.  Hop on Hop off bus tours have stops in between Casa Batllo and Casa Mila attractions so you have an easy off and walk back to the hotel.
terrace-garden-alexandra

Terrace Garden

Service at the hotel was outstanding.  Omar the concierge kindly greeted us upon our arrival, helped with luggage and confirmed my directions to the airport.  I even noticed him helping another guest fix the wheel on their luggage.  Our hotel rate included breakfast.  Breakfast was an upscale continental which consisted of bread, muffins, croissants, meats, cheeses, and fruit as well as coffee, tea, and juices.
The property does have a pool (although I never got to visit it) , a restaurant and meeting rooms.   Perfect place to stay for a Barcelona visit.
alexandra pool

Pool

Ready to plan your “Barcelona, Spain” escape?  Contact me at karen.holmes@mei-travel.com for special deals, packages, and no-obligation quote!

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Escape to… The Lodge & Club | Ponte Vedra Beach, FL

Framed by graceful palms and rolling dunes, the oceanfront resort has charmed guests with world-class amenities and gracious service since its debut in 1989. Echoing Old World grandeur and romance, a distinctive Mediterranean-inspired architectural character is reflected throughout The Lodge’s ten seaside acres.

ponte vedra lodge outside

The beautiful wide stretch of white-sand beach at The Lodge & Club serves as a constant beacon, calling all to the pleasures of the sea and surf.

oceanfront ponte lodge

Oceanfront Accommodations

Location:  Ponte Vedra Beach, FL
Distance from Airport: Jacksonville International Airport (JAX) approx. 36 mins. away
Distance from Train Station: Jacksonville Amtrak Station  (JAX) -approx. 35 mins. away
Distance from Cruise Terminal: Jacksonville Cruise Terminal-approx. 35 mins. away
family pool with splash

Family Pool with Splash Zone

The Lodge’s beach offers endless hours of entertainment. Beach chairs, umbrellas, ocean kayaks, bicycles, boogie boards, surfboards and beach games are conveniently available for rent. In addition to 36 holes of oceanfront golf, world-class tennis, and an indulgent spa, on-site resort activities include:
  • Beach
  • Pools
  • Fitness Center
  • Kid’s Activities
  • Shopping

lodge beach view outside

The Lodge & Club features two heated pools for guests to enjoy — an Adults-only pool, which overlooks an expansive oceanfront offering a poolscape comfortably outfitted with a relaxing conversation area, umbrellas, and oceanfront trellis. As well as a The Family & Lap pool and its 17,000 square foot surrounding deck comprised of dramatic water-based fun including a small-scale splash pool/mini water theme park for families and an exercise pool for fitness enthusiasts.

Ready to plan your “Ponte Vedra Beach, FL” escape?  Contact me at karen.holmes@mei-travel.com for special deals, packages, and no-obligation quote!

Escape to… The Queen Mary Hotel | Long Beach, CA

Whether it’s the authentic polished wood paneling, the original 1930s artwork, the Art Deco style or the operable porthole(s), there’s no question that the Queen Mary Hotel is unlike any other Southern California hotel. Each stateroom is unique with its own personality and offers a real glimpse into what transatlantic travel was like during the 30’s, 40’s and 50’s. With an impressive history and tradition of excellence, the Queen Mary Hotel is more than a place to rest one’s head – it’s an entire experience.

queen mary hotel long beach

Once a world-class ocean liner, the Queen Mary Hotel offers guests unique accommodations and a wide array of attractions that simply cannot be found anywhere else. From historic tours to paranormal attractions, shops, spa and various events, there are a wide variety of things to do and see while aboard the ship.

qm_familystateroom_king_m159

King Family Stateroom

Tradition, class and old world elegance are evident throughout each Stateroom, which offers the perfect balance of authentic style and modern amenities. An homage to a bygone era, each cabin is different and adorned with a variety of rich wood paneling, original artwork, and Art Deco built-ins. The Queen Mary Staterooms exude an air of cozy sophistication and are unlike that of any other downtown Long Beach hotel. With a variety of different Staterooms and Suites to choose from, the Queen Mary Hotel is ideal for family vacations, couples looking for a romantic retreat, or anyone seeking a unique hotel experience in Southern California.

 

sir winstons

Sir Winston’s Restaurant

 

Location:  Long Beach, CA
Distance from Airport: Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) approx. 27mins. away | Long Beach International Airport (LGB) approx. 17 mins away
Distance from Train Station: Downtown Long Beach Amtrak Station  (LBC) -approx. 6 mins. away
Distance from Cruise Terminal: Long Beach Cruise Terminal-approx. 7 mins. away

queen mary bow

Get an up close and personal look at the Queen Mary with one their exciting and informative guided tours. From the ship’s groundbreaking construction and royal launch as the most luxurious and technologically advanced ocean liner at the time, to her duty as a troopship during WWII, to her golden days of the 1950s, to her earning the nickname, the “haunted ship,” the Queen Mary’s history is full of action, adventure, romance and paranormal activity.

Ready to plan your “Long Beach, CA” escape?  Contact me at karen.holmes@mei-travel.com for special deals, packages, and no-obligation quote!

Escape to…Sheraton Grand Chicago | Chicago, IL

Located in the heart of the city the Sheraton Grand Chicago overlooks the Chicago River. This hotel puts you within walking distance of business, dining, entertainment, and nightlife.

sheraton grand chicago outside

Warmly decorated in jewel tones and textural fabrics, all guest rooms and suites at the Sheraton Grand Chicago hotel feature the irresistible comfort of the Sheraton Signature Sleep Experience with its plush mattress and crisp linens. Each guest room and suite features unparalleled views of the Chicago River, Lake Michigan or city skyline.

Sheraton Grand Chicago double room

Traditional Double Room

Location:  Chicago, IL
Distance from Airport: O’Hare International Airport (ORD) approx. 58 mins. away | Midway International Airport (MDW) approx. 25 mins away
Distance from Train Station: Chicago Union Station Amtrak Station  (CHI) -approx. 10 mins. away

 

sheraton grand chicago pool

Indoor Pool

 

Located one block west of Lake Shore Drive the Sheraton Grand Chicago is within walking distance to Navy Pier, Magnificent Mile, Millenium Park, Art Institute, the Loop District, shopping, dining, and entertainment.

Ready to plan your “Chicago, IL” escape?  Contact me at karen.holmes@mei-travel.com for special deals, packages, and no-obligation quote!

Escape to… Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort | Orlando, FL

Located in the heart of the most magical place on earth, the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort provides a truly extraordinary backdrop for your Orlando vacation or meeting.  Beautiful tropical landscaping, tranquil waterways and classic art and architecture work together to create a stunning landmark in the midst of one of the most spectacular places on earth.

swan and dolphin resort

As a guest, you’re entitled to many special Disney benefits to help you make the most of your time, such as the all-new MyMagic+ benefit, complimentary scheduled transportation to the Disney theme parks and attractions, on-site Disney ticket and information desks, the Extra Magic Hours benefit in the theme parks, on-site character dining, and advance tee times on championship Disney golf courses.  Spend fun-filled, action-packed days in the theme parks or water parks neighboring our Disney resort.  Enjoy award-winning dining experiences, abundant shopping, amazing entertainment and invigorating recreational activities at the Walt Disney World® Resort.

 

dolphin resort room

Dolphin Resort Room

 

The resort is located in between Epcot® and Disney’s Hollywood Studios™ and close to Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park and Magic Kingdom® Park. Discover our magical surroundings, superior service, luxurious facilities and redesigned guest rooms featuring the Heavenly Bed®. Enjoy the new Mandara Spa, 17 spectacular restaurants and lounges, five pools, a white sand beach, two health clubs, tennis, nearby golf and many special Disney benefits.

 

swan deluxe family room with balcony

Swan Deluxe Family Balcony Room

 

Designed by award-winning architect Michael Graves, the duo of hotels share similar design elements but each has its own distinct appearance. The two waterfront resorts sit across from one another on Crescent Lake in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.

Walt-Disney-World-Swan_Full_28101

Ready to plan your “Orlando, Florida” escape?  Contact me at karen.holmes@mei-travel.com for special deals, packages, and no-obligation quote!

Escape to… Grand Hyatt Baha Mar | Nassau, Bahamas

Located on Cable Beach, Grand Hyatt Baha Mar offers you a piece of paradise in The Bahamas. This Nassau luxury resort includes the Baha Mar Casino, along with the sumptuous spa, ESPA Baha Mar. Explore the city of Nassau, dive into pristine waters, and soak up the sun. A destination within a destination, Grand Hyatt Baha Mar Resort in Nassau, Bahamas offers a luxury stay during your island getaway.

grand hyatt baha mar bahamas

Experience luxurious Nassau at Grand Hyatt Baha Mar. Savor breathtaking ocean, show lake fountain or island views from the spacious guestrooms and suites at our hotel, all of which include a full or Juliet balcony.

Make yourself at home in one of the 1800 air-conditioned rooms featuring minibars and flat-screen televisions. Complimentary wireless Internet access is available to keep you connected. Private bathrooms with bathtubs or showers feature designer toiletries and hair dryers. Conveniences include phones, as well as laptop-compatible safes and desks.

double room grand hyatt baha mar

Two Queen Bed Room

With a stay at Grand Hyatt Baha Mar in Nassau, you’ll be on the beach and close to Nassau Botanical Gardens and Ardastra Gardens, Zoo, and Conservation Center. This 4.5-star resort is within close proximity of Queen Elizabeth Sports Center and Haynes Oval.

 

Grand Hyatt Baha Mar Pool

Pool

 

Unwind in one of six awe-inspiring pools, exclusive to resort guests or lounge on 3,000 feet of sugary white sand. Enjoy miles of sun-soaked beaches, interesting eco-attractions, and the vibrant community of Nassau.  Play the night away at the Baha Mar Casino or hit the links the 18-hole, 72-par Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course. Or you can simply relax at the spa.

Ready to plan your “Nassau, Bahamas” escape?  Contact me at karen.holmes@mei-travel.com for special deals, packages, and no-obligation quote!

Escape to…The Arctic Club Seattle – a DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel

The Arctic Club Seattle – a DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel is located within walking distance of local attractions like Pioneer Square, Seattle’s first neighborhood, and the ‘soul of Seattle’ – Pike Place Market. Be sure to take the Underground Tour and visit the Klondike Gold Rush Museum. Or take the monorail to Key Arena, Seattle Center and the Seattle Space Needle.

 

arctic club lobby

Lobby

 

This tastefully decorated hotel in Seattle, WA offers a unique experience, echoing the post-Klondike gold rush days of the early 1900s. It also offers modern facilities to business and leisure travelers alike, including WiFi and 5,700 sq. ft. of meeting and event space.

 

artic guest

Two Queen Bed Guest Room

 

Location:  Seattle, WA
Distance from Airport: SeaTac International Airport (SEA) approx. 20 mins. away
Distance from Cruise Terminal:  Port of Seattle Cruise Ship Terminal -approx. 11 mins. away
Distance from Train Station: Seattle Amtrak Station  (SEA) -approx. 9 mins. away
king room balcony whirlpool

King Guest Room with Balcony & Whirlpool

Anchored at the threshold where urban Seattle meets the city’s historic district, the Arctic Club Seattle – a Doubletree by Hilton Hotel roots in adventure are not just reflected indoors. Outside you are steps away from experiencing all that Seattle has to offer: Explorations of the Waterfront, Space Needle or Pike Place Market. The Arctic is just blocks from Safeco Field, CenturyLink Field and neighboring Pioneer Square which celebrates Seattle’s history and is home to many art galleries, shops, and nightlife.

restaurant

Ready to plan your “Seattle, WA” escape?  Contact me at karen.holmes@mei-travel.com for special deals, packages, and no-obligation quote!

 

Escape to… Hotel El Convento | San Juan, Puerto Rico

Located in the heart of Old San Juan, Puerto Rico, imagine a destination as grand and storied as the “Isle of Enchantment” itself for your memorable San Juan, Puerto Rico vacation. Old world charm and elegance meet contemporary comfort in this Small Luxury Hotel of the World.

hotel-el-convento-old-san-juan-front

Just outside the lobby of Hotel El Convento, you can wander the streets of colorful Old San Juan to experience the finest museums and attractions including stunning cathedrals and world-renowned historic forts.

hotel-el-convento-old-san-juan-sleeping-queen-vista

Queen Vista Room

Location:  Old San Juan, Puerto Rico
Distance from Airport: San Juan International Airport approx. 21 mins. away
Distance from Cruise Terminal:  San Juan Cruise Ship Terminal -approx. 8 mins. away
hotel-el-convento-old-san-juan-pool-at-day-time

Pool

A former Carmelite convent built three and a half centuries ago, El Convento has gone through many incarnations before a complete refurbishment carefully restored this historic hotel with special attention paid to the preservation of the original structure. No expense or imagination has been spared in giving El Convento a fine blend of originality and classic quality.

gv-suite

Gloria Vanderbilt Suite

Area Attractions:

  • Pablo Casals Museum – walking distance
  • San Felipe del Morro Fortress – walking distance
  • San Cristobal Fortress – walking distance
  • Galeria Nacional – walking distance
  • San Juan Nautical Club -2 miles
  • The Cathedral, which houses Ponce De Leon’s remains – Across the street

Ready to plan your “Old San Juan, PR” escape?  Contact me at karen.holmes@mei-travel.com for special deals, packages and a no obligation quote!

 

Escape to… Hilton Reykjavik Nordica | Reykjavik, Iceland

Set in central Reykjavik, the stylish Hilton Reykjavik Nordica hotel is one of the city’s most popular destinations for tourists, business travelers and locals alike. Enjoy Hilton style, service, and quality, with the comfort and amenities you expect, and the extras you deserve. Our central location provides a great base from which to discover the capital and makes it easy to travel further afield and explore Iceland’s unspoiled natural landscapes.

 

hilton reykjavik nordica lobby bar

Lobby Bar

 

With a stay at Hilton Reykjavik Nordica in Reykjavik (Laugardalur), you’ll be minutes from Asmundarsafn and close to Hallgrimskirkja. This 4-star hotel is within close proximity of Laugardalsholl and Laugardalsvollur.

Local Attractions

  • Icelandic Parliament
  • Botanical Gardens
  • Kringlan shopping center
  • Laugardalur
  • Reykjavik Harbor

 

queen executive room plus

Queen Executive Room Plus

 

Location:  Reykjavik, Iceland
Distance from Airport:  RKV – Reykjavik Airport approx. 10 mins. away

hilton reykjavik

The Hilton Reykjavik Nordica Hotel is situated just a short journey from the city center via city bus and provides a great base to explore the capital city. Take a leisurely stroll through the Botanic Gardens or discover the fantastic shops at the nearby Kringlan shopping center. Play a round of golf at one of the several excellent golf courses in and around Reykjavik. The Icelandic summer offers 24-hours of daylight, and a round of golf under the midnight sun is an unforgettable experience. Discover a city rich in art and culture – from the Icelandic Sagas to contemporary art, Reykjavik has a buzzing cultural scene. Enjoy a constant flow of innovative music, theatrical performances and cultural events available all year round. The hotel is within easy walking distance to attractions like Laugardalur, where you can find Reykjavik zoo and the Laugardalslaug, Iceland’s biggest geothermal swimming pool, and sports center, as well as scenic walking and jogging paths.

Ready to plan your “Reykjavik, Iceland” escape?  Contact me at karen.holmes@mei-travel.com for special deals, packages and a no obligation quote!