Every wonder where do the super rich go on vacation? Since they have deep pockets, they will certainly have more and better choices than most of us. Take a look at some of the luxury choices.
Space Adventures provides the opportunity for you to blast off in a Soyuz spacecraft for a circumlunar mission. During the seven-day space flight, which reaches top speeds of 17,000 mph, you’ll see stars, the illuminated far side of the moon, and the Earth from 250,000 miles away. Candidates must train for four months alongside Russian cosmonauts at the Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center in Star City, Russia. Two seats are available for $100 million each.
National Geographic Expeditions has licensed TCS & Starquest Expeditions to offer an adventure it calls Around the World by Private Jet. Pulitzer-Prize-winning author David Lamb and photographer Annie Griffiths Belt will accompany the trip in February 2011, while geographer and conservationist David Scott Silverburg and photographer Michael Melford join in October 2011. The 24-day itinerary includes Machu Picchu, Easter Island, Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, Angkor Wat, Tibet, the Taj Mahal, the Serengeti Plain, Luxor and the Pyramids and Marrakech. The cost is $64,950 per person, double occupancy.
Silversea, a luxury cruise line renowned for its gourmet food and service, launched its new Silver Spirit in December. In 2011, this ship will embark on a 119-day world trip from Los Angeles to Southampton, England, exploring 60 destinations in 25 countries. The itinerary includes French Polynesia, New Zealand, Australia, Bali, China, Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, India, Egypt, Italy and Spain. Expect great service: 376 crew will be on hand to tend to the needs of 540 guests. Fares start at $61,924 per person, double occupancy.
Yachts of Seabourn will launch the new Seabourn Sojourn this June. If you’re planning for 2011, you can book passage on the ship’s 111-day cruise from Los Angeles to London via the South Pacific, New Zealand, Western Australia, Indonesia and Southeast Asia, India, the Arabian Peninsula and the Mediterranean. The cost for the Grand Suite is $263,650 per person, double occupancy, and includes first-class round-trip airfare, 300 pounds of luggage shipping and a $1,000 shipboard credit.
GW Travel offers a trans-Siberian luxury train trip from Moscow to Vladivostok (or vice versa) on the Golden Eagle. The tour, available from May to September, lasts 15 days, covers 6,600 miles, and takes in Moscow, Kazan, Lake Baikal and Mongolia. Gold-class cabins include a private en-suite bathroom with power showers, under-floor heating and a DVD/CD player with LCD screens. The cost is $15,795 for a twin shared cabin and $22,195 for a single cabin.
Drive a Mercedes, Ferrari, Aston Martin, Lamborghini or another luxury car through the French Alps, stopping at boutique luxury hotels along the way. Loeven Sportwagentouren offers a Tour des Niveaux package with an itinerary from Geneva to Monaco. You’ll see Lake Geneva, Mont Blanc, Nice and more. Rent a luxury car and the cost ranges from $8,126 to $13,544 per person, or bring your own vehicle and the package drops to $7,043 per person. Wine and fuel are extra.
Want to see the World Cup in person? Premiere Global Sports offers a package that includes the World Cup final match in Johannesburg on July 11. It includes five nights at the Crowne Plaza Rosebank in Johannesburg, game tickets, round-trip transfers from the hotel to the stadium and daily breakfast at the hotel. Prices start at $6,995 per person, double occupancy. You can run up your tab by upgrading your hotel or game tickets or by throwing in limousine service. Airfare is extra, too.
Marquis Los Cabos in Los Cabos, Mexico, wants you to rock out in style. Its three-night Fabulous Cabo package includes arrival by private jet, use of a championship golf course, a tailor-made haute couture evening gown, a personal chauffeur, private Carlos Santana concert, private luxury yacht for the day, gourmet dining prepared by a Michelin chef and a private helicopter. Accommodations are in Marquis’ presidential suite, which has a private butler, maids and a chef. Rates start at $8.4 million for a three-night package, which must be booked at least six months in advance.
Look, your ship has come in! The Burj Al Arab, a hotel designed to resemble a behemoth sailboat, sits perched on the Dubai skyline. Check into the Royal Suite on the 25th floor, and you’ll have a chauffeur-driven Rolls-Royce, a floor-to-ceiling view of the Persian Gulf, a private elevator, private cinema, rotating beds and laptop computers with Internet access. The suite comes with both a pillow menu and a bath menu. The cost is $14,974 per night.
The Raj Palace in Jaipur, India, a former royal residence, is now part of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World. Its Maharajah’s Pavillion Presidential Suite, a multilevel, 16,000-square-foot space, overlooks gardens and an inner palace courtyard. Guests can access the four bedrooms through a private gold-paneled elevator. The third floor has a private rooftop terrace with a view of the city, as well as a Jacuzzi, swimming pool, lounge with home theater and a private spa. The cost is $15,000 per night.
When Sir Richard Branson isn’t in residence at his 74-acre private island, you can rent it and bring along 27 of your closest friends. Necker Island in the British Virgin Islands comes with a staff of 60, including general managers, chefs, maids, gardeners and water sports staff. Lie in a hammock, jump on an aqua trampoline, play tennis, rent a Hobie Cat or learn how to kite surf, and stay in the great house with its infinity pool or in one of six private Balinese-style houses. The cost is $53,000 per night, or $371,000 for a week.
Opening this summer, The Regent Maldives is a 50-villa resort that occupies the entire Maalefushi Island in the Indian Ocean. The resort dazzles with over-water accommodations, a lagoon-front spa and the only dive center in the atoll. Regent can also arrange for DJs, live bands and chef demos on the beach for private events. Rent the island for $100,000 per day for anywhere from two to 120 guests. That price includes breakfast, dinner, beverages, afternoon tea, spa treatments, water sports and snorkeling.
Seeking to impress with a little decadence? The Trump International Hotel & Tower Chicago is offering a Once in a Lifetime proposal package. Pop the question on the 89th floor of Trump Tower amid the ambience of flowers, candles, music — and a diamond ring from the Ivanka Trump Jewelry Collection. Celebrate with a private in-room four-course dinner, two dozen long-stemmed roses, a night’s stay in a grand deluxe lake-view suite, turndown service with wine and truffles, and couples’ spa treatments the next day. The cost is $20,100.
Rent Musha Cay in the Bahamas for yourself and 11 of your closest friends, and you’ll get access to five villas and 40 private beaches. Island activities include swimming in a free-form pool, fishing, snorkeling, sailing, windsurfing and boating. The cost is $37,500 per day. For $20,000 extra, you can throw in a treasure hunt designed by David Copperfield, which takes participants on a search for loot on 11 of the surrounding islands.
Harrah’s Entertainment has created the Total Experiences program. Women and their friends can sit back and relax while a trip-planning specialist pulls together a custom itinerary. One example: exclusive VIP table service at Pure nightclub at Caesars Palace, a meet-and-greet with a celebrity host such as Paris Hilton or 50 Cent, a VIP table next to that person, and a white-gold-plated 3-liter bottle of Dom Perignon. Prices begin at $25,000 for the celebrity meet-and-greet and $50,000 for the Dom Perignon.
The five-star Hotel de Charme Les Airelles in the French Alps is a ski resort with a 5,900-square-foot private apartment on the top floor. It features a view of the Courchevel slopes, four bedrooms each with private bath, steam shower, fireplace and sound-proof screening room, and a 1,600-square-foot terrace with an outdoor Jacuzzi. The hotel also comes with a Hermes-designed horse-drawn carriage. The cost is $47,406 a night.
The Mountain Lodge at Telluride, Colo., offers a Soar in Style package throughout the winter ski season. It includes one day of helicopter skiing the back country of the San Juan Mountains, a guided snowmobile tour to Dunton Hot Springs for a soak, a spa treatment and lunch, dog sledding, and skiing Telluride Mountain with a private guide. The price starts at $14,017 per person, double occupancy, for four nights in a log-and-stone cabin with slope-side ski access.
Qua Baths & Spa at Caesars Atlantic City in New Jersey has a full menu of spa treatments, including Shirodarah, in which herbal oil is poured in a steady stream on the forehead. The cost is $90 for 20 minutes. Want to really splurge? Try the three-hour Dieci Mani Treatment, which means “10 hands.” Guests will enjoy the healing touch of four artisans and one esthetician at once, soak in Roman baths, and get a facial, massage and exfoliation treatment, too. The cost is $5,000.
Micato Safaris gives its clientele the opportunity to go on a 17-day Grand South Africa Golf Safari. It includes an overnight at golf legend Gary Player’s private ranch and a round of golf with him on his private course. Other highlights include a helicopter tour of Cape Town, a visit to South Africa’s wine country, a hot-air balloon flight, a visit to Player’s stud farm and a traditional wildlife safari in Phinda Private Nature Reserve. The cost is $1 million for four people, double occupancy.
Link: Expensive Vacations
Text by Robin Dalmas, Bing Travel; photo editing by Connie Ricca.