A $1.56 million trip of a lifetime ... New flights T.O. to Dublin ... Halifax golf
It’s a tad expensive as trips go. Roughly $1.56 million, to be precise. But it promises to be the vacation/expedition of a lifetime.
A company called VeryFirstTo.com is selling an Ultimate Journey package that includes the Taj Mahal, Petra in Jordan, Angkor Wat in Cambodia (see photo below), the Forbidden City in Beijing and Peru’s Machu Picchu. And a few other spots, such as, get this, every one of the world’s 962 World Heritage Sites.
Although various governments current advise against visiting some World Heritage Sites, including Pasargadae in Iran and Leptis Magna in Libya, the firm apparently will try to make everyone happy, according to the Daily Telegraph in London.
The trip includes overland travel and flights (in business class cabins or superior), while tours of the different sites will be guided (presumably by workers carrying peacock feathers and iced Grey Goose martinis). Accommodation will be at a range of luxury hotels, including Sandy Lane in Barbados (a lovely spot I got to stay in - briefly - a few years ago) the Hotel George V in Paris and The Plaza in New York (a Fairmont property, also a very fine hotel).
The trip – billed as the ‘world’s most expensive holiday’ – was launched last month by VeryFirstTo.com. Now the company’s founder, Marcel Knobil, says two wealthy travellers have expressed firm interest in becoming the first people to embark on what the Telegraph called “an epic odyssey.”
The first chap is said to be a Chinese fellow who can’t go until he’s finished his PhD tudies next year. An Italian industrialist also is on the verge of booking, according to Knobil.
Just in case you have cash to spare, VeryFirstTo.com also is willing to book you a trip into space for $108,000 and the chance to wake up surrounded by more than one million rose petals for a $110,000.
The latter seems kind of expensive to me. I think you probably could drive to Ottawa and lie down in front of Parliament Hill and wake up in mid-May with about a million tulip petals all around. And you’d only have to pay for your bail after the cops arrest you.
ON THE OTHER HAND
If you’re more in the market for value, Fox News recently put out a list of its top value hotels around the world.
Among them was the Coco Palm Resort in St. Lucia, which I’ve heard previously is a good deal, as well as Le Richelieu in the French Quarter of New Orleans, The Dean Street Townhouse in London, England and Hotel Le Germain Dominion in Quebec City.
Fox cited the Germain’s “historic, wood-and-stone façade” and bank vault doors that are played off against stylish, modern décor. Breakfast is included and there’s also free Internet (hurray) and a Nespresso coffee machine in each room.
I went online and found a room in early May for $222. Not cheap but not bad for what looks like a nice property.
More than a million folks from Canada and the U.S. visited Ireland last year and spent more than $994 million, an increase of 9.3 per cent. This year marks a year-long event called The Gathering, a series of festivals and events celebrating “the unique nature of what it means to be Irish.” Which means numbers could increase even more. Air Canada this week announced it will start year-round service from Toronto to Dublin on its new, discount airline, Rouge, beginning May 1, 2014. Service this year is from May 17 to Sept. 30.
THIS AND THATToronto golf designer Tom McBroom has announced a new, championship course for Halifax. It’s called The Links at Brunello and is slated to open in June 2015. There hasn't been much in the way of new golf course construction in this country for a while, so it's a good sign. I hope … I guess we can put our pocketknives – and hockey sticks – back in cold storage. After suggesting they’d lift the ban on those and other items on airplanes, the folks at TSA in the U.S. now say they need to consult pilots, airline workers and other concerned parties (many of whom have expressed alarm at the proposal) before they can revoke the ban … Nice way to start a vacation? Not really. It seems a worker at Los Angeles International Airport the other day mistakenly hit a switch and, for eight minutes, caused flight status signs to flash the message “Emergency: Leave the Terminal.” …