You redecorated your office, and did a couch to 5k. You mastered Zoom and took an online cooking class. Now you’re ready to scream and run for the hills.
Enter luxury travel advisor Amina Dearmon to help you plan your escape, even while the pandemic lock-down lingers on.
Luxury Travel Advisor Amina Dearmon, owner of New Orleans-based Perspectives Travel
“People just want a change of scenery,” says Dearmon. “If you can take the destination off the table and instead focus on your vacation goals, we can get you a 'like-as’ replacement closer to home. “
Here are 5 brilliant swaps Dearmon put together for clients who had to cancel their big trips over the past year.
Instead of the Italian countryside:
Twin Farms in Vermont is for those who have long wished for a private country retreat. This pastoral paradise is set on 300 acres of verdant hills, fields, and forest, and offers 20 individually designed accommodations. Outdoor activities range from hiking, biking, and fly-fishing to snowshoeing, sledding, and downhill and cross-country skiing. Golf, gallery hopping, and shopping in Woodstock are all nearby.
Instead of a horse farm in Argentina:
Majestic scenery, all-inclusive luxury, and endless adventure exemplify the Western experience at The Brush Creek Luxury Ranch Collection, a luxury dude ranch situated on 30,000 acres of Rocky Mountain wilderness in Saratoga, WY. Brush Creek Ranch is where rusticity meets luxury; a unique setting where one can reconnect with nature, revitalize the senses, and indulge in unlimited adventure.
Instead of the Swiss Alps:
Set in the heart of Vail Village, The Sonnealp Hotel chalet-style hotel has brought a bit of the Swiss Alps to Colorado’s ski capital through its five generations of ownership stemming back to Bavaria. It all looks very authentic, but in fact, Vail was built in the 1960s and modeled after the Swiss ski town of Zermatt.
Instead of Spain:
Tucked on the northeast coast of Florida, St. Augustine is America's oldest city, founded by the Spanish in 1565. The 450-year-old Spanish heritage can be seen all through the narrow stone and brick-paved streets of the historic downtown district. There are 144 blocks that are all chock-full of Spanish colonial-style buildings, some dating back several centuries, and now house boutiques, antique shops, galleries, and atmospheric sidewalk cafes.
EDITOR'S NOTE: St. Augustine Beach is beautiful. We took surf lessons in November!
Instead of a South African safari:
Amangiri just opened Camp Sarika which is inspired by South Africa's luxe safari tents. Amangiri and Camp Sarika are literally oases in the Utah desert. Camp Sarika is the only year round camp of its kind and it's just a 30 minute hike (or a 5 minute drive for those less adventurous) from the main resort complex. The beauty of the camp is that you still have access to the main properties’ gorgeous pool, spa, and restaurants.
"Nothing about travel going forward is going to be simple," says Dearmon.
"If you’re going to travel you want to reduce your COVID footprint as much as possible. This means staying in one place vs. visiting a lot of different destinations and limiting how much time you actually travel."
Workation anyone? With the kids?!
If you are able to work remotely and crave a tropical beach, Dearmon recommends 3 dreamy properties in Mexico.
"All of these properties are in an area that was one of the first to receive a Secure Travel Stamp by the World Travel and Tourism Council for meeting the highest hygiene and sterilization measures to protect travelers' health. Plus, Mexico is one of the few international destinations that’s open to U.S. passport holders. So you’ve got safety, sun, and margaritas… if that’s the new workday then I may become a workaholic!"
The St. Regis Punta Mita Resort
This resort offers the perfect getaway for families. Think fully equipped offices, customized menus to meet special dietary needs and professional services that can aid home schooling, like after-school activities. Then end your day with a champagne sabering or private beachfront BBQ.
The Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita
Settle in for an awesome schoolcation for the kiddos with a tech hotline and study buddy program, plus after-school sports, art, culture and history classes. For the adults, the resort has created designated poolside and beachfront cabanas outfitted with WiFi, a TV monitor, a portable charger and energizing snacks.
The Conrad Punta de Mita
This is a brand new property and their Work From Paradise Package includes access to premium WiFi, a daily $75 resort credit, early check-in and a spa discount for an afterwork treat.Opt for a suite or a casita and you’ll get Pacific Ocean views plus a plunge pool, patio, and an outdoor shower.
"I have also been encouraging people to revisit a destination they know and love. It's familiar and that will reduce stress. Road trips, hotel stays, short direct flights are good options. Be flexible and make sure you have cancellation options and travel insurance."
Better yet, hire a travel advisor well-versed in safety protocols, and travel restrictions. Luxury upgrades, a 4th or 5th night free, and local contacts are a few of the reasons Amina Dearmon's client list is steadily growing.
Follow more information and even more great travel advice, visit Perspectives Travel.