Relax in the new Serenity by the sea Spa atThe Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa in South Walton, FL

Relax in the new Serenity by the sea Spa atThe Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa in South Walton, FL

In this issue: Hot deals across the globe; Two cities party through the summer


Seventy-two percent of American business travelers extend their executive trips with a leisure component, which is why the AAA Four Diamond Shores Resort & Spa in Daytona Beach, FL has created “Benefits of Bleisure*” for meeting travelers during select dates, beginning April 27 through September 10. The Shores Resort took the survey responses conducted by BridgeStreet Global Hospitality to heart, which also indicates that six out of 10 are more likely to take bleisure trips today than they did five years ago. With the Shores Resort program, rates will start at $109 and extend over weekend days for leisure stays. Bleisure benefits will include ocean view rooms, a $5.00 rebate per paid and consumed guest room, complimentary parking, waived resort fee, three upgrades to the property’s all-new Cabana Suites, one upgrade to a Presidential Suite, as well as complimentary use of the Ocean Terrace or Atlantic Room for meal functions.  The Bleisure Benefits are available for new groups with a minimum of 50 room nights. Contracts must be received by May 31. The beachside resort has more than 20,000 sf of indoor and outdoor function space, 212 guestrooms and suites offering water views of the Atlantic Ocean or Florida’s Intracoastal Waterway. It recently completed a property-wide renovation.;; (386) 322-7262

Book three nights at Elbow Beach Bermuda and receive the fourth night free. Stay required by September 5. Use promotion code QUEST when booking.; (800) 223-7435

Summer hasn’t officially landed in North America and already there are fall promotions for fall, such as this fab offer from Aulani, A Disney Resort & Spa in Ko Olina, Hawaiʻi. Save 30% when you book at least five consecutive nights, or 25% for nights. The offer is valid for stays most nights between August 16 and December 21, excluding Thanksgiving weekend. Book now through October 26. Savings even more if you book by June 29. You’ll receive an extra $50 Resort credit for every night of your stay.


You can scrub a lot of hands with 600,000 pounds of soap and once they’ve been converted to more than a million bars, they can be sent across the globe to combat hygiene-related deaths and illnesses. Thanks to a partnership between Hilton Worldwide and Clean the World, that soapy coverage is an actionable item… not just a talking point. According to CEO and Co-Founder of Clean the World Shawn Seipler, Hilton Worldwide has dedicated 850 hotels, more than any other major hospitality company in the world towards collecting and recycling basic hygiene products. One of Hilton’s original partners in this effort, Global Soap, recently announced it has joined forces with Clean the World. Hilton was the first major hospitality company to partner with Global Soap, helping the organization expand its footprint globally and providing operational expertise to improve soap processing capabilities. “Although this marks the beginning of our official joint commitment with Hilton Worldwide, we have been partners in spirit and practice since 2009,” said Seipler, executive director for Clean the World. “Our initial work with Global Soap helped lay the foundation for a comprehensive in-room waste strategy that provided turn-key solutions for our hotels,” says Maxime Verstraete, vice president of sustainability for Hilton Worldwide. “Whether it’s soap or any other product that’s left behind, our guests count on us to manage our waste responsibly and develop solutions that enhance the guest experience.” Since 2009, more than 25 million bars of Clean the World soap have been distributed in 99 countries, and more than 7 million pounds of waste have been diverted from landfills.;


After three years and $30 million, the largest full-service beachfront resort hotel on Northwest Florida’s Gulf Coast just got bigger. Following a renovation, The Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa in South Walton, FL has added a 500 sf of event space to the Coastal Ballroom has expanded and enhanced the award-winning Serenity by the sea Spa. Meeting planners now have more than 23,000 sf of ballroom and event space on a single level, with approximately 10,000 sf of additional pre-function area to support the three ballrooms. All total, the resort has 40,000 sf of indoor meeting space and 20,000 sf of outdoor event space. Serenity by the sea Spa expanded by 3,000 sf, providing more space for individual guests and groups in the women’s locker room, lounge facilities and new group relaxation area. The spa also now offers a separate and expanded salon for hair and makeup, as well as a separate nail salon with four manicure and four pedicure stations. The new area totals 14,500 sf and also includes an all-new fitness center with 24/7 guest access.; (850) 267-9500;; (850) 622-9595

Fifteen tented suites offering a clear view of Kenya’s Maasai Mara will set apart Angama Mara, the newest luxury camp opening June 1. Located in the Mara Triangle, this boutique property features a fitness center, 40 foot swimming pool, curated craft and art gallery and a sun-filled studio with Maasai women creating beaded items. What really sets the suites apart are that three walls are of canvas and the one overlooking the Maasai Mara is a 32-ft wide floor-to-ceiling glass window. The camp has its own private hardtop airfield, just moments from the lodge. Movie buffs may recognize the lodge, comprising two totally separate and intimate camps each of 15 tented suites, because that’s where some of the most romantic ‘Ngong Hills’ scenes were filmed for the movie Out of Africa.

16th century Spanish Guard, reenactors for St. Augustine's 450th Birthday celebrations

16th century Spanish Guard, reenactors for St. Augustine’s 450th Birthday celebrations


When you’re 450 years young, celebrating for a year seems like a justifiable action. Captain General don Pedro Menéndez de Aviles knew he was onto something big when he stepped ashore at Seloy, a large Native American village, but he may not have realized the full impact his arrival would create on the creation of America’s oldest city, St. Augustine, FL. If your family or your group ever wanted to participate in living history reenactments and celebrations, you have until the end of September to do it in this Florida coastal city. There are music festivals, competitions, battle reenactments, dance performances and art exhibits. There are dozens of attractions and tours to enhance your experiences while exploring the history of a city steeped in Spanish and British influences.;; (800) 653.2489

365 days a year, you can find a festival to ogle in Montréal, Canada, but summer is when this city capitalizes on its international enticements. I’ve oohed and aahed at L’International des Feux Loto-Québec, one of the most prestigious fireworks competitions in the world. This year it runs July 1 to August 1. I’ve watched the Cirque performers practice at a street corner and walked through flowery gardens. This year, Montréal has added a host of other activities to appeal to families and groups and many of the events are free. You can download a free app as part of Montréal en Histoires, a large-scale multimedia project celebrating the rich history of Montréal, which will be celebrating its 375th birthday in 2017. The app will guide you past 60 points of interest along five different circuits. Three projects included in the $11 million Montréal en Histoires will project vignettes and short movies of period-dressed characters on trees, streets and buildings. The more adventurous among you may want to fly through the air over Bonsecours Island in Old Port and get a fantastic view of the cityscape on Canada’s first urban zipline circuit.



The new borderless East African Tourist visa allows for multiple-entry to those countries over a period of 90 days. The partnership between Rwanda, Uganda and Kenya enables travelers to apply and receive the $100 visa upon arrival at Kenya’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport.

Karen Kuzsel is a writer-editor based in the Orlando area who specializes in the hospitality, entertainment, meetings & events industries.  She is a Contributing Editor-Writer for Prevue Magazine and is an active member of ISES and MPI. She writes about food & wine, spas, destinations, venues, meetings & events. A career journalist, Karen has owned magazines, written for newspapers, trade publications, radio and TV. As her alter-ego, Natasha, The Psychic Lady, she is a featured entertainer for corporate and social events.;; @karenkuzsel; @thepsychiclady


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