From Four Seasons to Kempinski, a number of luxury hotel brands have launched five-star road trips with stop-offs at properties along the way. Olivia Palamountain reports
At a time when hotel numbers are down and travelling privately is more in demand than ever, it makes sense that the likes of Marriott International, Kempinski and Four Seasons are pitching road trip itineraries to entice guests.
Marriott International, which has a portfolio of brands including Ritz-Carlton, St Regis Hotels & Resorts, The Luxury Collection, EDITION and W Hotels, has unveiled a collection of “one-of-a-kind adventures” created in partnership with luxury concierge company Quintessentially.
Several distinct itineraries and immersive experiences are available in the US and Europe, taking in destinations such as Lake Tahoe, Bal Harbour and Venice, and with access to vintage cars, such as a 1960s Ford Mustang Convertible.“During this time we know that many of our guests are choosing to travel in different ways. They might be staying closer to home, or seeking the personal space that driving between destinations affords,” says Tina Edmundson, global brand and marketing officer for Marriott International.
“With this series of exclusive road trips, and with the expertise of Quintessentially, we are thrilled to be able to offer our guests access to unparalleled, luxury focused experiences that meet the moment.”
Starting at US$15,000 for two guests, each trip will include diverse, high-end experiences that are unique to the destination, from champagne toasts in a private seaplane overlooking a San Francisco sunset to private tours of the exclusive Palazzo Corsini or Sistine Chapel in Rome.
“At Quintessentially, we are the authority on creating one-of-a-kind, unforgettable experiences. With this collection of road trips, we are excited to bring these different destinations to life in a unique way and can further tailor the packages to guests’ personal preferences,” says Annastasia Seebohm, CEO of Quintessentially.
“Marriott International’s unparalleled luxury portfolio allows for a seamless experience as guests move between properties and explore at their own pace.”
In Europe-only, Four Seasons is focusing on La Dolce Vita for its road trip experiences, taking customers on a road trip through southern France and Italy in classic cars.
The bespoke trip cruises between Four Seasons Hotel Firenze, Four Seasons Hotel Milano and Grand-Hôtel du Cap-Ferrat, A Four Seasons Hotel, in either a 1960 Giulietta Spider, a 1958 Mercedes-Benz 190 SL Cabrio or a 1956 Porsche 356A Speedster. Guests may choose where to set off from and whether to visit any two hotels or all three.How does it work? A dedicated concierge recommends the best stops along the way according to guests’ personal interests – think architecture detours in Florence, stylish sojourns in Milan or Michelin-starred cuisine lunch breaks in the French Riviera.
On the road, Four Seasons service continues throughout the journey. A personal driver tails the trip in a separate modern-day vehicle or will take the lead and navigate the route.
Accessible on a two-way radio, the driver is on call for roadside assistance, recommendations and valet parking at each hotel and stop along the way, as well as car washing and petrol stops.
The best bit? A picnic made by Four Seasons chefs is supplied for each leg of the trip.
Meanwhile, Kempinski’s “Your 5-star Road Trip” twins two of its hotels with a private road trip planned out between them. Routes are covered in guests’ own cars or motorbikes or through Kempinski’s mobility partner Sixt.
From Budapest to the High Tatras, Munich to Berchtesgaden or Nairobi in Kenya to the Masai Mara region, Kempinski will recommend where to go and what to see en route.
“To adapt a travel route flexibly, to choose one’s own playlist and to enjoy the view a little longer according to one’s own taste – this is the freedom we all long for at the moment, whether it’s a short weekend trip or a trip to a neighbouring country,” says Amanda Elder, chief commercial officer for Kempinski.
“Even on already well-known routes, there are still so many things to discover – crowning the day with a stay in one of our luxury hotels.”
Earlier this year, Globetrender predicted in its Future of Luxury Travel Forecast that “Supercharged Road Trips” would be an defining trend for the new decade. You can download the full report below.
What’s coming next? Trend reports available to download HERE