When does a tourist become a traveller? What separates a trip from an experience? International flights have become more and more accessible to the masses, but the luxury traveller is always looking for ways to take their voyage to the next level. Enter the latest trends in luxury travel, where heading off on a holiday means so much more than hotel pools and city monuments.
Everyone has different tastes and desires when it comes to travel. Some like to have strict agendas, some like to go with the flow. Some want to plumb the depths of history, some aren’t satisfied unless their adrenaline is pumping. A cookie-cutter tour will often aim to please everyone and end up pleasing no-one, so it’s no wonder that travellers with means are opting for highly personalised experiences and adventures. Getting involved in personalised products is also part of this: for example, spending time at a Tuscan winery creating a personalised wine, or at a French perfumery crafting your own signature scent. For the modern traveller, the more personal a trip is, the more memorable the experience.
Those who truly appreciate travel crave the opportunity to experience the non-touristic side of any location. They want to do more than just see the most famous sites and tick off the cliche tourist boxes. A huge part of this is the ability to connect with a local culture on a deeper level. This idea has permeated so deep into the consciousness of travellers that even major players like AirBNB are tapping into it (their new “City Hosts” feature launched recently in Beta mode). With a bit of extra spend, travellers can experience a location through the eyes of a local, without sacrificing comforts or conveniences.
“Wellness” and “well-being” are vague terms, but deliberately so: they can be used to encompass whatever it is that makes you feel good. Usually that means a combination of physical health and fitness, mental clarity and emotional stability. A holiday away from regular life where you can focus purely on personal growth and self-healing is one way to strive for this elusive state of wellness. Remember when travelling in luxury meant overindulgence? These days it’s all about wellness retreats, where margaritas and partying are out and organic juices and yoga are in.
Ever been to a place that’s so amazing, experienced a moment so spectacular, that you wished you could share it with everyone important in your life? Or felt that a particular experience wasn’t quite the same without a big, buzzing group of people to enliven it? Multi-generational travel and group travel are ongoing trends that have impacted the direction of luxury accommodation. Those seeking large spaces to accommodate small armies of friends and family will now be able to find them — and experience the joy of togetherness in a whole new place.