A new year warrants many changes. Eating better, working out more and hopefully making it past the first chapter of a book is among many of the resolutions you might have made for this year. However, nothing says “new year, new me” like making blissful memories during a vacation spent in a destination you’ve never been before. I hope your resolutions call for beach-side cocktails, captivating coliseums and lazy lagoons because we’re adding Athens, Mauritius, Port Douglas, Malta and Cozumel to your list of something new.
Make this year the best one yet when you head to Athens, once known as the most powerful city in Greece. Find yourself roaming through streets bound together with grand architecture and cultural riches. Traveling to Athens is sure to fulfill your desire for a trip that’s heavy in history, hillsides and heroines. After all, the city is named after the Greek goddess Athena. During your time in the city filled with wisdom and courage, make sure to explore The Acropolis, Syntagma Square and The Ancient Agora. Find shelter from the warmth of this city at the Parthenon or embrace the heat with a trek around Mount Lycabettus – complete with a sunset enjoyed with a pillar of rich wine. There’s no going wrong during a Greek adventure through this ancient city.
Where to stay?
Elegance meets grand architecture at Hotel Grande Bretagne, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Athens. Across the way, you will find views of Acropolis and the original Olympic Stadium. The landmark hotel gives ode to the city that is rich in history. When you arrive at the multi-awarded landmark hotel, you’ll be greeted with mythical history and décor that displays precise attention to detail. Charming rooms and suites offer butler service, embellished gold accents and the sweetness of rich comforts. During your stay, you can be treated with holistic rituals at GB Spa Athens or satisfy your cravings for stunning views and crisp red wine at GB Roof Garden Restaurant. Cap your evening in Athens with a refined brandy or classic cocktail at Alexander’s Bar. This hotel is just the start of a magnificent trip in Athens, Greece.
Trickled with gorgeous gardens and a fierce collection of wildlife, the island of Mauritius invites you to enjoy its breathtaking beaches and blue lagoons. If you’re in the business of traveling somewhere new, this island – located in the Indian Ocean – is your destination for just that. Kiss a dolphin when you navigate the crystal-clear waters surrounding the island. Cleanse yourself of forgotten resolutions as you stand beneath cascading waterfalls in The Village of Chamarel, where you can also find comfort in world-class rum. From stunning mountains to turquoise lagoons and palm-studded beaches, there’s no reason this island shouldn’t be at the top of your travel list in the new year. Mark Twain once said, “Mauritius was made first and then heaven.” Need we say more?
Where to stay?
Surrounded by local teak and lava rocks, The Westin Turtle Bay Resort & Spa, Mauritius is your destination for peace and relaxation in the historic Balaclava area. The resort offers two outdoor pools and easy access to the stunning beach located just down the pier. From water activities to tennis, there’s an ample selection of activities to keep you busy while you’re in Turtle Bay. Something you can count on during your stay here is the utmost in hospitality. Upon arrival, you’ll be invited to enjoy luxurious accommodations with views of the ocean, inspired dishes served at Mystique Beach Bar & Lounge and a kids’ club that helps them create while you relax at Heavenly Spa. Unwind in a tropical paradise when you stay at The Westin Turtle Bay Resort & Spa, Mauritius.
Port Douglas, Australia
Known for its peaceful resorts and white sand beaches, Port Douglas is a must-visit destination in 2019. Whether you’re looking for a place to sip on cocktails while you float into bliss or wanting to dive deep into the Great Barrier Reef, this town in Australia is filled to the brim with sun-soaked adventure. And when your suntan begins to turn into a burn, roam with the wildlife at the world’s oldest rainforest, Daintree National Park, or stroll Macrossan Street, home to unique boutiques and restaurants with succulent dishes. Venture outside of the town and head to the popular city of Cairns, where you can enjoy the Esplanade Lagoon and Cairns Art Gallery. Make enjoying the balmy days of Port Douglas’s winter season a must this year.
Where to stay?
A home away from home, but better. The Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort, Port Douglas rests easy on Four Mile Beach, surrounded by tropical gardens, an 18-hole golf course and refreshing saltwater lagoon pools. With accommodations featuring private balconies and swim-up entry, the rooms and suites feature impeccable amenities and refreshing beach-style comforts. Aside from peaceful sleep, there’s no doubt you’ll also be eating well while you’re in Australia. From modern gourmet to casual Australian cuisine, the resort offers dining options that are fitting for any appetite. Starting with the lagoons at sunrise and ending with a cozy night in your private villa, there’s no end to a euphoric retreat at Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort, Port Douglas.
Malta is a group of islands located in the Mediterranean that offers travelers an oasis of historic sites as well as fortresses, megalithic temples and the Ħal Saflieni Hypogeum. Aside from its rich culture and historic appeal, this group of islands is abounding with rugged and blue lagoons, cliffs and the perfect waters for snorkeling, diving and so much more. Whether you want to spend your time exploring St. John’s Co-Cathedral in Valleta or taking it easy at one of our relaxing resorts, there’s no doubt you’ll be fulfilled with a trip to Malta in 2019.
Where to stay?
Seclude yourself in paradise at The Westin Dragonara Resort, Malta. Tucked away amongst turquoise waters, this pink-painted resort offers opulent accommodations in the Mediterranean Sea. Stay sweetly in our suites that sit on the water’s edge, featuring large tubs for a candlelit bath, luxurious bedding and a large living space for gathering with friends and family by the fire. What really makes this resort stand out is beyond the sophisticated décor. Gorgeous sundecks offer endless access to the sun, diving and water sport options put the adventure back into a relaxing trip and the five resaturants offer dishes that will leave you satisfied in St. Julian’s. Don’t forget to pamper yourself in paradise at The Beauty Clinic. And did we mention that this award-winning hotel features Malta’s most historic casino? Place your bets on a trip worth taking when you stay at The Westin Dragonara Resort, Malta.
The “new year, new you” could be coasting through the Caribbean Sea when you put this Mexican island on your travel map. Cozumel has taken a back seat to popular destinations in Mexico, but this is the year to give it the attention that it deserves. Nestled along Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula, Cozumel offers a world of scuba-diving adventure, access to Arrecifes de Cozumel National Park and the Museo Subacuático de Arte, an assortment of submerged sculptures. If swimming with the dolphins and manatees in Chankanaab isn’t your thing, retreat to a luxurious resort for a much-needed, lazy stay. For a more inspiring afternoon, strap on your boots and mosey through the Mayan Ruins at San Gervasio. No one said you had to bring your other resolutions with you to Cozumel, Mexico.
Where to stay?
Standing tall on the coast of Mexico is The Westin Cozumel. This modern resort welcomes the blissed-out traveler ready for stunning beaches and absolute relaxation. The hotel features soft rooms and suites with gorgeous wood details, white-topped beds, flat-panel TVs and balconies that are perfect for your morning coffee in Mexico. From fine-tuning your Zen at Zazil Spa to treating yourself to Yucatán favorites and sweeping views of the ocean at Cuzamil. During your stay at this resort, you can easily venture to local treasures and take up scuba diving at Playa Azul, Eco Divers and Blue Magic Scuba. However, at The Westin Cozumel, no one will judge you for sipping on cocktails while soaking up the endless sun that beams on Cozumel, Mexico.
Are you ready to head somewhere new? Reserve a stay in one of these destinations with Vacations by Marriott and discover exclusive savings when you book your accommodations, airfare and transportation all in one place!