The summer season is here, and perhaps the time to take vacations have also arrived. For most people based in the concrete jungle based cities from around the world, where sometimes temperature tend to soar, a refreshing beach vacation would be the best way to rejuvenate, and emerge fresh into the daily course of life. Hence, with the 2013 Starwood Preferred Guest Member Favorites list selected by members worldwide, you can be your own luxury travel advisor. The preferred Starwood resorts from around the world have been listed across nine categories, including best spa indulgence, golf getaways, best island getaways amongst other categories, but for those dreaming of a luxurious beach vacation, get ready to take your pick.
Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa
North Male Atoll, Maldives
Highlights: Dining, natural relaxation and rejuvenation methods
Located in the best known nation for beach resort vacationing, The Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa happens to be an ideal location for indulging in the 'R and R' formula of rejuvenation and relaxation. One can indulge in the sessions for sunset yoga, or take dives from the 40 diving sites across the location to indulge in some underwater adventure. For those looking to taste varieties of cuisine at the resort, Chef Sven is in charge for serving varied cuisine at the 7 restaurants and lounge bars at the resort. What makes this location very conveniently located, is the 15 minute distance from the Male airport by a boat ride. This also means that the island remains a private spot, though easily connected to the mainland areas.
The Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa also features as one of the most romantic retreat and one of the best island paradise.
Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa
Hawaii, United States of America
Highlights: Pacific Ocean exposure, smoke-free resort
Being placed at the near the tip of the famous Black Rock of Kaanapali Beach in Hawaii, one of the favorite destinations for beach vacationing in North America, this resort boasts of some of the best oceanic exposures to the Pacific Ocean via most of it's accommodation, including the special Ali 'I' suite, Ohana Suite, and the ADA Rooms. Apart from the large scale of amenities, most hotels of this stature would include a suitable ambiance, and the Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa does that with aplomb. Old Haiwaii has been depicted via the local craftwork displayed along the walls including the bamboo lamp designs, block prints on kapa, and rattan chairs in peacock shape design of ancient thrones.
Sheraton Mirage Port Douglas Resort
Port Douglas, Australia
Highlights: 4-mile beach exposure, 2-hectares of swimmable lagoons, access to Great Barrier Reef and Daintree Rainforest, Villa accommodation
The Sheraton Mirage Port Douglas Resort is located near the Great Bariier Reef, which is famous around the world for the aqua-marine diversity. Followed by that, the beach resort offers a vast expanse of 2-hectares of swimming friendly lagoons, an experience which perhaps can be felt only in natural settings. There are 5 types of rooms available, including the deluxe garden view, mirage garden view, deluxe lagoon view, superior lagoon view, and the premium mirage view. Followed by that, there are 4 options of suites including the 2, 3, and 4 bedroom villas, which are more exclusive in their settings. 5 dining outlets including the lagoon bar, and the Daintree Lagoon bar apart from kids' zones and party locations are on offer too.
Sheraton Mirage Port Douglas Resort is also listed as best golf getaway.
Royal Hawaiian Resort
Honululu, United States of America
Highlights: Cultural activities, unique décor, gold standard concierge service, and host of summer activities
Known as the 'Pink Palace of the Pacific', the Royal Haiwaiin Resort is a part of the Luxury Collection Resort Group. For those who love beach based activities, there is a lot to choose from, including catamaran cruises, surfing, snorkeling, apart from shopping, cultural activities to keep busy. There are special childrens' menus that can also be free under certain conditions. There is the opportunity to indulge in golfing, luanas and cultural shows, and land adventures as well.
The Royal Hawaiian, Waikiki is also on the list of most romantic getaways.
St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort
Miami Beach, Florida, United States of America
Highlights: AAA Five-Diamond Award Winning hotel, Spa, grilled cuisine, recreation, special childcare services
One of the most luxurious offerings in this list, the St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort looks to please it's guests with the plethora of luxurious services including Remede Spa, Beach and ocean front pools, St. Regis Athletic Club, dining options including the renowned J&G grill by Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten, apart from the wine vault and local shopping centre. Other amenities include St.Regis Butler service, childrens' club and care services, private travel and transfers, Fresco Bar & Grill with oceanfront dining, Bal Harbour Shopping centre, golf course, cultural and entertainment options like the Lowe Art Museum and the Jackie Gleason Theatre. For rejuvenation, one can always hop into the 14,000 sq ft 'no-wall' Remede Spa, swim in the beach and oceanfront pools, St.Regis Athletic club where celebrity trainers like Tracie Wright Vlaun and Christopher Vlaun will help guests improve upon their health.
The St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort also has one of the best spas on the list.
St. Regis Princeville Resort
Hawaii, United States of America
Highlights: Location on Kaua'i island, which millions of years older than the other neighboring islands, Young Voyagers Club, vast accommodation choices, dining, spa and golf course
The St.Regis Princeville resort stands as one of the most elite properties in the area where clubs and it's amenities pamper guests to make their holiday worth the wait. The list of benefits included in the Inner Circle of the Resort count to many, but the most mentionable ones include complementary valet parking, discounts on the Halele'a Spa treatment, 15% discount on food and beverage, 15% discount on purchases as the Golf Club, direct and access to Young Voyagers Club. For staying there are 3 main categories of luxurious accommodations which include the ocean view, mountain or garden view, and the ocean view premium category of rooms. For dining, there are 8 options to choose from including outlets like Kauai Grill, St.Regis Bar, Makana Terrace, Napali Cafe, and the Nalu Kai Grill and bar. One can of course order in for a private room dining, or enjoy meals at the Mailani Dinner Show. For refreshing experience, one can join the yoga sessions, get special bridal dresses in case of a marriage, or work it out at the athletic centre.
The St. Regis Princeville Resort also features as one of the best golf getaways, best romantic retreat and best island paradise.
The Westin Grand Cayman Seven Mile Beach Resort and Spa
Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
Highlights: Location on Cayman Islands, food and beverage, Hibiscus Spa, Westin Kids Club, beach exposure
The Westin Grand Cayman Seven Mile Beach Resort and Spa is known for it's prime location in one of the best European locations in the Cayman Islands. Located away from the busyness of the European mainlands, the Cayman Islands get their fame for being one of the world's top tax havens and financial centres. The Westin Resort is one place one can forget the life of the cities with the pristine views of the ocean, multi-cuisine dining options, exotic massage treatments, and beach related activities. For recreation there is the diving centre, fitness facility, golfing, scuba diving, wave running, snorkeling, or something more exotic at the Hibiscus Spa. For satisfying the gastronomic demands, one can access 8 options for dining which include the Tortugas light fare outlet, lobby bar, the beach bar, Ferdinand's Caribbean restaurant, Courtyard Cafe, Casa Havana Lounge and restaurant, and Cafe Soleil.
Westin Ka'anapali Ocean Resort Villas
Hawaii, United States of America
Highlights: Villa Accommodation, large number of housekeeping and guest services, entertainment, and Spa facilities
For those who like privacy and exclusive accommodation even during the vacation, The Westin Ka'anapali Ocean Resort Villas are just the perfect way to spend the summer beach vacation. The owners' lounge which overlook pools and waterfalls, apart from the 3 restaurants where one can satisfy gastronomical needs. One can even go shopping at the on-site markets which have outlets for almost all needs. For those who like to laze around, there is always the great conversations at sundown, at the outdoor gas grills and barbecues. The daily housekeeping services, which include a total change of linen on call, and through cleaning of the accommodation. For rejuvenation, one can head to the Spa Helani, where the host of Hawaiian based treatments await a totally reflective and peaceful experience via trained and skilled therapists.
The Westin Ka’anapali Ocean Resort Villas is one of the best resorts for family vacation.
Westin Resort & Casino, Aruba
Palm Beach, Aruba
Highlights: Idyllic setting in Caribbean, ocean view suites, casino
One of the rare surviving monarchies in the Caribbean waters, the Westin Resort and Casino in Aruba, will best be known for the Idyllic setting, peaceful surroundings, ocean views, and not to forget, the casino. Out of the 481 rooms that can accommodate guests, one can view the infinite expanse of the ocean from alteast 200 of the rooms. One can always choose for greater privacy in a family setting in one of the ocean-view suites. In fact, there are 11 different options to choose from. Main activities include the casino gambling, deep sea fishing, scuba diving, sailing and windsurfing, shopping, sailing and windsurfing. Some of the total 9 dining outlets should cater to most dining and pleasure needs, and one can always attend the Magic Livel Comedy Show for having a few laughs.
Westin Siray Bay Resort & Spa
Siray Bay, Phuket, Thailand
Highlights: idyllic settings, water sports programme, shared neighborhood with James Bond Island, golfing
One of Asia's prime locations for beach vacationing, Siray Bay near Phuket offers some of the best views and lifestyle tourism known in the region. Westin Siray Bay Resort & Spa offers a host of activities in these settings, including beach yoga, sunset beach volleyball, Nordic walks, windsurfing lessons, kayaking, beach soccer, beach pilates, and snorkeling. The outdoor pools and Siray Bay visits, workouts at the Westin WORKOUT Gymnasium, kids programme at the Westin Kids Club, or a through refresher at the Heavenly spa which has localized but famous treatments are other activities to keep oneself busy in. For dining needs, there are 6 outlets on the resort; Daily Treats for bakery products, Eest for Asian Cuisine, Mix Lounge Bar, Prego Italian Cuisine, Seasonal tastes for multi-cuisine, and the Splash beach-side restaurant.
The Westin Siray Bay Resort & Spa, Phuket has world class spa for spa for spa indulgence.
W Retreat Koh Samui
Koh Samui, Thailand
Highlights: modern lifestyle on the beach, exotic therapy at the spa, library, and guest services
Though most luxury resorts and hotels offer the local seaside lifestyle to it's guests, the W Retreat Koh Samui offers a more contemporary lifestyle, without compromising on the serene beach vacation factor. Outdoor tennis court called Swing being complementary for guests, water sports and activity center rightfully called the Wave, to the Fitness center being called Sweat, and the W Library are some of the signature highlights of this resort. Those who have a thing for spas, the Away Spa has exotic offerings including a Thaimazcal, which is an Mexican inspired therapy. For those who can't stay away from the world for too long, the Wired Business center is always there for use to get connected via the Internet, or even hold a private meeting.
W Retreat Koh Samui wins accolades for not just being the best beach resort, but also as one of the most romantic retreats, island paradise and best exotic escape.
W South Beach Hotel
Miami Beach, Florida, United States of America
Highlights: Multiple cuisine dining, beach bar, private accommodation
Miami Beach in Florida happens to be a fantasy destination of the all the beach loving Americans, and the Western world at large. The interesting part about resorts based in this area is, the complete contrast of a busy city alongside this pristine beach vacation spot where the lifestyle is much more easily paced. The W South Beach Hotel is one such place, where luxury and beach lifestyle come into a homogeneity of soothing vacation, where guests can select anything between the 15 different varieties of accommodation including the private villas. The VIP suites itself, have 8 sub categories, which translates into 'just-the-right' room and settings for everyone. Apart from a host of sea based activities, one can indulge in Bliss Spa, Sweat Fitness cente, Bicycle rental for a local city tour, basketball and tennis, apart from wellness consultation with noted expert Simone Cavalletti. For hunger pangs, anything from the 5 outlets can be chosen as per mood and setting to indulge and taste finely cooked food.