Best of the New 2022
Many resorts and cruise ships slated to make their debut in 2021 were pushed off a year due to the pandemic. So some of the properties we discussed in last January’s Best of the New issue are finally opening, like the Chatwal Lodge in upstate New York. Others like the new Rock House in Turks & Caicos (see below) simply waited until they felt the timing was right. Active adventure tour operators like Backroads had their best year ever. Domestic bookings were up 45% compared to 2019, the last pre-pandemic benchmark year, and virtually all US departures sold out. They continue to expand their domestic product in 2022 and sales in Europe are already better than last year. Here at ActiveTravels, we remain optimistic that we can finally get you over to Europe, Asia, even Africa later this year.

Please read on to hear about the fabulous new hotels, trips and cruising options we're excited about for 2022!
12 Hotel Openings To Get You Excited
New York, NY
Situated in New York’s NoMad neighborhood (5th Avenue and 28th Street), this Leading Hotels of the World property will combine a historic 1907 residence designed by storied architecture firm McKim, Mead & White with a new 24-story addition by Perkins Eastman. Designer Martin Brudnizki is behind the interiors, which are inspired by the Gilded Age with a rich color palette. There will be 153 rooms and suites, four chic restaurants and bars, and a ballroom for star-studded events. Opening Autumn 2022.
Hudson Valley, New York
Opening this fall is another Auberge Resorts Collection property we’re excited about, Wildflower Farms in upstate New York (about a 10-minute drive from New Paltz). The 140- acre grounds are teeming with gardens, a farm, grazing animals and, like the name implies, fields of wildflowers. The 65 freestanding, natural light-filled rooms are outfitted with wood floors and ceilings, fireplaces and fire pits, wood decks and private patios from which you can take in views of white pines and native perennials. A 9,000-square-foot spa will have an indoor saltwater pool and outdoor hot tubs, while the central restaurant will be built around an open kitchen. Guests can learn about the land through hands-on farming and foraging experiences, cooking classes, picnics and more.
Chicago, Illinois
Occupying 11 floors of a 101-story skyscraper designed by architect Jeanne Gang, this luxurious new offering opening in August will wow guests with its sleek design and 360-degree views of Chicago and Lake Michigan. There will be 192 rooms and suites, several dining options, a spa and fitness center with an indoor pool. 
Charleston, South Carolina
Open this past November, the newest boutique hotel in Charleston boasts Southern hospitality at its finest. Upon arrival, guests are welcomed with a "Nice to Meet You" Swizzle cocktail and are treated to homemade cookies and other local goodies throughout their stay. The hotel’s design is equally inviting and uniquely Charleston: the veranda-inspired lobby is adorned with live citrus trees and a repurposed Southern porch swing that beckons guests to sit and relax, while its 50 guest rooms are decorated in Lowcountry hues of blue and green. On the rooftop, guests can take in views of The Ravenel Bridge.
Marking Raffles’ first property in North America, this 35-story building will be a new landmark in Boston’s Back Bay. Its three-story sky lobby will be a first for the city, offering panoramic views of Copley Square and the surrounding area. The project, including 146 residences, are designed by the renowned Rockwell Group. Expect show-stopping spaces like a rooftop garden terrace, five restaurants and bars, and a spa with a 20-meter indoor pool. Opening late 2022.
Turks & Caicos
Set to open May 1st, the sister property to the Grace Bay Club will have a Mediterranean-inspired design with a beach club, oceanfront dining, and the largest infinity pool in Turks & Caicos. Accommodations will range from poolside studios to four-bedroom standalone villas. Service should be exceptional from the outset, as it’s rumored the hotel poached several top staffers from the nearby Como Parrot Cay, the country’s current top choice.
Riviera Maya, Mexico
Set to open this month, this Auberge Resorts Collection property is only 30 miles from the Cancun airport. Every one of the 75 rooms or suites (starting at 875 square feet) will have a view of the water and a private plunge pool, plus design features that nod to the area’s Mayan heritage created by the Abstract Expressionist artist Manuel Felguérez. Other amenities include five restaurants, two swimming pools, a kids’ club, and experiences that explore the Yucatán Peninsula. Their Mayan-inspired signature restaurant, Itzam, offers panoramic ocean views from its open-air seating.
Verona, Italy
Finally, a place in Verona worthy of a Romeo and Juliet level of love. Upping the five-star landscape in this fair city, Vista is set in the UNESCO World Heritage Site-designated historic center, in an elegant palazzo that has been renovated to reflect a mix of traditional and contemporary styles. The 16 spacious suites are furnished with pieces from top Italian designers, from the custom-made marbles sinks to fine cotton towels. Can’t-miss spots include the rooftop terrace with 360-degree views, and the spa, home to a pool, Turkish bath, saunas and a small gym. Head to the panoramic terrace to find the bar and restaurant, both looking out over the Verona rooftops and to the vineyards just outside town. Opening spring 2022.
The Maybourne Hotel Group (the brand behind Claridge’s, the Connaught, and the Berkeley in London) will debut their first foray into France this spring on the fabled French Riviera. Expect 69 rooms and suites and a variety of culinary destinations. Jean-Georges Vongerichten will debut his first restaurant in the south of France and Hiro Sato will add a world class sushi experience. But the big-ticket restaurant is sure to Ceto, by Mauro Colagreco, whose restaurant Mirazur was named the world’s best restaurant in 2019.
Edinburgh, Scotland
Scotland’s famed countryside resort is expanding its brand for the first time ever and opening a city hotel this May in Edinburgh. Ennismore Studio (also behind the hip Hoxton brand) has spent five years restoring the landmarked building, which was formerly the Bank of Scotland. Expect 33 rooms, a lively all-day restaurant, a rooftop bar, a club for members, and a wellness center in the old vault. Both the original resort and the town house are members of Leading Hotels of the World. 
Carved into a rugged cliffside and sprawled over 20 secluded acres, the latest from the wellness brand, Six Senses, brings a sense of much-needed calm and tranquility to this exciting Spanish island. There are 116 breezy, coastal-chic suites and two townhouses, each boasting sweeping Balearic Ocean views. But the resort’s crowning jewel is its spa, offering everything from cryotherapy to infrared saunas. There’s even an in-house shaman to help guests improve their spiritual well-being.
Open two weeks ago is Explora’s latest debut in Patagonia. Just like their sister properties in Torres del Paine and Atacama, adventure is the name of the game at Explora El Chaltén, a stunning lodge unveiled in in a private, 14,000-acre nature reserve. Here, guests have easy access to 15 acres of marked hiking trails, rock climbing routes and ice-trekking expeditions at nearby glaciers, all guided as part of your stay. Indoors, you'll find 20 bright, airy, minimalist rooms with jaw-dropping views of El Chaltén’s snow-capped peaks.
Best New Trips
Backroads Multi-Sport Adventure Trip
to Portugal
Pent-up demand for Europe has already led to a glut of bookings at Backroads this coming summer. Top-selling countries include Italy, France, Spain, Portugal, Croatia, Greece and Iceland. 

New for 2022 is a Multi-Adventure Trip to Portugal, available for couples and all family age groups. Highlights include biking through UNESCO World Heritage towns in Alentejo, hiking in Serra da Arrábida Nature Park, and sea kayaking in secluded bays outside of Lisbon.
South Korea Real Food Adventure
with Intrepid Travel
Once South Korea opens up to North Americans again, I am signing up for this 8-day gluttonous food tour with Intrepid Travel.

Start with a fried chicken dinner in Seoul, then it’s on to Jeonju for a kimchi cooking class and craft brewery tour, a market food tour and farm visit at Gyeongju, morning meditation and tea time with a monk at the Golgusa Temple, and a seafood tour of Busan.
Southern Africa Riverboat Safari
with Natural Habitat Adventures
This dreamy new 11-day trip from Natural Habitat Adventures starts aboard a small luxury ship on the largest manmade lake in Africa, Kariba. Then it’s off to safari in Hwange, the crown jewel of Zimbabwe’s national park system, before a stop in Chobe to see the large elephant herds, and the grand finale at Victoria Falls. Not too shabby.
Insider's Journey into Yosemite
with Nat Hab
We have to hand it to Natural Habitat Adventures again. We are also liking their U.S. National Parks trips for this coming summer as well as some spring and fall itineraries too. If you are not wanting to travel overseas just yet, check out where Nat Hab is offering trips in the US. This might just be the year to see the wonders of our own backyard.
Their Insider's Journey into Yosemite looks mesmerizing. It's an 8 day immersion into the secret spots known only to their Expedition leaders who understand Yosemite intimately. Stay 3 nights at the legendary Ahwanee Hotel in view of Half Dome, Yosemite Falls and Glacier Point (it's practically impossible to get reservations here on your own), see the 3000 foot El Capitan and the towering sequoias of Mariposa Grove and enjoy a sunrise canoe excursion on Mono Lake. If you journey there from July through early September, you'll experience their wildflower season. If you choose to go from mid-September through early October, you'll enjoy the magnificence of fall foliage. Either way, it will be stunningly beautiful!
Floriade in Amsterdam
at The Tower of London
For those of you who enjoy flora as well as fauna, it's a big year for floral events.

Floriade is happening in the Netherlands from April 14th until October 9th. This is a huge international Expo which occurs every 10 years. Esteemed horticulturalists from around the globe convene in a different spot in the Netherlands once a decade to propose solutions. This year the theme is Growing Green Cities and countries from Japan to Qatar to Nepal to Indonesia will participate in their designated pavilions with their revolutionary ideas of how horticulture can revive urban sprawl. I was fortunate to see the grounds in October last year and see them preparing for this exciting event.
Another floral event is SuperBloom! A colorful field of flowers will fill the moat at the Tower of London to celebrate the Platinum Jubilee of the Queen this summer (June 1st to September 18th). Visitors can wander along a meandering path into the center of the field of flowers and hear the sound installations and see sculptures commissioned especially for this event along the way.
New River Cruise Ships
Viking River Cruises
Debuts in America
Viking’s first foray in the US will be on the Mississippi River this summer aboard the new Viking Mississippi. Hosting 386 guests in 193 outside staterooms, the cruises will run from St. Paul, Minnesota, to New Orleans and numerous ports in between. The full-length cruise runs 15 days, while several eight-day trips are available. The staterooms will range in size from 268 square feet to 1,024 square feet, and each will have its own private veranda or French balcony, a king-size bed, and 24-hour room service. The ship will have a main dining venue on the first deck, a cafe on the top deck, and a pool at the aft.
Ritz Carlton Yachts
to Sail in May
The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection set a new May 2022 inaugural date for its long-awaited debut of Evrima.

She will now make her Inaugural voyage from Lisbon to Barcelona on May 6, 2022. The ship will have a maximum capacity of 298 passengers while carrying a total of 236 staff members aboard, one of the highest staff to guest ratios in the industry.
ActiveTravels is here to help you with your winter, spring, summer, or fall plans in 2022. Please let us know what interests you and we’ll get the ball rolling.
We’re here to help!
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