KAA News Roundup

Welcome Winter.  It may be time to make some beach vacation plans, and our portfolio is full of tropical locales.  Read on for the latest, and may you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Six Senses Resorts & Spas has several new openings planned for 2015 including Portugal and The Seychelles. Six Senses Ninh Van Bay in Vietnam was awarded  “Sexiest Hotel Bedroom by Smith Hotel Awards.

Vik Retreats has exciting news this month with both Bahia Vik and Vina Vik set to welcome guests. Read about the new properties as well as Estancia Vik and Playa Vik in some great press this month from W Magazine, Travel + Leisure, Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The New York Times.

To the west, Pikaia Lodge in the Galapagos continues to receive great press and rave reviews after their recent opening. Read about it in The Financial Times

The new Condado Vanderbilt will be re-open Dec. 8 after an extensive renovation. This legendary hotel in San Juan Puerto Rico is almost ready for it’s first guests!

Gansevoort Turks + Caicos on Grace Bay Beach is the perfect spot for a destination wedding and View the Vibe agrees.

Musha Cay was featured in The Telegraph’s article, “Top 10 millionaires’ paradise islands: where the rich and famous go to get away from it all.” View this video interview with Island Director Cathy Daly with Superyachts from the Monaco Yacht Show.

Over to Nicaragua, where Mukul Beach, Golf & Spa continues to receive great press. Mukul was featured in  Forbes Travel Guide’s “5 Wedding Packages We Love For 12-13-14.” They also made the list from Travel + Leisure of the Hottest New Beach Hotels. Vogue features Mukul in their “10 Amazing Winter Wedding Destinations Near and Far.” EOnline features the crown jewel of Mukul, Casona Don Carlos in their roundup of “World’s Most Expensive Hotel Rooms.” The man this suite is named for, Carlos Pellas, is interviewed by Bloomberg News in their article, “Nicaragua’s First Billionaire Is Country’s Sugar King.”

Forbes writer Ann Abel featured three properties on her list of “The Most Luxurious Beach Vacations: 12 Tropical Ways To Escape Winter.” Song Saa Private Island, The Wakaya Club, & Mukul all make the cut.

Spa Finder announced the winners of their Wellness Travel Awards, and a big congratulations to Song Saa, the winner of readers “Favorite Wellness Travel Property in Cambodia.” The private island also received a visit from His Serene Highness Prince Albert II of Monaco this month, read more here.

The Siam in Bangkok was featured in an article in this month’s Vanity Fair on Thailand, writing “The Siam is a remarkable hotel, a luxuriously serene escape from Bangkok…” Full article is available here.

Luxury Travel Magazine wrote a review on  The Lodhi in New Delhi, entitled “A Perfect Sanctuary.” More on India where Ananda in the Himalayas was featured in Travel Age West’s article, “Traveling Like the Beatles in India.”

Down to Bali, where The Urban List writes on “Where To Eat, Play And Stay In Bali” highlighting the award-winning Fivelements healing and wellness retreat. For more wellness, look no further than Conde Nast’s list of 6 Top Fitness Vacations featuring The Ranch at Live Oak Malibu.

Fogo Island Inn is definitely something special, and the below news and press is in total agreement.  You can also now buy the Newfoundland furtiture you see at the inn online soon. Vogue writes on, 5 Winter Wonderland Vacations That Are Better than the Beach.” NUVO magazine writes on architect Todd Saunders in an article entitled Raw Beauty. And, Fogo Island Inn is a finalist for a National Geographic award.  Read more here.

More great news this month from New Zealand where the Owner’s Cottage at Matakauri Lodge was featured on EOnline’s World’s Most Expensive Hotel Rooms.



Wakaya Club & Spa: Luxury and Freedom on a Private Island in Fiji

Wealth has its privileges and one of them can be found on a private island in Fiji. Wakaya Club & Spa is an Eden of sustainable luxury to some and an exotic getaway in a far island paradise to others. But to all it is an answer to a those seeking a romantic, sun-drenched isle amazing enough to attract some of the wealthiest travelers in the world and humble enough to harness the waves and the stars as constant company.



The private island resort is the work of David and Jill Gilmour, perhaps better known for putting Fiji Water on the map. But their values for purity and earth-friendly living has made the Wakaya Club a place where dining well and as organically as possible is as important as the clear waters, sumptuous cottages and fine hospitality details to be found.  The island is in Fiji’s Lomaiviti Archipelago, a quick hop from Suva and a 40-minute private Cessna jaunt from Fiji’s international airport at Nadi.


Once there, find in island of peaceful green, about five square miles in area with some 16 miles of road, an air strip, marina, village and church – and 10 magnificent bungalows by the water served by a staff of some 300 souls. Only 28 guests can share this privilege at one time – a making for a very comfortable 12-1 staff/guest quotient.

wcs-history-ceremonyIt’s not hard to imagine Captain William Bligh passing this island as he did in 1789, set aloft after the famed mutiny on the Bounty. Nearly a century later the island marked Fiji’s first foray into the cultivation of sugar. But it was left more or less alone for over a century after that time until the Gilmours purchased the island and, in 1990, opened 10 bures, two villas and a sprawling hilltop mansion that all became the Wakaya Club & Spa.

Wakaya (1)
A Vacation’s Vacation

A vacation at Wakaya is at once as close to the earth as one can possibly get and as close to heaven as can be found on earth. The island has four beaches, each offering its own reason for staying, swimming and indulging in lavish picnics in the sand, alone on the edge of the Koro Sea.

There is a golf and tennis (with lessons from pros); guided nature walks, watersports, yoga, croquet, even a fully outfitted gym for guests who want to stay active. Guests can scuba or snorkel the marine preserve directly in front of their bure. And, of course, hammocks strung between coconut palms wait for those moments that call for a good book and a snooze. The Breeze Spa caps the indulgences with treatments geared for individuals and couples, complemented by dips in a body-temperature serenity pool while relaxing on a lanai overlooking the sea. Mango wraps and sugar glows get the good chi flowing.


Sprawling 1,650-square-foot bures (private cottages) opening onto the beach each provide the kind of retreat that invites dreaming. Following Champagne on arrival, guests find their island lair to be a temple of cathedral ceilings, woven bamboo wall coverings and indigenous yaka timber flooring. Two- and three-bedroom villa estates surrounded by acres of privacy provide vacation perfection for families, CEOs and heads of state alike.


GB-Bed-smallAll rooms at The Wakaya Club have a living room area with fully stocked wet bar and CD stereo. The bedroom brings a four-poster king size bed draped in 100% cotton Filli D’Oro sheets from Italy. The bathroom comes with an open-air lava rock shower stall plus an oversized soaking tub, three sinks, a bidet, and Aveda bath products.


Matsuhisa and Trotter: Two Chefs, One Island

Organic ginger grows wild on Wakaya and the pungent root finds its way into the signature “Wakaya Perfection Organic Ginger Margarita” sipped during quiet sunsets or enjoyed by the freshwater pool. And it finds its way into menus created by master chefs Nobu Matsuhisa and Charlie Trotter who trained the island resort’s chefs. The kitchens use organically grown ingredients where possible, much of it culled from the island’s untainted, super-rich volcanic soil.

A Wakaya Vacay: No Wants, No Worries

Much is included in a Wakaya vacation. Guests are met at Nadi International Airport and guided to their island flight. Early arrivals are guaranteed early morning check-in and all guests can have a late afternoon check-out. All meals and beverages (alcoholic and non-alcoholic) are part of the fare, as are unlimited use of the generously-stocked mini bar, unlimited wireless Internet access throughout, personal laundry service, two scuba tank dives per person per day, and unlimited use of all other sporting facilities and equipment– including private beach picnics, golf, tennis, snorkeling, sea kayaking, Fitness Bure, and croquet.

A Getaway Package that offers the fifth night free with a booking for four consecutive nights is a popular and ongoing value at Wakaya Club & Spa.



(+011 679) 34 48128


Kurtz-Ahlers & Associates– Curator of undiscovered luxury travel locales with insider info and news from our worldwide portfolio of hotels, wellness retreats, and eco-resorts. View our portfolio on our Online Directory.

Sign up up for our Wellness Travel Updates and our monthy newsletter for the latest exclusive offers and news from around the globe, follow us on twitter, like us on facebook or follow us on Instagram and Pinterest.







Twin Farms Winter Wellness Package

logcabin5_galleryVisit Twin Farms this winter and enjoy the new Winter Wellness Package. Stay at Twin Farms midweek and receive a pair of Hunter Boots, daily yoga class, daily group hike or snowshoe, daily cooking demo, breakfast juice bar, and more. Reserve a cottage and in addition to the above activities, choose from a private yoga session in your room or a Tata Harper facial!
Winter Wellness Package is available midweek until March 17, 2015, subject to availability, blackout dates apply.

Contact info@twinfarms.com for reservations or more information.

Wyoming’s Brush Creek Ranch Ranks #1 in the US, #2 in the World by Condé Nast Traveler

The lodge at Brush creekThe 2014 Reader’s Choice Awards from Conde Nast Traveler ranked The Lodge & Spa at Brush Creek Ranch the #2 Hotel & Resort in the World, the #1 Resort in the USA, and the #1 Dude Ranch in the USA.

The magazine writes, “The Lodge in Saratoga, Wyoming is our readers’ favorite U.S. resort, bringing an extra dose of luxury to the rugged West.” The Ranch is ideal for families, weddings, couples, groups and anyone looking for a true western experience where luxury meets adventure. The all-inclusive resort offers gourmet food, spa and a vast array of outdoor experiences delivered by a passionate staff to create memories to last a lifetime.

Top 100 Hotels in the World

Top 25 Resorts in the USA


The Lodge & Spa at Brush Creek Ranch
66 Brush Creek Ranch Road
Saratoga, WY 82331
Tel: +1-307-327-5284
Email: GuestServices@BrushCreekRanch.com
Website: www.brushcreekranch.com

 Brush Creek rock and pasture

Once Upon a Time in Puerto Rico: Condado Vanderbilt Reclaims its Glory

If its walls could talk they would probably sing. The Condado Vanderbilt in the fashionable Condado district of San Juan has accommodated kings, captains and stars through most of the last century and as it rounds its 95th birthday, is reopening December 8, 2014 as a buffed up version of those glory decades.

lobby area
The upcoming close-up for this grand dame marks the completion of a $200 million remake that has re-imagined 319 guestrooms, including 108 suites, and preserved the nostalgia – though now infused with 21st century amenities.  Newly constructed Suite Towers offer one- and two-bedroom villa-like residences, many with dramatic ocean views, ranging in size from 750 – 1,500 square feet. Expect exquisite accents here: spacious living areas with nine-foot ceilings, white Carrera marble flooring, cozy Euro-style kitchens with granite counters and touches of mahogany woods, Jacuzzi tubs and separate rainshower stalls. All suites have round-the-clock butlers in attendance.


Condado Vanderbilt: Long Shadows of History

Not lost in the shine is the original Spanish Revival grandeur from the firm Warren and Wetmore (think New York’s Grand Central Station and the New York Biltmore) carefully blended into the new presentation by Wilson & Associates. The Condado Vanderbilt Hotel stays worthy of bearing the title of its original owner, Frederick Vanderbilt, who created this icon on the sea in 1919, two years after Puerto Rico became a U.S. territory under the Jones Act. Since then the hotel has welcomed such guests as Charles Lindberg, Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, and countless CEOs and celebrities.

Exterior Facade 9029

Condado Vanderbilt’s Menu of Amenities

On its perch above the Atlantic on the north side of the island, guests still have those inspiring views of the ocean but receive a strong whiff of modern luxury in the mix. The hotel’s signature restaurant, 1919, has Michelin-starred chef Juan Jose Cuevas at the helm. The Puerto Rico native has cooked for Alain Ducasse and won a star of his own at Blue Hill in New York.

Veritas Wine Bar 9401The hotel’s spa brings a dash of Middle Eastern culture to the island with Puerto Rico’s first hammam, featuring a traditional marble-slab heated massage bed, along with marble benches, and walls of mosaic marble. Indoor and open-air pampering experiences include two remineralizing natural clay treatments with outdoor showers for guests to rinse off. Quiet areas allow spa guests to enjoy the ocean views while sipping refreshing mocktails.

The Condado Vanderbilt’s spa veers to beauty in a space for consultation services and a spot at the Aroma Blending Bar where visitors can mix their own fragrances. Pampered relaxation extends to the hotel’s two pool lounging areas: a mirrored pool with waterfall on one side and an infinity pool on the edge of the Atlantic on the other, both with butler attendants at the ready.

Terrace East Sunset

Savoring Old San Juan

Condado Vanderbilt is just off the isthmus from Old San Juan, a spectacle of New World history and a colorful mecca for shopping and dining. When seeking out what there is to do in Puerto Rico, Old San Juan is ready to oblige with art and history museums, hip art galleries, cobbled narrow streets flanked by colorfully preserved Spanish Colonial facades – all leading to the tip of the island that houses the ghostly 500-year-old walls of the El Morro fort.


Browsers with an eye for bargains will want to hit the El Alcazar, probably the top spot for antiques in the Caribbean. The treasures overflow to surrounding warehouses. Adventurers will want to explore the nearby rainforests, rivers and waterfalls of El Yunque or the amazing underground caves of Río Camuy Cave Park.


Mosquito Bay is where to go – and glow – at night. These waters make up one of the world’s brightest bioluminescent bays, causing organisms – and swimmers – to light up in the dark due to high concentration of dinoflagellites, small incandescent microorganisms that illuminate the entire bay when the sun goes down.


But nightlife in San Juan is legendary. From romantic sunset spots to swank cocktail stops to hot gay scenes, rumba and salsa palaces, live music just about everywhere. Dancing in the streets is not uncommon and barhopping is a must.


A stay at Condado Vanderbilt can be packed with value with a roster of packages – from family to romantic — now available. A Discover Old San Juan package starts at $478 per night for two and includes ocean view accommodations, daily full breakfast, a walking tour through Old San Juan (with transportation) and lunch at Patio del Nispero Restaurant at Hotel El Convento (three-night minimum required). Best available nightly rates at Condado Vanderbilt Hotel vary but currently run around $350 mid week.



Condado Vanderbilt Hotel
1055 Ashford Avenue
San Juan, Puerto Rico 00907
(1-787) 721-5500


KAA News Roundup

Big news from Conde Nast Traveler 2014 Reader’s Choice Awards:  The Lodge & Spa at Brush Creek Ranch wins #1 in the USA and #2 in the World! Congratulations!

Congrats to Twin Farms  in Vermont as well, coming in at #61 in the world. Travel + Leisure agrees, listing them in their article, “Most Romantic Fall Getaways.” The Inn at Dos Brisas in Texas also made the list.

Exciting news from Fogo Island Inn, the modern outport furniture found throughout the Inn is now available for sale.   The inn established a retail partnership with Toronto-based residential furniture and accessories shop Klaus by Nienkamper. Read more in Architectural Digest.  From the Robb Report, read about Newfoundland’s nautical island tradition of punting here.

More from the Robb Report, featuring Musha Cay in the “Top 10 Ultimate Winter Beach Getaways.” One more Caribbean resort in our portfolio, Gansevoort Turks + Caicos, is featured in Live Fast Magazine here.

Coming in at #36 on Conde Nast Traveler 2014 Reader’s Choice Awards is Rancho La Puerta, the original destination spa.

From the New York Times, read about VeraVia in Carsbad, California in their article, “Health Spas Aimed at Teaching Stressed Executives to Unwind.”

“The 3 Best Luxury Detox and Slimming Hotels” from New York Smash features both Ananda Spa and SHA Wellness.

More wellness from Uruguay, where there are a few spots left for Vik Retreats yoga retreat on November 3oth. Download information here.  From Fathom, “Everything You Need to Know to Have a Perfect Beach Vacation in Jose Ignacio, Uruguay.” Read article. From Architectural Digest, the Vik Vineard in “The Best Vineyard Designed by Starchitects.” From Absolute Travel’s Robyn Mark, a candid review on her visit to Vik retreats here.

Great press this month for the newly opened Pikaia Lodge in the Galapagos. Read the article from The Telegraph and The New York Times on this new eco luxe gem.

Great news from Nicaragua, a new airport is scheduled to be complete on the coast, making travel seamless for guests of Mukul.

Learn more about our new client Ol Jogi Ranch in Kenya and their conservation efforts from this video courtesy of Lonely Planet.

More awards from Conde Nast Traveler 2014 Reader’s Choice Awards, The Lodge & Spa at Kauri Cliffs  in New Zealand makes the Top 100 in the world, congrats!  Congratulations are in order for the Armani/Amal at The Armani Hotel Dubai, #1 of 5,600 restaurants in Dubai from Trip Advisor’s Travelers’ Choice Awards 2014.

Lastly, The Siam Hotel in Bangkok was featured in CNN’s article, “11 urban resorts that will make you forget you’re in the city.”

Enjoy the last bit of fall, may travels be in the near future.



Ol Jogi: Luxury and Conservation on Your own Safari Ranch in Africa

While luxury safaris in Africa come in many shapes and sizes, few, if any, offer guests an entire ranch of their own in the middle of Kenya with on-tap amenities that wow. And few, if any, make those dreams happen inside a wild animal sanctuary that is as focused on conservation as it is on comfort and luxury.

OlJogiOl Jogi is an African safari experience that transcends time and possibly style. It ascends to something supercharged that mixes extremes in luxury with the primeval purity of the African high plains. That means amazing meals in sumptuous settings while lions roar in the bush beyond. That means rooms filled with precious ornaments, the finest of linens and rare and exquisite artworks. And it means that being there is actually a measure of giving back.

1458643_10154610226290088_3694768575233435016_nThe 58,000-acre ranch located on the Laikipia plateau of northern Kenya is surrounded by grassland horizons, interrupted now and then by great volcanic rock outcroppings and migrations of rare wildlife. Herds of hippo, black and white rhino, elephant (these can number as high as 600 depending on the season), Grevy’s zebra, Cape buffalo, giraffe, impala, gazelle and wildebeest move in patches that blend in with the acacias and grasses. Rare avian species feed in the many rivers and streams or next to large and lumbering beasts that mozy up to the ranch’s own watering hole and salt lick.

StevieMann (2)Some 130 rangers and security personnel keep the animal count in check, as does an electric fence. Incidents of poaching – especially targeting the precious rhino populations — are increasing and becoming stunningly sophisticated. Ol Jogi’s resources are given to staying ahead of the threat as well as protecting – and healing – the great variety of wildlife that inhabit these plains.

For the guest itchingly interested in Africa’s rich wildlife Ol Jogi is where guests can explore an ultra-modern onsite veterinary center where cheetahs, lions, and African wild dogs are fostered. They can take walks with friendly troops of baboons or ride horseback into the savannah for a feeling of being at one with the world – and its wild inhabitants.

StevieMann (4)Back on the ranch, Ol Jogi is a living paradise of wonder, inside and out. Seven freestanding cottages as well as quarters within the main house mean that up to 22 people can be accommodated for celebrations, weddings, incentives and meetings in a most magnificent manner.

Each guest cottage is freestanding with windows and patios overlooking the vast and scenic savannah. Interior décor here employs the finest European linens; exquisite glassware and ornaments from Lalique, Saint-Louis, Hermès and Daum; his and her bathrooms and his and her dressing rooms for those overstuffed steamer trunks. And it is all in surrounds of precious wall arts and sculptures and custom-designed furnishings.

10648230_10154610227205088_6034984773237775778_oThe cottages mix with a prodigious mélange of public spaces: a large, meandering swimming pool with tropical accents, a tennis court, horse stables, a hammam. In the main house also find reception rooms, a sitting room, a cozy library room with fireplace, a billiard room, plus the dining room and bar.

OlJogiGuides are on tap for one or two or 22 guests who want to share an adventure together watching lions and hyenas under light of the moon, the pale of dawn or the long shadows of sunset. Masseuses are at the ready to deliver sublime body treatments and banish jet lag. Generous staff-to-guest ratios assure someone is always available to cook bacon and eggs at midnight or deliver gin & tonics at a perfect moment.

10338421_10154610227930088_592267209707398645_oThe safari guides know most of the animals by sight and may even have names for them. Although the populations vary in migrations and numbers with the seasons, they always seem to come back. Ol Jogi is a 45-minute flight from Nairobi and within easy reach of Mount Kenya and the Samburulands to camp amid wildebeest and see the magnificent gatherings of coral flamingos.

The ranch is an easy buyout at $210,000 for seven days for up to 14 guests, which easily pencils out, at full house, to an inclusive cost per night that is significantly less than other resorts charge, and they do not include all the on-tap luxury amenities and services that Ol Jogi manages.

10535639_10154610226425088_8551297958263224146_oAs a working cattle ranch, Ol Jogi participates extensively in community development and provides a livelihood for many local families as well providing education, financial assistance and support to community development programs. Just 140 miles from Nairobi, a stay at Ol Jogi is at once a safari vacation of a lifetime and a direct way of giving back to the land, the animals and the people that make it possible.


Ol Jogi


Kurtz-Ahlers & Associates– Curator of undiscovered luxury travel locales with insider info and news from our worldwide portfolio of hotels, wellness retreats, and eco-resorts. View our portfolio on our Online Directory.

Sign up up for our Wellness Travel Updates and our monthy newsletter for the latest exclusive offers and news from around the globe, follow us on twitter, like us on facebook or follow us on Instagram and Pinterest.








Experience Two of Thailand’s Best Hotels in One Unforgettable Trip

At The Siam in Bangkok, book any of our best available rates for three consecutive nights at The Siam, Bangkok and stay one night with our compliments at the exclusive Dhara Dhevi Hotel in Chiang Mai. This complimentary night in a Colonial or Villa Suite is for room only.

MainThis amazing offer is valid until 31st March, 2015.

For bookings and additional information please contact The Siam’s reservations department directly at reservations@thesiamhotel.com.

Terms & Conditions

  • Black out dates from December 21st, 2014 to January 3rd, 2015.
  • Complimentary night must be connected with the stay at The Siam and is not to be booked separately.
  • This offer can not be combined with any other promotion and advanced purchase rates.
  • Complimentary night is subject to room availability.

To visit and explore Dhara Dhevi Hotel in Chiang Mai, visit:  http://www.dharadhevi.com.

For more information, please call +66 (2)206 6999 or email: info@thesiamhotel.com.

Wellness Travel Becoming the Journey du Jour in Vacation Choices

When things get tough, the tough get going – to spas, that is. According to a comprehensive wellness travel study released last month by the non-profit research center SRI International, the global wellness market is now worth $3.4 trillion, making it nearly three times larger than the $1 trillion worldwide pharmaceutical industry.

297219_10150865317770088_1299632012_nThe wellness sectors seeing the biggest spikes in growth and interest include:

  • Healthy eating, nutrition and weight loss (108 percent increase to $276.5 billion since 2010)
  • Preventative and personalized health (78 percent increase to $243 billion since 2010)
  • Complementary and alternative medicine (65 percent increase to $113 billion since 2010)
  • Beauty and anti-aging (51 percent increase to $679 billion since 2010)1934802_214893270087_5548959_n

For vacation seekers, this means wellness travel is no longer a marginal afterthought in getaway options. Rather, the consideration of wellness within one’s travel plans is becoming priority as stressed-out workers and consumers peruse the possibilities in resort destinations that will not provide a welcome change of scenery and lifestyle, but push the reset button on spirit and energy.

In fact, biggest industry sector for this study was wellness tourism, or travel associated with maintaining or enhancing one’s personal well-being and health. Wellness travel alone accounted for $494 billion spent on travel last year.

Answering the call that the quest for wellness travel generates, the destination spa resorts in the Kurtz-Ahlers & Associates portfolio of exclusive resort properties provides a formidable list of choices for the mounting demand.

United States

The Ranch at Live Oak in Malibu, CA is the resort of choice for anyone who is serious about setting goals – and meeting them. Guests get their wake-up calls before sunrise and settle in for a day of hiking, training, great eating, fitful sleeping and, yes, sweet pampering. And they can expect to see a celebrity or two toning up for yet another close-up in this Malibu location so close to the star-studded enclaves of L.A. The ranch accommodates up to sixteen guests in weeklong programs that are all in.

(310) 457-8700

in Carlsbad, CA just north of San Diego combines a stay at Park Hyatt Aviara Resort (formerly a Four Seasons property) with a fully customized wellness regimen that fills a full day with hiking, fitness classes, workshops, counseling and healthy eating. The location is in mountains above the Pacific and a calming pool environment is there for anyone who wants to incorporate time to relax. Each guest receives a fully customizable menu of options in daily activity lists that include everything from yoga and Tai Chi to trips to a farmer’s market with a nutritionist. Wellness professionals help guests set life goals and show them paths for achieving them. Active follow-up coaching comes as part of the resort’s approach so that changes can, indeed, be achieved and maintained long after the vacation ends.

(800) 527-1936



Rancho La Puerta in Tecate, Baja California is an hour’s drive from San Diego and many miles away in slow and healthy living. The cottages and campus of this easy-access wellness retreat spread about the 3,000 acres of gardens and rolling mountain meadows. The resort accommodates up to 100 guests and provides a variety of fitness programs and activities — from daily morning hikes to Qi Gong to classes in healthy gourmet wellness meals. Weeklong programs run Saturday to Saturday and the inclusive rates wrap all meals, transfers, fitness activities, classes (and there are around 50 classes to choose from each day), lectures, workshops and entertainment into neat and effective programs. Three- and four-night packages are also available for quick tune-ups. A variety of specials and theme weeks take place throughout the year.

(800) 443-7565


Ananda in the Himalayas is a short flight or four-hour train trip from New Delhi, and offers a movie set backdrop for a wellness journey that delves deep into mind, body and spirit. The stay here is in what was once a Raja’s palace and focus is placed on harmonizing energies through meditation, yoga, hiking and mindful walks in the mountains, intense massage treatments based on the wisdom of the Vedas, and healthy ayurvedic eating based on body type. A variety of programs and flexible schedules meet guest demand – whether one wants to stay a few nights or a few weeks. Medical practitioners and wise Buddhist and Hindu spiritualists work with guests to de-stress and reset no matter how long the stay.

(011 91) 1378 227500


Fivelements in Bali puts guests right into the heart of nature with nine thatched cottage suites and villas, each surrounded by primal forest and overlooking the sacred Ayung River. The spa at Fivelements focuses on Balinese culture and wisdom, immersing guests in a holistic spa experience based on harmonizing the physical, emotional and spiritual parts of our inner and outer worlds. Healing here incorporates meditation with deep bodywork and tapping prana energy in rituals performed by authentic healers. Guests here come for the cleansing, the rest, the deep spirit work and bodywork managed through hydromassage, chomotherapy, watsu, reflexology and beauty treatments. All-inclusive retreats run from three days to three weeks and focus on purification, balancing and regeneration, eating life-sustaining foods, and skills for creating inner strength.

(011 62) 361 469 206


Chiva-Som in Hua Hin, a royal resort town on the Gulf of Thailand around three hours south of Bangkok by car, offers a kitchen sink approach to wellness. Find incredible food, sumptuous settings, medical advice and days of satisfying indulgences in eastern and western philosophies of wellness. Guests stay in private Lanna-style cottages and consult with a wellness advisor to get the most from their stay, no matter how long. Retreats can be as short as a three-night stay during a whirlwind visit to Thailand and include classes, spa treatments, meals and consultations. The Niranlada Medi-Spa is available for more involved treatments and therapies, including cosmetic contouring and laser treatments, and all within a soothing and harmonious environment.

(011 66) 32 536 536


SHA Wellness Clinic in Alicante combines world class medical pioneering in interdisciplinary healing arts within a posh Mediterranean setting. The resort’s 93 suites offer luxury with a modern sheen – whites, clean lines, plenty of southern European sunshine through walls of glass. Aesthetics aside, guests come to SHA not only to rest and reset but also to manage health issues, such as smoking, sleeping problems, even cosmetic changes. The SHA Clinic divides into five areas of focus: Anti-Aging Medicine, Aesthetic Medicine, Cosmetic Dentistry, Sleep Medicine and Anti-Smoking and those seeking assistance in these areas find plenty of ways to make affirmative changes in their lives. SHA Spa is there to round out these treatments with beauty pampering and relaxation therapies that infuse eastern calm. A cornucopia of programs available speak to every wish – from relaxation and pampering to intensive restructuring.

(011 34) 966 811 199


Kurtz-Ahlers & Associates– Curator of undiscovered luxury travel locales with insider info and news from our worldwide portfolio of hotels, wellness retreats, and eco-resorts. View our portfolio on our Online Directory.

Sign up up for our Wellness Travel Updates and our monthy newsletter for the latest exclusive offers and news from around the globe, follow us on twitter, like us on facebook or follow us on Instagram and Pinterest.


KAA News Roundup

Lots of news this fall with some exciting hotel openings.  Vina Vik in Chile is opening October 1st, Bahia Vik in Uruguay on November 1st and The Norman in Tel Aviv and Pikaia Lodge in the Galapagos have just opened. Read more about the new Vik Retreats here.  Read a great article on Estancia Vik from Fast Life Luxury here and read about their upcoming yoga retreat here.

Pikaia Lodge Galapagos is also in the news on the heels of their opening.  From CNN Traveler “Alternative tours | Wonders of the World” proposes a way to see wonders without the crowds. Hotel Chatter’s article here touts the in-house tortoise reserve.

Andrew Harper’s Annual Reader’s Choice Awards are always worth a read and we are proud three of our hotels made the list - Halekulani, Twin Farms, and Kauri Cliffs. See the full list here.

Twin Farms was also included in Conde Nast Traveler’s round-up of the best all inclusives, ranking Twin Farms as the best for food fanatics. And About Travel Blog included Twin Farms in their list of Resorts with Must See Art Collections.

A great Article from Yahoo here entitled, “Yummy: 8 of the Most Delicious Farm to Table Hotels in the World” features The Inn at Dos Brisas. Up to Wyoming where The Lodge & Spa at Brush Creek Ranch was featured in AFAR as well as an insightful article on a father-daughter trip in The Denver Post.

Song Saa in Cambodia received a spot on three lists this month. “Nine Intimate, Luxurious Hideaways Fit for Royalty and Celebrities” from a Luxury Travel Blog. “Ten of the best: Teen Adventures Worldwide” from Family Traveller. Lastly, Song Saa made the list from Fodor’s 100 Hotel Awards, in the “Trip of a Lifetime” category.

Our new client, Ol Jogi Ranch in Kenya is also a trip of a lifetime, a private enclave for safari with your closest family and friends. From The Financial Times, How To Spend It “Game Changer” article by Lucia van der Post details her stay at the ranch. In Forbes, Ann Abel writes, “The $210,000 Safari: Ol Jogi Ranch In Kenya.”

Over to another remote outpost, Fogo Island Inn where the press has been constant since their opening. Read this take from John Walters of Newsweek.  He visited Fogo Island Inn and interviewed founder, Zita Cobb, an 8th generation Newfoundlander. An article here from Toque and Canoe discusses photography on the island, and two write-ups from Conde Nast Traveller -one on style and architecture, “How Hotels Became More Than Just a Place to Stay” and another on “8 Incredible Hotel Designs.”

Musha Cay in the Bahamas received a mention in a New York Times article, “Group Adventures, With a Sense of Play” detailing the special Treasure Hunt and other magical amenities that are offered on the island.

From Conde Nast, “Nicaragua: A Paradise Poised for Discovery” discusses Mukul, Nicaragua, culture and more of this fascinating country. The Spa at Mukul in a Departures Dispatch roundup of the most ultimate outdoor spa experiences.  The gem of the resort, Casona Don Carlos, in Elite Traveler “Top 101 Suites” here.

For wellness this fall Rancho La Puerta is celebrating October 26th and hosting a Mexican Harvest Festival October 26th, details here. In More Time 2 Travel Blog, Sheryl Kraft writes here about how Rancho La Puerta is the perfect spa for men.

Read this great review on SHA Wellness by recent visitor Jessica Rizzolo of Ker & Downey. Spa Finder Top 10 Editor’s picks includes Fivelements Bali here and a write up on AFAR.com this month as well, “Highlight: Nature and Luxury at Fivelements Spa.”

Six Senses Zighy Bay on Blomberg News, “The Resort So Remote You Need a Paraglider to Get There.” Watch Video. CNN also featured Six Senses, “10 Outrageous Spas in the Middle East.”