The ways in which we see the world, and how we want to experience different destinations, is changing. Here, I speak to some of the industry’s leading experts to discover the latest travel trends.
According to Nobu Hotel Ibiza Bay, 2019 will be the year of 'bite-sized travel', with travellers looking to squeeze in curated travel itineraries into shorter time-frames.
“Thanks to better flight routes, coupled with a desire to fit more experiences into a fixed holiday allowance, we predict a rise in weekend trips with a purpose,” says the hotel, which reopens in April 2019 with new rooftop suites. “As a consequence, our ‘Guest Experiences’ team have curated micro-travel experiences based around bespoke Ibizan offerings.”
Recruited for their insider knowledge of the best parties, sights and happenings on the island, the hotel’s ‘Experience Makers’ have pulled together a line-up of ideas to make the most of a short space of time spent on the island – from yacht trips that allow for a day of cove-hopping to curated bamboo plantation bike tours to explore Ibiza.
Travel tech knowledge
Gone are the days when we’d carry a trusty, beaten-up travel guide with us. Instead it’s all about online knowledge – but how do you filter through the hundreds of guides, magazines and articles, which can more often confuse rather than enlighten? The answer, according to Trip101, is an innovative one-stop travel guide designed for travel-savvy nomads.
Based in Singapore, the digital travel platform pulls together a global network of travel experts and enthusiasts to offer trustworthy ideas from around the world. With a team of editors, the website publishes travel guides for over 150 countries, packed not only with the basics for any aspiring traveller but also offering under-the-radar suggestions and stories filled with local insight. The hub covers the most popular cities in the world, such as Tokyo, San Francisco and Toronto, as well as off-the-beaten-track destinations, like Cali in Colombia and Phu Tub Berk in Thailand.
From cities to beaches, mountain trails to design inspirations, Trip101 tells stories, curates ideas and helps travellers to find some of the most unusual places to stay, along-side innovative places to stay. From houseboats to treehouses, from yurts to luxury villas, there’s something for everyone. It also reveals a range of authentic experiences to be had in each destination, from the best ways to explore the nightlife, to hidden local hot spots, favourite foodie pit-stops and up-to-the-minute hidden gems that rarely make it into mainstream guides.
Meanwhile, Stay One Degree is a new social network platform made up of luxury global travellers and holiday home owners. Tipped as ‘the world’s first luxury travel social marketplace’, it is a global member’s club connecting friends and mutual connections with a trusted network of home owners and top-end homes.
The network currently hosts over 1,000 properties in 54 countries with 10,000 members and is made up of luxury properties and private islands – each handpicked and design-led. Based on the LinkedIn model, the platform works by linking people together, with members only able to request to rent a property if their profiles fit, and on the basis that they stay one degree of separation from the people within their network.
“It’s like renting a home from a friend of a friend,” the company says. “So you have a reassurance your home will be respected, and those looking for somewhere to stay will know they will find a quality property.”
Art and travel and a love affair with Portugal
As well as predicting that Portugal will be our must-see destination for 2019, Viking, the award-winning river and ocean cruise line, has seen a rise in travellers seeking out accommodation that incorporates art into its offering.
“Experiencing art while travelling is nothing new,” says the company. “But 2019 will see travellers wanting a more immersive art experience. In 2018, for example, street artist Banksy opened the much-anticipated Anistas Walled-off Hotel in Bethlehem, a city which is within reach to guests on Viking’s Cities of Antiquity & the Holy Land itinerary.
Viking’s ocean ships are themselves floating galleries, with the cruise line owning one of the largest private collections of original Norwegian art, designed to complement the Scandi-style interior of the ships. Viking guests also have the opportunity to view a number of original artworks by Norway’s most celebrated artist, Edvard Munch. Through an exclusive relationship with Oslo’s Munch Museum, Viking has also been granted the digital rights to the entire Munch collection, allowing it to bring the magic of this master expressionist to life with a daily interactive event ‘Munch Moments’.
Its Portuguese prediction, meanwhile, is based on the World Travel and Tourism Council’s stats, which reveal that the country is set to see a 2.6% rise in tourism every year until 2028.
Viking’s Portugal-based itinerary ‘Portugal’s River of Gold’ has almost completely sold out for 2019, forcing the line to open bookings for 2020 early to cope with the demand.