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Miami "Miami arouses the senses, with its warm, sultry breezes, white sandy beaches, fragrant tropical flowers and gently swaying palm trees," says William D. Talbert III, president and CEO of the Greater Miami CVB. "Fueling the fire are our dreamy hotels, delectable restaurants, stimulating culture, and steamy nightlife-all presided over by a golden tropical sun and the famous moon over Miami. For the ultimate in seclusion, try the Miami entrances of the Everglades, where couples can opt to hike or bike into the heart of the park and stay for a spectacular sunset over this subtropical wilderness. Whether you're newly enamored lovebirds or long-term partners, Greater Miami and the Beaches inspires couples to escape their routines and reignite their passion." For some "only in Miami" activities recommend a picnic at Crandon Park in Key Biscayne; nature hikes and butterfly walks at The Deering Estate at Cutler; moonlight tours of stunning Vizcaya; a visit to the lush Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden; a hot air balloon ride; and a visit to Coral Castle, built in the 1940s as a declaration of love. Where to Stay: When it comes to beach stays, not just any room with an ocean view will do. That's where the luxurious Fisher Island Club hotel, only accessible via yacht or private 24hour passenger vehicle ferry service, departing from Terminal Road just off Miami Beach's MacArthur Causeway, steps in. This Leading Hotels of the World property features a private beach, a championship golf course, tennis courts, two deep-water marinas, dining venues, a spa and an aviary. The property's Romantic Retreat package ($2,350 for a 2-night stay) starts with breakfast in bed followed by time to relax in a private cabana at the resort's exclusive Beach Club coupled with lunch for two. After lunch, there's a couples' massage at the Spa Internazionale, and the day ends with an alfresco dining experience with views of the city's skyline. New Orleans The city known for bead throwing and Mardi Gras has more to offer than a week of partying. New Orleans is also recognized as one of the most romantic cities in the world, and to help your clients get in touch with their amorous side, the New Orleans CVB has compiled a list of activities to help ignite the romance flame. This list includes breakfast at Cafe Amelie; visiting various art galleries on Royal Street; a carriage ride through the French Quarter; cocktails at Arnaud's French 75 Bar; and a late night jazz show at the Irvin Mayfield's Jazz Playhouse followed by dessert at Cafe du Monde. Or, suggest a stroll in Crescent Park, a bike ride through the Faubourg Marigny and Bywater neighborhoods, a swing dance class, or a ride on the St. Charles Streetcar. Where to Stay: For a romantic getaway that won't soon be forgotten, the Windsor Court Hotel New Orleans offers a Royal Stay package, priced at $119,236 for a 3-night stay, that includes accommodations in the Presidential Penthouse Suite; afternoon Royal Tea in Le Salon; a tasting dinner in The Grill Room with wine pairings by an onsite sommelier, plus a $90,000 dessert; a 4-hour private day at the spa; a private tour of the Windsor Court Art Collection; a private tour of M.S. Rau Antiques with a Champagne lunch; drinks at the Cocktail Bar; daily breakfast in The Grill Room or in-suite, and a welcome amenity. ■ Contact Information Charleston Area CVB: Greater Miami CVB: InterContinental Mark Hopkins San Francisco: Fisher Island Club: The Meritage Resort and Spa: New Orleans CVB: Planters Inn: San Francisco Travel Association: Windsor Court Hotel New Orleans: Mom-and-Dad-Only Trips ✈ guests various romantic packages including the It Looks Like Love package ($100 per couple) featuring a table with a view, martinis and a plate of tuxedo strawberries. For hotel stays, recommend the Leisure Escape ($299 per night) with accommodations, cocktails at the Top of the Mark, breakfast at Nob Hill Club, valet parking, and a 2 p.m. late check-out. For clients who want to add a Napa Valley stay, suggest The Meritage Resort and Spa. It's home to the country's only spa in a wine cave-the Spa Terra at The Meritage Resort; the cave also houses the Trinitas Cellars Tasting Room. This 322-guestroom/9-suite property offers A Tale of Two Valleys package (for a minimum 2-night stay starting at $339 per night) that includes tastings at Napa's Foley Johnson and Sonoma's Sebastiani, plus a $100 resort credit and a souvenir. TRAVeL AdVISOR Corner Susan Farewell When I sit down with my clients that have young families to discuss their upcoming year of travel plans, I encourage them to claim some travel time alone, without their kids. I am always surprised to see their response which is usually a "Why didn't we think of that?" look. Understandably so...between the logistics of running a household and planning the family vacations, it's often not even a remote consideration. That is until they've done it once. The benefits of parents traveling without kids can be profound, not only for their own relationship but for their children. Even grandparents (or other relatives they may leave kids with) can enjoy them. While they may not think they need you to plan a quick getaway to a nearby inn, you can suggest some trips that might be far more to their personal liking and your assistance is key. Here's a sampling of some ideas our clients have cottoned to. ■ A Weekend in the City: Sometimes just spending a weekend in the nearest big city can be just what the doctor ordered for a couple. Having your travel agent secure a good hotel room, get theater tickets and dinner reservations makes it all the better. ■ A Ranch Vacation: Ideal for the outdoor loving couple, there are ranches where you'll find horseback riding, hiking, fishing (and other fresh-aired pursuits) as well as outstanding cuisine and plenty of creature comforts. Your expertise is knowing which ranches are best for couples. ■ A Biking or Hiking Trip: So many parents want to do active trips as a family, but with kids different ages and abilities, it just doesn't happen. Solution? Encourage them to take a riding or hiking trip with a company that specializes in such adventures. They can choose a destination close to home in the USA or set their sights abroad. In addition to introducing your clients to ideas that they may not have thought of, your job as a travel agent is to make it as easy as possible for them. This requires not only knowing the destinations you are selling, but taking the time to put it all together so, for a least a while, the parents get to be kids. Susan Farewell is the owner of Farewell Travels LLC (, a travel design firm based in Westport, CT. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @FarewellTravels. august 2016 31

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