Doing the Nile in style: travel deals 7 October 2012


Do the Nile in style, let Versace bags you a pool lounger on the Gold Coast or shop it up in Melbourne and Malaysia.

WESTERN AUSTRALIA
Yes, there are bargains to be had on the crazy Perth hotel scene, creating a great excuse to go west and throw yourself into the city’s delicious food scene, led by the newly crowned top eatery in town, Fraser’s in Kings Park. Save 40 per cent on room rates at the Mantra on Murray until March 31, 2013 when you stay on Friday, Saturday or Sunday nights. Costs from $169 a night in a queen studio. 131 517, mantra.com.au

SOUTH AUSTRALIA
Mount Lofty House lives up to its name, with panoramic views over Adelaide and out to sea, yet it’s only 15 minutes from town. Stay at the boutique country hotel and save up to 50 per cent with its ‘Discover the Adelaide Hills’ package which includes overnight accommodation, breakfast for two and one of three activities in the Hills: lunch for two at The Locavore in Stirling, wine tasting at Shaw & Smith cellar door and winery, or a round of golf for two at Mt Lofty golf club. Costs from $249 a room.  (08) 8339 6777, mtloftyhouse.com.au. 

The Novotel Melbourne on Collins
VICTORIA
One of Melbourne’s best shopping hotels, the Novotel Melbourne on Collins, is 20 years old in October, and marks the occasion with a $7 million make-over. Stay two nights until November 11 and get 20 per cent off the best available rate, pay only $20 for breakfast (normally $29), $20 for valet parking (normally $35) and $20 for internet (normally $27.95 a day). There’s also a $20 deal on antipasto tasting platters and 20th birthday cocktails. Costs from $412 a room, two nights. (03) 9667 5800, novotelmelbourne.com.au.


NEW SOUTH WALES 
The recently renovated Sebel Resort & Spa Hawkesbury Valley’s new midweek ‘Polynesian Stay & Spa’ package with a Polynesian inspired spa treatment at its Villa Thalgo day spa. An hour from the CBD in Windsor, the 4.5-star hotel spa’s deal includes overnight accommodation for two in a deluxe spa room, breakfast, $50 to spend at the restaurant and two hours of body scrubbing, lagoon water bath and a Mahana massage. Normally $499, costs $289 a night, Monday to Friday until December 28. 131 515, sebelhawkesburyvalley.com.au.

QUEENSLAND
There’s no need for bagsing your poolside lounger at dawn at the Palazzo Versace: the staff will do it for you. In fact, you don’t know poolside lounging till you’ve lounged by the lagoon at the Gold Coast’s most luxe address. We’re talking private cabanas, chilled face sprays, platters of summer fruits, PV’s own sunscreen, a bottle of sparkling wine and two nights in a superior room. Save up to $910, costs from $938 for two people, for two nights. (07) 5509 8000, palazzoversace.com.au/packages.

TRANS-AUSTRALIA
Traverse the country, from the chasms of the Blue Mountains, across golden hay plains and the vast interior desert on a train journey across Australia. Save 30 per cent on all journeys in Gold Service  from Sydney to Perth, aboard The Indian Pacific when you book by December 24 for travel until March 31, 2013. Save $630, costs from $1584 a person, twin share. 132 447, greatsouthernrail.com.au

MALAYSIA
One of the best shopping destinations in Asia, Kuala Lumpur is easy to get around, and Malaysians love a bargain, from the five-star malls to Chinatown knock-offs. Bargain hunters will also love the 25 per cent saving on the four-star aparthotel Swiss Gardens Residences. The recently refurbished hotel between Chinatown and the main shopping strip, Bukit Bintang, and has a free shuttle bus. Book by 14 days in advance until December 15, travel by December 30. Costs from $103 a night.  1800 846 835, hotels.com.

USA
Soak up the magic at California’s Disneyland, staying at the Disney Paradise Pier hotel, which gets you in an hour earlier than the general masses. Kids stay free with the Disneyland Resort Magic package, which includes four nights’ accommodation, a three-day Park Hopper Bonus ticket, dining with Disney characters and airport transfers. Book until October 31, travel January 2 - February 14, 2013 (excluding January 18-19). Costs from $1009 adults, $325 kids, twin share, four nights. 1300 747 400, creativeholidays.com.

NEW ZEALAND
Stay four nights or more at The Rees Hotel Queenstown and receive a NZD$100 voucher to spend in hotel’s True South dining room, as well as complimentary wi-fi internet, free parking and a late check-out. Offer valid for stays from October 7 - December 20. Email reservations@therees.co.nz with “Booking Code SHD” in the subject line.  Costs from $390 a person, twin share. +64 (0)3 450 1100, therees.co.nz.



VIETNAM
Be one of the first to stay at the new Banyan Tree Lăng Cô hotel in central Vietnam, which opens 1 November. Expect pool villas, fabulous spas and an 18-hole championship golf course. Normally USD850++ a night, its opening specials cost from USD735 a night (two night minimum) plus USD765 worth of hotel credits to spend at the bar or the spa. Or stay three nights, add round-trip transfers as well. Book now for stays from November 1 – March 31, 2012. Costs from USD1470++ a room for two nights. +84 54 3695 888, banyantree.com.

Cruising the Nile in style, Egypt.

EGYPT
Cruise the Nile with 11 of your best friends on a private dahibaya, an elegant, 19th-century style riverboat, and save up to $21,300. The boat has six cabins and a plunge pool and includes all meals, drinks, entrance fees and an Egyptologist to explain the region’s rich treasures. Valid on departures until February 23. Normally, $44,300 costs from $26,780 for 12 people for seven nights. 1300 851 800, abercrombiekent.com.au.

Melbourne's Arts Centre
TOURWATCH
In November and December, Melbourne resonates to one of the great operatic events, Wagner’s four-opera Der Ring des Nibelungen (The Ring Cycle). Directed by Australia’s Neil Armfield and conducted by Richard Mills, three cycles of the epic will be performed at the Arts Centre Melbourne. The package includes eight nights at the Sofitel Melbourne in a superior king room, daily breakfast, airport transfers, four performances and transport to the Arts Centre. It also includes three small group touring experiences in between the operas, including a tour of Melbourne’s fantastic alleyways and arcades, a full day on the Great Ocean Road and a day on the Mornington Peninsula, lunching and wining. From November 18 – December 13. Costs from $5760 a person, twin share. (02) 9957 4511, maryrossitravel.com. 

Source: Belinda Jackson, Sun Herald newspaper

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