Nobu for Is­rael as El Al checks in on­line

The Jewish Chronicle - - Travel - BY KATE COLLINS

EL AL, IS­RAEL’S na­tional air­line, has an­nounced a newly up­graded web­site (www.elal.co.uk) One of the key changes is a more user-friendly book­ing sys­tem al­low­ing pas­sen­gers to see prices for flights on dates ad­ja­cent to those they se­lect. This is help­ful for leisure trav­ellers who of­ten want to find the best fares. The site also in­cludes an on­line check-in ser­vice for Heathrow, the first air­port out­side Is­rael to of­fer this ser­vice. It will en­able pas­sen­gers to check-in on­line from three to 24 hours be­fore de­par­ture, pre-se­lect seats, print board­ing passes and go di­rect to bag drop-off or de­par­ture-gate se­cu­rity (www.elal. co.uk)

Is­rael’s 60th birth­day cel­e­bra­tions con­tinue in late sum­mer, with a con­cert en­ti­tled Vi­o­lins of Hope tak­ing place in Jerusalem on Septem­ber 24. Vi­o­lin­ists from around the world will play at the out­door con­cert be­side Jerusalem’s Old City Walls. The Raanana Sym­phony and the Is­tan­bul Sym­phony will ac­com­pany the soloists, some of whom will use in­stru­ments found in ghet­toes and camps (www.vi­o­lin­sofhope.org).

Lux­ury cruise line Crys­tal has ex­panded its Jewish Her­itage pro­grammes in North­ern Europe this sum­mer aboard Crys­tal Sym­phony. The tours, which fea­ture vis­its to Old Towns, mu­se­ums, syn­a­gogues and Jewish fam­i­lies, in­clude Ber­lin, St Petersburg, Stock­holm and Dublin and cost from $75 (£37) per per­son. They are avail­able on Crys­tal Sym­phony’s seven North­ern Europe itin­er­ar­ies from June to the end of Au­gust. Fares from £2,440 per per­son (based on two shar­ing), for a seven-night cruise from Stock­holm to Copen­hagen (020 7287 9040; www. crys­tal­cruises.co.uk).

Nobu, the restau­rant chain, has launched a hos­pi­tal­ity brand, with its first prop­erty — the Nobu Ho­tel and Res­i­dences — due to open on Her­zliya Ma­rina in 2010. The Hos­pi­tal­ity Group is a part­ner­ship be­tween the restau­rant founder, Chef Nobu Mat­suhisa and ac­tor Robert De Niro, plus US and Is­raeli busi­ness­men. The 225-room Nobu Ho­tel — which will in­clude 12 pent­houses and nine du­plexes — will also be home to the first Nobu restau­rant in Is­rael, as well as a land­scaped pool with private ca­banas, a spa, and a private Mem­bers’ Club. The sec­ond prop­erty will be in New York.

Aviva Pre­ston’s an­nual kosher tour is head­ing to In­dia this year. From Novem­ber 3 to 23, the 19-day trip is pro­vi­sion­ally priced at £3,950 and will in­clude Delhi, Jaipur, Mumbai, Varanasi, Cochin and Cal­cutta. The cost in­cludes do­mes­tic flights, ac­com­mo­da­tion in deluxe ho­tels (or, where un­avail­able, four-star ho­tels), buf­fet break­fasts, din­ners and sand­wich lunches un­der Ortho­dox su­per­vi­sion, tours, guides and evening en­ter­tain­ment, but not in­ter­na­tional flights (aviva@alp­tours. co.uk ; 0208 997 7083)

Sol Kerzner’s One&Only Re­sorts, which in­clude Le Saint Géran, Mau­ri­tius; the Ocean Club, Ba­hamas and Reethi Rah, Mal­dives, has launched an es­padrille col­lec­tion de­signed by Chris­tian Louboutin. Priced from £185, the shoes are avail­able in three styles and colours to match all your favourite Tashia kaf­tans. They will be on sale at the re­sorts from June with a lim­ited num­ber at the Louboutin shop in Lon­don’s Mot­combe Street (www.one­an­don­lyre­sorts.com).

Lead­ing UK ho­tel chain De Vere is of­fer­ing a week­end break at Cameron House, its stun­ningly ren­o­vated 18th-cen­tury man­sion on the banks of Loch Lomond. The price is £599 for a room for two peo­ple, and in­cludes two nights’ lux­ury bed and break­fast ac­com­mo­da­tion, din­ner in The Cameron Grill on one night, a 90-minute loch cruise on the ho­tel’s speed­boat, the choice of a round of golf on the Car­rick or a spa treat­ment, and a bot­tle of Colquhoun Edi­tion Cameron House Whisky to take home (www.devere. com; 01389 755 565).

Ash­down Park Ho­tel and Coun­try Club in East Sus­sex is invit­ing bud­ding artists to brush up their skills dur­ing its Artist Work­shop Week­end from June 27 to 29. Sus­sex artist Juliet Murray is host­ing a pas­tels course at the ho­tel for all lev­els of ex­per­tise and al­low­ing time for the 186-acre es­tate, spa and 18-hole golf course. The two-night break costs £465 per per­son, based on sin­gle oc­cu­pancy, and in­cludes break­fast and din­ner on both days (01342 824988; www.elite­ho­tels.co.uk).

Ify­ouhave­been­hooked­bythe Strictly Come Danc­ing craze, you can learn con­tem­po­rary­dance­movesand­sal­sasteps with Healthy Op­tions (www.healthy­op­tion.co.uk). The well­be­ing hol­i­day ex­perts are of­fer­ing a 7-day Dance and Move­ment break on the Greek is­land of Le­fkas, amid land­scaped gar­dens near a beach. One week, from June 8 is £569 per per­son (based on two shar­ing) and in­cludes flights, trans­fers, ac­com­mo­da­tion (room only) and the ac­tiv­ity pro­gramme (0844 499 2909; www.healthy-op­tion.co.uk).

Devo­tees of the luxe ho­tel chain Four Sea­sons will wel­come the news that they have just opened their first prop­erty on the In­dian sub-con­ti­nent. The 202-roomFour Sea­sons Mumbai is a gleam­ing, 33-storey glass tower of­fer­ing the most spa­cious guest ac­com­mo­da­tion in Mumbai. Rooms, typ­i­cally, of­fer stun­ning views of the city sky­line through floor to ceil­ing win­dows. There are also two restau­rants, a two-storey spa, gym and out­door pool. Dou­ble rooms from £275.95 (www.foursea­sons.com).

Gate­way to In­dia in Mumbai: site of the coun­try’s first Four Sea­sons Ho­tel and on Aviva Pre­ston’s itin­er­ary

The Her­mitage Mu­seum, St Petersburg. See the city with Crys­tal Cruises

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