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DG Amazing Experiences
Insider Travel Briefs For Private Aviation Travelers

Special Report:
Former Victorian coaching inn The Fife Arms has re-opened as a luxury retreat in The Highlands
Check out our DGAE Library featuring:
Insider reviews of unique experiences from VIP supercar tours of Italy, treks to see the Polar Bears, safaris in Africa, Cuba by private jet and previews of top suites and villas at hotels and resorts across the USA, Hawaii, the Caribbean, Canada, Mexico, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Brasil, Cambodia, China, Costa Rica, Ecuador, England, Fiji, France, French Polynesia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Maldives, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Oman, Panama, Portugal, Qatar, Russia, Seychelles, Scotland, Singapore, Spain, South Africa, Switzerland, Tahiti, Thailand, Turkey, UAE, Vietnam, plus on the high seas aboard Regent Seven Seas Explorer, Seaboard Encore, Crystal Esprit, Crystal Mozart, Crystal Symphony, Norwegian Breakaway, and Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas

Highland Adventure

There may be no more beautiful landscapes anywhere than the Highlands of Scotland (Okay, I’m half Scottish). In the last decade, the northern nation has seen a bounty of luxury options to go with a modern approach to making use of its bountiful offerings making it a culinary hotspot. The Fife Arms restores a Victorian era coaching inn with modern touches and over 14,000 pieces of original art and artifacts that makes your stay almost like a visit to a museum. Perfect for those of you who like outdoor activities from hiking, biking, horseback riding, fishing and shooting to golf and skiing, and a great venue for celebrations or even corporate retreats, you can make easy helicopter transfers from Glasgow or Edinburgh. It’s the subject of our Special Report this week.

All the best,

Doug Gollan

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Table of Contents 

A.  Private Aviation Headlines
B.  Before You Buy Reports - Jets, Yachts, Villas
1.   Overview
2.   Accommodations
3.   Dining and Bards
4.   Wellness
5.   Golf 
6.   Meetings and Celebrations
7.   VIP Contact
8.   Executive Security Reports
9.   Jet Card Insider Reports
10. Best Of DG Amazing Experiences Library

A.  Private Aviation Headlines

Jet Card Buyer’s Tips

1.  Buyers Tip #1  Know the company behind your program
2.  Buyer’s Tip #2  Fixed rates or dynamic pricing?
3.  Buyer’s Tip #3  Do I need guaranteed availability?
6.  Buyer’s Tip #6  Roundtrip and one-way pricing

Los Cabos Villa Spotlight

Voted as one of the 101 Best Villas in the World by Elite Traveler Magazine 321 Beachfront Palmilla offers 138 feet of beachfront access with seven bedrooms spread over two homes and 6,400 sq. ft. of interior space. There are five Oceanfront Master King Suites with furnished balconies making it great for multigenerational families and groups of friends.

Located in an ultra private luxury community, you have access to Club 96 and all its amenities, include a 5-star restaurant, world class spa, kayaks, paddle boards, boogie boards, fitness center with personal trainers, basketball court, tennis and VIP access to top golf courses in Los Cabos. Of course, you may just spend you entire vacation in the 321 compound with your private staff, including personal chef. For more information, click here or call +1 949.388.8590 ext. 200.

Special Report:  The Fife Arms
1. Overview

Not your run of the mill luxury resort, The Fife Arms is a Victorian era coaching inn located in the historic Scottish village of Braemar amidst the dramatic landscape of the Cairngorms National Park. After multiple millions of pounds, the hotel recently reopened with a Royal celebration to mark the work of its Swiss owners Iwan and Manuela Wirth who are passionate about Scottish heritage, culture and contemporary art.

The Scotsman writes, “This is contemporary art, dark tartan walls, Victorian taxidermy and local color all fused together in a bizarre, mesmeric concoction that just works. Put simply, this is a no-expense-spared style transformation and a must-visit for anyone coming to the area.” It continues, “The wow factor starts in the reception area, which features a Picasso (Mousquetaire et nu assis), a Lucian Freud (Child Portrait – Annie), a Mark Bradford Steinway piano and a mahogany Robert Burns fireplace. Old Masters are peppered throughout the floors.”

Braemar is situated in the heart of Scotland’s Royal Deeside surrounded by the Grampian mountains and ancient woodlands. It is about an hour and a half drive from Aberdeen airport (ABZ) and a two-and a-half-hour drive from Edinburgh, however, helicopter transfers from Glasgow and Edinburgh airports are about £4000 one way for up to five passengers.
Originally built by the Duke of Fife it was officially opened by the TRH The Duke and Duchess of Rothesay with Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess or Cornwall making a visit.

 Of note is the hotel's art collection.Throughout the common spaces of the hotel are commissioned works by renowned contemporary international artists in addition to a collection of 12,000 paintings, drawings and objects narrating the history of the hotel, Braemar, and Scottish heritage.

The Wirths are co-Presidents of Hauser and Wirth with galleries in London, New York, LA, Hong Kong, Zurich, and Bruton, Somerset, and wanted to bring their love of art and design to the historic interiors of the building. Envisioned as a cultural hub for the village, they partnered with Alec Finlay, an artist and poet, to collaborate on its conceptual design keeping the unique landscape and culture of the Upper Deeside central to its philosophy. You’ll spot commissioned works by Guillermo Kuitca, Zhang Enli, Subodh Gupta, Richard Jackson, Louise Bourgeouis, Bharti Kher and an impressive array of Scottish artworks.
The Financial Times says, “The Fife Arms is a triumphant realization of maximalism…it never seems overdone and, by some alchemistic means, all comes together into a coherent, vibrant whole. And your children will love it. Ours, three and six, soon found their way by themselves to the Family Room, a playroom featuring a vintage table football, two doll’s houses and a wall of books, Scottish heritage coloring pads and paper, plus an en suite (toilet) with a jungle mural and felt elephant heads.”

Some of the popular activities include Highland safaris, clay and grouse shooting, deer stalking, distillery and castle tours, falconry, fishing, hiking, gliding, golf, mountain biking, photography, pony trekking, salmon fishing, Scotch tastings, skiing and other winter sports as well as visits to the Queen’s Balmoral Estate and Braemar Castle.
Anne Scully, president of McCabe World Travel, a travel agency focused on luxury travel visited shortly after the re-opening and tells me, “The hotel could be considered an art gallery with rooms. There is such a feeling of welcome on arrival it's as if you have gone to a favorite aunt and uncle's estate.”  
2. Accommodations

The Fife Arms offers 46 guest rooms and suites. The accommodations weave together exceptional design, local craftsmanship, nature, and the rich history of Braemar. Under the creative direction of London-based interior designer, Russell Sage (The Savoy Grill, bedrooms at The Goring Hotel, Lansdowne Club), and Crathie-based Scottish architects Moxon Architects (Taipei Museum of Art, Serpentine Boathouse at Hyde Park in London) the building has retained all of its timber sash and case windows and a large number of original chimney stacks. Traditional architectural characteristics from its timber bargeboards to its Aberdeen-bonded stonework and over 70 different wallpapers, many reprints of discontinued Liberty designs, provide authenticity.
Royal Suites (4 in category)

Each of the four Royal Suites (Queen Victoria, Princess Royal Louise, The Duke of Fife, and The Indian Suite) are located on the first floor (one above the ground level as they count them in Scotland) and span 614 square feet. These suites offer a separate bedroom and living area. The bedrooms all feature a stunning four-poster bed in carved, dark wood. The bathrooms are equipped with standalone copper bathtubs and separate walk-in showers. While each have a different décor, all offer views over Braemar’s surroundings, hills and the village.
Victoria Suites (11)

The Victoria Suites reflect the hotel’s history as a 19th century coaching inn and are decorated with antique furnishings, period wallpaper and original artwork. The Victoria Suites are 388 square feet with a bedroom and living area from which guests can enjoy panoramic views of the Scottish Highlands. The bathrooms feature freestanding cast iron bathtubs and separate walk-in showers.
3. Restaurant and Bars
Showcasing the best of Scotland Executive Chef Robert Cameron and his team work with local gamekeepers and farmers from fresh seafood and game to local whiskies and spirits.
The Clunie Dining Room

Serving breakfast and dinner daily, The Clunie Dining Room showcases the best of Scottish produce and ingredients with menus created by Head Chef Magnus Burstedt. Named after the River Clunie, which runs past the hotel, The Clunie Dining room showcases wood-fire cooking and seasonal Scottish produce in a striking room painted in distinctive cubistoid style by Argentinian artist, Guillermo Kuitca. The Scotsman writes, “It is a spectacular space and another canvas for great art.”
The Flying Stag
Traditionally the heart of the village, The Flying Stag is the hotel’s public bar. Frequented by residents and visitors alike, the public bar offers classic Scottish dishes, real ales, live entertainment and a selection of over 180 whiskies. Open daily.

An exquisite jewel box of a bar, Elsa’s Bar brings Art Deco glamour to the Highlands. Inspired by fashion designer, Elsa Schiaparelli’s signature style, love of shocking pink and “bon mots,” this bijou bar offers champagne and hand-crafted cocktails that are beautifully presented. The perfect spot for a pre-prandial aperitif or a late-night digestif, the bar showcases Scottish spirits and elixirs. Open Tuesdays-Saturdays.
The Drawing Room

Where tradition meets contemporary, the Drawing Room is one of the most picturesque rooms. The walls are covered in The Fife Arms tartan, which was specially designed for the hotel and the room is richly furnished with Scottish art and antiques. The most striking view is the ceiling quartz painting, “Ancient Quartz,” commissioned from the renowned Chinese artist, Zhang Enli. Enjoy a morning coffee or afternoon tea which is served daily from 12:00-4:00 pm. Reservations are strongly advised.
4. Wellness
The Fife Arms Spa has three treatment rooms, a sauna and a relaxation area. The spa builds on traditional heritage of its Highland location and blends holistic style with a local herbal approach to wellbeing.
5. Golf

Guests at the hotel can tee-off at the Braemar Golf Club less than a five-minute drive away. It holds the distinction of being the highest 18-hole course in Scotland at around 1,205 feet above sea level.

6. Meetings and Celebrations

Overlooking its internal courtyard and featuring a dramatic antler chandelier, The Fog Room can accommodate a maximum of 28 people in board room style over 2 tables or between 40 to 50 people on round tables. Equipped with AV equipment, a screen and a projector, the Brae Room lends itself to screenings, presentations and talks. It can accommodate up to 30 guests in theatre style or in boardroom style.The Fire Room is a private dining room can seat up to 12 people for a private meal or meeting next to an impressive fireplace and stainless-steel chandelier by Indian artist Subodh Gupta. The hotel is available for full buyouts and an ideal venue for celebrations as well.
7. VIP Contact
VIP Contact: Claire Oiknine at claire@thefifearms.com or telephone +44 (0) 78 76 32 76 03 or mail@thefifearms.com or via the website www.thefifearms.com

8. Executive Security Reports

9. Jet Card Insider Program Reviews

10. Our Most Popular Special Reports

If you are looking for more ideas and inspiration, check out some of our most popular Special Reports below...

Cuba with your own private jet

From driving classic cars to cigars, nightlife, nature and the arts, Cuba has so much to do. Johnny Considine, the Irish owner of Cuba Private Travel, who has been living in Havana for 15 years, has been featured in the likes of the Financial Times, Forbes, Conde Nast Traveler and The Telegraph. He recently told How To Spend It, “The quality of experience that you can have now in Cuba is top-notch. He can also arrange a tour of the island nation using your own private jet. Read more..

Seven hot superyachts for charter this Winter

We checked in with Northrop & Johnson’s top brokers to find out which superyachts are hot for the charter market this winter, and in our report are seven picks arranged by pricing, high to low. For each super yacht, you’ll find a summary of length, builder, launch and renovation dates, capacity for guests, number of cabins, range of rates, where each boat will be based for the winter season, minimum charter length, captain as well as list of toys.

Crystal Esprit is perfect for groups up to 64

Crystal Esprit sits in the wide gap between chartering a super yacht and even the smaller luxury cruise ships that take 200-300 passengers. There are 91 crew and 62 guests, and the passenger areas are spread across four decks. 

Explore hidden harbors and out of the way island beaches, swim to shore, splash out on wave runners, water toys and your own private submarine. Crystal Esprit is a 5-star floating resort for just 62 guests. You even can charter the entire yacht for celebrations or meetings. Read more

Tour Italy Like a VVIP By Super Car

1000 All’Ora combines its insider auto industry connections with the best of Italian luxury experiences. They arrange everything from hotels to restaurant reservations, sourcing the specific super car types you want and accompany your group providing VVIP service. 

They will also video your experience, including filming by drones, providing you with a memorable look back at your adventure. They arrange factory tours and behind the scenes visits to wineries, ateliers and museums. Below is a sample four-day itinerary, but at the end they will do whatever you want, wherever you want in Italy. Read more…

Takeovers in The Bahamas, Costa Rica and Panama

Sometimes you want to takeover the entire place. In this issue we look at three private resorts, visiting The Bahamas, Costa Rica and Panama. Each provides the privacy and personalized service that comes with your own residence, but offer more than a typical villa, and are perfect for friends, family and special events such as wedding and even corporate retreats. Read more


A billionaire’s private island resort in Fiji

Laucala Island in Fiji was once the playground of publishing mogul Malcolm Forbes. Now owned by Red Bull founder Dietrich Mateschitz, it is a private island resort with just 25 oversized villas bringing together high luxury and South Pacific romance in a playground of soft adventure, and even an 18-hole golf course. Each villa is different, designed with an eye to traditional Fijian style and all come with private pools set amidst the palms of coconut plantations, white sand beaches, turquoise lagoons and lush green mountains. Read more…

Why Waikiki is back as a luxury destination

Waikiki is back as a destination for luxury travelers. The Ritz-Carlton Residences Waikiki Beach has joined the Halekulani, Royal Hawaiian and Trump International as 5-star options. But the real change is that both Waikiki and Honolulu have become a destination fit for foodies, adding to the increasing quotient of luxury shopping. Most importantly, and often overlooked, a quick drive to the other side of Oahu and you will find deserted beaches, hiking, biking and all sorts of soft adventure on par with Hawaii’s outer islands.  Read more...

Montage Los Cabos is Mexico’s newest star

With luxury hotels and resorts popping up around the world like Starbucks, it says something that the lead travel story in the South China Morning Post’s luxury magazine was recently about a resort on the opposite side of the Pacific Ocean, in this case the Montage Los Cabos, which opened in May. Conde Nast Traveler already put the resort on its list of “New Hotels and Spas Worth Traveling For” with the headline, “You Can Finally Swim in Cabo,” a reference to its location on one of the destination’s few swimmable beaches. In this Special Report we give you a detailed, inside look at its suites, villas and residences and all the amenities and facilities. Read more

Luxury on the Bund in Shanghai

If you are visiting on leisure or have extra time, or this is your first time coming to Shanghai, The Peninsula should be at the top your consideration set. It also has a board meeting room with stunning views of The Bund on the west bank Huangpu River. The area is notable for its beautiful waterfront buildings, many of which have been restored. If you are doing a product launch, there is some nice rooftop space, indoors and outside. Read more…
Fine and Fun Skyscraper Dining in Bangkok

lebua at State Tower in Bangkok has become the epicenter of Thailand’s move to award-winning internationaining, with 2-star Michelin restaurant Mezzaluna, Breeze, Sirocco, and soon Chef’s Table under the direction Vincent Thierry of the 3-star Michelin Caprice in Hong Kong. Of course, the nightlife is not restricted to restaurants with a multitude of specialty bars from The Flute A Perrier Jouet and Al fresco 64, a Chivas bar, lebua No. 3, with its caviar shooters and of course the bar that launched a worldwide trend, Skybar (pictured left). Read more...
Views of the lake in Geneva

In the center of Geneva, convenient to private banks and the United Nations, Hotel D'Angleterre is hotel with a view of Lake Leman, both from its top suites and fine dining restaurant. Part of the Red Carnation group of boutique luxury hotels, each suite and room has its own unique decor. Don’t forget to check out its new cigar lounge. Read more...

About DG Amazing Experiences
My name is Doug Gollan. I am a strong advocate of the private aviation industry.  You can read my frequent coverage of private jets and luxury travel at Forbes.com.
I’ve chosen you to receive DG Amazing Experiences because I believe you share my passion for both business aviation and the best travel and luxury experiences in the world.
DG Amazing Experiences is your e-newsletter guide to the best places and experiences for private jet travelers like yourself. The content is personally selected by me with the help of some of the smartest and best travel advisors in the world. My goal is to give you a look ahead at what's new, what's hot, and the best of the best. To make it easy for you, the stories are short, but detailed, and I provide plentiful links to additional, relevant information.

If you are looking for private aviation solutions from on-demand charter to jet cards, fractional and even full ownership, please visit our sister website Private Jet Card Comparisons to access our buyer’s guide to over 250 jet card programs and our exclusive on-demand charter guide. Our VIP assistance program can help you decide which solutions are optimal for you.

Credit: Photos in the fireplaces story provided by each hotel

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