All-round itinerary

The tranquil oasis that is Temple House (main image) needs no introduction but, for the uninitiated, it is part of the award-winning Swire Hotels collection and gives convenient access to one of the most fascinating emerging cities in China. In line with its philosophy of curating meaningful experiences, the new Check-in to Chengdu package encourages exploration of the city’s surrounding attractions.

Spend time at the Chengdu Giant Panda Research Base, take in the local sights as part of a guided tour on the hotel’s Bamboo Bicycles and then unwind from the day’s activities at the world-class Xi Mun Spa. The package includes a Signature Bamboo Massage for two, using a combination of traditional bamboo canes and pressured hand strokes to ease muscle tension. Conclude your hour of relaxation with a selection of premium teas at the adjoining Teahouse.

Melding culture, adventure and repose, The Temple House’s Check-in to Chengdu package offers a holistic experience of the city. It starts from US$930 and includes three nights’ accommodation for two, daily breakfast, a guided cycling tour, an hour-long massage and a Teahouse hotpot set dinner. A guided tour of the Chengdu Research Base can be arranged for an additional fee. Find out more at www.thetemplehousehotel.com.

Cruising like a rock star

Virgin Voyages, another link in Richard Branson’s chain of travel experiences, has launched its first cruise liner. The adults-only Scarlet Lady combines a cruise holiday with a rock star theme and treatment. Accommodation spans the luxury RockStar Suites and 16 Mega RockStar Suites, further divided into Massive, Fab, Posh and Gorgeous.

Virgin’s rock ’n’ roll heritage takes centre stage, from design cues that are a nod to icons such as Grace Jones and a music room with guitars and an amp, to outdoor recreational spaces, an outdoor lounge with the largest daybed at sea and an on-board tattoo and body-piercing parlour, called Squid Ink, a partnership with New York’s World Famous Ink.

VIP treatment for suite guests includes private airport transfers and access to an exclusive terminal pathway.

The ship can host 2,770 passengers in 1,430 cabins and the crew can comprise up to 1,160. Fret not about being too close to your neighbours; at 278m long and 38m wide, the cruise liner will feature more than 20 dining and drinking options, including the glamorous Wake (a theatrical take on steak and seafood), laboratory-like eatery Test Kitchen, and Korean BBQ restaurant Geonbaeb, with a complimentary round of soju before each meal and lively drinking games. Meals and drinking water — still and sparkling — are included in the fare.

The Scarlet Lady will make its maiden voyage from Maine in the US to the Caribbean in 2020. Ready to set sail? Make your bookings at www.virginvoyages.com.