Life Travel Talk

Sunday 21 September 2014

Great Escapes from Ireland to Australia

A look at original and luxurious hotel stays in Australia and closer to home, not to mention some extravagant means of travel.

Published 08/06/2014 | 02:30

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Highlife: Sydney's 1888 Hotel
Air France Premiere Suite
Pol O Conghaile

ROOM WITH A VIEW

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Sydney's 1888 Hotel has been dubbed the world's first 'Instagram hotel'. Named for the year Kodak launched its first box and roll camera, the hotel lobby includes a picture frame for selfies and a specially commissioned neighbourhood Insta-Walk. Best of all, Instagramers with more than 10k followers can apply for a free night's stay. 1888hotel.com.au

DEPARTURES

It's a case of suite dreams for first-class passengers. Air France recently unveiled a spanking new La Première suite on the airline's Boeing 777-300s. The private space comes with a two-metre lie-flat bed, 24-inch HD touch screen and other treats akin to "spending a night in a palace" (a 77-cm wide palace, it should be said). But hold on to your vanity packs, because Etihad has gone even further. Its new Airbus A380s are being installed with "residences" complete with double beds, private baths and showers. What's that? You want a personal butler? Go on then (he's trained at London's Savoy Hotel, too). Fares are said to start at $21,000 (€15,400) – a snip, if you're comparing it to a private jet.

TRAVEL SMART

You don't have to fly first or business class to access an executive lounge. Dublin Airport allows passengers up to three hours from €20pp, regardless of airline or ticket class, with guests able to avail of complimentary drinks and snacks, Wi-Fi, newspapers and flight notifications. Dublinairport.com.

For more travel tips, deals and inspiration, visit independent.ie/travel

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