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could manage. And, Voila! it sank to the bottom quickly. mingling with the people, learning the customs, visiting the ranches and industrial premises where these pio¬ It's a method that requires patience and skill, no doubt, neers worked, sailing the fjords where the first canoeists but often lands groups of 20 to 50 fish at a time. In fact, traveled and admiring the incredible landscapes that it's not unusual to track a school of fish for 30 minutes generations have enjoyed. before making the decision to skillfully toss the net. It also requires stealth. The fish will surely scurry away if After the horseback ride, bump up your cooking cred they see the net coming. by taking an interactive cooking class with Chef Laurent Pasqualetto. Learn to create local specialties using lo- As Andrew scooped up the net, my hopes were high, cally grown/sourced ingredients, or tour the hotel for a but the net was empty. No problem, though, I still got dose of history. The Singular's bar, lounge and restau¬ what I was looking for: the chance to connect with a lo- rant, in fact, is a turn-of-the-century general store. cal Hawaiian and learn to love the ecosystem in a whole new way. SANDOS CARACOL RESORT & "Hana lends itself to really interesting experiences," says Mark Stebbings, Travaasa Hana's general man- SPA -- MEXICO ager. "It's priceless Hawaii; one of the things we try to www.sandos.com do here is keep it real." This seaside resort located along the Yucatan Peninsula immerses guests in local culture from the get-go. Begin It's a trend that's catching on around the world. For- your stay with a language lesson. Then, head over to the ward-thinking hotels are becoming keen to the idea that Mayan Herbalist and EcoClub Nursery to discover an- explorers want more than a room and a view. They crave cient remedies of traditional Mayan medicine, including authenticity. We've scoured the world for a hotels with native plant and herbal treatments for the whole body. "experiential" offerings. Take your pick. You'll even have the chance to plant indigenous species around the property that have great significance to the Mayan culture. SINGULAR PATAGONIA -¬ Guests may also take part in the Xcalacoco Experience, CHILE an event viewed by ancient Mayans as the beginning www.thesingular.com of a new era in humanity. Guests are invited to "live What better way to experience life in Chilean Patagonia Xcalacoco," a unique experience that transports guests than by horseback riding with a real-life gaucho past the through history, allowing them to discover the Mayan snowcapped Andes? Guests at Singular Patagonia -- a culture in distinctive natural surroundings. 100-year-old cold-storage plant that has been trans¬ formed into a super luxe hotel and national landmark -- have the chance to visit a working Patagonian ranch O'REILLY'S RAINFOREST and learn the basics. Tomas, a native Patagonian who knows the history of the remote and storied area better RETREAT -- AUSTRALIA than anyone, leads guests up hills, across streams and www.oreillys.com.au past cattle. By day, live like an adventurous Aussie. Take a 6-hour guided bushwalk past waterfalls (there are 500 in the The concept of the hotel is focused on providing an au¬ area) in Lamington National Park. By night, tighten your thentic Patagonian experience. In other words, you'll be shoelaces and turn on your headlamp. It's time to ven- 72 JULY/AUGUST 2012 SOUTHFLORIDALUXURYGUIDE.COM


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