Europe and Middle East

Bedford Lodge Hotel and Spa

Newmarket. The ancestral home of British horseracing is a perfect backdrop to the Bedford Lodge Hotel and Spa. As if on cue, expertly-groomed thoroughbred racehorses canter past my bedroom window exercising around the adjacent paddocks and training stables.

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Casa do Lago

Late November and the lunchtime crowd at Casa do Lago are looking a little bit thin. Admittedly it is out of season, yet the unusually warm sunny weather has brought the few of us out onto the lakeside terrace to eat.

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Pizzeria CasaVostra 

The Algarvian town of Almancil might not be high on your list of dining destinations seeing as the famed Quinta do Lago is almost next door, but take it from me, you won’t want to miss this one.

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Anfi Tauro Golf Club

Men moved mountains for me to play the Anfi Tauro golf course. Dynamited out of Gran Canaria’s black volcanic rock, this hedonistic and sometimes simply sadistic Par 72 course is a golfing Beauty and the Beast.

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The Trail of the Walser in Vorarlberg

Ancestors of the Walser, as these people are called, had left the Valais region in Switzerland centuries earlier and headed east over the high passes.

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De Vere Tortworth Court

As English as the afternoon tea the hotel serves, Tortworth Court in South Gloucestershire, with white beehives dotted along the lengthy drive, Union Jack fluttering above, epitomises the quintessential country retreat. 

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