Anantara to Rebrand Luxury Resort in Seychelles

Anantara to Rebrand Luxury Resort in Seychelles

Thailand’s Minor Hotels Group has signed a deal to rebrand the Maia Luxury Resort & Spa in Seychelles as the Anantara Maia Seychelles Villas, in September 2020.

Located on Mahé, the largest of Seychelles’ islands and just a short drive from the international airport, the resort can be found on the south west coast amongst 30 acres of forest garden, nestled between the island’s unique granite rocks and Anse Louis Beach.

The resort offers 30 secluded private villas, each with a dedicated villa host available 24-hours a day for the duration of the stay. Inviting guests to do nothing or do everything, residents can enjoy undivided attention and uninterrupted privacy.

Set around a peninsula overlooking white sands or perched between greenery and granite, each of the 250 sqm private villas is positioned to afford breathtaking views and unrivalled privacy. Villas situated atop the hill offer sweeping vistas over the coastline and turquoise ocean, whilst those dotted along the peninsula are tucked away in lush tropical gardens and with direct access to Anse Louis Beach.

With high thread count linens and maxi-sized Hermès Bath Collection amenities as standard, each of the exclusive villas offers a large bedroom, a bathroom with glass walled rainforest shower, dual vanity and outdoor sunken bathtub with a view, Smart TV with villa surround sound, personalised mini bar, private infinity pool and a secluded outdoor gazebo with dining area and oversized day bed.

Anantara Spa will be home to three open-air treatment rooms dedicated to rejuvenation and restoration. Located in the resort’s lush gardens, the spa sanctuary offers tailor-made Balinese massages and a range of beauty and facial treatments from the Omorovicza product house. With yoga and qiyong already available to guests, a wide range of new activities will be offered with a dedicated wellness focus.

Beyond All Inclusive invites guests to choose whether they eat in villa, on the beach, in the garden or under the stars, where they can enjoy the finest a la carte dining experiences with menus that aren’t restricted by time frames. International cuisines including Asian, Indian, Mediterranean and Creole tempt guests in the restaurant and pool bar or indulge in food and wine pairing at the stylish all-glass Wine Boutique.

Additional resort facilities include a main resort swimming pool, a fully-equipped fitness centre with TechnoGym Excite equipment, paddle boarding, snorkelling and kayaking.

For guests wishing to venture further afield, hiking in the forest and national parks or island tours can be arranged, or bespoke private visits by boat or helicopter to explore the Seychelles islands of La Digue and Praslin.

“The addition of the iconic Maia Luxury Resort & Spa to the Anantara portfolio, will mark the brand’s debut in the beautiful Seychelles islands and will represent an elevated level of luxury for discerning travellers in this corner of paradise. Without question Anantara Maia Seychelles Villas will become one of Anantara’s flagship properties and joins our existing portfolio of stunning Indian Ocean resorts,” said Dillip Rajakarier, CEO of Minor Hotels and Minor International, parent company of Anantara Hotels, Resorts & Spas.

Anantara Maia Seychelles Villas will be the brand’s first property in Seychelles and the seventh in the Indian Ocean, joining the two resorts in Sri Lanka, one in Mauritius and three in the Maldives.

Climate change is bad news for your beach vacation

Climate change is bad news for your beach vacation

Will sea walls replace accessible beaches in our lifetimes?

— Emily Hardy, Oceanside, Calif.

For almost as long as people have been building near beaches, they have been protecting those buildings with sea walls. These barriers, which deflect strong waves and prevent coastal erosion, were constructed around ancient Roman harbors and medieval British cities. Archaeologists in Israel have even uncovered evidence of a 7,000-year-old rock wall constructed in the aftermath of the Ice Age to hold back rising oceans as the world defrosted.

But modern, human-caused climate change is escalating the threats that make sea walls necessary. Sea levels are rising, putting communities at greater risk from floods. Storms are intensifying, causing more and more sand to erode from beaches. Cities such as New York, Boston and Miami — as well as smaller, beachfront communities from California to Cape Cod — could lose thousands of homes and suffer billions of dollars in damage if they don’t find a way to hold back the water.

Sea walls have been credited with saving lives in extreme events. When the 2004 Christmas Day tsunami bore down on the Indian coastal city Pondicherry, a 300-year-old sea wall prevented powerful waves from flooding the city center.

Yet these barriers can also transform the very places they aim to protect. A hard structure might keep the land behind it safe from the intense energy of ocean waves. But all that energy will instead erode the sandy beaches in front of the sea wall, erasing the places where people like to lounge and play. Shoreline habitats that have evolved with the give and take of the tides — salt marshes, sea grass meadows, rolling expanses of sand dunes — will also be disrupted. And, by deflecting the force of oncoming waves, “hard defenses” in front of one community may contribute to a greater deluge in another.

There are alternatives to sea walls. Some communities use barge loads of sand to replenish their depleted beaches, a practice called “beach nourishment.” This can help counter storm surge, but it requires constant upkeep. Piles of boulders known as “rip rap” or “rock armor” can absorb the force of powerful waves. Jetties — breakwaters constructed perpendicular to the shore — can also protect a coastline, although they may interfere with the natural movement of sand and rocks.

Nature has its own mechanisms for protecting against storms. The dense, anchored root systems of mangrove forests help dissipate storm energy, prevent erosion and filter water as it drains from the land into the sea. As an added bonus, the world’s mangroves are a potent tool for removing greenhouse gases from the atmosphere; one study found that 75 billion pounds of carbon are sequestered in these rich habitats each year.

Oyster beds provide a natural breakwater in front of coastal communities. One study of sand deposits left by hundreds of years of storms in New York City found that wave energy in the city’s harbor increased 200 percent when people dredged up the shellfish for food and other purposes. After seeing the destruction wrought by Hurricane Sandy in 2013, New York is attempting to restore that natural protection by resurrecting reefs throughout the harbor. A similar effort in the Chesapeake Bay, where the oyster population now numbers a billion strong, has been credited with cleaning the water and providing protection against erosion.

A 2014 study of salt marshes — where hardy grasses grow in spongy peat that gets flooded by the tides — found that they are more durable and better at preventing erosion than human-built bulkheads.

Meanwhile, some communities are considering what to some might seem unthinkable: managed retreat.

The transformation of the world’s waterfronts is already underway. In North Carolina’s Outer Banks, a beloved East Coast vacation spot, average sea levels are about 8 inches higher than they were 40 years ago. Around the globe, the pace of sea level rise over the past 10 years was about twice the rate recorded during most of the 20th century. Even if humanity acts to halt climate change, the world’s oceans are projected to be about one foot higher in 2100 than in 2000. If we do nothing, that increase could be as much as eight feet.

The evidence is undeniable: There is no going back to the beaches we once knew. The only question is, how do we want them to change? Sea walls could protect homes but not necessarily the sand in front of them. Nourishment could help sustain beaches if communities commit to the upkeep. Many environmental experts and coastal researchers say natural solutions are the way to go — after all, they’ve been working for the planet longer than humans have been alive. All of these options come at a cost, and communities will have to evaluate whether it’s better to pay or move away from vulnerable coasts.

So Emily, your question remains to be answered. Scientists have collected the data, engineers have examined the options. It’s up to us as a society to decide what happens next.

Massive Tropical Storm Isaias may reach parts of Florida by this weekend

Massive Tropical Storm Isaias may reach parts of Florida by this weekend

, USA TODAY
Published 12:02 p.m. ET July 30, 2020 | Updated 5:43 p.m. ET July 30, 2020

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Isaias is already impacting parts of the Caribbean, and it is expected to set its sights on the U.S.

USA TODAY

After lashing portions of the Caribbean with rain and wind, Tropical Storm Isaias is now forecast to become a hurricane on Friday, the National Hurricane Center said.

A tropical storm watch has been posted for parts of the east coast of Florida, as the projected path of the storm continues to keep most of Florida in its possible track.

“Isaias is forecast to be near the central Bahamas Friday night and move near or over the Northwest Bahamas and near South Florida on Saturday,” the hurricane center said. 

The hurricane center added that “there is a risk of impacts from winds, heavy rainfall, and storm surge this weekend along the Florida east coast and spreading northward along the remainder of the U.S. east coast through early next week.” 

Isaias is a large cyclone with tropical-storm-force winds extending up to 240 miles from its center. Portions of Florida could start feeling tropical-storm-force winds as early as Friday night, but more likely Saturday morning, the National Weather Service said. 

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said residents could feel the impacts from the storm into early next week. He encouraged everyone to prepare by having at least seven days of supplies.

On Thursday, Isaias’ rain unleashed small landslides and causing widespread flooding and power outages across Puerto Rico.

The storm knocked out power to more than 400,000 customers across Puerto Rico, according to the island’s Electric Power Authority. Minor damage was reported elsewhere in the island, where tens of thousands of people still use tarps as roofs over homes damaged by Hurricane Maria in September 2017.

As of 5 p.m. ET, Isaias had 60 mph winds and was centered about about 250 miles southeast of the southeastern Bahamas, according to the hurricane center.

It was moving west northwest at 20 mph, and its center was expected to move over Hispaniola (which consists of the countries of Haiti and the Dominican Republic) later on Thursday and near the southeastern Bahamas by early Friday.

Isaias: How to pronounce this new storm name and how hurricanes get their names

Isaias is the earliest ninth Atlantic named storm to form in an Atlantic hurricane season, according to Colorado State University hurricane researcher Phil Klotzbach. The previous record was Irene on Aug. 7, 2005, Klotzbach tweeted.

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Hurricanes can deal massive damage to homes. Here are a few tips that can help minimize the damage.

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So far this year, Cristobal, Danielle, Edouard, Fay, Gert and Hanna have also been the earliest named Atlantic storms for their alphabetic order.

Contributing: The Associated Press; Cheryl McCloud, Treasure Coast Newspapers; Kimberly Miller, The Palm Beach Post

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Nick Cordero’s son’s first words are adorably about his late father

Nick Cordero’s son’s first words are adorably about his late father

by | Jul 31, 2020 | Worldwide Beach News & Updates

, USA TODAY
Published 8:50 a.m. ET July 27, 2020

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Tony nominated actor Nick Cordero spent months fighting the virus.

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Nick Cordero‘s son is still making his late father proud.

Cordero’s wife, Amanda Kloots, luckily captured their 13-month-old son Elvis’ first words on video and shared it to Instagram on Sunday. In the clip, Kloots asks Elvis to point to a photo of his father – who died from COVID-19 complications on July 5, leaving behind Kloots and Elvis.

Elvis’ first words came as a response to his mother’s question: “where’s dada?” Elvis excitedly answered by giving his father’s photo a kiss, giggling, and excitedly saying “right here.” 

“Elvis said his first words today!! Listen closely!” the proud mother wrote in the caption of her post. “He hasn’t seen Nick since March 30th. The fact that he still knows who his Dada is, point to him and give him a kiss to me is amazing.”

Music: Nick Cordero posthumous album ‘Live Your Life’ will be released on his birthday, Amanda Kloots says

More: Fans launch petition to rename Longacre Theater after Broadway star Nick Cordero

One day earlier, Kloots, who regularly updated her followers about Cordero’s health progress, opened up on Instagram about her grieving process, comparing grief to an astronaut stranded in space.

“It’s important to voice grief, I’ve learned, for me. It’s ok. It’s weird,” she wrote on Saturday. “Grief is weird, it’s horrible, it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever had to deal with. I feel like I’m in outer space, drifting alone, but in a protective suit. The current soundtrack is Pet Sounds by The Beach Boys. It’s playing as I’m floating.”

During Cordero’s 95-day hospital stay, he faced a series of complications from the coronavirus, including a leg amputation, extreme weight loss, infections in his lungs and the insertion of a temporary pacemaker. 

Since Cordero’s death, Kloots has posted on Instagram that she’s doing a “#ak10daysofhappy” challenge, with the goal of doing one thing a day that makes her happy. On July 17, she wrote that she went swimming in a kiddie pool with her son and niece, and the day before, she wrote on Instagram that she discovered the Geico gecko logo on the back of the People magazine issue featuring Cordero on the cover. Kloots said Cordero had put this logo on his vision board this year and that she saw this as a sign.

‘It will be very hard’: Amanda Kloots starts move to LA home she bought with Nick Cordero

“The spiritual meaning of a gecko, in case you are wondering, it represents incredible healing and cleansing due to its regenerative powers,” she wrote. “I believe this was a sign from Nick! It was his cheeky way of saying, ‘Hi honey. I’m here still! I’m with you.'”

‘Devastating’: Katharine McPhee, Zach Braff react to Broadway star Nick Cordero’s coronavirus death

Remembering Nick Cordero: Amanda Kloots’ most memorable quotes on keeping faith amid tragedy

Contributing: Charles Trepany

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Trump’s travels, Nevada’s bar closures, Charlie Daniels’ funeral: 5 things to know Friday

Trump’s travels, Nevada’s bar closures, Charlie Daniels’ funeral: 5 things to know Friday

by | Jul 31, 2020 | Worldwide Beach News & Updates

Editors, USA TODAY
Published 4:02 a.m. ET July 10, 2020 | Updated 9:03 a.m. ET July 10, 2020

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Trump will travel to Florida, a coronavirus hotspot

President Donald Trump will visit U.S. Southern Command in Doral, Florida, on Friday to get a briefing on drug trafficking from South America. He is also expected to hold a political fundraiser in Hillsboro Beach later in the evening. Trump will make the trip despite Florida currently being a coronavirus hotspot with the number of deaths from COVID-19 skyrocketing Thursday, according to the Florida Department of Health. The rising death toll comes as the number of confirmed virus cases continues to climb and as more hospitals announced they are canceling elective surgeries and taking other measures to make sure enough beds are available to treat COVID-19 patients. The trip also will come on the heels of the Supreme Court ruling Thursday that Trump cannot withhold his tax returns from prosecutors. Trump blasted the court for rejecting his central legal argument that he had absolute immunity from subpoenas.

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President Donald Trump rejected the Supreme Court ruling and declared that the subpoenas of a New York prosecutor for the billionaire president’s tax records was “a political witch hunt the likes of which nobody’s ever seen before.” (July 9)

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States continue to make moves to combat coronavirus

Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak announced Thursday that Nevada would reimplement restrictions on bars and restaurants in certain counties to prevent further spread of coronavirus due to what he called a “spike” in confirmed cases. The directive is the second time Nevada has tightened restrictions since moving to phase two of its Roadmap to Recovery in early June. Under the new directive, which began Friday at midnight and will be in effect indefinitely, bars that do not serve food will close their doors and end counter service. Restaurants also will stop serving parties of six or more. In Kentucky, amid “an explosion of COVID,” all residents must wear masks in public starting at 5 p.m. Friday, Gov. Andy Beshear announced. His new executive order will last 30 days from July 10 and will be enforced by health departments. Exceptions will include kids under 5 and people with breathing problems. 

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Family, friends and fans say goodbye to Charlie Daniels

A funeral service for Country Music Hall of Fame musician and Grand Ole Opry member Charlie Daniels will be held Friday morning at World Outreach Church in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Nashville singers Travis Tritt, Vince Gill, Gretchen Wilson and Trace Adkins plan to perform at the service, and country music radio host Storme Warren and pastor Allen Jackson will lead the funeral. Hundreds gathered outside Sellars Funeral Home in Mt. Juliet, Tennessee, Wednesday evening for a patriotic-themed public memorial to celebrate the “The Devil Went Down To Georgia” songwriter and it included an audio message from President Donald Trump. A 10-hour visitation followed the event on Thursday. Daniels died Monday morning after suffering a hemorrhagic stroke. He was 83. 

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Pearl Harbor to resume boat tours of USS Arizona

The Pearl Harbor National Memorial will open for limited boat tours to the USS Arizona on Friday. Trips will include a ride aboard a U.S. Navy vessel to the memorial above the site where the USS Arizona sank during the attack on Pearl Harbor during World War II. A memorial stands above the sunken ship in the harbor. Memorial officials are following federal health guidance for mitigating the spread of COVID-19, and all guests must wear face masks. The USS Arizona was built in 1914, and was the second and last of the Pennsylvania class of “super-dreadnought” battleships. 

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Rapper Juice Wrld’s posthumous album ‘Legends Never Die,’ drops

Seven months after he died of an accidental overdose, Juice Wrld’s final works are about to see the light of day. “Legends Never Die,” a new, 15-track album from the rapper, whose real name was Jarad Anthony Higgins, comes out on Friday. While the tracklist has not been revealed, we know it includes “Life’s a Mess,” a somber collaboration with Halsey that was released on Monday. The rising hip-hop star died Dec. 8 after suffering a medical emergency at Chicago’s Midway International Airport. He had turned 21 six days earlier.

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Popular hip-hop star Juice Wrld died just days after his 21st birthday. He went into cardiac arrest at the airport and died in a Chicago hospital.

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Contributing: Associated Press

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