Travelling to Australia

Ayers and graces suite talk

When Irishman Robert O’Hara Burke and William John Wills, an Englishmen, set out across Australia in 1860, they needed 27 camels to carry their equipment. With the opening of the country’s first luxury safari camp, Longitude 131°, on 10 June, modern explorers can savour the raw beauty of the Outback carrying nothing more than a camera and sunscreen.

The camp’s simple construction, by Sydney architect Philip Cox, is sensitive to the fragile desert environment and the 15 air-conditioned tents, constructed from steel, glass and canvas, appear to float in the warm air. All have private bathrooms, stone floors and are furnished with beautiful linens, as well as mementos relating to

different European explorers. Each tent has an unrivalled view of Uluru (Ayers Rock), above, 8km away, as does the glass-fronted bar; and thanks to the camp’s special relationship with the area’s Aboriginal owners, the Anangu, guests have access to sites that are usually off limits to tourists. Unlike Burke and Wills, who had to supply their own refreshments (including 60 gallons of rum for the camels), guests at Longitude 131° will be able to enjoy superb food and service, including drinks throughout their stay. Mark Chipperfield Contact Voyages Hotels & Resorts (00 61 2 9339 1040) or visit www.longitudel31 .com.au). Two nights A$1,350 (about £500) per person, including personalised tours

New Zealand Fancy renting a designer-kit house? Try this bachkit (seaside bungalow) in the Mahakirau Forest south of Auckland. Overlooking the sea, it has two double bedrooms, a deck and barbecue area that seats 12. From NZ$450 (about £140) per night. Call 00 64 9 307 1002; e-mail: judehooson@mandala.co.nz USft The Viceroy, opening this month, is a 170-room, ocean-front hotel in Santa Monica combining British colonial style with modern design. A library doubles as a screening room. Doubles from $305. Call 00 1 310 451 8711 Italy II Convento is a three-bedroom apartment within a 10th-century monastery set in a cliff face on the Amalfi coast. Some rooms have original medieval frescoes.

From ‚3,200 (about £1,960) per week. Call Dolce Vita Villas on 020 7436 0426 Paris Re-opening this month is the 93-room Hotel de la Tremoille (00 33 1 44 05 75 75; doubles from £240). It now resembles a chic Parisian apartment – antiques are offset by modern almond-coloured fabrics. On 1 September, the new 188-room flagship Park Hyatt Paris Vendome (00 33 1 42 44 26 62; doubles from £355), created by Amanresort designer Ed Tuttle, opens near the place Vendome. Features will include a two-floor presidential suite with four terraces. Reykjavik The 40-room 101 Hotel, next to the Icelandic Opera House, features a bar, restaurant and spa, in-room libraries and care parcels containing T-shirts and bathrobes. Doubles from ISK17,500 (about £125). Call 020 7348 7040

jnks? Paul Smith has expanded his empire to open his first-ever airport shop in Heathrow’s Terminal 3 Thanks to the government’s Pet Travel Scheme (PETS), dogs and cats can now accompany you on holiday and bypass quarantine on their return. Since GB Airways joined the scheme in June 2015, the airline has expanded its routes to 11 destinations, including Malaga (from where one owner returned with 10 cats and a dog), Tenerife and Gran Canaria. Dogs and cats have been enjoying city breaks in Amsterdam, Madrid and Milan with bmi British Midland since March 2015, with others flying long-haul to Bermuda on British Airways. Animals travel in a heated and ventilated section of the hold and must be housed in a plastic or wooden container they can stand up, turn around and lie down in. LJ Call the PETS Helpline on 0870 241 1710;

GB Airways Cargo (01293 433767); bmi British Midland (0870 240 0203);

British Airways (0845 779 9977)

Photographs: Bruce Mackie; Benjamin Storrier. Leather satchel, £350, Dunhill (020 7290 8720)

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