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Good news for single parents, plus a peek inside the new Ice Hotel, Tel Aviv boutique style and East London comes to Paris


Good news for single parents, tired of unfair supplements for travelling solo with their kids — Virgin Holidays is launching new package holidays designed with solo parents in mind. 

The initiative will be covering 10 resorts across the Caribbean to start with, including four resorts in the Elite Island Resorts Collection offering family-friendly all-inclusive holidays, which could save up to £1,000 on a break.

Currently, most room prices are based on two adults sharing, so a child travelling with a sole adult would be charged the full rate — Virgin’s initiative will see the growing number of single parent families getting a reduction. 

The new room rates are available from October 1, subject to availability. 

Peek inside the Ice Hotel

Space, snails and Scheherazade are among the inspirations for the Icehotel in Swedish Lapland, the 28th winter creation built in Jukkasjärvi.

A total of 26 artists from 11 countries are joining the hotel’s design and building team to transform their ideas into frosty reality before the first IceFlight of the season on December 16.

The three and a half hour flight from Heathrow to Kiruna, 15 minutes from the Icehotel, is the only direct one from the UK and runs until March 2018, after which the hotel’s 5,000 tons of ice start to melt back into the river.

Guests can check in to 15 suites including Hang In There, with frozen sheets of ice creating a hanging installation, as well as other rooms inspired by One Thousand and One Nights, King Kong and a Faberge Egg, along with an Ice Church and a hall with a chandelier featuring 1,000 hand-polished ice crystals.

A three-night break with Discover the World starts from £1,154, including one night in the Icehotel and direct flights.

Israeli-style boutique

There a local twist to Tel Aviv’s newest boutique hotel, The Vera, due to open in November.

Set in the Rothschild neighbourhood, the 39-room hotel is working with local designers and brands to add an individual touch of style to the converted 1950s office building, such as organic cosmetics brand Arugot.

The hotel is also collaborating with local lifestyle magazine Telavivian to produce its own publication in place of more traditional concierge services.

And as well as local mixologists dreaming up cocktails in the bar, there’ll be a cocktail vending machine in the lobby — plus two rooftop terraces to enjoy them.

New Hoxton in Paris

Paris is getting the Hoxton touch after the fourth hotel in the UK chain opened in the French capital. Set in the 2nd arondissement, the 18th century listed building was created for an advisor to Louis XV.

Now with 172 rooms, brasserie and bar, The Hoxton, Paris, is split across three buildings and two courtyards. Many of the original details have been preserved, from 300-year-old staircases to 18th century tiles used in the bar, as well as timber roof beams in some of the fourth floor bedrooms.

Mixing ornate Belle Epoque styling and 1950s retro, the rooms range from high-ceilinged options with rolltop baths to attic rooms with a view of the Eiffel Tower.

The perks created for the first London hotel are also the same, including free water and WiFi, an hour of free calls anywhere in the world, breakfast delivered to the door and a mini fridge to stock with local products from the reception shop.

Events and masterclasses, such as art pop-ups and fitness options, are also planned. Walking distance from the Gare du Nord and the Gare de l’Est, rooms start from around £92.

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