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A bi-weekly round-up of new hotels and hideaways, treks and tours.

The Renaissance Barcelona opens 26 April, not far from the Passieg de Gracia , the city’s most elegant (and most expensive) boulevard, and Las Ramblas, the world famous pedestrian street. The hotel has 211 guest rooms, a steakhouse and a bar/lounge, but in the summer, head upstairs to La Terrassa rooftop bar, the kind that they do so well in Spain.

Just across the Mediterranean Sea, the sensuous Selman Marrakesh opens 1 May, just outside the Medina in the foothills of the Atlas Mountains. Artistic director and hotel design guru Jacques Garcia decorated the 56 rooms and suites with Moorish tiles, stuffed furniture and stylish fabrics. Its stables house 16 Arabian horses (six can be ridden on treks) that canter daintily around the nearby paddocks.

On 1 May, the Wythe Hotel, a new urban chic hotel in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, is planting its flag firmly in the art world, playing host to artists involved in the highly-anticipated New York debut of London’s Frieze art fair. The hotel’s “four or six person band rooms” have bunkbeds for aspiring rock stars on tour, and the restaurant, Reynards, is from star Brooklyn chef Andrew Tarlow of Marlow & Sons.

The deadline to register for one of Elevate Destinations’ voluntourism trips to Haiti is 1 May (named National Geographic Traveler’s “Tour of a Lifetime 2011”). Travellers can choose a one- or two-week trip, run in partnership with Let Haiti Live, where they help on construction projects and participate in summer youth camps. In addition to the tour rates, participants are also asked to raise an additional $500 from friends and family.

The Hollies, a 19th-century manor house, opened 16 April as a Natural Retreats property in County Kerry, Ireland. The house has been extensively renovated and consists of five guestrooms and a separate one-bed guest house. Set in a conservation area near Killarney National Park and the Ring of Kerry, guests can fish in the Caragh River, golf, canoe, hike around the lakes and hills or just relax on the lawn in the sun.

 

 

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