Sports-crazed travel buffs are already counting down the days to Winter 2006, when the Olympic games will take over Turin, Italy. In fact, in a survey conducted by The Leading Hotels of the World, 65% of the organization’s Leaders Club members said they would plan an entire leisure trip focusing on an acclaimed event, and of those, 12% named the Olympic games as their top choice.
With almost an entire year until the torch is lit (the games will be held from February 10-26, 2006) it may seem premature to start planning your clients’ Olympic excursion, but Olympic organizers have reportedly already booked all three- to five-star hotels in the area in preparation for the influx of tourists.
If your clients prefer to stay close to the action, try booking a quaint room directly in Turin. The Starhotel Majestic (www.starhotels.com; tel. +39 011 539153) is one option in the heart of Turin and just a short walk from the city’s historic center. The hotel isn’t currently accepting reservations for February 2006, but check rates and availability as the event draws nearer. Another convenient location to investigate is Sauze d’Oulx (45 miles from Turin), where the main mountain parking lot and train drop-off site will be. There, check out the Relais des Alpes hotel (+39 0122 859747; [email protected]).
For those travelers seeking a truly decadent city experience during their Olympic down time, Milan offers several luxurious options, including the Carlton Hotel Baglioni (www.carlton.hotel-milano.it; 0039-051-750830), Excelsior Hotel Gallia (www.lemeridien.com), Grand Visconti Palace (www.grandviscontipalace.com), The Westin Palace (www.starwoodhotels.com), the Park Hyatt Milan (www.milan.park.hyatt.com) and the Hotel Principe di Savoia (www.hotelprincipedisavoia.com; 39 02 62301), which is now accepting reservations (call 0039 02 6230 5555 for individual rates, and 0039 02 6230 7920 for group inquiries). In addition to arranging shuttle service to Turin, hotel staff will create personalized spa packages and arrange meals at the Galleria, the hotel’s gourmet restaurant. In Milan your clients can also rent a luxury vehicle and make the 89-mile drive to Turin, or ask their hotel’s concierge about arranging transportation to the Games.
To purchase Olympic tickets, visit www.cosport.com, or call 877-457-4647; a list of ticket agents for countries outside the EU is available on the official Turin Olympics website, www.torino2006.org.