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World's Most Unusual Hotel Transfers

© Jeremy Swanson

Pull up to your hotel in style with these unique modes of ground transportation.

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Guests arriving by air for stays at The Little Nell in Aspen, Colo., can ask to be met at the airport by pro cyclist Scott Kasin, who provides them with a bike jersey, a water bottle and their own top-of-the-line Orbea road bike. Kasin then guides them along for an incredibly scenic transfer to the hotel—and high-altitude workout.

Dig around and you’ll find that hotels can offer a lot more than just a limo when it comes to helping you make a grand entrance—options can include helicopter, boat, motorbike…even horse-drawn carriage. To determine what’s available, ask your hotel concierge about options, and be prepared to pay a lot—unusual hotel transfers don’t come cheaply.

Business travelers are growing weary of the journey from airport to hotel in clunky cabs or crowded vans. Mobile apps that call up car services such as Uber.com and Limos.com are increasingly popular with business travelers everywhere. Leading Hotels of the World, a luxury hotel consortium, says that airport-to-hotel transfers were a primary request in a recent guest survey, so it offers complimentary limo rides between airport and hotel to members of its Leaders Club Unlimited program.

A chauffeur can greet Milestone Hotel guests upon arrival at London’s Heathrow Airport, take their luggage and escort them to the Heathrow Express for a 15-minute ride to Paddington station. That’s where the transfer gets unusual: At the station, they are met by a butler who escorts them to a horse-drawn carriage for a royal gallop through London’s streets to the hotel, which overlooks Kensington Palace and Hyde Park. To be treated like royalty, expect to be billed like royalty: The cost for this carriage is $1,275.

If a horse and carriage is too staid, too slow or too expensive, you can opt for a ride on the back of one of Virgin’s Limobikes for the trip from airport to city. Drivers of its fleet of Yamaha FJR 1300s can zip around London’s famous traffic jams. Passengers are fitted with protective clothing (and even a blanket on cold days) and a helmet that allows the passenger to speak with the driver and make phone calls while in transit. There’s even room for a carry-on bag. And you don’t have to fly Virgin Atlantic to get the service. The price for the ride from Heathrow to central London runs about $125 (but it’s complimentary for Virgin business-class passengers).

On your next trip, eschew the ho-hum van ride from the airport to your hotel. Instead, make a real entrance with one of these 11 transfers.

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