With over 500 million daily active users sharing an average of 80 million photos a day, Instagram is more than just a repository of dreamy images— it’s the #1 trip-planning resource among millennial travelers.
In a recent survey, over 1,000 UK adults between the ages of 18 and 33 were asked what the most important consideration was when choosing a holiday destination. A whopping 40% percent pointed to the social media network, beating out other factors like sightseeing potential, opportunities to experience the local cuisine, and even cost.
Those findings, coupled with the fact that mobile bookings now comprise 40% of all digital travel sales— plus the prediction that millennials will make up 45% of the travel market in 10 years— point to the ever-growing importance of Instagram.
But not all Instagram images are created equal, and the breakfast-in-bed selfies and generic sunset shots have become so ubiquitous as to be unremarkable. The photos that are creating meaningful, lasting impressions: the ones that touch on millennials’ values and interests, from sustainability and design to health and wellness.
Here are just a few of the ways Luxury Frontiers has incorporated these Instagrammable designs into its experiential projects.
The Animal Viewing Hide at Belmond Savute Elephant Lodge
The new animal-viewing hide at Belmond Savute’s Elephant Lodge is Insta bait par excellence. For one, it allows guests to inconspicuously watch elephants, buffalo, giraffes, and other exotic animals gather around the property’s watering hole—an Instagrammable sight if we’ve ever seen one. Added to that are the hide’s bamboo walls, which frame the spectacular views while casting beautiful, spindly shadows throughout the open-air space.
Tree House Suites at La Piantata
In terms of “wow” factor, you can’t beat the treetop suites at La Piantata. Perched 25 feet above ground, the two suites are set amidst a pastoral landscape of lavender fields and olive groves on an 18th-century Italian farm nestled between Rome and Tuscany. One treetop suite is built into a 100-year-old oak tree; the other is wrapped around the trunk of a 200-year-old pine tree. As if that weren’t Instagrammable enough, breakfast is served straight to the room via a pulley mechanism.
Private Plunge Pools at Belmond Eagle Island Lodge
Nothing says “vacation” quite like a shot of a sparkling pool. And when said pool offers jaw-dropping views of the Okavango Delta, as is the case at Belmond Eagle Island Lodge, it’s an Instagram slam-dunk. Pro tip: keep your camera on hand, as you might even see a giraffe come by to drink from the watering hole in front of your pool.
Abu Camp’s “Stardeck”
Some travel experiences are so magical that it’s impossible to capture the beauty of the moment in a photo. Such is true at Abu Camp’s Stardeck, a one-of-a-kind lodging experience located high above the elephant boma. Offering complete sensory immersion in nature, the canopy-level suite has all the trappings of an Instagram success: a stunning backdrop of fig and jackalberry trees; a sumptuous “starbed” enclosed in gauzy mosquito netting; and a teak deck accented with lanterns and vintage-style trunks. Not pictured: the drowsy sounds of elephant snores.