RoyalGold is a particularly striking responsive WordPress theme sold via the ThemeForest website.
RoyalGold is intended for travel websites such as those for hotels, spas and resorts. Although ThemeForest state that it can also be used for other businesses, it’s certainly most suited to its primary purpose.
The theme’s image-heavy look and feel is attractive and bold. It’s perhaps best suited to mobile devices, and is fully responsive and retina ready for this purpose.
While the theme doesn’t include its own booking system for hotels and resorts, it does integrate with the easyReservations plug-in.
Resident Designer’s Opinion
“Nobody could reasonably argue that the RoyalGold theme isn’t eye-catching. When viewed on a high resolution tablet, it looks truly stunning.
However, there is a compromise made here, because when you view a RoyalGold site on a traditional PC, you get the distinct feeling that you really should be viewing it on a mobile device. Sliding between images feels jarringly jerky when you do it with a mouse pointer instead of a touchscreen.
Even so, this is a stunning theme, perfectly suited to those who want their travel-related site to truly stand out.”
Really, the RoyalGold theme is all about the main home page, which attractively displays large photos on a slider-based interface, complete with a small overlaid menu. It’s very striking, but interaction with it undoubtedly feels more natural on a touchscreen device.
If you make use of the easyReservation plugin, a reservation form appears on a side bar, while a large proportion of the screen continues to cycle through high resolution images.
The “About” page layout is similar, with information displayed to the side, and images remaining most prominent.
RoyalGold also boasts a “journal” feature – essentially another name for a blog, as far as we can ascertain. Again, this displays in a sidebar:
Continuing the theme, the contact page also appears in a sidebar (or at the bottom of the page if you are browsing using a smartphone with a small screen).
There are various widgets available, including plenty of social networking buttons.
The key features of RoyalGold are listed on ThemeForest as follows:
- HTML5 + CSS3 + jQuery
- Fully responsive + retina display
- Mobile first approach (to optimize bandwidth for smaller screens)
- SMOF admin panel
- Can manage header logo, site favicon, custom site image (for Facebook) and Apple touch icons
- Ability to add custom CSS style and scripts (like Google Analytics)
- Updates automatically from latest ThemeForest version by inputing a simple API key from your account (no need to manually re-download the theme)
- Can change base color, link color, background color+pattern, google fonts, extra space for menu and content areas, menu options (case and toggle state), supersized options
- Ability to backup and restore the admin options
- Included panoramic viewer for 360° images ($15)
- Integration with Contact Forms 7, easyReservations and Responsive Lightbox plugins
- Custom meta-box attribute to add additional images as page background slideshow
- Various theme shortcodes (tooltips, buttons, social icons, responsive video, etc)
- Localization support (default.po)
- Import .xml file included to get the same page+post data as in the demo preview
- Diverse variations of home page that contain:
- Unique pages: About, Our Staff, Testimonials, 404 Error Not Found, Search results
- Common elements: typography, lists, tables, forms, buttons, tooltips, dropcaps, quotes, alerts, toggle panels, lightbox wrappers, social icons, pagination, etc…
- Support supplied for theme issues, but not for customization (available at cost)
The pricing of RoyalGold is generous, at just $40 on ThemeForest for a standard license, and $2000 for an extended license. These costs are a little lower than those of competing themes, which is pleasing to see.
Other travel themes sometime include a rudimentary booking system for only a little more money, but it’s fair to say most travel businesses will quickly outgrown these. We therefore have no complaints at all about the cost of this theme.
RoyalGold is a great theme for high-end travel businesses who really want to show off their property in pictures. View it on a tablet and it looks truly stunning, thanks to the retina capabilities.
Our only suggestion is to have a good look at the demo site and make sure you’re happy with the desktop functionality too. While we like and recommend this theme, we do think it fair to say it’s great on a mobile device but merely good on a PC. You should make sure this is a compromise you’re happy to live with.