With the topic of this months travel link up being luxury I thought I’d compile a ‘best of the best’ hotel features that I’ve experienced so far.
1. Best Ever Room
Three years ago Mr S and I went to South Africa and stayed in a safari lodge called Singita Boulders. We entered the room, looked at each other and said ‘this is the best room we’ve ever stayed in’
Organic decorations, a wrap around balcony, bath with a view, private pool, all inclusive mini bar, huge fire place, four poster bed… need I even go on? With incredible food, service and animal experiences to boot, Singita Boulders was not only our best ever room, but the best hotel we’ve ever stayed in.
2. Best Ever Private Pool
Once a hidden gem, now an Instagram sensation, Jade Mountain in St Lucia is another of my favourite ever hotels. One of the main reasons I fell in love with this place is the unique architecture and the fact the rooms only have three walls with the fourth being replaced by the most beautiful private pool.
Not only was the pool in our galaxy sanctuary huge but there was an incredible view of the Pitons, the icons mountains of St Lucia.
3. Best Ever Beach
The prize for best ever beach goes to Amanpulo in The Philippines, I’ve never seen such fine white sand and crystal turquoise waters as when staying at this private island hotel.
I mean how pristine is that sand? And it felt so fine between our toes!
Our room was actually right on the beach and we had our own private section to ourselves!
4. Best Ever Spa
I recently wrote a post on my top ten hotel spas and I have to say that Sense Spa at Rosewood Mayakoba wins hands down for me. Located in a tropical jungle and drawing inspiration from local culture and the natural elements used by ancient Mayans, it is quite sensational.
5. Best Ever Bath Tub
The best bath tub I’ve ever experienced is at Velaa Private Island in the Maldives…
I’ll just leave these here…I don’t think I need to say any more!
6. Best Ever Hotel Pool
Perched on a cliff top and stretching to infinity and beyond is the pool at Alila Villas in Uluwatu in Bali. The view over the Indian Ocean is utterly spectacularly and the perfect place to spend a tranquil day.
Not only is the pool beautiful, this Balinese hotel is one of the world’s most visually stunning hotels and I love the dramatic wooden structures around the pool.
7. Best Ever Hotel Food
I’ve stayed in hotels with multi-Michelin starred restaurants but when I was considering this category my mind, heart and stomach kept on returning to Mnemba Island in Zanzibar. With only 12 villas on the private island, everything at Mnemba Island is as personal as can be. There’s only one restaurant located on the beach and a small kitchen staff who put together a set menu – I always think less is more when it comes to really good food.
Every morning the chef talks to the guests to discuss the menu that he’s put together and each meal is made from the finest and freshest ingredients. Absolute highlights for me were fresh sushi and cocktails on the beach every night at sunset and dining around the island. Dinner was located in a different special romantic location every night with the last night being right outside our room.
Seriously this is such a special place and the food made it even better!
8. Best Ever View
This was a tough category as really love a good view and it was a close call between a few of my favourites. But a view that was so beautiful, I almost wept was the view of Venice from The Gritti Palace.
This was the utterly glorious view from my room.
And the hotel bar was right on the Grand Canal facing the Santa Maria della Salute church, a truly exquisite sight!
9. Best Ever Attention to Detail
I couldn’t write this post without a mention of my favourite UK hotel, so I practically had to invent a category for it. I feel like at Soho Farmhouse they surveyed regular hotel goers and set about building a luxury UK country retreat that eliminated any of those annoying niggles. With the plug sockets, mirrors and lighting in the room all in the right place plus full size bathroom products. Forget cold room service breakfasts as a mini van comes to your room to make breakfast, there’s no worries about get a drink to the hot tub as there’s a press for drinks phone. Arriving late and feeling starving? Fresh bread and cheese awaits you on arrival. Hungover on a Sunday, of course there’s a Bloody Mary cart.
Plus there’s a so much to do you could stay here a week and not get bored. From the spa, to horse-riding, boats and a cookery school.
10. Best Ever Arrival
There’s nothing more rock star than arriving at your hotel by a small plane, I’ve been fortunate enough to do it a few times but the first and best was our seaplane to Jonah’s in Sydney.
We flew over Sydney before arriving at the hotel for champagne cocktails and an incredible three course lunch and stay. Oh…and it also helped that Mr S proposed there!
Those are my top ten travel luxuries. I’d love to know yours!
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