1. SANDERS COPENHAGEN
The beautiful brainchild of Danish ballet dancer Alexander Kolpin, Sanders encapsulates what Copenhagen does oh so well – pared-back luxury, quiet confidence, and rich yet refined creative and cultural references. Here, guests enter a world that takes its cues from the stage (the Royal Danish Theatre is right in front of the hotel): think sumptuous upholstery within a subdued palette of forest greens, earthy clay and laidback rattan; all perfectly stage-lit by moody lighting. Solo travellers will delight in the train carriage-style Coupe rooms, and long-stay guests will love the Sanders apartment, complete with open fireplace, kitchenette and space to entertain. Sanders Kitchen offers up fresh regional fare that can be enjoyed in the chic tiled dining space, under the stars on the hotel’s rooftop Conservatory, or in front of a roaring fire in the leafy central courtyard. Tata, the hotel bar named after the Royal Danish Theatre’s beloved red velvet curtains, will no doubt draw local creatives to its sexy surrounds; and stylish staff are on hand to create curated Copenhagen experiences.
2. PARQ VANCOUVER
Vancouver plays host to a veritable playground of high-end entertainment, dining and accommodation in the form of Parq Vancouver. Two luxury hotels – JW Marriott and the DOUGLAS, an Autograph Collection Hotel – sharethe prestigious address with eight restaurants and lounges and a 30,000 sq ft rooftop park in what’s billed as the largest private development in British Columbia. There’s something here for every luxury-lover – whether that’s the nature-infused vibe of the DOUGLAS (named after Vancouver’s Douglas firs and featuring a 25-foot replica tree in the lobby, a living green wall, Douglas fir-infused gin, and Aesop amenities); the playfulness of JW Marriott (a locally inspired art walk plus extensive Spa by JW amenities); or the range of food and drinks on offer – think Chinese fine dining at 1886, a celebration of local produce at Honey Salt, and top notch drops at Lotus Whiskey and Tea Lounge.
3. BULGARI RESORT & RESIDENCES DUBAI
Italian sophistication meets Middle Eastern exoticism at the hotly anticipated Bulgari Resort & Residences Dubai, with the ultimate ‘urban oasis’ set to open any minute in Jumeira Bay. Following on from its four predecessors in Milan, Bali, London and Beijing, the resort was designed by renowned Italian architecture firm Antonio Citterio Patricia Viel. The result? A jewel-like triumph of precision and beauty, blending Mediterranean boulevards, lush landscaping, and materials including Italian marble and luxe Italian furnishings with a sense of oceanside escapism. All 101 rooms and 20 villas boast expansive views over the Arabian Gulf or Dubai skyline, complete with large balconies. The BVLGARI Spa takes luxe wellness to the next level, with a 25m indoor pool complete with floor-to-ceiling sea views, soothing vitality pools, aroma steam rooms, ice fountains, private training and a men’s barber on offer.
4. NOBIS HOTEL COPENHAGEN
Nobis Copenhagen has all the makings of a surefire Scandi hit: impeccable design credentials brought to bear in a landmark historic building; hot-to-trot standalone restaurant; and an enviable location, just of H.C. Andersen Boulevard, within stone’s throw of Tivoli Gardens. Starchitect Gert Wingardh has enhanced the Danish classicism of the original building by using materials including Carrera marble, stone, wood and glass.
The grand scale is offset by ornate detailing, with soothing blues and greens working beautifully alongside warm blond wood furniture – much of it bespoke – and Nordic design classics add a modern, playful twist. Restaurant Niels, located in the attached annex with its own entrance, celebrates top-notch seasonal ingredients under the award-winning hand of Chef de Cuisines Jeppe Foldager (formerly of Alberto K), who recently obtained his hunter’s license in order to be able to serve meat from game he has hunted himself. Above and beyond? Yes. One to watch? You bet.
5. AVANI HUA HIN RESORT & VILLAS
Hua Hin, Thailand
Miles from the hustle and bustle of Bangkok, Hua Hin is the AVANI Hua Hin Resort & Villas beach escape of choice for the Thai royal family and well-heeled locals, who have been drawn to its white sand beaches and turquoise waters for the last 100 years. Adding a splash of colour to the town, Avani Hua Hin Resort & Villas is tucked away on a stretch of tropical coastline, with 196 guestrooms, suites and villas surrounding a central lagoon pool.
Eleven one- and two-bed villas are finished in natural hues, with earthy wooden shades complementing tropical greens; and private pools and spacious terraces make them a top choice for families. Other suites have plunge pools or Jacuzzis shaded by gazebos, and a handful have outdoor rainforest showers so guests can stay in contact with nature throughout their stay. All natural AVANISPA has nine treatment rooms including two couple’s rooms for romantic pampering and a VIP spa suite, and an authentic hammam for pre- or post-treatment steaming. The new Jazz Lounge will open on New Year’s Eve, joining all-day dining restaurant Staas and Italian restaurant Brezza to complete the resort’s dining offering.
6. FOUR SEASONS HOTEL MEGÈVE
The first Four Seasons mountain resort in Europe had to be impressive, and Four Seasons Hotel Megève doesnt disappoint. With interiors by Pierre-Yves Rochon and Baroness Ariane de Rothschild, whose family put Megève on the map in the 1920s, the 55-room and suite resort adds a splash of contemporary luxury to the Mont d’Arbois ski region and its 136 ski runs. Chef Julien Gatillon has relocated his two Michelin-starred restaurant Le 1920 to the hotel, with indoor-outdoor dining that makes the most of both winter and summer seasons.
Bar Edmond celebrates the legacy of Edmond de Rothschild, the man responsible for creating the town’s Mont d’Arbois Golf Course in 1964; a Nikkei restaurant adds a dash of Asian flavour to this corner of southeastern France; and a two-storey wine cellar with 10,000 bottles will ensure that no one goes thirsty when the weather takes a turn for the worst.