1. SIX SENSES BUMTHANG
Surrounded by pine trees in a hilltop glade, Six Senses Bumthang looks out across an ancient valley dappled with centuries-old monasteries and sacred monuments, putting visitors in the heart of the Bhutanese physical and spiritual landscape. After days spend trekking or biking through the lush landscape, touring palaces or foraging for mushrooms, guests can unwind in the lodge’s traditional dotsho hot stone bath or feast on seasonal fare in Tongtshang restaurant, before retiring to their pine-clad suite. Bumthang joins Six Senses’ collection of Bhutanese lodges: one overlooking the magnificent Phobjikha Valley; one in a pine forest on a hillside overlooking the capital Thimphu; one amid the rice paddies of Punakha, close to the mighty Punakha Dzong fortress; and the fourth high above the Paro Valley, a few hours’ hike from the iconic Tiger’s Nest Monastery.
2. ROSEWOOD YANGON
The three-storey colonnades of the New Law Courts in Yangon have extended a stately welcome to visitors since 1927, when the city was part of the British Empire. Almost 100 years later, the grand colonial building has reopened as Rosewood Yangon, complete with 205 lavish guestrooms and suites designed by New York-based Lillian Wu Studio, many with private balconies or patios and décor fashioned by local artisans and craftsmen. Most of the original interior design features have been retained, including cast iron balustrades and perforated metal screens that allow air to circulate around the building: an early form of air conditioning.
Five dining venues by Tokyo-based Bond Design Studio include NOVA European Brasserie, where at least 70 per cent of ingredients come from Myanmar and its oceans, and CourtRoom Bar, where dark teak wall panelling evokes the romance of times gone by while guests explore the selection of bespoke cocktails.
3. GRAN HOTEL BRISTOL
Less than three years after unveiling Gran Hotel Manzana Kempinski La Habana, the European hotel company has opened the doors to its second Cuban address: Grand Hotel Bristol. Set with in a 1930s colonial building with a modern extension raising the roof by an additional three storeys, the hotel offers a fresh take on the boutique lifestyle hotel experience, with 162 guestrooms and suites inspired by the Art Deco style of the ’30s.
Guests can enjoy privileged views of the National Capitol Building from the rooftop pool deck and top-floor El Capitolio restaurant, and there’s also Latin-inspired tapas at El Diamante, nutritious local fare at Pasos Perdidos lobby bar and casual dining at La Muralla Club. Later this year, Kempinski will open its third Cuban property on an island off the north coast: Cayo Guillermo Resort Kempinski Cuba.
4. RENAISSANCE NEW YORK CHELSEA HOTEL
New York, USA
Inspired by the nearby Chelsea Flower District and the Antiques Garage flea market that once occupied its address, Renaissance New York Chelsea Hotel invites guests into a whimsical world of local art and design. The 341 guestrooms and suites are adorned with printed wallcoverings and playful touches like rabbit-head desk lamps, while suites feature 4.2-metre high ceilings and artwork by artist and photographer Sara Byrne. Rooftop pool and lounge Somewhere Nowhere will undoubtedly become a neighbourhood hotspot when it opens in the near future, whisking guests into a fantastical world on the 38th-39th floor with 360-degree views of the New York skyline.