This one needs no introduction, but just in case… Imagine lounging on the most beautiful beaches in the world, the sounds of the waves crashing against the shore, your toes in the sand while you relax safe in the knowledge that everything is taken care of, worries left behind, cocktail in hand… You catch our drift. Now take your pick from this lovely lot.
However you spend your time, you’ll easily slip straight into holiday mode at the beachside Jumeirah Zabeel Saray. Inspired by the imperial palaces of the Ottoman era, everything here is done in superb style, from its exclusive location on the west crescent of the Palm Jumeirah to the elegant accommodation options. And as you gently float in the vast infinity pool, you’ll feel you’ve arrived in paradise.
Built into a rocky peninsula in a picture-perfect turquoise bay, this hotel’s architecture and décor take their cues from the surroundings. Even the outdoor saltwater pool is sculpted from the island’s granite, whilst nature moves inside with exposed rock features. All rooms are elegantly finished in soft palettes with white walls and handmade furniture.
This elegant hotel’s superb beachfront location nearby the traditional fishing village of Playa Blanca, is combined with extraordinary facilities, especially where children are concerned.
A glistening ode to contemporary design, this almost all-pool villa resort is located on Mai Khao beach on the northwest shoreline of Phuket. It offers sexy-cool modern interiors with gadgets aplenty, three pools to suit all moods, glamorous common areas and some serious show-off dining, including the rooftop restaurant where tables ‘float’ above a reflection pond and views go on forever.
The architecture, services and personalised attention are what make this hotel stand out as the ideal destination for an unforgettable holiday. Facilities abound for all with two pools surrounded by a botanical garden; the Aequor Spa, nine-hole putting green, kids’ play area, and three restaurants serving up a host of culinary experiences from poolside tapas to gourmet candlelit dinners.
A cool alternative to the bling of flashier resorts, Amanpuri’s charm lies in its stunning natural setting, and its inspired mix of laid-back vibes and downright-heavenly service. And if it’s absolute privacy and intimacy you’re after, take a look at the resort’s villas, each boasting several bedrooms, private pools and a live-in maid and cook to attend to your every whim.
This family-friendly resort is less than five years old but has already built a reputation for its amenities and levels of service. The infinity pool gives it its ‘wow’ factor, as do the views over Amadores Beach, but kids and adults too will love the vast selection of sports on offer, while a handful of restaurants means you’ll always be spoilt for choice.
This small resort takes advantage of Thailand’s undeveloped north-western coastline and is set in a tropical rainforest, its private bay fringed by a natural coral reef. The main pool and beach offer spacious, partly-sheltered sun decks, and you can indulge in pampering at the Trisara Spa with its seafront meditation sala, or take a luxury motor yacht expedition to nearby islands.
The Naka Island is a magical place, an oasis created around calm, balmy waters with tight design details, splashes of glamour, and huge doses of comfort. Guest rooms are set amongst coconut groves and fringed by dusty tropical beaches, of which the full effect is felt at the magnificent Royal Horizon Pool Villa, with its ‘floating’ water walkway and stunning private entertainment areas. Whether rejuvenating at Spa Naka, or splashing around in the pool, every moment here is unforgettable.
A modern and vast resort with a huge stretch of white sand all to itself, you’d be hard pushed to find something the beachfront Gran Hotel Atlantis doesn’t offer. Spectacular views come as standard, as do spacious, sumptuous rooms, whilst the dining ticks pretty much every international box. And while it’s great for families, adults can always get away from it all in the 3000 sq metre spa.
A slight departure for this ever-popular tropical island, Cape Panwa delves into old-school luxury to provide ultra-handsome, ultra-chic, ultra-luxurious accommodation on an island where it’s sometimes hard to find complete and utter exclusivity. All suites and pool villas are sea facing, with the latter numbering just six and all detached in beautifully-kept gardens. And whilst the outside is traditional, the interiors are crisp and exquisitely modern, with wonderful attention to detail.
Located just minutes from Meloneras Beach, as well as the famous dunes of the Maspalomas Nature Reserve, this imposing seafront hotel includes a Thalasso Spa, a meandering pool system, and three restaurants alongside five bars (including the pool bar), whilst sports seekers have long list of diversions to choose from, including a par-71 golf course.
Start your holiday as you mean to go on at Huvafen Fushi, and sit back and relax as you skim across the coral reefs. Thirty minutes later and your speedboat has docked at your own private oasis in the North Malé Atoll. You can choose between an expansive Beach Bungalow set directly on the sandy beach or a breezy Lagoon Bungalow set on decking above the azure water. No wonder this was awarded Best Beach Hotel by Harpers BAZAAR Travel Guide.
A world away from busier resorts and reached only by a stunning seaplane ride, this heartbreakingly-beautiful island presents its discerning guests with peace and seclusion, staggering natural beauty and a hefty dose of indulgence. You’ll find pristine beaches gently lapped by azure waters, coral reefs teeming with aquatic life, and some of the very best service on the planet. Villas are an effortlessly tasteful vision of white muslin drapes and cushion-strewn sofas, while the most spectacular boast immaculate private pools.
Location aside, the Savoy Beach Club has so much going for it. No-holds-barred architecturally, this is very much a grand hotel, going for all-out glamour, and you just know money has been thrown at it. Lavish and gleaming throughout, yet with homely rooms and an amphitheatre-shaped pool ideal for elegant dipping.
Illa d’Or has an air of the grand European hotel to it, yet is thoroughly in the here and now. Sophisticated and elegant through and through, they don’t do brash here. The location itself is almost other-worldly beautiful, and Illa d’Or nestles on its waterfront location with ease. A quirky place in parts, dining on La Terrassa is always a highlight.
One of Thailand’s most idiosyncratic destinations, this hotel’s bold architecture alone gives it a wonderful notoriety. A low-lying modernist masterpiece, it’s all sweeping clean lines, crisp edges, long stretches of mirrored water, and dazzling lighting effects. Whether you stay in a studio or pool villa, Hôtel de la Paix wants your jaw to be on the floor – in all the right ways!
Consistently voted one of the world’s top destination spas, it’s health, health, health here, without being like boot camp. Think relaxing massages rather than exhausting gym sessions; think exotic mocktails rather than calorific alcohol. It helps to stay for at least a week to really reap the rewards of your treatments, be they for weight loss, relaxation, detoxing, or improved fitness.
The resort’s teak and sandstone thatched-roof villas – some lining the crushed-coral sand, some on stilts above the shimmering water – are elegant in design with lovely Maldivian touches.
An adults-only resort presiding over an exquisite stretch of beach on this lovely island, Layana oozes sophistication. It’s elegantly grown up, with a beautiful, serene central pool area from where a cluster of modern pavilions contain 50 perfectly-turned-out rooms and suites, six of which are the grand Beach and Ocean Deluxe Suites. Tides Restaurant, grazing the beach, offers inside or outside dining of the highest order.
This fantastic-looking property, full of plantation house charm, is a brilliant destination for discerning couples and families alike, thanks to its relaxed atmosphere. Mums and dads can soak up the sun while little ones romp round the grounds on organised treasure hunts and pony rides, and actively-inclined adults will find stacks of sports and excursions awaiting them too. Or if you’re looking for an extra dose of romance, check out the Ocean Suites which come complete with breathtaking sea views.
Surrounded by verdant pine trees, white sandy beaches and clear turquoise waters, this gorgeous resort is designed to complement its natural surroundings. Choose from a range of deluxe suites and villas, every single one with its own unique style, immaculate taste and some even flaunting their own private pool. Leisure activities are incomparable, and include everyone’s firm favourites, but for something a bit different, why not try your hand at dance lessons or a painting class?
This is Koh Samui for those who want to get away from it all. Exclusivity is key and the silky halfkilometre beach shaded by palms,and granite headlands beyond, help. Intimacy is maintained throughout, with particular attention paid to your beautiful stand-alone suite or villa, or that special romantic, candlelit dinner on the beach.
On an isolated peninsula surrounded by white sand beaches, just 89 suites and villas await; some overlooking the beach, others stilted above the lagoon. Villas flaunt Jacuzzi bathtubs and walled courtyards with sunken marble baths. Private swimming pools are welcome additions in some, whilst the Princely Suite ranks as the ultimate retreat.
An intimate sanctuary offering hospitality on a regal scale. Charming and enticing, this haven overlooks Palm Island Bay, with just 49 spacious, luxurious rooms and suites housed in Arabian-style residences. A discreet reception leads to a private dining room and an exclusive bar lounge, just for guests, and then there is that spectacular Health and Beauty Institute ...
Cocoa Island knows how to indulge its guests: this COMO Shambhala Retreat is dedicated to renewing the body’s energies, overseen by master therapists and a resident yoga teacher.
A stunningly-slick addition to beautiful Formentera, Gecko set its sights very high, and has surpassed hem. Unapologetically design-conscious, this striking boutique hotel manages to balance aesthetic brilliance with customer service. There are only 27 rooms, meaning that all-important exclusivity is never lost; it also means each of those rooms is pitch-perfect. The pool sits amongst manicured lawns, just steps from the glorious beach that seems to go on forever. Gecko really does define stylish beach living.
An all-villa resort that prides itself on contemporary accommodation with private infinty pools and wow factor facilities, set in a text-book tropical bay with white sands and lush terraces.
Picturesquely located on 600 metres of pristine oceanfront at Turtle Bay, 15 minutes from Grand Baie, The Oberoi is committed to providing its guests with privacy, hospitality and, above all, exclusivity.
An intimate sanctuary offering hospitality on a regal scale. Charming and enticing, this haven overlooks Palm Island Bay, with just 49 spacious, luxurious rooms and suites housed in Arabian-style residences. A discreet reception leads to a private dining room and an exclusive bar lounge, just for guests, and then there is that spectacular Health and Beauty Institute...
Here, you’ll discover Koh Samui done in style, with the one and two bedroom villas looking like they’ve just stepped out of a magazine, and a cluster of restaurants that razzle and dazzle.
Stretching along 12 hectares of pristine beachfront on the private peninsula of Anse Louis, this Leading Hotels of the World member offers a sanctuary of peace and relaxation.
Over the years this charming retreat has acquired a sense of style that still manages to dovetail perfectly with its oceanfront setting on the west coast of Barbados. The luxurious accommodation is beautifully appointed; all rooms have a private veranda, whilst one and two bedroom suites feature a sitting room and well-equipped kitchen that’s especially useful for families. There are also two outstandingly-designed Tree Top Suites with their own plunge pools, and The Beach House, a stunning three bedroom villa.
The Residence’s first foray into the Maldives, the delightful beachfront or overwater villas at this secluded retreat allow for either a ‘toes in the sand’ experience or the chance to slip straight from your deck into the cool, clear waters. And it all comes with The Residence’s signature butler service and spectacular style. Adventure seekers can engage in a selection of exhilarating watersports, while those who wish to savour life at a slower pace can opt for more relaxing activities on land.
Overlooking a crescent-shaped, white sand beach and surrounded by an emerald green jungle leading down to the sea below, this resort has truly achieved the sublime. An extension of its stunning surroundings, the resort comprises 67 villas and suites that descend to the secluded Petite Anse beach below. The beautifully-decorated villas have their own infinity-edge plunge pool and open-air shower, designed to make the most of the breathtaking views.
Whether you’re keen to explore the casual Gulf Coast lifestyle and cosmopolitan excitement of Sarasota, or just lounge on the beach and enjoy luxurious accommodation, look no further.
Embraced on all sides by beauty and refinement, Montage Beverly Hills is located just steps from the unrivalled shopping and dining of Rodeo and Canon Drives. Exuding vintage Hollywood style paired with modern luxury, the hotel offers the best of both worlds and combines award-winning cuisine, a stunning spa and an iridescent rooftop pool. A Hollywood icon in the making!
Just 15 minutes from Koh Samui’s airport are 69 hidden villas, almost all coming with their own private pool, and each a stylish combination of comfort and unfussy design. Alfresco Thai dining is found beside the infinity pool, with views down to Choeng Mon beach, itself a beauty, or you can go for something more intimate in your villa.
Coral Reef Club has been owned and managed by the O’Hara family since the 1950s, and the younger generation has introduced the style and requirements of today whilst subtly retaining the finest traditions. Just 88 rooms, cottages and suites, overlook the gardens, swimming pool or coral-sand beach. Charmingly appointed in an elegant island style, they all feature air conditioning, ceiling fans, CD player/clock radios, safes and private balconies, whilst the Luxury Holiday Cottages and Plantation Suites serve up the last word in tropical comfort.
Here, traditional Maldivian hospitality has been shaken up and re-imagined giving stylish, modern interiors. A glorious, sandy retreat with its own reef and shipwreck to explore.
Banyan Tree Seychelles is a luxurious villa resort languishing on beautiful Intendance Bay, surrounded by swaying palms, takamaka trees and the tranquil waters of the Indian Ocean.
Whether you’re keen to explore the casual Gulf Coast lifestyle and cosmopolitan excitement of Sarasota, or just lounge on the beach and enjoy luxurious accommodation, look no further.
This luxury enclave in exclusive Montecito is old-school California meets up-to-the-second Four Seasons hospitality. A Spanish colonial-style mansion houses rooms and suites, many with vaulted ceilings and fireplaces, flanked by 12 cottages which pepper the property’s lush gardens and feature three to five guest bedrooms and enough room to entertain an army.
Discover a year-round paradise surrounded by exotic gardens and fringed by stunning white sands. Culinary delights are in abundance here, as are a host of activities and a spa.
Beautiful Balinese carvings, furnishings and fabrics lend an exotic air, as do the traditional open-sided pavilions here. The extraordinary privacy offered by the walled villas makes this a couples’ paradise.
In September 2010 this elegant and understated resort underwent a multi-million-dollar renovation. As well as refurbishing the 48 Oceanfront Deluxe Rooms and enhancing all the public spaces, an additional room category of 24 Beachfront Junior Suites was created. The experience begins with VIP fast-track through customs on arrival at the airport and is completed by butler service.
Indulge in calm and relaxation on this island of white talc sand surrounded by cobalt-blue waters, in one of 48 captivating villas cooled by the natural sea breeze of the Indian Ocean. From intimate moments to exciting shared activities, a wide selection of experiences designed for all ages can be found here; from watersports and marine life discoveries, to fabulous spa treatments or sublime dining choices that range from eclectic Maldivian and international cuisine to candlelit dinners under the stars.
This private sanctuary is one of the Seychelles’ 41 inner granitic islands, considered to be the most beautiful on earth. Just 20 minutes by helicopter from Mahé, North Island is perfect for those seeking an unspoilt tropical haven on a large and private isle. With four white sandy beaches located at each end of the compass, North Island is able to offer a year-round tropical beach and island experience that’s the very definition of barefoot luxury.
This hotel’s oversized rooms and suites, beautifully furnished in classic-yet-contemporary West Indian style, have fully-equipped kitchens and private balconies overlooking the Gulf of Mexico. Dining can be savoured at the seafood grill or at the outdoor pool (complete with childrens’ area and climatecontrolled cabanas) on the 8th floor, and there’s a rooftop terrace for sunbathing and hot-tubbing, a spa and gym, a childrens’ club and an abundance of watersports on the beach.
‘Spot the A-lister’ is a game anyone can play at Shutters – it’s a favourite haunt of Hollywood’s finest. The pool’s on the small side – but hey, when you’ve got Santa Monica beach on your doorstep (literally), what more do you need? You’ll love the constant sound of the ocean here, too. To do some star-spotting, stay at weekends or hit the main bar from around 4pm.
W Hotels are all about the ‘wow’ factor, and the 75 exquisite retreats here are no exception, with customdesigned furniture, sophisticated technology and private pools in a feast of cool, design-led luxury. The setting on the uncrowded north shore is as stunning as the hotel, flaunting powdery golden sands and clear waters, perfectly placed for local attractions and nightlife.
Large, but nevertheless the epitome of barefoot luxury, with a beachfront location, lagoon, inviting pools, a feast of culinary options, exquisite spa pampering and myriad watersports.
An exclusive resort set on its own private island with traditional, luxury villas perched on stilts or high on the hillside. Pangkor Laut provides its guests with indelible memories and an environment where you define your holiday’s pace.
Hugging the powder-white sands of a picture perfect horseshoe cove, with nothing but vivid green sugar cane fields behind yet close to the charming town of St Felix, is the boutique Shanti Maurice.
Nuzzling the gentle slopes of the Arcadian Praslin Island, 86 villas designed in contemporary style offer blissful accommodation with 24-hour butler service as standard.
Casually modern, overlooking the Gulf of Mexico, the resort offers no fewer than nine dining options, including a sushi bar and the beachside alfresco Gumbo Limbo – the perfect place to witness a breathtaking sunset. The world-class spa is nothing short of immense, with more than 30 treatment rooms, whilst championship golf is just three miles away at the Greg Normandesigned Tiburón Golf Club.
Every element is in place here for an idyllic retreat; its a cosy, Craftsman-style estate in the picturesque arts community of Laguna Beach and the ideal SoCal beach hangout.
This is a low-rise resort made up of 27 villas, most of them with private pools, and all of them something really rather snazzy. Unquestionably modern – the villas are handsome renditions of contemporary living – the resort, however, maintains an organic air, and feeds easily into the beachfront it calls home. A pretty impressive spa emphasises the importance of body and mind at X2.
On a garden hillside in Southern Bali, close to the bougainvillea-shaded streets of Nusa Dua, lined with dining, nightlife, shopping and entertainment options, Amanusa offers the most tranquil of bases.
Unspoilt beaches, idyllic islands and seas teeming with marine life form the perfect holiday setting. While the Spa Village provides traditional Malay-inspired treatments, the resort’s family activities and warm hospitality contribute to a relaxed atmosphere.
This Relais & Châteaux property brings together colonial elegance, immaculate service and a relaxed vibe. The result? An utterly idyllic resort that continues to delight discerning guests. Set in an English-style country house, Cobblers Cove boasts 40 gorgeous suites, in tropical grounds, each light, airy and opening onto beautiful views of the gardens or white sands.
A suite-only retreat, Rosewood Mayakoba’s rooms are reached by a stroll through flower-filled gardens or by boat through the meandering freshwater lagoons encompassing the resort. And with their pale limestone walls, the suites are visions of natural beauty married with man-made luxuries. Inside, the look is clean, crisp and contemporary, with vast airy rooms decked out in muted tones, lit by floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors. Through them, oversized terraces open onto your very own slice of Caribbean sunshine, while terrace plunge pools are on hand to help you cool off.
Located directly on the beach at secluded Pai Plong Bay, just one bay away from Ao Nang with its extensive range of shops, bars and restaurants, Centara Grand Beach Resort retains a traditional Thai architecture, designed as a cluster of low-rise buildings and individual villas and is ideally suited for couples and families alike, with an extensive range of spacious accommodations and activities to suit all.
While the superb service really sets this resort apart, it’s a bit of a looker too. The elegantly-tapered, three-tiered pool is sensational, while the cliff-side location makes for breathtaking views.
Built in a horseshoe shape around the freshwater swimming pool, a large number of Treasure Beach’s suites have ocean views. All have open-air living areas extending to an outdoor patio or balcony, ensuite bathrooms with bathtub and walk-in shower, and air-conditioned bedrooms. Kathy’s Restaurant has received international acclaim and the dinner menu changes on a nightly basis.
Nature meets design made for coffee table books in this gated, exclusive enclave on Mexico’s famed Riviera Maya coast, home to the second largest coral reef in the world. Each villa, whether it’s on the beach or with its own spa, is stylishly decorated with handcrafted Mayan furnishings and comes with its own private garden.
Set on a 300-acre private island nestled just two miles off the coast of Antigua, Rosewood Jumby Bay’s coastline is edged by pristine white sands and its waters are amongst the bluest in the islands. Guests arrive by a short, private boat journey; it’s an exclusive experience that sets the tone for the rest of your stay. Noted for its landscape, lush with rare tropical flowers, stately palm trees and abundant foliage, the island is also home to beautiful birds and brilliant reef fish.
A pared-down paradise getaway, you’ll find comfortable rooms and live entertainment here, as well as lovely local cuisine, two magnificent pools and a choice of private beaches nearby.
An idyllic Thai getaway overlooking the magnificent Andaman Sea, Phulay Bay is a peaceful sanctuary with spacious villas and pavilions accented by contemporary Thai décor. A tantalising selection of casual and formal dining options cater for all; the ESPA spa will leave you in a blissful state of relaxation, and littler guests will delight in the Phulay Baby kids’ programme, especially meeting Koko, the resort’s two-year-old elephant.
An intimate and luxurious rainforest retreat, The Datai’s secluded villas are set on meandering paths leading down to a private bay and white sandy beaches that face the Andaman Sea. It’s the ultimate in peaceful perfection.
The only resort on Moyo, a native reserve east of Bali, Amanwana is a camp in name only – its 20 tents sport the majesty of royal palaces in a setting even your wildest dreams couldn’t conjure.
This resort is a fabulous oasis of domes and arches. Rooms are clustered like a Mediterranean village, with interlinking courtyards adorned with fountains and flowers. Alcoves, hand-carved wooden panels, traditional tile patterning and advanced entertainment systems feature in every room. Private balconies and terraces provide panoramas of the coral-rich Red Sea, while some suites come with private outdoor plunge pools. Guests have the choice of three sprawling freshwater pools and outdoor whirlpools too.
With its white walls, thatched palapa roofs rising up above pure white sands, and turquoise Caribbean waters; Belmond Maroma Resort & Spa is a vision of Mayan loveliness. Part of Belmond's renowned global collection of 45 iconic hotels, trains and river cruises, this heavenly resort’s aim is to wow you with its sheer natural beauty, before packing you off feeling revitalised and full of well-being.
A beachfront resort that hums refinement, Heritage Le Telfair consists of a series of handsome, colonial style villas and takes in 15 pristine oceanfront acres, including the glorious Bel Ombre beach.
Nestled amongst lush forest with the beach right there, this is five-star luxury with a choice of hill, lagoon, or sea views from your well-appointed room, and a spectacular signature restaurant.
The Chedi, located in Oman’s capital city, Muscat, is elegance incarnate with a restrained opulence. Every effort has gone towards creating a resort that oozes character, yet remains at ease with its magnificent backdrop of deserts, mountains and the stunning Boushar beachfront, which dips into the pure waters of the Gulf of Oman.
Located in the Dubai Marina and The Walk, this Mediterranean-style resort overlooks 1000 ft of white sand on Jumeirah Beach. Just six elegant floors incorporate a collection of luxury guest rooms and suites and a surfeit of gourmet restaurants offering anything from Arabic to Italian dishes, while recreational facilities include tennis, the worldclass spa, and Ritz Kids’ Club.
Organically designed and nestled on a ridgeline 1,200 ft above the crashing surf, Post Ranch Inn is a fantastic and luxurious place for couples needing peace and seclusion. The accommodation is unique: Ocean House roofs are covered in wild flowers and walls of glass while Tree House rooms are built on stilts in the canopy of hundred-year-old oaks. There are no clocks or TVs - just wood-burning fireplaces and bathtubs big enough for two.
Guaranteed to knock your socks off, Amanjiwo is surrounded by lush forest, towering volcanoes and the planet’s largest Buddhist temple, blending effortlessly into its awe-inspiring natural setting.
If you can drag yourself away from the vast, playful pool area, you’ll find a hotel dripping with facilities and awards for those facilities. The seafront location is also a winner.
At this all-pool villa resort in Vietnam’s new international playground, Banyan Tree have created a wonderful enclave of traditional-modern pavilions ripe for romance, where local and global cuisine is at your fingertips and a signature spa will see to your pampering needs, all lapped by the gentle East Vietnam Sea in this most stunning of destinations.
Four Seasons’ legendary standards come to this exotic ocean paradise with its choice of Overwater Bungalows (with or without plunge pools) and Beach Villas with private infinity pools.
A grand driveway flanked by casuarina trees, a prime stretch of white-sand beachfront and languorous evenings that resound to the lazy strains of calypso and jazz. Accommodation is luxurious, with suites gracefully furnished with four-poster beds. The hotel also offers two renowned restaurants and a complimentary water taxi service between the six west coast Elegant Hotels.
An exclusive enclave within the Punta Cana Resort & Club complex, Tortuga Bay comprises 30 Oscar de la Renta-decorated guest suites in 13 individually-managed villas. Each of the luxuriously-spacious suites has a terrace overlooking a green lawn or the Caribbean Sea, and a golf cart parked right outside – just the thing for exploring the resort’s nine world-class restaurants and PB Dye-designed course.
Renowned for its club-like ambience, exemplary service levels and 25,000-bottle wine cellar, Curtain Bluff’s perfect location is what really sets it apart. Dominating a private bluff on Antigua’s south coast, its Caribbean beach is tranquil and calm and its Atlantic beach deliciously windblown and wild. It’s also a sporting paradise, with complimentary activities including tennis and squash courts, a fitness centre, aerobics, yoga, Pilates, a swimming pool and watersports that include deep sea fishing, snorkelling and scuba diving for certified divers.
This towering resort a few kilometres from Rhodes offers traditional guest suites alongside some nice, modern flourishes, a glut of dining options, and a private beach accessible only via the hotel.
Once you’ve caught your breath after taking in the views of Phang Nga Bay – ‘wow’ doesn’t even cover it – lay back and take in the Six Senses Hideaway that you’ve wisely chosen as your holiday destination. Set on Koh Yao Noi, an extraordinary island of lush vegetation and tropical landscaping that’s reached by motorboat or the resort’s own helicopter, the contemporary villas are tucked away in dense forest, with stunning views over the awe-inspiring limestone pinnacles of Phang Nga that really do have to be seen to be believed.
Set on a secluded beach, this resort claims Langkawi’s most dramatic setting. All guest pavilions and villas feature large Malay-style verandas or balconies, unique design touches, the soothing sounds of the Andaman Sea and sensational views beyond the beach, whilst the Two Bedroom Villa comes with its own lap pool. While the kids enjoy their own tailormade activities, why not explore the wildlife-rich rainforest, enjoy non-motorised watersports, take a private picnic on a nearby island, or simply relax in the spa.
The setting’s gorgeous; nothing beats the cobalt ocean view from your bed before you jump off your terrace into the lagoon! It’s very private too – no wonder it’s a favourite with Hollywood’s A-list.
Imagine walking into the pages of Wallpaper* magazine and you’ll have some idea of how it feels at this most fashionable resort on the Caribbean’s most fashionable island. Its distinctive geometric architecture surrounds sophisticated, contemporary interiors, courtesy of Kelly Wearstler (the imagination behind all Viceroy properties), with custom-designed furnishings throughout. Spread along two superb white sand beaches – Meads Bay and Barnes Bay – the luxury accommodation goes from rooms and suites, right up to super-swish villas.
Located in a secluded bay on the west coast of the island, this all-suite resort fronts a white sand beach and has fabulous views across the Caribbean Sea. Built from tropical hardwoods, the shingle-roofed cottages sit prettily in the landscape and recall the island’s colonial past. Inside, a neutral palette and contemporary décor form the backdrop to unobtrusive luxury. Its easy to do nothing here, but there’s also non-motorised watersports, sailing and windsurfing lessons or indulgent pampering with a range of sumptuous spa treatments plus a beachside restaurant and freshwater pool.
Stylish and contemporary in design, suites here feature open floor plans with unobstructed ocean views, a full or French balcony and come complete with oodles of modern amenities.
Inspired by the elegant hideaways of the French and Italian Rivieras, Eden Roc is a boutique hotel with 34 freestanding suites overlooking the gardens or the lagoon, each with its own swimming pool and spa area. Located on the Cap Cana resort, with its world-class Jack Nicklaus-designed golf course, full-service marina and tennis courts, the hotel has five restaurants, a private beach, two outdoor pools, a kids club and a fabulous spa.
A tropical hideaway reflecting the style of grand haçiendas, One&Only nPalmilla is simply idyllic; a verdant oasis of exquisite fountains, swaying palms and tropical flora. Guest rooms are in single- and three-storey ‘casas’, scattered throughout the 250-acre estate, with unobstructed views of the Sea of Cortez from the balcony or patio.
Sugar Beach is surrounded by tropical rainforest and flanked by a dazzling white sand beach. The newly renovated Luxury Sugar Mill Rooms provide the ultimate in convenience and comfort with private plunge pools and secluded walled gardens, and some come with rooftop open-air lounges. The Villas boast the same elegant styling. For us, that’s what the Caribbean’s all about – that and white beaches plus water so clear it’s like snorkelling in an aquarium, both of which you’ll find here. Very cool.
A tropical paradise and ecological haven ideal for couples and families alike, this is your very own private island home. The outstanding beauty of the island is enhanced by a conservation programme which allows guests to share in discovering rare wildlife and indigenous plants. The island’s own plantation guarantees a unique gastronomic experience, with gourmet cuisine served at one of the two restaurants.
A quaint and pretty resort with low-rise villas providing clean-lined, elegant accommodation, Lindian Village really does feel like a village. The Pool Suites, incidentally, are divine – as is the food!
Overlooking emerald-green rice fields and the spectacular Ayung River gorge, but just minutes away from arty Ubud, Amandari is perfectly placed for culture vultures and lounge lizards alike.
Amidst a dramatic watery landscape, this cluster of renovated bungalows, with their own turtle sanctuary, offer modern, delightful on-water accommodation in a dream setting.
Once the private estate of Huntington Hartford II, this resort reflects the refined quality of an elegant colonial manor. The resort features stunning Versailles gardens and 12th-century Augustinian cloisters.
Those seeking tranquillity are sure to find it at Cap Juluca, home to dramatic Moroccan design, amidst 179 tropical acres on a mile-long, crescent-shaped beach. Whether you stay in a luxury suite or dreamy beachside villa with its own pool, you’ll be met by sophisticated style and modern luxuries at every turn. Dine on ‘Eurobbean’ or pan-Asian cuisine and charter a boat to Little Bay.
Little Dix Bay boasts a spectacular setting on Virgin Gorda; the reefprotected lagoon and half-mile crescent beach are its undoubted natural highlights. Facilities abound on land or sea and the 106 guest rooms and suites are furnished to the very highest standard with amenities such as air conditioning, fridge/minibars and private patios. Most look out towards the bay, whilst others are beachside and set on stilts.
This sophisticated hideaway is set on the beach overlooking the sapphire Sea of Cortez. Vibrant Mexican artwork abounds: avant-garde paintings, precious artefacts and carved furnishings are scattered throughout the resort. Bright, spacious and air-conditioned, the suites maintain a muted but inescapable Mexican style. Full butler service, luxurious bathrooms, king-size beds, satellite TV, CD and DVD players feature, along with a wood-burning fireplace for romanticevenings and a telescope for stargazing.
This boutique-style hotel is a distinctly Gallic testament to the finer things in life. At its hub lies the beachfront plantation-style estate house with its swimming pool, alfresco restaurant and collection of rooms and junior suites. Four Beach Suites featuring private infinity plunge pools sit directly on the beach, whilst the remaining bungalows and suites lie amid tropical gardens.
This is the perfect Caribbean resort for families, especially those with young children. Built between a sandy crescent beach and an 18-hole golf course, the village comprises a choice of one, two, three and four bedroom luxury villas, some overlooking the giant 35 metre lagoon pool and some offering private pools and the services of a personal butler.
It may be a hop and a bit of a skip to get to Mustique, but boy is it worth it; Cotton House’s appeal is in its seclusion, elegance and refinement. While it’s been converted from an old sugar mill, it’s far from rustic: having been rejuvenated by hotel genius Grace Leo it now boasts beautifully renovated and romantic weathered cottage rooms and suites.
On its own 1000-acre private island. Parrot Cay is the epitome of contemporary chic thanks to a clever combination of simple décor, impeccable service and activities, all designed to de-stress. Choose between rooms, suites or villas, all with spectacular views. Or beyond the resort’s mile-long stretch of porcelain white sand, one of the exclusive private homes.
Imagine a private island in the breathtaking Seychelles with 14 kilometres of perfect-to-the-touch white sandy beaches, fringed by unspoilt forest and looking out towards crystal waters. Then imagine a series of über-stylish yet sensitively-designed suites and villas brushing the perfect sands; each beautifully rendered in natural woods with mod cons through the roof. This, is Desroches.
Originally built to host heads of state, this palatial resort is the jewel of the Sultanate with a breathtaking location – the jagged Hajar mountains as its backdrop and the glittering Gulf of Oman on its doorstep. Sitting in 200 acres of manicured grounds, punctuated by a network of lagoons, infinity pools and fountains here you’ll find an authentic, stylish Arabian experience.
.A slight departure for this ever-popular tropical island, Cape Panwa delves into old-school luxury to provide ultra-handsome, ultra-chic, ultra-luxurious accommodation on an island where it’s sometimes hard to find complete and utter exclusivity. All suites and pool villas are sea facing, with the latter numbering just six and all detached in beautifully-kept gardens. And whilst the outside is traditional, the interiors are crisp and exquisitely modern, with wonderful attention to detail.
The concept behind this show-stopper of a resort is the fusion of health and world class luxury, and they’ve seduced us. The property itself is a careful and winning combination of traditional lines, yet wrought in a very modern, quietly beautiful way. It is all-villa accommodation, and all villas come with a private pool. But back to the health thing: Fusion offers spa treatments that are an inclusive part of your stay and that will leave you looking – and feeling – more beautiful.
You’ve already chosen Fiji, so half the work is done for you; Vomo Island will do the rest. You’ll run out of adjectives to describe this wonderful resort where spectacular villa living is accompanied by some of the best all-sensory dining experiences in the South Pacific. Vomo’s superlative accommodation – The Residence and The Royal – is amongst the region’s most impressive.
A luxuriously low key, eccentric and soulful boutique resort big on service and style, and perched on a grassy, flowery bluff amidst confectionery-sugar pink sand and jasmine-scented breezes.
Set between the sugar-soft sands and the azure waters of Rendezvous Bay, CuisinArt’s setting is pure Caribbean glamour. Inside the 93 spotlessly-turned-out spacious rooms and suites, restful whites and rich blues echo the immaculate views that stretch as far as the eye can see. There’s a host of superb sporting facilities, and for lovers of all things culinary it’s a veritable paradise.
Tucked away on the stunning island of Virgin Gorda, accessible only by boat or helicopter, Biras Creek has long been a favourite of both discerning guests in the know and the critics who routinely shower it with awards. Just 31 airy suites complete with light furnishings are set amongst 140 lush acres to be explored by bike, hikes or boat trips, before an indulgent spa session or sumptuous meal.
Casual yet stylish attire is the order of the day here, whether relaxing barefoot at the Sand Bar or dining at the hotel’s On The Rocks Restaurant with its spectacular setting. Originally opened in the 1950s, Eden Rock has retained the enviable reputation of being the place to be seen on the fashionable island of St Barths, and offers its guests an impeccably refined holiday.
Overlooking the powdery sands and tranquil waters of Smugglers Cove, Cap Maison’s spacious haçiendastyle villas open onto gorgeous Caribbean views. And with 49 modern and fully-equipped Villa Suites spread throughout tropical gardens, many with private roof terraces, Jacuzzis or plunge pools, this resort is perfectly placed to meet the needs of couples and families alike
Stunningly designed with an outside-in ethic – the sun seems to glide through the bleached wood villas with their clean lines and design-classic furniture – this resort tempts you in from the onset. Its luscious reception pavilion opens out on to the central reflection pond, which in turn brushes against the library and boutique, the restaurant and the bar. The perfect modern island hideaway.
Perched gracefully at the southernmost tip of Baja California, Capella Pedregal is a dreamy marriage of Mexican hospitality and spectacular amenities. The location itself is perfection, set minutes from bustling Cabo San Lucas but serenely private, with a beach that marks the point where the Pacific and the Sea of Cortez meet.
Nestled within luxuriant gardens with ocean views, this five bedroom staffed villa embodies subtle refinement from the moment you arrive, with everything to make your stay perfect.
Hilton has gone back to nature with this resort tucked away on beautiful Mahé. Comprised only of private villas, dotted with secluded coves, and topped off with the Duniye Spa, it’s an idyllic escape.
With arguably one of the most advantageous locations in Abu Dhabi, on a beautiful island studded with miles of pristine white beaches, glassy waterways and lush green gardens, a shiny new, must-visit destination has been created. That island is Saadiyat, surrounded by the glittering waters of the Arabian Gulf, just off the coast of Abu Dhabi. The St. Regis is already the choice of those in the know, and an ideal pick for anyone who likes to mix their glitz and glamour with some serious rest and relaxation and mouthwatering dining options too.
Located on the very northernmost tip of Oman, the property sits among a landscape of craggy cliffs, desert fjords and pristine beaches, all just two hours from Dubai airport. So stunning is the approach to Zighy Bay that guests have the choice of arrival by land – a breathtaking drive down the hill, by sea – speedboat, or by paragliding in with the resort’s resident instructor.
A truly unique and breathtaking destination, Six Senses Con Dao has the privilege of being located in a protected national marine park, and its buildings are a delicate balance of natural materials, architectural subtlety and jet-set luxury. Each of the 50 villas is a stunner, with their own infinity pools and sweeping views of the East Vietnam Sea.
Set on two protected islands – known locally as The Sweethearts’ – and connected by a footbridge spanning a marine reserve, ‘special’ hardly covers this magical place. The islands are populated by a selection of villas, each as spectacular as the next, plus a large infinity pool and an island boutique featuring designer labels and beauty products. The cuisine is Cambodian fusion that’s as special as the islands, whilst you can venture out on bespoke ‘off-island’ adventures. There’s also the added convenience of an all-in pricing policy.
Its home on Seminyak Beach, this chic resort offers 68 sea-facing suites, the show-stopping Beach House, a lovely infinity pool stretching out towards the beach, and shoreline dining.
The beach here is one of the best in the world – and we’ve seen a few! With its beautiful white sand, clear, deep blue water and a nearby coral reef, it’s the stuff of fantasies are made of.
A wonderful, watery world of standalone bungalows either lolloping above the water and connected by romantic wooden walkways, or basking in the sun beside the powdery beach, Likuliku is the epitome of a South Pacific lagoon paradise. The beach, the food and your own piece of paradise are all perfect, and rammed with mod-cons that will have you pinching yourself.