Collected by Jenna Francisco, AFAR Local Expert
Who doesn't love to daydream about staying in elegant, luxurious accommodations where one can truly leave worries behind and deeply relax? Here are some amazing accommodations to get your daydreams (or travel plans?) started.
Carretera Federal 307, 77710 Playa del Carmen, Q.R., Mexico
Secluded and service-oriented are the adjectives that best describe Rosewood Mayakoba, a resort in Playa del Carmen that opened in 2008. At 1,600 acres, the resort is expansive, offering plenty of room for guests to feel that they have their own...
Str. di Certosa, 82/86, 53100 Siena SI, Italy
There is an intimate hotel in the hills of Tuscany near Siena called Certosa di Maggiano. It is pure magic. Tranquil and filled with old Italian charm, this is a place to go and chill out. Strada di Certosa 82/86, 39/0577-28-81-80. Rene Redzepi...
Euston Rd, Kings Cross, London NW1 2AR, UK
I watch as yellow-and-white Eurostar trains snake in and out of London’s St. Pancras train shed, a vaulted Victorian masterpiece of glass panels and iron arches. My room at the St. Pancras Renaissance Hotel has this floor-to-ceiling view:...
392 Rue Notre Dame, Montebello, QC J0V 1L0, Canada
When I stepped into the grand lobby of Québec’s Le Château Montebello, I felt like I was entering Paul Bunyan’s living room. Giant timbers braced a three-story-high ceiling, and a massive fireplace in the center radiated warmth in all directions....
49 Brook St, Mayfair, London W1K 4HW, UK
It says a lot about the values of Claridge’s that the hotel once refused Katharine Hepburn entry because she was wearing trousers (strictly not allowed for women at that time). Instead, one of the world’s greatest actresses was asked,...
Nebovidská 459/1, 118 00 Praha 1-Malá Strana, Czechia
Vaulted ceilings and arched hallways retain the medieval character of the 14th-century monastery that originally stood here in the Mala Strana district. The hotel also houses Essensia restaurant. Doubles from $350, Nebovidska 459/1, Mala Strana,...
Calle Gran Vía, 11, 28013 Madrid, Spain
Extremely nice people at the front desk. Amazingly helpful. The room I had was enormous. Great views. Very quiet. Nice bathrooms. Perfect location, easy to get everywhere walking, Gran Via metro stop just a block away. Retiro just a few blocks...
Constitución 317, Santiago, Providencia, Región Metropolitana, Chile
The Aubrey Hotel is full of surprises to be discovered. Whether a cozy, hidden seating area, meringue cake at afternoon tea, or fresh raspberry juice and mango nectar delivered by a delightfully energetic breakfast server, the Aubrey was a...
8 Rue de Verneuil, 75007 Paris, France
A few meters from Serge Gainsbourg's former residence in the heart of Saint-Germain sits this charming boutique hotel housed in a 17th century building. Aside from a stunning location only a few blocks from the Seine and flanked by shopping and...
Piazza di Santa Maria Novella, 7, 50123 Firenze FI, Italy
Staying in boutique hotels, with their homey feeling and personal attention, can enhance one's travel experience. That is definitely true of staying at J.K. Place. The beautiful décor, central location (right on Piazza Santa Maria Novella in the...
Rodovia Br 469, Km 32, s/n - Parque Nacional Iguassu, Foz do Iguaçu - PR, 85855-750, Brazil
Ok, here's about a half-dozen reasons why Iguacu is better than Niagara... 1) You're in Brazil. 'Nuff said. 2) A few more steps and you're in Argentina or Paraguay. Way cooler than Canada. 3) It's about ten times bigger. 4) And you can go in it....
4048 Sonoma Hwy, Napa, CA 94559, USA
This refined 28-acre resort set in the rolling hills between downtown Sonoma and downtown Napa makes guests feel relaxed the moment they check in. The vistas are unobstructed from the resort’s pool areas, and many of the property’s 94...
Mambal, Abiansemal, Mambal, Abiansemal, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80352, Indonesia
It took three years to realize this passion project: a spa retreat built mainly of bamboo. Book a riverfront suite, or the hotel can arrange a stay in a rural family’s home. This appeared in the January/February 2013 issue.
Via S. Giovanni del Toro, 28, 84010 Ravello SA, Italy
Set in a 12th-century pink fairy-tale palace that looks like it’d make a prime setting for a Wes Anderson film, Palazzo Avino is skirted in flower-filled gardens terraced across a cliffside in Ravello. Interiors are as decadent as the...
Bahía de Coson, Ramal Viva, Las Terrenas 32000, Dominican Republic
Unlike most people who arrive at the property fresh off a plane and short cab ride, I showed up after spending an hour searching for waterfalls on horseback in the Samana wilderness. Basically, I was tired, smelly, dirty… And by no definition...
Jl. Goa Lempeh, Banjar Dinas Kangin, Uluwatu, Pecatu, Kuta Sel., Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361, Indonesia
Atop a cliff one hour from the center of the island, and reachable from the beach by elevator, the Bulgari Resort is an Italian-Balinese collection of villas, each with its own pool. There are also several restaurants, where the food was...
4591 Blackcomb Way, Whistler, BC V0N 1B4, Canada
At the foot of Blackcomb mountain, Whistler Four Seasons blends into and complements its gorgeous natural surroundings with a kind of "chalet-luxe" style. The spacious public lobby areas feature earthy tones, wooden beams, granite, and limestone....
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