If you're a hotel fan, like us, you're partial to the luxuries of a king-sized bed, walk-in shower and views to die for, so we've compiled our pick of bucket list-worthy hotels around the world where you will want to stay before you die.
These dream hotels are architectural masterpieces, remote retreats that blend seamlessly into their surroundings and seven-star hotels where the service is second to none.
We chose these hotels based on their world-class settings, unique features and incredible offerings for guests, which range from stargazing with a local astronomer to arriving by helicopter.
Whether you're into rainforest retreats, French chateaux or even ice hotels, these are the holiday-of-a-lifetime hotels to add to your bucket list...
Bucket list hotels to visit before you die
Bucket list hotels to visit before you die
With no electricity and positioned above the forest canopy in a unique location, Pacuare Lodge is mostly reached via white water raft as you spot the huge array of multi-coloured birds and wildlife along the way. Its eco-friendly, luxury bungalows are palm-thatched with private terraces, indoor and alfresco showers, plus virtually 360-degree views. By day, activities include rafting, horse riding, trekking and zip lining. By night, you can enjoy a candlelit dinner high in the rainforest canopy or on the riverbank. The Ultimate Travel Company offers three nights at Pacuare for £1,160 per person on a full-board basis.
Situated at the heart of a land of extraordinary and contrasting landscapes, andBeyond Sossusvlei Desert Lodge enjoys splendid solitude in the NamibRand Nature Reserve, the largest private nature reserve in Southern Africa. Looking out onto vast desert plains, the lodge offers incredible views of some of most spectacular night skies through scenic skylights situated above the king-sized beds in the suites, as well as from its fully equipped observatory. Steeped in the utter tranquillity of the desert, it provides a range of experiences from stargazing and intimate picnics in the desert to a hot air balloon ride and scenic flights. Those looking for something a little more active can enjoy quad biking and hiking through the surrounding scenery. Rates start from $456 (£351) per person per night on a full-board basis.
Repeatedly voted the world's most luxurious hotel, the Burj Al Arab Jumeirah offers unrivalled facilities and seven-star service throughout – right down to an optional chauffeur-driven Rolls-Royce. This suite-only accommodation offers discreet within-room check-in, a private reception on every floor and a host of personal butlers to ensure your every need is catered for. The impeccably designed 780 square-metre Royal Suite is the pinnacle of luxury, with its opulent colour scheme, sumptuous furnishings and exclusive amenities including a private lift and cinema. Guests at the hotel can arrive by one of the world's largest chauffeur-driven fleets of Rolls-Royces or by a dedicated helicopter transfer service. You name it, the Burj Al Arab's got it! Rates for the two-bedroom Royal Suite start at £6220.89 per night.
This must-visit hotel has some of the most distinctively designed villa suites you'll see anywhere in the world. Located in Phuket, Keemala Resort provides four designs each inspired by the life stories, cultures and traditions of four groups of fictitious ancient Phuket settlers. The largest villa type is the Bird's Nest Villas which have a unique woven style and feature their own private terrace and private pool. The hip hideaway oozes serenity and is near to the sights and sounds of Phuket, yet far enough away for total tranquillity. Luxtripper offers seven night holidays including flights from £2,380 per person.
A fairytale castle perched on a cliff overlooking the prettiest meander of the Dordogne River, Chateau de la Treyne invites guests to have a Michelin-starred dinner in the most romantic setting on the Terrace watching the sun go down before bathing in the La Favorite Master Suite’s exquisite golden bath and enjoying its breathtaking Gothic stucco ceiling, period Louis XIV furniture and the way in which the huge white bathroom turns gold every evening as the sun sets. Rates for La Favorite start from €900 per suite per night.
The Bela Vista Hotel & Spa, located in Praia Da Rocha, Algarve, sits against a backdrop of stunning surrounding scenery and lays within a mansion that dates back to 1918. The property still has its original guest books, registration of signatures and comments from Sidónio Pais, the King of Italy Umberto di Savoia, Fulgêncio Baptista, amongst others, as it has played host to a number of esteemed personalities in its lifetime. The hotel has maintained its original romantic aesthetic and has 38 luxurious and contemporary designed rooms, inspired by the opulence of real palace life. It features a terrace restaurant overlooking the clifftops below, two bars, private beach access, an outdoor swimming pool and a spa signed by L’OCCITANE. Prices in a classic room start from 400 euros per night.
A staple of the Indian Ocean, the first over-water bungalows are set to hit the Caribbean at Sandals Royal Caribbean in Jamaica this year. The Over the Water Bungalows feature a king-sized bed, a furnished sun deck, outdoor shower, over-water hammocks and an outdoor tranquillity tub for two, while the Villas also feature an infinity pool and Jacuzzi. All come with a personal butler, private water taxi to take you to and from the mainland and Sandals Luxury Included service. Prices with Destinology start from £8,489 for a seven-night stay, based on two sharing an Over the Water Private Island Bungalow on an all-inclusive basis and including flights.
Located in Tianjin’s prestigious Heping district along the picturesque south bank of the Hai River, The St.Regis Tianjin features striking architecture by world-renowned Skidmore Owings and Merrill and interior design by KCA International. The 18-floor building is constructed of steel and glass and rises from the river in the shape of a hollowed cube. Its interiors include strong Art Deco and Art Nouveau influences, and the hotel is home to the Iridium Spa which features an indoor pool, Jacuzzi, steam room and whirlpool in addition to nine treatment rooms. Rates start from £97 per room per night, which includes the signature St. Regis Butler Service.
Set in the heart of Ecuador’s cloud forest, Mashpi Lodge is the ultimate eco-chic hideaway, perfect for adventurous travellers looking for a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The strikingly contemporary lodge sleeps 44 guests in 22 luxuriously appointed rooms, including three Yaku suites featuring floor–to–ceiling windows, the ideal environment for viewing the vibrant surrounding jungle and forested mountains. A hideaway in the clouds only accessible to its guests, the lodge is designed as the ideal springboard for exploring the biodiverse world of its reserve. Mashpi’s unique Sky Bike offers an unforgettable journey of discovery through the rainforest, presenting spectacular views of the forest below, while the lodge’s newest addition, Dragonfly, South America’s first rainforest gondola, allows guests to glide gently above, below and through the canopy. Rates start from $1,437 per room per night on an all-inclusive basis.
Just ten minutes' drive from downtown Quebec City lies the Hotel de Glace, which is the only ice hotel in North America entirely made of ice and snow. The structure takes 50 workers, including fifteen sculptors, six weeks to build and requires over 30,000 tons of snow. Guests can choose between a standard room, themed suite, premium themed suite with a fireplace or upgrade to the Premium Deluxe Arctic Spas Suite with a fireplace and its own private spa. A range of winter activities for guests in the area include skiing, ice skating, snowshoeing, dog sledding and snowmobiling. In its 16th season, the hotel will be open from 4 January to 26 March 2017 and next season’s theme will be Rivers. An overnight stay starts from CAD$199 per person.
Four Seasons Resort Seychelles is home to 67 treehouse-style villas and suites that dot the hillside overlooking Petite Anse bay, one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Its Hilltop Ocean View Villas and Serenity Villas offer some of the most spectacular hotel bedroom and bathroom views around, perfectly positioned to capture the sunset that drops straight in front of the bay. Meanwhile, the hilltop Spa is nestled at the top of the resort, overlooking the entire bay and offering a serene retreat for you to spend precious moments relaxing with a spa treatment. Two bedroom Ocean View Suites start from 3,220 Euros per night.
With its magical setting right in the heart of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Dolomites, Adler Mountain Lodge encapsulates contemporary luxury and offers a real escape from modern living and all its pressures. Home to just 30 rooms, the hotel sits at a height of 1800m in the middle of the Alpe di Siusi piste. The main lodge features a cavernous lounge with open fireplace, spacious sun terrace, restaurant, wellness and spa facilities, infinity pool and 18 Junior Suites, all with panoramic views of the Dolomites. Guests can enjoy guided skiing, moon-lit sledding, hiking and mountain biking, as well as yoga at sunrise and stargazing with a local astronomer at night. Rates start from 234 euros per person per night on an all-inclusive basis.