These Are the World’s 17 Most Beautiful Hotels

Courtesy of Saint James Paris Beauty can be found in every corner of the world,

Courtesy of Saint James Paris

Beauty can be found in every corner of the world, and sometimes the best way to discover these life-changing places is by staying somewhere just as awe-inspiring. While some travelers may crave the privacy of a quaint villa (or even a spectacular private island), the impeccable service and extraordinary design of a luxury hotel will never go out of style.

There’s something magical about being surrounded by beauty from the moment you land in a new, charming destination to the moment you lay your head on the fluffy pillows in your hotel room. Each breathtaking stay that comes to our editors’ minds as one of the “most beautiful hotels” has a way of celebrating its setting and people while inspiring guests through its interiors, offerings, and hospitality. All the hotels you’ll on this list deliver just that. From an exquisitely colorful hotel in Seville to an art-filled Nairobi escape neighboring a giraffe sanctuary, these are VERANDA’s picks for the world’s most beautiful hotels.

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Borgo Santandrea: Amalfi, Italy

If a hotel could speak Italian, this sublime four-year renovation of a midcentury cliffside hotel by the Orlacchio and De Siano families would be the one. Setting the dolce vita tone: 31 types of handmade, hand-painted local tiles from Cottovietri and Ceramiche R that bring the Mediterranean’s shimmering blues into classically inspired geometrical play throughout the hotel. The impeccable furniture collection ranges from quietly custom to seductively original and includes gems like the circa-1960s Englander & Bonta chairs (pictured here in the La Libreria restaurant).

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Cashel Palace: Tipperary, Ireland

The wonders of Ireland—lush rolling hills, ruins of Medieval marvels, and even Guinness—all converge at Cashel Palace. Overlooking the historic Rock of Cashel, the regal estate, originally designed by famous architect Sir Edward Lovett Pearce, went under restoration in 2017 only to reopen earlier this year in absolute splendor. Cashel Palace’s unique dual facade–red brick on the front and limestone on the rear—and fully restored 150-year-old windows now sparkle in the sunlight. The 42 rooms retain the charm of the hotel’s past while being outfitted for modern living. The gardens call out to guests with its perfectly manicured topiaries and fluffy hydrangeas. And the beer is always flowing in the hotel’s own Guinness Bar.

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Cheval Blanc St-Barth Isle de France: Baie des Flamands, Saint-Barthélemy

Hidden amid the vivacious palette of St. Barths, the Cheval Blanc hits all the right notes from its serene atmosphere to world-class accommodations. Renowned designer Jacques Grange gave the guest rooms a recent refresh inspired by the sweet cadence of island life. Each room features quirky objets d’art and handcrafted furniture made from materials that echo the natural landscape of the isle. The guest rooms’ crisp white tones and pink accents carry over into the common rooms, terraces, and the relaxation spa pavilion. Competing against the panoramic ocean views for the hotel’s pièce de résistance is the striking mobile sculpture made of colored glass pearls by artist Jean-Michel Othoniel at the entrance.

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Concepció by Nobis: Palma, Mallorca, Spain

It may be a little difficult to believe a former mid-16th-century building once home to a soap factory has become the height of hospitality and innovative design in forever-fabulous Palma, Spain. Yet, that’s exactly what makes Concepció such an extraordinary stay. Award-winning Swedish firm Wingårdhs worked with Spanish firms Jordi Herrero Arquitectos and Eduardo Garcia Acuna Arquitectos to preserve the original bones of the property as a way to pay homage to its Mallorcan heritage. Meanwhile, minimalist lines and Scandinavian-inspired decor unexpectedly work in harmony with the vaulted ceilings and interior arches. The incredible Huguet cement tiles tie the entire property together in a beautiful bow.

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The Dorchester: London. England

There’s a reason why The Dorchester served as the unofficial playground for the royal family and the uber-famous. From its larger-than-life chandelier and mirror-like pillars greeting guests in the lobby to the chintz-filled suite by design legend Oliver Messel, The Dorchester exudes opulence. The landmark hotel is entering a new era as it’s experiencing its biggest renovation since the 1980s. Pierre-Yves Rochon is decorating the guestrooms (fear not: The Oliver Messel suite will remain as-is), while Martin Brudnizki plans to bring a sense of 1930s elegance to the Vesper Bar. The Dorchester’s grand opening is currently set for December.

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Eden Nairobi: Nairobi, Kenya

If there’s any hotel in the world that can confidently say it’s a home away from home, then it’s the game-changing boutique hotel Eden Nairobi. Celebrated fashion designer Anna Trzebinski carefully transformed her former home neighboring a giraffe sanctuary into a palatable, art-filled gathering place for creatives around the world. Each of the eight guest rooms showcases wood-carved Lamu-style beds and works from the Trzebinski family: Anna’s late husband Tonio’s canvases, her son Stas’ bronze sculptures, and her daughter Lana’s ceramics. The hotel’s open-air restaurant, The Deck, overlooks the surrounding 100-acre forest and lake of water.

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Esmé Miami Beach: Miami Beach, Florida

Esmé’s mission isn’t just to provide impeccable service to its guests—it’s restoring the artistic spirit of Miami Beach’s Española Way. Jessica Schuster’s design of the boutique hotel echoes the vibes established by bohemian artists decades ago, yet brings it up to date. No room looks the same as some are drenched in warm rose tones and others take on a moodier, jewel-toned disposition. What connects each space in Esmé are the subtle nods to its Spanish influence from the patterned tiles decorating the concierge desk to the mouthwatering small plates served at the hotel’s cocktail bar, El Salón.

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Fifth Avenue Hotel: New York, New York, United States

One of the most-anticipated hotel openings of the year, The Fifth Avenue Hotel promises to deliver a sense of grandeur through impeccable service and design. Designer Martin Brudnizki layers together rich colors, buzzy patterns, and glamorous lighting to create a visual treat in this historic building by McKim Mead & White. The glitz of the Gilded Age makes a return in the Mansion Ballroom where coffered ceilings, jaw-dropping chandeliers, and bouncy drapery set the scene for dazzling soirees.

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KAI Poroto: Hokkaido, Japan

Welcome to the new ryokan moment: sublime silhouettes on the water and perfectly poised interiors. Architect Hiroshi Nakamura looked to the traditional villages of Japan’s indigenous Ainu people as inspiration when designing KAI Poroto. The rooms, all offering sweeping views of Lake Poroto and the natural forests of Hokkaido, feature ornamentations and patterns often seen in Ainu art and motifs. The imposing bathhouses pay homage to Ketunni-style architecture with their cone-like structures made from logs.

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Kisawa Sanctuary: Benguerra Island, Mozambique

Excuse the dramatics, but it’s beyond worth it to book a flight to Mozambique just to be able to sleep at Kisawa Sanctuary for one night. The sanctuary on Benguerra Island aims to bring wilderness and well-being together by delivering world-class hospitality surrounded by natural wonders. Local artisans partook in the design of the beach bungalows, integrating a sense of African architecture and decorating vernacular into each room. The interiors manage to feel so residential offering a home-away-from-home feeling, all while the open-air communal terraces and lagoon pools allow the beauty of the forests, beaches, and sand dunes to shine.

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Patina Maldives: Fari Islands, Maldives

Modernist design reaches its peak in the beach and water villas of Patina Maldives. Relaxed furnishing and unassuming silhouettes keep the focus on the turquoise lagoons and coral atolls just outside the doors of each guest room. Marvelous art installations surprise guests at every turn on the hotel’s property with some popping up along the beach (don’t miss the scroll-like beauty from Portuguese-based FAHR 021.3) and others decorating the villas (like the ‘Palms’ series by Cássio Vasconcellos pictured in this guestroom).

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Playa Viva: Juluchuca, Mexico

Childhood dreams do come true—you can officially sleep in a beyond-fabulous and eco-conscious treehouse at Playa Viva. These aren’t ordinary treehouses, though, as the silhouettes of the hotel’s newest bamboo additions are modeled after a manta ray. Fresh air seamlessly flows throughout the lattice-like structures, making it feel as though guests are one with nature. However, the star of the Mexican retreat is the view of the lush forest which the hotel’s Permaculture team has helped regrow after years of deforestation and continues to cultivate today.

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Posada Ayana: San Jose Ignacio, Uruguay

High art extravagance meets the bohemian cool between the walls of San Jose Ignacio’s Posada Ayana. Designed by Uruguayan architect Álvaro Pérez Azar, the airy retreat houses 17 sun-filled rooms and a separate private villa showcasing works by female Uruguayan artists. The first freestanding “Skyspace” by James Turrell in South America sits in the hotel’s park, which will eventually grow to include an amphitheater and a sculpture collection.

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Saint James Paris: Paris, France

The Saint James Paris has worn many hats over the years: The site was originally Paris’ first balloon-landing field; the home of the Thiers Foundation; and a regal gentleman’s club. Yet, its most remarkable role is its current as a landmark hotel exuding timeless Parisian hospitality and style. Fully redesigned by Laura Gonzalez in 2021, Saint James Paris has taken on a maximalist persona with each room boasting a different blend of geometrics, textiles, and objets d’art.

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Six Senses Fort Barwara: Rajasthan, India

Can a resort inhabit a 14th-century fortress, much less one originally owned by a Rajasthani royal family, and hope to do the inheritance justice? Ahmedabad-based Panika Architects proved the answer is yes: They led a massive structural and decorative restoration of the fort’s pairs of palaces and temples, including reviving lime plaster details and the kari mirrorwork (the former women’s palace—the Zanana Mahal—now the resort’s spa.) The 48 newly crafted suites within the fortress walls feel timeless with Rajasthani-resonant arches, courtyards, jharokha stone windows, interior latticework, and embroidered textiles. With an equally ambitious landscape rehabilitation that returns endemic plants, restores the site’s sacred lake, and rewilds forests to the east, Six Senses Fort Barwara offers a regal seat (including a hot tub in the Terrace Suites, pictured here) for exploring the profound cultural riches of Rajasthan.

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Triana House: Seville, Spain

Small may be beautiful, but in the hands of designer Amaro Sánchez de Moya, small is exquisite. The irrefutable example is his top-to-bottom vision for this new seven-room hotel named for its historic neighborhood. “I have a deep connection to Seville,” the local-born Sánchez de Moya says. “I always drew inspiration from the beauty, architecture, and history of the city.” In Triana House, he delivers an Andalusian rhapsody inspired by the colors and textures of his homeland: bold paint palettes, bravura textiles and wallpapers, and dreamlike furniture (which he largely designed). “It’s an environment that reflects a traveler’s dream,” Sánchez de Moya says. “Our hotel could be in a David Roberts painting, a Washington Irving short story, or a scenario for Carmen.” And there is nothing small about that.

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Wildflower Farms, Auberge Resorts Collection: Gardiner, New York

Amid all the buzzy projects coming to the Hudson Valley, Wildflower Farms pivots away from the region’s established Scandinavian-inspired style and into a more mature design vernacular informed by native woodlands and wildflower fields. A slow-rippling river hugs the freestanding cabins overlooking Shawangunk Ridge. The 65 accommodations range from sweet cabins under tree canopies to cozy cottages nestled in the middle of meadows. All are outfitted with natural materials you’ll likely be able to find in the woodlands just outside the cottage windows.

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