These are some of the most-renowned and iconic hotels in the world which have spectacular architecture, sumptuous interiors and a fleet of staff who are dedicated to making your stay unforgettable. These hotels are the most famous in the world.
Gritti Palace Venice
If you want to completely embrace the charm of the floating city of Venice, you should arrive by boat. If you really want to feel special though, you need to ensure that your boat pulls up at the dock of the Gritti Palace. A 500-year-old’s Palace, the Gritti is the grande dame of Venetian hotels, an elegant blend of historic interiors and immaculate service. With just 82 rooms, a stay here is an experience that is both intimate and grand. Once you have enjoyed breakfast on the Gritti terrace, overlooking the magnificent Grand Canal, you will never want to wake up anywhere else.
Taj Lake Palace Udaipur
India is blessed with palace hotels, but none can match the mystique of the Taj Lake Palace. As the name suggests, the hotel floats in the middle of Lake Pichola, a self-contained haven of indulgence. What it lacks in size, the palace makes up for in unexpected luxuries, including elegant gardens and domed pavilions. For a right royal experience, check yourself into the queen’s former room, complete with a giant swing hanging from bronze ropes and stained glass windows that dapple the entire suite in jewel tones
The Ritz Paris
Ernest Hemingway put it best: “When I dream of afterlife in heaven, the action always takes place in the Paris Ritz”. Novelist Marcel Proust and fashion designer Coco Chanel were also fans, choosing to live long-term in the legendary hotel on Place Vendome. Part of the hotel’s charm is its intimacy – whether you are taking tea in the Salon Proust or sipping a cocktail in the Bar. Hemingway was quoted as saying that “it feels as if you are staying in a (rather grand) private home rather than a hotel”. Following a recent renovation that harnessed the skills of 800 stonemasons, upholsterers, gilders and woodcarvers, this grand dame is back to her brilliant best.
Amid the city’s soaring skyscrapers, one corner of Singapore preserves the ambience of former times. The Raffles Hotel has seen plenty of history since it opened more than 130 years ago. The Raffles Hotel was declared a National Monument by the Singaporean Government and is currently undergoing a multi-million dollar renovation. When it reopens later this year, you can be sure that its old-world charm will be stronger than ever.
Burj al-Arab Dubai
This is the hotel that put Dubai on the map. Back in the late 1990s, the Burj al Arab’s distinctive silhouette, billowing like a wind-filled sail, was the image that people around the world associated with the then-emerging destination of Dubai. That eye-catching exterior wasn’t the only reason that the Burj clocked up column inches in newspapers all over the world. The opulent public spaces – including a fountain-filled lobby that stretched vertiginously ever upwards – were matched by over-the-top rooms (think oversized round bathtubs in red-tiled bathrooms) and attentive service that quickly had commentators proclaiming it the world’s first seven-star hotel. Our favourite touch: the full-sized sets of Hermes toiletries in the bathroom.
Copacabana Palace Rio
The staff at Rio’s most famous beachfront property, the Copacabana Palace, let nothing stand in the way of looking after their guests; not even a crisis. When a fire raged through the hotel in 1953 – taking out the casino and the theatre along the way – the hotel staff continued to serve tea and cocktails to the guests sitting poolside, who seemed to view the blaze as an unscheduled entertainment. You would expect nothing less from a hotel that has welcomed everyone from Albert Einstein to Orson Welles. It keeps an exclusive clientele to this day.
Hamilton Princess & Beach Club Bermuda
The attention to detail makes this pink-painted palace Bermuda’s most famous hotel. You have the choice to laze on a lounge chair or cool off in the spectacular multi-level infinity pool. The Hamilton Princess & Beach Club makes it easy for you to soak up the sun and stay cool at the same time.
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