Latest Escapes


Portrait of Tammy Strobel
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Opulence Defined   

The highly anticipated Ritz Paris reopens after a four-year renovation. Recast by New York design firm Thierry W Despont, the Grand Jardin remains sumptuous; decorative objects and paintings continue to charm; and the fireplace and library in Ernest Hemingway’s home away from home, the Salon Proust, continues to impress. While its grand strokes are opulent, the preservation of numerous historic details should also be lauded: peach-coloured bathrobes and bath linens favoured by César Ritz still hang in the rooms, and regular guests will immediately recognise the tulip lamps, and cords to call for the valet and maid.

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Ice, Ice Baby 

‘Built’ with 30,000 litres of water from the Torne River, Icehotel 365 has 55 rooms, and a bar and gallery made from ice. Walls, floors and ceilings are covered with ice and snow year-round as Deluxe Suites come with a private sauna, shower and bathtub. Guests can create their own sculptures, hop on a dog sled, watch the Northern Lights, take an Arctic survival course or explore the Jukkasjärvi village, ending it with a dip in the river.

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Urban Dwelling   

In celebration of its 25th anniversary, Novotel Century Hong Kong unveiled 510 guest rooms now featuring paintings depicting Hong Kong’s historical journey, in addition to redressed drapes, contemporary lighting fixtures and plush carpet. Located in bustling Wan Chai, the property is a stone’s throw from the city’s prime shopping areas.

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Three’s a Party   

Bigger parties are now welcomed to Anantara Kihavah Maldives Villas with its new three-bedroom beach pool residences. Snuggled in a green cocoon of island lushness, the 1,050sqm residences borrow elegant accents from Thailand, Morocco and India with teak columns, daybeds floating over infinity-edge pools and swaying palms sprawling over wooden decks. Opt for spa treatments performed in the privacy of the residence’s spa sala, take a dip in the adjacent Jacuzzi pool or catch a movie in the private cinema, followed by a drink at the central bar complete with humidor.

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Mountain Gem 

Perched 2,000 metres above sea level on the curving rim of a great canyon, the Anantara Al Jabal Al Akhdar Resort beckons intrepid traveller with rich local culture and indulgent adventures. A highlight is the resort’s 82 Premier and Deluxe Canyon View Rooms, which boast a spacious bedroom, amongst the largest in the country, and a spa-like bathroom complete with a rain shower and separate bath alongside a balcony.

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Under the Dome 

A fascination of minimalist architecture, Asilia’s The Highlands has replaced traditional rooms with the Maasai Bomas-inspired Geodesic Dome camps to ensure the smallest ecological footprint. The campsite runs on 100 per cent solar power, and waste wood from local coffee plantations fuels fire for cooking. A highlight is the campfire-like leather seating area with an intimate whisky bar, sheepskin chairs, tartan cushions and chandeliers. Guests can take their breakfast on the outside deck, where the view stretches out to the Serengeti across the hills and valleys of the Crater Highlands.

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All Blue   

Banyan Tree Hotels & Resorts welcomed Dhawa Cayo Santa Maria as its first property on the Cuban island, which offers white sandy beaches and stunning landscapes. Guests can indulge with the hotel’s signature dining experiences ranging from French and Italian to local specialities, and cap the night with its iconic mojito. Book any one of the property’s 516 rooms and enjoy complimentary beach and pool activities like aqua-aerobics, dance classes, beach volleyball and kayaking.

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Step Up    

Four Seasons Resort The Nam Hai, Hoi An has been upgraded to better cater to families, beach lovers, spa aficionados and culinary travellers. The refreshed resort and hotel villas include eight family villas; a new beach bar and enhanced beach and water sports programmes; a never-before-seen kids club; new name and concept for the spa, The Heart of the Earth Spa; as well as a Vietnamese cooking school.

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New Yorker   

Offering unobstructed views of Manhattan in a neighbourhood packed with stylish bars and culinary options, The Williamsburg Hotel has floor-to-ceiling windows that look out to mesmerising views of downtown New York, Brooklyn and the East River. The grain and vegetable-focused menu at Harvey, headed by Chef Adam Leonti is a main draw, as is the rooftop pool featuring a replica water tower bar honouring the block’s historic landmark, and its chic brick, glass and Corten steel exterior.

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Naughty or Nice  

Hôtel Negresco’s Rivoli wing has been revamped with bold colour palettes in seven new bedrooms and attention to detail that includes polished bases of furniture to bring Mediterranean brightness to the room. Headed by Studio Marc Hertrich and Nicolas Adnet, the art-focused hotel continues its legacy as a classic property with a contemporary finish.

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Swiss Chalet  

Nestled on a rolling hillside between the villages of Saanen and Gstaad, Huus Gstaad houses an adventure lounge, restaurants, spacious spa and family area. The seven- storey, 136-room traditional chalet hotel features a Mountain Concierge, who advise guests on all on- and off-piste pursuits, from skiing in the winter to hiking and river rafting in the summer. Hästens bed, mountain-facing balconies and a mini bar complete the chalet experience; a Finnish sauna is the ideal refuge after a long day at the slopes; while the lounge and bar The Livingroom boasts floor-to-ceiling windows for breathtaking views.