WASHINGTON, D.C.—September 7, 2018 Historic Hotels of America® and Historic Hotels Worldwide® are pleased to announce the nominee finalists for the 2018 Historic Hotels Awards of Excellence. The Historic Hotels Awards of Excellence recognize and celebrate the finest historic hotels and hoteliers from across the nation and from around the world.

The 2018 Historic Hotels Annual Awards of Excellence and Gala Dinner will take place at The Broadmoor (1918) in Colorado Springs, Colorado on Thursday, November 1, 2018 at 7 pm. The final award winners will be announced before an audience of owners, senior management, industry leaders, and representatives from the finest historic hotels around the world.

Nominee finalists are selected from nominations received from historic hotels, historic preservation supporters, prior award recipients, community leaders, and leadership from Historic Hotels of America and Historic Hotels Worldwide. As official programs of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Historic Hotels of America and Historic Hotels Worldwide provide the recognition to travelers, civic leaders, and the global cultural, heritage, and historic travel market that member hotels are among the finest historic hotels across America and around the world. The Historic Hotels Annual Awards of Excellence program recognizes the pinnacle of this distinct group of nominees in a range of categories.

From over 200 nominations, the awards committee evaluated and after careful consideration selected the following 2018 award nominee finalists:

Historic Hotels of America New Member of the Year

  • Antrim 1844 Taneytown, Maryland
  • The Stagecoach Inn (1852) Salado, Texas
  • The Lodge at the Presidio (1895) San Francisco, California
  • The Bellevue Hotel (1904) Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Hotel Skyler Syracuse, Tapestry Collection by Hilton (1921) Syracuse, New York
  • The Statler (1956) Dallas, Texas

Best Social Media of a Historic Hotel

  • Ledges Hotel (1890) Hawley, Pennsylvania
  • Union Station Hotel Nashville, Autograph Collection (1900) Nashville, Tennessee 
  • The Otesaga Hotel and Cooper Inn (1909) Cooperstown, New York
  • Historic Hotel Bethlehem (1922) Pennsylvania
  • The Brown Hotel (1923) Louisville, Kentucky
  • Mauna Kea Beach Hotel (1965) Kohala Coast, Hawaii

Sustainability Champion

  • Airlie (1892) Warrenton, Virginia
  • Hotel Congress (1919) Tucson, Arizona
  • La Fonda (1922) Santa Fe, New Mexico
  • Omni San Francisco Hotel (1926) San Francisco, California
  • The Inn at Death Valley (1927) Death Valley, California
  • Mauna Kea Beach Hotel (1965) Kohala Coast, Hawaii

Best Small Historic Inn/Hotel (Under 75 Guestrooms)

  • El Convento Hotel (1651) San Juan, Puerto Rico
  • Glasbern (1787) Fogelsville, Pennsylvania
  • Castle Hotel & Spa (1910) Tarrytown, New York
  • Benbow Inn (1926) Garberville, California
  • The Berkeley City Club (1930) Berkeley, California
  • Williamsburg Inn (1937) Williamsburg, Virginia

Best Historic Hotel (76-200 Guestrooms)

  • Beekman Arms and Delamater Inn (1766) Rhinebeck, New York
  • Union Station Hotel Nashville, Autograph Collection (1900) Nashville, Tennessee 
  • Historic Hotel Bethlehem (1922) Pennsylvania
  • La Fonda (1922) Santa Fe, New Mexico
  • The Cavalier (1927) Virginia Beach, Virginia
  • The King and Prince Beach and Golf Resort (1935) St. Simons Island, Georgia

Best Historic Hotel (201-400 Guestrooms)

  • The Willard InterContinental, Washington, DC (1818)
  • Capital Hotel (1873) Little Rock, Arkansas
  • The Pfister (1893) Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • The Brown Hotel (1923) Louisville, Kentucky
  • Hotel Viking (1926) Newport, Rhode Island
  • The Wigwam (1929) Litchfield Park, Arizona

Best Historic Hotel (Over 400 Guestrooms)

  • Moana Surfrider, A Westin Resort & Spa (1901) Honolulu, Hawaii
  • The Fairmont Hotel San Francisco (1907) California
  • The Mayflower Hotel, Autograph Collection (1925) Washington, DC
  • Hilton Chicago (1927) Chicago, Illinois
  • Lord Baltimore Hotel (1928) Baltimore, Maryland
  • Hotel Captain Cook (1964) Anchorage, Alaska

Best City Center Historic Hotel

  • Palmer House®, A Hilton Hotel (1871) Chicago, Illinois
  • The Jefferson Hotel (1895) Richmond, Virginia
  • The Bellevue Hotel (1904) Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Utica (1912) Utica, New York
  • Omni Shoreham Hotel, Washington, DC (1930)
  • Hotel Phillips Kansas City, Curio Collection by Hilton (1931) Kansas City, Missouri

Best Historic Resort

  • The Buccaneer (1653) St. Croix, US Virgin Islands
  • Mohonk Mountain House (1869) New Paltz, New York
  • Hotel del Coronado (1887) Coronado, California
  • The American Club (1918) Kohler, Wisconsin
  • The Wigwam (1929) Litchfield Park, Arizona
  • The Hotel Hershey® (1933) Hershey, Pennsylvania

Hotel Historian of the Year

  • Susan Wilson at Omni Parker House, Boston (1855) Massachusetts
  • Larry Johnson at The Seelbach Hilton (1905) Louisville, Kentucky
  • Teresa Porter at Benbow Inn (1926) Garberville, California 
  • Sarah Gill at The Berkeley City Club (1930) Berkeley, California
  • Patrick Denis Murphy at Morris Inn at Notre Dame (1952) South Bend, Indiana
  • Brian Kelleher at Capital Hilton (1943) Washington, DC

Best Historic Restaurant in Conjunction with a Historic Hotel

  • TÈ at The Inn at Leola Village, Est. 1867 Leola, Pennsylvania
  • Chez Philippe at The Peabody Memphis (1869) Memphis, Tennessee
  • Grand Dining Room at Jekyll Island Club Resort (1887) Jekyll Island, Georgia
  • Woods Restaurant at Grand Hotel (1887) Mackinac Island, Michigan
  • Murray Circle at Cavallo Point (1901) Sausalito, California
  • Immigrant Restaurant at The American Club (1918) Kohler, Wisconsin

Legendary Family Historic Hoteliers of the Year

  • The Belz family at The Peabody Memphis (1869) Memphis, Tennessee
  • The Beach family at Basin Harbor Club (1886) Vergennes, Vermont
  • The Monteleone family at Hotel Monteleone (1886) New Orleans, Louisiana
  • The Boughton family at The Colony Hotel (1872) Kennebunkport, Maine
  • The Kohler family at The American Club (1918) Kohler, Wisconsin
  • The Oseran family Hotel Congress (1919) Tucson, Arizona

Historic Hotelier of the Year

  • Jack Moyer at 1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa Eureka Springs, Arkansas
  • Linn Lesesne at Wentworth Mansion (1886) Charleston, South Carolina
  • Kenneth Hayward at Grand Hotel (1887) Mackinac Island, Michigan
  • Patty Henning at Jekyll Island Club Resort (1887) Jekyll Island, Georgia
  • David Tamulevich at Portland Regency Hotel & Spa (1895) Portland, Maine
  • Susan Anselona at Radisson Martinique on Broadway (1896) New York, New York

Steward of History and Historic Preservation

  • Andrew Todd at Xanterra Travel Collection
  • Oliver Carr at The Willard InterContinental, Washington, DC (1818)
  • John Murtha at Omni Parker House, Boston (1855) Massachusetts
  • Herbert V. Kohler, Jr. at The American Club (1918) Kohler, Wisconsin
  • Gary Melius at OHEKA CASTLE (1919) Huntington, New York
  • Birney and Marie Dempcy at Mayflower Park Hotel (1927) Seattle, Washington 

Best Historic Hotels Worldwide hotel in Europe

  • La Bagnaia Golf & Spa Resort Siena, Curio Collection by Hilton (11th Century) Siena, Italy
  • Kinnitty Castle Hotel (1209) Birr, Ireland
  • Domus Renier Boutique Hotel (1608) Chania, Greece
  • Hilton Molino Stucky Venice (1884) Venice, Italy
  • Grand Hotel Tremezzo (1910) Lake Como, Italy
  • Fairmont Le Montreux Palace (1906) Montreux, Switzerland

Best Historic Hotels Worldwide hotel in Asia/Pacific

  • Alsisar Mahal (18th Century) Rajasthan, India
  • Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar (1780) Bataan, Philippines
  • Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi (1901) Hanoi, Vietnam
  • The Fullerton Hotel (1928) Singapore
  • Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor  (1932) Siem Reap, Cambodia
  • Hotel New Grand (1927) Yokohama, Japan

Best Historic Hotels Worldwide hotel in the Americas

  • Quinta Real Oaxaca (1576) Oaxaca, Mexico
  • Hacienda de los Santos (1600s) Sonora, Mexico
  • Hacienda Uxmal Plantation and Museum (1673) Yucatan, Mexico
  • Alfiz Hotel (17th Century) Cartagena, Colombia
  • Fairmont Le Château Frontenac (1893) Québec City, Canada
  • The Omni King Edward Hotel (1903) Toronto, Canada
  • Alvear Palace Hotel (1932) Buenos Aires, Argentina

“It is an honor to congratulate all the 2018 award nominees,” said Lawrence Horwitz, Executive Director, Historic Hotels of America and Historic Hotels Worldwide. “The nominee finalists exemplify the finest historic hotels and hoteliers from the across the United States and from around the world. The historic hotels nominated include small historic inns, boutique hotels, lifestyle hotels, and resorts. They represent small towns to large cities to UNESCO World Heritage destinations. We applaud the dedication and passion of the thousands of individuals working at these iconic and legendary hotels that keep the stories alive from the past and make staying or celebrating special occasions at these historic hotels memorable experiences.”

Tickets for The Historic Hotels 2018 Annual Awards of Excellence and Gala Dinner are available. The Awards Ceremony and Dinner will take place at The Broadmoor (1918) in Colorado Springs, Colorado on November 1, 2018 at 7 pm. Tickets for the 2018 Awards Ceremony and Gala Dinner are $350 for one seat and $2,800 per table (for 8 seats). To register for the ceremony and gala, please contact Stephanie Calhoun This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or +1 202 772 8336. 


Washington, D.C. (September 12, 2018) – The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) and the Asian American Hotel Owners Association (AAHOA) kicked off their two-day 2018 Legislative Action Summit (LAS) on September 12 as nearly 400 hoteliers from across the country gather to meet with their lawmakers on Capitol Hill. During the summit, hoteliers will discuss the strength of the lodging industry, issues affecting it, and its significant impact on communities around the country. This is the fourth year AHLA and AAHOA are partnering to highlight the lodging industry’s strength and unity.

Supporting nearly 8 million American jobs, putting $600 billion into the U.S. economy each year, and contributing $170 billion in federal, state and local taxes, the hotel industry’s impact is undeniable. As AHLA and AAHOA members meet with elected officials and congressional staff, they will advocate to make permanent the tax cuts in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, policies that encourage international travel and tourism to the United States, and new protections for consumers from online hotel booking scams.

“The hotel industry is one where the American Dream is alive and well, and we are excited to bring that story of opportunity and success to Capitol Hill this week,” said AHLA president and CEO Katherine Lugar. “As part of an industry that supports 8 million jobs across the U.S., hoteliers are focused on providing the training and support to help our employees move up the ladder of opportunity, and build a strong workforce to sustain our industry. Hotels are an integral part of the communities of every congressional district across the country, and we look forward to working together with our nation’s lawmakers so that they understand what makes us unique as an industry, and the policies that will help us continue to grow and thrive.”

AAHOA President and CEO Chip Rogers said, “As Congress confronts the many challenges facing our country, hoteliers are united in advocating for our employees, our businesses and our industry. AAHOA is pleased to once again join with AHLA for our Legislative Action Summit. Advocating for hoteliers in our nation’s capital is essential with all the important issues being addressed by Congress. This week, we’ll be talking to lawmakers about tax reform, stopping online booking scams, increasing international travel to the United States, and enhancing the hospitality workforce.”

LAS participants will hear from key leaders in Washington who will offer their insights on the political climate and congressional landscape, including U.S. Department of Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta; Sen. Mike Rounds (R-SD); Reps. Henry Cuellar (D-TX), Rodney Davis (R-IL), and Scott Peters (D-CA); Phil Lovas, Deputy Assistant Secretary, National Travel and Tourism Office with the U.S. Department of Commerce; and David Wasserman, U.S. Editor and Senior Election Analyst, Cook Political Report.

The lodging industry continues to focus on growth and the nation’s economic resurgence while improving the employment landscape. The lodging industry has seen 102 straight months of economic growth, and each day, nearly 5 million people check into a hotel, spending nearly $500 billion at local businesses during their trips. The hotel industry creates competitive, good-paying jobs with clear pathways for professional development and advancement.


PLAINFIELD, IL, AUGUST 8, 2018 -- With a booming economy, Americans are spending increasingly more time traveling. Luckily, when it comes to hotels, they have more options than ever, from the tried-and-true branding of large chains to smaller boutique hotels aiming to provide unique, one-of-a-kind experiences. Both options work, but offer distinctly contrasting atmospheres.
These contrasts pose challenges to renovation contractors. Construction procedures and design goals differ greatly between chain and boutique hotels. Boutiques have become synonymous with the idea of quirky cool while major chains rely upon uniform, pre-approved Property Improvement Plans (PIPs).
“The boutique hotels we’ve renovated have been designed based on inspiration and building character,” said Jose Ortiz, project manager for Cicero’s Development, Inc., one of the country’s largest hotel renovation contractors. “Chain hotels are typically prototype buildings and have a PIP that needs to be strictly adhered to for a hotel to remain in compliance with brand standards. This limits design flexibility but means the project will run faster and smoother with fewer change orders.”
PIP packages are created months in advance and all construction products have been tested to meet the chain’s standards. Construction schedules are painstakingly established with no detail omitted. In the event a chain hotel owner wants to alter the PIP it can be a long, drawn-out task to receive brand approval. There is good reason for the brand’s strict adherence to PIP specifications: the main reason travelers gravitate toward a large chain is brand recognition. Knowing exactly what they're going to get no matter what city they're in is attractive to travelers. While each location in the chain may cater to local needs, the hotel still features the same style and amenities in their suites, lobbies, signage, meeting rooms, and restaurants and lounges.

Autonomy is a major advantage held by independent boutique hotels which runs counter to the structure and nature of chain hotels. In planning a renovation, boutique hotels can factor in highly localized demographics and preferences that are consistently evolving. They are in a better position to understand and adjust to the neighborhood in which they operate, so they can make renovation decisions to take advantage of this knowledge. In addition to lodging visitors, boutique hotels can renovate with the goal of serving as local gathering places, supporting neighborhood initiatives and partnering with other businesses to ensure their community remains vibrant. 
However, all this flexibility comes with a cost. Boutique renovations are much more likely to run into problems as a good amount of the scope is customized and subject to frequent changes by the owner. Once construction starts, there may be high-end details added by the owner to give hotel guests a more luxurious experience, details that were not included in the original scope. An inexperienced contractor will quickly lose control of the renovation because of this. 
“Since most boutique hotel renovations call for one-of-a-kind designs with specialized materials, a lot of the questions may have not been answered,” says Cicero’s Ortiz. “Compared to a PIP where every detail is laid out, there is a considerable amount of additional time spent reviewing materials and how they will work with each other. Receiving the necessary spec sheets for all materials being used on the project is an administrative struggle. 
“When a problem does arise in the renovation, however, I’ve found most boutique owners are appreciative of our expertise and are open to ideas that would change the scope to solve it.”

The age of the property housing the boutique hotel, and therefore its mechanicals, can also be an issue. Boutique hotels are often in historical buildings where HVAC, plumbing and electrical are no longer functioning as efficiently as modern systems. Opening up a wall in the hotel may expose problems in wiring or piping that will need to be repaired before the renovation can continue. Depending on the city’s building code, a major renovation may also trigger an avalanche of upgrade requirements for systems that were grandfathered in or for new systems, such as fire sprinklers.
Chain hotels renovation challenges predominantly come down to decision making, explains Ortiz. “It can be a struggle to receive quick responses to questions, especially over the weekend, as the hotel’s contact person has to run it up the chain and wait to hear back. A contractor may need answers in minutes but they can take days. Delays in decision making lead to cost overruns and postponing putting guestrooms back into service.” 
To remedy this predicament, Cicero’s Development relies on open communications between its team and the property owner. This runs through the initial stage of scope planning and budgeting, to the bidding process and performing the work — all the way through to completion of the project and long after it is completed. Elements of Cicero’s open communications include a daily report identifying manpower levels, deliveries, safety, and current areas out of service. Weekly phone calls take place to discuss the overall schedule, design and operations so that all parties can work to manage issues as a team.
Hotel renovations help owners gain market share, increase guest satisfaction, drive revenue performance, and enhance profitability. While every renovation is unique, there are stark differences between renovating a boutique or chain hotel. Hiring a contractor with extensive experience in navigating those challenges is the key to profitable outcomes.

For more information, please visit


Markham, Ontario – August 8, 2018 – “It is essential that all our properties and their activities be instantly accessible on one PMS system for our destination service agents. Maestro Multi-Property Management does a great job of connecting the different pieces of our business, the Spa, front desk, and food and beverage outlets. It all comes together on one system to support personalized experience that is essential for our Forbes rating,” says Mary Arcuri, Group Director of Reservations and Revenue for Ocean House Management.

“We call our reservations team ‘destination services’ because they take reservations for all services and activities for our properties on one property software system,” Arcuri added. Ocean House Management operates four properties. The Ocean House earned Forbes’ Five-Star designations for each of its hotel, spa and restaurant operations and a AAA Five-Diamond rating.  

Exceptional training and ease of use boost productivity

“Training and staff productivity are important for multi-property operators. My team commented how easy it is to learn and navigate our Maestro Multi-Property System. It is easy to find the information you need to answer questions quickly and provide personal service,” said Michelle Miller, Director of Revenue for Lais Hotel Properties Ltd, which represents Vintage hotels and Niagara’s Finest Hotels with a total of 11 properties. “We programmed room descriptors, color codes, packages and text in our property software describing amenities for all our hotels. When guests call our service representatives we can describe our rooms in a natural, unscripted way from looking at Maestro. We can quickly scan their history to see which room they had before. These subtle things add up to an exceptional guest experience.”  

“In the area of training, Maestro’s multi-property, multi-module integration is effective and efficient,” Arcuri said. “Maestro’s online eLearning and webinars make it easy for staff to learn the system on their own time schedule.  We can hire and train a guest service agent for one hotel, and they can easily move to another property since our hotels all use the same Maestro multi-property software system.”

VIDEO: Leading operators discuss the importance of sound technology

A feature rich, easy to use technology solution is essential to profitable property operations. Click here to listen in on a group of full-service independent operators discuss what system features are most important to their properties. 

Multi-property reporting = standardized data delivery, smooth guest journey

“My focus is to protect company revenue. Maestro tracks our revenue effectively and lets me drill down to learn how guests generate our revenue. Maestro is a solid system that manages all areas of our business,” Miller said. “Guests can book rooms, meals, and spa appointments at any of our properties and they will appear on their confirmation, itinerary and their folio. Maestro integrates with our point of sale system so we can even drill down and view charges on their restaurant check. This enables us to provide a seamless guest experience. Maestro Multi-Property has been huge for us.”

‘Their product is superior because their service is superior’

“It’s not just about the system, it is about the people behind the scenes that deliver that system to you,” said Chris Shroff, owner of Seaside Properties with six destinations in South Carolina. “Maestro’s product is superior because their service is superior. Service, courtesy, and friendliness, Maestro has all these qualities when we call them.”

Warren Dehan, Maestro PMS President, said, “Maestro is really a service company that provides very good technology for independent operators. We understand hospitality is a 24/7 business, and it doesn’t matter how good your system is, hoteliers will call for help. We pride ourselves on always having a person respond to a support call.”

The Maestro Property Management System delivers flexible and scalable deployment options with an identical full-featured web browser or windows solution available in the cloud or on premise.  Maestro’s revenue-generating hotel management software tools and services increase profitability, drive direct bookings, centralize operations, and provide personalized and mobile guest service tools to enhance the guest experience. Click here for more information on how to engage and socialize with Maestro PMS.


Small Luxury Hotels of the World (SLH) adds five new properties to its portfolio of luxury boutique hotels this August. Enjoy laid back luxury at two new island properties in Thailand and St. Vincent and the Grenadines, or a stylish city break in Norway. Improve your golf swing and take in the views in Switzerland or indulge in the tranquility of a resort and spa in Italy. These properties offer luxury on their own terms, ensuring independently spirited travelers create unforgettable moments to last a lifetime.  

Crans Ambassador, Crans-Montana, Switzerland

54 rooms from USD$318 per night inclusive of breakfast

At Crans Ambassador, the first thing to notice are the views – snow-capped in winter and sun-drenched in summer. Once you’ve torn your gaze away from the scenery, you’ll find there’s just as much to delight indoors. Plenty of natural wood and warm fabrics offer an understated, modern take on chalet style featuring large windows and private terraces overlooking the forest or the valley. In the Deluxe Suite, you can even enjoy this from the outdoor hot tub. To get a closer look, stop off at the hotel snow-sports shop, then make for the nearby ski lift. Or when the snow has melted, go in search of adventure, with everything from rock climbing and trail-running to a leisurely round of golf nearby. End your day at La Table Restaurant, where rustic Alpine dishes are served up with an ample choice of wine.

SLH Insider Tip: Wellbeing and indulgence are the focus here. The hotel spa features a gym with personal trainers on-hand to help achieve your goals, and a Performance Lab to pick up tips on improving your golf form. There’s also a heated indoor pool overlooking the valley and a number of private spa treatment rooms. 

Cape Fahn Hotel, Koh Samui, Thailand

22 rooms from USD$502 per night

Opens October 2018

Welcome to your personal piece of Thailand. Cape Fahn Hotel is set on a private island, separated from Koh Samui by a small, walkable shallow channel caressed by the tropical sun. Across the bay, people gather on popular Choeng Mon Beach, but at Cape Fahn you have the sheltered shores almost to yourself. Influenced by traditional Thai architecture, each villa has a large plunge pool complete with private sun deck and decorated with plenty of natural wood complimented by a sea-inspired color palette. Spend the day relaxing at your villa, sampling local and international dishes from the room service menu or hop on a boat or paddleboard and go exploring. Then enjoy an evening of fine dining at the Cape Fahn Hotel restaurant, followed by a drink or two under a canopy of stars.

SLH Insider Tip: The Reading Room offers the perfect location to shrug off the cares of the world with a cooling drink and a good book, exclusively for guests.

Opus XVI, Bergen, Norway

65 rooms from USD$265 per night inclusive of breakfast

Crafted by descendants of Bergan composer Edvard Grieg and named after his famed concerto, Opus XVI offers guests a modern feel immersed in the city’s rich musical heritage. Every element of this luxury city center hotel plays a part in telling Grieg’s story, with original features including marble columns and polished granite walls alongside Scandi-chic design. Individually styled rooms pair block color palettes of natural tones with subtle details such as gold-accented furniture, strokably-soft upholstery or statement lighting. Whether you choose a Classic room or the Peer Gynt suite, named for Grieg’s masterpiece, each space is as comfortable as it is contemporary. With its location on Vågsallmenningen plaza, Opus XVI puts you steps from some of Bergen’s best sights. Take in the views from Mount Floyen and the KODE art galleries or learn more about Edvard Grieg at the Opus XVI library exhibition.

SLH Insider Tip: One of the architects behind the building, which was once Bergen’s grandest bank, was the composer’s cousin. Many of the rooms and suites are named after Grieg’s masterworks, and during summer months, lunchtime piano and opera concerts bring his works to life.

The Liming Bequia, St. Vincent & The Grenadines

14 rooms from USD$542 per night inclusive of breakfast

Opens November 1st 2018

Doing nothing is an art form in Bequia (Bek-way) and is the philosophy at The Liming. Channel pure escapism in one of the nine spacious, stylish villas including one five-bedroom mansion house, each offering exquisite vistas while retaining the privacy afforded by an exclusive Caribbean island. Spend days lounging beside your private infinity pool or the refreshingly peaceful beach. Those with a thirst for adventure could board a hand-built schooner for a day trip to Mustique, or head into Port Elizabeth, with its colorful wooden houses and bustling produce markets.Then as the sun sets, return to your contemporary villa to watch the sky fill up with stars.

SLH Insider Tip: If you’ve opted for the Gingerlily five-bedroom mansion house, you’ll have your own gardens as well as a kitchen for cooking up Caribbean feasts.

Villa Neri Resort & Spa, Linguaglossa, Italy

24 rooms from USD$311 per night inclusive of breakfast

Hidden among the olive groves and fragrant pine trees of Etna Regional Park is Villa Neri, a hotel that pairs impeccable good looks with warm, personal service. This boutique spa resort takes elements of traditional Sicilian living and turns them into something fresh and contemporary. White walls and clean lines turn the spotlight onto individual details, from classic tiling to wooden flooring. Many suites have views of Etna, with extra luxuries such as in-room hot tubs, wine cabinets and fireplaces. By day, relax by the pool, or devote your time to Petra Spa. Massages and beauty therapies draw on plant essences and natural ingredients from the surrounding landscape, complemented by a sauna, Turkish bath, plunge pools and relaxation area. Venture out to explore Linguaglossa village, or head to the beach at Taormina. Then return to Villa Neri and watch the stars come out from the privacy of your personal terrace. 

SLH Insider Tip: Named after the 12 fountains dotted around the outdoor dining area, Le Dodici Fontane offers a sensory journey through the flavors and cooking traditions of Sicily. In summer, dine outside with the fragrance from the herb gardens and olive groves drifting on the air.

And in other news...

Eichardt’s Private Hotel, Queenstown, New Zealand

Those looking for the best in luxury land and lake will now be spoilt for choice as Eichardt’s Private Hotel has recently acquired the region’s first premium nautical cruiser, the Pacific Jemm. The 24-metre Falcon 80 S is a welcome addition to the Eichardt’s Private Hotel offering (including the country’s most exclusive accommodation: The Penthouse). Complete with all the modern amenity one expects of the hotel experience, the lavish vessel includes four luxury suites and has at its beck and call two crew alongside Eichardt’s’ famous chef. Options for cruising include scenic daytrips to Glenorchy and a helicopter over to the West Coast for crayfish before anchoring up to cook the catch. For the truly adventurous, guests can super-charge the experience with their pick of an Aston Martin, Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder, Audi R8 or Porsche 911 to race to Glenorchy before being helicoptered over the Southern Alps.

Rockliffe Hall, Durham, United Kingdom

Rockliffe Hall recently launched its latest exciting addition – Mischmasch. The ‘wonderland of curiosities’, set within one and a half acres of woodland, offers an enchanting space in which children (and big kids) can play and explore. There are six arctic pods nestled beneath the trees, an eco-adventure playground and an interactive water feature. Mischmasch gets ‘curiouser and curiouser’ as you move out of the pods and into a wide-open space featuring climbing frames, slides, tennis courts and the water feature where children can run in and out of jets of water. The centrepiece of the new development is the Looking-Glass House, a stunning addition to the hotel’s entertainment space and a perfect venue for weddings and corporate events.

Healthouse Las Dunas, Estepona, Spain

Healthouse Las Dunas welcomes guests seeking a Mediterranean sun-soaked relaxation and has recently unveiled the new restaurant FELIX. As a reinvention of the former Bistro FELIX, the new restaurant is led by chef Manuel Camisuli with a commitment to Mediterranean cuisine with Asian influence, and over 300 selections of wine. FELIX includes a bar dedicated exclusively to Japanese food under the concept “Omakase”, with exquisite dishes served by chef Jose María Viera in a ceremonial style environment. The decor provides a unique visual experience and the live music offers an enjoyable atmosphere.

Hotel Belles Rives, Antibes, France

The Hotel Belles Rives, the Art Déco jewel located on the gorgeous French Riviera, has just opened a complete beauty corner facility. The Belles Rives chooses to celebrate its brand-new beauty corner with the famous beauty brand Valmont, a family company that perfectly reflects the spirit of the place. Inheritors of the Swiss medical tradition, the brand draws incredible natural resources from its own land and within the most recent development of cellular cosmetics, in order to offer a moment of harmony in a refined environment. Elegant treatments are presented in a place that breathes art and style, creating an intimate link between wellness and expertise.


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