Want opulence in 2016? Here are five new destinations that provide unforgettable escapes…
The 13 – Macau, China
What is it? Put simply, this development, due to open mid-year, is billed as “the most luxurious hotel ever built”. Add “expensive” to that also.
What’s it like? Expensive baroque elegance doesn’t begin to cover it. Some rooms have been built and designed at a cost of $10 million each, with the total development coming in at $1.4 billion. There are 200 suites, with entry-level rooms comprising 2000 square feet while the top-range Villa de Stephen is 30,000 square feet. You’ll feel like a king at court.
How sweet is it? Pretty damned sweet. Even the basic Villa du Comte suites are out of this world, offering guests private elevator lobby, butler service, spectacular décor with stained glass and period artworks, and a roman bath that’ll seat up to eight guests beneath a crystal chandelier in a marble bathroom. You’ll sleep in a king-size, velvet-canopied bed and be transported to and from the airport in a Rolls Royce Phantom. There are also six restaurants in the complex.
Museum Art Hotel – Wellington, New Zealand
What is it? One of the quirkiest and most stylish luxury hotels in the world, this is like bunking down for the night in a combination art gallery and man cave.
What’s it like? You know you’re somewhere unique when you walk into the lobby and see the burnished period furniture, huge paintings and striking sculptures, and… three limited edition MV Augusta motorbikes parked on the carpet. Oh, and there’s a hippo on the roof.
How sweet is it? This is for the gent with taste and who’s not necessarily going to measure quality in cost. One of the best rooms, the Executive Suite, is luxuriously and stylishly appointed over 520 square feet, has a separate bedroom and living area, rain shower, all mod-cons and stunning views over Wellington Harbour from the sixth floor. From $NZ429 a night, it’s a bargain.
St. Regis – Langkawi, Malaysia
What is it? A stylish tropical paradise, St. Regis Langkawi opens April 6.
What’s it like? There are 89 rooms and every one promises to be a winner, whether you’d like to look out on the rainforest or gaze at the turquoise Andaman Sea.
How sweet is it? Book us a flight to beat the winter blues – stat! The décor is clean, tasteful and inviting, the views are stunning, the facilities include gym, spa, Decanter Wine Bar and three restaurants. Just looking at the Infinity Pool makes us drool. You’ll expect to pay between $US1,188 and $US4,648 per night.
Six Senses – Various locations, Bhutan
What is it? Launching this year, the Six Senses group’s newest destinations allow guests to experience this seldom-visited mountain kingdom.
What’s it like? Five lodges – located in Paro, Thimphu, Punakha, Gangtey and Bumthang – are being opened, with a “Six Senses Journey” package offered to transport guests between each so they can fully explore Bhutan.
How sweet is it? Visiting Bhutan confers the sort of bragging rights a trip to Nepal offered decades ago. But with Six Senses, you’ll do it in luxury. There are to be 82 guest suites divided between all of the lodges, with most offering spectacular views over rivers, paddy fields and valleys, which can be enjoyed from infinity pools. Prices not yet available.
The Surf Club – Florida, USA
What is it? Opening later this year, this is a Four Seasons Hotel reimagining of the legendary Florida club that had Frank Sinatra and Winston Churchill as members.
What’s it like? We’re talking American Dream here, with 77 guest rooms, including five cabana bungalows, looking out onto pristine Atlantic beachfront. Spring break never sounded so good.
How sweet is it? Minutes from Miami Beach, this offers convenience to the party lifestyle as well as a serene retreat. The original clubhouse – site of many legendary member confabs in the 20th century – has been restored for your gentlemanly enjoyment. There’s also a cabana, outdoor heated pools, luxurious spa, two restaurants and half a mile of private beach. Prices TBC.