It’s billed as ‘the fashion week of travel’. And certainly, with over 5,000 industry pros hitting Virtuoso Travel Week this year, there’s no better place to get the low-down on the hottest destinations – and of course the most luxurious way to experience them. Here, we bring you this season’s top five emerging hotspots, along with our edit of the best hotels to bunker down in, when there.
Where to stay: Amankora
Mountains, monasteries and magic, Bhutan - located on the eastern edge of the Himalayas - is known for its dramatic landscape.
Now visitors to this tiny Buddhist kingdom can indulge in pampered bliss, thanks to Amankora’s five lodges, which are spread across the valleys of central and Western Bhutan. Each comprising between eight and 24 suites, all offer seclusion, tranquility and spectacular views. Legs wearied after a day trekking in the mountains, can indulge in a traditional Bhutanese oil massage using plant-based ingredients, followed by a preprandial cocktail in front of a cosy wood fire in the communal lounge.
Rates from: £1192; www.aman.com
Where to stay: Four Seasons Casa Medina, Bogotá
One of Latin America’s brightest stars, Colombia is turning over a new leaf and its capital, Bogotá is booming. Yes, it’s still a little rough around the edges, but new restaurants, boutique hotels and craft breweries are springing up across the city where colonial meets contemporary.
With just 62 rooms, the Four Seasons Hotel Casa Medina was originally built in 1946 by Colombian architect Santiago Medina Mejia. A beloved landmark in downtown Bogotá, the property’s original wrought iron finishes, slanted beamed ceilings, sweeping lobby staircase, fireplaces, and convent doors are now complemented by Chesterfield lounges, geometric patterned rugs, and mirror-clad travellers’ trunks.
The sunny courtyard is topped with glass and converted into the all-day Spanish diner Castanyoles, though it would be churlish to bypass the spectacular gastronomic offerings at the hotel’s doorstep in Zona G.
Rates from: $199; fourseasons.com
Where to stay: Villa Dubrovnik
With its long stretch of coastline along the Adriatic Sea, Croatia is best-known for its sparkling waters and picture perfect old towns.
To experience both, head to Villa Dubrovnik, a 56-room late-modernist property that has long been a fixture on the Croatian seaside. A recent spruce-up has freshened up the interiors, including the guest rooms, but it’s the terraces, with their sweeping views of the turquoise ocean and the Old Town beyond that are the biggest draw.
We suggest plumping for one of the suites, where an outdoor Jacuzzi is the perfect spot to wallow in blissful tranquility, surrounded by the Mediterranean scents of pine, orange and lemon trees.
Rates from: £265; www.villa-dubrovnik.hr
Where to stay: Hotel Saratoga Havana
More than just a Caribbean island with long stretches of white sandy beaches, Cuba is dramatic mountainous landscapes; wild, unspoilt valleys, sweeping vistas of sugar cane, tobacco plantations and old school cool.
For a taste of that old school cool, head to Hotel Saratoga, an iconic proeprty housed in a magnificent 1880s neo-classical building, set on the edge of Old Havana. After a day exploring the city, meander up to the rooftop pool, where dramatic views of the city are best enjoyed with a cocktail.
Rates from: US$373; www.hotel-saratoga.com
Where to stay: Ion Adventure Hotel
A jewel in the Atlantic with jaw-dropping natural beauty and an abundance of outdoor recreational activities, its not surprising Iceland is on the up.
We suggest bedding down in the Ion Adventure Hotel, a rural escape housed in a distinct architectural building perched on the slopes of Mount Hengill, near Iceland’s Thingvellir National Park. Outdoor pursuits include visits to geysers, glaciers and the famous Gullfoss waterfall, but if its the Northern Lights you’re after, these are best viewed from the panoramic glass-walled bar, or even from the 10 metre outdoor geothermal hot tub.
Raes from: £299; ioniceland.is