Monday newsletters always feature top 10 travel lists to inspire.
Today: My 10 preferred Four Seasons hotels & resorts in the world
Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts is one of the world’s leading ultra-luxury hotel brands, with more than 100 properties in more than 40 countries. The Toronto based is rapidly expanding, with dozens of hotel projects in development across the globe. Four Seasons was founded in 1960 by Isadore Sharp, who remains the company’s hands-on chairman (despite being in his early nineties). Sharp’s first luxury hotel was the Four Seasons London, which opened in 1970. The company went public in 1986, and since 2007, Bill Gates and Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal have been majority owners of the company. Some Four Seasons Hotels are fully owned by the brand, but it acts as a management company for many of its properties. In addition, Four Seasons owns residential properties in several resort areas. Here’s my selection of the 10 best Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts in the world.
There is more information (with reviews & YouTube videos) below my slideshow. What’s your favorite Four Seasons hotel? Leave a comment!
*** Follow me on Instagram, YouTube, Twitter or Facebook for a daily moment of travel inspiration ***
10. FOUR SEASONS TENTED CAMP GOLDEN TRIANGLE, THAILAND
Hidden within exotic bamboo jungles, Four Seasons Tented Camp Golden Triangle offers tailor-made, all-inclusive experiences close to some of Thailand’s oldest civilizations, commanding majestic views of Burma across the Ruak River and mountains of Laos in the northeast The luxury resort comprises 15 beautifully appointed tents with leather-and-hardwood bush chairs, paddle fans, and a hardwood desk; some of them feature a custom-made wooden hot tub on the outdoor deck. At night, sundowners are offered at the Burma Bar, then afterwards, guests enjoy unforgettable dining experiences in a safari camp atmosphere at the Nong Yao Restaurant. A stay at the lodge includes a comprehensive list of activities, such as walking with the resort’s resident elephants, or absorbing the tropical tranquility with an open-air massage among the treetops.
9. FOUR SEASONS HOTEL NEW YORK, USA
After experiencing the exhilarating whirlwind that is the Big Apple, you can return to the serenity of the Four Seasons Hotel New York. Located in Midtown Manhattan’s exclusive East 57th Street, the hotel invites you to live the ultimate New York lifestyle in a 52-storey tower designed by I.M. Pei. It is a modern-day palace in the sky that is unique in so many ways that it is difficult to think of what hotel in the city compares. If your taste runs to sleek and contemporary look no further. The spectacular lobby is steeped in grand tradition, highlighted with art deco lamps and a backlit onyx ceiling. With 368 suites decorated in tranquil colors – some featuring private, furnished terraces – the hotel offers guests a quiet sanctuary in “the city that never sleeps.” When reserving a suite with terrace, opt to indulge in a private, five-course dining experience, served as high as 500 ft (150 m) above Manhattan.
8. FOUR SEASONS HOTEL MADRID, SPAIN
Enjoying an unbeatable location in the heart of Spain’s capital, the Four Seasons Hotel Madrid is within walking distance of all of the city’s must-sees. The property is housed in collection of seven historic buildings, including a former American insurance house located in the “bow” of the triangle-shaped block. The meticulous restoration of these buildings took eight years and was undertaken simultaneously, ensuring a common identity while preserving their independent styles dating back to the late 1800s. Accommodations are adorned with traditional and modern details, plush furnishings, and al fresco spaces to soak in the views. Dining options include the highly sought-after Dani, located on the hotel’s rooftop and led by celebrity chef Dani García. Four Seasons Hotel Madrid is also home to the Spanish capital’s largest wellness center, which includes a stunning indoor pool and expansive lounge terrace.
- Hotel website: Four Seasons Hotel Madrid
- Other accolades: Four Seasons Madrid features in my top 10 list of the best hotels & resorts in Spain.
- Tip: get complimentary VIP perks when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, early check in, late check out, daily breakfast, and $100 USD hotel credit).
- Review: read my review of Four Seasons Hotel Madrid here.
7. FOUR SEASONS HOTEL ISTANBUL AT THE BOSPHORUS, TURKEY
Located along the Bosphorus, in one of Istanbul’s most naturally beautiful neighborhoods, the Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at the Bosporus is a former 19th-century palace transformed into a hotel sanctuary of luxury and comfort. It consists of three blocks, with the original palace building flanked by two modern wings. A circular drive sweeps down to the entrance, in the main palace building, with a lovely tiered gardens interspersed with fountains and waterfalls in the middle. The hotel’s main asset is an expansive waterfront terrace with a large swimming pool, plenty of sun loungers, and a private boat dock, linking the hotel to its sister property, the Four Seasons Istanbul in Sultanahmet, which is close to Istanbul’s historic sites. The 145 guest rooms and 25 suites are an airy fusion of traditional Ottoman architecture and contemporary furnishings. The pillared underground swimming hall (with classical music playing underwater) and hammam are not to be missed!
6. FOUR SEASONS RESORT LANAI, HAWAII, USA
On the southeastern shores of Hawaii’s last unspoiled island, Four Seasons Resort Lanai is your gateway to an exotic, private paradise where opportunities for adventure and relaxation abound. The ultraluxe resort – which reopened in 2016 after undergoing a multi-million dollar transformation – offers dazzling views over the gold crescent of Hulopo’e Beach to the blue-green waters of a protected marine preserve. Inspired by Hawaii’s diverse and storied influences, the interiors showcase walls of teak and zebra wood edging artisan-produced Nepalese lokta paper and floors of mahogany laid with wool hand-woven area rugs. Verdant botanical gardens, two lagoon-style pools and cascading waterfalls serve as a beautiful backdrop for outdoor art and sculpture. Four Seasons Lana’i at Manele Bay offers 217 over-sized guest rooms & suites, each with a private lanai, two restaurants (including a NOBU), a full-service spa, and two legendary golf courses.
- Hotel website: Four Seasons Resort Lanai
- Other accolades: Four Seasons Resort Lanai also features in my top 10 list of the best luxury hotels in Hawaii.
- Tip: get complimentary VIP perks when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, daily breakfast, early check-in, late check-out, and $100 USD spa credit).
- Review: read my review of Four Seasons Resort Lanai here.
5. FOUR SEASONS RESORT THE NAM HAI, VIETNAM
Embellishing heritage with Four Seasons flair, Four Seasons Resort The Nam Hai is a harmonious ode to coast, culture and community in Vietnam’s UNESCO-strewn center. Along a seemingly infinite stretch of sand – hailed by Forbes as one of the best beaches in the world – a strand of sophisticated, visually striking villas lines the dramatic beachfront. Inspired by 2,500 years of history, The Nam Hai’s architecture and interior design present a dramatic play on wind and water inspired by ancient feng shui philosophy and the grandeur of the Tu Duc royal tombs of Hue. All of the 100 private retreats are elegantly finished with Vietnamese lacquer and diaphanous silk, reflecting the soul of Vietnam’s cultural heartland and illuminating the spirit of all who visit. The resort’s central area wraps around three tiers of infinity swimming pools – one of the most stunning hotel pool areas in the world – flanked by the pristine gold sand beach, where exhilarating water sports include X-Jetpacks, wake-boards and jet-skis.
- Hotel website: Four Seasons Resort The Nam Hai
- Other accolades: Four Seasons Resort The Nam Hai also features in my top 10 list of the best luxury hotels & resorts in Vietnam.
- Tip: get complimentary VIP perks when booking via Virtuoso (upgrade on arrival, daily continental breakfast, $100 USD resort credit, early check-in and late check-out).
- Review: read my review of Four Seasons Resort The Nam Hai here.
3. FOUR SEASONS PRIVATE ISLAND MALDIVES AT VOAVAH, MALDIVES
Capturing the imagination, this secluded haven transcends the private island experience: “entirely yours” from the moment of booking, seven bedrooms, a dive school and a private spa extend the oceanic spoils of the Maldives’ only UNESCO Biosphere Reserve to up to 22 guests at a time. Voavah days revolve around a double-storey beach house and adjacent white sands, crystal waters and abundant reef – all exemplary even by Maldives standards. A 62 foot (18.9 metre) private yacht – Voavah Summer – invites Voavah guests to explorate the UNESCO protected reserve: diving with whale sharks, snorkelling with manta rays, swimming with neighborhood turtles, fishing for dinner, visiting local islands, surfing unknown breaks and cruising into breathtaking Baa Atoll sunsets. Four Seasons also manages two other terrific properties in the Maldives: Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru and Four Seasons Kuda Huraa, both linked by the luxury catamaran Four Seasons Explorer.
2. GRAND-HÔTEL DU CAP-FERRAT, A FOUR SEASONS HOTEL, FRENCH RIVIERA
Located between Nice and Monaco, at the tip of the beautiful Cap-Ferrat Peninsula, Grand-Hôtel du Cap-Ferrat, a Four Seasons Hotel is a French Riviera icon. The property faces the Mediterranean and is surrounded by a private 17 acre estate of pine trees and gardens with flowers of a thousand colors. This award-winning legend has hosted many heads of state, celebrities, and artists since 1908. Guests can settle into one of 49 guest rooms, 24 suites, or a super-de-luxe villa with views of the sea or lush pine forest. Open from April to October, the hotel’s famous beach club – Club Dauphin – features an Olympic-size heated seawater pool, cabanas, water-edge deck and a private cable car to reach this spectacular facility. The hotel has three excellent restaurants , including one Michelin-starred Le Cap, which serves contemporary French cuisine.
2. FOUR SEASONS RESORT BORA BORA, FRENCH POLYNESIA
On this mystical island with its necklace of white-fringed coral islets, Four Seasons Bora Bora elevates the excitement to redefine South Seas escape. Wrapped by majestic views, Four Seasons Resort Bora Bora is surrounded by sand-fringed islets on an outer coral reef that enclose a turquoise lagoon. The resort offers 121 spacious hideaways with 100 over-water bungalows and 7 beachfront villas, all overlooking the lagoon’s crystal clear waters and some with spectacular views of Mount Otemanu. Inspired by local architecture, all guest accommodations offer a restful, airy ambience; complete with traditional teak wood furnishings, high ceilings and thatched roofs made from pandanus leaves. Special touches that accentuate the feel of Polynesia include striking works of art, private pools and sliding doors by deep bathtubs for panoramic fresh-air views of the lagoon.
1. FOUR SEASONS RESORT SEYCHELLES, SEYCHELLES
In this lush castaway sanctuary, days promise barefoot ease as you stroll along the white powder beach. Set in the heart of a lost Eden and one of the most beautiful bays on earth, Four Seasons Resort Seychelles offers guests an unrivalled luxury hotel experience in a natural ocean and jungle setting. The resort’s villas, each with plunge pool and perched on a jungled hillside, will challenge your notion of paradise and feature interiors that draw their inspiration from a mix of rustic Seychellois and French colonial style. The magnificent beach is just a short stroll away, scented en-route by cinnamon trees and frangipani. As well as indulging in water sports, there’s a lovely swimming pool to relax by with poolside dining and refreshments readily available. The spa is a treat for all, located at the top of the hill and overlooking spectacular Petite Anse, with both adults and children welcome.
*** Follow me on Instagram, YouTube, Twitter or Facebook for a daily moment of travel inspiration ***