Top Hotels to Stay at in 2011
St Regis Lhasa Resort, Lhasa
Planning a vacation in 2011 shouldn't leave you at a loss for where to stay. Last year saw the opening of several, exotic luxury hotels opening in some unconventional as well as conventional destinations.
Here are our top luxury hotel picks:
St Regis Lhasa Resort, Lhasa
The St Regis Lhasa Resort, Tibet's first luxury hotel sits on 32,000 sqm on the 'Roof of the World'. The 150-room hotel (plus 12 villas and suites) also has what is probably the world's highest spa - Lhasa is 12,000 feet above sea level - as well as a gold-tiled swimming pool, a signature tea room, Tibet's first wine bar and restaurants.
Views of the Himalayas, Lhasa's valley are just a bonus. Rooms start at $300 a night.
Jumeirah Zabeel Saray Hotel, Dubai
It's the newest luxury hotel on the block, or more accurately on the west crescent of Palm Jumeirah. The 363-room hotel takes inspiration from Turkey's Ottoman period and is suitably decorated with Turkish murals and hand-painted furnishing.
But the star of the Jumeirah Zabeel Saray Hotel is its 42 spa room and suite Talise Ottoman Spa, complete with authentic Turkish Hammam treatments.
Royal Mansoor, Marrakesh
This ode to extravagance opened in June last year to globe trotters who can afford the $1,840-$42,9200 a night price tag. The Royal Mansoor, owned by Morocco's King Mohammed VI, is located in the city's 11th century Berber town. The hotel's three restaurants are run by three Michelin star chef Yannick Alleno, the library boasts a retractable hand-carved cedar roof that allows guests to star-gaze via a computerized telescope and the butlers know exactly how to fold your silk shirt in silk paper before putting them away.
Falaknuma Palace Hotel, Hyderabad
A new Taj Hotels property, the Falaknuma Palace Hotel was the home of the sixth Nizam, Mehboob Ali Khan. The palace, which has hosted visiting royals including Britain's King Edward VIII and the last Russian Tsar, Nicholas II, was restored under the guidance of Princess Esra Jah, first wife of the eighth Nizam. Besides 60 opulent guest rooms and suites, the luxury hotel still retains Hyderabad's first petrol pump, original GE refrigerators, the world's longest dining table with 101 chairs and a rare Orchestreone
Marina Bay Sands Hotel, Singapore
With the world's highest and biggest infinity pool, over 2,000 guest rooms, an in-door canal complete with boats and boat rides as well as a casino, the Marina Bay Sands Hotel has dethroned even Abu Dhabi's over-lavish Emirates Palace Hotel as the world's most expensive hotel. Rooms here start at Rs 24,000 a night.
Banyan Tree Spa & Resort, Seoul
The Singapore-based Banyan Tree spa and resort chain opened in Seoul, Korea in June 2010. Thoughtfully located on Mount Namsan, the city’s designated natural ecological zone, this urban resort concept hotel includes the award-winning Banyan Tree Spa that incorporates Asian philosophies in its holistic therapies. Rooms here start at Rs 20,000 a night.