World’s Most Extravagant Hotels

Start the New Year off with a bang by staying at one of the world’s most extravagant hotels 

The Upper House, Hong Kong

Ranked the top hotel in Asia by Trip Advisor Traveller’s Choice Award 2013, The Upper House offers its own fabulous brand of low-key luxury. Designed by celebrated Hong Kong architect Andre Fu, the house was built in the vision of a serene private residence. In the Upper Suites, you can lounge around on bespoke furnishings in the living room and look out onto Victoria Harbour. But if that’s not quite spectacular enough, head up to the 1,960ft Penthouse that boasts two en suite bathrooms (complete with limestone clad bath and walk-in shower), an iPod touch full of games and a complementary bar.

The Dolder Grand, Zurich

Set on Zurich’s forested hillside looking out across the city to the Alps in the distance, the turreted Dolder Grand appears on approach like a fairytale palace hidden in the clouds. Guests over the years include Nelson Mandela, Elizabeth Taylor and Prince Philip. The hotel dates back to 1899 and offers old school decadence with a modern twist thanks to two developments – the Spa wing and the Golf wing. The expansive spa, however, is the most stand-out feature. Here, guests can be massaged in time to the melodies of a private violinist, take a meditation walk through the mirrored maze or chill out in the one-of-a-kind snow room.

Burj Al Arab, Dubai

Famously claimed to be the world’s first seven star hotel when it opened in 1999, the Burj Al Arab’s sumptuous Royal Suite is still about as decadent as it gets. Its two floors rich in red and gold furnishings come complete with dedicated butler service, a rotating bed and a private cinema. Guests are even offered a 24-carat gold iPad when they check in.

Four Seasons, Bora Bora

Located in what must be one of the most idyllic destinations in the world, the Four Seasons is hidden away around Bora Bora’s glittering turquoise lagoon. The bungalow suites are perched on stilts above the water, whilst the resort’s villas are laid out on the white sand beach with views of spectacular Mount Otemanu. For true rest and rejuvenation, guests have a choice of a dip in the picture perfect ocean, a few laps in the wave-shaped infinity pool or a long soak in the Holistic Spa’s tubs. Attendants are on hand to offer refreshing iced water and chilled towels.

The Boulders, Arizona

This celebrity favourite is remotely located in the wilds of the Sonoran Desert amid twelve-million-year-old granite formations. The hotel accommodation is stunning, ranging from adobe-style Casitas with wood-burning fires and private patios to The Villa Retreat, a five-bedroom home with privileged views of the desert and its own infinity pool and Jacuzzi. There’s a host of outdoor activities available, too, to ensure guests get the most out of the incredible setting. As well as two championship golf courses, there is a terraced tennis garden and opportunities for rock climbing and horseback riding.

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Written by Hannah Stuart-Leach
Culture & Lifestyle Journalist  - Currency Today

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