High Five: International hotels and resorts
High Five: International hotels and resorts
1. Edition Miami Beach
Where: Steps from the sand, this property occupies the old Seville Hotel building – upper floors have stunning ocean views.
What: Visionary hotelier Ian Schrager’s latest venture features 294 wood-and-white guest rooms, suites and bungalows as well as a soaring penthouse.
The culinary offerings are sure to impress even the fussiest diner: there’s a restaurant by Michelin-starred chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten, a gourmet marketplace and a bar with ocean views. There are also two outdoor pools with bars, personal cabanas and lounge areas; an outdoor movie theatre; plus a sprawling fitness centre and spa.
Why: There’s a lot to do in Miami, but if you never want to leave the hotel, you don’t have to: the Edition features an entertainment area complete with bowling alley, ice-skating rink and nightclub.
2. InterContinental Sydney Double Bay
Where: This new hotel (opening in November) occupies a prime inner-city perch in Sydney’s tree-lined suburb of Double Bay. It’s a few streets back from the water, but upper rooms still boast bay views.
What: The second InterContinental hotel in Australia’s largest city, this property stands out for its history – it occupies the long-defunct Ritz-Carlton building, favoured by celebrities until it closed in 2009 – and the fact it’s not smack-bang in the CBD. Which is not to say it’s inconvenient – a cab ride will have you in the city in no time. But the real allure is the Double Bay village, replete with sparkling beach access.
The hotel’s rooms and suites are a clean palette of white and charcoal, with pastel splashes a nod to the waterside location.
Fans of chef Shaun Presland’s contemporary Japanese Sake Restaurant in The Rocks will be happy to hear the hotel will be home to a second incarnation of the establishment, complemented by a dedicated gin joint.
Why: At sunset, the rooftop bar is the place to be – the harbour views are hard to beat.
3. Mondrian London
Where: Situated on the banks of the Thames in the famed Sea Containers House, Mondrian London offers slick rooms and suites with views. Forget taxis – it’s within walking distance of landmarks such as Tate Modern, Royal Festival Hall, the National and Globe Theatres, as well as Borough Market and the London Eye.
What: Working with Design Research Studio under the creative direction of renowned British designer Tom Dixon, this newcomer captures the essence of the original building, exuding 1920s cruise-ship glamour integrated with modern twists and sophisticated design, for which the Mondrian brand is known.
Experience underwater tranquillity and specialised treatments at Agua Bathhouse & Spa, sample innovative cocktails at Dandelyan, or watch the sun set at the rooftop bar, with its glass box structure and outdoor terrace.
Why: The River View Balcony Suite offers panoramic views of London. Custom-designed furnishings and classic pieces include Tom Dixon’s signature wingback chair and an original Warren Platner-designed chair.
4. Four Seasons Moscow
Where: This impressive Moscow newcomer occupies a landmark location just steps from Red Square, the Kremlin and the State Duma.
What: A modern replica of the legendary Hotel Moskva, originally opened in 1935, Four Seasons Hotel Moscow is connected to history, yet is stylish and contemporary. There are 180 rooms and suites, which come with every amenity imaginable. Included are elements of the 1930s Russian constructivist design, modern bathrooms with large panels of richly grained marble and state-of-the-art, no-smoke fireplaces. Five restaurants and bars and
a spa round out the offerings.
Why: Moscovsky Bar is set to become one of Moscow’s hippest hangouts – its dramatic red-and-black room is the perfect spot to work through an extensive champagne menu.
5. Ritz-Carlton Kyoto
Where: The Ritz-Carlton group continues its Japanese expansion – it opened a property in Okinawa earlier in 2014 – with this luxe lodging in the country’s cultural capital and hub for Unesco World Heritage sites.
What: Self-described as a modern-day ryokan, or inn (and a luxurious one at that), the Ritz delivers on every front. Situated on the banks of the Kamo River and with views of the Higashiyama mountains – which turn a rich purple shade at sunset – the rooms include Western and traditional tatami-style beds, all fitted with oh-so-soft 600-fretted linens.
Mizuki restaurant’s kaiseki (Japanese degustation) menu is one of the best you’ll come across in town.
Why: While every modern amenity is on offer, the hotel includes design features such as patterned motifs created by local artists, zen gardens and water features.