Our sister site, TripAdvisor, has crunched the numbers to determine the world’s top 25 hotels based on literally millions of traveler reviews. But who has enough vacation time to see them all? We’ve narrowed the field down to our 10 favorite.
Reid’s Palace by Orient-Express, Funchal, Portugal
Take a dip in the ocean without worrying about sharks or jellyfish—this hotel (pictured above) features two seawater swimming pools (one heated to a toasty 84 degrees) and one freshwater heated pool. The pools and rest of the hotel (check prices) is set amidst 10 acres of semi-tropical gardens comprised of trees and flowers from all over the world. The closest international gateway is Madeira Airport (check prices).
Riad Kniza, Marrakech, Morocco
Experience old-world Morocco in this 18th century riad. The hotel (check prices) has 11 rooms and suites built in the traditional style, around three open-air courtyards. There’s also a swimming pool, Moroccan-style spa, and creature comforts like satellite TV and air conditioning. The closest international gateway is Marrakesh Menara Airport (check prices).
Hamanasi Adventure and Dive Resort, Hopkins, Belize
Stay in a grown-up tree-house along one of the best stretches of beach in Belize. Hamanasi (check prices) has nine private tree-house rooms set on stilts in the coastal forest, with orchids and birds as a backdrop. The deluxe tree-houses each have a wrap-around veranda with Jacuzzi. Guests can also take advantage of the hotel’s freshwater infinity pool and provided beach chairs and hammocks. The closest international gateway is Philip S. W. Goldson International Airport (check prices).
Castlewood House, Dingle, Ireland
No cold generic rooms will be found at this charming Irish boutique hotel. Each room is individually styled in motifs from French chic to classical mahogany. Online reviews rave as much about the hospitality of the couple that owns the bed and breakfast as they do about the hearty breakfast served here. The location can’t be beat, either—Castlewood House (check prices) is just a five-minute walk from the center of Dingle. The closest international gateway is Shannon Airport (check prices).
Astra Suites, Greece
This stunning cliff-side hotel (check prices) features breathtaking views of the Aegean. The suites-only property is beautifully decorated in Mediterranean style, and all rooms offer private terraces with volcano or sea views. Go all out with the Astra Private Villa, a three-bedroom, two-bath retreat that features a private cliff-side swimming pool and an outdoor Jacuzzi. The closest international gateway is Santorini Airport (check prices).
Layana Resort and Spa, Thailand
This beautiful resort (check prices) is located in a national park on Koh Lanta Yai Island. Surrounded by tropical rainforests and turquoise blue waters, The Layana sits on a long white sand beach. All 50 rooms feature large private balconies; suites have open-air garden showers so you don’t have to leave the scenery even for a second. The closest international gateway is Krabi International Airport (check prices).
Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea, Maui, Hawaii
“An amazing experience—you’ll be ruined for all other hotels,” says one review on TripAdvisor. The resort (check prices) features special touches like L’Occitane bath products in every room, a beach tote to use during your stay, and twice-daily housekeeping service. Relax in peace at the adults-only Serenity Pool (witha swim-up bar) or in the whirlpools at the Fountain pool. You’ll never be bored here with free activities like snorkeling, scuba diving lessons, and an outrigger canoe program. The closest gateway is Maui’s Kahului Airport (check prices).
The Grand Del Mar, San Diego, California
This hotel bills itself as a 15-star resort, since it’s received five stars each for its accommodation, restaurant, and spa. The San Diego resort (check prices) definitely lives up to that claim, with free amenities like Wi-Fi; transportation within a 14-mile radius; a beach shuttle and set up of beach chairs, umbrellas, towels, and bottled waters; Saturday morning hikes; and fitness classes. All for no additional resort fee! The standard guestrooms are a massive 550 square feet, or go grand with the Brisa Villa—4,500-square-feet of space with climate-controlled patios surrounded by privacy walls. The closest gateway is San Diego International Airport (check prices).
Wellness Hotel Casa Barca, Malcesine, Italy
Stay in a picturesque olive grove at a hotel that offers a rooftop terrace with panoramic views of Lake Garda and Monte Baldo. The 26 rooms in this small property (check prices) all feature balconies and lake views. Spend time relaxing in the on-site pool, garden, or jacuzzi, or just walk five minutes to be in the city center of Malcesine. The closest international gateway is Verona Airport ((check prices).
Al Maha Desert Resort, Dubai
Every suite at this resort (check prices) has a private, temperature-controlled swimming pool, which means you can take a dip in your own oasis in the middle of the desert. A stay here is pricey, but includes two free activities per day—so you could go on a desert safari and Arabian horseback ride one day, and a wildlife photo safari and nature walk the next day, at no extra charge. The closest international gateway is Dubai International (check prices).
If these 10 destinations inspired you to buy a lottery ticket and browse round-the-world airfares, be sure to check out the full list at the TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards. And let us know what you think of our picks in the comments area below!