History reigns supreme at Italy’s best luxurious hotels, and that is indeed the case at Passalacqua, which opened its doors this June. The 18th-century villa was acquired by the De Santis family (the hoteliers behind Grand Hotel Tremezzo) at a Sotheby’s auction in 2018, and they spent the following years (and about €20mm) renovating it into a masterpiece with the ambience of a private home. There are only 24 suites, each with a distinct character that showcases Italy’s artistry: ceilings are adorned with handblown Murano glass chandeliers from Venice, the marble in the bathrooms is sourced from Verona, bespoke brass lamps were made in Florence, and the luxurious silk taffeta curtains were created in Como. The views are equally enchanting outside, where you’ll find a lakeside pool framed with parasols and gardens with water fountains dotted throughout. Other notable features include the spa with Dr. Barbara Sturm treatments and the private dock with vintage boats furnished in Loro Piana fabrics. The property has lived many lives, from being owned by Pope Innocent XI to hosting luminaries from Napoleon Bonaparte to Winston Churchill, but this is perhaps its most exquisite rendition yet.
By Amy Louise Bailey | @amylouise_bailey
Passalacqua, Lake Como
Address: Via Besana, 59, 22010, Moltrasio, Como, Italy
Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc, Antibes
Address: Boulevard J. F. Kennedy, CS 10029, 06605 Antibes Cedex, France
There are few hotels that warrant a dedicated coffee table book, or that continue to attract the world’s most creative minds for decades on end. But Hotel du Cap is in a class of its own, widely considered as the epitome of French elegance. Chanel has hosted shows down its coastal runway and it’s the center of activity during the Cannes Film Festival every year. And although the 22-acre property has been deemed paparazzi-proof, you’ll probably recognize the gymnastics equipment hanging above the Mediterranean from the Instagrams of the models and moguls that visit each summer. Those seeking a more discreet scene can opt for private seaside cabanas where the full menu from Eden-Roc Grill is served and you can leap right off the cliff into the water. There are 118 guestrooms spread throughout three locations: the main building, the oceanfront pavilion, and the more secluded Les Deux Fontaines residence.
Amanyara, Turks and Caicos
Address: Northwest Point, Providenciales, TKCA 1ZZ, Turks & Caicos Islands
Translating to ‘peaceful place,’ Amanyara is a sanctuary where you can relax in privacy. Like all Aman properties, it’s designed to showcase the natural surroundings with minimalist décor and airy spaces where spectacular views take center stage. The resort is situated within the Northwest Point Marine National Park, overlooking a stunning white sand beach and the turquoise waters that Turks and Caicos is renowned for. It’s all about the natural beauty and there are plenty of ways to experience it beyond the sun lounger. More adventurous itineraries could involve scuba diving, snorkeling, sailing, and kayaking, and children can immerse themselves in the resort’s educational science camps – a unique highlight for such a high-end destination. In keeping with Aman’s wellness traditions, renowned Pilates pioneer Erika Bloom will be hosting restorative retreats there this November, sure to revive even the most jaded New Yorkers.
Ocean House, Rhode Island
Address: 1 Bluff Avenue, Watch Hill, Rhode Island, 02891
Generations of well-heeled East Coasters have graced the halls of Ocean House – undeniably New England’s most iconic hotel. The sprawling Relais & Chateaux property sits majestically on Watch Hill overlooking the Atlantic Ocean with manicured gardens leading to a pristine private beach. It has the largest private collection of Bemelmans art outside of Paris (the man behind the whimsical illustrations at The Carlyle) and a seemingly endless list of amenities including a 12,000 square foot spa with an indoor lap pool, private yacht charters, beach cabanas, a billiards room, a croquet lawn, and a magnificent Wine & Culinary Arts Center, where guests can elevate their entertaining expertise. There are 49 rooms and 18 signature suites, many of which have private terraces and fireplaces – perfect for cozy evenings to watch the waves crash in.
The Colony Hotel, Palm Beach
Address: 155 Hammon Avenue, Palm Beach, Florida, 33480
The glamor of Slim Aarons and the original jet-set lives on at The Colony. Since opening in 1947, it’s been the preferred Palm Beach address for British royalty, and today, it attracts Pucci-clad crowds that glide between Worth Avenue and the beach before returning for cocktail hour at Swifty’s. It’s one of the most photogenic hotels in America, rendered in a flamingo pink with whimsical de Gournay wallpaper and tropical interiors. The main building is iconic, but the best accommodations can be found in the private villa complex across the street, where several spacious residences have been individually designed: there is Villa Jasmine by Aerin Lauder; the Sister’s Suite by Serena & Lily, and Villa Aralia by Mark Sikes. Later this year, the hotel will be celebrating its 75th anniversary, and to mark the occasion, it will be unveiling refurbished suites and several new retail concepts.
Château de la Messardière, Saint-Tropez
Address: 2 Route de Tahiti, 83990 Saint-Tropez, France
Château de la Messardière has been one of Saint-Tropez’s most revered properties since it was built in 1904, and it’s recently been revamped by the haute hoteliers at Airelles. The result is classic French Riviera glamour with a modern gloss. Emblems of elegance can be seen at every turn, from the fleet of Rolls-Royce Cullinans to the oversized tapestries lining the walls. It has its own beach club, Jardin Tropezina (up the coast from Le Club 55), a luxurious Valmont Spa, and three pools to lounge around to soak up the South of France sunshine. It is also a supreme dining destination, home to an impressive range of restaurants including a Nobu pop-up and several Mediterranean offerings from the group’s Michelin-starred Culinary Artist, Marco Garfagnini (previously an Executive Chef for Four Seasons).
Chatham Bars Inn, Cape Cod
Address: 297 Shore Road, Chatham, Massachusetts, 02633
This charming shingle-style property is the jewel of Cape Cod, located on a picturesque private beach. It’s low-key but high-end, offering an exceptional fine dining restaurant, a spa with a variety of luxurious treatments, and seasonal activities ranging from oyster shucking to floral arranging classes and boat excursions for exploring the coast. There are various accommodations spread across the 25-acre property, but the best option for families and groups is the exceptional three-level Octagon House, which has all of the conveniences of a private home located within a five-star hotel. It also has its own vegetable farm where the hotel’s Executive Chef Anthony Cole sources the restaurants’ produce from.