Find out more
There is more to Design Hotels™ than ‘just’ design. Each of the company’s member hotels represents a story. A story of innovation, sustainability, originality and individuality. From humble beginnings, with only ten members, the company has grown into a global network of more than 290 independent hotels in more than 60 countries. Each property is hand-selected and checked personally. To be a member of Design Hotels™, not only design and service are critical, but those individuals behind the hotel – “Originals”, as the company calls them – and their vision is equally, if not more important. Visit the Design Hotels™ online store for some exquisite trinkets for the modern traveler.
When The Dwell’s owner, Seija Ojanpera, was young, her parents would often arrive home to discover that their house had been rearranged by their daughter, beds, wardrobes and art repositioned. This passion for interiors – she also used to collect hotel brochures while on family holidays – has now been fully realized in her first property, the 16-room boutique hotel The Dwell in central Chattanooga’s reinvigorated Innovation District. Set in an early 20th-century brick-and-limestone building that can look back on a long history as an inn, the property has been transformed with a touch of Old Hollywood glamour and vibrant retro-chic luxury. Each of the rooms, for example, comes with its own name, boldly colorful wallpaper and globally sourced vintage furniture. The sultry cocktail bar, Matilda Midnight boasts a menu of old classics and new creations and is the ideal place to unwind after a day exploring the nature of this city in the Appalachian Mountains – take tips from the concierge who is eager to ensure each guest has an enjoyable stay.
Just two-hours from busy Manhattan, in the upstate town of Hunter, you’ll find a tranquil hideaway, namely Scribner’s Catskill Lodge – a spot popular with New Yorkers and international travellers alike. Back in 1969, the area was the site of the legendary Woodstock festival and still attracts many visitors today – not only because of its historic significance and pop-culture appeal – but also due to the many outdoor activities on offer. The 1960-built, recently renovated, luxury retreat offers 38 eclectic, comfortable rooms, a restaurant dishing up locally-inspired meals with a twist, a whiskey bar, romantic fireplaces, a pool and even yoga rooms – what more could you want from your mountain getaway?
ANANTARA VILLA PADIERNA PALACE BENAHAVÍS MARBELLA RESORT.
A palatial, pink-hued Mediterranean villa, with soaring white archways and a clock set in its façade, welcomes guests to this supremely elegant Andalusian retreat. Nestled among sprawling, lush grounds – with three golf courses, a lake and Roman amphitheater as well as man-made pools, statues and fountains amid cypresses and palms – the Anantara Villa Padierna Palace offers peaceful seclusion just 20 minutes’ drive from pretty, upmarket Marbella. Its 132 rooms, suites and villas radiate grand Tuscan style, housing classical furnishings – think gilded mirrors, blue-and-white porcelain lamps and marble bathrooms – and modern amenities, while private pools are available with each villa, one of which is named after renowned guest Michelle Obama. The on-site facilities are notable, ranging from an extensive spa and golf expert sessions to multiple restaurants, including a soon-to-open addition from acclaimed Spanish chef Paco Roncero, as well as a shuttle to the nearby beach club, meaning that guests need never leave this sophisticated sanctuary.
Tranquillity is found in the bamboo-blanketed hills and the spring-blossoming grove of plum trees surrounding Alila Anji – a resort built to look like a traditional Chinese village. Relax during morning tai chi classes with views of the misty lake, or explore lantern-adorned lanes between white-walled, dark-roofed villas. Located in Anji – a pilot county for ecological and green building construction and the backdrop for the film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon – the property has been built both to blend with its serene setting and in line with Alila’s strict environmental ethos. Interiors of the 72 villas and suites offer clean lines, native woods and elegant silk or hand-woven textiles and feature oversized bathrooms and rain showers. The resort‘s cuisine incorporates seasonal ingredients infused with local flavors. TCM-inspired treatments are available at the hotel‘s Spa, while seasonal activities, such as rafting and white tea or chestnut picking, are on offer for those looking to explore – Alila Anji is an eco-luxury escape for city-dwellers and nature-lovers.
South Tyrol is a breathtakingly beautiful region in the Italian Alps, shaped by its Mediterranean scenery and the imposing Dolomites, which have been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. From orchards to dramatic peaks, South Tyrol’s diverse landscapes, make for some of Europe’s most spectacular hiking routes. But the autonomous Italian province also has many other recreational activities to offer – from skiing to water sport and state-of-the-art spa experiences – ideal for family holidays. The hotel Hohenwart is the perfect fusion of the region’s rich traditions and contemporary hospitality. It comprises four buildings, including a new, 4000 ft2 spa complex, all with views of the dramatic panorama. Guests can sample the finest Tyrolean wines in the hotel’s vinotheque, enjoy classes on the roof-top yoga platform and take advantage of children’s activity rooms, complementary bike hire and organized hiking tours. Given Hotel Hohenwart’s superior facilities, outstanding service and spectacular location, it’s perfect for a break, regardless of whether you would like to relax in style or have get active with the family.
Amid heavenwards-pointing peaks, painter Hans Walter Beyer built a small retreat in Alpine Engadin, south-east Switzerland, appropriately naming it “Il Paradis”. That was in 1910, and more than a century later this is still an art-filled space, with over 100 pieces on display by contemporary artists, alongside antique furniture and creative personal touches such as the hand-sewn Please Do Not Disturb tags. The hotel houses 23 rooms and suites, and for part of the season is exclusively reserved for Club Privé “Il Paradis”, which offers an all-inclusive experience to a limited number of members. The creative theme extends into the “Garden of Eden” spa, with its mosaic of biblical scenes, where a wide range of treatments are on offer. For those seeking an authentic culinary experience, cookery courses are available in a 7,200-foot altitude cabin with an old wood-burning stove at its centre – an elevated experience, indeed.
ASIA. HAA ALIFU ATOLL, DHONAKULHI ISLAND, MALDIVES.
HIDEAWAY BEACH RESORT & SPA AT DHONAKULHI MALDIVES.
Pristine white sandy beaches, crystal-clear blue lagoons and limitless sky make the Maldives one of most sought-after travel destinations in the world. This unusual country is situated 620 miles from the Indian shore and consists of 1200 coral islands, forming 26 ring-shaped atolls. An incredible diversity of sea life with over thousand species of fish as well as sea turtles, dolphins and whales make this one of the greatest places for diving and snorkeling. The Hideaway Beach and Resort occupies one of the country’s typical, crescent-shaped islands in the north of the Haa Alifu Atoll. The elegant resort comprises a choice of water and beach villas, including some of the largest beachfront accommodation of the Maldives. The privacy these villas offer, award-winning gourmet food as well as the elegant spa and comprehensive recreational offer, make this the ultimate remote getaway and perfect place to unwind.
A fascinating culture, spectacular marine wildlife and vast beaches make Bali Indonesia’s prime tourist destination. While the southern part of this island can get very busy, this resort is located on the tranquil eastern coast and feels like an oasis of peace and calm. The buildings are loosely centered around the resort’s large swimming pool, all with views of the sea. The free-flow design is inspired by traditional Balinese architecture, featuring an alang alang thatched roof on the lobby as well as traditional Balinese pavilions, which blend effortlessly into the island’s unique landscape. The serene atmosphere and focus on wellness make this resort ideal for a relaxing and rejuvenating holiday with its wide range of activities – from yoga and tai chi classes to spa experiences, including massages, reiki and beauty treatments. But it’s also the perfect gateway to explore this charming island with its extraordinarily spiritual and artistic heritage. Guests can join a range of experiences, such as hikes to the holy Mount Agung or trips to Bali’s most beautiful temples, palaces and villages and, of course, excursions to some of the world’s best diving sites.
It’s a retreat in every sense of the word: set amid fern-fringed pools, lush palms and moss-covered stone terraces, with an ancient mango tree and strolling emerald and cobalt-tailed peacocks, all backdropped by the tree-clad mountains, this verdant jungle paradise hides a multi-award-winning holistic medical wellness resort. Just a 90-minute drive south of Manila, the property offers medically supervised health optimization programs to help guests address the stresses and disorders of modern life, conducted by integrative medical doctors, therapists, nutritionists and fitness coaches. This is complemented by a wide range of spa treatments, a gym, daily yoga sessions and mediation lounges. Relaxed guests can stay in 33 suites and villas that represent eco-luxury at its best, with traditional touches such as thatched roofs and wood-beamed ceilings paired with modern amenities and, in some cases, private gardens and pools. The nourishing lifestyle is continued in the resort’s world-class vegan cuisine, which is locally sourced and combines the health, healing and sustainability that characterize this high-quality eco-resort’s approach.