Today (December 18, 2015): 40 best luxury hotels that opened their doors in 2015.
Be the first to explore my selection of the best new luxury hotels that opened their doors in 2015. Some of these hotel are managed by world’s most exclusive hotel brands. For my list with the most anticipated luxury hotel openings of 2016, click here.
There is more information and direct link to the hotel websites below the slide show! Think I missed one? Share your opinion in the comments section!
Nestled in the heart of Nisantasi, the St. Regis Istanbul is surrounded by the exclusive district’s shops, dining, art, and entertainment. Mere steps away are such destinations as Macka Park, the convention center, the city center, and the Bosporus. The property has 2 signature restaurants: an intimate rooftop terrace venue and an eclectic French brasserie. The hotel’s 118 sumptuous accommodations boast a unique identity of discrete luxury, timeless elegance, and compelling grace. Guests of the 10 suites – one designed by Bentley – enjoy the elevated level of bespoke service of the St. Regis Butler.
- Hotel website: St Regis Istanbul
- Top 10 accolades: The St Regis Istanbul features in my top 10 list of the best luxury hotels in Istanbul
- Review: click here to read my review of the St Regis Istanbul.
Offering convenient access to the Parel and Worli commercial districts, the St Regis Mumbai is the newest best address for conducting business in the financial capital of India. The Bandra Kurla Complex is also nearby, and the airport is 13 kilometres (12 miles) away. Business and leisure visitors alike will appreciate the indulgences and stunning views afforded by 386 well-appointed guest rooms, suites, and serviced apartments. Whatever the request, St. Regis Butler Service is available any time, day or night. The hotel’s fitness centre, swimming pool, and spa offer welcome escapes. Dining venues’ cuisines include Indian, Japanese, pan-Asian, Middle Eastern, and Mediterranean.
- Hotel website: The St Regis Mumbai
Located 20 minutes from the heart of Qatar’s vibrant capital by a luxury yacht ferry, the Banana ISland Resort by Anantara is located on its own island that feels a world away. It is a hideaway in true Arabian luxury with 141 rooms, suites, pool villas and over water villas setting the mood for romance. Guests can bask on the private 800 metre beach and refresh themselves in the 100 metre long lagoon pool, or master the waves in the surf pool and enjoy a wide range of water sports. Leisure options include bowling, golf and beach games by day, and VIP cinema at night, and there are several fine dining venues present at the resort.
- Hotel website: Banana Island Resort Doha by Anantara
Hidden on a rocky outcrop along a secluded stretch of Sri Lanka’s southernmost coastline, Anantara Peace Haven Tangalle Resort boasts the most unique location of any hotel in this beautiful corner of the island. Set amidst a 42 acre coconut plantation and golden crescent shores with glorious Indian Ocean views, the resort offers a naturally exclusive hideaway for exotic beach life in a tranquil world of your own. Inspired by ancient Sri Lankan design and Anantara’s sense of indulgence, the 152 rooms and pool villas offers couple’s romance, and ample space for families and friends.
- Hotel website: Anantara Peace Haven Tangalle Resort
Richard Branson describes his Virgin Hotels brand as “beautiful, comfortable, fun hotels for guests and give them what they want and need while being gentle on their wallet”. The brand’s Chicago flagship opened last January in the heart of the Loop district in the historic Old Dearborn Bank Building, a 26-story Art Deco structure. It has 250 guest rooms, including 40 suites and two penthouses. The brand retained many of the building’s original features, including, a beautiful 1920s oak Cigar Bar that serves as the hotel’s front desk, ornate brass elevator doors, and the original mail slot and chute serving all floors.
- Hotel website: Virgin Hotel Chicago
The new Fairmont Jakarta is located in Senayan, with very close proximity to the Indonesia Stock Exchange, Jakarta Convention Center and linked directly to one of the city’s most stylish shopping venues. The hotel has 374 spacious guestrooms and 114 Fairmont branded suites. Each room is remarkably spacious, complete with premium amenities that are essential to both business and leisure travelers. The hotel’s signature Willow Stream Spa is among the city’s most luxurious retreats with 900 square meters of soothing surroundings featuring 9 fully equipped treatment rooms, and an outdoor swimming pool.
- Hotel website: Fairmont Jakarta
Raffles Jakarta stands at the heart of the central business district, in Ciputra World Jakarta, a prestigious new development with luxury boutiques and office buildings. The hotel is exclusively linked to the new Ciputra Artpreneur Centre, dedicated to the celebration of art and theatre. Like its sister hotels, the stylish Le Royal Monceau, Raffles Paris and the stunning Raffles Istanbul, Raffles Jakarta is a celebration of artistry – and in particular an homage to the iconic Indonesian artist Hendra Gunawan. The hotel features 173 exquisitely designed rooms and suites, some of the largest in the city.
- Hotel website: Raffles Jakarta
Seated majestically on the beachfront in Stone Town, the historical centre of the city and a designated UNESCO Heritage site, Park Hyatt Zanzibar’s architecture reflects its Swahili culture with a unique blend of Arab, Persian, Indian and European elements. Reminiscent of an exclusive Omani residence, the hotel features 67 spacious guest rooms including 11 suites, brilliantly combing contemporary style and timeless regional accents. Standard guest rooms range in size from 45 square metres to 50 square metres, and ocean front rooms feature spectacular, picturesque views of dhows, the harbour and the Indian Ocean.
- Hotel website: Park Hyatt Zanzibar
Designed to resemble a private mansion by the sea, Park Hyatt Sanya Sunny Bay Resort offers relaxed, personalised luxury, housing 207 sophisticated rooms and suites, the majority blessed with unadulterated, breathtaking views of the South China Sea. The property, which has its own private white sand beach, is located on the southernmost tip of Hainan Island, widely known as “the Hawaii of China”. Guests can enjoy any of the resort’s five swimming pools or activities for all ages, with a focus on local culture and sea and environmental education.
- Hotel website: Park Hyatt Sanya Sunny Bay
The 595 room hotel is located 60km north of Beijing’s city centre, alongside the picturesque Yanqi Lake and boasting panoramic views of the Mutianyu section of the Great Wall. Leisure facilities include 14 restaurants and bars, a spa, a private marina, the Yanqi Pagoda, recreational and fitness facilities, a Kids Club, and beautifully-landscaped gardens. With four ballrooms and 23 meeting rooms, this new destination is designed to host high-profile government conferences and is set to become the location of choice for global summits and large-scale international meetings in the region.
The JW Marriott brand’s first hotel in Italy is a world-class addition to its global portfolio of 59 luxury properties. The resort is located on a private island in the Venetian lagoon, just a 20-minute ride across the Lagoon to central St. Mark’s Square by complimentary shuttle service. The resort features 250 contemporary-styled rooms and suites designed by the architect Matteo Thun, in addition to 4 restaurants, the largest spa in Venice, a romantic Church for events and private ceremonies, and a rooftop lounge area with pool offering a dramatic 360° view over Venice.
- Hotel website: JW Marriott Venice
- Top 10 accolades: The JW Marriott Venice features in my top 10 list of the best luxury hotels in Venice.
- Review: click here to read my review of the St Regis Istanbul.
JW Marriott Los Cabos Beach Resort & Spa, the newest addition to the upscale Puerto Los Cabos development, boasts unparalleled luxury, a gorgeous location right on the beach, several swimming pools, a state-of-the-art, and beautifully appointed accommodations. Guests can settle in their room or suite, and take advantage of high-tech amenities, plush bedding, and scenic beach or resort views. The resort also offers the Griffin Club, a cutting-edge, boutique hotel concept located within the resort. With over 38,500 square feet of flexible event space, the hotel is also one of Cabo’s premier destinations for corporate meetings and social gatherings.
- Hotel website: JW Marriott Los Cabos Beach Resort & Spa
Lijiang is a fabled city – tucked into the northwestern corner of China’s Yunnan Province. Renowned as one of the most beautiful places in China, it is often favourably compared to the mythical Shangri-La of Himalayan lore. Surrounded by snow-capped peaks and home to a harmonious fusion of cultures, the city’s Old Town was listed as a World Heritage Site in 1997, and is now home to Amandayan, the 28th Amanresort, the world’s most exclusive hotel brand. Situated atop Lion Hill with panoramic views of Lijiang and the region’s majestic mountain ranges on the horizon, Amandayan is Aman’s third resort in China, joining Aman at Summer Palace in Beijing and Amanfayun in Hangzhou.
- Hotel website: Amandayan
Besides Amandayan in China, Aman also opened an ultraluxurious resort in the pristine natural beauty of the Dominican Republic. Nestled within more than 2,170 acres of pristine Caribbean jungle, Amanera overlooks the ocean from Playa Grande, whose golden sands make it one of the region’s most beautiful beaches. Presenting the first fully-integrated Aman Golf Course, the resort is located alongside the lauded fairways and greens of Playa Grande. Amanera has 25 free-standing Casitas, that all come with ocean views from an expansive terrace, as well as a private garden and biodiverse roof that seamlessly blends with its surroundings. Thirteen casitas have a private pool.
- Hotel website: Amanera
True to its heritage of creating exceptional guest experiences in places of incredible beauty, Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas unveiled its first resort in Europe, the Six Senses Douru Valley. Located in the beautiful Portuguese UNESCO World Heritage area of the Douro Valley, the property is touched with the romance of 19th century architecture wedded to contemporary interiors reflecting the inimitable Six Senses style. The resort covers 8 hectares (20 acres) and comprises 57 guest accommodations. With a décor of light greys and sandy tones,the glamorous rooms incorporate eco-friendly materials blending nature with Portuguese traditional design.
- Hotel website: Six Senses Douro Valley
Six Senses’ fans, who admire the hotel brand’s eco-friendly barefoot (high) luxury in far-flung locations, will be thrilled with another Six Senses resort opening this year, located in Qing Cheng. It is the only resort located adjacent to the UNESCO World Heritage Site in the Chinese province of Sichuan. Drawing upon the renowned Six Senses perspective of responsible luxury, the 113-suite and-villa resort has been designed to incorporate regional architecture and landscaping, resulting in an extraordinary cultural offering with a strong sense of place wedded to contemporary attitude.
- Hotel website: Six Senses Qing Cheng
The all-suite Ritz-Carlton Macau is located within one of the world’s most spectacular destinations, Galaxy Macau, which provides easy access to a host of leisure and entertainment options, including premium shopping, exquisite dining, world-class entertainment events and multi-functional meeting spaces. After being whisked away to the 51st floor lobby, guests can settle into their spacious suite, where a large picture window offers a breathtaking view of the glittering city. Exploration beyond the hotel is easy as all attractions, including Macau’s UNESCO World Heritage Historic Centre, are within 20 minutes.
- Hotel website: The Ritz-Carlton Macau
Verdant rice paddies, meandering pathways, gently rolling hills and the soothing Ayung River set a glorious backdrop for Mandapa, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve. In the spiritual and cultural heart of Bali, visitors are transported to a place where joy is found in luxuries as simple as time and nature. Secluded from the distractions of daily life, resort guests will discover the peace of mind and body that has drawn devotees to area mandapas, or temples, for thousands of years. An intimate hotel of only 60 villas and suites, Mandapa, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, features two swimming pools, a luxury spa and active excursions to awaken the spirit.
- Hotel website: Mandapa, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve
The latest addition to Alila Hotels & Resorts’ Bali collection enjoys an unrivalled beachfront setting along the sophisticated shores of Seminyak, Bali’s upscale resort destination. The 240 rooms, each an exquisite composite of thoughtfully designed spaces, are housed in four separate buildings throughout the resort. Guests can take the resort’s fully restored vintage 1980 Volkswagen Kombi to different beach venues and beach clubs in the area, where they can party with friends and make pit stops for cocktails and canapés.
- Hotel website: Alila Seminyak
Mandarin Oriental Milan is an intimate and contemporary hotel housed within four elegantly redeveloped 18th century buildings, with a distinctly residential feel. The 104 elegant rooms and suites offer the most stylish and spacious accommodation in the city. Situated on the central Via Andegari, just a few steps away from the fashionable Via Manzoni and Montenapoleone, the hotel is perfectly located, with easy access to the city’s most important commercial, fashion and cultural centres.
- Hotel website: Mandarin Oriental, Milan
The new Mandarin Oriental Marrakech is set among 20 hectares of landscaped gardens filled with the scent of 100,000 roses, with the snow-capped Atlas Mountains providing a stunning backdrop. Located just 10 minutes’ drive from the heart of the city and the historic Medina, the hotel offers 54 private villas inspired by Berber and Moorish influences, all with secluded walled gardens, swimming pools and hot tubs, extensive areas for sunbathing and shaded alfresco dining. A further nine spectacular suites, seven with their own rooftop plunge pool, feature panoramic vistas of the gardens and the surrounding countryside.
- Hotel website: Mandarin Oriental, Marrakech
The 317 room hotel invited some of today’s most creative minds into a world of possibility guided by an unwavering commitment to quality, and the result is truly extraordinary. Sensory delights abound from the finest textures and finishes to the carefully chosen music in each area of the hotel and the signature scent created exclusively for Four Seasons by Lorenzo Villoresi Firenze. The look is a modern reflection of Korean tradition, with light-filled spaces and every modern convenience at hand. More than 160 contemporary artworks feed the soul, while attentive Four Seasons staff ensure every need and want is met.
- Hotel website: Four Season Hotel Seoul
An architectural icon on its own exclusive island, Four Seasons Hotel Bahrain Bay is set on the northeastern waterfront of Manama, capital city of Bahrain. Destined to become the new downtown, the mixed-use Bahrain Bay district includes residential, commercial and retail – with Four Seasons as the focal point. Unparalleled in design, the 68-storey tower is an urban hotel with resort-style atmosphere, including 273 guest rooms and suites, six restaurants and bars, a spa with 17 treatment rooms and five swimming pools.
- Hotel website: Four Seasons Bahrain Bay
Cool and avant-garde on the beachfront of Morocco’s largest city, Four Seasons Hotel Casablanca enjoys a prestigious resort-style setting, just a short distance from the business district and the historic city centre. The new hotel is part of the master-plannedAnfa Place community, combining residential, business, shopping and entertainment. The 183 guest rooms and 29 suites share a range of dining and recreation amenities in a style that mixes French and Arabic traditions. Meetings and events can be hold in the ballroom and five function rooms, that open to outdoor terraces that celebrate Morocco’s year-round warmth and sunshine.
- Hotel website: Four Seasons Casablanca
This unusual Phuket resort is nestled well away from the crowds and overlooking Kamala Village and the Andaman Sea. Shaded by an enchanted canopy of rainforest and connected together by a network of jungle walkways, the resort’s 38 villas are complete with a private pool and are designed for guests wishing to experience a rustic, yet lavish, escape. For fun seekers the resort is close enough to the liveliness of Patong Beach and all the dynamic action that Phuket has to offer, yet far enough removed to step back and take time to enjoy the tranquil surroundings of the rainforest and a plethora of holistic activities and cuisine to aid wellbeing.
- Hotel website: Keemala
- Top 10 accolades: Keemala features in my top 10 list of the best luxury hotels in Phuket.
A UNESCO World Heritage City, Bath has endured as a leisure and wellness destination for over 2,000 years. Its archaeological and architectural heritage is amongst the finest in the world. Set in the heart of Bath, The Gainsborough Bath Spa is perfectly placed to explore the city and its surrounds. Beyond its walls, a wealth of history, stunning architecture and beautiful countryside await. Created by award-winning Champalimaud Design, the 99 rooms and suites at The Gainsborough Bath Spa are custom furnished, subtly referencing period details combined with contemporary forms.
- Hotel website: The Gainsborough Bath Spa
With his first small luxury hotels in Uruguay, billionaire entrepreneur and art collector Alex Vik put the boho beach town of José Ignacio on the map. As with Vik’s earlier resorts, his Bahia Vik hotel has a focus on art and architecture. The resort consists of eleven uniquely designed bungalows, tucked into the sandy beach dunes, with one central building around which retreat living revolves. The main building includes 10 luxurious suites and are defined by open architecture and flowing spaces, encouraging conviviality among Bahia Vik guests.
- Hotel website: Bahia Vik Jose Ignacio
Shangri-La Hotel Ulaanbaatar is located right in the heart of the city, within walking distance of the Government House and main offices and embassies. Chinggis Khan International Airport is a 40-minute drive away. The hotel features 290 spacious guestrooms with a minimum of 42 sqm and contemporary and indigenous fusion design. All rooms overlook either Nayramdal Park to the south or Great Chinggis Khaan Square and panoramic vistas of the city to the north. A fire struck the hotel construction in September 2014, pushing back the official opening date.
- Hotel website: Shangri-La Hotel Ulaanbaatar
With a prime location on the former Accra racecourse in the heart of the city, adjacent to the Accra International Conference Center, ministry buildings and the State House, Kempinski Hotel Gold Coast City is a unique addition to the Kempinski portfolio. As the centrepiece of the 35 acre “Gold Coast City” development, the hotel boasts the largest rooms in Accra, at a minimum of 50m² for each of the 269 rooms, including 22 luxury suites and 2 presidential suites. The hotel offers two restaurants, a lobby lounge with outside seating, a cocktail bar, a pool lounge, and the biggest Ballroom in the city.
- Hotel website: Kempinski Hotel Gold Coast City
Phum Baitang is a luxury resort near Siem Reap in Cambodia, gateway to the Angkor World Heritage Site. This elegant hideaway is set within eight acres of lush gardens and paddy fields. It comprises forty-five spacious villas, twenty-five with private terrace and twenty with private plunge pool. The wooden and stilted villas are inspired both inside and out by traditional Cambodian design, offering guests a unique experience in Siem Reap. A luxurious and tranquil Spa Temple offers seven treatment rooms, a sauna, steam room and relaxation area. A yoga pavilion, fully-equipped fitness room and 50m outdoor infinity pool complete the resort’s leisure facilities.
- Hotel website: Phum Baitang
In 1873, Ignazio Corpi, a powerful Genoese shipbuilder in what was then known as the European quarter of Constantinople, commissioned a palatial residence bearing his family’s name. Following Iganzio’s death, it served as the U.S. embassy and residence, and then the US consulate general from 1937 to 2003. In 2014, Soho House began extensive restoration work on the Palazzo, returning it to its former glory. The building now functions as a private club and a 87 room hotel, with furnishings sourced from local artisans, the design bridges Eastern and Western styles. Don’t forget to visit the stunning rooftop pool!
- Hotel website: Soho House Istanbul
- Top 10 accolades: Soho House Istanbul features in my top 10 list of the best luxury hotels in Istanbul.
Abu Dhabi’s hottest new address is a sleek boutique beach hotel with 32 sublime beach villas that are highly modern, dominated by clean lines, cotton-wool-white linen and bleached wooden furniture. Spacious outdoor areas include elegant verandas and private palm-fringed pool with unrivalled views of the ocean. By next year there will be a full-throttle spa and five restaurants serving locally grown organic fruit and vegetables from the Ripe Market, line-caught fish and biodynamic wines. More than 800 fully grown date palms were shipped to create this exclusive island resort in the Persian Gulf.
- Hotel website: Zaya Nurai Island
Linkwasha Camp lies on a private concession in Zimbabwe’s Hwange National Park. Situated on the same site as the old Linkwasha, the camp overlooks a pan that is a magnet for game in the dry season. The fresh, open and airy design of Linkwasha Camp is complemented by an eclectic mix of contemporary interiors with the original spirit and essence of safari. Eight en-suite luxury tents and one family tent look out over the waterhole, while the main area – including various multi-level decks, a pool area and a winter lounge complete with library – has the same uninterrupted view.
- Hotel website: Linkwasha Camp
Ian Schrager has proved yet again why he is the pioneer of the boutique hotel concept. The New York EDITION has breathed new life into the southeast corner of the Madison Square Park area, known as the NoMad neighbourhood, with the introduction of the exceptional high-end hotel. The former Metropolitan Life 700-foot office tower at Madison Avenue and East 24th Street used to be the world’s tallest building for a few years in the early 20th century. The complete remodeling of the building has converted the space from an office block into a 50 floor, 273 bedroomed boutique hotel with panoramic views of the city.
- Hotel website: The New York Edition
Soneva in Aqua is the first floating villa in the Maldives. The pioneering new concept elevates the guest experience by offering the option of a boat villa which combines all the benefits of this iconic resort’s services and amenities with the freedom and exclusivity associated with a private boat charter. The two-cabin boat features a spacious main cabin with a glass bottom spa and shower facilities. The second cabin offers a king-sized bed and en-suite facilities. Other features include an external raised sun and dining deck, a lower level bar and dining area plus daybeds, lounge seating and a jacuzzi.
- Hotel website: Soneva in Aqua
Located in the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve of Baa Atoll, one of the 26 natural atolls in the Indian Ocean, Amilla Fushi Maldives Luxury Resort is offering you a choice of Island Homes that hover over crystal clear waters, nestle amongst lush tree tops or hug the shores of pristine white sand. Home to some of the richest waters in the Maldives, it provides a peaceful, unspoilt haven for protected marine life. With delicious food, superb wine, impeccable service and most importantly wonderful company, Amilla offers a range of experiences to make your island home complete.
- Hotel website: Amilla Fushi
The 10th Banyan Tree in China is located 70 minutes away from Huangshan city, in the misty awe-inspiring landscape of Anhui Province, east of China, enshrouded by the great Mount Huangshan. Cultural adventurers and explorers will be fascinated by the ancient-styled dwellings of Xidi and Hongcun, two UNESCO world heritage sites and the breath-taking Mount Huangshan with its peculiar shaped granite peaks, woody pine trees and hot springs. This perfect harmony of nature and culture embodies Banyan Tree Huangshan’s dedication to create a Sanctuary for the Senses amidst picturesque landscapes and rich Chinese history.
- Hotel website: Banyan Tree Huangshan
Just steps away from the vibrant Dam Square and the Royal Palace, the hotel features 238 stylish guestrooms across the two buildings, including 21 suites, 3 WOW suite and two Extreme Wow Suites (the W brand’s reinterpretation of the Presidential Suite). Guests arrive in style when they check in at the rooftop W Lounge, the W brand’s re-interpretation of the traditional hotel lobby, on the sixth floor of the Exchange building. Looking out to the Royal Palace and lively historic centre, the 22 meter Wet Deck is Amsterdam’s first rooftop pool and will be heated in winter.
- Hotel website: W Amsterdam
COMO The Treasury is a 48 room contemporary luxury hotel in Perth’s newly revitalised historic heart. Occupying state buildings dating from the mid 19th century, COMO The Treasury opens up the city with new experiences by way of two restaurants, a bar and world renowned COMO Shambhala wellness therapies. Designed by Kerry Hill, COMO The Treasury also provides an elegant, restful base from which to explore the wilder lures of Western Australia. Grand Posture king-size beds, handcrafted European furnishings and oversized windows deliver comfort, personality and light in the 48 contemporary rooms and suite.
- Hotel website: COMO The Treasury
In Sri Lanka’s deep south, nestling among dunes and trees at the ocean’s edge, you will find Chena Huts, the latest addition to Uga Escapes’ exclusive portfolio of luxury boutique hotels. Overlooking a beach where sea-turtles come to lay eggs by moonlight and elephants wander down from the nearby jungle to play in the surf, Chena Huts is fringed on one landward side by tropical jungle and on the other by a saline lake where ibises, painted storks and even flamingos may be seen, wading in the shallows. The ‘huts’ are in fact luxurious detached, private pavilions offering fine views of the surrounding wilderness and seascape.
- Hotel website: Chena Huts