Today (June 5, 2017): Top 10 best luxury hotels in British Columbia (Canada).
British Columbia, Canada’s most western province, is one of my favorite travel destinations on earth. It is the kingdom of abundance, a place where towering glaciated mountains stand over an unruly Pacific, where thick rainforests wrap around picturesque villages, where raw nature shapes a refined culture, and where the wild breathing life back into the wild within. For starters, British Columbia offers superb hiking in the Rocky Mountains, world-class skiing in Whistler, storm-watching in the Pacific Rim National Park, unforgettable wildlife encounters (e.g. whale watching and grizzly bear spotting), and urban adventures in one of the world’s most magnificent cities, Vancouver. The province also houses some of Canada’s (and the world’s) most impressive accommodations. To help you plan your next British Columbia holiday, I have compiled a top 10 list with the area’s best hotels.
There is more information (with Youtube clips and reviews) below the slide show. Think I missed one? Leave a comment or take my poll below!
Yoho National Park is located in the Canadian Rocky Mountains along the western slope of the Continental Divide of the Americas in southeastern British Columbia. Here, you can stay at Emerald Lake Lodge and follow in the footsteps of legendary guide Tom Wilson, who discovered this magical location – famed for its jade-coloured waters – more than 100 years ago during the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway. Today, the hotel remains one of North America’s most outstanding and year-round accessible lodges in a wilderness setting. With its century-old fireplaces and an oak bar salvaged from an 1890’s Yukon saloon, there is no shortage of history within these walls. Built of hand-hewn timber and featuring massive stone fireplaces, the lodge includes an elegant dining room, quiet reading and sitting rooms, conference facilities and a games room.
- Hotel website: Emerald Lake Lodge
- Other accolades: Emerald Lake Lodge also features in my top 10 list of the best hotels in Canada’s Rocky Mountains.
- Review: read here my review of Emerald Lake Lodge.
This 119-room luxury hotel, located in vibrant downtown Vancouver, occupies the first 15 floors of a 61-story landmark building, the tallest in the city. Here, guests find luxurious guestrooms and suites decorated in the brand’s contemporary Asian style, with many rooms featuring private balconies, stunning views of the city, and abundant sunlight filtering in through floor-to-ceiling windows. Guests can enjoy personalized spa treatments at Chi, The Spa at Shangri-La, or experience Vancouver fine dining with regionally inspired dishes at Market by Jean-Georges. Whether in the city for business or for pleasure, the Shangri-La Vancouver offers amenities and accommodations that bring to life the unique Asian hospitality, serenity, and caring service that Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts are known for.
- Hotel website: Shangri-La Vancouver
- Tip: enjoy free VIP amenities when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, daily breakfast, $100 USD hotel credit).
The Four Seasons Resort Whistler is located in the heart of what is by far the largest ski resort in all of North America. The pedestrian village of Whistler has itself won numerous design awards and was the site of the 2010 Olympic Winter Games. Beyond its famed slopes are the championship golf courses, hundreds of boutiques, museums and galleries and endless year-round happenings. The hotel’s 273 guest rooms are appointed richly in wood, each with their own gas fireplace. After the rigors of skiing, golf, hiking, or shopping, you can avail yourself of Four Seasons Resort Whistler’s many relaxation options, and inhale alpine air while you’re massaged with the clay from a nearby lake or survey the snow-capped peaks while soaking in the outdoor whirlpools.
- Hotel website: Four Seasons Resort Whistler
- Other accolades: Four Seasons Resort Whistler also features in my top 10 lists of the most luxurious ski hotels in the world and the best hotels in Canada.
- Tip: enjoy free VIP amenities when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, daily breakfast, $100 USD spa credit).
Situated on Vancouver Island’s magnificently rugged west coast, the Wickaninnish Inn – a Relais & Châteaux property – is surrounded by the Pacific Ocean on three sides with an old growth forest as a backdrop. The hotel’s story began way back in 1955, when Dr. Howard McDiarmid first moved to Tofino and assumed responsibility for the Tofino General Hospital. Over the years, he recognized the unique nature of the area and was instrumental in the creation of the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve in 1971 and the opening of the famous hotel in 1996. Architecturally, the Inn has succeeded in defining an archetypal North West Coast style, utilizing the natural elements of cedar, fir, driftwood, and stone, together with expansive windows inviting the awe-inspiring ocean vistas. Spectacular ocean and beach views are standard from every guest room, suite, public space and meeting venue.
- Hotel website: Wickaninnish Inn
With the wild Pacific surf before you, and lush rainforest behind, you’ll experience Canada’s untouched, rugged West Coast while savoring all the comforts of five-star luxury at Long Beach Lodge Resort. The hotel has 41 rooms and 20 cottages and is located on Cox Bay beach, just 7km (4 mi) south of Tofino in the heart of the Pacific Rim National Park. It’s mesmerizing to light a fire and cozy up under your duvet as the ocean offers its entertainment: bald eagles soar from treetop to treetop, ravens comb the beach, and harbor seals and whales surface while the churning Pacific pounds the beach. The chef’s innovative cuisine mirrors the unique character of the lodge, and you can enjoy fine dining while watching a magnificent sunset.
- Hotel website: Long Beach Lodge
- Other accolades: Long Beach Lodge also features in my top 10 list of the best hotels in Canada.
Following its grand debut in the roaring ‘20s, Hotel Georgia came to be known as a Vancouver legend for bringing unheard-of luxuries to the young city and Canada’s West Coast. After undergoing a full renovation and reopening in 2011 as Rosewood Hotel Georgia, the hotel has been returned to its former grandeur with the additional elegance of extensive amenities and the impeccable service of Rosewood, one of the world’s most exclusive hotel brands. With 156 rooms and suites embellished with stylish elegance equal to its landmark location, guests uncover an exclusive residential ambience. Featuring a palette of light blues, ivory and chocolate, guestroom decor is completed with sleek furnishings and spa-inspired bathrooms for ultimate luxury.
- Hotel website: Rosewood Hotel Georgia
- Other accolades: Rosewood Hotel Georgia also features in my top 10 lists of the world’s most stunning indoor hotel pools and the best hotels in Canada.
- Tip: enjoy free VIP amenities when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, daily breakfast for 2, $100 USD hotel credit, early check-in and late check-out).
This luxury wilderness resort is an absolute jewel amid one of Canada’s most alluring, pristine environments, being British Columbia’s stunning Desolation Sound, home to fascinating wildlife and some of the best salmon fishing in the world. Sonora Resort is where uncompromising eco adventure travel meets luxurious accommodations, unparalleled service and five-star facilities. Here, guest can enjoy thrilling eco-tours along the coast, such as getting close-up views of grizzly bears, orcas, sea lions, and dolphins. Guests can also take hikes through the towering old-growth firs and cedars of the coastal temperate rainforest. Or experience a mind-blowing helicopter ride to a glistening glacier where they can enjoy a private picnic prepared by the chef.
- Hotel website: Sonora Resort
- Other top 10 accolades: Sonora Resort also features in my top 10 lists of the best wilderness lodges in the world and the best hotels in Canada.
- Tip: enjoy free VIP amenities when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, daily breakfast, early check-in, late check-out, and a complimentary eco tour for two).
This downtown Vancouver hotel, the flagship hotel of the Fairmont Hotel Group, combines the best of the Pacific Rim in its plan, décor, and culinary offerings. It is conveniently situated along the shore in Vancouver’s vibrant waterfront area, a few blocks from the cruise ship terminal. Designed with five-star standards and amenities, the 367-room hotel features spacious guestrooms with lavish appointments, naturally inspired materials, comfortable furnishings and state-of-the-art technology. The higher floors enjoy breathtaking panoramic views of Coal Harbour, Stanley Park and the North Shore Mountains. The hotel’s spectacular outdoor rooftop pool with private cabanas brings a little South Beach ambiance to the heart of downtown Vancouver.
- Hotel website: The Fairmont Pacific Rim
- Other accolades: The Fairmont Pacific Rim also features in my top 10 lists of the world’s most luxurious city hotels and the best hotels in Canada.
- Tip: enjoy free VIP amenities when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, daily breakfast, early check-in, late check-out, and $100 USD spa credit).
- Review: read here my review of the Fairmont Pacific Rim.
The Clayoquot Wilderness Resort, open from May to September, is an exotic paradox of indulgent luxury and remote, untamed wilderness in the Clayoquot Sound World Biosphere Reserve (within the Pacific Rim National Park). This unique 21st-century-safari-style enclave of great white canvas suite tents, dining, lounge, and spa tents, offers exquisite cuisine and breathtaking adventures, giving visitors a rare taste of how the fortunate spent their summers ‘roughing it’ some 100 years ago. Twenty guest and family suite tents showcase antique furnishings, opulent rugs, down duvets, remote-controlled propane powered woodstoves and luxurious amenities. Watch out for bears and whales.
- Hotel website: Clayoquot Wilderness Resort
- Other accolades: Clayoquot Wilderness Resort also features in my top 10 lists of the best wilderness lodges in the world, the world’s best family hotels, and the best hotels in Canada.