Monday newsletters always feature top 10 travel lists to inspire.
Today (March 5, 2018): Top 10 most amazing hotel breakfasts in the world.
There are a lot of features that can make a hotel exceptional, from a spectacular location and a mindblowing design to pampering service and world-class spa facilities. But in my humble opinion, there’s no arguing that one of the biggest factors that can give a hotel a wow-factor is that first meal in the morning. Gone are the days of uninspiring continental breakfasts. Instead, super-de-luxe hotels seize the opportunity to make a statement at dawn, with lavish breakfast spreads, including dumplings, maple-bacon biscuits, eggs Benedicte, melon prosciutto skewers, and Pierre Hermé croissants. Although it is impossible to definitively rank the world’s best hotel breakfasts, I hereby share with you the ten hotel breakfasts that impressed me the most and that you won’t mind getting out of bed for, whatever time zone you wake up in.
Although breakfast is not included with the room rate at most luxury hotels, you can always save money by booking via Virtuoso, which will get you free VIP benefits such as daily complimentary breakfast for two at the world’s top properties.
There is more info below the slide show. Think I missed one? Share your favorite hotel breakfast in the comments section, or take my poll below!
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10. ATLANTIS THE PALM DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
Located on the kingdom’s man-made, palm tree-shaped island, palatial Atlantis The Palm is one of Dubai’s most impressive resorts, part blockbuster luxury hotel (more than 1,500 rooms and suites!), part aquatic wonderland. The resort has some of the most elegant hotel rooms in Dubai, designed to immerse guests in absolute comfort and unparalleled luxury, including signature underwater suites with breathtaking underwater views of the ‘ancient’ ruins of the mythical lost city of Atlantis. Although the hotel’s two main restaurants both serve sprawling breakfast buffets, it is Safron Restaurant that will blow you away with its 20 live cooking stations that serve more than 200 international dishes, turning breakfast into an all out bonanza.
- Hotel website: Atlantis The Palm Dubai
- Other accolades: Atlantis The Palm Dubai also features in my top 10 lists of the best underwater hotels in the world and the best family hotels in the world.
9. FOUR SEASONS HOTEL FIRENZE, ITALY
With at least two amenities that are very rare in Florence – an 11-acre private park and an on-site spa – Four Seasons Hotel Firenze is the best hotel in the Renaissance capital. Housed in an art-filled palazzo and a former convent, the hotel’s interiors are adorned with arches, inlaid pillars, friezes, painted frescoes and marble floors. The 116 guest rooms and suites at are located within three buildings, and no two rooms are alike. A wide variety of à la carte items is offered at breakfast including freshly baked pastries, egg specialties, cheeses, smoked fish and cold meats, but it’s the Sunday brunch that is not to be missed, when the formal restaurant – Il Palagio – is transformed into a multi-station brunch by noted chef Vito Mollica, who makes killerFlorentine pached eggs.
- Hotel website: Four Seasons Hotel Firenze
- Other accolades: Four Seasons Florence also features in my top 10 lists of the best urban resorts in the world, the best Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts in the world, and the best luxury hotels in Italy.
- Tip: enjoy free VIP benefits when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, welcome gift, daily breakfast, $100 USD resort credit, early check in and late check out).
8. GRACE SANTORINI, GREECE
Located in the romantic setting of Imerovigli, high above Santorini’s Caldera, Grace Santorini is the perfect vantage point from which to enjoy the famed Santorini island sunsets that envelop Greece’s Cyclades Islands. With its jaw-dropping location, spectacular infinity pool, heart-stopping views, and luxurious accommodations, Santorini Grace may be the ultimate expression of a boutique hotel in the iconic Greek Island and the perfect spot to spend your honeymoon. Breakfast is served at the hotel’s only restaurant, Santoro, and represents an indulgence of tempting gastronomy with a sea view to die for alongside the hotel’s iconic infinity pool. The four-course Champagne breakfast menu is a wonderful alternative to the all-you-can-eat-breakfast buffets in most other high-end resorts.
- Hotel website: Grace Santorini
- Other accolades: Grace Santorini also features in my top 10 list of the most beautiful hotel pools in the world, the best hotels in the world for a honeymoon, and swimming pools with the world’s most breathtaking views.
- Tip: enjoy free VIP benefits when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. upgrade, daily breakfast, complimentary one-way private airport transfers, welcome amenity of bottle of champagne, fruit and chocolates, early check-in, and late check-out).
- Review: read my review of Grace Santorini here.
7. LA MAMOUNIA, MARRAKECH, MOROCCO
For more than 90 years, La Mamounia – member of Leading Hotels of the World – has been a beloved destination for discerning travelers. Located in the heart of the enchanting imperial city, this luxury hotel has recreated the intoxicating mood of an Oriental palace. But underneath the exquisite Moorish architecture are 21st-century conveniences fit for the most demanding of clients including celebrities, financiers and just plain sophisticated travelers. The sprawling gardens are ripe with citrus trees, fragrant rose blossoms, ancient olive groves and a vegetable garden where one might see La Mamounia’s chefs foraging for ingredients to be prepared each morning for the the extraordinarily lavish buffet breakfast, which is served in a poolside pavilion setting with lush garden views.
- Hotel website: La Mamounia
- Tip: enjoy free VIP benefits when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. upgrade, daily breakfast, early check-in, late check-out, and $100 USD spa credit).
6. ALILA VILLAS ULUWATU, BALI, INDONESIA
Alila Villas Uluwatu is located in the dry savannah landscape of Bali’s southern Bukit Peninsular. Poised on an elevated plateau that meets with limestone cliffs sweeping down the Indian Ocean, the view from the hotel is nothing less than breathtaking. Blending in with these spectacular surroundings, the architecture of the hotel combines the delights of traditional Balinese pavilion architecture and rural landscapes with modern dynamic treatment of space and form. The spectacular yet serene, open-plan rooms with minimalistic interiors are designed to impart comfort and space. Breakfast is served at the open air CIRE restaurant with views of the fabulous cliff-side pool; the highly inventive à la carte menu changes daily, often includes Indonesian specialties, and offers tasting portions of each item so you can try plenty of what’s on offer.
- Hotel website: Alila Villas Uluwatu
- Other accolades: Alila villas Uluwatu also features in my top 10 lists of the best luxury hotels in Bali, the world’s best honeymoon resorts and the world’s best luxury hotels.
- Tip: enjoy free VIP benefits when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, early check-in, late check-out, daily breakfast, and $100 USD food & beverage credit).
- Review: read my review of Alila Villas Uluwatu here.
5. THE CHEDI MUSCAT – A GHM HOTEL, OMAN
The Chedi Muscat was one of the first stylish resorts to rise on the Gulf of Oman. Today, it remains a standard-bearer for quiet luxury and minimalist design. It’s located on a long stretch of private beach and 21 acres of beautifully landscaped gardens. Sparkling waters, vibrant gardens and dramatic mountains as seen through the grand windows in all 158 tasteful, well-appointed guest rooms and suites heighten the calming effect of the natural and timeless environment. Facilities at The Chedi Muscat are utterly comprehensive, with six distinct restaurants, a thirteen-suite Balinese spa, and three swimming pools, including a stylish 103-mere (338 ft) long pool. Each morning, a sumptuous and ultra-stylish breakfast buffet is spread out along the main restaurant’s four open kitchens, while you can order hot items waffles, pancakes and eggs from a menu.
- Hotel website: The Chedi Muscat
- Other accolades: The Chedi Muscat features in my top 10 lists of the world’s best urban resorts and the best luxury hotels in Oman.
- Tip: enjoy complimentary VIP benefits when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. upgrade, free breakfast, a 50-minute massage for up to two guests per stay, early check-in, late check-out, and roundtrip airport transfers).
- Review: read my review of The Chedi Muscat here.
3. THE UPPER HOUSE, HONG KONG
Warm, friendly and informal, the Upper House feels more home than hotel. Far above the hustle and bustle of the city, the 117 guest rooms – including 21 suites and two penthouses – are quiet, relaxing urban retreats. All benefit from abundant natural light and offer wonderful views of Hong Kong’s Victoria’s harbour or the Peak. Breakfast is served in Café Gray Deluxe, the signature restaurant of Hong Kong chef Gray Kunz. Although you can have a Western breakfast, I recommend to order the ‘Upper East breakfast’, which included includes all the staples of a classic Chinese morning spread, such as fried egg noodles with roasted duck, minced pork with shrimp dimplungs, and char siu bao, a fluffy steamed flour bun stuffed with sweet, slow-roasted pork tenderloin.
- Hotel website: The Upper House
- Other accolades: The Upper House also features in my top 10 list of the best luxury hotels in Hong Kong.
- Tip: enjoy free VIP benefits when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, daily breakfast, early check-in, late check-out, and $100 USD resort credit).
3. LE BRISTOL PARIS, FRANCE
Le Bristol Paris – part of the Oetker Collection – is located in the heart of Paris’ fashion and arts district, where it has been welcoming its esteemed guests since 1925. Its 188 rooms and suites have undergone extensive refurbishment, and are spacious and bright, decorated in classic eighteenth-century style. Breakfast is served in style at Epicure, the hotel’s 3 Michelin star-rated gastronomic restaurant, which welcomes guests in a newly decorated setting with bay windows which open out onto a magnificent French-style hotel garden. Here, you can start your day with crusty baguettes, Parma ham and burrata, fluffy brioches and melting pains au chocolat, smoked salmon and blini, and a soft-boiled egg topped with Sologne caviar, crème fraîche, and an edible 23-karat-gold leaf.
- Hotel website: Le Bristol
- Other accolades: Le Bristol also features in my top 10 list of the best luxury hotels in Paris.
- Tip: enjoy free VIP benefits when booking via Virtuoso (e.g.room upgrade, early check-in, late check-out, daily breakfast, and $100 USD spa credit).
2. AMAN TOKYO, JAPAN
Occupying the top six floors of the recently-built Otemachi Tower, Aman Tokyo is an urban sanctuary high above the atmospheric whirl of tradition and modernity that epitomises Tokyo. The hotel draws its design inspiration from traditional Japanese residential structures, with classic Japanese materials such as timber, Washi paper and stone blended to great effect with modern technology and luxurious fabrics. The 84 rooms and suites, all with unique layouts, enjoy magnificent city views and every contemporary convenience. The hotel’s stellar breakfast is not your usual hotel breakfast, and ranks among the best I have ever had a hotel. It’s a multicourse meal served à la carte at the hotel’s main restaurant, and the brilliant presentation of the dishes matches the exquisite quality of the food.
- Hotel website: Aman Tokyo
- Other accolades: Aman Tokyo also features in my lists of the hottest luxury hotel openings of 2014, the 10 most amazing hotel lobbies in the world, the 10 most fabulous luxury hotels in Japan, the 10 best luxury hotels in Tokyo, the best Aman hotels in the world, and my 10 favorite luxury hotels in the world.
- Tip: enjoy complimentary VIP benefits when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, daily breakfast, early check-in, late check-out, and $100 USD food & beverage credit).
- Review: read my review of Aman Tokyo here.
1. SONEVA KIRI, THAILAND
It’s no secret, I am a huge Soneva fan (some would call me a Soneva-junkie). Waking up at each one of the 3 amazing Soneva resorts – Soneva Fushi and Soneva Jani in the Maldives, and Soneva Kiri in Thailand – is always a pure delight since you know that out-of-this-world breakfast buffets are waiting for you at the resort’s restaurants. The 3 Soneva resorts feature by far the most lavish breakfast buffets of any hotel in the world, but my absolute favorite is the breakfast at Soneva Kiri in Thailand. It features a dedicated ham and cheese room, with sumptuous homemade cheeses, charcuterie and own-smoked salmon, in addition to a menu of creative Thai and Mediterranean fare from the Cooking Hut. You can also take your pick of more luscious delicacies straight from the wood-fired rock oven, hot and cold smoke oven and the earthen tandoor. And after breakfast, you can always retreat to the chocolate room, where the cocoa goodness is presented in blends of up to 95%, be it in the form of mousses, cookies, drinks, bon-bons or truffles.
Contact me to get a free upgrade at any of the 3 Soneva resorts (before any booking is made).
- Hotel website: Soneva Kiri
- Other accolades: Soneva Kiri also features in my top 10 lists of the world’s most amazing beach resorts, the world’s most outrageous hotel experiences, the best private plunge pools in the world, the world’s most beautiful hotel beaches, the world’s best luxury hotels, the world’s most remote hotels, the most insanely beautiful hotels in Thailand, the most astonishing beach retreats in Asia, the best family hotels in the world, and luxury hotels with private airports.
- Tip: get complimentary VIP benefits when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. villa upgrade, breakfast, early check-in , late check-out, welcome Champagne with Thai tapas on arrival, and a 30 minute spa treatment for two).
- Review: read my review of Soneva Kiri here.
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I had one of my most memorable breakfasts in Santorini, but I think it was more about the cliff-side setting than the food. I would add the Champagne Sunday brunch at the Four Seasons Bangkok, although I haven’t been since it became the Anantara Siam. Others worth trying are Sunday brunch at the Fullerton (focused on seafood) and the Pan Pacific (regional specialties), both in Singapore, with optional free-flow bubbles. Yes, please.
Four Seasons, Koh Samui – great breakfast
Four Seasons Lanai is the best I have experienced. Amazing view. Buffet is extensive and also includes menu items.
Would you care to compile a 10 top list of hotels that are also socially conscious?
What I mean to say is, how do these establishments handle food ‘waste’? Many of these top notch hotels often are in countries with abmysssal poverty where malnutrition is one of the main reasons of the local popluation either being very sick or unable to eat and going hungry – especially the children.
I would dare say that part of having all that abundance (of too much really…) ought not be wasted by being thrown away just because it is no longer considered ‘edible/presentable/marketable’ (fill in as applicable…) to the punters and high paying customers. Those who have a full table to share but don’t are not up to the 21st century’s sensibilities of treating the less fortunate with the proverbial kick to the (empty) stomach. I would be the first to applaud a 5 star+ venue that also acts in concert with those who cannot afford to eat on a daily basis but who are grateful for that which they DO receive – even if it’s “only” leftovers.
Didn’t visit any above hotels but Grace Santorini seems good which located in Greece.
Would love to see the top 10 dining experiences!