The Marmoris Palace Hotel is located in Sintra, 38 kilometres from Lisbon city centre and a quick 30 minutes from the international airport.
The charming building – previously a private residence and converted into a boutique hotel two years ago – is surrounded by lavish trees and a huge private garden. Situated on top of a hill, it is overlooking the historical town centre with beautiful views of the castle.
Being a small hotel, it offers guests a truly personalised experience. All from the reception and welcoming drinks to the check-out was a great experience. Our host also gladly assisted us with recommendations for dinner, where to shop for a few necessities that we needed and ideas to explore the town.
The hotel has nine individually decorated rooms – four in the main building – all of which have breathtaking scenic views of Sintra – and five in an outbuilding a few metres away, all offering privacy and direct access to the garden. The massive en-suite rooms which are beautifully furnished speak of royalty and have all the amenities that you can think of.
The buffet breakfast has a huge selection of fruit, cereals, pastries and hot food. Taking into account that Marmoris is a small hotel with a limited number of guests each day; this was hugely impressive.
Beautiful shaded gardens create a calm and relaxed atmosphere and because of the huge premisise it is situated on and surrounding gardens, the hotel offers a totally quiet and noise-free environment to relax in. An indoor swimming pool is also available to guests with a retractable roof overlooking castle hill.
Although my stay at Sintra Marmoris Palace was short, it is truly one of the most exquisite properties I have ever visited. From the perfect location to friendly staff, scrumptious food and attention to the finer details, Sintra Marmoris does not dissapoint and I highly reccomend a stay here if you are visiting Sintra.
Reviewed by World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative
The Hillside Beach Club is about an hour’s drive from the nearest airport in Dalaman but our luxury transfer with in-transit WiFi, refreshments and a booklet giving the daily scoop of entertainment made for a blissful journey.
Upon entering the property gates high upon the hill, the cove in which the resort lies can been seen in all its splendour with steep slopes that are rich with indigenous flora and fauna. The resort boasts 4 private beaches: Main beach, Pasha Beach, Serenity Beach (which is accessible by either a short walk or a colourful water ferry) and Silent Beach (complete with mini-library for ultimate unwinding). If you’re looking for something a little less salty, there’s always the huge overflow pool with stunning views of the ocean. ‘Paradise Found’ is definitely an apt description to this resort!
The rooms nestle comfortably in the forested slopes, ensuring that most rooms have spectacular sea views and there is even a funicular for those who choose to avoid using the stairs. Our Superior Room had a roofed balcony with outdoor lounge set. The bedroom had a television, music docking station (in case you happened to miss your home playlist too much) and all the basic amenities, including a walk-in closet. Bathroom access was via the balcony and only separated by a bamboo curtain to let in the ocean breeze. At night we left the balcony doors wide open to take in all that Hillside had to offer.
Most of the amenities are open-air and lavishly clad in Bougainvillea creating a relaxed, beach-cabana look and feel. The light atmosphere makes one simply want to kick off one’s shoes, sit back and soak in the sun care-free! Being ‘full board+’, this resort is a culinary festival that takes resort dining to a different level. Pasha Restaurant serves a Mediterranean menu with beautiful views over the ocean. At Main Restaurant, buffet style dining gains a whole new meaning, with over 80 different kinds of desserts served at the special Turkish dinner buffet on Sundays – a feast not to be missed!
After sunset the air turns rife with excitement and there is always something festive going on – whether it’s a theatrical performance in the resort’s very own amphitheatre or the DJ’s at Beach Bar pumping up the beat. A special guest performance by local music professor Errol Erdine and family was particularly memorable being a mixture of classical, jazz and Latin-American music – all performed on the grand piano on the terrace of Abacco bar with its distinctly Byzantine-style domes. There were special romantic open-air movie nights held in the nearby deserted ruin village of Kayaköy. On one occasion, local craftsmen set up their stalls near the pool area for a private night-time market; on a different evening, professional stargazing equipment was set up so that we could discover the night sky in a way we had never seen before. With so much going on, every waking hour was filled with wonder and excitement!
The resort has two spa areas, namely the Sanda Spa and the Sanda Nature Spa, the last of which is hidden away in the forest near Silent Beach where your open-air massage treatment will transport you to a different world. There are all kinds of on-site facilities on offer, including an array of sport fields and courts, a water sport division, diving centre, creative art classes and a variety of boat tours depending on the day of the week. For all activities off the premise, there is a helpful ‘Hillside Outside’ office which can make recommendations for all kinds of activities from hiking and biking to shopping. The resort also offers a complimentary shuttle service 3 times per day to the town of Fethiye and back, which is close by and famous for its Tuesday bazaar and wonderful waterside boulevard.
The secluded location, layout of the resort and host of activities available make it a popular destination for families. There are several lifeguards, friendly and caring staff and lots entertainment to keep the children busy and happy, all in a safe environment.
Hillside Beach Club certainly lives up to its motto of ‘Feeling good’!
Reviewed by World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative Mrs. Signe Da Silva
To book a stay at this spectacular property simply follow the link: www.hillsidebeachclub.com
Upon arrival at Kievits Kroon I was greeted by the very friendly security at the big swinging gates to what looked like an exclusive and very pretty estate in the middle of the bush. The guards signed me in and directed me to the reception building. Driving into the estate it became clear that this was not like any normal hotel. Instead its more like a resort, with pretty trees and well-kept green lawns under which people were having picnics. It really did look like a place you can come to and just relax!
I parked my car and walked to the reception building where I was greeted by another very friendly staff member behind the reception counter. She informed me that I will be staying in one of the two VIP suites and I was instantly even more excited to see what Kievits Kroon had to offer. My room was not ready yet, but It turned out well as they had an opening for a full body massage immediately at their well renowned spa.
While they were getting my room ready, I enjoyed a wonderful Pinotage full body massage. Having been up since 4am to catch a flight from Cape Town, renting a car at OR Tambo and then driving 45min to the hotel, this was just what the doctor ordered. There were some snacks, juices and fruit flavored water waiting for me as I entered the spa. The lady behind the counter was again super friendly and made me feel right at home. I was very impressed with all the staff from all the different departments. My massage was amazing and I felt refreshed afterwards. I also had access to the jacuzzi, sauna, steam room and heated pool.
I checked into my room which as it turns out is more like a small apartment on the outer parameter of the estate. Completely private and with its own parking space. The room had a jacuzzi bath, two TV’s, a lounge area and a spacious room. All inside a beautiful Cape-Dutch stile building. There were also two outside porch areas where you can sit and enjoy some of the complimentary sherry provided in the room. Right next to my room was a helipad. Being a helicopter pilot myself, this really excited me. I love to fly to all the different wine farms in and around Cape Town and I’m always looking for places offering those with the means to do so an opportunity to skip traffic and fly in. I was really happy to see that here in Pretoria you can do just that at Kievits Kroon.
Breakfast the next morning was a full buffet. And I do mean full. From scrambled eggs to oysters. Anything you could think of for an amazing breakfast was on the spread. I really enjoyed my breakfast and decided to head back to the room for my costume and go relax by the pool area.
The restaurant was fully booked when I arrieved, so the waiter asked me to sit at the bar area next to the restaurant and they would serve me there. I didn’t mind this at all as it was really comfortable sitting outside and the view of the beautifully kept green lawns and big trees was just great. I ordered a chicken wrap and something to drink. The weather was warm and the view was amazing.
In conclusion, Kievits Kroon is a beautiful and peaceful venue for escaping the rushed city life. Whether you are looking to stay for a weekend, have a business conference, go for a spa day or just have a romantic picnic with your better half, Kievits Kroon really does offer it all.
Reviewed by World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative
Richmond Nua Wellness-Spa is situated on the scenic edge of Lake Sapanca, which is less than 2 hours’ drive from Istanbul and a popular choice for spa and wellness resorts in Turkey.
Being the pinnacle of spas in Sapanca, Richmond Nua spares no expense to ensure the ultimate wellness experience. The reception area immediately sets the tone with uncluttered and modern finishes that echo the emphasis on revitalisation, while the recurring theme of flowing water calms the senses – the water flowing inside the building through the dinner area is a great design feature. The common areas are simplistically yet stylishly decorated with a heavy emphasis on natural elements like wood and stone.
Our spacious Q-level suite was the epitome of luxury – a private deluxe-sized spa jacuzzi and separate lounge room with private tanning balcony overlooking the serene lake. The huge all-marble bathroom recreated the luxury feel of a true Turkish hammam in the privacy of our own suite. Complete with luxurious queen bed and two TV’s, this truly made for a relaxing stay.
Our stay was complemented by the friendly and attentive staff. All of our needs were meticulously anticipated and attended to by Guest Relations Agent Firuze Hidayetova, who graciously guided us through everything that the resort and surrounds had to offer.
Nua is the first and only destination spa in Turkey as well as the Global
winner in the category of Luxury Destination Spa 2019. Boasting a total of 15
spa experiences that are recommended before treatments, the spa is a dream for
even the most discerning spa goer! Starting off with a traditional Turkish
Hammam, the following series of curated water, steam, mist and temperature
therapies awaken all of your senses. Amongst our favourite of the 15
experiences were the salt-steam inhalation therapy, menthol misting experience
and ice grotto. Ensure that you allow ample time for this sequence of rituals,
the entire routine of which could take between 3 and 4 hours. After our first
full sequence, we felt revitalised and our skin was soft and glowing – ‘Sanus
Per Aquam’ in the true sense of the word!
I was treated to a much anticipated ’Signature Ricmond Nua Massage’ by the skilled hands of Spa Manager Birol Paşalıoğlu who has approximately 30’000 massages, as well as various qualifications under his name. This exclusive massage created for Richmond Nua is tailored with specific techniques and therapies that revolve around the guest’s needs and left me feeling entirely revived after this hour-long treatment.
Richmond Nua offers wellness in all areas including the cuisine – a unique Beautyfood Menu is specially designed to optimise healthy results. A standard à la carte menu is also offered at the romantic lake-side seating area. The restaurant undoubtedly presented the best meat Köfte and the tender-soft beef fillet was impeccable. The ‘Warm Chestnut Cake’ is an absolute must! There are delicious options for guests on the wellness program, including dessert. The breakfast buffet showcased a wonderful spread, ranging from fresh fruits, vegetables, dried fruits and nuts that made for blissful clean eating to traditional Turkish favourites as well as the more classical breakfast offerings.
This is one destination spa that is well worth the journey!
Reviewed By World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative Signe Da Silva
My husband and I were so privileged to enjoy a 3-night stay at this property on our honeymoon in July 2019. When we arrived at Koh Samui Airport, there was a complimentary air-conditioned hotel pick-up transport service waiting for us at the arrivals section. The location is further enhanced by a close proximity to pharmacies, convenience stores, markets etc, as well as scooter-rentals available on-site.
Upon arriving at the hotel, they already started spoiling us with a refreshing coconut welcome drink to cool down whilst being friendly greeted by all the staff as if we were part of the family. They offer several types of accommodation, from pool access rooms, sea view villas, penthouse suites, to a luxury presidential suite and many more. For two nights we stayed in a pool access room and the last night we enjoyed staying in the presidential suite. They spoiled us with a beautiful towel and rose petal representation in our room, seeing that is was our honeymoon.
The pool access room was conveniently located only meters from the main 40-meter swimming pool, only separated by some of the most comfortable reclining chairs. The pool has spectacular views of the beach and boasts its own pool bar that certainly creates a unique beach club experience! Apart from enjoying the swimming pool, going for a spa treatment, sipping cocktails at the pool bar or defeating your partner with a game of ping pong, the beach is also just a few steps down from the pool area where you can relax amongst the surrounding tropical palm trees. Large inflatable pool toys are left in the pool for guests to enjoy and children to play with
Our night in the presidential suite, was certainly the best night of our stay. The room boasted a glass bathroom, tasteful art and a very large and comfortable couch. The owner hosted a pool party that included cocktails and an exciting fire dance on the beach, which was great fun! After that, we enjoyed the Jacuzzi bathtub on the deck of our suite, with the most beautiful views over the ocean and surrounding islands, with a glass of champagne in hand. It was so special and romantic.
This was the best 3 days of our Honeymoon in Thailand! We would definitely recommend the Privilege Hotel Ezra Beach Club for anyone when travelling to Koh Samui.
Reviewed By World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative Ms. Jana Matthee
If you are looking for an ideal family holiday getaway, filled with entertainment for all ages, this is the place to be. The Robinson Club Khao Lak in Thailand is an all-inclusive resort, offering 4 restaurants, 5 bars, 6 swimming pools, a spa, gym, water sports, tennis court, golf course as well as its own private beach.
We enjoyed a 3-night stay at this resort in July 2019 and it was the ideal relaxing break away. As there is so much to do, we didn’t have the need to leave the resort throughout our stay. The management team of the resort strive in connecting with the guests and therefore have daily activities planned for guests to partake in.
We enjoyed most of our meals at the main restaurant, and what a treat! It was buffet style meals, 3 times a day with a wide variety , varying daily to suit every culture, pallet and desire. The resort is quite big and even with our map, unfortunately we did not get the opportunity to see all the types of accommodation they offer such as their villas, bungalows and suites, but we could tell by all the guests staying at the resort, that there is abundant accommodation available.
Some of the activities they offered during our stay were archery courses, cooking classes, pool action water boxing, water polo, beach volleyball, soccer and many more options. One of the nights we attended an all-white cocktail party just before dinner. There were delicious aperitifs as well as entertainment that we enjoyed whilst getting to know other guests staying at the resort. While the adults are being entertained, they have the Roby Club which is their signature Kid’s Club offering fun, creative and active programs to keep the children amused.
We were really impressed with the service of the staff members as they were very well-informed with arranging transport services, renting of motorbikes to explore the surrounding villages, organising snorkelling and diving trips etc. We would certainly recommend this resort to all families travelling together to Thailand.
Reviewed by World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative: Jana Matthee
Upon entering this hidden gem, you will immediately fall in love with not only the surrounding mountain and ocean views, but mostly with the staff members and their impeccable service!
We stayed for 2 nights on our honeymoon in July 2019 in an absolutely beautiful ocean view villa with our very own private pool, which was very romantic. They spoiled us with a beautiful towel and rose petal presentation on our bed in the villa as well as a complimentary 15-minute foot massage. This resort is very private; located about 25 km away from the hustle and bustle of the busy Phuket town itself which makes it even more peaceful and ideal for an intimate break away, but with this said, they also offer daily shuttle services to nearby shopping centres, beaches etc so guests can enjoy the best of both worlds.
The resort offers 3 restaurants namely; 1- the Plantation club, which focuses on re-interpreting classic Thai dishes & utilising locally sourced ingredients, whilst enjoying the breath-taking views of the surrounding ocean and mountains. Guests can also enjoy their daily afternoon tea at the library area next to the Plantation club; 2- 360° Bar with its ideal sunset experience, creative drinks, tapas entertainment and many more; 3- The Firefly Restaurant surrounded by a tropical garden and bordering a 60-meter freeform pool, offering a wood-fired grill delivering modern Mediterranean BBQ, authentic Thai specialities and is also the place to enjoy a relaxing breakfast.
Guest can enjoy yoga and fitness classes at the gym, as well as traditional Thai massages at the spa that is surrounded by a relaxing swimming pool, tropical plantation and a Khoi fishpond to help you relax even more.
We would highly recommend this resort for those in need of a relaxing break away from the everyday life.
Reviewed By World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative Jana Mathee
SOFITEL Legend the Grand Amsterdam certainly makes a grand first impression which was upheld throughout the entire luxurious experience of our stay.
We received a warm welcome on arrival with the full attention of the Concierge who assisted us to make the most of our visit by immediately booking us on a boat tour for the next day which conveniently left from the canal directly outside the hotel – this was definitely a hig hlight of our Amsterdam experience.
As the name suggests, the hotel exudes grandeur, with a stylish interior reflecting modern influences, contrasting perfectly with the obvious history of the city. We took a historical tour of the hotel and discovered many interesting facts, including that many years ago the building was 2 separate convents alongside each other, the buildings were eventually combined and the hotel was also the City Hall for a number of years.
hotel offers a perfectly situated location, within easy walking distance of the
Central train station and right at the heart of Amsterdam’s major attractions.
The gardens of the hotel are a peaceful haven in the heart of a busy city, immaculately maintained with great attention to detail, amongst all the greenery we spotted trees full of beautifully ripe apricots!
The well known, Michelin star restaurant, Bridges was outstanding for daily breakfast, the best we have ever experienced. The newly opened Oriole garden bistro, offering indoor and outdoor dining, provided exceptional taste experiences after a long day exploring the city.
All amenities are provided from luxury spa to gym an d an indoor swimming pool and sauna.
Sofitel Legend the Grand Amsterdam is certainly an unforgettable legend.
Reviewed by: World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative Linda Cooper
Naledi Bush Lodge is located in the Balula Game Reserve, a consortium of private reserves and land owners, that shares an unfenced border with the renowned Kruger National Park. The reserve is only an hour’s drive from two of the main gates to the Kruger National Park.
Arriving at Naledi is like stumbling upon an oasis within the now very dry western side of the park. After a long day of travelling, I was warmly welcomed by the staff and shown to my room. I stayed in the Paperbark Suite, which was spacious and beautifully decorated with earth tones and African accents. The rooms all offer total privacy and a private stoep and viewing deck.
Naledi prides itself as an exclusive private reserve with a family-like atmosphere, and offers a personalised experience. The hospitality and friendliness of the staff during my visit was really great. The lodge can only accommodate 10 guests and as such, everybody gets to know each other. All guests are seated together at one big table for breakfast, lunch and dinner, joined by of the managers or game rangers.
Naledi offers fine dining crafted by dedicated professional chefs. The dinner was superb and beautifully presented on both evenings. A special mention to the chefs for exquisite presentation and taste . One of the dinners during a stay, is served in the outside boma area offering an authentic experience.
The lodge offer two game drives per day – a morning game drive at 6:00 and an afternoon game drive at 16:00. Breakfast is served upon return from your morning game drive. The afternoon drive includes a drinks-and-snacks stop. It was amazing to just stop and take it all in.
For late morning, you have a choice of either a guided bush walk or visiting a private game viewing hide out in the bush. The guides are very knowledgeable and go out of their way to offer you the best game viewing opportunity available.
Beautiful shaded gardens create a calm and relaxed atmosphere, with a variety of recliners all around the four levels of decking surrounding the swimming pool area. An upper level dinning room and lounge area offers a great view of the reserve and water hole close by. A big-screen TV shows real-time footage of a field camera mounted at one of the watering holes on the reserve – this is a great feature!
The hospitality of TK and the staff was absolutely wonderful and the lodge and facilities top-class – all of which made for a great experience; and one I will not soon forget.
Naledi is intimate and luxurious while also paying extra attention to detail. .If you are looking for the ultimate Bush experience, look no further than Naledi.
Reviewed by World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative To book a stay at this magnificent Lodge:
Situated in the bustling Cape Town City Centre, The Taj hotel is within close distance to all local attractions. We arrived at the Taj on a rainy Friday afternoon. The Staff warmly greeted us with umbrellas and took care of parking our vehicle. Entering the Taj is like entering another era; the grandeur and splendour of the lobby area simply takes your breath away.
After a smooth check in we were escorted to our room. We stayed in a Luxury Room in the King Tower wing with a view of Table Mountain and the bustling streets below. We were greeted with a welcoming snack of nuts and fruit, a bottle of white wine and note from the General Manager. The room was spacious with elegant designs and finishes. The bathroom for me was simply stunning with the perfect layout and marble finishes.
After settling in we headed to the lobby to enjoy an afternoon tea and snack while listening to the rain fall outside.
The fitness centre at The TAJ hotel is one of the best I have experienced. State of the art equipment including free weights and stretching equipment made for an intense training session. Fresh towels and water are available at each machine. There is also an indoor heated swimming pool if you wish to get in a few laps.
Dinner at Mint Restaurant was absolutely fantastic. Friendly staff, efficient service and a menu that will satisfy any craving made for the perfect evening. There was also live jazz music which added to the ambiance.
After a good nights rest in the King size bed we enjoyed a Buffet Breakfast which was incredible. From every cereal imaginable and English breakfast options to sushi and a variety of pastries we had it all!
Jiva Spa was the absolute highlight of our stay. We were treated to a 60minute couples Indian Aromatherapy massage. This was an amazing and relaxing experience from start to finish. A special thank you to Bianca who was my therapist – she has magic hands!
Overall my experience at the TAJ Cape Town was incredible. From Check in to check out everything was perfect. The staff are friendly and welcoming, the facilities are world class and the food is superb. I left thoroughly refreshed and would highly recommend the TAJ Cape Town to anyone visiting South Africa and hope to visit again soon – one night is just to short!
Reviewed by Tanique Echardt – Executive Manager of the World Luxury Hotel Awards