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Hotel Katajanokka – Escape the ordinary.

Hotel Katajanokka is a rather comfortable prison and one of the most uniqe hotel’s I have ever visited. Before it was converted into Hotel Katajanokka, it was literally the old prison of Helsinki. A new prison was built and the decision was made to renovate and recreate the old prison into Hotel Katajanokka.

The beauty of the hotel is almost hidden behind the perimeter wall, but once you enter the gates the scope of this hotel with its rich history comes into full view. Walking in the front door is not at all what you would expect from a prison. No metal gates, no bars and no prison guards taking your belongings and putting you in handcuffs. Instead, you get modern automated glass doors, friendly welcomes from the staff and someone willing to take your bags to your “cell”.

Walking down hotel hallways between rooms that used to be the cells where the prisoners were kept, you almost get the feeling of being in an episode of Prison Break. The rooms are comfortable in size; defnitely not as small as the cells used to be. They broke through the walls and converted 3 or 4 cells into one lovely room with a modern bathroom and enough space for a large bed and dressing table. The rooms still have the original small windows with views into the yard. The decor was stylish with old prison locks and images framed above the bed; reminding us of the unique history of Hotel Katajanokka.

The hotel has also kept an isolation cell in the exact condition it used to be when it was still a prison. So if you like, you can go down and lock your friends up or take some awesome pictures. Another feature is the group holding cell. This is basically a small, dark cave in the foundation of the building that was used to hold large groups of people. I must admit it was quite eery exploring these rooms, but also very intresting. These original cells and many more features of the Hotel Katajanokka are now being used for treasure hunts and team building exercises where you will be given clues hidden inside the dark and scary cells. This to me is an amazing way of sharing the rich history of the hotel with the public.

Hotel Katajanokka also has a gym. You are able to do great workouts in the small but well thought out gym with top of the range equipment. They have everything you need and more for all your workout needs during your stay.

The restaurant is just as impressive. With amazing food and a warm and entertaining atmosphere you find yourself sitting around the table laughing and cracking jokes with the friendly waiters for much longer than you initially intended. If you ever find yourself in this particular prison kitchen, I do recommend the burgers!

Breakfast at Hotel Katajanokka is really amazing. No matter where you are from, you will find exactly what you want at this buffet breakfast. There is even an ipad that controls the juice fountain.

Hotel Katajanokka has exceeded all my expectations. I really loved staying here, but one thing stands out to me above all. The staff. Especially the front desk staff. On our last day in Helsinki our flight left early in the morning which meant we would have a really early checkout before breakfast was available. In most hotels if you put in a request the previous evening, they will give you a yoghurt or some fruit the next morning just to keep you going.

Not at Hotel Katajanokka; here Taija who was on duty told us to come down 30min before we needed to leave so we can eat something. When we got to the reception early in the morning, she had bars and fruit waiting for us. There were also smoothies and shakes. And as if that’s not enough, she offered us coffee and tea and then she told us to have a seat while she fixed us some oats. This is unbelievable. Never have I experienced a front desk staff member at a hotel going through so much effort to make sure we do not leave with an empty stomach. Thank you! This was really appreciated!

In conclusion, Prison Break is a TV series where some inmates desperately tried to break out of prison. However, here you will find yourself willing to do anything just to stay a little longer at this stylish and unique hotel.

Reviewed by World Luxury Awards Executive Manager Tanique Echardt

To book a stay at this unique and stunning property follow the link :www.hotelkatajanokka.fi

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Arctic Light Hotel – a unique contemporary hideaway in the heart of Rovaniemi …

Arriving at the Arctic light hotel during the day, it blends in with the buildings around it except for a massive polar bear welcoming you to your new home. At night it completley lights up with stunning fairy lights and bright colored spotlights shining onto the building and it becomes clear you have arrived in aurora-light territory. Located in the tourist part of Rovaniemi and just a two-minute walk from the vibey centre of this magical town ;we were in the perfect location for our stay in Rovaniemi.

In contrast to the freezing cold outside, walking in the modern front doors you are greeted with warmth. Not only by the exceptional staff but also by the atmosphere created by the lighting and warm interior design. After walking up and down the shopping street in temperatures bordering zero degrees it’s a sigh of relief every time those automated doors of the Arctic Light Hotel swing open to greet you. It’s the same feeling you get when coming home after a long day at the office. It feels like home.

Arctic Light Reception
Previous Wins proudly standing in reception

The best part of home is kicking off your shoes and getting comfortable. In the spacious room with its own mini lounge and kitchenette, that’s easy to do. And the cherry on top…. Sauna!!! Yes, you have your own personal sauna. So, if the atmosphere and friendly staff warmed your heart then the sauna will surely warm your body. It’s the best feeling to jump in the sauna and warm up after having to wear thick layers outside. Our room was beautiful with modern and contemporary design, as well as touches of local heritage and a delight to return to after a day of exploring.

The Arctic Light hotel also scored major points in my book with their gym. The gym and breakfast are two areas where I personally pay close attention to. I love a good workout. And I also love to eat. Especially in the morning. The gym itself is small, but big enough to do a full workout. The layout and types of equipment they have available allows you to do great workouts all week long. I really appreciated this and its clear that some thought went into the design and outfitting of the gym.

The Arctic Light Hotel has a great buffet breakfast with enough variety to cater to everyones needs. The food was delicious – especially the sweet treats. I also loved the layout of everything. The perfect way to start a day of exploring.

While on the topic of food, lets talk about the restaurant which was absolutely superb! The menu offered a variety of local dishes and being in Finland, I had to try the Reindeer. And boy was it good! The waiter was friendly and helpful, the food was out of this world amazing, the atmosphere was relaxing yet vibey; the list goes on. Even if you don’t stay at the Arctic Light Hotel but happen to find yourself in Rovaniemi one evening, I would highly recommend trying out the Arctic Restaurant.

Arctic Light Restaurant
Traditional Reindeer

After dinner if you are looking for a nightcap you are able to relax in the Plan B bar area. Also part of the Arctic Light Hotel. This area offers a full bar with a great and relaxing lounge area. It’s all very classy and is a big contributor to the warm atmosphere you feel as you walk in the door.

My conclusion is that The Arctic Light Hotel is an amazing hotel to stay at when visiting Rovaniemi. It feels like home and is warm and inviting while being very modern and contemporary at the same time. It’s a place you look forward to being. Instead of just being the accommodation you stay at every night while you explore your dream destination, this hotel becomes part of the dream. Arriving in Rovaniemi is arriving at your dream holiday destination. Arriving at the Arctic Light Hotel is completing the dream.

Reviewed By World Luxury Awards Executive Manager: Tanique Echardt

To book a stay at this superb hotel: http://www.arcticlighthotel.fi/en/hotel/

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The Mulia – Nusa Dua, Bali – A blissful island escape …

My Husband and i recently had the privilege to visit The Mulia Resort in Bail. It was one of the most luxurious experiences we have ever had and we were thoroughly impressed with the attention to detail – the resort itself was immaculately kept, the staff always friendly, helpful and available, the food was exquisite and we will forever treasure the memories of our stay.

We arrived at the Mulia after a long wait and treacherous journey from the Gili Islands followed by a long drive from Padang Bay – typical traffic jams along the way. My husband kept in contact with the hotel to notify the delay in arrival and they were understanding and helpful in on the telephone. We arrived after dark and were immediately welcomed by a staff member who collected our luggage and provided us with a receipt which immediately came as a wonderful relief. Upon check in, due to multiple staff members being available to help us, we did not have to wait and were welcomed with a hot towel and cool water which helped to further remove the sweat and stress of the day. We were greeted and accompanied to our room by another staff member – which helped greatly, as the scale of the resort can be quite alarming initially – but she explained to us quickly which floors we would be wanting to use for whatever activity we wished to pursue, for example eating out or outdoor activities. She also explained vouchers that were issued to us which entitled us to discount on lunch or a few welcome drinks. Even with the sun down already, the aesthetic of the architectural design –with its clean and linear lines, juxtapositioned with the delicate floral lighting and glass fixtures and mosaic work in the water features were breath taking, and we were looking forward to a chance to review and appreciate the details of the interior design in the day time.

Refreshing Welcome Drink.

We stayed in a room with a king-sized bed, facing the courtyard, number 2857 to be specific. The room was extremely spacious, with small details that made it both comfortable and practical, for example the recliner in the corner, the presence of a desk and chair as well as a discreet blind that could either open the bathroom up to be visible from the bedroom or have the extra privacy if needed. There was ample cupboard space to unpack everything if needed to get rid of that “living out of the suitcase” feeling and the balcony had two upmarket but comfortable single seaters with a small coffee table, ideal for early morning coffees or evening sunset gazing.

The bed was absolutely perfect – the size, the mattress, the bedding, the linen – it was one of the most lavish spoils we have ever experienced. The fact that the bathroom consisted of both a shower and a bath – both spacious and elegant, made for a room truly catering for whatever preference guests could have. The high-end technology accompanying the toilet was also a first for us to experience and made for a more pleasant bathroom experience. Lastly small touches were made for guests, such as issuing of soft and lush dressing gowns, flip flops, bathroom accessories, lotions, soaps and shampoos as well as two beautiful carrier bags that could be used while staying at the resort. With my recent birthday just having passed, a piece of beautiful confectionary and a birthday card made me feel really special and spoiled on top of all the luxury and extravagance.

We had complimentary breakfast at The Café every morning and was astounded with the vast selection that was on offer – all cultures, tastes and preferences were accounted for, with ample quantities provided – and due to the layout of multiple stations, one rarely had to queue for food – and if needed, never lasting longer than a minute or two. The quality of the food was fantastic and the staff were courteous and friendly, eager to help with whatever request or inquiry we had. We also had dinner at The Café, where we were given the opportunity to order off the a la carte menu or from the buffet.

We also took the opportunity to order some room service while staying at the Mulia, and was impressed with the selection, efficiency of service and taste and presentation of the food. The fact that the option was there to set up a table for you in the room also made it a more comfortable experience.

We were thoroughly impressed with all of the staff that we came into contact with. We were impressed with the effort that they went through to ensure our every need was met in an unobtrusive but kind way. All of the staff members were fluent in English, which is not a small thing, considering our experiences in other areas of Bali. The housekeeping services were quick to notice when extra items in the room were needed and on one occasion even ensured that my valuables were locked away safely when I had forgotten to do so upon leaving for breakfast. Daily fresh fruit and complimentary water were given which was definitely a plus and there were clear notes left re: communication of washing of towels and bedding – we appreciated that an effort was made to not wash bedding every day to save some water and try to decrease our carbon footprint, but that you could also request to do so if there was a specific reason you might need this daily service.

It was truly inspirational to see what effort the staff put in to maintain the pristine premises of the Mulia. Staff members were seen raking loose sea grass from the ocean, sifting coarser pebbles from the beach sand and washing some gravel like stones in a decorative landscaped area. It is clear that only with the level of dedication and detail orientated focus, one is able to ensure the perfection and elegance that we found at the Mulia.

My husband and I spent some time at both the courtyard and seaside pools on the two days we spent at the Mulia. It was a lovely touch that fresh swimming towels were provided at the different swimming areas, meaning that we would not have to carry towels to and from the rooms and that towels that were used would be washed and or cleaned without you having to take responsibility for any of this. The deck chairs were fantastic – as comfortable as a day bed and long enough for my husband who usually ends up being too tall for these kinds of chairs.

I greatly appreciated that there was a traditional Balinese temple on the premises of the Mulia. I was so happy to have a look at the beauty one finds in the immensely detailed stone carving, rich history and fascinating stories one finds in such temples.

Temple on the Mulia grounds.

Our stay at the Mulia was an absolutely unforgettable experience and one that we are bound to remember for a long time.  It is not surprising to see how well The Mulia is performing in international awards arena, and the excellence in service, presentation and luxurious details from beginning to end will definitely ensure that we will be recommending The Mulia as a place to stay when visiting Nusa Dua, Bali.

Reviewed by World Luxury Hotel Awards Representatives.

To book a stay at this beautiful Resort follow the link: www.themulia.com/mulia-bal

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Mövenpick Hotel Izmir – a gem in the heart of Izmir…

The award-winning Mövenpick Hotel Izmir with its urban all-glass exterior is perfectly located in the absolute heart of the city. It is within walking distance of the business- and shopping districts and less than a kilometre from popular tourist sites like the Izmir Clock Tower and Kemeralti Bazaar. The stunning lobby with high-rise ceiling of intersecting golden circles also echoed on the floor are a symbol of the perfection, class and consistency that is Mövenpick.

The staff are highly professional and certainly uphold the traditional Swiss standards with a flair of true Turkish hospitality! They spared no effort in ensuring that our time in Izmir was well spent making the necessary arrangements for tours and activities in Izmir and the surrounds and were very well informed. We were welcomed by the lovely PR Manager, Merih Hasaltun, who ensured that every detail was perfect for our stay.

The hotel has 185 Rooms, including 36 Executive Rooms and 17 Suites. Our senior suite on the eighth floor had spectacular views of both the city and sea. The suite was spacious with lots of natural light and well laid out with two separate lounges and workspaces particularly useful for business travellers. The suite furthermore had two minibars, two television sets and other equipment that might be of use to corporate guests. The hotel also has several meeting rooms available.

For a sweet indulgence, there is the Swiss Cake Shop Mövenpick which sells delectable cakes and the world-class Mövenpick ice cream. For something more substantial, there is Margaux Restaurant which serves a buffet-style breakfast and à la carte lunch and dinner and the occasional themed set menu. A lot can be said about the creative cuisine that is presented by the chefs at Margaux Restaurant. We were treated to a world of flavours of both international cuisine as well as some wonderful interpretations of Turkish classics. Of particular note was the Börek (fine duck leg and pistachio in phyllo pastry) which simply melts in your mouth and the chef’s signature Roast Aubergine Soup garnished with aubergine chips. The Beef Tenderloin was remarkably succulent and soft and served with a marvellous porcini sauce! All meals were beautifully presented by the chefs and well accompanied by our friendly waitress Ôykü who served us every night and ensured that that we got a good impression of what special dinners at Margaux Restaurant is all about.

For those aiming to keep in step with their after-work exercise routine, the Fitness Centre with its incredible view of the sunset hues and Izmir skyline will make the stress (and time) simply fade away. What better way to end it all off than with a dip in the heated pool in the Coral Health Club on the 11th floor or spend some time in the sauna and steam room. For destressing on a deeper level, professional massage therapists are available until 9 pm.

It is then no wonder that Mövenpick Hotel Izmir has been vote as Turkey’s Leading Business Hotel.

Reviewed by World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative: Mrs. Signe Da Silva

To book a stay at Mövenpick Hotel Izmir simply follow the link: https://www.movenpick.com/en/europe/turkey/izmir/hotel-izmir/overview/

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Mandarin Oriental Bodrum – home away from home!

Mandarin Oriental Bodrum was home away from home! This massive 60-hectare resort with 2 kilometres of private coastline is located in Cennet Koyu, appropriately translated as Paradise Bay. The sheer size of this resort is a proclamation that space itself is a luxury. Arrival was unlike any other – a ceremonial and warm greeting awaited us at the beautiful entrance courts which invite one inside to discover for yourself what lies beyond – and what a sight it was! The magnificent terrace with iconic tub chairs had a view that was breath-taking and it almost felt like one could observe the whole of the Aegean – ‘land of the eternal blue’.

There are over 130 accommodation options in 33 different categories to choose from, including hotel rooms, suites, villas and apartments. Of note is the resort’s 5 new green marble family villas at the secluded Olive Garden Beach. These villas range in size from 3-bedroom to an enormous 7-bedroom option and include a dining room, lounge, kitchen and private terrace with pool to make for the perfect family luxury experience.

Our dedicated butler, the lovely Ksenia who was both professional and very friendly, escorted us to our Sea View Suite complete with private pool. We were delighted with the lavish welcome gifts that awaited us – an abundance of handmade confectionary, fresh fruits, champagne and edible platter with golden fan beautifully fashioned entirely out of chocolate! The suite was very spacious with a reception area, large walk-in closet, lounge, shower (convertible to steam room), two toilets and huge open bathroom area with sunroof which could be opened and closed at the push of a button. The modern wooden interior had several moving walls that allowed us to create and compartmentalise the space as we wished. The bedroom was conveniently situated in the centre of the suite with access to the patio, bathroom and reception area. The lounge and bedroom each had a Bang & Olufsen Beovision TV, automated blinds, and an array of lighting features. Our private outdoor area was spacious as well, with a beautiful swimming pool clad in green marble, sun loungers and outdoor set. The cleverly designed valet box, which is simultaneously accessible from within and outside the suite, optimises privacy by allowing for the daily newspaper and other services to continue uninterrupted without the interaction of staff. The grand turndown service surprised us with something special every night, from a gold eye mask to an invigorating salt scrub. All of the above made for an experience of ultimate luxury!

An incredible welcome.

Being the Group’s first resort in Europe, this stylishly designed haven certainly set the bar very high. The architecture and interior design are masterfully done by Antonio Citterio Patricia Viel and Co. who in partnership with landscape architects Scape Design have more than succeeded in creating a resort that has been seamlessly merged with the natural habitat. The stepped layout of the resort perfectly complements the natural terraces and combined with the several eco-friendly planted roofs create the illusion of isolation amidst the thick, lush forest. MO Bodrum is very much concerned with the environmental impact and sustainability and boasts using desalinated and recycled water for irrigation and solar-panels in some parts of the resort. They have furthermore maintained much of the natural indigenous flora, including many very old olive trees that create a sense of time as if the resort has been imbedded in the ancient bedrock.

The modern design of the buildings incorporate local materials with natural elements of stone, marble and wood and the interiors are reminiscent of the oriental. The superb suspended staircase in the main building is a stunning feature and grand match of design and engineering. The descent to the spa-level reveals even greater interior beauty, with opulent floral wall pieces and a unique light feature that reminds of poppyseed pods bursting open.

The MO Bodrum Spa & Wellness offers an array of massage treatments from only the best of masseuses, Hamam, Fitness centre, Yoga, Pilates and indoor and outdoor pools. The spa overlooks a green valley and has a tranquil Spa garden. The indoor pool looks out into the woods, creating a sense of being at one with nature.

MO Bodrum also hosts a number of exclusive luxury retail stores, from the one-of-a-kind jewellery pieces by Cevan Biçakçi to one of only three Chanel stores in the world exclusively located in a resort. For those interested in something a bit more physically engaging, the resort offers a range of sports and watersports, from tennis and jogging trails to flyboard and scuba diving. Yacht excursions can also be arranged.

The resort has stunning sandy beaches as well as a wonderful pool area with three-tiered swimming pools where guests can soak up the sun. For some privacy, guests can rent a cabana on the seaside. They cater splendidly for the younger generation as well, with everything from arts, crafts and movies at the kid’s club to supervised kids sports and a selection of other in-room amenities.

For dining, the resort offers eight fabulous options. The Mandarin Cake Shop presents a selection of handmade gourmet treats, pastries and other delicacies including their delicious Turkish Baklava which can be enjoyed with a splendid view of the vast blue! The glamorous Mandarin Bar is situated near the reception area and is the perfect place to enjoy a unique cocktail or savour the some of the premium liqueurs in style. For a party, there is Kai Beach Club – the only part of the resort that is open to the public on occasion. It has become notorious for hosting famous musicians and DJ’s for events and parties with a chic Mediterranean setting. The Pool Bar & Restaurant serves an array of healthy, bite-size meals – we particularly enjoyed the Beef Tataki and Shrimp Caesar Salad and the fact that waiters brought around freshly squeezed juices to the poolside guests.

Blue Beach Club & Bar has a very relaxed atmosphere and is there to welcome you when you are sandy and salty having just come out of the ocean. They serve delicious lunches, specialising in Turkish mezzes including a variety of kebabs, pide and Lahmacun. Assagio is the resort’s Italian restaurant, and probably has the best location of all dining options. It is magically situated on a pier extended over the water, where the ocean is beautifully lit up at night. They serve wonderful Italian specialities such as handmade pastas and pizzas, accompanied by some excellent wines. For traditional Turkish seafood, there is Balikçisi. We loved this relaxed, market-style restaurant with fish laid out on ice, nets strung up along the ceilings and peppers being dried on the walls. We were treated to an assortment of mezze starters, such as zucchini leaf Dolma with carrot puree to imitate the yellow flowers, stunningly presented on an urchin server. The Lobster main was also done splendidly and was evidently fresh. To top it off, we had the signature ‘White chocolate soup’ consisting of 70% high quality white chocolate presented in a mousse-like texture with raspberry sorbet that was divine! Kurochan offers a unique take on Japanese cuisine with some creative sushi and seafood dishes. They serve a noteworthy Black Cod that is marinated in Miso and tastes like sweet melted butter – an absolute must try!

Mornings at MO Bodrum are a magical time. The skies turn the most beautiful soft pink, setting the tone for a beautiful day which begins with breakfast at Sofra. Here, the open buffet style breakfast caters for everything that the heart desires, made fresh and on site. So fresh, that a selection of the breads and traditional Gösleme are made as you watch. A wide selection of Turkish cheeses and olives are served, thoughtfully identified by region and type – so much to discover and experience!

They say that your arrival at MO Bodrum is a gateway to paradise and so it was for us. Our stay MO Bodrum was one of discovery and new experiences; hospitality of an unparalleled kind; and luxury redefined. So, whether you come by plane (the airport being only 35 kilometres away) or rest your yacht in one of the resort’s moorings, every moment here is time well spent. And perhaps, you might consider staying permanently by purchasing one of the resort’s 125 private residences with private entrance and beach.

When our time came to an end, we left feeling like family and it was like waking up from a dream, wishing only that we could go back to sleep. All that remains is to say that “I am a fan!”

Reviewed by World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative, Mrs. Signe Da Silva

To book a stay at this magnificent property follow the link: www.mandarinoriental.com/bodrum/paradise-bay/luxury-hotel

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NG Afyon Wellness and Convention – an oasis in the desert…

NG Afyon is quite literally an oasis in the dessert – a welcome retreat with enticing pools, gardens and luxurious delicacies!

The region is famous for the number of hot springs that burst through the earth’s surface and NG Afyon certainly showcases this in a unique way. With no small number of different pools, at different temperatures, both in- and outdoors, the emphasis is on the importance of sustained thermal water treatment as a preventative measure rather than simply a cure for ailments. Furthermore, the spa and wellness areas cater for everyone with not only specific sections for men and women, but also a children’s area and family area. Apart from the pools and jet pools, there are hammams, saunas, steam baths, tepidarium and an outdoor waterpark for the children – the perfect getaway for the whole family!

After some ‘aqua time’, enjoy a healthy drink and snack at the Aliva Café’s little greenhouse, and get that extra oxygen boost; or unwind poolside or in one of the hotel’s many lounge areas, bar and even patisserie. The hotel is decorated in the classical French style yet gracefully incorporates the traditional ceramic and tile culture that the surrounding regions are known for. The proud collection of ceramic displays in the lobby were most interesting and enlightening

The hotel has a very big capacity. Yet despite the number of guests, NG Afyon has managed to maintain the luxury of space and privacy and the property itself is large enough that one never feels crowded. As much as NG Afyon caters perfectly to its family-orientated guests, the hotel is also very well equipped to receive business-orientated guests. It has several meeting venues, convention centre and even offers Business Wellness and Corporate Wellness packages. It is furthermore well situated, being only a 5-minute drive to the city centre, which is easily accessible by car.

Our suite had a luxurious bath which uniquely had water directly supplied from the mineral-rich thermal springs found on the property. The varied pillow options ensured a good night’s rest.

The breakfast buffet presented a huge variety of foods, in all forms and catering for all diets. It was a delight to try the many traditional Turkish foods that were on offer before heading for the pools for yet another day of blissful water wellness! NG Afyon is truly an amazing

Reviewed by World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative Mrs. Signe Da Silva

To book a stay at this wonderful property follow the link: https://nghotels.com.tr/ng-afyon/

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The Bodrum EDITION – the place to see and be seen…

Friendly staff awaited us in the light and airy reception area adorned with palm trees and cloaked with white linen adrift in the ocean breeze. The abundant green olive groves along the walkways offset by the dry-stone walls made for a sense of antiquity. Gracefully balancing ancient Mediterranean design elements with a modern minimalist style created a gateway from the past to the present – a snapshot in time; a space where hours of lounging pass by freely and at the same time a place of eager expectancy.

The continuous views of the Aegean starting from the reception area all the way down to the beach is the crown feature of this 5-star property. The 108 rooms, lofts and villas cascade down the slopes with cobbled staircases running in between them.

The resort is ideally situated close to the Yalikavak Marina at the western point of the Bodrum peninsula with its vibrant night life and boutique retail stores. Perfect summer days consisted of lazing at the golden, sandy beach with a cocktail in hand or taking a dip in the turquoise water. The stunning high-rise infinity pool seemed to flow directly into the ocean, enabling one to quite literally lean over the blue horizon. The pool-side hammocks made for hours of blissful daydreaming.

Our room was elegant and modern, furnished in light and neutral colours. The finishes were neat and uncomplicated. We had a lovely patio with ocean view that included our own olive tree. The light bathroom had a luxurious tub. The room service staff were particularly attentive and friendly, ensuring our every need was taken care of.

Breakfast at EDITION’s Kitchen Restaurant is somewhat of a ritual – an experience that should be savoured and not rushed, to be enjoyed any time at leisure between 7 am until 4 pm complemented a the splendid setting with views of the Turkish Riviera. It is a full house demonstration of what an authentic, Turkish breakfast experience is all about – an assortment of around 16 elegantly curated small plates and portions of all things traditionally Turkish, including olives, cheeses, fruits, vegetables, honey, homemade butter, homemade cream, traditional baked goods and much more to share and enjoy. Added to this then is your choice of choice of eggs, or healthy muesli, yogurt and fruits. Not to be missed are the ‘elements breakfast shots’ and very creative cold pressed juices which are very healthy and nutritious. Keeping up with the trends is the Ministry of Coffee which presents a wide selection for the discerning coffee connoisseur, boasting even a its very own Kyoto-style slow drip cold coffee brew. This method extracts the essential mineral components from the coffee beans through a process lasting several hours, resulting in a rich full-bodied coffee that is exquisite. It goes without saying that there is no rush this side of the Aegean.

No day would be complete without a visit to the spa area. The beautifully tranquil all-white spa has water flowing along the walkways and is as enchanting as it is relaxing. The spa is divided into a men’s and women’s section, each with hammam, dry sauna, steam room and salt room where one can unwind and rejuvenate. At the end of it all is a powerful jet pool for a relaxing aqua jet massage. The massage treatment areas are open-air and cater for couples massages as well.

Dinner at BRAVA was a refreshing experience! Chef Diego Muñoz showcases a daring yet perfectly balanced menu which combines innovate flavour combinations with nostalgic Peruvian tradition. Be sure to save room for dessert: surprising offerings such as the Caramelized Eggplant, Passionfruit & Coconut Cachanga dessert are sure to shift your culinary boundaries.

Life is truly beautiful at The Bodrum EDITION.

Reviewed by World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative: Mrs. Signe Da Silva

To book a stay at this beautiful property follow the link www.editionhotels.com/bodrum

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The Pavilions Phuket – what a treat!

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

To book a stay at this beautiful property Click Here: https://www.pavilionshotels.com/phuket/

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THE WORLD LUXURY HOTEL AWARDS 12TH ANNUAL GALA CEREMONY

10th November 2018, AYANA Resort & Spa, Bali, Indonesia was the venue of the prestigious black-tie event celebrating the 12th anniversary of the World Luxury Hotel Awards. Over 360 guests flew in from around the world to attend the event, which awarded the world’s finest hotels for their luxury offerings and exceptional service delivery.

Set across 90-hectares along Jimbaran’s golden mile, AYANA Resort and Spa, BALI, is a world-class destination resort. As the property approaches its 22nd birthday this November, the privately-owned resort holds more fame than ever. AYANA is recognized for prolific sunset and ocean views, as well as offering a choice of five-star accommodation and facilities, coupled with the genuinely warm Balinese hospitality that has put AYANA on the map. Over the years, AYANA has received many top-shelf accolades including Luxury Honeymoon Resort Global Winner for the World Luxury Hotel Awards 2017.

Participants from over 100 countries sipped on cocktails after being welcomed on the red carpet. During the cocktail’s guests enjoyed Jegog instrumental background music followed by Okokan and Kecak dancing. Jegog is a form of gamelan music indigenous to Bali, played on instruments made from bamboo, and the Kecak Dance is a form of Balinese Hindu dance and music drama that was developed in the 1930s, but that was not all as the guests where welcomed to the gala dinner by the Panyembrama Dance, which is a traditional Balinese welcome dance followed by Gus Teja who is a maestro of the flute.

After Prof. Dr. I Gede Pitana Msc. delivered his keynote speech, the incredibly entertaining Masters of Ceremonies, twins Maria and Elizabeth Rahajeng, who are TV hosts for E! News Asia guided the audience through a dazzling awards ceremony where awards were presented to luxury hotels and resorts in over 100 categories on a Country, Regional, Continent and Global basis. Special congratulations go to the inspirational Gaia Retreat & Spa, who received the 2018 Global Hotel of the Year Award. Founded in 2005, Gregg Cave, Ruth Kalnin, Olivia Newton-John and Warwick Evans, affectionately known as G.R.O.W, set out as a close-knit team to realise a shared dream, offering the highest of standards and service excellence, true to the World Luxury Hotel Awards overall winner criteria. Gregg Cave, Co-Owner and General Manager of Gaia Retreat & Spa proudly collected the award on stage.

Gaia Retreat & Spa- Australia

Mr Gregg Cave

The prestigious Chairman’s Award is the decision of the Owner and CEO of World Luxury Hotel Awards, Brandon Lourens. This year Imrhim Inad, Director of Sales, attended the ceremony and was privileged enough to collect the award on behalf of the Velaa Private Island Resort in Maldives. This boutique private hideaway can only be described as “beyond luxury”.

Mr Imrhim Inad of Velaa Private Island with France 24 representatives Odile Franc and Vishmi Congreve and Ceo Of WLHA Mr Brandon Lourens, Executive Manager Ms Tanique Echardt and Ms Michelle Snayman Brand and Event coordinator for the World Luxury Awards Brand.

Further Global awards went to Vacala Bay Resort in Fiji who received both Luxury Contemporary Villa and Eco/Green Villa Award; Lamaraz Arts Hotel in Algeria received the Luxury New Hotel Award; Valamar All you can Holiday in Croatia received Luxury Hotel Group Award; Tintswalo Atlantic in South Africa received Luxury Beach Lodge Award and Okinawa Spa Resort EXES in Japan received Luxury Honeymoon Hotel Award just to mention a few.
The much sort after World Luxury Hotel Awards trophy was presented to winners on stage. Thereafter, the proud winners were given an opportunity for one-on-one personalised video interviews to speak about their achievement with the media.

Okinawa Spa Resort EXES in Japan

There was not a dull moment as the diners were spoiled by AYANA Resorts Executive Chef, Patrick Callarec and his team, who wowed guests with Balinese inspired 6-course meal. The food was elegantly plated and paired with the finest of wines supplied by Bali Indah and Sababay. The room was in awe as the incredibly plated food was served all at once to the entire ballroom. The fact that the food was on par with any fine dining restaurant made it even more impressive.

UNIQUE Rooftop Bar & Restaurant was the venue for the after party where guests danced to the sounds of Martin Denev, the resident DJ from Rock Bar and were entertained by Sasha on vocals.

“We congratulate all our winners for the 2018 Award Year, who through their tireless efforts and endless passion to elevate their guests experience, have received this honour tonight. True luxury is not easily attained, it takes a team of highly efficient and dedicated staff willing to go the extra mile and stop at nothing to ensure that every guest feels cared for and no challenged not solved. This is the definition of luxury, this is what makes the winners shine at the World Luxury Hotel Awards event”. Says, Michael Hunter-Smith, Group Marketing Director for the World Luxury Hotel Awards.

“The 2019 World Luxury Hotel Awards will take place on Saturday, 12th October 2019 at Arctic Circle, Finland. The event will be hosted by Arctic TreeHouse Hotel and the gala venue SantaPark is an ideal location just before Christmas in the home town of Santa Claus. The magical Finnish Lapland is a bucket list experience and attendees can look forward to a winter wonderland, beautiful natural landscape wilderness, reindeer safaris, the phenomenon of the Northern lights, and of course Santa Claus” said Michael,“Applications to host the event in 2020 are now officially open”.

An event of this calibre would not be possible without our much-cherished sponsors France 24, Copenhagen Traveller, Caviar Spoon, Destination Golf, Santé Magazine, Singapore Brides and Spa & Wellness International who we thank for their continued support over the years. Thanks, is also extended to Bali Indah Beverindo, Captain Morgan, Coca Cola, Dewata Primi Lestari, Dolomia, Two Island Wine, Heineken Light, Kita Satu Bali, Strongbow, Global Seafood, Frizzante, Classic Fine Foods, Valrhona, Revolt and ABV Media Asia who were the sponsors here in Bali.

Please see our video of this prestigious event.

Everyone who attended the event was blown away by the professionalism of every person who works at AYANA Resort & Spa. Congratulations!

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These 10 Design hotels are a feast for your eyes…

The State Hermitage Museum Official Hotel

This state of the art historical design hotel has everything you need. Offering 126 rooms with 10 categories starting from Premium and Superior room types up to imperial and Presidential residences. All the rooms are decorated in exquisite styles replicating the imperial chambers of the Winter palace. Only natural materials are used for the decoration of the guest rooms like natural wood, different sorts of Greek and Italian marble, silk wallpapers and hand crafted plaster gilded with gold.

Ovolo Woolloomooloo

Art and culture meet at the Ovolo Woolloomooloo. Located in Sydney, Australia this hotel is bold, innovative and community minded. Creating a design centric, social space where like minded individuals can enjoy everything from accommodation to co-working. The unique and intriguing design features of Ovolo Woolloomooloo effortlessly combine heritage with modern luxury, breathing a new lease of life into this historic Wharf in an absolutely stunning location over the picturesque Sydney Harbour.

Sarai Resort and Spa

Situated in the exotic city of Siem Reap, Sarai Resort & Spa is a luxury boutique, Moroccan-inspired design resort. Sarai has been designed to be a destination where travelers from East and West come to pleasantly discover superior services, beautiful and comfortable rooms, great food, exquisite spa, and a tranquil swimming pool. Its rural atmosphere makes Siem Reap the perfect destination for your vacation. Take a break from the demands of every-day life; take a breath, relax, look up to the stars and take a moment to just gaze at their gentle beauty.

Hotel VIC on the Harbour

Hotel VIC on the Harbour has been built to the most exacting standards through the combined star power of renowned award-winners Rocco Design Architects Ltd as project architect and Hirsch Bedner Associates as guestroom interior designer.

Conservatorium Hotel

This hotel is a Architecture design hotel based in Amsterdam, Netherlands. Located in the Museum Square district, the true heart of the city, the Conservatorium is an architectural masterpiece that combines a landmark heritage building with graceful, contemporary design.

The Salil Hotel Sukhumvit 57 – Thonglor

A “Concept Living Space” representing a tranquil heavenly luxury hotel in the heart of Bangkok.The hotel boasts the most original and soulful luxury destination in Thong Lor, where business and chic living style are intertwined. All guest rooms are designed with a contemporary interpretation of the East meets West cultures through the pattern of wallpapers.

Alentejo Marmoris Hotel & Spa

At the heart of Alentejo, 180 km east from Lisbon and located in the historical town “Vila Viçosa”, the Alentejo Marmòris Hotel & Spa presents itself as the most luxurious new hotel of Portugal. This hotel is unique and distinctive – a real museum dedicated to marble.

The Torch Doha

At 300m high and with 360° panoramic views across Doha, THE TORCH is the centerpiece of Doha’s vibrant Sports City – Aspire Zone. This iconic 5-Star hotel features 51 floors, a revolving restaurant on the 47th floor and a cantilevered swimming pool anchored to the 19th floor. All rooms feature a mood-lighting system with 12 different colours, a unique iPad in-Room Solution and LED TVs.

Sofitel Luxembourg Le Grand Ducal

A striking design hotel in Luxembourg’s historic center Sofitel Luxembourg Le Grand Ducal gazes magnificently over the picturesque Alzette and Pétrusse valleys and Luxembourgs UNESCO Old Town. A grand modern glass structure of dramatic lines and curves, this 5-star hotel in Luxembourg is a landmark amid a tapestry of cultural historical and natural sites.

Hotel Éclat Beijing

This 5 star hotel is a stunning landmark on the Beijing skyline, standing impressively in the heart of the city’s downtown Central Business District – a perfect location for both business and leisure travelers. A focal point of the award-winning Parkview Green, the luxury boutique Hotel Éclat Beijing offers the rare opportunity to experience museum quality art while enjoying stylish accommodation, outstanding cuisine, intuitive yet non-intrusive guest services and a spectacular Mall within its unique architectural design.