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A wonderful Balinese experience with the gentle giants of Mason Elephant Lodge …

Although I did not stay at the Mason Elephant Lodge in Ubud, I was invited to come and visit this beautiful property for the day.

Arriving at Mason Elephant Lodge we were immediately warmly greeted by the staff who would be showing us around for the day. Just beyond the reception is a beautiful museum filled with rare and beautiful elephant skulls,tusks and even the only complete mammoth skeleton in the world. This was so informative and a great way to learn all that there is to know about elephants!

The Lodge offers 27 rooms, beautifully decorated and situated within the Elephant park. A stay here will give you everything you would expect from a luxury lodge as well as being amongst the herd and able to see them from your room balcony, or even bathtub. Guests can literally hop onto an elephant from their front door and explore the area.

After taking a look at the lovely rooms and the owners stunning Art Gallery we were taken to the Elephant Park area, and oh what an experience we had! We got to wash the elephants, take a ride through the Ubud jungle and even feed them some treats.  It truly is a special experience to get so up close and personal with these gentle giants and spend time with them.  Daisy was our assigned elephant and it was a real treat getting to know her and her quirky, friendly personality.

The park is the only rescue park in Bali and has been involved for the past 20 years in the upkeep of the elephants who were originally saved from camps in Sumutra. The team at the park are dedicated to giving this heard of endangered elephants a happy and safe existence.

There are 31 elephants in total and each elephant has their own dedicated handler. It was so amazing for us to see the bond each elephant has with there handler. After spending a few hours with the elephants we were treated to a buffet style lunch, with views of the elephant Park.

This is definitely an experience I will never forget and I hope to be back in the near future to stay at the Lodge.

A huge thank you to Jian and the entire team for looking after us and treating us to this once in a lifetime experience!

Some of the wonderful Mason Elephant Lodge team

Reviewed By Tanique Echardt- World Luxury Hotel Awards Executive Manager

To book a experience or accommodation of this piece of paradise click the link below

www.masonelephantlodge.com

 

 

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Dash Hotel Seminyak – Dashingly different!

If you are looking for a unique, hip and fun place to stay whilst in Seminyak – look no further than Dash Hotel. With their hallmark assortment of red, yellow and blue mannequins standing outside on the hotel balcony, it is tough to miss the Hotel.

Upon entering the Hotel we where immediately bewildered, yet drawn in, by their unconventional architectural style that creates a unique atmosphere, the style mostly comprising of designs made from recycled materials. In the lobby we also noticed the Dash Hotel’s World Luxury Hotel Awards Winner trophies and plaques are proudly displayed in the reception area for all to see, confirming the appreciation and global recognition for that unique style and atmosphere.

On our way to our room we were able to observe more of the Hotel’s décor, and we were completely fascinated by the Hotel’s choice of art and other decorative pieces scattered all over on the walls and floor of the hotel. The Hotel’s use of this unique contemporary style surely surpassed our expectations.

The theme that we were now seeing continued into our room, which had a unique artistic style which also managed to incorporate elements of glamour, with the Hotel’s iconic bunny laid upside down on our beds.

Our balcony overlooked a sea of green trees, which is something pleasantly different for a place situated in the epicenter of the busy, yet vibrant Seminiyak.

After checking in and been shown to our exciting room, we were spoiled with a 15-minute complimentary arrival-massage at the Rabbit Hole Spa situated on the rooftop of the Hotel alongside the fitness centre.

Thereafter, we enjoyed a much needed cool-down swim session in the red pool with the Hotel’s iconic red bunny mascot lying next to the pool at the centre of the hotel. On the rooftop of the Hotel, there is another pool, this time yellow, where you can enjoy cocktails at ‘The Shack’ lounge bar whilst watching the beautiful sunset over Seminyak Beach.

The Hotel’s Mya Restaurant is situated on the ground floor, where guests have the option to enjoy a variety of reasonably priced meals and drinks throughout the day and night. We ate breakfast at the Restaurant which was absolutely divine. Instead of having a conventional buffet breakfast, the Restaurant brings you a menu from which any dish is available, leaving you unrestricted in your choices of what to eat. The Restaurant further features an entertainment section with a balcony on the street, where you can enjoy live music and DJ events, and play pool and various other games. The Restaurant comes alive in the evening, with the people and the atmosphere making it very difficult to leave.

Dash Hotel is ideally located in the heart of Seminyak’s night life and shopping district, whilst at the same time being close to the beach, which makes it the perfect place from which to experience all that the destination has to offer. Be sure to visit this trendy and unique hotel, we assure you that the red rabbit will not disappoint.

Reviewed By Jana Vos and Lindi Smuts – World Luxury Awards Representatives

To book this vibey hotel follow the link to their website below

dash-hotels.com/seminyak-bali

 

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A piece of heaven in the jungles of Ubud…

Ubud is located a hour and a half’s drive from Denpasar. The magical Ubud consists of green terraced hills, artists, yogi’s, silversmiths, stone carvers, painters, traditional dancers, temples, restaurants, bars and live music, all surrounded by an untouched jungle. Located 4 km outside Ubud is where you can find Tejaprana Resort & Spa, nestled in the lush jungles of the Petanu river valley in Tegallalang.

 When I arrived at Tejaprana Resort & Spa after making my journey through the vibrant street market, I was left speechless by the sheer beauty and serenity of this luxurious jungle sanctuary. If heaven is a place on earth, I believe Tejaprana Resort & Spa might be it. I was welcomed at the beautiful reception area with a refreshing wet towel as well as a vibrant yellow welcome drink. The reception consists of wood carved furniture as well as beautiful orchid plants. Once I was checked in the friendly staff showed me to my villa. Upon entering my villa, I was blown away by the sheer size, the beautiful décor, the view of the jungle as well as the special features. In all my years travelling I have never seen a more lavish yet cozy villa.

Tejaprana Resort & Spa is an architecture marvel, blending effortlessly with the organic growth of the jungle. The entire concept reminds me of a modern organic palace. The design elements are beautiful, modern and luxurious but also embodies the concept of being one with nature. The resort introduces travellers to Balinese culture and teaches a respect and admiration for their rituals and beliefs.

Whether you are taking a break, seeking a place to rejuvenate your soul, explore Balinese culture or enjoying a honeymoon, Tejaprana Resort & Spa is the perfect destination. The resort offers a variety of interesting activities for energetic travellers, but also offers privacy and serenity for travellers wanting to rest and soak in the splendour of the natural surroundings.

Tejaprana Resort & Spa comprises 28 cozily furnished villas, all facing east allowing you to take full advantage of the warmth of the morning sun. Each villa is complemented with a gazebo, an infinity plunge pool and an outdoor natural stone bathtub bringing you yet closer to the Balinese landscape embracing the resort. Tejaprana Resort and Spa was designed by Arte Architect and Associates.

One of my favourite activities was taking a refreshing swim in my infinity pool, followed by a relaxing bubble bath in the outdoors stone bathtub. All of this was enjoyed with a spectacular view of the jungle. I truly felt free and in touch with nature.

The resort features the spectacular Chatraka spa where guests can enjoy a view of the jungle while having their treatments. The extensive treatment list offers all pamper options as well as wellness rituals that will improve health. The resort also offers a special yoga space, Maitra Bale, where yoga is practiced twice a week. Private yoga sessions are also available.

The design of the Aruna restaurant incorporates a 180’ jungle view, high above ground level. Enjoying a meal at Aruna is a special experience in itself. The cuisine ranges from local and traditional to international dishes all cooked with fresh and organic ingredients. I often ordered room service in order to maximize my time spent in my private villa. The dining service is very quick and attentive, and I enjoyed sampling different Balinese dishes and desserts. My favourite was a banana and chocolate dessert. In addition, I was also impressed with their wine selection as they even had a beautiful Sauvignon Blanc from South Africa.

A delightful corner of comfort and art is the Oja Lounge & Gift Shop. It is a lovely boutique filled with radiant handmade jewellery, scarfs, hand bags and souvenirs to take home, it is also a good place to curl up with a book or enjoy afternoon tea or a cocktail.

Other amazing activities include, Kedisan village cycling, cooking classes, Kepitu village trekking, Yoga classes, and Canang making. The resort also offers a very unique activity where you can go with a guide on a special journey to participate in a traditional Balinese cleansing ritual. A guide takes you to a Hindu Balinese water temple that has a sacred stream. One is then cleansed underneath a waterfall.

Regardless of religion, beliefs or nationality, visitors often rave about this powerful and beautiful experience.

 Tejaprana Resort & Spa holds a special place in my heart and I would recommend any travellers to visit. Do be warned that once you have arrived at Tejaprana Resort & Spa, it is difficult to leave such a majestic place.

Just before I got into the car to depart for the airport, I was surprised to be handed a Polaroid image of myself and the Tejaprana staff that we had taken the day earlier. What a special departure gift and a way to remember my visit.

Reviewed By Michelle Snyman -Brand Manager and Events Coordinator World Luxury Hotel Awards

To book this amazing jungle experience go to  www.tejaprana.com 

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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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Escape to the heart of Dubai…

Nassima Royal Hotel is located in the heart of Dubai, very close to many of Dubai’s top attractions. There are also many shops and restaurants within walking distance, including the Dubai Metro.

What an unforgettable stay, the architecture of the hotel is beautiful, and the service was exceptional throughout our stay.

We stayed in two executive rooms on the 45th floor which had amazing views of Dubai. The rooms were spacious, each had a big bath overlooking Dubai. The amenities in the room were great and they provided the most comfortable bath robes and towels.

The swimming pool was one of the best I’ve ever seen, it overlooks the Persian Gulf and many high-rise buildings. The pool bar had the most delicious cocktails and pizzas and the lounge chairs were very comfortable.

There were numerous restaurants and bars in the hotel which had a big variety of food. The breakfast was delicious, the chef made the best eggs benedict I’ve ever had. The staff were friendly and gave world class service.

The concierge staff were very knowledgeable and assisted us with booking our restaurants and excursions. For our transportation they offered us their hotel car which was so comfortable and stylish.

This hotel is definitely on my list of top hotels in Dubai and is a must visit hotel when in the city. Truly great hospitality.

Reviewed By Kayla Lourens- World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative

To book follow the link below

nassimaroyalhotel.com

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Relaxation and wonderful Thai hospitality at the Grand Mercure Phuket Patong Resort & Villas…

The Grand Mercure Phuket Patong Resort & Villas is situated in the centre of the busy town of Patong in Phuket. The hotel is within walking distance of the beach,shops and restaurants.

We received a Thai purple drink and a filled pastry with purple icing on top as a welcome treat and a cold towel to fight off the heat. We felt very welcome and all the staff were friendly.

We stayed two nights in a one-bedroom pool villa, which was gorgeous! A beautiful bath and a big lounge area. Our private splash pool was so great, and the pool chair was very comfortable.

There is a high tea lounge for VIP guests which offers complimentary beverages and snacks every day from 11:00am to 17:00pm which was delicious.

The swimming pool was heated and there were many poolside chairs available.  Most of the ground floor pool facing rooms are adjacent to the swimming pool so guests can just jump in from their terrace. The pool bar had daily specials on their cocktails which guests can enjoy on the chairs inside the pool.

The buffet breakfast was delicious, there was an Asian corner as well as an assortment of Indian and western food.

There was even sushi for breakfast and also a stand where you could make your own iced coffee or chocolate milk which was great.

Our entire stay including the amazing staff made our trip unforgettable. I would definitely recommend this hotel to anyone who plans on visiting Phuket.

To book this magnificent property or get more details follow the link below

http://grandmercurephuketpatong.com

 

Reviewed by Kayla Lourens – World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative

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A visit to remember at the Shangri-La Hotel, Singapore…

The Shangri-La Hotel is centrally located in Singapore and in close proximity to many of Singapore’s attractions.

For more than 40 years, Shangri-La Hotel, Singapore has been committed to providing luxurious service in a tropical urban oasis with hospitality from the heart.

 

Upon arrival I was greeted by a friendly porter who took my luggage and showed me to the reception desk. The entrance was stunning, I loved the green nature elements in the lobby lounge. The receptionist was very friendly and also extremely helpful.

 I stayed one night in a Tower wing deluxe room with a beautiful view of Singapore. The room was very comfortable in every way with a big bathroom and a large selection of beverages and snacks in the minibar. The television had a lot of channels to choose from and there was even a speaker in the bathroom.

The swimming pool was magnificent and large and the poolside chairs were very comfortable to relax in. The buffet Breakfast was absolutely delicious, there was a huge selection of food and beverages, and the service was swift. There were freshly squeezed juices and smoothies and a great coffee machine.

The hotel is great for leisure and business travellers, there is a big play area for children and even conference facilities. Even though the hotel is so big, my stay still felt very personal, all the staff members were friendly and diligent.

 

Unfortunately I wasn’t able to visit all the restaurants and facilities because of my limited time in Singapore but when I am in Singapore again I would definitely stay at Shangri-La and recommend it to others.

Reviewed by – Kayla Lourens – World Luxury Hotel Awards representative

To book and see more of this beautiful hotel follow the link below

Click Here

 

 

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State of the art luxury experience at the Como Metropolitan Hotel London

We arrived at the stunning Como Metropolitan hotel, situated in the in the heart of London and overlooking the magnificent Hyde Park on a sunny afternoon.

We were greeted at reception by the extremely friendly Service Manager .The staff took care of unwrapping our bags for us and taking them up to our room. While checking in we were offered a glass of champagne and given a small shot glass filled with a mixture of herbs. They explained to us that it was meant to recharge our bodies and give us new energy. (Exactly what we needed at that stage).

The Service manager accompanied us to our room. Just as well because the room needed some explaining. Arriving at our magnificent room on the 10th floor and with an exquisite view over the park we quickly realized that this room was even more amazing then we first thought. It was a fully smart-room. All the curtains, blinds and lights were controlled from a single control panel on the telephone. Push a button and the blinds opened. Push another button and you can dim any of the many different lights in the room to create whatever ambiance you desire. The room had everything from electric blinds to a fully stocked mini-bar with everything you could possibly want or need including heated mirrors that wont fog up when you shower.

The next morning, we had a workout in their state of the art gym. As someone that has been to many gyms and loves a good workout, this was heaven. The gym was fully equipped with everything from a full range of cardio equipment to weights heavy enough for regular trainers. There was even a ballet pole attached to the mirror to help you stretch. The standard bottle of water and towel were included as part of your workout but what is more is they also give you a free pair of earphones. This is for you to plug into their cardio equipment and listen to music or watch television while you build up a sweat. In my books this gym scored 10 out of 10.

The English breakfast was a delight, served in a beautiful dining room with a glass roof, letting the sun shine in.

In conclusion, the Como Metropolitan hotel is a must visit. The staff are exceptionally courteous and friendly, always willing to help and assist. The hotel itself with its technologically advanced rooms and amazing gym provides all the facilities and services you can think of.

Reviewed by World Luxury Hotel Awards Representatives

Book Here  

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Prana Lodge An absolute stunner!

Prana Lodge is a unique small luxury beach lodge and wellness spa situated in a pristine forest alongside the spectacular Chintsa Bay, within minutes of rolling savannah and private game viewing.

My Husband and I had the pleasure of spending two nights at Prana Lodge in Chintsa. We were greeted by two staff members standing waiting for us to arrive. Once we stopped our vehicle they introduced themselves and took our car to park it as well as our luggage to put in our rooms. We were then welcomed with a  delicious refreshing drink.

We then went to the sauna, steamer, jacuzzi and then went to have a full body massage! It was amazing! Quiet and tranquil. It was so incredible that even my husband even fell asleep half way through.

They have 7 different suites. Ours was called the Citrine Suite. Each Suite is named after a different gem stone and they have the colour elements in the suite. Ours had yellow elements in the room. It was defiantly striking. Each suite has their own pool, and I absolutely loved relaxing outside there. The outside shower was exquisite as well.

Now for the food, one word… SUPERB! We were served a three course meal every night and had two options for the main dish. They decorated the plate beautifully, and served just enough to be able to get through the three course meal without feeling to full.

I have been telling people that this is a place they have to visit! Especially if you are needing a get away from your busy life and are needing time to relax and get your thoughts together. I cannot think of one thing to complain about! The staff always had smiles on their faces and were always eager to help when necessary. I would come back in a heartbeat.

Reviewed By L’toya and Neville Da Silva – World Luxury Hotel Awards Representatives

To view more about this property go to www.pranalodge.co.za

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Kolbe Hotel Rome; an enchanting experience from the city of Rome.

The city of Rome, Italy is an enchanting experience. Rome is a vibrant and decadent destination. It is filled with passionate Italian locals and rich history. Rome has played an important role as a political and religious capital during centuries of human civilization and should be on everyone’s bucket list.

Walking amongst the historic ruins of the Roman Forum is an experience that will leave you with goosebumps, not to mention a tour of the Colosseum where one can imagine gladiators having a brutal battle.

What made my Roman tourist experience truly special was the fact that our hotel was located right in the middle of all the important historic sites. Just a brief walk from Kolbe Hotel Rome brings you to the centre of it all.

“Surrounded by the magnificence of ancient Rome, only a few steps from the Circus Maximus and the Imperial Roman Forum, the building is located in an evocative and prestigious area right in the heart of the city.”

Kolbe Hotel Rome is a blend of modern and ancient décor; the furniture and finishing are modern and comfortable, yet the hallways are decorated with examples of ancient Roman clothing which is fascinating and really gives you an idea of what was worn back in the day

       

Upon entering the lobby guests are met with extremely friendly staff welcoming you to the hotel. The lobby leads into a contemporary bar lounge as well as the Garden Restaurant – Al Palatino. Guests can choose to sit inside or outside to enjoy a delicious gourmet meal. The garden outside is breathtaking.

“Keeping Mediterranean traditions alive, the courtyard reflects calmness, tranquility and peace. Guests can drink, dine or simply relax in this private sanctuary that is unique in all of Rome.”

The Kolbe Hotel Rome offers a variety of rooms. This includes double rooms, deluxe suites as well as family rooms. Rooms are generally decorated with maroon and light pastel colors and guests can enjoy bathroom amenities from Roberto Cavalli. One of the great features of the rooms are the big windows which open with a view of the surrounding area.

The hotel also offers great meeting and function facilities. During my stay at the Kolbe Hotel Rome, the hotel hosted a large corporate group with ease and professionalism.

Breakfast is served as an informal affair and leaves guests to help themselves to coffee and snacks from the buffet. This provides a relaxed environment for families or businessmen that want to grab a quick snack before heading to the next meeting.

Overall it was a wonderful stay that provided me quick access to the best that Rome has to offer.

Reviewed By Michelle Snyman

Brand Manager World Luxury Awards

To see more of this hotel click here