Top Hotel Picks: Winter 2017

From Zurich to Jamaica, the best in hotel getaways, weekend road trips and far-flung adventures.

Dolder Grand

Zurich, Switzerland

Stroke of Genius

Much hotel “art” is mass-produced and forgettable, but the museum-worthy collection at the Dolder Grand is one of the hotel’s main draws. The 11-metre-long Big Retrospective Painting above the reception desk is by Andy Warhol; Salvador Dalí’s painting Femmes Métamorphosées – Les Sept Arts can be spied in the restaurant; and the imposing bronze statue on the spa terrace is Fernando Botero’s Woman with Fruit. Explore over 100 works throughout the property on a self-led tour with the help of the hotel’s complimentary iPad guide.

Round Hill, Jamaica


In Good Company

Round Hill is still as glamorous as it was when the Montego Bay hotel played host to the who’s-who of 1950s Hollywood. Stay at Villa 10, where Jackie and John F. Kennedy spent their honeymoon, or opt for a room decorated by Ralph Lauren (who has a residence on the property).

Crane Resort


Cliff Notes

From its perch overlooking Barbados’ rugged Atlantic Coast and an iconic pink-sand beach, the Crane Resort celebrates its 130th anniversary in 2017. The beloved Caribbean property is built on the site of a former cargo port and its architecture is distinctly past-meets-present. Find restaurants and shops in a town square inspired by Barbadian heritage culture complete with cobblestone walkways and jalousie windows. Original rooms are awash in handcrafted mahogany furniture, including dramatic four-poster beds, while the brand new Crane Private Residences offer contemporary interiors for those who love the white-and-bright look. Starting in 2018, 63 new beach houses at nearby Skeetes Bay will add an even more secluded offering.

Grand Hotel Excelsior Vittoria

(Photo: Kirstin Mckee)

Sorrento, Italy

Antique Italia

Founded by the Fiorentinos in 1834 and still run by the family, the Grand Hotel Excelsior Vittoria is a must-visit not only for its cozy atmosphere, Michelin-starred dining and clifftop views of Mount Vesuvius, but also for the history lessons inside its walls.

Museum decor With original frescoes, period furniture, framed photos of historic guests and bronze sculptures from Positano’s Liquid Art System gallery, the eclectic interiors often feel like a liveable gallery.

Roman ruins Legend has it that this is the same site where Roman emperor Augustus once lived. You’ll find excavated stone pillars and baths across the grounds (similar to those you’ll spy at nearby Pompeii).

Musical history Famous hotel guests have included Wagner, Pavarotti and Enrico Caruso, who actually lived there in the 1920s. His eponymous suite remains. In fact, staying there inspired singer Lucio Dalla to write his hit song “Caruso.”

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