If there’s one thing to understand about Tablet, it’s that our greatest joy in life is handing out well-deserved recognition to the world’s most unforgettable hotels.
The trouble is, there are simply so many of them that a single top-ten list would hardly scratch the surface. This awards season we’re taking our cues from the movie business and dishing out honors in every category we can think of, from Most Impressive Views to Top Hotel Pools to the all-important Best Overall, as chosen by Tablet users.
If there’s one capital hotel design offense, it’s to be inoffensive, to risk nothing; these hotels stand boldly in the other camp, exultant in form and function alike. They’re after that electric, gobsmacked moment where you’re not sure if you’re reserving a room or a seat for an architectural performance. Go on, live a little.
Our hats (and most of the rest of our clothes) come off to these watery wizards, these acrobats of the aquatic. No small skill and vision goes into making one’s pool the scene of your hotel, whether it’s the views, the swim-up bar, the size, or the surprise factor.
Best For Business
And let’s not forget the (impeccably tailored) suit — more than just about anyone else, the executive knows what they want and where to stay to get it. An expansive, connected in-room workspace. Bright, collaboration-friendly meeting facilities. A handsome bar where you can hear yourself think and they remember your order.
Best For Creatives
It seems obvious in hindsight, but boutique public spaces weren’t always the hives of bustling activity we’ve come to expect. A heady mix of entrepreneurs-on-the-go, nervous first-daters, aspiring novelists, and touring performers gave rise to this trend; where will it evolve next?
A velvet rope alone does not a nightclub make; neither do heart-attack cocktail prices nor inscrutable door policies. When in doubt, we say follow the locals: to the brace-yourself rooftop panorama, the ingeniously sly layouts, the truly reliable music programming. You could stay here all night, and you just might.
To determine which hotels were the best overall, we turned to the people whose experience matters most: you. Every hotel we feature is only a Tablet Hotel by virtue of your continued feedback, so it’s only fitting that your ratings decide which hotels should be considered the absolute best.
This one’s a make-or-break doozy. No amount of genius architecture or mouth-watering cuisine can outshine the spirit of a location. An arresting mountain vista, a thrilling crop of skyscrapers, an impossibly blue seascape: such are the visuals that keep us coming back.
Hotels That Feel Like Home
It’s true that there’s no place quite like home, but these hotels are as close as it gets to turning a place to stay the night into a place where you can truly live.
As much as we love minimalism, it’s criminally uncozy. Sometimes you want the candle bouquets, the velvety nooks, the gilt mirrors, the tango à deux. And sometimes a secluded getaway is just the ticket — some space, some discretion, some time to really take each other in.
Most Stylish Hotels
It’s tougher than it looks — in every sense of the phrase — to pull off an interior that invites the double-take. And there’s a fascinating alchemy in making guests comfortable enough to be themselves, yet inspired enough to be their best selves. Looking good just feels great, after all.
Top New Hotels
If there’s one thing a ho-tel should never be, it’s ho-hum: for most of us, the charm of the new more than justifies the dust of the road. Be they utter newcomers, reinventions, or glorious second acts, these new-on-the-scenes command our attention.