15 Bucket List Hotels We're Completely Obsessed With

Photo: Courtesy of Amangiri.
The world has a lot of hotels, some better than others. Certain properties are 100% worth adding to your must-stay travel bucket list, whether its because they have a great location, great amenities, or a serious sense of luxury. From the Thames-adjacent Mondrian London to the iconic glass igloos of Hotel Kakslauttanen, we’ve compiled 15 hotels from around the globe you should consider for future trips. They’re not cheap, but they’re worth it, and if you start saving now, maybe you can eventually hit up all of them.
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Photo: Courtesy of the Mondrian.
Mondrian London
Where: Along the bank of the Thames in London, adjacent to the recently renovated Tate Modern.
Why You Should Stay: Go big and book a River View Balcony Suite, a beautiful, massive room with a balcony overlooking the river and all of London’s iconic sights. Currently, the property, which is designed to look like an old-school cruise ship, is the only hotel in London that offers riverside balconies. The hotel’s location is unparalleled, and its rooftop Rumpus Room bar offers a 360-degree view of the city. There’s also a spa, a fitness center, two restaurants, a cinema, and the ongoing feeling that something glamorous is about to happen.
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Photo: Courtesy of the Mondrian.
The Mondrian (continued)
Coolest Amenity: Dandelyan Bar, which bases its current cocktail menu on human interaction with plants for unique and eclectic flavors, is a highlight of the hotel. The drinks (try the BC3 Negroni) are unlike anything you’ve imbibed before, and the vibe is hipster chic. Plus, Dandelyan’s mixologist Ryan Chetiyawardana has created pre-bottled drinks that can be found in all the rooms, just in case you can’t make it downstairs.
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Photo: Courtesy of Twin Farms.
Twin Farms
Where: In the countryside town of Barnard, Vermont, a three-hour drive from Boston.
Why You Should Stay: Forget all-inclusive resorts by the beach. Twin Farms is a high-end all-inclusive experience that you’ll never want to leave. Everything comes with the price tag, including picnic lunches, ice-skating, canoeing, and tennis. You can even borrow a BMW to drive around the countryside. There are various types of plush guest rooms, as well as cottages, and anything you might need, from same-day laundry to snacks, is provided free of charge. The resort is also filled with art from founder Thurston Twigg-Smith’s private collection; it's essentially like staying in your own private art museum.
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Photo: Courtesy of Twin Farms.
Twin Farms (continued)
Coolest Amenity: There are a lot of perks at Twin Farms, but one of the coolest is the chef’s table, which can be booked for a private dinner in Chef Nathan Rich’s kitchen. The special meal, with wine pairings, can be for up to four guests and is only available certain days of the week. Make sure you add that to your reservation.
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Photo: Courtesy of The Peninsula Hong Kong.
The Peninsula Hong Kong
Where: At the southern tip of the Kowloon Peninsula in Hong Kong (hence the name).
Why You Should Stay: Built in 1928, The Peninsula is Hong Kong’s oldest hotel and one of the world’s most iconic properties. Its rooms have a timeless yet modern design and unparalleled views of the city (be sure to book a Deluxe Harbor View Suite or, if you’re feeling really extravagant, The Marco Polo Suite). The hotel has an expansive spa, several renowned restaurants, and its own bespoke helicopter, which you can book for VIP adventures called “Journeys of Peninsula.”
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Photo: Courtesy of The Peninsula Hong Kong.
The Peninsula Hong Kong (continued)
Coolest Amenity:
The luxe rooftop swimming pool, with its panoramic views, is a huge plus, but you’ll likely appreciate the LED touchscreen panels around every room, which control everything from the lights to the temperature. You can use the screens, which are custom to the Peninsula brand, to order room service, put up a “Do Not Disturb” notice, or close the blinds — which is as impressive as it is entertaining.
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Photo: Courtesy of Amangiri.
Where: In the remote desert of Canyon Point, Utah, almost totally secluded from the real world.
Why You Should Stay: Aman resorts are notorious for their luxury, and Amangiri is an iconic destination located in the middle of nowhere. It’s considered the place to go for relaxation and detox, so you’ll want to add it to your list. It’s not just about sitting by the pool, either. At Amangiri, you can head out on a sunrise hot-air balloon ride, dig for fossils, kayak on Lake Powell, or horseback-ride through the desert. The resort notes that “No request is too great, and no detail too small,” so your wish is their command. Plus, the minimalist suites are super Instagram-worthy.
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Photo: Courtesy of Amangiri.
Amangiri (continued)
Coolest Amenity: The hotel’s expansive spa is inspired by the healing traditions of the Navajo and the four elements of earth, wind, fire, and water (and is the central aspect of visiting this hotel). Book a flotation therapy treatment, which will help you completely unwind, and enjoy the plunge pool’s serene desert views.
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Photo: Courtesy of Minaret Station.
Minaret Station
Where: In Minaret Bay, a town located in the wilderness of New Zealand’s South Island.
Why You Should Stay: Minaret Station’s luxury Alpine Lodge is accessible only by helicopter (so you know it’s exclusive) and gives you access to a vast array of outdoor activities, such as hunting and fishing. The rustic-chic chalet rooms include complimentary mini bars, surround sound systems, and two decks. All your meals are also included (as well as local wines). The best part is the array of helicopter activities that can be done, from scenic flights to heli-hiking. Can’t say that for most hotels.
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Photo: Courtesy of Minaret Station.
Minaret Station (continued)
Coolest Amenity: Minaret Station’s best feature is its views, which are best enjoyed sitting in your private in-deck hot tub. There, you can gaze at the stars while relaxing — and try to forget the fact that you’ll eventually have to go back to your real life.
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Finland Photo: Courtesy of Hotel Kakslauttanen.
Hotel Kakslauttanen
Where: In Saariselkä, a town in Finnish Lapland located 250 kilometers north of the Arctic Circle.
Why You Should Stay: Anyone who has seen a photo of Hotel Kakslauttanen’s glass igloo rooms wants desperately to stay at the hotel. The idea is that you can experience the Northern Lights and starry skies while lying in the warmth of your bed. If you go in the winter, which is the best time to see the Northern Lights, the hotel offers a slew of cool experiences like dog-sledding, snow tank safaris, skiing, and ice fishing. They have two onsite restaurants (one of which has a glass igloo bar) and the hotel provides transportation to and from the airport for all guests.
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Finland Photo: Courtesy of Hotel Kakslauttanen.
Hotel Kakslauttanen (continued)
Coolest Amenity: You know when your parents told you that Santa isn’t real, and it ruined your childhood? Well, it turns out that he is real and he lives just minutes from this hotel. You can walk to Santa’s House from Hotel Kakslauttanen and pay him a visit (by appointment only).
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Photo: Courtesy of Conrad Maldives.
Conrad Maldives Rangali Island
Where: On the exotic island of Rangali in the Maldives.
Why You Should Stay: Book a Water Villa and sleep in a luxury beach hut situated directly over the clear, blue ocean, checking a massive box on your travel bucket list. The villas, connected to the beach by wooden walkways, have private decks, outdoor whirlpools, and “floating beds” that display the ocean from all four sides. The hotel has a dive center as well as access to a variety of watersports, a spa, a shopping center, and the possibility of snorkeling with whale sharks. The resort also has several restaurants and bars, so you’ll basically never want to leave. Ever.
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Photo: Courtesy of Conrad Maldives.
Conrad Maldives Rangali Island(continued)
Coolest Amenity: One of the hotel’s restaurants, Ithaa Undersea Restaurant, is literally located under the ocean. At your table, you can look up and see the fish and coral reefs through the domed glass ceiling. It’s known as the “world’s first all-glass undersea restaurant” (we promise it’s perfectly safe) and offers six-course dinners of European cuisine.
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Photo: Courtesy of Hotel Le Sirenuse.
Hotel Le Sirenuse
Where: Along the Amalfi Coast in Positano, Italy.
Why You Should Stay: Le Sirenuse is a historic hotel nestled in the cliffs along the Amalfi Coast, and it's a favorite of celebrity guests. The hotel, which has a pool, spa, and gym, is peaceful, lavish, and full of classic charm. The rooms look over the water (go ahead and splurge on the Two Bedroom Suite Sea View) and have handmade tile floors and vaulted ceilings. The hotel also offers a seaside dining experience at its Champagne & Oyster Bar, and will serve up Mediterranean fare at its Michelin-starred La Sponda restaurant.
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Photo: Courtesy of Hotel Le Sirenuse.
Hotel Le Sirenuse (continued)
Coolest Amenity: Le Sirenuse has its own boat, the Sant'Antonio, a wooden ship that can take up to 12 people on excursions around the nearby coastline — all for free. The ship sails daily from June through September, so be sure to visit the hotel during the summer months to take full advantage. Plus, if you book one of the suite rooms, the hotel will arrange for you to set out on its vintage, wooden speedboat, the Riva Aquarama Special.
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Photo: Getty Images..
Burj Al Arab Jumeriah
Where: Along the Arabian Gulf coast in the UAE’s wealthy city of Dubai.
Why You Should Stay: The Burj Al Arab Jumeriah has been voted the world’s “most luxurious hotel,” so you’ll obviously want to book a room to see for yourself. The hotel is all about privacy, with a check-in desk on every floor and a team of personal butlers who are at your service. The rooms are notably opulent, with gold accents everywhere, and you’ll feel like a queen (or king) as you soak in the massive marble bathtubs. The hotel’s iconic terrace houses two pools, a custom beach, and a restaurant — and the spa, with its high views of the sea, is just as lavish as you’d expect.
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Photo: Getty Images.
Burj Al Arab Jumeriah(continued)
Coolest Amenity:
Have you always wanted to zoom through the streets in an Aston Martin? What about a Lamborghini? The hotel’s Dream Car Rental service will pair you with your ideal ride. Or, if you’d prefer to be driven around in style, the hotel has a fleet of chauffeured Rolls Royces and BMWs.
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Photo: Paul Cooper/REX/Shutterstock.
Hotel Plaza Athenee
Where: Paris, France
Why You Should Stay: The Hotel Plaza Athenee is a favorite of fashion bloggers, so you’ve certainly admired photos of the beautiful exterior and impressive lobby before this. The sumptuous property is the height of French luxury, and its location near all the designer shops will be dangerous for your wallet. The hotel prides itself on its service, which means you can essentially have anything you want. There is a pillow menu to select your sleeping pillow, personal trainers, a dedicated footwear service, and custom strollers for those who are arriving with small children. So think of something you want, and they’ll have it ready for you upon your arrival into your posh guest room or suite.
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Photo: Paul Cooper/REX/Shutterstock.
Hotel Plaza Athenee (continued)
Coolest Amenity:
The spa and beauty treatments at the Dior Institut, located in the hotel, are worth the trip. The Institut refers to its treatments as “haute-couture,” and that’s the level of care and expertise you can expect to enjoy. Your skin will never look so good again.
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Photo: Courtesy of Viña Vik.
Viña Vik
Where: In Millahue, Chile on the VIK vineyard, a two-hour drive from Santiago.
Why You Should Stay: Viña Vik bills itself as an “avant-guard retreat and wine spa” and if that sounds like your dream, then you should add it to your travel bucket list. The hotel offers its guests private wine tastings, horseback rides through the vineyards, mountain biking, and access to the spa, which involves treatments that incorporate the VIK grapes. There is also an infinity pool, fitness center, and sauna, and the rooms have insane views of the Chilean landscape through the massive windows. All the rooms in the hotel are suites, but if you want to go big, try the VIK Master Suite.
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Photo: Courtesy of Viña Vik.
Viña Vik (continued)
Coolest Amenity:
The wine. It may sound obvious, but the VIK wine, which you can see being made adjacent to the hotel, is worth the trip. The hotel’s wine experts can teach you all you need to know and will pair the wines with Chilean dishes for every meal.
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Photo: Courtesy of The Oberoi Udaivilas.
The Oberoi Udaivilas
Where: On the bank of Lake Pichola in Udaipur, India.
Why You Should Stay: If you book a suite at The Oberoi Udaivilas, you will have access to your own private pool, as well as incredible lake views and a private courtyard where you can enjoy a glass of wine. The resort is all about the luxury experience, so its spa and restaurants are top-notch and the decor throughout the hotel is opulent and indulgent. The hotel’s main restaurant, Udaimahal, offers a “lavish feast” in the evenings, specializing in signature Indian dishes, so you definitely won’t go home hungry.
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Photo: Getty Images.
The Oberoi Udaivilas(continued)
Coolest Amenity
: You’ll want to book lunch on the lake, where you can have a meal while cruising on a small boat. The hotel offers several courses of a chef-prepared meal, as well as tea and coffee that are brewed on the boat.
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Photo: Courtesy of Hotel Ubud Hanging Gardens.
Hanging Gardens of Bali
Where: Near the jungle city of Ubud, Indonesia, overlooking the Ayung River.
Why You Should Stay: Book a private villa situated in the Hanging Gardens, which were built to create an authentic experience in the Balinese jungle. There is an extensive spa menu, and many of the treatments take place alongside the river and outside in the jungle. The hotel’s restaurants serve what they call “Art cuisine,” and guests can book something called the Romantic Temple Dinner, which is set in “a sacred and magical location” and followed by a walk and purification ritual with a local mangku and a Traditional Balinese Blessing ritual. It’s the sort of place where you’ll want to ditch your phone, your computer, and any connection to the outside world.
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Photo: Courtesy of Hotel Ubud Hanging Gardens.
Hanging Gardens of Bali(continued)
Coolest Amenity:
This might sound basic, but the resort’s Twin-Tiered Cascading Pool has been awarded the distinction of the “World’s Best Swimming Pool,” and you’ll probably agree. The pool, which has two levels, floats over the jungle, so you can literally go swimming in the treetops.
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Photo: Courtesy of Constance Le Prince Maurice.
Constance Le Prince Maurice
Where: In the town of Poste de Flacq, on the African island nation of Mauritius.
Why You Should Stay: Mauritius has a lot of enviable resorts, most of them located along the ocean. But this one is an especially luxurious, intimate property that will leave you relaxed and happy. The rooms, designed with Feng Shui principles, are soothing and luxuriant, and you can even book one of the hotel’s 12 villas to house you during your stay. You can get involved in watersports or just lay by one of the hotel’s pools, and there’s also a massive golf course.
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Photo: Courtesy of Constance Le Prince Maurice.
Constance Le Prince Maurice(continued)
Coolest Amenity:
Bookworms will love the resort’s library, which houses a selection of fiction and non-fiction books, as well as games, newspapers, and tea and coffee. You can also bring your laptop and enjoy free Wi-Fi while relaxing in a cozy chair.
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Photo: Courtesy of Callistoga Ranch.
Calistoga Ranch
Where: In the heart of Napa, Northern California’s wine country.
Why You Should Stay: This luxury retreat offers the best way to experience Napa, from its restorative spa offerings to the easy access to all of the region’s signature wines. The property is made up of lodges, so you’ll feel secluded and relaxed in your own space, and every room has an outdoor rain shower, wet bar, and in-room iPad. The hotel has a private restaurant called The Lakehouse, which offers local food (and an extensive wine list) with a view of Lake Lommel. Calistoga Ranch will also create a private dining experience for you in case you don’t want to leave your lodge — and you might not.
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Photo: Courtesy of Callistoga Ranch.
Calistoga Ranch (continued)
Coolest Amenity:
Have you ever wanted to know how to blend wine? The Ranch will arrange for you to take a personal wine-blending class on the property and will even let you take home a bottle of your own creation. That’s the sort of souvenir you’ll treasure forever (or at least until you drink it).