The best hotels of the world
There are many opinions about how to be a luxury hotel. What makes the hotel so? Historic building and tradition? Architectural beauty? Designer fashion? Sverchkova? Unimaginable price? Unique natural landscape? Unforgettable experience?
This book is an attempt to tell about the best hotels in the world. The most expensive, most famous, most beautiful and certainly the most convenient. And not just to tell but to give readers the opportunity to see them through the eyes of the modern travellers: experienced, sophisticated and professional as can be only journalists, including those working in the publishing house “Kommersant”.
Hotels, which will be discussed (as, indeed, those who wrote about them), are very different. So we tried to break them into groups. Turned out to be seven groups. Accordingly the book in seven chapters.
The first Chapter – “a Classic of the genre” is the story of “old giants”, “the elders”, the “deans” of the world of hotels. And since many travellers believe that a luxury hotel can only be described as the Grand hotel located in the heart of the European metropolis, it is primarily European hotels, and above all Paris. Ritz, Le Meurice, Le Bristol – inhabited museums: the gold, stucco, huge, with a patina mirror, gastronomic restaurants with mnogochislennymi prestigious hotel and restaurant guide “Michelin”, the winter gardens and marble statues. And legendary guests.
Is it convenient to live here? Yes, if you agree to stand in long queues for Breakfast at the Ritz. Yes, if you agree days and nights to see in the corridors of Le Bristol someone’s dark guards, hung headphones. After all the guests inhabited the museums – that Gabrielle Chanel (Ritz) and Vladimir Putin (Le Bristol), and the Spanish king Alfonso XIII (Le Meurice). Grand hotels is a luxury that gives a feel close to history.
In the second Chapter – “Fashion & Fusion” – we will talk about the modern hotels not only luxurious, but also fashionable. Each of them has something “cool”. The Gleneagles Hotel in Scotland is famous for rabbits, whiskey and the famous guests, and in the Bayerischer Hof in Munich stayed the Beatles. From the Grand hotels they are distinguished by one thing: this is the heroes of recent history.
The third Chapter is called “the discreet charm of the design.” Some believe that to grasp the true breath of modernity is possible only in a designer hotel. But designers sometimes alubat this… the Author of these lines, if you stay at design hotel Palaffite in the Swiss city of neuchâtel, spent 40 minutes to find the room in a toilet stall. To avoid more embarrassment, I had to settle for less: call to reception.
The fourth Chapter – “rural idyll” – a story about luxury, which can be enjoyed only by resting in a tiny charming hotel, located away from busy airports, heavy traffic and rumble of big cities. Many people spend big money to sleep in a blessed country-side, where the ringing of the electric alarm clock replaces the cry of a young chicken, ‘ for example, at the Four Seasons hotel in Hampshire or in the “house in the Tuscan countryside” (Villa Arceno).
The fifth Chapter is called “body and soul”. After all, the luxury of beauty involves not only the hotel but the guests. Rather, the ability to take care of the beauty (and health, of course). Therefore, according to many, a luxury vacation – a holiday in the SPA-centers: yoga, meditation, massages and a gym. the complex according to Joseph Pilates. Spirit, body, figure, proper breathing, posture. Plus vitamins, thermal water and healthy diet. Hotel Fonteverde in Tuscany invites you to enjoy the thermal, with the mysterious healing waters of plankton from its own sources. In Evian on lake Geneva mineral water is so warm, nasty, but with a terribly high content incredibly useful salts for the most part, drinking, and strictly for hours, of special porcelain mugs. And it seems that from the corner of the hospital Peeps strict doctor in round gold pince-nez, with a small beard, in a white robe. And then you understand that the real luxury – as much as possible not to meet with the doctors.
Hurrah for the sun! Long live life on a small island, in a rickety wooden bungalows with a thatched roof! Or on an island, not-too-small (for example, in Cyprus, Mallorca or Madeira). Sunrises and sunsets on the sea, beaches, diving… And warm, warm, warm! And around – water, water, water, sea waves or the surface of the lake… the Sixth Chapter of the book is called “the Island and lake of luxury”.
A seventh and final Chapter – “…And some of the exotic” – devoted to hotels, for the guests whose main goal is the thrill. Because many are looking for luxury in the exotic, new experiences, constant change of impressions. India, China, Eastern and southern coast of Africa – where else to find this? It abound in the hotel AnandaSPA in the Indian Himalayas, in the “Chinese Venice” – Macau, in tents Saskwa Lodge in the Serengeti national Park in Tanzania.
Of course, our classification is very subjective. However, any classification is conditional. Hotels “for body and soul” can be and the Grand hotels, among the “exotic” can be found and designer, of in the depths of the countryside can be very modern and very expensive. Luxury and expect it to be as diverse as the people for whom they are intended. On the most-most-most hotels you can talk endlessly. But the thing is that the ideal of a luxury hotel just isn’t there. At least because there is no perfect guest.
A classic of the genre
Sacher is, first, cake second, the hotel and thirdly, people.
Once upon a time in a fairy-tale Kingdom called Austria-Hungary decided to find out what is the main treasure of the national cuisine. In the list of applicants included and Apple strudel and Hungarian goulash, and the Wiener schnitzel.
But erupted serious scandal: it turned out, almost forgot about the Sacher cake. Perhaps because of the names of the inventors Apfelstrudel, Weiner Schnitzel and Gulash history has not preserved, but the name of Franz Sacher written in chocolate letters.
In 1832, the “coachman of Europe”, Austrian Chancellor Prince von Metternich was the first to taste this delicacy.
Who made this stunning, award-winning cake? Tell me the name of this man! – cried a great politician.
– Sacher! – was his answer.
Young chef became famous on that day on the entire Empire. So his name on the facade of the 130-year-old Vienna hotel recalls the founder of a dynasty of confectioners and hoteliers. And although the last decades of the hotel (founded by the son of a famous pastry chef) owned by the family of Elizabeth Gurtler, only here have the right to sell the real one, the only, the Original Sacher-Torte, which in Soviet times was a sign us evil copies of cooking “Budapest”. Which is not surprising, if you know that the recipe for this cake is kept secret.
One of the main historic hotels of Europe not in vain was called Hotel de l’opera – it is located next to the Vienna state Opera, and still prefer to stay here Opera stars and fans of Opera coming to the next Prime Minister. Other buildings are close, the Albertina Museum, the Manege of the Spanish riding school, the Belvedere is the most beautiful in the world (in my opinion) the Museum of art history – also from the category of must see.