A new batch of hotel openings is capturing that elusive optimism of sun-drenched holidays we are all lusting after right now. Here are five hotels to put on your wish list for when we can travel again…

W ALGARVE, PORTUGAL

What’s the vibe?

This summer, W Hotels is bringing its signature ‘urban glam’ aesthetic to Albufeira, Portugal. The cliffside W Algarve hotel has ocean-facing suites, a standout Away spa and private residences, with bright and contemporary décor. Designed by the renowned studio AB Concept – founded by Ed Ng and Terence Ngan – it also incorporates work by local Portuguese craft studios, giving a nod to the destination, with unique crochet and mosaic pieces, pottery and ceramics and local stone used throughout.

Food for thought?

Take a seat at Market Kitchen – an authentic Algarve restaurant, inspired by local Portuguese markets, with a focus on seafood. There is also Paper Moon for modern Italian cuisine. Meanwhile, a dedicated Champagne bar – Air – could mean that the bubbles will literally go to your head – with its cliffside position. While the Sea Sky Bar also has panoramic views, this time set to the soundtrack of international DJs.

Original features?

Luxury is taken to the next level in the hotel’s ‘Extreme WOW Suites’ which boast their own rooftop terraces. Here, you can retreat to your own garden, surrounding an elevated lounge, DJ booth, bar area and an infinity pool. Meanwhile, the bedroom design is more low-key with a natural feel, inspired by the destination’s famous beauty spot, Benagil Cave, and picturesque Algarve fishing villages.

Destination intel?

The hotel is near Albufeira, which is known for its seaside charm with pretty beaches and colourful fishing boats. A little further along the coast is the vibrant Vilamoura, with its marina and buzzy restaurants. For an insight into the region’s history and culture, guests can venture inland to find historic towns with cobbled streets, bustling markets and peaceful orange and lemon groves. Here, Silves, Loulé and Monchique are ripe for adventures.

Book: walgarveresidences.com

BODRUM LOFT, TURKEY

What’s the vibe?

Opening in May 2021, Bodrum Loft – a super-luxe, all-villa property – has a focus on design and sustainability, with nature at its heart. With a laid-back, village-feel, the property is found amid sandalwood, olive, laurel and citrus trees, all painstakingly preserved during construction to limit any adverse environmental effect. Istanbul-based Tabanlioglu Architects has designed adaptable spaces, based around courtyards and with the notion of bringing the outdoors inside. Villas feature views over the bay, and have rustic, wooden details and local, hand-painted mosaics to give character and life to each space.

Food for thought?

There are several dining experiences on offer. Found under the shade of olive trees, Loft Elia, serves an Aegean menu, created by chef Yilmaz Ozturk. An authentic Italian Restaurant is located by the beach, and a Sushi Restaurant serves traditional Japanese delicacies. In addition, authentic Turkish food is also available at the beach area.

Original features?

Natural detailing is seen throughout, with the villas seemingly blending into the landscape, both with their positioning and the natural rocks used in their construction. A dedication to authenticity is also key – for instance, the coating on the rocks was prepared using an ancient Aegean recipe of hay and olive oil, applied with traditional methods. Green roofs have also been used to collect rainwater which is then recycled through a water filtration system and used in irrigation.

Destination intel?

The resort’s private concierge team is on hand to help guests discover the island’s hidden gems, including local eateries, exclusive boutiques and historical sites. Guests can also use the hotel’s private boat shuttle to access secret bays and beaches. There’s also a spa with indoor and open-air massage rooms, private beach deck and fitness centre offering private training sessions, yoga and pilates. 

Book: bodrumloft.com.tr

DESTINO PACHA MYKONOS, GREEECE

What’s the vibe?

It’s glamour all the way with the latest opening from the Pacha Group on the Greek island of Mykonos – the first from the group outside of Spain. Destino Pacha Mykonos, opening in June 2021, has just 34 rooms and six suites, and combines traditional Mykonian architecture – think: elegant tiled floors and white-washed walls – with a contemporary design, with natural wood, stone and linen.

Food for thought?

The all-day Mediterranean restaurant serves up locally-sourced ingredients, featuring plenty of freshly-caught seafood. 

Original features?

It’s all about the the famous Pacha pool scene with its buzzy restaurant, lounge and bar. Playing host to an array of artists and performers, guests can expect a mix of world-renowned DJs and local talent – the idea is to soak-up the unique spirit of Ibiza, Greek island style. For downtime, the hotel will also offer a choice of wellness experiences, including soothing massages and rooftop yoga.

Destination intel?

Launching alongside Destino this summer will be Lío Mykonos. After the success of Lío’s pop ups in London and Sardinia, the one-of-a-kind immersive cabaret dining experience will land permanently in Mykonos town. Curated by Pacha’s creative director Joan Gracia, revellers can expect a unique and surprising display of burlesque, circus performance and gastronomy to come together to stimulate the senses.

Book: destinopachamykonos.com

 

PALAZZO FIUGGI, ROME, ITALY

What’s the vibe?

Carved out of the once-iconic Grand Hotel Palazzo della Fonte, the new Palazzo Fiuggi (owned by the Forte Village Resort team in Sardinia), has been many years in the making, following the restoration of the noted property. It may be found in an historic building, but Palazzo Fiuggi is also a wellness medical retreat with its eyes on the future – inspired by the latest cutting-edge wellness knowledge around. With a team of leading experts, guests can expect five different bespoke programmes to treat body, soul and mind. 

Food for thought?

Not surprisingly, the culinary offering is uber-healthy, but that’s not to say it skimps on taste. After all, it has been created by the three-starred Michelin chef, Heinz Beck, who has a degree in Natural Bioenergies. Guests will receive healthy, personalised menus, using natural and locally-sourced ingredients, unique to each of the five programmes on offer.

Original features?

The retreat takes a 360-degree approach to health, with each guests receiving a personalised programme. Following diagnostic assessments, the team of expert scientists and doctors, craft a bespoke portfolio of medical services, wellness treatments and holistic therapies for each guest. The spa will also use some of the most innovative technologies available – from retinal scanning to hydro therapies using the natural water from Fiuggi; from touchless treatment experiences to Icaros virtual reality fitness machines.

Destination intel?

Palazzo Fiuggi is found in the stunning town of Fiuggi, just under an hour away from Rome, and is set in a eight-and-a-half hectare estate, with pools, gardens, woodland and lake. The town is famous for its celebrated mineral waters known for their unique healing powers with the spa celebrating this heritage. 

Book: palazzofiuggi.com

SANTORINI SKY, GREECE

What’s the vibe?

Capturing the best in boutique luxury, Santorini Sky is an exclusive project, made up of just eight private villas. Carved into Santorini’s highest peak – Prophet Elias Mountain, which rises some 2,000 feet above sea level – each property offers glorious views over the Aegean and the best of contemporary design. This is James Bond territory, with the villas featuring cutting-edge contemporary architecture by renowned Santorini architect Vassilis Zorzos. Seamlessly blending into the landscape, Vassilis has used local materials wherever possible – from limestone excavated when building to local Greek marble in bathrooms and kitchens, while indigenous plants make up the extensive landscaping. Each of the properties also have indoor and outdoor showers, and a private terrace with jacuzzi plunge pool. 

Food for thought?

The experience on offer can be as private or as tailored as you’d like. Guests are given the option to customise their holiday before they arrive, selecting from a range of locally-sourced products and services, including chefs to experience authentic Greek meals and wines. 

Destination intel?

Located in the centre of the island, away from the often-overcrowded main tourist spots, this feels tucked away and super-private. In fact, while they are secluded, the villas are still just a five-minute drive from the winding streets, local shops and famous tavernas of Pyrgos. Throughout is a true dedication to sustainability and locality with eco-friendly Greek bath products in bathrooms to rugs made from recycled water bottles. There’s also a lush fruit and vegetable garden for the freshest, seasonal breakfasts.

Book: santorinisky.com