Whilst the doors to most of the world’s hotels remain closed, why not get inspired by some of the best in hospitality design from the comfort of your home? Take a city break and explore the meeting place of Jimmy Hendrix, Nina Simone and other musical icons at London’s Hard Rock Hotel, bask in the sunshine on the deck of your own beachside villa in the Maldives, or feel your way through the slippery twists and turns of an ice hotel in Quebec. Whether it’s afternoon tea at The Ritz you crave, or a cold beer among the trees of your Treehouse balcony, our compilation of virtual hotel tours is here to provide you with a welcome escape to design inspiration utopia.
Treehouses at The Fish, Cotswolds
THE CONCEPT: Touting their magical treetop hideaways as one of the only childhood pleasures that can be taken into adulthood (albeit with a few adjustments for size), The Fish’s treehouse retreats combine rustic woodland charm with decadent luxury. Spacious decking areas with outdoor seating and heated wooden bathtubs wrap around the ballasts of sheltering Oak trees, slipping seamlessly into a soft natural palette or greens and rust orange inside the cabins.
THE DESIGNER: Hannah Lohan.
WHERE YOU’LL BE SLEEPING: Beneath the trees in a raised double bed overlooking the Worcestershire woodlands, or a cosy wooden bunkbed room, complete with woven blankets and choice of board games.
WHAT YOU’LL BE EATING: Enjoy a ‘proper Cotswold breakfast’ on your private treehouse balcony, or head to the ‘Feasting Deck’ for an alfresco barbecue feast, prepared by chefs on outdoor wood-fired ovens.
Explore the Treehouses at The Fish >>
Anantara Dhigu Maldives Resort, Maldives
THE CONCEPT: Further afield, across the crystal clear shores of the Indian Ocean, awaits the Anantara Dhigu Maldives. Anantara’s 110 villas exude tropical exoticism; rich woods feature throughout, offset by cooling white linens and vibrant blues. Parred back wooden over-water cabins and straw thatched beach villas combine with luxurious touches of outdoor waterfall showers, free-standing bathtubs and sumptuous soft furnishings. Ride the waves of the Indian Ocean with the Anantara Surf School, set sail on a dolphin-spotting adventure, or drift into bliss with the calming sound of waves beneath you at the over-water spa.
WHERE YOU’LL BE SLEEPING: Nestled in the lush garden courtyard of the Beach Villas, framed by swaying palms, or floating atop the gentle crystal clear waters of the lagoon, in an Over-Water Suite.
WHAT YOU’LL BE EATING: A choice of cuisines from every corner of the globe; Italian dining with a view at Terazzo, Thai food by the lagoon at Baan Huraa, modern Japanese cuisine at Origami, Maldivian classics at Spice Spoons, or poolside drinks and snacks at one of the island’s varied bars.
Lose yourself in a virtual tour of the whole island >>
Hotel Indigo, York
THE CONCEPT: An IHG boutique hotel, Hotel Indigo York is nestled in Yorkshire’s capital on Walmgate – a buzzy foodie destination within the city’s ancient walls. Winning the York Press People’s Award for its unique interiors, the hotel’s rooms are designed to reflect the history and chocolate heritage of York. Using local fabrics and furnishings designed and crafted in Yorkshire, wall panels in the confectionary rooms resemble chocolate blocks, the lights are antique jelly moulds, and bright soft furnishings and cocoa colours echo the city’s confectionary history.
THE DESIGNER: Interior design by Wakefield-based studio, Matthews Mee.
WHERE YOU’LL BE SLEEPING: In one of a selection of luxurious double rooms, uniquely designed to reflect the neighbourhood’s colourful and varied history. A stone’s throw from the hustle and bustle of the historic city centre.
WHERE YOU’LL BE EATING: Hearty and traditional Yorkshire grub in the delicious front of house restaurant, No. 88 Walmgate, accompanied by a selection of local craft beers and ales. Indulge in complimentary locally-made chocolates, and tuck into a full Yorkshire breakfast when you wake. All served with a dash of warm Yorkshire hospitality.
Virtually explore the award-winning décors of Hotel Indigo >>
Hotel De Glace, Quebec
THE CONCEPT: The only one of its kind in North America, the Hôtel de Glace (Ice Hotel) changes theme each winter. With walls entirely moulded in genuine ice, offering ‘the intimacy of an igloo’, guests can choose from a variety of themed suites, complete with snow sculptures. With a lifespan of just 3 months, the Hotel de Glace is built by a different team each year, taking approximately a month and half to construct, and around 50 pairs of hands.
WHERE YOU’LL BE SLEEPING: In one of 51 double beds, all made of ice with solid wood bases, topped with a comfortable mattress. A cosy sleeping bag, isolating bed sheet, and pillow will be delivered to the room before bedtime.
WHAT YOU’LL BE EATING: Having moved site to Valcartier Vacation Village, a large family resort in Saint-Gabriel-de-Valcartier, in 2017, guests at the Hotel de Glace can take a stroll to a selection of on-site bars, restaurants and cafes. Cocktails served in ice ‘glasses’ are also offered on arrival.
Tour the icy corridors of the Hotel De Glace >>
Hotel Zetta, San Francisco
THE CONCEPT: Located in the heart of San Francisco’s famously cool South of Market district, Hotel Zetta offers fashionable accommodations to culture-seeking out-of-towners, style-focused business travellers, and local professionals. With the hotel’s 116 rooms decked out with oversized butcher-block desks and high-tech conveniences, including Amazon Alexa voice assistants powered by Volara and smart TVs with Netflix access, work-hard, play-hard travellers can customize their in-room workspace. A state-of-the-art urban enclave.
THE DESIGNER: Dawson Design Associates.
WHERE YOU’LL BE SLEEPING: Choose between the Zetta Suite, complete with sleeper sofa, ‘wet bar’ with sink and ping pong table, or Well + Away Rooms, including Peleton exercise bike, Muse meditation headband and cushion, Amazon Alexa voice assistant and espresso machine.
WHAT YOU’LL BE EATING: A taste of home at The Cavalier, the restaurant adjacent to Hotel Zetta’s lobby, offering an unabashed Anglophilic menu that celebrates British-inspired classics for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. For something more authentic to the States, head to The Salvage and Rescue (S&R) Lounge in the hotel lobby. THE S&R Lounge blends a traditional Manhattan lobby bar with the ‘atmosphere of a Silicon Valley startup’, complemented by a full menu and outstanding cocktail program.
Take the virtual tour >>
The Ritz, London
THE CONCEPT: Arguably the most famous hotel in London, The Ritz has been welcoming guests into the lap of five-star luxury since 1906. Steeped in more than 113 years of history and the finest of British traditions, no expense has been spared on its opulent interiors and lavish furnishings. Originally designed largely by London and Paris based designers in the Louis XVI style, The Ritz is world-renowned for its characteristic atmosphere of decadent luxury combined with elegant restraint. Though an overnight stay may be beyond many of our budgets, The Ritz is now offering the next best thing via a realistic virtual tour of many of the hotel’s lesser known lavish interior spaces.
THE DESIGNER: Waring & Gallow were responsible for many of the fine design work of The Ritz London’s interiors.
WHERE YOU’LL SLEEP: In a spacious suite decorated in the classic Ritz Louis XVI style, with adjoining living space and ornate marble en suite bathroom, overlooking the scenes of surrounding Piccadilly. Guests can expect round-the-clock 24hr room service, and a morning delivery of their choice of complimentary newspaper.
WHAT YOU’LL EAT: Enjoy a selection of finely cut sandwiches, freshly baked scones with Cornish clotted cream and strawberry preserve, and a mouth-watering range of exquisitely presented pastries and teacakes in The Palm Court tea room. All replenished on request, and served alongside a choice of 18 different types of loose-leaf tea, or Champagne. At dinner, descend to the Michelin-starred Ritz Restaurant for organic beef from the Cornish moors, succulent lobsters from South West Scotland, and tender lamb from the Lake District. All within a setting of towering marble columns, sparkling chandeliers and soaring floor to ceiling windows, overlooking the calm oasis of Green Park.
Explore the lesser-known rooms of The Ritz, London >>
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