Now in its 20th year, Tripadvisor’s annual Travelers' Choice® Awards for Hotels reveals the most-loved hotels by travellers in 2021
Here, we explore the top 5 hotels in Europe, from Turkey to Greece, to Switzerland.
1. Ikos Aria, Kefalos, Kos, Greece Described by travellers as “an absolutely beautiful hotel in the most stunning of locations”, Ikos Aria is a five-star resort stretching over a whopping 47 acres of land along the gorgeous Kos coastline with access to landscaped gardens, a wide sandy Blue Flag beach, and crystal-clear seas, from which you can paddleboard across to a nearby islet. Choose from rooms, suites or bungalows, each with a private terrace or balcony, while all Deluxe suites and bungalows come with an impressive private pool and access to a private beach area. The resort features extensive on-site facilities, including a spa, fitness studio, and multiple pool areas, not to mention complimentary luxuries include drinks by the pool, paddleboard use and windsurfing sessions. Dining options are prolific with eight restaurants, including three led by Michelin-starred chefs – Fresco, an Italian led by Ettore Botrini, Ouzo featuring a Greek menu designed by Lefteris Lazarou, and French restaurant Provence brought to life by Anthony Jehanno.
2. Romance Istanbul Hotel, Istanbul, Turkey Loved by travellers for its perfect location and friendly hospitality, this boutique hotel in Istanbul sits on a hill that connects the old city with the Golden Horn waterfront area in Eminonu and is perfectly placed to discover the city’s hotspots, with a 10-minute walk to the Archaeology Museum, Topkapi Palace, and Basilica Cistern. The hotel’s custom-made styling takes inspiration from Istanbul’s Ottoman past – think ornate, period gilded-wood furniture, heavy drapes, floral wallpaper, velvet upholstery, chandeliers and ornate French balconies. Rooms, which range from compact City rooms to the supersize Romance Suite, feature King-sized beds, Turkish rugs, French balconies, espresso machines, marble floors, rainfall showers, and complimentary Turkish delight. The spa is a must-visit with its hammam, wave machine pool and Happy Hour discounts, while the Romance restaurant, which offers Turkish cuisine, delivers complimentary coffee and cakes during afternoons.
3. The Omnia, Zermatt, Switzerland Bond-like cave entrance. Indoor/outdoor spa. Sensational service. Unbelievable schnitzel. These are just some of the reasons why travellers love The Omnia. Located in the Swiss Alps, perched on a wooden ledge high above central Zermatt, this multi award-winning boutique hotel has been designed by New York architect Ali Tayar in the style of a contemporary mountain lodge. Rooms and suites, of which there are just 30, are spacious and minimalist, yet warm and cosy, with some offering sweeping views of the Matterhorn, and all delivering luxuries like memory-foam mattresses, sizeable balconies, power showers, handmade truffles, and Aesop toiletries. Wellness takes centre stage here with a spa that boasts a variety of saunas and steam rooms, a relaxation area with heated beds, large pool, and a hot, marble whirlpool with mountain views. The wellness theme continues through to dining with the Michelin-starred Omnia restaurant taking a vegetarian first approach, delivering innovative Alpine dishes that reflect seasonal produce. Among the excursions on offer are sightseeing helicopter tours, while facilities include a cavern club, drinks terrace, boardroom, and DVD rental from more than 700 titles.
4. Kayakapi Premium Caves – Cappadocia, Urgup, Turkey Cave dwelling has reached luxurious heights with Kayakapi Premium Caves, a collection of 29 stunningly retrofitted rooms that have been carved into the soft stone cliffs of the Kayakapi neighbourhood, in Goreme National Park, high in the hills of Urgrup. A 15-minute downhill walk takes guests to the town below. While rooms are caves, this is no stone age living – think underfloor heating, HD LED screens, stone bathtubs, wood-burning fireplaces, and some even have heated pools, private elevators and balconies offering spectacular mountain and valley views. Facilities are plentiful, among these are a stunning spa with traditional Turkish Hammam offering the signature Ottoman Massage, outdoor mosaic tile pool, fitness centre, wine cellar, bistro and restaurant.
5. BLESS Hotel Madrid, Spain Indulgence is the name of the game at BLESS Hotel, which sits in the upmarket Salamanca district of Madrid, among the city’s finest shops, cafes and restaurants. Rooms and suites are more spacious than most, with a mid-century, art deco styling, and features that include bathtubs (some have tubs in the bedroom), fireplaces and pillow menus. Some rooms have large balconies, others surround a courtyard garden with a decked terrace and plunge pool. Among personalised luxuries are a pillow menu and a bath butler who can tailor your bath to your mood. A bijoux basement spa centres around a hydromassage pool and offers a variety of treatments, while a gym delivers both personal trainers and a virtual training room. Dining is especially standout, with all food on offer overseen by Martin Berastegui, who has an incredible 10 Michelin stars at his own restaurants. Fun is also encouraged with the offer of a bowling alley and cocktail bar.
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