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Hilton London Bankside – A luxury modern hotel in London City Centre.

We recently had the privilege of staying at Hilton London Bankside for three nights in a king deluxe room.

The ambience of the hotel is warm and welcoming. We were delighted to enter our room and find a complimentary drink accompanied by delectable macaroons – my sweet tooth is still dreaming of them.

We immediately felt at home, especially since the bed was extremely comfortable and plush, we had such a good night’s sleep. The bathroom was every inch of modern perfection, with interesting colours and lighting to help one relax after a day of exploring the extensive sights of London.

We were also fortunate to have access to the Executive Lounge which was very organized and had amazing food and drinks available. With their super-fast Wi-Fi this was a great place to catch up on some work.

Hilton London Bankside has a perfect location in London with many cultural and historical sites within walking distance. The Concierge surprised us with his tips on how best to navigate the area, as well as assistance in finding some interesting nearby attractions.

With a fitness centre and beautiful indoor pool, this modern contemporary hotel has everything to offer. Our time at Hilton London Bankside was such perfection, we can only say that we highly recommend you choose this hotel for all round comfort and good memories from start to finish.

Reviewed by World Luxury Awards Representative, Shannon Langeveldt.

Book a stay at Hilton London Bankside: www.hilton.com/en/hotels/lonsbhi-hilton-london-bankside

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Pan Pacific London – a modern urban retreat in the heart of the City of London.

When in London we had the pleasure of spending a night at Pan Pacific London. We arrived to immediately feel embraced by the ambience and were impressed with the décor which was matched by the friendly and attentive staff who welcomed us.

My partner and I enjoyed the comfort of a beautiful en-suite deluxe room with a stunning view of the city. The room was super-modern with all the amenities at hand to make one feel at home. 

We chose to dine at the in-house restaurant, Straits Kitchen, which proved to be an experience we will never forget. The restaurant serves South East Asian food with dishes from Singapore. Our favourite was the variety of small plates, which included spring rolls, prawns and vegetables, to top it all off, we indulged in the Mandarin dessert which was absolutely delicious. 

My partner and I are both very keen on keeping up with our gym routines when travelling and this was undoubtedly the best gym I have ever seen in a hotel. The gym is fully equipped with the latest technologies and is clean and organized. We also took the opportunity to have an afternoon dip in the pool at the spa, it was extremely relaxing and the setting was amazing with an incredible view of the city. 

We will definitely return to Pan Pacific London on our next visit to London.

Reviewed by World Luxury Awards Representative, Shannon Langeveldt

Book a stay at Pan Pacific London: www.panpacific.com/en/booking/search.html?propertyCode=pplon

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Aquila Private Game Reserve & Spa – an experience in luxurious African hospitality…

My husband and I visited Aquila Private Game Reserve & Spa in September of this year, in a time where COVID-19 was, and still is, a big problem to all working in the hospitality industry.

We arrived on the Friday and had a welcome drink before checking in. Once checked in they gave us time options for when we would like to go on safari and then showed us to our room.

We were booked into one of the Premier Lodges. The room had a balcony with amazing views of the Game Reserve, we could even see some elephants roaming around from time to time. The room also had an en-suite bathroom, coffee and tea facilities, an in-room safe, a mini fridge and complimentary water.

The first night we watched the sunset on our balcony and then went to have dinner at the restaurant. The food throughout the weekend was amazing and the Aquila team took great precaution to keep guests safe and healthy during this time.

Our Saturday was spent relaxing by the swimming pool with some sparkling wine, thereafter we went on a sunset game drive. Our guide had the best stories and so much knowledge about the animals, he made our safari experience even better. We had a sundowner in the mountains before heading back.

We woke up early on Sunday morning to go on a sunrise game drive, it was very cold but so worth it. We had the best time at Aquila, it was very relaxing, and the safaris was an amazing experience.

Aquila is more than just an unforgettable wildlife experience, it is an experience in luxurious African hospitality, traditional culinary delights, service excellence and the restoration of pride to the indigenous people and the land.

Reviewed by World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative: Jana Stoman

To book a stay at Aquila Private Game Reserve & Spa: https://www.aquilasafari.com/

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O’Two Hotel – the perfect city escape…

O’Two is a new luxury boutique hotel situated in Cape Town, South Africa. The hotel offers breathtaking views of Cape Town’s Mouille Point area and offers panoramic views of Table Mountain and surrounds.

Upon arrival, my partner and I were served with a glass of champagne and received a small gift bag containing masks, sanitizer, and Lindt chocolates.

The friendly porter assisted us to their penthouse suite on the 7th floor and explained all the amenities to us. The suite had two interleading rooms, both offering a bathroom, lounge, terrace, and kitchenette.

Our beautiful suite.

The design of the suite was stunning, such attention to detail, the scented candles, unique décor, and an amazing view from our balcony.

We also received a chilled bottle of Moet & Chandon Champagne and strawberries, what a treat!

The smart TV had DSTV Now and Netflix, so we were thoroughly entertained throughout our three-night stay. We also ordered delicious pizzas from the in-room dining menu and enjoyed the fully stocked mini fridge and tea station.

O’ Two Hotel boasts a beautiful rooftop pool with sun loungers which is the perfect place to enjoy a summer’s day in Cape Town! There is a view of the ocean and on the opposite side a view of Table Mountain.

The hotel is located close to the city center offering numerous restaurants and bars. The V&A Waterfront and famous Cape Town attractions are all just a short taxi ride away.

Thank you O’Two for your amazing hospitality, I will always remember this trip.

Reviewed by World Luxury Hotel Award Representative Kayla Lourens

To book your city escape at O’Two Hotel:https://www.otwo.co.za/

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A grand stay at Waldhaus Sils Hotel…

The drive down to Sils was breathtaking as we descended into the verdant Engadin valley. The Waldhaus (“forest house”) is majestically perched in a forest above the delightful village of Sils, overlooking the valley and its many lakes.  As the hotel is at 1800m altitude, the air is crisp and warm, devoid of the coastal mugginess at this time of year.

On arrival, we were received with a friendly welcome from the family management and were presented with a beautiful book chronicling the fascinating history of the hotel and family since 1908.

The décor of the hotel has been purposely preserved as it was many years ago and exudes an old-world charm in the best tradition of luxury hotels of that era.

Our room consisted of a lounge with bathroom on level 1 and a spacious bedroom en-suite accessible via a quaint spiral staircase. Bathroom fittings were of a classic look and of top quality. The accommodation was scrupulously clean and maintained.

Guests can choose a variety of room genre furnishings and decorations eg contemporary, historic, classical etc. Indeed, some returning guests specify the genre of their choice when rebooking at the Waldhaus.

We were treated to a very special fine dining multi course dinner in the original wood paneled a la carte dining room. The enthusiastic sommelier let us experience a few of the excellent wines from the region drawn from their huge cellar selection while guiding us for food matching as a delicate compliment to the fine cuisine that was presented to us. A most enjoyable candle lit evening overlooking the forests stretching out before us.

After a peacefully silent sleep, we awoke at dawn and were greeted by a spectacular view from our windows of the valley and its lakes stretching to the far mountains in the distance.

The spectacular view from our room.

A special tour of the hotel was conducted by the family’s general manager and co-owner, a descendent of the original creator of the hotel, wherein he enlightened us of the rich history of the hotel.

Of great interest was the “live” ghost that lives in a suitcase in the underground museum surrounded by artifacts of a bygone era. The hotel also features one of the first synchronised clocks system to be installed in a hotel at that time. Who knew?!

In contrast to the classic décor of the hotel, the new spa is ultra-modern and has been tastefully designed to complement the hotel. We enjoyed massage treatments by professional therapists who were friendly and extremely knowledgeable about all wellness matters – superb!

Breakfast was a classic affair in the stately high ceiling dining room with a vast variety of tasty items together with the option of a la carte menu. Eggs were perfectly presented and the cappuccino was delicious.

Later in the day we were treated to an exhilarating cable car ride up to the 3300m peak of Corvatsch from where we could see the Waldhaus overlooking Sils valley.

We had an incredibly special and memorable stay. If you are looking for a grand country hotel of days gone by but beautifully preserved, look no further than the Waldhaus Sils hotel.

Reviewed by World Luxury Hotel Awards representative Marianne Cauvin-Vaz.

To book a stay at this spectacular property: https://waldhaus-sils.ch/en/

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A luxurious getaway at Ultima Gstaad…

After a long amazingly scenic drive from Monaco via Turin and over St Bernard pass we eventually arrived at the 17 suite Ultima Gstaad. Although the exterior of the hotel resembles a fancy Swiss ski chalet, the interior is quite a revelation.

Featuring the best finishes available and furnished and decorated in assosiation Louis Vuitton and Hermes it imparts chic while still being homely and warm. The rich combination of wood, leather and fine textiles ensure the WOW factor.

Upon arrival, one is greeted with a unique perspex piano in the lobby. This hi tech theme is also mirrored in the glass elevator which is one of a kind.

The duty manager and his team were super friendly and attentive. Nothing was too much trouble.

Our suite continued the theme of luxury, fine design and warmth. The walk-in wardrobe was bedecked with plentiful storage space including leather fronted pullout drawers. The lounge suite was finished in crème leather and soft fabrics. The king bed also featured the finest cotton linen.

A personalised letter welcomed us together with a plate of delicious canapes.

The large bathroom was stunning in fine veined grey marble featuring a huge walk-in double door Swedish shower and double marble sinks.

Waking through the patio doors onto the wooden balcony, we were presented with a stunning view of the distant mountains and the clanging of cowbells on an adjacent pasture.

The next morning we were greeted with a scrumptious breakfast including delicious pastries, breads, detox juices – all freshly made – and an a la carte menu. The bespoke eggs and bacon were presented in true gourmet fashion and tasted even better. The breakfast area was intimate and inviting and although the hotel was full, only a handful of clients were dining which added to the overall tranquility of the surroundings.

Secure and plentiful underground parking was available for complimentary use.

The hotel was a brisk walk to the buzzy and trendy Gstaad village centre together with its outdoor restaurants and cafes and picture postcard railway.

The spa is breathtaking comprising a large indoor pool, hot whirlpool tubs inside and out, a sauna, steam room and gym. After indulging, a visit to the indoor snow machine that spews forth snow from overhead is a surprise touch

The spa massage was absolute heaven.

Our stay was in one word – Perfection.

Reviewed by World Luxury Hotel Awards Representative: Marianne Cauvin-Vaz

To book a stay at this magnificent property: https://www.ultimagstaad.com/en

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Hotel Skt. Annæ – the perfect hotel for a stay in Copenhagen…

Arriving at Hotel Skt. Annæ in Copenhagen I was immediately impressed by the beautiful exterior with large flower pots on either side of the entrance, historic buildings in the surrounding area and the close proximity to the city centre. We were within walking distance to a variety of restaurants and most importantly Strøget; the longest pedestrian shopping street in Europe at 1.1 km. We arrived a little early for check in and the front desk staff were happy to keep our luggage in storage while we went to explore the city.

Hotel Skt. Annæ boasts a beautiful open area which immediately catches your attention. Featuring a large wooden table in the centre, with beautiful chandeliers hanging above and plants all around the room it really is a special space and feels like the heart of the hotel. There is also writing on the wall explaining Hotel Skt. Annæ’s history and other interesting facts about the property.

Once we got back from an afternoon of exploring the charming city of Copenhagen, we were able to go to our rooms. Our room was modern and beautifully decorated with a painting by the famous Danish painter Vilhelm Hammershøi. His artwork can be seen throughout the hotel and really stood out to me.  Besides this the furnishings in Hotel Skt. Annæ are largely from Danish Designers.

Our room also had a beautiful view over the street outside, a sizeable and comfortable bed, desk area and a beautiful bathroom with gold bronze taps and shower heads. The design in the bathroom really stood out to me.

After a great night’s sleep, we headed down for breakfast and wow, Hotel Skt. Annæ seriously shines here. There are 3 parts to the breakfast area, first the Breakfast Restaurant Area, then the kitchen area where the buffet is placed and lastly an indoor courtyard area where more seating is available with a beautiful tree in the centre. This area is also buzzing at night, and a great spot for a glass of wine with friends.

I absolutely loved the fact that the buffet area was basically in the kitchen and while you were dishing up your morning scrambled eggs you could see the chef on the other side preparing meals. Very unique and a great touch. The food selection at breakfast was incredible with everything from Bacon and eggs to Cheesecake and Nutella Croissants.

The lounge area in Hotel Skt. Annæ is also a great area to grab a quick coffee, meet with friends or simply relax with a glass of wine. Keeping in theme with the hotel décor, the space is modern and contemporary with a beautiful fireplace as a centrepiece. There is even a Hotel Skt. Annæ magazine on the table where you can read all about the hotel, get to know each staff member and great tips on what to explore and must see’s  in Copenhagen. I loved this personal touch.

The staff at Hotel Skt. Annæ are incredibly friendly and helpful and you immediately feel comfortable and at home. On our last day we had a late flight back home and at the last minute requested a late check-out. The staff were quick to accommodate us at such short notice and this really made our last day in Copenhagen enjoyable. Just before leaving for the airport we were able to freshen up for the long journey ahead.

All in all, our stay at Hotel Skt. Annæ was an all-round wonderful experience from start to finish. The Hotel is the perfect blend of luxury and comfort with modern design. Add in amazing staff, great food with a warm atmosphere and you have yourself a winner!  Hotel Skt. Annæ is definitely the hotel to stay at when visiting Copenhagen.

Reviewed by Executive Manager of The World Luxury Awards: Ms. Tanique Echardt

To book a stay at this remarkable hotel follow the link: www.hotelsktannae.dk

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Herangtunet Boutique Hotel Norway – an intimate and luxurious hideaway…

Arriving in Norway at Oslo Airport we hired a car and took the scenic route towards Herangutunet Boutique Hotel. The hotel is situated on the outskirts of the quaint town of Heggenes and driving towards the hotel you almost think for a second you are lost. The Hotel is magnificent and right in the middle of the forest. It truly does take your breath away. I absolutely loved how the hotel is at one with nature and eco-friendly in every sense.


We arrived early, but Marco the owner greeted us and immediately made us feel so welcome and right at home. He was happy to show us to our apartment early. The hotel boasts 4 suites, 5 rooms and one apartment. The apartment is spacious and with two rooms, a lounge area, dining area and a fully equipped kitchen mking you feel immediately relaxed and at home. The Apartment is decorated with earthy tones and beautiful wooden finishes. I especially loved reading through the Guest book about previous visitor’s happy experience’s here.

After settling in, Marco was kind enough to show us some of the rooms and suites where guests had not arrived for check in yet. I must say, I was and still am completely blown away by Marco and Marie and their love for Herangtunet. They have spent years making each room and space something truly special. Marie is an interior designer and all I can say is wow. I have never seen such beautifully and well thought out decorated rooms.

Marco too put his heart and soul into creating the spaces with his own hands. It was fascinating to get all the details. The main building was even dismantled picked up and rebuilt at Herangtunet to house the current suites. It was incredibly special to be taken on a personal tour of this special property.

The building that was picked up and moved here – piece by piece.

We spent the afternoon exploring the beautiful woodlands surrounding the hotel and soaking it all in. Marco has even created a Sauna in the woods with a jacuzzi outside. There is also a fire pit area you can enjoy on the colder days as well as outside seating to enjoy on the warmer days.

The main building and where the restaurant, lounge area and bar is situated is warm and welcoming. Walking in here you immediately know that it is going to be a great evening. All the staff are so friendly and welcoming you almost feel like you are joining your family for dinner. I was also so happy to see our World Luxury Hotel Awards Trophy proudly displayed on the bar counter. A well-deserved home.

Dinner at Herangtunet was incredible and a dinner I will not soon forget starting with a mouthwatering starter of soup freshly made and ending with a unique beer ice cream. Everything is made by the team with the freshest local ingredients and served with a wine of your choice. Marco and the team really interact with all their guests and Marco even gave all of us a warm welcome and some history on Herangtunet and how it came to be. It was a memorable and special evening.

After a great night’s sleep, we joined the Herangtunet team for breakfast and again everyone was there to welcome us and have a chat. This breakfast was absolutely incredible, assorted cheese, fresh homemade bread, sliced ham and salami, cereal, and even a home-made chocolate spread. After telling Marco how much I loved this chocolate spread he even sent me the recipe which will definitely be used at home.

With Marco, owner of Herangtunet Boutique Hotel .

In conclusion Herangtunet Boutique Hotel is honestly the most intimate and luxurious property I have ever visited. The location and nature, the history, the food, and most importantly the people make this property a rare gem. Marco and Marie are extraordinary and it is clear that Herangtunet is a labour of love. My only regret is that I could only stay for one evening, but even so; in this time, I fell in love with Herangtunet. I look forward to visiting this exceptional hideaway in the near future and highly recommend it to anyone travelling through Heggenes, Norway.

Reviewed by Executive Manager of the World Luxury Awards: Tanique Echardt

To book a stay at this beautiful property simply follow the link: www.herangtunet.com

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Hotel Katajanokka – Escape the ordinary.

Hotel Katajanokka is a rather comfortable prison and one of the most uniqe hotel’s I have ever visited. Before it was converted into Hotel Katajanokka, it was literally the old prison of Helsinki. A new prison was built and the decision was made to renovate and recreate the old prison into Hotel Katajanokka.

The beauty of the hotel is almost hidden behind the perimeter wall, but once you enter the gates the scope of this hotel with its rich history comes into full view. Walking in the front door is not at all what you would expect from a prison. No metal gates, no bars and no prison guards taking your belongings and putting you in handcuffs. Instead, you get modern automated glass doors, friendly welcomes from the staff and someone willing to take your bags to your “cell”.

Walking down hotel hallways between rooms that used to be the cells where the prisoners were kept, you almost get the feeling of being in an episode of Prison Break. The rooms are comfortable in size; defnitely not as small as the cells used to be. They broke through the walls and converted 3 or 4 cells into one lovely room with a modern bathroom and enough space for a large bed and dressing table. The rooms still have the original small windows with views into the yard. The decor was stylish with old prison locks and images framed above the bed; reminding us of the unique history of Hotel Katajanokka.

The hotel has also kept an isolation cell in the exact condition it used to be when it was still a prison. So if you like, you can go down and lock your friends up or take some awesome pictures. Another feature is the group holding cell. This is basically a small, dark cave in the foundation of the building that was used to hold large groups of people. I must admit it was quite eery exploring these rooms, but also very intresting. These original cells and many more features of the Hotel Katajanokka are now being used for treasure hunts and team building exercises where you will be given clues hidden inside the dark and scary cells. This to me is an amazing way of sharing the rich history of the hotel with the public.

Hotel Katajanokka also has a gym. You are able to do great workouts in the small but well thought out gym with top of the range equipment. They have everything you need and more for all your workout needs during your stay.

The restaurant is just as impressive. With amazing food and a warm and entertaining atmosphere you find yourself sitting around the table laughing and cracking jokes with the friendly waiters for much longer than you initially intended. If you ever find yourself in this particular prison kitchen, I do recommend the burgers!

Breakfast at Hotel Katajanokka is really amazing. No matter where you are from, you will find exactly what you want at this buffet breakfast. There is even an ipad that controls the juice fountain.

Hotel Katajanokka has exceeded all my expectations. I really loved staying here, but one thing stands out to me above all. The staff. Especially the front desk staff. On our last day in Helsinki our flight left early in the morning which meant we would have a really early checkout before breakfast was available. In most hotels if you put in a request the previous evening, they will give you a yoghurt or some fruit the next morning just to keep you going.

Not at Hotel Katajanokka; here Taija who was on duty told us to come down 30min before we needed to leave so we can eat something. When we got to the reception early in the morning, she had bars and fruit waiting for us. There were also smoothies and shakes. And as if that’s not enough, she offered us coffee and tea and then she told us to have a seat while she fixed us some oats. This is unbelievable. Never have I experienced a front desk staff member at a hotel going through so much effort to make sure we do not leave with an empty stomach. Thank you! This was really appreciated!

In conclusion, Prison Break is a TV series where some inmates desperately tried to break out of prison. However, here you will find yourself willing to do anything just to stay a little longer at this stylish and unique hotel.

Reviewed by World Luxury Awards Executive Manager Tanique Echardt

To book a stay at this unique and stunning property follow the link :www.hotelkatajanokka.fi

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Arctic Light Hotel – a unique contemporary hideaway in the heart of Rovaniemi …

Arriving at the Arctic light hotel during the day, it blends in with the buildings around it except for a massive polar bear welcoming you to your new home. At night it completley lights up with stunning fairy lights and bright colored spotlights shining onto the building and it becomes clear you have arrived in aurora-light territory. Located in the tourist part of Rovaniemi and just a two-minute walk from the vibey centre of this magical town ;we were in the perfect location for our stay in Rovaniemi.

In contrast to the freezing cold outside, walking in the modern front doors you are greeted with warmth. Not only by the exceptional staff but also by the atmosphere created by the lighting and warm interior design. After walking up and down the shopping street in temperatures bordering zero degrees it’s a sigh of relief every time those automated doors of the Arctic Light Hotel swing open to greet you. It’s the same feeling you get when coming home after a long day at the office. It feels like home.

Arctic Light Reception
Previous Wins proudly standing in reception

The best part of home is kicking off your shoes and getting comfortable. In the spacious room with its own mini lounge and kitchenette, that’s easy to do. And the cherry on top…. Sauna!!! Yes, you have your own personal sauna. So, if the atmosphere and friendly staff warmed your heart then the sauna will surely warm your body. It’s the best feeling to jump in the sauna and warm up after having to wear thick layers outside. Our room was beautiful with modern and contemporary design, as well as touches of local heritage and a delight to return to after a day of exploring.

The Arctic Light hotel also scored major points in my book with their gym. The gym and breakfast are two areas where I personally pay close attention to. I love a good workout. And I also love to eat. Especially in the morning. The gym itself is small, but big enough to do a full workout. The layout and types of equipment they have available allows you to do great workouts all week long. I really appreciated this and its clear that some thought went into the design and outfitting of the gym.

The Arctic Light Hotel has a great buffet breakfast with enough variety to cater to everyones needs. The food was delicious – especially the sweet treats. I also loved the layout of everything. The perfect way to start a day of exploring.

While on the topic of food, lets talk about the restaurant which was absolutely superb! The menu offered a variety of local dishes and being in Finland, I had to try the Reindeer. And boy was it good! The waiter was friendly and helpful, the food was out of this world amazing, the atmosphere was relaxing yet vibey; the list goes on. Even if you don’t stay at the Arctic Light Hotel but happen to find yourself in Rovaniemi one evening, I would highly recommend trying out the Arctic Restaurant.

Arctic Light Restaurant
Traditional Reindeer

After dinner if you are looking for a nightcap you are able to relax in the Plan B bar area. Also part of the Arctic Light Hotel. This area offers a full bar with a great and relaxing lounge area. It’s all very classy and is a big contributor to the warm atmosphere you feel as you walk in the door.

My conclusion is that The Arctic Light Hotel is an amazing hotel to stay at when visiting Rovaniemi. It feels like home and is warm and inviting while being very modern and contemporary at the same time. It’s a place you look forward to being. Instead of just being the accommodation you stay at every night while you explore your dream destination, this hotel becomes part of the dream. Arriving in Rovaniemi is arriving at your dream holiday destination. Arriving at the Arctic Light Hotel is completing the dream.

Reviewed By World Luxury Awards Executive Manager: Tanique Echardt

To book a stay at this superb hotel: http://www.arcticlighthotel.fi/en/hotel/