San Giorgio

Mykonos, Greece

Revived by two German club owners who transformed Mykonos' Paradise Club into one of the most popular nightclubs in the world, the neighbouring San Giorgio is a destination for free spirits and a member of Design Hotels™.

The crisp splendour of the whitewashed building is exactly what one would hope to find on this Cycladic isle. At the hands of creative director of Design Hotels™ Michael Schickinger, and interior designer and stylist Annabell Kutucu, the boutique property is an ode to history, heritage, style and simplicity with a few carefully chosen accessories giving warmth to an otherwise open space.

Light and air dominate within the 33 guestrooms, shimmering over polished cement counters in the open-plan kitchen and throughout the al fresco lounge and deck that look straight out to the ice-blue Aegean.

The interiors celebrate holistic design and bohemian-inflected luxury. From the charming off-kilter design chairs that showcase their raw wood parts, to the traditional Greek woven-top stools and weighty cotton matelassé quilts, each piece is organic in form and source, together creating a harmonious whole.

Sangiorgio-mykonos.com

Kempinski Hotel Muscat

Muscat, Oman

Designed by Woods Bagot, the new Kempinski Hotel Muscat makes an arresting architectural impression in the heart of the old city, characterised by the firm as a modern interpretation of the sultanate of Oman. The hotel's grand façade, which is stunningly reflected in its pools, was inspired by the landscape of Old Muscat, particularly the Muttrah Corniche. 

The most iconic structure on the property is the ballroom (above). Architecturally designed to replicate the effect of Arabic lanterns, the building is illuminated in the evening creating a striking impression on the Al Nouj waterfront. 

Inspired by the Al Alam Palace, the ceremonial palace of his Majesty Sultan Qaboos, the design of the lobby is intended to depict the nature of lilies on a pond. 

With 10 world-class restaurants and lounges, the interiors reflect French, Thai and Indian flavours, while a fusion of smooth leathers in pearl tones, rich wood and stone finishes - reminiscent of traditional European cigar lounges - makes the 1897 Cigar Lounge & Bar a cosy design classic.

kempinski.com

Anantara Medjumbe Island

Mozambique

Set within the protective borders of the Quirimbas National Park on Mozambique's Quirimbas Archipelago, this idyllic island retreat is surrounded by pristine waters with vibrant coral reefs teeming with tropical sea life, including some of the world's largest populations of dolphins, whales, and turtles. 

From the hotel lobby and open public spaces to the guest rooms, splashes of colour and texture add life to the supremely serene setting with multi-coloured woven wicker lamp shades, colourful poufs and cushions with African patterns peppering each interior. 

Warm woods create a very at-one-with-nature aesthetic across the property, from the thatched roof over each private villa to the flooring and furnishings.

Anantara.com

The Library

Koh Samui, Thailand

Owned by Samui native Kasemtham Sornsong and created with designer Tirawan Songsawat, this beachfront hotel is an elegant minimalist structure with a strong colour palette, that pays refreshing homage to the notion of the book.

The Library's clean lines and cool black, white and red interiors feature a number of delicate touches, including daybeds in public spaces that invite guests to settle down and curl up with a book. In fact, the grounds are peppered with moulded fibreglass statues of figures engrossed in a good read. 

With suites named the writer, the editor, and the bookmark, as well as the page restaurant, the theme of all things literary is married with sensuous design with the use of touch, sight, scent and sound stimuli in each guest room. 

A bold twist on the serene azure of other infinity pools, the red tiled plunge pool is a striking Instagrammable feature securing its Design Hotels™ status. 

The hotel's library binds the property; its collection of over 1,400 books, available to borrow, provides a satisfying alternative to modern distractions.

Thelibrarysamui.com

Farol Hotel

Cascais, Portugal

Nestled between Guincho Beach and the picturesque fishing village of Cascais, this luxurious retreat on the Portuguese Riviera was the count of Cabral's 19th century mansion and the royal hideaway of Europe’s kings and queens in the 1950s. 

Mounted on the rocky shoreline of the Estoril coast, this daring project by CM Dias Arquitectos practically falls into the Atlantic Ocean. The entire structure was designed to blur the boundaries between the building and its stunning natural surroundings enhancing the property's sublime coastal closeness. 

Not only do the guestrooms feature transcendent ocean views, but luxurious water retreats have also been integrated throughout the hotel, including an outdoor saltwater pool and hydro-massage bathtub in each of the guestrooms. 

The 33 guestrooms were styled by Portugal’s top fashion designers - including Ana Salazar, Miguel Vieira and Manuel Alves & José Manuel Gonçalves, who created an individual look to rival the catwalk for every single room.

Farol.com.pt.en

Monte-Carlo Beach

Monte Carlo, Monaco  

This exclusive boutique hotel first opened its doors in 1929 to popular success, with its California-style villas designed by Roger Seassal in a purely art deco design. For its 80th anniversary, the property experienced a renaissance when acclaimed interior designer India Mahdavi was commissioned with the contemporary makeover of the new Monte-Carlo Beach.

Mahdavi's inspiration was the rich history of this magical spot, its sentimental relationship with the Monegasques and a tribute to the Mediterranean. The sea is invited into the rooms by a porthole created between the bedroom and bathroom bringing light and depth, while openwork doors suggest a play of shadows, and the colours were chosen in palettes with seaside atmospheres. 

Recurring graphic elements, such as stripes, which constitute the DNA of the Monte-Carlo Beach, or diamonds, reminiscent of the coat of arms of the principality on Monaco, speak to the history and local culture. 

Outside, the curved geometry of the Monte Carlo coastline embracing the shade of the pine forest is truly distinctive. With the makeover, conceived and designed by landscape architect Jean Mus, the forest brings to the beach a new leafy environment, with rocks now embedded in its seaside promenade.

Monte-carlo-beach.com

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