Essentials List: Luxury Destinations for 2014

Thinking about your next getaway? Well, we’ve put together another Essentials list comprised of some amazing hotels you will find around the world in some of the most coveted vacation spots ever. Whether you want warm Caribbean sun or your jet-setting off to Paris Fashion Week, we  got it all.

Andaz Peninsula Papagayo Hotel

Guanacaste, Costa Rica

Nestled in the Gulf of Papagayo, the Andaz Peninsula Papagayo Hotel defines the country’s slogan,”Pura Vida” which to the Ticos means “Pure Life”. Designed by Costa Rican architect Ronald Zurcher, the hotel was designed as a translation between the healthy and poetic integration of men and nature, where the ambiance of the hotel makes you feel like you’re a part of the vast jungle surrounding the resort. Featuring 153 deluxe rooms, 21 suites, 9 spa treatment rooms, and unique concept-restaurants with breathtaking views of the sea and forest, you will find the perfect accommodations to make your visit to Costa Rica unforgettable.




If you have read the second instalment of our A Week Off series you know that Costa Rica has so much to offer, and will keep you busy the whole trip. Take a break and relax on the beach, zip line through the jungle, explore the wildlife of the National Parks, or ATV to a waterfall, you will always find something to keep you entertained in Costa Rica. Pura Vida!

The PuLi Hotel and Spa

Shanghai, China

The first luxury hotel of its kind in China, The PuLi Hotel and Spa is the perfect place to relax when you are on a business trip to Shanghai or just visiting the city for the first time. In Shanghai’s most central location, you get the big city feeling looming beyond the quiet, calming, stress free, walls of this luxury resort. It’s a feeling of being in the center of everything yet being on a secluded resort in paradise, meaning you get the best of both worlds. 193 meticulously appointed rooms and 36 suites provide you the best sense of luxury, comfort, and attention to detail that embraces the hotels unique ability to combine contemporary luxury with old world furnishings. Touches of historical and cultural reference sit side by side to the newest innovations in technology and design in Shanghai’s most luxurious hotel, The PuLi.

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Almond Beach Resort

Barbados, West Indies

This time of year when the snow is covering most of the Americas, you find yourself looking to get away to somewhere that you can have your toes in the sand without a worry in the world,  we found it. If you’re looking to do a more relaxing, sun drenched, carefree vacation then you want to check out the Almond Beach Resort in Barbados. An all-inclusive resort on the beautiful white beaches of the Caribbean Sea, this place will take all your worries away while providing with every amenities you will ever think of needing. Do as much or as little as you would like here, the list of things to do is endless or you don’t have to do anything, just relax with a cocktail in hand.

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InterContinental Davos


Heading to Basel World 2014 to check out the newest and best watchmakers in the world or taking a more adventurous route and skiing the Alps? Take a trip to the InterContinental Davos, you won’t regret it. Set in the scenic backdrop of the highest city in Europe, 1,560 m above sea level, the hotel provides 216 well-appointed and spacious rooms with spectacular mountain views. Designed by German architects Oikios, the structure features a shimmering gold exterior adorning the façade. 804 undulating bands of steel make up the dome of the oval-shaped main building creating different viewing angles in its numerous open surfaces. A modern Chalet feel is reflected in the decadent interiors, underlined by high tech amenities that create an atmosphere of quiet elegance, privacy, and comfort.

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Round Hill Hotel and Villas

Montego Bay, Jamaica

Indulge in a classic Caribbean resort, The Round Hill Hotel and Villas, and enjoy the luxury and warm welcoming of the  Jamaican sun.The luxury of the resort doesn’t just lie in the marble and gilt but from the people at the resort who make sure that your experience in Jamaica is unmatched. One of the finest resorts in the Caribbean, this fabled boutique property houses 27 private villas, a 36 room oceanfront hotel and spa, and some of the finest restaurants in Montego Bay. With a recent light renovation the resort has brought some modern innovations while keeping the aesthetic that is the The Round Hill’s footprint. The highly productive and popular organic vegetable garden has expanded with a fruit orchard, where the produce grown in the garden will be used in dishes served at the popular farm-to-table dinners at the Grill Restaurant, featuring all local Jamaican ingredients and products from the Resort.

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InterContinental Paris -Le Grand

Paris, France

Visiting Paris is always a good choice no matter what time of year it is. The Eiffel Tower, The Louvre, Notre Dame de Paris, Champs-Elysees, and the Arc de Triomphe are just a few reasons to visit the capital city of France.  Opened in 1862, the Paris Le Grand Hotel is at the heart of Parisian Society and defines historical grandeur. Boutique-style suites offer stunning views of some of Paris’s most famous landmarks while also being centrally located in the 9th arrondissement, which allows you to be in walking distance to the Louvre Museum and to the famous shopping districts of the City of Light.

In honor of Fashion Week, French Fashion Designer Inés de la Fressange worked with Head Pastry Chef Dominique Costa to create the world’s first ‘Fashionista Cake,’ made up of layers of almond cake, coconut cream, crunchy pralines and fresh raspberries, and topped with a red velvet handbag containing thick raspberry sauce. Guests can enjoy this tasty delight through the end of the year! In partnership with Ladurée, InterContinental Paris – Le Grand will host a record-breaking creation made up of 8,000 brightly-colored macarons piled nearly 14 feet high to create the world’s largest macaron Christmas tree.

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Ryan Neeven

|Editor at Large, A&H Magazine| Travel Well, Travel Often.