Publié le 03/04/2024

More than a Hotel Room

What makes a room truly outstanding? Unique details, local craftmanship, or perhaps the sense you’re immersed in a bygone era. Or maybe it’s all about mesmerizing views beyond the window, from your bath or hot tub. Here are the top picks from Relais & Châteaux.

More than a Hotel Room

L’AND Vineyards, Montemor-o-Novo, Portugal © João Guimarães Carlos Vieira

What makes a room truly outstanding? Unique details, local craftmanship, or perhaps the sense you’re immersed in a bygone era. Or maybe it’s all about mesmerizing views beyond the window, from your bath or hot tub. Here are the top picks from Relais & Châteaux.

Make a splash on safari

Morukuru Family Madikwe, Madikwe Game Reserve, South Africa

Take a dip in an outdoor bathtub in Morukuru Owner’s House in the Madikwe Game Reserve, an hour’s flight from Johannesburg, and listen to the sounds of safari at night. The bath is footsteps away from a sunken firepit and inviting pool–both for exclusive use of the thatched villa, which sleeps four. For larger groups, the villa connects to the River House, which has its own fantastic indoor tub set against a floor-to-ceiling window. 


Living history in the Loire

Château Louise de la Vallière, Reugny, France

Journey back to the era of the Sun King when you stay in this beautiful Renaissance château, between Tours and Amboise, named after Louis XIV’s first official mistress, Louise de la Vallière. Designed by the interior designer Jacques Garcia, its 20 guest rooms all have the opulent trappings of the past, with silk wall fabrics, period furniture, plush fabrics and wood paneling, as well as every modern convenience. Staff act the part too, dressing in majestic outfits inspired by period costume.

© Eric Sanders / Erwan Fiquet


A glass cube in Galicia

Pepe Vieira Restaurant & Hotel, Poio, Spain

Like the idea of sleeping surrounded by nature but don’t want to forego your creature comforts? Then take a look at the 14 white cubes known as galpones that comprise guest accommodation at Pepe Vieira in Spain’s rural Galicia. Their glass walls mean you can gaze at a fairytale forest setting from your bed. Nature and sea are the star of the show here–turf roofs overhead, bathrooms that look out onto courtyards and minimalist interiors in natural tones to match the setting. Sleeping amid the wilderness never felt so good.

© Stéphane Lutier


Sleep beneath the stars in Portugal

L’AND Vineyards, Montemor-o-Novo, Portugal

The retractable rooves of the Sky View suites at L’AND Vineyards–located just one hour from Lisbon–mean you can stargaze from your bed in the Alentejo region, famed for its clear nights. Sink into your uber-comfy mattress and look up into the dark velvet of the night sky, illuminated by the brightest of stars, inviting you to pick out the constellations. If you choose a lake-view suite, you’ll enchant your eyes by day, too, with a panorama that takes in medieval Montemor-o-Novo castle. 

© João Guimarães Carlos Vieira


Ornate Moroccan craftsmanship

Riad Fès, Fès, Morocco 

Morocco at its decorative best is on show in the Royal Suite at the Riad Fès, whose 4.5-metre-high cedar ceilings, exquisite hand-chiseled stucco walls and ornate colored tiles make you feel like you’re in an exotic palace. From your private terrace, with views over the medina and the Atlas Mountains, you are immersed in the life of the 1,000-year-old city, where the call to prayer resounds from the mosque minarets and the fountain tinkles in the garden below. 

© Yann Deret


A lake and mountain vista

Blanket Bay, Glenorchy, New Zealand

The spectacular lake and mountain vista, seen through the large windows at New Zealand’s Blanket Bay, is more than just a pretty picture–it promises a world of adventure outside. On South Island, just 45 minutes from Queenstown, the timber and stone building is located right on the shores of Lake Wakatipu, whose waters reflect the Humboldt Mountains. In this rugged, wild territory, guests can enjoy the spectacular scenery on a hike, then return to relax in front of the view from their private balcony.



A bird’s-eye view in the treetops

Twin Farms, Barnard, Vermont, USA

Rooms reach new heights at the upmarket Twin Farms country estate in Vermont, with eight stylish treehouses cantilevered high among the trees and reached via a bridge. Curvilinear decks open onto modern interiors in a neutral palette, where you can get a true bird’s-eye view from the king-sized bed and the oversized bath. More refined than rustic, and designed by Michaelis Boyd of Soho Farmhouse fame, these treehouses are the perfect place to embrace your inner child as well as to indulge in a spot of peaceful birdwatching.

© Claude-Simon Langlois


Safari style in Botswana 

Duba Plains Camp, Botswana

Feel part of the wild paradise of the Okavango Delta during a stay in one of five tents at Duba Plains Camp, found on a private reserve in Botswana. The canvas tent sides roll up so you can gaze out at the scenic floodplain and watch the varied wildlife parading past. Each tent is on a raised wooden platform and decorated in the height of safari chic. You might spot herds of buffalo and elephant, as well as lions and leopards, while herons and egrets grace the skies. And if you fancy exploring different landscapes in East and Southern Africa, Great Plains Conservation has other exceptional safari camps, also Relais & Châteaux members.



Mesmerizing sea views in Spain

Akelarre, San Sebastián, Spain 

As its name suggests, it’s all about the sea at the Ocean Suite at Akelarre, just outside the Spanish city of San Sebastián. That means that you can enjoy watery views of the Bay of Biscay from your bed in the contemporary, minimalist-styled room, as well as from your balcony, bathtub and private plunge pool. Wherever you relax in this suite, your eyes will be drawn to the shifting shades of the sea, like a piece of living art.



Relax in the heart of desert in Rajasthan

Mihir Garh, Jodhpur, India

A private terrace overlooking the desert vastness comes with each of the Shandaar suites at Mihir Garh, in Rajasthan. Built with the help of more than 100 local carpenters and craftsmen to mirror the region’s typical architecture, the fort’s rooms blend dark furniture with bright colors. They also showcase local cultural traditions, including floors plastered using techniques known to only one man in the region, and handcrafted fireplaces created by women from the neighboring village.

© Joann Pai



Lemur-watching in a Madagascan eco-lodge

Anjajavy Le Lodge, Madagascar
You don’t even have to stir from your thatched rosewood villa to see Madagascar’s famous wildlife at Anjajavy Le Lodge, where lemurs roam freely in the gardens. Sit on the covered terrace of the eco-lodge and take in the long, sandy beach and the jewel-colored sea beyond–it’s sometimes turquoise, sometimes emerald, but always beautiful. The lemurs live in the lush, ancient forest behind the lodges, venturing out into this slice of paradise where hummingbirds flit between the flowers.

© Tsilavo Rapiera

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