Eiffel Tower view
The house of Roland Bonaparte, great-nephew of Napoleon Bonaparte, exists to this day. It is now home to the five-star Shangri-La Hotel. Those who stay here do so not just thanks to the regal interiors, although you can be certain to be greeted by marble staircases, sumptuous carpets, antique furniture, silk cushions and stucco. No, it’s not the baroque luxury which draws people here, but the refined atmosphere.
On looking out of the window, the classic view of Paris opens up before your eyes: morning coffee with a view over the Seine and the Trocadero Gardens, evening champagne on your balcony in the silhouette of the Eiffel Tower – something which needs to be experienced at least once in a lifetime. You might decide to simply study Paris from the comfort of your room, but if you do decide to venture out, the Arc de Triomphe and Champs Elysees are a short 15 minute walk away.
View over St. Isaac’s Cathedral
Many of the hotel room windows of the Sofitel So look out over the picturesque roofscapes of St. Petersburg and the suites have direct views over St Isaac’s Cathedral itself. In the SO VIP apartment bathrooms you can even enjoy the romantic views from a bathtub for two, snug in your bathrobe looking over the snow-crowned dome. Walk from the bathroom to the open fireplace and you feel more like you’re in a cosy Alpine chalet than in Russia’s northern capital. The crowning glory is the view from the rooftop restaurant with its terrace and picture postcard views over the historic centre of the city.
The popular Russian restaurant KOKOKO is located on the ground floor of the hotel – one of its owners is the well-known Russian ska-punk singer-songwriter Sergey Shnurov. The views might not be so fairy-tale, but this is where you can try delicious buckwheat muffins and cold milk or chicken broth in а cut-glass bowl accompanied by Russian pies – and just one of these delicacies won’t be enough to fill you up. All in all, stylish, fashionable and youthful.
View over the Caldera
The Caldera is a huge crater filled with sea water which was formed after the eruption of the Santorini volcano in the XVI-XV century BC. It is considered one of the most picturesque places in the world – you will easily recognise it from the photos of snow-white buildings clinging gently to a rockface as it descends into the indigo-coloured water.
The Grace’s rooms and restaurant offer stupendous views over the Caldera and the rooms themselves are no less stupendous: filled with natural light and unobtrusive design concepts, they are spacious with luxurious linen accessories to add to the experience. Everything invites you to touch it (especially the flower tapestries) and take it home (No! Not allowed! And if you’re in any doubt, take a look at our article on what you can and cannot take away from the hotel when you check out). Many rooms offer a terrace with a small pool and jacuzzi. The suites come with steam rooms and the Villa suites have wine cellars and a personal spa centre – an outdoor sauna, a selection of wine and massage at your full disposal for the duration of your stay, any time, day or night.
Views over the Grand Canal and the Rialto Bridge
The Rialto Bridge is one of the main symbols of Venice. It was the first bridge to be built over the Grand Canal in the XVI century and goes to show they really knew how to build things back then given the number of tourists it has to support year in year out nowadays. The Hotel Rialto offers spectacular views over both the Rialto Bridge and the Grand Canal and the hotel itself is a typical Venetian palazzo. Inside you can expect a classic interior with antique furniture, bronze door handles and a slightly faded, noble air.
Recline on your luxurious Louis XV bed and gaze upon the endless procession of gondolas as they file endlessly past beneath the Rialto Bridge; this is how it is to feel truly Venetian. Stepping out onto the balcony, you hear the cries of gondoliers and other boatmen and as the cacophony subsides all you hear is the gentle splashing of the water under your window as the city whispers good night.
View over Mount Kazbek
About 150 km from Tbilisi lies the homely little town of Stepantsminda, where the doyen of Instagram hotels is located – the Hotel Kazbegi. If you have an Instagram account, take a look and you’ll see what we mean.
The hotel is designed using only natural materials such as 150-year-old oak fixtures and features neutral, calm colours. Wherever possible, there are floor-to-ceiling windows – in the lobby, in the pool, in the library and, of course, in the rooms. It’s as if nothing should come between you and nature. You lie on the bed and can’t help but admire the snowy slopes of the Caucasian ridge. Take a dip in the pool and swim with the outline of Mount Kazbek in the background. Sit with a glass of wine on the terrace and become one with the star-filled sky.
View over the Geirangerfjord
The Geirangerfjord became a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2005. The view is the kind of thing you’ll want to stay with you for ever, but you’ll have to start things off with a couple of nights in a nearby hotel. Judging by its on-line ranking and reviews, our choice, the Union, has some of the best views over the fjords and rooms here sell like salmon smørrebrød.
The inside of the hotel simply oozes Scandinavian hygge – cosiness and harmony. The Norwegian version of hygge is “kosjelig”, and here’s what it’s like: the restaurant walls are upholstered panels of dark wood, the armchairs are festooned with cushions as emerald coloured mountains peek in through the windows at breakfast time. Each morning, as a special treat, guests are served cups of fish oil. I’m not sure we’d consider it a delicacy and it’s a somewhat acquired taste, but at least it’s good for your health.
The views from the terrace are particularly impressive: engulfed in plush, soft blankets and relaxing on your chaise longue, somewhere down below on the fjord, ships lazily make their way back and forth, and then you reach for a book, or sip an aperitif before supper. By the way, about dinner. This hotel is famous for the freshest seafood: shrimps, mussels, crabs, crayfish, you name it. And then after dinner, it’s bath time. Each bathroom has panoramic windows, so you can admire the dramatic Norwegian scenery from the warmth and comfort of your cosy shelter.
As if that weren’t enough, the hotel has its own collection of vintage cars. One is in the reception area and the other eight are displayed separately. Take advantage of your guest status and go for a spin in one of these rare cars – with a driver, of course.
View over the Indian Ocean with an underwater panorama
The Conrad Maldives Rangali Island is typical of the exotic serenity of the Maldives. The flight from Male airport takes about 30 minutes and is organized by the hotel, but you should make sure you inform the hotel of your inbound flight number in advance. The seaplane is paid for separately on departure (slightly more than $250 per adult) which is typical for all Maldives hotels.
The accommodation at the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island consists of villas on the beach or of terraces on stilts over the ocean. Prepare for a period of luxurious relaxation and meditation, taking in views over the turquoise Indian Ocean, daydreaming in chic whirlpool baths, enjoying spa treatments as you nibble on fresh mango. In the most expensive villas, those on the terraces over the sea itself, the walls are completely made of glass. All those incredible sunsets and sunrises that you’ve only ever seen on YouTube are now there just for you. You will want it to go on for ever.
The Ithaa Restaurant awaits you – and it will be expensive (the average bill is about $250), but try the Maldivian black caviar anyway. You might not be paying much attention to the menu straight away, though, because this restaurant is 5 metres under water. The fish and stingrays attach themselves to the glass ceiling, drawing the attention of diners and inspiring all with awe.
Your hotel might share its location with world capitals, areas of outstanding natural beauty, architectural masterpieces, and this might be visible through the windows of your hotel room. We know how to turn this beautiful image into reality. Once you decide that it’s time to pamper yourself, your exquisite experience is only a couple of clicks away, where you wake up with the stunning view which only yesterday was something in your dreams.