The holidays are upon us and everyone is taking off for their end of year retreats. It got us dreaming about the best resorts in the world and wearing our Pitusa everyday. We’ve rounded up some of the best of the best in the world when it comes to resorts. Whether you’re stuck in the cold and want to do a bit of daydreaming or you’re ready to book that last minute plane ticket halfway across the world to make your January a little more exciting. We encourage you to be bold, make that rash decision and get your luxury on at these incredible resorts.
Sri Lanka is a sleeper hit amongst those fancying a holiday a bit off the beaten path. Paradise Road The Villa is the country’s first boutique hotel, built in the 1970s. What we love about this place is that it’s small, private and unique. Each of the 15 rooms are designed differently: so if you go with a big group of friends you can run around the hotel checking out all the sick design details. It really does give that “stranded-on-a-desert-island” feel that we all crave at the end of a long year. With flight deals from both the UK and the US, we think it’s time to plan your next winter getaway and discover all that Sri Lanka’s rich cultural landscape has to offer. Think riding elephants, exploring Buddhist caves, taking long beautiful train journeys and some of the worlds best surfing (and less crowded than more well-known surf breaks). There is also another incredible hotel called the Kumbuk River Eco Resort that actually has a villa inside of an elephant. Yes, you read that right: this eco-lodge is housed in the belly of a 40ft elephant. Seeing is believing.
We recommend to anyone staying at The Four Seasons in Ubud one time in their life. We’ve never seen anything quite like it. Anyone entering the property feels like they are in some large-scale Hollywood film, crossing over a teak built bridge into another world. Whilst we highly recommend getting to Bali to explore the sublime culture of the Island of the Gods, you may never want to leave the paradise and pampering provided by the Four Seasons. There are beautiful frangipani trees everywhere you look, and the always-pleasing bougainvillea dotted around the property. You’ll be surrounded by rice paddies with the most sartorially pleasing scarecrows we’ve ever seen. And then there is the infinity pool that you’ve seen splashed all over Instagram, and the spa treatments are more like elaborate pampering rituals fit for Balinese royalty (and if you look around, you may indeed see some Balinese royalty tooling around town if you make the trip into Ubud-proper). You can even be massaged listening to singing bowls whilst your chakras are balanced, it goes with out saying that The Four Seasons at Sayan does not mess around. The list is long and extensive of all the various treatments, food and adventure you can enjoy at your stay here – it’s a treat for all the senses: from the 5-start cuisine, to the daily walks, to an on-site wellness mentor (who is a former monk) and tailored excursions to see healers in the nearby town. You won’t regret going.
The Maldives is a big honeymoon destination — and with good reason, it’s location in the Indian Ocean makes for some insane opportunities for gorgeous getaways with your one and only. The Six Senses Laamu is one of the OG squad of a crop of luxury resorts that have popped up in the past few years and it knows a thing or two about excelling at barefoot luxury. Since it’s the only resort in the Laamu Atoll, you’ll feel like you’re completely removed from civilization for a little while — with nothing to look at but blue sky and crystal tinged waters. The resort is comprised of both on-land and over-water villas, made with all sustainable materials. If you’ve ever dreamt of staying in a house on stilts and forgetting all your worries — whilst simultaneously watching as your wrinkles becomes less defined, and you smile more and forget what cold feels like — Six Senses Laamu is where its at. There are even 4 restaurants to choose from, so no matter how long you decide to stay, you really won’t have a chance to get bored.
Banyan Tree is well known around the world as one of the best resorts and spa experiences, and luckily for us the. We like anywhere that has a bit of a locals-like-it-too vibe, and Tamouda Bay is destination for both Moroccans and Europeans alike (considering its proximity to Gibraltar). Since you’re in Morocco, you’ve got to experience the full hammam situation and Tamouda Bay does not disappoint: it has a full service spa where you can experience any number of treatments and enjoy lying on the quintessential Moroccan marble slabs for your treatment — a not-to-be-missed experience. If you want to venture off the property and do some exploring, you’re only a 20 minute ride away from a UNESCO world heritage site, plus you can do some shopping in the souk in Tangier (or hop the ferry to go to the gorgeous little town of Tarifa, a kite-surfer’s paradise) or go look at the history of the ancient city of Asilah.
The Rayavadee is unlike anywhere else we have stayed: they manage to marry luxury with an extremely laid-back attitude, so you may just sink in comfortably to allowing them to know what you need when you need it and taking in the incredible views of the limestone cliffs in the Phranang Peninsula. It’s a short boat ride to Krabi (which is an exciting experience all in itself, and once you arrive you rock up to an infinity pool so inviting you’ll want to leave your luggage on the beach and jump in in your airport clothing (although we do recommend exercising patience in this regard). A short little hike away from the property and you’ll be wowed by exotic birds, gorgeous vistas and a little snorkel around the peninsula means you’ll see a variety of colorful fish and delight in their majesty an area renowned for its natural beauty and rich flora, fauna and marine life. The resort has a commitment to living in harmony with the natural environment its surrounded by and they are as sustainable as they can possibly be. We highly recommend dining in the grotto for both the food and the setting, there’s nothing else quite like it in the world. You won’t be disappointed and on the boat ride back, you’ll be hoping the motor breaks down and you’ll get to stay another few days (if you’ve very lucky).