Over the years, Ben and I have had the pleasure of travelling to some incredible places in the world. We’ve also stayed in some amazing places and I’m hoping we’ll be able to stay at many more. This post is a list of my top five favourite hotels that Ben and I have ever stayed at. I’m looking forward to reviewing this top five list again in the future. Each of these hotels offers a completely different guest experience, so the list is in no particular order. Hopefully it might inspire you to add one of these to your bucket list!
Cliveden House – Berkshire, England (Dog Friendly)
Our love affair with Cliveden started back in 2017, when we were first invited to stay as a guest of Aston Martin. We’ve stayed twice since, once as a guest of the hotel and another to celebrate Ben’s 30th birthday.
Cliveden is just the most stunning house, with an incredible history. Beautiful grounds looked after by The National Trust and an amazing spa. The rooms in Cliveden have been carefully restored and retained. So you truly feel as though you’re stepping back in time. Every time we visit, we feel as though we’re home, with top class service but no pretentiousness.
For a truly special stay, call to book and ask for a suite in the main house facing the spectacular gardens.
Ja Manafaru – Haa Alifu Atoll, Maldives
We only spent two nights at the amazing Ja Manafaru. But truly fell in love with the most amazing service from our private butler Jessica and the most amazing room. We woke up to incredible views every morning through the floor to ceiling windows and took a dip in our private pool or the sea daily. There are two incredible pools in the resort. Various restaurants and bars to choose from, so you never get bored, and loads of activities.
Although we didn’t visit the spa, we did take part in sunset yoga which was glorious. We also went on a dolphin spotting excursion which was magical.
We stayed in an over-the-water villa which I would highly recommend for the full luxury experience.
The Newt – Somerset, England
We only stayed at The Newt in December, but it was really amazing. Having opened in August 2019, the service is already unbelievably slick. The Newt really ticks so many boxes for what you would want in a country house hotel. It’s truly a retreat from real life. Fires roar in every room, bedrooms are individually decorated and there’s an exceptional spa to escape to, after a day walking through the vast and elegantly manicured grounds. Food is grown in the grounds, and what isn’t, is as locally sourced as possible.
You can stay in either Hadspen House (the main house) or for a little more privacy, stay in the stable yard. I want to stay in a Stable Loft next time or The Granary as we’ll definitely be back!
Chateau De La Treyne – Dordogne, France (Dog Friendly)
A one night stop over on our France roadtrip in 2018, but this beautiful hotel remains firmly on the favourite hotels list. Family owned, it sits on a cliff overlooking the Dordogne river and is practically a fairytale castle.
The fine dining here is one of the best experiences I’ve ever had and there are a number of beautiful spots in the castle to dine in. The grounds are absolutely stunning with a glorious pool in one corner to relax by during the day. There’s no spa or designated activity list, but in such a beautiful part of France, there’s plenty to do in the area. The fact that there aren’t many activities is truly a testament to how stunning the hotel is. You’ll want to spend your whole time exploring or just sitting on one of the terraces enjoying a glass of wine overlooking the incredible views.
Belmond Mount Nelson – Cape Town, South Africa
We stayed at The Belmond Mount Nelson way back in 2016 on our honeymoon, but it stays firmly on the top five list. A fully pink hotel, we stayed in a stunning cottage on the premises and spent the most amazing two nights at the hotel. A culinary dream from start to finish with amazingly welcoming staff. They serve a world famous afternoon tea and have one of the most affordable chefs table offerings ever. Scrolling through the website now is making me want to go back.
There are two pools, tennis courts, activities on offer, numerous restaurants to dine in and beautiful views of the glorious Table Mountain. We had a tour of the spa, when we visited, but didn’t get a chance to experience it.
What are your favourite hotels in the world? I’d love to know so I can potentially add them to my list!