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Accor has one of the best portfolios of luxury properties of any major hotel group, but it doesn’t get much attention because it has a relatively small presence in North America and because its loyalty program is (rightly) perceived to be subpar.
There are two things, however, that I like about Accor. First, they have a great price match policy and in my experience are much more likely to actually match prices than other hotel groups with nominally similar policies. Second, Accor has a partnership with Air France and KLM that earns me 1 Accor point for every €2 I spend with either airline and 1 Flying Blue mile for every €1 I spend at Accor properties.
Drawing on a variety of review sites to put together the following list, I want to emphasize that even though you can’t necessarily get outsized value from Accor points they’re still valuable for redemption at some of the best hotels on earth.
Raffles Istanbul is a luxurious and contemporary hotel widely regarded as Istanbul’s best and rated number four in Condé Nast’s 2022 Reader’s Choice list. This elegant establishment is known for its massive soaking tubs, butler service(!), and balconies with stunning city views that come standard with every room. A fusion of Byzantine and contemporary designs pays homage to Istanbul’s historical heritage while also retaining its status as a modern architectural landmark in its own right. Its location, though slightly off the beaten track, means it’s only a few stops on the M2 metro from Istanbul’s old quarter.
Ranked the second-best hotel on earth by Condé Nast readers in 2022, the Sofitel Legend Santa Clara is a stunning fusion of colonial-era charm and modern elegance. The luxurious hotel boasts beautifully appointed rooms and suites, gourmet dining options, and the best spa in Cartagena. A rich history—the hotel was originally built as a Franciscan convent in 1621—and impeccable service makes the Sofitel Legend Santa Clara an unforgettable destination for travelers seeking a blend of culture and luxury.
Among the most iconic hotels on earth, Raffles Singapore is an elegant colonial-style property that has hosted celebrities and royalty for over 150 years. Originally a privately owned beach house built in the early 1830s, the hotel offers exquisite accommodations, fine dining experiences, and its legendary Writers Bar. I stayed here in 2017 and was provided the best service I’ve ever experienced at any hotel.
Located in the pristine Gaafu Alifu Atoll, Raffles Maldives Meradhoo Resort is an exclusive, luxurious retreat offering guests unparalleled privacy and serenity. This tropical paradise features lavish overwater villas, private beachfront residences, and a range of world-class dining options. Guests can indulge in a suite of bespoke experiences, including personalized spa treatments, diving excursions, and sunset cruises. Even in an incredibly crowded luxury hotel market like the Maldives, Raffles stands out and is, without a doubt, the best beach hotel I’ve ever been lucky enough to visit.
Described by the Telegraph as a “theatrical fantasia in red, gold and tiger print, dusted with mind-bending contemporary art,” the Faena Hotel is the Art Deco gem of Miami Beach and my favorite hotel in the US. It offers opulent accommodations, three world-class restaurants, and Tierra Santa, the hotel’s sublime spa. A stay at the Faena Hotel Miami Beach is an unforgettable immersion into the city’s dynamic culture and delightful theatricality.
Just a stone’s throw from the White House sits this immensely sophisticated and luxurious retreat. Consistently ranked the best hotel in DC and one of Condé Nast’s 50 best hotels on earth for two of the past three years, the Sofitel Lafayette Square features elegant accommodations, excellent dining options, and impeccable service. Its location beside the President’s Park makes it the perfect bucolic base for exploring the rich history and culture of Washington, D.C.
A symbol of British elegance and sophistication, The Savoy Hotel in London is an iconic destination that has been welcoming illustrious guests such as Charlie Chaplin, Katharine Hepburn, Winston Churchill, Frank Sinatra, and Claude Monet since 1889. This luxurious hotel features sumptuous accommodations and world-class dining, including the renowned Savoy Grill and the elegant American Bar. The Savoy’s prime location on the banks of the River Thames makes it an ideal base for exploring the city’s cultural attractions and shopping districts.
Tucked away in a secluded beachfront location on the pristine shores of Phuket, Thailand, V Villas offers an intimate and luxurious retreat for discerning travelers. This boutique hotel features a collection of private pool villas, each boasting stunning views and contemporary design. Guests can enjoy world-class dining, personalized service, and a range of wellness and leisure activities, including private scuba diving lessons and ocean fishing.
A tropical oasis situated in the Shaviyani Atoll, the Fairmont Sirru Fen Fushi is an idyllic retreat offering unparalleled luxury and natural beauty. This stunning resort features lavish overwater and beachfront villas, each with private pools and direct access to the pristine white sand beaches or crystal-clear waters. Guests can indulge in a range of dining options, a serene spa, and a wealth of recreational activities, including snorkeling, diving, and water sports.
Located on the iconic Palm Jumeirah in Dubai, the Rixos offers a unique blend of luxury, comfort, and world-class amenities. I’m generally not one for Dubai’s flashiness, but the hotel’s spacious rooms and suites, exceptional food, and an array of leisure facilities, including a private beach, multiple swimming pools, and a rejuvenating spa, won me over. Aside from sweeping views of the Arabian Gulf and the Dubai skyline, the Rixos is elegantly understated, which I greatly appreciate.