Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust
Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust - Overwater Bungalows in Tahiti Beckon
Who doesn't dream of waking up to the sound of waves gently lapping beneath your overwater bungalow? This quintessential Tahitian experience continues to top bucket lists around the world. And for good reason - there's simply nothing else like it.
As you roll back the curtains and step outside, you're greeted by the warm South Pacific breeze and endless blues of sky and sea. Below, schools of tropical fish dance through crystal clear waters that beckon you in for a swim or snorkel. Swaying palms provide shade for an afternoon nap in your private hammock. At night, you drift off to sleep as soft moonlight ripples across the lagoon.
With jetsetting celebrities like the Kardashians putting Tahiti's overwater bungalows in the spotlight on social media, these romantic retreats are having a major moment right now. Luxury outposts like The Brando or Le Taha’a Island Resort & Spa offer A-list worthy indulgences. But you can also find more affordable options starting around $500/night like those at Tahiti Pearl Beach Resort or InterContinental Bora Bora Resort & Thalasso Spa.
Wherever you choose, you'll be spoiled with incredible views. Each bungalow's glass floor panels give you a window straight into the sea below. Some even have slides from the deck right into the water for instant access to snorkeling adventures.
Past guests rave about the total privacy and intimacy of having these little love nests all to yourself. Fall asleep to the sound of waves, wake up to room service delivering breakfast across your private dock. Spend sun-drenched days paddling the complimentary kayaks and cuddling up for romantic dinners as the sun melts into the horizon.
What else is in this post?
- Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust - Overwater Bungalows in Tahiti Beckon
- Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust - Safari Glamping Under the Stars in Africa
- Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust - Sleep in a Bubble Under the Northern Lights
- Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust - New Eco-Resorts Open in Costa Rica
- Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust - Luxury Treetop Retreats Around the World
- Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust - Hot New City Hotels with Rooftop Pools
- Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust - Private Island Resorts Worth the Splurge
- Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust - Wellness Retreats for Total Mind-Body Resets
Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust - Safari Glamping Under the Stars in Africa
Trade in tents for luxury tents this year and go glamping on an African safari. Sleep mere feet from where wild animals roam free, immersed in the raw beauty of the bush. This is an adventure that trades roughing it for a serious dose of style.
Picture rolling out of a sumptuous bed with crisp linens to start your day on a sunrise game drive. Then unwind in a private plunge pool while sipping cocktails at sunset before settling into a cozy armchair by the fire. Lavish tents let you fall asleep to the rhythmic chorus of the wilderness, often with retractable roofs to stargaze at night.
Glampers rave about the thrill of hearing lions roar or elephants splash nearby. Yet you’ll stay blissfully comfortable, with electricity, en suite bathrooms, and in some cases even AC or fans. Forget leaking tents and inflatable mattresses; here you’ll be pampered with luxurious beds and stylish interiors.
Singita offers ultra-luxe safari glamping in both South Africa’s Sabi Sand Game Reserve and Tanzania's Grumeti Reserves. The tents resemble small boutique hotels with huge decks and private pools. Or check out andBeyond's Ngala Treehouse and andBeyond Nxabega Okavango Tented Camp in Botswana for Insta-worthy accommodations surrounded by wildlife. Kenya offers gorgeous options too, like Angama Mara's tents perched right on the edge of the Great Rift Valley.
A highlight for many glampers is the exclusive game drives catered to those staying at the camp. With only a handful of tents, you won't share the vehicles or compete with crowds of other tourists to spot lions and leopards. Your guide and driver get to know you, customizing your experience.
Back at camp, you'll bond over shared meals and swapping stories of sightings with fellow guests. There's a strong sense of community, yet each tent still feels secluded in its own little world. You can be as active or relaxed as you wish between the morning and evening game drives.
Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust - Sleep in a Bubble Under the Northern Lights
For a truly magical experience, head north this year and sleep in a transparent bubble under the dazzling Northern Lights. This trend is sweeping across northern destinations like Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Canada. Adventure seekers rave about the thrill of watching the Aurora Borealis dance overhead all night long from the comfort of their private bubble suite.
These spherical, domed rooms are often perched atop cliffs or hillsides with panoramic views. Thanks to their transparent ceilings and geodesic dome shapes, you'll be fully immersed in the stunning night sky and hopeful to catch that bucket list sighting. The bubbles are heated and insulated, creating a cozy haven in even the most remote wilderness.
Expect gorgeous and glam accommodations inside your pod. We're talking plush memory foam beds, twinkly starry ceiling lights, fluffy duvets and even luxury bathrooms in many cases. You'll have unparalleled views of the Northern Lights - photographing these dazzling lights is a highlight for many. The bubbles offer much better viewing and photo opportunities compared to standard hotel rooms.
Recent guests describe the experience as comfortably falling asleep right beneath the Aurora Borealis and waking up to epic views. Couples love the intimacy and romance of stargazing together, with some bubbles featuring private outdoor hot tubs. Families relish the chance to witness this rare natural phenomenon together. Photographers appreciate the unmatched 360-degree vantage point.
Popular spots praised for Northern Lights bubble stays include the Arctic Bubble Hotel in Icelandic Lapland and Sorrisniva Igloo Hotel in Alta, Norway. Canada's Bubble Hotel in the Yukon and Sweden's Treehotel with its new Northern Lights Treehouse also get rave reviews. Prices average $350-$500 per night.
While seeing the Northern Lights involves some luck and good timing, the bubbles maximize your chances. Many hotels offer wake-up calls if the lights appear in the night so you don't miss out. Early fall to late spring offer prime viewing, with January through March considered peak season.
Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust - New Eco-Resorts Open in Costa Rica
Costa Rica continues to raise the bar for sustainable tourism in 2023 with exciting new eco-resort openings. As the original eco-travel pioneer, this lush Central American destination entices nature lovers with dense rainforests, diverse wildlife and stunning beaches along both the Caribbean and Pacific. Costa Rica protects over a quarter of its land in national parks and reserves. New eco-resorts allow you to immerse yourself in these vibrant habitats while minimizing your footprint.
Nayara Tented Camp debuts this spring in Arenal Volcano National Park. Slated to be Costa Rica’s first luxury tented camp, this Relais & Chateaux property features just 15 safari-style tents. Each one sits either perched on a hillside or tucked along the La Pluma River, which meanders through the property.
Guests can glamp in total comfort with en-suite bathrooms, floor-to-ceiling windows and river rock floors heated at night. Outdoors, private viewing decks with plunge pools or hot tubs provide front-row seats to the area’s rich biodiversity. Expert naturalist guides lead tours for wildlife viewing and adventures like waterfall rappelling or zip lining across the rainforest canopy. The camp’s contemporary restaurant highlights farm-to-table cuisine sourced on-site or locally.
Over on the breezy Pacific coast, Nayara Gardens opens this June in Guanacaste. Surrounded by tropical dry forest, this family-friendly escape features 45 casitas plus 22 luxury villas with private pools. Slated to be Costa Rica’s largest carbon-neutral resort, Nayara Gardens runs on renewable energy. Onsite staff biologists protect the area’s 300+ native plant and animal species while educating guests.
Activities range from beach time to exploring nearby Rincón de la Vieja Volcano National Park. The property’s organic farm and greenhouse supply its restaurants and spa. Other eco-conscious touches include an onsite water treatment plant, eliminating plastic and using biodegradable cleaning products.
Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust - Luxury Treetop Retreats Around the World
Take your next vacation to new heights by booking one of the world’s amazing luxury treetop retreats. These lofty accommodations let nature take center stage, immersing you in lush forest canopies alive with exotic birds and playful monkeys. Suspended on stilts or nestled in the treetops, these hideaways trade crowded resorts for intimate escapes that blur the boundaries between indoors and out.
Recent guests say these breezy jungle lodges make them feel like kids again, transported back to childhood dreams of treehouses. Now those fantasies have come to life, only with 5-star amenities like four-poster beds, clawfoot tubs and private infinity pools cantilevered high above the rainforest floor.
Luxury treetop hotels first took root in Costa Rica, where the wildly diverse landscape provides endless options. Pick Pacific-facing suites at El Silencio Lodge & Spa tucked within 500 private acres of rainforest. Or lounge in Caribbean-inspired lofts at the adults-only Esencia, where toucans and howler monkeys swing through the property.
Jungle lodges now flourish across Southeast Asia as well. Banyan Tree Kuala Lumpur drips with posh romance, its treehouse villas offering Brazilian walnut floors, canopy beds and private rooftop Jacuzzis. Meanwhile Thailand’s Keemala blends treetop villas with aerial walkways and suspended cabins called “nests” and “pods” for an otherworldly ambiance.
In Africa, stilt-perched sanctuaries like andBeyond Nxabega Okavango Tented Camp place you eye-level with zebras and giraffes roaming below. Or escape to Mozambique's gorgeous Azura Benguerra, whose breezy villas sit playfully propped between coconut palms.
Don't forget Australia, home to tech titan Bill Gates' favorite hotel - Silky Oaks Lodge. Built into a historic 150-year-old fig tree, its luxe treehouses gaze out at World Heritage-listed Daintree Rainforest. Snag a treetop table at the open-air restaurant for panoramic rainforest views as parrots flutter by.
Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust - Hot New City Hotels with Rooftop Pools
This year, the hottest place to make a splash is checking into one of the world’s amazing new city hotels featuring buzzworthy rooftop pools. From New York to Dubai, these urban oases offer a refreshing escape from crowded streets below. Kickback in a private cabana, cocktail in hand, as you soak up panoramic views. Here, elevating your stay is as easy as heading up to the rooftop for a dip.
Recent guests say a rooftop pool in the heart of a bustling metropolis makes them feel far from the grind. The glittering cityscape becomes your view, not part of the rat race. Release the tension of business trips or touring at these sleek infinity pools perched high above it all. Many boast DJs and lively poolside bars creating an exclusive nightclub vibe.
New York is experiencing a surge of rooftop pool openings, craving cooler escapes to counter sweltering summers. Downtown at the new Pendry Manhattan West, guests get away from it all at their glass-bottomed pool looming over the Hudson River and High Line. For unrivaled Times Square views, there's the Peninsula New York Midtown. Their hip rooftop pool lounge offers light bites and great people watching behind sunglasses.
Over in trendy Brooklyn, soak up views of the Manhattan skyline across the East River from the William Vale's hipster-chic rooftop pool. Enjoy poolside cocktails and globally inspired bites at the Westlight bar. Or head to swanky Soho and bask poolside at The Dominick, where cabanas come with flat screen TVs. Their glitzy pool bar serves up Insta-worthy dishes and drinks like the "Diamond in the Sky" cocktail.
Across the pond, London's been getting some hot new swim-friendly skyscrapers too. The city's tallest hotel just opened in Canary Wharf - the gleaming 770-foot Gehry Partners-designed Pan Pacific. Its day club style rooftop pool is poised to be among Europe’s hottest day-to-night venues this summer.
In bustling Dubai, rooftop pools are practically a prerequisite for new hotels. Cue in 2023's wave of over-the-top, only-in-Dubai designs. Like the new SLS Dubai Hotel & Residences, where a shimmering glass rooftop pool juts out 75 feet in the sky, making even thrill seekers think twice before plunging in. Nearby on Palm Jumeirah, the upcoming Raffles Dubai palm-shaped property promises poolside views all the way to the Dubai Eye.
Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust - Private Island Resorts Worth the Splurge
Who doesn't fantasize about having their own private tropical island? This year, turn fantasy into reality by planning a getaway to one of the world's top private island resorts. While splurging on your own island for the week may sound over the top, recent guests swear it's worth every penny for a true once-in-a-lifetime experience.
At these secluded island resorts, you'll feel a million miles from the crowds and the daily grind. We're talking miles of untouched beach, impossibly lush jungles and unreal turquoise lagoons where sea turtles and manta rays glide past your overwater bungalow. The hardest decision of the day is choosing between a champagne picnic on a remote beach or decadent couple's massage at the spa. The staff here numbers nearly as much as the guests, allowing for incredibly personalized service.
One leading private island is Laucala Island in Fiji, purchased in 2016 by Austrian billionaire Dietrich Mateschitz. With just 25 overwater and beach villas, Laucala pampers guests with private infinity pools, submersible boats and even electric cars. There are horses available for riding along deserted beaches, world-class dining, and non-motorized water sports galore. No kids under 18 are allowed, promoting an ultra-luxe adults-only ambiance. Nightly rates hover around $4,800 but are all-inclusive.
Over in the Maldives, consider taking over the breathtaking private island of Velaa Private Island. With 47 beach and overwater villas, your biggest concern will be which of your plunge pool to take a dip in. There are six restaurants, a golf academy, the largest spa in the Maldives and a wine cellar with over 5,000 bottles. A dazzling house reef surrounds the island, ripe for snorkeling and diving adventures. Rates average $2,500 per night.
If you're willing to share your island with a few more guests, Song Saa Private Island off the Cambodian coast offers 27 villas starting at $1,400 per night. Song Saa feels incredibly intimate and unspoiled. The island's talented chef dishes up Cambodian-inspired flavors and the waters are ripe for snorkeling, diving or kayaking. There's an on-site marine conservation team that protects the island's reefs, sea turtles and more. Guests praise the meaningful voluntourism opportunities.
Or opt for North Island in the Seychelles, loved by celebs like William and Kate. With just 11 villas, North Island's devoted staff deliver unmatched service in total seclusion. Villas feature historic, handcrafted furniture, plunge pools and incredible sea views. Rates start at $8,000 per night all inclusive. The island has dedicated conservation programs protecting endangered Seychelles wildlife. Overall, North Island offers an otherworldly tropical escape.
Your 2023 Hotel Hit List: The 15 Hottest Hotel Stays Sparking Major Wanderlust - Wellness Retreats for Total Mind-Body Resets
With burnout and anxiety plaguing so many these days, wellness retreats offering mind-body resets are having a major moment. Weary from the daily grind, travelers seek places to hit the reset button and reconnect with their true selves. These healing havens promise the chance to relax, recharge and gain new wellness skills through immersive programming. You'll emerge renewed, your mind and body working in greater harmony.
Recent wellness retreat goers say they felt totally transformed by the experience. The combination of yoga, massage, meditation, nourishing food and nature seem to work wonders, melting away months or even years of accumulated stress. Many describe reaching the end of their trip feeling the best they have in ages, with increased mental clarity and focus. They credit wellness retreats with providing a much-needed escape to pause and prioritize self-care. Away from work and routine demands, guests finally have time to focus inward.
Through instruction in practices like mindfulness, guests gain tools to maintain their new-found wellbeing even after returning home. Beautiful natural settings further foster this sense of wellness. With fresh ocean air in Hawaii, desert heat in Arizona, or Alpine vistas in Switzerland, nature energizes and inspires. Many leading wellness retreats follow a digital detox approach for full focus on health. Forget FOMO and notifications; you'll be blissfully unplugged. Typical offerings include fitness classes, spa treatments, nutrition counseling, life coaching, yoga and more. Program lengths range from weekend reboots to three-week regimens targeting specific goals like weight loss or reducing inflammation.