Inspiration Destinations Europe Introducing Ultra Lux: These are the Most Luxurious Hotels in the World

Introducing Ultra Lux: These are the Most Luxurious Hotels in the World

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Out-of-this-world architecture, six-star service, vintage champagnes and Michelin-star-worthy cuisine: at the world’s finest hotels, the sky’s the limit.

If you’re after the crème de la crème, look no further than the Ultra Lux collection – a curated selection of the most exquisite hotels and resorts in the world, where the luxury is second-to-none, the service is bespoke and the champagne flows. This is a highly curated collection of the very finest hotels in the world, sourced by our luxury travel experts. From the legendary Raffles and Mandarin Oriental to game-changing newcomers such as Atlantis The Royal, Dubai and hidden diamonds like the boutique Sequoia Lodge in South Australia, each property has been hand-selected for being truly exceptional. Cutting-edge architecture, extraordinary settings, out-of-this-world experiences and at every turn, the best of the very best: this is your invite to the highest echelons of luxury travel.

Come with us as we discover the most luxurious hotels in the world.

Picture-perfect sunsets: The Shore at Katathani

The Shore at Katathani, Phuket one of the most luxurious hotels in the world - Luxury Escapes
Beachfront elegance at the Shore at Katathani

Powder-soft white sands and stunning Andaman Sea sunsets from private infinity pools: it is no wonder The Shore at Katathani is consistently ranked one of Phuket’s best hotels. Situated in a hidden cove on Kata Noi Beach – one of the region's most desirable stretches of beachfront – this five-star haven promises villas with panoramic ocean vistas, sundowner cocktails at The Nest Beach Club and romantic candlelight dinners by the water. Dial up the luxury at Serenity Spa with bespoke treatments.  

Top-rated pool villas: Mulia Villas Bali

Mulia Villas, Bali, one of the most luxurious hotels in the world - Luxury Escapes
A beachfront Oasis: Mulia Villas

There are not many places in the world that embody five-star elegance quite like Mulia Villas, a gem on Nusa Dua's sun-kissed beachfront. Consistently ranked one of the best resorts in the world, it's immediately clear why this sanctuary of exotic luxury receives A-list acclaim. With multiple glittering pools, nine restaurants and bars serving a smorgasbord of cuisines, an ultra-luxurious spa and enchanting, butler-serviced pool villas – among the largest on the island – it’s easy to forget that some of Bali’s finest beaches also await on the doorstep.   

A-listed acclaimed: Finolhu Maldives Resort

Finolhu Maldives Resort, one of the most luxurious hotels in the world - Luxury Escapes
Pillow-soft sands and glittering ocean at Finolhu Maldives Resort

With a guest list that includes Leonardo DiCaprio and the Beckhams, you’ll be in good company at Seaside Finolhu Baa Atoll, an award-winning, all-inclusive luxury playground located in the heritage-listed Baa Atoll. Just when you thought the Maldives couldn't get any dreamier, this ultra-luxurious resort takes the splendour up a notch with roundtrip seaplane transfers, all-inclusive ocean-facing dining and free-flowing drinks. Stay in an Ocean Pool Villa for direct access to the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Biosphere Reserve, which provides a pristine setting for a myriad of water activities, from kayaking to windsurfing, paddle boarding and snorkelling. 

Private island luxury: Intercontinental Hayman Island

Intercontinental Hayman Island, Australia is one of the most luxurious hotels in the world - Luxury Escapes
Tropical indulgence is all around at Intercontinental Hayman Island

A catamaran transfer, complete with glass of sparkling wine, from Hamilton Island sets the perfect tone for a five-starstay on this postcard-perfect private island. For those keen to take luxury up a notch, a helicopter or private yacht can be arranged. The world-class Hayman Spa beckons for guests after pampering, with signature treatments encompassing all manner of scrubs, massages and facials. Plunge into the impossibly turquoise Coral Sea, take a dip in one of Australia's largest swimming pools, dive below the surface to spot kaleidoscopic corals and spend evenings stargazing on beach picnics and feasting on oysters and champagne at this exquisite island haven. 

Meru Sanur

All-suite opulence doesn’t get much better than The Meru Sanur, which takes five-star Balinese luxury to new heights with meticulous attention to detail and a commitment to first-class hospitality that rivals even the island’s biggest names. Easy access to over a kilometre of pristine coastline makes it easy to embrace Sanur’s sun, surf and sand; then return to your spacious, masterfully designed accommodation to savour the magnificent central resort pool, sumptuous Arunika Restaurant and blissful Svasana Spa.  

Opulence meets sustainability: Six Senses Uluwatu, Bali

Undoubtedly a crown jewel of Bali's southern coast, perched atop limestone cliffs, this eco-sanctuary boasts a World Green Council certification and sets the bar for eco-friendly indulgence. While sustainability is at the forefront, no luxuries have been missed. From the unrivalled views of the Indian Ocean to the cliff’s edge three-tiered infinity pool and the Six Senses Integrated Wellness program, every element exudes elegance. When it’s time to treat your tastebuds, enjoy farm-to-table dining at its finest with its fusion of Japanese and Peruvian cuisine at Watu Steakhouse. This is one Balinese cliffside retreat taking luxurious eco-retreats to new heights.

Middle eastern icon: Burj Al Arab Jumeirah, Dubai

Burj Al Arab Jumeirah, Dubai, one of the most luxurious hotels in the world - Luxury Escapes
Burj Al Arab Jumeirah, Dubai, where luxury transcends to icon status.

Hands down the most iconic structure on the Dubai skyline, Burj Al Arab Jumeirah is a pinnacle of luxury renowned the world over. In fact, it’s widely regarded as the most luxurious hotel in the world – and it’s not hard to see why. Aside from its extraordinary, genre-defying architecture and prime real estate on the Palm Jumeirah, touches such as a fleet of Rolls Royce cars for chauffeuring guests, a rooftop helipad and an onsite Michelin-starred restaurant cement its status as one of – if not the – most extraordinary hotels of all time.

Once-in-a-lifetime indulgence: Soneva Jani, Maldives

Soneva Jani, Maldives, one of the most luxurious hotels in the world - Luxury Escapes
Overwater villas of dreams at Soneva Jani, Maldives.

If you’re not yet familiar with Soneva, you’ll certainly want to be. The ultimate destinations to embark on a wellness and relaxation journey, Soneva resorts are, quite simply, exquisite, and designed to create those once-in-a-lifetime moments of luxury travellers’ dreams. Book into Soneva Jani's private overwater villa with a slide into the impossibly turquoise lagoon, and spend evenings stargazing at the observatory and feasting on sashimi and champagne. There’s simply no finer way to experience the Maldives.

A world-away: The Naka Phuket

Escape to where the world can’t find you – tucked away amid lush vegetation on the western coast of Phuket, Thailand. The Naka Phuket boasts a prime hillside position above the porcelain shores of NAKA Bay, with direct, unspoiled access to a coral reef. Wake each morning to panoramic views of the sparkling Andaman Sea from your villa, indulge in exquisite cuisine at the resort's signature restaurants and swim in the longest beachfront infinity pool in the region. For the ultimate relaxation, pamper yourself with a rejuvenating spa treatment or partake in onsite yoga sessions. 

Natural marvel: One&Only Gorilla’s Nest, Rwanda

One&Only Gorilla's Nest, Rwanda, one of the most luxurious hotels in the world - Luxury Escapes
A privileged viewpoint at One&Only Gorilla's Nest, Rwanda.

If you favour an escape out of the ordinary, One&Only Gorilla’s Nest, at the edge of Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park, will deliver those utterly magical moments in spades. Hidden amid a leafy eucalyptus forest that is home to the mountain gorilla, this resort offers the chance to spot these majestic creatures in their natural habitat, from the comfort of your accommodation. Here, you can be at one with nature without relinquishing luxury: dine on fresh, seasonal cuisine, indulge in a spa treatment utilizing ancient African wisdom and retire to your impeccable forest lodge or suite.

Timeless French elegance: Mandarin Oriental, Paris

Mandarin Oriental, Paris, France, one of the most luxurious hotels in the world - Luxury Escapes
Mandarin Oriental, Paris, France, is exemplary of the brand's timeless elegance.

You can’t have a conversation about the world’s most luxurious hotels without name-dropping this most elegant of brands: with origins dating back to the Victorian era, Mandarin Oriental has a rich and storied history in luxury hospitality. Its Paris outpost is exemplary of the Mandarin Oriental ethos, showcasing timeless elegance and thoughtful service. Expect the best of the best with dining at the two-Michelin-starred Sur Mesure, and treatments at Spa by Mandarin Oriental, Paris, named Best Luxury Hotel Spa at the World Luxury Spa Awards.

London luxury: COMO The Halkin, London

COMO The Halkin, London, UK, one of the most luxurious hotels in the world - Luxury Escapes
An inner-city oasis: COMO The Halkin, London, UK.

Looking for top-tier luxury in the big city? The COMO boutique hotel brand specialises in understated, ‘home-away-from-home’ luxe, resulting in the feel of staying in a (very exclusive) private home. Nestled in a Georgian townhouse near Hyde Park, in exclusive Belgravia, COMO The Halkin welcomes those with impeccable taste. Its rooms and suites are each a haven from the frenetic energy of the city, with whitewashed walls accented with walnut panelling. A spa offering holistic treatments centred on COMO’s signature Shambhala approach eases you further into a sense of serenity.

Los Cabos glamour: Esperanza, Auberge Resorts Collection

Auberge Resorts Collection, Los Cabos, Mexico, one of the most luxurious hotels in the world - Luxury Escapes
Paradise views at Esperanza, Auberge Resorts Collection, Los Cabos, Mexico.

Mexico’s Los Cabos attracts the well-heeled with good reason, thanks to its dreamy beaches, out-of-this-world diving and exceptional luxury resorts. One of its finest is Esperanza, Auberge Resorts Collection: home to the only private beach in Los Cabos. Here, indulge in the one-of-a-kind luxury one can expect from the prestigious Auberge Resorts Collection. Wake in an ocean-view villa, dine cliffside on succulent seafood and explore the beach on horseback for a truly unforgettable experience.

High octane glamour: W Dubai Mina Seyahi

Step into the epitome of luxury at W Dubai - Mina Seyahi, where contemporary design meets Middle Eastern mystique. The possibilities for adults-only, day-to-night adventures are boundless: alfresco terrace Ginger Moon offers an infinity pool over the Arabian Gulf and dialled-up DJ sets, while attiko, a Japanese-inspired rooftop bar, hosts lively late-night gatherings and breathtaking panoramic city views. Bohemian accents adorn award-winning restaurants (there are six dining venues onsite), while each room and suite offers vistas of the Dubai Marina. 

Discover the Ultra Lux collection here.

Looking for more inspiration? Check out Luxury Escapes' Top Bucket-List Destinations for 2024.

About Rebecca Ellwood
An English girl in Melbourne, Rebecca's exploring and tasting her way around Australia and beyond – and she does love a little luxury (who doesn't, darling?)

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