On the heels of announcing its top destination, cruise and lifestyle partners, Virtuoso named the winners of its 2018 Best of the Best awards. Virtuoso honored 2018’s top 10 hotels and hoteliers to an audience of 1,700 of luxury travel’s most principal figures at its 30th annual travel week.
Awards were determined by vote. Over 1,000 travel agency members and their 17,500 professional travel advisers chimed in, along with insight by editors of Virtuoso Life Magazine. The winners are going to be included in the publication’s September/October issue.
The 2018 Virtuoso Best of the Best winners in each category are:
Hotel of the Year: Adare Manor, Limerick, Ireland
Adare Manor reopened in November 2017 following an extensive 21-month restoration, refurbishment and expansion, marking a new beginning for this historic property. The warmth of the staff, the personalized service and the extraordinary experiences create a sense of belonging and home for guests.
Best Achievement in Design: The Silo Hotel, Cape Town, South Africa
The name of the Silo Hotel commemorates the building’s former use as a grain silo. Today it has been reborn as a unique all-suite boutique property above MOCAA, an exciting new museum of contemporary African art. “The design and view from every suite is breathtaking. The location and access to MOCAA is a fantastic added value.” – Helena Andren, Travel Beyond, a Virtuoso Agency
Best Dining Experience: Meadowood Napa Valley - The Restaurant, St. Helena, California, U.S.
The Restaurant features modern American cuisine stemming from relationships with local artisans, growers and foragers. Its 2.5-acre garden produces unique seasonal crops using organic and sustainable techniques to enhance the relationship among the landscape, food system, and community. “The service was outstanding with attention to detail from the moment we arrived, with an excellent menu and a price point that didn’t break the bank.” – Jay Johnson, Coastline Travel Advisors, a Virtuoso Agency
Best Bar: Brown’s Hotel, A Rocco Forte Hotel – The Donovan Bar, London, U.K.
The newly renovated Donovan Bar, named for noted photographer Sir Terrence Donovan, features his images on the walls, enhancing the sleek yet approachable design. The bar offers signature cocktails, an intimate atmosphere and a perfect Mayfair location. “Great mix of contemporary and traditional English with fantastic drinks and great service.” – Miriam Geiser, KK Travels Worldwide, a Virtuoso Agency
Sustainable Tourism Leadership: Six Senses Douro Valley – Lamego, Portugal
Six Senses Douro Valley is located in the Douro ecosystem, a UNESCO World Heritage Site with 3,500 different botanical species. The property has pledged to improve the ecological and carbon footprint from its activities and continuously monitors its performance.
Best Family Program: The Ranch at Rock Creek – Philipsburg, Montana
Children from ages four to 12 will enjoy the Little Grizzlies Kids Club, where trained staff introduce them to the Frontier West in an exciting and safe way that educates and entertains. “The property has many diverse programs, but I selected Ranch Life Day. Adopt a horse! Wranglers teach kids about horse safety and care, before a group horseback ride and roping practice. Sounds like great fun and educational, too, as the kids explore the ‘wild west’ of the USA.” – Valerie Wilson, Valerie Wilson Travel, Inc., a Virtuoso Agency
Best Wellness Program: BodyHoliday Saint Lucia – Castries, St. Lucia
BodyHoliday features wellness offerings in a gorgeous Caribbean setting, including healthy and delicious meals, spa treatments, and yoga and other outdoor fitness, while also providing luxury accommodations, expert staff and excellent service. “They take wellness the extra step ahead of the almost 150 wellness spas I have visited in my many years in the business. The facilities, located on a small beautiful beach, include many fitness activities each day including sailing, hiking, biking, spinning, boxing, golf and more. The experience was delightful!” – Karen Benson, Travel Experts, a Virtuoso Agency
Best Virtuoso Newcomer: Hôtel de Crillon, A Rosewood Hotel – Paris, France
The Hôtel de Crillon’s renovation resulted in a luxurious and welcoming interior including stunning suites, a bar attracting rave reviews, and a beautiful new pool. “Fabulous, flawless renovation of an iconic property; a staff that embraces and warmly welcomes their agency partners; best Concierge team in Paris! Amazing new bar that the Parisians also love.” – Victoria Boomgarden, Direct Travel Luxe, a Virtuoso Agency
Best Virtuoso Hotel Ambassador: Andrea Filippi, Belmond
Hotelier of the Year: Patrizio Cipollini, Four Seasons Hotel Firenze, Florence, Italy