By Forbes, Special for USADC.
Forbes Travel Guide today unveiled its 59th list of worldwide Star Rating recipients, continuing its exceedingly selective approach for recognizing the world’s finest properties and rewarding gracious, intuitive service.
For 2017, the award winners include 22 new Five-Star hotels, 76 new Four-Star hotels and 83 new hotels in the Recommended category. Other first-time recipients include seven Five-Star restaurants, 13 Four-Star restaurants and 12 Recommend restaurants. The list also honors nine new Five-Star spas and 35 new Four-Star spas. See the complete list of winners here.
As it continues to expand globally, Forbes Travel Guide now rates properties in 42 countries throughout the Americas, Europe and the Asia-Pacific region, with plans to add the Middle East and Africa for 2018. Newly added international destinations for 2017 include: Bali, Barcelona, Bogota, Budapest, Cartagena, County Kildare (Ireland), Dublin, Kyoto, Lima, Lisbon, Manila, Melbourne, Monte Carlo, Munich, Osaka, Santiago, Seoul, St. Tropez, Sydney, Venice and Zurich.
“This year’s Star-Rated properties — the largest and most global group in the company’s history — achieved an impeccable standard of excellence in hospitality, underscoring our overall mission of positively contributing to the international tourism industry as well as the individual hotel experience,” said Gerard J. Inzerillo, Chief Executive Officer of Forbes Travel Guide. “We are excited to recognize the 2017 Star Rating recipients, an exceptional collection of hotels, restaurants and spas with a strong culture of service. In an online environment of confusion and clutter, Forbes Travel Guide is the most trusted source of information to assist guests in making informed decisions,” Inzerillo said. “We are proud to congratulate everyone who showed dedication to their guests and employees.”
To celebrate this year’s award, Star-Rated winners are invited to the Forbes Travel Guide All-Star Celebration in New York City on March 2. Attendees will enjoy selections of dishes prepared by award-winning chefs and legends of the international culinary world, including: Jose Garces, Amada; Christian Pratsch, Asiate; Daniel Boulud, Daniel; Mario Batali and Joe and Lidia Bastianich, Del Posto; Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Jean-Georges; Geoffrey Zakarian, The Lambs Club; and Michael White, Vaucluse.
HIGHLIGHTS, TRENDS & FUN FACTS FOR 2017
- By the Numbers
- Among the total 1,464 winners, there are 175 Five-Star, 478 Four-Star and 237 Recommended hotels.
- Overall, 62 Five-Star, 176 Four-Star and 73 Recommended restaurants earned distinctions.
- In the spas category, a total of 56 Five-Star and 207 Four-Star spots achieved awards.
- Beauty in Diversity
While the 2017 group of winners is the most diverse in terms of size, location and style, one overarching theme that ties them together is that each delivers its own distinctive experience. New Five-Star hotels range from the brand-new fresh and inventive Faena Hotel Miami Beach and the recently restored grand dame Ritz Paris to over-the-top all-suite hotel The Ritz-Carlton, Macau. Boutique hotels also made a strong Five-Star showing, including Cabo San Lucas’ 87-room The Resort at Pedregal, London’s 30-room Hotel 41 and Rome’s 14-suite Portrait Roma.
The same diversity can be found with the new Four-Stars winners, which include St. Lucia’s Jade Mountain Resort, whose 29 three-walled suites are open to the elements and have either their own private infinity pool or Jacuzzi, and Mystic, Connecticut’s Spicer Mansion, a new eight-room hotel that pampers with monogrammed pillows and chauffeured BMW service.
- New and Noteworthy
- Among the new destinations, the small island of Bali emerged as a big luxury winner. The new luxury hot spot snagged Five-Star distinctions for three hotels (Four Seasons Resort Bali at Jimbaran Bay, Four Seasons Resort Bali at Sayan, The Villas at Ayana). It also tallied an impressive 10 Four-Star hotels and three Recommended properties. Five Four-Star spas also debuted.
- Puerto Rico is rebounding from a tourism slump with a new Five-Star hotel, The St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort, Puerto Rico. It joins Dorado Beach, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve in achieving the top honor. The island also boasts its first Five-Star spa, Spa Botánico, a five-acre oasis within Dorado Beach.
- Manila launched with two Five-Star hotels (Marco Polo Ortigas Manila, Sky Tower at Solaire Resort and Casino), a quartet of Four-Star properties (Fairmont Makati, Hyatt City of Dreams Manila, Raffles Makati, Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila) and a pair of Recommended hotels (Makati Shangri-La, Manila; Pan Pacific Manila).
- In Australia, Crown Towers Melbourne and The Darling in Sydney picked up their respective city’s first Five-Star hotel distinction. In addition, Melbourne added a Four-Star (Park Hyatt Melbourne) and two Recommended properties (Grand Hyatt Melbourne; The Langham, Melbourne). Sydney racked up two Four-Star (The Langham, Sydney; Park Hyatt Sydney) and a pair of Recommended hotels (InterContinental Sydney Double Bay; Shangri-La Hotel, Sydney). Each city also gained a Four-Star spa (Crown Spa Melbourne, Sydney’s The Darling Spa).
- Numerous European destinations debuted with their first Five-Star properties: Budapest (Four Seasons Hotel Gresham Palace Budapest), Barcelona (Mandarin Oriental, Barcelona), the French Riviera (Grand-Hôtel du Cap-Ferrat, A Four Seasons Hotel) and Venice (Belmond Hotel Cipriani).
- Stars All Around
- An elite group of 11 properties earned Five-Star awards for their hotel, restaurant and spa. These triple Five-Star winners include: Banyan Tree Macau; The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs; The Cloister in Sea Island, Georgia; Fairmont Grand Del Mar in San Diego; The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong; Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas; Mandarin Oriental, Macau; Mandarin Oriental, Miami; Montage Laguna Beach; Ocean House in Watch Hill, Rhode Island; and Wynn Las Vegas.
- Altira Macau and Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong received a total of four Five-Star awards for the hotel, spa and two restaurants.
- Crown Towers Macau won a total of five Five-Star awards for the hotel, spa and three restaurants.
- Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong and Wynn Macau set a new record, achieving a total of six Five-Star awards for the hotel, spa and four restaurants.
- Where the Hotel Stars Shine Brightly
- In the United States, the greatest number of Five-Star hotels are in: California (18), New York (9), Florida (8), Massachusetts (6) and Nevada (5). California gained two new Five-Star hotels this year: Napa’s Solage, An Auberge Resort and San Diego’sFairmont Grand Del Mar.
- U.S. cities with the highest number of Five-Star hotels include: New York (8), Beverly Hills (5), Las Vegas (5) and Miami (5).
- Globally, cities with the most Five-Star hotels include: Macau (10), Paris (10), London (9) and Hong Kong (8). Macau and Paris remain neck and neck with one new winner each in 2017.
- Where the Restaurant Stars Shine Brightly
- In the United States, the greatest number of Five-Star restaurants reside in: New York (7), California (6) and Nevada (6).
- Cities in the United States with the most Five-Star restaurants include: New York (7), Las Vegas (6) and Chicago (3).
- Las Vegas’ fine-dining scene is seeing an uptick with three new Five-Star restaurants: Le Cirque Las Vegas and Picasso, both in Bellagio, and Wing Lei in Wynn Las Vegas.
- Globally, cities with the highest number of Five-Star restaurants include: Macau (11) and Hong Kong (8).
- Where the Spa Stars Shine Brightly
- In the United States, the greatest number of Five-Star spas are located in: California (8), Florida (5) and Nevada (5). California’s two new Five-Star spa additions are Meadowood Spa in Napa and The Spa at Beverly Wilshire in Los Angeles.
- The brand-new and sumptuous Meadowood Spa brings Napa Valley its first Five-Star spa.
- Globally, cities with the most Five-Star spas include: Macau (7), Hong Kong (5) and Shanghai (4).
- Sense, A Rosewood Spa at Mayakoba is the first and only Five-Star spa in Mexico.
For details on how Forbes Travel Guide compiles its Star Ratings, click here.
To view the complete list of 2017 Forbes Travel Guide Star Rating recipients, click here.
To view and download images of all 2017 Forbes Travel Guide Star Rating recipients, click here.