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Hotel Review: La Réserve Hotel and Spa Paris

Diego Travel Hotel Review

La Réserve Hotel and Spa Paris

An Insider’s Address Just Off the Champs-Elysées
MARIA DIEGO

One of the best kept secrets of in-the-know travelers who frequent Paris, La Réserve Paris Hotel and Spa is the Parisian address you want on your radar. With 40 rooms and suites, this boutique hotel is the smallest of the famed Palace hotels of Paris. Refined without feeling pretentious, elegant without feeling stuffy, every detail of your stay is thoughtfully looked after and ultra-personalized.

I’m embarrassed to admit that La Réserve had not been on my radar, prior to an invitation to a travel industry event, in which I was invited to stay at this luxury hotel for four nights. With very little prior research before my stay, I can now say that I have never enjoyed myself more in the City of Light than I did while staying here.

The essence of La Réserve is the combination of warm hospitality from its attentive, yet unobtrusive staff, and the cozy, yet ever-so-chic venues like the Duc de Morny Library and the irresistible Bar Le Gaspard. I found myself returning to my newfound home away from home each evening, exhausted after long days of meetings, yet not wanting to retreat to my suite. Instead, I found myself a velvety-tufted seat alone downstairs enjoying the background buzz of French chatter, live music softly playing in the next room, and the cozy warmth of a crackling fireplace. The bartender managed to get it just right each time I told him to surprise me. After the first night of a midnight solo dinner of filet de bœuf with sauce au poivre, the waiter greeted me every subsequent night with a warm smile and a heavily-accented, “The usual?” I’m hard-pressed to think of a more romantic hotel in Paris, or one that makes you feel so at home.

Perfect For: Romantic Getaways | The Business Traveler Who Wants Personalized Service | Families | First-Time Visitors to Paris | 2nd, 3rd, and 4th-Time Visitors to Paris | Anniversary Trips

La Réserve Hotel and Spa Paris

La Reserve Paris

Location:

48.8696988,2.3132448

Florida Keys

La Réserve Hotel and Spa Paris

Midway between Avenue Montaigne and Rue du Faubourg St-Honoré, a stone’s throw from the Champs-Elysées, La Réserve Paris – Hotel and Spa overlooks some of the city’s key sights: the Eiffel Tower, the Pantheon, and the Grand Palais. It’s located on the Right Bank of Paris, in the 8th arrondissement.

La Reserve Paris Location

Vibe:

It wasn’t long into my stay before I realized that the well-traveled, and well-heeled guests staying at La Réserve were not your typical first-timers to Paris. Perhaps they’d tried the Hotel George V or The Ritz and wanted something a little less flashy and a lot more discrete.  Perhaps they appreciated the gesture of the extra phone charger left in the room when they had forgotten theirs at home, without ever needing to ask.  Perhaps they all had a mutual understanding and respect for discrepancy and the shared values of the art of sophisticated travel.  Guests seemed they type to appreciate the old-world butler service, where your suitcase is meticulously unpacked, and your shoes are shining when you return to your room after a long day of sight-seeing and shopping.  I loved this subtle sheen that illuminates every surface of your experience at La Réserve.

During my stay, there was a president of an unnamed country staying at the hotel, along with his large team of security and staff.  Even though it is a small property, their presence did not take away at all from the experience of other guests.  The only nuisance was that the street was closed off by French policy, so was inaccessible to taxis or car services.  The friendly bellman saw to it to personally accompany me the block over to hail and taxi for me, and to carry my bags upon my return. It was very apparent during every moment of my stay that their team truly cares and gets to know their guests, which in turn creates a repeat customer, lending itself to that home-away-from-home feel.

ACCOMMODATIONS:

La Reserve Suites Photo Courtesy La Reserve Paris

The entry level room at La Réserve is quite spacious by Paris standards, boasting 430 square feet. All rooms and suites come with an Italian marble bathroom with double basin sink, bath tub with separate walk-in shower, which bath amenities in the signature La Réserve scent (it might just be worth a stay only to snag a bottle of this heaven scent)! Beyond that, there are 12 different room and suite categories, with 25 of those being suites. Some look onto a leafy and quiet courtyard, while others have panoramic views of the Eiffel Tower. My favorite was the Grand Palais Suite, a palatial suite of 2,153 square feet that sleeps six people. In 1900, the Grand Palais had been built to magnify “French art” at the World’s Fair. Today, this suite also pays tribute to a proud French heritage, with its authentic Napoleon III furniture, its antiques lovingly collected over the years, as well as its historical or contemporary works bridging the centuries. You can have it as your own, and enjoy the stunning views of the Eiffel Tower from your private balcony with personalized butler service.

La Reserve Paris Rooms Photo Courtesy La Reserve Paris

Beyond the main hotel, La Réserve also offers Paris apartments, which are perfect for those longer stays or when you’re traveling with the whole family or large group of friends. From 1 bedroom to 4 bedroom options, these apartments in Paris come with a dedicated butler, 24/7 concierge service, valet and indoor parking, 24/7 security, dedicated housekeeping to take care of your daily shopping, laundry and ironing, a gourmet welcome amenity and daily breakfast served in your apartment. I get many requests for apartment stays in Paris, and La Réserve apartments are quite possibly my favorite selection.

Plan my trip to Paris

FOOD & BEVERAGE:

  • As I mentioned in the introduction to the hotel, the culinary experience at La Réserve Paris Hotel and Spa is perhaps at the forefront of your stay and a large part of your unforgettable experience. Even the locals frequent the restaurants, as I witnessed myself each night. While each day I opted to have breakfast on the patio of my room, which is always included with your stay when you book with Diego Travel, the options were endless and authentically delicious.

  • Restaurants La Reserve Paris

  • Restaurant La Pagode Paris

  • Led by the Michelin two-starred Executive Chef Jérôme Banctel, Le Gabriel offers a three, seven or nine-course menu, which is great to share amongst friends or for that special celebratory dinner with your loved one. La Pagode de Cos is the more casual and contemporary option, prepared by that same Michelin team. I already mentioned the library and bar in my intro, but it’s important to note that all spaces can be privatized, which I also witnessed with the presidential stay during my time there.

ACTIVITIES:

  • One of my confessions as a travel advisor is that I am my own worst travel planner. As I always prioritize my clients’ travel needs, I rarely anticipate my own and find myself with unsettled plans wherever and whenever I travel. I suppose it was my own way of testing out the Clefs d’Or concierge service that La Réserve provides to their guests, but I nonchalantly passed by the desk one morning on my way to meetings to request a highly-sought after appointment at a nearby designer boutique. Before 10 AM, I had a text message to my phone, confirming my pre-opening appointment at the famous Chanel on 31 Rue Cambon. Now that’s magic!

  • Chanel

  • Paris Seine River

  • The activity options in Paris are endless and will totally depend on what you’re into – art, culinary, history, fashion, cycling, etc. Typically, I pre-plan my clients’ trips to Paris with a full itinerary of these activities, tailoring each day to their personal needs. However, if you’re just booking your hotel stay with me, I wouldn’t hesitate to use their concierge team to provide exceptional and unique Paris experiences.
  • Another key point I was thoroughly impressed with was their ability to curate your stay, whether you are traveling alone, with a romantic partner or with young children. They customize your welcome amenity each time, and provide personal details and offer activities according to you.

  • Plan my trip to Paris

    Plan my trip to Paris

WELLNESS:

The spa at La Réserve offers a 16m indoor pool that is heated to a comfortable temperature year-round, along with a hammam, fitness studio and 3 treatment rooms. While on the smaller side, the emphasis again is on personalization. They offer personalized fitness instructors and can personalize your facial to best suite your needs, using Swiss anti-aging beauty products from Nescens.

La Reserve Paris Pool-Photo Courtesy La Reserve

What  Sets  It  Apart:

Isla Bella Beach Resort Marketplace

If I haven’t made my point yet, this hotel is all about the personal touch, and making you feel comfortable and at home while at the same time being elegant, sophisticated and Parisian chic. I don’t know if it was just because I was so tired every night from working, but I don’t think I have ever slept in such a comfortable bed. I actually dream of returning to Paris, just to sleep here! While the room, furnishings and finishes were classically beautiful, I think what set it apart was truly the level of service that their team provides.

Isla Bella-Diego Travel Guide

Diego Travel Loves…
La Réserve receives our vote for the most romantic hotel in Paris. From its central yet quiet location, to its lush finishes like silk walls, velvet drapes, and brocade taffeta, the romanticism is an endless experience at this Paris hotel. I also love that there are many interconnecting options for families, which is hard to come by in a historical building such as this one. The authenticity of the La Réserve experience is second to none.

Isla Bella Beach Resort Marketplace

How Much Does it Cost?
Rates start around 1,600 Euros per night for the Prestige Room, which again, based on size, is comparable to a mid-level room at any other hotel. During high season, that same room can go for 2,800 Euros per night. Some suites can go for 21,000 Euros per night. As a member of Virtuoso, our clients receive exclusive access to promotional rates, as well as daily breakfast, a $100 hotel credit, and priority upgrade with your stay. We also have a personal relationship with the hotel, where we can assist in hand-picking the right accommodation for your special time in Paris.

Diego Travel Extras at La Reserve Paris

Extras You’ll Get with Diego Travel:
  • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
  • Daily Full Breakfast for up to two guests per bedroom
  • $100 USD equivalent Resort credit to be utilized during stay (not combinable, not valid on room rate, no cash value if not redeemed in full)
  • Complimentary round-trip airport/train private transfers in an E-Class Mercedes
  • Early Check-In / Late Check-Out, subject to availability
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • Welcome box for new Diego Travel clients with custom trip planning

    Book La Reserve With Perks

    Diego Travel Insider Tips:

    Utilize the insider access of the concierge. They will recommend local eateries, entertainment, and the last-minute key to Chanel when needed!

    Some suites include a selection of 30 refreshments in your in-room bar.

    La Reserve Paris-Photo Courtesy La Reserv

    LETS SET UP A CALL


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    5 Mini Vacations To Plan Now

    5 Mini Vacations to Plan Now

    Maximizing Your Mini Vacation

    5 Mini Vacations to Plan Now

    MARIA DIEGO

    As summer comes to a close, you might want to think about what’s up next. To make this easy, we’ve put together a selection of 5-day trips that you can squeeze in for fall travel.

    5 PLACES FOR 5-NIGHTS

    1. IRELAND

    Delve into the craic of this ancient city of Dublin, brimming with castles, cathedrals, and pubs. Take in Irish history at the Epic Immigration Museum or the downtown’s plentiful free museums, including the popular Natural History Museum. Revel in the music of cozy pubs, plunge into Temple Bar’s lively heart, and cap off with a pint at the iconic Guinness Storehouse, savoring city views. The cherry on top? U.S. pre-clearance at Dublin’s airport streamlines your journey home.

    Want to explore more of the country-side? We have many properties up our sleeve that are the perfect one-stop-shop for golfing, culinary experiences, and pub crawls.

    Bummer! Kids club is closed

    2. San Diego

    I may be biased as I count North County San Diego as home, but you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better place to visit in the fall. Experience exceptional weather, stunning beaches, and a blend of diverse cultures in this captivating coastal city. With its Spanish roots dating back to 1769, the city boasts architectural gems including the Mediterranean and Spanish Colonial Revival structures housing Balboa Park’s museums and shops. Head north to explore Encinitas, a surfers haven, and appreciate the mile-long sandy shoreline of La Jolla Shores. Beyond the beach, the rugged cliffs and scenic trails at Torrey Pines State Beach park add a dash of adventure, making San Diego the perfect short getaway.

    Contact me to match you to the best property based on your needs – as well as receive elevated treatment, perks, and amenities extended to Diego Travel clients.

    Expect limited dining option while traveling in the age of COVID

    3. Iceland

    I am headed to Iceland in November, to experience it first-hand so I can better advise my clients. Iceland is an easy 5-night trip from the East Coast, where you can explore the northernmost capital in the world, Reykjavik. Visit the architectural marvel of Hallgrimskirkja, and immerse in Viking history at the National Museum of Iceland. Sample local specialties in Reykjavik’s innovative food scene and enjoy the city’s vibrant nightlife. Just outside, the Golden Circle route offers a day trip filled with geothermal wonders and majestic waterfalls. Unwind at the end in the world-famous Blue Lagoon’s geothermal waters.

    Checking into a hotel the age of Covid-19

    4. Punta Mita

    I’m headed here in October, and will be staying at 3 of the leading resorts. I’ve previously stayed at two others, so I feel like this week will allow me to guide you to the very best option for you. With its pristine beaches and upscale resorts, it’s a haven for relaxation and high-end leisure. Here, you can tee off on championship golf courses, explore the biodiverse Maritas Islands, or bask on the breathtaking Playa Destiladeras. Delight in the local food scene, a fusion of indigenous flavors and global cuisine, and soak up the vibrant culture in traditional Huichol craft shops and bustling beachfront fish markets. In Punta Mita, every moment promises an unforgettable Mexican escapade.

    Networking during Virtuoso’s anual conference

    5. Montana

    Fall in Montana is the perfect time of year if you’re looking for a romantic getaway. There are many options, from Triple Creek Ranch, the Resort at Rock Creek and the new Montage Big Sky. Did you know that at all Montage hotels, you’ll receive an upgrade at time of booking? Along with daily breakfast. $100 hotel credit, and a VIP welcome. It’s the perfect time to discover Big Sky’s newest hot spot.


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    Ireland

    Ireland

    A Destination Guide to Authentic Ireland Beyond Dublin
    MARIA DIEGO

    Covering 32,595 square miles and a population of just over 5 million people, Ireland is a lush, green country dotted with grazing sheep and medieval castles. Historically a very poor country, the Emerald Isle as it’s aptly nicknamed, is rich in culture, folklore and charm. Most visitors want to cover the country of Ireland in a week-long visit, but I’d like to argue that this expansive destination requires a bare minimum of two weeks to cover it all, and four if you cover it well. From Dublin to Waterford, Cork to Killarney, you’ve covered just the bottom portion and have barely made a dent. Take time to see Dingle, Lahinch, Galway and the Aran Islands, and you’re still not quite there. If you want to take a deep dive into Ireland’s history, visit Northern Ireland to Belfast and beyond. In this guide, I’ll take you from Dublin to the West Coast of Ireland and highlight our favorite hotels, things to do, and places to eat in Ireland. If you really want to create your dream Irish vacation, you can start by filling out this form to get started planning.

    Perfect For: Honeymooners | Anniversary Trips | Golfers | Couples Trips | Family Vacations | Travel with Teens | Corporate Groups | Incentive Travel

    Antique car at Sheen Falls in Ring of Kerry Ireland

    Getting to Ireland

    Ireland is one of the easiest destinations for travel, with non-stop flights from many hubs in the United States and around the world. With non-stop flights from the East Coast into Dublin being just under 7 hours, it’s an easy overnight trip to start your time in Ireland in the morning. I typically recommend to start in Dublin and fly out of Shannon airport (airport code SNN), as you won’t have to backtrack to Dublin, and you can clear United States customs in Shannon airport. It’s truly the easiest in terms of international travel.

    When is the Best Time to Visit Ireland?

    From March to May and September to October may be the best time of the year to visit, to avoid the crowds but still enjoy warmer weather. June thru August is peak season, but with the warmer weather comes more crowds. Ireland has a temperate (albeit somewhat rainy) climate year-round, so it makes for a great destination at any time.

    Ireland

    53.3498006,-6.2602964

    Dublin

    Boat Tour in Ring of Kerry Ireland

    Ireland Luxury Travel Guide

    What to do in Ireland

    • Dublin Highlights

      Trinity College and The Book of Kells is one of Ireland’s greatest treasures.  The sight of the Long Room, one of the world’s oldest libraries, and its collection of books spanning thousands of years, is quite breathtaking and well worth the visit.  When we plan your stay in Ireland, we can pair you with a local historian to guide you through the local’s Dublin and focus on the highlights that are relevant to you.

      If you love your spirits, you’ve come to the right place.  Dublin is home to the Guinness Storehouse, Jameson Distillery, and the Irish Whiskey Museum, so whatever your beverage of choice may be, Dublin has you covered.  We like to avoid the crowds of group touring and pair you with a local to explore one of these well-known establishments, but ends with a local pub crawl to the neighborhood gems that you’d otherwise never stumble upon.

      It wouldn’t be a trip to Ireland without a stop at St. Patrick’s Cathedral.  The Patron Saint of Ireland is well-known around the world, but learning about his life story in this setting is an unforgettable experience.  Did you know that St. Patrick was not actually Irish?

    • CLIFFS OF MOHER

    • Ring of Kerry

    • Cliffs of Moher

      The famous Cliffs of Moher are a must-see while exploring the West coast of Ireland.  You can see the Cliffs by hiking along the trail that runs above their rugged bluffs, taking a group tour with the Doolin Ferry Co, or a private seafari with picnic lunch.  Seeing them from the sea is spectacular and I highly recommend it.  We can also combine the Cliffs of Moher with a visit to the Aran Islands, depending on how much time you have, which by the way, one week in Ireland does not allow you to see it all!

    • Ring of Kerry

      The scenic drive around Southwest Ireland’s County Kerry around the Ring of Kerry is simply stunning.  From Killarney to Kenmare, you’ll pass castles, breathtaking vistas, and plenty of wildlife.  Pro Tip: During the summer months, tour buses are required to drive in a counter-clockwise loop around the Ring, so if you are driving, we suggest starting in Kenmare and doing your day trip in a clockwise circle.  To avoid these crowds altogether, we can arrange for a private helicopter tour around the Ring of Kerry, where you will be able to fly over the Skellig Islands, where Star Wars was filmed.

    • Golf Ireland

    • Irish Castle Tour

    • Golfing in Ireland

      There is no shortage of premiere golf courses in Ireland.  With our partnerships, we can get golfers into the best courses and even helicopter you from one course to the next to make the most of your time on the Emerald Isle.  When the McManus family purchased Adare Manor, they invested a million pounds on each hole on the drainage system alone.  I was particularly impressed with The Padel Club at Adare Manor, where your rainy days will not be ruined with their indoor Sports Simulation Room.

    • Irish Castles

      Everyone wants to see an Irish castle or two when traveling to Ireland, but opportunity abounds to actually stay in Irish castles as well.  What we recommend will be based on how much time you have to spend in Ireland (no, two weeks is not too much), what your budget allows, and the logistical routing of your tour through the Emerald Isle. 

    • The Burren Ireland

    • Fly Fishing in Ireland

    • The Burren

      While there are just so many things to see and do in Ireland, a noteworthy mention is a visit to The Burren.  Recently described to me by my Irish friend as “The Sedona of Ireland,” this vast landscape is a bedrock of cracked glacial-era limestone with fossils, caves, rock formations and archeological sites.  You won’t want to miss a lunch stop at The Burren Perfumery, a boutique outpost that makes the best locally sourced perfumes and cosmetics in perhaps the whole world (and their tomato soup and gluten-free pastries might just be the best I’ve ever had!).

    Oil nut bay

    Where to Stay in Ireland

    There are so many great options in Ireland, but no hotel is a one-size-fits-all.  I love to get to know my clients, the type of hotels they’ve loved in the past, and what they are looking for in order to curate the best stays.  These are just a selection of hotels we love to book for our clients, though there are so many more not mentioned in this guide.

    Rosewood Little Dix Bay

    The Shelbourne, Dublin

    Quite easily the most prestigious hotel in Dublin, The Shelbourne has stood the test of time for nearly 200 years.  Located in the heart of Dublin, it’s always a favorite amongst frequent travelers to the city and boasts 246 rooms with 10 meetings spaces, perfect for corporate groups or business travelers.  When booked with Diego Travel, our clients benefit from their STARS amenities listed below, all while earning their Marriott Bonvoy points.  A win/win for you Marriott loyalists.

    Book with Diego Travel to Receive the Following STARS Amenities:

    • Exclusive Marriott STARS offers
    • Daily full breakfast for up to two guests per bedroom
    • Complimentary lunch or dinner for up to two guests per bedroom, once during stay, excluding alcohol, taxes and gratuities (minimum 3-courses & value of $100 USD)
    • Welcome note and amenity
    • Priority Early Check-In/Late Check-Out
    • VIP Status
    • Diego Travel Welcome Box when Using the Travel Planning Service

    Diego Travel Recommends The Shelbourne For: Corporate Groups | Destination Weddings | Couples Groups | Multi-Generational Families | Incentive Trips | Golfers

    Moskito Island

    The Merrion Hotel, Dublin

    About half the size of The Shelbourne yet still situated in the city-center, The Merrion Hotel is home to the 2-Michelin Starred restaurant, Patrick Guilbaud, and a favorite home away from home for many of Europe’s elite.  The Merrion Hotel offers intimacy, privacy and a nice indoor pool and spa.  The lobby feels like stepping into someone’s home, as opposed to The Shelbourne which feels more like a traditional hotel.

    Book with Diego Travel to Receive the Following Virtuoso Amenities:

    • Upgrade upon arrival, subject to availability
    • Full Irish breakfast buffet or A La Carte breakfast for up to two people per bedroom
    • USD 100 credit – a lunch or dinner for up to 2 people in The Saddle Room restaurant
    • Welcome note and amenity
    • Priority Upgrade if Available
    • Priority Early Check-In/Late Check-Out
    • VIP Status
    • Diego Travel Welcome Box when Using theTravel Planning Service

    Diego Travel Recommends The Merrion Hotel For: Romantic Getaways | Anniversary Couples | Those Looking for Privacy | More European Clientele | Spa & Wellness Enthusiasts | Golfers

    The Cashel Palace Ireland

    Cashel Palace

    Meticulously restored with glowing splendor, this Relais & Chateaux manor house dating back to 1732 sits in the heart of Ireland, between Dublin and the west coast.  Perfect for a 1-3 night stay on your way to the Ring of Kerry, this hotel is just perfection.  King Charles stayed at Cashel Palace just days before our stay, and I can attest that this lovely property is well, fit for a king.  From the lovely and caring staff, to the chic interior design, to its gorgeous and inviting spa and indoor/outdoor pool, it’s no wonder that countless celebrities have chosen to stop here to sip coffee while they enjoy views overlooking the iconic Rock of Cashel. 

    Book with Diego Travel to Receive the Following:

    Our personal relationship with the team at Cashel Palace will ensure that your stay is sseamless.

    Adare Manor

    Adare Manor

    This 840-acre estate will have your jaw drop upon arrival.  Adare Manor was awarded the Forbes 5-Star in 2023 and won the Conde Nast Resort of the Year award in 2022, and once you stay here, it’s easy to see why.  No expense was spared in the restoration and reopening of this grand estate and because of the pandemic, they were able to spend even more time on its restoration and perfecting every detail before the world reopened.  It would be easy to spend a full week at this resort alone, which is not uncommon for repeat visitors to Ireland.  Flying in and out of Shannon makes a singular visit to Adare Manor extremely easy and accessible. 

    • Book with Diego Travel to Receive the Following Virtuoso Amenities:
    • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
    • Daily Full Breakfast for up to two guests per bedroom
    • Complimentary Afternoon Tea for up to two guests per bedroom, once during their stay, served in the Gallery (must have minimum value of $100 USD equivalent)
    • Early Check-In / Late Check-Out, subject to availability
    • Complimentary Wi-Fi
    • Diego Travel Welcome Box when Using the Travel Planning Service

    Diego Travel Recommends Adare Manor For: Golfers and Sports Enthusiasts | Weddings | Honeymoons | To See and Be Seen | Multi-Generational Families | Spa & Wellness Enthusiasts

    Dromoland Castle

    Dromoland Castle

    This 97-room castle located in County Clare is close to the Cliffs of Moher, Limerick, and Galway for day trips.  It recently underwent a renovation and offers a brand new boutique and updated spa.  We loved being greeted by the Scottish bagpiper, and the live music in the bar and by the fireplace each evening.  It’s an easy place to settle in with a cocktail in hand after a day exploring all that Ireland has to offer, or just the grounds of the estate by horse carriage. Only 8-miles from Shannon airport, it makes for the perfect final stop in Ireland before your return home. 

    Book with Diego Travel to Receive the Following Virtuoso Amenities:

    • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
    • Daily Full Breakfast for up to two guests per bedroom
    • $100 USD equivalent Food & Beverage credit utilized during stay
    • Early Check-In / Late Check-Out, subject to availability
    • Complimentary Wi-Fi
    • Diego Travel Welcome Box when Using the Travel Planning Service

    Diego Travel Recommends Dromoland Castle For: Romantic Getaways | Anniversary Couples | Traditionalists | Golfers | Couples Groups | Smaller Castle than Adare Manor with a Similar Location

    SHEEN FALLS LODGE

    Sheen Falls Lodge

    Sheen Falls has been a Diego Travel favorite with its prime location to the Ring of Kerry in County Kerry, and their commitment to sustainability.  This 18th century fishing lodge is nestled between a cascading river and Kenmare Bay, where guests can never tire of the quintessential Irish landscape views.  My clients recently described the moment of sitting out on their balcony drinking a glass of red wine and listening to the babbling creek below as a favorite memory from their recent trip.  My favorite memory from my stay at Sheen Falls Lodge was having dinner with Sheila, the sales director, and the general manager, and the way they made me feel like family.  The live music for after-dinner drinks was a special treat too – and the perfect way to end a day after touring the Ring of Kerry! 

    Book with Diego Travel to Receive the Following Virtuoso Amenities:

    • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
    • Daily Breakfast for up to two guests per bedroom
    • A tour of Kenmare in the hotel’s 1936 Vintage Buick (must have minimum value of $100 USD equivalent)
    • Complimentary bottle of house wine in room on arrival
    • Early Check-In / Late Check-Out, subject to availability
    • Complimentary Wi-Fi
    • Diego Travel Welcome Box when Using the Travel Planning Service

    Diego Travel Recommends Sheen Falls Lodge For: Romantic Getaways | Anniversary Couples | Base for Ring of Kerry | Riverfront Rooms | Groups | Local and Authentic Experience

    BVI Villas

    Gregan’s Castle Hotel in The Burren

    An 18th century manor house that has been welcoming guests since the 1940s, this boutique hotel is warm and inviting and makes you feel like you’re stepping into someone’s home.  The meal we had here was one of the best, and my daughter and I explored the grounds, creating magical little fairy beds out of leaves for them to come and visit us overnight.

    If you’re feeling energetic, meander down the local lanes by bike into the Burren valleys or the nearby towns.. Electric bikes can be provided for a more leisurely ride. You can follow along a guided trail or hire a guide to take you where the locals go and see where the day takes you…don’t be surprised to see more than one new type of Irish wildlife along the way.

    Diego Travel Recommends Gregan’s Castle Hotel For: Romantic Getaways | Anniversary Couples | Those Looking for Privacy | Bed & Breakfast Style Experience | Reconnecting with Nature

    BVI Villas

    Ashford Castle

    This 13th century Castle is located 45 minutes from Galway city. Once the Estate of Lord Ardilaun and the Guinness family, Ashford opened as a luxury hotel in 1939.  Since then, generations of family members have worked in the hotel, and they take pride in the longevity of their staff.  There is a 32-seat cinema, a library, Spa, Billiard’s room, and cigar terrace to name a few of its features – enough to feel like you’ve been transported into the Irish version of Clue.

    Don’t miss the unforgettable Hawk Walk at the Irish School of Falconry or the truly immersive experiences they offer into Irish culture.  And an insider tip: for larger groups with a range of budgets, Ashford Castle offers a number of options that will work for you.  Contact Diego Travel to find out more about this.

    Book with Diego Travel to Receive the Following Virtuoso Amenities:

    • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
    • Daily Breakfast for up to two guests per bedroom
    • $100 USD equivalent Food & Beverage credit to be utilized during stay (not combinable, not valid on room rate, no cash value if not redeemed in full)
    • Early Check-In / Late Check-Out, subject to availability
    • Complimentary Wi-Fi
    • Diego Travel Welcome Box when Using the Travel Planning Service

    Diego Travel Recommends Ashford Castle For: Romantic Getaways | Anniversary Couples | Honeymoons | Multi-Generational Families | Corporate Groups | Weddings

    Ireland’s Best Restaurants and Bars

    Where to eat in Ireland?

    • RICHMOND RESTAURANTBased in the beautiful Portobello of Dublin, experience contemporary modern cuisine. Richmond Restaurant creates a welcoming atmosphere in the newly renovated building where your tastebuds will be treated to skillfully prepared dishes that would excite anyone’s palate.

      MR. FOXThey serve a seasonal set menu at €70 per person. Vegetarian menus are always available upon request. Reservations are encouraged.

    • Nova on Oil Nut Bay

    • FADE STREET SOCIALCreative dishes from homegrown produce in a stylish, signature chef–run restaurant & bar.

      SOLEOriginal, upmarket venue featuring carefully sourced meat & seafood dishes, plus cocktails & wine.

    • BURREN PERFUMERYWhile this small boutique perfumery is set within the heart of The Burren, what makes this family-owned and operated small business so special is that they source all their ingredients locally and offer the most delectable lunch dishes and pastries in their tiny café.  Well worth a stop!

    A Few of My Favorite Things

    Ireland

    The People

    Arguably one of the nicest countries in the world, the warmth of the Irish is what will make your trip to Ireland that more unforgettable.  I count myself lucky to have several close friends in Ireland, and every time I’ve visited, they drop everything for days to spend time with our family.  To visit Ireland as a tourist is lovely, but to truly experience the real Ireland involves partnering up with a local and spending one-on-one time in conversation, while on a walk or in a pub.  I don’t believe that the tourists who see Ireland in large groups and on tour bus will have this experience, so planning a fully curated and personalized trip that will immerse you into the native language is imperative for a true Irish experience.

    Equestrian Experiences

    Whether you’re an avid horseback rider or a beginner, Ireland’s passion for all things equine is abundant throughout the country.  From thoroughbred racing to side saddle programs, Ireland offers it all and some of the world’s most beautiful horses.  Cashel Palace even has their own equine concierge, which will arrange tickets to the races, or private lessons in a nearby horseback riding facility for you.  I can’t think of a more breathtaking setting than to ride horses through th emerald hills of Ireland.

    Fishing

    While I did not talk about this hotel in my reviews, Ballynahinch Castle is the ideal option for a remote escape for nature-lovers.  Set on 700-acres in Connemara, it is one of the finest fisheries in Ireland, and the Ballynahinch Catchment drains an are of 68 square miles and is a diverse system of interconnected rivers.  The Ballynahinch Estate has sole fishing rights to the river.  Several other options throughout Ireland, and planning with Diego Travel ensures your itinerary is crafted exclusively for you.

    Dining

    While I mentioned a few of our top picks for restaurants, it’s worth it to say that I have never had a bad meal in my multiple trips to Ireland.  The last time I was there, I met with the president of the Ireland tourism board, who told me they worked tirelessly over the last two decades to recruit top talent into their culinary programs.  They really make a focus on using local ingredients, so the farm-to-table plate can really be experienced at nearly every luxury hotel and higher end restaurant in the country.  Many of my clients say they are pleasantly surprised by how well they eat in Ireland, so be sure to carve out enough time to enjoy longer meals at leisure along with a pint or two.

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    Top 5 Best Luxury Hotels & Resorts for 2023

    The Best 5 Luxury Hotels & Resorts for 2023

    MARIA DIEGO

    We hand-picked our 5 top hotels and resorts for 2023. Whether you are looking for a romantic getaway or a family vacation. For each of our top choices, we’ve provided similar alternatives. As a Virtuoso travel agency, Diego Travel adds value and additional amenities to your stay every time. Contact us here to get started planning your 2023 vacation!

    • Nihi Sumba

      Nihi Sumba

      Indonesia

    • One&Only Gorilla’s Nest Suite

      One&Only Gorilla’s Nest

      Rwanda

    • The Brando, Bora Bora

      French Polynesia

    • Aman Kyoto and Amanemu

      Japan

    • Corinthia London

      Corinthia London

      United Kingdom

    Nihi Sumba Villas

    1. Nihi Sumba, Indonesia

    Very few luxury all inclusive resorts in the world have left such an impression on us as Nihi Sumba in Indonesia.

    If you’re searching for off-the-beaten-path all inclusive luxury vacations in 2023, Nihi Sumba checks all the boxes – an exclusive, remote location, sustainable ethos, true luxury and incredible facilities and hospitality.

    Located in the wilderness on the small Indonesian island of Sumba, this isn’t the easiest luxury resort to reach, but that’s part of its appeal and only adds to the exclusive atmosphere of the property.

    Nihi Sumba is all about creating an experience for its guests, from picking you up at the airport in an open air jeep with fresh coconuts, to your own private butler or “captain” who personally takes care of you and your villa during your stay.

    There are 23 villas at Nihi and all of them are unique, varying from 1 to 4 bedrooms depending on your needs and the size of your travel group.

    Despite being on a small, remote island, there is so much to do! Surfing lessons, sunset horseback rides, releasing turtles, chocolate making and a spa safari which was a level of luxury and relaxation that I’d never experienced in my life.

    The barefoot luxury of Nihi Sumba perfectly combines high-level luxury with comfortable relaxation. There is no rush, no thoughts of the outside world beyond the island, just pure bliss.

    Nihi Sumba is the perfect luxury resort for honeymoons, romantic escapes into nature and eco-conscious travelers.

    Get additional amenities and added value when booking your stay with Diego Travel.

    Nihi Sumba

     When You Book with Diego Travel, You’ll Receive:
    • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
    • Daily Full Breakfast for up to two guests per bedroom
    • $100 USD equivalent Resort or Hotel credit to be utilized during stay
    • Early Check-In / Late Check-Out, subject to availability
    • Complimentary Wi-Fi
    • Complimentary 60 minute massage

    Book Now

    Similar Properties:

    One&Only Gorilla’s Nest Suite

    2. One & Only Gorilla’s Nest, Rwanda

    An African safari is a bucket list travel experience for many people, but when it comes to luxury safari lodges and resorts in Africa, One & Only Gorilla’s Nest in Rwanda is above and beyond the rest. In fact, it’s my favorite resort of all time – and that’s a big statement for Diego Travel!

    We flew in by helicopter and were greeted by African dancers who made us feel so welcome and like a true celebrity, which considering Bill Gates was one of the first guests on the property, that should tell you the level of luxury offered at One&Only Gorilla’s Nest.

    Go Gorilla trekking, have the chance to see the Big 5 on safari, embrace adventure in Volcanoes National Park, visit a Rwandan village, relax in the incredible spa and wellness facilities at the property – whatever you choose, a memorable trip is guaranteed.

    For those who have had gorilla trekking high on their bucket list, I can tell you that this is a once in a lifetime experience that did not disappoint. I went on the trek two days in a row and each day is different, the guides and porters are wonderful and it’s an experience I will never forget.

    There are just 21 rooms at the property which enhances the exclusivity of this luxury Africa resort. But when I say rooms, there’s nothing small or entry level at the resort. Each room has a sitting area, open fireplace, private deck and outdoor shower. Our stay at the 2-bedroom Forest View Lodge was beyond any luxury resort I’d experienced before. And there is an understated luxury in every detail, from the bespoke bed sheets and underfloor heating to the specially made gluten-free snacks for me and the fine china in the room’s snack bar.

    This luxury resort in Rwanda is perfect for adventure seekers, nature lovers, bucket list experiences and those looking for privacy and exclusivity while experiencing the best of Africa.

    Contact Us

    Gorilla Baby

     When You Book with Diego Travel, You’ll Receive:
    • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
    • Daily Breakfast for up to two guests per bedroom
    • $100 USD equivalent Food & Beverage or Spa credit to be utilized during stay
    • Early Check-In / Late Check-Out, subject to availability
    • Complimentary Wi-Fi
    • Complimentary 60 minute massage
    Similar Properties:

    The Brando, Bora Bora

    3. The Brando, Bora Bora, French Polynesia

    Bora Bora in French Polynesia is a bucket list destination for many people who dream of turquoise blue waters, breathtaking white sand beaches and luxury atolls in a tropical paradise.

    The Brando resort is located on the private island of Tetiaroa, an atoll of small islands around a vibrant blue lagoon, situated 30 miles from Tahiti.

    If you’re dreaming of a honeymoon in Bora Bora, the Brando is the perfect choice for French Polynesia honeymoon resorts or luxury anniversary trips to Bora Bora.

    The resort’s focus is carefree luxury and that’s exactly what you feel as you arrive at the resort by private plane. Stay in one of the exclusive 35 luxury villas on the island, dive or snorkel among manta rays, turtles and tropical fish, try your hand at canoeing, stand up paddleboarding or deep sea fishing. Explore the island by bike, and enjoy the fresh Polynesian food and shows each night such as live music, Tahitian dance or nature lectures.

    It’s possible to book a private dinner on the beach, perfect for a romantic getaway to celebrate an anniversary trip or honeymoon in Bora Bora.

    Primland Resort in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Virginia

     When You Book with Diego Travel, You’ll Receive:
    • Upgrade not applicable for this property
    • Daily Breakfast for up to two guests per bedroom
    • $100 USD equivalent credit, once per stay and per bedroom of the reserved villa
    • Early Check-In / Late Check-Out, subject to availability
    • Complimentary Wi-Fi
    • Complimentary 60 minute massage

    Contact Us

    Similar Properties:

    Aman Kyoto

    4. Aman Kyoto and Amanemu, Japan

    After recently reopening its borders, Japan is one of the top destinations for 2023.

    With such a rich culture and history, plus so much to see and do in Japan, deciding where to stay in Japan can feel like an overwhelming decision.

    The Aman Kyoto resort in Japan is a perfect option for a luxury hotel in Japan, giving you a rich cultural experience. Located inside a secret garden in the foothills of Hidari Daimonji mountain, close to the iconic and historic city of Kyoto. Japanese hospitality and tranquil seclusion are the focus of this luxury resort.

    With a traditional Japanese onsen spa at the resort and rooms that combine contemporary decor with the traditional Japanese Ryokan style, everything is designed with tranquillity and peace in mind as you look out the windows and see yourself surrounded by forest.

    17 UNESCO World Heritage Sites can be visited around the resort, explore the Edo period secret garden, meditate with Buddhist monks, enjoy a traditional Japanese tea experience, take a private helicopter ride to the temples of Kyoto or visit the Kamishichiken village of the Kyoto Geisha’s with an exclusive invite for resort guests only. If you’re planning a Kyoto travel itinerary, The Aman Kyoto can offer exclusive experiences and things to do in Kyoto.

    Japan is the perfect 2023 destination for those wanting to experience rich culture, history and incredible hospitality. The Aman Kyoto combines all of this with serenity and exclusivity at its luxury Kyoto property.

    Farmhouse Inn in Sonoma County

     When You Book with Diego Travel, You’ll Receive:
    • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
    • Daily Japanese or American Set Breakfast served at the Living Pavilin for two guests per bedroom
    • $100 USD equivalent Food & Beverage Credit per room, per stay
    • Early Check-In / Late Check-Out, subject to availability
    • Complimentary Wi-Fi
    • Complimentary 60 minute massage

      Book Now

      Similar Properties:

      Amangiri in Utah

      5. Corinthia London, UK

      Diego Travel was named a Travel & Leisure Rising Star in 2022 and as the UK has been named Travel & Leisure’s Destination of the Year for 2023, we have to mention the incredible luxury offering in the UK. 2023 is the perfect time to explore the UK and where better to start than the iconic capital city, London.

      Famous for having one of the best afternoon tea experiences in London, the Corinthia is also one of the best luxury hotels in London located in the heart of the city.

      With penthouses and suites designed with a luxurious elegance that makes you feel like you’re at home the moment you step in, you’re also rewarded with a private terrace offering stunning views across London, complimentary Brompton Bike rental and a spectacular dining experience.

      Enjoy the seasonally decorated Winter Garden restaurant,  indulge in the Corinthia Afternoon Tea experience, sip champagne in the dark and exclusive Velvet Champagne bar, or dine at the world-renowned Kerridge’s restaurant by Michelin-starred British chef, Tom Kerridge.

      The hotel itself is a former British Government building, mealace allows you to see and discover iconic landmarks like Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament, the London Eye, the Embankment, Covent Garden and Trafalgar Square on your doorstep.

      For other luxury hotels in London, you could also consider The Goring, Claridge’s and the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park.

      Amangiri Utah

       When You Book with Diego Travel, You’ll Receive:
      • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
      • Daily breakfast for up to two guests per bedroom
      • $100 USD equivalent Hotel credit to be utilized during stay, applicable in Northall Restaurant, Velvet Bar, Crystal Moon Lounge, Kerridge’s Bar and Grill, In Room Dining and ESPA Life at Corinthia
      • Early Check-In / Late Check-Out, subject to availability
      • Complimentary Wi-Fi

        Book Now

        Similar Properties:

        Diego Travel-BUILDING THE TRIP

        THE BEST 5 LUXURY HOTELS & RESORTS FOR 2023

        I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about our top hotels and resorts for 2023.  If you don’t see what you’re looking for, feel free to schedule a call with me, so that I can match you with an ideal destination that fits both your travel style and budget.  We’re also always looking for new places to recommend to our clients.

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        St Moritz

        St Moritz, Switzerland

        Alpine Luxury Family Vacation Travel Guide

        MARIA DIEGO

        Any family vacation can feel overwhelming, especially when you consider a winter ski destination that’s outside of your comfort zone. Believe me, I get it! Planning an alpine family luxury vacation from the US may seem like a daunting undertaking, but with proper planning and guidance, heading to St Moritz, Europe’s most iconic ski destination is 100% worth it! If Vail or Aspen skiing might feel cliché, or maybe you’ve been there, done that and want to try something new then this guide is for you! After a year of meticulous planning, and tapping into my trusted resources (ie: from Swiss friends who have been taking their annual family holiday to the Alps their entire lives to my incredible Virtuoso luxury travel expert colleagues), have I got the guide for you! 

        ST MORITZ FAMILY TRAVEL GUIDE

        What to do

        Not only is there an abundance of things to do in St. Moritz in the winter season, but summer also has its own activities perfect for an active family vacation. From taking the funicular for hiking and mountain biking to sailing or stand up paddle boarding in St. Moritz Lake, we can’t wait to experience a summer season in this Swiss town.

        • TRAIN

          While it requires a bit more travel savvy than arriving by car, the train ride from Zurich to St. Moritz is worthwhile and a great way to kick off your Swiss experience.  I was blown away by the scenery as we passed through Unesco World Heritage bridges of the Rhaetian Railway, Albula line. Something else to consider is the twists-and-turns car ride that can be slightly nausea-inducing if youre prone to motion sickness.

        • Breathtaking views on the way to St Moritz

          Breathtaking views on the train ride to St Moritz

        • The Carlton Hotel’s Outdoor Butler

        • Cross-Country Skiing

          While most think of down-hill skiing being synonymous with the Alps, St. Moritz is also home to some of the world’s best cross-country skiing and the famous Skimarathon. At the Carlton Hotel, we had the chance to spend some time with their outdoor butler who meets you with a contagious grin and gears up to take you on trails that are fit for your level, arranges for ice fishing or sets up a romantic winter wonderland picnic.

        • Downhill SkiIng

          For downhill skiing, the piste levels range from 3 bunny hills, suitable for children and beginner skiers, but then jump to blue, which I found a bit too difficult for our 5-year-old and personally challenging – okay, downright scary!! In addition, Snowli Kids Village has a playground to keep kids entertained in between ski runs and après ski. In nearby villages, Samedan, Zuoz or S-chanf, you can find perfect family and beginner skiing as well.

        • St Moritz ski school

        • St. Moritz Skating Club

        • ICE

          If you love ice skating like we do, then you’ve come to the right place. There are several ice skating rinks in St. Moritz, most notably the one located next to the Kulm Hotel, with others at Badrutt’s Palace and Suvretta House (which offers the only curling classes in town).

          Alternatively, you can skate on St. Moritz Lake itself, but they do not offer the push-carts that help kids learn to skate.

        Getting There

        Distance from ZRH: 3 hours by train or car

        Recommended Stay: 5-7 nights in winter, and 3-4 nights in summer, with additional stops within Switzerland

        Elevation: 5,978 feet

        Best Time of Year to Visit: End of June to early September and early December to early April

        INSIDER TIP

        Corvatsch offers a 4.2 km floodlit night piste, at an easy enough level for kids to enjoy

        In the Heart Of Switzerland
        • 46.4994,9.84327

          St Moritz

        • 46.6303,9.7465

          Preda-Bergun

        St Moritz White Turf Horse Race

        • Snow Polo & Horse Races

          Without a doubt, one of the things I was most excited to experience was St. Moritz’ famous White Turf horse races. Nowhere else in the world offers horse polo and racing on a frozen lake.  Every year, the who’s who from around the globe gather to watch the Snow Polo World Cup, and for 3 weekends in January/February, the White Turf horse races take place.  Whether you’re there to place bets, watch horses or the high fashion, there’s something for everyone and definitely didn’t disappoint.

        • TOBOGGANING

          You cannot visit St. Moritz without a chance to do the Preda to Bergün sledge run.  We looped down hills that vary from trudging along to sweeping inclines that feel like a rollercoaster with the most beautiful, scenic setting.  Half-way down the run, we rode past firs and under Unesco bridges, with the chance to stop at a Schneeschloss Preda-Bergün, a cute little ice castle perfect for popping in for a hot chocolate. Be sure to start first thing in the morning, because once you finish the run, youll want to go again, and the afternoons can get icy as the sun goes down.

        • St Moritz Ski Lift

          St Moritz Ski Lift

        • Preda-Bergün Tobogganing Run

          Preda-Bergün Tobogganing Run

        • A HORSE CARRIAGE RIDE

          An unquestionable hallmark of St. Moritz are the beautiful horse carriages that youll see around town.  Its an easy way to transport tired kids from the ski gondola to the lift, and helped us avoid some major meltdowns after a full day of skiing. Plus, its a great way to see the city!

        Where to stay

        Switzerland currently has 39 Virtuoso hotels, so choosing the best one might feel like a shot in the dark.  I get asked all the time, Whats the best hotel in any given destination?  The truth is, the best hotel for you might look a lot different than the best hotel for me.  Fortunately, as a travel advisor, Im able to tour all hotels both physically and virtually and make a recommendation based on who you are, your taste, and your budget.  Think of me as your holiday match-maker!  Below, Ive highlighted a few of my personal favorites, but that doesnt mean there arent other great options out there.

        CARLTON HOTEL

        From the moment our driver greeted us at the train station to whisk us off in a Bentley, the experience was something out of a fairytale. First, we were welcomed with house-made macaroons, muffins, marshmallows and fresh oranges and a fully-stocked complimentary mini-bar. Stuffed animals and coloring books with Swiss-made Caran d’Ache colored pencils and a beautifully embroidered baseball cap were left for us on the dining table, part of the VIP treatment that is typical when you BOOK with Diego Travel.

        Details like block-chipped ice in your cocktail with a glass straw or bath salts waiting on your nightstand after a long day of skiing. Need to pick up your ski lift tickets? Not to worry, they’ll send someone for them. Your ski boots feel a little too snug? Don’t bother bending down to fix it, as someone will already be on one knee, adjusting them for you. Don’t bother with a taxi to get around town, as the driver is eagerly waiting to shuttle you around, no matter the time of day and on little to no notice. At the Carlton, the entire purpose of your stay is to relax, disconnect, and not lift a finger while delighting in every possible amenity. When it came time to check out, we definitely weren’t ready to leave!

        As a Virtuoso partner, the hotel provided us with an upgrade to a Carlton Suite, with a balcony overlooking the best view of St. Moritz. When you book with Diego Travel, you’ll also enjoy complimentary buffet breakfast for two, an upgrade upon availability, a $100 USD spa credit, early check-in/late check-out upon availability, and of course, free Wi-Fi. Whether planning your honeymoon or traveling with kids, the Carlton offers a first-class stay with privacy, and a boutique, personalized experience.

        Extras You’ll Get with Diego Travel:

        • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
        • Daily Buffet Breakfast for up to two guests per bedroom
        • $100 USD equivalent Food & Beverage credit to be utilized during stay (also granted to non-Virtuoso bookings, not combinable, not valid on room rate, no cash value if not redeemed in full)
        • $100 USD equivalent in local currency Spa credit, once per stay, per room (applicable to services and products, no cash value if not redeemed in full)
        • Early Check-In / Late Check-Out, subject to availability
        • Complimentary Wi-Fi

        SUVRETTA HOUSE

        While not a Virtuoso partner, this hotel is one of the Leading Hotels of the World, and it’s at the top of my list for clients looking for a family-friendly vacation. No other property comes close when considering the kid-centric inclusions. The oldest Swiss family-owned and operated hotel in the region, this property has a rich history of drawing the same clients again and again, who consider it their second home.

        Suvretta Sports School includes its own ski school, curling lessons, an ice skating rink, and guest year-round ski equipment storage. So if rentals won’t do, you’ll have a secure place to store your gear. Even the full-service locker rooms have a state-of-the art fire place! You can also make use of the 25-meter lap pool and solarium, something you won’t find at the other hotels.

        As a mom of 3 kids, what just might be the biggest draw is the children-only restaurant, the Teddy Club. You read that right – children only. You can drop off your kids at this pint-size restaurant that offers everything in miniature, including the ceiling height, while you’re able to actually enjoy your meal at one of the 3 restaurants, several bars, and 2 off-site restaurants. They also offer a unique kids club, as well as summer camp for kids and teens, so you won’t see anyone on a device throughout your stay.

        Suvretta House is set outside of St. Moritz, but a shuttle is on a constant loop, and being apart means having their own ski lift and trails for the guests of its 181 rooms and 10 suites. In summer, they set the stage for the British Classic Car Meeting, as well as the Engadine Bike Giro and Suvretta House Clay Pigeon Shooting Cup. For music lovers and foodies, you can’t miss the Engadine Music Festival or La Tavolata Food Festival. And if you plan to spend Holiday season here, you’ll need to book a year in advance and stay for a minimum of 14 days. Be ready for the time of your life! I was told by the general manager, “It’s basically like a large family-reunion each year and an extraordinary celebration.”

        BADRUTT’S PALACE

        My first impression of “The Palace” was the Old World glitz and glamour oozing from its core at this iconic property, mixing tradition with innovation. Overlooking the lake that appears in every post card photo of St. Moritz, Badrutt’s Place is where you want to stay to see and be seen, or to have quick access to the high-brow shops that line its streets. While I was there, the entire white-gloved staff lined up at the lobby entrance to welcome a VIP guest who had just landed by private plane from Russia.  

        The hotel itself is adorned with important works of art, Michelin starred restaurants, an exclusive smoker’s lounge, and an expansive spa. I was lucky enough to be greeted by the receptionist who had worked at the Palace for a lifetime, proud to be part of the Badrutt family business. Rooms and suites are currently being updated with understated elegance, and the Luxury Lake View Suite features a sustainable chandelier with detachable crystals (for recharging under the moonlight) by Australian artist, Christopher Boots, commissioned by the not-to-miss Gallery Elle, owned by the brilliant and gorgeous Atossa Meier, and located within Suvretta House.

        If you want to add a bucket-list experience to your plans, you might consider a New Years Eve spent here, which begins to book as far out as 2 years in advance. A whopping 200,000 Swiss Francs are spent on just the decor alone, so if you want to rub shoulder’s with the world’s elite, contact me to set up your Holiday travel. As a Virtuoso property, you’ll receive an upgrade on arrival, subject to availability, daily breakfast buffet, seasonal welcome amenity and mineral water, $100 USD spa credit, and round trip transfer from the train station among other VIP perks. Contact me HERE to get started with travel planning.

        Extras You’ll Get with Diego Travel: 

        • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
        • Daily breakfast for up to two guests per bedroom (already inclusive in hotel’s rates)
        • $100 USD equivalent Food & Beverage credit to be utilized during stay (not combinable, not valid on room rate, no cash value if not redeemed in full)
        • Early Check-In / Late Check-Out subject to availability
        • Complimentary Wi-Fi

        Where to eat?

        I’ll be the first to admit that when traveling with kids, culinary experiences and fine dining are not at the top of our priority list. With more Michelin-starred restaurants than I could count and insider secrets to the best dining in St. Moritz, I might steer my clients in a different direction than what Ive highlighted below.  For us, we wanted more casual meals but still authentically chic and where the locals go.

        Theres no better place to après ski in the Engadin than either the Checha Restaurant & Club, where the menu is built to impress or Salastrains where the scene is to see and be seen.  Conveniently situated at the Alpine slopes, either is the perfect meet up spot for all levels of skiers.  Dress code of Moncler and Bogner encouraged.

        If sipping aperol spritz while DJ music plays in the background is more your thing, than El Paradiso Mountain Club is where to go with its mountaintop views that can be reached if you are more of an advanced skier (with kids, we arent), or if you take the gondola from Suvretta House hotel.

        For a casual, traditionally Swiss experience, try the family-friendly fondue at Le Lapin Bleu, St Moritz’s oldest restaurantWe loved the service here as they made us feel right at home in their cozy chalet quarters.

        An offshoot of Badrutts Palace, the charming Chesa Veglia, an old Engadine farmhouse built in 1650, is the one place you cant miss while youre in St. Moritz.  In addition, the famed hotel offers Michelin rated restaurants like IGNIV and La Coupole Matsuhisa, but the truffle pizza at Chesa Veglia has our heart.

        Where to shop?

        If youre like me, a cultural trip isnt complete without doing a little research in the shops.  I couldnt resist checking out my favorite Italian designer Brunello Cucinelli – and Loro Piani for my husband – and run my fingers over the perfectly coordinated luxurious garments that drape from their hangers.  And if youre also like me, a budget of $1,000 might not cut it at the Swiss chocolatier Läderach, or a little more budget-friendly option would be Confiserie Hanselmann.  I was able to pick up some traditional pieces at Haus des Jägers AG, since my sons lucky lederhosen have been well-loved and worn for every special occasion over the last few years.

        Luckily for my husband, so much time skiing left little time for shopping, but the after hours window-shopping had me drooling at Ender Sport and Jet Set.  And finally, if youve fallen in love with St. Moritz and want to buy a place to call your own, visit Maura Wasescha, the premier agency in Switzerland and agent to the stars.  Let her know I sent you!

         


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