28 European Hotels To Explore Now


European hotels

1. Airelles Château de Versailles, Le Grand Contrôle, Versailles, France

If you’ve been holding out for that fairytale hotel to drop into your lap for the blow-out break post-pandemic, look no further. Le Grand Contrôle is the first hotel to open within the staggering surrounds of the Palace of Versaille. History seeps through every inch as you take up residence with 2,000 acres of grounds as your playground. The building itself, originally built by Louis XIV’s favourite architect, Jules Hardouin-Mansart in 1681, has been restored to offer just 14 jaw-dropping rooms and suites, fit for a king or queen. And as for the food, none other than Alain Ducasse (and his 20 Michelin stars) is at the helm of an experience that is less hotel dinner more theatrical extravagance. You’ll be blow away.

Book It: Rooms from €1,700 B&B.

European hotels

2. The Rooster, Antiparos, Greece

One of the smaller Greek islands, yet all the more perfect for it, Antiparos offers laidback luxury by the bucketful. The Rooster is yet another reason to head to this idyllic Aegean jewel for the ultimate in rest and relaxation. It offers a slow-living retreat for travellers who really want to connect to their surroundings – and disconnect from the tinnitus hum of modern life. There are just 17 very private suites, villas and houses, built with space in mind, yet with areas to embrace human interaction should you so wish. Your wellness needs are well taken care with spa menus, treatments and massages on offer – and you can take to your mountain bike, go diving, hiking or hire a boat to make the most of this exquisite location.

Book It: Doubles from €580.

European hotels

3. Six Senses, Ibiza

With the arrival of the sustainable-wellness Six Senses on the White Isle, it confirms Ibiza’s entry into the super-luxe league. Adding to its credentials, this is the first sustainable BREEAM certified resort on the island, meaning it’s been independently assessed for its responsible build. Immerse yourself in this 20-acre haven in the north of the island, where seasonal and organic food is overseen by Eyal Shani, founding father of new Israeli cuisine, and a world-class spa is yours to wallow in. Come for wellness retreats by yourself, for letting your hair down holidays with your friends or romantic breaks with lovers, all 35 minutes from the airport.

Book it: Doubles from €1,080 B&B.

European hotels

4. Palazzo Fiuggi, Italy

Why visit Rome if it’s not to fill up on pizza, wine and La Dolce Vita? If the last thing your liver needs is a dose spaghetti and chianti, though, just 50 minutes south of the capital you’ll find Palazzo Fiuggi. A utopia of wellness, Fiuggi is just the place to restore your inner glow and address the effects of overindulgence, all while soaking in edifyingly glorious hilltop views and eight hectares of private parkland. A personalised menu of biodynamic, natural ingredients at its three Michelin-starred restaurant heals from the inside, while hydrotherapy in the Medieval Fiuggi waters (thought to have cured the illnesses of Pope Boniface VII and Michelangelo) give a deep detox. Top it all off with reinvigorating yoga, pilates and restorative Indian Ayurveda therapies.

BOOK IT: Intro Wellness Programme from €3,945 for four nights.

European hotels

5. One & Only Portonovi, Montenegro

Located at the entrance of Boka Bay, fringed by luscious forest on one side and lapped by Adriatic waters on the other, there’s something for every traveller at One & Only, Montenegro. The new opening from the five-star resort group doesn’t let the side down when it comes to bliss-out standards of luxury or paradisiacal surroundings. One day you could find yourself exploring lagoons, ancient tunnel and cave structures in the Kumbor Strait and Klinci, the next, clinking glasses overlooking panoramic views at one of the many vineyards. Or, simply wander through Montenegro’s walled and moated towns, soaking in dramatic mountainscapes and collonaded architecture (the latter of which inspired the hotel’s palatial interiors).

BOOK IT: Portonovi room from £718 per night B&B. 

European hotels

6. Marbella Elix, Greece

If over lockdown you consoled yourself with visions of pellucid Grecian oceans, silky sand beaches and cliffs peppered with flourishing greenery, set your sights for Marbella Elix. Built along a mountain to make the most of the staggering surroundings and sea views, this five-star hotel opened in spring 2021 on the Karavotosi beach in the (relatively undiscovered) Parga region. For a seamless and relaxing getaway from start to finish, book with tour operator Olympic Holidays.  You won’t want to do much more than sprawl with a book in front of one of the many infinity pools or paddle in the Ionian Sea, but a perfect ending to each day is the authentic Greek and Mediterranean cuisine prepared by renowned chefs in the restaurant. The perfect place to get away from it all, in the lap of Elysian luxury.

BOOK IT: Olympic Holidays offer seven nights in October from £637pp with flights from Gatwick.;

7. Ikos Andalusia, Spain

It would be difficult to dream up a more tranquil setting than that of Ikos Andalusia, skirted by the Mediterranean Sea and sands of Playa de Guadalmansa. Which makes it all the more impressive that it’s located just a 55-minute drive from Malaga airport, and a stone’s throw from Marbella. As the fifth and newest addition to Ikos’s ultra-luxury portfolio, an oasis of gardens and swimming pools outdoors set the bar high. Indoors, cool, contemporary interiors take over along with seven restaurants serving Michelin-starred cuisine. Two complementary kids’ clubs will keep little ones entertained all day, leaving you free to pick between a restorative session in the spa or sweating it out at a spin or yoga class. And relax.

BOOK IT: From €392 per night all inclusive.

European hotels

8. Rosewood Villa Magna, Madrid, Spain

Having reopened in autumn 2021, Rosewood Hotels arrived in Spain with the new Rosewood Villa Magna, following a complete remodel and refurbishment of the property on the Paseo de la Castellana boulevard in collaboration with four design houses. Renowned Spanish architect Ramón de Arana remodels the hotel’s exteriors with interior design led by BAR Studio, experts at giving chic, minimal designs a luxury touch. UK-based ArtLink is curating the hotel’s impressive contemporary art collection while Spanish landscape architect Gregorio Marañón transforms the gardens into modern oases in the heart of the city. More interested in the food? Michelin-starred chef Jesús Sánchez will be launching a new signature restaurant, Amós, in the Rosewood Villa Magna, brining all the essential flavours of Cantabrian cuisine to this new destination hotel.

BOOK IT: From €750 per night,

European hotels

9. Sani Resort, Halkidiki, Greece

This sprawling, elegant luxury resort in northern Greece is the epitome of escapism. Featuring five award-winning hotels, Sani Beach, Sani Club, Porto Sani, Sani Asterias and Sani Dunes, the Halkidiki escape is nestled in a 1,000-acre resort surrounded by stunning coastline and lush pine forests. Explore the private marina, hone your skills at the Rafa Nadal Tennis Centre or train the kids for future stardom at the Chelsea FC Foundation. There are also five tranquil spas to choose from, offering treatments designed by renowned French skincare brand Anna Semonin. Whether it’s an active escape or a true fly and flop you’re looking for, Sani won’t disappoint.

BOOK IT From €129 per night, on a half-board basis.

European hotels

10. Omma Santorini, Greece

Brand new in summer 2021, Omma Santorini is perched on a secluded hilltop and perfectly positioned for the ultimate escape. Enjoy 360-degree sparkling sea views of the Caldera and the Aegean Sea and beautiful sunsets in one of 25 intimate rooms and suites in this Greek sanctuary. Choose one of five discreet villas with private pools and sea views set in 1.23 acres of unspoilt landscape for a home away from home and make the most of the show-stopping double level signature infinity pool that overlooks the Caldera and is one of the largest pools on the island.

BOOK IT  From €670. 

European hotels

11. Casa Pacha, Formentera

Pacha hotels are known for their wild parties, but Casa Pacha – located on the smallest and most tranquil of the Balearic Islands, the idyllic, sun-soaked Formentera, – could not be more peaceful. Decorated throughout with calming natural materials and mere steps from the white sands of Migjorn beach, this hotel is built for relaxing. Rooms range from doubles with sea views on either side to suites with direct access to the dunes. The hotel’s ‘chiringuito’ bar serves classic dishes (think fresh grilled fish, seasonal veg and sunset tapas) under canvas parasols. And for when you’re too chilled out to move, the à la carte menu is available on room service.

BOOK IT Doubles from €400 per night.  

European hotels

12. Kalesma Mykonos, Greece

Away from the tourist hubs, Kalesma Mykonos is collection of a whitewashed houses designed to resemble a traditional Aegean village. The hilltop spot means guests can enjoy sunrise and sunset, as well as panoramic views over Ornos bay. Whether you stay in one of its 25 suites or a larger villa, expect a private terrace and your own personal heated pool. With day trips to hidden coves, shopping hotspots, and local eateries, this is the perfect base for exploring the island. Alternatively, stay in and enjoy one of Kalesma’s three dining options, personal yoga sessions, or a spa treatment from the comfort of your own room.

BOOK IT Suites from €1,200 per night 

European hotels

13. METT Hotel & Beach Resort, Bodrum, Turkey

Just outside Bodrum, METT Hotel & Beach Resort is a sprawling luxury retreat. Choose between an elegant guest room (perfect for couples) or a premium suite (where the private pool and garden makes an ideal family holiday). During the day, you can gaze out over the Aegean from a poolside cabana or relax in the traditional spa. Then in the evening, the resort has four restaurants to choose from and late-night performance to be enjoyed over a cocktail. If you fancy a ride out, there are organised trips to The Halicarnassus –  an ancient Greek city and one of the seven wonders of the ancient world – and bustling Bodrum to be explored.

BOOK IT Garden Deluxe Rooms from £500 per night. 

European hotels

14. Forte Village, Sardinia

This luxurious resort in Sardinia boasts a whole host of hotels, suites, and secluded villas for guests to choose from, with locations near the beach or spa based on preference. Expect to find rooms with sea views and openings onto beautiful tropical gardens, with terraces, balconies, and garden patios there to help you take it all in. There’s plenty of activities to get stuck into, from spa treatments, shopping, and partying at the discotheque to boxing, fencing, and water sports. Forte Village is also ideal for families, with its Children Wonderland offering all kinds of activities for little guests. Think theatre, sports, arts and crafts, and trips to the Barbie House and Mario’s Village.

BOOK IT: Stays for a family of four from €663 per night on a half-board basis. 

European hotels

15. Parco del Principe, Italy

Tucked in the lush countryside between Tuscany and Umbria, Parco Del Principe is ideal for those wanting to get back to nature. The residence dates back to the late 1700s, where it served as a meeting place for important personalities from Rome and Florence. Now, visitors can expect to find a stunning example of Italian hospitality. Guests are encouraged to take full advantage of the setting: dine outside in the sprawling gardens, taste local produce and a selection of fine wines, play sports, or visit any of the nearby villages and cities for a fantastic day out. A great find for culture vultures and Italophiles.

BOOK IT: From €10,000 per week.  

European hotels

16. Hotel Aristide, Syros, Greece

One for aesthetes, this luxury boutique hotel is filled with artworks – in the bar, the bedrooms, and even the bathrooms. In fact, the hotel also boasts its very own art gallery and artist residency programme. Art aside, the nine-bedroom property – a restored neoclassical mansion and home away from home – is serious about sustainability. Its tree-planting project works to offset guests’ travel carbon footprint, you won’t find any single-use plastics about (even the slippers are biodegradable), and most of the produce is sourced locally and organically. Its garden bar, sea views and picturesque location are just the icing on the cake.

BOOK IT: From €240 per night B&B. 

European hotels

17. Paragon 700 Boutique Hotel & Spa, Puglia, Italy

Known as ‘the red palace’ because of its striking red brick exterior, Paragon 700 was formerly the home of Ostuni’s first mayor, Don Paolo Tanzarella. Today, owners Pascale and Ulrike have transformed the historic building into a luxury hotel, while retaining its Puglian character and charm. Located within the whitewashed city of Ostuni (just a five-minute walk from the main square), guests will enjoy the hotel’s underground Spa 700, private garden (the largest in the city), and 15-metre outdoor pool. Meanwhile, each bedroom (there are 11 to choose from) boats its own authentic décor and is a seamless blend of old and contemporary; think fresco ceilings, sunken bathtubs, and open fireplaces.

BOOK IT: From €300 per night B&B.

European hotels

18. Angsana Corfu, Greece

A brand-new resort located on the Greek island of Corfu (and Banyan Tree’s first European property), this holiday destination is the latest hot spot in luxury travel. The hotel houses 159 stylish rooms and suites, but for those who desire a little more seclusion, there’s also 37 private pool villas, each complete with spectacular sea views. Elsewhere on the resort you’ll find an award-winning spa with five outdoor spa pavilions, four restaurants (including fine dining by Michelin-starred chef Ettore Botrini), a private beach and an infinity pool (the largest on the island). All this just a short drive from the historic Corfu town and its 15th-century Old Fortress.

BOOK IT: From €219 per night B&B low season.

European hotels

19. Mandarin Oriental Ritz, Madrid, Spain

Back in 1910, King Alfonso VIII decided he wanted to replicate Paris’ original Hotel Ritz in the Spanish capital – and so the Mandarin Oriental Ritz was born. Over a century later, the landmark building has undergone an extensive restoration, spearheaded by architect Rafael de La-Hoz alongside French designers Gilles & Boissier. While the hotel’s Belle Époque character remains, it now sports a chic new look, with 153 modernised rooms alongside sleek new spa facilities. Michelin-starred superchef Quique Dacosta oversees the five culinary concepts, which include the hotel’s signature restaurant Deessa and the glitzy Palm Court, set underneath a crystal canopy ceiling.

BOOK IT: Doubles from €600. 

European hotels

20. Ruby Luna, Dusseldorf, Germany

One of Ruby Hotels’ new additions is Ruby Luna, the group’s third opening in Dusseldorf. Set a short walk from the city’s old town in the former Commerzbank building, the hotel is themed around outer space. An open ground floor gives the illusion of floating, while a concrete ramp to the basement area is decked out with glass panels to offer a bird’s eye view of the ground below. The 13th-floor Observatory Bar, meanwhile, offers panoramic views of the starry night sky. All 206 bedrooms – which range from a cosy ‘Nest’ to an expansive ‘Loft’ – are targeted towards uninterrupted sleep, with blackout curtains, full soundproofing and ultra-comfy beds.

BOOK IT: Doubles from €74 per night B&B. 

European hotels

21. The Maybourne Riviera, Côte d’Azur, France

Perched high above the French town of Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, the newly opened Maybourne Riviera offers unrivalled views of the Mediterranean coastline – from Monte Carlo to Cap-Martin. It’s the fifth opening from the Maybourne Hotel Group, the name behind Claridge’s and The Connaught, so ultimate luxury is guaranteed. All 69 rooms feature private terraces overlooking the sea, while chef Mauro Colagreco (of three-Michelin star Mirazur in nearby Menton) heads up the glitzy rooftop restaurant. There’s also an impressive spa, both an indoor and an outdoor pool, and the cherry on top: access to the nearby private Maybourne Riviera Beach Club.

BOOK IT: Doubles from €875. 

22. Rocco Forte Private Villas, Sicily

White sand beaches and orange groves stretch as far as the eye can see here at Verdura Resort, offering the perfect combination of coastline and countryside. Book one of the Rocco Forte Private Villas available for an unforgettable family holiday. The team will ensure your holiday is tailored to you, with groceries delivered to your door, daily housekeeping, and access to all Vendura Resort’s facilities. Spend afternoons exploring Sicily’s secret, untouched beaches, playing golf on the coastline, or relaxing in the Rocco Forte Spa. And when it comes to the evening, dine al fresco under the stars in the villa courtyard or head over to one of the resort’s many restaurants for dinner and drinks.

BOOK IT: From €2,320 per night for a three-bedroom villa.  

European hotels

23. Ibiza Gran Hotel, Ibiza

We’re all in need of a little restoration after the past year. Enter Ibiza Gran Hotel, which relaunched this summer with a series of new experiences for guests to replenish mind, body and soul. Bob along the coast in a llaut, a traditional Ibizan sailing boat; get lost among the vines at Ibiza’s finest organic winery, Bodegas Can Rich, followed by a wine tasting with Ibiza Gran Hotel’s master sommelier; learn about preserving the life in the Balearic Sea with marine biologist and photographer, Manu San Félix. Or, alternatively, you could just stretch out by the azure swimming pool, and take in the view over to Formentera.

BOOK IT: From €230 per night. Closed 18 Oct 21 to April 22.

24. Villa La Lavandaia, Tuscany, Italy

A jewel in the heart of the Tuscan countryside, Villa La Lavandaia offers guests some of the most breath-taking views of Italy’s natural landscape. Featuring two master bedrooms with private bathrooms, a partially covered terrace, and private heated pool and sundeck, the villa is perfect for a relaxing getaway abroad. Villa La Lavandaia is also part of the Borgo Pignano luxury resort, meaning guests will have access to facilities such as the spa, art gallery, and restaurant. Another bonus is the location. Being within an hour’s drive of Siena and Florence makes Villa La Lavandaia an ideal base for exploring some of Italy’s greatest cities, galleries, and tourist destinations.

BOOK IT: From €1,200 per night B&B. 

Can Ferrereta

25. Can Ferrereta, Santanyí, Mallorca

Inspired by the colours, flavours and textures of Mallorcan village life, Can Ferrereta is a peaceful new 32-room boutique hotel on the island’s less-explored south-eastern coast. It’s the second project from the team behind the renowned Sant Francesc in Palma and is set within a historic 17th-century mansion that’s been lovingly reimagined. Expect stylish, tranquil rooms decorated in earthy tones, a jewel-bright swimming pool and luscious gardens bursting with Mediterranean nature. Admire the contemporary art on the walls, stretch out for a multi-sensory massage in the Sa Calma spa, and feast al fresco on simple, seasonal Mediterranean fare at in-house restaurants Ocre and La Fresca.

BOOK IT: From €315 per night B&B basis, 14 years +.

European hotels

26. San Domenico Palace, Taormina, Sicily

San Domenico Palace has a rich history dating back to the 14th century, when it served as a convent until the late 1800s. Now known as a luxury hotel for the rich and famous, with previous guests including Oscar Wilde, Audrey Hepburn, and King Edward VIII, San Domenico Palace offers unforgettable experience. Stay in one of the sea-view rooms with a terrace – where you can start the morning with views over Taormina Bay and the wider Ionian Sea – and take advantage of the hotel’s many facilities. The Italian gardens, spa, clifftop infinity pool, and selection of restaurants are the perfect setting for a relaxing romantic getaway. And with the best of Sicily on the doorstep, it’s unlikely you’ll run out of things to do.

BOOK IT: From £339.28 B&B, low season.

27. OKU, Ibiza

Only a ten-minute drive from San Antonio but a world away from Ibiza’s party scene, Oku Ibiza is a laid-back escape perfectly positioned for beach-hopping in the south-west of the White Isle (don’t miss the Cala Gracioneta beach club just down the road). Minimalist, pared-back rooms are split between a trio of low-rise buildings that surround the 50m pool (there is a smaller pool for families) where there’s a juice bar, yoga shala and spa treatment rooms. A DJ plays chilled-out beats before dinner at Japanese-inspired Oku Restaurant, overseen by executive chef Mark Vaessen (ex-SushiSamba); must-try dishes include wagyu gyoza, black cod and honey miso eggplant.

BOOK IT: Doubles from €360 B&B.

Château Capitoul

28. Château Capitoul

Think of the south of France and Narbonne is not a town that springs to mind. But for those yearning spring sunshine, the ‘secret riviera’ is a very good shout. Hoteliers Karl O’Hanlon and Anita Forte realised its potential and moved here some years ago. Buying up disused wineries they created three estates, breathing life back into wine production and renovating disused barns to create impeccably stylish villas. Château Capitoul is the latest, a sister property to Château les Carrasses and Château St Pierre de Serjac. Lying within an ancient landscape and natural park, Chateau Capitol comprises an eight-bedroom hotel (in the main house) and 44 self-catering villas, a gastronomic restaurant, winery with tasting rooms, wine shop, informal brasserie and spa. Each villa looks out onto acres of vineyard and is styled with contemporary flair using natural, often reclaimed materials including terracotta roof tiles, traditional wooden shutters, oak beams and huge bay windows, framing extraordinary views. Fully equipped Italian kitchens and en suite bathrooms are enhanced by antiques and French furnishing. Guests often enquire about buying pieces of the furniture (both indoor and out) so Karl set up Domaine & Demeure to meet demand. As well as a generous terrace pool for each villa, the estate has a 30m infinity version dotted with olive trees shading sun loungers (so much prettier than an umbrella), tennis court, and terraced Mediterranean gardens designed by renowned landscape designer James Basson. Château Capitoul is easily accessed via air and rail, while driving gives the option of bringing back some of the renowned Vignobles Bonfils wine. (Listen to the House Guest podcast with Karl O’Hanlon to hear more.)

BOOK IT: £195 per night including breakfast for a double room in main house. A 7-night stay in a 2-bedroom villa with private garden is from around £2269 to £4157 (low to high season).

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