A riot of tropical colours and exotic patterns, these eclectic Roman residences are moments from the Eternal City’s ‘big five’: Capitoline Hill, the Forum, the Pantheon, the Colosseum and Basilica of Saint Peter in Chains. Housed within a grand 18th-century building, each of the 12 suites at Palm Suite has its own whimsical style – a statue of a tiger in one, a golden palm-shaped lamp in another. This meticulously mismatched palette is made to be as memorable as the Forum views.
Cornflower blue meets pastel pinks and soft greens, a patchwork of prints and an assortment of frames alongside hatstands and fabric headboards, seaside touches of shell trinket dishes and marine life illustrations. Not to mention the nautical blue and white striped loungers lining the picture-perfect pool. It’s easy to see why Halcyon House was our Most Liked Hotel of 2020 – ‘Instagrammable’ is an understatement, thanks to interiors by designer Anna Spiro.
Powder pink parasols provide shade along a private, white sandy beach, while fuchsia flowers sit beneath peachy walls and popping turquoise windows. Every colourful corner of Las Alamandas Resort is beautifully decorated with Mexican fabrics and rattan sofas in canary yellow that make a bold statement against white ceramic floors. Mexican hand-painted folk art is highlighted throughout.
This glamorous haven away from the glitzy Côte d’Azur crowds is packed with contemporary art and graphic prints, hand-picked by owners Leslie and Kimberley from their parents’ extensive art collection, alongside works from up-and-coming artisans. Designed by Charles Zana to recreate the glory days of the French Riviera, the artistically inspired aesthetic of Hôtel Lou Pinet is vibrant yet vintage, from the light-filled suites to the frescoes on the walls of the trendy Beefbar restaurant.
The clue is in the name at this blue-washed Mediterranean-style mansion. Inspired inside and out by Middle Eastern, North African, and European art and architecture, La Maison Bleue‘s Venetian-style façade and opulent marble hallways make an immediate impression. Take a leisurely dip in the blue lagoon, before watching the Egyptian sun dye the sky a dusky pink (to match the suites) behind the distant Red Sea mountains.
A statement art hotel combining contemporary works by world-famous artists with the grandeur of a 16th-century Venetian villa, Byblos Art Hotel Villa Amistà has been given an ultra-modern makeover by architect and designer Alessandro Mendini. Each one of the 59 rooms is individually decorated and masterfully styled with the use of vividly coloured fabrics and furnishings as well as works by Marc Quinn, Damien Hurst, Anish Kapoor and Vanessa Beecroft.
A treasure trove of 16th-century houses in Santo Domingo’s colonial zone, Casas Del XVI feature local works of art, ancient Dominican artefacts and beautifully carved wood furniture. Maintaining the houses’ original architecture, each one is individually decorated to reflect the area’s historical and cultural significance. All of the properties have a central courtyard with zesty walls, perfect for an evening aperitif or outdoor dining.
A dash of urban cool here, a touch of rock and roll there (thanks to owner Girish Jhunjhnuwala‘s love of 1980s music legends), Ovolo The Valley Brisbane is located in an ultra-hip entertainment district – and has the interiors to match. Step inside, and you’re met with energetic contemporary design fused with understated luxury. Think plush velvet, pops of colour, loud wallpaper, and one-of-a-kind artwork.
An historic 17th-century building with an original baker’s shopfront, Hôtel du Petit Moulin is a truly unique residence with flamboyant interiors designed by Christian Lacroix. From brightly coloured 1960s furniture in the bar, and plush textiles, leather sofas and highly decorative walls in the lounge to green corridors with polka-dot carpeting that lead to Baroque, Rococo and Couture designed rooms, it is a fascinating journey through the artistic expertise of Lacroix.
Housed within Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, Italy’s oldest active shopping centre, the Vik family have established a Milanese home-from-home inspired by the architecture of the 19th-century arcade and the city’s world-renowned design scene. Reflecting the art and soul of Milan, Galleria VIK Milano is part hotel, part modern art gallery. Clearly unafraid of colour, bold murals, striking sculptures, and a vibrant palette paint a vivid picture, though no two rooms are the same – each bearing the hallmark of a renowned artist, from Giuseppe Gonella and Pino Pinelli, to Felipe Cardena and Shinya Sakurai.