Whether you want to wander among wild flowers, seek shade beneath tropical palms, or take in the scent of citrus trees and olive groves, experiencing the outdoors is just as important as the indoors of these boutique hotels. From perfectly manicured lawns to private patios and verdant villas, here are 25 of the most beautiful hotel gardens in the world.
English country gardens, Italian landscapes, and French Provençal perfection…
Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club, East Sussex – UK … a listed 19th-century mansion set in 186 acres of landscaped parkland, with secret gardens and woodland paths with lakeside views.
Tylney Hall Hotel and Gardens, Hampshire – UK … this late-Victorian mansion is a tranquil country house overlooking sweeping lawns and lakes within 66 acres of gardens and parkland.
Luton Hoo Hotel, Bedfordshire – UK … a magnificent former stately home, nestled in over 1,000 acres of gardens and parkland created by Capability Brown. The River Lea flows through the hotel grounds, forming two lakes over 50 acres.
Monkey Island Estate, Berkshire – UK … an 18th-century estate turned boutique retreat on a private island on the Thames, with beautiful grounds and river views.
Great Fosters, Surrey – UK … surrounded by 50 acres of stunningly landscaped gardens, England’s green and pleasant scenery greets you from the moment you arrive. From picturesque summer picnics and tennis to crisp winter walks around the estate, you can fill your stay with as much – or as little – activity as you like.
Rockliffe Hall, Durham – UK … a magnificent 18th-century country house with a Lewis Caroll inspired outdoor area, known as Mischmasch, tennis courts, curious cabins, and adventure and nature trails.
Susafa, Sicily – Italy … a 200-year old Sicilian farmhouse, this family-run estate celebrates the beauty of its natural surroundings. Stroll among the cherry trees, or enjoy a Sicilian cookery class with herbs and vegetables picked from the hotel gardens and organic olive oil.
Hotel Regency, Florence – Italy … a 19th-century hideaway in the heart of Florence with its own private urban garden.
Hotel Villa Athena, Agrigento – Italy … a 300-year old villa within a stone’s throw of the magnificent Temple of Concordia, part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Valley of Temples. After a visit to the hotel’s farm which harvests traditional Sicilian produce, sit in the garden with a cold glass of limoncello amid the lemon trees and view the temple on the hill.
Villa di Piazzano, Cortona – Italy … set on the border between Tuscany and Umbria, this historic estate was originally the hunting lodge of Cardinal Passerini, a favourite of the Medicis. Dine alfresco where the vegetables are plucked fresh from the hotel gardens.
Domaine des Etangs, Massignac – France … a meticulously restored château with fairytale turrets and sweeping grounds of waterways and woodlands. Look out for wildlife – from herons and otters to deer and Limousin cows.
Château La Chenèviere Hotel, Normandy – France … an elegant 18th-century château surrounded by attractive gardens and parkland close to historic Bayeux.
Domaine de Manville, Les Baux de Provence – France … originally a working farm, it is now a stylish hotel surrounded by olive trees, scented wild herbs and lush green fields set in a vast 100-acre estate.
Le Pigonnet, Aix-en-Provence – France … an 18th century Provençal mansion in beautiful floral gardens, surrounded by centenary chestnut trees and blooming rosary arcades. Relax with the sound of one of the many fountains nearby and discover Cezanne’s favourite spot when he painted his beloved Mount Sainte Victoire.
Zen gardens, rainforest retreats, and private lagoons…
Keemala, Phuket – Thailand … a collection of private villas and treehouses seemingly suspended in the rainforest canopy. The tropical forest is quite literally on the doorstep, with jungle walkways to stroll and exotic flora and fauna to spot. Meditate beneath the trees, or learn the art of Thai cooking using herbs picked from the hotel’s own garden.
Sowaka, Kyoto – Japan … a restored ‘ryokan’ in one of Japan’s most alluring destinations, the bedrooms and suites at this hotel are discreetly arranged among flourishing green courtyards bubbling with water features. Many of the rooms have their own private gardens, seamlessly blending the outdoors with the interiors.
Hotel Éclat Beijing, Beijing – China … part of the architecturally striking Parkview Green development in Fangcaodi, many of the rooms at this hotel have private terraces, and some with their own lagoon pools.
The Old England Manor, Nantou – Taiwan … set in the picturesque highlands of Nantou County, this Tudor-style hotel is surrounded by rolling green hills with easy access to the Hehuanshan National Forest Recreation Area and Cingjing Farm, where fir trees and alpine meadows sit side-by-side with terraced tea plantations and steep valleys.
A desert oasis…
Dar Ahlam, Ouarzazate – Morocco … unwind in a haven of manicured lawns and fragrant almond blossom at this Kasbah on the fringes of the Moroccan desert. Spend the day beneath the shade of palms and olive trees, or enjoy refreshments beside the edge of Ouarzazate Lake.