After four years on top, London has lost its crown as the five-star hotel capital of the world – instead, it’s Macau, China, that’s number one.
That’s according to Forbes Travel Guide’s 2023 Star Awards, a list of ratings allocated by ‘highly trained inspectors’ who have evaluated properties around the world based on a range of criteria, looking at everything from service to luxury levels.
The 65th annual list features 360 five-star, 585 four-star and 433 ‘recommended’ hotels – with 48 brand-new five-star hotels in total. Spas and restaurants have also been awarded, with 119 five-star and 195 four-star spas worldwide and 79 five-star, 113 four-star and 67 recommended restaurants.
First-place Macau – a city and region nicknamed the ‘Las Vegas of Asia’ thanks to its thriving gambling industry – is recognised as having 22 five-star hotels overall, including the newly awarded Grand Lisboa Palace Macau, The Karl Lagerfeld and The Londoner Hotel. Meanwhile, silver medal-winner London has 21, including the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park and The Langham, though there are no new five-star hotel additions for the English capital this year.
Several U.S hotels have also been newly awarded five-star ratings. Among them, there’s the Montage Healdsburg resort in California, Florida’s Boca Raton Beach Club and the Trump International Hotel & Tower Chicago.
After four years on top, London has lost its crown as the five-star hotel capital of the world in Forbes Travel Guide’s 2023 Star Awards. Above is the five-star-rated Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, London
First-place Macau has 22 five-star hotels overall, including the newly awarded Londoner Hotel (pictured)
Nine destinations have welcomed their first five-star hotel in the awards this year.
In Europe, there’s Athens and its Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel Athens; the Turkish city of Bodrum, with the Mandarin Oriental, Bodrum; the island of Capri with J.K. Place Capri; Kuwait for the Four Seasons Hotel Kuwait at Burj Alshaya; Italy’s Lake Como with the ‘Mandarin Oriental, Lago di Como’ hotel and Mallorca for the Jumeirah Port Soller Hotel & Spa.
Further afield, three other destinations have welcomed their first five-star hotel – the Japanese city of Osaka for The Ritz-Carlton, Osaka; Riyadh in Saudi Arabia for both the Four Seasons Hotel Riyadh at Kingdom Centre and The Ritz-Carlton, Riyadh; and Shenzhen, China, for the Mandarin Oriental, Shenzhen.
While they failed to earn any five-star ratings, Nordic countries have made their first showing on the list with the four-star Hotel d’Angleterre in Copenhagen and several recommended winners in Oslo and Stockholm.
Sicily has also earned an impressive number of four-star hotel ratings – five in total – with one allocated to the San Domenico Palace, Taormina, which famously formed the setting for the second season of the hit TV series The White Lotus.
Moving to the UAE, Dubai’s Jumeirah Al Naseem hotel has earned a five-star rating on the list.
Meanwhile, four new five-star hotels in the Maldives have been added to the ranking, including Soneva Jani and The Ritz-Carlton Maldives.
After a two-year renovation, the legendary Raffles Hotel Singapore – where the Singapore Sling cocktail was invented – has triumphantly returned to the Star Ratings list with a five-star award.
Several U.S hotels have also been newly awarded five-star ratings – among them there’s Florida’s Boca Raton Beach Club (pictured)
Nine destinations have welcomed their first five-star hotel this year, including the Turkish city of Bodrum with the Mandarin Oriental, Bodrum, pictured
Four new five-star hotels in the Maldives have been added to the list this year, including Soneva Jani (above)
Mandarin Oriental Ritz, Madrid (pictured) in Spain has newly snapped up a five-star rating
Elsewhere in the awards, the U.S performed well in the five-star restaurants ranking.
The Restaurant at Justin in Paso Robles, California, has nabbed its first five-star win, while on the east coast, Manhattan’s Gabriel Kreuther restaurant is the first new independent restaurant in New York City to receive five stars in 10 years.
In the spa ranking, six destinations have picked up their first five-star spa accolades, including Barbados, for The Spa at Sandy Lane; Ireland, for The Spa at Ashford Castle; Madrid for the spa at the Four Seasons Hotel Madrid; and Vancouver for the Willow Stream Spa at Fairmont Pacific Rim.
In a new category of the awards this year, the Forbes Travel Guide announced its first-ever ocean cruise ratings.
After a two-year renovation, the legendary Raffles Hotel Singapore (above) triumphantly returned to the Star Ratings list with a five-star award
The Montage Healdsburg in California (above) has been newly awarded five stars
Manhattan’s Gabriel Kreuther restaurant is the first new independent restaurant in New York City to receive five stars in 10 years
In a new category of the awards this year, the Forbes Travel Guide announced its first-ever ocean cruise ratings, with Celebrity Edge (above) among the inaugural star-rated ships
The inaugural star-rated ships are Celebrity Apex, Celebrity Flora and Celebrity Millennium, Celebrity Edge and Celebrity Summit.
Commenting on the awards, Amanda Frasier, President of Ratings for Forbes Travel Guide, said: ‘Travel is in an incredible position for continued growth, as people prioritize authentic, in-person experiences.
‘The hotels, ocean cruises, restaurants and spas on our 2023 Star Rating list demonstrate an impressive commitment to creating memorable environments that nurture connection, joy and sense of place as we experience the world to its fullest.’
To see the full list, visit www.forbestravelguide.com.
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