LIFESTYLE | 3 MINUTE READ
TOP 5 ROOMS WITH A VIEW
NO.1 LA SIRENUSE, POSITANO, AMALFI
This uniquely glamorous boutique hotel opened in 1951 with a large terrace overlooking its namesake, The Islands of the Sirens. Writer John Steinbeck, visiting in 1953, described, “An old family house converted into a first-class hotel, spotless and cool, with grape arbours over its outside dining rooms. Every room has its little balcony and looks out over the blue sea to the Islands of the Sirens from which those ladies sang so sweetly”.
Over 60 years on, the hotel has 59 suites with all the comforts of a five-star luxury hotel without losing the atmosphere of a family home. It is considered one of the best hotels in Italy and has won numerous awards. Almost all rooms look out over the bay of Positano. Most have a private terrace or balcony and are decorated with white-washed walls, antique furniture and hand-made Vietri tiles. Romantic moment: watch the sunset from the rooftop Champagne & Oyster bar.
NO.2 SHANGRI-LA, AT THE SHARD – LONDON
Take in showstopper views at smart and plush Shangri-La Hotel, At The Shard, London. Floors 34 to 52 of Renzo Piano’s iconic building (at 1,016ft it is the tallest building in Western Europe) are given over to the Hotel. Bedrooms feature floor to ceiling windows to showcase mesmerising ever-changing views across London. A nice touch – binoculars are provided in each room. Watch life unfolding along the Thames and the city lighting up beneath you as the evening sky blushes and deepens. Spot the landmark... St Paul’s Cathedral... Tower Bridge... London Eye... In the morning London wakes up beneath you; it is absolutely transfixing. The top tier rooms with triple aspect views have been described as glass boxes suspended in the sky with London laid out at your feet.
Don’t miss a nightcap cocktail in the bar high up in the sky. Or maybe a dip in the hotel’s infinity pool on level 52.
NO.3 LION SANDS GAME RESERVE – SOUTH AFRICA
For romantics, adventurers and wildlife enthusiasts, this is a magical experience: spending a night under the stars in a luxury treehouse above the bush. The Lion Sands’ Treehouses are the ultimate bush bedrooms. Guests arrive at sunset to a lantern-lit treehouse and tuck into a delicious picnic hamper dinner before watching the vast wilderness of the bushveld at dusk. Retiring to bed, you sleep safely and comfortably beneath a velvet sky with the Milky Way and shooting stars clearly visible. However, this experience is about sounds as much as sights. In the night, you may hear hyenas whooping, impalas snorting, lions roaring or a solitary leopard coughing – their cries and calls carrying over several kilometres on the thin night air.
When dawn comes you are awoken by a choir of birds, and in the early morning light, as the bush comes to life, you have a front-row seat.
NO.4 MANDARIN ORIENTAL – NEW YORK
It is all about that view. The Mandarin Oriental is located more than 280 feet above ground level in the north tower of the $1.7bn Time Warner Centre. This luxury five-star hotel, high above New York’s iconic skyline, combines discreetly attentive Far East hospitality and sleek contemporary style. Glamorous guestrooms, celebrated Asiate restaurant and chic MObar all enjoy stunning views of Manhatten. Guests recall enjoying the sunrise over Central Park from their king-sized bed as they wake. With floor to ceiling windows, corner rooms seem to float adrift above midtown Manhattan, and even bathrooms with picture windows give bathers views of the Hudson River and Central Park. In addition, the Spa has been called heavenly, and not just because it is so relaxing. Positioned on the 35th floor with windows framing uninterrupted vistas from Central Park to the Hudson, guests have described the feeling as though they’re floating among the clouds.
NO.5 JADE MOUNTAIN – ST LUCIA
Winner of American Express Travel’s ‘Most Breathtaking View’ Award, Jade Mountain showcases St Lucia’s beauty. This hotel has the appearance of having grown organically on the mountainside, among lush tropical gardens. Owner Nick Troubetzkoy says, "I’ve tried to change the entire concept of a hotel room. I wanted to create environments that enable guests to forget about everything other than experiencing this unique space on an intuitive level.”
So, each guest room has only three walls, the fourth is open, framing uninterrupted views of blue Caribbean waters and the twin Pitons - part of a UNESCO World Heritage site. Guests have described the experience of waking up in a huge living postcard with birds flying in and out of it. Alongside mesmerising panoramas, each guest room also features generously-sized infinity pools and handcrafted furnishings sourced from local materials. Service is also commended for being first-class, warm and authentic.