Recently, more than 2,000 travel advisers and nearly 60 journalists and bloggers attended the Virtuoso Travel Week conference at the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas. Virtuoso Travel Week, also considered the “Fashion Week of Travel,” is the largest event for buying and selling travel in the U.S. With a focus on the latest offerings of luxury experiences, Virtuoso reports an estimated $450 millionÂ in luxury travel sales happens during Virtuoso Travel Week.
So, if you’re wondering which luxury hotels are commanding the big bucks, Forbes.com met with a few luxury travel pros to pick the top new hotels. “Clear winners were The Ritz in Paris, which has been closed since 2012 and Aman’s first golf resort, to open in the Dominican Republic,” said Doug Gollan. Check out the list below compiled by Forbes.
The Ritz in Paris (closed since 2012) & The Fontenay in Hamburg
Michael Holtz, Owner, SmartFlyer
“Michael Holtz adds to the chorus, “The obvious one is the Ritz Paris,â€ but adds, “The Fontenay in Hamburg looks amazing. It’s on the site of the former Intercontinental, (and) as a member of The Leading Hotels of the World, (it will) combine (location and service) with its stellar style. I expect it to drag new guests like me to this Northern German city.â€
New York-based Jack Ezon
“Ezon is looking south for two his most anticipated openings. He points to Faena Miami “set to pre-open this November,â€ saying it “will change the landscape of South Beach.â€ Predicting is as “a new epicenter for Art Basel,â€ he says, “It is sure to attract the world’s elite to its wide open beaches and buzzing bar scene all year long.â€
Annie Fitzsimmons, Contributing Editor, National Geographic Traveler and Urban Insider
“I am most excited about the newest Ritz-Carlton Reserve property, Mandapa, in Bali, opening at the end of this month,â€ says Annie Fitzsimmons, a leading travel journalist who has written for Forbes, Travel + Leisure, and USA Today. “The property itself is beautiful and draws inspiration from the Balinese spirit of wellness and health. I love that the swimming pool has a view of local rice paddies.â€ For folks who may not have had recent experience with the flag, or its uber-luxury sub-brand, Fitzsimmons adds, “The Reserve portfolio has proven to be an innovative, modern way to help bring this hotel brand into the future. Ritz-Carlton isn’t stuffy or dated anymore, and these Reserve properties show their dedication to the experiential traveler and the explorers, essentially, all of us modern travelers, no matter what age bracket.â€
Aman’s Golf resort, Dominican Republic
Tiffany Dowd, President & Founder, Luxe Social Media
“I’m looking forward to the Fall 2015 opening of the newest Amanresort, Amanera, overlooking Playa Grande Beach in the Dominican Republic. It’s going to bring a whole new level of luxury to the Caribbean with its 25 casitas and Aman spa. It’s also the first Aman to integrate a golf course,â€ said Tiffany Dowd, also known to her hundreds of thousands of social media followers as Luxe Tiffany. She adds, “Amanemu, the second property by Amanresorts in Japan, is also hot on my radar scheduled to open early 2016 located in Ise Shima National Park on the west coast of Honshu, Japan’s main island. It’s going to be the perfect destination to combine with the Aman Tokyo, for a city and country escape in Japan and accessible by train.â€