Art + Design

The world’s most beautiful hotels for the design-conscious traveller


By Su Fen Tan

The world’s most beautiful hotels for the design-conscious traveller

Eden Locke in Edinburgh, Scotland 

See the quaint little corner in the cover image? You’ll find that space nestled in Edinburgh’s Eden Locke hotel, located in UNESCO World Heritage Site New Town. Designed by New York studio Grzywinski + Pons, the sophisticatedly tropical interiors provide charming contrast with its 18th-century stone exterior, welcoming guests with a soft pastel palette and modern, tropical furnishing.

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The Krane in Copenhagen, Denmark 

In stark contrast with Eden Locke, the next establishment in this list is painted in shades of black. A former industrial coal crane by the harbour turned a luxury two-person retreat, The Krane, an all-black living space complete with a lounge terrace take up the top floor, while a spa and terrace filled with natural light occupy the second floor.

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The Ned in London, UK

The Ned is named after British architect Edwin “Ned” Lutyens, who designed the former bank back in 1924 that is now home to the lavish hotel and members’ club by Soho House. The grandeur of the historical building is retained via period design features and vintage-inspired furnishing, an aesthetic that is constant through the 252 bedrooms, nine restaurants, spa, lounge bar and other facilities.

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RYSE Hotel in Seoul, South Korea

Aptly located in the colourful, artsy neighbourhood that is Hongdae, RYSE is a hotel designed by creatives, for creatives. You don’t have to be art-inclined to appreciate the beautifully modern establishment though. The lobby reels one in with a pastel pink lacquered floor juxtaposed with textured concrete walls and brass accents, while the differently-themed rooms and suites each boast tasteful design and bold personality.

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Alila Yangshuo in Guilin, China

Yet another industrial structure transformed into a retreat, Alila Yangshuo guarantees peace and tranquillity in the heart of the mountainous Yangshuo County. The original buildings now house the reception and other amenities, while new accommodation buildings complement the existing infrastructure with a muted aesthetic and palette bolstered by contemporary materials and construction methods. Just look at the outdoor lounge space—pure serenity.

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Nobu Ryokan in California, US

Indulge in a little slice of Japan in sunny Malibu at Nobu Ryokan. This luxurious sanctuary combines traditional Japanese minimalism with the elegant flair of the California coastline, complete with lush gardens and the beach at your doorstep. When you’re at a Nobu property, be sure to make plans for a meal at the renown Nobu Malibu restaurant too.

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At Six in Stockholm, Sweden

Maybe it’s a Scandinavian thing, because the next hotel from the region that makes it into the list is also rooted in deep, monochrome hues. A palette of sawn stone, blackened steel, fine timber and polished granite live in harmony at At Six, rendering it supremely chic and elegant. How gorgeous is that granite tub feature from the Masterpiece Suite (image 4)? We suppose that is just what you should expect from the home to one of Europe’s most significant hotel art collections.

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Brody House in Budapest, Hungary

Going against the grain of modernist design, this eccentric boutique accommodation in Budapest consists of 11 unique rooms, each featuring art by different artists who either used to have a studio at Brody House or collaborated with the Brody House Group. Expect artistic design quirks such as walls covered in antique music scores and handwritten letters, magnificent marble columns and crumbling plaster walls all under one roof.

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