Our top 9 hotel list – we have stayed in hundreds since 2013 and it was quite difficult to choose which ones would make our list. These may not be the most luxurious, but some are quirky, fun, scenic and just plain memorable and we would definitely return.
- 1 How do we select our hotel accommodation
- 2 #1 – Old Oia Houses, Santorini, Greek Islands
- 3 #2 – Gripsholm Vardshus, Mariefred, Sweden
- 4 #3 – Kismet Cave Hotel, Cappadocia, Turkey
- 5 #4 – Tri Yaan Na Ross, Chiang Mai, Thailand
- 6 #5 – Arize Hotel Bangkok
- 7 #6 – Riviera Hotel South Beach, Miami, USA
- 8 #7 – Hotel Aura del Mar Zihuatanejo, Mexico
- 9 #8 – Hostal Las Marias, Antigua, Guatemala
- 10 #9 Old Mariner Guest House, Kotor Montenegro
How do we select our hotel accommodation
There are a few steps that we take:
- Depending on the length of stay and location we either choose a hotel, apartment or a hostel
- Location, location, location – is our mantra. What do we want to do and see?
- Price is always a factor as we are on the road continuously travelling to a budget.
- We are affiliates of Booking.com and Agoda.com – we always check these out first to get a feel for what is available in which location. Booking.com is a great tool for worldwide, Agoda is good for Asia but they are now expanding their market to a higher global presence.
- We are also Genius Bookers with Booking.com which means because of the high volume of bookings we put through them on certain hotels we get a further discount.
- Tripadvisor – for the latest reviews and a round up of the latest hot deals available on the accommodation and area where we are looking.
- Check the hotel website to see if they are offering any promotions.
Our favourite studio apartment in Oia on the island of Santorini. Location, location and location is the key to this studio with stunning views over the Caldera. The bathroom has one of the best views ever over the incredible blue sea of the Caldera. The studio comes equipped with a small kitchen, inside table and chairs and outside table and chairs to enjoy on the balcony. Fresh home made bread is delivered daily for breakfast. It feels like home when we return – so far in two trips we have spent 7 weeks there.
In a small town south of Stockholm in the Sormland Region, the Gripsholm Vardshus (Inn) sits on a lake opposite Gripsholm Castle. It is the oldest Inn of its kind in Sweden and sits on top of a Carthusian Monastery. The rooms are all decorated in classic Swedish style with very comfortable beds and luxurious linen. The restaurant serves up classic Swedish dishes and the breakfast buffet is outstanding.
Fancy staying in a Cave Hotel in the middle of Goreme in Cappadocia? Faruk, the very personable owner, who has become a life long friend, offers 8 classic cave rooms and one of the most memorable breakfasts ever. Breakfast items come from his farm, even the honey still attached to the honeycomb. The views are incredible especially at sunrise when the sky fills with hundreds of hot air balloons. If you are considering buying a Turkish Carpet – tell Faruk we sent you, he is one of the most knowledgeable in Goreme and if he hasn’t got what you want in his cellar he will find you one from his many contacts who just happen to pull up outside the hotel and spread their many carpets out for you on the local road. It is quite an unbelievable and fun way to purchase a carpet.
We treated ourselves to this amazing accommodation in Chiang Mai over the Christmas period. We had been on the road for 11 months and wanted to spend 2 nights in luxury accommodation. We booked the villa which comprised of two bedrooms, lounge room, small office all decorated in traditional dark Thai furnishings. The restaurant served great meals throughout the day, the best Thai Green Vegetable Curry that I have ever had and a plentiful breakfast buffet. The swimming pool area is calming and relaxing, a great place to unwind after a day of sightseeing.
#5 – Arize Hotel Bangkok
Another home away from home, we have stayed here over 6 times since 2013. This boutique hotel is located at Soi 26 just off Sukhumvit Road, close to many small restaurants and the BTS. It has a swimming pool and gym, the rooms are very comfortable and a plus for us is good fast wifi.
What instantly comes to mind when we think of Miami is the Riviera Hotel in South Beach. We spent 3 nights in this boutique hotel enjoying the free transfer shuttle from the airport, breakfast by the pool in relaxing cabanas and free cocktails at happy hour each evening. The bed was extremely comfortable with a good menu of pillows for selection.
Booked two weeks and stayed for three! Our room came equipped with an incredible view, spa bath, balcony and daily maid service with lovingly animal shaped towel creations. Hotel Aura del Mar is a boutique hotel located on La Madera beach. In the evening we ate at the local beach fish restaurants for the freshest grilled fish for approx USD10. It was hard to leave!
Although it is called a Hostal this is far from a hostal, it is more of a boutique hotel located in a small gated community about 6 minutes walk from the historical centre of Antigua. We were upgraded to a larger room with kitchen facilities. The courtyard overflows with so much greenery and nature, and it is calming just to sit and enjoy the peace and quiet. Breakfast is served overlooking the courtyard.
Kotor in Montenegro is located on a bay surrounded and is known as Europe’s Mediterranean Fiord region. Past the Old Town of Kotor about 10km is a quite village by the name of Prcanj. Here lies a 400 year old family home (still in the same family) which has been turned into one of the highest ranking Booking.com locations in the area.
The Old Mariner Guest House is now one of our favourites. From its dramatic location overlooking the bay, the unique service from the staff and the design and cleanliness of the property we rate this property very high indeed. Simple touches such as we were on the sun lounges at the front of the property when the Housekeeper arrived with glasses of juice, chocolate macaroons, fruit and coffee not just the first day but every day we were there.
Alexsandar Perovic,the owner also runs the Pub Mariner inside the walls of the Old Town.
We hope you have enjoyed our top 9 hotel list and feel free to share with your friends and families. Do you have a favourite hotel? Have you stayed in any of the ones we have chosen?
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