Five of the Best Dressed Hotels

We like our hotels sexy and stylish


Twenty of the world's most seriously stylish stays were shortlisted for the Best-Dressed prize at the Smith Hotel Awards 2015: which would have been your number one?

Halcyon House, Cabarita Beach, Australia

Since opening in May 2015, this beautiful boutique bolthole has made waves in Australia and beyond. Interiors whiz Anna Spiro scoured the globe for antiques, textiles and wall coverings that combine Mediterranean hues with a dash of California cool – think up-styled surf motel with lots of sunshine and a stiff breeze. With a private stretch of beach and just 21 rooms, it's a winning retreat: choose master suite 301 for a sea-view terrace. The restaurant is a winner, too – Aussie chef Ben Devlin, recently returned from Noma, oversees Paper Daisy's locally-sourced fare.


Halcyon House, 21 Cypress Crescent, Cabarita Beach, New South Wales, Australia. Doubles from £254, B&B, inc soft drinks minibar

Hotel Cort, Mallorca

This one-time 19th-century bank has had a beach-inspired makeover: the hip hotel now houses Moorish tiled floors, maritime-chic suites and island-life flotsam and jetsam. Spanish designer Lázaro Rosa-Violán has done a stellar job, and when the locally loved restaurant and bar spills out into historic Plaça de Cort, you can really soak up the Mallorcan soul.


Hotel Cort, Plaça de Cort 11, Palma de Mallorca, Mallorca. Doubles from £122, B&B

The Battery San Francisco

With striking industrial interiors,  thanks to exposed brick walls, polished brass fittings and a speakeasy-style bar within ( tip: pull the lever on the bookcase), this is a members' club with serious style in the centre of San Francisco. The result of a four-year collaboration between designer Ken Fulk and FME Architecture + Design, the Battery houses a spa, restaurant and no less than four bars. Roam the lobbies and spot the quirky art lining the walls, then book a booth or an oversized couch in restaurant 717B.

The Battery, 717 Battery Street, San Francisco, California, USA. Doubles from £418, room only

El Fenn, Marrakech

After taking home the Best-Dressed Hotel gong last year, El Fenn's back in the running for 2015 because it's still a shining example of first-class style. A 22-room labour of love, the former set of crumbling riads has been turned into one of the most intriguingly cool stays in the Medina. Mixing traditional Moorish patterns with contemporary cedarwood in eye-popping hues, this hotel also houses an impressive art collection, including pieces by David Shrigley, Antony Gormley and Bridget Riley.

El Fenn, Bab El Ksour, Medina, Marrakech,  Morocco. Doubles from £185, room only but including afternoon mint tea and pastries  

Portrait Firenze, Florence

A refined retreat on the banks of the Arno, Portrait Firenze's historical views aren't the only ace up its bespoke sleeve: walls are lined with monochrome shots of the great and the gorgeous, against a gentle but sophisticated palette of greys and golds. Designer Michele Bönan put his luxury stamp on the velvet and marble suites at this Ferragamo family-owned hideaway: Salvatore can be spotted in the framed portraits, and his workshop on nearby Palazzo Spini Feroni still houses an archive of sketches. Guests of the hotel get free entrance to the Salvatore Ferragamo Museo, and a ten per cent discount at the boutique on via Tornabuoni. Don't blame us for the impact that might have on your Italian-leather wallet…

Portrait Firenze, 4 Lungarno degli Acciaiuoli, Florence, Tuscany,  Italy. Doubles from £326, room only 

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