Conde Nast's top China hotel picks 2009

by Stephan Larose
Posted: April 21st, 2010 | Updated: July 25th, 2012 | Comments
Though the global economic crisis has meant big losses for banks and investors, fans of hot hotels are definitely coming out as winners. Development of premier properties worldwide has continued unabated -- increasing our selection of the finest while simultaneously bringing prices down to levels affordable by us mere mortals.
For the absolute creme de la creme in China, Conde Nast travel has assembled its hotel hot list for 2009, and we've taken the liberty of taking the best in China and putting the results right here at you fingertips. Fans of the beach will be pleased by multiple winners in Sanya, and those looking to book in China's cultural heart will find many stylish options in Beijing. Read on for the best of the best in China... The Aman at Summer Palace in Beijing

Anyone keen on checking out the UNESCO World Heritage Summer Palace should have a look at this collection of 51majestic rooms. Spread across nine courtyards, many hail from as far back as 1750, how's that for authentic? Highlights include a Pilates and a yoga studio, high wood-beamed ceilings, floors of polished Jin clay tiles and some of the best Peking duck in Beijing.

Opposite House, Beijing A Japanese playboy's dream come true, celebrity architect Kengo Kuma has taken Japanese minimalism and fused it with outrageous luxury to bring you some of the most hella-chill decadence you'll ever see. Brushed-oak floors and an emarald glass exterior take the best of the Heffner mansion and encase it in Wizard of Oz reverie to set this ultra-chic Beijing property a cut unequivocally above the rest. Do be sure to have a cocktail at the fabulously wicked Punk bar... Hotel G, Beijing

While the G has got a number of virtues, modesty is not one of them. With its burgundy velvet furnishings, collection of sensual black and white photography, and abundant use of crystal and mirrors, this boutique hotel's business meets boudoire concept is accented by works of art procured from Beijing's trendy 798 Dashanzi Art District. Weekends see Beijing's bold and beautiful flocking to 25 Degrees, the hotel's lounge, where they vibe to musical tapestries woven by France's DJ Maxwell's. The Mandarin Oriental, Sanya Though Coral Bay beach, which fronts the property, isn't Ansel Adams material, guests meandering about the hotel's 30 acres of beautifully landscaped grounds have plenty more to do than ponder a dip in the less-than-salubrious South China Sea. Guests can take in morning tai chi from a Shaolin master, test their grip on the rock-climbing wall, play Tiger Woods on the golf simulator, or simply lounge about in the hammocks surrounding the resort's three pools. Cliff-top villas ensure great views and even better privacy, great after a night of revelry at the hotel's 11 bars and restaurants. Park Hyatt, Beijing Fans of space and height get all they want and more in the Park Hyatt's commodious rooms and vertiginous views. A sunlit swimming pool on the sixtieth floor makes dreams of wading at the roof of the world a material reality, while those looking to dine in style can sample steak and sushi under the pyramidal glass ceiling of Beijing's highest restaurant, the China Grill. Brilliant if you enjoy a little vertigo with your veal... The Banyan Tree Resort and Spa Sanya An exquisite hotel tucked away from the ruction of rapidly-developing Sanya, this is truly an oasis of calm, hedonistic though it may be. 61 villas, all with private pools, are set amid a man-made lagoon teeming with local flora and fauna whose nighttime sonnets are music to the city-dweller's ears. The hotel's spa, sauna, and gigantic granite tub can melt any level of stress, and best of all, you can take all this luxury in guilt-free. The Banyan philosophy is to mind its carbon footprint, and the resplendent retreat treads lightly by purchasing furnishings, fabrics and more from local craftsmen. Ritz-Carlton, Sanya Traveling with the family? If the kids are coming along to Sanya, best get a room in the Ritz-Carlton. The hotel's Yalong Bay real estate, the best beach in the area, provides ample space for the kids to stretch their legs, while Fresh 8, a great family dining venue, makes sure meals please. If you want luxury and the ability to roll out of bed and onto the beach, this is the place to be. W, Hong Kong Home to the city's highest swimming pool, there is no better place to float in the lap of luxury while taking in jaw-dropping views of the Hong Kong skyline. Sunsets from the seventy-sixth-floor jacuzzy and Bliss Spa are unforgettable, as are the hotel's surreal decor and impeccable service. The Living Room lounge is a great place to rub elbows with Hong Kong's hippest socialites, and if you're a little worse for wear after a sizzling Saturday night, there's no better cure than a delectable Sunday brunch at the Kitchen. Nothing brightens a Sunday morn like a chocolate fountain does it? Park Hyatt, Shanghai The very epidome of modernity, there isn't an inch of the Park Hyatt, or it's host structure, the World Financial Center, that doesn't scream bleeding edge. There's no doubt that the best views in the city are right here, where even the Jinmao tower seems tiny. Bedding materials as fine as cirrus and carpets soft as cashmere give you an idea of what the Hyatt has in store... Four Seasons, Macau the Venetian has over a ton of gold leaf in its halls!) this hotel's 360 rooms give you the best of Macau's European mansions and updates them with refined services, luxurious amenities, five pools, and subtle touches including Portuguese egg tarts delivered alongside evening turndown service and Chinese silks in room decor. Images courtesy of the Four Seasons, Macau; W, Hong Kong; The Banyan Tree Resort and Spa Sanya; Park Hyatt, Beijing; Hotel G, Beijing and the Aman at Summer Palace, Beijing.
[Last edited by Stephan_Larose on 5-May-2009  15:52]
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