Whether you want to find a bit of romance or simply to be humbled by the genius of humanity, a skyline can be an awe-inducing thing of beauty. With that in mind we’ve collected 10 of the top hotels around the world that offer stunning views of skylines new and old. You’ll find everything from high-end luxury to simple mid-range options on this list, so no matter your budget there’s a beautiful view waiting to be found.
For fans of old-school luxury, the InterContinental Hong Kong is one of Hong Kong’s most tricked-out properties. That starts with amenities like 24-hour butler service and free smartphones, and continues through the hotel’s five exceptional restaurants and elegant rooms. Without a doubt, though, it’s the stunning views of Victoria Harbour that make this a truly special experience. For travelers with the cash to spare, opt for rooms like the Presidential Suite, with its skyline-view terrace and living room. Regardless of which category you select here, you’re likely to score a skyline view, as nearly two-thirds of the rooms look out onto the harbor and Wan Chai across the water.
New York City isn’t lacking in luxury hotels, but for sexy contemporary style alongside stunning city views, it’s hard to top The William Vale. Depending on where you’re standing in the hotel, views will take in the Manhattan skyline, the spires of Long Island City, the sprawl of northern Brooklyn, and the towers of downtown Brooklyn. It also packs in tons of luxe features that aren’t common in NYC, including a South Beach-style outdoor pool, wildly popular bars and restaurants, and eye-catching local artwork. The skyline is ever-changing, but for rates that are consistently reasonable among New York City’s luxury hotels, The William Vale delivers plenty of bang for the buck.
Spa days are an indulgent experience by any measure, but when you add stunning skyline views to the package, things enter a whole new level of luxury. That type of pampering is exactly what’s on the agenda at the Andaz Tokyo Toranomon Hills, where the spa is just one of the spots for taking in breathtaking cityscapes. In fact, the hotel occupies the 47 through 51 floors of the Toranomon Hills skyscraper, meaning that every floor, room, and common area essentially guarantees vantages across the city. Decor blends hip and edgy elements with more classic touches, and there are numerous restaurants and shops within Toranomon Hills development. The only downside is that the Minato location a bit far from Shinjuku and some of Tokyo’s other tourist hot spots. However, for luxury amenities and views like this, the tradeoff is worth it.
The hilly landscape of Portugal’s west coast is a thing of beauty that lends itself to some pretty spectacular urban scenery. For an epic classic skyline view of Porto — one of Portugal’s most beautiful cities — head to The Yeatman. Keep in mind that you’re trading easy city-center access for some of the best views to be found across the Douro River to Porto. This luxury boutique property, in Vila Novo de Gaia (home to many of the region’s oldest port wine cellars), has impeccable Old World style. However, it’s the undeniably romantic vistas that make this hotel special. They’re available from most rooms, the lovely rooftop terrace bar, and both indoor and outdoor pools.
Here’s a pro tip for scoring the best skyline views possible: Opt for a hotel that’s a little farther from the city center than you might otherwise prefer. This puts some distance between you and the landscape you’re hoping to enjoy. That’s especially true in cities that are densely packed with skyscrapers, like Chicago and New York City. Hotel Lincoln, which sits right next to Chicago’s gorgeous Lincoln Park, has amazing views south to iconic buildings like the John Hancock Center. If you snag a seat at its popular rooftop restaurant and bar — J. Parker — you’re in for a treat, as views from the terrace sweep across the park, Lake Michigan, and the stunning Second City skyline to the south.
Bangkok is dizzying by any measure, from its frenetic pace of life and jam-packed markets to fiery cuisine and stifling heat. But its cityscape is also the stuff of legend, and with massive skyscrapers popping up all of the time, its an ever-changing landscape that’s always filled with fresh new perspectives. The Centara Grand & Bangkok Convention Centre is a sharp exercise in extremes. Rooms are sober and stylish, and every luxury amenity is on hand — from a swish spa and juice bar to a city-view pool and gym. It’s attached to CentralWorld, one of the world’s largest malls, and sits right next to the skytrain for easy city commutes. The views are mind-blowing from many parts of the hotel, though especially at its restaurants and bars: Red Sky and The World. Regardless, as rooms start on the 28th floor of the tower, all have some version of an inspiring skyline view.
Chic style? Check. Impeccable boutique hotel credentials? Check. Amazing views of downtown Toronto? Check. The Thompson Toronto embraces all things hip and modern, and does so with a style that matches its Art and Design District address. The hotel is something of a destination in its own right, with hip crowds swarming its bars and restaurants until late. Rooms are spacious, bright, and sharp, and the rooftop pool and terrace opens to panoramic cityscape views, including Toronto’s iconic CN Tower. The plush screening room, full gym, and wealth of boutiques and galleries just outside its front door all add to this hotel’s polished appeal.
While Europe’s low-rise capitals may not inspire the kind of vertigo-inducing awe that travelers have in mind when they think of skylines, cities like London manage to be easy on the eyes nonetheless. And that’s particularly the case at the impeccably sleek and stylish Mondrian London at Sea Containers. From its bars — where luxe jewel tones and lively terrace scenes are the name of the game — to the sexy rooms, this hotel is polished in the extreme. When you add panoramic Thames River views — with glimpses of St. Paul’s iconic dome in the distance — it’s hard to top the Mondrian. Unexpected central-London features like a spa and cinema room only sweeten the deal.
It’s not the most glam hotel to be found in downtown Sydney, but for travelers wanting almost unrivaled views of Sydney’s bustling core, the Quay West Suites Sydney is hard to top. What makes this property even more enticing is the chance to peer down on two world-famous sights — the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge — simultaneously. The style is modern, though unmemorable, but the addition of a pool and fitness center, plus the all-apartment accommodations, make this a fine place to bed down in comfort. It’s also within an easy walk of The Rocks neighborhood as well as the Central Business District.
Shimmering steel and glass, endless white sand, and emerald green mountains — there’s something extra special about the skyline in Rio de Janeiro. While skyscrapers and high-rises clamor for space along famous beaches like Copacabana, Leblon, and Ipanema, the Hilton Rio de Janeiro Copacabana provides a classic luxury retreat in the middle of it all. Its Copacabana location puts it in the middle of one of Rio’s most classic beachside retreats, and near plenty of dining, drinking, and nightlife. The rooms are traditionally outfitted, but the bells and whistles here include two restaurants, an excellent wine cellar, spa, and two pools — one of which is a rooftop option with great beach views. Many of the rooms stare straight down the glittering Copacabana strip to Dois Irmaos, one of Rio’s many beautiful peaks.
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