One of the most important brand names a hotel can boast is that of its designer. A famous hotel designer such as Philippe Starck can help ensure a hotel’s hot spot status, so new hotels are wise to invest heavily in their interior style. And it’s not only traditional hotel designers that can add to a hotel’s cachet; there is a trend of fashion designers or celebrities turning their talents to hotels, which always creates plenty of buzz. These nine hotels are some of the most devastatingly stylish we’ve found anywhere.
Hotel Le Notre Dame, Paris
Many guests choose this charming boutique hotel for its proximity to Notre Dame Cathedral, which is a two-minute walk away. But this hotel is notable for more than its location: Its 26 funky, eclectic rooms were designed by none other than fashion powerhouse Christian Lacroix. They feature bold patterns and prints, as well as natural materials such as wood and stone.
SLS Hotel South Beach, Miami
Celebrity hotel designer Philippe Starck has become famous for his surrealist, oddball style, and the SLS Miami is a gorgeous recent example of his work. (The hotel’s star-studded opening party was in late 2012). As if that weren’t enough, Lenny Kravitz collaborated with Starck on the design, making this hotel’s design a true celebrity tour de force. The style is just the right combination of sexy, whimsical, and weird.
Viceroy Santa Monica
Designer Kelly Wearstler is known for her bold, colorful styles that incorporate Asian influences as well as offbeat touches such as animal motifs (think: horse busts and porcelain dog lamps). Her designs also have a cohesive theme that relate to the hotel’s architecture, history, and vision. The Viceroy Santa Monica has a Colonial Britain theme (note the china displays on the walls).
Tortuga Bay, Dominican Republic
Tortuga Bay not only has a gorgeous setting (featuring miles of beachfront and a 1,500 nature preserve) -- it also has lovely, airy villas, designed by none other than D.R.-born fashion designer Oscar de la Renta. Every villa has a terrace or balcony with an ocean view, and decadent beds have four-poster frames and Frette linens.
Ink48, New York City
The Ink48 in Hell’s Kitchen offers all the extras expected from the Kimpton brand (including free wine receptions and a pet-friendly policy). But it also offers remarkably stylish design from the famous David Rockwell. The son of a vaudeville dancer and choreographer, David Rockwell continues to be inspired by the theatrical -- and it shows. The hotel’s bubble-glass chandeliers, electric blue velveteen couches, and red silk upholstered seating alcoves are nothing if not dramatic.
Gramercy Park Hotel, New York City
Ian Schraeger, the hotelier behind many of the county’s hippest hotels, teamed up with artist and filmmaker Julian Schnabel to create the look for Gramercy Park. The hotel’s combination of red velvet, museum-quality artwork, thick rugs, and rich wood creates a decidedly bohemian feel. It’s not hard to understand why the hotel has endured as a celebrity hot spot.
Fontainebleau Resort Miami Beach
This Art Deco icon got a $1 billion facelift in 2008, and Jeffrey Beers’ design firm was responsible for its sleek, mood-lit interiors. The hotel is sprawling, with over 1,500 rooms, and there are nine massive free-form pools to accommodate the crowds. Its gorgeous design is hard to top.
Mukul Luxury Resort
A superstar team of designers collaborated on this uber-luxury resort that opened in Nicaragua in 2013. Paul Duesing (whose past projects have included Grand Hotel du Cap Ferrat and One&Only Palmilla) worked with Jeff Jensen and Frank Butler to create one most exclusive hideaways not only in Nicaragua, but Central America. The name, Mukul, is Mayan for "secret," and guests are assured of a high level of privacy: The resort, part of a sprawling, 1670-acre beach community, has only 37 luxurious Bohios and Villas, and the grounds are not open to the public.
Round Hill Hotel & Villas
The exclusive hillside villas dotting Round Hill’s lush, beautiful grounds were all designed by Ralph Lauren. Rooms have four-poster mahogany beds, furniture from the Ralph Lauren Home collection, and ocean views. Fresh white linens and white stone floors combined with pink and blue color accents make for a sophisticated and airy beach style.
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