An enclave of the uber-rich, Palm Beach caters to a traditionally wealthy crowd with its elegant restaurants, private beaches, and beautiful oceanfront mansions and boutiques along Worth Avenue. Visitors must be ready to shell out some serious green while vacationing in Palm Beach — especially if they’re staying at one of the town’s top luxury hotels.
This sprawling 140-acre resort feels more like a Renaissance palace than a hotel. The oceanfront grounds are defined by historic architecture and elegant landscaping, and the extensive features include five swimming pools, two 18-hole golf courses, 10 tennis courts, nine restaurants, and more than a dozen boutiques, including Lilly Pulitzer and Guerlain. The Breakers’ 540 rooms include all of the modern amenities -- minibars, flat-screen TVs, and free Wi-Fi -- but most feel a bit cramped for the price. The only major downside of The Breakers is its expensive, albeit delicious, on-site dining: A family of four could easily spend several hundred a day on food, without ordering anything special. But as far as competing hotels in Palm Beach go, nothing compares to the luxury found at this iconic property.
Even in ultra-luxurious Palm Beach County, the Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa stands out from the five-pearl pack (with a little help from the hotel's past life as a Ritz-Carlton property). From the palatial, world-class spa to the fine-dining restaurants and bars to one of the area’s most postcard-worthy beaches, every amenity is top-notch. The 309 rooms were designed by Jonathan Adler. Each is spacious, bright, and luxuriously appointed with premium minibars, chic bathrooms, and private balconies (many with ocean views). The location in Manalapan is farther than most hotels from the action, at about a 25-minute drive to popular CityPlace.
Four Seasons Resort, Palm Beach is located on a relatively quiet stretch of sand about a 10-minute drive south of the area's main attractions. The 210 rooms have private balconies and large flat-screen TVs, and are decorated in sophisticated beach style, with a blue, white and cream color scheme. Though the hotel is short on curb appeal, it has thoughtful amenities for families, a beautiful spa with a whirlpool and steam room, and wonderful service -- guests can expect extra touches like water spritzes and sunscreen at the (smallish) ocean-view pool.
Dating to 1926, the Chesterfield is a 52-room boutique hotel and historic landmark with the Palm Beach Preservation Foundation. Each of the unique rooms is meant to resemble accommodations in a European bed-and-breakfast; many have bold and colorful style influences, such as (tasteful) patterned wallpaper and bedspreads. Rooms are adorned with fresh flowers daily and come with tea- and coffee-makers, bathrobes, twice-daily housekeeping, and turndown service. The hotel's Old World Leopard Lounge & Restaurant serves all meals daily, plus tea in the afternoon and cocktails in the evening. Round-the-clock room service is also available. The heated pool has an adjacent hot tub and a refreshments table with lemonade, fruit, and chilled bottled water.
Built in 1926, this beautiful Mediterranean Revival hotel is a local institution. Nearly all of Sicilian architect Rosario Candela’s original structure remains, complemented by a lush decor of rich mahogany paneling and ornate antique furnishings. Two beautifully landscaped courtyards with sparkling fountains and intimate seating areas put a finer point on the boutique feel. The vibe is quiet, elegant, and sophisticated. Every space -- from the garden pool to the gourmet French restaurant to the twin reading nooks -- feels neatly designed for relaxed seclusion. Kids are welcome, but the reserved, honeymoon-worthy air draws far more couples than families.
Formerly the Omphoy, the intimate and swanky Tideline Resort & Spa is one of Palm Beach’s chicest hotels. It checks all the boxes for an upscale oceanfront resort, including a fine-dining restaurant, sushi bar, a full-service spa, gorgeous outdoor pool, and a semi-private stretch of one of South Florida’s most pristine beaches. All 134 rooms feature a modern, Asian-inspired decor and come with premium minibars, flat-screen TVs, and private balconies -- some with ocean views. However, the slightly sterile public area decor, and pricey restaurant and valet parking are all difficult to overlook.