NEW YORK, July 10, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Virtuoso®, the leading luxury travel agency network, has announced the nominees for its prestigious Best of the Best Hotel Awards. The network's famed Hotels & Resorts Program consists of more than 983 hotels, resorts, villas and private island retreats in 100 countries, cementing its reputation as an industry powerhouse and trusted source. Every year, the awards recognize the hotels that best exemplify Virtuoso's commitment to delivering exceptional experiences in travel.
The nominees represent the highest standards in their given category and only 50 properties are under consideration for the awards. The status and strength of the collection only enhances the level of competition, reinforcing the outstanding achievements of the 2013 nominees (see below for a full list).
"Virtuoso has been curating a portfolio of the most desired properties worldwide for more than 20 years," commented Albert Herrera, senior vice president of Global Product Partnerships. "The Best of the Best Hotel Awards honor the most exceptional properties within this group, and it is our pleasure to recognize them as well as some of the most respected general managers in the industry."
Editors of VIRTUOSO LIFE magazine, the network's exclusive award-winning publication, reviewed numerous submissions and researched hundreds of properties to select the award nominees. Winners will be revealed at the Hotels & Resorts dinner August 14, held during the 25th annual Virtuoso Travel Week. Taking place at the Bellagio in Las Vegas, August 11-16, Virtuoso Travel Week brings together thousands of Virtuoso's member travel advisors – considered the leaders in creating luxury experiences – and the world's best travel providers to participate in the industry's preeminent event. Virtuoso's travel advisors lend their experience and often firsthand accounts to the voting process, as they determine the winners for each category. VIRTUOSO LIFE magazine will feature the Best of the Best winners in its September/October 2013 issue. For more information, visit www.virtuoso.com.
Hotel of the Year – Recognizes a hotel that continually epitomizes excellence in the categories of design, ambience, service, food and beverage, spa, family programs, innovation and social responsibility.
- Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea – Maui, Hawaii, United States
- Gritti Palace, A Luxury Collection Hotel – Venice, Italy
- Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong – Hong Kong, China
- Montage Laguna Beach – Laguna Beach, California, United States
- The Peninsula Shanghai – Shanghai, China
One to Watch – Recognizes an exciting new property that elevates the hospitality experience, either in an emerging destination or an established tourism market.
- J.K. Place Roma – Rome, Italy
- Ritz Paris – Paris, France
- Rosewood London – London, England
- The St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort – Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
- Shangri-La Bosphorus, Istanbul – Istanbul, Turkey
Most Innovative Guest Experience – Recognizes a hotel that continually raises the bar by featuring clever and meaningful guest experiences that move the industry forward.
- Anantara Elephant Camp and Resort – Chiang Saen, Thailand
- Banjaar Tola by Taj Safaris – Kanha National Park, Madhya Pradesh, India
- Hotel Cipriani by Orient-Express – Venice, Italy
- The Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii – Kohala Coast, Hawaii, United States
- InterContinental Moorea Resort & Spa – Moorea, French Polynesia
Best Achievement in Design – Recognizes the significance of outstanding architecture and design of a hotel or component therein, whether in new construction, renovation or historic restoration.
- Alpina Gstaad – Gstaad, Switzerland
- Dorado Beach, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve – Dorado, Puerto Rico
- Four Seasons Hotel Toronto – Toronto, Canada
- Hotel Maria Cristina, A Luxury Collection Hotel – San Sebastian, Spain
- Mashpi Lodge – Mashpi Rainforest Biodiversity Reserve, Ecuador
Best Culinary Experience – Recognizes the hotel restaurant that offers exemplary food, service, ambience, wine list and even views.
- Amber, Landmark Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong – Hong Kong, China
- La Pergola, Rome Cavalieri Hotel, A Waldorf-Astoria Resort – Rome, Italy
- Restaurant 1621, Sofitel Santa Clara – Cartagena, Colombia
- Rivea, Hotel Byblos Saint Tropez – Saint-Tropez, France
- La Scene, Prince de Galles, A Luxury Collection Hotel – Paris, France
Best Bar – Recognizes the hotel bar that offers a lively, convivial and entertaining social meeting spot where innovative drinks and an enticing atmosphere create a "must see and be seen" buzz.
- The Armani, Bamboo Bar, Armani Hotel Milano – Milan, Italy
- The Bar, Park Hyatt Sydney – Sydney, Australia
- Bar Centro by Jose Andres, SLS Hotel South Beach – Miami, Florida, United States
- Ozone Bar, The Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong – Hong Kong, China
- Tunes Bar, The Conservatorium Hotel – Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Best Family Program – Recognizing the family friendly environment, this award acknowledges special programs and activities for children of all ages, from creative activities to educational endeavors and active adventures.
- Acqualina Resort & Spa on the Beach – Sunny Isles, Florida, United States
- Evason Ana Mandara at Nha Trang – Nha Trang, Vietnam
- Four Seasons Resort Bora Bora – Bora Bora, French Polynesia
- The Gleneagles Hotel – Auchterarder, Perthshire, Scotland
- The Resort at Pelican Hill – Newport Coast, California, United States
Best Spa – Recognizes the hotel spa that offers the most alluring environment for rest and rejuvenation, creative and therapeutic treatments, and highly skilled and knowledgeable therapists.
- Hypnoze Spa, Palacio Nazarenas by Orient-Express – Cuzco, Peru
- Miraj Hammam by Caudalie Paris, Shangri-La Hotel Toronto – Toronto, Canada
- Opium Spa, The Siam – Bangkok, Thailand
- Regent Spa, Regent Palms Turks & Caicos – Providenciales, Turks & Caicos
- Spa Mukul, Mukul Beach, Golf & Spa – Tola, Nicaragua
Hotelier of the Year – Honors an experienced hotel manager with an unrelenting passion for the industry, an astute appreciation for detail and a keen sense of how to lead and manage a dynamic team of professionals.
- Omer Acar, Le Royal Monceau – Raffles Paris, Paris, France
- Antonio Alvarez, Palacio Duhau-Park Hyatt Buenos Aires – Buenos Aires, Argentina
- Francois Delahaye, Hôtel Plaza Athenee, Dorchester Collection – Paris, France
- Elisabeth Gürtler, Hotel Sacher Wien and Hotel Sacher Salzburg – Vienna and Salzburg, Austria
- Marco Selva, St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort – Bal Harbour, Florida, United States
Virtuoso® is the industry's leading luxury travel network. This by-invitation-only organization comprises over 340 agencies with more than 7,200 elite travel specialists in 20 countries in North and South America, the Caribbean, Australia and New Zealand, as well as over 1,700 of the world's best travel providers and premier destinations. The network's member agencies generate over $9.6 billion annually in travel sales, making the group the most powerful in the luxury travel segment. Their relationships with the finest travel companies provide the network's affluent clientele with exclusive amenities, rare experiences and privileged access. For more information, visit www.virtuoso.com. To view Virtuoso's latest videos, go to http://www.youtube.com/user/VirtuosoTraveler.
About VIRTUOSO LIFE:
An award-winning upscale travel and lifestyle magazine, VIRTUOSO LIFE is the face of Virtuoso. Distributed to the top clients of Virtuoso-affiliated travel advisors, it reinforces their relationship through cutting-edge personalization and one-on-one messaging. VIRTUOSO LIFE artfully depicts highly customized luxury travel experiences enhanced by Virtuoso-exclusive products, access and amenities. For more information, visit www.virtuosolife.com.
Misty Ewing, CTA
Virtuoso – Director, Public Relations
Charles G. Curkin
Senior Account Executive
Alice Marshall Public Relations
Phone: 212. 861.4031
Alice Marshall Public Relations