Since 1969, restaurant, hotel, travel & other witty reviews by a handpicked, worldwide team of discerning professionals—and your views, too.




The exterior of Ocean House in Watch Hill, Rhode Island

The exterior of Ocean House in Watch Hill, Rhode Island

by Meryl Pearlstein

Set on a bluff overlooking the town of Watch Hill, Ocean House is a meticulous, $149-million recreation of the original 1868 hotel of the same name. While it has decidedly 21st-century luxuries and conveniences, it conveys the mood of an earlier era, when its namesake was the last of eight grand Watch Hill resorts built during the area’s heyday, which lasted into the 1920s.

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The pool at Alila Ubud in Bali

The pool at Alila Ubud in Bali

by Evelyn Chen

Just five kilometers north of Bali’s Ubud village, the Alila Ubud is hidden away in the Ayung Valley. With the lush landscape as its backdrop, a postcard-perfect infinity pool that seems suspended in midair symbolizes the retreat’s paradisiacal ambience, and the property thrives on its reputation as a place for communing with nature. This harmony begins with the hotel’s own construction. The bamboo-pillared lobby overlooks verdant fields from which alang-alang is harvested for the thatched roofs, while the banks of the Ayung River supply the river stones that stud the walls and pavements.

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by Sophie Gayot

When the Four Seasons Hotels take it to the streets, they take it in the form of a food truck! The Four Seasons Hotels Food Truck is an idea developed during a corporate meeting that was two years in the making. The truck is currently touring cities in the western United States which are home to Four Seasons Hotels, starting in Palo Alto and ending in Santa Fe.

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Francois Delahaye | Alain Ducasse | Sophie Gayot

François Delahaye, Hôtel Plaza Athénée general manager, chef Alain Ducasse with Sophie Gayot

by Sophie Gayot

Although I missed the 100th-anniversary celebration of Hôtel Plaza Athénée in Paris in April of this year, I was there last night for its “unofficial” closing ceremony. Yes, you read that correctly, the Plaza’s last day was September 30th. Rest assured, it is closing for a good cause: to reopen with even more grandeur (if that is even possible).

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A guest room at the Fairmont Peace Hotel in Shanghai

A guest room at the Fairmont Peace Hotel in Shanghai

by Evelyn Chen

Between the busloads of tourists and the history buffs that flock to this Bund landmark to experience a piece of Shanghai’s history, the public spaces at the Fairmont Peace Hotel might not quite embody its name. But what the property lacks in tranquility, it more than makes up for in iconic status, given its storied past as the Cathay Hotel, built in 1929 and then owned by one of the city’s most notable businessmen, Sir Victor Sassoon.

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The exterior of The US Grant hotel in San Diego's Gaslamp Quarter

The exterior of The US Grant hotel in San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter

A Historic and Storied Gem in the Gaslamp Quarter

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, The US Grant hotel has been a San Diego icon since its debut in 1910. While the handsome hotel itself is a sight to see, its history is what makes this property so fascinating. The land (which was once owned by the Kumeyaay tribe) was the home of San Diego’s first major hotel, Horton House Hotel, until it was bought and demolished by Ulysses S. Grant, Jr., son of the eighteenth U.S. president. In its place, he built The US Grant (named after his father), an eleven-story, luxury hotel in what is now the Gaslamp Quarter of downtown San Diego.

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Beach Vista at Beaches Turks and Caicos

Beach Vista at Beaches Turks and Caicos

A Caribbean Gem for Families

By John and Sandra Nowlan

As we approached our resort, our friendly driver boasted that the Turks and Caicos offer the best of all worlds — British passports for its 30,000 citizens, the American dollar as its currency and a Canadian banking and health care system. Located where the Caribbean Sea meets the Atlantic just southeast of the Bahamas, this tranquil and tropical archipelago of 40 islands and cays (eight of which are inhabited) also offers the clearest and brightest turquoise water we’ve ever seen, fantastic white sand beaches and several resorts that rate among the best in the world.

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Nyungwe Forest Lodge Exterior

Exterior view of the Nyungwe Forest Lodge in Rwanda


by Martha Burr

A cutting-edge destination for eco-tourism, Rwanda’s top luxury safari lodge borders the continent’s largest mountain rainforest and offers extraordinary chimpanzee trekking.

Rwanda offers a luxury boutique resort experience not to be missed at the edge of one of the continent’s oldest mountain rainforests. Nyungwe Forest Lodge sits like a dream on a rolling hilltop in the midst of the vast working Gisakura Tea Estate, with airy private bungalows that sometimes offer fleeting views of monkeys springing past in the forest.

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View of the Golden Gate Bridge from Loews Regency San Francisco at sunset

View of the Golden Gate Bridge from Loews Regency San Francisco at sunset

Located in the heart of San Francisco’s bustling financial district, this posh property is more than just a high-end business hotel. Occupying the top eleven floors of the city’s third-tallest building, the Loews Regency San Francisco provides incomparable sweeping views that stretch from the Golden Gate Bridge to the Bay Bridge. The hotel caters to a sophisticated traveler clientele, whether it’s those who like to call it home while on business, or visitors who prefer a luxurious and comfortable resting place while touring “The City by the Bay.”

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The outdoor lounge at Frolik Kitchen + Cocktails

The outdoor lounge at Frolik Kitchen + Cocktails

Motif Seattle went through a three-year, multi-million dollar renovation. Starting with the common areas, it’s upped the ante in terms of décor, with vibrant, contemporary colors, new furniture and modern art in what was once a Red Lion Inn. The new restaurant, Frolik Kitchen + Cocktails, sports a gorgeous interior and inviting outdoor patio (weather permitting, that is). There is a fitness room, as well as plans to add a spa.

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