I’ll be back: The 14 best hotels I stayed at in 2014

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merrion dublin 3 merrion dublin 2

14. The Merrion, Dublin

If you want to experience true Irish hospitality whilst in the capital, The Merrion is an impeccable reflection of Irish homeliness the way it should be enjoyed – with a touch of luxury of course! The staff are some of the friendliest, most humble people I have encountered throughout my days living in 5 star hotels… and the rooms are simply exquisite. 

Read the full review.


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13. The Balmoral, Edinburgh

The Balmoral is widely regarded as the crowning jewel of luxury hotels in Edinburgh, Scotland’s ever-so-charming capital. J. K. Rowling stayed here to finish the final installment of the Harry Potter books and yes, you can even stay in the same room!

Read the full review.


zabeel saray dubai dubai

12. Zabeel Saray, Dubai

As one of the Jumeirah collection, the Zabeel Saray on the palm is one of Dubai’s most luxurious hotels. It is also relatively well-priced compared to other hotels in the 5 star category and the private beach is also a nice touch!

Read the full review.


explora rapa nui explorarapanui

11. Explora Rapa Nui, Easter Island

Easter Island is one of those bucket list locations you always dream about but never actually think you will go. When I went there this year, I couldn’t have been in a more dream-like fantasy that requires pinching yourself to know its actually happening. I visited the island with Explora, a luxury collection of 3 properties in Easter Island, Atacama, and Patagonia. The all-inclusive package ensured I was well taken care of, including all three-course meals and guided hikes around the island.

Read the full review.


wellesley london wellesley

10. The Wellesly Hotel, London

Although I have stayed at many of London’s most luxurious properties, The Wellesly London managed to stand out as London’s first boutique uber-luxe property. It had all the grandeur of the large hotels, but with the exclusiveness of being a small property catering to a small clientele. The position of the property opposite London’d Hyde Park couldn’t have been more perfect!

Read the full review.


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9. Hotel Beaune Le Cep, Beaune

Although this hotel is only categorised as a four star hotel, it managed to surpass all expectations and come inside the top 10 of this year’s best hotel visits. Located amidst the wine region in France, Hotel Le Cep has been passed down through generations and manages to maintain a uniquely family-oriented approach to comfortable luxury.

Read the full review.


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8. The Greenwich Hotel, New York

What’s cooler than being cool? Robert De Niro’s Greenwich Hotel is the epitome of being ‘on the inside’. This is one of the most understated addresses in all of New York and an absolute must for anyone who wants to experience New York in a more local way but still with the artsy types.

Read the full review.


Le Toiny St Barths st barths

7. Hotel le Toiny, St Barthelemy

Hotel le Toiny is the destination for honeymooners on the island of St Barthelemy in the French caribbean. Each room has a private pool overlooking the ocean and the greenery surrounding each bungalow makes it a private affair. Private in-room breakfast is included in the rates and served on your private terrace – how lush!

Read the full review.


Ritz Carlton HK Ritz Carlton Hong Kong

6. The Ritz Carlton, Hong Kong

As far as room views go, the Rits Carlton Hong Kong – aka the highest hotel in the world – is like sleeping in the clouds. Upgrading to the hotel’s executive club is an absolute must, as it comes with complimentary food and drinks around the clock and unrivalled service. 

Read the full review.


Isle De France St Barthelemy St Barthelemy

5. Hotel Isle de France, St. Barthelemy

The Isle de France has long been regarded as one of the absolute best properties to stay at on the island of St Barthelemy, where hotels very rarely drop below five stars. Commonly regarded as the holiday destination for the international elite, St Barthelemy is a truly luxe getaway that is hard to beat. Prices almost double during the festive season, so be sure to consider a visit over summer time instead.

Read the full review.


south africa Ellerman house

4. Ellerman House, Cape Town

As far as luxury experiences go in South Africa, there are plenty on offer that involve safari camps and lavish three-course meals… but there is none other like the cliffside innercity escape in Cape Town; Ellerman House. The staff at Ellerman welcome guests at the airport with a private car, followed by a full property inspection and introduction to their home away from home in Cape Town, South Africa. There is even a private gallery onsite that is home to an impressive collection of South African art, as well as an opulent wine gallery that feels as if it is a living piece of art in itself.

Read the full review.


Patagonia Chile Patagonia Chile

3. Salto Chico Hotel, Patagonia

Salto Chico is located smack bang in the middle of the Torres del Paine National Park in Patagonia, Chile. While the nature and surrounds are the clear focus, the hotel itself is a luxurious getaway that will leave you feeling as if you have found a true heaven on earth. The only hard part is leaving…

Read the full review.


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2. The Pierre, A Taj Hotel, New York

When I was upgraded to the Presidential Suite at The Pierre hotel in New York, I couldn’t help but to think this would have to be the most luxurious experience I would ever be a part of in my life. The opulence of the hotel is reflected in all suites and rooms throughout The Pierre, but stepping inside the Presidential Suite after getting into New York from a long day flying was a moment I will never forget for as long as I shall live!

Read the full review.


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1. Singita Sweni, Kruger National Park

The luxurious Singita properties located throughout Africa are some of the most exquisite private lodges to be found in the world. A long list of A-list celebrities have stayed here at the Singita Sweni and Lobombo lodges inside the Kruger National Park, but despite the rumours none of these will be confirmed – all part of the privacy on offer here at Singita. Although this is one of the world’s most exclusive accommodations on offer, Singita have a strong focus on giving back to the local community and even have a cooking school onsite to invigorate education in the region. A true delight to visit and by far the most luxurious hotel visited by WOW in 2014.

Read the full review.


Thanks to each of the 14 best hotels of this year for welcoming World of Wanderlust. Here’s to a New Year exploring more of the world’s most exclusive properties in 2015!

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    December 9, 2014 at 8:27 pm

    Wow, so many amazing places!

    November 30, 2014 at 11:28 am

    You’ve stayed in some amazing places! x

    November 25, 2014 at 7:16 am

    Nice!!! I can’t wait to get to Dubai…

    November 25, 2014 at 7:16 am

    Wow, they’re all so incredible! It’s so hard to pick a favorite but if I could go to one tomorrow it’d be Singita Sweni, Kruger National Park! Thanks for sharing 🙂

    November 25, 2014 at 6:53 am

    Hi Brooke 🙂
    I absolutely love this post! All of the hotels look incredible 🙂 I’m currently planning my 6month holiday and although I can’t afford to stay in places like this I think I may splurge on the Merrion in Dublin for 2 night! 🙂 are there any cheaper hotels that you could reccomend? As a student planning a world trip my funds are a lot more limited haha
    Keep up the wanderlust xxxx

    November 24, 2014 at 8:23 pm

    I’m afraid I agree with Kristin… your site is becoming far too commercialised! Unfortunately, it is somehow losing its individuality and character (my opinion, of course!). I understand that you need to fund this blog and lifestyle, but then the original concept is somehow lost in translation…

    Kelly @ Endlessly Exploring
    November 24, 2014 at 4:56 pm

    Some incredible hotels on here! I can’t even pick a favourite 😛 You’re a lucky girl! x

    November 24, 2014 at 9:58 am

    Great choices! I’d definitely come back if I were you too

    Characters & Carry-ons

    November 23, 2014 at 8:43 pm

    Looks like some amazing places. Lucky lady you are.

    November 23, 2014 at 10:17 am

    I have been following your young soul travelling for almost a year now…? Once I read your post about not receive any money from anyone and all the expenses are from your “own pocket”… Well, I don’t want to sound like an idiot because I think that’s great people actually travel by themselves. I have many experience of it myself but now, all these hotels, food, transportation is not gonna last with your two years of saving darling.
    This is beyond absurd that you are actually doing this with your savings only.
    Keep you the good spirit doll, I don’t mean to put you down but rather ask, isn’t this one of those commercial thing you get sponsors for doing some of this… and maybe…your parents is supporting you for some part? Whatever I say… consider yourself lucky and continue your good work you’ve done for yourself!

  • awanderlustblog@OUTLOOK.COM'
    November 23, 2014 at 7:34 am

    you lucky girl!! they all look amazing

    Andy Cao
    November 23, 2014 at 4:05 am

    I’ve stayed at The Balmoral and the Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong and both are amazing! Next time you are in NYC, you should check out the Gramercy Park Hotel. I stayed there a few years ago. It’s a really unique hotel with lots of history and a cool bohemian style. Great rooftop bar and the Rose Bar downstairs is a celebrity hotspot. The walls are covered with world class art, and only guests are allowed in the private Gramercy Park across the street.

    Best holiday destinations
    November 22, 2014 at 7:10 pm

    Thanks for sharing nice views.

    Clipping Path Outsource
    November 22, 2014 at 5:37 pm

    5. Hotel Isle de France, St. Barthelemy was fine of them.

    November 22, 2014 at 10:27 am

    I’ve always wanted to stay at the Balmoral! This is such a scrumptious look inside luxury hotels.

    Sarah Elizabeth
    November 22, 2014 at 9:33 am

    WOW!! Talk about luxury- these all look amazing! Would say you’re one lucky lady but we know you’ve worked hard to experience all of this- what a life! Can’t wait to see what 2015 brings for you. GIPD xx

    Tessa / Bramble & Thorn
    November 22, 2014 at 9:26 am

    Oh my gosh, all of these are so beautiful! You’re so lucky that you’ve been able to stay in these gorgeous places, they all look so opulent and gorgeous!

    Sabine @ thetravellingchilli
    November 22, 2014 at 9:00 am

    These hotels just look amazing! Great you were able to stay here the past year and thanks for sharing them with us.

    November 22, 2014 at 8:30 am

    I can’t even believe that some of these exist! Absolutely gorgeous!

    -Raza from

    November 22, 2014 at 7:38 am

    Wow! All these hotels are amazing. You are one lucky girl to see the world in style.

    November 22, 2014 at 7:36 am

    WOW! I would say you have gotten to stay some amazing places. You really get to see the world in style.

    November 22, 2014 at 5:21 am

    Such gorgeous properties! I can see why you chose Singita Sweni as number one!

    November 22, 2014 at 4:59 am

    That’s an impressive list of stunning hotels – need to check a few of them out me thinks but I also loved The Balmoral in Edinburgh, such a beautiful hotel x

    November 22, 2014 at 4:30 am

    Love the last one!

    November 22, 2014 at 4:20 am

    It’s a pity that you don’t choose hotels that your readers also can afford.
    I would love to read more from small boutique hotels, eventhough they did not invited you to stay 😉

    Occasionally I may...
    November 22, 2014 at 4:04 am

    Wow all 14 look amazing! I would love to stay at any one of these places.

    November 22, 2014 at 2:36 am

    Where do you get the means to stay in these expensive hotels?

    November 22, 2014 at 2:34 am

    Can you make a list of the best hostels you stayed?

    November 22, 2014 at 2:29 am

    Cape Town in itself is absolutely breathtaking. I can’t imagine how unbelievable that hotel is and how much more amazing a trip there would be!

    November 22, 2014 at 2:07 am

    All of these are wow!!! Lucky girl x

    November 22, 2014 at 2:06 am

    I would LOVE to stay at one of the Explora hotels!

    I think you ought to try more small “boutique” hotels! I like staying at big-name luxury hotels, but nothing beats the feeling of discovering a little treasure when you are staying at a wonderful independent hotel!

    Leah of The Mochilera Diaries
    November 22, 2014 at 1:47 am

    I was reading through this like “Yeah…that one’s my favorite. No, that one! NOOO THIS ONE!” And then I realized I want to stay in them all and I gave up trying to choose a favorite. So swanky.