For many, this was the year that wasn’t. However, whilst Covid-19 has had a serious impact on the travel industry, the world’s luxury hotels persevered, with a whole host of lavish destinations throwing open their doors for the first time, ready to (safely) welcome guests.
However, with travel restrictions in place across the world, many of these exciting new hotels missed their hour in the limelight, with many openings slipping under the radar.
But fear not: our round-up of the 2020 hotel openings you may have missed ensures that now the world is beginning to open back up, your travel calendar will be full of the most exclusive destinations on the market.
Villa Copenhagen, Denmark – opened July
As one of Europe’s coolest cities, Copenhagen is not short of chic places to stay. Since its opening in July, the 390-room Villa Copenhagen has been causing quite the stir as a destination to eat, sleep and work. Featuring the sharp, clean lines of Danish architecture, combined with the signature playful, bright colors that have made the city a fashion capital, the Villa is impressively stylish – even by Copenhagen standards.
Villa Copenhagen focuses on what it calls “conscious luxury”, whereby sustainability is a driving force in the hotel’s overall mission, with one suite entirely dedicated to showcasing sustainable design and materials, making it one of the most forward-thinking 2020 hotel openings. In addition to eco-friendly accommodation, the Villa also boasts zero-waste dining options and historic event spaces.
La Reserve Eden au Lac, Switzerland – opened January
Designed with the intention of giving guests the feeling of being on a yacht, La Réserve Eden has the exclusive claim of being the only hotel on Lac Zurich – with most of the 40 rooms and suites including impressive lake views.
The hotel joined the brand’s other properties in Paris, Geneva and Ramatuelle in January, following a two-year restoration. Inside, the décor is contemporary but still maintains nods to the nautical location with wooden oars and boat-themed artwork. The redesign extends to the hotel’s two restaurants, with guests able to enjoy all-day dining in stylish surroundings.
&Beyond Ngala Treehouse, South Africa – opened February
Having opened as part of the &Beyond Ngala Safari Lodge in February, the &Beyond Ngala Treehouse offers completely private accommodation, surrounded by nothing but the South African bush. On the rooftop of the fully solar-powered Treehouse, guests can lie under the expansive star-studded skies, whilst listening to the sounds of the bush coming alive.
Set across four stories, the &Beyond Ngala Treehouse includes both indoor and outdoor sleeping, a roof terrace and bathroom with an outdoor shower, allowing you to go completely off-grid, and immerse yourself in the natural environment from a comfortably safe distance.
Paragon 700 Boutique Hotel & Spa, Italy – opened June
Nestled in the southern region of Puglia, Paragon 700 Boutique Hotel & Spa is a former palace that has been carefully restored using traditional methods. Featuring classic décor with contemporary touches and remarkably high ceilings, Paragon 700’s 11 rooms are brimming with Italian charm. Set in the hill-top town of Ostuni, the red brick façade makes the hotel stand out against its neighboring whitewashed buildings.
Outside, the turquoise swimming pool (the only one in Ostuni) and walled green gardens create a lush oasis, prime for relaxation and a cocktail or two. With an idyllic spa and gourmet dining experiences, Paragon 700 is one 2020 hotel opening you’ll wish you hadn’t missed.
Commodore Perry Estate Auberge Resorts Collection, USA – opened June
Combining European elegance with Texan charm, Commodore Perry Estate opened its doors late June. Set on ten acres of grounds in the hospitable city of Austin, the hotel is the first urban location in Auberge Resorts Collection. The hotel’s 50 charming rooms are design-led, with the suites paying homage to the premises’ former residents, with an eclectic mix of tasteful yet playful décor.
Commodore Perry Estate is also home to one of Austin’s most hotly anticipated restaurant openings of the year: Lutie’s Garden Restaurant. Celebrating seasonal ingredients sourced from the hotel’s own gardens, Lutie’s will open late fall. Amenities also include a lavish 50-foot swimming pool and state-of-the-art fitness facilities.
One&Only Desaru Coast, Malaysia – opened September
As One&Only’s first Asian destination, the Desaru Coast resort promises to be one of the most magical 2020 hotel openings. Having launched early September, the hotel offers a tranquil retreat from the demands of busy city life with a selection of luxurious suites, nestled into the Malaysian coastline, all of which include their own plunge pool.
The One&Only Desaru Coast’s main appeal is its commitment to health and wellbeing, with Asia’s only Chenot Spa calling the hotel home. In addition, guests can enjoy a range of excursions into the hotel’s surrounding rainforests to witness the native wildlife, or relax at the laid-back beach club, enjoying the BBQ-style food.
Riggs Washington DC, USA – opened February
As Lore Group’s first US-based hotel, you can be sure that no expenses have been spared in creating the perfect base from which to explore the capital. Situated in a former bank, the hotel’s décor makes nods to its past, with bank-like interior elements remaining throughout – history fans will be delighted to find that the lower level bar is housed in the original bank vault.
However, whilst the original architecture has been honored, the hotel successfully elevates itself to suit the modern market. A chic rooftop bar overlooking views across the city serves up Mediterranean-inspired aperitifs and light bites, while the 181 impressively decadent rooms and suites promise to be a relaxing retreat.
The Mitre Hampton Court, UK – opened September
Located next to Hampton Court Palace, The Mitre has an impressive history dating back to 1665 – although the new hotel has only been open a precious few weeks. Honoring the building’s long history, each of The Mitre’s 36 vibrantly decorated rooms is named for a historic figure or pastime, including suites dedicated to Henry VIII and Catherine Parr.
Set on the banks of the River Thames, The Mitre boasts a waterside terrace, perfect for enjoying a drink and watching the boats go by. Guests can also make use of the hotel’s two restaurants, offering excellent food in casual yet stylish settings. As the first hotel launched in the Signet Collection, The Mitre offers a quintessentially British experience with more than just a dash of luxury.
Alamayah Boutique Retreat, Indonesia – opened April
Offering just six suites, the Alamayah Boutique Retreat has promised the height of exclusivity since its opening in April. Set in a remote village in the southwest Sumba, each suite offers stunning views of either the wild jungles or the Indian Ocean, with the natural surrounding woven into the interior design.
Under the guidance of executive chef Diego Gimeno, Alamayah serves up a farm-to-table menu, packed with fresh and locally sourced ingredients. The journey to wellness doesn’t stop at food, with the hotel encouraging physical exercise by offering complimentary use of a range of equipment including surfboards, mountain bikes and yoga equipment. Those hoping for the most exclusive of retreats can opt to privately hire the entire premises with full servicing.
The Tokyo EDITION, Toranomon Japan – opened September
Modern design meets historic charm at The Tokyo EDITION, Toranomon. Opened mid-September, the hotel has been designed by renowned architect Kengo Kuma, creating an oasis in the middle of a bustling city. The 206 rooms feature sleek, minimal design and muted lighting in line with classic Japanese décor, creating a calm, welcoming environment.
Set in the heart of the city, The Tokyo EDITION’s 22 suites all boast incredible views across the skyline, but the 180° vistas from the hotel’s one-of-a-kind EDITION Penthouse Suite are not to be missed. Those with a taste for the high life will also be delighted to learn that the hotel’s 90-seat outdoor terrace restaurant is the only outdoor skyscraper dining venue of this scale in the whole city, making Tokyo EDITION one of the most exciting 2020 hotel openings.