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SmartFlyer 30: Stateside Hitlist

A luxury travel advisor isn’t allowed to play favorites, but, as we approach our 30th anniversary, there’s never been a better time to compile a list of thirty of our most beloved spots around the country that exceed client expectations, time, and time again.

The trickiest question you can ask a travel professional is, “what’s your favorite hotel?” Not because we haven’t tried them all, but because there is never just one. There’s say, a nature-lovers’ paradise for a coastal California getaway with the kids, or, the most romantic place to sneak away as a couple for the weekend within a few hours drive of Manhattan, or, perhaps our go-to for a southwest mother-daughter wellness getaway. The point is, we don’t play favorites. But we do love collaborative conversation around what makes a truly exceptional stay – and with feedback from our team of 175+ luxury travel advisor around the country, our stateside hitlist was born.

We’ve crafted this list with the understanding that in the wake of so many altered vacation plans, comfort levels with regards to travel will vary. With that in mind, our team is here to support whatever feels right for you and your family – our roundup has been designed to specifically highlight hotels that will welcome guests from summer 2020. Consider the links below your digital version of expedited security to the below regions or you can always skip back up top; and for specific opening dates and revised safety COVID-19 protocols, be sure to contact your SmartFlyer travel advisor.

#smartflyertakemeto…

  1. California: Discover the Golden State
  2. Out West: (Re)connect with Nature
  3. Southwest: Dose of Sunshine, Please
  4. Southeast: Southern Charm, Y’all
  5. Northeast: New England Vibes
  6. Hawaii: Aloha, Paradise

California: Discover the Golden State

Auberge du Soleil

Rutherford, California

Showcasing breathtaking views, Auberge du Soleil is the realization of French restaurateur Claude Rouas’ dream dating back to the 1980s. After the immediate success upon opening Napa Valley’s first fine-dining restaurant – designed to reflect a taste of Provence in California wine country – the hotel (then named “The Inn of the Sun”) was born. Nestled within a terraced, sun-kissed hillside amid 33-acres of heritage olive and oak trees, Auberge du Soleil offers fifty contemporary guestrooms and suites that effortlessly blend relaxed sophistication with understated elegance, earning a long-standing reputation as one of wine country’s most iconic luxury property.

Inspired by the South of France and infused with California soul, this is your ideal spot for a couples’ getaway. Newport Beach-based luxury travel advisor Lauren Grubbs shares, “Clients love beginning their day at Auberge du Soleil on the outdoor terrace enjoying breakfast and the incredible views of the Napa Valley!” Chicago-based luxury travel advisor Justyna Della Valle adds, “Auberge du Soleil is classic wine country. The rolling hill views remind me of being in Italy.”

Insider Tip: Work with your trusted SmartFlyer travel advisor to book a sunrise hot air balloon ride. You’ll launch just after dawn for an unforgettable ride, floating high above the expansive lush vineyards stretched across the valley floor while the sun rises over the eastern hillside.

Belmond El Encanto Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara, California

Spread across seven acres of secluded gardens, Belmond El Encanto opened in 1918 and has been part of Santa Barbara’s social scene ever since. The resort is gleaming and glamorous, yet relaxed and low key; it’s the kind of place that invites you to recline poolside, breathe in the ocean air, and sip a glass of crisp local wine. The restoration process helped to highlight the original Spanish-colonial and Californian craftsman styles, with modern additions including a zero-edge outdoor pool and sumptuous boutique spa. Here, every sense is heightened.

Austin-based luxury travel advisor Amanda Poses shares, “Belmond El Encanto is a very special place – the views during the day and at night at spectacular. As an added benefit, the spread-out nature of the property will be a comfort to clients looking to observe social distancing in one of just 92 California-style bungalows.” Plus, El Encanto is ideal for those with sustainability at the forefront of their travel decisions. The property has implemented a series of zero waste initiatives including composting, increased recycling and decreased plastic use ensuring travelers are assured every detail has been considered. | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: Enjoy a ride to the beach on the hotel’s electric bicycles or hop in their Mercedes sprinter to taste premium wines at El Paseo in the historic Presidio neighborhood.

Farmhouse Inn

Forestville, California

Nestled in the Russian River Valley of Sonoma, the Farmhouse Inn experience creates an authentic wine country haven in stylish comfort; and its unique West County location offers the added benefits of the majestic Redwood Forest and the breathtaking Sonoma Coast all within miles of the resort. Plus, this boutique, family-owned property is surrounded by world-class wineries and hundreds of acres of vineyards. The team prides themselves on the Inn’s intimacy and privacy, creating a feeling of visiting a private estate. Once at the resort, guests can enjoy the acclaimed 14-year awarded Michelin-starred restaurant.

St. Louis-based luxury travel advisor Amy Zebala shares, “Farmhouse Inn in Sonoma is exquisite. With only twenty-five rooms and keen attention-to-detail, it feels like your own hideaway. A decadent breakfast and a morning spa treatment followed by pool time and dinner at their Michelin star restaurant is also a perfect day!” New York City-based luxury travel advisor Mauricio Buenaventura adds, “Farmhouse Inn is the perfect boutique option for guests to feel socially distant while still being in a fully serviced in a high-touch property with divine food and access to all the best wine and vineyards.” | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: Be sure to visit the Inn’s winery partners – the 25 wineries offer complimentary VIP experiences. You can also gain insider knowledge on a day tour with one of the hotel’s sommeliers.

Hotel Bel-Air

Beverly Hills, California

Created by a pioneering spirit and entrepreneurial visionary, Hotel Bel-Air is a legendary estate that has taken care of is guests and community since 1946. The hotel has been the legendary setting for countless Hollywood moments and is beloved for consistently offering its guests privacy and low-key elegance.  The tone here is sophisticated and relaxed all at once. Louisville-based luxury travel advisor Erin Trager Kusman shares, “Hotel Bel Air is such an oasis in the city” to which Texas-based luxury travel advisor Carly Davis Allen adds, “This 12-acre is situated in the exclusive neighborhood of Bel-Air, making guests truly feel like royalty.”

Los Angeles-based luxury travel advisor Tiffany Khalili elaborates, “Guests will feel well looked after in this private and intimate setting.”London based luxury travel advisor Emyr Thomas weighs in, “If your idea of a perfect city hotel is one that instills a sense of peace and tranquility far away from the crowds but close enough to dive into the action when you need to, then this is the place for you.” Atlanta-based luxury travel advisor Alison White concludes, “Hotel Bel-Air is such a special spot! It feels romantic and Old Hollywood. And just by staying there you feel like part of a very exclusive club.” | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: Be sure to check out the iconic celebrity images in glorious monochrome that dominate the walls of The Bar & Lounge at Hotel Bel-Air captured by film and photography legend Norman Seeff.

Malibu Beach Inn

Malibu, California

A Pacific Coast getaway on ‘Billionaire’s Beach’ in the heart of the ‘Bu, Malibu Beach Inn is an idyllic boutique hotel offering breathtaking oceanic panoramas and refined design inspired by Malibu’s effortless ambiance. The vibe is effortless, relaxed, and completely laid back. Once you’re checked in, it will be hard to leave! Manhattan-based luxury travel advisor Erina Pindar shares, “The 47 guestrooms are perched right above the crashing waves and sands of Carbon Beach. The picturesque rooms are decorated in a simple aesthetic with a hint of coastal décor and most have small balconies overlooking the ocean and the beach below.”

Hoboken-based luxury travel advisor Carly Robinson shares, “You can hear the waves crash from your room when staying at the Malibu Beach Inn as you wake each morning to the soothing sounds of the sea, and at day’s end, watch the shores come alive with the glow of the setting sun. And with great restaurants close by alongside the beach, the location can’t be beaten. Of course, there’s also a spa allowing for a true R&R.” Mauricio Buenaventura adds, “With comfort, style, and all the cool factor you need, Malibu Beach Inn has it all.” | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: Check out nearby Point Dume State Beach for a boardwalk, a beach, and sea lions all in one spot. This nature preserve is located along a coastal bluff and visitors can ascend the trail to the sand dune and take in the incredible views.

Meadowood Napa Valley

St Helena, California

Settled on a private estate, Meadowood Napa Valley is a center of social, cultural and viticultural life in Napa Valley and a second home for those who enjoy the beauty and hospitality of the wine country. Atlanta-based luxury travel advisor Maggie Barton shares, “Meadowood has the luck of beautiful and spacious geography! Accommodations are individual and service is second to none.”  There are eighty-five cottages, suites and lodges nestled into the forested hillside of the beautiful valley, each providing serenity and privacy. Terraces offer ideal settings for quiet contemplation or intimate meals. Palo Alto-based travel advisor Katie Lee elaborates, “Meadowood seamlessly pairs old-world charm with modern-day luxury. The property is perfectly located to Yountville (just ten minutes by car) but still hidden in the Redwoods. And it just underwent a massive renovation to add a third pool on the property which will be adults only.”

Manhattan-based luxury travel advisor Xavier Cano reflects back on his stay sharing, “The Michelin 3 star restaurant, state-of-the-art spa, serene grounds, and their well-connected concierge puts Meadowood in a league of their own!” Carly Davis Allen elaborates, “Having visited the wine region over festive season with my husband, Meadowood immediately sets the mood for a romantic backdrop of a stay. From their spa, leisure activities to their award-winning dining, couples have no shortage of fantastic ways to enjoy themselves while on property.” And for those who would just like to relax, a thick robe and a cozy reading corner invite R&R – whether that begin with opening a bottle of local sparkling wine or enjoying a classic film. | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: Be sure to plan extra time in the Treehouse Retreat at the spa, with its amazing copper tub for two and plenty of romantic space.

Post Ranch Inn

Big Sur, California

Sitting high above the cliffs of Big Sur, Post Ranch Inn is a luxurious, romantic escape known for its award-winning organic architecture. For those focused on mind, body and soul connection, this is your place. The forty secluded guestrooms, suites and private houses blend rustic elegance and comfort with ocean and mountain views. San Francisco-based luxury travel advisor Leigh Rowan shares, “There is no place like Post Ranch Inn. Take in the majestic Pacific from your hot tub perch, far above the breaking surf and nestled in the trees, close to – if not actually in – heaven.” Each room features a wood-burning fireplace, private deck and complimentary minibar.

Knoxville-based luxury travel advisor Alexandra Stockton loves it for couples, sharing, “Post Ranch Inn is heaven for clients looking to re-connect and get some much needed R&R. It’s impossible not to feel recharged after experiencing the magic of Big Sur. The views are breathtaking!” Katie Lee adds, “Post Ranch Inn transports guests into a dreamlike seascape high above the clouds and the service is always exceptional. You feel like you are worlds away from reality here!” Guests are invited to enjoy activities like morning yoga, rejuvenating spa treatments, swimming in the heated pool and ocean-view basking pools, hiking and nightly stargazing. The celebrated Sierra Mar restaurant, recipient of Wine Spectator’s Grand Award, serves organic seasonal fare. Xavier Cano concludes, “Post Ranch Inn has one of the most beautiful coastal views in the world. It’s a literal dream come true to wake up here.” | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: For a special occasion, book an upper Pacific Suite featuring a huge private deck with spa and jetliner views over the ocean.

Rosewood Miramar Beach

Montecito, California

Situated on one of the most beautiful and exclusive beaches in Southern California, Rosewood Miramar Beach is located eighty miles north of Los Angeles in Santa Barbara’s beautiful Montecito community. The world-class resort conveys an elegant yet casual atmosphere, offering iconic sophistication and refined modernity. Born from an era of gracious hosts welcoming guests for the season, the resort’s unparalleled level of service is attentive and professional, yet never pretentious. ​The design and decor was so thoughtfully selected and it will impress the most discerning clients; from head to toe this resort is one of the chicest around.

Newport Beach-based luxury travel advisor Michelle Manas shares, “Rosewood Miramar Beach is the most exciting opening to hit the American Riviera in years! They designed the resort to feel like a Montecito Manor and they captured it to a T. You feel like you are at home from the main spaces to the charming bungalows designed with a neighborhood feel. The beach club is a unique retreat for the California Coastline and it’s the perfect summer staycation all around!” Boston-based luxury travel advisor Julie Palo Hayes concludes, “Take a long beach walk from Rosewood Miramar before returning back to the property for a Malibu Farms breakfast. If you want to keep the activity going, there’s really fabulous hiking nearby. This is your ideal spot for mountains meet beach!” | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: Guests can request to be taken off property in one of three 6-seater vintage Fiat Jollys; drivers will take guests to Montecito’s shops and restaurants on Coast Village Road, the upper village, and beyond.

The Peninsula Beverly Hills

Beverly Hills, California

With one of Southern California’s most desirable addresses, The Peninsula Beverly Hills is an exclusive Los Angeles hideaway. The hotel has a sophisticated elegance nestled among a lush tropical garden. When you walk into the Peninsula Beverly Hills, you know you have arrived; it is the epitome of class, style, elegance and the place to be seen. World-class shopping and dining is just a short walk away along the famous Rodeo Drive. Also, unique to the hotel, the property offers flexible check-in and check-out experience, allowing guests to arrive and depart at their leisure. And, if that doesn’t convince you, the hotel has been awarded the prestigious AAA Five Diamond Award and Forbes Five-Star ratings every year since its debut in 1991.

Florida-based travel advisor Larry Stein shares, “The Peninsula Beverly Hills is my go-to hotel in LA. Over the top rooms, service and fantastic location. They can never do enough for you. I could easily live there!” Repeat guest Erina Pindar adds, “There are 195 elegantly decorated guest rooms, including several suites and private villas which offer an additional level of privacy with their own dedicated entrances. The hotel manages to be both traditional and elegant without being stuffy, absolutely the quintessential Beverly Hills spots. ” | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: On a beautiful day, be sure to reserve a table out in the Belvedere Terrace for lunch or during cocktail hour.

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Out West: Reconnect with Nature

Amangani

Jackson Hole, Wyoming

Situated close to some of the USA’s finest ski slopes as well as Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks, Amangani, or ‘peaceful home,’ is an all-season resort overlooking the beautiful valley of Jackson Hole in Wyoming. Amangani clings to the crest of East Gros Ventre Butte, some 7,000 feet above sea level. The forty suite retreat and a handful of private homes is a year-round destination acting as an ideal base for exploring the magnificent natural surroundings. With its floor-to-ceiling columns of Oklahoma sandstone, ceilings and walls in Pacific redwood and chairs of rattan and woven cowhide, Amangani embraces the spirit of the West.

Take to the fresh mountain air in spring or summer, a serene sanctuary from which to explore the backcountry of the old West – on foot or horseback, by hot-air balloon, or along the spectacular Snake River. NYC-based luxury travel advisor Tom Bartholomew weighs in on a recent stay, sharing, “The property has compiled a series of excursions that will allow you to explore Jackson Hole and its magical environment. In addition to Amangani Signature Tours, some excursions are offered in conjunction with the most professional outfitters in the area and most of these activities are offered privately. Warm weather activity options include hiking, horseback riding, fly-fishing, mountain biking and exploring the boutiques and galleries of downtown Jackson. Winter pursuits include skiing and snowboarding, snowshoeing, dog-sledding and snowmobiling.” | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: The property is extremely ethically-conscious; you’d never believe that their faux fur rugs and throws are actually made from recycled plastics.

Dunton Hot Springs

Dolores, Colorado

Located just outside Telluride, Dunton Hot Springs breathes new life into a 19th-century ghost town. The thirteen rustic log cabins are all unique and surprisingly luxe, with heated slate floors and handpicked antiques; guests in the Well House enjoy their own hot springs. Others can soak weary bones in the old bathhouse or under the stars at the source. Join a trail ride into the Rockies or fly-fish along a private stretch of the Dolores; guests will find every conceivable winter sport, including heli-skiing. Farm-fresh meals and wine from the resort’s vineyard are shared over the Saloon’s long table.

Alexandra Stockton shares, “Dunton Hot Springs will make you feel like you’ve stepped back in time (that is, if mining towns had world-class food and wine and a luxury spa with natural hot springs!). The property is tucked deep into the San Juan Mountains but it is worth the trek! The accommodations are individual log cabins so it’s easy to social distance and there is plenty of wilderness for everyone to explore. Splurge on the Well House cabin that has its own hot spring and cold plunge.” | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: Butch Cassidy was just one of many characters who passed through Dunton; look for his name among the etchings in the Saloon’s original bar.


The Little Nell

Aspen, CO

Aspen’s only Forbes Five Star and AAA Five-Diamond property with ski-in, ski-out access, The Little Nell gives guests direct access to America’s most famous mountain town. Beyond the property’s intimate ambiance and luxurious amenities, they offer unparalleled seasonal packages — from fly-fishing trips on Gold Medal waters to free lift tickets to the four mountains of Aspen/Snowmass. Seasonal haute cuisine is available at Element 47 or on the sun-drenched patio of Ajax Tavern. Rejuvenate your mind, body and spirit in the utmost style and elegance when they check-in here.

Julie Palo Hayes shares, “Aspen has the true mining town feel with rock star restaurants and services along with all the outdoor activities. It beats all the other options!” Justyna Della Valle adds, “The Little Nell is an institution in Aspen and my personal go-to for my annual ski trip. The ski concierge staff are the star of the hotel and guests are known by name. As a guest of The Little Nell, you enjoy complimentary access to first tracks before the mountain opens. Even better, they offer regular guests ski storage year-round!” | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: The Little Nell boasts an award-winning wine program led by Wine Director Chris Dunaway who oversees a 25,000 bottle wine cellar.

The Lodge at Blue Sky

Wanship, Utah

Situated on 3,500 acres of lush ranch land outside of Park City, The Lodge at Blue Sky invites guests to slow down and forge meaningful connections with the natural environment. Guests will immediately feel at peace as they check into one Blue Sky’s 46 rooms and suites followed by a meal at their farm-to-table restaurant. Or, just up the private road on which the property is located, opt for a meal at the iconic High West Whiskey Distillery which lovingly crafts small-batch whiskey from grain to glass. Maggie Barton shares, “Lodge at Blue Sky was literally made for ‘the new normal’ that we are now living. This brand new Auberge property is a true gem complete with soul, offering wide-ranging activities from horseback riding, fly fishing or hiking during the summer, and skiing, snowshoeing or cross country during the winter.”

For the spa lover, The iconic Auberge Spa invites reconnection with the self through indulgent treatments, yoga, guided meditation and products that feature nourishing bloom-to-bottle ingredients. The CBD massage is a favorite! New York City-based Marketing Manager Kayla Douglas adds, “For the city-dweller looking to connect with nature, there are few better places. The equine program here is so special; guests can visit the stables and see the property’s vet provide their rescue horses with massage therapy, acupuncture, essential oil therapy, light therapy and chiropractic work. The lodge’s owner, Barb Phillips, is so passionate about animal welfare and she generously spends time with guests to explain the work being done by her organization, the Saving Gracie Equine Healing Foundation for an even deeper impact.” | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: Arrange to go on a farm visit and you can select your own fresh eggs! The next morning for breakfast, the kitchen will cook them up for you just to your liking.

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Southwest: Dose of Sunshine, Please

Enchantment Resort

Sedona, Arizona

Set on seventy acres of panoramic natural terrain, Enchantment Resort is located in the spiritual heart of Sedona, surrounded by the towering red rock walls of Boynton Canyon. The property combines the rugged grandeur of the Southwest landscape and Native American culture. Featuring 218, one-story guest accommodations, over 140 weekly guest activities and panoramic views of red rock formations, this Sedona Resort is a place to naturally feel alive. Richmond-based travel advisor Stacy Luks shares, “Enchantment is a destination in and of itself offering a fabulous spa, peace and quiet.” Guests are invited to discover exceptional Sedona dining at Enchantment Resort featuring fresh ingredients, imaginative menus, award-winning wines and views that take your breath away.

For guests wanting to ignite their sense of adventure, there are an endless amount of things to do in Sedona for every age and interest from sunrise to sunset (and even once the stars arrive). Whether you prefer hitting the links or the scenic Canyon trails, nurturing your artistic side or sculpting your body, you’ll never tire of the options. Camp Coyote offers activities that explore the region’s culture and natural environment facilitated by trained counselors as they guide campers ages 4-12 years through a host of adventures including nature walks, pottery making, scavenger hunts, culinary activities and more. At Enchantment Resort, there’s something for every member of the family.

Insider Tip: Enchantment Resort is home to some of the most experienced hiking and mountain biking guides available to enrich your knowledge of the trails, the native land the art of the sport.


Hotel Saint Cecilia

Austin, Texas

Created in honor of the patron saint of music and poetry, Hotel Saint Cecilia takes inspiration from the great era of the late 1960’s and early 1970’s when a revolution of rock and roll and beat poetry overran the hallowed halls of established convention. This Bunkhouse Hotels’ project was part of iconic boutique hotelier Liz Lambert’s vision to pay tribute to the great creative legacy of revolutionary idols and to the spirit of the artist that lies within us all. Each of the five suites, six poolside bungalows, and three studios embodies an equal love for the elegance of old-world luxury and the irreverence of the era’s muses – The Stones, Bill Burroughs, Anne Sexton, Hunter S. Thompson among them. Guests are ensured an ultra-private atmosphere as the secluded property and lush grounds are open only to hotel guests, thereby offering a unique sense of home situated steps away from the heart of South Austin. In Julie Palo Hayes‘ words, “the soul of Hotel Saint Cecilia can’t be beaten. With it being only open to hotel guests, exclusivity is key here.”

Amanda Poses – an Austin local – divulges, “Without question, Hotel Saint Cecilia is an oasis in the middle of a city. It’s such a special spot with everything from the service to vibe to food to cocktails being executed flawlessly!”  This space offers a city view and overlooks The Saint Cecilia’s stunning grounds. You’ve likely seen photos of the lap pool with its much-Instagrammed red neon “Soul” sign, but this is just the beginning. It’s details like the floor-to-ceiling black tile in the bathrooms (and massive soaking tubs in Suites 1 and 3!) thoughtfully paired with Grown Alchemist products and custom batik indigo-dyed kimono robes that make guests’ stays truly memorable. And let’s not forget the handmade organic bed made by Hästens, Sweden’s most revered bedding company, ensuring you get the best night’s sleep after an evening out. Bottom line, there are so many reasons to love Hotel Saint Cecilia, but don’t take our word for it – talk to your SmartFlyer travel advisor about setting up a reservation.

Insider Tip: The lobby is also home to the Saint Cecilia’s retail store, which carries a selection of items from travel necessities to souvenirs, including products by Saint Rita, Santa Maria Novella and a variety of local and international craftspeople.

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Southeast: Southern Charm, Y’all


Blackberry Farm + Blackberry Mountain

Walland, Tennessee

A 4,200-acre working farm and romantic hideaway in the heart of Tennessee’s Great Smoky Mountains, Blackberry Farm is an idyllic Relais & Châteaux gem. Guests are invited to explore the property on horseback, via old-fashioned carriage, by canoe and mountain bike or on intimate walking trails. In the words of Nashville-based luxury travel advisor David Bragg, “Blackberry Farm is the perfect place to be socially distant.” Quieter pastimes include a massage at The Wellhouse, reading in a hammock or fly-fishing in Hesse Creek, one of the best spots in Tennessee. For those seeking a culinary experience, food and wine take center stage at The Barn, where multicourse menus feature the bounty of the farm’s bakery, butchery, creamery and extensive wine cellar of 160,000 bottles. Be sure to take part in one of Blackberry Farm’s cooking schools’ or wine events. | Book Now >>

Just about twenty minutes away, the owners of Blackberry Farm have opened their sister property, Blackberry Mountain. Wellness, outdoor adventure and inner serenity are prioritized at this immaculate lodge where rooms take the form of cabins and cottages designed with nature in mind. This is truly a place to unplug from the world and reconnect with oneself. Justyna Della Valle shares, “Having just returned from Blackberry Mountain, I cannot get the magic of it out of my mind and cannot wait to return. The views from each private cottage trick guests into believing they are in Northern Italy or Switzerland, until experiencing their warm southern hospitality.” Atlanta-based travel advisor Heidi Hyland adds, “Blackberry Mountain is one of my all-time favorites in the South for a romantic getaway – whether you choose a Watchman cabin or a Thunderhead cottage, you’re in for a treat. The property offers understated luxury with interiors and views that appeal to everyone. Actually, my husband who rarely wants to visit the same place twice, has asked to visit for a second time.” | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: Trying to decide between the two properties? We love Blackberry Farm for multi-gen trips thanks to its rolling hills, pond, garden, spa and the beautiful barn. For those seeking more wellness and life-enriching programming (think: soundbaths and sculpture!), consider opting for Blackberry Mountain.

Faena Miami Beach

Miami, Florida

While boasting a prime location on Collins Ave close to Miami Beach’s many attractions, it’s possible you’ll never leave Faena Hotel Miami Beach with its extraordinary ambiance and innovative entertainment. Baton Rouge-based travel advisor Kristin Songy Diehl shares, “Surround yourself in a sea of vivid red, turquoise and animal print décor that is accented with meticulously selected artwork from the moment you walk in. With a line’s eye view of Hirst’s golden mammoth (glistening in the Miami Beach sun), you are instantly transported. The already vibrant energy is enhanced by a staff that truly goes above-and-beyond, genuinely happy to assist in all your needs.”

The 169-room property offers art deco flair, two signature oceanfront restaurants by celebrated chefs Paul Qui and Francis Mallmann, private screening room and an opulent 150-seat theater offering a diverse lineup of live entertainment and an original production. The Tierra Santa Spa is not to be missed as it provides ancient South American healing techniques and indigenous ingredients; the double-height hammam is particularly impressive. In terms of nightlife, Newport Beach-based travel advisor Michelle Manas shares, “A trip to Miami isn’t complete without a night to see Faena’s cabaret show! It changes throughout the year and the stage is surrounded by the most intimate and charming theater!” Tampa-based travel advisor Lesley Cohen adds, “Faena is perfectly suited for a couple looking for a sexy weekend getaway.” | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: The Premier Oceanfront Junior Suite is the room to have at this sexy resort — it’s perfect for stunning South Beach views.

Four Seasons Hotel at The Surf Club, Surfside

Miami, Florida

From the moment it first opened its doors on New Year’s Eve 1930, The Surf Club has hosted history. It is here that you will find Four Seasons Hotel at The Surf Club, an oceanfront destination bringing a new era of glamour elevated with chic Italian dining and a world-class spa. The Surf Club today might have a storied past – a glittering list of names including Frank Sinatra, Elizabeth Taylor and Winston Churchill – but the sense of possibility and timeless values for which it has always been cherished remain as strong as ever. Tom Bartholomew shares, “The restored Surf Club entrance still feels like you are stepping into the club’s 1930’s heyday, full of the original character whilst the modern extension of guest rooms offer a perfect contrast with bright, airy ocean views and modern amenities.”

For guests who want a taste of Italy in Florida, Chef de Cuisine Antonio Mermolia brings the flavors of the Amalfi Coast to Le Sirenuse Miami. Fort Lauderdale-based luxury travel advisor Phyllis Polaner elaborates, “Four Seasons Surfside is my absolute favorite property anywhere! From the aesthetics to service but oh my goodness, the food! Thomas Keller and Le Sirenuse have won my palette and heart. Every experience there takes me on a journey.” Mauricio Buenaventura concludes, “What could be better to have than the Four Seasons’ elevated service and standards in a stunning beach location?” | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: Walk through the lobby towards the beach and explore the photography exhibition depicting the colorful history of The Surf Club. The art installations throughout the property are inspiring and thought-provoking.

Four Seasons Hotel St. Louis

St. Louis, Missouri

Set along the banks of the fabled Mississippi River in the heart of downtown’s entertainment district, Four Seasons Hotel St. Louis is a resort-style hotel is just steps away from The Gateway to the West’s most recognizable landmark: the shimmering Gateway Arch. Take in the epic views from a private poolside cabana on the Sky Terrace, from a table filled with shareable plates at Cinder House, or from the floor-to-ceiling windows in the comfort of your very own room. With a bustling restaurant scene, live music and remarkable sunset reflections off the Gateway Arch, every day at Four Seasons Hotel St. Louis is unique.

St. Louis-based travel advisor Robert Merlin shares, “The property is the perfect escape from daily life; they have so many amenities for families, including a new Top Golf Suite. Combined with their top-notch service and phenomenal food and beverage outlets, it rivals some of the best hotels in the world.” Fellow STL local Betsey Brown elaborates, “St. Louis has the most insane food scene ever, so underrated. We love the Four Seasons’ restaurant, Cinder House, where James Beard Award-Winning Chef Gerard Craft is blending the tradition of wood-fired meat, vegetables and fish with bold international flavors.” Manhattan-based travel advisor Susan Andrzejewski concludes, “We love the rooftop pool and terrace overlooking the iconic arch. There’s no better place to call home in the city!”

Insider Tip: Play a game of Family Feud with St. Louis trivia or enjoy a farm-to-table experience from Such and Such Farm, capped with a private brewery tour and tasting.

ERIKA DELGADO PHOTOGRAPHY

Hotel Zero George

Charleston, South Carolina

Named after the property’s actual street address, Hotel Zero George is comprised of sixteen lush guest rooms and studios in three painstakingly restored historic residences and two brick carriage houses that surround the property’s private garden courtyard. The team has infused it all with a sense of intimacy and warm personality, honoring the buildings’ solid 1804 bones and graceful architecture with measured, timeless design. At Zero George, you’ll find both period millwork and Charleston’s best contemporary art, original heart pine floors and rooms full of heart. Los Angeles-based travel advisor Michelle London shares, “I fell in love with the chic neutral décor and abundant natural light, welcoming and attentive service, and spending each afternoon sipping on a cocktail or iced tea on my veranda — definitely what I envisioned for my romantic weekend escape to Charleston. The courtyard feels magical and peaceful with fountains and palmettos overhead. Not to mention, the beds are so cozy that they make you want to sleep in late, the room keys are actual keys — so charming!”

Dallas-based travel advisor Hillary Taylor adds, “The restaurant & bar at the Zero George, aptly named Zero, transports you to a whole new culinary dimension with its elevated yet comfortable cuisine, not to mention the incredibly romantic and cozy atmosphere. Zero is a gem in every sense of the word, and Chef Petrillo leaves nothing to be desired with his bold flavors, creative dishes and impeccable wine pairings that fit so perfectly in the foodie mix of Charleston.” The team here aims to delight, spoil and surprise guests as we serve up Old World authenticity with contemporary upscale hospitality. From lush guest rooms to cozy piazzas, Zero George redefines luxury—not as opulence but understated, authentic elegance. They have restored this historic property to reflect all the wow of old Charleston while setting new standards of style and comfort. Charleston has been seducing visitors and residents alike since the 17th century, and Hotel Zero George is ideally located for exploring the city.

Insider Tip: Guests have unlimited access to the hotel’s fleet of classic bicycles, and they offer custom package excursions depending on your interest. The professional concierges are at your service for whatever needs or questions you may have.

Maison de la Luz

Maison de la Luz

New Orleans, LA

A fully private guest house located in the heart of New Orleans’ Warehouse District, Maison de la Luz is sure to elevate any NOLA stay, whether it’s your first time visiting your city or you’ve lost count of your stays in The Big Easy. Amanda Poses reflects on her recent stay divulging, “This unique property was created so guest feel like they are coming home! It is your own private, luxurious oasis in the Crescent City.” A few blocks from the Vieux Carre, all spaces in the hotel, including parts of Bar Marilou, are for hotel guests only, making Maison de la Luz a quiet luxury respite. Guests are welcome to enjoy the neighborhood perks, including full access to the adjacent Ace Hotel’s amenities, including signing privileges at all of their outlets.  Whether enjoying breakfast in the Breakfast Room, or complimentary wine, cheese and charcuterie in the afternoons in the living room, or making a drink at the Honor Bar, the line between hotel and residence is beautifully blurred.

Designed by celebrity interior designer Pamela Shamshiri, Maison de la Luz boasts 67 guest rooms and suites. The vast majority of rooms boast large bathrooms including separate shower and soaking tub, with a combination of both designed and vintage furniture in our beautiful appointed bedrooms and parlors. Susan Andrzejewski, concludes, “This exclusive hotel has a truly special vibe and leaves guests feeling both spoiled and indulged while under the illusion of being right at home. And of course, there is Bar Marilou to cozy up in late into the night. The live music with one of their artisan cocktails in hand creates the ultimate New Orleans vibe.”

Insider Tip: Visit Bar Marilou’s secret guest-only lounge to enjoy the full menu with the privacy included with your Maison de la Luz stay.

Montage Palmetto Bluff

Bluffton, South Carolina

Nestled along the scenic May River in South Carolina’s Lowcountry, Montage Palmetto Bluff is set within a vibrant 20,000-acre community between Hilton Head Island and Savannah. Las Vegas-based luxury travel advisor Addie Bell recalls her recent arrival to the property feeling like she was “turning on low country mode” sharing that even just looking out from her room was as if “Montage Magic is in full force.” The resort encompasses an extensive nature preserve, two picturesque villages featuring nine Southern-inspired dining options, a riverfront marina and a Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course. With Savannah and Hilton Head just minutes away, you might be drawn to explore, but it will be difficult to find a reason to leave Montage Palmetto Bluff. Jacksonville-based luxury travel advisor Anastasia Regas adds, “I love this spot for my clients seeking a true southern feel and sense of place. It’s ideal for couples, multi-generational groups and families thanks to its abundance of activities.”

The property offers guests 200 cozy accommodations designed in its historical Colonial charm, there’s something for all travelers. The Main Inn offers rooms and suites while the rest of the property is dotted with beautiful cottages. Our favorites are the River View Cottages, the charm of the decor and gorgeous views over the May River are incomparable. This is a sporting paradise with golf, tennis, boating, biking, kayaking, fishing, sporting clays, equestrian activities and more. After your activity of choice, rejuvenate in the world-class Spa Montage; try the signature Palmetto High Cotton treatment, complete with a stimulating scalp and body massage and a smoothing foot scrub. To cap off the night, the Octagon Bar is a central gathering point at the Bluffs and it welcomes guests to come together to enjoy the lively atmosphere. | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: If you are a pet lover, don’t miss the Monday – Saturday canine ambassadors meet and greet — it’s a heart-warmer.

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Northeast: New England Vibes

Chatham Bars Inn

Chatham, Massachusetts

One of New England’s most honored and historic getaways, Cape Cod, encompasses 17th-century towns and the spectacular Cape Cod National Seashore. Opened in 1914, Chatham Bars Inn overlooks a private, quarter-mile beach and has a fleet of boats for sportfishing, sailing and day trips to Nantucket Island. The property offers a rich variety of guestroom styles and types ranging from historic guestrooms in the Main Inn to the two-bedroom Presidential suite complete with fireplaces, steam shower, dining area and wet bar, there is room to meet any desire. Accommodations vary from one-bedroom suites in cottage-style buildings to four-bedroom custom homes. Many families enjoy selecting an entire cottage to meet their needs or connecting rooms, which provide convenience and privacy. We especially love the ocean view master suites on “the bluff” overlooking the water.

Mauricio Buenaventura shares, “The quintessential Americana property with all the necessary social distancing protocols in place, Chatham Bars Inn is your perfect northeastern escape.” Further, the award-winning spa and four dining options, as well as an eight-acre farm that supplies the hotel’s fresh produce make for a truly memorable experience. And before you go, be sure to check out the outer beach is a section of Cape Cod National Seashore, one of the most beautiful barrier beaches in the world which is only accessible by boat. The boat drives by the seal colony on it’s return to the hotel which is a highlight for younger guests. Michelle Manas concludes, “Be sure to check with your travel advisor on dates so you plan your trip around their summer clambakes!” | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: Enjoy a cocktail and live music in the Adirondack chairs outside The Veranda, all overlooking Chatham Harbor and the Atlantic Ocean.

Ocean House

Cape Neddick, Rhode Island

Originally built in 1868, Ocean House has long been a retreat for discerning travelers in New England. The structure was completely rebuilt in 2004 and today conveys the romance of its storied past as a member of Relais & Châteaux. There are forty-nine luxurious guestrooms and eighteen signature suites on property reigning over thirteen blufftop acres and a private white-sand beach with dedicated cabana service. Guests are invited to savor farm-to-table fare at COAST restaurant and learn the chef’s secrets in culinary classes. New York-based luxury travel advisor Melissa Rodriguez shares, “Ocean House offers quintessential New England digs, a beautiful stretch of beach, and a wonderful jazz brunch.” Fellow New Yorker Michael Schertz chimes in, “This is your spot for a quaint, quiet stay. Couples seeking relaxation with the ability to charter a boat or bike into town will love Ocean House.”

The spacious accommodations are each richly appointed to reflect the feel of a sprawling seaside estate, offering an unrivaled residential experience. In the summertime, make sure you arrive early on Fridays so as not to miss the good, old-fashioned New England lobster boil on the beach, complete with a live band. We also love starting the evening with a glass of Veuve at the property’s Secret Garden champagne bar endorsed by Town & Country. If you’re thinking of combining multiple properties through Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Maine, Ocean House is a fantastic launching point; for more info, check out, “The Ultimate New England Roadtrip,” for suggestions straight from our team. | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: As part of the Mercedes-Benz Hotel Program, guests of Ocean House have the opportunity to use one of four Mercedes-Benz vehicles without charge. Plus, an additional four hotel cars are available for guests who require assisted transportation during their visit.

Troutbeck

Amenia, New York

Manhattan-based luxury travel advisor Erina Pindar shares, “Nestled away in Upstate New York, Troutbeck is a hidden gem for couples wanting a cozy getaway. The property is intimate with just thirty-six accommodations, all beautifully designed; the rooms in the main house are one-of-a-kind, while the ones in the new builds are more contemporary.” In our Manhattan-based team’s eyes, Troutbeck makes the perfect escape for New Yorkers looking to be cared for in a property that feels like a family’s luxury estate.

The 250-acre estate hotel has felt like home to romantics, naturalists, humanists and poets for centuries thanks to its eclectic family ownership dating back to the early 18th century. Troutbeck’s first owners were the Benton’s, a family of officers, farmers and poets, the last of whom was a transcendentalist; close friends with Emerson, Thoreau and Burroughs. All three spent a great deal of time at Troutbeck. The Benton’s were hospitable and popular people, building a tavern and inn on the property which still stands today. Colonel Joel and Amy Einstein Spingarn bought the estate in the early 1910’s. Amy was active in the fight for women’s suffrage. Alongside Joel, they were pillars of the Civil Rights movement with Joel credited amongst the founders of the NAACP. | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: The library has original books and was used by a writer who is researching the history of the area. In terms of activities, the hotel has access to ski in the winter, skeet shooting all-year-round and there are cute towns nearby for antiquing.

Twin Farms

Barnard, Vermont

Twin Farms, a member of Relais & Châteaux, is tailormade for those who have long wished for a private country retreat in Vermont. The 300-acre property set in Barnard offers guests a location dedicated to making their stay as private as it will be and serene, or as adventurous and social as they wish. The twenty unique accommodations are decorated with impressive art and character, offering something for every taste. From incredible meals to outdoor adventure to rest and relaxation, this is a place for true rejuvenation. Oh, and did we mention it’s all-inclusive?

Erin Trager Kusman reflects on a recent stay divulging, “It’s like you’ve been transported to an exclusive (adults-only) summer camp, where everything is perfectly nostalgic and at the same time luxurious without the pretense. Come for the breathtaking scenery and stay for the caviar and champagne.” There’s the rustic Log Cabin, with its river-rock fireplace; the Treehouse Cottage, with its Adirondack twig accents; and the surprising Meadow Cottage, decorated in vibrant Moroccan style. Outdoor activities range from hiking, biking and fly-fishing to snowshoeing, sledding, and downhill and cross-country skiing. Golf, gallery-hopping and shopping in Woodstock are all nearby. | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: Seasonal meals incorporate the property’s own herbs — customized for each guest — and are complemented by vintages from a 15,000-bottle wine cellar.

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Hawaii: Aloha, Paradise

Four Seasons Resort Hualalai

Kailua-Kona, Hawaii

Set on the picturesque Kona-Kohala coast of Hawai’i Island, Four Seasons Resort Hualalai is a magnificent work of destination art. Built into its natural surroundings, the resort combines history, culture, pure pampering, and true aloha to all who come its way. Manhattan-based travel advisor Nicole Gerber shares, “Every year over the holiday season, I return here with my family. Four Seasons Hualalai really does have a fabulous sense of place – there’s a reason it’s our favorite spot amongst all the Hawaii properties.” The property features 243 magnificent rooms and suites, championship golf, world-class spa and fitness, tennis, on-site ocean activities, retail boutiques, seven pools, cultural experiences, and award-winning dining.

All the while, the contrast of ancient black lava rock with towering coconut palms, white-sand beaches, and azure seas create a stunning backdrop for lasting memories. Lauren Grubbs elaborates, “In my eyes, Hualalai is quintessential Hawaii. The property is so well-loved and is just such a special place. I grew up traveling here with my family and when I returned earlier this year, I was thrilled to see that all my favorite places that I held dearly in my memory were still there are better than ever.” | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: Venture into King’s Pond, a 1.8-million-gallon “aquarium” carved out of natural lava rock, featuring more than 4,000 tropical fish swimming freely, including a spotted eagle ray.

Four Seasons Resort Lanai

Lanai City, Hawaii

Above all other domestic properties, none garnered collective admiration amongst our 175+ SmartFlyer travel advisors at the level of Four Seasons Resort Lanai. Michael Schertz reflects on a recent stay sharing, “This place is just plain dreamy… you feel like you are on a private island surrounded by lush landscapes and the expansive ocean!” Echoing the collective excitement by our team, Addie Bell adds, “This property is the number one booked amongst my clients right now; they really appreciate the private transfers from Honolulu, not to mention the generous resort credit we hook them up with as Preferred Partners of Four Seasons.” Alexandra Stockton elaborates, “This is one of my favorite places to send honeymoon clients; they are always wowed by the property, love the exclusive feel of the island, and make so many memories doing all of the activities offered at the resort, like horseback riding, Polaris off-road adventures, and sunset sails. I always recommend the package that includes unlimited activities!”

Katie Lee continues, “Four Seasons Lanai offers guests privacy, exclusivity, authenticity, and the ultimate Hawaiian experience.” Michelle Manas adds, “You feel like you are on your own private island, away from tourists, which is a unique feeling for Hawaii!” Amanda Poses elaborates, “The hotel is spread out naturally so social distancing was a thing there before it was ‘in.’ They have and will continue to focus on wellness. Plus, having Malibu Farms and Nobu who were already pros at taking necessary cleanliness precautions will even further the trust in the property.” Justyna Della Valle concludes, “Four Seasons Resort Lanai is my go-to in Hawaii. It’s the last unspoiled island and truly feels like a different world. Enjoying a Mai Tai sundowner at Nobu is not to be missed.” | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: With the new edition of Sensei Lānaʻi, it’s a great island combination for wellness and R&R! You can fly private on Lanai Air and easily connect to the island and once you arrive you are immersed into a lush oasis.

Montage Kapalua Bay

Lahaina, Hawaii

Montage Kapalua Bay is situated within the world-renowned Kapalua Resort and is steps from Kapalua Bay, voted one of America’s favorite beaches. Spacious one- to four-bedroom residential-style accommodations overlook swaying palms and surf while dining venues range from the upscale Cane & Canoe to the casual Hana Hou bar. These complement the full-service Spa Montage, historic Cliff House, championship golf courses, tennis courts, and ziplines. Guests experience relaxation and rejuvenation, marked by the island’s unique beauty. Manhattan-based travel advisor Laine Wladis shares, “Montage Kapalua Bay feels less like Disney on Maui!”

This oceanfront accommodation is a premier Maui resort, the perfect place for family getaways. Tiffany Khalili adds, “The residence style accommodations  allow for more space that families need and want right now.” These 50 luxury residences range from one to four bedrooms, offer spacious living accommodations flowing into a large private “lanai” (balcony). They also offer fully equipped kitchens, elegant master suites, and luxurious bathrooms. Ultimately, no matter where guests choose to stay on property, they will experience a blend of relaxation and rejuvenation with every detail celebrating the richness of Hawaiian culture. | Book Now >>

Insider Tip: Kapalua is a golfer’s heaven: Bay Course features Maui’s only hole located over the ocean, while Plantation Course has been ranked number one in Hawai’i.

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