On My Radar: Luxury Hotel Openings 2016

On My Radar:  Luxury Hotel Openings 2016

Limalimo Lodge, Ethiopia

main lodge[1].JPG

Located at the edge of an escarpment in northern Ethiopia, the new 14-room lodge opening January 2016 will sit on 10 hectares of land in the Simien Mountains National Park, one of UNESCO’s Outstanding Places of Natural Beauty.  Built by local community members, environmental conservation is at the heart of the lodge and it boasts superb eco-credentials.  The lodge has been constructed using sustainable building techniques and materials including rammed earth walls, thatch and wood sourced from surrounding areas that blend seamlessly into the scenery.  Each of the 14 simple yet elegant rooms will be scattered throughout the lush grounds, providing guests with total seclusion and the opportunity to enjoy spectacular views out across the mountains from the private terraces.  Set in a prime position, the lodge will offer a host of activities to enjoy the beauty and wildlife found in the Simien Mountains National Park.  The location will provide a fantastic spot from which to birdwatch, whilst a selection of treks through the highlands and lowlands will offer guests the chance to get up-close and personal with local wildlife including the Gelda monkey.

www.scottdunn.com / +44 (0) 20 8682 5070


Helena Bay, New Zealand

New luxury lodge Helena Bay will launch in New Zealand in November 2016 on the Tutukaka Coast, North Island in 2016.  The new lodge is 40-km north of Whangarei and just a 45-minute helicopter ride from Auckland.  Set on 800 acres, Helena Bay will include two and three bedroom villas, all overlooking three kilometres of pristine coastline.  The main lodge will house a Turkish Hammam, plunge pool, gym, sauna, luxury spa, a 25-metre heated pool, a library, three lounge areas, a restaurant and an outdoor fire pit surrounding three private beaches.  



Faena Hotel Miami Beach

The opening of Faena Hotel Miami Beach by Alan Faena this winter will mark the inauguration of the FAENA DISTRICT – the second only such official designation in Miami’s history – where art permeates every aspect.  It includes FAENA HOTEL MIAMI BEACH; FAENA FORUM – a ground breaking new art and cultural institution by Rem Koolhaas / OMA; FAENA HOUSE – a Foster + Partners 18 storey condominium; FAENA VERSAILLES – two residential condominium towers designed by Brandon Haw and William Sofield; CASA CLARIDGE’S – a beachside guest house built like a home not a hotel, and FAENA BAZAAR – a unique retail experience also designed by Rem Koolhaas / OMA.  FAENA HOTEL MIAMI BEACH comprises rooms and penthouses designed by film director, Baz Luhrmann and his Academy Award-winning wife, Catherine Martin, a 22,000 sq. foot South American inspired Tierra Santa Spa, fire kitchen restaurant Los Fuegos by Francis Mallman, two bars and Pao by Paul Qui restaurant as well as the Saxony Theatre – a two level theatre and performance space.

Opening November 2015. www.faena.com


Amanemu, Japan

Set to open in Spring 2016, Japan’s newest Aman hotel, ‘Amanemu’ merges the design of a traditional Japanese 'ryokan' with the sleek modern features for which the Aman brand is renowned.  Located on the shores of Ago Bay in the city of Shima, Amanemu has stunning views of the coastline and rolling hills of the ancient woodland surrounding the property.  Taking half its name ‘nemu’ from the Japanese for ‘joy’ the new Aman aims for guests to unwind in the hotel’s serene location and spa.  Typical of all Aman properties, the spa features two large bathing pavilions with nutrient-rich spring water and relaxing treatment suites, gym and yoga studio.  Luxurious spa days can extend into the evenings as each of the 24 suites and four two-bedroom villas have their very own private baths drawing water directly from the hot springs. Traditional Japanese design elements are woven into the property’s modern features with sliding screen doors, wooden panels and gardens, as well as an isolated lotus pond with private pavilion for a quiet spot of afternoon tea. The Amanemu is ideally located to explore the ancient sites of Japan including shrines, trails and fishing bays.

 www.ampersandtravel.com     +44 (0)207 819 9770


The Silo, Cape Town

An iconic hotel in an iconic destination. The Silo is the latest addition to The Royal Portfolio. The Royal Portfolio began in 2000, when Liz and Phil Biden converted their family bush lodge into what is now Royal Malewane. Since then, the Bidens have dreamed of opening a hotel in their home city of Cape Town. A hotel that would complete the portfolio of quintessentially South African experiences. The Silo is the realisation of that dream. The Silo will open in late 2016

The Silo will be a magical space towering above the V&A Waterfront surrounded by the natural wonder of the Mother City. The building has been designed by Thomas Heatherwick, Founder and Principal of the London-based Heatherwick Studio. Heatherwick Studio was tasked with the transformation of the elevator house and the adjacent storage annexe of 6 rows of 7 silos, while carefully retaining its cultural significance and creating a building that will be as synonymous with the Cape Town skyline as the Eiffel Tower is to Paris.

The Silo will have 28 rooms, including a spectacular penthouse. Each room will be individually designed and decorated by the stylish wand of Liz Biden. Colourful and eclectic pieces will juxtapose the modern, industrial architecture. The 9 room categories are based on the room size and the views. The rooms are more spacious vertically than horizontally due to the unique architecture of The Silo and in particular the ingenious design of the pillowed window bays which are one of the key architectural features. This design showcases the extraordinary natural beauty of Cape Town.

The Silo


Il Sereno, Lake Como

Scheduled for opening in Spring 2016, il Sereno Lago di Como will build on the unique formula that has propelled its Caribbean counterpart to ongoing success: relaxed privacy, understated elegance, and inspiring design. Stylish and peaceful, it promises to add a whole new flavor of luxury to the area’s prestigious collection of lakeside hotels.

The essence of le Sereno—an intimate setting with a cutting edge design—lives on as we expand across the Atlantic. Guests of il Sereno will be treated to the same sense of privacy and place enjoyed in St. Barths, while experiencing some of the world’s most stunning scenery directly from their secluded terrace. The result is a design and ambience that is unlike any other in this region renowned for luxury hotels. Thanks to our deliberately small size—a mere 34 suites—visiting guests will escape to a lake refuge tailor-made for privacy and relaxation. Be it in our spacious bedrooms (the smallest room is over 600 sq-ft), private terraces, secluded gardens, 60-foot infinity pool, or restricted sundeck, there is not a single space on property without a panoramic view of Lago di Como.

A promising culinary destination for hotel guests and locals alike, il Sereno’s terrace restaurant is another Patricia Urquiola creation that sits directly on the water. The restaurant will take inspiration and ingredients from the nearby regions of Valtellina, Lake, and the Milanese Plateau to serve simple and delicious creations on the waterfront. Imagine perfectly executed Italian cuisine. Imagine an atmosphere with the sophistication of nearby Milan and the glamour of Como. Imagine a balmy summer night with exquisite wine and natural evening lighting past 10pm. All this and more awaits at il Sereno Restaurant.


Finolhu, Maldives

Having revolutionised the ‘typical Maldives resort’ concept with this year’s game-changing launch of Amilla Fushi, The Small Maldives Island Co. looks set to confound expectations once again with the opening of sister resort Finolhu in Summer 2016.  Bringing a timeless sense of style to the pristine lagoons and rich waters of the Maldives’ Baa Atoll, Finolhu will be a refined, retro-inspired island paradise for the fun-loving beach-erati, and an unexpected revival of the halcyon days of the classic chic getaway.

Located in the UNESCO world biosphere that is the Baa Atoll (just 30 minutes in a speedboat from sister resort Amilla Fushi) Finolhu is the ultimate island experience for chic couples, fun-loving families and gatherings of friends alike.  Over water or on the beach, as one- or two-bedroom with or without pool,  there are seven villa types to choose from - all eclectically furnished with design classics and firm favourites, from iconic Marshall speakers to the famous blue bottles of organic skin and body products by the UK’s very own Neal’s Yard Remedies.

Collaborating once again with Island Restaurateur Luke Mangan, Finolhu is home to the kind of laid-back yet elegant dining options you would expect from this world-renowned chef.   An island outpost of Salt Grill, Luke’s signature restaurant in Singapore, is all about modern Australian food; the Fish & Crab Shack is a relaxed, quirky nod to traditional seaside food stalls; Baa Bar and Dining offers the beautiful simplicity of bold flavours done well, served under the stars and accompanied by a world class wine library; whilst Kanusan showcases the clean, innovative flavour combinations of Asian cuisine.



Mosquito Island, BVI

Meet the newest addition to Sir Richard Branson’s luxury collection of award-winning retreats, Virgin Limited Edition  – The Branson Estate on Moskito Island, available for rental from early 2016. 

Situated on 125 acres of stunning paradise, surrounded by turquoise Caribbean waters, The Branson Estate features three villas: Headland House, Mangrove Villa and Beach Villa offering a total of 11 bedrooms for at least 22 guests. The three villas are complemented by a Recreation Area on the eastern side of the island where guests can take advantage of a diverse range of activities and dining options all based around Beach House. With a wraparound infinity pool, hot tub, swim-up bar and nearby tennis pavilion, the Beach House is the perfect location to take in the stunning views and socialise with friends and family. 

The Branson Estate offers the perfect balance of that ‘home away from home’ feeling combined with the full range of services you’d expect from a luxury hotel. From kite surfing to stargazing, the Estate will go above and beyond conventional villa rental.

Moskito Island


Six Senses Zil Pasyon, Seychelles

Scheduled to open in 2016, Six Senses Zil Pasyon is located on the private island of Félicité. Approximately 30 nautical miles (55 kilometres) northeast of Mahe, the resort is accessible by helicopter from the International Airport or a short boat ride from neighbouring La Digue and Praslin islands.  Situated on the north side of the island, Six Senses Zil Pasyon will occupy less than one third of the total land, a sanctuary within a natural environment as the island features prolific indigenous and abundant flora and fauna.  Comprising 28 one-bedroom villas, two two-bedroom villas and 17 private residences, all with private pools, the resort has been designed by Richard Hywel Evans of Studio RHE, who has created an oasis of serenity encircled by the Indian Ocean, while Six Senses will oversee the interior design.  

The resort will include two restaurants, a bar, boutiques, a recreation centre and Six Senses Spa in addition to a well-appointed gym and swimming pool.  Félicité is one of the most dramatically beautiful isles in the 115-island nation featuring massive granite boulders that fringe the shoreline and create an air of drama and mystery.  Measuring 652 acres (264 hectares), the resort will create a very personal destination that embraces nature whilst offering every creature comfort.

Six Senses Zil Pasyon


Miavana, Madagascar

Madagascar is renowned for having the world’s most unique and diverse wildlife and next October 2016 it will also prove its unique hotel credentials with an entirely new species of holiday born at Miavana.  Located on the private island of Nosy Ankao, an unspoiled wildlife haven off the northeast coast of Madagascar, Miavana is a new ultra luxurious lodge boasting 14 one, two and three bedroom villas, which are dotted along the western shore.  Combining a bare foot powder soft sand beach, which guests step onto from their lodge and some of the most unique safari and wildlife adventures in the world, Miavana is bringing a new level of luxury to Madagascar.  The island itself is surrounded by a pristine reef, which offers unbeatable snorkelling and diving opportunities as well as turtle, dolphin and whale watching, which can be experienced on Miavana’s ‘Blue Safari’.  Alternatively, guests can make their way into the depths of the island to discover the incredible wildlife that inhabits this undiscovered isle.  Accessed by helicopter from Diego Suarez, it is also possible to enjoy forest walks and lemur treks on the mainland.

Designed by Silvio Rech and Lesley Carstens, who were behind the award-winning North Island in the Seychelles, the villas are vast and boast outdoor and indoor living space.  The main lodge features a French garden, wine cellar dining areas, a Chamber of Curiosities filled with items found on the island, from canon balls to lemur skeletons and a swimming pool set on the sand surrounded by lush green vegetation.

www.scottdunn.com / +44 (0) 20 8682 5070

The go-to girl for luxury hotels, Lisa Corcoran knows how to travel in style. Join Lisa on her quest, with a little help from her friends, to seek out those special places which stand apart from the rest.