‘It blew me away’: the hotels that have wowed the stars

Where do celebrities go on holiday? If you’re in New York, Choirmaster Gareth Malone recommends a visit to The Dream Downtown (www.dreamhotels.com; 00 1 887 753 7326).

“They have a pool above the lobby, with a transparent floor, so you can look up and see people swimming above you,” he tells The Independent. “It felt very sophisticated. You walk out and you’re right in Chelsea too.”

Alternatively, Doctor Who actress Jenna Coleman likes The Bowery (www.theboweryhotel.com; 001 212 505 9100). “The bathrooms are amazing, all black-and-white tiles, and the bar has a good vibe. It was near Christmas when I stayed, so I’ve got memories of Frank Sinatra songs playing in the rooms,” she tells The Independent. And for food, she loves August on Bleecker Street (www.augustny.com; 00 1 212 929 8727).

Cricket commentator Henry Blofeld loved the Grand Hotel Europe (www.grandhoteleurope.com; 0845-0772 222) in St Petersburg.

A friend invited him to stay and “we had the most unbelievable week, being fed astonishing food and wine – the hotel’s restaurant is possibly one of the finest in Russia”, he told The Sunday Times. “We stayed in the Romanov Suite which has a bathroom that resembles a marble palace.”

The Grand Hotel des Iles Borromees, ItalyThe Grand Hotel des Iles Borromees (www.borromees.it; 00 39 0323 938938) on Lake Maggiore in Italy impressed sports presenter Jeff Stelling.

“It was… like living in an art gallery,” he said in The Independent. One of his favourite restaurants is in Barcelona. Botafumeiro does “fantastic food: ham, anchovies, you name it, they have absolutely everything”.(www.botafumeiro.es; 00 34 932 184 230)

The Soneva Fushi resort (www.soneva.com; 00 960 660 0304) in the Maldives won actor Martin Clunes’ seal of approval. “We’ve been six times,” he told The Daily Telegraph. “It’s an island resort and the rooms have little gardens with their own pools and a little path to the beach.” But “it’s very expensive, you might need to sell a car to go there”.

Former England footballer Michael Owen told The Independent his favourite hotel is the Guangzhou Marriott Hotel Tianhe in China (www.marriott.co.uk; 00 86 20 6108 8888). “It blew me away. I’ve stayed in quite a few nice hotels over the years, but this was fabulous. The restaurants were the main feature, but it had lovely pools and gyms too.”

TV presenter Lorraine Kelly has two hot tips. The Taj Mahal Palace hotel (www.tajhotels.com; 00 91 22 6665 3366) in Mumbai enjoys an “extraordinary” location, and “the service is brilliant – absolutely the right balance”, she told The Daily Telegraph.

Closer to home, Kelly recommends The Foveran (www.foveranhotel.co.uk; 01856-872389) in Orkney. It’s “basic but very comfortable. The food is fantastic: lobster and fresh seafood that has just been caught”.

Three songs of praise

The Pangkor Laut Resort, MalaysiaSinger Katherine Jenkins can’t narrow it down to one favourite hotel – she has three. If she’s in Malaysia, she likes to stay at The Pangkor Laut Resort (pictured, right, Pangkorlautresort.com; 00 60 5699 1100), which “has some great individual properties”, she told The Daily Telegraph.

In South Africa, she loves Ellerman House (Ellerman.co.za; 00 27 21 430 3200) in Cape Town.

It has a private villa – “one of the most gorgeous villas I’ve ever seen”. Closer to home, “Babington House (Babingtonhouse.co.uk; 01373-812266) in Somerset is where I spent
my 30th birthday and somewhere I return to for a luxury weekend in the country”.



Claim 12 issues of MoneyWeek (plus much more) for just £12!

Let MoneyWeek show you how to profit, whatever the outcome of the upcoming general election.

Start your no-obligation trial today and get up to speed on:

  • The latest shifts in the economy…
  • The ongoing Brexit negotiations…
  • The new tax rules…
  • Trump’s protectionist policies…

Plus lots more.

We’ll show you what it all means for your money.

Plus, the moment you begin your trial, we’ll rush you over THREE free investment reports:

‘How to escape the most hated tax in Britain’: Inheritance tax hits many unsuspecting families. Our report tells how to pass on up to £2m of your money to your family without the taxman getting a look in.

‘How to profit from a Trump presidency’: The election of Donald Trump was a watershed moment for the US economy. This report details the sectors our analysts think will boom from Trump’s premiership, and gives specific investments you can buy to profit.

‘Best shares to watch in 2017’: Includes the transcript from our roundtable panel of investment professionals – and 12 tips they’re currently tipping. The report also analyses key assets, including property, oil and the countries whose stock markets currently offer the most value.