Unveiling the Pursuitist 5-Star Gold Award-Winners: Top 5 Best Luxury Hotel Brands of 2023.
In the realm of luxury hospitality, only a few brands rise to the top, consistently setting the bar in their dedication to superior service, exquisite properties, and crafting tailored experiences that resonate with discerning travelers. This dedication permeates every facet of their operations, from the elegant design of their properties to the finesse of their branding, from the professionalism of their staff to the precision in their attention to detail. With extensive deliberation from the Pursuitist editorial team, luxury travel insiders, and leading journalists, we are thrilled to reveal the Pursuitist 5-Star Gold Award-Winners of the Best Luxury Hotel Brands of 2023.
1. Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
Embarking on its journey in 1961, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts has since paved its way to become a paragon of ultra-luxury hospitality. Its commitment to quality and consistent service has remained unfettered, reflecting in its 100+ properties globally. Whether nestled amidst a buzzing metropolis or on a secluded island, Four Seasons has set a stellar standard in hospitality that transcends all boundaries.
- Heritage and History: Started by Isadore Sharp in Toronto in 1961, it transformed the idea of luxury hospitality with a simple guiding principle: treating every guest as an individual with their own specific needs.
- Leadership: Alejandro Reynal leads the brand, focusing on the guest experience.
- Brand Affiliation: Four Seasons operates independently, assuring consistency and excellence across its properties.
- Mission: “To create an environment where employees can do their best, and the result will be an experience that is so exceptional, guests will return to a Four Seasons again and again.” – Four Seasons’ mission.
- Key Locations: The Four Seasons boasts properties in some of the world’s most sought-after destinations, from Paris to Maui, and from Bora Bora to the Serengeti.
- Defining Aspects: Four Seasons stands out for its unparalleled commitment to customer service, exceptional properties, and unique, local experiences.
Why Pursuitist Ranks Them the Best: Four Seasons’ dedication to offering personalized service, the brand’s drive for innovation, and the experiences they offer make them a Pursuitist 5-Star Gold Award-winner.
5 Must-Visit Best Resorts:
- Four Seasons Resort Bora Bora
- Four Seasons Hotel George V, Paris
- Four Seasons Hotel New York
- Four Seasons Resort Nevis
- Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World
2. Aman Resorts
With a Sanskrit name meaning ‘peace’, Aman Resorts offers a unique vision of hospitality that focuses on minimalist luxury, serene environments, and a holistic approach. Founded in 1988, Aman has curated its properties to provide a tranquil retreat for luxury travelers. Their mission to provide a “warm welcome, an elevated way of life, and ever-expanding personal experiences” is embodied in each of their unique locations.
- Heritage and History: The brainchild of Adrian Zecha, Aman Resorts was born with the vision of creating boutique properties that focus on location and experience.
- Leadership: CEO Vlad Doronin perpetuates the brand’s vision of luxury as a state of mind and being.
- Brand Affiliation: Aman Resorts operates independently, ensuring the singular essence of the brand remains undiluted.
- Mission: “The Aman journey is about a warm welcome, an elevated way of life and ever-expanding personal experiences.” – Aman Resorts’ mission.
- Key Locations: Each Aman property is nestled in an exclusive locale, such as the scenic landscapes of Amangiri in Utah or the cultural heart of Tokyo with Aman Tokyo.
- Defining Aspects: Aman stands out for its focus on minimalist luxury, its secluded and exotic locations, and a commitment to a peaceful and holistic approach to luxury hospitality.
Why Pursuitist Ranks Them the Best: Aman’s understanding of luxury as an emotional and transcendental experience, their commitment to serenity, and their extraordinary destinations make them a Pursuitist 5-Star Gold Award-winner.
5 Must-Visit Best Resorts:
- Aman Tokyo
- Amangiri, Utah
- Aman Sveti Stefan, Montenegro
- Amankila, Bali
- Aman Venice, Italy
3. The Ritz-Carlton
An emblem of timeless luxury, The Ritz-Carlton is a beacon of fine living and high standards. Founded in 1983, the brand was inspired by the legendary hotelier César Ritz known as “king of hoteliers and hotelier to kings.” Today, The Ritz-Carlton is known for its unwavering commitment to service, providing luxury travelers with an experience that enlivens the senses, instills well-being, and fulfills even unexpressed wishes and needs.
- Heritage and History: Named after César Ritz, the brand has upheld the high standards set by its namesake.
- Leadership: Herve Humler is the co-founder and former president of The Ritz-Carlton brand.
- Brand Affiliation: The Ritz-Carlton operates as a part of the Marriott International portfolio.
- Mission: “We are Ladies and Gentlemen serving Ladies and Gentlemen.” – The Ritz-Carlton’s motto.
- Key Locations: The Ritz-Carlton’s key properties include The Ritz-Carlton, Tokyo, The Ritz-Carlton New York, NoMad, and The Ritz-Carlton, Bali.
- Defining Aspects: The Ritz-Carlton is known for its legendary service, timeless elegance, and commitment to enhancing the guest experience.
Why Pursuitist Ranks Them the Best: The Ritz-Carlton’s heritage of timeless elegance, its dedication to providing exceptional service, and its commitment to fulfilling even unexpressed guest needs make it a Pursuitist 5-Star Gold Award-winner.
5 Must-Visit Best Resorts:
- The Ritz-Carlton, Tokyo
- The Ritz-Carlton, Bali
- The Ritz-Carlton, Mexico City
- The Ritz-Carlton, Dubai
- The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman
4. Mandarin Oriental
Melding contemporary style with traditional oriental charm, Mandarin Oriental offers travelers a rich tapestry of experiences that celebrate the essence of each destination. Founded in 1963, the brand quickly became a byword for style, service, and sophistication. Through their Asian heritage and forward-thinking mindset, they continue to create unique experiences that enrich the mind, body, and soul, leaving travelers yearning for their next Mandarin Oriental stay.
- Heritage and History: Rooted in Asian heritage, the Mandarin Oriental was born from the fusion of The Mandarin in Hong Kong and The Oriental in Bangkok.
- Leadership: Led by Group CEO James Riley, the brand continues to scale new heights in luxury hospitality.
- Brand Affiliation: Mandarin Oriental operates as part of the Jardine Matheson Group.
- Mission: “To delight our guests each and every day” – Mandarin Oriental’s guiding principle.
- Key Locations: Prime properties include The Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok, The Mandarin Oriental, Miami, and The Mandarin Oriental, Paris.
- Defining Aspects: Mandarin Oriental is known for its perfect blend of contemporary style with oriental charm, its world-class spas, and its commitment to sustainability.
Why Pursuitist Ranks Them the Best: With their distinct blend of heritage and modernity, world-class service, and unforgettable experiences, Mandarin Oriental holds a deserving place as a Pursuitist 5-Star Gold Award-winner.
5 Must-Visit Best Resorts:
- Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok
- Mandarin Oriental, Miami
- Mandarin Oriental, Paris
- Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong
- Mandarin Oriental, Tokyo
5. Rosewood Hotels and Resorts
Embodying a sense of place in each of its properties, Rosewood Hotels and Resorts allows travelers to experience destinations in an immersive and personalized way. Established in 1979, the brand has curated its collection of properties to evoke a refined but residential style of luxury, reflecting the culture, history, and geography of each location.
- Heritage and History: Founded by Caroline Rose Hunt in 1979, Rosewood Hotels and Resorts originated in Dallas, Texas, with the ethos of a residential style of luxury.
- Leadership: Led by CEO Sonia Cheng, Rosewood continues to redefine luxury hospitality.
- Brand Affiliation: Rosewood is a part of the larger Rosewood Hotel Group, which includes brands like New World Hotels and KHOS.
- Mission: “We believe that true hospitality is found in the nurturing and building of strong relationships with each other, our guests and our communities.” – Rosewood’s philosophy.
- Key Locations: The brand’s standout properties include Rosewood London, Rosewood Beijing, and Las Ventanas al Paraíso, a Rosewood Resort.
- Defining Aspects: Rosewood is distinguished by its ‘A Sense of Place’ philosophy, bespoke services, and its commitment to nurturing relationships with guests and communities.
Why Pursuitist Ranks Them the Best: With their deep commitment to providing a unique sense of place, nurturing relationships, and their signature residential-style luxury, Rosewood is indeed a Pursuitist 5-Star Gold Award-winner.
5 Must-Visit Best Resorts:
- Rosewood London
- Las Ventanas al Paraíso, a Rosewood Resort, Los Cabos
- Rosewood Beijing
- Rosewood Bermuda
- Rosewood Phuket
Here are the key qualities that all these top luxury hotel brands share:
- Customer-Centric Approach: All these brands prioritize the needs and experiences of their guests above all else. This customer-centric approach is characterized by personalized services and a commitment to meeting and exceeding customer expectations.
- Superior Service: They are all known for their exceptional service standards. The staff at these brands are trained to offer the highest level of service to ensure a memorable stay for their guests.
- Quality and Consistency: These brands all maintain high standards of quality and consistency across their properties. Whether it’s the quality of their rooms, the food they serve, or the service they provide, they ensure that these standards are consistent across all their properties globally.
- Unique and Luxury Experiences: They all offer unique and luxurious experiences to their guests. This could be through their property’s location, their unique amenities, exceptional dining experiences, or through personalized guest experiences.
- Innovation and Adaptability: All these brands are continuously innovating and adapting to meet the changing needs and expectations of luxury travelers. This is in the form of incorporating new technology, offering new services, or continually updating their properties.
- Heritage and Authenticity: Each of these brands has a rich heritage and they strive to maintain the authenticity of their brand and the experiences they offer. This heritage and authenticity often reflect in the architecture, décor, and the overall guest experience at their properties.
- Focus on Well-being: These luxury hotel brands are increasingly focusing on the well-being of their guests. This is evident in the form of wellness amenities, such as spas and wellness centers, as well as wellness programs and experiences.
- Commitment to Sustainability: They show a growing commitment to sustainability and responsible travel. This can be seen in their efforts to reduce their environmental impact, support local communities, and promote sustainable practices.
In conclusion, the hospitality brands that have earned Pursuitist’s 5-Star Gold Award for Best Luxury Hotel Brands of 2023 distinguish themselves through their rich heritage, unwavering commitment to their guests, and their ability to offer exceptional and personalized luxury experiences. These brands, including Four Seasons, Aman Resorts, The Ritz-Carlton, Mandarin Oriental, and Rosewood, each offer a unique and compelling interpretation of luxury travel. It is their consistency, dedication, and passion that position them as leaders in the realm of luxury hospitality, setting the benchmark for others to aspire to.
Christopher Parr, is the Editor and Chief Content Creator for Pursuitist, and a contributing writer to USA Today, Business Insider — and the on-air host of Travel Tuesday on Live at 4 CBS. He is an award-winning luxury marketing veteran, writer, a frequent speaker at luxury and interactive marketing conferences and a pioneer in web publishing. Named a "Top 10 Luxury Travel Blogger” by USA Today, Parr has also been selected as the official winner in Luxury Lifestyle Awards’ 2023 list of the “Top 50 Best Luxury Influencers and Bloggers in the World.”