The World's Most Spectacular Hotels: 2020 Gold List by Condé Nast Traveller

The "best hotels in the world" have been revealed, according to the 2020 Gold List compiled by Condé Nast Traveller.

The annual list by the luxury travel publication highlights some of the most spectacular hotels around the world. Here we look at some of our favorites from the shortlist of 129 hotels, chosen from the U.S., Canada, Caribbean, South America, Europe, Africa, the Indian Ocean, Asia, the Middle East, Australia and New Zealand.

North America and the Caribbean

Hotels in New York City and California dominated this regional selection, including five properties in the Big Apple such as The Greenwich Hotel in the Tribeca neighborhood of Lower Manhattan. Designed with earthy tones and understated touches, including abstract paintings by actor Robert De Niro's late father, it's no surprise the five-star luxury hotel owned by the Hollywood star attracted an A-list crowd, with rapper Jay-Z and other celebrities said to be among the hotel's regular fixtures.

Further uptown on West 53rd Street, The Baccarat from the French luxury brand of the same name, dating back to the 18th century, oozes elegance and opulence, showcasing the brand's signature crystal pieces in its interior. The five-star hotel is conveniently located opposite the Museum of Modern Art, which recently reopened following a major $450 million expansion in October.

The historic Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons Hotel, a Los Angeles institution boasting a 91-year-history and star-studded guestbook, is among the four California properties that made the cut, along with the Sunset Tower, another celebrity haunt dating back to 1931 which has hosted Hollywood greats including Clark Gable, Frank Sinatra and Ava Gardner.

The luxurious Four Seasons Lanai on the southeast coast of the Hawaiian island Lanai also made the list, for its oceanfront setting on an island known for its unspoiled feel and dramatic natural landscape.

The Wickaninnish Inn is the only Canadian property to make this year's list. The remote bolthole from the luxury hotel group Relais & Chateaux is tucked away in the heart of Clayoquot Sound, off the west coast of Vancouver Island.

Further afield in the Caribbean, top picks include The Turtle Inn, an idyllic hideaway in Belize from film director Francis Ford Coppola's Family Coppola hotel group. The property was noted for its scenic location on a remote white-sand beach along the Caribbean Sea. Sitting at the fringes of the Belize Barrier Reef, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the hotel offers its own castaway island at Coral Caye.

Hotel Four Seasons Lanai Hawaii
A view of the Nobu restaurant at the Four Seasons Lanai in Hawaii. Barbara Kraft / Four Seasons

Dorado Beach, a Ritz Carlton Reserve luxury hotel in Puerto Rico, which underwent a major refurbishment following Hurricane Maria in 2017, received a nod for its setting where "Biennale-worthy art is scattered on tree branches," the magazine noted, as well as its incredible spa.

The best of the rest

South America

Tierra Atacama is a standout among this year's South American hotel picks for its location in the middle of the northern desert of Chile, with an outdoor pool offering views of the Licancabur volcano across a remote desert landscape.


The jam-packed list of European top picks including several from the U.K. (dominated by London hotels), France (including a handful in Paris and other pockets of the country), Italy (including Rome, Venice, Tuscany and Amalfi Coast), Germany, Greece, Turkey, Denmark and the Netherlands.

The picks are mostly classic timeless hotels like the Ritz Paris and Belmond Hotel Cipriani in Venice. A few hipster havens are also in the mix such as the Nimb in Copenhagen and the Hoxton Paris, featuring a buzzy bar and lounge area sprawled across the courtyard and lobby, with an additional intimate cocktail bar overlooking the courtyard from the second level.

Africa & Middle East

With several tourist-heavy spots covered in this selection, including South Africa and Morocco, Namibia and Oman may be less-crowded options for a relaxed getaway.

A stay at the Hoanib on Namibia's remote Skeleton Coast promises you'll "never feel more alive," from dune-bashing on drive across the desert to stalking paw tracks on riverbeds and admiring wildlife including ornyx, mountain zebras, lions and elephants.

Located at the edge of "the most outrageously beautiful canyon" on the Arabian Peninsula, Oman's Anantara Al Jabal Al Akhdar hotel is said to be home to the highest swimming pools, tennis court and stargazing platform in the Middle East. "But the real essence of this place is pure escapism," the magazine notes.


The sprawling selection of picks from Asia range from beachfront island getaways in Bali, Cambodia and Thailand to city escapes in bustling capitals like Tokyo and Seoul, including the Park Hyatt Seoul.

This urban retreat in the heart of the South Korean capital's luxurious Gangnam district offers a quiet break from the busy life of the city which can be observed from an infinity pool above offering spectacular skyline views through floor-to-ceiling glass walls.

Australia & New Zealand

The three hotels from this selection are all mountain retreats outside the main cities, such as the Matakauri Lodge in Queenstown, which was described to be "the embodiment of New Zealand's own brand of epic luxury," for its offering of picturesque views of the surrounding landscape, matched by its superb service and comfortable feel.

See the full 2020 Gold List at the Condé Nast Traveller website.