Hotel Punta Islita
     

Hotel Punta Islita

Islita, Costa Rica

Set on a hillside overlooking the Pacific, Hotel Punta Islita is an ideal choice for those looking for a bit more privacy than you'll find at your standard accommodation. Set on 300 acres, this scenic resort offers everything from standard double rooms all the way up to private villas, all of which offer outdoor areas and ocean views. And should you feel the need to move about a bit, you'll also find a fitness center, a 9-hole golf course, tennis courts, two pools, gardens, a spa, and two restaurants on site — and, of course, don't forget about the beach.

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Hanging Gardens Ubud
     

Hanging Gardens Ubud

Payangan, Bali

Set in the rainforest at the heart of Bali, Hanging Gardens Ubud is an exquisite alternative to a traditional beach resort. The multi-level property is home to 38 villas ranging in size from 100 to 160 square meters, and all boasting king-size four-poster beds, handmade baths, terraces with open-air showers, and Java stone infinity pools. Speaking of pools, the resort is home to one of the world's most dramatic — a split-level infinity pool lined with Batu Chandi slate stone. Add in the restaurant, bar, river cafe, spa and great views of the neighboring Padmasana Temple, and you've got all the ingredients needed for a stellar vacation.

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Palau Pacific Resort
     

Palau Pacific Resort

Koror, Palau

The South Pacific is filled with great places to take a vacation — but you'd be foolish to book a trip to the obvious stops without checking out Palau. And the Palau Pacific Resort is the place to stay while you're there. Set on 64 acres of tropical gardens on one of the nine inhabited islands, this high-end resort boasts 160 rooms with traditional decor and many with ocean views, as well as its own white sand beach, multiple restaurants and bars, a full-service spa, a diving center, tennis courts, a gym, and the requisite infinity pool. Need something more? There's always the private dinner for two atop the ocean, or you can hop in a kayak and explore the hundreds of islands that make up the country.

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La Tagliata
     

La Tagliata

Positano, Italy

The only thing eating at an authentic Italian restaurant in Italy? Not having to sleepily drive your car somewhere after your meal. Set on a hillside on the Amalfi Coast high above the Tyrhenian Sea, La Tagliata is a unique hideaway offering just two rooms — La Botticella, with a king size bed, a private balcony with Jacuzzi, and a mosaic shower, and La Limonella, with a private terrace, king bed, and glass-walled bathroom. Breakfast is included with a stay in either room, as is access to the onsite gardens — but you'll probably just want to eat at the restaurant anyway.

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Grace Santorini
     

Grace Santorini

Thera, Greece

Greece might be best known for its yogurt, ancient ruins, and epic legends, but one visit to Grace Santorini will have you forgetting all of that. Set upon a hillside with breathtaking views of the Caldera, this upscale resort offers a variety of rooms and suites — some with private plunge pools — decked out in traditional white and filled with luxurious fixtures and furnishings. Also on site is an infinity pool, conveniently located right next to the bar and Mediterranean fusion restaurant, as well as a gym, spa treatment room, and hundreds of spots to catch a great sunset view.

Photos: Serge Detalle
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Hotel Hotel
     

Hotel Hotel

Canberra, Australia

Pop quiz: What's the capital of Australia? If you said Sydney, guess again — while Canberra might not be at the top of everyone's Down Under checklist, it's more than worth a visit, and Hotel Hotel is the place to stay while you're there. Taking up three floors of the Nishi building on Lake Burley Griffin, it offers 68 sleek, stylish rooms outfitted with an eye on sustainability, as well as a cinema, grocery store, bicycle shop, gym, library, gallery, spa, hair salon, and multiple eateries, bars, and lounges all just steps from your door.

Photos: Ross Honeysett, Lee Grant
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Faralda NDSM Crane Hotel
     

Faralda NDSM Crane Hotel

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

It's not big in terms of rooms — there's only three suites in the entire place — but it's certainly big in terms of height. The Faralda NDSM Crane Hotel, as the name suggests, is built inside a crane, with its three rooms sitting at 35, 40, and 45 meters up, respectively. Each room has its own theme, with interesting art, eclectic furniture, and an upscale bathroom. And should you feel like grabbing an even better gaze of the city, head to the top deck, where you'll find a jacuzzi and unencumbered 360ยบ views.

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Chateau de Villiers Le Mahieu
     

Chateau de Villiers Le Mahieu

Villiers-le-Mahieu, France

There are plenty of palatial places to stay in Paris — but if you truly want to experience the opulence of old-world France, book a few nights at Chateau de Villiers Le Mahieu. Built in 1642 on top of the remains of a 13th century castle, this unique estate offers 93 rooms, each of which blends modern style and colors with neo-classical elements, and features an attached bathroom. Also on the grounds, you'll find a restaurant, bar, orchard, gardens, spa, pool, a sauna, and a fitness room — and if that's not enough for you, the City of Lights is just 30 short minutes away.

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The Hermitage Plantation Inn
     

The Hermitage Plantation Inn

Pond Hill, Saint Kitts and Nevis

There are certainly flashier places to stay in Nevis, but if you're looking for a more authentic experience, The Hermitage Plantation Inn is your best bet. Located at the base of Nevis Peak some 800 feet above the Caribbean and just a few miles from the beach, this quaint hotel offers 15 hotel rooms, each housed in a traditional style cottage and furnished with antiques. As the cottages are scattered throughout the garden, the property feels more like a small village than a resort, with the Main House — built around 1700, and claimed to be the oldest house on the island — serving as the town hall, as it serves up delicious meals prepared by cooks from nearby villages, and an amazing rum punch made using a local recipe that dates back 350 years. Like we said: Authentic.

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Wanderlust Hotel
     

Wanderlust Hotel

2 Dickson Road, Singapore

What better name for a place welcoming world travelers than the Wanderlust Hotel? Fortunately, this interesting Design Hotels property is far more than a clever name. It offers 29 rooms across four levels, each with its own theme. Lobby level rooms feature an "industrial glam" design, while second level "eccentricity" rooms boast colorful designs, neon lights, and access to an outdoor deck. Third level rooms sports a black and white palette, while top-level rooms boast friendly "monsters" in each room. Add in a welcoming bar and French eatery Cocotte and you have an ideal base for your local adventures.

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Sea Island
     

Sea Island

Sea Island, Georgia

Yes, technically, Sea Island is a resort. But it's really so much more than that. Located off the Georgia coastline in between Jacksonville and Savannah, this fantastic spot features multiple accommodation options, including the 40-room Lodge, the golf-focused Inn, hundreds of rental cottages ranging from three- to seven-bedrooms in size, and the elegant Cloister, which also encompasses a beach club and ocean villas. On the property, you'll also find seven dining venues ranging from casual to the award-winning Georgian Room, five miles of pristine beach, three championship golf courses, tennis and squash courts, a 65,000 square-foot spa, a fitness center, and opportunities for fishing, boating, shooting, and hunting. Or you could just lounge by the pool — totally up to you.

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Las Terrazas
     

Las Terrazas

San Pedro, Belize

It's possible to do a vacation to Belize on the cheap, renting out small huts — or even hammocks — by the ocean for just dollars a day. But if that's not your style, Las Terrazas is a good option. This luxurious resort is located on the island of Ambergris Caye, just 30 miles north of Belize City, and offers 37 full-sized townhomes ranging in size from one to three bedrooms and from 983 to 3,000 square feet. Also on site are a restaurant, full-service spa, a gorgeous pool, and, of course, plenty of pristine beach.

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