For anyone planning a campaign with star-quality prizes or incentives, these hotels need to be on your radar this year.
London - Ned, Soho House & Nobu Hotel, Shoreditch
Those with an eye for vintage style will be awaiting the opening of the Ned, Soho House’s reimagining of Sir Edwin Lutyen’s Midland Bank building, the heart of the Square Mile. The vault has been transformed into a bar and the rooftop pool has a million-dollar view over St Paul’s. For cutting-edge architecture though it has to be Nobu Hotel, Shoreditch, the latest collaboration between Robert De Niro and the Japanese chef Nobu Matsuhisa. The striking steel façade is one part Blade Runner. Two parts Dalek. The restaurant will also feature a DJ booth. Ned opens in April, Nobu in June.
Devon - Lympstone Manor
After 21 uears and two Michelin stars at Gidleigh Park, Michael Caine wanted a new challenger. AT Lympstone Manor, his country house near Exeter, the décor will be as modern and original as the dishes. The rooms will have a New England feel and there’ll be tasty views of the Exe estuary from the three dining rooms. Opens April.
The Pig hotels have been a runaway success, and the next one in the litter is due to open in a Georgian mansion near Arundel, with heart-stopping views of the South Downs National Park. No name yet, opens next winter.
Tony Conigliaro is the kind of conceptual cocktail: his Michelin-worthy mixology has been the downfall of many a guest at London’s Zetter Townhouses. Now he’s branding out: details are sketchy, but centre on a bar with louche rooms by the River Charents, opposite the Hennessy distillery. Sounds fabulous. Opens in the summer.
Jasper Conran has created womenswear, menswear, homewear, accessories, fragrance, and finally, a hotel. His 19th-century riad, L’Hotel has a 1920’s vibe, with five suites decorated with antiques and art from the designer’s personal collection, and there’s a communal pool, a rare and welcome plus in the pulsating medina.
The lack of airport has saved this baby Balearic island from the tourist hordes, and the reinvention of the Gecko by Pablo Carrington, Spain’s coolest hotelier, will make the half-hour ferry ride from Ibiza well worth the effort. It’s all about barefoot luxury, the interiors and white on white: with a splash of cobalt blue, leaving the Gecko’s sparkling strip of Migjorn beach to do the talking.