The Best Luxury Hotels to Book in the USA

Escape reality for a vacation in paradise with these incredible luxury hotels across the US
Escape reality for a vacation in paradise with these incredible luxury hotels across the US | Courtesy of Hotel Wailea /
Photo of Abigail Blasi
30 November 2021

Some of the world’s best luxury hotels are found across the United States. There is so much to explore in the US, from wide open prairies, snow-peaked mountain ranges, mangrove-fringed bayous and extraordinary desert rock formations, to buzzy coastal cities, elegant colonial towns and tropical beachside boltholes. It’s unsurprising that the many five-star hotels in America offer some of the world’s most sophisticated luxury. Whether you seek inner-city swank or unparalleled comfort amid scenic wilderness, you’ll find the best of big luxury brands and independent five-stars right here.

Little Palm Island, for an island retreat in the Florida Keys

One boat moored at and another moving out from a jetty over blue waters off the small, forested Little Palm Island
Courtesy of Little Palm Island /
Off the coast of the Florida Keys, this private, tropical island is home to a resort of lavishly kitted out, British-colonial-style bungalows. The lush suites feature vaulted ceilings and thatched roofs, and the interiors are beautifully furnished with rugs and richly hued armchairs. For those of you on a romantic vacation, Romance Suites have a deck with a copper hot tub and couples’ sunlounger. SpaTerre is the signature spa of Noble House Hotels & Resorts, and in the indoor and outdoor spa, you can enjoy vanilla- and macadamia-enriched treatments such as the Four Hands Massage.

Amangiri, for desert escapes in Canyon Point, Utah

Outdoor swimming pool with two handrails, in between natural rock formation and walkway with several loungers at Amangiri
© jn2005 / Stockimo / Alamy Stock Photo
Set amid the canyons, mesas, ridges and gorges of Vermilion Cliffs National Monument in Utah, Amangiri gives you unparalleled opportunities for star-gazing and hiking in the remote, thrilling desert landscape of the American Wild West. There are tented suites, Camp Sarika’s one- and two-bedroom pavilions with private plunge pools and floor-to-ceiling windows framing desert vistas, plus desert-view suites – all with pared down, luxuriously minimalist interiors that don’t detract from the views, and fire pits to gather around at night. Mesa-facing suites offer particularly glorious sunset views as the geological formations are tinged with pink and gold. Join in the Yoga on the Rocks at the Aman Spa, or indulge in therapies inspired by Navajo wellness practices before partaking in the Native American-inspired Spirit of the Journey tasting menu at the Amangiri restaurant.

Baccarat Hotel, for French-style luxury in New York

Four-poster bed, long sofa, desk, cushioned stool, armchair and wood cabinet in room at Baccarat Hotel & Residences New York
Courtesy of Baccarat Hotel and Residences New York /
French designers Gilles & Boissier have conjured fabulous, old-school glamour out of contemporary furnishings in this lavish Midtown hotel, with glittering Baccarat glass chandeliers, sumptuous sofas, designer lighting, marble-lined bathrooms and contemporary four-poster beds. Floors are polished parquet, thread-counts are stratospheric and there are spectacular fresh flower arrangements. For downtime, there’s a checkered-floor indoor pool, surrounded by Cote d’Azur-style cabanas, while the Spa de la Mer is America’s first spa devoted to haute skincare brand, Le Mer. Sip a signature Opus in the vaulted, crimson-walled bar, or indulge in afternoon tea at the elegant all-day dining venue the Grand Salon – with Petit Prince options for children.

Royal Palms, for mountain views in Scottsdale, Arizona

Outdoor courtyard at Royal Palms Resort and Spa, with dining tables, many cushioned seats, central fountain and decorative plants
Courtesy of Royal Palms Resort and Spa, part of Hyatt / Expedia
Inspired by Delos and Florence Cooke’s European travels and completed in 1929, this 65-acre (26ha) estate in the foothills of Camelback Mountain has pale terracotta walls and tiled rooftops that seem reminiscent of a Spanish palace. Shaded by palms and brightened by cascades of blazing bougainvilleas, the hotel has dramatic mountain views and rooms decorated in muted hues, with huge beds, sofas and armchairs to sink into. You can eat Mediterranean-inspired dishes such as spaghettoni with Dungeness crab and scallops at the terrace restaurant, T Cook’s.

Pelican Hill, for getting away from it all in Los Angeles

Long cream corner sofa and armchair, flat-screen TV and fireplace in wood-beamed living area at the Resort at Pelican Hill
Courtesy of the Resort at Pelican Hill / Expedia
Built in the style of an Italian Renaissance palace, this beautiful resort feels like you’ve landed on the Amalfi Coast rather than a five-star hotel in America, set amid 500 verdant acres (202ha). Rooms and villas feature pale biscuit furnishings, gleaming-white linen, sea views and private terraces. You’re a mere putt from Pelican Hill Golf Club, and there’s also the Coliseum Pool – a huge oval – and a lush spa, where you can get rejuvenated with a Himalayan salt stone massage. Hungry? There’s a choice of five dining venues, from fresh pastas at Andrea to steak and wood-fired pizzas at the Pelican Grill, which also has an excellent Napa Valley and Sonoma Hills wine menu. If you get bored, downtown Los Angeles is a short drive away.

Brush Creek Ranch, for cowboy adventures in Wyoming

This is your chance to experience the wilds of the American West in style, on a sumptuous all-inclusive ranch-resort set in 30,000 acres (12,141ha) of Wyoming wilderness. Staff can organize fly fishing, horseback riding – there are over 120 horses on the ranch – rock climbing, golfing, hiking and trail running. You’ll stay in log cabins with fireplaces, wood-paneled ceilings and floors, and leather furniture. The spa will unknot the most tightly wound cowboy, while the Farm offers a seed-to-table epicurean adventure, cooking classes, small-batch whiskey tastings at the Spirit Vault, plus tours of their very own brewery and distillery.

Hotel Wailea, for private island luxury in Hawaii

An outdoor pool and hot tub surrounded by loungers, cabanas and lush vegetation at Hotel Wailea
Courtesy of Hotel Wailea / Expedia
Deemed one of the world’s most romantic hotels, this five-star hotel on Maui has 72 individually styled suites decorated with original artwork, all on a private island. It’s perched 300ft (91m) above sea level, and views from here overlook three Hawaiian Islands and the azure ocean. There’s also extraordinary mountain scenery, and 15 acres (6ha) of landscaped grounds that feature a blaze of tropical color and glittering waterfalls. Sip a signature apothecary cocktail at the laid-back poolside Cabanas bar, share small plates at the Birdcage Bar, or treat your loved one to an intimate dinner for two at the Treehouse, with your personal chef conjuring culinary wonders from local ingredients.

Bardessono, for proximity to wineries in Napa Valley, California

A single bed in a hotel room with floor-to-ceiling windows, and a terrace with a pool at Bardessono Hotel and Spa
Courtesy of Bardessono Hotel and Spa / Expedia
Sleekly glamorous Bardessono is an ecofriendly spa resort offering superb modernist villas and suites, with wow-factor, floor-to-ceiling plate-glass doors opening onto sun terraces, a sitting room centered on a flickering fire, a dining table and a plunge pool. The resort spa features a rooftop pool and hot tub, and treatment rooms are full of light – with huge glass windows overlooking the beautifully landscaped gardens. Lucy Restaurant serves field-to-fork fare like buckwheat pappardelle with rabbit sausage ragout and sautéed kale with wild Gulf shrimp, complemented with Napa Valley tipples. Oenophiles looking to expand their knowledge of local tipples will appreciate Bardessono’s location, within easy driving distance of at least two dozen wineries in the surrounding countryside – five-star hotels in America should come with a five-star drink, after all.

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