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This is (y)our wanderlust collection of cool design hotels, luxury villas, stylish houses and boutique B&Bs that share our passion for good architecture and creativity. These are soulful places to stay that we have chosen and that you have always wanted to find, where ordinary is a no- no. Small, family-owned independents of lifestyle and the fine details, these hotels and guesthouses were created by those local heroes, designers and architects who dared to dream. From your alpine pitstop of aged heritage to the modernist architectural den lost in the wilderness, the luxury coastal bolthole to the culture crash pad of urban design.
Meet The Aficionados - pleasingly here, there and not everywhere.
Happy travels amigos,
Iain & Crew
Definitely off-radar, ‘an insider’s boho art den’ best describes this series of lavish apartments, suites and rooms dressed in a plush melange of period styles, furnishings and artistic installations. This discreet little number is famed by writers, artists, actors and thinkers alike.
A fabulous foodie haunt, this chilled riverside hotel in Upper Austria is a traditional modernist that plays with heritage, the arts and nature between the Bohemian Forests and the Danube.
A legendary crash pad of royalty, celebs and lovers of Arlberg, this is the chic chalet hotel and spa of consummate five star style. Interiors are dedicated to Alpine heritage and modern luxe running through the hotel’s family history.
The Hirschen "Young since 1755", is a love pot of heritage, art, culture, food and style – a Wunderkammer of familiar nostalgia reframed for the nomads who seek roots and prefer to sleep with history.
Mesmerhaus, once the sexton’s home, is today a wonderful style chameleon of ornate exteriors and simplistic elegant interiors. The effect is of refined originality, a heritage house reduced to its essence through a calming language of decorative stillness.
Strikingly modern design and humble heritage are the trademarks of Tempel 74 Apartments in the heart of the Mellau-Damüls ski region, just 500m to the ski lifts. Centuries-old Alpine craftsmanship marries pioneering architecture.
The perfect amalgamation of old and new, Benedikta breathes fresh life into Vorarlberg heritage traditions in this smoothly crafted private-hire house originally built in 1836, located in the sleepy village of Vandans clasped by the wildflower-strewn valley of Montafon, west Austria.
Overlooking a dramatic diorama of mountains and valleys, this fun spirited luxury den threads the Heimat of Montafon with a modernist design aesthetic.
Nothing short of a foodie legend, Restaurant & Hotel Taubenkobel’s quirky 19th-century Austrian country cottage is the iconic culinary destination of Austria - and beyond. Serious pilgrims of food flock from far reaches of the globe to this tiny gourmet hub of creative flavour.
Affectionately termed by its motif of ‘chic-shock-Baroque’, the Hotel Weißes Kreuz, originally built in 1465, is a timely marriage of its opulent Baroque past with a high concept design that pays homage to the rhythm of change that has taken place over centuries.
Built into the original Medieval town walls of Hall, this former guilders’ house of traditional Tirol style has stood here for well over half a century with records dating back to 1450. Today, behind the rose petal façade, lies the small Kontor Boutiquehotel.
Ullrhaus is a hotel of muted luxury, where cool design marries Alpine soul and a minimalist edge. Located in the resort of St Anton in the Tyrolean Alps, home to some of the Alps’ most exhilarating skiing.
Drenched in Tirol originality and crafted by a setting of mountainous vistas. This luxury ski & spa hotel is all about boutique personality, passion, delicious food and a perfect location that hugs the snow-capped plateau, with windows that frame endless Austrian mountain eye-candy.
Wonderfully humble, this authentic exclusive-hire farmstead hideaway dating back to 1885 comes with the mandatory choc-box appeal of a rural Alpine chalet besieged by the hush rhythms of lush green pastures, ancient forests and hum of the mountain waters.
Close to the Tirol mountains of the Tux and Zillertal Alps, this design hotel of chilled style and nostalgic tradition, steps away from the chocolate-box picture-postcard image with creative art installations and a casual approach to life in the alps.
Birds, botanicals and fauna headline the canvas of this Austrian designer den found in Tirol wrapped in a fusion of honeyed Alpine traditions and chic urban style.
The edgy contrast of an aged coaching inn where artsy installations lend an air of east-side gallery – this is a cradle of the arts and style where a bold, contemporary curatorial scene is flanked by twisted beams and heritage-thick walls.
A lovely Alpine lodge for families that has had a chic, eclectic refit. Quirky design elements, stacks of well-positioned collectables and lively, modern takes on heritage prints and textiles decorate this boutique interior.
A peak-side, sophisticated bolthole oozing fifties Vogue glamour. A firm favourite of the design fraternity, it is a trove of timeless, postmodern pieces that feel perfectly at home in this Alpine masterpiece of creative chillax.
A lair of nature wrapped by the mountains and forests with perhaps one of the best nature-inspired spas in Austria, all overlooking the Leogang Rockies. This design hotel hugs smooth modern interiors that brush up to loveliness of the Alps, complete with its own lake.
Opened December 2022, this new unashamedly smooth and modern resort, Haven is your ski-in, ski-out all apartment-hotel in the small Austrian town of St. Johann im Pongau.
The fabulous boutique Hotel Julien, with its mansion-house pedigree in the heartlands of old-town Antwerp, is a self-confessed curator of the arts, designer pieces, antiques and mid-century furnishings, which adorn the handsome salons and rooms in comfy elegance.
Created within a former Augustinian cloister and chapel, Hotel August in the Flemish city of Antwerp was designed by one of Belgium's most acclaimed architects, interior designers, and product designers, Vincent Van Duysen.
Originally conceived as the village schoolhouse back in the 1930s, the traditional house, with alpine curb appeal of larch shingles, gabled rooftop and green shutters frame the lattice windows, is now a fabulous small design hotel and restaurant surrounded by the Bavarian alps and pastures.
A fabulously new take on alpine traditions is dramatically edged by the mountains and sweet Mother Nature. A perfect nesting spot, close to a favourite corner of Bavaria, stunning Berchtesgaden.
A regal abode of rich heritage rethought for the creative set, founders, fashionistas and entrepreneurs who feel equally in residence in Bavaria's downtown beauty, Dinkelsbühl.
A wonderful six-suite design guesthouse-hotel in the creative heartlands of Athens in the Kolonaki Quarter - home to the creative set, bookstores, publishing, galleries, museums and cafes.
Housed within a fabulously restored Venetian-styled mansion house, this design hotel with nine suites and a stunning rooftop bar has put the island of Syros back on the map.
Éros Kéros Villas, on the slow-pace Cyclades island of Koufonisia, come drenched in Aegean blue vistas – a sun-kissed boutique retreat of four cubic Cyclades-style merchant houses that lazily gaze onto the island of Keros.
Sat in a secluded spot right on the edge of the famous Caldera, individually-created traditional houses hug the rock formations – these exceptionally sleek designer dens are more than villas, their tonal whitewashed minimalism gradually revealing handcrafted touches and a cool boutique aesthetic.
Seamlessly slotting into Tinos’ wild and remote surroundings, design hotel Under The Sun is a raw and natural addition to this dramatic cliff-scape where Aegean blues blend sky with sea and a rugged architecture creates the perfect setting for a soulful escape.
Billed as the first ‘green’ hotel on the island, Nōstos is a casual style refuge , a marriage of sustainability, nature, design and creativity that is neatly wrapped by the doorstep bustle of the port and the nearby beauty of Sérifos’ abundant beaches.
An elemental experience awaits at these natural designer dens, private-hire holiday houses for small groups, where cashmere hugs, rock walls shield, and simplicity is elegant.
A short drive northwards from the wild sandy beaches, the eco-design guesthouse lies secluded within the Horn Head peninsula. Created to blend seamlessly in with its surroundings of County Donegal’s mountainous yet green landscape.
Crossing Corso Apartment is a luxury design pad in the heartlands of Rome set within a historic 18th-century palazzo townhouse, which poignantly resides behind the Piazza di Spagna.
Crossing Condotti is a style colony of luxury suites, lavish apartments and designer penthouse living created within 18th-century palazzo townhouse, which poignantly resides behind the Piazza di Spagna and namesake, Via Condotti, in the heart of Rome’s historic Tridente district.
With arguably one of the most magnificent infinity views across Lake Garda, the new, all-suite hotel and wellness retreat is a fabulous escape of design.
A small designer outpost that is both rustic and sophisticated in its design simplicity – conceived to mirror the surrounding vineyards and Arco Mountains of Trentino, this rural idyll is an architectural bolthole that gives nature a stylish makeover, irresistibly close to Lake Garda.
Once the home of devout Sisters, its aged cloistral heritage has been recast following an exacting narrative of preservation, reframing the monastic aesthetics for the modern nomad without corrupting the patina of austere beauty and timeworn touchpoints.
With the feel of a hip in-the-know club for lido-lovers, Aqva Boutique Hotel’s modular alabaster white building is fronted by a turquoise pool surrounded by sleek decking. Like a pointing finger, a private pier juts out onto the lake - perfect for those celeb moments.
A smooth design den pearled in white with an interior design that is eminently simple: a clean alpine aestheticism that borrows from Italian design, the Danish principles of hygge and a touch of sweet sophistication in the Japonesque detailing.
The chilled design hotel Miramonti sits perched atop Merano, nestled in forestry with spectacular, Bond-like views. Modernity subtly reigns whilst snuggling up to Alpine traditions – the vibe is relaxed, chilled and most definitely easy-going.
A fabulous new hotel, excitement builds for the opening of Parkhotel Mondschein, a new design hotel addition to the red-roofed Bolzano skyline in South Tyrol, ready for guests to pass through its newly painted doors.
Affectionately known simply as ‘Magda’, personality flows from this mountainous bolthole of style framed on all sides by glorious greens, thanks to its location in choc-box Bolzano within the South Tyrolean Dolomites. Magda will soon become your New Best Friend.
Sleep under medieval frescoes, sweep down labyrinthine corridors, lord it up on the lofty ramparts or stroll through the Mediterranean garden, admiring the ivy-clad castle backdrop.
A groovy icon from the seventies, Seehotel Ambach presides over the shores of Lake Caldaro in Italy’s South Tyrol with its perfectly formed, curvaceous marshmallowy walls of laid-back glamour and a canvas of tangerine, vert and oxide reds which drape mid-century furniture pieces.
A design smoothie wrapped in vineyards and mountain eye-candy; this villa-hotel masters the polarity of heritage with its sedated tones of taupe framing dramatic vistas of vert. Modernity, fresh elegance and a natural hand are cornerstones within the restored traditional walls of Das Wanda; a modern, designer, natural retreat with a strong South Tyrolean heart.
History, design, calmed wellness and an interior of modern heritage make this hotel-apartment refuge close to Merano the perfect pitstop for some downtime and closeness to nature.
Ceramics, pencil-lead greys, putty linens and aged furnishings headline at this restored design guesthouse of original simplicity in the cute market of Lana, South Tyrol.
A fabulously chilled 1920s villa with just ten gorgeous suites is set to a rhythm of vineyards, vegetable gardens, velvets, rattans, good food, pool – and a past decked in creative glamour wrapped in mustard yellow
Rising up like delicate meringue-whipped peaks, mirroring the Dolomites panorama that surrounds it, the architecture and design of Hotel Milla Montis create an impact.
Small, delicate, exquisite; this creative residence is fully-stocked with vintage family pieces and curatorial heritage, and includes a fabulous orangerie thriving between the greenest of Mediterranean gardens and whitest snow-capped peaks.
A fabulous retro-design, five bedroom holiday home of smooth vintage in Merano, this design vacation-rental is gorgeous, a luxury haven dotted with thoughtful mid-century design pieces, layered with love.
A design refuge for those that like their head in the clouds but feet firmly placed in architectural modernism, set at 1850 metres, the hotel is lofty enough to be able to ski straight out of its door, as well as hiking in summer.
An architectural-statement, this minimalist hideaway in the Dolomites is the perfect basecamp for those who appreciate design, food, comfort and doorstep nature.
Wrapped by the Dolomites, this modern eco resort pairs mountain lifestyle with simple elegance and luxury wellness vibes. An authentically pastoral location accented with the local Ladin culture that feels at once both holistic and fun.
The vigilius mountain resort was created by architect Matteo Thun, inspired by a fallen tree and the surrounding beauty of San Vigilio’s mountaintop landscapes. This wellness sanctuary rewrites the blueprint for an eco-design hotel, reached appropriately only by cable car.
With mountain eye-candy stretching out in every direction, this nest egg of casual style is the perfect bolthole for urbanites who love the rural idyll framed by modernity and crowned by its fabulous rooftop infinity pool of sheer wow.
Fabulous holiday apartments with panoramic views and an interior palette that borrows from the surrounding beauty and captures the purity of nature with a modernist hand.
Cuboid, measured and precise, Casa Al Sole is emblematic of the Italian Rationalism architectural style of Italy in the 20s and 30s. Renovated with precision and scrupulous attention to detail, the house is a meticulous restoration of purity and simplicity.
Birch and smoked oak hug the thick walls and capture the house’s DNA from the days as a farmhouse barn. Once a resplendent Renaissance home to the Bishop and favoured lodgings for the merchant traders heading along the Romanesque Via Claudia Augusta.
An eye-catching designer hillside bastion of cool contemporary interiors framed by lush alpine forests and snow-capped mountains, where simple luxe shakes hands with age-old tradition.
Austere beauty and chunky grandeur are the inaugural hallmarks of this 15th century castle and glacial-grey monolith perched on the slopes of South Tyrolean village Villanders / Villandro in northern Italy.
Dating back to the 16th century and once the noble country pad of Marquises and Counts – the Roncolo 1888 is a boutique guesthouse-hotel set within 130-hectares of the Venturini Baldini viticultural estate.
Caramel timbers, robust chunky stone and larch shingled rooftops amplifies Alpine charisma buttered across the three ‘Malghe’houses of the Borgo Eibn which are draped in the views of the Sauris plateau and the Dolomites.
A fabulous beachfront hotel legend has been creatively reimagined with iconic design, smooth aesthetics and a nostalgic touch of seaside glamour.
A restoration den of raw genius – a weathered Tuscan house close to Montefollonico that has been allowed to expose her weathered elements and complemented with chic salvaged interiors. An imaginative retreat of utter, rustic romance.
An aged former Convent, the history and heritage of this house has been lovingly exposed to play host to modern furnishings and a chilled vibe right in the heart of old town Pienza.
Curated architecture, restoration, rolling hills, wellness and food are the gorgeous tangents of this once-dilapidated hilltop village - lovingly restored into a slow-down bolthole of romance, heritage and utter style.
Fabulous farmhouse luxury decks this Italian bolthole in the hilltops of Versilia close to Tuscany's coastline hot picks Forte dei Marmi and Viareggio.
A tiny redoubt of stripped, twisted beams, limestone walls and a modern interior. There’s an air of culture at this aged – and much loved – restored monastery, which perches on a verdant hillside overlooking distant Capri and close to the Paestum Temples.
Agriturismo simplicity meets designer theatrics here at this chilled farmhouse awash in white and filled with rustic bric-a-brac. A candlelit gem that sits amongst the twisted olive trees, rubbing shoulders with a golf course and the Adriatic.
A sleek modernist mansion sitting front row on the Lezzeno shoreline of Lake Como, backed by a mountainous canopy forest. An homage to Italian custom, style and native craftsmanship, Filario flirts with time-past decadence and chilled luxury.
Restored within a former monastery, this fabulous design hotel and foodie hotspot brings together the stone mason, blacksmith and wood worker with the artisan makers.
Overlooking the Grand Canal, this cool-cat Palacio Hotel is for those who prefer their heritage married to sophisticated design and seductive luxury.
An unfussy architectural gem that floats above a bed of the greenest and most delicate fauna like a scene from the latest Hobbit epic, this is total immersion in nature from your spectacular viewing pods – here, less is definitely more.
An old logged, fairytale-like gingerbread house, wrapped in a lush carpet of nature. Inside, designer interiors narrate this chameleonic hub of eclectic creativity – it is traditional, pleasingly crafted and naturally cool.
A noble Palácio of cor de rosa in the leafy Príncipe Real district dates back to 1877, a luxurious family residence that courted Lisboan high society. Aptly, this former heritage palace is a rather fabulous boutique hotel of style – it is grandeur: suitably chilled.
Na Travessa pleasingly resides almost incognito amongst its neighbours, it is unassuming, familiar and reveals little about the poetic architectural features within.
With a handful of rooms, suites and studios to opt for, it is tough to know which one to fall in love with - they each have a distinct identity and are all infectiously gorgeous.
Artsy modernism melts within aged tea plantation walls perched upon a verdant hilltop – a house of uninterrupted rural life where Azorean beauty bursts from the terracotta architecture and the scents of wild coastal nature clean the air.
This reclusive stopover will give you reason to pause and take in the stillness of your environment while revelling in the perfectly blended alchemy of Scottish and Scandinavian style.
Once a remote shooting lodge home to the Duke of Sutherland, Kinloch
Lodge now provides a remote and inviting retreat into the vastness of
In a toned-down material palette of stone, timber, metal and glass, the brutal stone exteriors are hushed by Danish functionality: each piece of furniture carefully considered so as to embellish nothing but the raw landscapes, framed in oak.
Design Bothy & Geordie's Cottage close to the Cairngorms National Park, ideal for a small family or as a Highland refuge, this aged restored cottage is decorated with Scandi influences and Scottish crafts - complete with log stove.
A tiny weathered Scottish farmhouse plays host to Scandinavian contemporary design and Scottish crafted pieces from the Highlands - an irresistible combo of old and new, heritage meets the design - affectionately known as the 'Scandi-Scot'.
A monastic designer den of rural appeal set in a 30-hectare estate, this rural sanctuary has clubhouse flair, a sleek modernist touch and loads of sun-kissed sophistication. Altogether, a chilled off-radar adaption of indulgent luxury.
A fabulously styled country retreat lost between the Pyrenees and Costa Brava in Catalonia's heartlands of L'Empordà - like the Hamptons are for New Yorkers, this bolthole is the secret destination of the good-life insiders from nearby Barcelona.
A funky creative home to fashionistas and hipsters, trendy grandmas and urban kids - this is where generations mix with ease. Hotel Flora’s playfully light, vibrant boutique interior sees the modern designer hotel fused with Nordic confidence and a nudge of hot Brooklyn vibe.
A curated style jungle of mid-century furnishings, abstract modernism and bespoke pieces are flavoured by the original pine panelling dating back to 1848 - and all this cuteness is wrapped in a canvas of wild herbs and mountain eye candy.
Unapologetically vivid, this preferred pad of intellect and creativity is awash in Art Nouveau flamboyance tamed with clever 1950s-inspired design interventions. A stylishly cool home of the arts, brushed with boldness.
A fabulously humble basecamp of good design for kindreds of style, Brücke 49 is a collection of rooms, suites, studios and apartments in the high-in-the-mountains creative enclave, Vals.
A chilled habitat of modern alpine vibe, this ski bolthole is dapper, plush and Martini cool. A suave lair of modern alpine style that flirts with the traditions of the Alps and is the perfect habitat for the ski fraternity and summer activity junkies.
A fabulous creative fusing of two historic landmark buildings, this popular restaurant and newly created design hotel is decked in Swiss and Scandi aesthetics and crafts.
A bijou design hotel laced in a plush hipness of crushed velvets, soft linens, aged oak beams and lovely quirky accessories – a dash of peacock blue, gold, burgundy and teal usher a signature of urban cool to this
120-year-old dairy warehouse.
Perched high, this reborn majesty presides over the larch-wrapped resort of Zermatt in the Swiss canton of Valais, a design hotel that rekindles the Geist of Golden Age alpinism.
Eye candy sets the tone, a decisively chilled design refuge of honeyed timbers and smooth noir accented interiors, a foodie basecamp and cabin-esque hideout for the lovers of keeping it easy, perched hillside overlooking Engelberg.
A combination of country house familiarity and urban chill. A designer orchestration of salvaged pieces, crafted textiles, aged ceramics and bespoke furnishings that are housed in a traditional red-brick new build – this new luxury kid on the block gives TriBeCa the unpretentious grand hotel it so craved.