When it comes to hotels, it can be hard to find that happy medium between embedding a sense of heritage and context into your ethos and between injecting modern touches to express your point of view as a contemporary travel brand. But it’s those two things together that can make a unique and profound impression on the modern-day traveller…
Meet three hotels who’re making their mark by harmonising the historical and contemporary elements of their respective brands.
NAME: The Malborough Lodge
LOCATION: Marlborough, New Zealand
HOW THEY’RE CHANGING WORLDS: It’s the smell of timber that gives away the history of this space: originally a wooden convent in Bleinhem constructed in 1901, the property – now known as The Malborough Lodge – replanted itself in the heart of the fertile Marlborough wine region in the 1990s. So while the lodge’s heritage is present and appreciated in the preservation of the original, ornately carved Victorian staircase and in the suite names inspired by the different types of wood used for the building’s construction, guests can also get a taste of the now upon their arrival – a glass of the local Sauvignon Blanc, anyone? But it’s the newly renovated interiors and offerings that really help to tip the balance, moving part of the guest’s focus back towards the carefree, modern-living ideal: airy, spacious suites and marble-laden bathrooms restore an air of relaxation to the property that guests will be only too happy to adopt, while the exhaustive fine-dining options at local vineyards encourage them to indulge themselves at their leisure.
NAME: Villa La Coste
LOCATION: Provence, France
HOW THEY’RE CHANGING WORLDS: Some are just born with modern written all over them: unusually, Villa La Coste started off as an art space featuring both contemporary art and architectural design worthy of global recognition, before it dabbled in the hotel business. The perfect example of how moulding modernity and cultural heritage into one can wow travellers, Villa La Coste’s hotel, spa and restaurants – surrounded by a picturesque sea of lavender fields, olive groves, woodland and organic vineyards – incorporate a sincere respect for the surroundings of Provence into this enchanting enclave of contemporary art. Guests wonder in awe along the undulating pathways of the estate – filled with the work of modern artistic legends Tracey Emin and Richard Serra – while also taking the time to experience the locally sourced ingredients used for food, wine, essential oils and scrubs throughout their stay.
NAME: Storfjord Hotel
LOCATION: Glomset, Norway
HOW THEY’RE CHANGING WORLDS: In the crest of a hillside overlooking the fjord and Sunnmøre Alps lies Storfjord Hotel, where a Scandinavian folk tale is modernised and brought to life. Guests can kick back and enjoy the finest traditional cheeses, ales and views that Norway has to offer in a dialled-down and thoroughly unpretentious setting; and while outside activities such as hiking, fishing, sailing and skiing are on offer, the equilibrium of modern and historic elements manifests itself within Storjord Hotel’s walls: with interiors epitomising a soothing combination of Norweigian traditions and modern design, the carefully selected art and antiques, neutral colour palette and texture-rich fabrics all play their part in creating context and depth behind this hotel’s plush, contemporary aesthetic.
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Annie is Junior Content Executive for Beyond Luxury Media Ltd. She is a lover of dance, sausage dogs and immature jokes, and is a self-confessed serial wine-and-diner who lets her tastebuds guide her travels.