Arriving over the private bridge in a chauffeur-driven Rolls Royce, you'll find the world's original 7-star hotel, looking like a billowing sail, soaring to a height of 321 metres, dominating the Dubai skyline and illuminated at night by choreographed lighting representing water and fire. In your suite you'll find a rain shower, Jacuzzi, sweeping staircase up to your bedroom, Hermes-stocked bathroom, floor-to-ceiling windows framing the Dubai coastline and a dedicated private butler.
Its West Hollywood location and Old Hollywood charm has turned the Chateau Marmont (featured in Sofia Coppola's latest film 'Somewhere') into a bit of a hedonistic hangout for celebs, from Greta Garbo to Lily Allen. Built in 1920 using blueprints drawn from a French castle in the Loire Valley, the general theme is simplicity, elegance and luxury, and despite some of its celebrity connections being notorious (John Belushi died of an overdose there in 1982), there's nowhere else in the world you'll feel more like an A-lister. Just don't smother yourself in food – that's how Britney got herself barred pre-breakdown.
Located inside the historic 'Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II' built in 1876, with its hand-painted vaulted ceilings and large shuttered windows preserved, this intimate and exclusive hotel proves that the best things often do come in small packages. With seven stars and seven suites, it's the smallest accommodation on the list, but that means guests get that little bit more of a personal touch – your butler can take care of restaurant reservations, cocktail parties, private dining and theatre bookings, as well as fluffing your pillows and polishing the provided leather-covered laptop.
Built in 1889, the classic Savoy was the first luxury hotel in Britain – and the first to have electricity, electric lifts, air-conditioning, 24-hour room service, private bathrooms and constant hot and cold running water. That little list might not cut it these days, but a three-year and £220m restoration might – the hotel that reopened recently has kept its emphasis on restrained elegance, whether you're in one of the Edwardian-style rooms facing the river or the art deco rooms on the Strand.
Arguably the most luxurious hotel you'll find down under, it's hard to stop staring from the moment you arrive in the grand foyer – it's all marble, mosaics, vaulted ceilings hand detailed in gold with an antique chandelier from the grand State Library of Milan, and floor-to-ceiling glass with a view of the sparkling blue of the Broadwater. And that's all before you get to your room. There you'll find that the Versace furniture, linen and bath products in your room is glamorous, sexy and just the right amount of OTT.
Located in the top nine floors of the 39-floor Nihonbashi Mitsui Tower, the hotel design was conceived as a large tree, with the guest rooms being the top branches, with floor-to-ceiling windows displaying awesome views of the city. Almost as awesome as the views of the rooms themselves. The silk-clad walls surround rich wooden flooring, waterfalls and fireplaces, with soft arc lights emphasising the luxurious design elements. If nothing else can lure guests out of their rooms, three Michelin-starred restaurants ought to do it.
It's come a long way since it opened in 1887 in a sombre-looking old bungalow known as the Beach House - today's grand hotel attracts celebrities, writers and royalty. Aside from its 113 super elegant suites, you'll find 15 brilliant eateries, a top spa and exclusive rooftop pool, a spectacular shopping arcade, a museum, a charming, Victorian-style theatre playhouse all set amongst lush greenery and the landscaping, which make up a quarter of the total land area of the hotel.
Words like serene, idyllic and tranquil get bandied around a lot when referring to the Caribbean – but if you're ever going to live out the clichés like sipping champagne while watching the dazzling sunset or having an amazing candlelight dinner on the beach, then this is the perfect setting. With views that look just like the postcard, from an oversized room with an outside terrace that doubles as an alfresco living area.
Overlooking the 2008 Beijing Olympic Park, this 7-star spectacular structure has been fully designed according to ancient Chinese feng shui principles to bring prosperity and good fortune to its inhabitants. But you don't have to buy into the whole feng shui thing to enjoy soaking in the hand-crafted marble bath tub with Gianfranco Ferré and Hermès bathroom luxury amenities, or relaxing by the digital, remote-controlled fireplace eating dinner served by the butler, or falling asleep on a pillow selected from an actual pillow menu.
Pangu Hotel, Beijing