Our panel of globetrotting tastemaker judges – including fashion designers Charlotte Olympia Dellal and Henry Holland, Sydney design duo Louise Olsen and Stephen Ormandy and Melbourne-based jewellery designer Lucy Folk – have also crowned 11 boutique beauties in a range of other categories, from World's Sexiest Bedroom to Best Date-Night Bar and Pool with a View. With winning properties in Chile, Japan and Canada, the list is a wanderlust-awakening hint at location hotspots for 2017.
'We've always wanted Mr & Mrs Smith to be about the details, so this year we've ensured each category gives a nod to a unique part of the boutique hotel experience. We've introduced new categories like Hottest Hotel Soundtrack (because music can make or break an atmosphere), and Coolest Creative Hub (now that so many hotels are becoming culture hubs). We want to reward and recognise the best of the best.
'For the first time, we've commissioned a photographer – Polly Brown – to document the 12 winning stays, too. She's a unique talent; able to tell a story in just one shot, with a quirk and with irreverence. We're delighted to have had the opportunity to work with her and set her the enviable task of heading on a round-the-world trip.'
James Lohan, Founder and Executive Chairman, Mr & Mrs Smith
INTRODUCING POLLY BROWN…Polly Brown, who has worked with the likes of Givenchy, Roksanda and Victoria Beckham, is shooting an exclusive suite of images of the 12 winning properties.
Having trained at Central Saint Martins, London, and with her personal approach, each of the 12 images will stand alone as a unique artwork, highlighting the winning element of each hotel. Watch this space for the big reveal – these images are set to raise a smile and maybe an eyebrow or two...
Images can be found here
…AND THE WINNERS ARE…
Best Smith HotelHalcyon House, Cabarita Beach, Australia
'As the only category voted for by the public, Best Smith Hotel is a serious accolade. Halcyon House burst on to the scene as a new opening last year, and has since become one of the most impressive boltholes on our books. With its good looks and down to earth charm, it's a well deserved winner.'
– James Lohan, founder, Mr & Mrs Smith
Best-Dressed HotelPalazzo Margherita, Basilicata, Italy
'A beautifully-designed, updated Palazzo which still retains its character and soul.'
– Charlotte Olympia Dellal, designer
World's Sexiest BedroomKeemala, Phuket, Thailand
'Nestled up in the rainforest canopy with a private pool, al fresco bath and four poster bed… heaven.'
– Olivia von Halle, designer
Best Date-Night BarLondon Edition, London, UK
'Each Edition property hits the nail on the head when it comes to killer food and drink combos, and since we're suckers for classic cocktails and bygone-era bar culture, this one's a top contender in our book.'
– Cyndi Ramirez-Fulton, founder of Taste The Style and Celine Bossart, creator of The Staycationers
Best Gourmet GetawayThe Old Clare, Sydney, Australia
'My readers rave about this hotel… AND I'm biased… my pal Jason has a restaurant here!'
– Ben Pundole, A Hotel Life
Most Spoiling SpaAmanemu, Mie, Japan
'Amanemu has incorporated the Japanese bathing tradition of onsen, making it a very authentic and overly Zen spa experience; the watsu pool is definitely a highlight.'
– Vivienne Tang, founder Destination Deluxe
Hottest Hotel SoundtrackFazenda Nova, Algarve, Portugal
'A laid-back soundtrack that is as chic, timeless and classy as the hotel itself.'
– Lauren Laverne, DJ and broadcaster
Pool with a ViewGrand Hotel Tremezzo, Lake Como, Italy
'This property gets our vote, mainly because Lake Como is such a glorious place to visit. The afternoon light over the lake is beyond beautiful.'
– Tamsin and Patrick Johnson, interior designer/tailor team
Above & BeyondAwasi, Patagonia, Chile
'Secluded cabins amidst Patagonian triple peaks, eco-awareness, and they've bothered to make their villas and bathrooms wheelchair accessible; location, privacy and inclusivity wins hands down.'
– Anita Kapoor, TV presenter
Best Family HotelTreehotel, Sweden
'I'm giving this first choice simply because it's the kind of place that your children will never forget.'
– Yasmin Sewell, fashion director Style.com
Coolest Creative HubFogo Island Inn, Newfoundland, Canada
'The inspiring Todd Saunders design perched on the cliff edge is so spectacular... this has to be a front-runner.'
– Henry Holland, designer
Local Hotel Hero11 Howard, New York, US
'This hotel engages with and gives back to its community in multiple ways, but my favourite element is the Jeff Koons-mentored mural created by local students, because supporting the arts is what I'm most passionate about. And this particular effort is very much in tune with the aesthetic-minded nature of this stylish, boutique hotel.'
– Rosa Park, editor Cereal