World's Most Luxurious Wine Country Hotels
July 22, 2014 5:30 pm Post a comment
The Farm at Cape Kidnappers
Where: Hawke's Bay, New Zealand
The Farm at Cape Kidnappers is a 6,000-acre working sheep and cattle farm located in the legendary Hawke's Bay. The 22 suites feature rustic New Zealand elements and modern twists, with breathtaking views of the Pacific. When not sampling the area's best wine, guests can unwind at the 18-hole championship golf course, take a quad bike tour of the property, or test their skill at clay target shooting. The lodge has its own vegetable garden and menus feature New Zealand beef and lamb. Hawke's Bay has over 70 wineries, but don't miss a stroll in downtown Napier, which is one of the best-preserved Art Deco towns in the world.
Plan Your Trip: Visit Fodor's Hawke's Bay Guide
Where: St. Helena, California
Those looking for the full-blown resort experience in Napa should book a stay at Meadowood. This 250-acre property has 85 guest rooms tucked into cottages dotted around the grounds. Meadowood is a place to indulge both the body and the brain. The Restaurant, helmed by Christopher Kostow, has earned three Michelin stars and Kostow is a James Beard-award winner. Sampling wine is a major part of anyone's stay here, but the hotel helps visitors learn more about it through its numerous Wine Experiences. Seven Stones Winery is located right above the Meadowood resort and is available to visit by appointment only. Its inaugural release, the 2005 Seven Stones Cabernet Sauvignon, received plenty of praise and the tiny winery produces only a few hundred cases a year.
Plan Your Trip: Visit Fodor's St. Helena Guide
Where: Cafayate, Argentina
Grace Cafayate is tucked inside La Estancia de Cafayate wine estate in the Calchaqui Valley. The area is known for its Torrontes, Malbec, and Cabernet Sauvignon wines. Grace Cafayate has 52 guest rooms along with 20 villas, and the color palette is muted, giving way to stunning views of the Andes and the vineyards. There's a swimming pool and spa that incorporates local ingredients such as aloe and grape seed oil into treatments, as well as a championship golf club. Nearby Bodega Colome is one of the oldest vineyards in Argentina and claims to be the highest, with an elevation of nearly 8,000 feet above sea level.
Plan Your Trip: Visit Fodor's Cafayate Guide
Le Quartier Francais
Where: Franschhoek, South Africa
A member of Relais & Châteaux, this hotel is located in Franschhoek, a popular weekend gateway for Capetonians. Le Quartier Français has just 21 rooms tucked around a courtyard. Bright pops of color are used throughout the hotel and unexpected touches include a cinema, contemporary art gallery, and an "Indigenous and Unusual Herb and Sculpture Garden." There are around 40 wineries to visit in the area, while Franschhoek itself boasts plenty of antique shops and restaurants.
Plan Your Trip: Visit Fodor's Franschhoek Guide
Hotel Marqués de Riscal
Where: Elciego, Spain
This Frank Gehry-designed hotel looks like a pile of unspooling ribbons that have been plunked down in the middle of a vineyard. The Marqués de Riscal, part of Starwood's Luxury Collection, is located in Elciego, one of Spain's top wine producing areas (come here for the Rioja). If you'd like to do more than just drink wine, the in-house Spa Vinothérapie Caudalie uses local wines in its Red Vine Bath and Crushed Cabernet Scrub treatments. A short drive from the hotel brings you to Bodegas Vivanco, a combination winery and museum.
Plan Your Trip: Visit Fodor's Bilbao and Basque Country Guide
LOISIUM Wine & Spa Resort
A member of Design Hotels, this minimalist property has a boxy, streamlined design juxtaposed against acres of vineyards. The LOISIUM Wine & Spa Resort sits just outside Langenlois, in the heart of Austria's wine country—even the pool overlooks the vines. The hotel was built on top of 900-year-old wine cellars, which can be toured, but the décor is decidedly sleek. If you can tear yourself away, you can cycle through the vineyards, hike, or just relax in the hotel's Aveda Spa.
Plan Your Trip: Visit Fodor's Austria Guide
Where: Yallingup, Australia
The boutique Cape Lodge is tucked inside its own vineyard in the heart of Margaret River Wine Country in southwestern Australia. This corner of Australia, about three hours south of Perth, is known for its Chardonnays, Rieslings, and Cabernets, and is right on the Indian Ocean. Sample the area's wines while dining at The Cape Lodge Restaurant, which uses local, seasonal produce. Off property, the hotel can arrange horseback riding, sheep shearing demonstrations, and whale watching. Nearby wineries include Vasse Felix, Cullen Wines, and Cheeky Monkey brewery.
Plan Your Trip: Visit Fodor's Margaret River Guide
The Vines Resort & Spa
Where: Mendoza, Argentina
The Vines Resort & Spa debuted in January in Mendoza's Uco Valley, located among 1,500 acres of vineyards that produce about 300 unique wines a year. The Vines' décor blends rustic elements with modern touches, such as floor-to-ceiling windows and spa-like bathrooms. Argentina's famous beef is featured prominently at the Siete Fuegos restaurant, which specializes in cooking over an open flame. To burn off all those calories, guests can access hiking trails and a climbing wall, or swim in the infinity pool, which offers views of the Andes. Guests who fall in love with the property, and its wine, can buy a slice of it. Three to 10 acre parcels of professionally managed vineyard at The Vines of Mendoza are available for purchase.
Plan Your Trip: Visit Fodor's Mendoza Guide
Les Sources De Caudalie
Where: Bordeaux-Martillac, France
Located in the famous Bordeaux region, Les Sources de Caudalie allows guests to completely indulge in the local beverage. The hotel is located on the Château Smith Haut Lafitte vineyards, but was built using repurposed local materials to help it blend in with its surroundings. The Vinotherapie spa incorporates natural spring water, wine, and grapes into beauty treatments that include a Crushed Cabernet scrub, a Honey & Wine Wrap, and a Barrel Bath.
Plan Your Trip: Visit Fodor's Bordeaux Guide
Castello Banfi—Il Borgo
Where: Tuscany, Italy
Castello Banfi—Il Borgo is a medieval castle turned luxury hotel, located within Tuscany's Castello Banfi vineyard estate. There are only 14 rooms, so it never feels crowded. Guests can spend lazy days strolling among olive groves or relaxing by the pool, while tours and tastings at Castello Banfi are available, as well as private cooking lessons, balloon rides, and bike rides. Guests staying in the Poggio all'Oro Suite can access their own private wine cellar, which stores rare vintages of Castello Banfi and includes its own complimentary sommelier service.
Plan Your Trip: Visit Fodor's Tuscany Guide