Some of the world’s most breathtaking resorts are located far from sea level. Nestled in mountain ranges and perched on top of desert cliffs, these hotels offer visitors picturesque views and quiet retreats away from the hustle of everyday life. Here are our picks for the world’s most stunning mountaintop hotels. —Emily Wasserman and Amanda Oppold
WHERE: Jackson Hole, Wyoming
At the edge of Jackson Hole's East Gros Ventre Butte is Amangani, (meaning peaceful home) one of the world’s most stunning mountaintop resorts. The hotel offers unparalleled views of the Grand Teton Mountains and the surrounding meadows and valleys. Guests can enjoy the scenery from the hotel’s outdoor pool, or take in the breathtaking views from one of the resort’s exclusive suites. Learn about the surrounding area with a book on Native American culture from Amangani's redwood-decorated library or wander the resort's gallery of regional artwork and buy a piece of local jewelry to remember your mountain stay.
PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Jackson Hole Guide
WHERE: in the Himalayas near Shimla, India
Untouched scenery and antique furnishings make Wildflower Hall one of the world’s premiere mountaintop resorts. The hotel’s colonial-era décor and view of the nearby Himalayas will make you feel like you’ve stepped into a fairytale. Visitors can explore the surrounding forests by foot, or enjoy views of the snowcapped mountains from the resort’s heated outdoor pool. Indulge in holistic treatments at the Oberoi spa's private spa suites that offer exquisite views of mountains and tall cedars. During the winter enjoy skating on the hotel's own ice rink, and during warm summer days enjoy archery or croquet on the resort's lush lawns.
PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's India Guide
Vigilius Mountain Resort
WHERE: South Tyrol, Italy
Guests looking to escape the hustle and bustle can unwind at Vigilius Mountain Resort in South Tyrol, Italy. The resort is car-free, and the hotel prides itself on its eco-friendly practices. Visitors can explore bubbling springs and pristine forests, and enjoy some of the best mountain views in the area. The resort is also home to a 13th-century church that adds to its romantic ambiance. Experience an elegant dinner at the resort's Restaurant 1500, or enjoy a cozy lunch with regional dishes cooked in the hundred-year-old tiled stove at the Parlour Ida, where homemade cakes are served as well. Then relax at the resort's spa, relishing the treatments that utilize the fresh waters of the Vigiljoch springs—believed to have healing powers.
PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Italy Guide
St. Regis Lhasa Resort
WHERE: Tibet, China
For unparalleled views of the Polata Palace and the Himalayan mountains, visit the St. Regis Lhasa Resort. The hotel’s Golden Energy Pool overlooks the surrounding valley, and its traditional architecture pays homage to Tibetan elegance and simplicity. Have the resort's chauffeur take you on a guided tour of Mount Everest, or the more than 600-year-old Tashilunpo Monastery, or the ancient palace Yunbulakang. Enjoy more Tibetan culture with the St. Regis Sabrage Evening Ritual where the resort's butler team will use sabers to dramatically open a champagne bottle and then pour you a glass.
PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Tibet Guide
Sparkling Hill Resort
WHERE: Vernon, British Columbia
Shimmering Swarovski crystals and sleek architecture make Sparkling Hill Resort one of the world’s premiere mountaintop hotels. The hotel’s elegant décor comes second to the area’s natural beauty, as guests can enjoy views of the Monashee Mountains and Okanagan Lake. For stunning indoor views visit the resort's indoor pool with starry Swarovski crystal sky. The KurSpa's other sparkling amenities include a crystal steam room, aqua meditation room with water dripping into a crystal basin, and the igloo room with glazed, crystal-lacquered floors.
PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Okanagan Wine Country Guide
WHERE: High Atlas Mountains, Morocco
British entrepreneur Richard Branson restored Kasbah Tamadot to its original grandeur, as the resort was once the private villa of an Italian artist. The hotel is located at the foothills of the Atlas Mountains and overlooks a scenic river valley. The resort includes two infinity pools, a private collection of fine art and artifacts, and authentic Berber tents with spectacular views. Exciting activities at the resort include mule treks through the mountains, a visit to the nearby craft house run by the area's young women, and a trip to the neighboring Eco-Museum to learn about the area's natural and cultural resources.
PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's High Atlas Guide
Salto Chico Lodge
WHERE: Patagonia, Chile
Located at the banks of the Salto Chico waterfall, Salto Chico Lodge offers unparalleled views of the Torres del Paine National Park and the Paine Massif mountain range. Guests can take advantage of the resort's own 26-horse stable with a horseback ride across acres of sprawling property, or take in the scenery from one of the resort’s coveted suites. Patagonia's rich gaucho culture can be experienced with a trip to the Estancia 2 de Enero to watch gauchos shear sheep, drive livestock, and train horses.
PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Chile Guide
WHERE: Val Thorens, France
Val Thorens, France is home to one of the largest ski areas in the world, Altapura. Here guests can make the most of their mountain experience with panoramic views of the French Alps while skiing or relaxing in one of the hotel’s elegant lounges. Beyond skiing the hotel offers exciting adventures like ice driving, a 45-minute slide down Europe's longest toboggan run, or paragliding over the majestic alpine peaks.
PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's French Alps Guide
Badrutts Palace Hotel
WHERE: St. Moritz, Switzerland
Overlooking Lake St. Moritz is Badrutts Palace Hotel. The hotel’s elegant, refined décor and breathtaking views of the Swiss Alps make it a favorite among winter sports stars, royals, and celebrities. Guests can take in the snowcapped peaks from luxurious guest rooms, or explore the area’s picturesque surroundings by foot. Dine at one of the hotel's six restaurants or rejuvenate at the Palace Wellness.
PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's St. Moritz Guide
WHERE: Mont Tremblant, Quebec
At the foot of Quebec's Laurentian Mountains is the Fairmont Tremblant resort. The hotel offers unparalleled views of Mont-Tremblant, and the scenery transforms with every season. Guests can stroll through verdant forests during the summer, take in the vibrant fall foliage, or enjoy views of snowcapped mountains during the winter. Enjoy the winter season with dogsledding or a sleigh ride, and take advantage of warmer summer temperatures with rock climbing or white water rafting. Explore the surrounding towns of Mont Tremblant and St. Jovite for traditional Quebecois food and unique craft shops.
PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Mont Tremblant Guide
WHERE: Aspen, Colorado
Founded in the 1880s, Hotel Jerome is located in the heart of Aspen and is often referred to as the city’s “crown jewel.” Spectacular views, elegant interiors, and a sprawling ballroom make it a favorite among visitors. Catch a vintage-inspired cocktail at the hotel's J-Bar, an Aspen hot spot for ski bums, socialites, and cowboys.
PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Aspen Guide
WHERE: Girdwood, Alaska
Enjoy the Alaskan wilderness’s natural beauty at Alyeska, located in the mountain valley town Girdwood, only an hour south of Anchorage. The resort is surrounded by majestic peaks, glaciers, and ocean views. Guests can take in the scenery from an aerial tram, or hike down one of the resort’s nature trails or walking paths. Take the aerial tram to Alyeska's award-winning restaurant, Seven Glaciers, where you'll enjoy lofty views and meals created with local produce, seafood, and game.
PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Anchorage Guide
Kimamaya Boutique Hotel
WHERE: Hokkaido, Japan
Located in the middle of Japan’s most popular ski area, Hokkaido, is Kimamaya Boutique Hotel. The hotel only contains nine rooms, ensuring that guests receive a personalized visiting experience. The resort’s laid-back atmosphere and quaint lodgings make it the ideal place to relax and escape from everyday life.
PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Hokkaido Guide
WHERE: Tirol, Austria
Combining traditional Tirolean hospitality with upscale, contemporary design is Zhero Ischgl/Kappl. The hotel is footsteps away from Ischgl, a popular ski resort, and offers a free shuttle to nearby peaks. Guests can explore extensive alpine trails, or enjoy one of the hotel’s renowned “après-ski” parties. For shopping take a quick jaunt across the border to enjoy Switzerland's duty free offerings.
PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Tirol Guide
WHERE: Gstaad, Switzerland
Located in the small ski village of Gstaad, Alpina is the newest luxury hotel—but still exudes Swiss ski tradition. Stone from the nearby Alps and timber from local farmhouses was used to create the hotel’s interior, and guests can relax in armchairs in front of open fireplaces after a long day on the slopes. Hit the slopes of Glacier 3000, the only glacier ski area in the region that offers views of 24 peaks, or enjoy the ice without skis by taking the 360-foot drop on the glacier's bobsleigh-style rollercoaster.
PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Gstaad Guide