At Sojourn, we are fortunate to stay in some outrageously beautiful places. These are properties offering unparalleled experience and luxury at the end of a rewarding day of discovery. From the Hotel Maria Cristina in San Sebastian, Spain, and the Relais & Châteaux’s Hameau Albert 1er in Chamonix, France, to the historic Prince of Wales in Waterton, Canada, or the La Casa del Zorro, these hotels are almost a re-imagination of perfection: the attention to details, the passion for service, and the signature unique offerings of each will certainly make each of them one of the highlights of your vacation. While we don’t like to play favorites, these five accommodations are extremely close to our hearts.
Relais & Châteaux’s Hameau Albert 1er, Chamonix, France
This 5-star Relais & Châteaux property has been owned by the same family since 1903 and sits at the base of Mont Blanc in Chamonix. The hotel prides itself on its luxury, providing charm, prestige, and gastronomy to the mountain since its inception. The chalets of the Chateaux are built in the style of a small hamlet, with rustic gardens and a flowing brook that passes through the grounds, with incredible surrounding views of Chamonix and Mont Blanc. It is also home to a two Michelin star rated restaurant, that offers a subtle take on natural cuisine, inspired by the hotel’s surrounding.
Here is the Trip: France: Annecy, Chamonix, and the Rhone Alps
Hotel Maria Cristina, San Sebastian, Spain
Named for Spain’s regent queen, mother of King Alfonso XIII, Hotel Maria Cristina was designed in the prevailing belle époque style by Charles Mewes, architect of the Ritz in Paris, and built in the honey-coloured sandstone typical of the Basque country. Overlooking the Urumea River in San Sebastian, the hotel is surrounded by bountiful gardens and pristine beaches and its opulent style offers a sense of luxurious sophistication. Chef Francis Pangieno, who has been awarded Michelin stars for two of his restaurants, helms one of the in-house restaurants. The hotel’s close proximity to San Sebastian Beach offers plenty of opportunities to swim and the culinary center is the epitome of Basque gastronomy.
Here is the Trip: Spain: Basque Country and Rioja Wine Region
Prince of Wales Hotel, Waterton, Alberta, Canada
Alberta’s Prince of Wales Hotel, one of the most iconic hotels of the world, offers stunning panoramic scenery of Waterton Lakes National Park, styling itself as “a view with a room.” Built by the Great Northern Railway in 1927, it is a historic railroad hotel and is decorated with period-specific inspiration and historic elements. Guests enjoy the sights from the hotel’s own Royal Stewart Dining Room, where you can try their special braised bison stew for a true taste of Waterton.
Here is the Trip: Glacier National Park & Waterton Lakes
Chatham Bars Inn, Cape Cod
The quaint Chatham Bars Inn offers the quintessential Cape Cod experience, with its own luxury, private beach and three distinct restaurants that specialize in serving the day’s freshest seafood catches. Guests can play croquet on the manicured lawns, go for a whale watching boating adventure, or simply relish in the beauty of the beachfront location. Wake up to seaside breezes and watching the seals start their day as the sun rises overhead at this coastal gem. This inn has been deemed as the “best hotel on Cape Cod” by Boston Magazine and is known for its charming, relaxed atmosphere in the restaurants or on the beach.
Here is the Trip: Cape Cod, Massachusetts
La Casa del Zorro, Borrego Springs, California
Originally opening its doors in 1933, this quiet retreat began as simply a single ranch house. Over the years, the resort’s reputation grew, drawing visitors from all over the world to experience its serenity and opportunities for stargazing. Today, La Casa del Zorro features nearly thirty crystal-clear pools, a full-service spa, fully lit tennis courts, and a golf course, while maintaining the same historic elegance and style of its rustic roots.
Here is the Trip: California: Palm Springs & Joshua Tree National Park