The start of the new year is the perfect time to start planning adventures near and far. From bucket list destinations to weekend getaways, we've put together a list of our top 17 picks for places to go in 2017.
Celebrating its 375th Birthday in 2017, this French Canadian city offers history, art, and a strong food scene. Designated a UNESCO City of Design, many of the birthday celebration events will be taking place during the summer months in the historic Vieux Montreal (Old Montreal). One of our favorite experiences is Cité Mémoire, where guests download the free app (available in four languages), and take a historically-inspired evening walking tour of the historic quarter while viewing projected images with sound and music through the app. For luxury accommodations in the heart of Old Montreal, Le Saint-Sulpice
, is an all-suite boutique property with a center courtyard and contemporary restaurant next to the Notre Dame Cathedral, or Hotel Gault
, a modern, art-focused property in a historic building.
Selected as the first UNESCO World Heritage City in the U.S., Philadelphia is set to debut the new Museum of the American Revolution in the spring, along with new luxury hotels from Four Seasons, Study, SLS, and the W. Founded by William Penn in 1682, the city offers an array of historic attractions including the Independence National Historic Park with the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall. Spend the night overlooking the National Historic Park at the Hotel Monaco Philadelphia
with a rooftop lounge and chef-driven restaurant, or stay at one of the country's highest rated hotels, The Rittenhouse Hotel
with five star comforts, rich mahogany furnishings, and a landmark location.
2017 is the Year of History, Heritage, and Archaeology in Scotland. From landscapes carved by glaciers thousands of years ago, to towering castles, fine whiskey tastings to local delicacies infused with traditions and legends, the country offers a variety of sites and events to explore. Less than an hour southeast of Glasgow, New Lanark, a UNESCO site began as a purpose-built mill village in 1785, and was transformed in the 19th century by Utopian idealist Robert Owen, into the largest collection of industrial buildings in the world. A short drive from New Lanark, The Blythswood Square Hotel
offers a Glasgow city center location, award-winning spa, historic Rally Bar, and classic Afternoon Tea. Another of the country's UNESCO sites is Edinburgh Old and New towns, with two distinct areas: the Georgian and neoclassical New Town and the Old Town with the medieval Edinburgh Castle. The Caledonian
is a Victorian railway hotel offering views of Edinburgh Castle, along with an indoor pool, gourmet dining with Michelin-starred chef-prepared cuisine, and the Caley Bar.
Perfect for museum lovers, Malaga is situated in Spain's Andalusia region. The birthplace of Picasso, the city is home to the Picasso Museum, Centro de Arte Contemporaneo, and a five-year pop-up of Centre Pompidou which includes art by Chagall, Kahlo, and Magritte. Centrally located, the new Gran Hotel Miramar
opened in a 1926 Art Nouveau building across from Malagueta Beach with a massive spa scheduled to debut in 2017. The Molina Lario
boutique hotel is located in the city's cultural center by the port and Picasso Museum, while the Finca Cortesin Hotel, Golf and Spa
is located just outside the city with Andalusian architecture and a championship golf course.
Following the opening of the 36-mile-long Gotthard Base Tunnel in December 2016 on the southern edge of the lake, this Alpine paradise offers an array of water activities during the summer, along with hiking, and regional cuisine. The massive Bürgenstock resort is set to open later this year. For a historic setting, the Palace Luzern
is locationed on the lake, and offers special perks for Five Star Alliance Guests. While the Art Deco Hotel Montana
is perched high above the lake with picturesque views of the Swiss Alps.
Finland is Celebrating 100 years of indepence in 2017, and the country's capital city will be the hosting a variety of events, including the Worldcon 75 - World Science Fiction Convention in August at the Helsinki Convention and Exposition Centre. Combining contemporary Scandinavian style with a diverse history, the scandic city offers new Nordic cuisine, the Old Market Hall with local and regional specialties, outdoor recreation, and traditional Finnish saunas throughout the city. Spend the night in the city center at Radisson Blu Seaside Hotel Helsinki
, set within a former dairy laboratory and cheese factory, or at the beautifully restored Hotel Kamp
, across from Esplanade Park, as well as upscale shops and restaurants.
Three of the city's iconic attractions: the Ryman Auditorium, Country Music Hall of Fame & Museum, and the Bluebird Cafe are celebrating major anniversaries this year. Plus, Music City U.S.A. has a booming food scene with John Besh's Marsh House, an eatery from Per Se-trained chef Julia Sullivan, joining a strong market of dining options in the past year. The city also debuted the Thompson Nashville
in the Gulch dining and entertainment district, with a 21c, and Kimpton opening in 2017. For visitors wanting a historic setting, Nashville's Hermitage Hotel
is a landmark destination since 1908 with the Capitol Grille and a regal setting.
8. Cape Town
Set along picture-perfect beaches where two oceans converge, Cape Town is ideal for whale watching and water sports. Surrounded by the Cape Winelands of Constantia, Franschhoek, and Stellenbosch, the region pairs well with the city's growing restaurant scene. Cape Town's art and design scene is also strengthening with the opening of the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary African Art. The award-winning Twelve Apostles Hotel and Spa
offers a waterfront setting, with a private helicopter pad, impeccable service, and a shuttle service to Cape Town's V&A Waterfront, plus special perks for Five Star Alliance guests. For a setting removed from the city, Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve
is less than a 3-hour drive, with a unique natural environment featuring waterfalls, open plains, and ancient sandstone formations, along with VIP status for Five Star Alliance guests.
From the beaches in the Algarve region, to the chic city of Lisbon, Portugal offers vineyards, arts, culture, and a delectable culinary experience. Perched on a mountainside overlooking a UNESCO World Heritage town, the Tivoli Palacio de Setais
is set within a castle built by the Dutch in 1787. The Hotel Quinta Do Lago
is located within the Ria Formosa Nature Park, with direct beach access, outdoor pool, and spa. Olissippo Lapa Palace
offers a retreat-like setting in the heart of Lisbon, while Six Senses Douro Valley
provides a spectacular setting in Portugal's Duora Valley wine region.
10. Perth, Australia
The capital of Western Australia, Perth is one of the most remote cities on the planet. But the city's restaurant industry is booming with historic buildings being transformed into swank cafes and chic cocktail bars. There's also a growing number of design-focused accommodations, including COMO The Treasury
. Set within a 140-year-old State Building, the hotel has a rooftop Wildflower restaurant, COMO Shambhala spa, and indoor pool. Crown Metropol Perth
overlooks the rolling hills to the east with a large resort pool surrounded by cabanas and day beds, spa with Swan River views, plus cycling and running tracks.
Torres del Paine National Park offers breathtaking vistas and an array of mountains, fjords, and glaciers to explore. New flights from South American airline LATAM between Santiago, Chile and Puerto Natalas are making this region more accessible than ever. The luxury ecolodge, explora Patagonia
is set within the national park, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, while Tierra Patagonia Hotel and Spa
offers distinctive architecture overlooking the area's unique landscape. For exclusive access to mountainous terrain, as well as nearby farms and rivers, The Singular Patagonia
is set on 100 acres and pays homage to the heritage of the region.
This June, the island will host the 35th America's Cup sailing race, and the island is currently undergoing a redevelopment phase. The Hamilton Princess & Beach Club
just completed a $100 million renovation, which included the addition of a Marcus Samuelsson restaurant, plus an art collection, spa, and revitalized guest rooms. Elbow Beach Bermuda
is located along a stretch of pristine, pink sand beach, while Rosewood Tuckers Point
is set amongst 200 waterfront acres.
In celebration of the country's 150th birthday, all of Canada's National Parks will offer free entry to anyone who signs up for the Discover Pass. Ottawa will host a variety of events, and the Fairmont Chateau Laurier
is in the center of it all next to the Parliament Buildings. Toronto is now more accessible via Air Canada's stopover program, and the newly opened Thompson Toronto
offers a chic setting with a rooftop pool. Quebec City, North America's only walled city, is experiencing a renaissance, and the Auberge Saint-Antoine
mixes history with a chic setting. While Vancouver offers a thriving metropolis on the Pacific Coast, fusing historic railroad hotels like the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver
, amongst contemporary retreats such as the Fairmont Pacific Rim
14. Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
The island's colonial city is expanding its offerings with new restaurants that transform into nightspots, a hip electronic music scene, and a variety of live music venues. Casas del XVI
features 10 luxury accommodations spread throughout three historic homes, with an overall romantic, yet contemporary setting. The Hostal Nicolas de Ovando Santo Domingo
is located within a former palace that has been transformed into a luxury hotel along the Las Damas, the New World's first paved road.
15. Suzhou, China
Offering a new high-rise Suzhou Industrial Park with a shopping and entertainment district, mixed with the UNESCO-designated 2,500-year-old city known for traditional white-washed buildings and an Old Town with canals, this city mixes old with new. Just a half-hour bullet train ride from Shanghai, the historic city known for art and poetry is becoming a popular location, with multiple Western hotel brands opening properties in the next two years. The Pan Pacific Suzhou
offers traditional Chinese architecture with renowned personalized service, and the Regalia Resort and Spa
featuring a secluded setting with lotus ponds on Jinji Lake.
Home to some of the world's most beautiful beaches, the Seychelles is a 115-island nation off the eastern coast of Africa. Popular with honeymooners, the islands are experiencing a boom in lavish resort openings. The newly opened Six Senses Zil Pasyon
is an all-villa retreat on the private island of Félicité with an open-air spa and plunge pools. The Constance Ephelia Seychelles
on the island of Mahe with contemporary furnishings, surrounded by gardens and ocean views, while the Constance Lemuria Seychelles
has its own 18-hole championship golf course, and sits directly on three white sand beaches with four restaurants, children's club, and five bars.
Emerging as the arts hub of the Hawaiian islands, the state's capital is hosting its first Biennial, March 8 to May 8, which will feature art installations, performances, and more around the city at the City Hall, Chinatown, and Foster Botanical Garden. There are new galleries and studios opening throughout the city, plus the beachfront hotels are right on the water, yet close to the attractions. Halekulani
is located on Waikiki Beach with the 5-star Le Mer Restaurant and a mosaic-bottom swimming pool. The newly transformed Four Seasons Resort Oahu at Ko Olina
is a sprawling property with an award-winning spa, marina, and family activities. Plus, the Royal Hawaiian
, known as the Pink Palace provides a landmark setting on Waikiki Beach with classic beachfront dining.