World's Hottest Celebrity-Owned Hotels
Not getting enough celebrity sightings in your life? Check into a celebrity-owned hotel, where A-list owners and their famous friends have been known to kick back. From a restored inn in Upstate New York owned by actor Richard Gere to a cool, contemporary boutique hotel in the heart of Dublin envisioned by Bono and The Edge, these hotels offer all the creature comforts of home, in luxurious celebrity style.
Bedford, New YorkThank Richard Gere and his wife for saving this historic building: a 1762 structure that survived the Revolutionary War. The couple transformed the space into one of New York State's most intimate boutique hotels in 2007. Designed by Richard's wife Carey Lowell, Bedford Post Inn is romantic and stylish, with top room amenities like claw-foot bathtubs, Frette linens and working fireplaces.
There are only 8 guestrooms but, due to demand, 12 more are planned for 2013. Dine in the Farmhouse, which sources locally for its Mediterranean-inflected American fare, and check out The Barn for a cup of coffee before embarking on outdoor adventures like sailing, horseback riding and hiking. Richard plays a big role here and is seen frequently at the hotel, which also attracts famous guests like Martha Stewart and Ralph Lauren.
Gold Coast, AustraliaActor Hugh Jackman can sing, dance, act and apparently run a hotel, too. Opened in 2006, Gwinganna (meaning "lookout") shares its name with the region itself, named by the local aboriginal people. The retreat offers visitors the opportunity to embrace health and wellness with fitness classes, a fully equipped gym with trainers, 2 infinity-edge pools, a yoga deck, holistic counseling and nutritionists.
Sixteen accommodations (from villas to houses) showcase a rustic yet modern feel (complimentary iPods are available), along with commanding views of the Pacific Ocean and Tallebudgera Valley. All meals are certified organic (many ingredients come from the retreat's own garden) and the spa is a haven. Book the "Australian Spirit of Sound" treatment, which features live percussion instruments and advanced massage techniques to soothe clients through the powers of vibration and rhythm.
Park City, UtahOnly 40 minutes from Park City, UT, where the annual Sundance Film Festival is held, Sundance Resort is Robert Redford's destination retreat, located at the base of Mount Timpanogos. Here, it's all about entertainment in an outdoor setting, with plays, concerts and film screenings held at the Eccles Outdoor Amphitheater, along with area attractions such as hiking, skiing, white-water rafting and mountain biking.
The resort includes 92 rustic guest rooms built from local materials like stone, cedar, fir and pine. Accommodations are nestled in clusters around the resort, but should you prefer more privacy (as many celebrity guests do), Sundance Resort also offers mountain homes tucked in the mountainside, with private butlers and chefs at your disposal.
Vero Beach, FloridaIt's hard not to do the conga at Costa d'Este Beach Resort & Spa: The property is owned by singer Gloria Estefan and her husband Emilio. Opened in 2008, the resort in Vero Beach (about 100 miles from Orlando and 135 miles north of Miami) is a perfect getaway from these more high-traffic Florida hot spots. Here, it's all about relaxation.
The Wave Kitchen & Bar showcases Cuban-fusion, Continental and Peruvian cuisine, while the resort’s pool and beachfront are helmed by splash stylists (pool concierge) who ensure top-notch service. The spa has a "secret" entrance for high-profile guests, and all rooms are designed to look and feel like modern yacht staterooms. Viva Costa!
Cayo District, BelizeWhen iconic film director Francis Ford Coppola visited Belize in the 1980s, he fell so hard for the country that he opened several hotels. Blancaneaux Resort, his most famous, is set deep within lushy, dense jungles, alongside steep ravines, crashing waterfalls and fast-flowing rivers. The 20-room, eco-friendly resort is a favorite for families and honeymooners who want to be completely removed from civilization.
Cabanas and villas are set far apart from each other, an outdoor spa and hot pool are heated solely by hydro-electricity and a 2-acre organic garden supplies produce for meals -- all presented in the most upscale way. After all, the property was good enough for Coppola, who held his private family retreats here until making the resort a public hotel in 1993.
New York CityVisitors to the Big Apple who want an exclusive (and quite luxurious) stay check into to Robert De Niro's Greenwich Hotel in Tribeca (where the famous actor helped launch the equally famous Tribeca Film Festival). Amenities include a bar by renowned chef Andrew Carmellini, as well as the acclaimed Locanda Verde restaurant, Japanese-inspired Shibui Spa (including an indoor swimming pool) and a swanky Drawing Room and Courtyard, the latter 2 open to hotel guests only.
The 88-room hotel makes anyone feel like a celebrity, with beds by Duxiana of Sweden, a 24-hour room service, luxurious bath and body products and all furniture made especially for the hotel. The building itself is made out of hand-made bricks with interior details including reclaimed wood, custom-made glass, and bronze and mirrors made from antique glass.
Dublin, IrelandIt's hard not to hum a U2 song when entering the Clarence in Dublin: The hotel is owned by Bono and bandmate The Edge. In 1992, the duo transformed an 1852 building, situated along the famous River Liffey and centrally located in downtown Dublin, into a 49-room boutique. Among the hotel’s attraction is the Octagon Bar, a prominent late-night destination among the locals who gather for a pint; it’s also the original bar where Bono and The Edge used to hang out before making the hotel their own.
The hotel also features an eclectic array of culinary fare: Enjoy a full Irish breakfast in the Tea Room and more casual fare like an Irish beef cheese burger in The Study. All rooms showcase unique furnishings designed by Irish artisans, from the super kingsized beds to the nickel-plated desk lamps.
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