The best Four Seasons hotels & resorts in the world include Grand-Hotel du Cap-Ferrat, Four Seasons Lanai and Four Seasons Resort Hualalai in Hawaii, Four Seasons Surf Club on Miami Beach, Four Seasons Shanghai At Pudong, Four Seasons Los Cabos At Costa Palmas, Four Seasons Palm Beach, Four Seasons Istanbul At The Bosphorus, Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach and Four Seasons Boston, One Dalton Street. To be honest, there are a number of other properties that I want to include in this article, but I would have to stray into the realms of top 20 or top 30 to include all my favorite Four Seasons hotels. There are just so many great ones!
I love Whistler and Megeve in France for skiing. I love the Maui and Oahu Four Seasons, which I have not included below, but are amazing hotels in Hawaii. There are numerous Four Seasons hotels across Asia, plus a great Four Seasons in Bora Bora, one in the Maldives, and one in the Seychelles. Back to European cities, I am a huge fan of the Four Seasons in Florence in Italy and both Four Seasons properties across the pond in New York, which I have compared in more detail, Four Seasons Hotel New York vs. Downtown. Choosing the best is nearly an impossible task!
Whichever Four Seasons Hotel or Resort you chose, get the following free benefits at no extra cost, by booking via our luxury travel concierge:
- Breakfast for two people per bedroom
- Food and beverage credit or spa credit of $100 USD per stay (where you can spend your credit depends on the hotel but the value is always $100 USD)
- Upgrade of one category, based on availability at time of check-in (this usually excludes suites)
- Early check-in / late check-out (subject to availability)
- Complimentary basic Internet in all guest rooms
- Complimentary welcome gift (usually a box of chocs, bottle of wine etc)
1. Grand-Hotel du Cap-Ferrat, A Four Seasons Hotel
Grand-Hotel du Cap-Ferrat, a Four Seasons hotel, also features in my ten most incredible stays worldwide. This Four Seasons hotel has the only luxury hotel air-conditioned glass lift down to their beach club (that I have come across) in the world. This Willy Wonka lift, along with the large saltwater pool, beautiful gardens, and, IMHO, the best terrace for sitting out on and drinking and eating through the day and into the evening, means that Grand-Hotel du Cap-Ferrat, A Four Seasons Hotel is our best choice in Europe and a must for your bucket list.
The Grand-Hôtel du Cap-Ferrat, a Four Seasons Hotel, is actually located in France between Nice and Monaco, at the tip of the Cap-Ferrat peninsula, facing the Mediterranean, in a private 17-acre estate with pine trees and flowers of a thousand colors. The hotel has just 49 double rooms and 24 Suites, which have been entirely renovated and redecorated by the famous designer Pierre-Yves Rochon. It has an 8500-square-foot spa with an indoor swimming pool, indoor and outdoor treatment rooms, an indoor and outdoor gym, Jacuzzi, saunas, steam rooms, and spa gardens.
This luxury hotel is open from March to November, and you will find the best deals here at the end of March and the start of November. The spectacular Club Dauphin, with an Olympic-sized heated seawater swimming pool, is open throughout the season, and the hotel has three restaurants under the direction of Michelin-starred Executive Chef Yoric Tièche: the gastronomic restaurant Le Cap, with one Michelin Star; the Club-Dauphin restaurant, open for lunch in season; and the Veranda with Mediterranean cuisine for all-day dining.
My lasting memory of a stay at this hotel is sitting on that magical terrace, watching the distant ships pass by at the end of the Cap Ferrat peninsula while twinkling planes negotiate the skies above on their way into Nice airport. I love smelling the greenery in the gorgeous gardens, at the end of a hot day under the Mediterranean sun, and of course, sipping a beer as live jazz plays into the starry night. If you have a soul, you cannot fail to fall in love with this hotel and the person you share it with.
2. Four Seasons Lanai
Possibly offering the most picture-perfect beach in the world is the Four Seasons Lanai, Hawaii, a true escape on a billionaire’s private island, Larry Ellison’s to be exact. The Four Seasons on Lanai features in my best Four Seasons hotels in Hawaii. You will not find more beautiful or more remote, empty beaches anywhere in the world.
Overlooking beautiful Hulopo’e Bay, Lana’i by Four Seasons offers an innovative vision of a Hawaiian resort, a perfect base to explore your own 90,000-acre island. Experience modern luxury at its most sophisticated, discover a remarkable variety for dining and drinks, and explore an astonishing range of landscapes with activities to match.
Upon arrival, you’ll find elegant yet innovative guestrooms, a variety of restaurants, including NOBU LANAI, a spa, and wellness program, high-end retail stores, and a gorgeously landscaped pool oasis. Activities range from horseback riding, off-roading tours, sporting clays, and archery to snorkel and sailing adventures, as well as tennis, championship golf, and more.
Don’t expect a great deal of nightlife here. In fact, when we stayed, the alfresco restaurant by the pool closed quite early. Having said that, things have changed since Four Seasons took over, and there is now a beautiful alfresco bar on a large Lanai with sweeping views, connected to the Nobu restaurant, which serves a light menu and drinks through to 10:30 pm. After this, you can always wander barefooted, down to the beach, where you will almost undoubtedly be alone, and you can enjoy a paddle under a milky way of stars.
3. Four Seasons Hualalai
Set on the North Kona Coast of Hawaii Island, Four Seasons Resort Hualālai boasts a dramatic mix of white-sand beaches, dazzling oceanfront, and black-lava landscapes. Enjoy championship golf, island-fresh dining, and a genuine aloha spirit during your stay.
Housed in intimate two-storey bungalows, Four Seasons Resort Hualalai’s 243 expansive guest rooms and suites exude a nostalgic sense of Hawaii’s golden age. All rooms offer modern Hawaii décor, paddle ceiling fans (along with air conditioning), and each has a lanai or terrace.
The Golf View rooms are undoubtedly the best deal as you get to enjoy all the benefits of the resort at the cheapest possible price. These are on the Golf Ocean-View Crescent on both the lower and upper levels. As you would expect, these rooms look out onto the golf course, which is a pretty nice view. We prefer the downstairs rooms, which have private outdoor lava rock showers. I love the outdoor showers and the terrace as oppose to a lanai, so you can walk right out onto the grass. I would therefore always pick the downstairs rooms as the best choice.
It is worth mentioning that even the cheapest room at the Four Seasons Hualalai is a great room, and you will have a similarly great holiday, whichever room you choose. If you book via our luxury travel concierge, we can bump you up a room level for free, (subject to availability on check-in), as well as offering a bunch of other free benefits!
Whatever deal or discount you manage to book, the Four Seasons Hualalai is brilliant for several reasons:
The hotel itself is perched on dramatic blackened lava from the Volcano. The entire low-rise complex is dotted with palm trees and has a hugely long and private beach. The mix of the warm sand, deep blue Pacific waters, lush green tropical foliage, and flowers means that the setting can only be described as breathtaking.
The design of this low-rise hotel means that it never feels full, even though this glorious hotel often enjoys 100% occupancy (it’s that good!). The mainly two-story buildings are spread out, so you never feel like the hotel is particularly busy. By comparison, the Four Seasons Maui feels much more lively and busy, which is a good and a bad thing!
The large lobby is open-air, and when you arrive, you get a sweet-smelling lei (flower necklace) and an oshibori towel which is a great start to every stay here. Communal areas are also always immaculate, and the staff are always welcoming and often address you by your name (although I still don’t know how they manage to do this, bearing in mind the size of some Four Seasons hotels!).
The Four Seasons Hualalai has a wonderful garden that stretches down to the beach, and its pools are an absolute highlight.
My favorite thing at the resort is the King’s Pond pictured above. Four Seasons brings the ocean into the resort for you with this pool: a quarry-like pond with a sandy bottom, carved free form out of the black lava, and teeming with fish. It is right next to the beach and is one of the most unique resort features I have seen. It’s filled with seawater and is home to thousands of fish, including a couple of spotted eagle rays.
You can swim in this pool for as long as you like with complimentary snorkel gear. Swim with real fish and rays, a truly magical experience, and all with the convenience of being just a short walk from your room. It’s a “must-do” for your bucket list. After your swim, or between swims, laze on a pool chair and have a drink or a bite to eat.
There are five other swimming pools, some with sloping and sand bottoms, some with hot tubs/ You can look forward to complimentary frozen grapes poolside, which is a lovely touch.
There is also a large gym with a lap pool and of course, there is an amazing beach. From November to May, you are likely to spot whales and dolphins just offshore, and there are local turtles that meander about on the beach too. I could go on, but suffice to say, this is one of the best Four Seasons hotels in the world, without a doubt.
4. Four Seasons Los Cabos At Costa Palmas
Although it was due to open in 2018, the Four Seasons Los Cabos is only currently bookable from early 2020, but if you are a Four Season’s fan, this brand new Four Seasons simply must be added to your bucket list.
Four Seasons Los Cabos is in fact just down the beach from the new Amanvari Los Cabos in the 1,000-acre beachfront resort community of Costa Palmas. This luxury vacation development brings a whole new level of luxury to Los Cabos, making this the number one spot to choose, both for your couples break or honeymoon and for a family holiday with the kids.
The calm shores of the Sea of Cortez and this Four Seasons hotel are surprisingly easy to reach, less than an hour from the airport, and they have a huge advantage over many other luxury hotels around Los Cabos. Hotels which face the rough Pacific are disadvantaged as you are often confined to using the hotel pool rather than swimming in the sea. The Sea of Cortez in front of this Four Seasons hotel offers calm waters and great snorkeling, everything you need from paradise!
145 rooms spread across multiple buildings share multiple pools, extensive indoor and outdoor event and wedding facilities, and five unique dining outlets. The Resort also features a Robert Trent Jones II signature 18-hole golf course, a full-service spa, and progressive fitness facilities.
Four Seasons Resort Los Cabos is part of the exclusive Costa Palmas resort community, which will also feature a private marina and members-only beach and yacht club, all set along a two-mile stretch of immaculate white-sand beach and the warm, swimmable waters of the Sea of Cortez.
The East Cape’s location of this Four Seasons, on the warm, crystal-clear waters of the Sea of Cortez, makes for excellent snorkeling and diving, some of the world’s best light tackle and sport fishing, and world-class windsurfing and kiteboarding. The idyllic setting at the base of the Sierra de la Laguna Mountains also offers endless opportunities for land adventure, from hiking, biking, and horseback riding to exploring waterfalls, spring-fed freshwater pools, and hot springs.
Four Seasons Resort Los Cabos at Costa Palmas marks the third addition to the company’s growing Mexican collection, which currently includes properties in Punta Mita and Mexico City. The Resort will join an exclusive collection of Four Seasons resorts in destinations including the Maldives, Seychelles, Bora Bora, Koh Samui, and Hawaii.
5. Four Seasons Shanghai At Pudong
The Four Seasons Shanghai At Pudong rises high above the Pudong Lujiazui business district. The selling point for me, beyond the ultra modern and exclusive Executive Club Lounge on the hotel’s 35th floor, is the incredible infinity pool looking down upon the city.
This art-deco inspired hotel sits in the gleaming 21st Century Tower, surrounded by iconic skyscrapers and bustling city streets lined with luxury shopping, restaurants, and prestigious financial centers. Awaken to panoramic views of Shanghai from your room’s floor-to-ceiling windows, enjoy breakfast at Camelia, then hop into their complimentary house car to whisk your way to meetings or sightseeing adventures with the family.
Unwind with a swim in the infinity pool (my favorite and definitely the best in Shanghai, possibly the world) or at their intimate FLARE Spa before savoring the authentic Cantonese flavors at Shàng-Xí. The disadvantage of this Four Seasons is that the Pudong location isn’t great for leisure travelers, even though this is the newer of the two Four Seasons hotels in Shanghai. You are away from the tourist center around the Bund, which means that although this property is probably the best in Four Seasons in Shanghai, if your primary objective is the perfect location for a vacation, this hotel isn’t it.
One noteworthy feature of this Four Seasons is the spectacular breakfast offering, spread across three different rooms. You get this free if you book via our concierge. Pearl view rooms are fantastic, the pool will probably be one of the best pools you have ever experienced, and we love the fact that Four Seasons hotels are always child-friendly if you bring your family on your travels.
6. Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach
Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach is the best Four Seasons hotel in Dubai (there are actually two in this ultra-modern metropolis). This glamorous beach resort is ideal for families, couples, or high-level business. Four Seasons hotels always welcome children with open arms and encourage families with free food for kids under a certain age. They often offer free rollaway beds in the rooms to encourage families to stay. Book a Junior suite, and you have a separate bedroom and lounge area so you can put your baby or a little child to sleep in the next-door room. Ideal!
Set on a pristine, natural beach, Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach has 237 ultra-spacious Dubai hotel accommodations, including 49 suites, offering views of the Arabian Gulf on one side and Burj Khalifa and the downtown skyline on the other.
This 5-star Dubai hotel is home to 10 restaurants and lounges, one of the city’s most lavish spas, three swimming pools, and fun family activities. The jewel atop the resort, the Mercury Lounge, is host to spectacular sights over both the sea and the Dubai skyline, offering guests uninterrupted views over the Burj Khalifa unlike anywhere else in the city!
Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach is probably the best family-friendly luxury resort on the shores of the Arabian Gulf. Their youngest guests get just as many opportunities for fun as the adults, and their Concierge is pleased to help arrange adventures suitable for your children’s ages and interests.
Within the resort, there is a complimentary kids’ center room with a curved, bright sofa and cushions, toys, and TV loft. There is also a complimentary kids’ program is designed to educate and entertain children ages 4 to 12. On Thursdays and Fridays, the center is open until 11:00 pm, convenient for parents who want a night out.
The free-form outdoor pool is extremely child-friendly, the perfect gathering place for friends and families across generations, and just a few steps from the beach where kids can build sandcastles.
7. Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul At The Bosphorus
Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at the Bosphorus (on the European bank) feels like a palace because it was originally a beautiful 19th-century Ottoman palace. This Four Seasons hotel is well located for exploring the famous Dolmabahçe Palace, a few buildings away, along with the Naval Museum and Yıldız Park, a steeply sloped park with pretty pavilions.
The Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at the Bosphorus is badly located for public transport, but you can taxi to the transport hub of Kabataş and then tram across the Galata Bridge to the Old City and take the funicular up to Taksim Square.
This waterfront palace offers decadent dining venues providing views of the Asian shore, while the urban day spa boasts a Turkish hammam, famous for its purity and cleansing rituals. The highlight is the wide terrace decked in comfy seating, where you can sit out and enjoy watching the boats criss-cross the Bosphorus strait and look over to the hills on the other side in Asia.
In the evening, you can dine alfresco on the terrace in the Italian restaurant Aqua, and the bar area is lit by a large Tikki torch. It is utterly atmospheric. Aqua is also where you have breakfast. It has an indoor section for the colder weather, but in the summer is a wonderful place to munch through the generous Four Seasons buffet breakfast.
145 guestrooms and 25 suites all have windows that open to the sea breezes, contemporary mahogany furnishings, and handpainted ceilings. “Palace” rooms in the older buildings are the ones to choose, and these have been stunningly preserved. Two more modern buildings house the remaining rooms and suites.
Standard rooms can be found in the two modern buildings and offer views through large windows onto the courtyard. We like the rooms in the Palace building. The ones to pick are those looking onto the Bosphorus with large floor-to-ceiling windows, high ceilings, and marble bathrooms. Children are welcome in all Four Seasons hotels, and free rollaway beds, high chairs, and cots are provided free of charge.
There is a pretty waterside outdoor pool (pictured above), a whirlpool tub, and decking plastered with deeply plush loungers positioned to make the most of the views. It is a great and sophisticated place for families and couples to hang out together between May and October. An indoor pool is ideal for the rest of the year and offers attractive lighting and grand pillars for an atmospheric swim. A large fitness room will keep you fit.
8. Four Seasons Hotel At The Surf Club, Miami, USA
Four Seasons Hotel at The Surf Club (pictured above) is the fourth Four Seasons in the Sunshine State, joining her sister hotels Four Seasons Resort Palm Beach, Four Seasons Hotel Miami, and Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World Resort. Situated directly on the Atlantic Ocean in the northern beaches of Miami, Four Seasons Hotel at The Surf Club in Surfside, Florida, is minutes from the prestigious Bal Harbour shopping and the nightlife of South Beach and Miami.
From the moment it first opened its doors on New Year’s Eve 1930, The Surf Club in Miami has hosted history. The Mediterranean Revival building and beachside cabanas that made up the original Surf Club formed elegant backdrops that would frame the beach and sea. It quickly became a magnet for members that crossed industry, culture, and class. It was a home away from home for people who shared provenance, privilege, and a preference for pleasure.
Archive photos show poolside fashion shows directed by Elizabeth Arden, Shah Mohamed Reza of Iran on the tennis court, his wife on water skis, and Winston Churchill painting in his cabana. There was booze on the beach during prohibition, kayaks in the swimming pool, black-tie boxing dinners, and lavish themed galas, one time with elephants, another with 300 tables made of ice. It was a place of myth, legend, and endless laughter. The names that rolled up were pioneers of the good life: Noel Coward, Douglas Fairbanks Jr. and Elizabeth Taylor, The Duke and Duchess of Windsor, Frank Sinatra, Tennessee Williams, Joan Crawford, Liberace.
Some of today’s greatest creative minds were commissioned to write the next chapter of The Surf Club’s story. The new Surf Club. Pritzker-prize-winning architect Richard Meier designed three buildings that frame and flank the original clubhouse. They are an exercise in discrete classical modernism, simultaneously reflecting and disappearing into the changing sky, the beach, and the sea.
Parisian interior architect Joseph Dirand was tasked with designing the interiors of the public areas and bedrooms of the Hotel, together with the cabanas. Renowned for his ability to bring atmosphere, rich narrative, and quiet drama to life through space, materials, furniture, and details, Dirand has created a series of rooms that evoke a sense of the past with a feeling of the present and a hint of the future.
The restaurants and bars evoke bygone times. The Spa is a light-dappled sanctuary. Outside, pool experiences include quiet and family options; and a cabana pool. On the pristine beach, guests can take part in an array of non-motorized water sports. Younger guests are also welcomed at the fully supervised Kids for All Seasons studio.
The Surfside Four Seasons is beautiful and right on the beach. It is my favorite Four Seasons in Miami and is the best choice for the following reasons:
- Location just a few blocks south of the luxurious Bal Harbour shops and a 20 minute drive from South Beach
- The beach is just steps away
- The rooms have been beautifully designed and offer stunning views
- Oceanfront views almost hang over the ocean with enormous floor to ceiling windows
- Glass fronted balconies enable you to enjoy the sunshine in your own private space
- The pool is super stylish, and the gardens edge the beach with plenty of loungers
- The bar has a tropical feel with high ceilings
- The hotel oozes sophistication with photo opportunities at every corner
Of course, the Four Seasons Downtown Miami tends to be cheaper and the better deal, but if you are looking for the best hotel on Miami Beach, Four Seasons Hotel At The Surf Club is it.
9. Four Seasons Resort Palm Beach
The Four Seasons remains Palm Beach Island’s only Five-Star, Five-Diamond resort. With 47 miles of pristine golden beaches, Palm Beach, Florida, has a setting for everyone, from romantically private stretches of sand to family-friendly beaches with playgrounds, nature centers, and beach parks that offer snorkeling, wind sailing, fishing, or paddleboarding. A key feature of this newly refurbished resort is the two pools, one for families and the other second pool for adults only.
Catch a gleeful glimpse of a loggerhead turtle, or relax in a cabana with the complimentary service of personal beach staff at Four Seasons Resort Palm Beach.
10. Four Seasons Boston, One Dalton Street
One of the most impressive new Four Seasons hotel in North America is the Four Seasons Boston, One Dalton Street in Boston. This is the second and best Four Seasons hotel in the city and is located in the heart of the chic Back Bay neighborhood, just steps from Symphony Hall, Newbury Street, Copley Plaza, Fenway Park, and so much more. It is also just 15 minutes from Logan International Airport.
Interestingly, if you are traveling with your family, you may prefer the prices at the original Four Seasons Boston. The rooms at this hotel house two double beds and 2 adults and 2 children, whereas you need to book a suite at the Four Seasons Boston, One Dalton Street if you want it to fit a 4-person family.
The Four Seasons One Dalton Street’s 215 hotel rooms (with king beds) and suites feature floor-to-ceiling windows. For dining, Zuma has arrived in Boston at One Dalton Street in a space that is as much a feast for the eyes as the menu is for the palate. The dishes themselves are designed to be shared from Zuma’s three open kitchens: the main kitchen, sushi counter, and robata grill. Also located on the second floor is One + One with its floor-to-ceiling windows, open for breakfast and lunch.
Here are some more of the best Four Seasons resorts in the world that we have reviewed:
Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul At Sultanahmet is a very well-located luxury hotel in the middle of the major tourist sites. It’s a beautiful and unique property with a lot of character. The Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul At The Bosphorus is… Read More.
The best hotel on the French Riviera is the Grand-Hôtel du Cap-Ferrat, a Four Seasons Hotel located near the small town of Saint Jean Cap Ferrat. Set in Belle Epoque splendor, in a building that dates back to the 1800s,… Read More.
The new Four Seasons Hotel The Westcliff, Johannesburg is a cliffside garden retreat overlooking the city’s prestigious northern suburbs. Fully transformed by UK-based hospitality design agency Black Sheep for a totally new experience. The hotel offers 117 guest rooms and… Read More.
Four Seasons Resort Seychelles at Desroches Island is the only resort on the remote tropical island of Desroches in the Seychelles. On the outer edge of the Indian Ocean’s archipelago, Desroches Island is located among the Amirantes Islands, a 35… Read More.
The newest Four Seasons hotel to launch from this luxury hotel chain is the Four Seasons Anguilla in the Caribbean. I am always excited about Four Seasons hotel openings because, although they are arguably not the pinnacle of luxury hotels,… Read More.
The Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts Downtown New York is now officially open. Designed by Yabu Pushelberg, the new Four Seasons Hotel New York Downtown is located in the city’s Tribeca neighborhood, steps away from the World Trade Center. Read More.
Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok at Chao Phraya River and Four Seasons Private Residences Bangkok at Chao Phraya River are to take their place as iconic landmarks on the longest waterfront promenade in Bangkok, covering 35-2-68 rai. The development has been unveiled… Read More.
Note: Benefits offered correct at the time of writing but may be amended at discretion of the vendor. Posts may be sponsored by the proprietor or brand being appraised. All opinions remain our own & are in no way influenced.