CNN’s Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World

CNN’s Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World boca do loboSome of the most exclusive hotels don’t even bother with a star rating, their luxury experience just jumps right in front of your sight and those mundane classifications become meaningless. Recently, the biggest and most exclusive names in hospitality battled for a slice of the lucrative and growing Chinese outbound travel pie at Shanghai International Luxury Travel Market (ILTM), CNN was there and decided it was about time to make a selection of the best luxury travel experiences in the world.

Necker Belle (Caribbean)CNN's Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World  CNN’s Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World w1920

Virgin boss Richard Branson’s Necker Island is already famed for being one of the world’s most spectacular private retreats. But he also likes to get his feet wet on the Necker Belle, a 105-foot catamaran that he calls “a mobile version of Necker Island.” Guests can design their own Caribbean itinerary, during which they’ll spend the days scuba diving, fishing, sunbathing, enjoying water sports, eating and drinking with up to 12 of their luckiest friends. At night, a screen and projector is set up on deck for movies under the stars.

SEE ALSO: VISIT THE WORLD’S LARGEST CRUISE SHIP THROUGH GOOGLE STREET

Priced from $110,000 per week, more info at: Virginlimitededition.com

Hotel President Wilson (Geneva, Switzerland)CNN's Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World  CNN’s Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World 8e82721e359a98de99944e370bea397a

Bill Gates, Matt Damon, Rihanna and Mikhail Gorbachev make an unlikely quartet. The common thread? They’ve all stayed in the Royal Penthouse suite in Geneva’s Hotel President Wilson. Overlooking Lake Geneva and the Alps, it features 12 bedrooms over 18,000 square feet — all for a cool 75,000 Swiss francs, or $80,000 per night. Guests don’t even have to slum it in the gym as it’s got its own fitness area and spa. Bulletproof glass, a private elevator and a helicopter pad all ensure it’s the safest spot in town.

Hotel President Wilson, 47 Quai Wilson, Geneva, Switzerland; +41 22 906 66 66

Private helicopter tour (Queenstown, New Zealand)CNN's Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World  CNN’s Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World 150618171427 international luxury travel market new zealand super 169

Few landscapes are as dramatic as the south island of New Zealand. For those short on time, veteran pilot Louisa “Choppy” Patterson offers helicopter day trips that take in everything from Queenstown to Stewart Island. A payment of $12,000 secures exclusive use of a Eurocopter, including an hour’s flight to isolated Stewart Island, where the nation’s flightless kiwi bird is said to outnumber humans. Once on land, an expert guide takes guests hiking, kayaking, fishing and bird watching.

Over The Top, Blue Hangar, Tex Smith Lane, Queenstown Airport, Queenstown, New Zealand; +64 3 442 2233

Belmond Napoleon barge (Provence, France)CNN's Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World  CNN’s Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World taif 1366x400 alouette exterior07

River cruises are one of the hottest trends in travel right now and the super luxury market is no exception. One of the swankiest tours on offer is a six-night cruise on the Belmond Napoleon barge, which floats down Provence’s Rhone River, from Arles to Tain l’Hermitage. Guests enjoy candlelit al fresco dinners and soaks in the outdoor jacuzzi at night and visit some of France’s most famous wine chateaux during the day. High season rates to book the entire barge, which has six cabins and holds up to 12 passengers, start at $76,100.

More info at Belmond.com

Private jet tour (Australia)CNN's Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World  CNN’s Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World bill peach top

Bill Peach Journeys has 30 years of experience creating private jet luxury tours in Australia and New Zealand. Its most recent bespoke trip came in at a cool $27,000 per person for a family of five. All travel was by Cessna Citation and included stops in Sydney, the Outback and Uluru, the Northern Territories and the Great Barrier Reef. All accommodation during any of Bill Peach Journeys’ trips is, unsurprisingly, five-star.

More info at Billpeachjourneys.com or +61 2 9693 2233

Singita Serengeti (Tanzania)CNN's Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World  CNN’s Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World serengeti lodge sunset banner

For safari enthusiasts, Singita offers the ultimate in African wildlife encounters. This includes the private four-suite Singita Serengeti House villa at Sasakwa Hill, which costs $84,500 per week during high season. That elephantine price tag buys prime game watching in the heart of the private 350,000-acre Singita Grumeti game reserve, which sits on the western flank of the Serengeti. A lap pool, private chef, horseback riding, mountain biking and archery are all available. All meals, drinks, guides and a private Land Rover are inclusive.

Booking info at Singita.com or +27 21 683 3424

South America cruise, Seven Seas MarinerCNN's Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World  CNN’s Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World 150618170853 international luxury travel market south america super 169

Booking the 2,000-square-foot master suite on the Seven Seas Mariner’s South America cruise costs $120,000 per person — not terribly outrageous given you’ll be spending 72 days at sea. Starting and finishing in Miami, passengers take in destinations like Colombia, Ecuador, Chile, Argentina, Brazil and much of the Caribbean along the way. As the ship caters to only 700 guests, the staff-to-guest ratio of 1 to 1.6 means a gin and tonics are never far away.

More info at Rssc.com or +1 844 473 4368

IcelandCNN's Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World  CNN’s Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World northern lights ronni

The land of fire and ice has no shortage of thrilling scenery, landing it on plenty of “places to go in 2015” lists. One of the more luxurious Iceland tours comes via high-end travel specialists Ker & Downey. Their 10-day bespoke tour takes in geological wonders including the Godafoss waterfall, Krafla volcano, Skutustadagígar craters and Dimmuborgir lava pillars. They’ll also help with the pronunciation. Add in puffin and whale watching in Husavík’s Skjalfandi Bay, the famous Golden Circle tour and an extended stay in Reykjavik for their “culture night” festival and you’re looking at a price of about $23,325 per person.

More info at Kerdowney.com or +1 800 423 4236CNN’s Best Luxury Travel Experiences in the World maison valentina

These are the selections from CNN for all of your luxury lifestyle needs, do they suite you? What would your dream travel plan be? Let us know

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