Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa

New for January: Smith Hotels in St Barths, Jamaica, the Maldives, Lombok and Marrakech


Welcome to 2014! We’re starting the new year with a hand-picked handful of boutique beauties: our first stop is Indonesia, where The Lombok Lodge wowed us with its elegant coconut-white interiors, pampering spa and charming chef (who’s rather good at cooking, too, of course). After that, our Asian adventures took us to the Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa (above), on a tiny atoll a few flipper-clad kicks from the equator, seemingly plucked from our favourite private-island fantasies (book Park Water Villa 51 at the end of the jetty if you’re after a particularly secluded stay).

Then, we were Caribbean bound: Hotel Christopher on St Barths awaited with its pleasing mix of Parisian-style glamour and glorious clifftop ocean views. In Jamaica, Port Antonio’s Trident Hotel (below right) is the perfect place to lounge in a private plunge pool all day before taking in the live music every night.

Meanwhile, in Morocco, we were bowled over by the terracotta pleasure palace that is Selman hotel in Marrakech (above right), with its palm-flanked pool and Arabian pony shows, but just as we were reaching peak relaxation in the Henri Chenot spa it was time to head off gallivanting around the globe to bring you another batch of hot hotels next month; check back in February to see where we’ve been…

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It was while sailing the Norwegian fjords on a Ukrainian cruise ship aged 11 that Rachel Juarez-Carr decided she loved travel. Once she completed her journalism degree at the University of Westminster, Rachel ran off to Los Angeles and crisscrossed the US for the next seven years, writing for travel magazines and photographing everyone and everything. She’s currently back home in London, thrilled to be back shooting under grey skies and serving as Mr & Mrs Smith's senior editor.

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