Sweeping beach views and sparkling waters not enough for you? If it’s the energy and excitement of cities that float your boat, here we navigate you to some of the mightiest waterfront metropolises with another hotel collection with Crème de la Mer, inspired by a shared love of the sea. Brace yourselves: these vibrant getaways can be as low-key or high-octane as you’ll let them be…
WHERE TO STAY
With its superabundance of natural beauty – mile-long tropical beaches, dramatic mountainscapes, lush jungle backdrop – if this destination was a person, Rio would be a supermodel. Add to that a population whose blazing spirit and passion are envied the world over; indeed, its glamorous citizens exude an energy that enlivens every corner of this sprawling megacity-on-sea.
Fasano Rio is a Starck-styled boutique hotel on the sexiest stretch of Rio de Janeiro brought to you by a hospitality family who’ve been in the restaurant and hotel game for more than 100 years. With a glass exterior, a white marble pool on the roof, and a section of private beach, it’s all about the glitz and glam of the supermodel’s seafront. La Maison (right) was the first boutique hotel of its kind to open in Rio. Located just 10 minutes north of Ipanema and its iconic beaches, it feels like a private residence – a world away from corporate chain hotels. The boudoirs are all completely different, so book the one to match your own personal Rio fantasy.
WHAT TO PACK
Crème de la Mer’s Moisturizing Gel Cream
For city breaks, you want to pack light, and with Crème de la Mer’s innovative Moisturizing Gel Cream, a little goes a long way. Refreshing and hydrating, it’s quite different to the classic creams, leaving a velvet finish to skin, it’s great under makeup and also the ideal moisturiser in sunny city environments.
MORE PLACES FOR PERFECT CITY-ON-SEA ESCAPES
Form, function, style, substance – this Scandinavian capital has quite the magic formula. And it’s not just a pretty place: navigate your way around its network of 14 islands on the edge of the Baltic, and you’ll discover Stockholm looks good, knows how to have fun and is always chilled. Skål!
Hotel J has a style influenced by the carefully crafted yachts right on Stockholm harbour, with a splash of New England in the red, white and blue scheme. Ferries run regularly between the wharf next to Restaurant J in this nautical city stay and central Stockholm, and the trip takes just 15 minutes. Berns Hotel was built as a restaurant in 1863 and reincarnated as Stockholm’s best-loved hotel and entertainment palace. Rooms are cosy but not tiny, the hotel exudes panache: the wood panelling feels both modern and warm, and the rooms and public spaces are being updated with new Italian and Scandinavian design elements all the time.
MIAMI United States
Few cities are more diverse and cosmopolitan than this Floridian, and even fewer can boast white-sand beaches and endless days of perfect sunshine, too. The wide sweep of SoBe sand between the famous candy-coloured art deco beachfront of Ocean Drive and the Atlantic surf is both Miami’s playground and its catwalk.
Soho Beach House (above), like the other outposts of the members club, comes stocked with a Cowshed Spa, fashionable restaurants, rooftop pool and private cinema. Rooms riff on a South American theme, and there’s a Cuban bar, and the hotel honours its art deco origins with Forties touches. The Betsy (right) may have first opened in the 1940s but her new fresh-faced persona is as pretty as a Hollywood starlet. 63 beach-cottagey rooms are laced with every possible modern-day treat, while up on the roof beauty treatments and rooftop sunning beckon, and downstairs there is a BLT restaurant and B-Bar. That Betsy – she’s not just a looker.
Sprawled around one of the world’s best looking harbours, there’s an infectious energy to this fun-loving hub. Dip into all the action in the city itself, from glittering restaurants, gregarious bars and glamorous boutiques or divert to some of the world’s most beautiful beaches.
Establishment Hotel (right) invites you to drink, dine, dance and sleep at this everything-under-one-roof design destination in the heart of Sydney’s buzzy business district. The owner’s concept is a big, glam food-and-drink emporium with a host of experiences amid a convivial atmosphere. Diamant Hotel Sydney has a party spirit lurking beneath that sleek black decor and hi-tech gadgetry – which is handy, given that it’s right beside Sydney’s most happening nightspots, in Kings Cross. Chic and comfortable, it’s the perfect base for exploring this effervescent city’s headline landmarks.
BRIGHTON United Kingdom
This East Sussex sweetie is a national treasure. As well as an impressive architectural heritage, a glut of eateries, watering holes and a warren of shop-lined lanes to explore, this pebble-beach-fringed patch of the country also has an action-packed cultural programme. No wonder the Queen gave Brighton a royal seal of approval when she promoted the seaside resort to city status.
Drakes is your archetypal Brightonian – not in the kiss-me-quick-sense – but set in a refined Regency building with a prime seafront location. Boudoirs are surprisingly airy and spacious – but chances are you won’t spend all your time in there. There’s a Thai-tinged reception/bar and, cocooned in the basement, the acclaimed restaurant to lure you out.
SMITH SKINCARE TIP-OFF
Super-refreshing, the Moisturizing Gel Cream protects as it hydrates, making it the perfect companion for busy city stays, but there are four other textures to choose from. Visit your nearest Crème de la Mer counter quick-smart, and you’ll get a free ‘Where Miracles Begin’ consultation, plus a 3ml introduction to a moisturiser of your choice*. Alternatively, enter ‘SMITH’ at checkout to receive a 3ml sample* of the new Moisturizing Gel Cream with your next online purchase from Crème de la Mer.
Join us every week in September for the latest travel guides, in association with Crème de la Mer.