Once again the annual Condé Nast Traveller Readers’ Travel Awards have been held at a glittering bash in London, where all the most luxurious and best valued hotels, airlines and tourist boards rubbed shoulders and vied for the ultimate accolade in their area.
As ever, awards were presented based on votes cast by the magazine’s own readers, so marks were awarded for all sorts of things people look for on a luxury holiday, from family friendliness, location and standard to value for money, quality of food and service.
The top island destination this year was the Greek Islands, which just pipped old favourite Maldives and triumphed into first place, well it is the ideal family holiday destination after all – especially with its hsort flight times. Meanwhile Italy was rated highest in the country category (I’m sensing a bit of a European theme here). Best overseas city did not come as a surprise – New York was rated for its user friendliness and great range of accommodation. Other favourite destinations included Barbados, Phuket and St Lucia, and countries include Australia, Turkey and South Africa.
For long haul travel, Virgin Atlantic topped the poll, while business travellers rated British Airways top for its on board cuisine and pre and post flight facilities, which usually means their business lounges.
For a bit of pampering on your holiday, The BodyHoliday in St Lucia was awarded best Destination Spa for its exercise programmes and facilities, while previous winner ChivaSom International Health Resort, Hua Hin was narrowly beaten into second place, but still rated highly for accommodation and service.
Six Senses Spa at Six Senses Koh Samui came top in the Spas in Overseas Hotels category, great choice – I’m proud to say I’ve been there! Maldives holidays were perhaps paid the biggest tribute of the evening however as Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Kuda Huraa won not only the award for best hotel in the Middle East & Indian Ocean but also scooped the prestigious honour of being rated the number one spot in the entire vote off, meaning it was the highest scoring of any hotel, airline, travel company or cruise ship in the entire poll – quite an achievement!
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