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the vacation report THE CULTURE COLLECTIVE

Equal parts artistic, historic and luxurious, these are the best cultural hotels to check into around the world.

Words by Ivy Storvik.

The Laslett, London

Located in the heart of west London neighbourhood Notting Hill, The Laslett is a book and art lover’s dream, and a favourite of the style set to boot. Nestling almost imperceptibly in a row of Victorian townhouses, this characterful 51-room property is the opposite of cookie cutter. Considered details add to the chic, home-from-home ambience – photographs, art and curios from local artisans and boutiques pepper the lobby. A key draw for visitors and guests alike is the Library. The white walls of this stylish cafe-come- local-hangout are lined with a plethora of coffee-table books, covering everything from art and fashion to history. Rooms are equally eclectic, each unique, but all united by a common thread of bespoke British design, with Penguin Classics, artworks, antiques and textiles all adding to the luxe, lived-in feel. living-rooms.co.uk

The Laslett, London
The Laslett, London
The Laslett, London

Crosby Street Hotel, New York

In a quiet pocket of vibrant SoHo lies this stylish 86-room hotel, beautifully designed by co-owner and design director Kit Kemp. With its sights firmly set on enjoying the finer things in life, the property boasts a secluded verdant sculpture garden, guest drawing room and rooftop kitchen garden, the produce from which supplies the hotel’s bar-restaurant. Rooms are individually designed and extremely comfortable, with kitschy textiles and handpicked ornaments adding to the cosy, charming ambience. The piece de resistance, however, has to be the screening room tucked away in the basement – this sleek high-tech venue boasts 99 chic leather seats and is home to The Crosby Hotel Film Club on Sunday evenings, which brings together moviegoers for dinner or cocktails, followed by a showing of the film of the week. firmdalehotels.com

Crosby Street Hotel, New York
Crosby Street Hotel, New York

MONA Pavilions, near Hobart, Tasmania

Aesthetes will be inspired by the visual smorgasbord of this Australian temple to design, which sits alongside MONA (the Museum of Old and New Art), the country’s largest private museum. If your stay falls on a Tuesday, you will receive an exclusive tour while the museum is closed. Eight modernist pavilions form the accommodation at the property – the original four overlook the River Derwent, each containing artworks by their namesake Australian artists Sidney Nolan, Charles Blackman, Arthur Boyd and Brett Whiteley, while the four most recent bear the names of influential homegrown architects. The indoor infinity pool commands beautiful tree-filled views from its floor-to-ceiling windows, turning morning laps into a mindfulness masterclass.

Left: the Roy pavilion. Right: a room in the Robin pavilion
MONA’s southern façade viewed from Little Frying Pan Island at dawn.

Elsewhere, MONA’s restaurant, The Source, is a delicious homage to local food and wine, while the Moo Brew microbrewery is a must for craft-beer lovers. From 11 June until 2 April 2018, MONA plays host to an exhibition by The Museum of Everything, ‘the world’s first wandering institution for the untrained, unintentional, undiscovered and unclassifiable artist of the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries.’ mona.net.au

Ace Hotel, Downtown LA

Music aficionados are well served at this hip downtown locale, which is housed in the erstwhile United Artists building in downtown LA. The rock’n’roll spirit sets the tone, with certain rooms offering their very own Ace x Rega LP1 turntables and an edit of vinyls for guests’ delectation. And the culture doesn’t stop there. The centrepiece of the hotel is its very own theatre, an exquisitely restored 1920s Jazz Age movie palace with vaulted, mirrored ceiling and over 1,600 seats – the iconic venue plays host to music concerts, film premieres, plays and dance performances year round. The vibes are eclectic and energised, with artworks and artefacts adding to the bohemian feel, and an emphasis on relaxed conviviality, from relaxed brasserie dining at L.A. Chapter to poolside drinks at the rooftop bar overlooking the city. acehotel.com/losangeles

Ace Hotel, Downtown Los Angeles
Ace Hotel, Downtown Los Angeles
Ace Downtown, Los Angeles

Gran Hotel Manzana Kempinski, Havana, Cuba

Havana’s nascent presence on the global stage continues to grow with the opening of the Gran Hotel in 2017. Calling itself the first true luxury hotel in Cuba, it occupies an enviable position, with the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Old Havana as its backdrop and the beautiful historic landmarks of the Cathedral and the Great Theatre as its neighbours. The 246-room property occupies the grand, storied Manzana de Gómez building, which opened in 1917 as Cuba’s first European-style shopping arcade, and features three restaurants, a swimming pool and a rooftop terrace with unparalleled views across the city. Inside, the décor is modern and understated and the rooms spacious, ranging in size from 40sqm to the 150sqm presidential suite. kempinski.com

Gran Hotel Manzana Kempinski, Havana
Gran Hotel Manzana Kempinski, Havana
Gran Hotel Manzana Kempinski, Havana

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PHOTOGRAPHS: BRETT BOARDMAN/MONA MUSEUM OF NEW AND OLD ART, LAUREN COLEMAN, RÉMI CHAUVIN/MONA MUSEUM OF OLD AND NEW ART, SPENCER LOWELL

The Style Report
The Style Report
THE STYLE REPORT