Once upon a time, a hotel room was just a room with a bed and a bathroom. But more and more travelers seeking out the most unusual, memorable experiences means hotels have had to up their game. Instead of providing a place to rest your head in a destination, hotels are offering accommodations that are destinations unto themselves.
You know what they say: “Location, location, location!” All around the world, from bustling cities to remote islands, we’ve rounded up some of the most amazing hotel rooms, tents, igloos (yes, igloos), penthouses, treehouses (oh, my!) and even underwater abodes that will wow you.
These 15 rooms all come with views so mesmerizing, you’ll be hard-pressed to leave your bed.
Imagine sleeping in an igloo with a glass ceiling boasting unobstructed views of the starry Nordic night sky, which may even provide you a glimpse of dancing northern lights.
In Finland’s Lapland, inside the Arctic Circle, the Kakslauttanen is renowned for its amazing rooms with a natural view. Glass igloos feature fireplaces, saunas, a kitchenette and warm, comfortable beds beneath a glass roof. Feeling brave? Snow igloos with -3 to -6-degree temps are also available with down sleeping bags.
The isolated resort features two restaurants, as well as smoke saunas and ice swimming for a truly Nordic getaway.
Borealis Basecamp, Alaska
Can’t make it to Lapland to see the northern lights? Perhaps Alaska’s Borealis Basecamp would do.
The new resort features domed sleeping quarters with private bathrooms and kitchenettes for creature comforts, as well as 12-foot ceilings with glass windows to see the stars and nature’s light show from your bed.
It won’t take a lot of work to get to your dome, either, as the Basecamp is located just outside of Fairbanks. While staying at the Basecamp, enjoy more fantastic views from the windowed yurt dining hall, and experience Alaskan snowy winters with dog sledding, snowshoeing and snowmobiling.
Manta Resort, Thailand
Far removed from Manta’s main accommodations is its very private Underwater Room. The floating room features a top deck for sunbathing, a main level with an open-air lounge, and a submerged bedroom, completely surrounded by water with 360-degree views of the surrounding reef.
Underwater spotlights attract fish even in the nighttime hours to provide you 24-hour views of the sea. Or you can pop upstairs to your sundeck and take in the stars at night. Guests of the Underwater Room have meals delivered, a kayak and snorkel gear, a fully stocked fridge, and a phone to call the main resort when they’re ready to return to civilization.
Zarafa Camp, Botswana
You could stay at a traditional luxury safari camp offering the same old, same old experience – or you could book The Zarafa Dhow Suite, a tented 2,260-square-foot villa on a raised deck with canvas walls, at the 320,000-acre Selinda Reserve.
The suite is outfitted with two bedrooms, each with copper claw-foot tubs, a lounge and dining area, leather couches and chairs, a firepit, a private plunge pool and large wooden decks overlooking the reserve, where giraffes, lions and elephants roam freely.
The villa properties are adjacent to the Zarafa Camp, a Relais & Chateaux property, and will set you back $9,120 per night.
Jade Mountain, St. Lucia
For a romantic retreat, the all-inclusive, adults-only Jade Mountain resort is tough to beat, thanks to its rooms offering an open fourth wall to the Caribbean Sea.
From suites that overlook St. Lucia’s famed Pitons mountains, you can take in the setting from your bedroom, living room or private infinity pool. The largest suite is the 2,000-square-foot Galaxy Sanctuary with an additional 900-square-foot infinity pool overlooking the Pitons.
Dine in the resort’s restaurant or in your room, enjoy spa services on land or partake in water activities like kayaking, sunset cruises, snorkeling or SCUBA. Excursions to the rainforest, botanical gardens and nearby waterfalls are also available.
Palms Casino Resort, Las Vegas
Got the dough to book a penthouse in Vegas? (Or lucky enough to win big at the casinos to get the upgrade?)
The Palms Casino Resort has a 9,000-square-foot, two-story Sky Villa suite that features a glass-enclosed, cantilevered pool that juts out over the Las Vegas Strip. Your stay in this suite includes butler service, your own private glass elevator (more views!), two master bedrooms and two guest bedrooms, 5.5 bathrooms, a living room, a dining room, a sauna, 11 flat-screen TVs and your own massage room — plus private balconies for another opportunity to take in Vegas from the top of the world.
Lions Sands Game Reserve, South Africa
You don’t need to camp out in a tent to enjoy Kruger National Park and an African safari. Instead, these glass-enclosed treehouses will provide you views of the bush from the comfort of your canopied bed. (Some treehouses do not have any walls!)
The treehouses do not offer electricity, so you can feel like you are truly getting away from it all as elephants and zebras strolling by become your evening television.
Amenities include toilets, dining tables and large decks for animal watching. The resort also provides spa services, safari adventures and three meals a day in either the dining room or on picnics.
Conrad Maldives Rangali Island
Over-the-water bungalows are so yesterday. Instead, stay at the Conrad’s Muraka, an underwater suite located on the bottom of the Indian Ocean. The glass ceiling provides views of the reef and its sea life from a king-sized bed, sitting area and dining room.
Above the sea, more than a dozen dining options are available, along with above-the-water spa services, swimming pools (in case the ocean gets too passé), water sports, entertainment and all the amenities one expects to find at a luxurious beachfront resort. (Did we mention the suite costs $50,000 per night? But you do get 24-hour butler service included.)
Mandarin Oriental New York
Looking for fabulous views of Manhattan? Try the Mandarin Oriental’s New York Skyline Suite overlooking Central Park from the 54th story. This two-bedroom suite features floor-to-ceiling windows in each bedroom and the living room, and starts at a cool $9,500 per night.
Budget conscious? Choose one of the hotel’s cheapest rooms and head to the Aviary cocktail lounge, where you can drink in the city while you drink in the luxe property’s superb cocktails. Or venture to the indoor spa pool take in skyline vistas while you swim laps.
Marina Bay Sands, Singapore
In Singapore, the Marina Bay Sands rivals Mandarin Oriental New York with its stunning big-city views.
Book a suite found on the 50th floor or higher, or go ahead and nab The Presidential Suite, promising particularly breathtaking panoramas. Not only do suite guests get the sweetest views, but complimentary breakfast, cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, tea and other amenities. Suites are also decked out with marble bathrooms, flat-screen TVs, and separate living and bedroom space. Even larger and more impressive is the nearly 7,000-square-foot Chairman Suite, located on the uppermost floors of the property.
The best views, though, are actually found even higher than your suite at the hotel’s famous rooftop swimming pool. At 57 stories high, it features a glass wall that will make you feel as if you may swim right over the edge of the hotel.
Playa Viva, Mexico
Skip the oceanfront hotel-room view and instead go for a bamboo-and-wood treehouse that opens right onto the beach.
Just six feet above the ground, these huts provide a lounge area with a catamaran-style netted hammock in the floor, a king bed and a private bathroom, all overlooking the resort’s mile-long private beach in Juluchuca, Mexico.
The unique sleeping arrangements are paired with all-inclusive amenities including meals and drinks and airport transfers.
Pullman Hotel, France
Not all hotels have to look like stunners on the outside to give you a killer view.
The Pullman Hotel in Paris may look like a basic hotel, but if you select an Eiffel Tower room, you’ll have an unparalleled view of the iconic French tower. The Eiffel Suite is nearly 1,200 square feet with another 194 feet of balcony and a bay window overlooking the tower. The top-floor suite also includes a dining room, lounge and king bed, while the hotel provides a lovely brasserie and a location that cannot be beat — literally steps from Paris’ main attraction.
The Archer, New York
Back in New York, a lovely boutique property known as The Archer provides brick-lined walls, wooden floors and windows with up-close views of the Empire State Building – all for a price that won’t break the bank.
From a king to two doubles, the Empire State rooms allow you to lie in bed and fall asleep with the Art Deco skyscraper standing sentinel outside your floor-to-ceiling window. On the top floor, a rooftop bar with outdoor terrace provides a beautiful backdrop for happy hour drinks or late bites. Downstairs, at ground level, another restaurant and bar are available for when you tire of your perfect views.
Not all rooms with a view belong to resorts. Royal Caribbean’s Royal Class suites on its newest cruise ships are mind-blowing. The two-story Star Suites feature floor-to-ceiling windows to give you the primo viewing spot for every port you pass. You’ll be treated like a king thanks to a spa-like bathroom with a Jacuzzi tub and your own dining area where you may be served your meals. The Star Suite is available on Allure, Harmony, Oasis, Anthem and Symphony of the Seas ships.
You can also enjoy superior views from the Royal Class suites, which include the one-story Sky and Sea suites. All three suites in the category have views from the back of the ship, with large balconies – you won’t even remember being on a ship with hundreds of people when you lock yourself away in these posh accommodations.
River cruises can also provide quite a room with a view, if you elect for a balcony suite to take in the scenery as you make your way down the Danube or Rhine Rivers.
Passing castles, palaces, vineyards and charming European towns, Uniworld’s largest suites are opulent in décor and styling, providing a king bed, marble bathroom with tub and rain shower, and sitting areas. Onboard, you’ll be treated to butler service and fine dining and entertainment, while at dock, you can explore multiple destinations on the typically 10-day cruise by foot or bike.