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To the French Riviera, which feels back in a biggish way. Call it nostalgia, call it evidence of a new Roaring Twenties; whatever, the arrival of Maybourne – the hotel group behind Claridge’s, The Berkeley and The Connaught – would seem to seal it. The talent marshalled for the making of the ultra-contemporary Maybourne Riviera, clinging to the hill above Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, is a pretty dazzling roll call: the likes of André Fu, Pascal Goujon and Pierre Yovanovitch are handling suite designs, while supernova chef Mauro Colagreco will oversee the rooftop restaurant, with Hiro Sato (who made his bones at Tokyo’s Sushi Tokami, and now presides over Hakkoku in Ginza) bringing the sushi. Indoor-outdoor pools, check; expansive citrus gardens, check; full-service spa, check. And for the water lovers? The private Maybourne Beach Club, naturally. maybourneriviera.com, from £875
To lots of those stateside who are still wary of the labile nature of international travel permissions and restrictions, 813 private acres in the Rockies looks pretty good as summer holidays go. Aspen Valley Ranch, a collection of 12 residences, has been designed by two of Colorado’s longtime leading architecture firms, Michael Fuller Architects and Poss Architecture. Spread across the samesaid private estate – a former family-owned ranch – they enjoy all the services of a five-star resort (that’s thanks to Simon Chen, who ran The Little Nell for years before signing on here). They vary in style, but all have at least four bedrooms and multiple outdoor playing-entertaining spaces (a couple stretch to 13,000sq ft). The terrain is ideal for cross-country skiing and sleigh rides, once the snow comes; meanwhile, though, there are kayaks, paddleboards and wild swimming on the property’s lakes and streams, and a wrangler primed to give barrel-racing lessons to the braver among the horseback riders (all of whom can enjoy day-long hacks through the surrounding woodland).
We like the sound of “slow safari”. It’s how Will Jones, master Africa fixer and founder of Journeys By Design, describes Kalepo – a new exclusive-use, tented camp deep in Samburuland in Kenya’s Northern Frontier District, created by long-time Kenyan hospitality purveyors Robert and Storm Mason. The charms of its ensuite tents (all with outdoor showers) and open-air living and dining areas do in fact manifest all that is “slow”, from the locally produced textiles to the Swahili-influenced cuisine – much of it prepared, of course, with produce from the onsite gardens. Beyond this there are the 390,000-odd acres of pristine, no-roads wilderness that’s yours for the exploring (Jones has already taken to using Kalepo as an alternative base for his heli- and fly-camp safaris, but there are stunning hikes into the Matthews mountains that begin right outside your tent); and the equally unique draw of Samburu culture itself, with one of the original communities based close by. journeysbydesign.com, POA
Return of the shack
Fforest, the three-in-one retreat in west Wales – consisting of a farm, a coastal camp, and a converted granary – has been generating buzz with its signal mix of onsens, Georgian farmhouse and lofts, and elevated “Shacs”, along with its array of coast-to-table dining. From summer 2021 its shacks can be joined up to accommodate up to 24 people, so ideal for families and groups of friends keen on rambles and a jazzed-up clapboard-and-tin roof aesthetic, and there’s an alluring new woodland dining venue. This outfit gets very good marks for its sustainability practices – something it’s bound to bring to The Albion, the 23-room hotel in Aberteifi (that’s Cardigan) that Fforest will open this winter, across two repurposed maritime warehouses on the Teifi River. coldatnight.co.uk, from £125
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