For the fourth year, Mr & Mrs Smith, the travel club for hotel lovers, is searching the world for the 12 most special stays – those one-of-a-kind, personality-packed places that raise the bar in terms of design, food, service and all-round wow factor.
From today, the hotel-loving public are invited to vote for the hotel in the 1,000-strong Smith collection that most merits the ultimate accolade: the title of ‘Best Smith Hotel 2016’.
For this year’s awards, the 12 categories have been updated to reflect the changing boutique-hotel scene around the world, acknowledging those unique aspects of the hotel experience that have particular resonance to today’s traveller – whether that’s having an intimate bar just made for date nights; supplying a pitch-perfect soundtrack; acting as a hub for the neighbourhood creative scene; or being an environment-enhancing champion of the local community.
With results announced officially on Friday 13 January 2017 (and with a sneak preview at a champagne-popping press party in London on Thursday 12th), the awards aim to reward the world’s best boutique stays, while setting the travel agenda for the most desirable destinations for the year ahead.
How it works
Shortlists of the top 10 hotels in 11 categories (selected by Smith’s expert insiders including company founders James and Tamara Lohan and founding editor Juliet Kinsman) will be put to a panel of three specialist judges in each category. However, the headline award – Best Smith Hotel 2016 – is entirely down to the public vote, with every hotel in Smith’s worldwide collection in with a chance to win.
Voting takes place on 1–30 September at Mrandmrssmith.com/awards, and anyone who votes will be entered into a prize draw to win a £1,000 Smith gift card.
‘To be honest, sometimes I think doing things more than a couple of times gets a little tedious, but with the boutique hotel scene bursting at the seams with both new openings and the old classics that are kept so beautifully up to date, it’s never a chore to talk about which properties are worthy of the shortlist. Our other aim is for this year’s updated categories to acknowledge an important or evolving part of the hotel experience.’
James Lohan, Co-founder, Mr & Mrs Smith
As ever, Mr & Mrs Smith has reached out to its network of global tastemakers to put together a panel of expert judges (three for each of 11 categories), all selected for their gimlet critical eye and impeccable travel credentials. The full line-up is listed on the awards site, but this year’s judges include:
- Designer Charlotte Dellal, founder of Charlotte Olympia
- Yasmin Sewell, Fashion director at Style.com and co founder of être cécile
- Fast moving founder of House of Holland, Henry Holland
- Tailor, Patrick Johnson, founder of P.Johnson Tailors
- Jewellery designer Lucy Folk, Lucy Folk
- Founder of Eco Age, Livia Firth
- Co-founder and editor of Cereal magazine and Cereal Guides, Rosa Park
- Designer and luxury nightwear specialist Olivia von Halle
- Cocktail maestro Tony Conigliaro
- Digital editor, Amanda Shadforth
- Legendary restaurateur Jeremy King
- Singer-songwriter Jessie Ware
- Travel writer and hotelier, Alice Naylor-Leyland
- Louise Olsen & Stephen Ormandy, founders of Dinosaur Designs
The 12 awards categories
- Pool with a View
- World’s Sexiest Bedroom
- Best-Dressed Hotel
- Best Date-Night Bar
- Best Gourmet Getaway
- Most Spoiling Spa
- Local Hotel Hero
- Best Family Hotel
- Above and Beyond
- Coolest Creative Hub
- Hottest Hotel Soundtrack
- Best Smith Hotel 2016