Five Best: Celebrity-owned hotels
Live like an A-lister in these retreats of the rich and famous
Saturday 16 April 2005
Hurst House Wales
Hurst House, Wales
This plush bolt hole in the town that was once home to Dylan Thomas is one of three properties owned by actor Neil Morrissey and his business partner Matt Roberts, and is surrounded by sea and marshland. The hotel boasts snazzy bedrooms, a round-the-clock kitchen, and spa.
Hurst House, East Marsh, Laugharne, Carmarthenshire (01994 427417; www.hurst-house.co.uk). Doubles from £125, with breakfast
Columbus Monaco, Monaco
Owned by the F1 driver David Coulthard and the founder of the Malmaison hotel chain, Ken McCulloch, Columbus Monaco was a welcome addition to the Monte Carlo hotel scene when it opened four years ago. Until then, the principality's hotels had been the preserve of the very rich - and very flashy. The Columbus, with its neutral colour scheme, sophisticated yet simple furnishings and surprisingly reasonable price tag was something of a revelation. Since then the competition has heated up, but Columbus remains popular among a hipper, younger Monaco crowd.
Columbus Monaco, 23 Avenue des Papalins, Fontevielle, Monaco (00 377 92 05 9000; www.columbushotels.com). Doubles start at €195 (£140), room only
Hotel Villa Angela, Italy
Rock stars may be better known for trashing hotel rooms than owning them, but the Hotel Villa Angela, in the Sicilian town of Taormina, is an exception to the rule. Built and run by the Simple Minds frontman Jim Kerr and his Sicilian pal, Antonio Chemi, its functional Italian styling (sturdy chestnut wardrobes and wrought-iron headboards) isn't likely to win any design awards but it's comfortable and the location is second to none. Each room has its own terrace where guests can eat looking out over Naxos Bay and Mount Etna.
Hotel Villa Angela, Via Leonardo da Vinci, Taormina, Sicily, Italy (00 39 0942 27038; www.hotelvillaangela.com). Doubles from €170 (£120), with breakfast
La Lancha, Guatemala
This atmospheric jungle lodge in Guatemala, with its brightly coloured textiles and quirky sculptures set off against simple white walls, is owned by the film director turned hotelier Francis Ford Coppola. Opened just over a year ago, La Lancha's 10 rooms teeter above picturesque Lake Peten Itza. The lodge's other main selling point is that it's within striking distance of Tikal's soaring Mayan ruins.
La Lancha, Lake Peten Itza, Tikal, Guatemala (00 501 824 4914; www.lalancha.com). Doubles start at $95 (£50) per night, with breakfast
Sundance Resort, Utah
More an empire than a hotel, Robert Redford's Sundance Resort was founded in 1969 as a community based on "environmental conservation and artistic experimentation". It's tucked away in a Utah canyon and now boasts a general store, a deli, a spa, several restaurants, a wildlife reserve, an organ transplant awareness institute (really), the Sundance film festival and even its own TV channel. Holidaymakers can also go skiing, hiking and mountain biking. Accommodation is "appointed in a style that integrates with our mountain environment". Don't be put off by the waffle - the rooms are actually pretty stylish.
Sundance Resort, Sundance, Utah (001 801 225 4107; www.sundanceresort.com). Rates for two people start at $225 (£118) per night, with breakfast
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