The Big Six: Cool cubes

  • @SophieLamTravel

Hotel Consolacion, Teruel, Spain

Popping up from the Matarraña countryside, Hotel Consolacion is an anomaly in this rugged, natural landscape. Ten timber-clad "kubes" are poised on a hilltop with uninterrupted views of the Teruel backdrop through the floor-to-ceiling windows, while inside there are black slate baths, suspended chimneys and crisp white Egyptian cotton on the beds. The centrepiece of this modern assemblage is the 18th-century "Ermita", with a further two bedrooms decorated in period style, a restaurant (the perfect place to try local Serrano ham) and a 14th-century church. The Camino de Santiago passes by the front door.

Hotel Consolacion, Carretera Nacional 232 km 96, Monroyo / Mont-roig, Teruel. Spain (00 34 978 85 67 55; Doubles start €155, including breakfast.

Endemico Resguardo Silvestre, Mexico

An hour and a half's drive south of San Diego, lies a little-known wine-producing region in Mexico's Baja California. Scrubby hillsides plunge down to vivid streaks of vines in the Valle de Guadalupe, where the eye-catching Encuentro Guadalupe winery is taking shape. A new addition, opening next month, will be Grupo Habita's "luxury camping hotel" – 20 stilted cube rooms overlooking the winery. Expect a glossy finish, with wine coolers in the rooms and a restaurant using only local produce.

Endemico Resguardo Silvestre, Carretera Tecate-Ensenada km75, Valle de Guadalupe, Baja California, Mexico (001 866 978 7020; Double rooms start at US$175 (£117), room only.

Casa de la Flora, Thailand

60km north of Phuket in the resort of Khao Lak, Casa de la Flora is a pocket of unapologetic modernism sandwiched between the Andaman Sea and lush tropical forest. The 36 concrete, cube villas maximise the views via their plate-glass ocean-facing walls. The scene is softened and warmed by tropical hardwoods, natural stone and luxurious fittings, including private pools for each guestroom.

Casa de la Flora, Khuk Khak, Khao Lak, Phang Nga, Thailand (00 66 76 428 999; Doubles start at 7,757 baht (£160), room only.


Hotel Palafitte, Switzerland

The peaceful panorama of Lake Neuchâtel is enjoyed in quite seclusion by guests at Hotel Palafitte – each cuboid room here stands on stilts over the water or on a walkway teetering at the lake's edge. Ladders invite you down into the sparkling water directly from the room's balcony, while the peaks of the Alps beckon for mountain hikes in the distance.

Hotel Palafitte, Route des Gouttes-d'Or 2, Neuchâtel, Switzerland (00 41 32 723 02 02; Doubles start at Sfr525 (£355), room only.


Carre d'Etoiles, France

Translating as "square of stars", this collection of timber cubes invites its guests to make the most of the stunning Ardeche gorges by day, then marvel at the night sky after the sun has set. Each cabin is constructed with a clear dome above the bed to watch the nocturnal spectacle in comfort, while telescopes and stellar charts offer a more detailed view.

Carre d'Etoiles, Saint Cerice, Vogué, Rhone-Alps, France (00 33 2 48 77 59 31; Doubles start at €95, room only.


Loftcube, Belgium

Tucked away in the woods surrounding the Chateau de la Poste, Loftcube is a modern counterpoint to its late 19th-century host. The sleek modernist pod has been conceived as a customisable open-plan space, with glass walls and louvred windows that reveal the sylvan setting outside. The décor is sleek and contemporary, and guests can also make use of the chateau's hotel facilities (restaurant, tennis courts, mountain bikes and more) a short walk away.

Loftcube, Chateau de la Poste, Ronchinne 25, Maillen, Belgium (00 32 81 411 405; The cube starts at €250, including breakfast.