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The summer months have commenced. The heat has abruptly pushed away the cosy winter days and cut short the spring bloom. In this onset of heat, the cool evening breeze is a daily relief, the anticipation of a satisfying summer break away from the heat – the apparent goal of the season!
It makes sense to contemplate life and its many subtle plays, far far away from reality and the day’s labour, cocooned in luxury while making the intricate decisions of whether to invest two hours in a renowned spa or spend the afternoon sipping champagne as the sun glides across the blue. This imagistic mirage is good enough to sustain the pursuit of the summer break.
The residents of the equator generally tend to look up north for such opportunities, be it summer or winter. The big ol’ Europe has a tendency of fitting the broad bill, a mix of culture – city – history – weather – cuisines combo. Tuscany and the French Rivera, with their abundance of luxury, charm and indulgence, are the destination of preference.
From secret beaches to celebrity boules or supping on cocktails favoured by stars ranging from Depp to Diaz, discover our insiders A-list of Cannes hip spots where the stars head to flee paparazzi during Cannes’ hottest festival. Luxurious volleys of new activities are on offer from Menton on the Italian border westwards to the silken sands of St Tropez. Read on to learn how to unlock a superyacht with an app in Monaco, or scoot around like Steve McQueen for a day.
In Tuscany, the villages remain calm, with hardly any tourism, never-ending vineyards and where the heat is served in a wine glass at the majority of the 250 wine cellars spread out in one of the oldest wine regions in Europe. With Montalcino and its stunning valley around the river Orica into the nearby region, there is more than enough fine wine and Michelin starred chefs to keep the most wanting of palate satisfied.
Our annual 100 List features in this edition of the magazine. Here, our editors compile 100 best hotels and resorts around the globe, based on their reviews, the lux element of the property and overall WOW factor that greets its guests. These properties collectively serve as a barometer for luxury, comfort and style that are currently prevalent at the pinnacle of the hospitality industry.