ATLANTA—Forbes Travel Guide unveiled its 60th list of worldwide Star Rating winners today.
Among the 1,609 award winners are 27 new five-star hotels, 70 new four-star hotels and 76 new hotels in the recommended category. Other first-time recipients include five five-star restaurants, 24 four-star restaurants and 10 recommended restaurants. The list also recognizes five new five-star spas and 29 new four-star spas.
Forbes Travel Guide now rates properties in 50 countries throughout the Americas, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Africa and the Middle East. Newly added international destinations for 2018 include Abu Dhabi; Amsterdam; Aruba; Chengdu, China; Dubai; Hokkaido, Japan; Jamaica; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Madrid; Marrakech, Morocco; Okinawa, Japan; Panama; Prague; Sanya, China; and Vienna. As Forbes Travel Guide marks its 60th year, it will expand to inspecting in 60 countries in preparation for its 2019 Star Ratings.
In all, 199 five-star, 513 four-star and 309 recommended hotels were winners this year. New York was the U.S. city with the highest number of five-star hotels with 10, including two new wins: Baccarat Hotel and Residences and Four Seasons Hotel New York Downtown. The last time the city had a new five-star hotel was in 2016, with the addition of Park Hyatt New York.
Independent hotels made a strong showing. First-time five-star awards went to Le Richemond Genève, Magee Homestead in Wyoming, Meadowood Napa Valley in California, Nemacolin Woodlands Resort – Falling Rock in Farmington, PA, and Williamsburg Inn in Virginia.
The new Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills is Hilton’s first five-star hotel in the Western Hemisphere. The brand also has five-star Waldorf Astoria Shanghai on the Bund.
Trump Hotels earned five-star honors for its DC and Vancouver outposts, which is unusual for new properties. These and other just-opened winners (like Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills and Four Seasons Hotel New York Downtown) show that hotels are becoming increasingly vested in their pre-opening strategies, including recruitment and training practices, according to the guide.