World Boutique Hotel Awards 2017

The annual Boutique Hotel Awards and gala dinner was held at the Merchant Taylor’s Hall on the 9th of November 2017.

This was the seventh year for the Boutique Hotel Awards founded by Cambridge graduate and young entrepreneur Edward Gabbai. The glittering event, presented for the second year by Christabel Milbanke, travel writer, hotel judge and editor of The London Journalist, celebrated boutique hotels, and their proprietors, from all corners of the globe during a spectacular evening of Laurent Perrier champagne, live music and fine dining.

Akademie Street Boutique Hotel, South Africa won the World's Best Boutique Hotel 2017!
Owner Paul Kinney had these words to say, 'I’m humbled to accept this award and want to congratulate everyone in the room for their achievements. On behalf of all our team in South Africa, we’re honoured to be here and are inspired to be different and unique as you all are.'

 2017 Winners of World's Best Boutique Hotel awards: Akademie Street Boutique Hotel, South Africa

2017 Winners of World's Best Boutique Hotel awards: Akademie Street Boutique Hotel, South Africa

The VIP ceremony brought together an array of boutique hotel owners, travel and lifestyle press and travel industry influencers from all four corners of the world, including representatives from CNN Travel, Elite Traveler, The Telegraph, The Sunday Times, Boat International, im u n h inancia ime.

 Wladimir Klitschko keynote speaker

Wladimir Klitschko keynote speaker

Two-time world heavyweight boxer turned boutique hotelier Wladimir Klitschko delivered this year's keynote speech where he urged hoteliers to 'be different, or die!'

Other esteemed guest presenters and speakers included Juliet Kinsman, founder of BOUTECO, the only independent authority for eco boutique hotel, Elisabeth Visoanska, ounder of VISOANSKA PARIS and Paolo Macchiaroli, founder of My Private Villas.

The Boutique Hotel Awards is the first and only international awards organisation exclusively
dedicated to recognising unique excellence among boutique hotels. The Awards, now in its 7th year, honours the people behind these outstanding properties and bringing together members of The Master Key Society; where relationships are built exclusively among the Award Winners by facilitating hotel exchange visits between them.

The Boutique Hotel Awards are the only independent awards organisation in hospitality where each and every property is visited personally by an experienced hotel judge which specialises in each category and too where decisions on winners depend on true first-hand guest experience at the property.


The winners were selected from over 600 Nominees in over 80 countries. Each entrant was nominated by a member of the Awards Nomination Committee, comprised of 70 leading trailblazing travel experts whose business it is to be in the know on the extraordinary boutique hotels.

 Award's hosts: Christabel Milbanke, Elisabeth Visoanksa and Wladimir Klitschko with winners: Akademie Street Boutique Hotel

Award's hosts: Christabel Milbanke, Elisabeth Visoanksa and Wladimir Klitschko with winners: Akademie Street Boutique Hotel


The 2017 World’s Best Winners are listed below.


WORLD’s BEST BOUTIQUE HOTEL: Akademie Street Boutique Hotel, South Africa

World’s Best Beach or Coastal Hotel: Qualia, Whitsundays, Australia
World’s Best City Hotel: The Serras Hotel, Barcelona, Spain
World’s Best Classic Hotel: The Chester Grosvenor, England
World’s Best Culinary Hotel: Vila Joya, Algarve, Portugal
World’s Most Inspired Design Hotel: Ca Maria Adele, Venice, Italy
World's Best Honeymoon Hideaway:Carpe Diem, Santorini, Greece
World’s Best New Hotel: Kensho, Mykonos, Greece
World's Best Relaxation Retreat: Castello Di Guarene, Italy
World's Most Romantic: Hotel Aenaon Villa, Greece
World's Most Sustainable Hotel: Cottar’s Safari Lodge, Nairobi, Kenya
World's Best Wellness Spa: Lefay Resort & Spa, Gargnano, Italy
World's Best Private Villa:Over Yonder Cay, The Bahamas AND Coco Prive, Kuda Hithi Island, Maldives

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