Best Craftsmanship: This 1929 hotel is full of geometric details influenced by Frank Lloyd Wright, who worked as a consultant with designer Albert Chase McArthur. The amount of gold leafing in the lobby, the Aztec Ballroom, and the Gold Room, was second only to that of the Taj Mahal when it debuted. Originally open to guests by invitation only, the hotel retains its air of exclusivity and grandeur.
Best Porch: The 660-foot-long porch, lined with rocking chairs and thousands of flowers and overlooking the Straits of Mackinac, sets the tone for this 1887 hotel. Designed by Carleton Varney (a protege of Dorothy Draper), its colorful, opulent interiors still live up to the hotel's name.
Best Collections: Chalkboards and kids' desks have given way to bergere chairs and claw-foot tubs in this landmark 1889 schoolhouse-turned-boutique hotel near the ski slopes of Park City. Each of the 12 rooms in the new property is decorated in an interesting mix of French and Swedish antiques.
Best Antiquing Home Base: Designer Rachel Ashwell of Shabby Chic fame fell so in love with Round Top, the site of a quadrennial antiques market, she opened a hotel there. The two cottages and two houses are decorated in her trademark style -- vintage furnishings, chandeliers, and lots of chintz.
Best Views: Accommodations blend into the forest landscape (sod roofs complete the camouflage) and are situated to maximize the mountain and ocean vistas. Every room has a stone soaking tub surrounded by glass walls that open.
Best Palette: There is nothing standard-issue about this 19-room country house hotel in the Berkshires. Decorated by Calvin Tsao, it combines the character of a private estate with the amenities of a luxury hotel. Furnishings seem handpicked, and the muted paint and fabric colors are elegant and inspired.
Best Craftsmanship: They’re the modern equivalent to the log cabin: six steel-and-plywood structures by Seattle-based architect Tom Kundig. Each offers modular furnishings, sleeps up to four, and has a wall of glass to take in the views of the mountains -- which are snowy or strewn with wildflowers, depending on the season.
Best Amenities: Turntables in every room and a library of vintage vinyl in the lobby. Minibars stocked with European candy and Russian caviar. A carafe of locally sourced rainwater at turndown. Every detail at this chic hotel by designer Liz Lambert is carefully considered and a little quirky.
Best Renovation: Interior designer Paul Fortune masterfully channeled this hotel’s Art Deco roots and long Hollywood history without creating a time capsule. Rooms are decorated in a warm, unexpected palette of lavender and brown, with brass deco-inspired fixtures. For its people-watching and old-school menu, the Tower bar and restaurant is worth the trip in itself.
Best Night's Sleep: This hotel is designed to make you forget you’re in the middle of the city. Rooms are modern yet incredibly comfortable, are perfectly soundproofed, and have Rivolta Carmignani Italian bedding that begs you to sleep in and then order room service.