COUNTRYSIDE GETAWAY

Nestled in the charming village of Bray-on-Thames in Berkshire, Monkey Island has a history dating back 800 years, and was once the stomping ground of monarchs, aristocrats, artists, writers and performers. Following YTL Hotels’ efforts to restore this historic landmark to its former glory, this property is slated to open its doors by the middle of this year. Set in the scenic River Thames and surrounded by manicured gardens, the stunning white-bricked buildings house 27 bedrooms and three deluxe suites. New York-based Champalimaud Design has created a unique blend of past and present, by stitching together luxe traditional features with a modern, relaxed countryside chic. The hotel is the perfect retreat for gourmands, with three-Michelin-star restaurants – Heston Blumenthal’s The Fat Duck and The Waterside Inn by Alain Roux – within the Bray vicinity. www.ytlhotels.com

MODERN AND VINTAGE

This month will see the launch of The Academy, after a multimillion-pound facelift. Spanning a cluster of five Georgian townhouses in the heart of Bloomsbury in London’s West End, the hotel honours the historical neighbourhood with a blend of modern and vintage through the ingenuity of renowned New York-based designer Alexandra Champalimaud. The hotel’s aesthetics embraces the casual exuberance, style and conviviality that typified The Bloomsbury Group, the influential group of writers, philosophers and artists which included Virginia Woolf and E.M. Forster. Decked in plush furnishings, large sash windows, patterned wallpaper and tile floors, The Academy will house 50 elegant guest rooms, exquisite dining options, and bespoke spa Mr Ma’s Tea House Spa. Inspired by 1920s Bloomsbury and Lao She’s acclaimed novel, Mr Ma and Son, the spa will offer traditional Asian therapies, like hot medicinal herbal footbath with zhi ya massage, and tuina. www.theacademyhotel.co.uk

BLOOM TOWN

Stay in the heart of Amsterdam and smell the tulips.

This spring, Amsterdam’s Conservatorium Hotel will be adorned with over 1,000 tulips that are grown on the estate. The hotel is also offering a Tulips in Bloom package that includes two nights’ stay, a helicopter ride over tulip fields, and a private tulip farm tour to learn about the history and art of tulip cultivation. The package includes entrance to Keukenhof, one of the world’s largest flower gardens with seven million bulbs and 800 tulip varieties. Available until April 28, with 14 days advanced booking. www.conservatoriumhotel.com

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