Over the years, I have been to many historic hotels around the world. Some were intentional, some not. But the experience in most of them was worth the time and expense.
Raffles Hotel in Singapore Home to the Singapore Sling, of course.
E & O Hotel in Georgetown, Penang Started by the famous Sarkis Brothers, it is the “Orient Express” of hotels.
The Peabody in Memphis You must see the duck walk, then head to BB Kings for some music.
The Peninsula in Bangkok We did not fly in by helicopter, just to land on the roof.
The Rasa Sayang* in Batu Ferringhi, Penang Yes, we had our own butler, and our tub was located on the balcony.
The Fontainebleau in Miami The place where I met the greatest, Muhammad Ali.
The Copacabana Hotel in Rio Old world elegance, new world string bikinis.
The Datai in Langkawi Only at an island resort in Malaysia would we meet lifelong friends.
The Lodge at Pebble Beach One of my all-time favorites, not just for golf, but for food and service.
The Brown Palace in Denver Many say it is haunted, but I think not.
The Willard in DC Every night, the ghost of Ulysses Grant shows up for after dinner drinks and a cigar.
The Fairmont in San Francisco Remember the old Tonga Room for its great show and fruity drinks?
The Olde Course Hotel in St. Andrews Yes, I broke 90, and birdied two holes. The hotel was great too!
Turnberry Hotel A classic place, unfortunately now owned by a disgraced former President.
The Palace Hotel in San Francisco Perhaps the most classic of all great city hotels.
Holly Inn at Pinehurst, NC The golf mecca of Bobby Jones, a truly classic place in the golfing world.
The Charleston Inn It feels like antebellum South, though the prices are not.
The Del Coronado in San Diego Classic in every regard, lots of history, just ask for a newer room, the old ones stink!
I am certain each of you have a favorite “classic” hotel. So many times, on my travels, I was lucky just to find a place to stay. Getting pampered at these places makes up for the dark and dingy backwater places in South America, and SE Asia.
Most of these hotel stays were not only enjoyable, but without pretense. We just chose the hotel based on the city, and the location. In many cases, some of you may have recommended the hotel. In others, it was just part of the “package”. The Rasa Sayang is my favorite hotel, followed by Casa Palmero at Pebble Beach.