Designer Thom Filicia’s inventive hand extends beyond the crisp looks of the W Los Angeles-Westwood’s 258 rooms: The pool area has been revamped, and there’s also a new outdoor restaurant, the Backyard. At 930 Hilgard Ave. Call 310-208-8765; .
A former Washington, D.C., Holiday Inn is now Donovan House, a hip oasis complete with a guests-only rooftop pool and lounge. Playful modern touches include chairs suspended from the lobby ceiling and leather canopy beds and cocoonlike spiral showers in guest rooms. At 1155 14th St., NW. Call 202-737-1200; .
The newly expanded Emerson Resort & Spa in this pastoral Hudson Valley town bursts with Far Eastern panache. In the company of handsome 19th-century buildings—the property is a former dairy farm—the inn features 26 suites and a spa whose 17th-century doors once adorned a Rajasthani palace. At 5340 Rt. 28. Call 877-688-2828; .
Nestled amid restored historic houses, the W Istanbul marks the hotel chain’s first European foray. A gold-pillared lobby, red silk bedding, and arched wood window frames suggest a sultan’s lair. Guests can dine in-house at Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s Spice Market. At Suleyman Seba Cad No. 22, Akaretler, Besiktas. Call 011-90-212-381-2121; .
The One&Only Cape Town resort exudes chic ethnic flair with local fabrics, woods, and artwork. The harborfront hotel’s balconies offer breathtaking views of Table Mountain, and a water taxi ferries guests to an island spa. At Dock Rd., Victoria & Alfred Waterfront. Call 888-877-7528; .
Inspired by the 15th-century abbey that stood on its site, the Dominican Hotel channels a monastic look with soaring ceilings, dramatic arches, and original stone floors. Each of the 150 guest rooms has a unique design and overlooks a quiet inner courtyard. At Rue Léopold/Leopoldstraat 9. Call 011-32-2-203-08-08; .
Upscale-resort chain Angsana has opened a group of sensitively rejuvenated riads (classic courtyard houses) in the fabled Red City. Each exotic property boasts a handful of richly decorated rooms and vernacular design elements from mosaic tiles and rooftop terraces to handmade rugs. Call 011-65-6849-5788; .
Located in the charming village of Painswick, Cotswolds88hotel is Gloucestershire’s most stylish place to stay. Behind the 18th-century mansion’s neoclassic exterior are 19 surprisingly artful rooms— a retro-‘70s bar with swank button-tufted upholstery. At Kemps Ln. Call 011-44-14-5281-3688; .
Atlanta decorator Suzanne Kasler brings a modern touch to the Great Smoky Mountains. Eight cottages at Blackberry Farm, in Walland, Tennessee, have urbane interiors and spalike baths. At 1471 W. Millers Cove Rd. Call 800-648-4252; .
Renowned for its wildlife and vegetation, Kangaroo Island welcomes its first luxury resort. Perched on a cliff above a dramatic coastline, Southern Ocean Lodge’s expansive suites offer sunken lounges, glass-walled baths, and private terraces. At Hanson Bay. Call 011-61-2-9918-4355; .
Set in the Georgia capital’s bustling downtown, the W Hotel sports whimsical, garden-inspired touches throughout the modernist interiors, including a mobile that resembles a tree canopy in the lobby. Rooms and suites are appointed with Macassar-wood furnishings, and the hotel boasts an infinity-edge pool, Bliss Spa, and BLT Steak eatery. At 45 Ivan Allen Jr. Blvd., 404-582-5800; .
The Four Seasons Hotel has opened its second property in Istanbul, this one in a 19th-century palace overlooking the Bosporus. Aqua, silver, and taupe hues in guest rooms echo the watery setting, while Turkish carpets and hand-painted ceilings exude Ottoman ambience. At Çiragan Cad No. 28. Call 011-90-212-381-40-00; .