A phenomenal hotel can turn a vacation into an extraordinary experience that you will remember for the rest of your life.
Fodor's recently revealed its 2012 Hotel Awards, which looked at the best hotels for the Trip of a Lifetime. They also issued awards for hotels in several other categories, like New & Noteworthy, Global Icons, and Trendsetters.
From Siem Reap to the Maldives, most of these locations are remote and exotic, but some are closer to home, in the Caribbean or Alaska. Besides the requisite luxury amenities and facilities, these hotels offer unique experiences that take advantage of their natural surroundings, from elephant trekking in northern Thailand to swimming with whale sharks in the Maldives.
Location: Bodrum, Turkey
Rates: Doubles from $1,000 per night
Amanruya resort exudes Turkish culture and architecture, with its stone cottages equipped with traditional fireplaces, its Mediterranean-inspired gardens, and its incredible Turkish meals.
Though guests can tour the nearby ancient ruins, many choose to relax in their rooms—each cottage has its own pool—and enjoy the views of the Aegean sea.
Location:Siem Reap, Cambodia
Rates: Doubles from $950 per night
Owned by luxe hotel chain Aman Resorts, Amansara is a modern and sleek resort that was once the guesthouse of a Cambodian king.
After exploring the famed Angkor temples nearby, guests can return to the hotel by private tuk tuk and cool off in the hotel's pool.
Four Seasons Maldives at Landaa Giraavaru
Rates: Doubles from $1,150 per night
One of the best things about this Four Seasons resort are its above-water Asian-style private villas—and the fact that the hotel is on its own private island.
Guests can snorkel with whale sharks and dolphins or just relax on the beach. This remote spot is a favorite with honeymooners.
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