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Video: World's best of the best in travel

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    >>> the best of the best . travel and leisure megazeen has just released its 16th annual world best revealing the readers' favorite holtzs, airlines, cities, and much more. joining me live is the digital project for travel and leisure , sarah spagnola. we love talking about things like the world's best overall hotel in africa. tell me about this one.

    >> it's an mazing hotel. it's in northern tanzania. an eco friendly resort on 3,400 acres on a migration route of wildabeasts. they're looking for exploration, adventure, and this truly exetch fews it. the property is actually family-owned and they're trying for fewer beds on larger spaces. look at these amazing migrations of the big five. you know, you'll be sleeping in four poster beds beneath chandeliers, private plunge pools. this is truly a trep of a lifetime, and that's why our readers selected it.

    >> i can imagine. how about here domestically in the u.s.? the best resort surprisingly from tennessee, blackberry farm?

    >> blackberry farm is an under the radar property, but our readers love it. this is other place where you can get your hands dirty. it's on 2,400 acres. there's an authentic farm. can you taste farm fresh eggs and go to cooking demonstrations and can hike and bike and do horseback riding . this is another foodie pilgrimage. a place where people can imers themselves in the great smoky mountains . a wonderful destination, and we're so happy it finally took the number one resort.

    >> it's beautiful.

    >> i can see why. especially by your description. what about the world's best airline? we're talking singe pour airlines. we are always talking singapore airlines . what makes it so good?

    >> we are 16 years running err since the survey launched in 1996 . singapore airlines has taken the number one spot . they're known for being a leader in their industry. they were the first people to introduce video and audio and all classes in 2001 . they recently announced routes to sal paolo, and they're constantly pushing the boundaries and leading the way for other international airlines. we love them for other customer service and efficiency. 38 routes in the united states . we're so happy to announce it once again they've taken the number one spot . stroo good for them.

    >> what about the best car rental agency, being the sfwlip car?

    >> zip car , this is a new winner. something new and fresh. zip car is a car sharing company. you can rent cars for one hour, for as low as $7 an hour, and $66 a day. they're also leading the industry. other car rental agencies have followed suit and offered similar programs. can you rent one of 30 different makes and models, everything from a bmw to a preus hybrid, leading the way, and travel and leisure readers are loving them both in the city in which they live in, and also when they travel.

    >> that's good. what makes bangkok the world's best overall city sf.

    >> two years running it's made the number one international city . we're so happy. i think it's because of the junk that pox because the modern sky rises. it's a gateway city . travellers go to bangkok and then travel on further to unwind among rice paddys or the beaches or to the up and come resort destinations. it's the junk that position of wild class foods and shopping. bangkok can deliver all of that and more. that's what our readers love.

    >> as do the people here in new york city . they probably helped make it the number one city domestically.

    >> new york city is the number one domestic city. that's because new york is always hatching new scenes. most significantly this year, west chelsea with the new face of the highline. readers love something new and different, and that part of new york city is actually absolutely revitalizing. you know, it's just one example of how new york new york is different and changing. of course, there's still the theater, the food scene, museums and great shopping. we love it, of course, and we're here right now. despite the heat, new york has so much to offer. all the winners have available at travelandleisure.com.

    >> you're part of being the digital products editor. thank you.

    >> thank you.

By
updated 7/23/2011 11:30:07 AM ET 2011-07-23T15:30:07

Thousands of miles off the western coast of Chile, you wake up to an expansive view of Easter Island’s grassy meadows, grazing horses, and the pounding Pacific surf, then set off on a half-day trek along a volcano rim toward natural rock pools. Your base camp? The No. 13–ranked hotel in the world, according to the readers of Travel + Leisure: Posada de Mike Rapu, Explora Rapa Nui.

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Slideshow: World's Best Hotels 2011

Finding the right hotel is essential to any trip’s success, especially as travelers increasingly seek out adventures in the most far-flung destinations. That makes the results of the World’s Best Hotels survey essential reading. Consider it your global  Rolodex of hotels that can deliver special access, noteworthy amenities, above-and-beyond service, and authenticity of place.

Honing in on the World’s Best Hotels is no easy feat. Each year, T+L readers vote on thousands of hotels based on rooms, location, service, food, and value. The top-ranked properties had impressively high scores. The entire Top 100 received scores above 92.00 — a T+L record that’s a testament to how properties around the globe are raising the bar.

This year’s World’s Best Hotels results also reflect a growing preference for the exotic. Six of the year’s Top 10 hotels overall are safari lodges in Africa, while the number of winning hotels in the top 50 located in Mexico and Central and South America has increased fivefold since 2010. Airline patterns also acknowledge the emerging importance of Central and South America as global players: according to the International Air Transport Association, travel on Latin American carriers increased by 25 percent this spring.

And don’t discount Asia. Bangkok — once again voted the No. 1 city in the world — is home to the legendary Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok (rising from No. 57 to No. 23 this year). North of Bangkok in Chiang Mai, the Mandarin Oriental Dhara Dhevi surged to No. 7 on the list, up from No. 45 in 2010. This resort was designed to re-create the experience of staying within a historic Thai village; farmers and wood-carvers work on-site. Similarly, a stay at the grand Oberoi Udaivilas (No. 5), a domed palace on the shores of Lake Pichola in Rajasthan, feels like a trip back in time.

Authenticity of place plays a role at another World’s Best perennial favorite, Triple Creek Ranch (No. 6) in the Montana Rockies. You can trace the Lewis and Clark trail on a horseback-riding tour, or channel your inner pioneer during steelhead fly-fishing trips on the Salmon River. Then you’ll unwind in renovated log cabins complete with wood-burning fireplaces and hot tubs.

Read on to find out which hotel is the very best in the world. And be sure to download the first-ever World’s Best Awards digital edition for iPad.

More from Travel + Leisure

World's best hotels 2010

It List: Best new hotels 2011

Best affordable beach resorts

Copyright © 2012 American Express Publishing Corporation

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