See the newest Relais & Châteaux hotels and restaurants, which includes Canada's iconic Fogo Island Inn.
Ever since its inception almost 70 years ago in France, Relais & Châteaux has grown its presence to 64 countries and comprises over 580 independently owned hotels and restaurants, each standing out with impeccable levels of service, culinary experiences, and commitment to their local communities and culture. Last week, the prestigious association — which Relais & Châteaux president Lauren Gardinier called "a unification between chefs and hoteliers," in an interview with Travel + Leisure — inaugurated nine more properties, bringing the total number of new members in 2023 to 27.
And it's easier than ever to visit the new Relais & Châteaux properties because half of them are in North America — with two in Canada, one in North Carolina, and one in St. Lucia.
Becoming an R&C-approved property is extraordinarily competitive and Gardinier said today's hotels and restaurants all embody three values: "authenticity, perfection, and family spirit." He also noted that in 2023 and beyond, he would add two more requirements to the list: "sustainability and responsibility."
"If we want this collection to be still alive in 10, 20 years, we have to consider sustainability," he emphasized. "I think that the key to keep delivering [authenticity, perfection, and family spirit] — to our employees, to our members, to our customers — is to bring sustainability to everything."
One of the most notable additions is Fogo Island Inn, an iconic all-inclusive luxury hotel that sits on the rugged shoreline of a remote island in Newfoundland. The property has amassed accolades in the past decade with its exceptional culinary program showcasing local ingredients that guests enjoy in its elegant restaurant with floor-to-ceiling windows affording breathtaking views of the Atlantic. Also in Canada, at the heart of Old Quebec City is Tanière, chef François-Emmanuel Nicol's modern eatery, housed in a 17th-century building. You won't find any imported food items on the tasting menu since Nicol's goal is to cook only with the best local and seasonal ingredients.
And, starting next spring, travelers can escape the hustle and bustle of cities with a trip to the scenic Cataloochee Ranch in North Carolina's Great Smoky Mountains. The property, which is undergoing extensive three-year renovations right now, comprises several rustic buildings surrounded by quaint, picture-perfect landscapes. The resort's restaurant, The Switchback, treats patrons to real-deal Appalachian food.
The Caribbean island of St. Lucia has no shortage of beautiful resorts, but Cap Maison Resort & Spa stands out with its lush setting and five-star amenities that include a private beach, ocean views, and rooms with private pools.
Finally, if you're headed to T+L's Destination of the Year, Costa Rica, consider staying at Casa Chameleon, a stunning collection of 21 villas with private saltwater pools perched cliffside with breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean, where sunsets are guaranteed to make your jaw drop. The resort's guests can choose from three restaurants offering the best Costa Rican produce and seafood. Sentido Norte, Casa Chameleon's signature restaurant, is helmed by chef Jose Lopez, a champion of Costa Rican ingredients and flavors.
Portugal now has two more Relais & Châteaux members — the L'And Vineyards in Montemor-o-Novo in the Alentejo region and Valverde Santar Hotel & Spa. The former has a vinotherapy spa, 15 acres of idyllic vineyards, and an eclectic restaurant celebrating the maritime heritage of Portugal. And the latter takes guests on a culinary trip through Beira cuisine thanks to chef Luís Almeida's modern interpretation of Portuguese food.
A four-century-old building of an orphanage-turned-luxury-hotel in Rome and an 18th-century manor house with stunning gardens in Aix-en-Provence, France, make up the nine new additions to Relais & Châteaux.
You can explore the complete list of new and existing Relais hotels at relaischateaux.com.
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