Gamechangers: Boutique Hotels & Motels - Full-Time Travel

Gamechangers: Boutique Hotels & Motels

Gamechangers: Boutique Hotels & Motels

Small in scale but big on design, boutique hotels offer guests personal touches and unique details that are often absent at larger resorts. This year’s selection of winners impressed us with their hidden-gem appeal, ambitious sense of purpose, unusual concepts, or striking design – sometimes all of the above. Book your stay for a truly local experience in Instagrammable surroundings. 

El Fenn
Marrakesh, Morocco

El Fenn | ©Cécile Perrinet Lhermitte

Marrakesh is full of beautiful riads, but few can compare to El Fenn. Access to this discreet hideaway is via a passageway so nondescript you could easily miss it, but inside it's a design lover's dream, with vibrant color and distinctive decor at every turn. Three pools, including a lap pool in the courtyard, offer plenty of respite from the city heat, and the space is full of shady nooks to relax with a hibiscus-ginger margarita. At sunset, head to the rooftop bar for live DJs by candlelight, then stroll five minutes to Jemaa el-Fnaa, the city's main market square, to shop and soak up the atmosphere.


Eaton Hotel
Washington D.C., USA

Eaton Hotel D.C. | By Adrian Gaut

Founded in 2014 by Katherine Lo, daughter of Hong Kong real estate and hospitality giant Lo Ka Shui, Eaton was a response to the question, what would a modern hotel-meets-lifestyle brand look like? The answer is a place that’s part hip hotel, part wellness studio, and part co-working space, with purposeful programming driven by a community of local artists and activists. When travelers book a stay at Eaton, they are embedded into D.C.’s scene of artistic movers and shakers and social change-makers, giving them access to a slice of local culture they might never have experienced otherwise. 


The Ryder Hotel
Charleston, South Carolina, USA

The Ryder Hotel | By Joe Thomas

In our humble opinion, The Ryder is Charleston's hippest lodging. Easy-breezy decor (think: blonde wood and wallpaper emblazoned with tropical foliage), impressive fitness offerings including in-room yoga mats and Peloton bike rentals, and a loungey pool area with oversized gingham sun umbrellas give the hotel a fresh, modern feel in an area known for history and tradition. Speaking of which, the location is another plus. Situated on Meeting Street, The Ryder is surrounded by downtown Charleston's best dining and drinking venues, although its own Little Palm cafe and cocktail bar is buzzy enough to keep you lingering until late.


The Siam
Bangkok, Thailand

You need somewhere to downshift and unwind after an exhilarating day of sightseeing and tuk-tuk riding in Bangkok. The Siam is that place of refuge. With its light-drenched atrium courtyard, riverside pool, and plush, antique-filled rooms, the hotel provides a steady sense of calm that's rare in the city's historic district, where throngs of tourists gather at glittering temples. When you're ready for something more active, check out The Siam's signature experiences, including a romantic dinner cruise on the Chao Phraya River, Muay Thai training with an expert coach, or Sak Yant, a sacred tattoo administered in the hotel's specially consecrated studio.


Sir Savigny
Berlin, Germany

Berlin Suite | Courtesy of Sir Savigny

A picture-perfect library, communal chess set, curated artworks, and carefully placed coffee table books give Sir Savigny an unmistakable sophistication. It's an aesthetic perfectly suited to the hotel's location in Charlottenburg, Berlin's artsy literary quarter. After a day spent perusing local boutiques and galleries, fill your tummy with the city's best burger at Sir Savigny's restaurant, The Butcher, then retire to one of the hotel's sumptuously decorated rooms. Our favorite is Sir Suite, which boasts a giant freestanding bathtub.

* Featured image of The Ryder Hotel, by Joe Thomas 

Sweeping mountain views of the Dolomites, beautiful wildflowers, and the most delicious dinner included with your stay at @hotel_dolomitenhof_u_altepost.

Reel: @tc.travels

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In the latest episode of our podcast, Christine Winebrenner Irick, entrepreneur (@lotussojourns) and podcaster (@souloftravelpodcast) shares the story of her first big trip to Asia. In the midst of a period of rebirth, as her career and marriage were crumbling, Christine took inspiration from Alex Garland`s book, The Beach, and set off for Thailand with one good friend and no solid plans. What unfolded was a perspective-shifting experience that would, in Christine`s own words, "reveal who she would become." 🎧 Link in bio to listen!

#tttcm #traveltok #thetripthatchangedme #podcast #travelpodcast #thailand #travelthailand

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Is it too early to think about Fall? Daydreaming of autumn in Patagonia.

Reel: @ramirotorrents

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A lovely town on the French Riviera, Menton is known for its beauty, mild weather, colorful buildings, and lemon production. Enjoy beaches, history, and a laid-back vibe.

Reel: @sofikulin

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Full-Time Travel`s sister brand, @kingdomgolf, invites you to a join special guests from the world of golf and entertainment, including Jack Nicklaus and Annika Sörenstam, for a luxury island experience. Play the incredible courses at Wexford and Palmetto Hall Golf and Country Club. ⛳️ Link in bio to reserve your spot at the 2023 Kingdom Cup on Thursday, September 21st thru Sunday, September 24th. ...

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One night in the desert inspires a corporate worker to follow her dream of becoming a travel journalist.

In the latest episode of our podcast, The Trip That Changed Me, travel journalist, podcaster, and entrepreneur Yulia Denisyuk (@insearchofperfect) shares the story of a career-altering trip to Morocco. It`s an ode to the power of looking for signs when you need confirmation you`re on the right track. If you`re harboring a dream but it never quite feels like the right time to make the leap, this episode is for you. 🎧 Link in bio to listen!

#fulltimetravel #travelreel #ftt #thetripthatchangedme #podcast #travelpodcast

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Submerged beneath the ocean waves or inside a kaleidoscopic aquarium, these rare underwater restaurants serve meals alongside a cast of aquatic creatures. Book a table and enjoy a whole new spin on dinner and a show. ...

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Bike through the world`s largest salt flats in Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia.

Reel: @islayjoy

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Known for its stunning sand dunes that create a landscape resembling white sheets (lençóis in Portuguese), Lençóis Maranhenses is a unique national park located in the state of Maranhão, Brazil.

The park`s most iconic feature is the series of turquoise lagoons formed by rainwater that collects between the dunes. These lagoons are a stark contrast to the surrounding white sands and provide a refreshing oasis for visitors.

Reel: @melly_ba

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A travel entrepreneur rows 3,000 miles in 36 days, completely unsupported.

In the latest episode of our podcast, The Trip That Changed Me, travel entrepreneur, Jimmy Carroll (@jimmyalexandercarroll), shares his experiences of participating in the world’s toughest rowing race: the Talisker Whiskey Atlantic Challenge.

For 36 days, Jimmy and his three teammates rowed in alternating two-hour stints for 24 hours a day, through storms, sleep deprivation, and an unexpected attack from a 12-foot blue marlin. It was an experience that pushed them to the limit of their resilience but one that was also full of profound beauty and awe.

🎧 Link in bio to listen!

#thetripthatchangedme #fulltimetravel #ftt #travelpodcast #podcast #jimmycarroll

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Sunsets in Big Sur are always a magical view.

Reel: @nathanaelbillings

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Like a big party by the beach, Coney Island has sandy beaches, a boardwalk perfect for strolling, and epic rides like the Cyclone roller coaster that`ll make your heart race! It`s all sun, excitement, and good times at Coney Island! 🎢🏖️


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