Virtuoso, the famed luxury travel network, is back again this year with its nominees for the Best of the Best awards. They’ve surveyed several hundred travel agencies and over 11,000 trip advisors to choose the best in luxury hotels and bars, according to Forbes. Obviously, we were more interested in the bars and we can’t wait till the winner is revealed on 15th August, but till then, let’s take a look at the cream of the crop nominees for Best Bar.
The Donovan Bar, Brown’s Hotel, A Rocco Forte Hotel – London
A glamorous, yet unintimidating bar that’s gained quite a following since its inception, The Donovan Bar definitely deserves this spot. It’s been named after the late talented master photographer Terence Donovan, and his work does adorn the bar while people of all ages and attire mull around. Even its menu is as eclectic as its patronage. Take the Box Brownies for instance, which is made of strawberries soaked in Contreau and lychee liqueur, served in champagne. Definitely also try the award-winning The Space Race Cocktail.
Hassler Bar, Hotel Hassler – Rome
Stepping into the Hassler Bar is like walking into a posh 1940s movie bar where something dramatic is about to go down. It’s a very exclusive hidden bar in Hotel Hassler that plays host to the elitest crowd one can find. With a signature cocktail called the Veruschka (pomegranate juice and sparkling Italian wine), it’s not hard to figure out why it has such a loyal, high-end customer base.
The Office NYC, Mandarin Oriental – New York
Just by the picture you can tell that this bar is going to be an adventurous yet regal experience. Get ready for all the Bond-esque feels and also to burn your wallet for it too (psst…it’s worth it). They don’t just have classy decor going for them, they also have highly droolworthy cocktails and interesting concepts. You can tell the bartender a drink, a movie or even a feeling with a number between 1-10 to go along with it (10 meaning most adventurous) and they’ll whip you up just the right thing. The Snap Pea and Amaretto Sour are some of their best cocktails.
The Bank Brassiere & Bar, Park Hyatt Vienna – Vienna
This humongous bar is worth visiting just for the sheer grandeur of it but the drinks are an added benefit. Their drinks in the signature menu have a bank theme too, with cocktails like Investment, Bankruptcy and Frozen Account. To be honest that would be way too stressful for me to even want to order but judging from the many customers’ reviews, I’ll trust them to make my experience calming and luxurious despite the accounts references.
The Horseshoe Bar, The Shelbourne – Dublin
As you can tell, The Horseshoe Bar is named after its shape but its known for a lot more. Several famous people including politicians, journalists, writers, poets have known to take up a barstool here in the past and continue to do so. It’s a huge part of Dublin’s culture also because it does an integral thing really well – Irish whiskey. They also do several signature Irish cocktails that are worth a salary or two, including Sky Is The Limit and Red Moon Rising.