In the ever-evolving cultural world we live in, there is always someone trying to make it big by illustrating luxury. And while there are always lavish yachts and exuberant resorts to contemplate, there is no debating the fact that waking up in a gorgeous city whilst looking at millions of dollars worth of beautiful art is pretty incomparable. Beyond satisfying creature comforts, hotels are now working to offer a cultural dimension to their guests' experience with museum-worthy art collections. Hotels are usually chosen for their proximity to all the things we want to visit—distance from museums and galleries, great restaurants, or more esoteric pleasures usually drive lodging decisions. However, it's possible to make art a destination in itself by selecting a hotel that brings world-class painting and sculpture to you.
If you're a fan of luxe traveling and are aiming to avoid well-trodden, tourist-infested museum lines this upcoming holiday season, we have compiled a list of six top sites around the world that boast astounding art collections—all enjoyable without ever having to step out of your hotel. Check out our favorites below.
Location: Manhattan, New York
In October 2015, Langham Place, New York unveiled a permanent $2 million dollar art collection featuring the work of American master and New York native, Alex Katz. Langham Place selected Alex Katz's work to be featured exclusively at the hotel as it "best embodied the liveliness of New York City." According to representatives, Alex Katz's work exudes sophistication and prominently features the kind of personalities that are acutely representative of the hotel guests. The art collection is congruent with the modern luxury image of the hotel and reflects a style that is distinctively New York City. The collection consists of a selection of ten original art works, lithographs, and block prints to be prominently featured within the hotel. These originals will be hung in the lobby and will be a major part of the event space renovation on the third floor, which is formally referred to as The Gallery at Langham Place. In addition, a series of prints were created specifically for the guest floor corridors, along with the guest rooms and suites. The two original oil paintings in the lobby—both named Trio—were chosen because of the representation of people in profile. It is a reflection of those walking on Fifth Avenue—an image guests see through the hotel's floor-to-ceiling windows at street level as they sit in the newly refurbished lobby. The other original artworks are all portraits of people from Alex Katz's personal life, including his wife Ada, who he has painted over 230 times throughout his career.
Location: Paradise Island, Bahamas
Long recognized as one of the world's most exclusive resorts, One&Only Ocean Club features an original million dollar collection by local artist Jane Waterous in the common areas, as well as in the resort's restaurant—Dune by Jean-Georges Vongerichten. The resort features "Gatherings," Jane's signature series of three-dimensional paintings; "Neon," installations featuring of traditional materials of neon, mirror, and paint to create high impact visual surprises; "Morse," paintings that feature translated excerpts of well-known speeches, songs, and poems into the deceptively simple dots and dashes of the universally recognized Morse Cod; "Harmony," a series of monks at rest, inspired by her travels in Asia; and "Into the Blue," featuring children leaping into the sky and sea. Following recent enhancements, the resort also boasts amazing world-class offerings, including the new Ocean Pool and Grill, fully-renovated Hartford Wing, Versailles Gardens, One&Only Spa, extensive array activities, and shopping at NEO boutique.
Location: Atlanta, Georgia
Located in the heart of Buckhead at The St. Regis Atlanta, this stunning gem offers an incredibly unique and treasured visual experience for diners when they visit the in-house restaurant. Green lacquered walls provide the backdrop for the art, which can be viewed from every vantage point. A collection of important paintings, including works from masters Picasso, Freud, Bacon, Soutine, van Gogh, and Chagall have been installed on the walls of Atlas—a new restaurant by famed Atlanta chef and restaurateur Gerry Klaskala and the Tavistock Group. This impressive grouping features two-dozen 20th century masterworks from the Lewis Collection, one of the most significant private art collections in the world. Noteworthy paintings displayed at Atlas include Pablo Picasso's "Dora Maar," Francis Bacon's "Study for Portrait," Pablo Picasso's "La Famille," Vincent van Gogh's "Vieux se chauffant," and Marc Chagall's "Le Femme Rouge."
Location: Aspen, Colorado
The St. Regis Aspen Resort features an exclusive million dollar art collection of over 77 pieces. Throughout the property, guests can seek out the 36 paintings and drawings, 22 sculptures, 14 original prints, and 5 custom decorative pieces. Additionally, they can gaze upon the massive, commissioned mural set against the back of the bar in the Shadow Mountain Lounge (reminiscent of the Maxfield Parrish at the King Cole bar in N.Y.C.) that details the story of how the Aspen trees were created. There are a few pieces in the collection where the frame is worth up to three times what the painting is valued at. A painting in the Presidential Suite has a 5-inch gilded 19th century antique Hudson River School Frame with acanthus corners, oak leaves, and beaded outer edge. This frame is valued 40 percent higher than the painting inside the frame, which is oil on canvas and is indiscernibly signed and dated from 1870-1880. Many of the paintings date to the late 1800s. The oldest piece in the collection is from 1853 by Otto Knirsch, an American lithographer.
Location: Beverly Hills, California
Known as the ultimate destination for luxury, Beverly Hills is overflowing with art, architecture, and cultural attractions. In January 2016, The Peninsula Hotel in Beverly Hills launched The Belvedere at the hotel. The pieces were installed on January 19, 2016 for the reopening of The Belvedere earlier this year. The art is curated by The Peninsula Hotel's Local Managing Partner Mr. Robert Zarnegin and is worth several million dollars. Pieces will be on rotation; however, there is no set schedule for when they will be swapped out. The Poppies; Big Red" (2014), "Poppies; Big Blue" (2014) and "Poppies; Big Yellow" (2014) Donald Sultan reflects the pieces in the restaurant upon opening and were installed in August.
Location: Los Angeles, California
In collaboration with other artists such as Shepard Fairey, Geoff Melville, Richard Mirando, and more, RISK has curated the multi-million dollar art collection at The Mayfair Hotel (now opening in phases through Summer 2017). Kelly Graval, the multi-talented artist, illustrator, and graffiti artist known as RISK, has been synonymous with the Los Angeles art community for decades. With a career spanning 30 years, RISK has solidified his place in the history books as a world-renowned graffiti legend. He has come a long way since he pioneered the painting of freeway overpasses, signs, and billboards—dubbed "heavens." Although RISK loves aerosol art, he sees it as merely just one genre in his life's work. From his days as a student at the USC School of Fine Arts to gallery and museum showings around the world; RISK has transformed from a street artist to a rising star in the contemporary art world.