Forbes Travel Guide Names 2018 Star Rating Award Winners

ATLANTA—Forbes Travel Guide unveiled its 60th list of worldwide Star Rating winners today.

Among the 1,609 award winners are 27 new five-star hotels, 70 new four-star hotels and 76 new hotels in the recommended category. Other first-time recipients include five five-star restaurants, 24 four-star restaurants and 10 recommended restaurants. The list also recognizes five new five-star spas and 29 new four-star spas.

Forbes Travel Guide now rates properties in 50 countries throughout the Americas, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Africa and the Middle East. Newly added international destinations for 2018 include Abu Dhabi; Amsterdam; Aruba; Chengdu, China; Dubai; Hokkaido, Japan; Jamaica; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Madrid; Marrakech, Morocco; Okinawa, Japan; Panama; Prague; Sanya, China; and Vienna. As Forbes Travel Guide marks its 60th year, it will expand to inspecting in 60 countries in preparation for its 2019 Star Ratings.

In all, 199 five-star, 513 four-star and 309 recommended hotels were winners this year. New York was the U.S. city with the highest number of five-star hotels with 10, including two new wins: Baccarat Hotel and Residences and Four Seasons Hotel New York Downtown. The last time the city had a new five-star hotel was in 2016, with the addition of Park Hyatt New York.

Independent hotels made a strong showing. First-time five-star awards went to Le Richemond Genève, Magee Homestead in Wyoming, Meadowood Napa Valley in California, Nemacolin Woodlands Resort – Falling Rock in Farmington, PA, and Williamsburg Inn in Virginia.

The new Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills is Hilton’s first five-star hotel in the Western Hemisphere. The brand also has five-star Waldorf Astoria Shanghai on the Bund.

Trump Hotels earned five-star honors for its DC and Vancouver outposts, which is unusual for new properties. These and other just-opened winners (like Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills and Four Seasons Hotel New York Downtown) show that hotels are becoming increasingly vested in their pre-opening strategies, including recruitment and training practices, according to the guide.