Hot tubs_Amangani Resort_Amanresorts

Luxurious hot tubs from bucolic China to downtown Manhattan have more than warm water in common—the views are incomparable.

There’s no escaping it: after a day hoofing it around Paris from Montmartre to Montparnasse; off-roading in a bare-bones Land Rover on safari in Botswana; or attacking moguls in Vail,
CO, the day’s activities are bound to haunt you. One of the oldest,
most common ways known to man to relieve aches and pains is also one of
today’s most luxurious and coveted amenities. In ancient times, the
Romans named it the caldarium; we simply call it the hot tub.

Today, hot tubs are tucked into balconies and placed like ornate
centerpieces on white-sand beaches. Hotels are increasingly charging
architects with creating steaming jet-powered oases that will fuel
guests’ imagination and allow them to while away their vacation in
warmth—and turn to Jell-O.

And that’s exactly what happened when Resorts West partnered with
Ski magazine and Deer Valley Resort in 2007 to build the most idyllic
ski-in, ski-out home possible. Resorts West CEO and cofounder Joe
Ballstaedt wanted to one-up the extravagant lodges he had visited in
Europe and South America—especially when it came to the après-ski

“Our Ski Dream Home—a
six-bedroom luxury home atop Deer Valley Resort’s Little Baldy Peak
with a stunning kidney-shaped hot tub for 12—improves on Chile’s top
resort lodges with natural grottoes and epic mountain backdrops,” says

The view, though, is just one measurement of a great Jacuzzi. For John DiScala, owner of the travel Web site,
the hot tub also needs to be secluded. And DiScala has seen plenty of
hot tubs, good and bad—he travels about 150,000 miles and visits around
20 countries each year, from Brazil to Malaysia.

So we consulted him and other hot tub aficionados to compile a list of the world’s best hot tubs, which stretch from Jackson,
WY, to the Maldives. Some tubs sit on the edge of pristine, white-sand
beaches, while others are hidden behind deep jungle foliage. A few will
take hours and a tiny seaplane to reach, and one was even created by
film icon Francis Ford Coppola.

All of these tubs are unique, but the experiences they offer don’t come cheap. At the Molori Safari Lodge in South Africa’s
North West Province, for example, the Metsi Suite features a
3,423-square-foot wooden deck, complete with an alfresco dining area, a
private infinity pool, and a seamlessly integrated hot tub that
overlooks the 185,329-acre (malaria-free) Madikwe Game Reserve. Cost:
more than $4,100 per night. And New York City’s Hotel on Rivington
is even pricier: it costs $5,000 per night to soak in the 10-person hot
tub on the penthouse terrace. But the scenery—a bird’s-eye view over
buildings and bridges—is spectacular.

So go enjoy the sense of place all these tubs offer—it’s a great excuse to soak yourself silly.