Luxury Hotels

A private pop-up hotel, Auckland, Mandarin Oriental

Make your own luxury hotel (see above). Philippe Kjellgren, the Swedish traveller known universally as PK who has spent nearly three years visiting all the known and unknown best luxury hotels in the world, treated his father to a birthday ‘away night’. His parents thought they were being chauffeured to some recognized establishment but found they were welcomed, with Champagne of course, at Kjellgren’s own summer cottage, half an hour away. The stay at the momentary ‘Aman’ included farm-to-table dining and sauna and spa.  Read more @pkslist, and for PK’s choice of legitimate hotels globally, see


Auckland’s Hotel Britomart opens 1st October – 104 bedrooms, GM Clinton Farley.  It is managed by TFE Hotels, partly owned by Singapore’s powerful Far East Organization, perhaps known for that city-state’s Fullerton Hotel (Far East has recently re-branded Sydney’s former Westin, now also Fullerton). TFE Hotels consists  of 73 hotels with 10,374 keys in Australia, New Zealand and Europe under five brands, plus over 30  hotel projects under various stages of development. TFE’s main brand is Adina, which is opening several properties in Germany within the next year.


Mandarin Oriental is putting together a scrumptious ‘sandwich’ of a package, two water-side luxury hotels in Europe with a ‘filling’ of helicopter transport. The Lake-to-Lake Helicopter Experience consists of one-night accommodation in a luxurious suite at both Mandarin Oriental, Geneva and Mandarin Oriental, Lago di Como; a 75-minute private helicopter flight with stunning views from Lake Geneva to Lake Como or vice versa (maximum five passengers); round-trip limousine transfers between the helipads/airports and the hotels; a unique three-course bespoke dining experience at each hotel; daily breakfast for two in the hotel/resort restaurant or American breakfast in-suite – plus a bottle of Champagne in-room upon arrival at each hotel.


Not long now – the next episode of MARY GOSTELOW GIRLAHEAD PODCAST features Forbes Travel Guide CEO Filip Boyen