The best way to begin a cruise vacation is with an extended stay in the port city of embarkation or disembarkation. In 2015, there were a handful of hotels and resorts that stood above all the rest. Below are our picks for the best hotels and resorts of 2015.
Best Luxury Resort (Hawaii) - Four Seasons Hualalai - Kona, Hawaii: We stayed at Four Seasons Hualalai in 2003 and loved it. When we returned in 2015, we were instantly reminded why this is one of best resorts in the world. If we only had four days to spend in Hawaii, it would be at Four Seasons Hualalai. It's that good. Read our review. Read our review.
Four Seasons Hualalai, Kona, Hawaii
Best Luxury Hotel (Waikiki) - Trump International Hotel Waikiki Beach Walk: We have experienced two luxury hotels in Waikiki. In 2003, we stayed at Halekulani, a 5-star property that was very nice. However, our most recent stay at Trump International Hotel Waikiki Beach Walk makes this our new favorite luxury property in Waikiki with its huge, beautiful rooms and suites, a great location a short stroll from the beach, 5-star service and an amazing Spa. Read our review.
Trump International Hotel Waikiki Beach Walk
Best Luxury Hotel (Europe) - Palazzo Manfredi - Rome, Italy: Any cruise that embarks or disembarks from Civitavecchia is not complete without a pre-/post-cruise stay in Rome. Forget the big, crowded chain hotels. In Rome, a boutique hotel is the only way to go. Our new favorite is the Palazzo Manfredi, located just steps from The Colosseum. Read our review.
The view from our corner room at Palazzo Manfredi
Best Luxury Hotel (New Zealand) - Hotel InterContinental - Wellington, New Zealand: When your cruise takes you to Wellington, New Zealand, at the southernmost tip of the north island, you should plan on at least two nights to explore Wellington. This is a great city to explore on foot and there is a lot to see and do. Hotel InterContinental is our pick as the perfect home base for exploring Wellington. Read our review.
Hotel InterContinental, Wellington, New Zealand