Koh-I Nor Val Thorens

Location: Val Thorens, France
Classification: 5 star hotel
Official website: https://www.hotel-kohinor.com/fr/
Official website Les Trois Vallées: https://www.les3vallees.com/fr

Located in Europe’s highest ski resort, Hotel Koh-I Nor is a top notch five star hotel offering amazing facilities. The hotel is located at the highest point of Val Thorens at 2400m and offers the best views over the village and surrounding mountains. It’s mind blowing and I couldn’t believe my eyes when we arrived at the hotel.

When you enter Hotel Koh-I Nor, you enter a world of luxury. Each detail has taken care of. The lobby area is spacious and front desk staff does give you all the information you need for a comfortable stay.

We stayed at a deluxe room and after having stayed at many hotels in Val Thorens, this was the best room we stayed in so far. The room had a wonderful size and was decorated with high quality materials. We had an amazing south oriented view over the whole area. I could have spent hours here sitting on the balcony and enjoying the views.

The marble bathroom had a nice bath tub, separate walk-in rain shower and an oversized sink. Fancy toiletries are provided each day and I must also highlight the nice bathrobes and towels. Another bonus: turndown service is provided each night.

One of the highlights at Koh-I Nor is the spa area. With 800m² it is huge! The whole area is very well maintained. It is the perfect place to relax and unwind after a day on the slopes. The spa offers a warm indoor pool, a comfortable relaxation area with a salt wall and a jacuzzi. There are two saunas: an indoor sauna and an outdoor sauna which is pretty cool as it offers an amazing panoramic view over Val Thorens. There’s also a hammam. The experience showers are a must do! They’re real fun: I’d call it a “shower walk” as there are 4 different colored showers with different temperatures and water pressures. There’s also a large separate indoor pool especially for family with kids.

During the day we – of course – explored the ski area of Les Trois Vallées, the largest ski area in the world. I ski since I was a little boy and I must admit that Les Trois Vallées is one of my favorite ski resorts. The whole area has been connected in a very convenient way. The slopes were prepared in an excellent way and the staff was friendly. At one time we were skiing to Courchevel and were looking on the ski map which way we needed to take. Immediately a super friendly staff member of the ski area came to us and asked if we needed some help. We were really impressed! Les Trois Vallées is located in one of the nicest areas of the Alps. I couldn’t stop taking pictures.

There are also 2 zip lines: La Tyrolienne and La Bee, both really fun. La Tyrolienne is the highest zip line in the world and I enjoyed each second of it. With a speed of over 100 km/h I flew 250m above the ground. I highly recommend to treat yourself to a flight 😊

Hotel Koh-I Nor truly is a ski-in / ski-out hotel. The hotel is located right at the slope of Plein Sud which will bring you to the center of Val Thorens. Koh-I Nor has its own ski shop and when you return they will take your skis and store them for you, very convenient and unseen at any hotel!

After and before skiing, we need to eat 🙂 There are three restaurants on site. Each day we started our day with a wonderful breakfast at L’Atelier d’Eric. Breakfast at Koh-I Nor is something to look forward to! It offers a large buffet with a lot of healthy options. There’s even champagne… That’s what I call a five star breakfast!

Hotel Koh-I Nor is one of a kind! It’s definitely one of the best hotels in Val Thorens. If you’re looking for luxurious place in the highest ski resort of Val Thorens? Don’t hesitate to book a stay here!

Amor Arenal

Location: La Fortuna, Costa Rica
Classification: Deluxe hotel
Official website: https://www.amorarenal.com/

Situated at the foothills of the world-famous Arenal, Amor Arenal is one of the top luxury resorts in the area. This luxurious resort built with precious tropical hardwoods has only opened several years ago and everything still looks brand new.

The dramatic entrance as I would call it, truly is spectacular. You enter the semi open lobby area and immediately notice the fantastic view all over the resort. I couldn’t believe my eyes, it is so beautiful… so peaceful and oh so romantic. When I think of Costa Rica, this is exactly what I would expect. Check-in was very efficient and personal. A welcome drink was offered and the administration only took a few minutes.

I read many good things about Amor Arenal and I had high expectations. The resort is well known for its service and overall quality. When I entered the hotel, everything felt right here. After check-in we were escorted to our beautiful Canyon Casita King. Each room at Amor Arenal is a separate villa. That’s right, the hotel is build up in several buildings and the resort does feel like a small luxurious village. At 872 sq. ft., the room was huge and the king sized bed was heavenly. I loved the lay-out of the room as well as the decoration. The wood touches add the true Costa Rica feel. A bonus was the complimentary mini bar with home-made sangrias and kambuchas, local beer, water, soda, coffee, tea and snacks. The huge HD-television was something we didn’t need during the day, but at night it was fun to watch some Netflix while being in the middle of the jungle. To round up, our room felt like a small luxury villa. Absolutely gorgeous! It felt like a home away from home.

The semi open bath room has a huge double walk-in (rain)shower and his/hers sinks. Taking a shower here is something to look forward to. I’d call it a panoramic shower experience as I had a direct view through the top to floor windows over the jungle. Luxury toiletries of Molton Brown were a treat. They smell amazing.

The oversized balcony offered the most amazing views all over the jungle and volcano. And probably the best feature of the room: a plunge pool. Honestly, I could have spent a whole day in this pool. Relaxing in the plunge pool and soak up all the beauty of the area was heavenly!

There is so much to do here and even just walking around the resort is so much fun. It is almost unbelievable how well maintained this place is. I saw staff working and maintaining the gardens every time of the day. Amor Arenal offers several natural spring pool that are beautifully integrated in the resort and its surrounding areas. This is what paradise look like and I couldn’t believe how beautiful this place is. There’s a great laid back ambiance around the pools with a lot of comfortable loungers. No need to put your towels here to ‘reserve’ your spot in the sun. Pool service was great too, they greet you as soon as you approach the pool area and make sure you’ll have everything you need.

A must-do is booking a relaxing massage when you’re guest at Amor Arenal. They have 3 beautiful semi-open treatment rooms surrounded by jungle vegetation. I couldn’t have asked for a better view. I often have a lot of tension everywhere so I love a good massage. I’ve been for many massages in my life in many different parts of the world and I can say wholeheartedly and sincerely that my massage at Amor Arenal is one of the best I’ve ever had. The therapist was absolutely incredible. Her knowledge and intuition about the muscular system is superb and she is extremely skilled at releasing tension and always hitting exactly the right spots. On top of that, she made me feel so relaxed during and after the treatment.

Also the restaurants are worth mentioning. We started each day at El Rancho where they serve a wonderful breakfast. The personal service was great as was the food. They use many local products which was much appreciated. I liked the many healthy options I could choose from. Each dish was presented in an excellent way! This truly is a five star breakfast!

At night, we had dinner. It is good to know that the resort is proud of how fresh their ingredients are and that they buy almost everything from local producers. The six course Costarican tasting menu is a must do! This culinary experience takes you on a delicious journey through Costa Rica. Eating such good food with rain forest views is an experience I will never forget. Again, you can request the food to be prepared exactly the way you want it. Service was so friendly… They will make sure you are enjoying your time here and every single request has been taken care of with a smile! It truly is all about service here! People are so nice, the level of service is very high at Amor Arenal. I never felt uncomfortable requesting for something and I was greeted every single time I met one of the staff members. 

There is so much to discover at Amor Arenal. Let me share a secret: did you know that they have 2 hiking trails around the rain forest? A must do when you are here. The nature is mind blowing and I spotted many wild animals during the hike.

The Amor Arenal experience was amazing! From the beginning to the end, everything felt right here! Highly recommended for a romantic getaway in paradise!