The Westin Denver International Airport, USA
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This isn’t the boxy affair so often associated with airport accommodation. The blue glass of the Westin’s exterior walls is contorted into waves and jutting edges and the walls within are decorated with unique artworks. Its location is what makes it an ideal stopover choice, though –¬ it’s across the street from the terminal and the Denver commuter train links the airport with the CBD in just over 30 minutes.
Felix Hotel Sydney, Australia
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Just a few streets away from the Sydney Domestic Terminal, the hip and travel-themed Felix is designed for serious rest. The 150 rooms – titled “The Cabins” – feature plush beds, curtains that black out the view of the runway and powerful rain showers. Once you’re refreshed, hit the on-site gym, all-day food shop or venture to the rooftop cinema on the terrace. Oh, and if you’re travelling with a furry, four-legged companion, they’re very welcome in the courtyard rooms.
Pullman Kingsford Smith Airport, Sydney
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The Pullman is a brand-new luxury hotel, so from the lobby lounge to the pillow menu, it’s state-of-the-art. Located 600 metres from the domestic terminal, the Executive Club Lounge is a boon to business travellers in transit with workspaces for charging devices, shower facilities and monitors projecting flight info and cocktails and canapés, if you’re so inclined. There’s a kitchen garden providing produce for the uber-cool Mobius Bar & Grill, and a light-flooded 24-hour gym.
Hotel Nikko Kansai Airport, Japan
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A single minute from the international terminals (and about an hour to the closest domestic airport), this 576-room, 11-storey hotel offers a late noon checkout so there’s no need to spend hours in gate lounges. And if you find your tech isn’t working when you land, all guests have access to a free smartphone with unlimited calls to Australia.
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It’s surreal waking in a Superior Runway View Room: you can sip your morning coffee while watching planes jetting off at extremely close proximity. Don’t worry, though. If a sleep-in requirecd, there’s double-glazing and black-out blinds to block the sound and light, and the king-sized beds mean you can really stretch out and luxuriate.
Sheraton Milan Malpensa Airport Hotel & Conference Centre, Italy
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Though sizeable windows are a key feature of every soundproof room and suite at this hotel, upgrade to a Mountain View and the outlook of the snowy alps will tickle your travel lust just that little bit more. The restaurant, Il Canneto, is no slouch either, thanks to its “Paired” menu that matches local bites with reds, whites and bronze craft beers sourced from the surrounding region.
Homewood Suites by Hilton Los Angeles International Airport, USA
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Craving a home-cooked meal after hours in the air? Then employ the grocery shopping service at Homewood Suites and staff will stock your kitchen (featuring a full refrigerator and two-burner stove) with your favourite foods so you can whip up a proper meal as soon as you check in. There’s plenty of room to stretch out inside your suite thanks to separate living and sleeping spaces, as well as oodles to explore within the complex including pool, gym and Waypoint Kitchen restaurant where you can enjoy a hot breakfast every day.
Crowne Plaza, Changi Airport, Singapore
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This is an oasis of subtropical plants, cool, limpid pools and courtyards with lush gardens in the middle of the third most densely populated city in the world. Rooms have amenities aimed at the busy traveller: in-built USB charging ports, mobile phone with unlimited free calls and wireless printing. With business taken care of, relaxation options are at hand: Orla Kiely bathroom products, a Sleep Advantage kit for a restful night and reflexology treatments at the Essence Vale spa to help guests combat jetlag.
Intercontinental Johannesburg O.R. Tambo Airport, South Africa
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As South Africa’s only luxury airport hotel, the Intercontinental Johannesburg O.R. Tambo Airport takes its responsibilities very seriously. It’s perfect for those jetting into Jo’burg for a safari adventure – holidaymakers can spend a few days either end luxuriating in the hotel’s comforts. Rooms are decorated in rich fabrics and warm colours with a fabulous African vibe – think zebra-print ottomans and original artworks.
Fairmont Vancouver Airport, Canada
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Just two minutes at a relaxed stroll will take you from the baggage claim to Fairmont Vancouver Airport. Floor-to-ceiling windows in the rooms frame amazing views of planes taking off or the dramatic Northshore mountains that rise beyond the airport. Conveniently, there’s a 10am check-in for Deluxe and Signature rooms, which means no waiting around at the airport until 2pm if your plane arrives in the morning.
Regal Airport Hotel, Hong Kong
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The Regal is enormous, with 1171 rooms, a grand ballroom and “banquet facilities”. Make time for a treatment at the luxurious OM Spa or a spot of shopping in the hotel’s shopping arcade. Rooms range from Premier to Suite, but for our money, the Spa rooms have the best ambience, with wooden floorboards and gentle lighting. The idea is to have a relaxing spa treatment on the in-room massage table, then stay the night for maximum comfort.
Sofitel Heathrow, London
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Sofitel Heathrow is connected to Terminal 5, with its Chanel and Burberry boutiques, so remove your neck-pillow – we’re not in transit anymore, Toto. Moments from the airport, you can sip Champagne in the Perrier Jouet Bar, take high tea in the salon or try the 25 treatments on offer at the Heathrow Spa. Got some time to spend beforehand? Spend it in the aromatherapy room or take a dip in the vitality pool. Don’t forget you’ve got a flight to catch.
ANA Crowne Plaza Narita, Japan
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Deep slumber is a central focus at this sleek hotel, a 10-minute shuttle ride from the international airport at Narita. The specially appointed sound sleep consultant has crafted a bedtime experience that practically guarantees you’ll overcome jet lag. As well as a five-option-strong pillow menu, guests can choose from three sleepy scents (mandarin, lavender and cedar wind) and will be presented with bath salts, an eye warmer to ease tightness in tired peepers and a roasted brown rice tea prior to tuck-in. Sweet dreams indeed.
CitizenM Paris Charles de Gaulle
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This is no ordinary airport stopover hotel. In fact, it’s the kind of place you’d choose to stay, proximity to the airport be damned. The rooms are aeronautically themed in the coolest possible way, with XL king-sized beds, high-pressure rain showers, ambient lighting, air-conditioning, TV and blinds all controlled by iPad. Oh, and kids will approve of the giant orange swing hanging outside the entrance.
Hotel Pullman Sao Paulo Guarulhos Airport, Brazil
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With chesterfield headboards, dark-hued walls and enormous plush beds, the Hotel Pullman is thoroughly modern in design – and in its special features, too, including an in-room Nespresso machine and an iHome device that hooks your smartphone into the room’s sound system in some premium rooms. Located next door to the airport, the hotel transfers guests to several parts of the airport every 40 minutes between six am and midnight.
CitizenM Amsterdam Schiphol Airport Hotel, The Netherlands
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Just a few minutes’ walk – exactly six minutes if you moonwalk, according to the hotel website – from the arrivals hall, is a fresh and modern accommodation option for travellers popping by capital. Within the living rooms throughout the building are iMac computers that are free to use, and there’s free wi-fi. Check-in is sped up thanks to a self-service touch screen (don’t worry, there’s roving staff should you get stuck) and a canteen that never closes so there’s ample food when your body thinks it’s dinnertime at 3pm.
Crowne Plaza JFK Airport, USA
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The striking brightness of the fire-engine red lobby chairs, bed dressings and bathroom tiles will jolt you out of any travel-induced fugue – a good thing, too, given you’ll need to match the bustling pace of New York soon enough. The hotel’s features make it ideal for all sorts of travellers: Quiet Zones encourage precious shut-eye for weary explorers; the crisps-and-candy-stocked lobby market will soothe any junk food craving; and the fitness centre and separate yoga room will get gym bunnies back into their regular routines.
Hilton Frankfurt Airport, Germany
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There’s zero reason to miss a flight when you’re staying in this handily located hotel thanks to a skywalk that links the lobby with Terminal 1. Everything you may need to sort out the life-admin portion of your travels is on hand, including a barber shop, currency exchange, laundry service and 24-hour business centre.
Hilton Munich Airport
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The enormous, green-tinted atrium of the Hilton Munich can be found right between Terminal 1 and Terminal 2. The light and space create a feeling of calm and tranquillity, a balm to the sleep-deprived. The feeling of Zen intensifies with a trip to the Fit & Fly Spa, which is home to an incredible indoor heated pool resembling Roman bath.
Grand Hyatt Dallas Fort Worth Airport, Texas
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Access the Grand Hyatt DFW from Terminal D and enter a world of contemporary comfort. With a rooftop pool, fitness centre, 45 meeting rooms and several restaurants and bars, there’s little need to leave the hotel except to catch your next flight – unless, of course, you’re after a few rounds of golf, in which case the nearby courses (Cowboys Golf Club and Bear Creek Golf Club) will do nicely.
Mövenpick Hotel Bahrain, Bahrain
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You’ll struggle to extricate yourself from the aqua lagoon that hugs the edges of this hotel: the huge, deep pool is perfect for a post-flight plunge. Mövenpick’s pale yellow exterior stands out from the bright blue sky – in which you’ll regularly spot planes jetting away from the nearby international airport – and the grounds are fringed with palms. As well as offering six types of comfortably appointed rooms and three different restaurants, it’s the only accommodation in Bahrain to earn a green globe certification.
Hyatt Regency Pittsburgh International Airport, USA
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Exercise is the best way to reset your body clock after hours in the air and the heated lap pool at this hotel, engulfed in natural light thanks to wall-to-wall windows, will have you refreshed in no time. The 24-hour fitness centre will help you to invigorate your system, too, (and the dedicated fitness concierge will come to the rescue if you’ve forgotten gym gear or headphones), as will the farm-to-table menu in the bellfarm Kitchen downstairs.
Pullman Guangzhou Baiyun Airport, China
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Tired legs will appreciate the seconds it takes to traverse the ground between this hotel and the airport departure hall. Once inside the calming, neutral-hued rooms you can recline in silence thanks to double-glazed windows or stretch out on the yoga mat provided. Then perhaps indulge in a traditional Chinese massage in one of the 11 treatment rooms at the on-site spa or head to Tuan Yuan Creative Chinese Resta to sample some Cantonese bites.
Radisson Blu Hotel Zurich Airport, Switzerland
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Would you expect anything but perfect symmetry from the Swiss? The exterior of this 330-room hotel is a neatly stacked array of rectangular windows and within its walls, each room adheres to one of three styles. “Fresh” rooms are accented with bright reds and golds; “Home” rooms showcase muted tones; and “Chic” rooms are appointed with elegant furnishings, though all were styled by interior designer Matteo Thun. It’s the only hotel with direct access to the airport terminal, too.