Forbes Travel Guide announces 2023 Star Award Winners

Forbes Travel Guide, the independent global rating system for luxury hotels, spas and restaurants worldwide, has announced its latest Star Award winners. This year, the list includes the first-ever ocean cruise ratings.  

The 65th annual list includes 360 five-star, 585 four-star and 433 recommended hotels; 79 five-star, 113 four-star and 67 recommended restaurants; and 119 five-star and 195 four-star spas globally. It features 48 new five-star hotels, 64 new four-star hotels and 45 new recommended properties. Many new countries — Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Cyprus and Tunisia — debuted in the awards winner list.  

Nine destinations — Athens (Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel Athens), Capri (J.K. Place Capri), Kuwait (Four Seasons Hotel Kuwait at Burj Alshaya), Shenzhen (Mandarin Oriental, Shenzhen) and Lake Como (Mandarin Oriental, Lago di Como) — welcomed their first five-star hotels.  

The Forbes Travel Guide released ocean cruise ratings with five ships for the first time. Celebrity Apex, Celebrity Flora and Celebrity Millennium won four-star awards, while Celebrity Edge and Celebrity Summit earned recommended honors. A second list of cruise line ratings will be announced later in the year.  

After four years of London maintaining its top spot as the destination with the most significant number of five-star hotels, Macau emerged as the new winner this year, with 22 luxury properties. After staying closed for the past three years, the erstwhile gambling capital added more new luxury properties this year than any other destination (Galaxy Hotel, Grand Lisboa Palace Macau, The Karl Lagerfeld, Londoner Court, The Londoner Hotel). 

The Maldives welcomed four new five-star hotels — Joali Being; Patina Maldives, Fari Islands; The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands; and Soneva Jani.  

Following a two-year renovation, the iconic Raffles Hotel Singapore reclaimed its star ratings list with a five-star award.  

Nordic countries registered their first appearance on the list with four-star Hotel d’Angleterre Copenhagen and recommended winners Amerikalinjen (Oslo), Ett Hem (Stockholm) and Grand Hôtel Stockholm.  

Six destinations saw their first-ever five-star spa awards — Ireland (The Spa at Ashford Castle), Barbados (The Spa at Sandy Lane), Kuwait (Spa and Wellness Centre at Four Seasons Hotel Kuwait Burj Alshaya), Madrid (The Spa at Four Seasons Hotel Madrid), Mauritius (One&Only Le Saint Géran’s Wellness Spa) and Vancouver (Willow Stream Spa at Fairmont Pacific Rim). 


Four Seasons Resort and Suites Napa Valley and Chateau Healdsburg in Sonoma, both in California, received five-star ratings. The Chatham Bars Inn on Cape Cod and The Rittenhouse in Philadelphia took first place on the East Coast. While The Boca Raton’s Beach Club and Spa Palmera took first place in Florida, the Trump International Hotel & Tower Chicago took first place in the Midwest. While The Boca Raton’s Beach Club and Spa Palmera took first place in Florida

The St. Regis Toronto won five stars in Canada, with Grand Velas Los Cabos and Zadun winning five stars in Mexico.  

Three new five-star properties were added in the Caribbean — Four Seasons Resort and Residences Anguilla, Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa and Rosewood Little Dix Bay. 


Forbes Travel Guides undercover expert auditors check into hotels and cruise ships as normal guests, eat at restaurants and use spa services. These examiners evaluate up to 900 standards, ranging from contemporary amenities to traditional elements such as décor and staff attention. 

Approximately 70% of a property’s rating is determined by its service, while the remaining 30% is determined by the standard and state of amenities and facilities.