Costing a cool $4bn, this 1700-room Cotai monster unsurprisingly drips luxury – think Jeff Koons artworks and Qing Dynasty vases, and a gigantic lake peppered with fountains – but does surprise with its surprisingly modest room rates. Even standard rooms are sleek and spacious, with touches like a choice of eight pillow types and floor-to-ceiling windows. Twelve restaurants offer overwhelming dining choices, including Hanami Ramen, headed by Michelin-starred chef Yuki Onishi. There’s a spa and gym, casino, upmarket shops and even a cable car, and it’s conveniently close to the airport and ferry terminal.
While China’s Special Administrative Region of Macau is known for being ‘the Vegas of China’ for its high octane gambling, there’s much more to this former Portuguese colony than slots and gaming tables. Its old city centre blends funky boutiques with colonial ruins, while its interconnected islands of Taipa, Coloane and Cotai have different personalities: the first offers old Catholic churches and traditional Macanese architecture, the second boasts attractive beaches and old colonial villages, while Cotai is awash with mega-casinos.
Gourmet dining, epic nightlife and a shopper’s paradise also beckon, and its past is very apparent, with Portuguese cuisine readily available and streets paved with traditional Portuguese tiles next to ancient Chinese temples.
Macau is also home to some of the world’s most modern and stunning hotels, many with 100s of rooms and state-of-the-art facilities, as well as a smattering of small, down-to-earth lodgings. Of course, it has a Wynn Palace, but it also has a bijou option staffed by trainee hoteliers, hiker-friendly spots, a golf resort and a riverfront idyll. Here’s our pick of the best.