The Michelin Guide, one of the world's most recognised restaurant guidebooks, last week announced that it will give ratings to hotels and accommodation beginning next year.
(Photo courtesy of The Michelin Guide)
Carrying the same prestige as the Michelin star system for fine dining, the new distinction, “the Michelin key”, is the outcome of four years of work proposing a selection of more than 5,000 hotels in 120 countries across the globe.
The new award follows the guide’s main objectives to cater to travellers in search of a gourmet experience and/or a memorable hotel stay. It aims to celebrate establishments that offer exceptional accommodation experiences that are more than just a room for the night.
The criteria for hotels, over a broad range of prices and styles, include location, design, service and value.
The destination must be travel-worthy and contribute to local experience. The interior design and architecture must be excellent, and properties must have a unique character that reflects personality and authenticity. The quality of service, comfort and maintenance must also be high, and consistency between the level of experience and price paid is also expected.
As it does for restaurants, the French guidebook, established by the tyre company 123 years ago, intends to independently recommend hotels that constitute true destinations.
For the inaugural selection, anonymous inspectors are already in the field identifying exceptional properties. Keys may be awarded according to a single stay or multiple visits.
“The Michelin key is a clear, reliable indication for travellers. It is also an acknowledgement of the teamwork of committed enthusiastic hospitality professionals,” says Michelin Guide international director Gwendal Poullennec.
He also says the guide will appeal to travellers’ emotions by orienting them towards bold establishments that excel in every way, whether it be architectural approaches, professional know-how or the existence of a true, identifiable personality.
The additional entry of Michelin keys signifies the peak in the highly-anticipated hotel ranking system.
In September, the UK-born World’s 50 Best released its first annual selection of best hotels, expanding from the company’s two-decade-old territory of restaurants and bars.
As of now, the Michelin Guide website already features a booking platform with more than 5,000 boutique hotels around the world. The inaugural list of hotels to receive the Michelin key will be revealed in the first half of 2024.