Now is a great time to leave home. On top of all the usual reasons to travel, there's a world of exciting hotels opening this year. Some brings new luxury to destinations (like Madagascar) that had been seriously lacking in comforts. Others bring new ideas about luxury - simplicity, unexpectedness (like a neo-ryokan in the South Pacific) - to destinations that had already reached the pinnacle. And a number of classic hotels are finishing up major, multiyear renovations that will reinvent them and easily exceed the amenities at all those sassy upstarts.
Here's what's all over the map in 2017.
Villa Marie St-Barth
The mostly alpine hotels of Jocelyne Sibuet have a cult following in her native France, where she's known as the Gallic Martha Stewart. Now Sibuet is bringing her breed of casual elegance to her 13th hotel (her second on a beach and first outside continental France).
The St. Barth hotel, on a hillside above Colombier Beach and Flamands Bay, is more relaxed than many of the island's resorts and undeniably cheerful, with lots of pineapple patterns and playful parrot motif (and two live ones by the pool). The colonial-style villas and bungalows are decorated in a way that doesn't shy from bright color, exuberant patterms or contrasting textures. There is a two-room spa that uses Sibuet's signature products, an extensive rum bar and an excellent restaurant continuing the legacy of François Plantation, a 25-year institution in this location.