On the heels of Forbes Travel Guide’s recent 2020 Star Awards, which honor the best in luxury hospitality, the company unveiled the hotel, restaurant and spa of the year. This marks the first time in its 62-year history that FTG gave out such accolades.
CEO Filip Boyen surprised the more than 600 top hoteliers who gathered at Verified, The Forbes Travel Guide Luxury Summit in ARIA Resort & Casino during the February 19 gala by announcing the debut distinctions. “Every year we continue to see the bar raised higher, and hotels pushing themselves to deliver completely memorable guest experiences,” he said. “Our hotel, restaurant and spa of the year awards are based on our well-known commitment to integrity, and are being awarded to the highest official scoring properties.”
Hotel of the Year
Hotel of the year went to Twin Farms, a cozy 20-room hideaway in Barnard, Vermont. The boutique property scored a record-breaking 98.24 percent, a result of anonymous inspectors testing rigorous, objective standards that emphasize exceptional service during a two-night stay.
“We were absolutely delighted and equally humbled by the news that we had been awarded the inaugural Hotel of the Year Award,” said John Graham, managing director of Twin Farms. “It is an honor that we have been recognized by Forbes, which is truly transparent and is recognized by our guests and our industry for relevance and its pursuit of excellence expressed through its 900-plus criteria evaluations.”
“It means that the dedication, commitment, the true giving nature and relentless dedication of our team, our owners and our partners have been recognized. We serve with the ultimate goal to affect how people [feel], and this feels amazing!” he said.
Among the 1,898 Star-Rated properties spanning 73 countries, Twin Farms manages to stand out by providing a one-of-a-kind experience. “In part it’s a beautiful Vermont setting,” Graham said, “in part wonderful design and art, in part great culinary and wine, in part memorable activities, but in whole our team truly dedicated to serving, really serving.”
About an hour and a half from Burlington, Twin Farms has earned a Five-Star rating for 25 consecutive years. The secluded property began as a romantic gesture. When author Sinclair Lewis (the first American to win the Nobel Prize for literature) proposed to journalist Dorothy Thompson, she said yes, but only if he would buy her a Vermont farm. They purchased what would become Twin Farms in 1928.
Today, the all-inclusive hotel still emanates passion. With 20 accommodations scattered among 300 acres, the adults-only property feels like your own sprawling escape. Every individually decorated room comes with a fireplace and views of the bucolic surroundings from the bathroom. And, of course, service goes beyond the ordinary: the refrigerator comes stocked with beverages and snacks, a staff member unpacks and packs for you, and there’s same-day laundry service, all of which is complimentary. Twin Farms also gifts you with a handcrafted wooden Stave jigsaw puzzle, a unique local touch (Stave is based in nearby Norwich) and a guest favorite.