September 14, 2017
The nation of Taiwan is somewhat unique when it comes to South China Sea destinations, a combination of the history and culture of the Middle Kingdom but with distinct cultural charm and elements of the tropics. And, whether one is biking around the island or there for business, almost all will make landfall in Taipei.
The true luxury options in Taipei can seem few and far between compared to cities of a similar standard, but don’t be fooled: Taipei has diverse luxury options. With styles for the club kid and the nature lover, Taipei’s has luxury accommodations for every taste.
Party at W Taipei
Located in the center of Taipei’s whirlwind Xinyi district, W Taipei is a top-notch, ultra-modern hotel for guests who prefer to have the party brought to them.
The pool bar, or Wet Bar, often involves a DJ, a party, and a surprisingly varied champagne list. In the hotter months W Taipei hosts their famous “HEAT WAVE” pool party, an exclusive celebration at their Wet Bar – with a “Lust for Fun” package that includes a late checkout for the hangover.
The hotel features 405 rooms, each featuring views of the city skyline and artfully decorated interiors. That said, the rooms vary: from the modest “Wonderful Room” all the way up to the 365-square-meter “Extreme WOW Suite” with a 270 degree view of the city, including Taipei 101, and a butler service.
Surrounded by nightlife and entertainment of every sort, W Taipei’s offerings come in close proximity to fine dining eateries such as Mosun and Jiyue Tiebanshao’s teppanyaki. Dining in the hotel, too, is quite extensive, including the Yen Bar on the 31st floor and the homier Kitchen Table for more diverse epicurean delights.
Serenity at Villa 32
On the other end of the spectrum is Villa 32. Tucked away north of the city, Villa 32 is just off the Beitou Station, and while you won’t find much fine dining and partying nearby, you will find hot springs, temples, and pleasant hikes into the Yangmingshan Nation Park – all just a stone’s throw away from one of East Asia’s most dynamic cities.
The Villa 32 aesthetic skews Japanese – unsurprising considering the prevalence of hot springs. There are public and private hot springs as well as the Matsu and Sakura rooms which have in-room onsens.
The lush greenery, flowers in bloom, and fresh air are hardly what one thinks of when one imagines Taipei, but, untouched by Taipei’s urban reach, Villa 32 offers guests an idyllic escape from the city’s chaotic clutter. Each suite offers tasteful design and artful attention to detail.
Via The Restaurant and The Concept, Villa 32 is the only name in fine dining in the immediate area, headed by Chef Jimmy and focusing on Italian cuisine. In addition to the sophisticated dining on site, Villa 32 has an abundant selection of wines and spa options.
Elegance at Mandarin Oriental
In any country, in any city, there are few that can compete with the Mandarin Oriental for luxury. With the best Taipei has to offer by way of entertainment, shopping, and night markets right at its doorstep, Mandarin Oriental Taipei is the ideal choice for guests in search of a piece of both worlds: the thrilling bustle of city culture and a luxurious, relaxing retreat.
Located near the Songshan International airport but certainly a cut above the usual airport hotel fodder, the Mandarin Oriental Taipei boasts contemporary style interwoven with that traditional Mandarin Oriental class. The suites, of course, are up to the Mandarin Oriental standard, and the location is just a short journey to the main shopping and dining areas.
When it comes to food, Mandarin Oriental guests are spoiled for choice: Italian at Bencotto, Chinese at Ya Ge, cocktails at M.O. Bar, afternoon tea at The Jade Lounge, and pastries at the Mandarin Cake Shop.
The Mandarin Oriental’s spa happens to be one of the largest in all of Taipei, covering two floors, with dozens of different heat and water treatments on offer, along with a gym, swimming pool, and yoga center.