Officially, there is no such thing as a 7-star rating. The term 7-star was created by a journalist who attended the opening of the Burj Al Arab in Dubai and felt the standard five stars didn’t do its decadence justice.
Even a 5-star rating can vary country to country as there is no global standard for star ratings. But what we can gather from hotels who market themselves as having seven (and very few claim to have six) is that they are a really, really luxury property with the glitziest and flashiest extras you can imagine.
1. Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi, UAE
Standing on its own private beach, Emirates Palace exudes luxury around every corner, as its decor features gold-crusted pieces and Swarovski crystal chandeliers. If you’re in the market to buy some gold, you should probably hit up the gold vending machine here. The Emirates Palace Hotel wins the award for being one of the world’s most expensive hotels but it’s worth the 1.3 km pristine beach, landscaped pools and a private marina overlooking the bay.
Rooms range from relatively affordable at $350 USD per night and the most expensive being $11,000 USD per night.
2. Burj Al Arab, Dubai
It’s one of the tallest hotels in the world and the reason why the term “7-star hotel” started. The impressiveness of this hotel starts just from its exterior, as it stands on a man-made island. It contains 202 suites, the most expensive of which is the royal two-bedroom suite, which costs nearly $27,000 per night and comes with an uber sleep technology bed, elevator, cinema room, library, butler service, Rolls Royce chauffeurs, and views of the Persian Gulf.
3. Hotel President Wilson, Switzerland
Hotel President Wilson home to the largest and most expensive suite in the world. Known as The Royal Penthouse Suite, this suite takes up the top floor of the Hotel President Wilson. At approximately $80,000 per night, guests staying in this impressive suite can look forward to grand amenities like a grand piano, bulletproof windows, a billiard table, the world’s largest TV, ancient books and artwork, and of course an impeccable view of Lake Geneva. This suite has 12 bedrooms and a massive dining room, perfect for hosting a truly iconic party.
4. Laucala Island Resort, Fiji
Owned by Red Bull co-founder, Dietrich Mateschitz, Laucala Private Island is the largest private island in the Southern Hemisphere. Laucala Island Resort, on Laucala Island, is one of the most luxurious resorts in the South Pacific, where you can take your private jet and enjoy a luxury beach vacation. Activities at the resort vary from kayaking to golfing to even submarine rides.
The island is home to 25 private villas, the most expensive being the island owner’s Delana Hilltop Estate that costs $55,000 per night. The cheapest one-bedroom villa is still a whopping $4,000 USD per night.
5. Town House Galleria, Milan
The Town House Galleria in Milan is the only official 7-star hotel on this list. That’s because the owner hired a company to create a European ranking so they could officially take the title. Located inside the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II mall (dating back to 1877), the hotel is ‘seventh heaven’ for shopaholics. The property’s private lift drops you directly in the mall which is Italy’s oldest and grandest shopping arcade.
With only 20 luxury suites available, they tailor everything including the bed, meals and ambient music to each guest’s individual preference. Room rates start at $1000 USD per night.
6. Taj Falaknuma Palace, India
Labelled as the only 7-star hotel in India, the palace was built in 1884 by the world’s richest man at the time. You will truly live like royalty when you stay here, arriving in a horse-drawn carriage and enjoying a personal butler. The communal spaces are nothing less than luxurious, with marble staircases and 24-karat gold wall moldings. As much as it is a hotel it is also a relic and museum of the past. Guests can experience precious heirlooms like Nizam’s special chair, the former monarch of Hyderabad and the former resident of this palace.
A Historical Suite with city view starts from $530 USD per night.
7. Signiel Seoul, South Korea
Signiel Seoul Hotel, located in the Lotte World Tower, is one of the highest buildings in the world and the most expensive hotel in the country. Although not as expensive as some of the other hotels on this list, a nightly fee in one of its most expensive rooms will still set you back $340 per night. During a stay here, guests will have access to the largest champagne bar in Asia as well as breathtaking views of Seoul’s cityscape.