5 of the world’s best floatels

Have you seen these five stunning floatels yet? They’re sure to float your… well, you know. 

Fancy being lulled to sleep by gentle waves but not keen on cruise-ship crowds? A floating hotel, also known as a ‘floatel’, might be more your speed. From private floating villas to full-service waterborne hotels, here are five of the world’s best.


1. OFF Seine, Paris  

Inflatable gold swans, cocktail brunches, designer suites furnished entirely in sunset orange – nobody could ever accuse OFF Seine of being boring. Paris’s first floating hotel is moored on the Left Bank near Gare d’Austerlitz, where it’s a firm favourite with Instagrammers, style-seekers and anyone wanting a taste of the Riviera in the heart of the City of Lights.


2. Good Hotel, London 

If filmmaker Wes Anderson were to design a hotel using only black shipping containers, Good Hotel could easily be the result. Transported from Amsterdam to London’s Royal Victoria Dock in 2016, the 148-room hotel is minimalist yet cosy, with a laid-back lounge and rooftop terrace looking over the Thames. Best of all: all profits go towards community-minded ventures such as training unemployed locals for jobs in the hospitality industry.  


3. Lilypad Palm Beach, Sydney 

Although it floats just metres off the shore of Sydney’s Palm Beach, this luxury private villa, Lilypad Palm Beach feels blissfully removed from the madding crowd. Perfect for an overnight recharge, the villa boasts picturesque views, a modern, eco-conscious design and plenty of high-end touches to help you unwind – like a 40-bottle wine cellar at your disposal.


4. Guntû, Onomichi

Billed as a cross between a traditional ryokan inn and a luxury yacht, the 19-room “floatel” Guntu carries passengers along the gentle shores of Japan’s Seto Inland Sea. With its calming timber interiors and handcrafted furniture, every detail aboard the Guntû reflects the understated elegance of Japanese design.


5. The Manta Resort, Tanzania 

At The Manta Resort, off the coast of Pemba Island, Tanzania, you can quite literally sleep with the fish. Floating 250m offshore in a marine conservation area, its three-storey underwater suite features a sea-level living area, upper sun deck and a submerged master bedroom that doubles as your own private aquarium.


Words by Alice Gallety; images supplied. Published 30 August 


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