Singita Boulders Lodge, Sabi Sand, Kruger, South Africa. Agency HKLM. Art Director: Paul Henriques. Stylist: Georgina Pennington. Photographer: Mark Williams. 14/11/11.
Singita Boulders Lodge, Sabi Sand, Kruger, South Africa. Agency HKLM. Art Director: Paul Henriques. Stylist: Georgina Pennington. Photographer: Mark Williams. 14/11/11.

Imagine this: you have the golden opportunity to create the perfect luxury boutique hotel anywhere in the world, filled to the brim with all the facilities, amenities and services you’ve always dreamed of! This question was recently presented to me. The possibilities flooded my mind in an instant!

What would my perfect luxury boutique hotel be like?

Well, first of all, it would be on the coast, fronting a blindingly white beach and a crystal-clear, turquoise lagoon. It would consist of spacious villas surrounded by floral gardens and shady trees and some over-water villas in the lagoon. Each villa would be of sufficient distance from one another ensuring total privacy, and will come with a private deck with a (plunge) pool. The over-water villas will have a large deck with direct access to the lagoon. The bedroom will have unobstructed views of the gardens or the lagoon, separate living areas and a large bathroom with both indoor and outdoor facilities. The interior will exude a luxurious, cosy and contemporary feel, with a good balance between function and locally-inspired design.

I loved this view at the One & Only Le Saint Geran, Mauritius
One of my all-time favourite villas! At Maradiva, Mauritius.

I won’t need a butler but a single button (the ‘Velvet’ button! Hehe!) in the villa which provides access to all facilities and services: from housekeeping (I can have the villa cleaned at my convenience) to the concierge, reception and room service. Anything can be arranged via the button.

There will be an open mini-bar in each villa with a good collection of wines, spirits and juices (including the ingredients required to make the guests’ favourite cocktails). The bar will also have a variety of snacks (fresh/dried fruits, nuts, chips and biscuits) and a top-notch coffee-maker!

The hotel will have an infinity pool with a view of the lagoon, a spa and gym surrounded by lush gardens and pools, and two restaurants: one with a view of the main pool and another fine-dining option facing the lagoon.

The Residence, Mauritius
How about a pool like this? The Residence, Mauritius

Service will be unobtrusive and of the highest quality. Guests can expect to be called by their names in a warm, friendly manner. It’s always the little touches that matter most and the staff will excel in providing personalised service with a big smile. Guests will never be disturbed in their villas by housekeeping or any other staff. The guests’ initials will be embroidered on the pillow cases, bath-robes and slippers. At the pool, the staff will offer to apply sun lotion, bring chilled mineral water, snacks and the guests’ favourite cocktails.

Ok, I can go on forever but I think you get the gist of it. 😉

What would your perfect luxury boutique hotel be like? Now, you have the opportunity to help create the perfect luxury boutique hotel! Welcome to Amberlair!


What is Amberlair?

The world’s first crowdsourced and crowdfunded boutique hotel.

Where is Amberlair?

You may have the answer.

Amberlair is a unique concept: a boutique hotel created with the help of the energy-filled resource that is the global travel community. Hamburg-based couple Kristin Lindenberg and Marcus Orbé have had successful careers in, respectively, the travel and events sector and the airline industry. Tired of being put up in cookie-cutter, could-be-anywhere clone hotels, they set off on a tour of more than 40 countries on six continents, researching boutique hotels, getting the inside track on what works and what doesn’t. They also met fellow guests with a passion for quality and authenticity, inspiring them to use the online input of crowdsourcing and crowdfunding to develop the first in a group of extraordinary places to stay around the world. Amberlair will be a destination that seamlessly combines a modern aesthetic with a sense of place and offers a 21st-century reinterpretation of Gemütlichkeit, the German concept of relaxation and hospitality.

Here’s how you can contribute:


Step 1: Crowdsourcing The Location

The location of the first Amberlair boutique hotel will be decided by the online travel community. If you know the perfect place for Amberlair to put down its roots, go to and submit your suggestion. We are seeking a location with character and allure. Have you spotted a building with history for sale – an abandoned theatre, perhaps, or a collection of old cottages – or, alternatively, a suitable piece of land available for development? The more details you can provide – plans, photos, owner’s contact details etc – the better. We welcome suggestions from property professionals but you certainly don’t need to have a direct connection to the location – other than thinking it would be great for Amberlair! And there is a great prize to be won for the person who submits the location finally chosen…

Step 2: The Competition

When we have received all your suggestions, we will choose a shortlist of the most suitable locations and, once again, we will turn to the online community – those who have registered with Amberlair – and put the location to a vote. Whichever location receives the most votes will be the site for the first Amberlair boutique hotel – as simple as that. And the community member who proposed it will win a fantastic prize: a week’s stay for two at Amberlair*, plus a VIP invitation to the opening party.

Step 3: The Future

Once the first Amberlair location is decided, we will open up the crowdfunding campaign. Rather than accept the compromises involved with mainstream investment, we will invite the online travel community – the sort of people we have met on our travels who share our love of personalised, eclectic places to stay – to invest in Amberlair. Benefits for crowdfunding contributors will include free stays at Amberlair and benefits while staying at the boutique hotel.

Further down the line, we will also be crowdsourcing the details of our boutique hotel – we’ll be seeking designers with original ideas, local suppliers of artisan produce etc. The spirit of cooperation will infuse every part of the Amberlair boutique hotel.

Stay In Touch With Amberlair






Note: this post was brought to you in partnership with Amberlair.


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