From a 1935 near the ancient city gates of Valletta to a 2016-renovated hotel in the heart of St. Julian’s crazy nightlife area, these luxury hotels in Malta are fit for a queen (seriously, Queen Elizabeth II was a guest of the Art Deco icon at the top of this list).
The 136-room Hotel Phoenicia is a luxurious historic hotel at the entrance of Valletta's ancient city gates. Rooms are spacious, clean, and classic, with traditional white tile bathrooms. The 1920s-style Art Deco property is surrounded by large terraced gardens that create an island of serenity at the doorstep of the Maltese capital. It's ideal for both business travelers and tourists, with excellent restaurants and bars, a stunning pool, and sensational harbor views.
Despite its massive size, the bright, contemporary Radisson Blu Resort & Spa manages to feel warm and open, not cavernous, with a vibe that's elegant and upscale without being stuffy. It overlooks one of Malta’s best sandy beaches, and it offers a full slate of water sports, four restaurants, a private beach, and a winding lagoon-style pool with palm trees, a footbridge, a swim up bar, and sea views. The enormous spa offers body wraps, massages, aromatherapy, Ayurvedic treatments, and a Turkish bath. The 337 guest rooms are clean and contemporary and feature satellite TVs with premium channels, blackout drapes, minibars, and furnished balconies, many of which have stunning sea views.
The 149-room Palace is a stylish luxury hotel in the center of Sliema, with a stunning infinity pool on the roof, the highest point in the city. But the Palace offers more than beautiful views, with a variety of fun restaurants and a singular design aesthetic that makes the common spaces feel hip and luxurious. Rooms range from economical to extravagant, and there are six individually themed Designer Suites. All rooms are clean, spacious, and elegant, with modern bathrooms. However, some have lackluster views, and the hotel is not directly on the beach, which may be a deal-breaker for some guests.
The 433-room luxury Excelsior Grand Hotel is a huge, family-friendly, seafront resort located just outside Valletta’s historic city walls. Guest rooms come in a variety of scales and sizes, but all are clean and spacious, with modern bathrooms, but little local color or character. The Excelsior is the only area hotel with a private beach and there are organized water sports available in the summer months. There's also a large, seasonal outdoor pool with picturesque harbor views and a spa with a big indoor pool.
The Intercontinental Malta is a large luxury hotel located near a nice beach and the bustling nightlife area of Paceville. Most rooms were renovated in 2015 and 2016, and have stylish contemporary decor in a blue and neutral palette, and modern amenities such as free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs, and minibars. A few, however, are yet to be refurbished and feel dated and somewhat underwhelming for a hotel in this price range. The property has a number of upscale amenities, including one of the largest and best hotel gyms in Malta, an outstanding spa with a Turkish hammam, and a large outdoor pool. A small private area on the beach located down the street offers loungers, parasols and an excellent restaurant.
The 340-room Westin Dragonara is a luxury family-friendly resort known for its wealth of great on-site amenities, including three pools, excellent and varied dining options, large fitness center, and one of Malta’s most famous casinos. Rooms are large and sunny, and most have wonderful sea views. But the classic decor and tan color palette make rooms feel a little dated and bland, and Wi-Fi is only available for a fee. The location on a quiet peninsula a short walk from St. Julian’s restaurants, shops, and nightlife is a big plus, and free on-site parking comes in handy. The Westin is one of the most luxurious resorts in Malta, but it lacks a full spa, and the pesky extra fees can add up.
The 252-room Radisson Blu Resort, Malta St Julian’s is a luxury hotel with three excellent restaurants, a large pool with striking panoramic sea views and a swim-up bar, and a full spa complete with an indoor pool and a hair salon. Rooms are spacious, clean, and elegant, with handsome wooden furniture, parquet floors or dark gray carpet, and balconies, most with sea views. Standard rooms, however, have a red color palette that looks somewhat dated, especially the striped curtains. Although located in a quiet and somewhat secluded area, the hotel is just a 10-minute walk from lively St. Julian’s.
The 249-room Corinthia Hotel St. Georges Bay is a large, luxurious waterside resort, with seafront sunbathing (but no beach) and a full program of water sports, including a certified dive center for all levels of scuba enthusiasts. The resort is family-friendly, but there are no programmed activities for kids -- or dedicated partiers. Rather, the atmosphere is quiet and elegant, with plenty of space for lounging, including at the four swimming pools. The poolside service, which includes free fruit and sunglasses cleaning, is a highlight. Rooms are spacious and modern -- with large windows and balconies -- but the decor is a touch generic and small bathrooms could use an update.