As a travel writer, I’ve stayed in hundreds of resorts and hotels over the years, and these are my favorite rooms with a view in the United States. As these properties benefit from remarkable locations, it’s difficult to choose a bad room, but I’ve included some specific recommendations when appropriate. After all, when a vacation is over, which do you remember more: the room or the view?
Halekulani is a remarkably peaceful resort for being located squarely in five acres of prime Waikiki beachfront. The Diamond Head Suites, on floors nine and higher, offer commanding views of the volcanic crater. Room service on the balcony is highly recommended.
The Lodge at Sea Island Golf Club is situated on the southern tip of St. Simons Island, one of Georgia’s many coastal islands. The Lodge is reminiscent of an English country manor and sits at the end of a magnificent natural avenue of oak trees. All of the guest rooms here overlook a bracing combination of emerald fairways, swaying cedar trees and St. Simons Sound.
Originally a weekend escape of the Rockefeller family, The Point is an Adirondack wilderness lodge in the “Great Camp” tradition on a 10-acre peninsula on a pristine lake in upstate New York. Morningside, a pine-paneled end-room in the south wing, is a particularly good spot for early risers. At dawn, Saranac Lake is as still as a mirror.
A two-and-a-half-hour drive from New York or Boston, Wheatleigh is a classic “Berkshire Cottage,” one of the many grand country estates built by the titans of the Gilded Age. Set on 22 acres overlooking a lake and the beautiful rolling Berkshire hills, the pastoral views here are framed by stately portico columns. A circular staircase in the whimsical Aviary suite leads to a light-filled bedroom that seems to hover in the trees.
The Wauwinet is a classic gabled New England manse next to a nature preserve on the northeastern tip of Nantucket Island. The windows of the Bayview Bedrooms here offer a simple and classic composition of meadow, sea and sky. The far side of the bay is visible on the horizon, and the occasional sailboat at dusk adds a nice painterly touch.
One of New York’s classic art deco hotels, The Carlyle sits on the Upper East Side at Madison and 76th Street. Most of the west-facing Central Park Tower Suites here have intimate balconies hidden amid the architectural flourishes seen from the street. All have breathtaking views of Central Park, directly overlooking Conservatory Water.
Amangani sits on the crest of East Gros Ventre Butte, an isolated mountain overlooking the town of Jackson, Wyoming. Every suite in the three-story contemporary resort affords heroic views of the snowcapped peaks of Grand Teton National Park jutting up from the alpine meadows of a broad valley. At almost 7,500 feet above sea level, the view is dizzying for more than one reason.
Post Ranch Inn is a loose collection of contemporary dwellings set on a ridgeline 1,200 feet above the Pacific Ocean in Big Sur, Calif. While several of the accommodations here (including a handful of clever tree houses) face the mountains to the east, most feature stunning floor-to-ceiling views of pure Pacific Ocean. The Cliff House has a deck suspended almost directly over the crashing surf far below.
From its privileged hillside, this iconic Wine Country retreat has unforgettable views of Napa’s vineyards and the forest-clad slopes beyond. Morning fog sometimes rolls in, adding to the romance of the vista. And taking in the view at sunset from the terrace of a Deluxe Maison Suite, glass of wine in hand, is one of the great pleasures of Napa.
Enchantment Resort in Sedona (roughly 100 miles north of Phoenix) sits in the heart of Arizona’s “Red Rock Country.” The adobe casita-style accommodations are sprinkled along the base of a box canyon ringed with towering rock formations. At sunset, the crimson canyon walls almost seem lit from within.
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