Published: February 2009World Class: Lodges + Escapes

Old World Action: Italy

Aman's regal lodge circuit takes visitors into the heart of mystical Bhutan; plus, dynamite Dolomite downhill and off-the-grid Mexico.

Text by Global Travel Editor Costas Christ
Photograph Courtesy of Hotel Rosa Alpina
Eat, ski, repeat.

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Last year’s perfect economic storm might have a silver lining: The global financial slowdown tipped the dollar up against the euro for the first time in years—and put Europe back on the map forAmerican travelers. The retreat du jour? Rosa Alpina, a family-owned hotel dating to 1850 in the heart of the Dolomites (doubles from $637; rosalpina.it). Each of its 51 rooms is unique in classic Old European style, furnished with 17th-century chests and paintings. But the main attraction is outdoors, where a single ski pass (about $60 a day) grants access to 746 miles of runs between jagged limestone peaks and village-sprinkled valleys. Ice climbing, snowshoeing, and trekking round out the daily activity menu—along with eating. This is Italy after all,and the hotel’s chef just landed his second Michelin star.

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