Condé Nast Traveler announced the winners of its 26th annual Readers’ Choice Awards yesterday.
As they do every year, this year’s results introduce new categories, new hotels and re-ordered lists of the world’s best destinations.
The magazine said this year’s list was the most comprehensive ever, with 1.3 million votes cast for a whopping 16,000 properties around the world.
World’s best cities
The “Top 25 Cities in the World” list had refreshingly surprising additions and rankings — Paris came in at a lowly 22 while Bruges and Cape Town tied for 11th place.
Budapest and Florence tied for second, while the very top spot was seized by the colonial city of San Miguel de Allende in central Mexico, which took the crown from last year’s favorite of Charleston, South Carolina (which was tied for fifth this year).
Italy snapped up five of the top 25 cities, while Spain managed to take three.
Despite its slide in the global rankings, Charleston was still voted the top city in the United States for the third year in a row, for its “sand, sun, history, good food and friendly people.”
In the “Top 100 Hotels and Resorts in the World” category, La Residence in South Africa and Lodge at Kauri Cliffs in Matauri Bay, New Zealand tied for first place, while Virgin America was named the No. 1 airline in the United States. Singapore Airlines came in first for international airlines.
Here’s a small selection of the rankings.
Top cities in the world
1. San Miguel de Allende, Mexico
2.= Budapest, Hungary
2.= Florence, Italy
4. Salzburg, Austria
5.= Charleston, South Carolina, United States
5.= San Sebastián, Spain
7. Vienna, Austria
9. Siena, Italy
10. Québec City
11.= Cape Town, South Africa
11.= Bruges, Belgium
13. Vancouver, Canada
14. Kyoto, Japan
15.= Prague, Czech Republic
15.= Kraków, Poland
17.= Victoria, Canada
17.= Santa Fe, New Mexico, United States
20.= Seville, Spain
20.= Beirut, Lebanon
22.= Melbourne, Australia
24.= Venice, Italy
24.= Barcelona, Spain
Top cities in the United States
1. Charleston, South Carolina
2. Sante Fe, New Mexico
3. San Francisco
Top hotels and resorts in the world
1.= Lodge at Kauri Cliffs in Maturi Bay, New Zealand
1.= La Residence, Franschhoek, South Africa
3.= Singita Sabi Sand, South Africa
3.= Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve, South Africa
5. Grand Hotel Timeo, Sicily
Top U.S. airlines
1. Virgin America
2. Jetblue Airways
3. Hawaiian Airlines
4. Southwest Air Lines
5. Alaska Airlines
Top international airlines
1. Singapore Airlines
3. Virgin Atlantic
4. Etihad Airways
5. Air New Zealand