AAA Extends Five Diamond Honor to 6 Additional Hotels and 8 Restaurants for 2014


AAA’s new 2014 Diamond Ratings are now out.  This year, AAA added 14 additional hotels and 14 restaurants to their top rating.  However, AAA also downgraded 7 hotels from a Five-Diamond Rating to a Four-Diamond Rating.  There are currently 124 Five-Diamond Hotels in North America (only about .4 percent of all hotels).

Here are the new Five-Diamond Hotels:

  • Château du Sureau, Oakhurst, Calif.
  • Wynn Tower Suites, Las Vegas, Nev.
  • Montage Deer Valley, Park City, Utah
  • Four Seasons Hotel, Toronto, Canada
  • Banyan Tree Cabo Marques, Acapulco, Mexico
  • Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Mexico

Here are the new Five-Diamond Restaurants:

  • The Restaurant at Meadowood, St. Helena, Calif.
  • Acadia, Chicago, Ill.
  • Grace Restaurant, Chicago, Ill.
  • Sixteen, Chicago, Ill.
  • Per Se, New York, N.Y.
  • Restaurant La Tanière, Québec, Canada
  • Restaurant Le Patriarche, Québec, Canada
  • Cocina de Autor, Playa del Carmen, Mexico

Congratulations to the new award winners!  About a year or so, we wrote an article detailing how much harder it would be in 2013 to pass the Five-Diamond certification.  Basically, you have to score a 78 percent now, compared to a 69 percent in the past.  From the AAA press release:

AAA inspectors collectively visit some 1,200 hotels and restaurants each week, allowing them to identify emerging trends in the industry. “At the ultra-luxury hotel level we’ve noted a move toward minimalism in design but not overall experience,” said Michael Petrone, director, AAA Tourism Information Development, “and an emphasis on privacy and intimacy with options like in-room fitness, private butler service and spa-like bathrooms. Guests enjoy highly personalized, learning-oriented experiences worthy of immediate sharing through digital channels.”

Inspectors have also observed a continuing evolution in the nature of fine dining. “Reservations are increasingly hard to get as formality is reduced in favor of greater creativity and attention to food sourcing,” said Petrone. “Innovative chefs handcraft artisanal menus featuring local, fresh and healthy ingredients. Increasingly educated guests focus more on the quality and origin of cuisine rather than complex presentations. A knowledgeable staff that can facilitate a memorable dining experience is paramount.”

“Attaining the Five Diamond rating is not an easy undertaking,” said Petrone. “Establishments at this level must consistently provide an unparalleled guest environment and experience.” Candidates for the rating undergo multiple unannounced evaluations and a final decision by a panel of experts. Inspectors meticulously evaluate guest services and physical attributes, closely examining the level of competence, refinement and hospitality, from reservations to checkout for hotels and from seating to presentation for restaurants.

Also, noteworthy for 2014:

Chicago gained three Five Diamond restaurants: Acadia, Grace Restaurant and Sixteen, bringing its total to seven, on par with New York City.

California and New York each gained one Five Diamond restaurant, bringing their totals to eight and keeping them tied for states with the greatest number.

California and Quintana Roo, Mexico, were the only states to gain both a TrueGuest hotel and a Five Diamond restaurant.

Canada and Mexico both gained three Five Diamond establishments per country.

One hotel, The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, Colo., has maintained the Five Diamond Rating for 38 consecutive years – since 1976 when AAA first introduced the Diamond Ratings for accommodations.

The restaurant with the longest consecutive Five Diamond tenure, 26 years, since 1988, is The Inn at Little Washington Dining Room in Washington, Va.


In case you were wondering, here is the full list of 2014 Five-Diamond Award Winners:


Scottsdale, Fairmont Scottsdale Princess

Scottsdale, Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale at Troon North

Scottsdale, The Canyon Suites at The Phoenician

Scottsdale, The Phoenician


Beverly Hills, L’Ermitage Beverly Hills

Beverly Hills, Montage Beverly Hills

Beverly Hills, The Beverly Hills Hotel and Bungalows

Beverly Hills, The Peninsula Beverly Hills

Carlsbad, Park Hyatt Aviara Resort, Golf Club & Spa

Dana Point, St. Regis Resort, Monarch Beach

Dana Point, The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel

La Jolla, The Lodge at Torrey Pines

Laguna Beach, Montage Laguna Beach

Marina Del Rey, The Ritz-Carlton, Marina del Rey

Montecito, Four Seasons Biltmore Santa Barbara

Newport Beach, Island Hotel Newport Beach

Newport Beach, The Resort at Pelican Hill

Oakhurt, Château du Sureau

Ojai, Ojai Valley Inn & Spa

San Diego, The Grand Del Mar

San Francisco, The Ritz-Carlton, San Francisco

Truckee, The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe

Westlake Village, Four Seasons Hotel Westlake Village


Aspen, The Little Nell

Colorado Springs, The Broadmoor

Denver, The Ritz-Carlton, Denver


Morris, Winvian

Washington, The Mayflower Grace

District of Columbia

Four Seasons Hotel Washington, D.C.

The Ritz-Carlton Georgetown, Washington DC

The Ritz-Carlton, Washington, D.C.


Bal Harbour, St. Regis Bal Harbour

Fernandina Beach, The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island

Fort Lauderdale, The Ritz-Carlton, Fort Lauderdale

Manalapan, Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa

Miami, Four Seasons Hotel Miami

Miami, Mandarin Oriental, Miami

Naples, The Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort, Naples

Naples, The Ritz-Carlton, Naples

Palm Beach, Four Seasons Resort Palm Beach

Palm Beach, The Breakers, Palm Beach

Ponte Vedra Beach, Ponte Vedra Inn & Club

Sarasota, The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota

Sunny Isles Beach, Acqualina Resort & Spa on the Beach


Atlanta, Four Seasons Hotel Atlanta

Atlanta, InterContinental Buckhead Atlanta

Atlanta, St. Regis Atlanta Hotel & Residences

Atlanta, The Ritz-Carlton, Atlanta

Atlanta, The Ritz-Carlton, Buckhead

Greensboro, The Ritz-Carlton Lodge, Reynolds Plantation

St. Simons Island, The Lodge at Sea Island


Kapalua (Maui), The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua

Kaupulehu (Hawaii) Four Seasons Resort Hualalai at Historic Ka’upulehu

Wailea (Maui) Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea


Chicago, Four Seasons Hotel Chicago

Chicago, The Peninsula Chicago

Chicago, Trump International Hotel & Tower

Chicago, Waldorf Astoria Chicago


Boston, Four Seasons Hotel Boston

Boston, Mandarin Oriental, Boston

Boston, The Ritz-Carlton, Boston Common


St. Louis, Four Seasons Hotel St. Louis (2008)


Las Vegas, ARIA Resort & Casino

Las Vegas, ARIA Sky Suites

Las Vegas, Bellagio

Las Vegas, Four Seasons Hotel Las Vegas

Las Vegas, Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas

Las Vegas, SKYLOFTS at MGM Grand

Las Vegas, The Palazzo Las Vegas

Las Vegas, The Venetian Las Vegas

Las Vegas, Wynn Tower Suites

New York

New York City, Four Seasons Hotel New York

New York City, Mandarin Oriental, New York

New York City, The Peninsula New York

New York City, The Pierre New York-A Taj Hotel

New York City, The Ritz-Carlton New York, Battery Park

New York City, The Ritz-Carlton New York, Central Park

New York City, Trump International Hotel & Tower

New York City, Trump SoHo, New York

North Carolina

Cary, The Umstead Hotel & Spa

Charlotte, The Ritz-Carlton, Charlotte

Fearrington-Village, The Fearrington House Inn


Aurora, Inn Walden


Farmington, Falling Rock at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort

Philadelphia, Four Seasons Hotel Philadelphia

Philadelphia, The Rittenhouse

Rhode Island

Watch Hill, Ocean House

South Carolina

Bluffton, The Inn at Palmetto Bluff

Kiawah Island, The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island Golf Resort


Nashville, The Hermitage Hotel


Houston, Four Seasons Hotel Houston

Houston, The St. Regis Houston


Park City, Montage Deer Valley

Park City, Stein Eriksen Lodge Deer Valley

Salt Lake City, Grand America Hotel


Washington, The Inn at Little Washington


Kohler, The American Club


Teton VIllage, Four Seasons Resort Jackson Hole

British Columbia

Vancouver, Shangri-La Hotel Vancouver

Whistler, Four Seasons Resort Whistler


Toronto, Four Seasons Hotel Toronto (2013)*

Toronto, The Ritz-Carlton, Toronto (2011)


Montreal, The Ritz-Carlton Montréal (2012)

Antigua and Barbuda

Antigua, Jumby Bay, A Rosewood Resort


Holetown (St. James Parish), Sandy Lane Hotel

Dominican Republic

Punta Cana, Tortuga Bay Punta Cana Resort & Club


Charlestown, Four Seasons Resort Nevis, West Indies

Puerto Rico

Rio Grande, St. Regis Bahia Beach Puerto Rico

St. Lucia

Soufriere, Jade Mountain Resort

Baja California Sur

Cabo San Luca, Capella Pedregal Resort and Spa

San Jose Del Cabo, Las Ventanas al Paraiso, A Rosewood Resort

Distrito Federal

Mexico City, Four Seasons Hotel Mexico D.F.


Acapulco, Banyan Tree Cabo Marques


Nuevo Vallarta, Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit

Punta Mita, Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita, Mexico

Punta Mita, The St. Regis Punta Mita Resort

Quintana Roo

Cancun, JW Marriott Cancun Resort & Spa

Cancun, Le Blanc Spa Resort

Cancun, The Ritz-Carlton, Cancun

Playa del Carmen, Fairmont Mayakoba

Playa del Carmen, Grand Velas Riviera Maya

Playa del Carmen, Rosewood Mayakobá

Playa del Carmen, Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancun

Puerto Morelos, Zoëtry Paraiso de la Bonita Riviera Maya

Source:  AAA

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