Imagine you had all the money in the world and could acquire any hotel that struck your fancy—or even better, create your own. Leaders of industry like Richard Branson and Ted Turner have done just that, designing experiential guest retreats in exotic locales, while film industry heavyweights like Hugh Jackman and Francis Ford Coppola have chosen to attach their names to more quaint getaways. In typical showman style, illusionist David Copperfield went all out and conjured a magical wonderland on a private island in the Bahamas. More celebs are about to join the ranks—word on the streets of Nashville is that Reese Witherspoon is soon to open her own hospitality haven, and further afield in Belize, Hollywood darling Leonardo DiCaprio is hard at work planning an eco-resort. Here, we speak to eight celebrity hotel owners about their beloved properties.
Ted Turner’s Casa Grande at Vermejo Park Ranch, Raton, New Mexico
The former private home of the media mogul, this 25,000-square-foot home has seven guest bedrooms and nine baths. It just underwent a multimillion-dollar renovation to restore its former grandeur; the original structure was created by Joseph Lyman Silsbee, mentor to architect Frank Lloyd Wright. “The land and wildlife are really what drew me to Vermejo, but I got lucky in that my purchase of the property included Casa Grande. The home, which was commissioned by Vermejo’s former owner William Bartlett, is like no other that I’ve seen on a ranch out west; the great room alone is enough to take one’s breath away,” says Turner. From $550/night; vermejoparkranch.com