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Once the luxurious main seat of Russia’s tsars and emperors, the spirit of Imperialism still lives on in St. Petersburg’s elaborate architecture and historic buildings. Most luxury hotels are housed within notable buildings that have incredibly decadent facades and carefully recreated interiors, bringing the ultimate in luxury alive.
Most of St. Petersburg’s opulent five-star hotels are located around Nevsky Prospekt, especially at the end closest to Palace Square. Luxury hotels feature lavish interiors, many of which are decorated in an Imperial style with period furniture. They also pride themselves on their deluxe facilities, from indulgent spas and health clubs, to state-of-the-art fitness suites and conference centres.
Each luxury hotel has its very own restaurant, some of which are the best fine-dining establishments in St. Petersburg. In-room dining is also an option with attentive 24-hour room service.
Carl Fabergé’s famous eggs are housed within St. Petersburg’s Fabergé Museum, alongside other pieces produced by esteemed Russian jewellers and artists. The collection includes nine Imperial Easter Eggs, which were originally presented as gifts to the final two tsars and their families.
There are more treasures in the magnificent Winter Palace’s State Hermitage Museum. Originally started by Catherine the Great, the museum’s huge collection of Western fine art now boasts an impressive three million pieces. Exploring the museum in full can take a couple of days.
The Mariinsky Theatre puts on some of the best ballets in Russia, equalling Moscow’s Bolshoi. Anna Pavlova and Rudolf Nureyev both danced on its stage, and these days, the theatre’s performances of Tchaikovsky’s ‘The Nutcracker’ attract ballet aficionados from far and wide.
St. Petersburg offers a divine culinary scene, from upper-crust restaurants serving some of the world’s best caviar to well-heeled diners, to slick modern eateries that add their own twist to international cuisines.
High-end restaurants line Nevsky Prospekt alongside some budget places to eat, though you’ll find many other top-notch restaurants dotted around the city centre. The best places to enjoy fine dining, though, are St. Petersburg’s many five-star hotels.