Five Houston area hotels made this year’s Forbes Travel Guide Star Awards list—including one of only two hotels in Texas to earn a five-star rating.

Forbes’ annual list rates thousands of properties around the world—including hotels, spas and restaurants. 

Houston’s Post Oak Hotel—as well as its signature spa—earned a five-star rating for the fourth year in a row. The only other hotel to get five stars in Texas is the Ritz-Carlton Dallas.

Lux Leaders: The Four Seasons Hotel Houston, The St. Regis Houston, The Houstonian Hotel Club & Spa, and Hotel Granduca all received four-star ratings on this year’s list. The Houstonian’s Trellis Spa also earned four stars.

Across Texas, this year’s Forbes list included 17 hotels, eight spas and five restaurants.

Behind the scenes: So how does Forbes do it? A lot of individual time. Travel Guide inspectors anonymously visit every property in person. They rate the hotels, restaurants, spas and cruise shops on a series of factors. According to Forbes: “They test some 900 exacting standards—such as whether a room is designed to promote sleep quality or whether the food-and-beverage choices support a guest’s well-being—emphasizing exceptional service, which accounts for 70 percent of a property’s rating. Newer standards focus on the guest experience, such as ensuring ‘cocktails are dynamically interesting and photogenic’ and even asking if the inspector would ‘readily recommend this property to others.’ The remaining 30 percent comes from the quality and condition of the facilities. Finally, inspectors are now required to reflect on whether there was great value in the experience.”

Written by A.J. Mistretta 

Pictured: Post Oak Hotel