Cape Town - Condé Nast Traveler recently announced the winners of its 26th annual Readers' Choice Awards and three out of their top five hotels and resorts are South African.La Residence in Franschhoek was named the top hotel in the world with a reader rating of 99.2%. Readers voted according to a certain set of criteria, including: rooms, service, food, location and design. La Residence scored 100% for each of these, except design which got a rating of 96%. They do, however, share the title with Lodge at Kauri Cliffs in Matauri Bay, New Zealand. “I am truly honoured and humbled by the award and I am pleased South Africa has been recognised internationally as a luxury destination,” said Liz Biden, the owner of three exclusive private hotels operating under The Royal Portfolio umbrella. Apart from La Residence, they include Royal Malewane, a safari lodge in the greater Kruger area and Birkenhead House in Hermanus.Singita Sabi Sand claimed the third position with a reader rating of 98.9 and comments like "truly amazing" and "spectacular through and through," according to the Conde Nast Traveler website. They share their spot on the list with Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve close to Clanwilliam in the Western Cape, which also got a rating of 98.9. "Riding mountain bikes past zebras is the right way to start the day" was one of the memorable activities mentioned by readers and the affable staff got a special mention for "offer[ing] great insight" into the native culture and history and "elevat[ing] the spirit." This year the survey recorded an astonishing reader participation of 79 268 entries – almost doubling the number of contributions in the 2012 competition. These astute and dedicated travellers cast 1,3 million votes for more than 16 000 properties around the world, resulting in the most comprehensive “best of the best” travel awards to date.