Hot List

The Best New Museums in the World: 2023 Hot List

The shiny new spaces displaying some of the world's most recognizable art and culture.
The Best New Museums in the World 2023 Hot List
Courtesy Sydney Modern Project

Nothing makes us more excited to get up and go than putting together our annual Hot List, now in its 27th year. This curated collection of the world’s best new hotels, cruises, restaurants, cultural destinations, and transportation projects is a labor of love for our global team, which spends the year researching, visiting, and vetting the entries to bring you a definitive directory of places whose style, ethos, and service set new standards for hospitality. Think shiny new high-design institutions displaying some of the world's most recognizable art, and a newly wild stretch of gardens that's greenifying one Southeast Asian mega city. All that’s left is for you to decide where you’re going first. Here, the seven best new museums and cultural spaces in the world, fresh off of this year's Hot List.

Click here to see the entire Hot List for 2023.

Courtesy Sydney Modern Project

Sydney Modern Project

One hundred and fifty years after opening its doors, the Art Gallery of New South Wales has received a major redevelopment and expansion. The most notable addition to the institution, which has historically focused on European artworks, is the Sydney Modern Project, which nearly doubled the museum’s square footage. Designed by the Japanese architecture firm SANAA, the stand-alone building includes the Yiribana Gallery, a space dedicated to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art. —Rebecca Misner

Doha Museum of Islamic Art

When the I. M. Pei–designed Museum of Islamic Art first opened in 2008, just months before Pei’s 92nd birthday, it was the first major project in Qatar to set architecture-loving hearts aflutter. Now, after an extensive enhancement project, its dramatic interior spaces are looking better than ever. Spanning 1,400 years of history, the museum’s galleries have been reimagined and reinstalled, introducing new visitor trails and child-friendly resources as well as more than 1,000 newly conserved or acquired objects displayed for the first time. There’s also a new gallery exploring the building’s creation story, which charts Pei’s journeys through the Islamic world before he finally settled on the fountain at Cairo’s Ibn Tulun Mosque as his inspiration for the museum. —Nicola Chilton

DesignMuseum Denmark — Copenhagen

Building a museum from scratch is a Herculean endeavor, but renewing a legacy museum is no easy feat either. Last summer, the DesignMuseum Denmark reopened its doors after a two-year renovation, its most exhaustive since it introduced its Ivar Bentsen and Kaare Klint–designed spaces to the public in 1926. This reimagining, helmed by the local firm OEO Studio, imbues the historic building with contemporary ideas but leaves room for Klint and Bentsen’s legacy, from the vintage lamps that line the rooms to the tiny design details seen in every corner, even the locker rooms. That juxtaposition of traditional craftsmanship and modern concerns is also evident in the museum’s displays: Its historical collections (tsubas, snuffboxes, and plenty of chairs) sit alongside exhibitions that address contemporary global challenges like climate change. Finally, no visit is complete without an amble through the museum’s courtyard garden, with its linden trees and sculptures, and a visit to its gift shop, packed with books and ceramics you’ll want for your home. —Arati Menon

Darren Cox/Museum of Broadway

Museum of Broadway — New York City

The Museum of Broadway, just off Times Square, features original costumes from the likes of The Lion King and RENT, as well as wee vignettes wherein visitors can take mirror selfies in the pink feather-clad dressing room of the Ziegeld Follies and pose on cabaret chairs as though about to give “Mein Herr” their best go, but the real attraction is the backstage experience. It allows you to wander from the stage door (a call sheet from the 2018 revival of My Fair Lady is the first thing you see), past props and sandbags, until you land at center stage. —Charlie Hobbs

Norway's Nasjonalmuseet — Oslo

When Norway’s National Gallery, which had been housed in the same building in Oslo since 1882, closed in early 2019, this effectively shut the door on the public’s access to one of the world’s most recognizable paintings by Norway's most famous artist. Thankfully, as of June 2022, Edvard Munch fans can once again see what is believed to be the artist’s first version of The Scream, now housed in a sleek new space. Norway’s National Museum brings the collections of the former National Gallery, the Museum of Contemporary Art, and the Norwegian Museum of Decorative Arts and Design together under one roof. And what an enormous roof it is–with around 140,000 square feet of exhibition space, it’s easily the largest museum in the Nordic countries. The museum’s collection emphasizes Norwegian art through the ages–of course Munch, and also traditional and modern works by indigenous Sámi artists. But there’s plenty of room for international heavy-hitters like Louise Bourgeois and Nan Goldin–especially in the sprawling Light Hall, a 25,000-square-foot space for temporary exhibits lit up by 9,000 energy-efficient LED lights. —RM

Benjakitti Forest Park — Bangkok

Over the past several decades, concrete and steel replaced much of what was left of the greenery around Thailand's fast-growing capital. But with the opening of the new Benjakitti Forest Park, that's finally being turned around. Taking over the grounds of a former tobacco factory in central Bangkok's Khlong Toei district, the park unfurls as a forest of tropical trees, lotus-dotted lakes, and egret-populated wetlands spanning more than 100 acres – all connected by elevated walkways and snaking trails at ground level. With more parks in the works as part of the 'Green Bangkok 2030' initiative, nature is finally reclaiming space in this notoriously un-green city. —Chris Schalkx

This story appears in Condé Nast Traveler's Hot List issue. Never miss out when you subscribe to Condé Nast Traveler.