If your idea of a holiday is to kick back into a beautiful resort with an expansive view of the water and greenery, then it’s time to leave our concrete jungle and check into these stylish, nature-oriented hotels for some well-deserved R&R.
Why go: Standing proudly on the previously uninhabited islet of Lastavica (more popularly known as Mamula) in the Adriatic Sea is a 19th-century fortress. The Unesco World Heritage site – a short boat ride from Herceg Novi, Montenegro and the Croatian coast – is also home to Mamula Island which is set to open later this summer and boasting 32 rooms and suites, a private beach, three pools and other amenities like restaurants, bars and spa. Taking cues from the architecture of this historic site, the fort’s prevalent arch motif will appear throughout the property, including its rooms and suites.
Address: Mamula Island, Montenegro
Rates: To be announced nearer to the opening date
Why go: Set in the Fari Islands archipelago in North Male Atoll region of the Maldives, this resort is the inaugural flagship property from the new lifestyle brand Patina Hotels & Resorts. The chic vacation spot is designed by Brazilian architect Marcio Kogan, and offers contemporary one- to three-bedroom beach and water pool villas, alongside 20 Fari studios which are contemporary rooms located near the resort’s beach club and art gallery.
Unique initiatives here include Patina’s artist residency program, where New York-based artist Daniel Arsham recently took up an exclusive residency and engaged with guests in an open studio session and pirate group dinner. Patina is also facilitating a pioneering genetic research expedition to study the local Maldivian hawksbill sea turtle population. The pilot expedition departs from the resort later this year, with guests given the opportunity to shadow its first stage on a turtle snorkelling trip, and ‘adopt’ turtles included in the study.
Address: Fari Islands, North Male Atoll, 20026, Maldives
Rates: From US$1,895++ (S$2,605++) a night
Why go: The five-star resort in Koh Lanta in southern Thailand is nestled in 100 acres of lush jungle, and leads down to a 900-metre-long private beach. The sprawling grounds also cover the equivalent area of 75 football fields and is akin to a private nature reserve with native flora like banyan trees and bird of paradise flowers. Wildlife species such as eagles and hornbills also abound in the area, and the nearby island of Koh Talabeng is famed for its sea caves which travellers can kayak to. Koh Lanta itself is home to forests, waterfalls and a series of hiking trails for different fitness levels. Hotel guests can also indulge in onsite wellness experiences, ranging from Muay Thai classes to tennis matches and afternoons at the resorts’ Pimalai Spa.
Address: 99 Moo 5 Ba Kan Tiang Beach, Ko Lanta District, Krabi 81150, Thailand
Rates: From US$180 (S$247) per night
Why go: If you fancy jetting off to a faraway locale, Maroma is the place to be. The hotel is situated between dense tropical jungle and the white sands of Mexico’s Caribbean coast, with access to the largest barrier reef in the Western Hemisphere. Featuring 72 rooms, suites and villas, Maroma will officially reopen on May 25, 2023, following an extensive renovation and redesign by renowned designer Tara Bernerd whose firm has worked on projects for the likes of the Four Seasons and Rosewood Hotels & Resorts. While the space will be completely reimagined, its design will honour Mexican artisanal traditions, authentic craftsmanship and local materials throughout the interiors.
Address: Carretera Cancun-Tulum, Km 51 77710 Riviera Maya, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Rates: To be announced nearer to the opening date
Why go: A two-hour drive from Singapore, this is the hotel brand’s first ultra-luxury tropical resort in Asia. Positioned on Johor’s south-eastern shoreline, the resort extends expansively across 128 acres of unspoilt wild flora. Designed by the award-winning Kerry Hill Architects, the resort showcases the region’s architectural heritage, with a modern interpretation of the traditional Malaysian ‘kampung’ or village. Guests also have access to a pristine 1.5 kilometre stretch of private white sand beach, with each standalone suite offering ample seclusion and private plunge pools. There’s also a choice of 42 junior suites, two expansive two-bedroom grand suites, and an opulent four-bedroom residence – Villa One. Guests can also enjoy guided nature tours to the nearby Panti forest, conducted by the resort’s naturalist.
Address: Darul Ta’zim, Persiaran Damai, Desaru Coast Bandar Penawar, 90, 81930, Johor, Malaysia
Rates: From $1,126 a night
Why go: A brand extension of Banyan Tree, Buahan is located in an untouched part of northern Ubud− just next to the Ayung River and waterfall. Scattered on and off the property are secret “hideaway spots”. These draw on the element of being at one with nature and provide guests with a garden sanctuary for meditation, reading, or simply unwinding. The resort is also big on sustainability − 70 per cent of its food menu is plant-based and sourced locally within a one-hour drive from the property. There’s also a Botanist Bar where local-grown natural ingredients and botanicals are infused into beverages. Guests can also indulge at Toja Spa, which celebrates the well-being traditions of Buahan village and its surrounding areas with a unique open garden experience.
Address: Banjar Selat, Buahan Kaja, Payangan,Kabupaten Gianyar, Bali 80572, Indonesia
Rates: From $984 a night
Why go: A new addition to Hilton’s luxury hotel portfolio, Roku Kyoto opened just last Sep in the foothills of Kyoto’s Takagamine Mountains. The area was previously an artisan village, and this is reflected in the hotel’s design− each area has a subtle touch of one of the styles from the original village. Lacquerware is featured in the tea house and lobby, ceramics is the theme in the wellness spaces and traditional paper is presented in the guest rooms in the form of patterned panelling. Guests looking to pamper themselves can book the spa access rooms and suites, equipped with a full terrace and a natural onsen hot spring.
Address: 44, Kinugasa Kagamiishicho, Kita Ward, Kyoto, 603-8451, Japan
Rates: From $850 a night
Why go: Andaz Bali marks the entry of the Andaz brand into Indonesia, and offers a contemporary take on the traditional Balinese village. Located in the idyllic seaside village of Sanur, the resort is carefully built around the existing mature landscape and draws inspiration from surrounding villages. For example, through the use of distinctive red brick – a traditional construction material in the area. Also, a tranquil Dukuh area, a secluded ‘village within a village’ where ancient banyan trees and garden villas stand side by side. All rooms, suites and villas are designed in contemporary Balinese style, using locally sourced materials like bamboo, andesite stone, marble and teakwood. Each room also boasts a private balcony overlooking the garden, ocean or lagoon.
Address: Jl. Danau Tamblingan No.89A, Sanur, Denpasar Selatan, Kota Denpasar, Bali 80228, Indonesia
Rates: From $408 a night
Why go: Located on the secluded island of Bodufushi in Raa Atoll, Joali Being is branded as a retreat where wellness seekers can reconnect with themselves and the beauty of nature. The resort is home to 68 exclusive guest villas with pools, consisting of 33 beach villas and 35 water villas. Guests can choose from 13 room categories, including one, two, three or four-bedroom accommodations. The island’s Learning Center offers a series of educational workshops and experiential classes, taught by well-being experts, culinary maestros, and herbalists. Unique transformational spaces also allow guests to immerse in elemental therapies and healing experiences. For example, the on-site herbology centre, where visitors learn the benefits of herbal teas and how to make natural body creams, face masks and massage oils.
Address: Bodufushi Island, Maldives
Rates: From US$2,035 (S$2,790) with a minimum of five nights
This article was first published on FEMALE.