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Nihiwatu, Indonesia

"The best hotel in the world"

"The best hotel in the world"

Charlotte Roberts

Nihiwatu is a remote, luxury resort but with a conscience. It is tucked away on one of Indonesia’s most unexplored islands  Sumba. Sumba is only an hour flight from Bali but feels a world away - only 650,000 people live on the island where they still live a traditional life and practice their own distinct tribal rituals. Nihiwatu was established several years ago as a secret surf destination.  Today it has been voted by Travel and Leisure Magazine as ‘the best hotel in the world.’ How has it achieved this in the space of 8 years and on an island that is barely heard of:
Firstly, despite its hard to get to location, every conceivable luxury is found once you step inside the resort confines. There are 28 decadent pool villas, a treetop spa, a professional equestrian centre, and private access to world-class surfing and experiences. Most recently Nihiwatu has opened a whimsical three-bedroom Mamole Tree House built on stilts overlooking the Indian Ocean. The Nio Beach Club also opened this year with a lap pool perched on Nihiwatu Beach, while Chris and Charly's chocolate factory has started production onsite.
The feel is more luxury safari lodge than world-class beach resort, and at Nihiwatu it's all about you. They have also established and support the Sumba Foundation which funds malaria clinics, wells and schools on the island. In the words of the owner Chris Burch: "Hospitality-centric luxury has changed," "It is more than just the finer touches. It has evolved to a custom itinerary, a personal journey, unexpected experiences, and a curiosity for the unknown. We have been extremely fortunate to exceed everything we set out to deliver with the Nihiwatu concept."

If only time could stand still when you are on holiday…