Bhutan: Higher Ground

Uma Punakha View

Getting to Uma by Como, Punakha (975/827-1597; comohotels.com; doubles from US$400) is its own reward: the road climbs up through pine and rhododendron forests past some of the prettiest countryside in Bhutan. It’s a fitting preamble to your arrival at this handsome new 11-room lodge, which overlooks a bend of the jade-green Mo River. Malaysian architect Cheong Yew Kuan, a longtime Como collaborator who also designed Uma’s eight-year-old sister lodge in Paro to the southwest, has created spare, light-flooded interiors outfitted with oversize beds and wood-burning stoves. Bukhari restaurant serves seasonally-inspired international and local dishes, while the spa’s dhotsho (hot-stone bath) awaits weary guests after a day spent touring nearby sites, such as the lodge’s own high-altitude wilderness camp. –David Tse

Originally appeared in the October/November 2012 print issue of DestinAsian magazine (“Higher Ground”)

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