The Luxe List 2013: Uma by COMO, Punakha

  • Uma is also close to the fortress-monastery Punakha Dzong.

    Uma is also close to the fortress-monastery Punakha Dzong.

  • Uma's villas feature terraces and traditional wood stoves.

    Uma's villas feature terraces and traditional wood stoves.

  • Bhutanese and international cuisine can be found at the resort's Bukhari restaurant.

    Bhutanese and international cuisine can be found at the resort's Bukhari restaurant.

  • Views from the property include a panorama with the Mo Chu river.

    Views from the property include a panorama with the Mo Chu river.

  • The nine rooms and two villas at the Uma by COMO come with local touches.

    The nine rooms and two villas at the Uma by COMO come with local touches.

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The views alone are worth the three-hour drive from Paro: a jaw-dropping panorama of the Mo Chu river as it winds past forested hills and rice fields. This is COMO Hotels and Resorts’ second outpost in Bhutan (it has a bigger sibling in Paro), and Bali-based architect Cheong Yew Kuan has created an intimate hilltop lodge rooted in local culture and elegantly built of native timber and stone. The nine rooms are comfortably stylish with an earthy palette, Buddhist paintings, thick rugs, and deep sunken tubs, while two villas come with terraces and traditional wood-burning stoves. Meals (try the slow-cooked Wagyu short ribs with salsa verde) and spa treatments are equally sublime. If you can bring yourself to leave the premises, visit Punakha Dzong, arguably Bhutan’s  most beautiful fortress-monastery.

975/827-1597; Uma by COMO website; doubles from US$575

See more from The Luxe List 2013

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