On Our Radar: Rissai Valley, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve

An all-villa resort will put guests on the doorstep of Jiuzhaigou National Park in China’s Sichuan province.

The view from a terrace at Rissai Valley, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve. (All photos: Marriott International)

The Ritz-Carlton’s ultra-luxe Reserve brand will be opening its inaugural Chinese outpost during the second quarter of this year, adding a five-star retreat to Jiuzhaigou, whose UNESCO-listed national park is famed for its mountain scenery, waterfalls, and iridescent lakes. Built on a hillside around 2,300 meters above sea level, Rissai Valley, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve will become the sixth resort of its kind worldwide and the fourth in Asia after sister properties in Krabi, Bali, and the Japanese ski town of Niseko.

Rissai Valley was originally meant to debut in 2017 but the opening date was pushed back several times. Construction resumed in September 2021 after a four-year delay due to a powerful earthquake, which altered some of Jiuzhaigou’s most celebrated scenic spots and created new ones like the Shuanglonghai waterfall. The resort’s name comes from the Tibetan word for “village,” and connects with the meaning of Jiuzhaigou — “Ravine of the Nine Villages.” Guests will get a feel for the indigenous culture through locally inspired food and immersive experiences such as visits to the ancient Tibetan and Qiang settlements that lie along the valley.

The architecture and landscaping at Rissai Valley were the work of global hospitality design firm WATG, which created a water feature for arriving guests to cross in a nod to Jiuzhaigou’s cascades. Here, 87 private villas are scattered across verdant grounds planted with native flora; the main building houses four restaurants and a lounge, along with a 215-square-meter ballroom. Each of the dining and event venues come with outdoor terraces that afford views of the surrounding woodlands and the Minshan mountain range. The property will also boast a 2,500-square-meter spa. Rissai Valley is a 75-minute drive from Jiuzhai Huanglong Airport, and 15 minutes away from Jiuzhaigou National Park and Nature Reserve.

ritzcarlton.com

Inside a two-bedroom villa at Rissai Valley, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve.

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