Aching to go on holiday again once travel restrictions ease? Here are nine of the most notable luxury hotel debuts across the region in the coming year.
Malaysia-bound travelers wanting to pair wildlife encounters in Sabah with five-star creature comforts can look to this soon-to-open resort outside Kota Kinabalu. Fronting a two-kilometer white-sand beach, Alila Dalit Bay’s main building contains 152 rooms and suites, but the ones to book are the 74 pool villas featuring their own private gardens. Expect a contemporary, pared-back design inspired by the longhouses of Sabah’s Dusun Lotud tribe: raw concrete finds its counterpoint in woven rattan, local timber, and tribal artifacts. Guests will never be far from nature: guided kayaking excursions on the mangrove-lined Mengkabong River, a nearby estuary with views of Mount Kinabalu, may well be in the cards.
Indonesia’s Island of the Gods already has two Anantara outposts (one atop the cliffs of Uluwatu and the other right on the beach in Seminyak), but the Bangkok-based luxe hospitality brand is adding a third property in the green heart of Bali. Come mid-2022, Anantara Ubud will make its debut three years after it was first intended to open. Cascading down a wooded hillside from the lobby, the resort’s 85 rooms and villas are decked out with Balinese and Javanese artworks; villas also feature balcony plunge pools. Organic produce sourced from the hills around the resort will be used in the restaurant kitchens, and recreational facilities include an infinity pool, a gym, and an Anantara Spa with a hair and nail salon.
Another highly anticipated new opening in Bali is the inaugural property of Banyan Tree Escape, one of five new brands being rolled out by Banyan Tree over the coming months. Accepting reservations from April, Buahan, A Banyan Tree Escape encompasses just 16 breezy pool villas on the side of a lush valley north of Ubud. Its “no walls, no doors” concept aims to immerse travelers in nature and connect them with the local community. Instead of glass, bricks, and mortar, gauzy curtains and canvas screens are all that separate guests from the great outdoors. Sustainability is part of the appeal: the entire resort was built from bamboo and recycled ironwood, menus at the zero-waste Open Kitchen are 70 percent plant-based, and the bar champions locally grown botanicals. Treatments at the on-site Toja Spa harness the wellness traditions of the surrounding area.
Amanusa’s former hillside digs above Nusa Dua have been refurbished and updated to become the second Southeast Asian property for IHG’s Kimpton brand (after Kimpton Maa-Lai Bangkok), which will open its doors in March. Most of the 50 villas here come with saltwater plunge pools and a canvas-roofed bale (pavilion); for further relaxation, Samskara Wellness blends modern techniques and ancient Balinese healing rituals. The resort’s selection of five restaurants and bars include Aki & Jack’s — a grill-focused dinner venue serving up Japanese-Western fusion food — and the off-site Nilam Beach Club.
The latest in a spate of new high-rise hotels in the Indonesian capital, the much-delayed Park Hyatt Jakarta is finally welcoming its first guests come the second quarter of 2022. The brand’s signature understated luxury is a hallmark of the 220 rooms (including 36 suites), which start at a generous 57 square meters. All feature floor-to-ceiling windows and deep soaking marble tubs, as well as Le Labo bath amenities. The highlight of the Park Hyatt’s culinary lineup is Kita, a two-level Japanese restaurant and rooftop bar with an outdoor terrace — just the place to sip on sundowners while admiring the views over central Jakarta and the National Monument.
An offshoot of the ultra-luxe Capella Hotel Group, Patina made its grand entrance on the hospitality scene in May 2021 when it debuted a private-island haven in the Maldives. With an ethos centered on “imagination” and “immersion,” the new brand is geared toward independent travelers seeking out meaningful holidays that are kinder to the environment. Its sophomore property will be opening in Bali on a steeply sloping site leading down to the Wos River, and within walking distance of Ubud’s main street. Though the Patina shares a similar setup with Capella Ubud farther up the valley (by virtue of the hilly terrain), it has a completely different design. The 102 rooms, suites, and villas are minimalistic and earth-toned rather than whimsical à la Bill Bensley, putting the focus squarely on the greenery outside the windows.
Late 2022 will see the debut of Singapore’s first all-villa retreat, with the city’s beloved colonial-era grande dame hotel branching out to Sentosa Island. Acclaimed Canadian design duo Yabu Pushelberg is responsible for all the interiors, landscaping, and lighting; guests will find 62 villas ensconced in 10 hectares of tropical gardens overlooking the South China Sea. Accommodations measure in at a roomy 260 to 450 square meters (including a private pool and terrace), and come in one- to four-bedroom configurations. Naturally, pampering treatments at Raffles Spa and round-the-clock butler service will be offered as well. And as every Raffles hotel outside Singapore does its own take on the city-state’s national drink, it remains to be seen whether mixologists will create a Sentosa Sling.
This coming April, Regent Hotels will be splashing down on the west coast of Phu Quoc, Vietnam’s most popular island destination. At first glance, its minimalistic look by the Bangkok-based BLINK Design Group feels somewhat removed from the locale, but it does nod to Vietnamese architecture in subtle ways. Villa courtyards are inspired by those of traditional houses, while the bovi, a vernacular wooden truss, shows up as a pattern for carpets and soft furnishings. When it comes to drinking and dining, options range from Japanese-French restaurant Oku and a Balearic Islands–inspired beachfront venue to speakeasy-style Bar Jade, which specializes in artisanal spirits and cocktails mixed with fresh local herbs. Wellness-minded travelers can look forward to high-tech treatments and a Pedi:Mani:Cure Studio by acclaimed podiatrist Bastien Gonzalez.
Complementing The Standard’s newly opened Miami-inspired outpost in Hua Hin, The Standard, Bangkok Mahanakhon is intended as the Asian flagship of the hip, fun-loving hotel brand. Its 155 guest rooms take up the lower floors of the 78-story King Power Mahanakhon Tower, a futuristic landmark by German starchitect Ole Scheeren that is an unmissable part of the Bangkok skyline. Spanish artist Jaime Hayon’s studio teamed up with The Standard’s in-house design team to create retro-chic interiors, which are far from the only draw. Gourmands can look forward to an iteration of the beloved Standard Grill in New York, Cantonese restaurant Mott 32 — whose current footprint extends from Hong Kong to Singapore, Las Vegas, and Vancouver — a rooftop venue, and an Alice in Wonderland–inspired tea room.