Perched on the edge of a lush valley, HOSHINOYA Bali immerses guests in nature and the artistic heritage of its island home.
Small is indeed beautiful when it comes to a stay in the south-central foothills of Bali. Located a 20-minute drive from Ubud, HOSHINOYA Bali is a three-hectare sanctuary built on a sloping site descending to the sacred Pakerisan River. The retreat made waves when it launched in 2017 as the first-ever international outpost for Japan’s Hoshino Resorts — a legendary group that has been delighting travelers for more than a century.
Guests here will find an intimately scaled resort village comprised of just 30 villas, all of which enjoy direct access to three canal-like swimming pools inspired by Bali’s traditional subak irrigation system. Architect Rie Azuma has seamlessly blended traditional Balinese craftsmanship with a Zen-like aesthetic. Each villa comes with futon-style beds, shoji screen doors, and an intricate woodcarving wall made by local artisans. Beside the pool, guests will find their own private terrace and gazebo thatched in alang-alang, alongside a stone-carved wall bearing elaborate plant and animal motifs.
At HOSHINOYA Bali, the three accommodation categories start at a generous 198 square meters. One-bedroom Bulan villas offer ample space to relax by the pool, while the two-story Soka villas are designed like a maisonette with the bedroom located upstairs and the living room below. An ideal choice for families, Jalak garden pool villas feature an expansive wraparound terrace on two sides for soaking up the jungle views.
Landscape designer Hiroki Hasegawa took his cues from the Balinese concept of harmony between humans, the natural world, and the divine. The sound of running water is ever-present in the verdant grounds; guests stroll down a boardwalk built along an ancient canal to reach Café Gazebo, a series of birdcage-like pavilions that appear to hover above the jungle. Perched on stilts and projecting out over the 170-meter-deep Pakerisan valley, this lounge is the perfect place to start the day as the surrounding forest awakens to a chorus of birdsong. A signature experience at HOSHINOYA Bali is the Air Gazebo Breakfast package: the assortment of dishes includes bubur injin — a sweet porridge of pandan-infused sticky black rice drizzled in thick coconut milk — bite-size Balinese apem cake, fish croquettes, as well as salads and fresh fruit in baskets. Every morning, Café Gazebo offers guests three kinds of complimentary wedang, a traditional Indonesian health tonic made from herbs and spices.
Nearby, the resort’s open-air restaurant tempts gourmands with a 10-course set menu that deftly combines French and Balinese flavors with a Japanese twist. Dishes include tofu-and-sesame fruit salad and chicken confit with black olive sambal matah, and every course is prepared in small portions to suit couples and solo travelers alike. For those in the mood for something à la carte, Executive Chef Mitsuaki Senoo and his kitchen team will prepare delectable savory items and sweet treats using premium local ingredients.
A range of immersive guest activities are offered both on- and off-site. The resort’s purpose-built yoga gazebo hosts a Sun Salutation experience for the wellness-minded before or after breakfast. Those staying at HOSHINOYA Bali are welcome to watch Balinese gamelan performances three times a week, and join workshops in making batik as well as traditional canang sari offerings. Led by hotel staff, the Ubud Rice Field Walking experience acquaints guests with the morning rhythms of the neighboring villages and rice fields. A free shuttle service to Ubud is also available.
After a day’s exploration, travelers can ride a custom-built funicular from the main resort to the spa, whose treatment rooms are located halfway down the hillside. Locally sourced organic ingredients are harnessed in wellness rituals rooted in ancestral healing traditions, including the Royal Lulur body scrub, Balinese boreh, and Balinese massage. Guests will be immersed in the soothing sounds of nature as skilled in-house therapists remove knots and ease muscle tension.
For more information, visit hoshinoya.com/bali
This article was brought to you by HOSHINOYA Bali.