Luxury hotels and resorts opening in Southeast Asia in 2020: Anantara Desaru, Rosewood Yangon, Park Hyatt Jakarta and more

Intercontinental Phuket

Here are some of the best luxury hotels and resorts to look forward to this year

We are blessed with beautiful neighbours, but explore one’s own backyard one too many times and even the cute girl next door will eventually lose her charm. Luckily, it is in the tourism industry’s interest to ensure that boredom never sets in for us. This year, several of the best-loved names in luxury hospitality are enticing us to revisit some of our favourite neighbours – Bali, Phuket and even Desaru – with spanking new properties that promise to rejuvenate the old and familiar. Looks like it’s time again to book that long, weekend getaway.

Alamayah

Where: Sumba, Indonesia

What about: Feel like the king of the jungle at Alamayah. Tucked away in a remote beachside location surrounded by lush tropical forests, this boutique hotel on Sumba is committed to tourism that leaves no footprint. Enjoy plant-based meals served on tableware created by local ceramic artists and lounge on furniture crafted from fallen trees found in the jungle. And with just six private suites, this is the perfect place for those seeking a quiet retreat to get away from it all.

Robb tip: Thanks to medicinal mixology, you actually drink to your health when enjoying cocktails here.

Alamayah
Patiala Bawa, Lamboya
West Sumba Regency
87251 Deke, Indonesia
Tel: +62 859 3615 2893

Andaz Bali

Where: Bali, Indonesia

What about: Hyatt is embarking on a massive expansion, with more than 20 properties across its various brands slated to be opened by the end of this year. Andaz Bali, located in the town of Sanur, is one of them. Set to open in Q3, the 149-room resort will be laid out like a traditional Balinese village, with a central square where guests may experience cultural performances and local crafts.

What about: Sanur is famous for its sunrises, but don’t forget the cultural sights, the Pura Blanjong temple is worth a visit for its wall built of coral. 

Andaz Bali

Tanah Gajah

Where: Bali, Indonesia

What about: Formerly The Chedi Club and now reimagined as a tribute to the late Hendra Hadiprana, one of Indonesia’s most influential figures in architecture, this is a resort steeped in art. Beyond simply admiring the impressive collection Hadiprana has amassed over a lifetime, guests are encouraged to take part in the creation process with Art Expressions, an initiative where they get to take art classes under local artists.

Robb tip: Instead of the main road, take the scenic hour-long trek through rice paddy fields to Bumi Duadari, once Hadiprana’s private estate, under the guidance of a butler.

Tanah Gajah
Jalan Goa Gajah, Tengkulak Kaja
Ubud, Gianyer Regency
80571 Bali, Indonesia
Tel: +62 361 975 685

Park Hyatt Jakarta

Where: Jakarta, Indonesia

What about: Park Hyatt reaches high for its debut into Indonesia, taking the top 17 floors of the 37-storey Park Tower. The 220-room hotel makes the most of its vantage point above Indonesia’s bustling capital, offering guests panoramic views from the 24-hour fitness centre on the 35th floor, the outdoor pool, and five dining venues. The well-appointed rooms feature design accents inspired by Indonesian decor and deep marble baths. The hotel will open in the first half of this year.

Robb tip: Look out for Masters of Food & Wine, a series of culinary experiences aimed at showcasing the best of local produce and the skills of Park Hyatt chefs.

Park Hyatt Jakarta
Jalan Kebon Sirih 17-19
10340 Jakarta
Indonesia
Tel: +62 21 3111 1234

Alila Dalit Bay

Where: Sabah, Malaysia

What about: Beachfront resorts are a dime a dozen. Alila Dalit Bay on Sabah’s pristine west coast is one, too, but it stands out because it has eschewed the usual resort-style architecture for one inspired by the iconic longhouses of the local Dusun Lotud tribe. Once completed – it’ll open at the end of the year – the 152-room hotel will offer diverse dining and activity options for couples and families alike. For the adventurous types, it is only a 90-minute drive from Mount Kinabalu.

Robb tip: Stake your claim by buying one of the 74 villas that are available for private ownership.

Alila Dalit Bay

Anantara Desaru Coast Resort & Villas

Where: Desaru, Malaysia

What about: Forget the Desaru of your childhood memories. Following an extensive facelift, Desaru Coast is now an integrated entertainment area comprising golf courses, a waterpark and hotels. Sitting at the top of the luxe offerings is the 123-key Anantara Desaru Resort & Villas, which just opened this month. Enjoy the brand’s hospitality at its best by opting for the three- or four-bedroom villas. You’ll get an infinity pool to yourself and an all-round butler service.

Robb tip: Dining by Design, Anantara’s private dining service, will whisk you away on a gastronomic journey off the beaten track.

Anantara Desaru Coast Resort & Villas
Persiaran Pantai
Desaru Coast
81930 Darul Ta’zim
Johor, Malaysia
Tel: +66 0 2 365 9110

One&Only Desaru Coast

Where: Desaru, Malaysia

What about: At the new One&Only Desaru Coast, you’d be paying good money to stay in a traditional Malaysian kampung, or village. But don’t despair, it’s not without your modern comforts. Villa One, the resort’s most luxurious option, sprawls over 1,500 square metres of land and boasts four bedrooms, private spa treatment rooms, a home office and a 27-metre-long swimming pool spread out over two storeys. The resort will open in March, and in addition to that, 50 residences will be made available for ownership or rental.

Robb tip: Get a bespoke nail treatment at the Pedi:Mani:Cure Studio with products by celebrity pedicurist Bastien Gonzalez; his clients include Gwyneth Paltrow and Naomi Campbell.

One&Only Desaru Coast
Persiaran Damai
Desaru Coast
Desaru
81930 Darul Ta’zim
Johor
Malaysia
Tel: +971 4426 1099

Banyan Tree Krabi

Where: Krabi, Thailand

What about: Banyan Tree Krabi, which will open by June this year, offers more than powdery white sand and panoramic views of the Andaman Sea. This 72-room resort has thrown two lush national parks and awe-inspiring limestone karsts into the mix, and its signature spa that’s been treated with a rainforest-themed twist.

Robb tip: Planning to get married? Hint – there’s a chapel within the grounds at the resort.

Banyan Tree Krabi
Moo 3, Nong Thale
Mueang Krabi District
81180 Krabi, Thailand

Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok at Chao Phraya River

Where: Bangkok, Thailand

What about: Taking up 200 metres of prime waterfront real estate on Bangkok’s Chao Phraya River, this property, which will open in February, will become Bangkok’s newest landmark with its distinctive stepped architecture. Designer Jean-Michel Gathy is quite the art enthusiast, and he has dotted the compound with works from his own collection. There’s also Art Space, which is dedicated to showcasing Thailand’s contemporary artists. The hotel’s 299 rooms include a spectacular two-storey Presidential Suite.

Robb tip: Make it a point to visit BKK Social Club at the hotel’s central courtyard to enjoy a drink by Philip Bischoff. He used to man the bar at the award-winning Manhattan at Regent Hotel Singapore.

Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok at Chao Phraya River
300/1 Charoenkrung Road
Sathorn
10120 Bangkok
Thailand
Tel: +66 (0) 2 032 0887

Capella Bangkok

Where: Bangkok, Thailand

What about: Designed as a pied-a-terre, Capella Bangkok aims to combine urban sophistication with nature’s calm. Sitting on the same compound as Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok at Chao Phraya River, this hotel is set to open in June. Panoramic vistas of the Chao Phraya river, visible from the window of every one of its 101 suites, lure guests into an illusion of tranquillity right in the center of bustling Bangkok. If a good view isn’t enough to chase the stress away, the Auriga Wellness spa beckons.

Side note: Capella will also be opening in Sydney in 2021.

Robb tip: For a taster of Michelin-starred chef Mauro Colagreco’s genius, head to Cote; he’s the man behind the restaurant’s menu. 

Capella Bangkok
300/2 Charoenkrung Road
Sathorn
10120 Bangkok, Thailand
Tel: +66 (0) 2 098 3888

Intercontinental Phuket Resort

Where: Phuket, Thailand

What about: Located right next to Twinpalms MontAzure on Kamala beach, Intercontinental Phuket Resort is as close as you can get to heaven on Earth. Displayed around the property are paintings and sculptures by local artists inspired by the Traibhumikatha, a historic Thai text about the Buddhist version of heaven; complementing the local art at this 221-room hotel are Sino-Portuguese design influences reflecting the long-running relationship between Thailand and Portugal. You’ll also enjoy taking a dip in one of the resort’s five pools, and if you’re wondering is there’s anything that could make it better, there are some rooms enjoy direct pool access. Perfect.

Robb tip: For the ultimate intimate dinner, reserve a spot at Jaras, the hotel’s destination Thai restaurant that cooks with family-owned recipes.

Intercontinental Phuket Resort
333 Moo 3
Kamala Beach
83150 Phuket, Thailand
Tel: +66 0 76 629 999

Hilton Dili Palm Springs
We’re as excited as you are for Hilton Dili Palm Springs, it’s the first five-star property on the island

Hilton Dili Palm Springs

Where: Dili, East Timor

What about: Hailed as the first international hotel brand to enter the young nation of East Timor, Hilton intends for this 150-room property to give it early entrance advantage in the country’s emerging tourism industry. For now, however, the demand is expected to come primarily from government and business travellers and is reflected by the extensive perks extended to guests of the executive rooms, such as complimentary breakfasts and refreshments as well as access to the Executive Lounge. The hotel will open in October 2020.

Robb tip: There is plenty to do in East Timor. Hike to a jungle cave, dive to some of the world’s most pristine reefs or wander through a mountain village market in Dili.

Hilton Dili Palm Springs
Marconi
Fatuhada
Dom Alexio
Dili, East Timor
Tel: +670 7741 2323

Rosewood Yangon

Where: Yangon, Myanmar

What about: Dating back to 1927, Yangon’s grandest heritage building has taken on many faces during its lifetime. Formerly a police headquarters, a parliament building, and the New Law Courts, Its latest incarnation as Rosewood Yangon (opening in February) is an indication of the hospitality group’s optimism in the country’s luxury tourism industry. The 205 guest rooms feature high ceilings that let in abundant natural light and balconies that look out towards the Yangon River.

Robb tip: The hotel is set to become the city’s preeminent location for fine(r) dining. Expect five F&B venues, including a tea lounge serving dainty confections and a modern Chinese restaurant.

Rosewood Yangon
14 Strand Road
Kyauktada Township
11182 Yangon
Myanmar
Tel: +95 12 307 900

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