Asia’s 10 best new hotels
THE WAREHOUSE HOTEL, SINGAPORE: From the team behind some of Singapore’s smartest restaurants comes this 37-room hotel fashioned from a riverfront heritage godown (or warehouse) at groovy Robertson Quay. Cool, urban interiors by local firm Asylum and top notch “mod-sin’’ (modern Singapore) cuisine from leading chef Willin Low make this a stylish alternative for travellers seeking a friendly neighbourhood pad. The ethos is rigorously “locally made”, from the tea, coffee and minibar inclusions to the staff uniforms and fleet of hotel bicycles. The fitout includes a loft-style suite with river views and rooftop swimming pool. More: thewarehousehotel.com.
137 PILLARS SUITES & RESIDENCES, BANGKOK: With just 34 suites, the highest infinity pool in the Thai capital and an on-call London cab fitted with champagne bar, this luxury hotel in fashionable Thonglor has all five-star bases covered. Occupying floors 24-32 of a residential block, the suites offer great city views from large balconies, and each features a private wine cellar, generous marble bathroom, “maxi-bar” and the services of a butler. Dial up a personal shopper for a visit to the nearby EmQuartier and Emporium retail mecca or pop into the 28th-floor day spa. Swedish chef Peter Marx gives traditional Thai a modern twist at 27th-floor Nimitr. More: 137pillarsbangkok.com.
ALILA FORT BISHANGARH, RAJASTHAN: The Alila group is unfazed by remote locales or challenging renovations. It took seven years to transform this classic Rajasthani warrior fort, sitting high on a hill one hour from Jaipur, into a stunning five-star hotel. The original building, with its 2m-thick walls and battlements, has been left intact and a new sympathetic structure built to house 59 elegant guestrooms and suites, all with farreaching views. The full Rajput playlist is here — cigars and cognac in the turret, a spa treatment in the dungeon, high tea in the lounge and the cuisines of the Silk Road in the signature restaurant. More: alilahotels.com.
ANANTARA KALUTARA RESORT, SRI LANKA: Tucked away on Sri Lanka’s southwest coast, an hour from Galle Fort, this family-friendly Anantara boasts an impressive pedigree, with the original resort designed more than two decades ago by legendary local architect Geoffrey Bawa. The project languished for years until one of his proteges picked it up. There’s no mistaking Bawa’s hand in the resort’s spacious arrival hall and lobby; his pared-back “tropical modernism” has also influenced the 141 guestrooms, suites and pool villas, each with a private balcony or terrace to take advantage of the property’s coastal, river and lagoon frontages. There’s a large day spa, children’s club, three restaurants and a resort library fashioned after Bawa’s personal study and displaying many of his original sketches. More: kalutara.anantara.com.
BAWAH ISLAND, INDONESIA: Thirteen white-sand beaches, three sparkling lagoons and five untouched islands should be more than enough to lure guests for three hours by ferry, then sea plane, from Singapore to this newly opened eco-resort in the southern Indonesian Anambas. Other tempting drawcards are the food, produced from the island’s garden, the 24 smart tented safari suites, 11 overwater bungalows and enveloping virgin rainforest. This is a marine conservation area, so resort
CAPE KUDU HOTEL, KOH YAO NOI, THAILAND:
Soneva Jani, The Maldives, top; Bawah Island, Indonesia, above; The Warehouse Hotel, Singapore, top left; Alila Fort Bishangarh, Rajasthan, above left