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The Samaya Seminyak - Bali

The Royal Collection is a unique brand of villa living, featuring three world-class properties: The Kayana, The Samaya Seminyak and The Samaya Ubud. Set within beautiful tropical gardens on Seminyak Beach and the Ayung River, each property combines a unique ambience with a touch of luxury in products and services. With a private plunge pool, spa and full butler service, these private boutique villas offer a secluded sanctuary for our most discerning guests.

ReseRvation centeR Ph: (62-21) 2700027, Fax: (62-21) 2700350 Email: reservation@santika.com | Online booking: www.santika.com


seminyak Ph: (62-361) 731149 | UbUd Ph: (62-361) 973606 Email: info@thesamayabali.com | Online booking: www.thesamayabali.com seminyak Ph: (62-361) 8476628 Email: info@thekayana.com | Online booking: www.thekayana.com

nUsa dUa Ph: (62-361) 849 8833 Email: info@balinusaduahotel.com | Online booking: www.balinusaduahotel.com


features

62

Volume 3, Summer 2014 April - June

40

40 Globetrotters
 Island Muse Travel, Luxury and Island Life According to India Hicks

& Design
 46 Arts It’s Mine! What Next? What to Do After the Acquisition of an Artwork

52 BUSINESS Don’t Time the Market The Investment Rewards of Patience

70

60 FASHION Orlebar Brown:

The Long and Short of It A Peek into the UK Fashion House and How You Could Win Some of its Goodies

62 Fashion Lost at Sea Castaway Chic Amidst Rising Temperatures and Dramatic Beaches

70 Travel A Place in the Sun Asia’s Most Exclusive Beaches Unveiled


78 112

94 106 Guide 78 travel Bali: Divine Dining Heavenly Dining Experiences on the Island of the gods

86 traveL Lombok:

Beauty Beyond Compare A Closer Look at Indonesia’s Other Island Marvel

94 travel


The Edge of South Africa Exploring a Piece of the Country’s Coastal Wilderness

100 travel
 Elements of Asia Becoming One with the Elements through Thrilling Adventures

Special 106 Quarterly Cabin Couture: Bespoke Travel by Train

Meandering through Spectacular Landscapes by Rail

112 Bi-annual Special

Anything But as Long as it’s Chardonnay A Toast and a Roast Dedicated to One Intriguing Grape Variety


Managing Editor

Kat Modelo Efenio km@travelitemagazine.com

Associate Editor

SJ Roxas sj@travelitemagazine.com

marketing director

Mary Jessie Efenio jess@travelitemagazine.com

Sales Associates

Jeff Litan jeff@travelitemagazine.com Emilie Joan Cruz emelie@travelitemagazine.com

Layout Artist

Toni Michele Carrillo michi@travelitemagazine.com

Contributors

Travelite at Your Fingertips Keep tabs of the latest in luxury travel and lifestyle which ever corner of the world wanderlust takes you through www.travelitemagazine.com Tap or click away to access updates on travel trends, fashion, exciting destinations and more as offered in Travelite Magazine’s online abode.

Viola Raikhel-Bolot, Holly Byrne, Elizabeth Ellis, Tai Hui, Amanda Longworth, Tim Russell

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Subscriptions and Advertising www.travelitemagazine.com sales@travelitemagazine.com info@travelitemagazine.com

Printed by : Paramount Printing Company Limited 1/F 8 Chun Ying Street, Tseung Kwan O Industrial Estate Tseung Kwan O, New Territories, Hong Kong Published by Travelite Magazine Company Limited. All rights, including the name of this publication are owned by Travelite Magazine Company Limited. No part of this publication may be reproduced without permission. Travelite Magazine believes that the information herein was obtained from reliable sources, but it does not guarantee its accuracy. Opinions expressed are those of the writers and contributors and not necessarily endorsed by the publisher. Information supplied for advertising purposes is the responsibility of the advertisers, and no advertisement is to be deemed an endorsement of the publisher. The publisher does not accept responsibility for entries supplied by individuals or companies including but not limited to typographical errors and copyright of all supplied materials. Travelite Magazine takes no responsibility for the price differences stated within. All prices are in US dollars, based on the currency rates at the time of print. Travelite Magazine Company Limited Room 103, Tak Lok House, Tak Tin Estate Lam Tin, Kowloon, Hong Kong

to god be the glory!


“The Best Island Destination Airline” Travel Brand Annual Award by Voyage Magazine Travel

“Best Creative Promotion Award” Jinghua Travel New Model Awards 2013

Non-Stop from Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong to the

www.megamaldivesair.com

flymega

flymega

Maldives.

flymega

mgcharter


editor’s note trav–el–ite noun /ˈtrav(ə)lēt/

travel for the elite It’s always a thrill to welcome the year’s warmest season. It’s the time, once again, for sun-soaked escapes to the most intoxicating destinations. As the world focuses on Asia for lavish travels, allow us to introduce you to the region’s finest spots, starting with six littleknown beaches. Truth be told, they are also among the world’s most divine shores. From undisturbed beachcombing, we take you to two of Indonesia’s stellar summer destinations. From my eternal favourite Bali, to sample some of the island’s best dining experiences to a discovery of Lombok’s more laidback coast. To cap your Asian journey, we prepared an exhilarating itinerary based on the four elements, escorting you from one adventure after another. We then venture further afield on a scenic train route, luxuries in tow, from South America’s mountainside to the Highlands of Scotland. A fitting final stop is South Africa’s edge, which, unknown to many, is home to an idyllic coastal town.

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If you’re thinking about what to pack for your summer escapes, let our scorching fashion editorial fire up your look this season with chic, castaway-inspired outfits. The beautiful beach that provided the stunning backdrop to our cover and fashion shoot is Palawan’s El Nido Resorts, where the Travelite team and I had a most pleasurable stay. More fashion finds are unveiled by British clothing brand Orlebar Brown, along with stylish his and her summer must-haves to complete your beach bags with. This season brings even more reasons to let loose, have fun and best of all, relish golden moments under the sun.

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Managing Editor

Photography Paelo Pedrajas Styling James Scott Model Olga D. | Elite Manila Hair & Make-up Anton Patdu for MAC Cosmetics | Lynelle Hair Extensions Shot on location at El Nido Lagen Island Resort Cover Outfit: Silk bra top, T By Alexander Wang. Perforated skirt, Carven. Art deco earrings and bangle, Lanvin. Gold cuff, Arnel Papa.


contributors Viola Raikhel-Bolot, co-founder

After spending time as an intern in

and Managing Director of 1858 Ltd

South Africa, Holly Byrne, who is

Art Advisory, is frequently invited

currently a journalism student at the

as a guest lecturer at Sotheby’s

University of South Australia, has fond

Institute and the International Bar

memories of the country, involving

Association as well as various art

rugged cliff-side hikes, enchanting

fairs and museums. Get a sample

beaches, thrilling shark cage dives

of her prized insights in IT’S MINE!

and exciting game reserves. She

WHAT NEXT?, as she brings forth

revisits one particularly stunning

some considerations after acquiring

area in THE EDGE OF SOUTH AFRICA.

an art piece. Having over 10 years of experience,

When she’s not pre-occupied as

Tai Hui, Managing Director and

the Marketing Manager of luxury

Chief Market Strategist, Asia, for

bespoke travel company Brown +

J.P. Morgan Funds, is an expert in

Hudson, Elizabeth Ellis fills her

Y

providing

understandable

time with yoga, photography, food,

CM

economic

and

wine and leisure travel. She has

MY

financial conditions in the region.

visited more than 20 countries and in

CY

In DON’T TIME THE MARKET, he

CABIN COUTURE: BESPOKE TRAVEL

CMY

stresses the value of patience when

BY TRAIN, she shares her knowledge

K

handling investments.

and memories on rail journeys.

analyses

easily of

the

Tim Russell, Marketing Director of

In ANYTHING BUT AS LONG AS

luxury tour operator Remote Lands,

IT’S

has come a long way in so many

Longworth, Education Consultant

aspects since 1992, when he worked

at Berry Bros. & Rudd, focuses

as a tour guide in Paris. Having lived

on one grape variety to discuss its

and travelled extensively throughout

origins and characteristics. Being a

Asia,

CHARDONNAY,

Amanda

superior

WSET (Wine Spirit Education Trust)

knowledge about the region, which he

certified educator who holds the

shares in ELEMENTS OF ASIA.

Level 4 Diploma, she is well on her

he

has

gained

way to becoming a Master of Wine.

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social timeline

Sakhir

Formula 1 Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix 4-6 APRIL It’s going to be a weekend of intense competition and entertainment as the Formula 1 fever spreads across the Gulf. Catch the highlights including the first ever Formula 1 night race celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Bahrain International Circuit (BIC). Book a Formula One Paddock Club™ Package and enjoy privileges such as VIP access to the circuit and pit lane walkabouts, among others.

New york

AREAA Global and Luxury Summit 12-15 APRIL Brought to you by the Asian Real Estate Association of America, this spectacle provides a substantial platform for you to immerse in the growing luxury real estate industry. Not only does it offer a global exchange of valuable views on investment strategies, but also presents business networking opportunities – not to mention an excuse to visit the Big Apple.

cannes

Cannes International Film Festival 14-25 MAY One of the film industry’s most anticipated festivals never fails to amaze, whether through its star-studded red carpets or its roster of motion pictures. Filmmakers and enthusiasts from different parts of the world converge in this single spectacle held in the French Riviera to celebrate the art of movies. Along with the screenings and awarding ceremonies are exclusive parties attended by the industry elite. Photo courtesy of AFFIF

12 | TRAVELITE


social timeline

Como

Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este 23-25 MAY Put together the elegance of vintage cars and the allure of a lakeside location and what you have is an unbeatable environment of timeless beauty. Showcasing over 50 historic cars from the twenties to the seventies, this gathering relives the most important moments of the automotive world’s past. The event also gives a preview of what’s to come through exhibits by the industry’s trusted manufacturers.

shanghai

International Luxury Travel Market Asia 2-5 JUNE There’s still nothing like face-to-face interaction, especially when you’re out to find the very best of luxury travel in the world. That’s why during this invitation-only affair, each enquiry is matched with a corresponding 20-minute appointment. With up to 60 appointments and over 550 international suppliers ready to cater to your needs, you’re sure to find the most memorable travel experiences around.

MIAMI

Le Miami 9-12 JUNE Advocating the cultural shift of luxury to a more dynamic front, this invitation-only event caters to a more specific set of travellers. It bridges the gap between the edgy, design-focused wanderers of the world and the new breed of travel and lifestyle brands that deviate from traditions in favour of creativity and innovation. Offering unique experiences, it presents the world in a new perspective.

TRAVELITE | 13


destination hotlist | The best of Maldives

14 | TRAVELITE


destination hotlist | Hotels & Resorts

North Malé Atoll

Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa The thought that a mere 15-minute boat ride from the Malé

Where azure seas and the whitest of beaches are the norm,

airport is all that separates you from paradise should get you

relaxation is key and of course, Sheraton pulls all the stops to

packing your bags in an instant. Faster than you can say Jack

provide the utmost. The signature Shine Spa sits on its own small

Robinson, you’ll be surrounded by clear, blue lagoons, white

island and offers a bewildering array of decadent treatments.

sandy beaches and modern luxuries that await at the Sheraton

Your choice of face and body therapies and massages come

Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa.

with calming views and soothing sounds of the sea. You’ll also find it necessary to lounge by the freshwater pool, enjoy sunset

Ready to be your home in this tropical haven are 20 water villas

yoga sessions or indulge in any of the seven exquisite dining

and 156 guestrooms donning sleek, contemporary interiors.

destinations. In any case, capping your day with private dinners

Whether you choose to get cosy on land or water, a Sheraton

under a bed of stars is always a splendid idea.

Sweet Sleeper™ bed greets from every spacious bedroom for the sweetest of slumbers throughout your stay. If you’re looking

Reserve

to splurge, the Ocean Vila is worth every penny – from infinite

per

an

sea views to delightful amenities including a private deck with

www.sheratonmaldives.com

night

Ocean for

an

Villa

starting

unforgettable

from Maldivian

USD1,600 getaway.

its own day bed, outdoor rain shower and plunge pool, among many others.

Photos courtesy of Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa

TRAVELITE | 15


destination hotlist | The best of Maldives

Noonu Atoll

The Sun Siyam Iru Fushi Take a 52-ac island, surround it with the most amazing views of the Indian Ocean and you get a perfect base for a tropical escape. To add are 221 ocean front villas designed in traditional Maldivian architecture, 11 restaurants and bars serving specialties to please all ages and cravings and a myriad of experiences on land, sea and beneath. That’s just a shortlist of the wonders offered at the recently launched The Sun Siyam Iru Fushi, which now welcomes sunseekers and beachcombers following a stunning makeover. Be one with the sea when you book an Infinity Water Villa, which, as the name suggests, perches you over infinite waters. You also get an outdoor deck, al fresco bath tub and a private

Leisure and recreation come in many forms at the resort, with

lava stone pool to complete your luxurious lodging. For bigger

water sports, fitness facilities and excursions to get you active

groups and families, three types of Retreat accommodations are

throughout the day.

available, which also come with round-the-clock butler services and delightful welcome foot massages. You’ll also be sure to get

Book one of only five Infinity Water Villas from USD2,172 to

personalised stays every time, from your choice of pillows and

experience the brand new offerings at The Sun Siyam Iru Fushi.

room fragrance to thoughtful nightly turndowns.

www.irufushi.com

16 | TRAVELITE


destination hotlist | The best of Maldives

Lhaviyani Atoll

Kanuhura Dreamlike views, serene ambience and thoughtful service are a way of life in Kanuhura, located in one of the Maldives’ most remote atolls. The first sight of the immaculate stretch of beach circling the atoll is sure to take your breath away, just moments after you are welcomed by the staff’s friendly smiles. Then, there are the charming villas, built and designed with natural materials, blending seamlessly with the surrounds. Kanuhura’s signature rustic theme exudes island chic cosiness and is impeccably contrasted with delightful villa amenities. Your home in paradise could either be perched on white sands or over crystal-clear waters. However, for the grandest of all stays, you’ll find two alluring Grand Water Villas, each with spacious bedrooms, relaxation lounges and private sun decks, all hovering over serene, blue waters. When you’re ready to explore, sail to nearby islands including the resort’s privately owned Jehunuhura isle where you can enjoy castaway-inspired picnics. Romantic, private cruises with a backdrop of divine sunsets are also one of many unforgettable experiences not to be missed during your stay. Back at the resort, four restaurants and two bars await your return for sumptuous island feasts under the moonlight. Relish an enchanting stay at Kanuhura with Grand Water Villa

accommodations

starting

at

USD930

per

night.

www.kanuhura.com

TRAVELITE | 17


destination hotlist | GastroPubs

Singapore

Cook & Brew With a selection of over 100 craft beers from 17 countries, you’d be hard-pressed to settle for a sole bottle when dropping by Cook & Brew, a relatively new gastrobar on the 33rd floor of The Westin Singapore. Set in the middle of the buzzing lion city, the bar provides a laidback yet stylish sanctuary for Singapore’s urban citizens seeking some unwinding after a day’s work. Cook & Brew showcases splendid views of the Marina Bay through its floor-to-ceiling windows, so it’s not just the menu that entices the senses. Try the Sushi Bowl (USD 16) and the Veal Schnitzel (USD 24) during dinner and enjoy your feast while marvelling at the evening cityscape. Complete your meal with some of the premium beers offered and you’re off to a night of relaxed enjoyment. Moa Blanc from New Zealand (USD 18), Duvel from Belgium (USD 16) and Fuller’s London Pride from the UK (USD 16) are some of the signature beverage items to try. Besides the beers and the scrumptious local comfort food,

Bangkok

the place also offers fine wines in a manner enthusiasts will

HYDE & SEEK

surely appreciate. Through the Enomatic® system, Cook & Brew preserves the characteristics of the wine while allowing guests to

taste the selection before deciding on a glass or bottle. Simply More than just a place for a tipple, Hyde & Seek is a culinary avail of a wine card for this unique wine tasting experience. playground for Bangkok’s discerning locals and visitors. As with any www.thewestinsingapore.com/cookandbrew

gastropub, the food is excellent with specialties such as Steamed Black Mussels (USD 12) and Duck Leg Confit (USD 9) to go along with your drinks. The place itself is straightforward, reminiscent of a quintessential English pub. There’s the bar on one side and glass windows on the other, while wooden bar stools with tables to match occupy the space in between. There’s also an al fresco area with cushioned chairs where large groups of friends are ideal to gather. The menu is a different story, offering playful twists to several classics. Baby Back Ribs with toasted chilli and chocolate glaze (USD 12) and the Wagyu Burger stuffed with foie gras served with shredded cabbage, brie and red wine bun (USD 16) are some of the unique interpretations of otherwise typical dishes that you must not miss. Judging from the number of bottles displayed at the bar, Hyde & Seek is obviously serious about its drinks. It’s also good to know that the bar list is constantly being updated, sustaining the interest of its patrons. Day Dreams (USD 11), a drink made of Ketel One, Luxardo Maraschino, lychee liqueur, watermelon and melon crumble, is one of the special concoctions that will make you understand why Hyde & Seek has earned multiple awards and a cult following. www.hydeandseek.com

18 | TRAVELITE


destination hotlist | GastroPub

In the patchwork of islands that make up the Maldives archipelago, Kanuhura stands out as a unique treasure. Emerging from the waters of the remote Lhaviyani Atoll, the secluded resort is the ultimate island hideaway. Scattered around the small tropical island are a collection of gorgeous villas, some nestled around the junglefringed beaches and other perched over the crystal-clear water. All have been carefully made with hand-carved wood, bamboo and other natural materials that reflect the natural surroundings, creating a rustic ‘island chic’ ambiance. Kanuhura Lhaviyani Atoll Maldives

T +960 662 00 44 F +960 662 00 33 info@kanuhura.com.mv www.kanuhura.com

TRAVELITE | 19


destination hotlist | GastroPubs

hong kong

common room Common Room is one of those casual dine-and-drink places that exude a cool, rustic ambience, calling for long hours of spirited conversations over indulgent comfort food and rounds of refreshing drinks. But this convivial gastrobar in Hong Kong’s Central district takes the experience further by serving molecular cocktails. Kiss from a Rose (USD 14), a cocktail consisting of vodka, lychee liqueur, fresh lychee, lemon juice and homemade rose foam is a testament of Common Room’s daring nature when it comes to mixology. In this casual environment of dark wood and leather, innovative cocktails incorporating unusual ingredients such as homemade rosemary syrup, lemon essence and lemongrass syrup are

The 4,000-sqm space is sophisticated but always inviting,

enjoyed together with familiar dishes like Lobster Linguine (USD

featuring warm lighting and fine interiors. Find your spot at the

20) and Bone Marrow (USD 15). The result is an absolutely

31-ft long mixology bar and check out the Common Room’s

satisfying experience for the palate. The comprehensive menu,

impressive collection of spirits displayed on the cast iron liquor

which offers everything from seafood to ice cream, would not

library while downing your drinks. Meanwhile, the wooden

disappoint whether you’re stopping by for lunch, dinner or drinks.

communal tables are perfect for groups who are up for a feast. www.common-room.hk

shanghai

table no. 1 Being the brainchild of Jason Atherton, the Michelin-starred chef behind Maze, an acclaimed restaurant in London under the Gordon Ramsay Group, it’s not surprising that Table No. 1 is fast becoming a notable gastronomic destination in Shanghai. But besides the contemporary European cuisine, this gastrobar, located at The Waterhouse at South Bund, is also ideal for a relaxed evening of fine wines. With an extensive wine list boasting bottles sourced everywhere from Argentina to France, the place is an enthusiast’s dream realised. Featuring interiors of wood and grey brick generously illuminated by natural light, Table No. 1 is a place for informal socialising enjoyed with memorable culinary masterpieces complemented by a steady supply of the best libations. It has a casual environment ideal for lingering talks, especially after a day’s worth of hard work. Even the menu encourages interaction as the dishes are offered in portions perfect for sharing, whether for light snacks or full meals. Some of the items you and your friends can indulge in are Salt and Pepper Prawns (USD 13) and Roasted Turbot on the Bone with saffron mash, crab salad and salsa verde (USD 24). If you have a more private affair in mind, Table No. 1 is equipped with two private rooms that can host your party. www.tableno-1.com

20 | TRAVELITE


Legian Beach, Bali

destination hotlist | GastroPub

Make an authentic connection. Located on palm-fringed Legian beach near Seminyak, O-CE-N Bali by Outrigger offers spacious rooms and suites that blend contemporary luxury with tropical island style. Call +62 361 737 400 email res@outrigger-bali.com or visit Outrigger.com

O~CE~N Bali by Outrigger

H AWA I I • F I J I • AU S T R A L I A • T H A I L A N D • B A L I • G UA M

TRAVELITE | 21


Nepal

Tiger Mountain Pokhara Lodge Relaxation is at its peak at a cosy lodge with a view of the world’s highest mountain range. Nepal’s Tiger Mountain Pokhara Lodge is where you can take pleasure in yoga and meditation retreats with a view of the Himalayas in every posture. Its picturesque and isolated location 1,000 ft above the Pokhara Valley ensures tranquil sessions, only disturbed momentarily by the sounds of nature. Four types of yoga – Kriya, Om, Shahaj and Kundalini are tailored to make the most of the scenery and bring utter calm to your mind, body and soul. Decadent massages also pair well with the views, with your choice of the relaxing Shiatsu, the balancing Hara and Shiatsu combination treatment, the stimulating Ayurvedic Yoga or the revitalising Holistic Massage, which blends acupressure with joint mobilisation and Ayurvedic techniques. At the end of every pampering and meditation, the swimming pool with snow-capped mountain reflections invite for further unwinding. www.tigermountainpokhara.com

14 | TRAVELITE


destination hotlist | wellness Retreats

indonesia

MesaStila In the midst of a stunning coffee plantation in Central Java is a multi-awarded spa commended for its unique approach to wellness. To add are top-notch facilities and rare signature treatments, which only account for its nomination in the 2014 World Luxury Spa Awards. Spa experiences at MesaStila are bound to take you beyond relaxation to a deeper sense of wellbeing. Jumpstarting a healthy lifestyle while on vacation this summer is one of the things you can enjoy in this scenic destination, where you can alternately indulge in traditional Javanese treatments and excellent spa cuisine based on local, organic ingredients. The only authentic Turkish Hammam in Southeast Asia is also found here, which means endless steam baths combined with cleansing rituals are always at the ready to soothe and pamper. To cleanse your body from the inside out, the 110-minute Royal MesaStila Detox ritual incorporates a relaxing steam session with

Creating balance to this state of calm are fitness classes to

full body cleansing and exfoliation, scalp and hair treatment,

complete your tailored wellness programmes. Options include

rose water splash and a soothing abdominal massage. You can

yoga, Javanese martial arts, boot camp trainings and cycling

further combine Hammam Rituals with traditional scrubs, wraps,

tours among many others, allowing you to reinvent yourself in

herbal baths and healing massages, starting with the exfoliating

between relaxation, organic cuisine and breathtaking landscapes.

Javanese Lulur treatment, followed by the cellulite reducing

www.mesahotelsandresorts.com/mesastila

Coffee and Pandan Wrap, and capping off with the deeplyrelaxing Traditional Javanese Massage, which eases muscle tension and triggers detoxification.

TRAVELITE | 23


destination hotlist | Luxury voyages

grand european tour

viking river cruises With phenomenal art, rich history, marvellous architecture and excellent cuisine found all over the continent, there’s never

where you are likely to get lost, albeit delightfully, in the picturesque labyrinth of quintessential European structures such as the Matthias Church and Fisherman’s Bastion.

enough time to explore Europe. One fine way to take in the region’s essence is through one of Viking Cruises’ voyages,

In between cities, you’ll be smoothly sailing on the iconic Rhine,

which allows you to experience the exceptional, must-visit

Main and Danube Rivers. But just because you’re not on dock

spots. The Grand European Tour offers outstanding immersions

doesn’t mean the cultural immersion has to stop. The vessel

from Netherlands to Hungary in 15 magical days. Spanning five

depends on the dates, but all of Viking River Cruises’ ships offer

countries and 13 guided tours, this cruise is an indulgent foray

top-notch features. Cooking classes, traditional folk music and

into varying cultures.

dance performances and talks about the European Union are just some attractions on-board that let you delve deeper into the

Your European journey starts at the charming city of Amsterdam

robust European culture.

where you’ll have the chance to explore the sites on your own. The next day marks the beginning of exciting scheduled tours to

During more private moments, luxuriate in your astonishing

some of each destination’s key landmarks. In Cologne, Koblenz,

suite, which comes equipped with a private wraparound veranda

Würzburg and Bamberg, UNESCO World Heritage Sites are the

showcasing views of the most captivating riverbanks you will see.

major highlights, while Nuremberg and Passau offer equally

Individual climate control, a large bathroom with double sinks and

stunning and historically significant structures from centuries

premium toiletries are some of the other refinements that will

past. Some of the other notable experiences and attractions

make every minute of your cruise nothing less than wonderful.

that your senses will feast on are the glassblowing traditions in Miltenberg, the medieval forts and churches in Bratislava and

Book The Grand European Tour with Explorer Suite accommodations

the Opera House, museums as well as the local signature cake

at USD 15,362 per person based on double occupancy.

called Sachertorte in Vienna. The journey concludes in Budapest

www.vikingrivercruises.com

24 | TRAVELITE


destination hotlist | luxury voyages

TRAVELITE | 23


destination hotlist | Luxury voyages

Pure One at Côte d’Azur

Camper & Nicholsons Luxury commercial cruises are always a treat, but there are those times that call for more exclusive sea journeys. During such occasions, chartering a yacht for private adventures out at sea is in order. Camper & Nicholsons offers a fleet of yachts for charter in several coveted destinations perfect for a sun-soaked summer. One of the most promising itineraries recommended is a cruise along the coastline of Côte d’Azur, a favourite playground among discerning travellers. Looking out to the horizon while cruising along the French Riviera is just one of the many sublime experiences to be had during this eight-day voyage. Pure One, a 46.2-m beauty is the vessel of choice for this cruise, offering speed, comfort and sophisticated design. Equipped with five elegantly furnished cabins, it easily accommodates you plus 11 of your sun-seeking friends. As you slither across the Mediterranean Sea, indulge in a bottle of bubbly while lounging at the bar on the sundeck or enjoy cinematic entertainment at the media room on the main deck. There’s also a Jacuzzi on the foredeck, which offers even more privacy.

From the moment you undock at St. Tropez to the time you reach Monaco, every part of the cruise promises utmost splendour whether on land or on water. Some of the earlier highlights include a visit to the vineyards of Île de Port Cross, trying water sports at Pampelonne Beach and dropping by Cannes for high-style shopping and for fine dining at the two-Michelin star restaurant La Palme d’Or. The rest of your time can be filled by more unforgettable experiences including a trek to the medieval hilltop village of Eze, perusing the horseshoe bay of Villefranche sur Mer, lunch at Paloma Beach and, of course, precious idle moments on the day beds at the rear portion of your private ocean abode. By the time you roll the dice at the Monte Carlo Casino, not only will you have a precious golden tan, but also a treasure trove of cruising memories to cherish forever. Pure One is all yours for a week of cruising along Côte d’Azur

starting

from

approximately

www.camperandnicholsons.com

26 | TRAVELITE

USD

206,000.


TRAVELITE | 23


feature | Huma Island REsort & Spa

INSIDER’S SECRET

Huma Island:

Legendary Shores From above, the unbelievable sight of this tropical eden is enough to get you dreaming of sun-drenched exploits within and around its bounds. The island, covered in robust greenery and fringed by white sand beaches, beckons with a stunning display of blues and greens along with what looks like a string of gems neatly set on the water. This is Huma Island Resort & Spa, and the views are only the beginning of a beautiful tale. You’d think that such a magnificent place would take forever to reach, but that is not the case. Located in Busuanga, Palawan, the resort is only 70 minutes away from Manila when taking the resort’s private seaplanes. Busuanga airport, which offers daily commercial flights from and to the Philippine capital, is also only 10 minutes away from the resort. Whether you’re flying in or arriving by boat, the trip to the resort is a treat for the senses either way. The sights are nothing short of breathtaking, from the pristine waters to the clear, open skies. Solely occupying an island formerly known as Dicilingan, the property only gets more impressive as you close in.

28 | TRAVELITE


feature | Huma Island REsort & Spa

INSIDER’S SECRET

The new name was derived from a legend in which a galleon

Magenta, bright green and teal, as seen in bold tropical

from the Middle East named Huma was washed ashore after

prints, give the interiors a punch of colour, enlivening the

coming across a violent storm. The vessel was carrying

otherwise monochromatic spaces. The use of thatched

precious commodities including herbs, spices, cutlery,

roofing, wood panels and natural fibres echoes the native

textiles, opium and tobacco. Having survived the ordeal, the

character of the island, but the treatments and execution

galleon’s flamboyant captain and his crew found themselves

are contemporary in nature. The result is a scintillating

on the island and developed a strong liking for the place.

environment that balances comfort and style.

They decided to stay, establishing valuable friendships with the local tribesmen – what followed was a beautiful fusion of cultures, still celebrated long after the captain’s passing. Having such a rich story behind the island, it’s only fitting that the resort is a sanctuary of grandeur, merging modern luxuries with an exotic locale. A collection of 81 accommodation units awaits guests who are bound to get utterly smitten by the charm of this exquisite refuge. Villa hosts are even around to provide round-the-clock service, so your only worries are limited to the depth of your tan and the drinks to have come sunset. Of all the living spaces, the 64 villas on stilts offer the most decadent stays. These over-water residences offer escapes that are more intimate as privacy is easily attained and the views are relentlessly bewildering. Decide whether you prefer dawn or dusk and pick from the Sunrise and Sunset Water Villas. In any case, you’ll be surrounded by refinements and treated to features such as a wooden sun deck, private courtyard, Jacuzzi, outdoor shower and 24hour room service. If you’re celebrating a special life event or are simply in for a splurge, the 294-sqm Presidential Suite presents a spectacular dwelling. With added perks such as villa check-in, golf cart service and personalised butler service, it’s the pinnacle of island indulgence. The wooden deck facing the sea is surely to be a favourite spot. Have a cocktail while basking in the vibrancy of the sun and master the pleasure-seeking Huma lifestyle as you stay longer on the island.

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feature | Huma Island REsort & Spa

INSIDER’S SECRET

In terms of dining, Huma offers a variety of restaurants where you can feast on delicious spreads or enjoy a round of drinks. If you think being in such a remote location limits your palate, the eight dining outlets will convince you otherwise – head to Al Fairuz for Lebanese favourites, Al Dente for Italian specialties, the Al Dente cellar for wines and spirits, On The Harbour for fresh seafood, Waves for international cuisine, Blu Bar for snacks and sweets, Tagahuma for PanAsian delicacies, and Rudi’s for wines and cheeses. No need to feel guilty about indulging in a plethora of gastronomic delights as the Humazing Spa and the resort’s own fitness centre allow you to maintain great physical and mental health. Designed with glass floors that afford you of views of the marine sanctuary below, the spa villas offer more than the usual therapies and rituals. There is also a yoga pavilion and an infinity pool for more wellness and recreational activities. Off the island, a variety of pleasures awaits the intrepid. Uncover some of the famous dive spots of Palawan through The Huma Dive Center. Robust coral reefs and Japanese shipwrecks from WWII are only a short, scenic boat ride away. Tailor-made excursions to neighbouring islands and towns are also worth including in your itinerary. From the

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magical Barracuda Lake, Kayangan Lake and Twin Lagoon to the insightful Calauit Island Game Preserve and Wildlife Sanctuary, both kids and adults will delight in stellar attractions, which happen to be only within the surrounding areas of the island. As legend has it, this piece of paradise has always been a wondrous site, winning the adoration of even the most experienced voyagers. Today, as Huma Island Resort & Spa, it remains enthralling, luring more wanderers, who, like the galleon captain of yore, helplessly fall for its unfading, transcendent charm. www.humaisland.com


feature | HUMA ISLAND

Huma Island Resort & Spa opened its doors in December 2013, with its very own sea plane transfers to the island. A luxurious hide away in Philippines nestled in Busuanga Palawan, also dubbed as Philippine’s last frontier. With its unparalleled location, endless blue waters, marine life that is surrounded by dozen of sunken Japanese warships and planes, Palawan was hailed as one of top 10 best diving sites in the world. Combining natural beauty, sophisticated accommodation, luxury travel and personalized service, Huma Island Resort and Spa offers 81 villas each with private Jacuzzi, an infinite swimming pool, 8 dining outlets, fitness center, library, kids room, diving center and wide range of water adventures. The resort’s SPA boasts glass bottom floors, again a very first in the Philippines with international services like Moroccan bath, Ayurveda treatment and the famed traditional (“hilot”) Filipino massage. Huma Island is perfectly designed sanctuary for those seeking luxury holidays, personalized service and outstanding gastronomical adventures. The resort’s beach villa allows you to step from your private balcony directly into turquoise beach waters or lay your troubles away in your outdoor private Jacuzzi. Over the water villa offers exquisite privacy with an infinite panoramic views and an outdoor Jacuzzi. All villas offers state of the art technology including WLAN, flat-panel televisions, coffee & tea making facilities in each villa, private Jacuzzis and bathtubs, indoor and outdoor showers . Sixty four (64) villas out of the eighty one (81) villas are placed over the water which makes the resort to achieve the highest number of over water villas in the entire Philippines.

TRAVELITE | 31


destination hotlist | Unique MICE Offerings

BALI

Semara Luxury Villa Resort Sitting on a breathtaking slice of Uluwatu, Semara Luxury Villa Resort showcases endless views of white sands and blue waters below. Adding to its uniqueness is a charming ‘resort within a resort’ concept, with seven individually designed villas featuring its own signature theme. All villas boast spacious guestrooms, private gardens, swimming pools and outdoor bales. Picking one favourite out of the seven is quite a challenge, good thing each one enjoys the same stunning views of the cliff side to hopefully make deciding easier for guests. Having been a favourite destination for vacationing families and groups of friends, returning guests have hosted one intimate social event after another complete with set-up, tailored menus and personalised service from the resort’s staff. Now, business meetings and corporate affairs can take advantage of the same oceanfront vistas, luxurious amenities and thoughtful service when choosing Semara as their next MICE venue. Enjoy

two

different

interpretations

of

traditional

Balinese

architecture when you host a boardroom meeting for 12 at Villa Chintamani or a larger event for up to 45 in Villa Ambar with its private media room and large open bale. Doing business with pleasure is also possible at the colonial-style Villa Tamarama or the Spanish-inspired Villa Santai Sorga, both with separate living, dining and entertaining areas. In case you need more options, two flood lit tennis courts are on the ready to welcome up to 600 of your guests. The cliff top Selatan Restaurant also offers indoor and outdoor areas, which come with signature dishes and fine wines against a picturesque backdrop. As with all well-kept secrets, the white sands of Finn’s, Semara’s exclusive beach club have now gained a following, including the corporate world. Barefoot meetings await you and your colleagues, which are best capped with sunset cocktails and barbecue dinners under the stars. Unveiling two more exciting MICE venues this year, Semara Resorts Group means business – but of course, never without pleasure on the side. Balinese landmark Canggu Club is having a grand Semara makeover and is set to launch five different venues, including a 56-seater cinema, water park, trampoline centre and a bowling alley. Villa Gajah Putih, a seven-bedroom estate facing the expansive Canggu Beach is another delightful offering to look out for this year. www.semararesorts.com

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destination hotlist | TROPICAL RESORTS

5 MEETING VENUES + 10 EVENT SPACES

Perched high on limestone cliffs overlooking the Indian Ocean at Bali’s most southern tip, Semara Luxury Resort, Uluwatu is fast becoming one of Bali’s most sought after venues. Dramatic in all dimensions, Semara Luxury Resort offers complete facilities for an A-lister’s retreat. More information at www.semarauluwatu.com/events E : events.uluwatu@semararesorts.com

TRAVELITE | 15 Jalan Pantai Selatan Gau, Banjar Wijaya Kusuma Ungasan 80362 Bali, Indonesia | T: + 62 (361) 848 2111


Epicurious | Beach Cafés

Phuket

Breeze at Cape Yamu w w w.breezecapeyamu.com Situated in a secluded and private peninsula that overlooks Phang Nga Bay, Breeze at Cape Yamu is a favourite dining destination among Phuket’s beachcombers. It’s easy to see why, as the place sits on a hill showcasing sweeping views of the sea, entertaining every diner with nature’s abundant beauty. In case the views are not convincing enough, then the food certainly is. Updated every week based on the availability and quality of the ingredients, the menu guarantees freshness at all times. The restaurant is open from lunch up to late dinner, serving contemporary fare from the west such as Reblochon Cheese (USD 11) Oyster Rockefeller (USD 15) and Duck Confit (USD 23), among others. The chef, Cheryl Johnson, is considered one of the best in the country and all it takes is a brunch at Breeze to understand why. By sourcing only the freshest, each ingredient retains its inherent character and blends harmoniously with one another, resulting to food oozing with flavour. To match the delectable dishes, Breeze boasts an expansive selection of spirits including champagne and wine in white, red and rose varieties. You’d want to reserve in advance as Breeze has gained a considerable following among Phuket’s jet-set crowd. On Sundays, when reservations are required, the place is packed with tourists enjoying brunch. As the menu constantly changes, it would be best to ask the servers for more recommendations.

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Epicurious | Beach Cafés

TRAVELITE | 35


Epicurious | Beach Cafés

Langkawi

Fat Cupid w w w.fatcupid.com.my There’s no need to get hit by an arrow to fall in love with this charming restaurant steps away from the shores of Pantai Tengah in Langkawi. Fat Cupid serves well-loved Malaysian dishes based on recipes lovingly passed on by the owners’ grandmother, lending the food a warm, home-cooked appeal that’s utterly comforting to the heart as well as pleasing to the taste buds. Casual, friendly and unpretentious, Fat Cupid is an idyllic sanctuary for a nice, quiet brunch. The whitewashed structure is complemented by interiors of the same shade, creating a pleasant and welcoming environment. There is a pool right in front of the main dining area and verdant foliage surround the property, making the open-air eatery even more endearing. The menu is straightforward, offering Western and Asian delights perfect for breakfast, dinner and everything in between. Before digging into the main dishes, try any of Fat Cupid’s salads, which its patrons swear by. Pair your meal with a freshly brewed iced

Melbourne

Sand Bar w w w.sandbarbeachcafe.com.au Nestled right on the beach between sandy shores and a highway,

tea or a signature cocktail to cool down, especially after some

Sand Bar is every bit the sunny, casual beach café that you

time out in the sun. To truly savour what the restaurant is all

would want to find yourself in on any given morning. Serving

about, order the Nasi Sambal Udang, a hot prawn dish, and

breakfast and lunch over sweeping views of Port Phillip Bay, it

the traditional Nyonya Laksa along with Sweet Potato Chunks

is the daytime haunt of many locals and tourists in Melbourne,

with Poached Eggs (USD 8 each), and you might just find it

most especially on weekends.

impossible not to swoon. Always buzzing with life, the restaurant has a convivial atmosphere. The ambience is easy and laid-back, made more pleasant by predominantly white interiors and wooden floors. Plenty of sunlight streams in through the glass doors and windows making the place all the more vibrant and inviting. Outside, a wooden deck awaits those who want their food to go with gorgeous sea views. If you’re the type, reserve a table at this area and enjoy the fresh sea breeze. You’ll find it hard not to go down the shore just for that priceless feeling of sand between your toes. Complementing the captivating locale, the menu is simple and refreshing. There’s a selection of set meals for breakfast, but you also get the option of creating your own combinations of different food items – from gluten-free bread to chorizo. For lunch, try some of the stellar dishes, including Prawn and Scallops Lettuce Cups (USD 16), Calamari Salad (USD 20), Beef Wrap (USD 18) and Spaghetti Marinara (USD 25). There is also a dedicated menu for the little ones as well as a beverage list, which features everything from Australian beer to wine. For a sweet conclusion, go and check the display cabinet for the day’s sinful desserts.

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Epicurious | Beach Cafés

TRAVELITE | 37


feature | Two Seasons Island Resort & spa Coron

INSIDER’S SECRET

Two Seasons coron:

Summer Bliss Sun-kissed exploits by the coast define the essence of summer journeys. When the temperature rises, the shores beckon, promising a fresh collection of experiences yours for the taking. Two Seasons Island Resort & Spa, a sprawling oasis in Coron, Palawan, provides an idyllic setting for the season’s exciting and boundless possibilities. Nestled between two stretches of beach, this island gem positions you in the centre of a natural playground of blue-green lagoons, white sand beaches, unspoilt coral reefs, majestic limestone formations and untouched forests. Coron is a peaceful town belonging to a cluster of islands in the northern tip of Palawan and Two Seasons occupies a prime slice of this tropical paradise. The environment-friendly resort is built amongst verdant foliage with one end providing access to a sandbar that connects to an islet. There are 42 luxuriously appointed bungalows ready to host your indulgent summer interlude, and while basking in the splendour of your personal sanctuary is a glorious way to while the days away, venturing out to closely inspect the bounty of marvels around will reap priceless rewards.

gateway to the area’s countless wonders. Palawan is known for its marine biodiversity and beneath the surf is another world waiting to be admired. Besides the kaleidoscope of fauna and flora, mystifying shipwrecks of decades past are also worth the plunge, allowing you to recount history underwater. Sangat Wreck, the site of a sunken World War II ship, is one of the many outstanding dive spots around. Another way of enjoying the underwater scenery is by hopping on a Hydrobob Submersible Scooter, which allows even non-swimmers and non-divers to glide across schools of fish with ease. If you prefer the traditional way, the resorts’ line of snorkelling gear is at the ready. Above the water, kite boarding, wakeboarding, water skiing and stand-up paddle boarding are perfect on any sunny day. Sailing on a catamaran and cutting across the waters on a banana boat also promise fun, worthwhile moments, but for something more unique, try one of the resort’s Molokini transparent kayaks and paddle your way around the island while soaking up the breathtaking views under and above the waves.

only a 30-minute, scenic speedboat ride away but offers a substantial immersion into local heritage through historical landmarks. If it’s nature’s call that appeals to you more, drop by Kayangan Lake and take a dip in its crystal-clear waters fringed by jagged limestone cliffs. Better yet, hop from one island to another at Siete Pecados while snorkelling amidst countless fish species in between stops. Finally, get utterly awestruck by visiting Twin Lagoon, located in the largest limestone formation called Mount Calis. After a good round of exploration, indulge in massages and other treatments at Two Seasons’ Narra Spa to get you rejuvenated and ready for a night filled with more revelry. Exquisite island gastronomy follows at Sulu Restaurant, offering delectable continental cuisine. Bahura Bar offers the perfect conclusion to your eventful summer day with soothing music and freshly concocted drinks to lull you to a state of easy, breezy bliss. From exhilarating scenery to thoughtful amenities, Two Seasons Island Resort & Spa Coron leaves no stones unturned, making it an idyllic haven for all your summers and beyond. www.twoseasonsresorts.com/coron

The Pawikan Aqua Sports Center, the resort’s recreational facility, is your 38 | TRAVELITE

Off the island, there are more treasures waiting to be unveiled. Culion Island is


feature | two seasons coron

TRAVELITE | 39


globetrotters

Island Muse

Thriving in sand and sea, India Hicks, daughter of the Earl and Countess Mountbatten of Burma, grandchild of the last Viceroy of India, and second cousin of the Prince of Wales, traded actual castles to sand castles, while establishing her own empire as a global lifestyle brand. Holding court in the Bahamas with her husband and their five children, she discusses travel and the intricacies of island living.

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globetrotters

Where do you get inspiration for your creations? From so many places – my mother’s extraordinary British heritage or my father’s great archive of daring designs. But mainly from the small island my family and I live on where you never know what unexpected discovery can lead to a new collection. A few months ago, I was on the beach, walking my dogs as dawn broke. A couple of sandpipers took flight above my head and the first rays of sun turned from burnt orange to pink. I looked down and in the small rock pool at my feet, something glistened. I picked it up and saw a tiny, lonely fishing hook. And I realised at once what my next collection of jewellery would include.

Does travel influence your creativity? Travel is a huge source of influence. I have just designed a bedding collection called ‘The Lake Palace’ that is reminiscent of that incredible palace in Jaipur.

What’s your favourite summer destination? My mother’s home in Oxfordshire, especially the secret rose garden in which my father romantically imagined my sister and I would be proposed to. It’s in full bloom throughout those hazy summer months. And I am blessed with having seen a great deal of the world. But there are few places that are easily within reach for a summer break, far from the maddening crowd where I don’t need a typhoid injection. Alys Beach is one. I anticipated this newest development on Florida’s Emerald Coast to be everything I shied away from. It was founded based on ‘new urbanism’, a movement that promotes walking and talking, and a sense of being connected – not what I look for when I have a few free days away with my children. But in point of fact, this elegant, softly spoken beach town allows you to run or walk, to chat or be silent.

Have you always wanted to live on an island? Gosh, no. It never occurred to me! I was not nearly organised enough to ever think far enough ahead to decide where I would make my own home.

“Travel is a huge source of influence.”

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globetrotters

What do you love most about it? How about the downside? I love mostly that the house we bought on the island has now become more than that. It’s become a home which has evolved over time, layer upon layer, into a truthful representation of who we are. It is not a status symbol and certainly lacks pretension. Hibiscus Hill was built in the 1950s, but we endeavoured to make the villa look like it was built in the 1850s. The house sits on three ac of rolling gardens that stretch inland from the top of the dunes, with jungles on two sides and a valley of coconut palms on the other. The site looks out over the distant rooftops of town, the harbour and the setting sun.

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When we originally saw the house in 1996, peeking in the windows together, it was love at first sight. David remembers that I said simply, “It feels like home.” Of course, the downside to creating a home on a small tropical island is that everything has to come by boat, and when the boat doesn’t come, there can be no supplies! We also have to share a doctor with three other islands. There is no vet and no one knows how to drive the ambulance. Don’t think for a minute there is a cinema or dry cleaning. There are no daily newspapers and there is only one choice of toothpaste. And of course, there's the fact that we face three months of hurricanes!


globetrotters

TRAVELITE | 43


globetrotters

If you were not living in the Bahamas, where do you think would you be based? I’ve lived in London, Paris and New York, as well as Boston. I don’t know where I might have wandered next, but I am certain it won’t be a city. I could never go back to a city.

What’s your most treasured keepsake from a trip? We have so many souvenirs from far-flung destinations – a shark’s jaw from Africa, a pink parasol from India, stone dogs found in a flea market in Nashville, of all improbable places, but maybe my most treasured keepsake is the croquet set I shipped from England. It was given to me on my 12th birthday, the same day my grandfather was buried.

A big pair of Bose headphones. They take up far too much

Is there a place that you haven’t been to yet but are planning to visit?

space in my handbag, but they do eliminate the dreaded

Tokyo. I’ve been longing to go – but only for a brief

sound of the plane humming from one destination to

moment. My head might explode, otherwise. It would be

another. Those headphones transport me far more quickly

in such sharp contrast to my island life.

What can you never travel without?

to somewhere much more comforting than that small seat in the sky.

What does luxury mean to you? Time. It’s always just out of my reach.

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Feature | The Shanti Collection

INSIDER’S SECRET

Enchanting Balinese Retreats Beachside Hideaway

Trendy Breaks It’s possible to revel in seclusion while still enjoying convenient access to the vibrant entertainment scene of Seminyak. Four On Drupadi not only offers much-needed solitude in the lively district, but also six concept residences featuring chic interiors inspired by unique cultures. Your

Relish the sun-kissed, white-sand beaches of Nusa Dua on end

sumptuous options include the minimalist Japanese décor

when you stay in The Shanti Residence. Five luxurious suites

of Yuubi, striking Indian design of Pyaar, modern European

with sleek, minimal interiors praise the natural surroundings

interiors of Amore, time-honoured Balinese motif of Cinta,

of lush gardens and shimmering seas. Ultimate privacy and

contemporary Chinese furnishings of Oaini or the modish

the most luxurious of escapes are yours when you book the

New Orleans themed Damou. All six also come with its own

private villa in its entirety. This means having the sweeping

unique feature from bathtubs to plunge pools, including

infinity pool and outdoor deck all to yourself, on top of the suites’ plunge pools and scenic gazebos. Completing your lavish stays are tailored services from your personal butler, private master chef, chauffer and well-trained villa staff.

one with a billiard table. Aptly named, each one means “love” in the respective cultures, as the residences are sure to make you fall in love with every delightful stay.

Tranquil Escapes Serene holidays await in North Canggu, Bali’s quaint area which is only about 20 minutes drive from Seminyak. The short distance does not quite explain the sudden change in scenery that welcomes your arrival at The Lotus Residence. Lush gardens, lotus ponds and rice paddies

surround

the

six-suite

private

sanctuary,

all

meticulously designed in traditional Balinese architecture. Apart from the comforts offered by the suites, relaxation is best enjoyed at the spa with al fresco treatment bales or at the multi-purpose pavilion found at the heart of the residence, which also fronts a rectangular swimming pool. The Shanti Collection is a purveyor of lifestyle beyond luxury, as evident in its stunning portfolio of suites and residences found in many of Bali’s sought after locales. www.shanticollection.com

TRAVELITE | 45


arts & design

It’s Mine! What Next? So, you are the lucky new owner of a fine piece of art? Your journey into the world of art collecting has just begun. Viola Raikhel-Bolot, Global Head of Art Advisory for 1858 Ltd shares the intricacies following your purchase.

Collecting art is an exciting journey as any collector can

handling such items. Fragile objects, from aged canvases,

tell you. There is a thrill of the chase that drives collectors

delicate fine vases and statues with outstretched limbs

to extraordinary ends – rushing to be the first at art fairs

all need to be handled very delicately. Then there are

or falling in love with artworks and bidding for them

the artworks made from sensitive materials, including

passionately at auctions. Yet, we rarely talk about what

certain metals, which require protective wrapping to

happens next, once the transaction is complete. Unlike

avoid contact with other surfaces or substances that could

other more traditional investments such as stocks and

cause irreversible damage. Others still can be prone to

shares, which we can merely track, artworks are precious

environmental damage caused by light, temperature or

treasures that require dutiful care and attention. From

humidity. Fine art transporters will be aware of these

transport, storage, framing and insurance, once an artwork

specific needs and can help ensure artworks are protected

changes hands, it embarks on a fascinating journey and

at all times.

one worth knowing about if you ever consider buying an artwork yourself.

Whilst some collectors will want their latest acquisitions to hang prominently in their homes, others prefer to store

One of the first factors to consider once an artwork has

them safely out of sight. Taking the time to find the perfect

been bought is insurance. With the extremely high prices

place, the appropriate frame or install the correct lighting

commanded by the art market today, it is not worth

will ensure that the artwork can be appreciated favourably

taking any risks, and regardless of an artwork’s value, it

while protecting it from the elements and any potential

is irreplaceable, so having insurance is a crucial first step.

damage while in situ. Whilst increasing the emotional

Also worth remembering, is that while an artwork is in

value of the art pieces, correct installation also contributes

transit, it is at the highest risk of damage, so insurance

to the preservation of artworks, one of the key roles of art

should be properly organised before it leaves its place

owners. This is why even those who hold their artworks in

of purchase to cover all travel and eventualities until it

storage must be certain that their chosen storage facility

reaches its final destination.

can accommodate fine art, namely protecting against environmental factors and that it is equipped with methods

When it comes to transporting artworks, it is important to only employ moving professionals with experience in

46 | TRAVELITE

to deal with these professionally.


& DESIGN The Bell Pool Villa Resort ARTS Phuket

41/31 MOO 5, BAAN HUA KHUAN, SOI BELL, KAMALA, PHUKET 83150, THAILAND TEL. +66 76 279914 | FAX. +66 76 279412 | WWW.THEBELLPHUKET.COM | INFO@THEBELLPHUKET.COM

The Bell Pool Villa Resort Phuket offering luxury private pool villa from 1-4 bedrooms, resort is located in Kamala, which is on the west coast of Phuket, 30 minutes from Phuket International Airport alongside the beautiful turquoise waters of the Andaman Sea. Only a quick 2 minutes free schedule shuttle ride to Kamala Beach, each of our Phuket pool villas have beautiful 360 degree tropical jungle and scenic mountain views, which enhance the relaxed feeling that only Phuket can provide all traveling guests.

24 Hour Butler Service Providing more than just a service, we want to ensure that all our guests enjoy themselves and return home satisfied after having a great holiday. With the introduction of our 24 hour butler service team, we are able to cater for all your needs & requirements giving you the full experience. Our unique and friendly 24 hour butler service is available to all guests with all staff being contactable by using our free mobile phone service inside your villa.

The Heavens In Villa Spa A Luxury gift for all our guests; ultimate relaxation, pleasure & enjoyment with complete privacy guaranteed. Our in villa spa treatments have been chosen specially based on the health benefits that they provide our guests as well as them matching the beautiful surroundings we have to offer. TRAVELITE | 43 Your True Boutique Experience


arts & design

Once in place, an artwork still requires care and attention

Far more than simply falling in love and winning at auction,

for both preservation and security. In terms of preservation,

collecting art entails careful due diligence and ongoing

careful monitoring of artworks is critical. In case there are

attention to protect its value going forward. Of course, for

changes in the environment that could affect it, these need

some, the joy of collecting comes from acquiring artworks

to be monitored and dealt with accordingly. In addition,

or even simply admiring them in the privacy of one’s home.

many artworks need to be cleaned as the accumulation of

This is where art advisors can prove valuable. 1858 Ltd Art

dust or the long-term effects of oxidisation will become

Advisory undertakes the due diligence and risk mitigating

harder to remedy if left unattended for long periods of time.

steps on behalf of the clients. We have an invaluable

In terms of security, there are many ways artworks can be

network of industry insiders, ensuring that only the most

secured. From art specific alarm systems to state-of-the-

qualified professionals are employed to carry out these

art DNA coding, proper security measures reduce the risk

tasks. With decades of experience, our client’s artworks

of theft and can also help minimise insurance premiums.

are in the best possible hands, and provide assurance that

It is also recommended to have artworks valued regularly,

cherished artworks will remain so for generations to come.

as often as once a year to ensure any market fluctuations have been reflected in the insurance coverage. Lastly, artworks, whether acquired for personal enjoyment

1858 Ltd is a leading International Art Advisory firm

or financial investment, can be used as tools to many ends,

providing independent and impartial advice on all areas of

something that many art buyers are not always aware of

collection management to private clients, museums, luxury

from the outset. From lending artworks for educational or

brands and private banks. 1858 Ltd is also the current

philanthropic purposes to using them as collateral to raise

Spears Wealth Management award winner for Art Advisory

money, the possibilities are diverse and numerous.

Company of the year. www.1858ltd.com

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ARTS & DESIGN

Exotic islands, swaying palm trees, golden beaches, all that is enchanting about Bali is waiting for you at The Oberoi. Overlooking crashing surf and tropical sunsets along a 500-metre stretch of Seminyak Beach, The Oberoi, Bali is situated in the heart of Seminyak, with artisan boutiques, galleries and world class restaurants steps away. The Oberoi, Bali is beautifully landscaped, with an ocean front swimming pool, set amidst 15 acres of mature tropical gardens. A mixture of private villas most with private pools, views, or both, dots the bucolic landscape. Clusters of thatched-roof Lanai rooms complement the topography. Kura-Kura restaurant features European, Asian and Indian cuisines. Beachside Frangipani Cafe is a celebrated spot for alfresco dining overlooking the crashing surf. Cultural performances feature at The Amphitheatre, and Kayu Bar is the perfect place to escape the sun and enjoy a cool cocktail. Seminyak Beach, Jalan Kayu Aya, Denpasar 80361, Bali, Indonesia Telephone : (62-361) 730 361 | Facsimile : (62-361) 730 791 Email: info.tobi@oberoihotels.com | Website: www.oberoihotels.com

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Feature

|

Hotel Istana

INSIDER’S SECRET

Luxe KL Centrally located in the midst of Kuala Lumpur’s premier shopping and business centres, Hotel Istana is a top-notch retreat in the Malaysian capital, offering pleasures for travellers of every persuasion. Its prime location doesn’t only speak of plain luxury, but ultimately, offers convenience when staying in the city whether for business or leisure. The pulsating sites of Pavilion Kuala Lumpur, Changkat Bukit Bintang and the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre are some of the notable hot spots within a few minutes’ stroll. From the airport pick-up service to the express check-in and checkout features, Hotel Istana upholds the value of efficiency. Stay on the Club Floors and you barely have to lift a finger as a dedicated butler caters to your every beck and call. This 23-storey oasis has a collection of 515 tastefully appointed guestrooms and suites, each equipped with standard features including high-speed Internet access and coffee and tea-making facilities. The club rooms and suites on the 18th to the 22nd floors are among the most exceptional, adding more benefits such as access to the Club Lounge, where complimentary buffet breakfast and pre-dinner cocktails await. The lounge also comes with its own mini business centre offering secretarial services and facsimile machines to assist you with business duties.

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If you’re looking to splurge, one of the four individually designed Staterooms should be more than enough. With each exquisite unit boasting six deluxe rooms, a kitchenette, a living area and a Jacuzzi bath, privacy and space are never a problem; there’s even enough room for entertaining when an intimate private party is in order. On top of the expansive space and exclusive refinements are great views showcasing the bustling metropolis. In between meetings, shopping sprees and sightseeing tours, Hotel Istana invites you to its sophisticated facilities to make the most of your stay. Besides the swimming pool and fitness centre, the hotel also has the Sompoton Spa as a comforting refuge for the weary. Indulging in its invigorating therapies in a private spa suite will have you re-energised and ready for anything ahead. The hotel’s Kelantan and Melaka Gardens are also spots for priceless downtime. Covered in lush greenery, these outdoor spaces are perfect for laid-back tea parties. For grander celebrations, however, make the necessary reservations at any of the hotel’s six dining establishments. Hotel Istana can host even bigger events through its selection of thoughtfully designed function halls. It doesn’t matter whether you’re looking to close a deal or looking for good deals. Hotel Istana puts you right where it happens, so you worry less and enjoy more. www.hotelistana.com.my


TRAVELITE | 35


Business

Don’t Time the Market Invest Long and Prosper! Tai Hui, J.P. Morgan Asset Management’s Chief Market Strategist, Asia, shares why patience is a virtue especially in your investments.

Some tips for investors: Warren Buffett once said in New York Times, “I

• “Buy low, sell high” is in theory the best way to

can’t predict the short-term movements of the stock

make profits, and even for professional investors,

market. I haven’t the faintest idea as to whether

attempting to time the market – buying at the

stocks will be higher or lower a month – or a year

lows and selling at the highs – is something which

– from now. What is likely, however, is that the

in practice works only occasionally, at best.

market will move higher, perhaps substantially so,

• While investors should review their portfolios

well before either sentiment or the economy turns

on a regular basis, skipping in and out of the

up. So, if you wait for the robins, spring will be over.”

market is likely to be counterproductive and hinder rather than assist investors in achieving

In behavioral economics, loss aversion tells us that the

their objectives.

pain associated with losing far exceeds the joy and satisfaction from winning. As a result, we often see signs

• In reality, many investors tend to do the

of panic selling from investors when there is significant

opposite (buy high and sell low) because of

negative news, which creates or adds to uncertainty.

“greed and fear.” They put more money into the market when they are making easy money, while

Market insights indicate that share prices tend to overshoot

they panic and withdraw their money when the

when many investors scramble to sell together at the same

market is declining.

time. When the dust settles, markets will recover some or all of the lost ground. Therefore, fleeing the market when it

• We encourage investors to stay invested for the

is falling sharply is one of the last things investors should do.

longer haul to enjoy the benefits of compounding and improved risk-adjusted returns.

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Business

We look at both equity performance and fund flow data as a method to determine whether investors have timed the market correctly over the years. Market studies state that investors have often exhibited “buy high, sell low” behavior instead. Equity flows tend to reach their highest when the market is near the top, as investors feel positive and add to their holdings when the market has been going up, while flows tend to leave the market when it is bottoming as investors then feel terrible and cut their positions. In other words, investors chase the market up as euphoria takes hold, while later chasing it down in panic.

Don’t Underestimate the Compounding Effect

S&P 500 rolling annualised returns for shorter time periods

Since investors do not seem to be good at market

are much more volatile than for longer periods, with a much

timing,

by

higher chance of getting positive annualised returns for

rotating in and out of the market can significantly

the latter (an 86 per cent chance of positive returns for

diminish

term.

10-year periods versus 66 per cent for one-year periods).

studies

A similar trend applies to other markets, such as the MSCI AC

invested

Asia ex-Japan. Investments that are held for longer periods tend

in the S&P 500 since 1980 would have accumulated

to exhibit lower volatilities, but higher potential cumulative

In

overreaction

an

show

their

overall

Investor’s that

an

to

short-term

returns

Marketing

investor

who

in

the

Timing had

volatility long

research, remained

USD

returns. This is because the longer you stay invested, the

100,000, a cumulative price return of 1,612 per cent.

more likely it is that periods of positive performance will

USD

1,712,393

from

an

initial

investment

of

compensate and outweigh periods of negative performance. However, if investors, for instance, missed the best 10 days out of the total 8,871 trading days over the

Investment Implications

past 34 years, their accumulated wealth would have

To put it in a nutshell, short-term market fluctuations are

been slashed by more than half to only USD 826,303.

always hard to predict. Moving in and out of the market due to ‘greed and fear’ can result in a significant loss of

While the top 10 days directly only sum to a loss of USD 75,780,

cumulative returns arising from the compounding effect.

what investors miss most are the compounding returns they could have made from including those top 10 days.

We advise investors to review their investment portfolio regularly and rebalance asset allocation when needed.

The compounding loss of USD 810,309 is more than 10 times

They

should

also

ignore

short-term

noise

and

stay

larger than the direct loss from the missing days. This is a good

invested, as historical evidence suggests that by doing so,

example of why investors should look beyond the short-term

they will be rewarded with better risk-adjusted returns.

volatility and stay invested for the longer term, given the huge opportunity costs of missing out on the compounding returns.

The material contained herein is intended as a general market commentary. Opinions expressed herein are those of the author and

Better Risk-adjusted Returns for Long-term Investors Analysis

shows

that

the

probability

of

getting

both

positive annualised returns and higher cumulative returns

may differ from those of other J.P. Morgan employees and affiliates. This information in no way constitutes J.P. Morgan research and should not be treated as such. Further, the views expressed herein may differ from that contained in J.P. Morgan research reports. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. www.jpmorganam.com.hk

increases with the length of the investment horizon.

TRAVELITE | 53


Feature

|

Heritage Suites Hotel

INSIDER’S SECRET

Meaningful Indulgence It takes nothing but a quick tour to its temples to get completely

consumed

by

the

spellbinding

beauty

of

Cambodia. The country takes you back to the glorious kingdoms of centuries past without having to give up the conveniences of the modern times. And with Heritage Suites Hotel as a complementing refuge in Siem Reap, every moment is a worthwhile foray into indulgence and culture. The boutique property harmoniously blends traditional and modern sensibilities as seen in the architecture and dĂŠcor. It evokes an underplayed elegance definitive of a Relais & Chateaux partner. Tucked in tropical gardens, the place has the feel of a decadent estate situated in a peaceful locale. But being only four minutes from Pub Street, 15 minutes from the Siem Reap International Airport and only six km from the majestic Angkor temples, the Heritage Suites is certainly within easy access to key spots in the city. There are only 26 suites and rooms, allowing more attention to service and privacy for every guest. The expansive living spaces are adorned with Asian artwork and

furnished

with

premium

refinements

such

as

lavish linens and high-quality espresso machines. For the ultimate residence, stay in the one-of-a-kind Red Poppy, which comes with its own steam room as well as a private garden with a seating area and a large Jacuzzi.

Outside the comforts of your personal domain, other pleasures are to be enjoyed in other corners of the hotel. Delectable Khmer specialties and cuisines are served at the restaurant, while invigorating massages and therapies are offered at the spa. When exploring the riches of Cambodia, trust the Heritage Suites to arrange the adventure of a lifetime. There are set tours that will take you to varying attractions including the Angkor Wat, Beng Melea, and the Great Lake. Based on your own pace, you’ll be seeing the sites through elephant rides, helicopter tours and everything in between. You may even personalise your itinerary to suit your interests. It is a dream of many to uncover the gems of Cambodia, and the Heritage Suites is instrumental in attaining such aspirations. But besides the desires of its guests, the hotel is also dedicated in fulfilling the ambitions of the less fortunate. In an effort to make a positive impact among young underprivileged Cambodians,

the

property

is

involved

in

community

projects. This includes an annual charity gala dinner for Sala Bai Hotel & Restaurant Training School, which aims to battle poverty and human trafficking through vocational training. Beautifully merging luxury, charity and culture, the Heritage Suites Hotel brings more meaning to any Cambodia journey. www.heritagesuiteshotel.com

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TRAVEL ESSENTIALS

Beach Bag Stuffers It’s the sunny season yet again and the coast beckons with a disarming splendour. Before heading out, consider these must-haves to keep your summer days – and yourself – hot and happy!

OMEGA Seamaster Planet Ocean Orange Ceramic Grab this stunning work of craftsmanship and own one of only eight pieces produced. Its radiant colour only makes it more unique. www.omegawatches.com

Lifestraw Go This award-winning product turns water from a river or pond into drinking water in an instant. Each bottle purchased also gives a child in a developing country clean water for a whole school year. www.buylifestraw.com

Louis Vuitton Vietnam and Venice Travel Books As the newest cities that inspired the revered fashion house, Venice and Vietnam are reinterpreted through drawings and illustrations by artists Jiro Taniguchi and Lorenzo Mattotti.

Hublot Sunglasses

www.louisvuitton.com

Handmade in Switzerland, these sunglasses offer excellent sun protection, great scratch resistance and elegant design. www.hublot.com

Dan Ward Rubber Sandals Casual cool comes in this Italian-made pair of sandals, which is practical enough for the shores and stylish enough for the clubhouse. www.mrporter.com

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TRAVEL ESSENTIALS

Hublot Big Bang Pop Art Complete your arm party with this vibrant horlogerie masterpiece. Available in gold and steel, the bezel is also stylishly set with 48 baguette precious stones. www.hublot.com

Guirado Design Scarves Emblazoned with prints inspired by the works of Spanish artist Juan Antonio Guirado, these silk scarves are both stylish and functional, be it in the city or at the beach. . www.guiradodesign.com

Valentino + Havaianas neon camouflage-print flip-flops

Kiehl's Activated Sun Protector Sunscreen for Body SPF 50 It doesn’t matter whether you’re swimming or frolicking on the sand, this water-resistant, light and non-greasy formulation keeps your skin protected all day. www.kiehls.com

Flip-flops get a high-fashion makeover through this highly anticipated collaboration. Get your own pair and transform your beach wardrobe from casual to couture. www.net-a-porter.com

Marisol Umbrella Protecting yourself from the elements with this handcrafted umbrella means helping end violence against women in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. www.marisols.org

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high tech

Tech Scorchers Sony 4K Ultra Short Throw Projector USD 30,000-40,000 Pleasing the eyes are its own appearance and the visuals it projects. Stylishly discreet and functional, this innovation boasts a modular design that combines the projector unit, speakers and cabinets in one neat package. Place it next to a wall and enjoy a stunning 147inch laser image display for movie marathon nights. www.sony.net

Keecker Entertainment Robot

ROLI Seaboard GRAND

USD 4,000-5,000

USD 8,889

Highly mobile, this device brings entertainment wherever there’s a wall, turning the room into a cinema, game area or concert hall. It can even connect to your smartphone wirelessly and let you browse through an expansive projection. Install Android apps to it to double the fun and function.

Music is given a new look and feel with this revolutionary seamless keyboard. Its 88 key-waves represent the 88 keys of a traditional grand piano minus the bulk. At only 25.7 mm, it is the thinnest full-size keyboard. An integrated aluminium stand comes with the package for more comfortable usage.

www.keecker.com

www.roli.com

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high tech

Leica D-Lux 6 Edition 100 USD 950 Celebrate 100 years of Leica photography with this special edition model. Besides the high-performance lens, full HD recording capability and a 1.7-inch CMOS sensor, the centennial logo on the front of the body makes this camera more special. Grab one of only 5,000 sets released. www.leica.com

Jarre AeroSkull XS USD 317 High definition sound has never looked this cool as it gets a macabre twist. With a 10-hour battery life, Bluetooth connectivity, built-in microphone and a line-in jack for playing music from more devices, it’s as practical as it is good-looking. Take your pick from 10 of the available colours and finishes. www.jarre.com

Whistle Dog Activity Monitor USD 129 Thanks to this nifty on-collar device, you can now check in on your canine companion even when you’re away. Through a partner app, keep track of activity and rest and also track medication while taking notes and adding photos to ensure that your best friend is in tip-top shape while you’re apart. www.whistle.com

360 Fly Camera Immortalise every experience whenever and wherever with this revolutionary video camera. It captures 360° horizontal and 240° vertical views, which can be edited and shared instantly through an app. It’s ready for your most daring adventures as the device is waterproof and can be mounted on tripods, helmets and many more. www.360fly.com

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Fashion

|

Orlebar Brown

It all started with men’s swim shorts. When Orlebar Brown introduced its tailored swimwear to the discerning gentleman, it also infused a great deal of sophistication and panache to some of the world’s most exclusive seaside locales. A

orlebar brown

The Long and Short of it

pair of the brand’s signature shorts even found its way to a Bond movie, cementing its appeal among men who, not unlike 007, frequently lounge poolside and frolic on the beaches of the French Riviera in style. It’s not just on the shores anymore that OB is found since it has evolved into a lifestyle brand with a broader range of items. Its selection of apparel, which includes knitwear, loungewear and outerwear, is just as good in the metro as it is in the coast. The fashion house’s attention to versatility and transitional elements is a definitive factor that makes the clothes sensible besides being fashionable. Most of the pieces can be worn at home, hotel and everything in between, earning the adoration of the jet-set crowd.

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Fashion

|

Orlebar Brown

Considering the success of its men’s line, it was only a matter of time until the ladies also get the OB treatment. This great milestone is marked by a collection that stays faithful to the classic aesthetic of the label. The OB woman, it seems, is sophisticated with an edge – someone who often travels therefore prioritises comfort and favours flexibility without neglecting style. Just like the guy’s selection, the womenswear pieces are immaculately tailored and are offered in a range of colours and prints. A great majority of the collection are classic pieces evoking the practicality and relaxed aesthetic of Orlebar Brown. The bikini sets in particular, in solid colours – from neutral to bright yellow and hot coral – are items that will see many beach vacations down the line. Meanwhile the printed pieces, available in herringbone and chevron patterns, provide some playful flair and are stunning whether on their own or partially obscured by one of the cotton t-shirts.

Dresses, shirts a rash vest and accessories are some of the other items included in OB’s debut collection for women.

No Orlebar Brown collection would be complete without a great pair of shorts and any girl who has been wishing for

As for the men, OB continues to broaden its wardrobe

the feminine version of the label’s tailored swim shorts will

coverage by offering even more items that transcend

find delight in the Whippet. Inspired by the classic men’s

landscapes. Jackets of differing varieties, from the shower-

Bulldog, the mid-length, 100 per cent polyamide model

proof Collins to the dressy Stanley, are some of the

is fashioned with the trademark labelled side fasteners.

transitional wear that will go a long way in any gentleman’s

Besides navy, white and red, the Whippet is also available

sartorial arsenal. One of the most notable pieces is the

in graphic prints including a design created by tattoo artist

Shep, which defines casual sophistication. Essentially, it’s

Saira Hunjan.

a sleek reinvention of the sweatpants, complete with belt loops, a branded zip fly and side zipper details on each leg. In the swimwear department, the Springer, baring a tad more leg than the classic Setter, is the newest addition to the family. Those looking for something a little less risqué, however, can always opt for the Bulldog, which now comes in a slew of prints; Orbital, Racer, Hulton Getty, Monaco Illustration and special designs by Saira Hunjan. Never one to shy away from evolution, expect Orlebar Brown to come up with even more sartorial options that will fit perfectly in a highly mobile, not to mention luxurious, lifestyle. That means more stylishly versatile pieces wearable from resort to residence and summer to summer. This beach season, Travelite Magazine and Orlebar Brown are giving you the chance to win stylish OB goodies. Log on to www.orlebarbrown.co.uk/travelite to enter the contest.

TRAVELITE | 61


Bustier, Acne. Dotted pants, Balenciaga. Kamagong necklace, Arnel Papa.


fashion

Lost at Sea

There’s no greater consolation in getting marooned on an island than the chance to relish sensational beaches, golden sunsets and glistening waters on end. Even better if you’re cast ashore with a luggage of the latest fashions that are equally hot as the sun.


fashion

This page Black Keiko top, Roland MouRet. Fuchsia Inca skirt, Roland Mouret. Gold earrings with cubic zirconia, Arnel Papa. Opposite page Up collar black lace dress, Joel Escober. Sterling silver Carabao horn with cubic Stretchable jeans, Balenciaga. Bejewelled neckpiece, Adante Leyesa.

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zirconia earrings & Ring with granite stone and cubic zirconia, Arnel Papa.


Travel | coverfashion STORY

Square-neck bra top, T By Alexander Wang. Bikini bottom, Orlebar Brown. Gold necklace with horn sticks, Arnel Papa.

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fashion

Crystal-encrusted shirt, 3.1 Phillip Lim.

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Bikini top, Pepper Swim. Bloomer shorts, 3.1 Phillip Lim. Kamagong balls necklace, Arnel Papa.


fashion

Bikini top, Orlebar Brown. A-line skirt, Plate necklace, Lanvin. Crystal earrings, Adante Leyesa. Gold cuff, Arnel Papa.

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fashion

Photography Paelo Pedrajas Styling James Scott Model OLGA D | Elite Manila Hair & Make-up Anton patdu for MAC Cosmetics Shot on location at el nido resorts Special Thanks: Orlebar Brown | Lane Crawford Hong Kong UNIVERS d’homme et femme | Homme et Femme Shangri-La Adante Leyesa | Arnel Papa | Pepper Swim | Lynelle Hair Extensions

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TRAVEL

| COVER STORY

A Place in the Sun Asia’s Secret Beaches

Asia is a favourite destination for sun-seekers out to quench their thirst for the sun-sea-sand combo. Since the region is blessed with pristine beaches matching its tropical weather, the visitors come in droves. However, unlike the Balis, Phukets and Boracays of the world, some seaside locales somehow remain as secrets or are simply exclusive, enjoyed only by a chosen few. Take your place in deserted stretches of beach set in unspoilt tropical locales and spend days frolicking in precious privacy. Hidden from the crowds, these gloriously secluded Asian destinations are your hideouts this season – a la Tom Hanks in Castaway but with room service. WORDS BY SJ ROXAS

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TRAVEL

|

COVER STORY

El Nido, Philippines Sure, Palawan has been on the travel radar for some time now, making the rounds of best-beach lists. The naturally rich province on the westernmost portion of the Philippines is impossible to ignore, and El Nido, a municipality situated on the northern tip of the main island, has some of the most alluring sites with rock and limestone formations rising out of aquamarine waters. The nearest public airport is a six-hour drive away, making the town a challenge to reach for some tourists. The long land journey is not always a catch as it helps control the number of visitors, leaving those who do venture to this tropical haven with more freedom and privacy. This is also one of the many reasons why it is best to entrust your getaway to El Nido Resorts, which conveniently offers assistance in booking direct flights between Manila and El Nido through a partner airline. And with four eco-resorts located in separate islands, every discerning wanderer is spoilt for choice. Apulit offers absolute seclusion, Pangulasian thrives on bespoke luxury and Miniloc charms with its rustic, natural allure, while Lagen Island Resort has everything in equal proportions, making it a fine choice when immersing in varying island experiences both for kids and adults. Boasting an environment of calm, azure waters, ivory beaches, lush forests and majestic limestone cliffs, El Nido Lagen positions you in the middle of a natural wonderland with nature’s best within your reach. Even the most experienced divers will agree that the place is breathtakingly beautiful from varying perspectives. Palawan is long known for its world-class dive spots and the resort is certainly an excellent base when finding out for yourself what the buzz is about. Lagen is a PADI-approved resort, offering a full line of diving equipment and services, giving you as much convenience when inspecting the surrounding reefs. Above the surf, Bacuit Bay is literally at your doorstep through El Nido Lagen’s Water Cottages. Individually standing on stilts, these magnificent accommodation units line the sides of the secluded cove that the resort inhabits. For the best views and utmost privacy, take the farthest cottage from the shore on the north wing and open up to a coastal vista that’s simply alluring at any time of the day.

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TRAVEL

| COVER STORY

As a guest of El Nido Lagen, one of the many privileges is

Previous page: Aerial view of El Nido Lagen Island Resort

exclusive access to the property’s beach clubs at Entalula

This page:

Island and Dibuluan Island, where water sports such as

Top to bottom: Tour at the Big Lagoon; Water Cottages; Sandbar Dinner

Hobie Cat sailing and windsurfing are the highlights along

Opposite page:

with sumptuous lunches and cocktails. But these spots are

Top to bottom: Aerial view of Batu Batu;

only two of the countless reasons why you must venture

One of the villas’ private terrace overlooking the South China Sea

further afield. El Nido is a gold mine of natural riches, so take any opportunity to commune with its treasures including some of its wild residents. What seems like a regular afternoon of kayaking may lead to the discovery of obscured caves, while a trek that winds through the forest and leads to a private cove will most likely yield sightings of Palawan hornbills and macaques that will surely amuse the little ones. Be careful not to cause any harm to any of the local wildlife, but do take notes of such encounters to participate in the resort’s wildlife monitoring initiative. As El Nido Resorts is a staunch advocate of the environment, nature protection and conservation programmes are in place in Lagen and the rest of the properties. There are 45 islands and islets in El Nido, so it’s best to book the resort’s guided eco tours and leave it to the local experts to show you around. After all, with the bounty of attractions in the area, you’d want to maximise your trip with a carefully curated itinerary. The breathtaking Big and Small Lagoons are not to be missed for the clear, cerulean waters and imposing limestone formations. Also make time for the spectacular Secret Beach and Lagen Island’s Cove Two, which are ideal sites for endless beachcombing. Come sundown, a pre-arranged dinner at the nearby Snake Island sandbar is a definite highlight of your El Nido interlude. The elation upon seeing a dramatic scene of candles illuminating a dinner set-up in the middle of a deserted beach under a ceiling of stars is incomparable. Just when you think the night’s spectacle is over, it gets better on your way back to the resort. Observe the water carefully and soon enough you’ll notice the tiny specs of light emitted by bioluminescent planktons – a magical experience that’s certainly one for the books. From the cold towels and drinks upon arrival, to the time the staff gather at the dock, singing and waving goodbye until you’re out of sight, El Nido tirelessly delivers a kind hospitality reminiscent of family and a rare type of luxury that could only flourish in an unspoilt natural haven.

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TRAVEL

|

COVER STORY

Pulau Tengah, Malaysia Whether you’re going away to reflect or to celebrate, nothing is quite like the allure of the ocean. Imagine having an entire stretch of beach all to yourself, giving you all the freedom to relax or run about. Now, imagine there are eight beaches to choose from – one for every day of the week plus another extra for good measure. Wouldn’t that be the best dilemma to

solar hot water heaters and wireless Internet connection for

contemplate or reason to celebrate?

those special moments that just cannot wait to be shared. The Two-Bedroom Poolside Villas and One-Bedroom Beach

Eight beaches. One island. Countless possibilities. Somewhere

Villas are best for families for the generous space and the

in the South China Sea lies Pulau Tengah where Batu Batu, a

proximity to either the pool or the beach, but if you’re looking

boutique island resort, offers all the island space and privacy you

for a more intimate retreat, stay in one of the Ocean Villas

could ever need. From the town of Mersing in Johor, Malaysia,

tucked away from the rest of the resort. With spectacular

which is approximately 120 km from Singapore and about 350

sea views – even from your four-poster bed – and nothing

km from Kuala Lumpur, a 20-minute speedboat ride takes you

but the sound of crashing waves filling the air, this space is

to the barely inhabited island. White sand beaches dotted by

an absolute love nest.

dramatic rock formations and verdant greenery greet every visitor upon arrival, turning even the most cynical of travellers to

Since Batu Batu is an advocate of responsible tourism and is

romantics almost instantly. Secluded, quiet and luxurious, Batu

the only development on Pulau Tengah, the natural elements

Batu is like a secret that only a few beach-loving couples and

of the place are well-preserved. In fact, the thriving wildlife

families from some parts of Europe, Australia, North America

that co-inhabit the island serve as a natural attraction,

and Asia are in on.

offering guests rare encounters with dolphins, reef sharks, sea cows, otters and about a hundred species of birds. So

As remote as it is, this island resort delivers more than

in between visits to the eight beaches around, fill your time

just the basics when it comes to accommodations. Each of

with jungle walks, snorkelling trips, diving adventures and

the 20 one-bedroom and two two-bedroom villas comes

guided tours to neighbouring deserted islands. The more

with a view of the sea and are equipped with thoughtful

you get lost in and around Batu Batu, the more amazing

conveniences including a standalone bathtub, rain shower,

experiences you’ll find.

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TRAVEL

| COVER STORY

Pulau Redang, Malaysia Time is indeed the ultimate luxury, so during instances when that strong urge to get away kicks in but you simply cannot spare too many hours travelling, it's good to have a go-to location that, while still accessible, is not overrun by tourists. This is when Pulau Redang comes in, the largest among a cluster of islands off the east coast of Malaysia. The most coveted address on the island comes in the form of The Taaras, a private beach residence far removed from crowds, treading the thin line between exclusivity and accessibility. By air, the island is less than an hour away from Kuala Lumpur and Singapore, replacing buildings with palm trees and highways with sandy beaches in no time. You can also charter a private yacht or helicopter for a journey that’s bound to be a highlight in itself. Surrounded by the South China Sea, the island is a precious gem floating amidst varying shades of blue. On one of its more isolated areas, The Taaras is sprawled on a privileged spot with a pristine bay right to its front. The resort structures are tucked amidst rainforest greens, giving guests ample privacy. There are 184 rooms and suites on offer, but the resort’s five-bedroom Private Villa is the best bet for larger groups. This splendid 3,000-sqm residence is a sanctuary of space and exclusivity set on top of a cliff. Besides the breathtaking panoramic sea views, the villa also offers outdoor and indoor lounge areas, a 16-m infinity pool, a private gym and a private security office as well as a personal butler. Leaving no stones unturned, you can even arrange to have a personal chef to whip up special dinners for your party.

More than the usual activities such as diving, kayaking and jungle trekking, The Taaras also lets you try some more unique adventures through pre-arranged packages. Try the Robinson Crusoe experience and spend four hours in secluded bliss. You and a loved one will be transported to a deserted beach with nothing more than a picnic hamper, snorkel gear and a kayak for two, allowing you to disconnect from the world momentarily. You can also try a moonlit cruise on the South China Sea, complete with wine and canapes, should you prefer to revel under the stars. Even meals tend to get adventurous as The Taaras offers dinners in different settings. A feast at the resort garden, in a traditional Asian cabana or right on the shore with waves

This page: Top to bottom: Diving at Redang Island; The Beach Brasserie Opposite page: Top to bottom: Haad Tien’s private beachfront area; Castaway Beach Villa

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lapping on your ankles are some of the viable options you can consider to make every precious minute of your escape more worthwhile.


TRAVEL Travel| | COVER cover STORY

Koh Tao, Thailand Its name alone, which means Turtle Island, is an indication of the exotic natural wonders it offers. About 45 km north of the more popular Koh Phangan and 70 km east of mainland Thailand, Koh Tao is a tiny island accessible via plane through Koh Samui, followed by a ferry ride. Unlike its more prominent island contemporaries in Thailand, the place is yet to be discovered by every tourist. But because of its mesmerising coastal setting, it should only be a matter of time until Koh Tao finds a spot on everyone’s bucket list. Just because the island is unspoilt doesn’t mean it’s missing the luxury factor. Indulgent massages and private pools are just the beginning of the story at Haad Tien, a sprawling 45-ac boutique resort on the southern tip of Koh Tao. Built on one of the most stunning parts of the island, the private beachfront resort gives effortless access to idyllic sunbathing stations and to the expanse of a blue, shallow

Of course, no trip to this coastal marvel is complete without sampling the thriving underwater sanctuary. Haad Tien’s Reef Dive Centre has your explorations covered with programmes ideal for beginners and experts alike. If you’d rather stay close to the surface, have a snorkelling trip arranged instead and request a packed lunch prepared by the resort chef. Not only will this let you interact with local wildlife, but also gives you a unique way to enjoy the resort’s gastronomic offerings, which are made using produce from the property’s own fruit and vegetable garden. Tiny as it is, Koh Tao is packed with island pleasures yours to soak in. The vibe is generally slow and relaxed, but if you’re willing to venture far enough, you’d stumble on a few artisan stores, notable restaurants and even some nightlife, especially on Sairee Beach. Then again, there are eleven coral beaches that call for endless basking, so there’s that delightful dilemma to ponder.

lagoon perfect for swimming and snorkelling. To hike up the grandeur of your Koh Tao getaway, book the Haad Tien Pool Villa and have a little piece of the island all to yourself – complete with your own pool and unparalleled views of the sea. Enjoying drinks while lounging on the day bed by the pool in between dips and sunning sessions is, undoubtedly, a great idea for a lazy afternoon.

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This page: Left to right: Panorama of Pulau Joyo; Pool Pavilion Opposite page: Top to bottom: Exterior of the beruga; View of the beach from one of the berugas

Pulau Joyo, Indonesia Sometimes, when you want to get away from it all, you really have to venture out and take the path less travelled. It’s all about making the journey worth it and if it’s in Pulau Joyo that you’re going to end up, then the rewards are well worth the trip. Although the island is in Indonesia’s Riau Archipelago, Pulau Joyo is most accessible from Singapore, making it the

compromising comfort, stay in one of the Driftwood Palaces

perfect refuge for the lion city’s residents when yearnings

set right on the beach. Your stunning abode, constructed

for a holiday set in. It takes hopping from one island to

using driftwood salvaged from the sea, comes exquisitely

another to reach this sublime destination, starting with a

furnished with rare furniture pieces and artwork collected

ferry ride from the Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal, which is

from the owners’ travels. Aside from an ensuite shower and

approximately ten minutes from the Changi Airport. After

bathroom, the beach house is also equipped with a sizable

about two hours, you’ll reach the Tanjung Pinang ferry

living area and terraces with sofas and sun loungers where

terminal where you will be welcomed by one of Pulau

you can take in gorgeous sea views.

Joyo’s staff. What follows is an hour or so drive to the island resort’s private jetty, from which you’ll embark on a

If not standing right on the beach, the resort structures are

25-minute speedboat transfer before finally setting foot on

nestled on the inner portions of the island, intertwining

the shores of this remote paradise.

with lush jungle paths that are ideal for nature walks in the morning. Upon reaching the centre, you’ll find the

The private island is surrounded by beaches and the best

pool pavilion where drinks are enjoyed after a few laps.

part is there’s only a handful of other guests to share white

Should you wish to explore outward, kayaking or sailing to

sand real estate with. Originally constructed as the private

neighbouring islands is a fun way to spend an afternoon.

residential property of a shipping family, the resort offers

Have a picnic arranged at the nearby Pulau Binyoso, another

only eight villas, ensuring enough peace and privacy for

island owned by the same people behind Pulau Joyo. In

everyone. All the accommodation units evoke vibes of rustic

the evening, a wine-fuelled beach party, illuminated by a

luxury that flawlessly blend with the tropical setting. To

bonfire, will add even more unforgettable moments to your

live close to the rich natural elements of the place without

island escape.

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|

not sunbathing or feasting on scrumptious Indonesian cuisine at the resort’s restaurant, an insightful tour to the nearby village promises to be a highlight of your visit.

East Lombok, Indonesia

There are 11 beachfront berugas made with recycled wood

With no public transport routes available and not much

and alang alang grass. From afar, these may look simple, if

infrastructure around, this coastal spot on the Southeast tip

not homely, but God is in the details, as they say. Bamboo

of East Lombok's Tanjung Ringgit Peninsula is just what you

and other natural materials are used to create furniture and

need for a laid-back holiday by the beach. Well isolated

small fixtures that together create ruggedly beautiful living

from Indonesia’s tourist hubs, it’s a true island jewel minus

spaces. Spanning 60 sqm each, the berugas are large with

the crowds. This unspoilt haven is Jeeva Beloam Beach

layouts that take advantage of mountain and sea views.

Camp, occupying a private cove facing the Timor Sea and

Although these unconventional villas are inspired by the

Alas Strait. Surrounded by a 55-ha forest conservation

traditional Sasak villages of Lombok’s indigenous people,

project, the property is tucked between the thickness

each comes with refinements such as coffee and tea making

of trees and the expanse of turquoise ocean waters.

facilities and air conditioning in the evening.

Fishing from a cliff, kayaking, and biking around the island

The area is so remote that it’s off the main power line, so the

are some of the popular activities, but because of the

beach camp relies on solar energy and back-up diesel fuel

serene atmosphere, merely getting up from one of the day

generator. To get here, a two-hour land travel to Te Elong

beds on the wooden sunning deck is a challenge. Don’t

Elong follows your arrival at Lombok International Airport.

let this pass up the chance to explore the place though.

Then a boat ride lasting for 30 minutes brings you to Pink

Along with its commitment to care for the environment is

Beach, where a 10-minute drive to the resort commences.

Jeeva Beloam’s support for the local community. In fact,

That may sound overwhelming, but it’s nothing compared to

the fresh seafood and dairy products served in the resort

the rare, intoxicating beauty of Jeeva Beloam. Its remoteness

are supplied by local fishermen and farmers. When you’re

is both the price you pay and the reward you get.

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Bali: Divine Dining

Lovely cafés, restaurants, sunset bars and watering holes fringe Bali on all sides imaginable. Though it’s always a good idea to try something new in every visit, our perennial favourites, will always find a way to sneak into our carefully planned itineraries. WORDS BY Kat Modelo Efenio

Asian Indulgence You’d know better to book in advance for dinner at a multiawarded restaurant, especially one that serves stellar Asian cuisine by no less than street food extraordinaire Chef Will Meyrick. Sarong could easily be anyone’s favourite restaurant in Seminyak, and quite understandably so. Its chic, dark wood interiors, low lighting and elegant atmosphere impeccably match the impressive menu, whether you are seated at the outdoor lounge or the dining area by the bar. Deciding what to order is a challenge, albeit a good one, what with the bewildering array of specialties from starters to dessert. From salads to curries, tandoori, stir-fry and coconut char grill specials, each dish boasts of bold flavours, owing to local spices that tell of the chef’s travels all over the region. Along the offerings is a delightful beverage list featuring handmade cocktails using fresh, regional ingredients. Dinners at Sarong are always a treat and you are more than welcome to dine on repeat throughout your stay in Bali, as most guests often do. Should you crave for similar flavours in a different setting, there is the nearby MamaSan, which, to no surprise, is also one of Chef Meyrick’s culinary feats. The group is also set to open more dining establishments this year, so keep your eyes (and taste buds) peeled.

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TRAVEL guide | BALI

Sunset Sessions Social gatherings of all sorts happen in the trendy Seminyak district, with streets lined with cafés, bars, lounges and casual to fine dining restaurants. Anantara Seminyak Resort & Spa is a modern resort that sits on a coveted beachfront location, allowing you some much-needed

calm

in

the

centre

of

entertainment.

Its rooftop bar on the fourth floor, SOS Supper Club calls for chic gatherings over Bali’s storied sunsets. Arrive a little before six in the evening to catch the last streaks of the sun with a glass or two of exquisitely crafted cocktails. As darkness sets in, trade your daiquiri with a bottle of fine wine to go with your lovely three-course dinner of succulent steaks and seafood. Just when you think you’ve had your fill, the music kicks in, signaling the start of yet another vibrant nightout.

Feast of the Senses The unassuming entrance, if anything, downplays all the wonders that earned Métis a spot in Miele Guide’s Top 20 Restaurants in Asia last year. Of the ambience, it is sophisticated and romantic – from the moment you walk through the gallery and boutique all the way to the al fresco dining area, with a backdrop of rice fields, lotus ponds and, if you’re lucky, one of Bali’s iconic sunsets. It is the place to go to impress your date and yourself with course upon course of elegant French-Mediterranean dishes gracing your candle-lit table. That includes fresh seafood and delicately cooked meats with well-balanced flavours and spot on simplicity. To cap is a tempting selection of soufflés on the dessert menu, all for a sweet ending. More

than

about

providing

gallery

and

pleasing a

your sensory

boutique,

palates,

Métis

experience

brimming

with

is

through antique

all its and

contemporary art, women’s accessories and jewellery.

This page: Top to bottom: SOS Supper Club, Anantara Seminyak Resort & Spa; Main Dining Hall of Metis Bali; Plated specialties, Metis Bali. Opposite page: Top to bottom: Interior of Sarong; Italian Margarita; Sashimi salmon with pickled radishes, organic flowers mushroom, baby watercress mint & yuzu dressing

A highly anticipated Lounge Club will also be launched this

April,

completing

the

sublime,

well-rounded

Métis experience where finger food and cocktails are served

with

world-class

entertainment

on

the

side.

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TRAVEL guide | Bali

Nocturnal Delights You’ll be sure to notice the pair of bright, red doors along one of Seminyak’s trendy streets. The intriguing entrance leads to Charlie, a new addition to Bali’s stockpile of stylish bars. Though, what sets Charlie apart, besides the air of mystery that envelops its laid-back vibe, is that the place could be anything to anyone. The choice is yours – from an all-day restaurant to a cosy bar and lounge and even an elegant club or party venue. No details were spared in building the unique concept, as evident in its fun, whimsical interiors and well-thought-out food and beverage menus. Everything the kitchen and bar churns out is prepared to perfection; even the ice that goes into your handcrafted cocktail is carved using a Japanese saw. This is the place to linger with a Classic Mimosa as early as 8am all the way to a signature Espresso Martini to pick you up right after a late dinner at say, 1:30 in the morning.

All-Day Café If you’re up for an early start, hangover permitting, there’s a corner café in Seminyak along the street with the same name. Petitenget is worth waking up for, if your idea of a good morning includes feasting on freshly baked croissants and eggs Florentine paired with gourmet coffees. If you’d rather catch up on sleep, you can also enjoy cosy lunches with Petitenget’s selection of salads as crisp as its black and white interiors. At night, the place transforms into a softly lit bistro. Think elegant dinners served with wines or cocktails, plus, a selection of fine cigars is also on offer – just perfect whether you’re bringing your date or mates.

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TRAVEL guide | Bali

This page: Top to bottom: Mozaic Restaurant Garden; Foie gras with cherries and cocoa. Photos courtesy of Philippe Heurtault. Opposite page: Top to bottom: Bar area of Charlie; Beef Tenderloin Rossini, Charlie. Interiors of Petitenget; Seasonal fruit plate yoghurt, Petitenget

Fine Degustations

Surprise Menu is served to amaze, featuring the finest

One of the must-visits in Ubud, Mozaic is a celebrated haunt

ingredients such as caviar and fresh winter black truffles.

for gourmands and avid foodies, and for good reason. The

Prepare your palates when ordering this set for unexpected

restaurant has raked awards and landed in one too many

specialties especially created by the chef for your table.

best lists including Wine Spectator, Miele Guide and San

Those with dietary restrictions can still indulge with the

Pellegrino and Acqua Panna’s World’s 50 Best Restaurants.

Vegetarian Tasting Menu with excellent dishes tailored to

Mozaic ticks every box of a fine dining checklist – elegant

suit every preference. All menus come with complimentary

ambience of flickering candles on tables, a tropical garden

canapés, amuse bouche, a selection of freshly baked breads,

setting, soft music and to top, modern French cuisine

petits fours as well as wine pairing options for each course.

backed by quality ingredients and flawless execution. Once seated in the main dining room, you will be presented

Besides being an award-winning dining destination, Mozaic

with four exquisite variations of six-course degustation

is also a culinary workshop, where food enthusiasts can

menus. The signature Discovery Menu uses six different local

learn cooking techniques from the masters themselves.

ingredients that are impeccably highlighted in each course.

Best of all, at the end of every class is a feast of the

The Chef’s Tasting Menu focuses more on international

day’s creations. The workshop also transforms into a

flavours with an assortment of perfectly prepared dishes

private dinner venue fit for any of your intimate soirees,

based on seasonal produce. As the name suggests, the

especially if fantastic cuisine is one of your requisites.

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TRAVEL guide | Bali

Starry Nights Bali’s breathtaking cliff side is home to many luxurious resorts

for

obvious

reasons.

Apart

from

infinite

views of the glistening sea, its distance from the island’s busy areas allow for the most secluded of escapes. One of the lucky few to take residence in this prestigious location is the all-villa resort Banyan Tree Ungasan. Even luckier, are pleasure seekers who come to experience the resort’s splendid offerings. One of many is Banyan Tree’s Destination Dining, offered in a stunning, private cliff edge venue. It’s the one dinner to enchant your date with and one that will be quite hard to beat. A dedicated butler and personal chef will pull all the stops to create an unforgettable meal for you and your date starting with welcome cocktails followed by a medley of seafood specialties, signature desserts and petits fours.

Sea View Dining The cliff side views at Karma Kandara, an almost unreal blend of blues composed of the sky, infinity pool and the Indian Ocean never gets old. And the best spot to imbibe in these views along with fine, Mediterranean cuisine is at the resort’s di Mare restaurant. Italian for ‘of the sea’, di Mare rightfully earns its name by turning fresh seafood into well-executed specialties served over endless ocean views. Indulgence starts as early as breakfast, to a lovely lunch or dinner of pan seared scallops and pasta with freshwater clams. The al fresco, half-circle dining room is decked with white interiors, creating a beautiful contrast to the scenery. Should you need further convincing, there is also a wine cellar stocked with over 3,000 fine wines to accompany your scenic dining experience.

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TRAVEL guide | Bali

WHERE TO STAY

NUSA DUA The golden beaches of Nusa Dua, acclaimed as one of Bali’s best boast an impressive lineup of luxurious resorts. Ayodya Resort Bali for instance, is inspired by majestic water palaces of a bygone era and occupies a sprawling 11.5-ha property in the white-beach district. Manicured gardens and tranquil lagoons surround the area from the spectacular entrance where a massive water fountain flanked with dragon statues greets. An extensive swimming pool laced with lush lawns and sun loungers serves as a soothing centrepiece. The interiors composed of intricate woodcarvings and stone décor complete its stunning traditional Balinese architecture. You are right to think that stays here are grand, to say the least. The same intricacy follows throughout all 541 lavish rooms of the main resort. However, ultimate privacy, along with other thoughtful luxuries is best found at the 79-room

This page: Top to bottom: The beachfront area of Ayodya Resort Bali; Mandavi Suite Opposite page: Top to bottom: Destination Dining. Photo courtesy of Banyan Tree Ungasan; One of the starters at di Mare; beach location of di Mare.

Ayodya Palace. The ‘resort within a resort’ enjoys a secluded location away from the rest of the property and all stays come with butler service and other exclusive amenities. With seven dining destinations, a world-class spa, water sports and top-notch fitness facilities, Ayodya clearly left no detail unattended. Also, the palatial property fronts a 300-m white sand beach exclusive to you and your fellow guests at the resort.

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TRAVEL guide | Bali

LEGIAN Some of the best waves in Bali are found in the sunkissed beaches of Legian. This is also the prime address of O-CE-N Bali by Outrigger, an all-suite resort offering active holidaymakers a home right where the fun is. Not only will you get to enjoy luxurious apartment living in Bali’s surfing district, taking residence in the resort also places you in close proximity to the nightlife and entertainment in Seminyak and Double Six Beach. Each of the 112 suites spread over five levels are decked in sleek, contemporary design, with spacious balconies facing the beach. You’ll be spoilt for choice with seven types of suites to choose from, including the three-bedroom Ocean View Penthouse where you and a maximum of six friends can relish lavish stays in between enjoying the beach, shopping, dining and the nightlife scene around the resort. After a day of fun in the sun, unwinding back at the resort could either mean a pampering session at the O-CE-N Spa or delightful meals at any of the dining options. Head to The Deck Café for international specialties or The Deck Seafood Grill for the freshest catch of the day and, as a special treat for hungry surfers, a Fish and Chips menu is also available for toothsome takeaways.

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This page: Top to bottom: Pool area of O-CE-N Bali by Outrigger; Penthouse Balcony Opposite page: Top to bottom: Swimming pool at Amandari; Massage bale at Amandari Spa. Photos courtesy of Amanresorts


TRAVEL guide | Bali

Ubud In the midst of Bali’s arts and culture capital, flanked by sweeping rice fields and the scenic Ayung River gorge is Amandari. Needless to say, the view from every corner is constantly breathtaking and is matched with an ambience so tranquil, it almost seems unreal. The Balinese village inspired resort allows you to immerse in Ubud’s rich traditions as well as pause, unwind and reflect in true Aman Resorts style. The resort’s focal point, an infinity pool designed to mimic a rice paddy seamlessly blends with the verdant surrounds. It is the site of many relaxations, with sun loungers facing the

At night, the pool transforms into a venue for gamelan players

Ayung Valley. For further unwinding, there is the decadent

to provide a soothing serenade of traditional music to your

spa with a duo of al fresco bales surrounded by lily ponds,

dinners. A feast of Western and Indonesian flavours awaits at

where you can treat yourself to a signature Amandari

the open-air Restaurant decked with soft candle lights that

Massage. The 90-minute treatment blends Swedish and

reflect on the pool, rounding off the elegant atmosphere.

Balinese techniques with acupressure to ease tired muscles. You can also spoil yourself with the 120-minute Mandi

Completing the remarkable Aman Journey on the Island of

Lulur treatment. Inspired by the Javanese Royalty bridal

the Gods is Amankila, a seaside haven perched on a cliff

preparations, it is a sublime combination of a massage, body

in Bali’s countryside, the tented hideaway of Amanwana in

mask and scrub capped with a soothing herbal bath. Not only

East Bali and Amanusa, a splendid destination fronting the

will you be fully relaxed, your skin will also thank you for it.

white sand beaches of Nusa Dua.

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Travel | Lombok

Lombok

Beauty Beyond Compare Forget everything you’ve heard about Lombok for a moment and just imagine a coastal marvel of

azure waters, sparsely populated, sandy shores, thick tropical forests – with a massive volcano as a centrepiece – and quaint villages where age-old traditions are still practiced. In a way, it may remind you of Bali, but the place has a charm of its own found nowhere else. With only the Lombok Strait separating the two Indonesian destinations, Lombok is only about 32 km east of Bali. Comparisons are inevitable, but it’s clear that one is further off the beaten track than the other, rendering it more ideal for low key revelry, introspection, communion with nature and uncovering the local cultural story. WORDS BY SJ ROXAS

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Travel | Lombok

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Travel | Lombok cover STORY

Lombok Central The island is reached through direct flights from Indonesia, Australia and Singapore. Depending on where you’re staying, the trip from and to the airport ranges from 45 minutes to two hours, which could include sea transfers if you’re staying on one of the Gili Islands off the northwest coast of Lombok. Over the years, hotels and resorts have found their way to this tropical oasis, merging unspoilt natural elements with modern luxuries. Yet, the beaches still seem almost devoid of any major tourist activity and the forests remain largely untouched. With less crowds, Lombok is generally laid-back, exuding a vibe that cradles you to a state of calm. Although establishments such as hotels and restaurants have provided spaces for socialising, much of the action is still centred on the island’s natural attractions. The must-visit spots are scattered around the island, so seeking the services of an expert tour company will turn out to be sensible.

As 4x4 Lombok Tours also aims to promote the beautiful local traditions, the tour will have you interacting not only with native wildlife, but also with Lombok’s indigenous

Focusing on eco-cultural immersions, 4x4 Lombok Tours brings you to the island’s most stunning natural hotspots while highlighting the local way of life. Don’t expect the usual visits to museums, shopping areas and any tourist traps as the tours only lead you to nature’s unmatched collection of wonders whether on land or water. You’ll find

populace. This opportunity to get to know the locals and their way of living is a priceless peek into a lifestyle unique to the place. They are a friendly bunch, kind enough to introduce any curious traveller to the Sasak culture. Offer a hand as they go about their daily life and you might take home seaweed and fruits besides wonderful memories.

yourself indulging in a barbecue lunch set on top of a cliff that overlooks the beach, but only after walking around the forest in the midst of monkeys. Perhaps, you’ll even stumble upon a gang of buffalo bathing in a swamp if you’re lucky.

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Top to bottom: Lunch on top of a cliff overlooking Pink Beach; Buffalos bathing in a swamp


Travel | Lombok

Despite being an island, some of the most popular attractions in Lombok are on dry land. Mt. Rinjani, the second highest volcano in Indonesia, is an iconic spot often visited by tourists. The precarious trek up may seem like a big challenge, but the views from above are absolutely worth the time and effort. On top is a crater lake called Segara Anak – certainly a sight to behold. If you’re up for an adventure, guided trips to the Rinjani caldera are offered by 4x4 Lombok Tours, so keep your hiking gear and intrepid spirit at the ready. Otherwise, explore the rest of Lombok by touring a pearl farm, a vanilla farm or a cacao plantation, among other sites. Before calling it a day, your tour will have you soaking up the awe-inspiring sunset at the Malimbu area. As the sun bids farewell, find delight in a humble feast of grilled corn and fresh coconut while entranced by amber-coated vistas. Having spent a day getting acquainted with the island, this would be the perfect time to simply sit back, relax and contemplate the overwhelming beauty that surrounds you. Finding the ideal base, which will serve as your home on the island, is never a problem as there are many reputable properties in Lombok that can host your island getaways. Whether rustic or modern, centrally located or off the tourist hub, there should be a handful of hotels and resorts perfect for the holiday you’ve dreamed up.

Merging the best of two worlds, The Santosa Villas & Resort manages to be private despite its close proximity to local commercial establishments. Situated in Senggigi, it gives you easy access to a thick concentration of restaurants and convenience stores. The beachfront property sits on a prime piece of the island, just steps from the shoreline, so seaside enjoyment is always within your reach. Bali, which lies at the other end of the ocean, is even within view. Frolicking on the beach is, without question, a must, what with the breathtaking scenery, but the resort’s expansive pool area is another great spot for sunning. Located just a few steps from the sandy beach, it showcases spectacular sea views. Settle down on one of the loungers and order a drink from the sunken pool bar to cool down. The local specialty, Kelapa Muda or young coconut cocktail is a refreshing choice on a hot day.

Top to bottom: Sunset at Senggigi Beach; Lombok mountainside; Private pool of the Deluxe Suite, The Santosa Villas & Resort Lombok

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Travel | lombok

The Santosa has three other facilities offering a variation of menus and settings for meals and drinks. Nusantara Restaurant, serving as the main breakfast area, offers bountiful spreads, while Seaside Restaurant, ideal for casual lunches and dinners, serves international and Indonesian fare. Should you require more privacy, reserve one of the garden cabanas where romantic meals are usually enjoyed. Meanwhile, The Gili Lounge behind the lobby, overlooking the pool, is a charming area for a round of drinks along with some snacks, be it during golden hour or after dinner. With the marvellous setting and high-quality amenities, business takes a more pleasurable turn at The Santosa.

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that at some point, you’ll

Functions and events such as corporate gatherings and

find yourself confined in the grandeur of the resort – or

private gala dinners are welcome as the resort is equipped

within the bounds your villa, even. But Lombok has a vast

with ideal spaces where momentous occasions are to be held.

selection of attractions outside of your private domain. Senggigi Beach is one of the more popular choices for

Whether you’re in town for business or leisure, going

swimming and snorkelling, especially for guests staying

home to a comfortable respite is essential to make your

within the area. If it’s a more laid-back retreat that you’re

Lombok trip worthwhile. Fortunately, The Santosa offers

after, Kuta Beach is the place to visit. Not to be confused

way more than just comfort with its selection of indulgent

with the popular spot in Bali, Lombok’s Kuta Beach retains

accommodations. All the units offer substantial fineries, but

a quiet, sleepy atmosphere. The views are nothing less than

if you’re up for a splurge, nothing quite compares to a villa

magnificent as a hillside landscape covered in greenery is

with its own private pool. Each of the pool villas comes with

seen on one side and a sea of bright blues on the other.

a walk-in closet, an oversized bathroom and plunge pool

Some parts of the beach get swells perfect for surfing,

with a wooden deck where you can sunbathe in total privacy.

making Kuta an appealing destination for wave riders.

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Travel | Lombok

While some find joy being in the centre of the action, there are those who thrive in isolation. If a private beach is your kind of indulgence, The Oberoi Lombok will have you longing for nothing more. Island decadence comes in this beachfront property of 24 ac of tropical gardens dotted by tastefully designed villas and pavilions. A haven of tranquillity, the resort is far removed from Mataram, the provincial capital, taking about an hour and 45 minutes to reach from the local airport. It opens out to Medana Beach, a part of Lombok exclusively enjoyed by resort guests, so sunbathing spots are plenty and wide. Celebrating privacy, space and luxury, The Oberoi Lombok presents a stunning collection of 50 accommodation units to serve as your island hideout. The 20 luxury villas define the essence of lavish island living, each having a courtyard with a rock pond and garden or ocean views. Designed with tropical sensibilities, the private spaces are built with thatched roofing and teak wood, finished off with native Indonesian accoutrements. The Royal Ocean View Villa with Private Pool offers the most exquisite living arrangements among all. At 375 sqm, this sprawling abode is anything but humble. Within the high stonewalls is a courtyard with a private swimming pool, a rock pond, a raised dining pavilion and a balcony. A separate living room and a bedroom with teak wood floors and a spacious marble-walled bathroom make it all the more covetable.

This multi-awarded property is a destination in itself, offering world-class facilities and impeccable service in a place enveloped by nature’s embrace. Lounging by the swimming pool, which overlooks the serene Medana Beach, is one of the best ways to savour the intimate ambience of The Oberoi Lombok. A gym and a tennis court are also on site to keep you occupied and fit at the same time. See more of the locale by hopping on one of the complimentary mountain bikes and cycle your way to its secret corners. For more comprehensive explorations, however, consult the resort’s menu of exciting day trips and activities catering to adults and children. Sasak pottery classes, making Balinese offerings and cooking lessons will have you happily busy, while a trek to Sendang Gile and Tiu Kelep Waterfalls takes you to the bowels of the island. A tour to the Tanjung Market on a horse-drawn cart and snorkelling trips to the nearby Gili Islands are also on offer.

Opposite page: Top to bottom: Public area of The Santosa Villas & Resort Lombok; Outdoor dining at Seaside Restaurant of The Santosa Villas & Resort Lombok This page: Top to bottom: Private jetty of The Oberoi Lombok; Interiors of one of the Luxury Villas, The Oberoi Lombok

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TRAVEL | Lombok

The Gilis Composed of three islands namely Gili Air, Gili Meno and Gili Trawangan, the Gilis are popular day tour destinations. In fact, even tourists staying in Bali travel across the Lombok Strait just to enjoy the coral reefs and the untainted beaches within and around what seems like a trio of gems strewn across the sea. Gili Trawangan, the largest and the farthest from Lombok’s main island, is the most visited among the three. The island is only 15 minutes away via speedboat from mainland Lombok – no wonder it has become a favourite stop for tourists out on boating trips. But it’s not just during the day that Gili Trawangan attracts visitors. The island has earned the reputation of being a party mecca, having a handful of exciting beach bars frequented by nocturnal revellers within the vicinity. If the hedonistic mix of peaceful beachcombing and wild partying is your idea of a holiday, you might as well make Gili Trawangan your base when visiting Lombok. On the more laid-back western portion of the island, Hotel Ombak Sunset provides an idyllic address from which you can enjoy the island’s varied selection of pleasures. Inspired by Indonesia’s rich heritage, the place is a beautiful interpretation of what could have been a severely traditional aesthetic. Its serene and elegant character resonates throughout the place, matching the intoxicating beauty of its location. Much like the rest of the property, Hotel Ombak Sunset’s rooms and suites are evocative of Indonesian heritage. Even when combined with modern conveniences, the traditional Balinese and Javanese nuances still give an intimate feel to the spaces. At the Agung Ocean View Suite, the beauty of these elements is magnified as generous sunlight streams in. Views of the beach and the resort pool add even more splendour to this expansive refuge. A private balcony,

Whichever activity you decide to get busy with, there’s only

a living area and a marble-floored bathroom are other

one place in the hotel that you must try at the end of the day

features that make it the best residence on the island.

– the Akira Spa. As the biggest spa on the island, it provides a captivating sanctuary of relaxation and rejuvenation.

There’s nothing like lounging on one of the sun beds at the

Natural plant extracts are incorporated into massages and

beach or doing yoga inside a hut, surrounded by marvellous

rituals to offer utmost pampering and achieve inner balance.

views of nature, to start a hot summer’s day. Later on, pick up

The spa menu combines Indonesian and western techniques,

the pace by enjoying a round or two at the hotel’s tennis court,

resulting to treatments that soothe both the mind and body.

or to really relish the blazing weather, get into beach volleyball,

This page: Top to bottom: Aerial shot of Lombok; Pool area of Hotel Ombak Sunset

beach futsal, kayaking and snorkelling. Hotel Ombak Sunset offers a range of activities to keep interested guests occupied. Cooking lessons for kids and adults are even available.

92 | TRAVELITE

Opposite page: Left to right: Pool Suites, Mahamaya Boutique Resort; Façade of Mahamaya Boutique Resort


TRAVEL | Lombok

As there are no television sets inside the rooms, Mahamaya guests are encouraged to commune with nature. And television would be the last of your concerns too if you’re literally steps away from an empty stretch of white sand beach with the sound of the waves beckoning endlessly. Awash with white, the resort has a vibrant, modern feel that appeals to the chic, jet set crowd. It weaves traditional When roaming around, don’t expect limo service as

sensibilities

motorised vehicles are not allowed on Gili Trawangan.

resplendent, inviting environment of white concrete walls

Instead, the ‘cidomo’ or horse cart is the popular means

and raw, wooden panels. The accommodation options, which

of transport. These horse-drawn carriages are not only

come in two types, are all stunning and tastefully designed.

charming, but they also help preserve the peace and air

The Poolview Suites situated around the swimming pool

quality in this part of Lombok. And there’s really no

feature a wooden pool deck with sun beds. The suites,

more brilliant way to see Gili Trawangan as a cidomo

although built right next to each other, offer ample space

lets you truly experience the essence of local life.

for each party to luxuriate privately. In case you prefer to be

into

contemporary

concepts

to

create

a

tucked away from any neighbours and revel in closer proximity Of all the Gili Islands, the closest to mainland Lombok is

to the beach, one of the two Beachfront Villas should fit the

Gili Air. It has the most number of permanent residents,

bill. Sunbathing in your sandy front yard and bathing under

giving it a more rural feel than the others. Snorkelling, kite

the stars through private outdoor showers are some of the

surfing and diving are some of the popular activities around

precious experiences to savour in your own beach nest.

the area. But if you’d rather take it slow while taking in the sights, simply walk on the beach. Owing to its size,

Gili Meno really is a haven for nature loves. The coral reefs,

it only takes 90 minutes to encircle the island on foot.

which don’t even need a boat ride to get to, are thriving with fish and marine organisms, so snorkelling is popular

Sandwiched between the two Gili Islands is Gili Meno, the

around the area. Turtle Point is not named so for nothing,

smallest of the three. It is also, arguably, the most peaceful,

so when you’re out for a dip, have a look out for the beloved

attracting tourists who seek laid-back, undisrupted holidays

sea creatures swimming about. When meals or drinks

by the sea. On the northwest coast of the island is Turtle Point

are in order, no need to go far as Mahamaya’s restaurant

where Mahamaya Boutique Resort answers every demand of

and bar serve fresh, delicious and, wherever possible,

discerning travellers looking to evade a fast-paced lifestyle.

organic fare to keep you satisfied throughout your holiday.

The eco-friendly resort offers more than just an escape

The exhilarating blend of a unique, well-preserved culture,

from the city, but an intimate interlude amidst the

unspoilt natural attractions and a host of world-class

richness

world-class

properties continue to establish Lombok as an outstanding

hospitality with minimal impact on the environment,

Indonesian marvel. Despite the comparisons, the truth is the

the property employs several technologies to efficiently

place has its own lure, presenting a set of wonders not to

utilise natural resources. Aside from having a rainwater

be found elsewhere.

of

nature.

Dedicated

to

offer

collection system, the resort is also equipped with a small cottage garden and sources some of its produce locally.

Brought to you in partnership with

TRAVELITE | 93


Travel | South Africa

The Edge of south africa Most travellers picture South Africa’s landscape as a flat, arid land populated by acacia trees, which are met by a rich orange sunset. However, an area along the world renowned Garden Route breaks past this preconceived image of Africa to deliver angelic beaches, indigenous forest and a rugged, mountainous backdrop. Voted one of South Africa’s best beach destinations by the World Travel Awards, Plettenberg Bay is a premier holiday destination boasting stunning reserves, unique wildlife, luxury hotels and highly raved about restaurants. WORDS BY HOLLY BYRNE

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Travel | South Africa

One of the most beautiful places you will find in Plettenberg Bay is The Robberg Peninsula nature reserve, eight-km south from the hustle and bustle of quaint village eateries and boutiques. The reserve offers three scenic paths, increasing in distance and difficulty, through the peninsula’s montane fynbos, some of the most biologically diverse vegetation in the world, with more species than the rainforest. The paths range from a 45-minute walk to a more strenuous five-hour hike, with all routes encompassing incredible coastline and lookout points in which to view the area’s diverse wildlife. Colonies of the cape fur seals, bryde’s whales and three different species of dolphins including the bottlenose, common and the humpback can be seen here year round, while southern right whales and their calves visit the bay from May to November. Along the trails, you can occasionally spot South Africa’s second most endangered coastal bird, the African black oystercatcher foraging in the tide pools below. The Point of the peninsula offers panoramic views of Plettenberg Bay, allowing visitors to familiarise themselves with the bay’s breathtaking landscape. There is an abundance of wildlife to be found amid the forests of Plettenberg Bay. Throughout the shade of the treetop canopies you’ll find baboons, vervet monkeys and native birds including the Knysna loerie and South Africa’s national bird, the blue crane. The Crags, just outside of Plettenberg Bay, is one of the most bio diverse areas in the world and is home to the world’s only free-roaming, multi species primate sanctuary – Monkeyland. This one-of-a-kind destination is 12-ha of indigenous forest and provides a safe and secure home to 11 primate species, including the ring-tailed lemur, native to Madagascar. Inside the sanctuary, you can catch a glimpse of primates interacting with each other in a natural environment. Most of the resident species are animals which have previously been rescued or kept captive. Monkeyland founders, Lara Mostert and her partner, Tony Blignaut, dreamed of creating a free-roaming safe-haven for primates after visiting one too many monkey sanctuaries where animals were unfortunately kept in undersized cages. Such a dream has now resulted in this incredible sanctuary where monkeys can be seen swinging from treetops at close range. Travellers can also view the sanctuary’s residents from a 128-m suspension bridge, high above the forest floor, making it the longest of its kind in all of Africa.

TRAVELITE | 95


TRAVEL

|

South Africa

Neighboring this incredible primate sanctuary is Birds of Eden. At over two ha, it is the biggest free flight aviary in the world and focuses on releasing domestic birds into a natural environment of dense foliage. Under the cool shade of the forest, visitors can relax and sip coffee while immersed in nature as an orchestra of over 3,000 birds from all over the world plays their song. Throughout the aviary, visitors can view anything from the Australian Galah to the loved-up Indian Ringneck Parakeets seen kissing and conversing along the path. Crossing the suspension bridge and following the descending boardwalk deeper into the forest, visitors will feel a temperature drop while noticing different species enjoying their preferred climate; the Macaws flying high above and the Scarlet Ibis scurrying the damp forest floor below. The incredible architecture of both sanctuaries, owned by the South African Animal Sanctuary Alliance, provide for incredible opportunities for

amateur

and

seasoned

wildlife

photographers.

A short distance away is the biggest game reserve in the Southern Cape, the 2,200-ha Plettenberg Bay Game Reserve, which is home to 30 different species including the African lion, blue wildebeest and the endangered white rhino. The Plettenberg Bay Game Reserve offers the luxury of a 4x4 game drive, or for a closer encounter and better photographic opportunities, a two-hour horseback safari can also be arranged. On the reserve, the Baroness Safari Lodge offers a real African experience as guests can wake up to the call of wild animals, such as giraffes grazing right outside their door. Built in 1822 by Baron von Plettenberg, the lodge originally served as his base as he explored the then untamed wilderness. The colonial style exterior is made from local stone and the interior dÊcor, revamped every six months, features an eclectic array of colourful antiques and animal skin rugs. Each of the lodge’s 10 suites is outfitted with high ceilings, polished yellowwood floorboards and its own brass-trimmed freestanding bathtub. The lodge also provides its guests with intimate dinners made exclusively by

the

lodge

manager

herself,

featuring

signature

dishes such as mouthwatering rosemary lamb chops.

Top to bottom: Scarlet Ibis; Indian Ringneck Parakeet; The two-hour horseback safari

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TRAVEL

| South Africa

Clockwise: Viewing deck of Plettenberg Park Hotel & Spa; Interior of one of their suites; View of the Indian Ocean from the bathroom. Photos courtesy of Fiona Ayerst

For visitors seeking accommodation overlooking the coastal landscape, the Plettenberg Park Hotel & Spa offers exquisite views of the Indian Ocean and the Robberg Peninsula. Previously a multi-million dollar beach house, it was renovated into an exclusive 10-suite boutique luxury hotel featuring simplistic architecture and design, which has previously accommodated Sir Richard Branson and the late Nelson Mandela. The interiors features cool, soft blue and beige hues reflective of the scenery right down to every last detail, including the beach sand-filled votives and seashell-filled glass bedside lamps. The suites are outfitted with luxury amenities including an all-glass open shower with a 180-degree view that overlooks the Indian Ocean. It truly is the epitome of an indulgent getaway from its 25-m infinity pool, secluded private beach and its tempting onsite spa. The staff goes out of their way to accommodate guests and provide a friendly, personalised service, so much so that the resident chef spends his time welcoming guests to discuss and devise a tailored menu for their stay.

TRAVELITE | 97


TRAVEL

|

SOuth Africa

The wine cellar at Tsala Treetop Lodge invites for fantastic tastings featuring some of South Africa’s most esteemed wines available. Another ultimate luxury hideaway, Tsala is an ideal destination during the cooler months, where you can cosy up beside a large fireplace or lounge by the infinity pool during the summer. Throughout the year, you can easily retreat back to your private suite after a busy day to enjoy slow, peaceful nights high above the forest floor. The rare opportunity to be surrounded by nature and all its beauty is one of the top experiences you’ll enjoy at the lounge. Also, what makes Tsala stand out above the wide array of luxury hotels is its attention to detail, from the stocked fine whiskeys and liqueurs laid out among the library’s bookcases, to the perfectly chilled champagnes lining by the reception. Its signature restaurant Zinzi is an exquisitely designed dining destination with elegant interiors and surprisingly, a reasonably priced menu, which boasts an array of diverse and exotic specialties with close-to-home flavours inspired by fresh produce.

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TRAVEL

|

South Africa

Should you decide to venture out and explore other fine dining opportunities in Plettenberg Bay, the local favourite Emily’s found at the Emily Moon River Lodge offers views of the winding Bitou River, which resembles a curled ribbon, along with its surrounding wetlands. The Thai-influenced, eclectic menu is best enjoyed by the balcony or poolside with a signature cocktail.

Opposite page: Top to bottom: Façade of one of the suites of Tsala Treetop Lodge; Private deck and infinity pool; View of the forest from the villa This page: Top to bottom: Pool area of Emily Moon River Lodge; Viewing deck. Photos courtesy of Fiona Ayerst

Another notable characteristic of the restaurant is the well-designed interior especially handpicked by Mark Valentine, the owner’s son, inspired by his travels to India, Eritrea, Ethiopia and Burma. From

its

diverse,

immaculate

beaches,

forested

wildlife sanctuaries, notable hotels and variety of finedining options, Plettenberg Bay provides a plethora of remarkable attractions to be explored. Although the local community almost cherishes an underrated status, discerning travellers are invited to taste and see why Plettenberg Bay deserves a spot as one of the world’s must-visit destinations in Africa this year.

TRAVELITE | 99


TRAVEL | Summer Adventures

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TRAVEL | Summer Adventures

Elements of Asia With adrenaline-pumping adventures set in mind-blowing locations, these thrilling journeys are well beyond your usual tours. So leave your inhibitions behind and discover the wild side of the world – and yours too – as you become one with the elements. WORDS BY TIM RUSSELL

TRAVELITE | 99


TRAVEL | Summer Adventures

EARTH The landlocked Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan is one of Asia’s most mysterious and quirky destinations, and one that is fully determined to hang on to its unique character – progress is measured in Gross National Happiness rather than GDP; there’s an annual limit on the number of tourist visitors; and the locals wear national dress out of habit rather than for show. It’s a truly charming country. You can, of course, view Bhutan’s spectacular scenery and welcoming towns from the comfort of a private car, but to truly immerse yourself in the country’s landscapes, there’s no better way than to strap on your walking boots and get trekking. Ultra-luxe tour operator Remote Lands makes this easy with a wide range of programmes,

including

the

six-day

Druk

Path

Trek.

On the one hand, it’s pretty tough going – you’ll be trekking up to 11 mi a day at altitudes reaching 12,700 ft – so you’ll need to be physically fit. But all that effort is well worth it when you consider the sights that lie in store. You’ll see Bhutan’s iconic Taktsang Monastery, the famous “Tiger’s Nest” perched seemingly precariously on a cliffside 3,000 ft up and 10,000 ft above sea level, reached only via an exhilarating half-day hike through scenic pine forests. Its legend dates back to 747 AD, when Guru Rinpoche, the historical founder of Tibetan Buddhism, is claimed to have arrived at the site on the back of a tiger.

You’ll finish off in the friendly capital Thimphu, before heading to Paro Airport, making it easy to extend your trip by visiting connecting countries such as India or Thailand. Stay And just because you’re trekking doesn’t mean you’ll miss out on creature comforts. Remote Lands partners with the most luxurious accommodation available in Bhutan – you’ll be staying in a mix of uber-luxe Amankora or UMA Resorts and luxury camps, where a team of porters and

Other sites that you’ll have the chance to explore include the Jili Dzong fortress, a regular resting spot for weary travellers situated 10,300 ft above sea level; and the Motithang Takin Preserve, home to Bhutan’s rare national

cooks will take care of your every whim and you’ll awaken to stunning Himalayan views. You may even be sharing your camp with local yak herders, who will give you a unique insight into rural Bhutanese life and traditions.

animal, from which the name of the place was derived. Amanresorts

have

exclusive

Amankora

lodges

throughout Bhutan, all located in scenic surroundings and

offering

sumptuous

private

suites,

fine

dining

and full spa facilities – the perfect way to soothe those

aching

muscles

after

a

hard

day’s

trekking!

Extend After six days of solid trekking, you’ll deserve a few days’ relaxation at the beach. Both India and Thailand offer a plethora of coastal sites to provide a change of scenery. The beaches of Goa and the mystical limestone-fringed coves of Krabi are some of the locales for seaside rejuvenation.

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TRAVEL | SUmmer Adventures

FIRE The recent eruption of Indonesia’s Mount Kelud brought home the fact that Java, the most populous of the country’s approximately 17,500 islands, continues to be shaped by sudden volcanic activity. Where better, then, for a fiery

Opposite page: Top to bottom: Taktsang Monastery, Bhutan; Locals at Thimphu

volcano vacation?

This page: Left to right: Labourer carrying extracted sulphur from the crater; Mount Ijen.

Lava lovers will be thrilled by Remote Lands’ three-day

steep steps up to Mount Bromo’s best viewing point, from

Volcanoes of East Java itinerary, which takes in the island’s

where you can see the region’s third volcano – Mount

two best-known volcanic peaks, Mount Bromo and Mount

Semeru – belching out steam, and experience one of Asia’s

Ijen, as well as pristine rainforest, local villages, and coffee

most impressive sunrises (well worth the early start).

and clove plantations. You’ll be sweaty, dusty and tired – so thankfully your last You’ll begin by checking into Ijen Resort & Villas, a beautiful

stop will be Tugu Malang for a cold drink, a shower and a

property idyllically located in the Ijen Highlands, from where

relaxing massage.

you’ll get your first glimpse of the imposing slopes of Mount Ijen itself. After a good night’s sleep, it’s time to take on the

Stay

volcano with a tough 1.9 mi hike up a trail to the caldera,

Tugu Malang is one of Indonesia’s most charming properties.

where, as well as spectacular views of the surrounding

A converted Dutch colonial mansion, it has just 49 rooms, all

landscape, you’ll be able to watch labourers engaged in the

boasting antiques and artworks to give a real old-world feel.

hot and dangerous job of extracting sulphur from the crater

Despite its compact size, it boasts several restaurants, bars

– and suddenly the walk back down the slopes won’t seem

and even a private fine dining room, as well as a swimming

quite so hard.

pool and a full-service spa.

Your next stop is the charming Dutch colonial city of Malang,

Extend

where another luxury resort – the historic Tugu Malang

There’s no reason why your Indonesian adventure should

– awaits. Malang is a lively place with plenty of bars and

begin in Ijen or end in Malang. Bali is a good starting point

restaurants, but you’ll probably want to get an early night,

for a side trip – a 45-minute boat ride from Bali’s west coast

because the following morning you’ll be up very early for

and a short transfer will get you to Ijen; and Yogyakarta;

the journey to imposing Mount Bromo. It’s a three-part

also, the nearby temples of Borobudur, are easily reached

journey – after a three-hour drive, you’ll cross the stark

from Malang.

lunar landscape of the Tengger Sand Sea (either on foot or on horseback – the choice is yours), before climbing 245

TRAVELITE | 103


TRAVEL | Summer Adventure

This page: Left to right: View of the Mount Everest, Nepal; Flying in an ultra-lite over Pokhara

AIR

Opposite page: Top to bottom: Pier at Mabul Island, Malaysia; One of the activities of Diving Borneo’s Aquatic Treasures

No other country in the world can boast a single mountain

to an experienced pilot and run off the edge of a cliff,

measuring over 23,000 ft. Nepal has over a hundred of

before you glide into the air and a strange peace descends.

them, and it’s these awe-inspiring heights that make the

Unobstructed views of the valley and the Annapurna

country a mecca for adventure travellers. If trekking or

range take your mind off the precariousness of your

mountaineering is your thing, a trip to the “roof of the

situation, and you’ll return to earth way, way too soon.

world” simply has to be on your to-do list. If ultra-lites and paragliders bring on a case of vertigo, But what to do if you want to see these amazing giants and

there’s a more comfortable way to get up into the

get an adrenaline rush while you’re at it, but don’t have

Nepalese clouds – a private helicopter flight to the daddy

the time nor the energy to spend several days trekking?

of them all, Mount Everest. Remote Lands’ chopper flies

The answer is to take to the air in a variety of craft and

you to Everest itself, passing other Himalayan giants

quite literally get a bird’s eye view of this planet’s most

including Ganesh and Dorjee, touching down at the

spectacular scenery.

world’s highest hotel for the most scenic lunch of your life.

Kick off your aerial sightseeing in Nepal’s second city

Stay

Pokhara, nestled in a beautiful valley in the Annapurna

The combination of high altitude and physical exertion

region. Remote Lands offers two different flying experiences

means a good night’s rest is important in Nepal. The

for thrillseekers, both requiring warm clothing and strong

traditional Nepali house that is Dwarika’s, located near

stomachs.

Kathmandu, received a coveted World Heritage Award for outstanding historical preservation, and offers full luxury

Ultra-lites are a quick and affordable way of getting

hotel facilities as well as nightly live jazz. Meanwhile,

airborne, and in Pokhara you have two choices – for the

Tiger Mountain Lodge in Pokhara Valley boasts 19

less intrepid flyer there’s a pod-like craft more resembling

bungalows with spectacular views of the Annapurna

a small turboprop plane; for the truly fearless, there’s a

range, along with a mountain-view swimming pool and a

flying golf cart-like contraption, fully open to the freezing

table d’hote menu using locally sourced organic produce.

Himalayan air. If the phrase “don’t look down” is in your vocabulary, there’s little point getting in, for looking

Extend

down at the amazing views of the valley, rice terraces and

Combine your airborne adventures with trekking, climbing or

mountains is what makes this experience utterly thrilling

more leisurely sightseeing with one of Remote Lands’ numerous

and unforgettable.

Nepal itineraries. Classic Nepal is a good introduction to this stunning country; National Treasures of Nepal takes you on

With ultra-lites, you at least have the comforting chug of

a tour of the country’s numerous UNESCO World Heritage

engines reminding you of the forces keeping you airborne.

Sites; Ultimate Nepal Trek is an epic 24-day journey

With your next adventure – paragliding – you’re entirely

through the Annapurna range, strictly for hardcore hikers.

in the hands of the elements. You simply strap yourself

104 | TRAVELITE


TRAVEL | SUmmer Adventures

Water The name “Borneo” instantly conjures up numerous images: its iconic orangutans, its dense jungles, maybe its highest point, the fearsome Mount Kinabalu amongst others. But while Borneo is justly famous for the teeming life of its rainforests, there is plenty going on beneath the waves too.

including hawksbill and greenback turtles, manta rays, eagle rays, reef, hammerhead and whale sharks and schools of

It was in the waters off Borneo’s coast, around the island

barracuda.

of Mabul, that muck diving – delving into the sediment on the ocean floor and unearthing the creatures that live

Neighbouring Mabul is where you’ll get down and dirty on

therein – originated, and the area is now considered one

the ocean floor, muck diving amongst reclusive species such

of the world’s best spots for muck divers and macro diving

as seahorses and octopuses; while Kepalai offers colourful

photographers, as well as more conventional scuba diving.

coral reefs and the area’s best wreck diving.

Whichever variety of diving floats your boat, Remote Lands’

Once you resurface for the last time, you’ll have time to

seven-day Diving Borneo’s Aquatic Treasures itinerary

acclimatise in your water bungalow before flying back to

enables you to spend a week in this underwater paradise,

solid ground, where those orangutans, jungles and mountain

taking in three world-class dive areas and introducing you to

slopes await!

the often rare species that inhabit them. Stay You’ll begin with a relaxing night at the Shangri-La Tanjung

You’ll spend five nights at Mabul Water Bungalows. Built for

Aru Beach Resort in Kota Kinabalu, kicking off the following

divers, it offers 15 private bungalows right on the water, all

day with a short flight to Mabul, where a boat transfer takes

with air-conditioning, satellite TV and private balconies. The

you to your floating resort, Mabul Water Bungalows – a

resort also has a restaurant, dive shop and spa.

recently opened, purpose-built dive resort close to Sipadan Island where you’ll spend the next five nights.

Extend Between underwater adventures, Borneo offers a wealth

For the rest of your stay, Remote Lands organises daily dives

of land-based activities. Take a private cruise up the

in the area’s best dive spots, starting with world famous

Kinabatangan River; get up close to orangutans at the Sepilok

Sipadan. Formed by corals growing on top of an extinct

Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre; or take a spectacular two-

volcano, it’s home to 15 world-class dive sites, including

day hike to the summit of Mount Kinabalu.

deep wall dives, hosting an incredible array of species

www.remotelands.com

TRAVELITE | 105


quarterly special | Train Travel

Cabin Couture:

Bespoke Travel by Train Embrace a bygone era aboard some of the world’s most luxurious trains. Glide your way through expansive, undulating landscapes, immerse yourself in traditional culture and sample some of the most delectable food on the planet while coursing through rails of splendour. WORDS BY ELIZABETH ELLIS

106 | TRAVELITE


quarterly special | Train Travel

TRAVELITE | 107


quarterly special | Train Travel

Adventure through the heart of the Andes Peru. A complex, delicate land best explored as an epic

Beginning your journey in Cusco – the city that once lay

journey through diverse and rolling landscapes on-board the

at the heart of the mighty Inca Empire – you will discover

Andean Explorer. As with most South American escapades,

the city’s unique combination of colonial and religious

the challenge here lies in capturing the country in all of its

splendours. Built on the hefty stone foundations laid by

essence. By choosing a train as the mode of travel, South

the Incas, home for your first two nights is the renowned

America’s most varied, colourful culture is brought alive by

Hotel Monasterio. Residing within the walls of a stunning

exploring Peru’s vast array of offerings in one fell swoop. From

16th century monastery, this historic hotel blends elegance

vibrant festivals and brass bands to the mystic reverberations

and comfort with the rich cultural heritage of Cusco. Set

of ancient pageantry, Peru exudes diversity in all corners.

in the tranquil courtyard of Plazoleta Nazarenas, you are just moments from the central square of Plaza de Armas.

Whisked from colonial cities, past pretty lakes and onwards to

imposing

mountains

dispersed

between

deserts,

rainforests and ancient ruins, train travel through Peru provides a wonderfully rich exploration laid out for your own personal adventure. Home to the mighty Andes, endless Amazonian jungle and countless archaeological treasures, there is so much to see and plenty to absorb. What better way to view your impressive surrounds than by perusing the ever-changing landscapes on-board a luxurious train?

108 | TRAVELITE


quarterly special | Train Travel

Having explored the city’s impressive array of wonders, you will then join the Andean Explorer – a fabulous blend of Peruvian craftsmanship and international design. Complete with 1920s glamour, the Andean Explorer is unique in South America. Enjoy a full day traversing through a variety of villages, encountering insightful cultural nuances along the way. Glide between mountains and clouds – from Cusco to the lofty heights of Lake Titicaca on the Bolivian border – you will gaze at the ever-changing landscape as

the

roving

rail

ripples

across

undulating

terrain.

Flavour and fusion are at the heart of Peruvian gastronomy. Laden with Spanish, African and even Asian influences, you will be joined by a Peruvian culinary master during your time on-board. And with the beautiful Titilaka Lodge waiting for your arrival on the lakeshore, you are welcome to relax and reflect on your journey in one of South America’s finest abodes. Soaking up your breathtaking surrounds, this is a fitting end to an adventure through the heart of the Andes. A five-day, all-inclusive journey with Brown + Hudson staying two nights at Cusco’s Hotel Monasterio, one day on-board the Andean Explorer and three nights at Titilaka Lodge starts at USD 19,400 per person.

A Trans-Siberian Tale The diverse history and cultural complexities spanning Russia, Siberia and Mongolia are all navigated in an exceptional journey through some of the world’s most fascinating cities and landscapes. Starting amongst the imposing and intricately beautiful facades of Moscow’s architectural wonders, you will travel southeast from Moscow to Mongolia and into the untouched wilderness of the Gobi Desert. Absorb

the

bursting

creative

energy

of

modern-day

Russia with contemporary art galleries, museums and world-renowned theatres just a stone’s throw away from the Ararat Park Hyatt, arguably the city’s finest hotel. Discover the capital’s bustling vitality with your personal guide – from the grandeur of the Kremlin to the treasures of the Tsars. Wander through peaceful monasteries to witness the historic spiritualism of the Russian Orthodox Church before embarking on a train journey like no other. Departing from Moscow’s Kazansky station, the Golden Eagle is a luxurious locomotive. With champagne to toast your departure, you can watch the world go by from your Imperial Suite’s panoramic windows. First stop is the historic city of Kazan, perching majestically on the banks of the River Volga, before travelling onwards through the Capital of the Urals, Yekaterinburg, and the Soviet city of Novosibirsk. This is a journey which juxtaposes

vivacity

and

peacefulness

like

no

other.

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quarterly special | Train Travel

Stroll through the streets of Irkutsk, known as the “Paris of Siberia”, then steam ahead to the beauty and grandeur of Lake Baikal. The world’s oldest and deepest lake is home to a unique breed of freshwater seal and over 50 species of fish. Relax as the stunning scenery envelops you as you wind your way along cliff-hugging tracks. A reminder that the depths of Siberia aren’t too far away lies in the backdrop of the lake; an expansive vista of snow-capped peaks framing the deep blue beneath. For nine days on-board this exceptional and grandiose train, you will glide past an array of fascinating sights and sounds, absorbing the ever-evolving landscape along the way. This of course is set to the backdrop of splendour and opulence of the acclaimed Golden Eagle sleeper train. Opting for an Imperial Suite complete with king-size bed, under-floor heating and en suite bathroom with L’Occitane products, your every need is met. A private guide is even at the ready to show you around. Arriving in the ethnic and culturally diverse city of UlanUde in eastern Siberia, where stepping off the train feels as though you have been transported to another world, the welcoming Buryat people will host a traditional lunch including their famous meat dumplings called buuza. Spend the afternoon learning about the culture and history of the religious people here and after a day exploring, you can experience a private concert featuring local traditions and lively folk-singing to truly immerse yourself in the diversity and colour of Siberian traditions. Travelling deeper and into Mongolia, the capital Ulaanbaatar exhibits the contrast between ancient traditions and a 21st century democracy. Here, traditional yurts and Buddhist monasteries sit in direct contrast to the modern high-rise structures. Spend the morning at the Gandan Monastery – the revered seat of Buddhism in Mongolia – for a private tea ceremony with one of the high-ranking lamas in his private chambers, followed by an afternoon visit at the National History Museum for an impressive overview of Mongolia’s famed paleontological discoveries. In the evening, a private dinner at the Fine Arts Museum can be arranged with the museum’s curator whose expertise will fully immerse you in the colourful world of Mongolian artistry.

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Finally, from the hustle of the city, travel across the vast steppe to the Gobi Desert. Hike through the Yol Valley National Park, cradled in the foothills of the Altai Mountains in the northern part of the Gobi. The green valley was carved out by an ancient river with remnant streams creating incredible ice formations at the base of the valley. Having explored the desert and immersed yourself in new natural surroundings, you will arrive at the award-winning Three Camel Lodge. With close proximity to the Tugrigiin Shiree site where the infamous ‘Fighting Dinosaurs’ fossil was found in the 1970s, it’s the ideal place to end your epic journey. An intimate dinner flanked by the amber-hued Flaming Cliffs is a grand conclusion especially if an expert astrophysicist is around to make the most of your evening, stargazing beneath the twinkling Gobi sky. For 14 nights, fascinating cultures and century-old customs emerge as the picture-perfect panorama of a far lesser known part of Eurasia unfolds before you. Not a journey for the faint-hearted, this Trans-Siberian tale is a worthwhile reminder that some of the greatest adventures are the ones that take a little more time and an open mind. Brown + Hudson can craft a 14-night, all-inclusive journey traversing Trans-Siberia with one night at Moscow’s Ararat Park Hyatt, two nights at The Blue Sky hotel in Ulaanbaatar and three nights at the Gobi Desert’s Three Camel Lodge, from USD 52,700 per person.


quarterly special | Train Travel

A Scottish Sojourn The Scots would have you believe that there is no finer place on Earth and so a journey on the iconic Royal Scotsman into the heart of the Highlands may well prove their point. When one thinks of Scotland, an array of images are drawn to mind – from colourful tartan kilts and aged-whisky to remote castles and flowering thistles. However, despite all of this, many visitors to the UK miss the touches of this magnificent corner of the British Isles. Working with expert trip planners, you will exclusively discover Scotland’s diverse landscape and unearth locations on-board one of Europe’s most prestigious trains. Admiring towering, pine-clad mountains reflecting on mirror-still lochs, with picturesque castles at dawn, seals basking on the beaches and historic golf courses down below, this journey truly captures the essence of what makes the Scottish so fiercely proud. Opting for a relaxed yet indulgent way to explore, the Royal Scotsman harks back to a glorious age of travel. With fine dining, local expertise and a wee dram of whisky, the rich history of Scotland comes alive in a unique and special way. Laying emphasis on the complexities of Scottish whisky – originating from the Gaelic word uisge beatha meaning “lively water” – the history, distilling

Scotland’s high latitude means that although winter days are

process and singularly unique flavours of each variety

short, the days during summer months are impressively long.

make for the perfect accompaniment to your exploration.

Summertime is the perfect window in which to embark on an exclusive journey combining stunning scenery, rich cultural heritage and a range of sporting pursuits with inspiring characters to bring each element to life. Whisking you from coasts to castles, by chartering the train exclusively, you will float effortlessly through pretty villages and glens whilst also sampling a superb selection of regional whiskies. The Royal Scotsman, with its private en suite cabins, mahoganypanelled dining carriage and open-deck observation car, is a wonderful place to slow your pace and settle into the Scottish way of life. A seven-day, all-inclusive journey with Brown + Hudson exploring the heart of the Scottish Highlands and exclusively chartering The Royal Scotsman train with two nights at Edinburgh’s most luxurious hotel costs from USD 66,000 per person including extensive aged-whisky tastings. www.brownandhudson.com

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Bi-Annual special | Fine wines

Anything but as long as it’s

C hardonnay

Any marketable commodity experiences trends; the ebbs and flows of popularity, encroaching competition from other brands or the positive impact of technology. Grape varieties in their vinous form often suffer the same fate. Amanda Longworth, Education Consultant at Berry Bros. & Rudd attests why Chardonnay is here to stay.

Photo courtesy of Jason Lowe

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Bi-Annual special | Fine wines

Chardonnay – The Pendulum Swings Up until the mid-90s, ordering a glass of Chardonnay was almost a generic term for ordering a glass of dry white wine. In the 20 or so years before this point, Chardonnay was the foundation of many a country’s burgeoning wine culture. As Jancis Robinson, world-renowned wine authority and Master of Wine notes, “In my long career I have seen a series of pendulum swings: trends that reach a limit and start to reverse. For example when I started writing about wine in 1976, white wine was the thing. Then Chardonnay.” Chardonnay is considered to be a neutral grape variety with

Producers of these lusher styles of wine responded to changing preferences by dialling back the oak and trying to create a style of wine that still had imminent appeal, but showed more restraint and elegance, more akin to their French counterparts. Despite the backlash that occurred during the late 90s, Chardonnay has still maintained its grip on being one of the more popular choices of wine. In 2010, it was the second most planted white grape in the worldi. While little known Airen, a white variety widely planted in Spain, often used for brandy distillation or inexpensive wine, holds first place.

most of its flavour profile resulting from its environment

What Regions, What Styles?

and the wine making process. Its popularity grew on all

The key to enjoying Chardonnay is finding your preferred

fronts: for the viticulturist, it was easily grown, winemakers

style. It may sound like a difficult task, and it could be, as it’s

could craft a wine with their individual stamp, and for

a variety that creates the most diverse range of wines in the

consumers, it was easy to drink. Approachable with lots of

world. Its hallowed ground is Burgundy, in East-Central France.

rich, tropical fruit and often lashings of new oak, its creamy

It is where this famous grape may have even originated.

and buttery character was for many totally charming.

Assumptions certainly have credence given a village called Chardonnay can be found within the sub-region of Mâcon.

Chardonnay had flooded the market, and drinkers began to tire of what some considered a bland and blousy wine. As the tide turned against Chardonnay, the term “Anything But Chardonnay” or ABC for short, was coined. Regions within Australia and California, which made their mark both domestically and abroad with this style, began to alienate consumers who preferred the reserved and leaner French wines from Chablis, Puligny-Montrachet or Meursault. Perhaps touting, “I don’t like Chardonnay” unaware their varietal nemesis was indeed at the heart of their glass.

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Bi-Annual special | Fine wines

Burgundy: Restrained & Refreshing

Burgundy: Elegance & Finesse or Subtly Richer

The freshest style can be found in wines labelled “Chablis”,

Moving further south to the Côte d’Or and more specifically,

the name taken from a medieval village, which sits at

the Côte de Beaune, lies the heartland of Burgundy’s finest

the base of rolling vine-covered hills. Wines have lots of

white wines: the villages of Puligny-Montrachet, Meursault

mouth-watering

and

freshness,

often

described

as

steely,

Chassagne-Montrachet.

Again,

quality

levels

are

mineral and focused. These terms supplement citrus and

grouped into four categories and as with Chablis, with each

green fruit. The delicate juice rarely sees oak, though the

step up come more power, concentration and longevity.

higher end examples may, in which case it adds texture and complexity. The aroma is subtle rather than dominating.

Puligny-Montrachet wines vary from the others in its distinctive style. It maintains an essence of Chablis’ steely

Quality varies greatly, defined by four different classification

character, but combines this with more fruit concentration

levels, with the bulk of production simply labelled Chablis

and gentle floral notes. Again, if any oak was used it is

or Petit Chablis. Knowing one or two reliable producers who

very discreet, with most leaning towards an un-oaked style.

focus on quality can be a map through the minefield of names. With the vineyard slopes capturing more sun, Meursault is a Producers such as Domaine Pinson, a three-generation-

softer and richer wine. Along with the light handed use of

old family estate, approaches winemaking with care

oak, well below 40 per cent for most producers, soft hints of

at every quality level, hand harvesting even the entry

butter, hazelnuts and vanilla spice accompany green apples

level wines. A different philosophy compared to 95

and white peach aromas and flavours. While lacking wines

per cent of the vineyards in the area, which opt to use

in the highest category level of Grand Cru, Meursault is the

machine. You can almost taste the love in the glass.

most popular and famous of amongst the three villages.

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Bi-Annual special | Fine wines

great Chardonnays led by the Grand Cru “Le Montrachet”.

California: Elegance with Flair

Wines of this quality are made for longer term ageing,

Word associations for California’s Chardonnay style for many

showing powerful and intense fruit. Oak may be more

years have included the likes of ‘opulent’, ‘fat’, ‘sweet’ and

obvious, but used judiciously, it becomes one of the many

‘blockbuster’. Anything about wine is difficult to generalise,

aroma layers that adds to the wine’s complexity over

particularly in regions like California. With its complex array

time. For the majority of wine from this appellation, the

of climates subject to a variety of influences: cooling Pacific

style is described as a compromise between the other two

Ocean breezes, the rain shadow effect of the 600-km long

villages – not as finely structured as Puligny and a little

coastal mountain range or the inland heat of the Central Valley.

Chassagne-Montrachet is home to the most famous of all

less rich than Meursault, but contains elements of both. If a ‘blockbuster’ wouldn’t be your preference, you can A great way to help identify the differences is to buy all

still find wines of elegance and finesse with a dash

the same quality level, say Premier Cru, and the same

of Californian flair. Santa Barbara and its sub-region

vintage from one producer for example Château De Puligny-

Santa Maria Valley produce award winning wines which

Montrachet and simply taste through the wines, compare

bow to the traditional Burgundian styles, adding soft

and contrast – there’s no need for professional tasting notes

oak, ripe apricot and peaches. Producers such as Jim

– the only note to be made is the one that appeals the most.

Clendenen of Au Bon Climat have worked tirelessly and persistently on wines that have balance and finesse that

The best places to appreciate the plethora of wines

retain freshness while distinctly reflecting their origin.

this region offers would be in one of the fabulous restaurants located in the buzzing town of Beaune. Ma Cuisine has a well-earned reputation for regional food

The Choice is Yours

as well as an impressive and varied wine cellar.

While

Chardonnay should not be shunned, but approached with an

Caveau des Arches provides a charming environment

open and inquisitive mind. The search will be an interesting

of a beautifully converted cellar underneath the town.

one, possibly filled with a few disappointments. At some point you will find a style, from a region or even producer that unlocks the door of resistance to one of the world’s great varieties. Berry Bros. & Rudd has been trading fine wines for more than 310 years. Their expertise lies in providing the right recommendations based on experience. www.bbr.com

i The World's Most-Planted Varieties: Winners & Losers w w w.wine-searcher.com/m/2014 /01/the-worlds-most-plantedvarieties-winners-losers Rebecca Gibb 7 Jan 2014

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Picture this

A Season of Change As the leaves fall and the temperatures cool, a new season is ushered in. This change, a chance to see the world in a different perspective, is a fitting moment to embrace new scenery and take fresh journeys. It’s the time to trade smooth roads for undulating landscapes and frequently trodden paths for new terrains. This turning point might just be all you need to experience the world like never before.

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Travelite Magazine Summer Issue 2014