Six Senses Resorts, legendary for their out-of-the-ordinary vacation lairs located in some of the world’s most scenic and remote spots, is taking vacation time to the next level with new resorts in the Seychelles, China, Portugal and Bhutan.
Six Senses has a dozen resorts and counting in such exotic locations as the Maldives, Oman, Vietnam and Thailand. And, later this year resorts will also open in Cambodia, Fiji and Bali. The Seychelles adds its imprint to the list as Six Senses Zil Pasyon just opened last fall on the private island of Félicité. The island measures just a tad over a square mile but has been the destination target of many a renown personality – former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, Richard Branson, and even Malaysian royalty.
Six Senses Zil Pasyon
At Six Senses Zil Pasyon, there are 28 one-bedroom and two two-bedroom villas ranging in size from 2,150 square feet to 5,380 square feet, each with its own private pool and all sitting on the rocky cliffs with splendid views of the Indian Ocean. Each villa has an expansive private sun deck with outdoor dining, a private wine collection and an ice machine. A dedicated 24-hour butler looks after each guest.
Guests can soak in the main pool by the beach and enjoy the waves splashing up against the infinity views. They can also relax in the hammam and sauna and have massage treatments infusing local herbs and botanic traditions in a full service 7,000 square foot spa that includes a luscious saltwater pool. Enjoy yoga in the mornings, a manicure in the afternoon, in between head to La Digue, the smallest of the three main inhabited islands, for cycling or have a guided tour of the Vallee de Mai, the UNESCO World Heritage Site in the heart of Praslin National Park.
Getting there: Six Senses Zil Pasyon is located 30 nautical miles northeast of Mahe (location of Seychelles International Airport – SEZ) and is accessed by a 20-minute helicopter flight.
Six Senses Douro Valley
Six Senses Douro Valley opened in the summer of 2015 to celebrate Portugal’s fine wine traditions in an unspoiled natural landscape that is one of the world’s oldest wine regions. Wine infuses every aspect of a Six Senses Douro Valley experience, whether guests are sampling it, making it, sipping it in a fantasy meal of pairings and small plates or enjoyong a glass after an inspired spa treatment.
A preserved 19th century manor got a makeover from New York’s Clodagh Design with stunning blue and white accents breathed through 18th century azulejo tiles, as well as granite floors, walls of gold leaf and ceilings of aromatic cork.
The hotel’s 57 rooms, suites and villas bring earthy tones in oak floors, gold textured walls and bright picture windows. It all comes with 21st century tech: room service that is ordered via a smartphone, that also operates the lighting, window coverings and TV. Locally made lemongrass soaps maintain a citrus scent that permeates.
Dining is naturally in focus with local organic picks from the garden that find their way into daily menus and cocktails. Try the house cured trout tartare, pickles from the organic garden, and a medley of organic vegetables served with parmiggiano, mozzerela, dry fruits and port wine sauce.
The spa is the star at most Six Senses and Douro Valley is no exception. A union of nature and Portuguese tradition wedded to the elements of water, stone and wood, the spacious Six Senses Spa Douro Valley offers 10 treatment rooms. There is a heated indoor pool with water jets, an outdoor pool and refreshment bar plus a gym with the latest exercise equipment and professional guidance. Six Senses speciality treatments and multi-day programs are featured together with locally inspired therapies, some of which are grape and citrus fruit based.
Getting there: Six Senses Douro Valley is located near the historic town of Lamego, a 60 minute drive from Porto and the Porto International Airport (OPO).
Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain
Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain opened in 2015 in Magical Chengdu near two riveting UNESCO Heritage sites. It takes only five minutes to drive to the base of the lush and thickly forested Qingcheng Mountain, replete with ancient Taoist shrines. In another 20 minutes guests are at the roiling waters of the Dujiangyan Irrigation Scheme, a site that dates back to 256 BC. The hotel sits about 40 miles or an hour’s drive from the bustling modern city of Chengdu.
Amid the sweeping Chinese roofs set up like a placid Sichuan village, Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain offers 122 guest rooms and suites that run from semi-detached quarters in duplex villas with balconies and verandas, to courtyard suites, and garden and pool villas. All is designed with authentic antiques or in traditional Sichuan styles.
For those with business to conduct or events to plan, the Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain is an unusual venue with hidden opportunities. Last summer it unveiled the 4,500 square foot multi-purpose Qing You Hall that can hold galas for up to 300 sitting guests or for 480 in a cocktail event. The pillar-free ballroom has a backdrop featuring Qing Cheng Mountain and 2.5 acres of organic gardens in the foreground.
Spa-goers will enjoy the18,400 square foot Six Senses Spa. Beyond the calming waterfalls it has 10 treatment rooms where locally-inspired massages and wellness therapies are offered along with plus yoga and tai chi classes.
Getting there: Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain is about an hour’s drive from Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport (CTU). Transfer arrangements can be made at the time of booking – and a clean-burning Tesla will be providing the transportation.
Six Senses Bhutan
Six Senses will be offering yet another exotic location for visitors when Six Senses Bhutan opens later this year. The new resort project in the Himalayan kingdom brings together five satellite resorts in separate locations under the Six Senses Bhutan umbrella. The project is especially significant as the Kingdom of Bhutan remains a rather isolated and ancient culture where local populations have been mostly unexposed to outside world. In fact, the people of Bhutan had no interaction with westerners until the 1950s. It has been known throughout the world as possibly the happiest place on earth by cultural anthropologists.
Six Senses will bring just 82 guest suites and villas to Bhutan, distributed between five intimate lodges located in Thimphu, Punakha, Gangtey, Bumthang and Paro. Each venue is themed according to the motifs of the area, whether forest or city or farmhouse or mountain perch, using the local woods, stones and handicrafts from each area.
Bhutan, some 15,000 square miles bordered by Tibet, and the far reaches of Northern India, is mostly a land of steep mountains, monasteries and astounding beauty.
Getting there: Fly into Paro International Airport (PBH) from Kathmandu, New Delhi, Singapore and Bangkok.
Kurtz-Ahlers & Associates– Curator of undiscovered luxury travel locales with insider info and news from our worldwide portfolio of hotels, wellness retreats, and eco-resorts. View our portfolio on our Online Directory.
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