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Nihiwatu

Hoba Wawi, Wanokaka, West Sumba Regency, East Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia
| +62 813-5306-4665
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Indonesia's Do-Good, Sustainable Hotel   Indonesia
Meet Nihiwatu, Indonesia’s Remote Eden     Indonesia
Meet Nihiwatu, Indonesia’s Remote Eden     Indonesia
Meet Nihiwatu, Indonesia’s Remote Eden     Indonesia
On the edge of wildness   Indonesia
Indonesia's Do-Good, Sustainable Hotel   Indonesia
Meet Nihiwatu, Indonesia’s Remote Eden     Indonesia
Meet Nihiwatu, Indonesia’s Remote Eden     Indonesia
Meet Nihiwatu, Indonesia’s Remote Eden     Indonesia
On the edge of wildness   Indonesia

Indonesia's Do-Good, Sustainable Hotel

Founded by a surfer in search of the perfect wave, Nihiwatu is a model of sustainable luxury. The resort’s remote location on the jungle-edged coast of Sumba Island lures travelers looking for true escape and the hedonistic pleasures of private, candlelit dinners in a tree house and hikes to cliff-top spas. But it’s the cultural and community experiences that set Nihiwatu apart from other far-flung hotels. Sumbanese villagers make up 90 percent of the staff, and the resort contributes to the Sumba Foundation, which funds health clinics, water wells, and educational initiatives. Guests can observe island traditions, tour the projects, or volunteer at a school lunch program. From $900.

This appeared in the Nov/Dec 2015 issue.

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AFAR Staff
about 4 years ago

Meet Nihiwatu, Indonesia’s Remote Eden

See all of our ideas for where to go in 2015.

Sumba Island is a small curl of paradise, located in the eastern curl of paradise that is Indonesia. (From Bali, it is an hour-and-a-half trip by air.) The tiny, remote island is home to the Nihiwatu surf break—a magnetic roll of surf considered to be one of the best in the world—and the equally magnetic Nihiwatu Hotel, which reopened in April 2014 after a six-month remodel. It’s almost painful to refer to this pristine 600-acre compound—a place deeply rooted in Sumbanese culture and the result of nearly 20 years of relationship-building by cofounder Claude Graves with the island’s 400-plus villages—as a resort, but let’s start there. Picture the finest stretch of tropical white sand, laced with palms and stubby green shrubs. Turn your head to the right and there’s that famously perfect break. Turn it to the left and you’ll find a collection of elegant teak-and-rattan villas, open-air restaurants, and spa pavilions. For many sun-seekers, these luxuries are enough. But layer on the fact that Nihiwatu is the island’s largest employer and that 90 percent of its employees are Sumbanese, and the picture shifts. Add in the Sumba Foundation, a nonprofit into which all of Nihiwatu’s profits are funneled, and which counts reducing the local malaria rate by 85 percent and building local schools among its successes, and a very different image of a resort begins to form.
  
Mind at ease? Now for the fun: Between all that beach time, there are thousand-year-old villages to visit, Ikat weaving to explore, nightly bonfires to circle around, and spa safaris to indulge in (see below). Or volunteer at one of the nonprofit clinics or programs the Sumba Foundation runs or supports. In 2015, watch for 11 new villas and a treehouse jungle spa from new owner, hotelier James McBride.
AFAR Staff
about 2 years ago

On the edge of wildness

Our gorgeous villa was nothing short of breathtaking. Nihiwatu's accommodations are beautiful as are the amenities and the setting. We loved our villa and its private pool. The resort has so much to offer, water sports (surfing, snorkeling, SUP) as well as yoga, horseback riding, amazing spa services as well as its own chocolate factory and many wonderful excursions to local villages and untouched waterfalls. The perfect setting for a family, couples.