Photo by Serena Renner
Nestle into Nikoi Island
The second you step off the boat and onto the sands of Nikoi Island, relaxation hits. After being escorted to a thatched roof bar, where you're handed a cold scented towel and tropical fruit juice to recharge while filling out check-in paperwork, you're inside a Robinson Crusoe dream house of driftwood, bamboo, and tropical thatching. The main bedroom is more rustic than luxurious but exudes a simple beauty that immerses guests into their waterfront setting. It has everything one could want without giving in to design trends—speakers with an iPhone dock, day beds (one of them swinging), a glass wall that accordions open to the sea, and a mosquito net canopy that breathes in the warm breeze. The island surrounds are equally inspiring studded with boulders; canopied in coconut palms (which the bar incorporates into several cocktails); and fringed by coral walls and bommies that guests can explore with a mask and snorkel or during guided dives. Nikoi's attention to detail extends to its genuine staff, delicious Indonesian cuisine, and environmental initiatives that range from a highly efficient generator (largely offset by solar power) to efforts to combat ocean pollution and over-fishing. It's the kind of stay you wish you could find everywhere you go. Fortunately, a second island property called Cempedak is in the works to give travelers one more authentic option within a few hours from Singapore.
By Serena Renner, AFAR Contributor
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Teluk Bakau, Gunung Kijang, Bintan Regency, Riau Islands, Indonesia
+62 771 7008040