Need To Know
11am. Check-in, 1pm. Both are flexible, subject to availability.
Double rooms from $650.00, excluding tax at 21 per cent. ⓘ
Rates include all meals (American breakfast, lunch, dinner, afternoon teas and coffees, soft drinks and bottled water from the minibar). A minimum 3 night stay applies for Nihiwatu.
The resort’s rocky paths make it unsuitable for wheelchair users. If a visit to the beach spa doesn’t float your boat, in-room massages are available from 9am to 8pm.
At the hotel
567 acres of land, private beach with watersports facilities, spa, equestrian centre, beach cinema, ping-pong table, pool tables, free WiFi throughout. In rooms: Minibar, free bottled water, tea and coffee-making facilities, Nihiwatu natural toiletries.
Our favourite rooms
Right on the cliff edge, Marangga villas have jaw-dropping ocean views and an outdoor bale where guests can sleep overnight. Built in the style of a Sumbanese house, Kanatar Sumba Houses have an upstairs bedroom with a terrace and bathroom among the trees. Crowned by distinctive conical roofs thatched with local Alang Alang grass, all the villas encourage breeze-cooled outdoor living, with private gardens, pergola-shaded bales and sweeping ocean views.
There is no communal pool at the resort, but each villa has its own sleek freshwater private pool.
In a sheltered creek framed by pandanus trees, Nihiwatu’s open-air spa pavilions look out over the beach and crashing waves. Worthy of its name, the Sumbanese Dream treatment combines a mineral-rich foot bath, relaxing massage, lavender-scented scrub and aloe-infused body mask. For an out-of-this-world experience, book a babysitter and embark on the Nihi Oka Spa Safari, a journey to a secluded valley where four bamboo-clad couples’ treatment rooms await. Pick one of the home-made aromatic oils and indulge in a stress-busting massage with views of peaceful paddy fields.
Bring your own riding gear to make the most of Nihiwatu’s sweet-natured horses. Serious surfers should bring their own boards too, but they’ll need to be shorter than nine feet for the flight.
Staff can also organise torch-lit dinners on the beach, treehouse barbecues and in-villa lobster feasts – just give them a day’s notice. The resort’s legendary surf break is just off the coast; for a gentler splash in the waves head to Tranquility Beach, a 15-minute drive away.
Two under-5s can stay free. Extra beds for 6–11 year-olds cost US$90 a child, each night; 12–16 year-olds are charged US$195 a night. The restaurants have high chairs and a children’s menu. Babysitting is available for US$7 an hour.
Responsible luxury is the guiding principle of Nihiwatu’s eco-friendly approach. Much of the restaurants’ produce is grown in the resort’s organic garden, fed by a clever composting and water-recycling system. The hotel’s green ethos extends beyond its walls, too, with community outreach programmes in local villages, a turtle hatchery and a foundation working to clean water and reduce malaria on the island.