Sunday, January 17, 2016


Framed by the dramatic Mount Angung volcano and the untouched waters of the Lombok Straight, Amankila—or “peaceful hill”—is where the stillness of Karangasem and the beauty of Bali collide.
This elegant beach side sanctuary is suspended on the cliffs of Bali’s eastern coastline, offering a reprieve from the flocks of tourists and a quintessential refinement singular to the exclusive Aman brand.

Amankila is an invitation to luxuriate in elegance. Inspired by the nearby Karangasem floating palaces, this hilltop resort allows guests to bask in traditional Balinese bales while admiring the never-ending blue vistas of the Lombok Straight. Cradled within the lush hillside frangipani and bougainvillea trees, each of the 34 suites occupy their own freestanding villa and are elevated in a way that maximizes sea views above the treetops. Inside, the suites are traditional yet graceful, outfitted with alang alang thatched roofs, coconut-shell and pearl-inlaid furniture, and private elevated terraces with day beds. Many come with their own private swimming pools and thatched balé pavilions where the views reveal nothing but trees and unspoiled coastline as far as the eye can see.

Waterside vistas are perhaps Amankila’s most enduring feature. Aside from the enormous lap pool by the Beach Club coconut grove, the resort’s serene, three-tiered infinity pool is the star of the property, tumbling down the hillside like a terraced rice field all the way to the shoreline. Lined with loungers and balé pavilions, there is simply no better place for a sunset cocktail or a view across the sea. Just above the topmost swimming pool is the Amankila Restaurant, whose open-air perch sets the stage for healthy and revitalizing fare. All of the ingredients at Amankila are locally sourced, with fish delivered daily by local boats, fresh herbs plucked from Amankila’s garden, vegetables and exotic fruits picked from a nearby organic farm on Mount Agung, and ducks and pigs raised at the resort’s free-range farm in Jasri. And with nightly traditional Balinese dances performed in the island bar and afternoon teas of local ginger tea and cakes, guests are never want for a taste of the local flavor.

From its hillside perch above the Lombok Strait, Amankila serves as a sacred gateway to Bali’s extraordinary culture and heritage. Between the emerald rice paddies are humble villages and temples unchanged by time. Goa Lawah Temple, hidden in a bat cave, is not far from Amankila, nor are the island’s incomparable Luhur Lempuyang, Besakih, and Tirta Gagga Palace landmarks. And then there is the water: turquoise and pristine and a maritime wonderland just waiting to be explored. Scuba divers and snorkelers will marvel at the unspoiled coral reefs, while the island’s wave attract surfers, kayakers, and sailors the world over. Or, one can simply allow Amankila to take the reigns of leisure with a private chartered cruise, a romantic dinner on the beach, or an open-air spa treatment secreted away in the tropical canopy.

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