For its first international venture, the Japanese resort group Hoshinoya could not have picked a more idyllic spot in Bali’s Ubud quarter.
Framed by a palimpsest of thousand-year old temple canals and the Pakerisan River valley, architect Rie Azuma has strung thirty villas along a dense three-hectare stretch of rainforest, rice terraces and shrines.
The aesthetic cleaves close to the Balinese ideal of balés capped by roofs covered with alang-alang grass, wall carvings of flora and fauna by local artisans, and a long stretch of swimming pool that’s evocatively styled as lushly foliaged canal.
A fantasist touch is delivered with trellised gazebos that hang high over the tree line for a literal bird’s eye panorama of the deep green forest canopy. The resort’s Japanese antecedents are recalled in a mod Balinese meets Japanese menu by resident chef Makoto Miyamaguchi that includes carpaccio paired with the pungent heat of sambal.