NAY PALAD, Philippines
There’s a reason Nay Palad has been splashed across the pages of Vogue, Conde Nast Traveller and Harper’s Bazaar.
With its swinging daybeds, white gauzy linens and lantern-lit dinners, this beautiful place is a designer’s dream and surfers paradise.
French-Romanian architect and designer, Daniel Pouzet, has combined enchanting elements of local material with timeless building principles from across cultures and ages to create a one-of-a-kind resort that lingers in your memory long after you’ve returned home.
Offering only ten expertly crafted villas, this barefoot luxury surf resort has been carefully created by local Filipino carpenters and crafters with sustainability top of mind.
As you gaze out at the star-flecked sky from these bright, airy villas, you are delighted at every turn.
Woven hints of wicker and timber throughout. Billowing pale fabrics. Wide outdoor terraces. Soothing aromatherapy burners. Outdoor rainfall showers.
All creating the kind of dreamy, restful feeling you only see in brochures.
Even better, the stylish resort is on a mission to build a “global community of friends and fellow travellers who seek made-to-measure experiences, meaningful connections and goods with stories to tell. A community of makers and dreamers, we commit to helping each other, and the planet we share, to thrive.”
Not only do these designer digs make your heart skip a beat with their beauty, but they also grab your heart with their fantastic vision. If you’re feeling inspired after your visit, you can take home a little piece of Nay Palad by purchasing stunning handcrafted homewares, ceramics and textiles at the hotel or from their website store.
HALCYON HOUSE, Australia
A design blog wouldn’t be complete without our homespun hero of playful decor, chilled family surf vibes and Hamptons-style chic, right on Cabarita Beach in northern NSW.
Awaking the old Hideaway beach hotel from her slumber, Halcyon House has been given a jaw-dropping makeover by Sydney-based architect Virginia Kerridge, with each of the 21 boutique rooms being uniquely designed by Brisbane-based interior designer Anna Spiro.
Vintage-inspired bicycles, blue and white candy striped deck chairs, eclectic artwork, warm wicker and yawning white archways inviting in the sun are the order of the day at this Amalfi-inspired hotel.
As noted by Melissa Hoyer, no two rooms are the same in this delightful surf resort with unique textiles, antiques, art and furnishings which were sourced from all over the globe — from Brisbane estate sales to the legendary Brimfield antiques fair in Massachusetts.
Many of these vintage pieces and whimsical furnishings such as John Derian sofas, Madeline Weinrib rugs and drawings by Wayne Pate, were personally sourced by Anna and her sisters, bringing back memories of their family holidays in the 70s.
It’s design aesthetic is so popular; it’s now known on Instagram as the ‘Halcyon Hang’.
And you’ll want to spend a bit of time pampering yourself in those bathrooms (or only to find that elusive ‘me’ time away from the kids): think brass fittings, Morrocan tiles, English tapware, marble vanities, Evo toiletries.
It’s a curated experience in understated elegance, laidback luxury and relaxed, breezy living. And yet it still has that old school 60’s motel feeling, so it never feels not too big for its boots.
Recently featured on the Conde Nast Traveler Gold List for 2019, Halcyon House is a pinch of California pool party, a dash of well-bred Riviera charm and an abundance of Aussie warmth and cool crowds that have earnt Halcyon the accolade of being one of THE best surf resorts in the world.
Here’s what the revered Conde Nast had to say about our beloved Halcyon:
At this motel-turned-boutique-hotel just north of Byron Bay, the mood-board is mid-century, Slim Aarons glamour. Bronzed pool boys in white uniforms serve artisan-gin cocktails to guests in big sun hats and designer togs, the breeze from Cabarita Beach rustling the pandanus trees on the lawn. Blue-and-white interiors are exuberant (nothing nautical-twee here) and new-school Aussie.
Yes. This is one achingly hip surf resort you must check out.
SUARGA PADANG PADANG, Bali
With a handful of handcrafted villas and pavilions and cinematic ocean views, the sustainable boutique surf resort, Suarga Padang Padang, truly embodies its Sanskrit name, “paradise”.
Using traditional Indonesian techniques, intelligent practices and a generous dash of modern style, Suarga’s 36 villas have been carefully created for artistically-minded travellers and style lovers at heart.
Graced with cool touches of stone, softly lit interiors, sea breezes rustling through bamboo, secret gardens and open-air structures that blur the lines between indoor and alfresco living, it is impossible not to feel relaxed in this stunning cliffside surf resort.
The stunning Ulin Pavilions feature all the stuff of our Balinese dreams: four-poster beds, private pools, indigenous soft furnishings, Sumba stone, plump cushions and regenerated ironwood from the old pontoons of Borneo.
The beautifully constructed bathrooms ring with notes of copper and sun-warmed stone and the scattered daybeds are the perfect choice for honeymooners, couples or small families.
Rooms filled with natural crafts from local communities and the chance to make boutique jewellery during your stay are signs that Suarga wholeheartedly embraces the art of Balinese culture.
As described on the Suarga website, the pieces that adorn the rooms serve as constant reminders and connectors to the destination: portraits highlighting the local culture, floor mats featuring traditional batik motifs, chests made of local rattan, and ornamental accessories made from seashells.
From carved teak and sunken dining spaces to Ajiro rattan from local weavers in Borneo and delicately painted ceramics, you’re going to want to transport every inch of this place straight back to your living room.
And if you’re like us, you’re a sucker for a boutique hotel gift shop – this one does not disappoint. The gift shop offers an exotic array of Papuan artefacts and bright coloured handicrafts from the villages around Sumba and Java so you can inject a dose of Suarga back home.
And before you say, but is it too fancy for messy toddlers, there’s a children’s pool, in-room childcare and a host of fun experiences for the kids to enjoy while you soak up the fancy feel.
Finally, Suarga’s sustainable vibes are the icing on the cake. Knowing you’re staying somewhere, that takes sustainable practice seriously brings a sense of guilt-free relief to any trip.
From low footprint building designs to natural water collection, solar panels, and locally sourced food – every decision at Suarga has been thoughtfully made.
At Suarga, cultural charm, spiritual sustainability and mindfulness blend together to form a design haven so special you and your family will remember it for a lifetime.