James McBride - Nihiwatu

James McBride’s Nihiwatu


After buying Nihiwatu in 2012, Chris Burch and South African born business partner, hotelier James McBride, began realising their dream of turning the resort into a sumptuous yet laidback escape. The 32 villas include the spectacular Raja Mendaka comprising five villas, each with its own pool, set in a sprawling private garden – popular with families – and Mamole Tree House that consists of three elevated villas connected by a bamboo bridge. Just one of the achievements of the Mamole construction team, is the infinity pool set among the treetops. Then there is Puncak, a three-bedroomed villa that resembles a traditional Sumbanese house – or Kunatar, a spacious two-storey villa with a private deck and infinity pool and open-air living room designed for couples wanting some alone-time. The range of accommodation truly caters for every type of guest and provides in every need.

It is, however, the beach that remains the star of the show. Bookended by two rocky headlands, surfers have less than a hundred metres to swim before catching the island’s famous waves. If you prefer to stay on land, opt for their new Spa Safari, a full day’s journey up Sumba’s dramatic coast to the nearby Nihi Oka Valley where dedicated therapists offer a number of treatments using natural, local ingredients at the spa villa. Nihiwatu also has hand-picked in-house experts – health gurus, spear fishermen, surfers, artists, painters, poets and even magicians – to host inspiring and fascinating talks.

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