3 New Five-Star Hotel Openings Add to the Luster of Visiting Bhutan

3 New Five-Star Hotel Openings Add to the Luster of Visiting Bhutan

Three new hotels are adding more choice and variety to the luxury traveler’s visit to Bhutan.

Located in the scenic valley of Paro, and just 15 minutes drive from Bhutan’s only international airport, the Zhiwa Ling Heritage Hotel is built in traditional Bhutanese architectural style, with elegant tapering stone walls and ornately hand carved and painted wood. With a spacious garden with trees and flowers, Zhiwa Ling has 45 well-appointed suite rooms, an indoor swimming pool, spa and a view of the rocky cliffs that lead to the iconic Tigers’ Nest Temple. An outdoor hot stone bath and a meditation house with a view of Tiger’s Nest add to the charm. Traditional in design but modern in comfort, the hotel is all about relaxation in the outdoor spaces, cozying around the fireplace in the bar, or enjoying a fine meal in one of the elegant restaurants. Within the hotel, a Buddhist shrine built of restored timber from a 450-year-old monastery adds a sense of calm and spirituality.

Nestled by the tranquil Mo Chhu River in Punakha and under the watchful gaze of the revered Punakha Dzong (Palace of Happiness), one discovers the sublime realm of Pemako Punakha. Spread across 30 pristine acres, it features 21 artfully curated tented pool villas, serving as a bridge between Bhutan's deep-rooted traditions and modern elegance. The resort offers experiences that embody the essence of Bhutan's warm hospitality. Its spa is rooted in Sowa Rigpa, the ancient Bhutanese art of healing. Every guest is paired with a dedicated guide/butler, unveiling the nuanced intricacies of Bhutanese courtesy. As guests embark on a transformative journey, revered Buddhist monks and resident scholars inspire introspection and balance. Pemako's cuisine is showcased at four premier outlets and other intimate picnic venues. The Chef’s Table weaves seasonal Himalayan flavors with the finest selections from local farmers.

&Beyond Punakha River Lodge is the luxury travel group’s first property outside of Africa and South America. Nestled on the shores of the Mo Chhu River, its architecture combines traditional Bhutanese influences with the experience and graciousness of the &Beyond brand. It has opened with six intimate luxury tents, a one-bedroom suite, and a two-bedroom family suite, surrounded by verdant paddy fields and dense clusters of forested hills. The spa’s location in an orange orchard is ideal for yoga, massage and a dip into its Bhutanese hot stone bath. The cuisine is locally inspired and presents a farm-to-fork concept, combining Bhutanese, Indian and European flavors. Drinks can be savored at sundown on a suspension bridge arrayed with prayer flags.

These new properties add to Bhutan’s ambitious palate of luxury brands' accommodations, which also includes Aman, Six Senses, Como, Bhutan Spirit Sanctuary, Gangtey Lodge, Pemako Thimphu, Le Meridien, and Dusit.

In addition to the five-star hotels, Bhutan also has nine four-star hotel brands, as well as numerous three star hotels. Homestays are also available.

"For the intrepid traveler who wants to be pampered and seduced by spirituality, no place on earth has the serenity, magic and grace of Bhutan,” says Dorji Dhradhul, the Director General of the Department of Tourism.