I had the pleasure of visiting one of the best hotels in the world. Nihi Sumba has been nominated as the best hotel in the world by Travel and Leisure.
Sumba is a beautiful island, but you won’t find the same kind of civilization as in Bali. Sumba has only 2 hotels on the island, but is a larger island than Bali. Sumba’s population is approximately 2 million, whereas Bali’s is around 4 million.
Nihi Sumba is a beautiful, luxurious 5-star hotel located on Sumba Island, which is a one hour flight from Denpesar Airport in Bali.
It’s a dream resort where you’re blind of the wow effect the whole time staying there. I only stayed for 3 nights and I wish I could have stayed a week more.
About Nihi Sumba:
When you arrive at Tambolaka Airport in Sumba, the Nihi staff is waiting for you to bring you safe to the resort.
Even from Denpesar Airport the Nihi staff helped us check into the flight and bring us safe to the gate and flight.
After arriving at Sumba Island we had a 90 min. drive to get to the Nihi Sumba Hotel.
I drove in an open Jeep where fresh coconuts and water was keeping me hydrated. On the way you see bamboo houses and a lot of deserted areas. There are small local shops, but only used by locals.
When arriving to Nihi Sumba you feel straight away as a part of a family. The vibe and energy, the hotel provides, is warm and welcoming, but were sincere and natural. The general manager, guest manager, spa manager, surf trainer, and more staff were welcoming with big smiles and a “welcome home”.
Simson was our concierge for the stay and helped up make our itinerary, book activities, and making sure we did everything we wanted and that we were satisfied with everything. Simson was beyond amazing!!! I already miss him.
The most unique thing about Nihi Sumba, besides being the most beautiful resort I have ever seen, is the that the staff is treating you like family and staff and guest are all together.
Moreover the hotel is almost completely plastic-free. They use wood, bamboo, glass, and other sustainable solutions which is quite amazing. Even the straws in all your drinks are made of papaya. This gives a feeling of authenticity and a closer connection to earth.
The first night there was a white barbecue night, which ended up staff and guest dancing in the sand and on the bar to commercial funny music. Nihi makes you feel like a part of a community and family while being so far away from home.
Nihi is a villa only resort. They have 85 villas accommodation from one bedroom to five bedrooms. You feel like zen and sustainable meets when you are in the villa.
You have your own pool with a waterfall, which makes it authentic and dreamy. You listen to the waterfall, even when you are in the bedroom.
The villas are facing towards the ocean so you wake up to the most amazing view. You wake up in paradise every day.
The villa I stayed in, has a pretty living room with a bar where you can mix your own drinks and eat their local made chocolate from the resort.
And upstairs, I had a beautiful and big bedroom with an outdoor bathroom and balcony with two sun beds and an outdoor bathtub.
The villa was a dream. It’s a villa you only see in movies, which suddenly came true.
Nihi Sumba is as ambitious about their food as they are with everything else in the resort.
They have a Ombak, which is a breakfast and dinner restaurant on a terrace overlooking the sea. For breakfast they have a á la carte menu where you can be healthy and order fresh green juice and Chia pudding with almond milk or order banana pancakes.
They serve all the best breakfast dishes you can imagine and the quality of the ingredients is very high.
For dinner Ombak serves fresh local fish, Wagyu meat, pastas, and different salads. Basically, there is something for everyone. And the food is amazing! I can highly recommend the lobster and kale and broccoli salad.
For lunch you eat on the beach with your feet in the sand. The menu is Hawaiian poke bowls, wood-oven pizzas, papaya salad and other fresh delicious dishes.
Three times a week the hotel hosts specials dinners which can be white barbecue night or jungle dinner party and more. Everyone at the hotel are gathered which creates a special intimate vibe as the hotel is not too big. For jungle night there is a performance of the locals dancing Sumbanese dance which is an experience to see.
Nihi Sumba provides a range of activities for all ages and genders. You can stay at Nihi for more than a week and still haven’t tried all activities. You won’t be bored at Nihi Sumba for sure.
If you love yoga you will love it here! There is a yoga bamboo deck on top of a hill where you have the view of the ocean while practicing yoga at 7AM or at 5PMfor sunset. I did a sunset yoga practice which was magical.
Nihi has a health studio, which is a small gym. If you need to work on your muscles you can.
Nihi has an open living room which is also a game room where you can play pool and table tennis. I didn’t have the time to do this but I would have loved both a pool and table tennis tournament.
Nihi is famous for their surf. The waves are not busy as there are not many people surfing at the same time due to restrictions.
I can highly recommend you to experience the spa safari. You can choose half day or full day and it’s a dream! I experienced the half day safari which started at 7:30AM where I met our guide in the reception of the hotel. There were more guests from the hotel at the meeting spot and together with our local Sumbanese guide, we hiked for 90 min. It was about 5 km. up and down hills seeing horses and buffalos on the way. We walked on roads, but mainly rice fields. After 90 min. we arrived at another part of the island where Nihi’s spa area is located.
The spa area has a a main area where you speak to your therapist and choose the treatments you would like to try. If you have a half day spa then you can choose 3-4 treatments which is 2,5 hours of treatments. The treatments take place in your own little bamboo house on the cliff. It’s so dreamy and a true “out of this world” experience.
After choosing my treatments I went to the beach and had a breakfast followed by dreamy treatments and afternoon tea and cake. I was an heaven!
The Hotel has a small market next to the reception where Sumbanese women are weaving and making bags and scarves that you can purchase. It’s truly beautiful and amazing to see the handcraft and how it’s being made.
If you love horses, then you will love this place even more. You can ride horses on the beach or in the water, which I saw some guests do and it looked so much fun.
If you prefer the view, then you can enjoy the wilderness and free life of the horses running and playing on the beach while eating lunch.
Below are pictures from my wonderful stay at Nihi Sumba:
The Sumba foundation:
Nihi is behind the Sumba foundation which I am so amazed by!
The Sumba foundation is a water, health, nutrition and education.
To have access to potable water, to provide a health care system that controls malaria that is a widely spread disease in Sumba.
The nutrition project that helps children from the age of five years old to receive the necessary nutrition needed.
The Educational project focuses on construction schools and providing a functional education for the children in Sumba. Furthermore the Sumba foundation has increased the number of children to get access to school and provide them with clean water, school books, teachers, and food.
I went to visit one of the four clinics that The Sumba Foundation have created as well as one of the schools. I was extremely amazed to see how big of an impact the foundation have done to the local people. Malaria is a common disease in Sumba where 3-5 Sumbanese in dry season have malaria and between 10-20 a day in rainy season.
The Sumba Foundation has reduced the amount of people dying from malaria by 93% in the close area because of their clinics offering free medicine and treatments. They educate nurses to check for malaria and look at the microscope.
The Sumba Foundation has helped around 2,400 children to get access to school and have 10 English teachers.
The Sumba Foundation raises money from the hotel, Nihi Sumba where almost all profit goes to the foundation.
The founders of Nihi Sumba xx are behind the foundation and they have also made several fundraising’s in New York and Hong Kong. Also the guests that stay at Nihi have the possibility of donating.
Nihi Sumba is a dream place for honeymooners and for families. You can bring your whole family and everyone will have the most dreamy time. Nihi Sumba is an intimate island resort that is unique and not like anything else you have tried.
Just have in mind that this hotel is not cheap. All this luxury comes with a price. This hotel is for sure one of the most amazing places I have been in the world, if not the most amazing place ever.
My dream is to come back here with my partner for a longer period time and enjoy more activities and the unique Nihi Sumba vibe.
Xx and Safe Travels