Travel: Eastern Edens

Bawah- beach front suites in jungle-edited

Bawah Island: Anambas Archipelago

Hotel Intel

Bawah Island, located three-and-a-half hours from Singapore by ferry and private amphibious plane, is eco-luxe personified. Spanning six islands with three crystal-clear lagoons, 13 untouched beaches and a lush jungle, it was created with wellness, sustainability and rejuvenation in mind. To this end the resort’s Aura holistic wellness centre the ideal travel destination for those wanting to slow down, switch off and get reacquainted with their ‘true nature’.

The centre offers a spa and personalised yoga, pilates, meditation and reiki sessions and complete mind and body programmes are also available. If that isn’t quite what you’re after don’t fret, the resort also offers an array of water sports, hiking, a library in the tree tops plus three bars in different zones serving bespoke cocktails.


The occupancy is capped at 70 and the accommodation offering is made up of 21 beach suites, 11 over-water bungalows and three garden suites. With no heavy machinery allowed, everything here has been made by hand using materials such as bamboo, recycled teak and driftwood.

Need To Know

The package rate includes round-trip transfers from Singapore, all meals, soft drinks, surface water sports and the wellness centre.

Image: Entrance to the suite’s main bedroom


Cempedak Island: Riau Archipelago

Hotel Intel

Two-and-a-half hours from Singapore via private yacht and seaplane, Cempedak Private Island, part of the Riau Islands, which if you Google and squint at your screen emerges at last after determined zooming from the South China Sea. It’s remote, but utterly on track, directional in design and experience and about to become not so secret because the vision for it as island hideaways go, is a fresh and unpretentious new approach to luxury retreats. The owners wanted to create something different that would challenge preconceived notions of holidays in the tropics. It had to feel like you were not in a resort hotel but with all the luxe amenities and more you didn’t know you’d appreciate.


The resort has a selection of private beach and sea view villas, each with its own pool, deck and bar area, and they are constructed primarily out of bamboo, apart from the unique crescent-shaped roofs. These are made of alang alang grass and were designed not only to blend into the surrounds but to allow optimum air flow, eliminating the need for air-conditioning.

To Do

Although relaxing will be your main priority once here, a variety of water sports, jungle trekking and even tennis are on offer. In-villa spa treatments are also available.

Image: The resort’s main pool and lounge area


Singapore: The Warehouse Hotel

Hotel Intel

Renowned Singaporean hospitality firm, The Lo & Behold Group, has opened its first hotel in Singapore, in a circa 1895 warehouse no less. The Warehouse Hotel, situated on the banks of the Singapore River in the Robertson Quay neighbourhood, was built during the height of trade commerce but post-renovation the former hotbed of underground activities has been replaced by a modern, historically-minded boutique hotel.

Design Cred

Local design firm Asylum was commissioned to create the interiors, whilst Zarch Collaboratives oversaw the architectural changes. The exterior is a refreshing antithesis to the skyscraper-filled city and once you step inside exposed brick walls, leather-clad sofas and custom-designed lighting inspired by pulleys await. Of the 37 rooms no two are alike, and here you’ll be met with muted tones, green forest marble and wood finishes.

On Arrival

Sample one of the hotel’s signature craft cocktails at the lobby bar, all inspired by the warehouse’s past.

Image: The lobby and bar area of the warehouse hotel is an ode to the history of the building


Images: Supplied