The resort in the Kingdom of Bhutan will roll out a series of unique experiences covering health and wellness, gastronomy and out-of-the ordinary sight-seeing
Aman Resorts, Hotels & Residences was the first to create an international hotel collection within the Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan when it opened Amankora in the early 2000s. The sole surviving Buddhist Kingdom, Bhutan is a place of remarkable natural beauty, cultural authenticity and utter purity, and Amankora offers a holiday experience quite unlike any other. The resort’s five intimate lodges – Paro, Punakha, Gangtey, Bumthang, and Thimphu, within the valleys of the Kingdom’s mountainous terrain, are more than just a place to rest your head, they are part of a bigger, more meaningful theme. Guests have the chance to stay in a combination or even all of the lodges, facilitating a ‘kora’ or ‘circular journey’ of discovery throughout central and western Bhutan, as each lodge unveils a unique view and experience of this Kingdom on top of the world.
The resort recently introduced helicopter transfers between lodges, a unique helicopter breakfast experience at Twin Lakes, forest and prayer flag bathing experiences, four new suites, and a swimming pool at Punakha Lodge. And from June until late February Amankora will also be featuring a series of unique experiences, from three Michelin-starred chef residencies at Thimpu Lodge, to immersive wellness retreats, poppy treks and a matsutake trek.
Amankora Helicopter Journeys
Amankora has introduced a new way for guests to travel from lodge-to-lodge. Thousands of metres above the mountains, guests can now wave down to the wildlife below and travel faster than before to their next destination, which will give them more time to explore on the ground. Aman has partnered with Royal Bhutan Helicopter Services to offer Amankora Helicopter Journeys.
Michelin-Starred Guest Chefs
A series of culinary nights is coming to the Amankora Thimphu lodge this July, August and September. Three renowned Michelin-starred chefs – Chefs Bryce Shuman, Joshua Brown, and Shinobu Namae – will work with Amankora’s own culinary team to feature a multi-course degustation inspired by the Kingdom’s mountainous environment and abundance of fresh produce.
Chef Bryce Shuman – 23rd and 14th July
Chef Joshua Brown – 10th and 11th of August
Chef Shinobu Namae – 14th and 15th September
Breakfast at Twin Lakes
Follow up a night of dining at Amankora Thimphu over at Bhutan’s second highest peak, Mount Jomolhari at Amankora Paro. Then take a helicopter ride over the Paro Valley before coming face-on with panoramic views of the Himalayas at the Bhutan-Tibet border.
The once-in-a-lifetime breakfast spot sits between two turquoise lakes above Jomolhari Base Camp at Jangothang and gives impeccable views of the 7,300-metre monolith. After breakfast, guests can venture to other sacred sites nearby including the Jomolhari Temple, the meditation cave of Milarepa, and the spirit lake of Tsheringma.
New Suites and Swimming Pool at Punakha Lodge
At Amanora Punakha, the midpoint of all five lodges, Amankora’s first swimming pool in the Kingdom has opened. The 30-metre infinity pool is surrounded by rice paddies and fruit plantations. It features 360° mountain views and a central location close to all other lodges.
To expand on Amankora Punakha’s small eight-suite lodge, the location has also introduced four brand new suites, marking a welcome addition to the traditional Bhutanese farmhouse near the Mo Chhu River.
Forest and Prayer Flag Bathing Experiences
You can leave your bath towel and bodywash in your lodge when it’s time for a signature Amankora outdoor bathing experience, because bath-time here is less about soapy suds and more about focusing on the present moment, alone in nature. Situated in the Himalayan Forest, the experience is focused on slow and tranquil walking through the pristine wilderness and is inspired by the Japanese phrase shinrin yoku meaning ‘absorbing the forest atmosphere’.
Prayer Flag Bathing focuses on soul-boosting outcomes as well as listening to the sound of prayer flags flapping in the wind. The prayer flags represent the Buddhist belief that prayers can be carried by the wind and that any person touched by the wind will be uplifted. The experience is said to be a deeply calming and spiritual immersion.
Wellness Retreats with Visiting Specialists
In September and October renowned wellness experts from around the world will be hosting retreats designed to balance the body and mind through various practices including alternative Tibetan medicine as well as Taoist practice, holistic massages, hot stone baths, Buddhist blessings and personalised spiritual immersion sessions.
15th to 22nd September – ‘Enriching Life’ retreat with Dr. Buathon Thienarrom. Includes three nights at Thimphu, four nights at Paro, a 60-minute spa treatment and all meals, road transfers and sightseeing between.
1st to 31st October – The Inner Light Immersion retreat. Includes two nights at Thimphu and Punakha, three nights at paro, all meals, three 90-minute specialist therapies, one 60-minute Amankora holistic massage, one 60-minute traditional hot stone bath, a Buddhist blessing ceremony and more.
Poppy Treks and Matsutake Season
The poppy is Bhutan’s national flower and these white, red and pink blooms blossom from June to July. Until July 15 guests of Amankora have the opportunity to view the seasonal display of the poppies while trekking through the remote and untouched Haa Valley. Two or three night accommodation in tents are included as well as two nights at Amankora Thimphu and Amankora Paro lodges.
Until 15th July
Guests of Amankora will also have the chance to observe and indulge in matsutake mushrooms. In a four-night tour at Thimphu and Paro lodges, both in the Bhutanese wilderness countryside, guests will visit the hamlet where the highly sought-after matsutake mushrooms are traded, and try various meals made from this rare matsutake.
1st August to 15th September