No new property this year has captured the essence of its environment quite like Mandapa. A stay at this Ritz-Carlton Reserve resort in Bali is a spiritual awakening, from the perfectly preserved temples and sacred trees on its grounds to the handwoven batik textiles and colorful murals by local artists in the guest rooms. For a total immersion, take a tour of Ubud in Mandapa’s vintage convertible Volkswagen 181.
Located on the edge of Ubud’s rushing Ayung River, Mandapa resembles a small village with a tiered rice plantation at its center.
Accommodations include 25 thatched villas—each with a swimming pool—and 35 suites.
A patih, or personal butler, takes care of each guest, arranging such on-site experiences as a massage by a blind healer or a private dinner of slow-cooked suckling pig.
At Mandapa’s working rice plantation, guests can sow seeds and tend crops with the local farmers.
Mandapa, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, ritzcarlton.com ($570–$2,700)