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“went to Heaven and back again...”
Review of Nihiwatu

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Nihiwatu
Ranked #1 of 14 Hotels in Sumba
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 22 September 2011

I am always hesitant to go to a place when so much already has been said and like a good film review, your expectations are so high that you end up slightly disappointed...With Nihiwatu, it was certainly not the case!
It is small, it is intimate, it is relaxing to the extreme, it is spectacular, it is primitive and at the same time very sophisticated. First and foremost, the surf is world class. The concept if not unique, seem to enrich the local Sumbanese community, your exceptional hosts and the guests alike. As a tourist you don't feel like an intruder but immediately part of a beautiful scheme and vision that the Sumba foundation has managed to create and keep developing. I was going to forget...The food is exquisite.

  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Pierre -A L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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305 - 311 of 370 reviews

Reviewed 1 August 2011

We returned from Nihiwatu about 3 weeks ago and all I can think about is returning. Nihiwatu is the product of an extraordinary vision: that a truly magnificent hotel could be established in a remote and beautiful place and in doing so the people who own that place would be involved and their children and their children's children would benefit for generations. Claude and Petra Graves have succeeded on all counts. The magesty of the location and the warmth of the staff at Nihiwatu are matched by the works of their Sumba Foundation which has already had an extraordinarily positive impact on the health and education opportunities for the people of West Sumba. There is also surf ... magnificent surf; a pristine beach; great food ; wonderful activities for children and a resort area where every stone in every pathway has been placed with love. Those who visit Nihiwatu are very lucky souls.

Room Tip: The bungalows are beutiful, each set amongst ancient trees and natural gardens looking at the surf.
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  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled with family
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3  Thank KWC_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ernst2010, Manager at Nihiwatu, responded to this reviewResponded 1 August 2011

Dear KWC_11

Thank you, your review sums up Nihiwatu and The Sumba Foundation's vision succinctly. Every guest visit has a positive direct impact on our neighbours in this region of the island, and as support grows, so too does the area and number of people affected. Instead of just enjoying the facilities of the property, we encourage all of our guests to get out and see the villages and initiatives that are improving the livelihoods of the Sumbanese.

Thank you and we'll see you at Nihiwatu again I know!

Regards

Ernst and the Nihiwatu Family

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Reviewed 27 July 2011

The staff at Nihiwatu was outstanding and very attentive, from the moment we met at the Denpasar Airport to the day we left. The drive to Nihiwatu is long, just soak in the scenery and time will quickly pass. You will be amazed at how simple the Sumbanese people live.

The location of the resort couldn't be in a better place. The rooms are not "beach front" but only a few steps away with every room having an excellent view.

Nihiwatu has become a surfers dream however if you don't surf no need to worry there is plenty of other things to do. Each day the activities are listed on a board near the dining area. Personally we would have like to see more activities included in the price along with a listing of the Sumba Foundation activities available for the day.

The rooms are great, need a little updating but nothing bad at all. We stayed in #5 which was quiet, had lots of privacy and excellent views.

I would not rate the food as excellent, but good. Plenty of variety and you will probably leave a few pounds heavier! They seem to struggle with desserts so I would recommend the fruit plate.

The Sumbanese people are beautiful. We took mountain bikes from the resort and rode around the neighborhoods and villages, everyone was super friendly. If you chose to do this go on a Sunday, there will be more people at home.

  • Stayed: May 2011, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank liv2xplore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 June 2011

The untouched beauty of Nihiwatu and its surrounds is an absolute treasure - we felt privileged to be indulging in its environs every day.

We spent a week there - late 30s couple plus our 22 mth daughter - and came away feeling like we had been away a month.

We are an active couple (and toddler) and found limitless options to expend energy, but also the peace and tranquility to rest and recouperate.

The place speaks for itself, but we found our experience was enhanced ten fold (more!) by the warm, caring and humorous people that made every day special and intimate. Not only was every need looked after, but more importantly, we have fond memories of our every day interractions with the Nihiwatu family. In addition we were afforded some precious "us" time, while our daughter was cared for by a host of wonderful people.

We think about you often, can't wait to be back and know we will be back again and again.

Room Tip: You couldn't find a more helpful team
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  • Stayed: May 2011, travelled with family
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2  Thank SarT74
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Ernst2010, Manager at Nihiwatu, responded to this reviewResponded 22 July 2011

Dear SarT74

Thank you for you review. We are fortunate to have a great team of babysitters here to provide excellent care for our younger guests.

It is our intention that everyone who leaves us feels that they have become part of the Nihiwatu Family, and I'm glad that was the case with you too.

Best wishes

Ernst and the Nihiwatu Family

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Reviewed 25 June 2011

Nihiwatu is one of the most magical places I have ever been. It is one of life's 'must do's'. From the minute we were met at the airport it was unforgettable. The resort is in an idylic location on remote Sumba. The villa's are gorgeous, staff attentive but discreet and the food amazing. There really is something for everyone, from walking along the beach,swimming, snorkelling, paddleboarding, releasing the recently hatched turtles,and yoga with the amazing Ka'ale in the tree top yoga studio it just goes on and on. Do yourself a favour and walk to the waterfall where lunch is served wrapped in banana leaf parcels. Another day was spent in a secluded bay. Our only instruction were to meet at the boatshed at 8am. Christian and Ben (the watermen!) took our group of 6 to an untouched, isolated bay. Whilst we swam to shore in the turquoise water, went snorkelling and paddleboarding the boys set up hammocks in trees, mats on the sand, lit the BBQ and set up a buffet table for lunch!!! We were in the middle of nowhere!!!! It was truely perfect! The boys even fitted in a spear fishing session. We have returned home after an amazing experience and cannot wait to return. It was perfect for both the boys and the girls. You can do everything or absolutely nothing. The boys were pretty keen on the surfing too!

  • Stayed: June 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Susannah010
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Reviewed 25 June 2011

We feel very privileged to have spent the most wonderful time at Nihiwatu. From the moment we arrived greeted by the friendly staff in the most wonderful venue surrounded by the most unbelievable scenery, it all exceeded our expectations. From helping release baby turtles into the ocean, the 'mudbath' experience!, the picturesque walk & swim in the stunning waterfall, the daily stroll & swim along the deserted beach, visiting the native villages & meeting the lovely people living there, hours of reading & relaxing whilst watching the surf, there are too many unforgettable wonderful times to mention. Nothing was too much trouble for the very attentive staff including a very special birthday dinner in a beautiful location. The Sumba Foundation is an amazing charity helping the local people & it is food for thought before our next visit of how we could contribute towards their way of life. Yes, we are hoping to make a return visit to repeat one of our most sublime holidays!

  • Stayed: June 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank avrilross
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 May 2011

There are no words to describe Nihiwatu. I am well travelled, and have been to many beautiful places around the world, but I must say that Nihiwatu is right there among the top of my list. I never expect to find something like that in the midst of Indonesian island. The staffs were amazing. The food was delicious. I was transported. My partner and I have such a good time that we vouch to come back. It was so remote and untouched. I cannot say enough how magical the place is. There were a couple of diving spots, and we gave it a go. It was one of my best dives ever. The current was so strong, but the sight was amazing. There were no other divers around. It was just so remote and pristine. Millions of butter fish, a big lobster, Napoleons, school of big eye tunas, schools of big trevalies, sharks, .. Unbelievable sight. We also went to visit a village that was just so impressive. I lived in Singapore and Indonesia most of my life, and I was just still so impressed by the rawness of it all. The beach was just spectacular. We ran and walk along it many times. I kept on writing on my journal cause I was so inspired. We met so many interesting individuals. It is a must visit. I can't say enough how beautiful the place is. Totally exceeding my expectations!

  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank fullofspirit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ernst2010, Manager at Nihiwatu, responded to this reviewResponded 24 June 2011

Dear fullofspirit

Thank you for posting and it is great that you were able to get a few dives in while you were with us. Although we cannot guarantee diving every day due to prevailing ocean conditions, we are fortunate to have some incredible sites which reveal themselves to a select few on the right occasions.

Our very best wishes to you

Ernst and the Nihiwatu Family

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Additional Information about Nihiwatu

Address: Desa Hobawawi | Kecamatan Wanukaka, Sumba 87272, Indonesia
Region: Indonesia > East Nusa Tenggara > Sumba
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Sumba
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Sumba
Price Range: £783 - £1,503 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Nihiwatu 4.5*
Number of rooms: 21
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Voted #1 Hotel in the World for two years in a row by Travel & Leisure magazine. An award-winning luxury resort on remote Sumba Island, Indonesia. A wide range of land and ocean-based experiences ensures all tastes are catered to. Attentive service and gourmet meals add to the refined and intimate ambience. A romantic getaway idyll with pristine private beach stretching in excess of 2.5km of length ideal for honeymooners and the unique tribal culture on the island offers guests a glimpse of a bygone era. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Nihiwatu Hotel Sumba
Nihiwatu Hotel Waikabubak
Nihiwatu Resort Waikabubak

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