Amankora Punakha, Punakha Bhutan
Only accessed via a suspension bridge decorated in prayer flags hanging over the Mo Chhu River, the Amankora Punakha offers guests a unique arrival amongst the dramatic scenery of the region. Incorporating a traditional Bhutanese farmhouse and contemporary design, the Amankora’s signature style of stone, wood and a neutral colour pallette still shines through the property.
The central building is a beautifully restored farmhouse, while the rest of the property has been extended around it. Shaded by Chinese cherry trees, fit with a fire and lamps by night, the courtyard is a calming place where guests can dine outdoors. Western and traditional Bhutanese dishes are served here or in the farmhouse on communal tables. Cooking classes are held in the tea pavilion, while a traditional altar room for meditation is available, along with a library, swimming pool, steam room and yoga room. Just a short drive away sits the stunning Punakha Dzong and Puntsho Pelri Palace that make for a great day trip.
The lodge offers an intimate atmosphere, with just 8 open-plan suites available. In keeping with the same Amankora theme, they feature wooden flooring and furnishings and a natural colour pallette. The opulent bathrooms have double vanities, a rainshower and central bathtub.
Of all the Amankoras in Bhutan, we feel the Punakha Lodge has the most character. If you’re going to splurge and choose just one, we highly recommend this property for both a luxurious and relaxing stay.
Luxury - Luxury hotels would have a superb level of service, very comfortable and usually spacious bedrooms, excellent food, great design and character. For us, when we visited, these places all had the 'wow factor'. A luxury hotel should satisfy the criteria of the most discerning clients.
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Our guides in Yangon, Bagan, and Kalaw / Lake Inle were wonderful. They struck the right balance of explaining the history and importance of the sights we were seeing without over-doing it, they knew where to get the best view/experience at what time and could rearrange experiences so we got the most out of them. A standout was our guide in Kalaw / trek / Lake Inle. He was as keen to learn from us as he was to teach us, he bent over backwards to make sure we were happy and comfortable, and he was just plain fun too!