Shinta Mani Hotels to open first property outside Cambodia

Boutique hotel collection Shinta Mani Hotels has announced plans to open its first property outside Cambodia.

The brand, which features hotels designed by American designer Bill Bensley, has partnered with Kathmandu-based Sherpa Hospitality Group to launch Shinta Mani Mustang – A Bensley Collection. 

The property will be located in Nepal in an area known as The Forbidden Kingdom, the gateway to Tibet. The destination is known for its Buddhist culture, monasteries and high peaks, including Mount Nilgiri. The lodge is expected to open on March 1, 2023.

The 29-suite property will be an all-inclusive experience, with stays tailored to each guest.

Each suite will be designed in the style of a traditional Tibetan home with an open-plan bedroom, living area, separate bathroom and floor-to-ceiling windows offering views of Nilgiri mountain. 

Interiors will feature warm-coloured fabrics, recycled materials and artwork of the late artist Robert Powell, a friend of Bensley’s who drew detailed depictions of the region’s architecture. Outside, a terrace will feature huge fire pits.

Culinary options will include a 60-seat Nilgiri Restaurant, named after the mountain it overlooks. The venue will feature a large outdoor dining patio and will serve modern Nepal and western cuisine using locally sourced and foraged produce. 

There will also be the Aara Bar, named after a local Tibetan and Sherpa liquor.

A Wellness Centre will feature two treatments suites with floor-to-ceiling windows facing the mountains, each with a hot plunge pool, steam room, sauna, shower and two massage beds. The centre will offer a Tibetan wellness programme developed by a local 11th-generation Tibetan Amchi doctor using traditional herbal medicine.

A mixed-use activity room can be used for meetings, presentations or yoga and exercise classes.

Shinta Mani Mustang – A Bensley Collection will also provide a personalised, privately-guided guest experience programme. Excursions will be led by Bensley Adventure Guides and include trekking, horse riding, rock climbing, cycling, archery, helicopter tours and wellness experiences.

In addition, the lodge will work closely with the Psang Lhamu Foundation to give back to the local community.

Bensley said: "This is perhaps one of the most exciting projects we have ever had. I have never seen such wildly dramatic landscapes as the mountains and valleys of Mustang, and am thrilled that Shinta Mani can be the first to introduce this Forbidden Kingdom to international adventurers - and all the more so under the special wing of Bensley Collection.

“This will be their base camp for explorations all around these phenomenal mountains, as always guided by our kind and infinitely knowledgeable Bensley Adventure Guides, for the experience of a lifetime.”

Sokoun Chanpreda, managing director of HMD Asia, which owns and operates Shinta Mani Hotels, added: “We are delighted to be entering into this agreement with the Sherpa Hospitality Group  and highly value our partnership with them.  We have incredible synergies between our brands and look forward to a fruitful and successful alliance in this unique and  very special destination.”

Namgyal Sherpa, owner of Sherpa Hospitality Group, added: “Our group has been promoting experiential travel in remote areas of Nepal for many years now. It was our dream to create world class, luxury hotel experiences in the Himalayas and we couldn’t find a better partner than Shinta Mani Hotels to collaborate with on this vision as we share similar values. We are very excited to be pushing the boundaries and creating a new and exciting project that will position Nepal as a quality, luxury destination and not just for budget traveller.”

Rates at the all-inclusive Shinta Mani Mustang – A Bensley Collection will start from $1,700 per couple per night for a minimum five-night stay. 

Rates are inclusive of all food and beverages, private guided activities and excursions, unlimited spa treatments, a personal Bensley Adventure Guide, and transfers between Kathmandu and Jomson.

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