Taj Falaknuma Palace // © 2016 Taj Falaknuma Palace, Hyderabad
Feature image (above): Singapore’s mixed-use Marina Bay Sands resort // © 2016 Marina Bay Sands
For travelers to Asia and the South Pacific looking to make their next trip more memorable, staying in an unconventional hotel will heighten the experience. Whether clients are looking to stay somewhere off the beaten path for the duration of their trip or simply want to switch things up for one night, these unique hotels will make their stay extra adventurous.
Black Sheep Inn
A four-hour drive from Sydney, Black Sheep Inn is an award-winning, century-old shearing shed that has been converted into a modern hotel. Key features of the building have been preserved, including its red Sunbeam shearing machines, handcut timbers, flooring and sheep chutes and wool table and baskets. All five of the guest suites offer views of Molong Creek Valley, and the communal lounge is kept warm with an old Coalbrookdale wood-burning stove.
A breakfast of local produce is served to guests daily on the glass-topped, restored wool-sorting table in the main dining area. For additional privacy, there is also a self-contained Whispering Moon Cottage — restored shearer’s quarters with two bedrooms, a living area and a built-in fireplace.
Container Hotel Ipoh
Container Hotel Ipoh is the first hotel in Malaysia that was built from renewable freight containers. The design, which was inspired by Ipoh’s industrial history as a tin-mining town in the 1920s and ’30s, pairs the reuse of renewable materials with a smart, modern space that features bright colors. The interior has been transformed into a creative communal area that allows aspiring artists the opportunity to display their work. Guests sleep in tastefully designed individual capsules with Female Pod, Mixed Pod (coed) and Pod Plus (queen-size bed) options.
Marina Bay Sands
Designed by architect Moshe Safdie, Marina Bay Sands in Singapore is a $5 billion mixed-use, integrated resort that includes a 2,560-room hotel, a casino, a convention center, theaters, a museum, stores and restaurants. The trio of 55-story towers is connected by the 2.5-acre Skypark, which features lush gardens, an observatory and the world’s largest rooftop infinity pool, stretching nearly 500 feet across. The resort combines indoor and outdoor spaces and reinforces connections with the surrounding urban area, as guests can directly access the subway and other forms of transportation from the hotel.
Sharma Springs, part of the Green Village master-planned community of 18 unique homes on Bali, is a six-level, four-bedroom home built entirely of bamboo that overlooks Ayung River Valley. Designed as a jungle fantasy escape, a tunnel-bridge leads guests into the open-air living, dining and kitchen areas on the fourth floor. Circular stairs wind around the central tower to the bottom floors, which include an air-conditioned playroom, bedrooms and a library with full-length spinning glass windows and doors. Master metalsmiths built the shower stalls; stone carvers from Java carved boulders into the counter slabs; and all of the custom-designed furniture is made from bamboo. The lowest level is where the private garden and pool are located, and the property also comes with a guesthouse and a butler.
Taj Falaknuma Palace
Taj Falaknuma Palace, hyderabad is a former 19th-century palace that is now a five-star historic luxury hotel spanning 32 acres in Hyderabad, India.
Taj Falaknuma, the former residence of the monarch of the Hyderabad State, is built in the shape of a scorpion, with two stingers spread out as wings in the north. The middle section consists of the main building and kitchen, while harem quarters are located in the southern section. The estate features an alluring blend of Italian and Tudor architecture, incorporating colonial and Indian designs, stained-glass windows, high wood-beam ceilings and marble floors. Additional amenities include an oak-paneled palace library, a billiards room and a hookah lounge.
The Imperial Boat House Beach Resort
Located along Choeng Mon Beach on the north-eastern tip of Thailand’s Koh Samui island, The Imperial Boat House Beach Resort consists of 34 authentic teak rice barges that have been converted into luxury boathouse suites. The suites were previously used as rice barges on the Chao Praya River before undergoing a yearlong renovation to convert them into private accommodations that include outdoor decks, living rooms and skylit bathrooms. The resort is set on 7 acres of tropical gardens, with two swimming pools, a spa and beach access.
The Temple House
Located in Chengdu, China, The Temple House is named after the historic Daci Temple. Inspired by the heritage, landscapes and historic buildings of the surrounding city, the hotel blends traditional and modern design beautifully. Guests enter The Temple House through Bitieshi — a restored Qing dynasty courtyard built more than 100 years ago that features traditional brickwork, elegant bamboo, wood carvings, step stones, timber ceilings and floors, freestanding bespoke furniture and a contemporary art gallery. The hotel interior, designed with local materials, maintains a sleek, stylish aesthetic and offers an abundance of natural light. Guestrooms feature minimalist decor, spa-inspired bathrooms, calming earth tones and modern amenities. The property also has an on-site teahouse and Jing bar, which was modeled after a 1920s speakeasy.