Three chapels and a mansion

THE Mulia at Nusa Dua is a hefty addition to the Bali accommodation inventory.

Set on 30 hectares with a one-kilometre stretch of beach, the property includes suites (spa on the patio, butler at your service), two-bedroom villas (private hydrotherapy pool) and, for a group of up to 12, The Mansion.

Beyond the bedroom there is a sushi and tepanyaki restaurant, a patisserie and, for cocktails, the Sky Bar overlooking the Indian Ocean.

For those with marriage on their mind, the three chapels — eternity, harmony and unity — seat up to 250 guests in each.

Rooms cost from $US460 ($445) a night.


Swiss touch for Shanghai

SHANGHAI'S Hengshan Road in the former French Concession is a romantic strip. Lined with plane trees imported from France in the early 1900s, its newest five-star addition is Twelve at Hengshan.

The five-storey building in the low-rise heritage district is designed by Swiss architect Mario Botta, whose credentials also include the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

The 171 guest rooms and suites, including a presidential suite, overlook an internal elliptical garden with flowing streams and trees, or the cityscape. Hand-painted screens, silk lanterns and latticework are among the traditional touches, and the marble bathroom has a television.

A 24-hour fitness centre includes a swimming pool in a cave-like setting surrounded by three spa baths, and the day spa with 14 double and single treatment rooms has a tepidarium and an ice fountain.

Rooms cost from 1759 yuan ($270).


Bed, bath and Bosphorus

ISTANBUL'S Gezi Hotel Bosphorus is taking advantage of its views over the Istanbul Strait with four new sky suites added to the hotel's rooftop.

The suites, with views of the Bosphorus from bed to bath, also have private balconies and spa tubs.

Off the rooftop, each of the 56 rooms and 11 suites in the curved 17-storey zinc-and-titanium building in the architectural style of the 1940s and '50s has views of either the Bosphorus or Taksim Gezi Park; Taksim Square, a meeting hub for locals and visitors, is 200 metres away.

Naturally, there is a spa and hammam to unwind in after a day at the occidental-oriental divide.

Rooms cost from €220 ($275) a night.


Hawke's-eye view of the kiwi

GUESTS at The Farm at Cape Kidnappers in Hawke's Bay, New Zealand, can get close to the kiwi, the country's national symbol.

The activity is led by kiwi expert Dr John McLennan with radio tracking and monitoring devices to find the kiwi habitat in Cape Sanctuary, a wildlife restoration project on the farm where an estimated 55 of the birds live.

The walks are available from mid-October until late May.

Rooms (December 14 on) cost from $NZ890 ($700) a person a night.


Pearl of the Kimberley closes

JUST six months after opening, Kuri Bay on the Kimberley coast closed on October 31.

The property's location, which is accessible only by seaplane or boat, was not economically viable for the Wild Bush Luxury operator and lodge owner, Paspaley, to continue operating, according to WBL's Charlie Carlow.

However, Kuri Bay will remain a Paspaley pearling venture.

It will be business as usual for Carlow's other properties — Arkaba Station in the Flinders Ranges, Sal Salis at Ningaloo Reef, and Bamurru Plains in the Northern Territory.