Mountains are privy to secrets from the sky; they share a camaraderie that is heightened as night falls and the lines separating them are blurred.
Mountains are nature-whisperers; they know how to placate nature, as they stand eternally anchored to their first love, earth.
Mountains are sanctuaries of peace crafted to enjoy nature; they are tabernacles that help explore human capacity for novelty…
Like the Anantara Al Jabal Al Akhdar Resort, which is designed to take one’s breathe away – whether with the grandeur of its structure, the vastness of its natural vistas, the liberal dose of luxury in its offering, the rendition of comfort in its service or the essence of peace pegged on to its bearing.
Carved into the mountain’s rugged landscape, Anantara Al Jabal Al Akhdar Resort is a uniquely compelling space set amidst juniper shrubs, rose bushes and scattered, ageless rock. Inspired by surrounding ancient forts, mud-brick villages and castles, the design pays homage to the mountain, with striking views of the gorge and Hajar mountain range providing a dramatic backdrop.
At its first anniversary celebration on October 17, local media representatives, community members and dignitaries from the private and the Government sector got a taste of this confluence of manmade luxury and nature elevated beauty. Perched 2,000 metres above sea level, on the curving rim of a great canyon, the highly anticipated resort officially opened its doors one year ago, ushering a new era of luxury travel to this extraordinary corner of Oman.
Over the past year, Anantara Al Jabal Al Akhdar Resort has achieved many milestones, making it one of the region’s most sought-after resorts. From a plethora of awards and accolades, including places in the prestigious Travel + Leisure Hit List and Condé Nast Traveller Hot List (US and Middle East), and Hotel Launch of the Year in the Middle East Hospitality Awards, to being selected as a destination for filming the BBC’s Top Gear and hosting several other supercar events, the resort has achieved remarkable successes since opening.
Speaking on the sidelines of the anniversary celebrations, General Manager Darren Darwin, said, “We are thrilled to celebrate our first anniversary, which represents a significant milestone for our resort and the destination. I couldn’t be more proud of the success that we have achieved this far, and with many exciting plans in the pipeline, this is only the beginning of the journey. Since opening our doors, we have been dedicated to providing authentic experiences, from rock climbing and abseiling to cookery classes and mountaintop yoga, allowing guests to connect to the surrounding landscape and culture. We are confident that our resort will continue to inspire travellers from around the world to visit and experience all that this unique destination has to offer.
“It is true that we have an extraordinary resort, location, views, climate and design; nevertheless, the team is the real driving force behind our success. I am truly humbled and extremely proud to lead such as passionate and dedicated group of people,” he added.
Sensitively designed to allow the breathtaking views take centre stage, the resort features 115 beautifully appointed rooms and villas alongside a world renowned Anantara Spa and six restaurant and lounges, including the recently opened Al Qalaa, an Arabian fine dining grill restaurant.
The mountaintop resort was designed by award-winning French-Moroccan architect Lotfi Sidirahal from Atelier PoD, celebrated for creating harmony between architecture, interior and landscape. Prior to the design, Lotfi and his team spent considerable time exploring the surrounding area, meeting with inhabitants of the mountains and visiting abandoned villages to immerse themselves into the culture to ensure the resort stays true to the charm and intrigue of its locale.
Inspiration has been drawn from the layout of the local villages to create a peaceful landscape filled with fragrant rose bushes, indigenous fruit trees, lush green terraces and al falaj water features, which mirror Oman’s typical system of irrigation channels. Constructed using traditional building techniques and local building materials, including stone taken from the mountain, the resort is an alluring blend that reflects Omani history and culture, with contemporary flair. Earth-coloured facades blend seamlessly with the rugged mountainscape, with signature touches such as fort-like doors carved from solid wood, gently curving archways and decorative latticework resulting in a unique setting respectful of its surroundings and enhancing the magnificent views.
From the moment guests’ step through the commanding entrance, they are enveloped in an air of restful, sophisticated style. The sense of arrival is heightened with a welcoming ceremony, allowing them to enjoy the mountain-fresh breeze whilst listening to the melodic beat of traditional Omani music. As they make their way through to the central courtyard, guests can catch their first glimpse of the incredible view, stretching over the garden terraces and beyond to the dramatic gorge. With a large open fireplace providing a central focal point, the courtyard shapes the heart of the resort. The six restaurants and lounges continue the superb design, with the signature restaurant, Al Qalaa, housed in a free-standing tower that takes inspiration from the iconic architecture of Khasab Castle in Musandam, northern Oman. Other unique design elements include the spa which features the falaj inspired waterways that gurgle quietly throughout the resort and the infinity pool, which stretches along the curve of the plateau.
With temperatures 15 degrees cooler than the rest of the Middle East, guests can immerse themselves into the surrounding landscape with wadi hikes accompanied by the ‘Mountain Guru’, rock climbing, mountain biking, archery and mountaintop yoga.
Renowned for offering the highest standards of service as well as opening the door to indigenous experiences at each hotel and resort, Anantara’s ‘Gurus’ are an integral part of the journey. Whether providing insight into local life and culture, ensuring guests have a restful night’s sleep or enhancing their culinary experience, Anantara Al Jabal Al Akhdar Resort’s highly trained and skilled gurus are on hand at all times, ready to impart their knowledge with genuine passion and expert flair.
Anantara Al Jabal Al Akhdar is an experience of a lifetime!