Nestled amid scraggy, limestone cliffs 145km southwest of Muscat in Oman’s Al Hajar mountains, the Alila Jabal Akhdar is a destination to cross off your travel list. Vogue Arabia recently had the chance to visit the remote and rugged escape for an idyllic couple of days. Read on for everything you need to know about the stunning mountainside boutique property before booking your next weekend getaway.
Dramatic is one word used to describe the resort, which is tucked away in the highest mountain range in the Arabian Peninsula. Located 2,000m above sea level, Alila Jabal Akhdar provides breathtaking 360-degree views of never-ending cliffs and gorges worthy of a postcard. The boutique property, which was designed to evoke a traditional Omani village, has 78 stone-clad suites generously spaced out to provide guests with maximum privacy. The hotel’s rocky exterior blends in with its pristine surroundings, and is mirrored with a stone and hardwood interior. Though there are only two restaurants, both the Juniper Restaurant and Rose Lounge have extensive menus with everything from traditional Omani food to Thai curry.
Facilities and activities
Guests can enjoy floating in the resort’s cliffside infinity pool, which overlooks the surrounding canyons. Those seeking sun-kissed limbs will undoubtedly benefit from the hotel’s pool butlers, who keep you stocked with Alila Living amenities such as sunscreen, tanning oil, and cooling gel. If you happen to visit the resort during the cooler months, a heated indoor pool framed by stone columns and mood-setting candles is sure to entice. Thrill seekers shouldn’t miss the chance to climb Alila’s newly opened via ferrata, which is the highest protected climbing path in the Middle East. And don’t forget to book an early-bird cliff-side yoga session for picturesque views of the sunrise.
The spa menu includes a number of rejuvenating treatments, including skin-boosting facials, exfoliating body scrubs, and therapeutic Balinese massages (opt for juniper essential oil, which is exclusive to Alila Jabal Akhdar) that will make for a relaxing experience. The hotel’s range of original products (which line the sleek bathroom counters) are made using all natural, herbal ingredients and can be purchased at the spa. Those seeking to restore their sense of well-being can enjoy the pampering steam bath or jacuzzi post-treatment.
The property is a 2.5 hour drive away from Muscat, and the last 45 minutes are only accessible to SUVs due to the steep incline –there is even a police check-point where everyone has to register for safety. Only four-wheel drive vehicles – may we suggest the sleek, new Maserati Levante? – are allowed into the mountain as the roads are steep with many hairpin curves. If needed, the resort can arrange the roundtrip from Muscat for guests. Regional flights to Muscat are provided by a number of airlines, including FlyDubai.
What to pack for a weekend getaway
For rates and booking information, visit www.alilahotels.com.