China’s Jiuzhaigou Valley in the southwestern province of Sichuan, where The Ritz-Carlton Reserve opened its sixth outpost.
Rissai Valley, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, is nestled in a fairy-tale-like area on the edges of the Tibet plateau, boasting snow-capped peaks soaring over lush forests and emerald lakes.
At Rissai Valley, the brand’s philosophy dominates every aspect of the guest experience that immerses travelers in authentic Tibetan culture and local life from the moment they step on the property — from the traditional Zhaxi Dele blessing ceremony that guests are welcomed with to the decor and list of activities and spa treatments.
The property’s 87 villas were designed by the late Indonesian interior designer Jaya Ibrahim, who took inspiration from the resort’s jaw-dropping setting and selected a natural palette of greens, blues, and emeralds that he paired with many artisanal objects and décor items handcrafted by Tibetan artisans.
However, the main feature is the stunning panoramic vistas of dramatic mountain ranges towering over Tibetan villages that open from private balconies.
The resort’s culinary offerings are another standout feature of the guest experience, according to Edmundson. She highlighted Cai Tin Xuan, Rissai Valley’s Sichuan restaurant showcasing Jiuzaigou cuisine. A Mediterranean eatery, La Montagne, blends the flavors of the West and East using local ingredients.
Like the rest of the resort, the spa is also a place of utmost tranquility where you won’t find high-tech cryotherapy booths or IV treatments. Instead, a selection of holistic treatments based on ancient Tibetan wellness practices, such as singing bowl sound therapy, yoga sessions, and an infinity swimming pool, seek to relax the mind and body.
Even Rissai’s youngest visitors will leave with a unique understanding of Tibetan culture and nature as the property’s kids’ club encourages children to explore Jiuzhaigou through guided hikes, animal feeding, treasure hunts, and stargazing.
Rissai Valley, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, is the first Reserve property in China and joins five more ultra-luxe estates in Puerto Rico, Japan, Thailand, Bali, and Mexico.
Nightly rates start at $1,200.