Karma Royal Group opened The Reef on 19th October 2013. Located on Gili Meno, the tiniest of the three Gilis, the luxury boutique resort will operate under Karma Royal Group’s Chakra Resorts brand and brings to 24 the group’s total number of resorts across Southeast Asia, India, Australia and Europe.
The Reef sits on a sprawling four hectares, of which only one has been developed for the resort; its architectural reliance on bamboo and other ethnic local materials making The Reef completely harmonious in blending seamlessly with pristine island grassland dotted with palm trees and a myriad of local flora and fauna, fringed with long stretches of secluded white sandy beaches and laced by the gently lapping waves of the crystal blue Bali Sea.
Guests at The Reef can experience laidback sophistication with an authentic indigenous touch for the resort’s collection of charming lumbung bungalows, all sea-facing and with expansive private balconies to blur the lines between indoor and outdoor living. The lumbung or “rice granary” is an intrinsic part of the local architectural heritage of The Gillis, as well as of surrounding islands Lombok and Bali. Constructed with bamboo and other locally sourced materials and traditionally used to store rice under the protection of the Indonesian goddess Dewi Sri, with the modernisation of farming methods, lumbungs are now seldom used for storage and have instead been resurrected as dwellings.
Each lumbung at The Reef sleeps a maximum of four people and is fully appointed for optimum comfort and relaxation, with a private kitchen and ensuite bathroom, flat-screen television and DVD player, tea and coffee making amenities, telephone and air-conditioning. The Reef’s Karma Beach Club has seating for 70 diners, who can enjoy breakfast, lunch and dinner with unobstructed views of shimmering azure waters, or bask lazily in the sun on daybeds at the resort’s white sandy beachfront.
Concierge services at The Reef provide a knowledgeable guide to the island’s and the neighbouring Gillis’ comprehensive snorkeling and scuba diving sites, including a peek at the sea turtles often seen nestling at the beach right in front of the resort as well as more adventurous marine life-gazing excursions in the resort’s glass-bottomed boat. Tucked into the northwestern corner of Lombok, Indonesia are three atolls, where the sand is still powdery white, the water a clear sparkling turquoise and the distant sunsets over Bali’s volcano Mt. Agung in the west, simply spectacular. Fringed by colourful coral reefs, home to turtle hatcheries and legendary dive sites, and blessed with miles and miles of white sandy beaches, Lombok’s Gili Islands, a cluster also known as the “Turtle Capital of the World”, offer the type of adventure beach holiday paradise fast disappearing in today’s commercialised tourism capitals.
Direct public boat transfers to Gili Meno can be arranged from Bangsal Harbour on Lombok Island, approximately thirty minutes away, or Padang Bai Harbour in Bali, approximately 75 minutes away; travel between the three Gilis takes between five to ten minutes via regular daily island-hopping boats. Helicopter transfers are also available. Lombok International Airport, on Lombok’s south side, is the closest airport to The Gillis while Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport in Denpasar serves a greater number of international routes.