Upscale living on the Riviera in Montenegro at One&Only Portonovi – Hotel Insider

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Opened last summer as the first One&’s resort in Europe, the ultra-luxury One&Portonovi on Boka Bay offers Riviera-style living in one of Montenegro’s most scenic locations.

With Venetian-style architecture and a state-of-the-art wellness center, the resort is gearing up for a busy second summer season. The National registered to see what travelers can expect at the upscale retreat.

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Landing at Tivat airport after a nearly six hour flight with flydubai, we are greeted by a driver in a sleek black car. Less than 10 minutes later, we are on an open ferry crossing a body of cobalt water with views of forest covered hills and terracotta houses. On the other side, a 15 minute drive takes us to the luxury lifestyle development of Portonovi and One & Resort.

We are ushered inside, past an understated exterior, where an elegant lobby surrounded by glass with floor-to-ceiling windows opens onto a terrace with stunning views of Boka Bay and the rolling mountains. We receive a welcome drink as check-in is completed in the marble-clad lobby with its soothing water fountain, grand piano, and oversized glass chandelier.

The neighborhood

Surrounded by alpine cliffs that plunge into a narrow inlet of bright blue water, the hotel has 113 rooms and suites, all positioned to make the most of the natural vistas.

Guests can arrive by road or boat, as the hotel has its own marina, and when it comes to sightseeing, it’s best done via the sunny waters of Boka Bay. The One & Portonovi makes sure you do it in style – via Bond-esque mahogany-clad outboards. Of course, if you’re more of a road trip enthusiast, there’s plenty to explore with the ancient towns of Herceg Novi, Kotor and Perast nearby.

Part of the Portonovi luxury lifestyle development, there are also residences, shops, cafes, bars and a 238-berth superyacht marina within walking distance.

Bedroom

We are in a Portonovi room on the ground floor with a private terrace opening onto the hotel’s flower gardens. Cutting through the grass – something not frowned upon but rather encouraged – takes us to the water in one direction, and to the restaurants, beaches and spa in the other. Much like Montenegro itself, the room is one of the most visually interesting places we’ve stayed in, with something to discover on every plane. There are shelves stocked with books, board games and unique ornaments, as well as a cylindrical fireplace that lights up at the touch of a button and is inspired by the country’s traditional love of chimneys.

The bathroom is a sight – with his and hers sinks on opposite sides of the room, a lounge chair, and a huge tub by the window that doubles as a cushion-covered daybed. A spacious wooden deck has a double lounger perfect for watching the sunrise, and also where to shelter from the morning showers, which stop as quickly as they come and leave behind a cool canvas. and bright.

The scene

Expect Venetian-style architecture with a backdrop of views of Boka Bay and the hills of Montenegro.

Spread over 60 acres and inspired by Venetian-style palaces in the area, the resort features monastic architecture, red terracotta roofs, and pretty interior courtyards. With secluded private pools, a gym, KidsOnly and One Tribe for the youngest, a private beach and jetty, there’s something for everyone.

It is also home to Espace Chenot, a state-of-the-art facility designed by Swiss wellness experts offering treatments designed to enhance guests’ vitality and health. We spot several guests strolling through the public spaces in fluffy white robes, a sure sign they’re here for a detox or rejuvenation program. Hotel guests are also welcome to book one of the hotel’s therapies and take advantage of the stunning indoor spa-style pool, one of the largest in the country.

The food

Tapasake Restaurant serves Japanese cuisine with a touch of tapas style.

Led by Executive Chef Nancy Kinchela, it offers culinary options including fine Italian dishes at Sabia, Asian fusion dishes at Tapasake and farm-to-table fresh Montenegrin cuisine at La Veranda.

The Tapasake Club is the resort’s upscale Japanese fusion spot that’s part beach club, restaurant, and bar. By day, it’s the perfect place to relax by the pool and there’s a water swing, private cabanas and DJ performances at sunset. The menu consists of Japanese-inspired tapas-style dishes with everything from sushi, sashimi and ceviche to fresh salads, tempura and small plates.

The Tapasake Club is the resort's upscale Japanese fusion spot, part beach club and part restaurant.

Highlights include the tuna tacos served with yuzu and green chili ($15), the tangy sea bass and coconut milk ceviche ($17), and the well-presented Chilean sea bass with lime ponzu ($40 ). Finish with a green tea crème brûlée ($15) to finish off on a high.

Sabia serves southern Italian dishes, and diners can choose to sit by the ocean. On our first evening we sat by the beach here and swoon over the rose-tinted sunsets accompanied by a duo of local Montenegrin musicians, the music really helping to bring a sense of authenticity to the place. experience.

The service

Riviera-style living with views of the Adriatic awaits you at One&Only Portonovi.  Photo: One&only

Typical of One & , service is one of the key distinctions in ensuring we have a memorable trip. Everyone we meet is knowledgeable and friendly. Montenegro as a country has been through many hardships and every local we meet seems genuinely thrilled that the resort has opened, bringing new jobs and tourist dollars to the region.

Highs and lows

The best is to visit the blue waters of Boka Bay and the elegant speedboats of One&Only Portonovi.

We love the convertible tub/day bed overlooking the working fireplace in our room, a real peaceful place to sit and watch the night sky fill with stars. The resort’s endless views of cobalt-blue coves and rolling hills are also picture-perfect from every vantage point. The only downside we can think of is that we couldn’t stay longer.

The insider tip

There are many bookable experiences designed to allow guests to explore the Unesco World Heritage Site of Boka Bay and its surroundings. Discover monasteries hidden in caves, mythical citadels, the oldest olive tree in the world and black mountain peaks, some of the treasures that await you in this Adriatic country.

The verdict

One&Only Portonovi raises the bar for luxury in the Balkan country.

Portonovi is one of the most luxurious beach hotels we’ve had the chance to visit, and its superb accommodations, impeccable service and top-notch restaurants elevate the level of luxury available in this small Balkan country. Touring the Bay of Kotor on one of the hotel’s Bond-style boats is as close as many of us will ever get to truly living the high life, one for the bucket list.

The bottom line

Prices from €495 ($533) excluding taxes; oneandonlyresorts.com. Check-in is from 3:00 p.m. and check-out is at 12:00 p.m., but this is flexible where possible.

This review was conducted at the hotel’s invitation during the global coronavirus pandemic. It reflects hotel standards during this period, services may change in the future.

Updated: April 29, 2022, 6:23 p.m.

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