Dotted with apricot-coloured guest cottages, secluded and brilliantly boho Amanruya feels a world away from Bodrum. The luxury resort looks out over the Aegean Sea and has a beach club on the protected bay. The village-like block buildings are constructed from local materials, and each guest pavilion has a private garden with a pool and pergola. There’s also a glittering hillside infinity pool, a dainty Aman spa, a yoga studio and a library tower. Dine on expertly prepared Mediterranean and Turkish cuisine on one of the smattering of dining pavilions scattered throughout the resort and sample wines in the cellar-like lounge.
Noon, but flexible, subject to availability. Earliest check-in, 2pm. Check-out can be extended to 4pm; check-outs between 4pm and 7pm will be charged half the daily room rate, and check-outs after 7pm will be charged for a full extra day.
Double rooms from £697.95 (€839), including tax at 19.8 per cent.
Rates usually include à la carte breakfast and free round-trip airport transfers between Bodrum Milas International airport and Amanruya.
Climb the spiral wood staircase to the third floor the library tower. This light-filled room has four walls of windows and is lined with cosy window seating; it’s a beautiful spot to read, relax and take in the 360-degree views.
Annually from 1 October to 15 April.
At the hotel
Beach, yoga studio, tennis court, fitness centre, free WiFi throughout, laundry. In rooms: TV, DVD player, iPod dock, WiFi, minibar with free bottled water, tea- and coffee-making facilities, Nespresso coffee machine, and Aman bath products.
Our favourite rooms
All the pavilions have spacious gardens, shimmering private swimming pools, and bright white bedrooms. For the most privacy and striking sea views, go for an aptly named Deluxe Sea-View Cottage.
The day-bed-flanked 50m infinity pool runs alongside the spa. It’s lined with emerald-green marble from Turkey’s southern Antalya region, and if you swim to the overflowing edge you’ll be rewarded with views over the olive trees down to the bay. There’s also a smaller communal pool, and each pavilion has a private pool too.
Next to the inviting infinity pool, Aman Spa has two treatment rooms, one specifically for couples. Choose from a range of Amanruya rituals, classic massages (including Swedish and Thai), facials, mani-pedis. Book the spa’s signature treatment for a cardamom and bergamot essential oil-infused Swedish massage followed by reflexology and energy work, or revitalise weary feet with an herbal foot-bath, crystal salt scrub and reflexology combo.
Bring floaty boho coverups and impossibly white swimwear.
You can borrow bikes to explore your surrounding, meditatively stretch in the yoga studio, or work on your swing on the tennis court.
Small dogs can stay for free in your room, but they’re not allowed in any of the public areas, the restaurants or the beach club. Dog bowls are provided, but you’ll need to bring the kibble. See more pet-friendly hotels in Bodrum Peninsula.
Amanruya is more suited to adults, but children are welcome; the Garden Terrace Pavilions work best for families. The hotel can organise activities, such as tennis and swimming lessons, arrange babysitting for €11 an hour, and provide key baby kit.
Amanruya is more suited to adults, but children are welcome. The Garden Terrace Cottages work best for families, but extra beds can fit in all of the cottages (free baby cots and beds for under-12s and €180 a person a night for Smiths 12 and older).
The Garden Terrace Cottages are best for those travelling with little Smiths.
Young Smiths can borrow bikes (and helmets) for free; tennis and swimming lessons, and youth yoga sessions, can be arranged for an additional charge. Children's books, DVDs, colouring-in and painting accoutrements, and board games are also available.
Each cottage has its own private pool. Swimming lessons for littles can be arranged by the hotel.
There’s a children’s menu at the Poolside Dining Pavilion, and menu items can be adapted at the other eateries.
With 12 hours’ notice, babysitting can be arranged for €11 an hour. A surcharge applies after midnight plus extra cost for taxi after midnight.
No need to pack
Amanruya can provide baby cots and highchairs, bottle-sterilising equipment, baby baths and Johnson bath products. Nappies, baby wipes, formula and baby food are available for purchase.
Please note: prams must be carried up steps to hotel entrance and the restaurants.
You can’t go wrong with the abundance of outdoor seating with beautiful views; particularly romantic dinners can also be arranged on sea-view terraces.
Something effortlessly boho and breezy will work from breakfast straight through to the evening.
Chef Ercan Soylu whips up classic Turkish and Mediterranean cuisine at the Poolside Dining Pavilion. The home-style menu includes freshly-baked bread, meze platters, daily changing seafood options and specials; chef Soylu will happily prepare meals to suit individual preferences, too. Breakfast is served on the pavilion, too. At the Beach Club, you’ll find a menu of unfussy light lunches and snacks perfect for water-induced hunger.
The Beach Club pours out drinks throughout the day, and each day a different pavilion hosts a free afternoon-tea service before being converted into the bar de la nuit. Wines from Amanruya’s cellar can be sampled in the brick-walled wine lounge.
Breakfast is served from 7am to 11am, lunch from 11am to 5pm, and dinner from 5pm to 11pm. Drinks can be ordered until 11pm.
Should hunger strike in your cosy cottage, order sharing plates of cheeses and meze dishes, sandwiches, salads and drinks straight to your dwelling from 7am to 11pm. Breakfasting by your private pool is an especially pleasant way to start the day.
Bodrum Town is 15 minutes away, and there’s onsite valet parking at Amanruya.
Worth getting out of bed for
Arrange water-based activities – sailing, snorkelling and canoeing – at the beach club, or borrow bikes to cycle around Amanruya’s grounds and the surrounding landscape. Venture to ancient city Ephesus, near Selçuk, for a serious dose of history: its excavated remains showcase centuries of the past, from classical Greece to the Roman Empire. Now home to the Museum of Underwater Archaeology, marina-side Bodrum Castle is worth a visit. Smiths interested in Turkish tradition or the arts should arrange a visit to the village of Mumcular, whose artisans have been making pottery since the days of the Ottoman Empire; if you’re lucky, they may invite you to try your hand at moulding the distinctive red clay.
Pull up a chair in the palm-tree- and banana-plant-dotted courtyard of Kocadon Restaurant and admire the deep-blue Aegean as you sip apertifs; for dinner, try the traditional hünkar beğendi: lamb chunks in a smoked-aubergine puree. For marina-side meze, head to bright blue-and-white Memedof Bodrum. Local favourite Musto dishes out traditional fare and more adventerous options, including a yufka pastry and mushroom layered number and duck liver sushi. It’s open daily from morning until midnight and has a full, thirst-quenching bar too. Modern-art-lined Zazu Bodrum is open all day; order eggs many ways for breakfast, burgers and salads for lunch, meze with grilled meat and fish for dinner, or simply sit outside with a colourful cocktail in hand.
For low-key burgers, pizzas and salads, make your way to tasty Tango Bodrum. If you’re looking for something sweeter, bakery Yunuslar has you covered from breakfast pastries to decadently decorated cakes.
Marina Yacht Club Bodrum has uninterrupted sea views and no less than three bars. Sip your evening drinks at the rooftop bar, club bar or jazz bar.
A lot can be said – and has been said – about the next-level luxury of Aman hotels. And it may be fairly obvious to point out, but worth reiterating, that we were blown away by the extraordinary service at Amanruya. It began long before we arrived, with the wonderfully detailed communication by email (up there with Smith’s finest). But it came into its own as we pulled outside the resort in a taxi. A welcoming committee awaited us: half a dozen staff members stood at the entrance, eager to greet us with cool, refreshing hand towels and delicious, fresh lemonade.
After a seamless check-in, we were ferried to our Pool Suite and advised that there were golf buggies available, should we need to be taken to the hotel’s private beach. This is because Amanruya is vast: so vast, in fact, that after my first few hours on the beach, I need to take a buggy to the hotel library to choose a book (the driver patiently waiting for me), returning by that very same buggy to our spot on the beach. Before you judge, know that I was seven months pregnant at the time. Still, quite the luxury. That beach, too, though not a sandy one, is dotted with super-private loungers dramatically nestled along the cliff edge or on the jetty.
And ‘private’ beach is the optimum word. Other than at breakfast and dinner, it felt like we were the only guests at the hotel which, on occasion, did seem almost too peaceful (a mad complaint, granted). As for breakfast: it was served on the pavilion area overlooking the 50-meter Olympic-sized pool. A mixture of continental and Turkish dishes like Cilbir (baked eggs in yoghurt) and Gozleme (a savoury filled flatbread) were on the menu as well as your usual continental offering. I would’ve eaten for two whether I was pregnant or not.
However, our favourite ‘meal’ time wasn’t breakfast or dinner, but the 5–6pm Turkish tea-and-biscuit hour. This gesture of complimentary sweet treats was our idea of heaven, and just the kind of ‘happy hour’ this pregnant lady was willing to indulge in.
The following day, I was making use of the sunlounger by that enormous pool, ruminating over the fact that, on account of the extra ‘baggage’ I was carrying, I’d likely not make it back in time for those delicious afternoon treats. In true Aman fashion, a staff member seemed to read my mind and without me asking brought over a whole plate of cookies and biscuits at about 5:45pm. ‘You seemed to like these yesterday’, she said. Fantastic moments like this really made the holiday.
All in all, I’m sure our little Smith has been enjoying the ‘luxury’ of me for nine months, but next time, I’ll leave the hard work to the staff at Amanruya.