Behind the glass facade of a César Pelli–designed building, retro-chic interiors by Alexandra Champalimaud may give the impression that the current Four Seasons Jakarta has been around for decades. (It only moved here from its previous digs in 2016.) The elegant all-suite property is home to one of the city’s finest cocktail bars and a terrific Italian restaurant; expect warm Indonesian hospitality that goes the extra mile.
The Four Seasons takes up a 20-story structure within the Capital Place development and is set well back from busy Jalan Gatot Subroto, part of Jakarta’s inner ring road. Traffic permitting, guests are a quick drive from the luxury malls and office blocks of Sudirman Central Business District as well as the embassy-laden Mega Kuningan precinct.
Champalimaud has fused past and present with nods to the art deco style and Jakarta’s 400-year history. Reliefs of clove, nutmeg, and cassia in the triple-height lobby recall the city’s role as a spice entrepôt, while commissioned paintings beneath the gold-leaf ceiling depict street scenes from the Dutch-colonial period. Bangkok-based architect Bill Bensley was responsible for the outdoor areas, including the resort-style pool on the fifth floor and an arrival zone interspersed with modernist sculptures of gamelan musicians.
Bedtime means sinking into cloud-like Four Seasons pillows stacked three high. Tall sliding doors separate the sleeping area from the living room in each of the spacious, high-ceilinged accommodations. A gray chaise-longue and armchairs come backdropped by silvery Chinoiserie panels adorned with birds and auspicious flowers like peony and chrysanthemum; the large mahogany work desk will suit those on business. Featuring double vanities and a freestanding tub, the Italian marble–clad bathroom can be accessed through the bedroom or via a walk-in closet. Wraparound windows flood the 68-square-meter Premier suites, located on the corners of the building, in natural light.
Food and drink
Puglia-born executive chef Marco Violano oversees all five of the hotel’s outlets. At top-floor Alto Restaurant & Bar, cheery red-and-gold interiors with herringbone wood floors set the scene for true-blue Italian fare made with premium ingredients. The hefty Fiorentina T-bone steak is best shared between four or more, but seafood enthusiasts will want to order steam-baked sea bass fillet and insalata d’Ischia, a Puglian classic. Another highlight? Aragosta, or grilled lobster mixed tableside with homemade spaghetti or angel hair pasta in a light tomato sauce. Alto also offers a monthly changing set menu focused on a specific region of Italy. At ground level, all-day eatery Palm Court is dominated by a Lasvit crystal chandelier hung from the 13-meter cupola ceiling. The wagyu rendang and lobster laksa are two signatures here; à la carte options at the semi-buffet breakfast include Jakarta specialty nasi uduk, or coconut milk–infused rice with sides like marinated tempeh, beef floss, and soy-braised egg. La Patisserie’s jewel-box aesthetic matches the dainty afternoon tea bites by Italian pastry chef Lorenzo Sollecito, and the plush, 32-seat Nautilus Bar is an intimate drinking den whose amiable bartenders serve up superb craft cocktails.
The spa comprises eight treatment suites, including two for couples, alongside a relaxation room with space-age loungers that are individually screened off with curtains. There’s also a men’s barbershop and a hair and nail salon for the ladies. Facials utilize the complete line of Biologique Recherce products, while Indonesian ingredients such as turmeric, galangal, pepper, and ginger go into the 90-minute Four Seasons hot poultice massage—a highly recommended treatment that uses Balinese techniques.
Junior guests at Four Seasons Jakarta are offered children’s menus in the restaurants and in-suite amenities like bathrobes in their size. Babysitting can be arranged upon request; seasonal stay packages sometimes include complimentary activities at a pop-up kids’ corner set up in one of the third-floor event spaces.
A newly installed water filtration and bottling plant supplies drinking water to the guest rooms, and the kitchens are cutting down on waste by donating long-lasting foodstuffs to charity. Bath and spa amenities with a custom-made scent have been sourced from local aromatherapy brand Bali Radiance to reduce air miles.
Intended as a masculine counterpart to La Patisserie, The Library is a cozy viridian-hued lounge that connects to Nautilus Bar and revolves around the theme of exploration. Four Seasons Jakarta also operates Dolcetto, the semi-outdoor coffee bar at the office tower next door, where display cases are stocked with an enticing selection of artisanal gelato, pastries, and hearty sandwiches to go.
Reviewed by James Louie