Best places to stay:
Four Seasons Resort Bali at Jimbaran Bay
Jimbaran, Bali, Indonesia|www.fourseasons.com|
Sashaying down a tropical hillside on sleepy Jimbaran Bay, the intimate ambience of this resort comes courtesy of a design inspired by local villages – albeit a very luxe version of them. Woven sensitively into the landscape, the communal pools are built around trees, with rushing waterfalls, while the sturdy volcanic stone villas are tucked away along twisting paths and set within their own courtyards for elevated privacy. Their thatched pavilions and sea-view infinity pools rubber-stamp a relaxing outdoor living vibe.
Bali is an incredibly spiritual place and home to many excellent luxury spas but none captures the essence of Balinese culture better than the Healing Village Spa, a two-storey palace suspended over water. It honours Bali’s traditions and translates them into beautifully curated treatments and rituals. This spa has some of the island’s best therapists and healers but it’s not shy of modern technology, and is constantly innovating to ensure there is always something to intrigue.
The spa’s Illume Room, devoid of natural light to maximise the colour therapy healing, is an extraordinary dance between the physical and metaphysical. You lie on a heated quartz-sand bed made of crushed crystals for a gently undulating massage, while entranced by site-specific music featuring seven crystal singing bowls.
On the silvery sands of Jimbaran Bay in the less touristy south, the resort is close to the eponymous beachside town. Despite being a relatively quiet spot, it’s home to some of the island’s best barbecue seafood shacks.
For something livelier, the bars, bustle and boutique shops of Seminyak are about a 30-minute taxi ride away. Balinese traffic jams have become a serious issue in recent years but the resort is only 20 minutes from the airport, guaranteeing stress-free arrivals and departures.
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