The Perfect Place for a Quick Balinese Escape
We weren’t too sure what to expect when we booked into The Pavilions Bali, but upon arriving, we’d found we’d made a mistake with our booking and were there a FULL DAY EARLY (oops…). The team’s response to our faux pas confirmed our suspicions – that we were going to be spoilt. Like, seriously spoilt. As the villa staff quickly prepared a two-bedroom private pool villa for us, we were ushered into the resort spa for complimentary foot massages and refreshing welcome drinks. It was the beginning of a very luxurious couple of days indeed…
The Pavilions Bali is a luxury boutique hotel that offers guests a complete getaway experience. So much so that guests can check-in and quite literally not leave their villa until check-out time. I am both pleased and ashamed to admit we almost never did! The pure, incomparable luxury of having a stunning two bedroom private villa, frangipani-filled bathtub, contemporary outdoor living space and private pool to yourself is a joy few are lucky enough to experience – so we relished it as much as humanly possible!
Hidden down a quiet, tree-fringed driveway running off Sanur’s main street, The Pavilions Bali offers a welcome respite from the busy restaurant and bar scene of Sanur. Though not quite on par with its louder neighbor, Kuta, Sanur most certainly offers visitors an overwhelming number of stylish cafes, reggae-themed restaurants, beach bars, countless beautiful resorts and the odd street food stall, making it an ideal destination for a quick weekend escape from Hong Kong. A 4km stretch of coastline, marked by one long boardwalk, is the highlight of the town, and a stroll along this should keep you well and truly entertained for hours.
Days at The Pavilions consisted of waking to the sound of birds and frogs chirping away in the gardens of our walled estate (fancy, right?), reading by our pool, enjoying the lunchtime poolside service – all interspersed with the odd treatment at the resort’s in-house spa. It’s safe to say that never have we departed a hotel quite so rejuvenated. Though Bali was indeed on our doorstep, the pure luxury here was too great a temptation.
The Pavilions Bali consists of 25 wonderfully private one or two bedroom pool villas, a handful of garden villas and a Honeymoon Villa, which offers newlyweds that little extra special something in which to celebrate their nuptials. Each pool villa features a lush private garden, stunning contemporary Balinese design, a gorgeous, palatial bathroom with standalone granite tubs and a shower fit for royalty. Our two-bedroom pool villa came with a private pool, sundeck and walled garden, free WiFi, a full range of bathroom amenities, matching kimonos (winning), kitchen with minibar, outdoor living area with plasma television and surround sound, in-room private dining and a full butler service… phew!
We slept like babies in the crisp, white linen-kingdom that was our bed, and a nightly “turn down” service ensured our mosquito net was drawn, the candles inside our villa were lit, and two cups of water in artisanal mugs were placed on either side of the bed – a thoughtful gesture inspired by the owner’s Korean upbringing. It also meant our pool would be magically lit on return to the villa each night, tempting us to frolick like late-night mermaids in our private underwater empire. For those villas not equipped with a pool, facilities at The Pavilions Bali includes a pool for general use (plus attached bar – yay!), spa and gymnasium, meaning languid afternoons by the water can be enjoyed by all…
Sanur was Bali’s first developed tourist area and was once touted as THE place to be in Bali – with celebrities such as Mick Jagger tying the knot on its beaches once upon a time. A mere 20 minutes from Denpasar International Airport, Sanur is a pretty ideal destination for a weekend away from Hong Kong. It’s probably one of the few places in Bali where a scooter is not necessary – everything desirable is within a few minute’s walk and, particularly if you are staying at The Pavilions, you likely won’t want to ever leave your villa or resort anyway.
If you are keen to get out and about, Seminyak is a mere 20 – 30 minute drive away, and Ubud is just 25 minutes by car, meaning you have some pretty awesome day trips at your disposal and getting bored (is that even possible on holiday?) is not an option. For those who prefer the underwater world, Sanur is a great base for heading to the nearby sleepy island of Nusa Lembongan, where world-class dive sites lie waiting.
Read more: A Girls’ Guide to Scuba Diving
The real attraction of The Pavilions Bali is the luxury personalised service available to each and every guest, regardless of which villa one has booked. Though not exactly ideal for people like me, since I never know what time I will be hungry in the morning or which breakfast food I’ll be craving, The Pavilions Bali invites guests to “pre-book” a breakfast service each night. The choices are seemingly endless – banana pancakes, nasi goreng, Indonesian black rice pudding, pastries, a full cooked breakfast – or all of the above! Each morning we delighted in the arrival of our personal butler, who brewed us a fresh pot of coffee, laid our poolside table for two, and proceeded to cook or bring us our breakfast from the nearby kitchen. Though the pastries were a little mediocre, the general setting more than made up for it and the routine never got old.
The room service menu was an absolute treat, with a range of salads, delicious grilled sandwiches and traditional Indonesian dishes like Nasi Goreng available for between IDR$25,000 – $90,000. There is even the option of ordering a Royal Indonesian Set Dinner (IDR$590,000 for two people), consisting of 13 exotic Indonesian dishes such as ‘Pepes Lobster’ – fresh lobster in Indonesian sauce wrapped in banana leaf – to the villa. I satisfied all my “healthy cravings” on tour while my partner enjoyed a mouthwatering burger a day – both for a relatively small price considering the general setting!
For those willing to venture outside of their villa, The Pavilions Bali has one restaurant onsite, Jahe, which offers a beautiful candlelit dining experience to both villa guests and outside diners. No more than 15 tables make up this restaurant; a delightful garden-of-Eden style setting with tables dotted about under cabana-style canopies.
I think it goes without saying that to have your very own pool villa, complete privacy, and the option of having your breakfast, lunch and dinner delivered to you poolside by beaming staff… well… you’re not left wanting much more from a holiday. A doting staff, temperate weather (in the dry season at least), beautiful contemporary design and luxury personalised service make The Pavilions Bali what it is – a luxury escape in a blissful corner of Bali. And we’d go back in a heartbeat.