A Sanur Sensation KayumanisThursday, September 29, 2016
Author Name : Melissa Rimac
Stepping into the sublime tropical gardens of The Gangsa Private Villa at Sanur, I feel like I’ve dropped in to visit old friends. Albeit friends with exceptionally refined tastes in art, design and cuisine!
The effect of the warm greeting, abundance of emerald green foliage and serenity - inducing arrangements of ponds, moss coated statues and incense shrouded spirit houses is immediate and deeply- felt. I’m breathing deeper and smiling wider within moments. The thing is, there’s plenty of gorgeous accommodation on offer in Bali and I’ve had the good fortune to experience several acclaimed options. However I’m learning that the litmus test for an exceptional property is how well it handles guests’ personal quirks.
Those little details that are a big deal for you that nobody else can possibly understand- well, the Kayumanis team are keen to hear about them and tailor a bespoke experience, never a rolled- eye in sight (as has happened even in so called 6 star establishments). And by the time I’ve strolled to the elaborately carved gates of my courtyard, I mentioned a few personal preferences to my butler – for instance, no sugar with afternoon tea, oh and I’d like that with some spice please - and I never have to mention it again!
When I ask for a variation on the sweet-themed afternoon tea in preference for something savoury, my wish is granted with enthusiasm. Clearly, going outside the box is encouraged here.
After closing the door to my massive courtyard, I slip into my large private pool – floating amidst dozens of oversized frangipani flowers. The gilded afternoon light clings to the dense tropical air and the loudest sound is a kingfisher fluttering in the mahogany trees. My butler rings a gong and asks where I’d like afternoon tea – prepared precisely as requested.
Villa style travel – kicking back in your own private house and tropical garden- is a luxe indulgence in which Bali excels. However the Kayumanis properties stand out for their unrivalled spaciousness, crisp contemporary style and intuitive service. Details like bunches of orchids, freshly baked cookies, piles of magazines and bikes add a homely touch that makes a holiday so much more special.
Lounging in my villa’s vast living area, it would make perfect sense- and a sublime break- to play Greta Garbo and relish the plush seclusion of my villa. But there’s so much about Bali that would be a shame to miss.
The beachfront of Sanur is skimmed by a five kilometre long bike track, with plenty of great places to stop to shop, surf, get a message or raise your cocktail glass.
I couldn’t get enough of the fact that I could get customised painting produced at bargain rates – thanks to the profusion of excellent artists in the area who differ in style and are happy to produce stunning bespoke works.
The Kayumanis properties in Bali have their own ‘beach bar’ with daybeds, snacks, drinks and helpful staff who can point you in the right direction for activities such as stand up paddle boarding, snorkelling or kayaking. And after a tough day’s shopping and feasting, stretching out on the daybed at the gangsa Beach Bar works a treat.
There is however one downer about spending quality time at The Gangsa: from that point on, reality becomes an ever sharper letdown.