Ladyhattan is bringing you an insider peak at another stellar luxury hotel, but this time we are heading to the magical and famed island called Bali. Bali is located in Indonesia and a surprisingly super easy directly flight from Hong Kong at about 4-5 hours. Before diving into the details and impressions of this particular hotel, I first want to say thank you to the PEOPLE I met in Bali. The warmth, positive energy and love that I could feel from all the incredible Balinese friends I made here at the Four Seasons Sayan and throughout the island are friendships that forever have changed my life. To see the way new friends live and look at the world each day has immensely changed my perspective and opened my mind to things that I could not see before. It’s just the Bali way of a life for them, but a way of life that can warm your soul and open your mind.
FOUR SEASONS SAYAN
Now let’s get to it, ladies. Where do I begin? I will to try keep my blabbering to a minimum and just cut to the chase because the photographs of this place speak louder than words. Bali has two Four Seasons Hotel locations on island – one is directly on a beach bay and the other is located up in the jungles in a place called Ubud. This post features the Four Seasons Sayan which is located in Ubud – a village famous for the world’s best craft shopping, yoga every damn day, rice fields, and spiritual healers, as this is the heart and soul of the “Bali Magic” you probably have heard about.
Starting with check-in, we made our way to the Four Seasons in Ubud by private car which took about 1 hour with mild traffic from the main airport on island. From there, we walked across an extremely long tikki wood draw bridge to the site of floating ponds elevated over the cliffs of jungle terrine. The staff greeted us with flowers and fresh fruit drinks, along with cold towels which is common at luxury Asian hotels. We met with the manager and discussed the various activities we were interested in. What is great about the quality of service here, is that they ensure your trip is exactly as you see fit by arranging every excursion or activity for you with honesty, local judgment and care. You want to see a spiritual healer, try a fancy restaurant in downtown, or get an endless massage – yeah, the folks at the Four Seasons will take care of that for you while you sit back and enjoy your vacation.
The hotel grounds (photographed below) are breathtaking – there are rice terraces everywhere in site, natural palms juxtaposed against rapidly flowing river waters, and eternity pool overlooking it all. How about that shade of green though?
RIVERSIDE POOL & CAFE
Moving on to the riverside infinity pool and café, you can find a lush tropical paradise beside the Ayung River. Here you can lounge by the pool to the sound of the river current, with a cocktail and book in hand. I loved the cozy details such as the carefully placed designer lounge furniture offering guests a “living room” experience right beside the pool and river. The menu at the Riverside Café offers a strong international selection, along with a few Balinese classics to try if you are feeling adventurous. We enjoyed the soft-shell crab sandwich for lunch and attended the special “seafood night” where they have a bountiful selection of fresh catches to grill for dinner. If you are traveling to Bali to kick-up your health routine or recharge, there are great vegetarian options as well as fresh green juice smoothies available at every meal of the day.
VILLAS + SUITES
You have a variety of suite or villa options here at the Four Seasons Sayan. The Resort’s 18 spacious suites and 42 private villas reflect the island’s natural, serene beauty. Each suite and villa is appointed with a mix of contemporary and Balinese décor, including rich teak furnishings and exotic hand-loomed fabrics.
While the private pool villas (perfect for honeymooners) are the premier accommodation, I opted for the duplex suite which has a very cool jungle-feel with views straight into the heart of the island’s greenery. Photographed below, you can see our duplex suite featuring an upstairs living space with a large patio, a downstairs master bedroom, walk-in closet and soaking tub with screens opening up to the views. Both levels in this suite have large patio areas where you can enjoy room service, especially breakfast, right in the comfort and privacy of your suite.
This might have been the best room “check-in” experience because my closet was filled with a special surprise – these colorful designer kaftans were waiting for me upon arrival. An amazing friend and designer over at The Swank Store, surprised me with a few perfect “Bali dresses” for this trip by shipping them directly to the hotel. You can checkout Swank kaftans here. Based in Australia, they ship globally, so go ahead American gals and get yourself a kaftan. I researched for months to find the perfect “Bali Kaftan” and found that the Camilla dresses were a bit too pricey ($650+), while the cheap no-name kaftans (sorry, Forever 21) were poor quality and cheap looking. The Swank styles are a fair price-point exuding premiere quality, detail, and in my opinion, even better designs than the overly priced ones on the market. Various styles have intricate beading, jewels, and of course vibrant tropical styles that will keep you looking sexy and stylish on any tropical vacation.
Once we were settled in at the hotel for a few days, I loved waking up to slip into my silky and sexy (oh hey girl…) kaftan to indulge in a deliciously healthy breakfast on our patio. I encourage my travel friends to participate in the “Wake up with FS” movement and photograph their favorite breakfast moment inside a Four Seasons room around the world. Here you can see an assortment of fresh fruits, green smoothie, and spinach-egg frittata. No crowds, no strangers, no fuss, just anything you want for breakfast delivered to the comfort of your private terrace, now that’s what I call #WakeUpWithFS.
COCKTAILS + CULTURE
Enjoying cocktails and culture at the Four Seasons should be effortless, even for you crazy uptight New Yorkers like me. Culture can be found everywhere at this resort – the scenery, the yoga classes, the smells and dialects. How did Ladyhattan explore culture in Bali?
Well, in many ways of course, but I sure did enjoy finding culture by savoring the tastes of a good local drink and Balinese sampler platter, all paired to the backdrop of traditional Balinese dancers. If you can tolerate a spicy cocktail, I encourage you to try the chili infused margarita. The Balinese sampler platter at the hotel’s bar is a great introduction to the various flavors and spices traditionally accompanied in Balinese dishes. Try it for yourself!
Checkout the hotel’s daily scheduled events and be sure to attend a dance show where you can participate in live Balinese dance to loud drums and flutes. How gorgeous are these Balinese dancers? They were beautiful and had very elegant moves, but they sure were excited to learn how to “twerk” from their new American friend, yes yours truly, Ladyhattan.
Complimentary activities and luxury amenities at the hotel include:
- Yoga Classes (Sunrise, Easy, Hatha & Laughter)
- Cycling Tour
- Meditation Classe
- Sayan Valley Walk and Village Walk
- Resort Garden Tour
- Spa Jacuzzi & Plunge Pools
- Steam & Sauna
- Balinese Dance Class and Performances
- Pici Pici Kids’ Club
The Four Seasons Resort Bali at Sayan has been recognized as one of the world’s best resorts on the Conde Nast Traveler, Gold List 2014 and Conde Nast Traveler, Platinum Circle 2014. To learn more insider thoughts and details about this hotel contact Ladyhattan@gmail.com for more insider tips. Thanks for stopping by.