Bali is more than a place, it’s a mood. A tropical state of mind that holds countless magical treasures. Located in the westernmost end of the Lesser Sunda Islands between Java and Lombok, it is one of the most evocative islands in the Indonesian archipelago.
Best known for its natural beauty, perfect climate and relaxed atmosphere, Bali's essence lies in the island's generous Balinese people. In the intoxicating fragrance of incense and ripening fruit that hangs on the air, peanuts roasted alongside busy streets and traditional music playing above the sea of mopeds. Often referred to as the Land of the Gods, Bali has long lured surfers to its legendary swells and palm-fringed beaches. Instead of holiday … think Baliday!
The BusinessClass.com guide to the best hotels in Bali:
Sheltered on the hillside in a calm cove overlooking three miles of beachfront, the Four Seasons Resort Bali at Jimbaran Bay has been designed to resemble a traditional Balinese village. The 156 Villas and Residence Villas are held within free-standing, thatched-roof pavilions with cascading hibiscus and jasmine covered walls. Each villa features oversized indoor and outdoor living areas, a courtyard and private pool. They come with the option of one or two bedrooms, while two to four bedroom Residence Villas are also available. Each with a library, fully equipped kitchen and positioned just steps from Jimbaran Beach. All accommodation is brightly decorated in natural tones with tasteful Balinese art with glass doors opening onto wooden decks. The bathrooms are vast with double vanities, indoor and outdoor showers, and stand-alone baths big enough for two.
Breakfast is served in the open-air pavilion, light meals at the Pool Terrace Café, or you can visit Sundara, the hotel's stylish restaurant where Asian cuisine and reviving cocktails are served. Swim in the main resort 57-metre infinity pool … or in the sea. Activities include morning meditation, Balinese dance performances and temple tours. Water sports can be booked at the beach club or consider a cooking class or rubber of tennis. The Healing Village Spa is one of the finest on the island and offers a range of Balinese-inspired holistic and traditional treatments, complemented by a unique yoga program.
Rising out of rice paddy fields above the Ayung River, the Four Seasons Resort Bali at Sayan is an exclusive sanctuary you will never want to leave. A sophisticated resort with excellent facilities, service, and experiences to remember, from biking through local villages to Balinese healing rituals and art tours. Located in the island's highlands, the luxury resort takes every opportunity to get you close to nature. Scattered around the grounds are 42 pool villas and 18 suites, all with sensational views towards the rice terrace and verdant tropical forest. The décor is a refined blend of traditional Balinese craftsmanship with modern luxuries, teak headboards, beds draped in nets and large marble bathrooms. The villas feature a dining area, comfy sofas, private deck, pool and enticing outdoor shower.
Ayung Terrace specialises in Indonesian cuisine, while Jati Bar serves cocktails and light meals. At Riverside Café, enjoy western delicacies. Private dining is available on the remarkable rooftop lotus pond or beside the terraced rice fields, while the Sokasi Cooking School offers a Chef’s Table – Balinese focused-cuisine supper. The resort offers a multi-tiered infinity pool, meditation, a fitness centre, treks, Balinese dance performances, a shuttle to Ubud centre, boutiques, and a children’s club. Overlooking the rushing Ayung River is the remarkable Balinese-style spa with three thatch-roofed couples' villas joined to outdoor bathing pavilions – unmissable!
Mandapa, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve – 10/10
At Mandapa, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve property, nature and culture guide the experience. Located in central Bali among rolling hills and rice paddy fields, Mandapa befits its name - ‘temple’ in Sanskrit. Consisting of 35 luxurious suites and 25 pool villas with traditional Balinese themed interiors. The Reserve Suites have enormous marble bathrooms with soaking baths, a private patio and wood finishes. The Mandapa Suites are larger and beautifully decorated with local art pieces, affording superb 180-degree views of the rainforest. The three-bedroom Pool Villas have private gardens, a fully equipped kitchen, outdoor shower, massage table and enormous private pools.
All guestrooms boast a 24-hour butler service. Settle into one of Kubu Restaurant’s bamboo pods for exceptional Indonesian cuisine. For al fresco dining, Sawah Terrace features Balinese and Asian fare. The Pool Bar and The Library are where guests relax over drinks and more classic European dishes. Mandapa carries a long tradition of healing and inner reflection and the resort’s Mandapa Spa draws on these practices. With eight treatment rooms, the unique services include consultations with an acclaimed Balinese healer. The yoga pavilion, meditation temple, vitality pool, 24-hour fitness centre and saunas add to feeling of inner happiness. A fun Mandapa speciality is touring the surrounding villages in a vintage VW, with a variety of activities like organic gardening, nature walks and Balinese kite flying arranged for children.
Amandari, Ubud – 10/10
Amandari is a luxury haven hidden in the forests above the studios, galleries, and workshops of Bali's artistic centre, Ubud. Stone gateways front the 30 free-standing thatch-roof suites that are reached by winding pathways. Three-sided with floor-to-ceiling glass walls, they offer a wonderful sense of openness, while tropical gardens ensure complete privacy at the pool and courtyard. The interiors feature coconut and teak wood finishes, high ceilings, and giant day beds. The Amandari Villa, with views of the Ayung River Valley below, is ideal for guests seeking an exclusive Balinese experience.
Overlooking the swimming pool, The Restaurant serves Indonesian and Western cuisine. Seasonal ingredients are sourced from local organic farms, and freshly caught seafood brought from the coast daily. The Bar is ideal for a refreshing drink or light meal, and Afternoon Tea is served by Kedewatan villagers who bring a choice of traditional Balinese sweets and home-brewed tea & coffee especially for your enjoyment. The Spa – that sits on the edge of the lotus pond - adopts a holistic approach to wellness, with therapists incorporating healing for the body and mind. You may be tempted to lounge at your suite all day, but the cultural treasures of Ubud await with skilled artisans and master craftspeople. At night, quaint restaurants host cultural dancers and theatrical performances.
Amankila, Manggis – 10/10
Amankila - ‘peaceful hill’ - is a luxury coastal resort situated on the green hill of Indrakila in eastern Bali. Operated by Aman Resorts, it delivers serene seclusion and spectacular views towards the Lombok Strait. The 34 free-standing suites are set against the dramatic backdrop of Mount Agung. With an array of suites that range from Garden and Ocean to Pool - complete with private enclosed courtyards. The Kilasari Suite takes its name from Amankila’s main temple and like the Indrakila Suite has a pavilion and sizeable infinity pool. The impressive Amankila Suite features two bedrooms that open onto a large pool terrace with lily ponds and its own private butler service. Ideal for guests wanting complete privacy or couples travelling together.
Serving exquisite Indonesian and international cuisines with produce sourced from the resort’s organic farm, Amankila Restaurant is located above the main swimming pool. The Terrace is open for breakfast and lunch, with a simple menu of light meals served at the Beach Club. Toast the sunset from Batu Jati Rock Platform overlooking Amankila's black sand beach, or book a private dinner on the beach, where a bonfire can be lit for added ambience. The Spa’s therapies aim for complete relaxation at the massage pavilion and secluded open-air spot, while the resident yoga instructor conducts classes next to the beach. From the resort opt for exploration by bicycle, trekking and testing your balance on the slackline tethered in the coconut grove.
Mulia Resort Nusa Dua, Bali – 9/10
Mulia Resort is located on the southern tip of Bali along a secluded shoreline of Nusa Dua and offers exclusivity and luxury with easy access to the Indian Ocean. The resort’s 526 superbly designed guest rooms – from the intimate rooms to the lavish suites - feature spacious balconies overlooking the landscaped surrounds. Discover more at your own pace with strolls through the gardens and time on the beach. Linger in the signature beachfront swimming pool or take a dip in one of the other three available at Mulia Resort – from the courtyard pool to the children’s splash pool.
Mulia Bali takes pride in providing exceptional dining experiences from international buffets, gourmet brunches, to award-winning fine dining. Embark on a culinary adventure with the resort’s signature take on cuisines from the Mediterranean, Pan-Asia, Japan, China, and beyond. Open for all-day dining is Mulia Resort’s Café, with fine dining at Soleil Restaurant and delectable dim sum at Table8. The Mulia Spa combines modern practices with Balinese tradition to offer a complete rejuvenating journey with an array of treatments. Take advantage of the hydrotonic pools, sauna, steam room, and Asia Pacific's first ice room. Keep up your routine at the Fitness Centre and indulge in a selection of activities including yoga, stand up paddle boarding, kayaking.
The 74-room Oberoi Beach Resort, Bali offers luxurious beachside accommodation in Seminyak. Stretching across 15 acres of tropical gardens and offering traditional Balinese architecture, stylish teak wood furnishings and private grounds, it is easy to feel shut away in this tradition-focussed hotel despite being in town. The Oberoi skilfully combines luxury with simplicity with Balinese history and culture, including dance performances and daily offerings in the hotel's temples. All rooms and villas are decorated in natural colour palettes with beautiful ocean or garden views, traditional design, and contemporary technologies. The Luxury Lanai Room Garden View is designed with comfort in mind, a traditional thatched roof, handpicked local artworks, cushioned cane furniture and king-size or twin beds. The Luxury Villa Ocean View boasts unrestricted ocean views, a king-size bedroom and authentic finishing touches while the Royal Ocean View Villa with a private pool sits on the beach.
Al fresco dining just steps from Seminyak Beach, Frangipani Café serves American, Continental, and Indonesian breakfasts - and light, healthy lunches. Affectionately named after the turtles that nest on the nearby sands, Kura Kura Restaurant is a thatched, open-air eatery – complete with traditional artefacts. Kayu Bar serves classic and contemporary cocktails, light meals, and snacks. The unique spa features therapy rooms housed in traditional, open-air pavilions, with views across private, tropical gardens and beautiful lily ponds. The swimming pool sits by the beach.
Capella Ubud, Bali – 9/10
Capella Ubud, Bali showcases tented accommodation within Ubud's iconic rain forest and trellised rice fields. Situated just 7 kilometres from the city centre, the hotel achieves a welcome harmony between the natural surrounds and entrenched luxury comforts. Inspired by early European settlers from the 1800s, the tented camp was designed by famed architect Bill Bensley as a tribute to their spirit of adventure. Capturing the imagination, the refined camp is much loved by travellers seeking out a unique experience. The twenty-two one-bedroom tents and one two-bedroom lodge boast private saltwater pools. The one-bedroom Terrace and Rainforest tents large outdoor decks, indoor and outdoor bathrooms, and sensational, uninterrupted views. All have scrumptious oversized daybeds, eclectic Balinese-style interiors, and all modern comforts such as air conditioning.
In-house guests have access to the Officer’s Tent, a charming space filled with character, antiquities, and books from a bygone era. The restaurants are influenced by the jungle setting and local heritage. Seasonal, sustainably farmed ingredients are the priority at Mads Lange, while Api Jiwa cooks up authentic Asian barbecue food. The Camp Fire invites evenings under the stars listening to fascinating tales shared by a local storyteller. The poolside Mortar & Pestle serves light snacks and carefully curated cocktails. While tucked in the heart of the camp is Auriga, an oasis that offers rejuvenating treatments using signature techniques and organic products exclusively blended for Capella Ubud, Bali.
Six Senses Uluwatu – 9/10
Located on the southernmost tip of the Island on the famed limestone cliffs with views of the Indian Ocean, Six Senses Uluwatu, Bali offers a sense of calm and serenity. The hotel is elegant, opulent, and home to Pura Uluwatu - the temple that is considered to be one of Bali’s most spiritual and sacred places. The property is the only green resort certified by the World Green Council on the island. Built with local materials and sustainable design, there are 28 sky villas, 62 one-bedroom villas and seven two-bedroom villas, The Retreat, and the Presidential Villa, all draw on the local culture while offering every creature comfort. The groundbreaking Sleep With Six Senses standard has been implemented to give guests handmade mattresses complemented by organic pillows and duvets, with high-quality organic cotton sheets and towels.
The three swimming pools; the main pool, relaxation pool and kids pool face out infinity-style from the top of the cliff. Six Senses Integrated Wellness provides experts and wellness practitioners to offer unique therapies. The yoga pavilion, captivating relaxation zones and state of the art fitness facilities add to the luxuries on offer. Six Senses Uluwatu, Bali offers a series of experiences in and out of the resort. Barefoot luxury at its finest, the resort offers a range of cuisine that celebrates the local Balinese food culture and internationally influenced fare, with the approach to food and drink ensuring that quality cleaner and healthier food is served across the board.
Bulgari Resort Bali – 9/10
The Bulgari Resort Bali occupies a secluded plateau near Uluwatu on the southern tip of the Jimbaran Peninsula. The location is defined by the dramatic cliffs that drop into the Indian Ocean. Private access to the pristine stretch of beach is by a splendid funicular. Each of the villas combines indoor and outdoor living - an oversized bathroom and a lounge area complement the indulgent bedroom, patio, garden, and plunge pool. The Bulgari Villa has two en-suite bedrooms, a private cinema and spa treatment room, a 20-metre private swimming pool and a meditation pergola - that overlooks the ocean. The Bulgari Mansion feature five separate bedrooms, a private swimming pool, an open-air living room pavilion and private elevator.
Choose from Bulgari Resort Bali’s three restaurants. Sangkar, named for the traditional bamboo cages that hang in abundanceabove the tables, for Indonesian, Asian and International cuisine. The more formal Il Ristorante for creative Italian cuisine, and overlooking a stretch of white sand beach, La Spiaggia, where guests can enjoy fresh grilled seafood. The Bar is a gathering place - serving wines and cocktails, ideal for winding down at the end of a Baliday. The Spa offers luxurious treatments from a menu that integrates Asian and European wellness practices. Several activities are available, including excursions to nearby islands, helicopter flights over the volcano, and visits to the local markets with a personal shopper.
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