Most of us always begin a New Year with a few resolutions and that was no different for me because I started 2016 by flying to Indonesia with my best friend Ellie to practise yoga, work on my blog and explore Bali. The first stop on our adventure was Jimbaran Bay and we were lucky enough to be staying at the idyllic Kayumanis Resort with our own private villa.
When we arrived at the airport we were greeted with a friendly smile behind a sign with my name on it, ‘Freya Bromley for Kayumanis’. Suddenly the trip I had been planning for months felt real! Being greeted at the airport took such a lot of hassle out of our journey. We had already hurried through a transfer at Hong Kong, attempted to get our heads round the exchange rate to stock up on the local currency and acclimatised to the heat (boy was it hot!) so to see a smiling face offerng to help us with our bags and escort us to the hotel was lovely. The service didn’t change during our stay – everyone was smiling, kind and always happy to help. I was called Ibu Freya meaning Miss Freya, everywhere I went which made me feel like part of the Kayumanis family.
The private estate is almost hidden amongst the groves of coconut trees so it feels very secluded from the long stretch of open beach nearby. Our villa, called Bungkak, was to be our little Indonesian ‘home away from home’ for a few days. It was so spacious with a private pool, timber terrace dining area, open-air bathroom and bedroom with a canopied bed.
For the two mornings we had at Kayumanis we woke up early when the sun started streaming through our blinds. Our breakfast was brought to our villa along with a wakeup call so that we could start the day with fresh fruit by the pool. The Indonesian coffee we were served was delicious! I wanted to go to the market to buy some to take home for my family so the staff kindly recommend a traditional Balinese brew called Kopi Bola Dunia. It has a distinct earthy taste to it so if you love rich coffee then I’m sure you would enjoy this.
The villa had everything we could possibly want in it. We needn’t have bothered packing our suitcases to be honest! There were luxury toiletries, sandals, robes, insect repellent, beach bags and even a yoga mat tucked away inside our wardrobe. The great thing about yoga is that you don’t really need anything to practice. At home I just kick off my shoes and use the techniques I’ve learnt to try and relax so to have a mat and private space just for me felt like a real luxury.
Making the most of the gorgeous weather and idyllic setting I couldn’t wait to try out the yoga I’ve practised at home beside my private pool at Kayumanis. Each morning I put on my bikini, rolled out the yoga mat and tried to let the calming sound of the water running into the pool ease my mindfulness. If only I could start every day like this…
Each day we enjoyed high tea in the afternoon. Despite it being January the weather was still very hot so it was perfect to have something to break up the day at 2 o’clock. The iced lattes were the perfect poolside drink for catching up with reading in the peace and quiet of our villa.
The three tier platter was filled with sandwiches, tarts, fruit and cakes. The Balinese cakes were exceptionally unique and varied everyday so that we had the opportunity to try lots of new delicacies. Of course this was all brought to us with a friendly smile and detailed information about the ingredients and recipe origins so that we could learn more about the country’s culture.
Our villa also had a fully-equipped gourmet kitchen which I’m sure is great for guests who want to cook but we were excited to dine out each evening and try traditional Indonesian dishes so we didn’t use it during our stay. Kayumanis is just a short walk from Jimbaran Bay which is a fisherman’s beach so we were spoilt for choice when it came to cuisine. Our favourite seafood restaurant was Menega Café where we enjoyed freshly grilled lobster with the sand between our toes.
For a luxury hotel the service wasn’t too fussy which is just how I like it. We weren’t hassled or bothered constantly and were pretty much left to our own devices in our villa so we could swim, walk on the beach, practice yoga and even go skinny dipping if we wanted – it was just us after all! If we did need anything, however, there was 24 hour room service. It was nice to know if one of us woke up in the night with jet lag we could call for a cup of camomile tea.
We had heard great things about the spa at the resort so we booked a shoulder and back massage together as a little treat. After just half an hour I felt so rejuvenated! My morning yoga session, fresh fruit breakfast and massage made me feel like a whole new me.
After all the tension in my shoulders had melted away from my massage I was in the mood for a bath and was pleasantly surprised to find I could have a bath ritual in our villa. I slipped in to the tub filled with petals and spent an hour daydreaming.
If you’ve never experienced the calm tranquillity of practising naked yoga by your own private pool then you need to fly to Bali and book a stay at Kayumanis for your next holiday!
It was an idyllic retreat amongst the bustle of busy Jimbaran Bay and I can’t recommend it highly enough if what you’re looking for is a bit of peace and quiet somewhere exotic. If you want to be out everyday and surrounded by other travellers then maybe this hotel is a little too indulgent for you but for those that want space, privacy and personalised service you won’t find better in Bali. You can book a stay here: www.kayumanis.com and be sure to follow me on Instagram and Twitter @freydefleur to keep updated with my adventures.