Bali at 40: Seminyak

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Advice, Asia, Bali, Story

Bali may be small, but it’s definitely not short of character. Whether it’s the flair in artsy Ubud, the merry pandemonium in Seminyak or the tranquil opulence of Nusa Dua, whether it’s for the old or for the young, there’s a Bali for everybody.

_4345069_origThen there’s the manic tourist area of Seminyak, Ubud’s antithesis: robust and party-packed.

Seminyak has a dynamic vibe whether you visit the area in broad daylight or late at night. Seminyak has pubs and clubs, including some by the beach where watching the dramatic sunset is part of the attraction. The streets are narrow and crowded with local and international boutiques.

Accommodation in Seminyak is diverse, from beachfront five-star hotels to local villas to backpackers’ inns.This is the area to meet people from across the globe, and unlike Ubud, where Balinese culture permeates every square meter, Seminyak is predominantly a commercial area.

Where We Stayed

The vibrantly and stylishly decorated three-bedroom Villa Sky Li lies in the secure and exclusive Laksmana estate at the heart of buzzing Seminyak, within walking distance of many of Bali’s best restaurants, cafes, shops and bars.

Sky Li’s charming and convivial living space includes a bright and airy open-plan kitchen, breakfast bar and dining area overlooking a lush tropical garden, 12-metre swimming pool and relaxation bale. There is a well-equipped TV lounge that opens to make one enormous living space or closed for air-conditioned comfort.

A capable team of staff was on hand to ensure that guests were efficiently assisted.  After our private yoga session, we ate in during our first evening.  Their chef prepared an authentic feast of Indonesian favourites as we enjoyed our evening swim. The place was so homey – we definitely enjoyed our stay there.

Where We Ate (and Drank)

  • Made’s Warung – This is a great choice to enjoy local cuisine.  The place overlooks a nice courtyard with interesting boutiques laid out around the complex.  The menu is simple, featuring traditional Indonesian food.  We were so hungry, we weren’t in a discerning mood but when the food arrived, we were surprised to conclude that everything was definitely good.  It’s simple restaurants like these that we enjoy.
  • Potato Head  –  We loved the details of this place.  If you want to get a table by the pool, you have to be there super early.  We wanted to stay by the pool with the view of the beach but the line was just impossible.  The lunch menu served expensive country club food and their cocktails are pricey as well. Even so, we enjoyed our afternoon there – people watching and just taking in the cool vibes.
  • Rock Bar – Leave it to Josine to plead to the Manager that we have have to celebrate our 40th milestone there.  We were quite complacent with our plans to have cocktails in what they say is Bali’s best sunset venue,  we didn’t think of going early.  So out of our desperation to cut through the queues to take a seat in the main bar cliff, we agreed to occupy the smaller cliff that is exclusive for small parties of up to eight people.  There was a consumable of about $100 pre-paid for that space.  It was an investment well spent as six fun loving ladies danced that afternoon enjoying magnificent views, great music with glamorous cocktails!
  • Sardine –  Sun burnt and blushing from all those cocktails we had to consume at the Rock Bar, we dashed back down to Jalan Petitenget to catch our reservation in the famous Sardine Restaurant.  Sardine is one of the first and foremost dining spots that will catch your eye as you enter. Its white stone wall facade conceals much of the treasure within, comprising an impressive bamboo-beamed dining hall with alfresco platforms overlooking probably one of the last rice paddies in Seminyak. The delightful compound is surrounded by leafy bamboo gardens, tranquil ponds, and quirky Balinese-style garden décor of pristine white and checkered parasols.If we didn’t have cocktails at the Rock Bar, the interplay of lush green views with the gorgeous Seminyak sunsets, a perfect prelude to a sumptuous meal could have been enjoyed here as well. Sardine Restaurant’s visual delights match its impressive menu, which contains a healthy and tasty seafood selection combined with home-grown organic produce. Our final dinner in Bali did not disappoint.  Everything was so good – it awakened our senses from our recent hangover instantly.

Shopping in Seminyak

Click here to check out this great guide for all the retail therapy we deserve!

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