The Seminyak Beach Resort & Spa is one of the island’s tourist hotspots.
It has become something of a tradition among many expat families to make a beeline for beautiful Bali for their summer vacation...
And when Emirates began operating a direct service from DXB it became even easier to get there, writes Charlotte Dunn.
That’s something not lost on The Seminyak Beach Resort & Spa, a restful and luxurious getaway in one of the island’s tourist hotspots.
After two weeks spent seeking out orangutans in the rainforests of Sumatra and peaking into passive volcanoes in Java, this was a welcome oasis of calm.
The Seminyak might be located in one of Bali’s best-known and liveliest towns, from where it takes its name, but it offers sanctuary from both the area’s party persuasions as well as life’s pressures. That makes it ideal for couples and also families.
A mid-size property, it has some of the traits of a boutique hotel, with attentive staff and an eye for detail. These include a delightful bag supplied in your room for carrying items to the pool.
It’s a cunning ploy as you’ll not want to move once there; iced flannels and occasional mini smoothies offset the heat of the day, while a sunglasses cleaning service ensures your view is never fogged.
And just before sunset, the hypnotic sound of the waves is accompanied by an acoustic duo or band beside the pool bar. But is the sound of the surf that accompanies you back to your "quarters", be they one of the stylish garden or beach villas or an ocean view suite, some designed large enough to host a family stay.
The latter proved spacious and blessed with modern touches; warm, traditional materials, such as dark wood floors and furniture, contrasting calm textiles and thoughtful lighting.
Our relaxation began by filling a tiled Jacuzzi corner bath and tuning a TV strategically placed to accompany an extended soak. Silk gowns – additional to standard toweling robes – proved ideal for lounging on the comfortable balcony with its palm-framed view of the horizon and manicured garden where guests are encouraged to join the morning yoga session.
It was on this same balcony that hotel staff and my husband colluded to spring a surprise breakfast with bubbles for a rather significant birthday.
And later a romantic bespoke dinner in one of the resort’s gorgeous villas. Nothing seemed too much trouble.
When the coast beckons again, the route is through lush greenery dotted with cabanas, via The Seminyak’s stunning infinity pool overlooking a wide, sandy beach.
For those craving contrast or nursing restless younger ones, The Seminyak’s distinctive main entrance is a short walk from the town’s lively, trendy centre with all the boutiques, nightlife and general vibrancy for which Seminyak is renowned.
International brands sit alongside homegrown labels such as 69 Slam seeking to broaden your holiday wardrobe.
Closer still, a well-stocked arts and clothing market brims with potential souvenirs, gifts, garments and street-style food.
Here you can equip yourself with traditional batik shirts and skirts in time for the hotel’s weekly Balinese night, staged on the lawn beside a variety of local and wider Indonesian-inspired dishes served from street market-style cooking stations.
Colourful dances evoke the spirit of Indonesian tradition stretching back hundreds of years; the graceful and alluring Panyembrama set to gamelan music and the Barong dance, a storytelling movement narrating the fight between good and evil with the aid of colourful masks and costumes.
This sense of tradition carries over to the spacious Kahyangan Spa, where cheerful staff offer a variety of treatments, such as soothing Balinese couples massages.
The Seminyak also hits the spot with its regular food and beverage outlets. There’s a stylish yet intimate bar, Klass & Brass, while dining options include Mediterranean al fresco restaurant and lounge Sanje, offering good value with healthy options flanked by the ocean and a reflective pool.
By night it becomes a cozy candlelit space with themed dining events, such as a Fisherman’s Night laden with BBQ seafood alongside sushi, ceviche and calamari.
Breakfast and afternoon tea is served in Santan, a partially open-air all-day dining restaurant flanked by ornamental ponds patrolled by koi carp. Tables are placed at various levels in a mix of sections, enabling it to be both spacious, yet intimate.
At night, gentle lighting and unobtrusive music transform this into a romantic or private experience serviced by a varied menu, including some memorable Asian choices. The Balinese prawn curry is not for the faint of palate, but rewards with incredible flavour beyond the heat.
All in all, The Seminyak manages to channel its namesake location’s cool and savvy vibe, but with an independent character all its own - oozing finesse and exclusivity without ever being stuffy.
CHECK out availability and room prices for The Seminyak by browsing www.theseminyak.com
EMIRATES operates direct flights from DXB to Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport. Visit www.emirates.com for pricing and schedules.