Bali, Once More

22537737416_15b801d981_cMy last visit to Bali was in 2009. It was a quick two-night trip to/from Taipei…not enough time. So we are back again.

22537773456_2c689b343d_cFour Seasons operates two properties in Bali. One near the water (Jimbaran) and another in the jungle (Sayan).

22563561995_e664234a7a_cI’ve lived on islands (Oahu and Manhattan) all my life. I like being near the water, but love homes surrounded by greenery. Deep in valley and up mountains. Big trees and wild flowers. It was Sayan I found enchanting…

22376474019_59cec4358b_c…and that’s where we spent most nights.

22563060355_f56d6b6da8_cBut the first night was at Jimbaran (which is closer to the airport).

22376215379_e2230cccfc_cI was walking around the property and found all these pandan plants. Heaven! Pandan is my favorite flavor and scent. Mom infuses it in everything from water to rice and coconut-based Vietnamese desserts. It’s a beautiful, flowery vanilla.

21942141153_bd3918354e_cA late lunch.

21941907703_e403c1fa54_cLittle pools in each villa (best part is that you can go skinny dipping and no one will ever know).

22563064505_907d130c55_cThe best part about hotels is…breakfast! Hot curry noodles, fresh watermelon juice and all the fruit in the world. (More on hotel breakfasts here.)

22537737416_15b801d981_cThen off to Sayan. It’s a two-hour drive inland to Ubud. You must walk across this long bridge to enter the property…

21942216433_74b6be0967_c…and once you’re on the other side it’s ahhhhhh.

22537253526_6181d07db2_cAll blissed out.

22563377095_d808c844b9_cSayan is really good with liquids. So many types of juices (watermelon was my favorite) and jamu (which are like tonics).

22563438315_768a5e6c9f_cThe “classic” jamu is made of turmeric, honey, and tamarind.

22563532655_36ee13f332_cVariations include one with black tea, lemongrass, ginger and honey.

22574459221_1002b6e4a8_cThis ginger one also showed up as a hot, extra spicy version at the spa.

22375807250_6efe4a5ddc_cWatermelon juice all day, every day.

28017307840_827ccf9053_cLisa flew in from Hong Kong for a few nights ^-^

22550199202_d4f84c6ca0_cWe went out to Will Goldfarb’s Room4Dessert one night…

21941027244_c24246fece_c…and had every dessert on the menu. Big thanks to Will for the ride back home.

22574450621_dae14452ac_cBut aside from that, I never left the property. There was plenty to do…

22537592996_b367a6f1be_c…and not do. I spent an entire day just reading in the villa, eating noodles for lunch and curry for dinner.

22375639010_b878faa52e_cThough I did go up to the lobby…

22563599195_0b806de373_c…for afternoon tea that day.

22537773456_2c689b343d_cSaving the best for last. Breakfast!! I woke up extra early for this. Breakfast is buffet + a la carte. I basically ate everything.

22549729192_1a70c2f2c1_cAre you familiar with salak gula? It’s also called snake fruit.

22375476670_b2465ed2ab_cLooks like this when you peel it. Hard to find in the US. (The orange fruit to the left of the snake fruit is tamarillo.)

22549859982_dfb35f6d28_cIt might be an Asian thing but I love starting the day with a hot bowl of noodle soup…

22537535966_44997b898d_c…savory, big, wide rice noodles. Fried shallots. A clean chicken broth, lots of herbs. Bean sprouts and greets. Fish balls and ground pork balls. A bit of chili paste.

22574761621_3517b43cf8_cEach breakfast featured a daily sweet. Bubur injin days were the best. On those days I’d have my usual soup plus two bowls of bubur injin. It’s magical. Black rice, palm sugar, coconut milk. Makes me so happy.

22375524260_8683ff673b_cOne morning we had breakfast near the rice paddies. That’s more bubur injin on the right.

22537492336_2c4f8b59f7_cHot water for tea was brewed here to the side of the table.

22575034921_73d03b8311_cAnother daily sweet featured tapioca and bananas in coconut milk…

22375491150_f179b24cfb_c…and yet another featured klepon. Dessert like this makes you happy to be alive. It’s mochi (with a texture similar to local Hawaii mochi), stuffed with gula jawa (hot liquid palm sugar). The mochi is scented with pandan. Each piece is rolled in grated coconut. Eat it in one bite.

22376590699_0efa39a970_cTill we’re back again ^-^

  • Suma Reddy
    July 17, 2016


  • Suma Reddy
    July 17, 2016


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