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Indonesia » Bali » Canggu » Bungadesa Villas (7BR + 3)
The striking traditional architecture of this breeze-kissed, 7+3-bedroom sanctuary is influenced by the many varied styles of Indonesia from Sulawesi to Irian Jaya. The open-sided living pavilion, for example, is built around an ornately carved Javanese joglo - an old timber house with a trapezium-shaped roof. One of the bedrooms is housed within a pavilion that follows the lines of a traditional lumbung, or rice barn, from Lombok; and the splendid thatched balé bengong is Timorese in character, constructed of pale-hued timber complete with distinctive primitive carvings.
Lombok doors, inlaid with mother of pearl, mark the entrances to bedrooms and outdoor garden bathrooms, whimsical statues stand guard over the two swimming pools, and many more richly-patterned Timorese carvings of geckoes, birds and stylised figures are evident on wall panels, doors, four-poster beds, and the ironwood pillars of a veranda. Antique and custom-made furniture and decorative pieces include a canopied Javanese marriage bed, Timorese stools with the seats upheld by long-limbed squatting figures, an ornate Sulawesi house panel, a gerobok rice chest on wheels, and a Palimanan frieze of ladies bathing at the holy springs of Tampaksiring.
Consisting of 5+1-bedroom Bungadesa I and 2+2-bedroom Bungadesa II, the villas are adjoined by a door in the garden wall (they have individual private entrances too). Both have vast sprawling lawns and gardens with a swimming pool each (9m and 12m respectively) and a couple of balé bengong - literally ‘daydreaming’ pavilions that stand guard beside a glorious pink-blossomed lotus pond and the pool.
Perfect for family holidays or groups of friends, Bungadesa villas are also an ideal setting for a wedding celebration. The villas are fully staffed by a team of ladies who’ve been running the household for many years and know their way around guest expectations like they wrote the book. They never fail to surprise and impress come meal times, when food is served from an imaginative and extensive suggestion menu (groceries at cost plus 30% service charge ).
Bungadesa is situated in a little beachside pocket on the outskirts of Canggu. Within 50m of the villa an exciting rope suspension bridge leads over the lagoon to the beach. A 100m walk up the beach to the north brings you to the LV8 Hotel with its beachclub and restaurant, and 400m along the beach to the south brings you to the flash and fancy W Retreat. This sweeping beach is popular with surfers but the currents are strong so you should only swim in the lifeguard patrolled areas, such as Batubelig (200m).
Canggu has become the collective name for a number of villages (including Berawa, Tegal Gundul, Tiyingtukul, Pererenan, Nelayan and Babakan), which, until very recently, could still be described as a sleepy coastal locale. It's now one of Bali's coolest districts.
Here, amongst the rice fields which extend all the way down to the beach, you will not only find some of the most luxurious private residences on the island, but also a great selection of eclectic restaurants, cafes, bakeries, boutiques and beach bars – especially along Jalan Batu Bolong, which runs right down to the beach. Popular spots include Finns Beach Club, Old Mans, La Laguna, The Lawn and Ji @ Bale Sutra.
Canggu is also an area that most surfers will know about, with reef swells that are larger than those you will find further south in Kuta and Seminyak. Swimming isn’t advisable however as the rips can be dangerous, but there are plenty of other things to do from horseback riding to cooking classes. Finns Recreation Club (for which many holiday villas in the area include guest membership) offers social and leisure amenities, including Splash waterpark, Bounce trampoline centre, Strike bowling, a state-of-the art gym, a 25m swimming pool and a tennis and squash centre.
Along the coast to the north of Canggu is Pura Tanah Lot; a sea temple perched high on a craggy wave-lashed rock and probably the most photographed sight in Bali. Sophisticated Seminyak, a few kilometres south of Canggu, lays claim to the highest concentration of independent fine-dining restaurants on the island, including Sarong, La Lucciola and Ku Dé Ta, together with a wide choice of chic cocktail bars, exciting nightclubs, lavish spas and elegant boutiques.
Bali is Indonesia’s most popular tourist location and is considered one of Asia's premier tropical island destinations. Steeped in history and renowned for its artistic way of life, Bali is a peaceful contrast to some of the more frantic destinations Asia has to offer.
The inner peace and creative talents of the Balinese has attracted artists the world over fascinated by local dancers, silversmiths, wood carvers, potters and painters that seem to pervade throughout the island. The abundant verdant fields and surrounding sea have long supplied Bali with an easy surplus of food leaving time for life’s more artistic past times. As a result everything in Bali has a creative and religious element centred around the local Banjar (residents association) – little, adorned temples are everywhere, doors are covered in intricate carvings, huge kites ward off evil spirits and colourful roadside ceremonies bring traffic to a standstill.
Bali is a popular destination principally from Australia and Asia but also from all over Europe. The island welcomes thousands of visitors each year to a relaxing lifestyle, stunning beaches, world class surf, vibrant villages, and spectacular scenery all with an exquisite tropical climate. Located approximately two hours’ flying time from Singapore the island is serviced by an international airport at Denpasar with direct flights to and from many major cities in Asia, Europe and Australia and many more via Jakarta, Indonesia’s capital.
The island offers an impressive range of leisure and lifestyle amenities including world-class golf courses, wonderful seascapes for surfing, diving and snorkelling as well as luxurious spas, chic boutiques, tropical forests, towering volcanoes and international cuisine.
Our review Overall Rating: 8.20
This little enclave across the river from Batubelig beach is as peaceful and quiet as the day is long. All we could hear at night was the sound of the rolling surf through the open windows. And the early morning view - from the bed in the master suite - over the pink-capped waves of the Indian Ocean was inspiration… at its very best!
The gardens at Bungadesa are huge and filled with soft lawns, flowering tropical plants, fruit trees (you’ve got to taste the homegrown passion fruit) and a wonderful mix of Indonesian architecture and indigenous statues. This place catches the sun and the cooling sea breezes in equal parts making for perfect sunbathing conditions beside either of the two pools.
Make sure you take the time to nip down the local lagoon-side restaurant on your way back from the beach. It’s charming and rustic and, as well as a great menu of holiday favourites, can rustle up a half-decent pizza in a flash... and the beer is always icy cold. The villa staff were great - funny, sassy, chatty when needed and gone like the wind when we wanted to be alone. A sweet touch was a gift for the ladies, while Nana’s home-cooking proved to be superb, especially her seafood curry.
Rachel L, Indonesia Overall Rating: 1.60
Sleeping Capacity: 15
Bungadesa Villas comprises two adjoining properties featuring the Java House, Toraja House, Timor House, Irian Jaya House, Bali House, Lombok House and the Sumba House. The main living/dining area (which is in the Java House) is open on two sides and furnished with a table for 14 and an L-shaped, cushioned sofa oriented around a 42-inch satellite-channel TV/DVD player. A large, well-equipped kitchen is housed in the same building.
Each bedroom or family suite is equipped with a TV/DVD player, air-conditioning, a terrace or balcony, and a rustic bathroom (four are open-air) with a standing shower (two with bathtubs).
In the two-storey Timor House, the downstairs bedroom is furnished with a king-size bed, while the upper floor, which is blessed with sea views, comprises a family suite with a twin/king bedroom, a small double bedroom (suitable for one or two children) and shared bathroom.
The single-storey Irian Jaya roundhouse is entered via a raised covered terrace and the bedroom is furnished with a romantic four-poster double bed, dressing table and a comfortable daybed.
Upstairs in the two-storey Toraja House is another family suite, with glorious sea views, one bedroom is furnished with a queen-sized Timorese bed, a desk and a daybed. Adjoining this room is a small extra bedroom overlooking the ocean and suitable only for a small child. The downstairs master suite has a king-size bed and a sitting area.
The Bali House is an octagonal pavilion with a thatched roof supported by stone and timber pillars. Here, a second fan-cooled living and dining room is open to the garden and furnished with a circular table for eight, a collection of chairs and a swing seat for two. The integrated terrazzo kitchen is small but well equipped. The air-conditioned ground-floor bedroom is furnished with a king bed and a daybed.
The Lombok House is a traditional lumbung (rice barn) with a bonnet-shaped roof. Perfect for kids, the house is accessed by an external wooden staircase leading to a loft-style air-conditioned bedroom furnished with twin bamboo beds (which can be joined to make a king bed). Downstairs is a small rustic bathroom with a standing shower.
At the far end of the garden is the single-storey Sumba House comprising a bedroom, with king bed and a daybed that converts to a child’s bed. On one side is an ensuite bathroom and on the other is a living room that can be used as an additional bedroom, furnished with two sofas that convert to twin beds or a double bed suitable for one or two children.
The gorgeous 3500sqm gardens feature fruit trees, palms and velvety lawns that ramble between the pavilions, and the bale relaxation pavilions, two swimming pools and a spectacular lotus pond.