If sprawling crowded contemporary beachside resorts aren’t your thing in Bali, and you’re seeking something totally unique and different (without, of course, sacrificing the classy factor) then this little gem of a boutique setup perched on the Sayan Ridge in Ubud may just be what you’re looking for.
This semi secret abode of John and Cynthia Hardy is a radical departure from the norm even by Bali standards. The eleven traditionally thatched antique lodgings (originally bridal homes from Java) have been fully restored and make incredible use of the open space and natural light afforded by their stunning location.
The largest of all eleven residences is Afrika House, with over 40 square metres of pure style fitted out with interiors sourced by John and Cynthia on their numerous trips to Africa. A feeling of spaciousness and some seriously beautiful primitive art make the lounge area one of the most beautiful living areas on the island whilst the hand crafted exquisite copper bath tub opens up to take in the awe inspiring tropical jungle view.
Dining at Bambu Indah is in a class of its own, with personal chef to the Hardy’s concocting a heady mix of very fine traditional Balinese dishes prepared using only the freshest ingredients and produce from the organic gardens where fruit and vegetables are harvested daily. New addition to the Bambu Indah family, Waroeng Dapoer (kitchen) serves traditional cuisine with recipes and techniques handed down through generations of Balinese and Javanese cooks. Breakfast overlooking the gorge in the shade of the palms is one of life’s true rare treats (the home made bread and condiments alone are world class) and breakfasting anywhere else, after experiencing a Bambu Indah morning, suddenly becomes much less enjoyable.
With Ubud centre only fifteen minutes away there’s the hustle and bustle of the village’s boutiques, restaurants and bar scene to dip in and out of at will, but you are really here to unwind and detach from the modern world. With that in mind, there are daily hikes into rural Bali, which afford guests a rare opportunity to experience the traditional kampong (village) life that many visitors never see. Daily hikes start at 7am and by the time you’ve returned and breakfasted you’ll be ready for one of the property’s signature spa treatments, our favourite being the Balinese massage and scrub with a decadent body scrub, hour long massage and natural yoghurt polish to restore your body’s natural PH balance.
Bambu Indah is available for private individual and group bookings. Be sure to spend some time looking into what the Hardy family has been doing with bamboo home constructions in Ubud, especially the new residence project completed by their daughter Elora – a truly otherworldly architectural achievement. Highly recommended.