The Weekend Australian - Travel - - Travel & Indulgence -

THE serene Four Sea­sons Re­sort Bali at Sayan, just out­side Ubud, has re­fur­bished its 42 one and two-bed­room vil­las in ‘‘more au­then­ti­cally Ba­li­nese style’’. Con­ceived by Koichi Ya­suhiro from Tokyo’s De­sign Stu­dio Spin, the re­freshed look in­cludes rus­tic ma­te­ri­als and ikat fab­rics and a daybed for re­lax­ing by the pri­vate plunge pool. Green mar­ble bath­rooms fea­ture a free­stand­ing tub be­side the win­dows, plus in­door and out­door show­ers, and a wood-pan­elled walk-in wardrobe and dress­ing area. The prop­erty, which opened in 1998, is also up­grad­ing 18 suites in its main build­ing. Dur­ing my re­cent stay, one of the high­lights was a Rice­field Lunch in a thatched bale (pavil­ion) over­look­ing ter­raced fields. As rice spar­rows darted among the ba­nana trees, we kicked back with gin­gery drinks and a sim­ple nasi cam­pur pic­nic spread. Also highly rec­om­mended is the spa, which of­fers ‘‘soul to sole’’ ther­a­pies such as a 120-minute Mu­lad­hara chakra-balancing ses­sion of herbal oil mas­sage and the un­likely (but thor­oughly cleans­ing) prospect of sit­ting on a pot of sa­cred ke­menyan smoke. Thus re­newed, it’s back to the villa, past stands of he­li­co­nias that hang like head-dresses and groves of guavas, pomegranates, water ap­ples and jack­fruit, for con­certed laz­ing as un­bal­anced kayak­ers in spin­ning in­flat­a­bles whoosh by on the Ayung River. More: foursea­sons.com.

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