Idyl­lic Get­away The Res­i­dence Bin­tan

A Lux­u­ri­ous Is­land Es­cape Away from Sin­ga­pore

World Travel Magazine - - Where To Stay - By Kim­berly Tan

Lux­u­ri­ously nes­tled in the south of Bin­tan, The Res­i­dence Bin­tan, just opened last Fe­bru­ary, one hour ferry ride from the Tanah Merah ferry ter­mi­nal, Sin­ga­pore and an­other hour by land trans­fer. Upon ar­rival at Bin­tan Ferry Ter­mi­nal, the ho­tel staff whisks you away to the re­sort car, of­fer­ing you min­eral wa­ter, cold, lemon­grasss­cented tow­els and cook­ies for the ride to the re­sort. Com­bined with thought­ful ser­vice, a plethora of ac­tiv­i­ties, lux­u­ri­ously ap­pointed rooms, and re­ju­ve­nat­ing spa treat­ments, the re­sort pro­vides a won­der­ful week­end get­away from the bus­tle of Sin­ga­pore.

INSTAGRAMMABLE LUX­URY

The Res­i­dence Bin­tan’s 127 villas fea­ture decorative stone walls, high ceil­ings and ex­pan­sive balconies. The re­sort has six dif­fer­ent room types, all with spa­cious bath­tubs, wire­less In­ter­net ac­cess and Ne­spresso cof­fee ma­chines. Their largest, a two-bed­room beach­front villa, can sleep six, and fea­tures its own pri­vate pool span­ning the length of the villa, great for fam­i­lies or large groups. Villa 314 of the Es­tate Villas of­fers the best panoramic views of the sea and the hori­zon—the per­fect Instagrammable spot for your daily fash­ion self­ies. Guests at the Es­tate Villas will en­joy their own but­ler and com­pli­men­tary mini­bar, which will be re­stocked once dur­ing their stay.

EN­JOY­ABLE DIVERSIONS

Aside from lounging in style at the pool—whether in-villa or at the main in­fin­ity pool —The Res­i­dence Bin­tan also of­fers guests myr­iad other ac­tiv­i­ties. These in­clude a fire­fly man­grove tour, an all-ter­rain guided ve­hi­cle ride through the jun­gle, snorkelling at Ma­pur or Kawal Ber­akit to see clown fish, sea urchin and sea tur­tles which are also be­ing bred and con­served at the re­sort. For the more ad­ven­tur­ous, spend time on an ob­sta­cle course, climb the rock wall, and take a moun­tain trek to take in stun­ning is­land views.

Im­merse your­self in a va­ri­ety of cul­tural day tours out­side the re­sort, from a trip to the Chi­nese vil­lage of Seng­gerang on the south­west­ern coast, or to Sea Gypsy Vil­lage to ex­pe­ri­ence the lo­cal at­mos­phere. Visit Pasar Ikan fish mar­ket and try Nasi Padang at Restoran Seder­hana, where you’ll be treated to plate­fuls of var­i­ous re­gional spe­cial­i­ties.

BLISS­FUL IN­DUL­GENCE AND PLAY­FUL­NESS

Af­ter a day out, rein­vig­o­rate at the Spa by ila founded by Denise Le­ices­ter, who once nursed a cer­tain UAE ruler back to health. Her treat­ments fea­ture or­ganic es­sen­tial oils, hand­made and blended in the barns at Cotswold, cho­sen for their po­tency and pu­rity and eth­i­cally sourced from lo­cal tribes around the world, many women-led. Natalie Portman and Gwyneth Pal­trow are fans of the spa brand.

The treat­ments are di­vided into four cat­e­gories, namely, Be Still, Be Happy, Be Vi­tal and Be Free, that in­cludes a range of mas­sages, body scrubs, fa­cials, and heal­ing rit­u­als. We rec­om­mend the week-long pro­gramme to go on a jour­ney through each deca­dent ex­pe­ri­ence. The Prana Vi­tal­ity mas­sage found me drift­ing off to sleep, and mas­sages rarely cast that kind of spell over me. Af­ter­wards, my skilled ther­a­pist en­cour­aged me to take even more time af­ter the mas­sage to re­lax or sleep, only leav­ing my pri­vate treat­ment room when I felt ready.

Those trav­el­ling with young ones will love the Kids’ Club, where chil­dren can pick up ba­sic Ba­hasa In­done­sian phrases, learn the lo­cal dance, make batik prints or paint bird­houses. Par­ents can join their chil­dren in tie-dy­ing or cook­ing classes.

CULI­NARY TRA­DI­TIONS WITH A TWIST

The re­sort’s sig­na­ture restau­rant Rica Rica serves up a mod­ern twist to clas­sic In­done­sian dishes, such as lob­ster gado gado and Wagyu beef ren­dang. The Din­ing Room of­fers Western and Asian dishes such as tuna niçoise salad and black pep­per king prawns served on a bed of bok choy, while their beef sa­tay was so good we ate sev­eral sticks. Fresh juices, cock­tails and light bites are avail­able at the Pool Bar, and for spe­cial oc­ca­sions, it’s pos­si­ble to get a renowned mixol­o­gist like Ju­lian Serna, Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor of Panamer­i­cana in Sen­tosa Golf Club, to cre­ate his sig­na­ture drinks like Grown Up Fanta, Cham­pagne, and Ab­sinth Co­lada. The kitchen uses fresh, lo­cally-sourced pro­duce along with or­ganic herbs and veg­eta­bles from the re­sort’s own gar­dens.

In­ti­mate, pri­vate din­ing op­tions in­clude in-villa bar­be­cue, where your per­sonal chef pre­pares a glo­ri­ous spread of per­fectly grilled meats and seafood, fea­tur­ing dishes like fish sa­tay and grilled lob­ster. Oth­er­wise, head to a se­cluded spot on the beach or in the gar­dens for a lovely can­dlelit din­ner, where your per­sonal chef and but­ler will see to your un­for­get­table evening. cenizaro.com/theres­i­dence/bin­tan

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