Tak­ing the high mark

A former AFL foot­baller has cre­ated two top-end es­capes away from Bali’s over­com­mer­cialised tourist spots, writes Fiona Hud­son

Sunday Mail - Travel/Escape - - FRONT PAGE -

FOOT­BALLER. Bali. Tran­quil­lity. Now there’s an un­ex­pected com­bi­na­tion of words.

But EX-AFL player Tony Smith has helped cre­ate two serene new es­capes that couldn’t be fur­ther re­moved from the boozed-up brawls and Bin­tang sin­glets of Kuta.

The two up-mar­ket prop­er­ties – one a re­mote villa re­sort carved into the lime­stone cliffs of the hol­i­day is­land’s south­ern­most tip, the other a plush ho­tel com­plex in posh Seminyak – are very dif­fer­ent.

But the end re­sults are the same: pure, un­com­pli­cated re­lax­ation.

We start at Se­mara Uluwatu, a col­lec­tion of five-bed­room vil­las on the edge of the Bukit Penin­sula, about a half-hour drive from the air­port. The idea, if you’re trav­el­ling with friends or fam­ily, is to hire an en­tire villa as your own mini-re­sort, com­plete with but­ler, chef and driver. Cou­ples or solo trav­ellers can rent sin­gle suites.

Each of the seven vil­las has its own style and strengths.

Chic Ta­ma­rama, for ex­am­ple, is of­ten cho­sen for wed­dings or 40th birth­day par­ties.

Am­bar, with its in­ter­con­nect­ing bed­rooms and pool fence, is bet­ter for chilled fam­ily get­aways.

Trav­el­ling solo, I snare per­haps the best bed of all – a deluxe Ba­li­ne­ses­tyled suite in Villa Chin­ta­mani, com­plete with pri­vate cliff-top plunge pool and views over the In­dian Ocean.

Hours, then days, drift by as I do lit­tle but eat, sleep, read and watch the ac­tiv­ity be­low from the pool or the daybed. Seaweed farm­ers tend their crop; chil­dren hunt in rock pools; a fleet of rick­ety fish­ing craft slides by. All the while, ea­ger-to-please staff bring

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.