BALI is riddled with small resorts striving to foster an intimate, community-based environment, but few have accomplished this as successfully as Desa Seni. The owners’ fascination with Indonesian art and culture is contagious, and the all-inclusive yoga and wellness packages on offer are enough to justify an entire holiday in Bali for the right kind of guest.
Antiques, Indonesian artifacts and folk art populate the grounds. Guests can sign up on an ad-hoc basis that centers on luxury accommodation in a fully refurbished antique house. But the most attractive offerings are packaged into three- to seven-night stays, which include yoga sessions, massage therapy and select meals at the acclaimed Desa Seni restaurant.
Desa Seni is located on the southwest coast of Bali in a little village known as Canggu. The beach here is great for surfing, though swimmers are better served by the saltwater lap pool on resort grounds. Horseback riding is also particularly popular in Canggu. Guests who desire more than the peace and tranquility of a village like Canggu, Seminyak is only a ten-minute drive away.
What makes it special?
Desa Seni has cornered a few specialty hotel niches in Bali, all of which center on wellness and community building. To begin with, this is a village-style resort with antique furnishings and folk art on display. The hotel organizes fundraising events for a local orphanage, stages yoga classes for the community and actively works to reduce litter through its Keep Bali Clean initiative. Much of the food served at the resort is grown organically on an on-site farm, and guests can enroll in wellness courses and yoga classes while staying here.
What to expect?
Desa Seni means “artists’ village”, and guests and this theme runs throughout the resort experience. Ten refurbished antique houses are scattered across the property. These houses have been imported from all over Indonesia, and each is unique. While time on the beach is central to any holiday in Bali, many of Desa Seni’s guests have a hard time pulling themselves away from the resort grounds. And there’s plenty to do here between the regular schedule of art and culture events, saltwater lap pool and the daily yoga classes, there’s plenty to do.
You’ll hear guests raving about the food here, and Desa Seni restaurant draws plenty of non-guest diners as well. East-West fusion dishes dominate the menu, and the bulk of the fresh produced used in the kitchen is grown in the resort’s organic vegetable patch.
What is there to do?
As already mentioned, on-site activities and wellness programs abound at Desa Seni. Merapu Svaasthya wellness center combines Eastern- and Western-style treatments. The various packages blend acupuncture, auriculotherapy and other holistic treatments depending on your length of stay. Standard packages can be booked for five, seven or eleven days.
Guests can also craft their own personalized yoga package. These include daily sessions with a private instructor and follow-up time with a wellness therapist. Five- and seven-day yoga packages include accommodation, breakfast, private yoga and meditation sessions, spa treatments and massage.
The staff can also help arrange outings across Bali. Golfing, temple visiting and horseback riding are all popular activities. The beach is only a short walk away.
What’s the damage?
Accommodation at Desa Seni begins with the village cabin, goes for US$125 per night. Rates go up progressively from here, to US$385 for the two-bedroom village home, which can house up to four people. Value for money is excellent here, especially considering the rave reviews that Desa Seni receives from former guests, guidebooks and hospitality ratings agencies.
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