Sofitel Bali Nusa Dua, Bali
On the eastern tip of Bali, Sofitel Bali Nusa Dua is a resort dreamland that is far removed from the frenzy of Kuta.
Lush green tropical trees dance with the wind, manicured gardens stand to attention along weaving pathways, and Sofitel Bali Nusa Dua is home to the best resort pool I've ever come across. The main pool is your standard resort affair, but the highlight is the lagoon-like passageways that link some of the ground-floor rooms with the main pool. So cool!
Greeting guests in the foyer is a two-storey, tree-shaped wooden centrepiece, inspired by the banyan tree. And intricate carvings in the foyer's ceiling and cornice depict Balinese reincarnation sequences. The link to Indonesian culture is carried thoughtfully through the grounds. For example, guest rooms feature traditional batik carvings inspired by royal Javanese patterns.
The lobby bar, simply called Le Bar, offers stunning vistas over the resort grounds and out to sea. Sunsets are beautiful here. Sunrises are even better if you can get yourself out of bed.
Club Millesime, a perk for guests staying in luxury rooms with pool access, suites and villas, is a stylish space where woods dominate the clean-lined design. It's the library that has me drooling – the bookshelves are chockers with artsy books!
Beachside, there's Beach Bar & Grill for casual bites and chic pool club Nikki Beach Bali. There are also seaside gazebos for spa treatments and So Spa … for more pampering.
This is a mammoth resort – 415 rooms and suites with everything from luxury rooms to secluded villas. My luxury room with pool access is tops! Who needs a private pool when you can waddle into the huge public pool maze from your doorstep?
The 48-square-metre room features a predominantly brown and beige palette, with pops of colour in the form of bright pillows and strategically placed magazines.
The world's best breakfast buffet (I know, big call) could well be at Kwee Zeen. If you want fresh fruit juice you handpick the fruits and a juicer makes your concoction. And the food … oh my. The first day I enjoy perfectly poached eggs on top of grainy toast with buttery mushrooms. Another day I attack the flakey, buttery almond croissants. On the third day I indulge in creamy Bircher muesli. And the following day I go for a local flavour and try char kwai teow. Oh, wait, I only stayed two nights …
Dinner at Cut Catch Cucina is an elaborate affair. Delicately seared scallops, fork-tender lamb, velvety mushroom risotto … I take to wearing flowy dresses.
You come to Sofitel Bali Nusa Dua to holiday at Sofitel Bali Nusa Dua. There's not that much around (except other resorts) within walking distance, but most guests staying here don't mind. There's a complimentary bus shuttle service that runs to the Nusa Dua shopping complex. I rent a bike from So Fit and pedal along the paved path that runs parallel to the shoreline for my "stepping out" escapade.
Sofitel Bali Nusa Dua is a tropical Balinese paradise with a nice big dollop of French flair on top.
Lot N5 Nusa Dua Tourism Complex, Nusa Dua, Indonesia. Rooms start from $315. See sofitel.com
The pool bar, my room with pool access, the main pool … you get the gist.
Umm … my jeans feel a little tight.
Tatyana Leonov was a guest of Accor Hotels (accorhotels.com).