Bali is known as the Island of the Gods, but it’s also an island of multitudes. Driving north from Seminyak to Tabanan almost feels like taking a step back in time – or a step out of time. As our car inches along the coastline, trendy boutiques and hip beach clubs give way to rice fields, seaside temples and local village life. To put it shortly, Tabanan is what people mean when they talk about experiencing the “real” Bali.
Arriving at Villa Vedas
Nestled by rice fields and directly facing the Indian Ocean sits Villa Vedas. On a sunny Friday afternoon, our car glides into the parking lot which is landscaped to such a degree that it actually rivals most gardens. From here, stepping stones built over koi fish ponds usher us into Villa Vedas.
From the moment you arrive, Villa Vedas feels very special. The foyer is built around a stunning floating staircase and the walls are lined with local art. The staircase with its brass railings is one of the most unique design features we have ever seen in any Bali villa. This is not just a means to connect the villa’s two floors – this is a work of art in and of itself.
All in all, Villa Vedas offers a very unique package. Part of the appeal are of course the surrounding rice paddies and the inescapable feeling of tranquillity. Some might flock here just for the stunning beachfront location alone. Then there is the luxurious and artful design combined with high tech solutions: throughout Villa Vedas, guests can control lighting, music and air-conditioning through their own smartphones.
3 Pools by The Indian Ocean
One of the easiest ways to check if you’re staying in a luxury villa is to count the swimming pools. Villa Vedas has a whopping three swimming pools, including a main pool which stretches towards the beach and measures at 40-metres long. A pool this long feels decadent at any time of day, but for me the most magical moment came after sunset: floating on my back, with the starlit sky above fringed by palm trees swaying softly in the ocean breeze.
And what about the other two pools you ask? Pool number two sits perpendicular to the main pool. This pool is 20 metres long and would be considered massive in any other villa but at Villa Vedas, it has to settle for second billing. The third pool is another showstopper. The “Sky Pool” is a glass-bottomed number located on the upper floor, sandwiched between two bedrooms.
Celebrating at Villa Vedas
Besides the incense from daily offerings and gamelan chimes from a thousand temples, love is in the air in Bali. The island is a dream wedding destination for many a couple and a lot of them choose to celebrate the big day in a private villa.
From the get go, it’s clear that Villa Vedas was made for weddings and true enough, the villa can host weddings and events for up to 150 guests – the villa manager even reports hosting celebrations for a whopping 200 guests.
There are many things that can elevate a villa into a wedding villa. With Villa Vedas, one undeniable perk is the sheer size of the estate. Throughout, there is an incredible sense of space about the villa, the kind you just can’t capture on film. Even the five bedrooms, which are spread over two floors and divided into two wings, are all huge in size.
For catering, Villa Vedas has both a show kitchen and a fully-equipped commercial grade kitchen in the back. Even if you’re not looking to tie the knot, Villa Vedas is a fantastic venue for entertaining. You just can’t go wrong with a villa with a pool table, media room and my favourite: an art deco styled bar by the pool.
Dining at Villa Vedas
As Villa Vedas is set on a secluded beach away from Bali’s more touristic hubs, dining in at the villa is a must. In other words, Villa Vedas is a real destination villa, a microcosm onto itself and comes staffed with a wonderful private chef. We toast the sunset by the pool and finish the day off with a feast of Indonesian cuisine gathered around a round dining table, family style.
The food at Villa Vedas is delicious and comes served on relaxed Bali time. Luckily, holidays are the time when time is measured in hours, not minutes as is too often the case in our hectic day to day.
Thanks to the property’s huge size, Villa Vedas offers several venues for dining. We had our dinner in the air-conditioned dining room and our breakfast out in the poolside bale, with the sound of the waves as the backdrop and a brand-new morning dawning over Bali.
Villa Vedas is set right on secluded Batu Tampih Beach. Here, there are no hawkers and no crowds to disrupt your day on the beach. The beach is covered in black volcanic sand that feels like velvet between your toes – you can actually spot the slumbering Batu Karu volcano in the distance.
On Saturday morning, we rise with the sun and head for a leisurely walk down the beach, watching the intricate shapes crabs and the waves have created in the sand. Once it’s time to head back down south (and back to reality), you can’t help but feel rejuvenated – and more than a little tempted to return to Villa Vedas before too long.