An awe-inspiring Balinese haven

Ayana Bali is where exquisite nature meets intoxicatingly stellar indulgences. With some 4,300 options to choose from, when it comes to choosing the best hotel in Bali, the bar is set high.

Misbaah Mansuri

Here is an island that is blessed with postcard scenes around every bend, even the most basic Bali villas and bungalows offer dreamy views and innovative designs from bamboo and volcanic rock. What do you give an island that has everything? I found the answer to this question during my stay at Ayana Villas in Bali.

An opulent check-in

Upon arrival, the AYANA Estate revealed itself as a constellation of luxury, comprising AYANA Resort Bali, AYANA Segara Bali, AYANA Villas Bali, and RIMBA by AYANA Bali. This sprawling estate boasts an impressive array of amenities, including 14 swimming pools and 26 dining venues, each offering a unique ambiance and exquisite culinary delights. Stepping foot on AYANA Villas BALI, nestled within the expansive 222-acre AYANA Resort in Bali’s Jimbaran Bay, was an experience that epitomised luxury and serenity. From the moment I arrived, the resort’s commitment to creating an unforgettable stay was evident. The villas, part of a resort-within-a-resort concept, offer a unique blend of privacy and opulence, each perfectly secluded within the property’s lush, cliff top gardens.

The villa I stayed in was a haven of luxury, with every detail thoughtfully designed for comfort and relaxation. The sprawling bedroom and bathroom were both elegantly furnished, and the separate living room provided a spacious retreat. However, it was the private plunge pool and the outdoor bale, nestled among the tropical garden that truly captured the essence of a secluded paradise, every detail making me squeal. The bathtub, offering direct views of the ocean, allowed for moments of serene contemplation as I soaked in the beauty of Bali’s coastline. The exquisite bedrooms and bathrooms have intricate stone carvings on the walls, below the his-and-her sinks, and along the large soaking tub. This décor, along with the alang-alang thatched roof, the private plunge pool and the outdoor cabana, creates an environment that is perfect for hiding away.

AYANA’s signature personalised service was apparent in every interaction. The staff’s attention to detail was impeccable, from the flower-studded bath prepared upon my arrival to the seamless prioritization at the resort’s iconic Rock Bar. It was these special touches that made my stay at AYANA Villas BALI not just a vacation, but a series of unforgettable moments of luxury and personalised care.

Beyond the villa itself, the resort offered an array of amenities and experiences, each designed to showcase the best of Balinese hospitality and culture. Yet, it was the tranquil atmosphere, the stunning natural surroundings, and the unparalleled service that made my stay at AYANA Villas BALI a truly exceptional experience.

A cornucopia of experiences

On day one, my adventure began with a tour of the estate that unveiled the magic of AYANA’s diverse offerings, culminating in a mesmerising evening at Rock Bar. Sipping cocktails as the sun dipped below the horizon, we were treated to a world-class dining experience, where the ambiance, service, and culinary mastery were in perfect harmony.

The next morning unfolded with a serene breakfast at DAVA, setting a tranquil tone for a day dedicated to unwinding and refreshing the soul. The River Pool then beckoned, offering a secluded retreat where the water’s embrace promised escape and serenity. Lunch at Sami Sami was an affair to remember, blending authentic Italian flavours with breath-taking views of the ocean, a feast not just for the palate but for the eyes as well.

The afternoon was dedicated to the AYANA Spa’s Thalassotherapy treatment, an immersive experience in the world’s largest aquatonic pool and all my stresses had melted away with the water. The day concluded with a romantic sunset picnic at Kubu Beach, a moment where time stood still, and the beauty of Bali was all-encompassing. There, amidst the whispers of the ocean and the vibrant hues painting the sky, time paused. Bali’s mesmerising beauty unfolded around us in a moment so pure and captivating, it felt like the world had been created anew.

Indulgences galore

Day three began with an indulgent breakfast at DAVA, setting a luxurious tone. The morning’s highlight was a couple’s Balinese Massage at Spa on the Rocks, an extraordinary experience with the soundtrack of the Indian Ocean’s waves.

It was a ceremonial journey beginning with a Balinese ritual that gently ushered us into a state of serene anticipation. The treatment unfolded as a rich, skin-refining body mask enveloped us, its luxurious texture promising renewal. Wrapped in a cocoon of warmth, the outside world faded away as gentle acupressure on the face and head invited a deeper state of relaxation. After a refreshing shower, the scent of frangipani filled the air as the body oil, massaged into our skin, eased every tension, leaving behind a trail of nourishment and softness. The finale, a focused foot reflexology, aimed at revitalising internal health, left us feeling balanced and rejuvenated.

The Spa on the Rocks is perched dramatically atop a rugged cliff, encircled by the ocean’s endless blues. This unique location, housing two spectacular spa villas, offers exclusivity not just in setting but in its specially curated menu, designed to harmonise with the breath-taking surroundings.

Lunch at Damar Terrace immersed us in a world of Asian flavours, served in an environment that captivated the senses. The afternoon brought a whimsical twist with a floating high tea in our private villa pool, marrying the relaxation of a pool day with the refined tradition of afternoon tea. The day reached its zenith with a romantic dinner at Asmara Gazebo, an intimate affair that transported us into a dreamlike state, accompanied by a five-course meal that is sure to be etched in our memory like nothing else can.

The final touch

The Asmara Gazebo experience was nothing short of magical—a private dinner that truly embodied the essence of romance. Seated beneath a beautifully crafted gazebo, with delicate curtains billowing in the gentle sea breeze, the setting was straight out of a dream. The intimate setting with floral decorations that spelled out ‘I Love You,’ symbolised the meticulous care put into personalising the experience.

Soft candlelight flickered, casting a warm glow over the table, enhancing the natural twilight ambiance. Every course of the five-course meal was a culinary masterpiece, an orchestra of flavors that tantalised the senses, each dish outdoing the last. The seclusion provided by the gazebo offered a private slice of paradise, where the only sounds were the whispers of the ocean and the quiet intimacy shared between two people. Here, in this intimate dining enclave, the world seemed to stand still, allowing for a moment of pure connection against the backdrop of Bali’s enchanting night sky. This was the magic created by the stellar staff and fabulousness that is Ayana Bali.

Interview with Giordano Faggioli, General Manager of AYANA Resort Bali

How has 2024 been for Ayana Bali?

We have experienced an exceptional beginning to 2024 at our resort. More arrivals and additional flights from several destinations have started to fly to Bali again and in late January, we warmly embraced numerous Chinese guests as they celebrated the Chinese New Year with us. Then, in March, we joyously observed Nyepi, the Balinese Day of Silence, marking the New Year according to the Balinese Saka Calendar.

This year, Nyepi held a special significance for AYANA Resort, following the soft launch of the SAKA Museum in 2023. The museum stands as our latest cultural destination, dedicated to the celebration of Nyepi. It features exhibits showcasing Ogoh-ogoh, giant effigies paraded on the eve of Nyepi, known as Pengrupukan day.

As a GM, what will your approach, strategy and leadership style be like for the property?

Our focus remains the guests experiences, Bali as a destination offers many opportunities, of beaches, mountains and culture among the top, we are very committed to make the guests experience the best it has ever been, we have enhanced our cultural experience with Saka museum, AYANA farm provides one additional options to live among the nature of Bali and the produce available on the island.

Continuous innovation, caring guests experience, accompanied by spirited service will be again key as part of our strategy for this year.

Bali is inundated with properties, what gives the property an edge over the rest?

As the largest integrated resort in Bali, AYANA stands as a beacon of luxury, innovation, and unparalleled hospitality. Nestled amidst the lush landscapes of Bali, our expansive resort boasts four exquisite hotels, each offering a distinct ambiance and world-class amenities to cater to every traveller’s preferences and desires.

With 28 dining destinations to choose from, AYANA presents a culinary journey like no other. From the iconic Rock Bar, perched atop towering cliffs with panoramic ocean views, to the newest additions of Japanese gastronomy at Honzen and Sumizen, guests are invited to indulge their palates in an array of flavours, textures, and experiences. Whether craving traditional Balinese cuisine, fresh seafood by the beach, or expertly crafted cocktails at sunset, AYANA’s dining venues promise to delight even the most discerning of tastes.

Beyond gastronomic delights, AYANA offers a sanctuary of relaxation and rejuvenation. With 14 sprawling swimming pools scattered throughout the resort, guests can bask in the tropical sunshine or find moments of serenity amidst lush gardens and cascading waterfalls. Our secluded beach provides a tranquil escape, where pristine sands meet the azure waters of the Indian Ocean, offering the perfect setting for sun-soaked days and romantic evenings under the stars.

For those seeking ultimate pampering, the award-winning AYANA Spa beckons with a luxurious array of holistic treatments inspired by ancient Balinese traditions. Set amidst verdant gardens and tranquil ponds, the spa provides a haven of wellness and tranquillity, where expert therapists guide guests on a journey of self-discovery and renewal.

At AYANA, our commitment to excellence extends beyond mere accommodation – it embodies an ethos of hospitality that seeks to surpass expectations at every turn. Whether embarking on a romantic getaway, a family vacation, or a corporate retreat, guests are invited to immerse themselves in the unparalleled beauty and luxury of Bali’s premier integrated resort, where every moment is crafted to create memories that last a lifetime.

If you were a guest at the property, what would your 24 hour itinerary look like?

I will start my morning with a hearty breakfast at one of the four breakfast restaurants located within the resort. My top choice is Karang at the new AYANA Segara Bali. In addition to the buffet spread, Karang also offers several dishes with ingredients from our own AYANA Farm, ensuring the freshest and healthiest meal to start the day. Next, I will visit the Kubu Beach Club for a coconut by the pristine beach, followed by lunch at the Trattoria-style Italian restaurant Sami Sami. For relaxation, I plan to enjoy a signature spa treatment, either the Balinese massage or our Thalassotherapy overlooking the ocean. After this rejuvenating spa experience, I will begin my evening at the iconic Rock Bar, enjoying the sunset with arak-based cocktails in hand, followed by dinner.

What are your big plans and focus areas for the year ahead?

A: Our key focus is always to make our guests feel at home when they stay with us, fostering a sense of belonging and anticipation for their next visit. This commitment is reflected in our continuous efforts to deliver the best experience through exceptional service, personalised attention, and attention to every detail. From the warm welcome upon arrival to the thoughtful amenities in their rooms, we strive to exceed expectations and create lasting memories for every guest. Our dedication to excellence ensures that each stay with us is not just a visit, but an unforgettable experience that they’ll cherish and eagerly anticipate returning to.

In addition to that, AYANA is evolving into more than just an integrated resort; it’s becoming a premier destination in Bali. We are embarking on several major plans in 2024 and beyond, which encompass the development of new dining destinations and a night club. Stay tuned as we unveil these exciting developments, promising unforgettable experiences and elevating AYANA to new heights as a sought-after destination.


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