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Elite Havens - page 14

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Elite Havens
Each of our 250+ carefully selected luxury villas in Asia's best island destinations is a private holiday home exclusively available for direct bookings via Elite Havens. We take it personally.

Chef du Jour: Villa Pangi Gita

in Destinations/Dining by

Villa Pangi Gita sits in the heart of Canggu but might as well be nestled in the middle of the jungle. That’s what it feels like in the verdant areas filled with little houses designed to look like Balinese huts.

Each space – including the open-sided living room, the study and the bedrooms – is topped by iron-wood shingle roofs. In tandem with water features scattered throughout, you feel the traditional Bali vibe.

The food in this 3-bedroom villa complements its decor and architecture. Scrumptious with a clean flavor, it’s cooked up by Chef Gus, who’s skilled in Asian and European cuisine.

Elite Havens: Chef, please tell me your name and what you do in the villa.

Chef Gus: My name is Ida Bagus Adhi Kusuma. People call me Gus. I’ve been working in Pangi Gita since 2012. I started around 2005. 

EH: What do you cook? Did you study cooking before?

CG: Actually, I graduated from a tourism hospitality university. Diploma 1.  And then I worked in a big hotel.  

EH: What is Diploma 1?

CG: Diploma 1 is the one year program to go in University after senior year of high school. So I took a one-year program in the hospitality industry in food and beverage products. Then I worked in one of the biggest hotels in Bali. And then in the airport, in a catering company, and then some other villas. The latest is here. I’ve been here for about 9 years.

EH: What kind of cuisine do you make?

CG: I am able to cook Balinese food, Indonesian food and even European food. I can also make cakes. I used to work as a pastry chef in a hotel. We had a special request for carrot cake for one of our retreat guests and I made a special one.

EH: How would you describe what you cook?

CG: Cooking is an art. Cooking is also an hobby.  So if you have patience in cooking, you’ll able to deliver an excellent dish to your guests.

EH: What are you making us tonight? What are you cooking tonight?

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Through The Keyhole: Villa Sepoi Sepoi

in Destinations by

If you are seeking a truly unique and quintessentially tropical backdrop for a special event, be it a destination wedding, significant birthday or large family reunion, Villa Sepoi Sepoi situated on Sira Beach in Lombok is the perfect venue.  Nestled between coconut plantations and sleepy villages this villa offers size coupled with a charming warmth. 

The lush green lawns meet a private white sandy beach, providing picture perfect views of Mount Rinjani, the Gili Islands and Bali’s Mount Agung.  Active guests can access a wide range of water or lawn sports provided in the villa or play a round at the immaculately maintained golf course located a short distance away.  Day trips to Gili Islands and local land attractions are personally curated by the Villa Manager providing guests with insider knowledge and truly special holiday memories.

Villa Sepoi Sepoi reflects traditional Indonesian architecture, paying homage to local Lombok culture and design, while maintaining an air of sophistication. Designed around a central courtyard, Villa Sepoi Sepoi includes 3 garden bedrooms and an expansive living pavilion all overlooking a magnificent in-ground pool. The villa has its own orchard which grows many of the ingredients used by the Villa Chef. 

We interviewed Villa Sepoi Sepoi Villa Manager Akmal Tubagus to find out what else makes the place unique.

 
Elite Havens: Hi, Akmal. What can you tell us about Villa Sepoi Sepoi?

Akmal Tubagus: Villa Sepoi Sepoi is quite large.  With 6 bedrooms, it can accommodate from 12 -16 people. With Sira Beach House, just next door a large group of up to 28 people can be housed. It’s right on the beach and you can see the Gili Islands and also Agung mountain in Bali. That is the view of our villa. There is always a very beautiful sunset. Our difference is because we face the Gilis, we can see the sunset in front of us, not like the other villas. We have lots of gardens, coconut trees. Our villa is exclusive and far from the normal crowds.

EH: Can you tell us more about the villas in Lombok?

AT: Every villa is unique. The villa staff love to take selfies here. Also you can see comments from our guests. Their comments about Lombok are excellent. Good food,

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Through The Keyhole: The Anandita

in Destinations by
Anandita-Aerial-13

The entrance to this elegant villa cleverly fuels an overall sense of anticipation and excitement for the first-time visitor. Visual delights unfold at each step across the white stone steps traversing the Koi pond, through majestic wooden double doors into a quiet and reassuringly cool foyer dominated by an intricately carved sandstone screen. This commanding piece offers snippets of the truly spectacular garden that stretches beyond the entertainment deck, sparkling pool complete with a cosy grotto, through the expansive coconut grove, over a private beach right to the water’s edge. All you hear is the sound of water gurgling in the Koi ponds, waves gently rolling onto the beach, the wind rustling coconut palms and the occasional calls of tropical birds. Welcome to The Anandita, your new ‘happy place’.

This villa is located in Lombok, a destination that is often described as the Bali of twenty years past, before urban sprawl pervaded the serenity of rainforest, rice paddies and clear ocean views. With far less traffic on the wide-open roads tracking through verdant green landscapes, Lombok feels more open, peaceful and fresh. A feeling that is encapsulated in The Anandita.

Designed by Australian architect John Lincoln, renowned for his work on the Four Seasons resort Hotel Jimbaran, the Westin Hotel Nusa Dua, and other five star venues in Bali. The priority in this space are nature’s offerings and comforts. Anandita sits on 1.5 acres of ocean front. Its owner Francois Vandenheste built the villa as a haven from the outside world, a retreat to be one with the land and the beach.

Anandita is located in Sira, a piece of of land bordered by a beach with magnificent views of the coastline, the mountains and the neighbouring Gili Islands.

 
Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

My wife and I are entrepreneurs living in Hong Kong. My wife, of Indian origin, came to Hong Kong from Burma when she was six, while I left France and made Hong Kong my home 30 years ago. We both love Asia, and in particular Indonesia, where we spend a lot of our holidays with our three kids and friends.

Why did you build The Anandita?

The Anandita was designed as a family retreat from the hustle and bustle of Hong Kong,

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Luxury Weekends in Phuket and Koh Samui

in Destinations/Families by
  • Phuket-beach.jpg
    beach with coconut palm and sea
  • Tawantok-Beach-Villas-In-villa-breakfast.jpg
  • Waimarie-Dedicated-staff.jpg
  • Villa-Nandana-Villa-view.jpg
  • 1.-Villa-Nandana-A-tranquil-location-to-relax-2.jpg

Picture this: you’re hidden away in a breathtaking haven away from the rest of the world, sitting atop a plush cushion beside a monumental door opening onto a lush garden. A flute of champagne in hand and a gastronomic spread before you, you hear only birds and your four-year old singing a soft rhythm. Your husband is floating in the pool in this hushed oasis, on his torso an outlined shade of a large leaf fluttering with the breeze.

Settle In

Welcome to Thailand’s quintessential experience of relaxation and rest, where you can stay holed up in an enormous villa replete with sumptuous lines of coconut wood and padauk, or nara wood, a hardwood that’s sturdy and pleasing to the eye. The furniture is simple and sleek amidst the high ceilings and glass walls. The master bath contains a stone bathtub, the perfect complement to your call to respite. You’re surrounded by space, space everywhere, and there’s nothing to keep you from running through the rooms in excitement.

You came to relax and enjoy a long weekend break, but also for discovery and local culture. Nestled in an idyllic retreat between ivory sands and jungled gardens, this villa feels like the home you’ve imagined in musings of grandeur. Yet, there’s a calm, tranquil atmosphere.

Phuket
What To Do
Get Splashed

Rest is abated when you venture outside on 13th April, the first day of the Songkran Festival. Songkran, one of Thailand’s most famous festivals, is an important event on the Buddhist calendar. It is the beginning of the traditional Thai new year – and what’s known as the day of the biggest water fight. Large water guns and hoses leave you drenched because every road you pass has a splash station.

But there are many things you can do besides get wet, including asking your private villa chef to indulge your taste buds. Savor the sweet, spicy and sour all at once. The villa managers and staff cater to your every whim and even take care of your children for the day. A private yoga teacher can help you unwind and a massage therapist will slowly knead city-stress away. Home spa services are just a call away.

Sun and Games

The sand stretches for miles and miles in Phuket.

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Romantic Seminyak: Rekindle Love in Bali

in Destinations/Dining/Wellness by
The Layar Romantic Seminyak Villas

The number one place for a romantic getaway? The dream honeymoon destination? The primo anniversary escape?

It’s got to be the Bali,Indonesia. Beach lovers can’t resist the lure of this spiritual island, where tropical luxury is at its best (and lovers can’t resist each other). 

More specifically, it’s got to be Seminyak, where wining and dining is effortless and hideaways like The Layar are kitted out for high-end leisure.

The Layar Private Pool Villa in Seminyak

Feel The Romance

First, get comfortable with cool spacious interiors, zillion thread count sheets and an open living area. Next, a private swimming pool and manicured tropical garden await nearby. A dramatic slanted ceiling overhead also makes your very private villa a personal theatre. Finally, display your affection. O Romeo! 

The Layar Seminyak One Bedroom Villa

If Shakespeare’s famed duo had dashed off to Bali, theirs would be a very different play with all the passion and none of the tragedy because this place is a romantic’s Heaven on Earth. Thus, thanks to the natural beauty and wealth of things to do, it’s the couple’s getaway of a lifetime. So forget R+J and take your cues for romance from this script instead.

The Layar Romantic Seminyak Villas

Act I. Scene I. Luxury one-bedroom villa. A warm welcome note and chilled champagne on the table.

To borrow a page from The Art of Seduction by Robert Greene, surprise is an easy road to romance. Being in a new place for the first time also serves up a bit of wonder, but a love of travel doesn’t necessarily bring people together. It’s the thoughtful surprises (and bold moves, says Greene) planned by one person for the other that bring back flutters of new love.

A simple request when booking is all it takes. Hence, set the scene for arrival however you’d like. Arrange special occasions and activities in advance. Also, leave the legwork to your hosts while you go barefoot. Enjoy your holiday worry free.

Seek Adventures in Sync

Act II. Scene II. The beach. Golden sand surrounds. Palm trees sway in the pleasant sea breeze.

Roses, chocolates and sweet surprises are strong symbols in the book of love. But the best romances have more to the plot. Love psychologist Barbara Frederickson agrees that feelings of awe and excitement make love blossom. 

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