Families

Crowd-pleasing villa rentals and wisdom for worry-free holidays with kids

An Ideal Stay in Koh Samui with Kids

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Children are fabulously celebrated and doted on by the Thai people, which makes it a seriously sensational destination for a family holiday. The stunning island of Koh Samui is trending hard among ‘in-the-know’ families. Velvet-soft, sandy beaches are perfect for sandcastle construction (and parents lazing around) while the glittering azure shallows are safe for swimming and snorkelling.
Koh Samui is just off the south-east coast of Thailand’s Surat Thani. Its a tranquil corner of an energized nation. Blessed with extraordinary natural beauty, it has a wealth of fun adventures that will be certain to create memories.

Family-friendly villas

The first concern for most families is where to stay. Hotels and resorts may pitch themselves as family friendly, but the prying eyes of other guests can be vexing. Massive resorts offer little in terms of space and privacy and certainly don’t give you access to your own private chef.
 
The support of a stellar team of professional staff in a luxury private villa caters to the broad demands of family life. Daily housekeeping discreetly happens everyday, everything is pristine and random glasses are whisked away. Meals are a stunning affair with a private chef creating beautiful dishes – from exotic delicacies, western favourites, barbeques, kids’ choices and even special meals. Add to this an easily secured in-villa nanny and the load of parenting is lightened even further. 
 
Imagine a private swimming pool with floating toys; imagine board games and table tennis and pool tables. Staff are quick to help with the kids, so you can enjoy the bliss away from other guests who may not love junior’s joyful squeals and noisy pool games. Secure walls deliver safe spaces for little ones to wander and explore under the watchful eyes of a nanny. Many villas are also big enough to house a few families turning a gorgeous estate into a sensational tribal ground with friends and cousins roaming in packs. 
 
A stream of homemade snacks will be prepared by the cooks and guests also have open access to the
kitchen which is worth its weight in gold for families with toddlers and babies – and jetlag. 

Enjoy Koh Samui with Family

Villa managers are a mine of local intelligence and know where to find the fun far and beyond snorkeling and kayaking in the crystal-clear waters and mysterious coves of the Ang Thong Marine National Park.

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5 Places to Take Your Kids in Bali

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There are few islands like Bali, which has a wealth of activities for families with kids of all ages. Perfect for a family vacation where no one feels left out, Bali is full of places to enjoy with your children. Here’s our concierge-curated list of the top 5 activities to do with kids in Bali.

BALI TREETOP ADVENTURE PARK

Fun for the entire family, Bali Treetop Adventure Park guarantees a great day out. Set within the stunning grounds of the Bedugul Botanical Gardens, this adventure park is literally suspended amongst the trees. Multiple circuit levels are available to accommodate varying fitness levels and ages. Be rest assured, safety is of utmost importance here, with all equipment and guides compliant with European standards.

FINNS RECREATION CLUB

With a giant waterpark featuring hydro slides, tenpin bowling alleys, Cubby House Kids Club and Bounce Trampoline Park, Finns has you and the kids covered. Day passes include access to the popular Finns Beach Club and a buggy service running between both locations. A visit here is a must during your island vacay.

DEVDAN CULTURAL SHOW

Head to Bali Nusa Dua Theatre for the Devdan show, a visual feast that takes the audience on a journey through historical Indonesia. Be entranced by mesmerising performances including acrobatics, dances and pyrotechnics, wrapping up into one truly spectacular show.

BALI PRAIA

Mix like a pro! Where better to learn the art of mixing tracks than the home of legendary beach clubs and endless lineups of international DJs? Bali Praia runs a fantastic DJ program designed especially for kids, so if your young ones like to feel the groove and love good tunes, this is for them.

AMPLITUDE SKATE AND BIKE PARK

This monster park will keep the kids entertained for hours and burn masses of energy at the same time – a parent’s dream come true. Learn from the pros, either in a private or group lesson, or practice those tricks and join the action on the pump track and bowl. Amplitude Skate and Bike Park has a racing pump track as well as a street skatepark and a bowl for bikes and skateboards. The onsite restaurant is a perfect spot for adults to chill out while the kids have a whale of a time.

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Island Adventures and Family Fun in Phuket and Koh Samui

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Planning a family vacation to Phuket or Koh Samui and accommodating the needs of an entire family is no easy feat. The mind boggles with such a wide range of both indoor and outdoor activities available. What are the most reputable and safe options, and which activity could satisfy everyone equally – from the oldest to the youngest? Staying at an elite haven makes the decision-making process simple.  Not only will you receive the attentive care and local tips from your dedicated Villa Manager, but you also have the assurance of the Elite Havens’ Concierge to assist with all your booking requirements and to personally manage your experience. So, you can sit back, relax and simply enjoy your holiday.

Phuket

The Phuket Aquarium, on the island’s southernmost tip at Cape Panwa, is a great place to discover Phuket’s underwater world and learn about local marine conservation at the same time. The aquarium is especially suitable for younger kids who will delight at the sight of sea turtles, manta rays and, of course, those cute clownfish of Finding Nemo fame. Top Tip: Walk along the nature trail at the exit of the aquarium and you’ll find a sanctuary for injured turtles.

Phang Nga Bay, with its magical hidden lagoons and towering limestone karsts, is a sea kayaker’s dream. Day trips from Phuket accommodate paddlers of all ages* and abilities and are a wonderful way to discover this unique seascape. Alternatively, ride the waves aboard a traditional long-tail fishing boat, or charter a luxury sail or motor yacht for the day.

*If your kids are very young, we recommend checking with the tour organiser before you book, as full day trips may not be suitable.

Bikes, Boats and Beaches. If you fancy something a little more energetic, we highly recommend a day out with Andaman Nature Tours (Feel Phuket). This three-in-one tour starts with a boat trip over to one of Phuket sister islands Koh Yao Noi. From here, saddle up for a bike ride. The terrain is relatively easy-going and the scenery is stunning. You’ll ride through paddy fields and meet local farmers who are the real organic hipsters, then up into the rubber plantations. For your lunch stop, hop aboard a traditional fishing boat and cruise to a secluded palm-fringed white sandy beach,

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The Ultimate Bali Summer Events Guide You’ll Need

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No matter what time of year, expect a holiday in Bali to be bustling with activity. But in the months of July and August, when the days are sunniest and the weather is driest, the island turns into a veritable party island. A wealth of activities are on-hand. Whether you’re travelling with friends, family, or your significant other, expect to be flooded with choice. Festivals, concerts, events and conventions are aplenty. These are the months Bali is most alive.

In September, as things die down, there is still a plethora of activities – what with less traffic and cheaper airfare. Everyday is a discovery, but with less people populating the streets.

Whichever month you choose to come to Bali, an elite haven will always be waiting for you. Grab your suitcase and head to the Island of the Gods!

JULY
Surfing Contests

The sponsors and activities change every year but you’ll find top international surf contests being held throughout the summer. It’s not just peak tourist season but also peak wave season! Surf to your heart’s content!

When: July and August

Where: Padang Padang Beach, West Sumatra

Gypsy Land

Equivalent to Burning Man – but in Bali – Gyspy Land is an art-filled techno festival in Seminyak. Three hectares of land are flooded with revelers dressed in outrageous gear and costumes that will make your eyes pop. There are two themes to explore: Alice in Wonderland and Mad Max.

When: July 13-14

Where: Seminyak

Bali Blues Festival 

Does the smooth sounds of the Blues titillate you? Then this is where you need to be. The Bali Blues Festival is back for its fifth year, featuring musicians from around the globe.

When: July 13 – 14

Where: Peninsula Island, Nusa Dua

Makepung Race, Governor’s Cup

Makepung is a tradition from the agrarian livelihood of the island and the race of water buffalo is a wonderful spectacle. The racing course is about 2 kilometres and the farmers come to race for honour.

When: July 14

Where: Jembrana, West Bali

Tulamben Festival

This event highlights exhibitions and a fantastic art and culture parade.

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Inspiring Art-Filled Villas in Bali

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One of the best things about private villas in Bali is that none of them are the same. Forget uniform lobbies, drab bedding and boring white walls. Think fascinating artefacts, colourful furnishings, amazing art and unique design from around the world, all representing the heritage and lifestyle of their owners. To give you an idea of the delights on offer, we’ve scoured Bali for ‘art-full’ villas that will win over the heart of even the most sophisticated art connoisseur.

Villa Asada, Candidasa

Villa Asada is a contemporary expression of Balinese style, filled with antiques and comfortable furnishings. In every corner is a spot of simple elegance and luxury, lovingly strewn with Oriental decor.  Buddha and other characters in Asian history take centre stage. Little pockets of space prove that in decorating, as in life, less is truly more. 

Villa Canggu, Canggu

Indonesian contemporary artists turn Villa Canggu into a living exhibition that could easily compete with many art galleries around the world. Eddy Susanto’s visual interpretation on the heritage of the Mayan people, who scandalised the world with their 2012 Armageddon prediction, is displayed here just around the corner from Yudi Sulistyo’s interpretation of modern-day life: a hanging metal spaceship entitled “World Without Sea”. Ronald Apriyan’s series of three paintings represents how modern-day women can choose to be whatever they want to be. Grab a glass of wine and start exploring.

Kaba Kaba Estate, Tabanan

For more than 20 years, the owners of Kaba Kaba Estate have been avid art collectors, and the villa serves as a showcase for their beloved treasures, which range from fascinating antiques to contemporary works of art displayed throughout the gardens and pavilions. These include Cai Zhi Song’s Ode to Motherland #5, a striking 2013 bronze of a male figure, inspired by an ancient image of a Qin dynasty warrior, to Sohan Jakhar’s Untitled (2009), which hangs above a guest bedroom headboard, and Hannes D’Haese’s sculpture Just a Dog, a pink resin bulldog that, along with its yellow counterpart, guards the entrance to the guesthouse. 

Then there’s the surprisingly recent (three decades old) 8-foot-long Indonesian carving of paddlers in a boat, displayed above a puckish Dodit Artawan oil on canvas depicting Barbie dolls and liquor bottles; Dadi Setiyadi’s White Goat, a 2011 canvas that reimagines Caravaggio’s John the Baptist as a loincloth-clad figure festooned with swirling Dayak tattoos,

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