The second property in the Bulgari Hotels collection is an Italianate icon perched on the cliffs of Uluwatu, a region at the southern tip of the Bukit peninsula whose climate and rocky coastline is reminiscent of the Mediterranean. While the hotel’s vibe stays true to Bulgari’s Italian roots, such Indonesian materials as hand-hewn volcanic rock, Javanese mahogany, and exclusive fabrics banded and bordered by local artisans reflect the heritage of the archipelago. The Asian-European duality is a prominent theme here: One restaurant focuses on Indonesian fare, while the other is a formal reflection of Italian culture. There are two on-site shops as well, each with its own personality. Watching over the resort at its highest point sits a traditional temple guardian—the Hindu elephant Ganesh—which attracts village worshippers every day to perform sacred rituals. And at Bulgari’s base is a private stretch of sand, accessible via funicular.
Added in 2014, five Bulgari Mansions come with either three or five bedrooms plus gardens, sundecks, gazebos, and swimming pools inspired by rice paddies. In 2015, a Bulgari-branded chapel debuts. Combined with the Bulgari Villa, it promises to fulfill wedding and honeymoon dreams.
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Once the hunting and leisure grounds of Balinese royalty, the Bukit peninsula now combines some of Bali’s most upscale villas and resorts with the island’s holiest temples and finest surf spots. Geologically and climatically, Uluwatu resembles the Mediterranean more than the wet tropical forests and mountains of inland Bali, but it still has the friendly Indonesian spirit that captures the hearts of locals and visitors alike.
Need to Know
Rooms: 59 villas, 5 mansions. From $1,100. Check-in: 2 p.m.; check-out: noon. Dining options:Sangkar serves Indonesian favorites like ayam bakar taliwang (tamarind and garlic chicken in a fiery sauce) and bebek betutu (slow-cooked Balinese duck breast served with rice) flavored with such local delicacies as mango blossom honey, Eastern Balinese sea salts, and cold-pressed coconut oil. The name means “cage” in Indonesian, which is a reference to the canopy of lamps made from rooster cages swaying over two communal tables. Candle lanterns lead the way to Il Ristorante, a more refined restaurant that crafts Italian spin-offs using Balinese produce. A 200-bottle wine list is partial to Italian labels and exclusive imports of champagne. For a more casual Italian snack and drink, guests can pull up a stool at the open-air bar, where a huge river rock found after an earthquake serves as a sculptural centerpiece. Spa and gym details:The fitness center, overlooking lush gardens, is equipped with high-tech equipment, and the infinity pool as well as cliffside Jacuzzis offer some of the best vistas of the Indian Ocean. Marked by an ornate Joglo house from Java that acts as a reception area, the Bulgari Spa features water ponds and treatment rooms overlooking the waves. Services begin with a Balinese foot ritual and conclude with tamarind juice or hibiscus tea as well as ginger and coconut cookies. There’s also a healthy spa menu. Spa therapies can be arranged by the beach or pool, at dawn or sunset.
Who's it best for: High-class honeymooners and families who want to experience Balinese culture in style. Our favorite rooms: All the villas incorporate elegant lanterns, traditional doorways, Balinese antiques and fabrics, private gardens, and refreshing plunge pools. The Ocean Cliff Villas simply have the best vantage points over the Indian Ocean. The Mansions are a cut above, including even more indigenous materials and featuring three to five bedrooms and 40- to 75-foot swimming pools lined with green sukabumi stone. Bring Bali home:The Arts and Crafts store stocks an inspiring range of ceramic furnishings, wood and stone sculptures, handwoven textiles, Balinese jewelry, and ceremonial costumes like songkets (silk brocades threaded with gold and silver), while the Bulgari Boutique sells the brand’s jewelry, watches, accessories, and fragrances along with an exclusive Bali resortwear line of silk shirts, swim suits, hats, and windbreakers.