Looking for a private beach? Ondy Sweeting sought out Bali’s best.
Karma Beach is at the foot of a stunning cliff and one must be forgiven for thinking of Corfu in Greece’s Ionian Islands.
The water is dazzling green to deep blue and when the tide is out, a reef appears and creates a lagoon – all the better for water play including snorkelling, SUP boards and surf skies. On the sand is a beach volleyball court that gets a good workout a few times a day.
Karma is not only one of the most visually arresting beaches in Bali; it also has an ocean side spa. A wooden treatment room is built into the base of the cliff and the windows are thrown open to invite a soundscape of the ocean that is only metres away. It’s an extraordinary way to enjoy a high-end massage by a professional therapist. Heavenly delight does not come close to how a session feels. Float back to the beach for lunch from a menu that has a Greek twist. Think mezze platters, pizza, luscious meatballs, and haloumi cheese in a filo pastry. Karma fully enjoys its geographical gifts and wraps them exquisitely up for absolute immersion.
Insider tip: stay a few nights in the villas that crown this beautiful bluff.
La Joya Resorts at Balangan have two beautiful properties on the remote peninsular and La Joya Biu Biu has a secret beach.
The stairway leads to a private crescent shaped beach of golden sand and rocky outcrops. This is a surprising treat from a low key, ultra stylish French-owned resort with terraced pools, cosy thatched private huts, an urbane restaurant – plus a spectacular spa set into the cliff face. The stairs flanked by jungle and while monkeys are evident they don’t seem to have an assault gene. Keep an eye on the tides when planning a visit since it can get a bit wild when it comes in and during full moons. The beach itself is a stunning spot that is, as its name suggests, secret and only open to guests or visitors to La Joya. Instagrammers will drool at the rare opportunity to have a beach to themselves and to take as long as needed to pose for the perfect post.
Insider tip: Day pool passes are available for visitors. Stay for sunset sax session. This is a deep soul indulgence.
Roosterfish is the private Pandawa beach attached to the Renaissance Hotel and Spa in Uluwatu. This family friendly beach has it all – a casual restaurant, a swimming pool with a swim up bar and beach front of the deliciously soft white sand of Pandawa. There are beachfront balés on a grassed lawn, beanbags and
sun lounges on decks and lawn by the pool plus towels on tap.
A large open sided tropical restaurant with a soaring ceiling serves up chilled cocktails, huge signature drinks, wood fired pizza, burgers, Indonesian favourites and big buckets of icy beers plus juices made to order. A small shop has emergency supplies of dresses, shirts and other holiday necessities. The beach is azure blue with white crests on the rolling waves. With a backdrop of cliffs with gigantic statues of Balinese Hindu deities set in alcove caves carved into the limestone rock face is has an exotic tone. Roosterfish can be hired for private functions. Teens will disappear into the tree-house look out above the diner while sand toys are provided for the little ones. Recently the beach was the stage for a party that had DJ Romeo and performances of magic traditional music.
Insider tip: this gem is a family friendly retreat from high voltage venues.
4. The Anvaya Beach Resort
Anvaya Resort in Tuban Bay has a pretty slip of a beach that is accessed from the resort or an ocean path.
The crescent of sand is lapped by clear water that is deep enough to swim in safely. Sun lounges attached to the resort, along with a beach volleyball court services guests and so do the staff delivering a stream of cool drinks and snacks. While Anvaya beach is not officially private, it is little known and few people pull up and sit down. Brightly coloured traditional wooden Jukung boats decorate the sand and bob on the gentle waves as if The Yak’s stylists have been let loose to create a scene of tropical bliss. A few friendly hawkers offer mega-value massages, inexpensive sarongs and local handicrafts.
Insider tip: take a room for your final day in Bali and enjoy the beach, resort and room facilities before heading to a red eye flight from the airport that is just a few minutes drive away.
Sundays beach has created the ultimate luxe private beach experience with four white curtained bamboo bales that can be reserved for the day. Perched above the beach, the balés each have a private shower and loo, a butler, volume control for your personal speaker, butter soft towels, beanbags, infused water and an overhead fan. A few steps down a short walkway and roped off from the masses is your exclusive sun lounges on the sand. Enjoy a flute of chilled Chandon on arrival and canapés in the afternoon. At 5pm the staff come and build a personal bon fire by the sun beds so you can relax into the evening and enjoy the blazing sky at sunset.
A day reservation is from 9am until 10pm. Sunday’s beach is famous for its glittering water that is outstanding for water sports that includes SUP boards, canoes and snorkelling when the tide is low. This is an intensely beautiful part of Bali. The premier management team has created seamless luxury and a uniquely casual in vibe with a menu packed with delicacies such as grilled lobster, ribs and salads. Each dish is perfectly executed and as fine as sandy feet dining can be.
Insider tip: grab seven friends and book now.