Advertorial, Reviews, Travel

Airbnb X Charles : Escape to Bali

So when I heard that I was going to spend almost a month in Penang filming for a new channel8 drama and being away from Sarah, I decided that I desperately needed one good getaway before I leave.

I’ve seen so many people travel to Bali and even though it’s so close-by to Singapore , what amazes me about this beautiful island is how each individual experience can differ so much even though they’re all equally awesome

I decided that our escape was going to be on this beautiful island for 3 nights and what better way than to do so with Airbnb. So I grabbed Sarah’s younger sister Rachel and her boyfriend, pengfong, and told them to pack their bags cos we’re going to escape to Bali!

Bali is notoriously famous for having some really kickass listings and accommodations. I daresay that this island houses some of world’s best and most drop dead gorgeous villas.

But if you know me well enough, I’m not one to settle for the cheapest/easiest things around. I like a challenge and I don’t like stuff to be just kickass.

I like them to be .. LEGEND… wait for it… DARY!

L.E.G.E.N.D.A.R.Y !!!

I spent weeks browsing through Airbnb for the perfect villa that met my personal standards and filters so without further ado, ladies and gentlemen.

I present to you the CHARLES’S STAMP OF APPROVAL for the most amazing & affordable villa in the whole Bali!

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villa dining table

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villa living room

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villa living room 2

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It seems to be almost magic that the villa retains its beauty/gets even more awesome even as night falls

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trying to cross this little ‘bridge’ for the 1st time and wasn’t sure if it was stable. Turns out its … ROCK solid. hahahha geddit?

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mastedbedroom

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I bet you’re already drooling . I felt the same way when I saw the official airbnb pictures on this listing as well.  I originally booked this villa here (which listing is also under our host RIO & thomas)

but because there was problems with the wi-fi in that villa, they offered to upgrade us to the biggest villa in the estate. which we politely declined and chose the one next to us because it was really too big for 4 people

I know you might be thinking

“siao ah!’  but hey , I also want to be a good guest for my hosts , doesn’t mean you have to accept everything you’re offered right?  I also wanted to show that I am graceful? hahahaha!:)

How do you decide what constitutes as the ‘best’ villa to stay in bali with airbnb?

1) It’s all about the money money money

Of course price is a factor cos I’m obviously not a millionaire. But to get a villa of this size, We booked it during an off-season period which meant that I only paid USD206 per night for 4 pax, 2 bedrooms

So holy crap on a cracker that means.. to stay in this drop dead gorgeous place, all we paid was USD51.5 per pax a night.

Trust me, worth every cent and whats more, its cheaper than  most 4 star hotels in Singapore!

2) Location Location Location 

3 minutes away to berawak beach , right next to a country club & water park(Which they give you complimentary membership cards to utilize the private facilities there)

Its only about 30- 40 minutes away from the airport. and TONS of  hipster cafes nearby.

Airbnb also tells you via map and description where exactly is this place located and the nearby amenities

3) Your Host’s … Hosting PLAN? (haha geddit geddit? #badpun) 

Our host , Rio met us on site at almost midnight when we checked in and we shared a cigarette and a welcome drink. He was warm, friendly and so freaking awesome.  in his free time, he plays in a band and just finished a gig at a nearby semiyak bar before riding a bike over with his guitar bag slung over

(It’d be easy to gush over him if I were a girl with a thing for bad-boy-cum-musician-cum-charming host type of guys)  

IF .. I were a girl!

He was never in rush even though it was late when he greeted us, he spent the time making sure that our needs were all settled for the next few days and gave us contact numbers, recommendation and even helped to arrange for motorcycle rental for us . I truly felt like a guest and that i belonged there.

4) Level of Awesomeness

This is my most important factor that I take into consideration.  this villa’s personal ratings for Charles’ stamp of approval went through the roof because of one simple fact

IT HAS A FREAKING fully equipped  9ft POOL TABLE . In fact, we loved it so much, we took many more pictures with it

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Awesome Shirt and shoes from Moley apparels http://www.moleyapparels.com/

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Awesome Shirt and shoes from Moley apparels http://www.moleyapparels.com/

check out the listing here for the full list of amenities this villa provides:)

Meanwhile.  Here’s more awesome pictures from around the villa!:)

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table setting for our breakfast

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Have i mentioned? The flowers are changed daily and they are FRESH real flowers kind ! sighhhhhh

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Collarless Curve Hem Shirt from Snort Label www.snortlabel.com

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rachpoolblackOn our second night, we requested for a bbq and all we paid for was for the groceries cost which took us about some $50?  there was so much and food and the villa staff made absolutely sure we didn’t need to lift a finger.

They even went so far as to make sure the table was clean and set nicely before we came down from our bedrooms.

Throughout the day, the staff is like, there but not there. It’s like we have total privacy but whenever we need something they are somehow there with it even before I open my mouth. Absolutely amazed

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Ayu always in close supervision of her colleagues in food preparation and you just feel so well taken care of

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I offered to help but the gentlemen refused. they insisted that they bbq the food themselves and that’s how they did it for about an hour and a half. in that half squat position. Makes me wonder how people can complain so much during BMT when they get punished with like 5 minutes of squats/push ups when these guys can just do this for hours on end and finish it with a smile. 

The Guy in white is actually the property operations manager and i feel insanely terrible that I cannot remember his name even though he introduced himself to me and even wore a name tag. He was warm and had the kindest eyes anyone has ever seen.  It was a very geniunue experience just speaking with him. Even though he works on a managerial level. He’s so humble and loves his job to the point I have nothing but the utmost respect for the work he does.

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Personal recommendations around Canggu .

Barely 2 minutes away from the villa is a quaint healthy little hipster cafe named RUKO that has food so instagram worthy that hardly made a dent in the ol’ wallet.

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banana Pan cake for around SGD $3.50 ? in a hipster cafe? with wi-fi?

Please prepare a box of tissues to either wipe tears of joy off your face or to clear that saliva cos

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Ruko Cafe is located barely a minute away from berawa beach. The beach isn’t very crowded but it’s not exactly a very.. beautiful kind of white sandy beaches kinda beach?

But its interesting because the sand is supposedly a little volcanic and came in this colour

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Nevertheless we managed to take some great photos!

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You gotta admit, I take pretty kickass photos right? 😛

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We also visited KUTA Square , did some shopping and decided to give another place a try called WACKO Burger.

Hands.Down.Best.BURGERS.ever.

to prove how awesome it was, I didn’t take a lot pictures of that cafe cos simply put. I was too busy eating. it was so awesome I didn’t really give two hoots about taking photos at all at that point.

Thank you Yi Xia (Rachel’s friend) for this awesome recommendation. thumbs up to you for this great find!

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DSC_4265After that back to shopping around KUTA Square and taking awesome pictures especially this quaint little store in that basically sold hand-made signs

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Along the Kuta coastline lo and behold, we found ourselves another beautiful beach and well there you have it

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On our last night in Bali, we visited the most famous bar in the entire bali to catch the famous view of the sunset. ROCK BAR. Will let the pictures do justice to the experience 🙂 OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

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Thanks Pengfong for this awesome picture which i ripped from his instagram !

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There are so many things that we did around bali that we didn’t manage to grab photos of, like the amazing in villa massage service that costs only around SGD15 for an hour and you can have it literally anywhere in the villa!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI was so sad to leave the villa and especially ayu, she’s like the coolest housekeeper in the world.  She didn’t just help to arrange our meals and all. She cooked, she cleaned , she spoke with such grace and with so much swag it made me feel just so royal living there

Type of things Ayu would say 

“Certainly, I would make that happen well before 7 pm”  

“Mr Charles, Would you be requiring dinner this evening?” 

” Are you enjoying your food? “(i replied of course and that it was alot to finish!)

“well i’m sure you’d finish it.. slowly but surely  -with a warm smile while walking away with so much swag.

I mean like holy crap,  the things she says I swear are perfectly formed to make me feel awesome and it made me feel so bad.  How can one tiny pint sized person make me feel so loved!

And if that wasn’t swag enough for you ,

SHE GAVE MOTORCYCLE LESSONS TO PENGFONG! 

Ayu, we had such a great time in Bali and it was only because you made it so. Thank you for also for heading to the market on our last day to specially make a batch of your home-made super spicy shiok ayam penyet chilli to bring home.

If i were a rich man, I’d have marketed it out and mass-produced it to be shipped world-wide!

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Of course if that really happened and my packaging was like that then i officially give you permission to whack me accross the head with a wooden pole

And when it was finally time to go home, I’m sorry I just really couldn’t bear to let ayu go and here’s picture proof of that factOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Sign up for an AIRBNB account and get $34 off your next booking on me 🙂  You can click on the picture below for a direct link there.

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If you have any thoughts or questions about bali or airbnb or anything you wanna know, just leave a comment or drop me a message =)

In the meantime, Belong anywhere with AIRBNB

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dA2F0qScxrI]

Cheers and much love to you all!