Busy day at Puri Bagus Lovina Resort & Spa…What a glorious location!…

We lounged in this (one of many) cabana overlooking the sea at Puri Bagus Lovina, iced tea in hand, with books to read on our phones.  Rather relaxing.

With an appointment to meet with a resort manager at 11:00 am yesterday morning, I worked on the post while we watched the US presidential debate which was on TV here in Bali starting at 9:00 am. We were a little surprised it was broadcast here, but with tremendous interest in US politics from many we’ve met, I suppose it was to be expected.

We were a little surprised that it came out here, but with a great interest in American politics from a lot of people we met, I guess that was normal.The luxurious ocean-view suites offer two separate wings, a central dining area and a private pool.

To maintain our stance of not discussing politics on our site, we will only state that we watched it and then went about our day. I had an appointment scheduled for a tour of the Puri Bagus Lovina with Ayu, a manager and to discuss some of the features of this upscale serene property where many travelers come to unwind from the stresses of life in their home countries.

The bedroom in the suite is almost identical (although slightly larger) to our oceanview villa except we don’t have two bedrooms, an outdoor dining room, a private pool and the larger baths with added soaking tub and bidet.

As it turned out, I had an opportunity to speak with three managers as they gathered around our table in the bar sharing various points of interest in their respective departments and the resort. 

Inside the private pool in the two-bedroom suites are multiple sun loungers and space for entertainment.

Gede, the general manager; Ketut, the restaurant manager; and Ayu were enthusiastic in visiting with me, knowing how appreciative we are to learn their story and details of the property. They were curious as to our perceptions of their country and our experiences to date, all of which I enthusiastically shared.

Walking through the carefully designed gardens Gede pointed out many areas of mediation and relaxation, all designed with the sweet and healing Hindu philosophies in mind.

Built by the environmentally conscientious owner 17 years ago, the facility offers clean, attractive and comfortable rooms, many with ocean views such as ours and others with garden views with easy access to the beach.

The  Jaya Spa consists of several structures such as shown here each well appointed with its particular spa offerings in mind.

The pool is enchanting not only in appearance, but in its pristine filtered water system using the finest local spring water as opposed to the less-safe-to-drink local water supply, which we discovered in speaking with Ketut. 

Yesterday afternoon, we had the blissful experience of swimming in the cool, partially shady pool built into a natural rock and vegetation formation overlooking the sea.

Yesterday afternoon we had the experience of swimming in the cool, partially shaded pool built in a natural rock and vegetation formation overlooking the sea.The grounds surrounding the various Jaya Spa structures are equally peaceful and serene.

(I should mention here, as we discussed during our first two month visit to Bali, there are only a few first names given to Balinese babies at birth. Thus, this explains the similarities in the names of many people we’ve met. Please see below:

“The first born is Wayan, and if there is a fifth child, he/she is often called Wayan Balik (or Wayan “again”). Balinese children/people are given other names, including a new “name” after death. Generally, everyone uses birth order names to refer to each other, and to call each other constantly throughout the day.”Given” names may be chosen due, for example, to the influence of popular culture or politics. Like some other Indonesian cultures, Balinese do not use family names.

  • First born names: Wayan, Putu, Gede, Ni Luh(female only). Wayan is Balinese originally meant Wayah or oldest.
  • Second born names: Made, Kadek, Nengah, Made/Nengah means madya or middle. Kadek means little brother/sister
  • Third born names: Nyoman, Komang
  • Fourth born names: Ketut”
Each guest is provided a unique experience suited to their particular needs.

After spending considerable time in the bar with Gede, the general manager, he took me on our tour to see the luxurious suites and the full service spa offering a myriad of relaxing and beneficial services.

What fascinated me the most during the almost two hour conversation and tour was the dedication of the owner and the full staff to maintaining an environmentally friendly resort with an atmosphere based on the gentle, soothing and a spiritual persona in Hindu beliefs. 

The salon for hair, nails and pedicures was equally inviting.

Whether it’s an early morning yoga session in the exquisite yoga building as shown below, to lounging on one of the many comfortably padded cabanas scattered throughout the resort facing the blue sea, to a healing treatment in the spa, this peaceful resort caters to those seeking the utmost in service, ambiance, privacy and amenities.

Over the next few days we’ll continue presenting more photos of our blissful experience at Puri Bagus Lovina while we make our way through the five days of requirements of the immigration office. 

The building where yoga classes are conducted.

Busy preparing the posts, taking photos, dining at both breakfast and dinner, spending time at the pool and walking through the exquisite grounds has made our days and evening satisfying and complete. 

Add the delight of participating in many engaging conversations with staff, we’ve had a superb experience thus far and expect it will continue over our remaining two days until we return to the villa.

Tomorrow, we’ll begin to share the diverse, delicious and creative food choices at Puri Bagus Lovina and an exciting special event occurring tonight. Please check back!

Be well. Be peaceful.

Photo from one year ago today, September 28, 2015:

These baby goats in Fiji were less than a week old.  Note the bit of greenery in the mouth on the one of the left. For more details, please click here.

We made it to Lovina…Two hour harrowing drive…Dangerous experience…

Last evening view from the beach at Puri Bagus at sunset.

Last night seen from the beach at Puri Bagus at sundown. Finding gas stations is not so simple in the remote area of Bali. As it turned out, we had to drive to Lovina in the village of Gilimanuk to find a place to buy fuel.

Crossing over a river.

It would have been very inconvenient to run out of gasoline. Thanks to the “safari luck” we did it on the fumes long after the warning light illuminated. Turning around, in less than 15 minutes, we were back on track to our destination.

Beautiful ocean view along the motorway.

For some ridiculous reason I expected the two hour drive to be less stressful with Tom driving than the drive from Denpasar to the villa with a driver, the four hour harrowing drive. I was kidding myself.

Ocean view on the drive to Lovina.

At the end of May, we made the same trip when we first had to travel to Lovina to get our first visa extension. Now, we’re here once again for our second and final visa extension requiring three separate trips to the immigration office on a Monday, Wednesday and Friday of any given week in order to complete the cumbersome application process.

Tom is an excellent driver. I’ve said this many times in the past. But, even the best driver has no control over the action of other crazy and reckless drivers. No less than on four occasions, we had “close calls” when motorbikes, trucks and cars were passing with little regard for other vehicles on the narrow two lane road.

Indoor seating area in the villa.

Finally, with a sigh of relief we entered the outskirts of the heavily trafficked town of Lovina with masses of fast moving vehicles comparable to that in wild-ride Denpasar. It took another 35 minutes to reach our destination, the immigration office.

The queen sized bed was comfortable for a good night’s sleep.

With documents in hand, we picked a number from the automated machine. It was 11:20 am. At noon each day, the office closes for lunch reopening at 1:30 pm. If we didn’t get called in time, we’d have to leave and return later.

In no time at all we were called to the counter to begin the process. The kindly English speaking officer handed us applications to be completed and reminded us that we’d have to wear long pants when we returned later in the day.

Tom showered in our outdoor shower.  I opted for the indoor shower.

Oh, good grief! We forgot about wearing long pants to government offices in Indonesian as a requirement. Neither of us had brought along a single pair of long pants. When we were packing Tom suggested we bring our Africa insect repellent long pants knowing we’d be dining outdoors and I dismissed the idea. Had I agreed we wouldn’t have had to figure this out.

There are many shady spots for guest’s use offering protection from the hot sun.

Neither of us remembered from our multiple trips in May that long pants were required. A lot has transpired in these past four months that could easily have contributed to this fact slipping our minds. In our usual way, we don’t do any blaming, instead spending our time considering our options.

As we walked toward the beach.

Since we had to return later with the completed application, we had a little time to find a place to purchase pants. First, we decided to find our hotel, Puri Bagus, located within a kilometer of the immigration office, where we’d complete the application, make a few more required copies and see if they had a gift shop selling clothing.

The veranda view.

Once again, we were in luck when I remembered that Gede told us to look for a very bumpy road, two left turns from the immigration office. The tiny one lane road leading to the hotel was unmarked with no signs indicating the hotel nearby. Luckily, we quickly found the bumpy road making our way to the end to the exquisite Puri Bagus. We were shocked we found the correct road.

Grounds near our villa.  The Hindu/Balinese influence is always present, creating inviting surroundings.

The Puri Bagus Lovina, is gorgeous, more than we expected. The service is impeccable, the ambiance over-the-top. In no time at all, we were in our private thatched roof villa and at works on the forms.  Once completed, we quickly headed to the hotel’s gift shop hoping again, luck might be on our side.

Table and chairs on our private veranda.

Alas, no more than minutes after we entered the small shop we were in the try-on rooms hoping that we’d find long pants to get us through the three upcoming trips to the immigration. The women’s pants were awful, definitely not anything I’d ever wear again with the length too short and the legs way too wide. 

The ocean view from our private villa’s veranda.

Finally, we both found with the exact same pair of men’s pant, a beige linen, mine sized at an XS and Tom’s, a large. I’d never worn men’s pant before, but these with a drawstring fit, although still a little short for me. 

The enticing grounds are neatly trimmed and maintained enticing grounds are neatly trimmed and maintained.

Tom’s fit him well for now anyway, not necessarily at the end of the upcoming 33 night cruise after eating all that food. The cost of the two pairs of pants and a top I purchased, we spent a total of IDR 839,000, US $64.39. We didn’t complain. We avoided the necessity of heading further into the town with much worse traffic to go shopping which neither of us enjoys anyway.

These cabanas are available for any guests’ use.

By 1:30 pm, we were back at the immigration office wearing the long pants much to the pleasure of the immigration officer who joked and laughed with us. By 2:30 pm, we were out the door, anxious to get out of the warm clothing on a very hot day and relax a bit at our hotel before heading to the bar and dinner in the evening.

The sandy beach at the resort.

By 6:00 pm, we were taking sunset and other photos throughout the resort feeling refreshed, rested and excited not to have to return to immigration until Wednesday at 9 am for round two of three. 

View to the pool from the pathway along the beach.

After a few drinks in the oceanfront bar and later a fabulous gourmet meal in the resort’s main dining room while entertained by soothing local music, we were able to unwind and revel in the luxurious surroundings. Soon, we’ll share photos of our beautifully presented meals in this fine establishment.

Footbridge we walked over on our way to the bar.

Today, I’m meeting the Puri Bagus Lovina manager for a comprehensive tour with many more photos and stories to share while Tom stays behind for some research we’re conducting, easier here with a better WiFi connection than in Sumbersari. We’ll be back with much more each day as we continue our stay in Lovina.

Have a beautiful day!

Photo from one year ago, September 27, 2015:

This duck’s unusual crown caught our attention one year ago. He seemed proud of his facial characteristics. For more photos, please click here.