Last weekend my family and some friends had the pleasure of staying in a super luxury beachfront villa in Negara, West Bali. We got picked up in a very spacious and comfortable Hyundai Royale. The doors closed automatically and we headed west. It’s a 3 hours drive from Seminyak to Negara, but the scenery is breathtaking. Ade, the son of the owner himself drove us and explained us everything we wanted to know about the estate. 40 minutes before we arrived we stopped at Warung Pantai. This place has Indonesian food always ready and offers a beautiful view over the ocean.
After a delicious lunch and some ice cream we continued our journey and arrived at the Starke Estate in Negara shortly after. A staff member opened the gates for us and two more joined him to help with our luggage. We entered the main villa and were impressed by the spacious place. The kitchen is to the right, the gym to the left and the living room, lounge and bar in front of us. Two pompous stairs lead to the second floor where the bedrooms are located. Each bedroom has its own balcony or terrace I should say. Besides the bedrooms, there is another living room (TV room) on the second floor that has another two free floating stair cases leading to two more terraces on the third floor, so you can always choose between more sun or more shadow. What impressed me the most was the roof that can open and close automatically with a switch. What I like the most about it is that you can see the stars from within the home.
The second and third floor offer a great view over the ocean and the rest of the 1.4 hectare property. Since all bedrooms in the main house are upstairs and we have two small kids, we decided to stay in one of the two beach houses closer to the beach. Three out of four sides of the beach house consist of glass. We loved the natural lighting and were able to close the curtains in the night for more privacy. The beach houses are just a few meters away from the gates to the black sandy beach.
The beach in Negara is much cleaner compared to the south. I only saw two fishermen about a hundred meters away on Saturday. Besides fishing boats in the distance you may not see other people since there is only palm trees to the left and a smaller abandoned building to the right. This is the perfect hideaway place for those who are looking for some peace and calm or a romantic getaway. Our two year old son always got up early and was excited to explore the property. We didn’t set any alarm (of course!) and I was surprised when I checked the the pictures on my phone, that it was not even 6am yet when we already visited the horses, the chickens, the fish and played in the gym room. Oh right, have I mentioned already that there is a big horse stable and a large riding stable? The five Spanish race horses are very friendly and we visited them every day.
After ten years in Bali I got used to the warm climate so much that I don’t like to jump into a cold pool. To my surprise, despite the size of the pool, the water was always warm. You can go to the pool at 6am or 11pm without having to worry about the water temperature. Due to its size, the pool is ideal for some serious swimming workout.
The mobile internet signal of my XL sim card wasn’t great. I was lucky if I got 2 bars of 3G, sometimes it switched to Edge and other times the mobile internet even disappeared completely. So I thought so far away from the main area with fast fibre optic internet cables, it is impossible to get fast internet here. So I went to the main villa, connected to the Wifi and ran some speed tests. By the way, for many years this is always the first thing I do when I connect to a new wifi, no matter if it’s at a friends’ house or at a new airport. To my complete surprise, I consistently got 60 mbps download and 40 mpbs upload speed! This is truly amazing. I am looking forward to talk to the owner this week what kind of contract he has in order to get this speed in that location. The son already informed me that the signal comes from XL through an antenna on the roof.
I was informed that I can control the music in the kitchen, the bar, lounge, living room, outdoors and in the pool area via an app on my phone. Since I am very curious when it comes to technology, I wanted to see the setup. Ade showed me the “holy” IT setup of the CCTV, internet cables and sound system in the home office. Did you know that Yamaha makes sound systems? When I hear Yamaha, I automatically think about motorcycles. So it felt strange first to search the app store for Yamaha MusicCast. I was impressed how easy it was connect and how intuitive it is to use. As long as you are connected to the wifi and have the MusicCast app on your phone, it will detect the sound system with its rooms similar to Philips Hue lighting system. As soon as you are connected, you can choose your source of music. Besides the music on your phone, it works great with Spotify, Deezer and other popular music apps. What I liked the most is that you can play music on the sound system while watching a video on Whatsapp or Youtube on your phone. Most apps would play the sound on the connected airplay speakers instead of your phone. Well done, Yamaha!
I almost forgot to mention the time when our son discovered the “gudang” (Indonesian for “warehouse”) one morning with all its equipment: Two jet-skis and two ATVs belong to the inventory of the villa.
The first thing I ever saw about this villa was a 60 seconds instagram video. Ever since then I wanted to visit this place. They now have an even more detailed video of over 8 minutes on Youtube:
Our entire family and friends loved the stay here and we are hoping to be able to stay here another time before the villa gets sold. Since the owner recently moved from Bali, they are now selling the entire property :-/ I think the concept is great, the pool has the perfect size and the house is big enough for a large family. The property would be a dream for a wedding or an anniversary with its gallery hall and plenty of space in the house and garden. I am grateful for the the trip and this amazing experience. Feel free to ask questions below, I will try to answer them to my best ability. You can also find more information on starkebali.com.