An Instagram Guide to St. Regis Bali Resort
Residing in the Tony Nusa Dua enclave, The St. Regis Bali Resort looks like a tropical fantasy with lush green gardens, towering palm trees, shaded gazebos, and an expansive lagoon pool.
Indonesia-based luxury travel photographer and influencer Christina Tan, known as @ SassyChris1 on Instagram, says there is much more that makes the five-star Forbes Travel Guide hotel special. According to Tan, it is the only seaside resort in Bali with villas by the sea and the service is superb. “The butler service is some of the best on the island,” she says. “You can literally ask your butler for anything. There is nothing they cannot accomplish.
Tan experienced the magic of 24 hour butler service – a hallmark of all St. Regis hotels, it is offered to every guest – firsthand during a visit in November 2020. “I was a little sad not being able to travel abroad for Christmas, ”she said. “So I casually mentioned that it would be nice to have a Christmas tree. The next morning a Christmas tree was installed in [my villa] salon on my return from the spa.
Another reason to go there: it is a destination for epicureans. “St. Regis’ food and drink is very well known all over the island as well as in Indonesia,” says Tan.
The culinary reputation comes from Executive Chef Agung Gede, who has been preparing dishes for the hotel since it opened in 2008. The Balinese-born chef takes an artistic approach when creating his simple yet elegant dishes. He first draws them skillfully with colored pencils, then uses the illustrations as a roadmap for his recipes.
Whether on the plate or by the pool, The St. Regis offers a feast for the eyes. We asked Tan, a regular hotel guest, to share the property’s most Instagrammable scenes.
The Bali hotel hosted a romantic and secluded candle light beach dinner overlooking the Indian Ocean just outside Tan’s villa. The six-course menu focused on lobster with dishes like bamboo lobster au gratin with miso and an open face lobster raviolo.
“It was really special because a chef came to my villa and cooked it in my kitchen,” she says. “And there was a butler to serve the food.”
This soft omelet swimming in lobster broth is a must. “The lobster omelet is an iconic dish of the St. Regis,” she says. Available for breakfast or brunch, it is best paired with one of the famous Bloody Marys.
All of the sumptuous accommodations at St. Regis Bali are suites or villas. Tan stayed in the Strand Villa on her last visit and she found Bill Bensley’s design striking. “He was very successful in combining Balinese architecture with the glamor of St. Regis,” she says.
The glass doors of the Strand Villa open to reveal a lush private garden with a large swimming pool, terrace and a bengong ball, a traditional Indonesian gazebo with day beds for relaxing. “I was just sitting there and reading books and enjoying being there,” Tan says.
One of the dishes Tan relished was marukoban fish. One of the top sellers in the luxury hotel, the fish is shaped to resemble a rose, and there’s wild trigona honey (made from stingless bees) and salt with sweet hints of Kusamba, a coastal village in the Klungkung region of Bali which practices a salt-making tradition.
The best way to catch the sunrise is on the beach. The hotel will prepare a breakfast at sunrise on the sand to help you soak up the fullness. “This breakfast was sumptuous,” said Tan. A selection of gourmet cheeses and cold cuts, oysters, vegetable and chicken wraps, and pastries were served under a large Balinese umbrella. “It’s such an experience,” she says.
You don’t have to leave your villa to snap an Instagram-worthy gourmet photo. Room service will deliver a nice breakfast to your dining room.
“Their Sunday brunch is super famous,” says Tans. You must reserve your place at the Kayuputi restaurant two to four weeks in advance for the popular meal. It’s an all-you-can-eat à la carte brunch with indulgent dishes like Japanese-inspired swordfish belly with miso (above), a fresh delicacy with umami pop; bamboo lobster with mushroom gratin; and martabak (a kind of Indonesian pancake) with pan-fried foie gras.