Staying at Bendega Nui is a wonderful way to experience Bali. The neighbouring paddy fields scattered with colourful flags and tinkling bells to scare the birds away from the ripening rice; the crowing cockerels; clear blue skies and amazing sunsets were a delight in themselves, but to enjoy all of this from the luxurious surroundings of this stunning new villa (completed end 2009) was a real privilege.
The super-comfortable beds (I felt like Alice in Wonderland climbing up onto the deep mattress of the canopied four-poster in our bedroom!), bold colourful fabrics, tasteful pieces of art, impressive sound system and blissful swimming pool were just some of the features that made a very clear statement about how much care and thought Bendega Nui's owners (who regularly stay there themselves) have put into the design and finish of their tropical holiday home.
In recent years, the Canggu area has sprouted some exciting new venues for drinks and/or dinner – several of which you can walk to from the villa. That said, we felt no desire to eat out after sampling the chef's culinary creations: From roasted vegetable salads, to steak and chips, to chicken curry, cheesecakes and crème brulée – everything was beautifully presented, absolutely delicious, and served with a smile.
Bendega Nui is a peaceful retreat; breezes from the nearby coast kept things cool wherever we chose to relax – and there was no shortage of options, from the hidden deck beyond the pool, to the shady reading pavilion next to one of the pretty ponds, to the bedroom balconies with their lovely views. And what better way to round off the day than with a glass of wine and a good movie on the big-screen plasma TV, or a social game of pool over a couple of beers – listening to whatever takes your fancy from the vast selection on the Sonos sound system (or bring your own – iPod docks in every bedroom). We felt that Bendega has something to please everyone in the family and would also make a great place for a group of friends to get together for a holiday, as well as (especially if you rent the one-bedroom suite and three-bedroom Bendega Rato next door) an exceptional and truly memorable wedding venue.