This article originally appeared in Wanderluxe by The Luxe Nomad.
In constant pursuit of checking into the next best villa, The Chedi Tanah Gajah checked all the boxes on our luxe list: authentic, exclusive and picture perfect. The estate is located in Ubud, the heart of Bali, within the Tanah Gajah private estate surrounded by lush highlands. Twenty villas and suites are spread over sprawling gardens and beautiful rice fields.
Guests are greeted with a welcome drink and cold towel before being taken on a buggy ride tour of the estate and its facilities, extending to the poolside bar, Spa and Health Club, tennis court and a boutique/salon. There are daily complimentary activities including yoga classes, printed on a list waiting for you in your room. Each villa has a dedicated butler, free alcohol replenished daily, and the usual refreshments, snacks, cookies and fruits.
For the very best stay, book yourself a sweet escape at The HadipranaVilla. This two-bedroom estate was built by Tanah Gajah’s founder and owner, Hendra Hadiprana. Originally the residence for him and his wife, the villa features some of the finest paintings, antiques and artefacts from his vast private collection, all set in 570 square metres (6,135 square feet) of space. Outside the villa sits a 10-metre long swimming pool with a private deck and a large, comfortable bale.
Luxe tip: Make plans to stay in for dinner. Overlooking the rice fields and aptly named The Restaurant, guests are treated to a kecak dance performance every Tuesday and Friday at 7pm. The villa also holds a Barbecue Under the Stars every Sunday. Fun fact: The rice served at the villa is sourced from the surrounding paddies.
Must-do: Take a cooking class with chef Dean Nor, who has worked on the island for 17 years. The class teaches you how to cook three different Balinese dishes. When you’re done, you get a certificate and spices to take home.