PAMPERING IN PARADISE
Sometimes, all we want from a relaxing getaway is a peaceful place to recline, and of course, a world-class spa at our fingertips for whenever our mind and body needs a little boost. At Grand Nikko Bali, situated just south of the exclusive Nusa Dua resort enclave, you can have just that, because this five-star paradise encourages self-indulgence in unadulterated abundance.
Grand Nikko Bali may not be a dedicated spa or wellness retreat, but what the resort provides is one of the most stunning beachfront hideaways in Bali for you to relax and rejuvenate, whether that be in the comfort of a five-star villa or the signature Mandara Spa. And even outside of these hedonistic havens, the resort itself is a playground for pampering set amidst breathtaking grounds. Sweeping tropical gardens meet brilliant blue swimming pools and dazzling white sands, peppered with cosy cabanas and sunbeds to laze away each day. Charming stone bridges arch over winding swimmable lagoons, connecting a kitted out fitness centre to the fresh and vibrant beachfront restaurant, The Shore.
And when your rejuvenation getaway calls for the absolute best, the resort’s villas are by far the most extravagant of Grand Nikko’s accommodation options. Designed with indulgence, escape and peaceful pampering in mind, the One-Bedroom Pool Villas make for an idyllic, soothing retreat. Each one is perched high above the crashing surf, ensconced by lush foliage to create that exclusive, paradisal feel. These tranquil sanctuaries are a haven for relaxation, each one decked out with their own private infinity pools, outdoor living areas and luxurious amenities.
The opulent bathroom is a particular highlight, adorned with His and Hers sinks fully stocked with organic bathing products in the huge vanity counter. In the centre of the room stands a magnificent egg-shaped bathtub, sheltered under a stunning chandelier. Soak amidst the bubbles and bath salts, or bathe al fresco under the outdoor, jungle-like rain shower. Whatever you choose, any troubles seem to just wash away, but that’s no excuse to stop treating yourself…
Inviting you into a new dimension of wellness is Grand Nikko’s beloved Mandara Spa. Thanks to a recent makeover, each of the spa’s world-class, open-air treatment villas are traditionally decorated, set behind high stone walls just footsteps from Nusa Dua’s soft sands. Within these walls lie the luxurious treatment areas, sheltered by alang-alang thatched roofs and surrounded by enchanting flowering plants. A cobblestoned footpath leads to each area of indulgence, winding its way toward the outdoor bathing amenities. Like an oversized Roman bath that has met a tropical twist, a giant tub is built into sumptuous marble and framed by pillars and lush greenery. Luckily for us, most of the spa’s treatments include a soak in this glorious tub, including the signature Ultimate Indulgence package, which I found out provides exactly what its name suggests…
The treatment begins with an Aromatherapy Floral Footbath, overlooking the tranquil garden of the spa villa. Foot washing symbolises a cleansing of life’s stresses and tensions, to prepare for the total relaxation that soon follows. The blissful foot bath is warm and inviting, filled to the brim with red and purple fresh flower petals and a few drops of lemongrass essential oil. My feet are gently submerged and delicately cleansed with a lavender-infused body wash. Any impurities are scrubbed away with a volcanic pumice stone before a soft misting of Aromatherapy Foot Spray.
Next is a traditional body scrub to brighten my complexion and rid my skin of any dryness. My smiling therapist presents a selection of signature scrubs to choose from. The first is the soothing coconut scrub that promises to gently exfoliate and nourish skin, while the fragrant Javanese Lulur softens, refines and offers deep cleansing thanks to its blend of powdered spices and sweet woods. But it is the Bali Coffee Scrub that catches my attention, known to elevate the mood and smooth skin to polished perfection. My therapist lathers on the intoxicatingly aromatic mixture, firmly massaging every part of my body to reveal softer, glowing skin beneath. I am then slathered with a cool carrot body rub to condition, refresh and stimulate, leaving my skin tingling with revivification.
Thoroughly cleansed and doused head-to-toe in the natural goodness, I wash off beneath the outdoor rain shower before sinking into the delicious Aromatherapy Floral Bath. The giant tub is filled with handfuls of vibrant blooms, tossed into the perfectly warm water along with a sprinkling of natural essential oils. As I recline in pure bliss, I sip on a cup of warm ginger tea and listen to the sounds of the soft rolling waves nearby. I can’t help but close my eyes and melt into the heavenly bath with a very deserved “ahhh”, but as much as I want to marinate in the warm water for hours, the signature Mandara Massage tempts me back to the squishy massage bed.
The “Tranquility” aromatherapy blend is my oil of choice, combining the relaxing scent of Lavender, Vetiver and Cananga; three essential oils that help to reduce stress and reveal a sense of serenity. The signature Mandara Massage sees two therapists working in harmony using a unique combination of five different massage styles: Japanese, Shiatsu, Thai, Hawaiian Lomi Lomi, Swedish and Balinese. The synchronisation of the therapists is incredible – not a single touch is ill-timed nor a slight disparity of pressure – it is as if all four hands are part of one super-therapist. They achieve this impeccable harmonisation by touching their palms together at the beginning of the massage, taking a few moments to concentrate on balancing their energies. They then remain connected throughout the massage by matching their breathing, making each rub, compression and knead doubly effective.
Just when I thought it couldn’t get any better, the Ultimate Indulgence concludes with a wonderful finale. Combining an intense foot massage with an Elemis facial, the two therapists continue to work together to top off one of the most divine pampering experiences I have ever tried. Whilst my feet are firmly massaged, my face is cleansed, toned, moisturised and intensely rejuvenated using products from the leading luxury skincare brand, Elemis. A herbal mask seeps its goodness into my complexion while my hands, arms and feet are treated to the therapists’ magic touch. My entire body has been lifted and restored, polished from head-to-toe. All of this in the divine grounds of Grand Nikko Bali, a true sanctuary for paradisal pampering.