March 22, 2009

Bali wedding days 2 & 3: Black tie in Bali

Pin It

I spent the last couple of days hanging out at the Ritz-Carlton in Bali, as a big group of us gathered here for a wedding. The weather is beautiful now, and we've got views of Jimbaran Bay out of our balcony. Life could be a lot worse.

I didn't do much on Friday, other than going down to the Kisik Pool to hang out for a couple of hours after breakfast. The long infinity pool is just perched above the private beach, and interestingly is filled with salt water. I'm normally not a pool or beach person, but it was sure nice to hang out and listen to the waves coming in. And watching airplanes land at the airport is always fun.

Dinner was at Menega Cafe on Jimbaran Beach. This is one of those tourist trap places where you sit on the beach and enjoy the standard grilled seafood dinner. The smoke coming out of these kitchens is incredible, and there are a string of these restaurants next to each other on the beach. Funnily enough, I actually ate at the same place when I stayed at the Four Seasons Jimbaran in 2004. The thoughts of the 2005 bombings flickered in the back of my mind...

After dinner a group of us adjourned to Ku De Ta for a drink. Again, it's been more than 4 years since my last visit, and I'm glad to see that it's still the place to be up in Seminyak.

Saturday was wedding day, so we took it easy. I took a short excursion to Impossibles Beach, a destination popular with surfers. I had wanted to take some pictures with my telephoto lens, but there was not a single surfer in sight. The water, though, was beautiful and there were some waves even around mid-day. The only unfortunate thing was that in my eagerness to get into the water, I left my Blackberry and wallet in my swimming trunks. I don't think either of them really enjoyed the dip as much as I did...

The wedding ceremony started late in the afternoon, at Astina Chapel - one of the two wedding chapels on the grounds of the hotel. I've heard long ago that the Ritz-Carlton in Bali is a fantastic place to have a wedding, and now I understand why. The setting is absolutely fabulous! The chapel is near the edge of a cliff and faces the ocean, with a reflecting pool just beyond the altar on the outside. The views are fantastic! There wasn't a single one of us who wasn't awestruck. And the cliffside makes for a magnificent backdrop for a photoshoot.

The only drawback to all this was that the bride wanted a black tie wedding. That meant me and the guys had to dress up like penguins on a tropical island with temperatures of 30° C. Not fun. But it made for a beautiful ceremony when all the guests were dressed up to the nines, including the guys.

Drinks and dinner were served on the vast grounds in front of the Ayana Villa, where the newlyweds were staying for the night. This place was huge! The lawn itself was big, with a Balinese pavilion which served as a DJ station and dance floor during dinner. The views of Jimbaran Bay were awesome. Then there's the two-story villa itself, with 3 bedrooms and adjoining baths. The master bathroom on the ground floor has a beautiful and big bathtub, and an attached shower "stall" that must have been more than 100 sq ft in size! The rain shower head was the biggest I've seen, hanging from an intricately carved wooden ceiling. It was just completely over the top!

We continued to party at the villa after dinner. As I expected, some of the guests decided to take a dip in the big pool in front of the villa - a couple of them against their will while fully dressed - while others soaked in the jacuzzi and were fed sparkling wine by their friends... A decadent but fun party that seemed the perfect way to end a beautiful and fun island wedding.

No comments:


Related Posts with Thumbnails

TripAdvisor Travel Map