The first Villas branded by Bulgari Hotels and Resorts will be built in Bali
October 05, 2009 - Uluwatu
Bulgari Hotels & Resorts' first branded residential villas in the world will be exclusive, avant-garde homes furnished with the most refined appointments. Distinguished by their unique design and services, they will represent the new frontier of luxury.
Designed by the architectural firm Antonio Citterio & Partners, the project calls for the construction of five single family villas in Bali, Indonesia, in the extraordinary natural setting of the Bukit Peninsula, site of the existing Bulgari Resort. Opened in 2006, this was the second luxury hotel built by the Bulgari Hotels & Resorts luxury group after the hotel in Milan was opened in 2004.
The five new villas, one of a kind, will be built in an area neighbouring the Resort, on a secluded upland plain bordered by cliffs plunging directly into the Indian Ocean. These exclusive residences will definitively confirm the Bukit Peninsula as the top destination for contemporary luxury travel.
All five of the luxury villas will have extraordinary views thanks to their unique sites. They will blend Balinese style and refined, typically Italian design and offer a range of exclusive services based on the standards of quality and excellence that have always distinguished every Bulgari creation.
The Residences are priced at the top end of the market, starting from US $ 6 million.
DESIGN BY ANTONIO CITTERIO AND PARTNERS
The five luxury units will cover a total area of 19,500 square metres. The built-up area for the individual villas range from 1,710 square meters to 4,415 square meters. Two models are planned, with either three or four bedrooms, and have a living space varying between a minimum of 880 square metres and a maximum of 1135 square metres.
Besides the bedrooms, the villas will boast a large living room and dining room, a large kitchen, a patio, a terrace and a separate structure for service staff. Every villa will have its own garden and swimming pool, surrounded by a solarium and gazebos with open living areas opening onto the garden.
Citterio & Partners have aimed to harmoniously integrate the villas in their design for the garden, by creating spare, low-profile architectural volumes that blend in seamlessly with the landscape.
The plan of the villas reflects this fundamental design paradigm. Consequently, the arrangement of indoor spaces will be the reverse of customary residential floor plans. The common areas have been situated on the top floor in order to create a living room housed in a lightweight structure. This structure will be clad with wood panels on the façade, which will be rhythmically defined by a series of high windows overlooking the garden.
The private spaces in each villa will instead be located on the ground floor, whose large footprint will make it possible to equip the spacious bedrooms with every imaginable comfort. On this level, the views will be screened to ensure maximum privacy and relaxation for guests.
The public spaces continue outdoors in the garden, with the gazebo sheltering the open-air living room, and the poolside area that offers some of the finest views of the Indian Ocean.
The elevated portions of the villas will be built of stone walls set in the ground, while the wood and glass façades open up the house onto the garden. The partially terraced slope of the land will permit direct access to the top floor via a broad outdoor staircase leading to the covered entrance porch to the villa. The top floor will contain a large open space including a sumptuous living room, dining room and elegant bar. The large windows and outdoor terrace will command unparalleled views of the Indian Ocean. The largely, fully equipped kitchen will be suitable for the preparation of banquets for any occasion.
Two large indoor staircases will lead to the spacious bedrooms on the ground floor. Both the master bedroom and the guest bedrooms will have a foyer, a study and walk-in closets. Each bedroom will have its own bathroom with walls clad in warm-toned exotic stone.
The design of the villas is a contemporary interpretative synthesis of traditional Balinese style and Italian design. Their style will be perfectly integrated with the local environment, where culture and natural, indigenous elements will be blended and expressed with hand-cut local volcanic rock, the use of precious exotic woods and refined fabrics made exclusively for Bulgari. All areas will be decorated with Italian furniture and finishing details designed by Antonio Citterio and equipped with all modern technological comforts, from air conditioning to broadband Internet access and the high fidelity Bang & Olufsen stereo system.
The Balinese culture and architecture greatly inspired the interior design concept of the Residences. All the hotel's accessories and details have been expressly designed and produced in Bali, exclusively for Bulgari: from every single piece of furniture to the handcrafted unique tableware and refined textiles.
Individual buyers can order customized interiors before construction begins to make their own villa even more exclusive.
The garden and indoor walls will be built with lava rock and palimanan, while the sophisticated nuances of bangkiray, a Javanese mahogany, will give the doors and windows of the villas a luxurious feel. The pools will be lined with the green hues of subakumi stone.
The design of the public spaces between the buildings will harmoniously link the various living units. The steeply sloped terrain has been remodelled by means of a complex series of landfills in order to create a unique, continuous garden. This type of landscaping gives the residential complex a harmonious appearance, while defining the property lines without the use of architectural barriers.
The pools were inspired by rice paddies. Every swimming pool has a different, free-form shape that follows the natural contours of the terrain, offering unobstructed views of the ocean.
The garden will be traversed by a small, secluded path leading from the entrance porch to the parking area.
BULGARI RESORT SERVICES
The owners and their guests can use the sophisticated services found at the Resort, such as the Italian and Indonesian restaurant, the spa, the swimming pool and the private beach.
The large spa, which has large, panoramic rooms facing the ocean, wraps around a large pavilion built in the typical style of Joglo houses on the island of Java, and offers two spa suites with outdoor garden. All of the treatments offered at the spa are inspired by Balinese, Asian and European tradition and improved by modern anatomical and physiological techniques and knowledge. These treatments are one of the key attractions of the Resort, which boasts an exceptional location overlooking the ocean.
The two restaurants near the ornamental pond and the open-air bar offer dishes inspired by Italian and local cuisine.
The swimming pool, built on the edge of the cliff, is surrounded by solariums and small gazebos, offering a veritable oasis for relaxation.
The beach, which is located between the cliff and the ocean, is a kilometre and a half long and can only be accessed from the hotel by means of its cog-way tram.
An imposing Hindu temple stands on the highest point of the property, offering enchanting views at sunset.
The owners of the villas will also be able to use the security guard, gardening and maintenance services of the Resort.
THE BUKIT AREA
Once the hunting grounds of the Balinese royal families, the Bukit peninsula is now home to some of Bali's most exclusive villas and resorts, as well as one of the island's holiest temples and some of the world's finest surfing locations.
Geologically and climatically, the area resembles the coastal regions of the Mediterranean far more than the verdant tropical landscape of inland Bali, a richly fertile plain surmounted by mountainous rainforests. The uplifted limestone plateau is one of three areas of vertical coastal cliff on and around the island and differs dramatically from the abundant surroundings in part due to its thin soil covering and lack of surface waters.
Although fairly isolated from the rest of Bali, the Bukit peninsula is home to one of the island's holiest places, the stunning clifftop site of the Pura Luhur Uluwatu temple.
Roughly translated, the name Pura Luhur Uluwatu means "the temple above the rock" and legend would have it that the temple itself is a ship that was once turned to stone. Consequently the temple is especially revered by the fishing communities in the surrounding area where they pray to the sea goddess Dewi Laut. The temple and its three courtyards are protected by walls of white coral stone and parts are astonishingly well preserved considering the temple is reputed in some circles to be more than 1,000 years old. The tiered shrines contained within the temple, known as meru, are believed to have been established by the holy man Empu Kuturan, who came to Bali from Java in the 10th century.
In the 16th century, a second holy man, the Danghyang Nirartha, traveled to Uluwatu bringing with him elements of the Buddhist religion which were absorbed into the practice of Balinese Hinduism. At Uluwatu, he decreed that the site was the ideal place from which to worship the gods and attain the state of moksa, or spiritual enlightenment, and the release from the physical universe required to enter heaven. This state of reverence and attainment is preserved to this day in every Balinese family temple where a single shrine covered with a black roof made from palm fibres, or pelinggih Uluwatu, is used to make offerings and worship to the soul of this great teacher of the Balinese Hindu religion. At more than 90 metres above the sea, the point at Uluwatu offers unrivalled views across the vast expanse of the Indian Ocean, uninterrupted by land from the Southern coast of Bali until the icy vastness of Antarctica. On a clear day, from the outermost courtyard, the tip of the island of Java is visible at a distance of more than 60 kilometres and as the sun sets, the temple is infused with a rich golden light and is one of the most magical experiences the island can offer.
The stunning ocean panorama that encircles the Bukit peninsula is one of the reasons for the area's enduring popularity with visitors. Since the 1930s, when surfers first discovered the glassy tubes of Bali's Western coast, the island has established itself as the home of some of the world's finest waves, the majority of which are to be found on the coastline of the Bukit peninsula.
At Uluwatu, depending on the size and state of the tide, the perfect walls of Outside Corner and long barrels at Racetrack attract the best surfers in the world, often in training for professional contests. And while the limited access and facilities of the area preclude the holding of major surfing events, there is no doubt that the quality of the waves makes Uluwatu one of the world's premier surfing destinations.
Further along the coast, the narrow rocky path that leads through a cave to the quiet cove at Padang Padang masks one of Bali's best kept secrets: a tiny picturesque beach that not only boasts more of those world-class waves, but also adds a clean and safe lagoon for the sun seeker.
The early inaccessibility of the Bukit peninsula has parallels with the discovery of its island home. Until the 1500s, Bali remained virtually closed to the outside world. Although the island was in the midst of the most significant shaping of its modern persona in the 14th, 15th and 16th centuries, with the migration of the Majapahit Hindu Empire from Java to Bali, it remained untouched by Western influences.
The first recorded expedition by a Western explorer, an attempt by a Portuguese ship to establish a trading post in Bali, foundered on the reefs off the coast of the Bukit peninsula and it was not until 12 years later that the dutchman Cornelius de Houtman paid a visit and provided the first account of daily life on this island paradise. His description of the vast wealth of the divine royal court of the Dewa Agung, with hundreds of wives and thousands of followers, was enough to begin the fascination with the island that continues to this day. It was not until the 1930s that tourism began to take hold, and Bukit was chosen as the site of the island's first airport, a decision soon found to be questionable as the site was only safely accessible in extremely calm weather.
Shortly after, in 1938, the airport was moved to its present site in Jimbaran Bay and Bukit was to remain largely ignored until the 1970s with the development of the Nusa Dua enclave of resort properties. Luxury resort development continued in the 1990s and the Southern coastline is now dotted with million-dollar private properties.
Stretching South from the Pura Luhur Uluwatu Temple, the Resort's and Residences' plateau is secluded alongside a still uncontaminated and peaceful coastline, offering a dramatic retreat setting.
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