How can you not notice a mosaic of Marilyn Monroe in that famous subway grate pose at the bottom of the pool in which you’ve been splashing for days? It’s simply breathtaking, but we don’t see it until we decide, on our final morning at Luna2, to have a bombing competition. Self-timer on the camera set, we leap into action. That’s the moment Mr Smith and I spy the movie star in our midst.
A girl only plans on having one honeymoon in her life, so this trip to Bali and its luxurious beachside private hotel – there’s more than a touch of Hollywood to its exclusive nature – had a lifetime of dreams to live up to. It didn’t disappoint.
From the moment we walk through the doors, the attention to detail at Luna2 is evident. We’re met by the property’s general manager and shown around our jaw-dropping new pad. Owner and designer Melanie Hall has selected everything we see, and although the modern fusion style is one I’ve never considered when decorating my own home, it has me rethinking my taste – put simply, I adore it. The bold colours, retro furnishings and huge open spaces feel incredibly luxurious. Every room has ‘wow’ factor, including the kids’ playroom, which, even to a childfree couple, is spectacular. With five bedrooms, each with its own individual colour scheme, all the mod cons and a flurry of pop art, it is difficult to choose one for our stay (the hotel is exclusive-hire, so we have the place to ourselves). However, as soon as we enter the Green Room, we know it’s for us. It has everything a honeymoon suite should: elegant dark decor, glam Bisazza mosaic tiles and an elevated view of the beach.
While we sip wine and chat, the general manager has our bags whipped up to our room, where they are unpacked and our washing done. Our cameras are even plugged in to charge. Now that’s what I call service!
After settling in – because it’s so hard when someone else unpacks your bag for you – we wander out to the pool area. We are left to our own devices, and soon Mr Smith and I re-evaluate any thoughts we have of leaving our digs for the next few days. Tucking in to a bottle of Veuve Clicquot, we agree to make the most of this indulgent adventure. As our glasses near empty, someone silently appears to top us up, not to mention making sure we have ice-cold water and fresh fruit to keep up our strength.
Later that evening, Mr Smith and I are treated to one of the best meals we have ever had. Executive chef Brenden Peace prepares the most amazing seven-course degustation menu. In fact, throughout our stay, the Euro-inspired dishes are a highlight. An amuse bouche of porcini mushroom soup, ahi tuna with tomato salad, zucchini flower, eggplant and salmon roe, and Margaret River wagyu with mushroom, tomato jam, rosemary jus and tortellini are just some of our favourites. Everything is incredibly well conceived, beautifully presented and perfectly balanced.
The next morning, we owe it to ourselves to go for a run along adjacent Seminyak Beach – after all, the rest of the day is going to be full of exhausting activities such as reading books, drinking cocktails and eating. As we return from our jog, off come the shoes and straight into the glistening pool we dive. Soon, however, we are drawn by the smell of breakfast. As Mr Smith well knows, there is nothing I won’t do to find out where the smell of freshly baked bread is coming from.
Quickly, a daily ritual is established: run on the beach (to ease the guilt of our many indulgences), devour a sumptuous breakfast, relax by the pool, have a massage on the top deck, stroll to the Seminyak shops (who am I kidding – we take a Lunamobile, one of the on-site cars with driver), head home in time for a drink and canapés by the pool, out for more sunset cocktails at nearby bars Ku De Ta or Potato Head, and then back in time for dinner, which quickly becomes known to us simply as ‘heaven on a plate’. Mr Smith and I agree that the thing we most enjoy on our three-week honeymoon in Bali is Brenden’s mouth-watering meals.
Having 24 staff members (yes, that’s correct: 24) at our beck and call to help with absolutely anything is a luxury I have never before experienced. Luna2 would be brilliant for group getaways or families – for just one couple, it seems like something out of the movies, but I have no problems adjusting to the extravagance.
All too soon, check-out day arrives and the GM calls a chef buddy who works at Cocoon, a nearby beach club, to arrange for us to have lunch there. We spend the day in the sunshine, tasting every cocktail on the menu while the chef keeps sending out food. Eventually we have to beg him to stop. The Luna2 team even send us a text a few days later to see if we’re still enjoying Bali and if they can help us with anything else. You don’t get service like that very often.
Luna2 leaves a lasting impression: one of grandeur, quirkiness, coolness and attentiveness. It is so hard to let go of something so wonderful. Mr Smith and I are still wondering how early is too early to renew our vows. One year seems like it could work. We know a great place for a fabulous party.