Accommodations I Love · Into Indonesia

Taking It Slow In Gili Air

“What do you wanna do the rest of the afternoon?” My husband asks, as he jumps into the private pool right across where I was– in bed, still in my robe, eating pieces of fruits while I watched the leaves around the villa dance playfully with the wind.

I looked around. We’ve got a private pool situated right inside our villa, a huge garden of our own with coconut trees to remind us we’re still in the tropics, and the sun shining brightly with no clouds in sight. We’ve just gotten back from exploring the island in the morning, and although I was ready to explore some more, I really didn’t wanna be anywhere else at that moment. Everything that I wanted and needed at the precise moment, it was here at our villa. So with reckless abandon, we made a commitment we never once regretted– we stayed in, and we took slow. Real slow.


Slow Villas

Right in the middle of the small island of the Gilis, Gili Air, lies the beautiful property of Slow. Having only been opened in 2016, it’s impressive how Slow is quite known in the island already. Consisting of only private villas, the concept of this eco-friendly resort gives you a humble approach to luxury. When I’ve decided Gili Air was where I wanted to stay, I knew what I was in for– quiet and isolation. I’ve spent two days in Gili T prior to coming here, and I knew a tranquil island like this is what I needed before heading back to the crowded Bali.

Slow Villas is like an oasis within an oasis. A tranquil paradise within a paradise. It’s like the center core of serenity. And as soon as we were taken to our villa, it was definite that I was going to be spending most of my time inside. You see, Slow is located further away from the town center. Although easily accessible with a bicycle, it’s far enough from any unnecessary distraction. Slow, by far, is the most peaceful resort I’ve ever been in.

What caught my attention about Slow is how eco-friendly the entire property is. The more I travel, the more conscious I become with the environment, and it’s impressive to see how even some of the most beautiful places are actually becoming advocates of the planet. From bio-septic tanks to reusable drinking bottles, Slow’s advocacy is very apparent and well-thought of in each aspect of their resort.

Location


Not the easiest place to find, Slow is situated right in the middle of the island. We were advised to take a horse carriage to get there, which usually takes around 5 minutes. But we were stubborn and decided to walk there. It wasn’t quite bad of a walk– but it was the beginning of summer and we were hauling 3 luggages in a dirt road.

The location might seem intimidating, but that is pretty much the great thing about it. It’s perfect for anyone not looking to interact or socialize. It’s a haven. You should also know that the island itself doesn’t have motorized vehicles, so it’s either a.) you take a horse carriage which can be costly, b.) you walk, which can be tiring especially with the heat, or c.) you rent a bicycle, which is the most convenient and popular way to do it here. With a bicycle, it’s easily accessible, although some path requires a bit of walking your bike because of the sand.

One Bedroom Villa


Slow consists of 10 contemporary style villas, each designed to accommodate guests with comfort and luxury. Complete with a private pool, a small kitchen, an office area, outdoor bathroom, and a garden, it’s very easy to get stuck here. Don’t get me wrong though, Gili Air itself is a paradise, but why leave the comfort of my villa when I’ve got everything I need here?

Our spacious king size bed offered more than just comfort– it guarantees sweet dreams too. Not to mention each material were top notch, from the beddings to the mosquito net that added even more of a romantic atmosphere, Slow Villas means business when it comes to making you feel like luxury. Right across the bed is a sliding door that opens up, giving you the view of the pool and coconut trees right in your garden. Can you imagine waking up to that? It’s the dream tropical setting. To top that off, the beach is only a short walk away.



The room provides their guests access to a couple of other perks too. Besides their white robes (because what else says luxury better than that?), they also have the island essentials you may need such as huge beach towels, a basket tote big enough to hold two of those– (which by the way is also very trendy right now), cute hats that makes great Instagram accessory other than serving its real purpose which is to protect you from the sun, mosquito repellant because it doesn’t matter how luxurious you are in a place like Indonesia– this is your best friend, reusable water bottles you can take on the go, and access to endless water to refill it with. They also provide tropical fruits in your villa as if all those other perks I mentioned weren’t enough.

One of my favorite thing about our villa other than the entire villa itself, is their outdoor shower. It’s perfectly thought of as there’s a door leading from outside, and also another door that leads inside. Nobody likes a sandy floor, but it’s more than just that. Showering under the stars is not something you can normally do where you’re from, now can you? The toiletries they provide are also of very high quality. I usually like to use my own but I really adored the smell of their shampoos and body wash. Naturally, I started to miss the smell as soon as we’ve left.

Breakfast


Breakfast at Slow is something to look forward to. Since they stick to its private villa concept, they don’t have a restaurant where you have to wake up early for to get a good seat. Breakfast is served right inside your villa at your comfort and privacy. You just have to tell them the day before what you’d like and what time you’d like it served. They’ve got a good variety– from Australian to the staple Indonesia breakfast– the Nasi Goreng, which is my absolute favorite.

Each breakfast also includes a fruit shake of your choice and a plate of exotic fruits in season. You can have your breakfast served in bed, the table by the pool, or at the pool. The world is your oyster.

Slow Spa


Though quite new in the business, Slow Spa’s popularity has spread quite quickly. I’ve seen a bunch of non-guests come in, begging to be squeezed in for a massage. We almost missed out on the experience because they were booked during the days we were there- but as luck would have it, the universe let us have a taste.

Located right inside the property, Slow Spa is yet another dimension of tranquility. If I’m Goldilocks, Gili Air would be the Baby Bear of tranquility, Slow Villas would be Mama Bear, and Slow Spa is obviously Papa Bear. The aesthetics itself brings you peace inside. But their massages. Oh, their massages. I’ve got to admit, it is definitely one of the best massages I’ve ever had. Time seemed to have stopped, worries seemed to have disappeared, and I seemed to have melted away right on that massage table. It was phenomenal, and I can see why word of mouth (and Tripadvisor) had spread so quickly. Whether you’re staying in Slow or not, you cannot miss a massage at Slow Spa.

Other than massages, they offer other services as well. I believe they have a private yoga instructor and you can arrange a lesson with them. They also arrange yoga retreats and I think Slow Villas would be the perfect spot to do so.

Others


Although it’s dedicated to taking things slow, they do understand that you didn’t come there just to shut the rest of the world away. They offer assistance with activities to make it more convenient for you. They have bicycles available for rental so you’ll never have to struggle around the island. If you’d like them to pick up food for you, they can also help with that. It’s a bit far from the restaurants so this comes in handy especially at dinner time when it gets pretty dark. Just make sure you let them in advance.

They also offer a private snorkeling trip all around the Gilis with their instructor, Madi. Complete with a private boat and a snorkeling gear, this is one of our highlights in Gili Air. Madi will take you to the best spots– away from the typical route most tourists are taken to. I highly recommend signing up for this. You simply can’t come to the Gilis without seeing what’s beneath its surface. It was a cloudy morning when we did this and the waves were a bit playful. I wasn’t going to let that ruin the day though because it was only chance as we were heading back to Bali later that day. In the end, I was sea sick (and I NEVER get sea sick), but I still had an amazing time.

Finally, one of the most important questions, how is the wifi? Yes, they provide wifi all over the complex. It’s not amazing internet, kinda sucky during prime time, just like the rest of the Gilis. However, it’s pretty decent on certain times, most times actually. I mean, don’t expect you’ll be able to download the most recent episode of Game Of Thrones, but it’s good enough to let you check your email or make a Facetime call.

Overall


If what you’re looking for is to unwind and relax, Slow Villas is perfect for you. If you’re looking for a more interactive location, Slow may not be right for you. However, if you crave luxury at a decent rate, Slow might just be the one. I would recommend Slow for couples, honeymooners, and maybe if you’re just looking for a quiet retreat by yourself. I’d easily recommend Slow Villas in a heartbeat. The comfort they provide is one thing, but I also might as well mention that they do go the extra mile. For instance, they provide each rooms with a USB consisting of movies just incase the satellite cable isn’t working– that’s definitely a commendable feature I haven’t experienced anywhere else. It’s the little things that they do that makes the experience unforgettable. But truthfully, whether you’re there with a mission to explore or to simply take it slow and kill time, Slow will help you achieve that goal.

For bookings and inquiries, you may check out Slow’s official website here.

Disclaimer: Thank you so much to Slow Gili Air for hosting me. This is a sponsored post written in return of a complimentary 2-night stay. All thoughts, opinions, and photos are my own. As always, I only recommend places that I know would be great for my readers.


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