The paradise on Earth that's just two and a half hours away
The Great Summer Time
And the living should be easy, but that’s not the case now. With the prevailing mood of dressing up even when you’re dressing down, the fashion bar has been raised for what to wear, wherever you are, whether it’s close by like Bawah – an island paradise an hour and a half from Batam – or somewhere further away like Croatia, or just Orchard Road.
PHOTOGRAPHY ELVINA FARKAS/ANUE MANAGEMENT
STYLING BRYAN GOH
HAIR CHRISTVIAN GOH/TRIMMINGS SALON & SPA
MAKEUP MELISSA YEO, USING SISLEY
MANICURE CHISAKI MURATA & AI ENOMOTO/KINOYE + LIM
This story first appeared in the April’18 issue of Her World Singapore.
The Big Blue Lagoon
If you look for tagged photos of Bawah on Instagram (and its @bawahisland), you’d notice that most of the photos are of its crystal clear waters, pristine white sandy beaches or #nofilterneeded sunsets. But that’s not why we were there. The resort – three lagoons, six islands, 13 beaches and 35 villas will make you feel like you’re marooned on an island just like Robinson Crusoe. Except if he had wifi, access to a spa and a variety of water sports to choose from.
Every Bawah villa is stocked with everything you need on an island paradise: beach bags and towels, kaftans, straw hats and sun care. If you stay in the Garden Suite, you’ll find that the sides of the villa open up for an “open-air campaign” experience.
All water-related activities are on the house at Bawah, including boat trips that let you explore the archipelago or spend a day on the other islands. Our suggestion: Get dropped off on the other side of Bawah and track your way back to the resort through its rainforest. Btw, the boat seen here is solar-powered.
Polyamide and spandex one-piece, $570, Eres. Cotton-blend jeans, $660, Alice + Olivia. Acetate sunglasses (price unavailable), Bottega Veneta. Metal earrings, $120, Kate Spade.
Bawah has three bars. This one is the Grouper (yes, it’s named after the fish), which faces a natural lagoon, the South China Sea, two smaller islands – Sanggah and Lidi – and the jetty at which guests arrive on a seaplane.
Bawah has 35 villas: 11 are suites on water – six on the eastern part of the island, five on the western part. Each has stairs leading directly to the water, to which lagoon sharks and parrotfish have returned thanks to conservation efforts, and are now thriving.
Nylon-blend dress, $2,720, and cotton tank top, $330, Miu Miu.
One of the things you might notice during your stay on Bawah is that there are tonnes of butterflies which is a sign of a healthy ecosystem. Over construction + extreme defoliation + use of pesticides = you won’t see as many.