This unique resort hugs a stretch of a precious silver-sand beachfront on the island of Bintan, only 50 minutes by ferry from Singapore. Elegant and exclusive, the Sanchaya’s clean lines, graceful architecture, and the shimmering 50-metre infinity pool seduce with a promise of a relaxing, sophisticated stay.
The serene ambience of the Sanchaya must have been the first thing that made us fall in love with the place. The well-rehearsed welcome and the gracious demeanour of the staff, combined with the refined architecture and interiors, made a very favourable first impression.
The resort entices with a thoughtful take on the quasi-colonial style, fusing classicist grandeur with a breezy tropical vibe. You could easily mistake the main building, designed as a sprawling European-style mansion only a few years ago, to have been built in the 1920s.
Designed to echo the historical heritage of the colonial period in Indonesia, The Sanchaya makes the nostalgic charm its main theme. Wooden decks and hardwood parquet floors, bamboo screens and Chinese-style cabinets, antique wooden writing desks stocked with artisanal stationery, and an assemblage of antiques, old travel posters, curios, books and old brass objects of various purpose all create an attractive vintage look.
Yet none of it ever feels stuffy, or old-fashioned. The designers infused the property with clean lines and added a touch of contemporary black-and-white leitmotiv. Gleaming chrome fixtures and the latest technology and electronics are part of the fabric of the resort too — the guest suites and villas have Bang & Olufsen TVs and in-room iPads with hundreds of films and an extensive selection of music.
The hotel looks larger than it is, thanks to its extensive grounds and generous proportions of the rooms and suites. The mansion has only nine suites on the first floor, and beyond it, spread among manicured gardens are twenty-one villas. The whole thing feels less like a hotel and more like a rich friend’s tropical holiday estate.
More than a weekend stay
Apart from sightseeing and sea trips, the resort offers a range of inventive activities, including petanque, croquet, archery sessions as well as blokart sailing. Blokarts are wind-powered go-karts, for which the vast beach at low tide allows plenty of roaming space. Finally, the “night mangrove tour” is magical. It’s a quiet boat ride in the mangrove forest, by moonlight, surrounded by… fireflies! A delightful sight.
Our stay at The Sanchaya, of just a couple of days, was too short to try out all of it, but the feeling we were leaving with was that we could have easily stayed for longer. Mind you, this was not just because of the attractions.
The staff at the Sanchaya have created a unique atmosphere which made us feel as comfortable as at home — and we simply enjoyed hanging out at the various spots, be it in the library, by the pool, or staying extra long for the excellent breakfast.
Beach, Boutique Hotel, Island, Luxury, Private Villa, Quiet, Relaxing, Resort, Romance, Spa, Tropical, Wedding, Wow Factor,
Number of rooms & suites: 29
Rate per night: From $550
*The rate is only approximate and is based on our own independent research, at the time of writing. We cannot guarantee the rate in any way.
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