Home: 3 Bedrm + Porch, xtra beds, 3 Baths, (Sleeps 9), Guest: 2-br/2ba w/pool
Why Made Mar chose Ubud
My career in the motion picture industry specialized in filming in international locations. Of the 36 countries I was fortunate to experience Bali, which I first discovered while in my early 70s, stood out as extraordinary among them all for many reasons: its incredible beauty, captivating culture, perfect weather, extraordinary artistic heritage, and its gracious and welcoming people. After having been away from Bali for forty years, on my return I was immediately filled with the same conviction that I felt as a young man: this is the place I want to live. This villa was built as a place to which I can invite the many friends I've met throughout the world in my travels, a place to share, enjoy and reminisce. It will be my eventual retirement home, and I am pleased and honored to share it with discriminating guests as a base from which to discover their own reactions to the magic of the island.
What makes this Villa unique
What is primarily unique about this property is its very special location, and the quality of its construction and furnishings. It has a dramatic 220-degree view to the front, where it overlooks the small river valley and the rice fields beyond, To the back, it has a 180-degree view of ascending rice terraces. There are no traffic sounds, honking horns, beeping motorbikes; in fact, the only sounds one hears here, day or night, are the natural ones: the sigh of breezes stirring the palms, the call of birds, the sound of running water in the river or cascading from the rice terraces. In order to achieve this unique and very spirit-fulfilling serenity, this property was chosen for its beauty and extraordinary serenity, one that is removed from the busy and noisy roadways of Bali, and is in fact equidistant from them. To the front, the 'Path to the Sacred Spring' runs along the river and terminates at Rumah Cahaya's gate. To the rear, a meter-wide causeway was built through the rice-fields to allow convenient access to Ubud's main road, largest market, and convenient transportation. The other considerable benefit of a stay at this villa is the extended family that built the house, maintains the property and cares for you during your stay. The family home is a short walk away, and if you avail yourself of the opportunity of spending time with them you will not find a more remarkable Balinese family. Their warmth, generosity and hospitality not only has many travelers returning year after year, but doing so feeling as if they are truly coming back to see members of a new and extended family of their own. You will truly enjoy a memorable stay.
100% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date. 50% refund if canceled at least 14 days before arrival date.
Hidden gem in the most beautiful setting
We stayed at rumah cayah villa and annex for 5 nights and definitely couldve stayed longer! The house had so much space and we loved the open design - be prepared to make friends with the local wildlife! The villa had everything you needed and the staff were wonderful especially Juli the property manager who helped arrange numerous trips and transport to our next destination etc. The villa is only a walk away or a very cheap taxi from ubud town however there are also many lovely places to eat nearby and the proximity to the supermarket was ideal for our group!
Thank you for a stay we will never forget!
A Lovely Stay outside Ubud
We loved our Stay at Rumah Cahaya in April 2018.
Staying in this Villa is like being one with nature. I was not aware before coming that the villa is completely open air, we definitely recommend a bath under the stars- it is magical. During the evenings it cooled down a bit but was still quite warm. The owner does a great job of keeping the mosquitos away but we were startled a few times by very large (by western standards) bees buzzing around the villa. They did not seem aggressive, but took some getting used to. Otherwise the live flora throughout really made for quite a special experience.
The pool area is absolutely beautiful and a dream to relax by. A feeling of seclusion is achieved. The setting of the villa is between the jungle and rice paddies, again very wonderful! Note there is no road to the villa and it is best to meet in the Market parking lot to find your way there. Having the Bintang Market nearby was also a major plus, you could find everything you might need there. We also rented a scooter while staying in Ubud and Juli the property manager conveniently had it dropped off for us at a great rate, we were so appreciative. Juli also graciously drove us to the airport very late at night which was great. He is one of the Villa's best assets.
There are information books in the villa that we also found quite helpful when just arriving and definitely recommend reading through.
Our only concern while staying in the villa is that we found cameras not only outside, but also inside (they appeared to only be pointing at the doors). We found this somewhat unsettling and a bit invasive. One should also note that the owner lives just beyond the pool with a door adjoining the properties. We didn't feel as though we had total and complete privacy.
Otherwise, we would absolutely consider staying again and will be recommending this villa to family and friends alike.
We’re always delighted by good reviews, but it is troubling to learn of any dissatisfaction. We provide a local phone for the purpose of answering any question, as we pride ourselves on providing the absolute best possible experience.
Comments that might be considered negative may give pause to others, so we’ll clarify a few points:
PRIVACY: The villa was built for the owner’s eventual retirement, and he presently occupies it only several weeks during the winter. Rental opportunities during this low season are infrequent, so when opportunity arises, to keep our our wonderful staff employed, he occasionally either moves into the adjacent bungalow (VRBO #702772) or travels.
Make no mistake. The villa and its adjacent annex are COMPLETELY PRIVATE! True a`connecting gate in the wall separates the two, but unless a large party rents both accommodations, the gate is kept locked accept when accessed by the housekeeper..
CAMERAS: When the villa was built, it was felt that its remote location and infrequent occupation neecessitated a security system and surveillance cameras. Eight cameras cover exterior doors and gates but NO interior living spaces. They are ONLY OPERATIONAL WHEN THE VILLA IS UNOCCUPIED. Privacy is one of our best assets and among are greatest concerns.
OPEN AIR: Lastly, it is a bit of a misnomer to refer to the villa as “open-air”. The bathrooms are delightfully indoor-outdoor, but are of course provided with doors. The 15-foot wide “view” walls, one from the living room to the front veranda and the other from the second-floor bedroom to the deck, are equipped with full-length folding glass doors and can be left open to the view and fresh air or completely closed .
The only true “open-air” portion of the house is the triangular atrium at the top of the indoor waterfall, which is located in the far north-east corner of the building.
Evidently what was meant by the reference to “open air” was the absence of air conditioning. We decided when building the house that its location high above the river valley and it’s high (26-feet in the bedroom) ceilings would provide adequate relief from the heat and humidity; we also felt that going in and out of air-conditioned spaces is not particularly good for our health.
We don’t miss air conditioning a bit.
In short the villa is an extraordinary gem even among the many wonderful offerings in Bali and we will do everything possible to provide the best in care and comfort to all who visit it.
Everything written about this property is spot on..the house is just gorgeous, the location is great - a perfect mix of town proximity and tucked away jungle feel, and the staff is so nice and accommodating! Maya makes an excellent breakfast and keeps the house spotless. I would definitely recommend hanging out and going around with Juli for the day. He's awesome and we were super grateful for his hospitality! Thanks Bruce!
Also, definitely check out Yellow Flower Cafe! A quick, nice path walk for some fantastic food!
Beautiful, peaceful villa with warm, wonderful staff
My wife and I stayed here briefly as part of our Indonesian honeymoon. We absolutely loved the villa. It was quiet, set apart from the busy and generally too-commercial Ubud. We woke to birds singing and went to sleep with just the stars. The villa was immaculate, and we enjoyed the pool, and outdoor shower and bath. The bed was very comfortable and we slept well each night. The house is filled with ornately carved doors, stone statues, carefully placed lighting, and an indoor waterfall. It, like Bali itself, marries art and function. But what made this stay so special was the staff. Juli picked us up from the airport and drove us to the villa. After a brief scooter lift to the house, he introduced us to the gardener and security officer, Ketut. We always felt safe there. Maya made us wonderful breakfasts -- both traditional Indonesian and Western options are available. On our second day, we hired Juli to take us on a local tour. We saw the traditional Barong dance, visited artisan shops, and toured temples. He even stayed with us late to make sure we saw the famous rice terraces. The next day was a special Hindu celebration -- Galungan. It is a sacred day when devout Balinese visit temples, make offerings to ancestors, and visit families. All the villages were decorated with beautiful penjor -- tall bamboo poles covered with flowers and other offerings. We were deeply honored when Juli invited us to attend the local temple with him and his son. We first met his wife and children and enjoyed some Balinese coffee and jaja cakes. At the temple, Juli guided us through the ceremony. It was one of the most special and sacred parts of our trip. After leaving, we went to Nusa Dua for two nights to enjoy the beach before returning to winter in New England. Immediately we missed Rumah Cahaya and the people of Penestanan. Nusa Dua felt artificial and inauthentic. Next time we will stay at Rumah Cahaya and skip the touristy resort. We could not recommend Rumah Cahaya more strongly. It is perfect for a couple or small family, and ideal for those wishing to see the "real" Bali and avoid the more commercial centers.
A week in paradise
Due to my wife’s work, we travel quite extensively, and have rented many houses, apartments, etc. Rumah Cahaya is by far the most enchanting and intoxicating experience we have ever had. Nothing comes close. The design, the attention to detail, the craftsmanship. All truly remarkable. Words can't describe our excitement of being privileged guests this absolutely beautiful villa.
We loved everything about it - the private pool, the outdoor bathrooms and bathing outside, the animal noises (especially in the mornings and evenings), and of course Bruce the owner who answered all our questions and the staff.
Juli, Maya, Bapak are all wonderful. So kind and so helpful. Juli (house manager) was an excellent driver and we encourage anyone staying at the villa to partake of his services and do a daytrip with him. Maya (housekeeper) made excellent breakfasts and kept the villa clean and comfortable. Bapak (the grounds supervisor/gardener), though speaking very little English, was a delight. We very much enjoyed his visits. We also loved his dogs and my wife even got a little lick on my hand from the younger one! Of course it may have been because she was crouched down on the ground, had just given him a hot dog and held out my hand that had touched the hot dog.
The villa is furnished with everything one could think of or need. We keep saying to each other, “Bruce thinks of everything!” The kitchen was terrific for those nights in. And it was easy to stock up as the Bintang supermarket was just a 5 minute walk out back through the rice fields. The big screen TV comes with a DVD player and Bruce has acquired a quite extensive DVD collection.
Though only about a 20 minute walk into Ubud proper, we only visited once. Why? We never wanted to leave the villa. Every minute away felt a moment missed in paradise. Our stay of 8 days seemed far too short. We left feeling rested and reinvigorated. This is a remarkable and romantic place in paradise and we will definitely be back.
Thank you for all your help and welcoming us into your extended family. We are eternally grateful.
Rumah Cahaya Top Ten
1. Master Suite: Comfy bedding and luxe outdoor bathroom with rain shower and soaking tub. There can be no better place in the world to enjoy the moon and stars!
2. Swimming Pool/Grounds: A full-size private pool is such a luxury on holiday. We never grew tired of ogling the magnificent grounds. Very hard to leave when we went out for activities. Bapak was a jewel and kept it all pristine.
3. Location: Steps away from eateries, shopping, and taxi stand, yet miles away from scooter fumes and crowds. Using the villa as base, one could stay right in Penestanan and fully experience the culture, nature, and palpable spirituality of Bali.
4. Restaurant Recommendations: Bruce offers a notebook of restaurant reviews/recommendations (and is quite the engaging writer by the way)....all within walking distance. Try 'em all!
5. Maya: Speaking of food, we fell in love with Maya and her delicious breakfasts. She is a major part of what makes Rumah Cahaya the wonder that it is. She exudes graciousness and ease, and keeps things sparkling and humming along, the heart and soul of Rumah Cahaya.
6. Juli: And speaking of heart and soul, Juli is the epitome of Balinese hospitality. He checked in with us regularly, though never intrusively, always warm and helpful. Great driver and guide who will make you forget he's a guide and feel more like a friend.
7. Sunrise: The gradual pinkening of the sky through open windows is a surreal alarm clock, awakening the cacophony that is so singularly 'Bali:' ducks, roosters, songbirds, frogs working up to an orchestral morning salutation. Daily soul food!
8. The House Itself: Take a full day to not leave the villa at all. Walk the grounds at different hours. Enjoy the light and shadows. Lose yourself in exquisite stone and wood carvings. Smell the flowers. Listen to the water cascading from the pool. Open all the windows and doors. Approach the temples and whisper a soft Thank You. Go up to the eagle's nest and witness the otherworldly panorama. Enjoy the breeze through the shady terrace. View the natural and man-made wonders from every lovely angle. Be dazzled.
9. Thoughtful Details: guides, menus, maps, great sound system and TV, DVDs and books, French press, flashlights, full kitchen, nice linens changed regularly, paper products, bottled water, wifi, easily arranged laundry and meal delivery.
10. Privacy: Perfect for couples. Doesn't get any more romantic and relaxing than Villa Rumah Cahaya.
The villa also has such amenities as a massage table with in-call masseuse. Beach areas are from 1/2 hour to an hour away (transportation is plentifully available and inexpensive), the city/town of Ubud with attractions such as shopping museums and restaurants is within walking distance, the Balinese village of Penestanan in which excellent painting and beadwork can be found is a short stroll from the house, Ubud is the perfectly located base for exploring all of Bali's offerings.