5 places to go in the Brooklyn of Bali

Surf culture, bohemian vibes and contemporary convenience collide in Canggu, sending waves through the property market on the Island of the Gods

A sculpture of Gajah Mina along Pererenan beach in Canggu, Bali, Indonesia. Danaan/Shutterstock

Expatriates longing for a reprieve from the tourist throngs in Kuta and Seminyak have lit a fire under Canggu, Bali’s hottest coastal bohemian hub. Known for year-round swells, photogenic rice paddies, and a thriving yoga scene, the one-time fishing village has seen private beachfront properties fetch sky-high prices (as high as USD12 million). It’s not all des res boltholes for the super-rich though. Beach clubs, street art, sustainable restaurants, healthy cafes, co-working spaces, skating bowls, and alternative lifestyle businesses maintain a countercultural vibe. Newly transplanted households, meanwhile, are catered for with increasingly family-friendly amenities, including an international school and several water parks.

The Double View Mansions Bali

This compound of 44 apartments, slotted into four three-level buildings in a 3,000-square-metre plot near Pantai Lima Beach, offers some of the best investment opportunities in Canggu. The residences managed by Italian expats Valerio Tocci and Luca Simioni are available to own on a leasehold term of 45 years—longer than the 25-30 year arrangement common in the island. As holiday homes, The Double View Mansions more than hold up their end of the bargain. The units, which range up to 205 square metres in size, overlook scenic rice fields on one side and the Indian Ocean on the other, with amenities like an open-air restaurant, breakfast bar, spa, gym, and 20-metre swimming pool.

COMO Uma Canggu

The 119-unit, 2.2-acre resort development fronts some of Bali’s best surf breaks. The property, styled by interior designers Koichiro Ikebuchi and Paola Navone, includes 55 serviced residences and 12 three-bedroom duplex penthouses boasting luxe beds and private rooftop pools. Residents and guests can take part in surfing lessons by Tropicsurf or confer with yogis at the COMO Shambhala Retreat. The COMO Beach Club is a contemporary twist on the surf shack: encompassing a restaurant that serves wood-fired seafood dishes; a 25-metre lap pool; and bar with sunset views, sound-tracked by live acoustic music or DJ sets.

Fishbone Local

Seafood restaurant Fishbone Local only serves fair-trade catch thanks to its partnership with social enterprise Bali Sustainable Seafood which helps local fishers. The restaurant, set near Batu Bolong beach, keeps diners guessing with a menu that rotates according to the day’s catch. Favourites include barramundi, grilled or pan-seared and tikka swordfish skewers with turmeric and coconut. The interiors keep the sustainability motif going with lighting fixtures repurposed from crab traps and menu baskets recycled from fishing nets.

La Brisa

Reclaimed wood from fishing boats was used to build La Brisa, a watering hole which opened in September 2017 at Echo Beach — a favourite surf spot near Canggu. The two-storey beach club, the latest venture by Lyd Bali Group, the impresarios behind similarly laid-back ventures La Plancha in Seminyak and La Favela in Kuta, embodies shabby tropical chic with chunky rope and fishing implements counting among the nautical décor, complemented by striped chairs, bean bags, and boat seats. Anchored by a spacious swimming pool, La Brisa has herb-infused spirits and exotic cocktails on the menu while the restaurant lists sustainably sourced, Spanish-themed fare. Tables with the best sunset views are available by reservation.

Crate

The hipster café, launched in 2014, moved in 2017 to its current location at Jalan Canggu Padang Linjong. Owner and surfer Maree Suteja from Australia showcases a love for locally sourced Indonesian beanery, along with sugar-free vegetable juices, fruit smoothies, and chia-infused beverages. Crate also specialises in all-day breakfast, which covers gluten-free and vegan items, and Aussie options. A concept store stocks clothing from designer labels around the island. The establishment also moonlights as an art gallery, hosting evening exhibitions and seeking out undiscovered creatives.

Haze & Glory

International fashion model Andre Hamann, along with surfer-designers Rik and Kim Fiddické, became darlings of the slow fashion movement with the opening of their flagship Haze & Glory store near Batu Bolong beach in 2015. Haze & Glory capitalises on the talents of Bali artisans to create vintage-inspired deconstructed garments and handcrafted jewellery. Backed by a solid online presence, Haze & Glory cuts middlemen from the supply chain and sells straight to customers worldwide, enabling them to pay higher wages to Balinese workers while ensuring high standards in production.

This article originally appeared in Issue No. 150 of PropertyGuru Property Report Magazine

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