Hot lava soared hundreds of meters into the Balinese air, halting all flights and threatening our trip to the Island of the Gods. We had been planning our return to Bali for months, but Mount Agung threatened to turn our tranquil vacation into a chaotic cancelation. Luckily, our flight to Bali was only delayed and our trip would indeed proceed. Upon touching down in Bali, the threat of Mount Agung’s ongoing pandemonium quickly dissipated as soon as we entered the relaxing refuge of The Four Seasons Sayan.


Upon walking into the Four Seasons Sayan, a bellhop immediately greeted us and tied traditional sarongs around our waists. He then handed us a bamboo hammer and said, “take this and hit the wood three times.” Upon tapping the hammer-like stick to a hanging wooden figure, the noise it created seemed to echo throughout the jungle. It was a jolting, yet soothing noise that quickly cloaked us with serenity. The noise separated us from the madness of the world and set our intentions for our trip to Ubud, the spiritual center of Bali.

The Location

The Four Seasons Sayan is located in the town of Sayan, near Ubud, the spiritual center of Bali. Far away from the tourist trap of Kuta and the chaos of the capital, Sayan and Ubud offer a quiet jungle respite to cocoon travelers in tranquility.

The Service

The service at the Four Seasons Sayan was by far the best service that we have ever experienced of any hotel around the world. From the moment we walked onto the tranquil jungle property, our every want and need was anticipated and effortlessly executed. Shortly after leaving the hotel, the Four Seasons Sayan was voted the number one hotel in the world according to Travel + Leisure and a massive reason why is because of its impeccable service. If it’s the number one hotel in the world, you know it’s definitely one of the best hotels in Bali.


The Hotel

Despite being a large brand name, the Four Seasons Sayan treats itself as a boutique hotel, paying close attention to every single guest and every detail. The multi-level open-air hotel seemingly suspends itself in the air above the Ayung River. While it’s just a short drive from the center of Ubud, its private location seems a world away from the hustle and bustle of Bali.

The Rooms

There are 60 rooms and villas at the Four Seasons Sayan. We stayed in a one-bedroom villa, complete with a spacious room and King-sized bed, lotus pond, indoor and outdoor showers, a private pool, a walk-in closet, a bathtub, and his and hers sinks. The rooms are decorated in a way that transports the traveler to the spiritual center of Bali, effortlessly incorporating traditional Balinese elements with modern amenities.

We also had the opportunity to tour the premier villa on the property, the Royal Villa. This is the same villa where Julia Roberts stayed during “Eat, Pray, Love” and where the Obama’s spent their family vacation in 2017. This three-story, three-bedroom villa is located on the Ayung River and houses an indoor and outdoor kitchen, relaxed living areas, and a massive pool.


All of the villas offer an intimate and secluded location, creating the feeling of omnipresent privacy. Every villa has views of the jungle and/or Ayung River, but guests will never see another villa from their own. This spacious layout fosters a wonderful cocoon of intimacy for all of the guests at the Four Seasons Sayan.


The Activities

The Four Seasons Sayan has an expert yoga program and its very own yoga bale overlooking the rice paddies and Ayung River. Every single day, we took part in complimentary sunrise yoga classes as well as Hatha yoga and Aerial yoga classes. From the yoga bale, we would watch the sunrise over the palm trees of the jungle, illuminating the valley floor and filling our souls with vibrant energy for the day ahead.

The Four Seasons Resort Bali at Sayan can organize plenty of other outdoor adventures for a trip to Ubud including white water rafting, trekking, and mountain biking.


The Spa

The gym and spa at the Four Seasons Sayan were absolutely perfect for our wellness routines. The gym had plenty of free weights, weightlifting machines, and cardio machines while the spa was the perfect place to rest and relax after a day of adventures. We both went to see the in-house healer who performed ritualistic ceremonies on us to cleanse our minds, bodies, and souls. This is Ubud after all – one must surrender to the Island of the Gods! We also had deep tissue massages, which were absolute perfection and one of the best massages we’ve ever had.