Retreat Reviews

Bawah Reserve – a gem in Anabas Archipelago, a review by Om & Away

B a w a h R e s e r v e ; This is barefoot, sustainable luxury and it’s truly heaven on earth.

A wellness retreat and dedicating yourself to getting fit and healthy can often sound daunting and resemble a challenge. But imagine if you could do it all in a paradise surrounded by lush tropical greenery, blue skies and azure waters in the epicenter of marine bio-diversity?

It was one of those unique experiences you are torn between keeping it a secret or sharing it’s beauty with the world. It was too good to be true. We have to share this magnificent place and we want everyone to experience it for themselves.

We Om and Away on an amphibious seaplane to Bawah Reserve and had the most epic weekend in this dreamy paradise. Bawah Reserve offers you a comprehensive and all-inclusive luxury that is in Indonesia’s remote Anambas Archipelago, complete with all the luxuries you can possibly dream of.  

We were incredibly stoked to see this slice of paradise as we’d always dream of jetting off on a seaplane to a private island and were absolutely thrilled when the unique opportunity arises to take a trip of a lifetime and to explore this untouched part of the world on this luxurious island.

We left our home in Singapore at first light and following a 20 minute drive, we arrived at Batam Ferry Terminal. Bawah Reserve had organised a VIP fast track ferry experience to Batam. The best part was travelling on the seaplane! It was super cool to see our barefoot pilot and we knew immediately that we were in for a real island adventure treat. Landing in water was indeed the most thrilling experience, not forgetting the surrounding was just the most beautiful view we have ever seen.

Our hearts were so full when we saw a group of Bawah Reserve staffs waving at us while waiting for our seaplane to land in waters. We instantly fell in love with everyone and this island paradise. As soon as we got off the seaplane, Mr Raymond, the General Manager of Bawah Reserve together with his team greeted us with our names. (How lovely is it that they remember every guests’ names prior to seeing us?) This just goes to show the heart-warming service that they extend to their guests is unmatched.

We had the utmost privilege to stay in the overwater bungalow which allowed us for easy snorkeling and sunrise swim right from our deck. Besides that, we got to enjoy villa dining while feeling the gentle sea breeze and watching the picturesque turquoise views. We are not exaggerating when we say that we’ve seen the most crystal clear waters and breathtaking turquoise blue sea.

The all inclusive vacation package provided us a myriad activities at no extra cost. You can look forward to water sports activities such as snorkeling, sailing, stand-up paddling, kayaking and more! Even if you are not a water lover, you can participate in land activities which included guided hikes, yoga/pilates classes, unlimited spa treatments all day, private picnic the beach, sunset cruise, star gazing and even cinema under the stars.

There is so much to explore and do on this incredible island that your inner child will be bursting with excitement for the possibilities each day.

We woke up at sunrise for a hike with our amazing guide, Sure, who led us through lush greenery trek, catching the rays of the warm morning sun. As soon as we reached the peak of the hill, we were rewarded with a magnificent view of the surrounding islets, and were lucky to watch a flock of beautiful white birds flying across the island in harmony.

We discovered the secrets of Bawah’s underwater world where we were led by Mr Didi, the Dive master who showed us Bawah’s colourful reefs as soon as we plunge into the sea. We got up close and personal with the most beautiful marine life such as giant bump head parrot fish, baby reef sharks and long-nosed trumpet fish.

Time in the ultramarine blue waters is never enough. We spent our time leisurely doing water sports like stand-up paddling, kayaking and sailing; just basically soaking in the summer vibes, quite literally!

Health and wellness are ingrained in Bawah Reserve; with daily yoga and pilates on offer. You will be able to downward dog to the sound of the ocean as the sun rises on the beach or on the terrace of your overwater villa.

For anyone looking to revive and rejuvenate during their stay at Bawah Reserve, the onsite Aura Spa and Wellness does not disappoint. Nestled in the paradise’s beachfront jungle, they offer an extensive menu from from relaxing rituals to deep massages, local and traditional body treatments, detox programs, and facials – it’s a prime paradise for anyone in need of some serious pampering. We really enjoyed the spa’s signature massages and, greeted with an ambience of serenity and a cup of ginger honey tea, left enveloped in a haze of pure, unadulterated bliss.

Bawah Reserve is your contemporary alluring eco-friendly offshore escape. Sustainable eco-friendly tourism is at the heart of Bawah Reserve. Their eco-friendly approach extends across all operations, from their permaculture to their products: ocean-friendly sun cream, eco-friendly laundry detergent, and no plastic bottles. All of their waste is recycled; all paper is mulched; food waste is composted, and crushed glass is used in the water filtering process. The only land vehicles are their electric buggies and they even have 2 solar powered boats! We were even told that everything was made by hand and no heavy machinery was involved in the 6 years worth building process! How crazy is that.

We also need to mention that the service at Bawah is exceptional. It is actually the most genuine and homely experience we’ve encountered while travelling. It doesn’t matter who you approach on this island, your wishes will be someone’s command and everything will be sorted. And the best part? You can feel that they do it from their heart. Undoubtedly, we have forged great friendships on this intimate island with the Bawah community- isn’t this the wonderful part of travelling?

From our initial encounter with Bawah Reserve as soon as they picked us up from our home to the ferry to jetting off on the seaplane to cozying up in our villa and exploring the island’s luscious grounds, this acclaimed paradise embodied luxurious comfort.


Offering endless opportunities for relaxation while surrounded by the most beautiful beaches, few places do barefoot sustainable luxury quite so well as Bawah Reserve; a real Om&Away for the mind, body and soul.

Come Om and Away with us to Bawah Reserve and treat yourself to a holistic wellness experience.
Discover more here.

Jacqueline & Iris

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