Julie Audette and her husband own and run The Movement, a recently established, independent bicycle store whose mission is to create a platform for people to live a healthier, happier and greener lifestyle. They stock a selection of stylish, affordable and practical Linus bicycles from Venice, California for adults and children as well as a carefully curated range of trendy accessories to enhance your cycling experience. The shop is located at the Dubai Garden Centre on Sheikh Zayed Road and opening hours are from 10am to 6pm everyday.
Live the Ride. Join The Movement
Here is her diary…
Destination Bali, Indonesia
Stayed at We stayed at 2 hotels during our stay.
From the moment I arrived in the open-air lobby, I felt an immediate sense of bliss. Upon arrival, we were handed a fresh cold towel and a fresh strawberry juice. I loved these personalized touches having worked in a five star hotel, you want to have this intimate connection when you are welcomed. Throughout our stay, the service was extremely attentive without being overwhelming.
Breakfast at Petani was impressive. The staff is welcoming, efficient and full of smiles. The a la carte menu offers breakfast sets including a Continental, American, Balinese and even a Silhouette option for the health conscious guests (like us!). All sets come with freshly squeezed juice, a fruit platter, homemade yoghurt and a breadbasket containing fresh croissants, local pastries and toast. And specialized coffees and teas. The quality of the food is brilliant and service was impeccable.
The hotel’s design is composed of natural materials such as wooden ceilings and doors and stone pathways creating a stylish and relaxing environment. All rooms have a private balcony with a daybed, which face the rice paddies. Our room was generously sized with a ultra confortable king-size bed, flat screen TV, free wi-fi and a lovely rain shower. The natural theme of the hotel is well reflected in the rooms. We found that the vanity space was too small.
The Alaya serves complimentary afternoon tea and Balinese sweets at Petani restaurant from 3:00pm to 5:00pm everyday but we were out and about every day so we didn’t get a chance to try it! We were told that it was great.
The pool is spacious and extremely quiet, perfect for reading and relaxing in their comfortable wooden lounge chairs. They also have a cabana with a light snack and beverage menu. I had to try the refreshing strawberry-basil mocktail. Amazing.
Overall, we adored our stay at the Alaya. Their sincere service, the sublime design details, ideal setting and great location made the first days of our honeymoon memorable.
Our second hotel was Corner 88 Ubud is a recently opened small contemporary designed boutique hotel. Composed of 8 villas, all with an intimate outdoor living space and private pool the hotel offers spectacular views of the Wos River landscape and the Tirta Empul Temple at Singapadu Ubud Bali.
After spending the first part of our holiday in Ubud, we were looking for a hotel that would offer us a more secluded environment. Located at traditional of Mawang Village, Ubud Corner 88 Villas, is surrounded by luscious greenery and the magnificent views of the Wos River & Tirta Empul Temple of Singapadu Village in Ubud Bali.
The view of hillside gardens amongst the tropical forest with multiple shades of green is spectacular. The complex is surrounded by Frangipani, Eucalyptus and many more luscious exotic trees. The architecture of the villas integrates the traditional Bali design but with Western influences. The layout offers a stunning view but also makes it very private. (Except on a few occasions where you can have a few local visitors from the Temple who will wave at you).
Service wise, the staff was very considerate and attentive from the moment we arrived. We were welcomed with a signature drink and traditional Balinese sweets. It was a nice touch to find a heart made out of petals on our bed and in the outdoor stone bathtub welcoming us in our Villa. The free shuttle service into Ubud works very well and leaves twice a day to and from Ubud Centre. We did have a few minor issues such as a door not closing well and a clogged water basin but staff was extremely accommodating and they made the appropriate repair quickly.
The energy of this place is charming.
In My Suitcase
I always travel light! Most of my trips I travel with a backpack and a carry-on. It’s always faster making sure you’re not waiting for you luggage for connecting flights and when you come back home. My tip for packing light is to create a 10 piece interchangeable wardrobe for travel. I choose clothing items strategically to maximize my travel outfit options. For this trip, I opted for a casual, confortable and eco-friendly style.
What’s in my suitcase:
- My Lululemon Yoga outfits
- 2 cotton dress
- Comfy cotton T’s and shorts
- 1 long boh0-chic dress for New Year’s celebration
- Birkenstocks, Toms, Havaianas
- My favorite sarong from Zanzibar
- 2 relaxed fit fleece sweaters
- Rattan hat
- Wooden bangles and natural stone jewelry
Diary Eat Pray, Love… and a little shopping! Our days consisted of eating healthy food, yoga, mediation, spa, walking hand in hand, cycling, a little bit of shopping. We stayed around Ubud throughout our stay in Bali as we truly wanted to relax and we didn’t want to do too much traveling. Ubud is a beautiful spot in the heart of Bali that has so much to offer in terms of things to do, culture and the exquisite natural environment.
Tegalalang Rice Terrace On the recommendation of our friend, we decided to visit Tegalalang rice terrace on our last day. With no expectation, we were blown away by the view. My husband and I looked and each other and were speechless. We spent about 1 hour trekking and taking in the sights and sounds of nature. Enjoying the simpler kind of life.
Living the Ride, even in Bali As we are so passionate about cycling, we were excited to hop on a bike to discover rural Bali. We rented our bicycles from Alaya Hotel to explore on our own. It’s such an amazing feeling for me to swing a leg over a bike. We had a great excursion interacting with local farmers, listening to the birds and just taking in the beautiful scenery. We stuck to the back roads as the traffic on the main roads can be stressful.
Yoga Barn We chilled at The Yoga Barn on a few occasions, as it’s only a few steps away from Alaya hotel. Yoga Barn has a café, a holistic healing center, an Ayurvedic Rejuvenation center and yoga studios. From lounging on the Garden Kafe’s outdoor couches to finding the yogi in us, we enjoyed every moment of our time spent there.
The Yoga Barn has highly qualified staff with some of the best yoga instructors in the world- It can be intimidating at first but we adjusted pretty quickly. Their yoga approach is a complete physical, mental and spiritual exercise. They also offer holistic healing sessions to help you find balance in physical, emotional and spiritual well-being.
Dined in We were definitely excited to be in the raw food capital, with more vegetarian, vegan and raw food restaurants per square meter than New York or LA. On friend’s recommendations, we have tried many local favourites on Ubud’s main strip.
Our favorite eating experience has to be at Pica. A sweet South-American restaurant on Dewi Sita street in Central Ubud. We enjoyed it so much the first time that we booked again for New Year’s eve! It’s a relatively small spot (24 covers) with a cheerful open kitchen. Service was prompt and interactive. On both occasions, our experience was faultless and cuisine was inspirational. It’s clear that the owners & staff are putting a lot of attention into bringing amazing food to the table. We recommend trying out this culinary gem.
We also enjoyed Alchemy in Penestanan village, about 2 km south of Ubud Centre. Their raw salad bar (yes, salad can be kick-ass) and their vegan and raw desert selection are simply amazing. All of their chocolates, pies and cakes are made without refined sugar, dairy or gluten.
Taco Casa was another great find. Located in South Ubud, this small, Mexican cantina is serving seriously authentic Mexican plates. There’s a lot of care given to their homemade sauces too. The pico de gallo is chopped fresh and a good complement to their exceptional cheese enchiladas or soft shell tacos. Yes, real good Mexican food in Bali can be achieved.
Shopped We shopped mainly in Ubud Centre on Monkey Forest Road. We found many independent little shops. We always bring back an elephant as a souvenir from all our travels and we found a contemporary copper elephant figure in a small little jewelry shop. We also bought many wooden teak bowls, plates and utensils as we love to cook and host.
My husband also bought me a stunning silver and copper handmade ring to immortalize our honeymoon, how romantic is that!
Tips The first sale of the day is considered lucky so salespeople will give you best prices in the morning when the shops open.
Must do:Spa days! Most definitely! Çantika spa in Penastanan is a traditional rustic Balinese spa set in the middle of nature. We booked the Meurut Spa Package which includes an hour-long massage, a full body scrub and flower bath. The treatment was sublime and as well as the setting. The spa is renown for its organic all natural products, which we’ve brought back home, of course. Everything is handmade with plants home grown in their gardens.
Dala Spa at Alaya resort Ubud, was admittedly one of the most amazing spa experiences ever.
We spent the evening indulging at the spa. One and a half hours of pure bliss for their signature couple’s foot massage, followed by great cinnamon tea and many homemade date cookies.
Not to do: The most touristy part of Ubud can be found at Monkey Forest Rd, where it can get a little overwhelming. The best thing to do is smile as most people trying to make an honest living and they don’t insist if you politely refuse their offers. Ubud Art Market located across the road from the Royal Ubud Palace. The market features numerous shops displaying everything from silk scarves, handmade bags, baskets or handcrafted goods. You find the same items in almost all the kiosks and their quality is low.
Religion & Culture: I’ve learned that the main religion practiced in Bali is a form of Hinduism called Agama Hindy Dharma. The main symbol of Balinese Hinduism is the Swastika or wheel of the sun. Bali is renowned for its diverse and sophisticated art forms, such as painting, sculpture, woodcarving, handcrafts, and traditional Balinese dance.
How to get there The Emirates flight was flawless as always but we have to say that we were a bit nervous about our flight back with Air Asia as it was only a few days after the tragic crash of an Air Asia flight. We were grateful that we only had a short departure delay, which made us sprint to catch our connecting flight on Emirates from Jakarta, but all went safely and smoothly.
Best part of it Sipping on fresh coconut water enjoying the rice paddy views.