Batam is a little under an hour away from Singapore via ferry. Telunas private island, however, is an extra 90 minutes away — an extra 90 minutes that’s well worth it in my opinion. In that time taken to get away from Singapore and then Batam, the (sea) water goes from a murky muddy green to bright turquoise that everyone longs for.
Telunas has been the epitome of Idyllic island life for me… so far. There’s little or almost no need to plan when going to Telunas, with the exception of the dates of your arrival and departure of course.
Simply book your dates, get on a ferry to Batam and be whisked off to the island by staff that will be waiting for you at the Sekupang Ferry Terminal.
Once on the island all you’ll need to fuss over is whatever tickles your fancy. The resort provides all three meals every day throughout your stay because there isn’t anywhere else to eat on the island, lest you decide to go foraging in the jungle (please don’t).
The dining area overlooks the sea and the kitchen keeps things interesting by switching up its menu daily, with the exception of breakfast. Breakfast is a simple buffet line and a menu of three to four a la carte dishes.
And of course there’s an egg station. Continental dishes filled the breakfast a la carte menu, with the exception of the nasi uduk, a dish centred around coconut rice cooked with cloves and lemongrass added to impart even more aroma.
And right off the bat I feel obligated to highlight that WiFi data connection is non-existent at Telunas. A “deficiency” deliberately implemented by the owners to be part of the experience.
If you’re a slave to your smartphone or any other handheld device, maybe this isn’t the sort of getaway you’re looking for. After all, you won’t be able to update your throngs of followers on Snapchat or Instagram about the fun you’re having on your getaway.
Cynicism aside, I’d recommend Telunas to couples, families or the odd group of friends looking to unplug for a short and fuss-free getaway.
With the lack of what many would consider a creature comfort, Telunas takes it a step further, going against the norm of almost every other hotel or resort. The absence of air-conditioning may seem like a step too far for some though.
However, the villas at Telunas have been thoughtfully built, ensuring an extremely comfortable stay. The sea breeze passes through the villa throughout the day, and of course there are ceiling fans. As the sun sets, the nights become pleasantly chilly. If you needed an example of how cool it can get… I’ve never slept using a comforter sans air-conditioning, till my stay at Telunas.
The island and its surrounding waters are your playground for the duration of your stay. Kayaking, stand-up paddling, fishing, jetty jump or if you prefer activities guided by Telunas’ staff, it’s all available.
All you’ve got to do is inform the staff what it is you’d like to do and they’ll handle the hard work. We kayaked, stand up paddled and fished from our villa’s balcony.
When you’re done and spent, chill out by the pool (and bar) or get a massage with a view and the sound of waves lapping against the shore. The spa, opened in March 2017 is the latest addition to the island’s facilities.
Pick from a variety of 60 minute (450,000++ IDR) or 30 minute (350,000++ IDR) massage offerings, we went for the Telunas massage that is said to help guests transit to island life. I didn’t find it particularly difficult to disconnect from social media and kick back, but the long kneading strokes of Telunas massage is well worth the time (and money).
As night falls and everyone is done soaking up the sun for the day, sit down for dinner with whoever it is you’ve decided to bring along. Banter, talk and enjoying the company comes at no extra cost. Neither does the unpolluted night sky where you can enjoy roasting marshmallows to some live music.
If you’re looking for a short getaway where connecting and bonding with friends, family or a loved one is guaranteed, look no further. Telunas forces guests to put aside their social crutches and actually spend time socialising. And while some may find island life a bit too slow, it’s really not such a bad thing if you just spent a day on this idyllic little island soaking up the sun while thinking about it.