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Bali’s hottest beach club launches its coolest villa collection

Bali’s hottest beach club launches its coolest villa collection

By Hamish McDougall

The Clubhouse at Ulu is everything you’d expect of a clique of seven villas attached to the legendary Ulu Cliffhouse beach club. Decadent yet laid back. Effortlessly chic. Fabulously enviable – from its showstopping interiors to its iconic Uluwatu views.

It’s the latest venture by M. Development, which began life as a property investment company only to find itself custom-building luxury villas in Bali while opening hospitality projects in Singapore.

“We enter businesses we’re not classically trained in,” says Ben Jones, M. Development’s co-founder and CEO. “We didn’t start out driving for a hospitality business. It just happened organically.”

This outsider approach has launched category-defining establishments such as the experimental underground cocktail joint Operation Dagger and, of course, the sun-drenched, hard-partying Cliffhouse at Ulu beach club. It’s all done in-house by their architecture and interiors, engineering and operations teams – “Projects move along a conveyor belt, from land to design to finance to hospitality” – and the Clubhouse at Ulu brings all of these interests together.

It’s a boutique hotel attached to a beach club. The kind of place you want to go without the kids, where you can head down for dinner, have a dance, and then a skinny dip after midnight.

There are seven individual suites, featuring totally distinct layouts and interiors. The look is decadent yet relaxed; it’s Ibiza-inspired but at home in Bali, made with local materials and by local artisans.

What ties it all together is the attitude: “We’re not going for the Eat, Pray, Love crowd,” says Jones. Starting with the views across the beach club, moving on to the signature mini-bars – “There is no better mini bar in Bali, maybe Asia” – and ending (perhaps) in room service care of The Dose, whose qualified nurses deliver vitamin IV therapy to take care of any morning-after malaise.

And all of this could be yours – for a night or two, yes, but also more permanently. The seven villas are for sale as an exclusive investment opportunity combining room nights and rental yields.

“All of our investments have yield as the focus,” say Jones. And the team is forecasting an attractive rate of return of 14% or more, and guaranteeing 7% for the first two years. But it’s equally an investment with benefits: 21 days each year for personal use, F&B credit of USD $5k, exclusive discounts across the group and access to music event packages.

As Jones says, “You’ve got to have fun with it and not take yourself too seriously.”

Go further with the Clubhouse at Ulu: theclubhouseatulu.com


Where to now?

By Hamish McDougall

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