Tuesday, February 6, 2018


I have been extolling the virtues of the Bintan Lagoon Resort on Indonesia’s Bintan Island every time I had been there, because they’ve always been everything they had advertised themselves to be, and even more so. Furthermore, there’s a significant difference between now and my features on BLR in the past. Back then, I usually traveled there to relax on my own, or with a companion or two. Now, I’d like to regale my readers of my latest excursion to Bintan near the end of January, this time at the head of a decently large group. What fun we had.
The trip I mentioned was at the tail end of a week-long early-year vacation trip for me and the handful of employees in my company. With them and my mother along, I took them to Singapore where we spent three days exploring the Marina Bay Sands, Universal Studios in Sentosa and the Gardens by the Bay, before capping off our sojourn with an overnight stay at the Bintan Lagoon Resort. To reiterate, I’ve stayed with them enough times to be accorded some really awesome benefits, which I’ve in turn been very eager to share with the rest of my employees.
As soon as we reached the Bintan port of Sebong after a lunchtime ferry ride from Singapore’s Tanah Merah, we were immediately met at arrivals by BLR’s enthusiastic shuttle service, with a big Morgan Magazine placard just for us. After our party of eight (including myself) piled into the van, we were off to that wonderful beach getaway that I’ve never imaginably gotten tired of.
Had we decided to visit at any other time from the monsoon season (like Sunday last week) then perhaps the ferry would’ve been able to drop us off at the Resort itself. But the overland route to BLR was just as beautiful, especially as it turned into the entrance roadway, which wound in between the sprawling and well-kept golf greens of BLR’s two 18-hole courses, the Jack Nicklaus and the Ian Baker Finch.
When we got off at the resort entrance our party was greeted by their welcoming and highly conversational concierge. As part of our VVIP welcome (note the second V, not a typo) we were served a round of lemongrass drinks with which we toasted our vacation and the company’s good year that spurred this getaway.
Following a brief welcome meeting between myself and the General Manager of Bintan Lagoon, plus the stowing of our luggage in our rooms (fourth floor west wing, and the accommodations are just as heavenly as I remembered for all of us), I took my mom and my subordinates on a grand tour. Treks to the golf course hole near our hotel wing, plus the infinity pool, lookout point and the white sand beach were mandatory (and the BLR has kept all these well maintained). But we’re a group, it makes sense for us to look at the many group activities they have on offer.

Passing by the beach we saw kayaks and surfboards out near the beachside activity shack, and I know they also have jet skis and banana boats ready for any party looking for an adventure out in the water. As my impromptu tour continued I showed my companions the resort’s tennis and basketball courts, dart room, and reservations desk for both paintball matches and air rifle shooting range. Those definitely sound very inviting across all safety levels, but I had a particular group activity I planned to share with everyone the following day: BLR’s ATV rides.
The next day, following a dip in the pool, an awesome buffet dinner at Fiesta, a dreamy night’s sleep in our rooms and an equally filling buffet breakfast (one of my employees insisted on clearing three full plates both times), I took my team back down to the beach where we got a set of ATVs (two of us on some, one and a guide each on two) for a ride along BLR’s wilder and more natural spots. I’ve been intimately familiar with the ATV route, having run in before in visits past, but riding through the beach and forested area with ma and all my staff was absolutely something else.
I did say we were only up for an overnight stay, so that ATV ride was the only resort-offered group activity we actually got to engage in, but what a rush all the same! The guides who went with us were consummate pros in their jobs but very friendly and approachable, and I could most certainly say the same for all the staff of the other activities to be had at the Bintan Lagoon Resort.
Oh wait; there’s actually more. When our time at the resort was almost at an end, and our baggage was being readied for loading at our shuttle bus back to the port, the staff offered us an awesome opportunity to tour the expanses of their golf course. And we got to do it on golf carts. That was definitely something else, driving through the neat greens with their sand traps and their water hazards (the largest of which have paddle boats for non-golfing guests, even!), and then the rough areas with the bushes and trees abound with squirrels and komodo dragons. That was a mind-blowing way to pass time while waiting for our bus. Two of my subordinates who have never driven four-wheeled vehicles before, got their “baptism of fire” behind the wheels of their golf carts.

Guests can rest assured that they will be well cared for at Bintan Lagoon Resort, no matter what fun diversion they’ve got in mind. And the amenities, as always, are nothing to sneeze at. But you don’t need me to talk you through all the wonders of BLR. You can see all the specifics of what you can enjoy with them, by visiting their official website at http://www.bintanlagoon.com because who knows; you might just find a sweet vacation package that’s just right for you, and your family or company team.


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