Last year we decided to do a short 3D2N getaway to one of the latest resorts on Bintan Island, The Canopi Resort. We loved the unusual tent rooms, and it certainly lives up to its name of glamour camping – glamping!
Apart from the tents, the main attraction is the large crystal clear Crystal Lagoon that is part of Treasure Bay Bintan, surrounded by sand. Treasure Bay is like a huge resort area and The Canopi is the only accommodation for now, but I gather there will be other concepts later. Anyhow, I loved that it is essentially filtered sea water in a free form swimming pool – so you get the fun of playing by the beach and swimming in some sea water but everything is much more sanitary 😀 Sorry but I cringe at the thought of going into local waters especially after an incident when we saw a golden retriever have diarrhea into the sea at Tanjong Beach on Sentosa. Ew right?!
Treasure Bay has all the (extra charge) activities like water bouncy castles, kayaking, air gun, ATVs, a mini mart, a spa, electric motor cycles, a boat ride, wake boarding etc. People from other resorts are able to pay to enter Treasure Bay, and everything is very new. The kids loved the water bouncy castles. There are also a few food options there.
At Canopi, we stayed in a safari tent, which is set slightly further back from the lagoon, although it is not too inconvenient. They also have jacuzzi tents, which is simply an outdoor jacuzzi plonked onto the verandah. I would recommend these only to families because there is very little privacy, so it probably won’t be ideal for a romantic getaway. Imagine trying to have some couple time…with people walking past. Frequently. The tents are also not sound proof, so it is possible you might have some noisy neighbors. We requested to be clustered together, and stayed in 4 villas out of a cluster of 6.
BTW when I wanted to book the tents in a cluster, I submitted a query to them through their website but after 2 weeks there was no reply. Then our original dates were all booked up. So I was a little annoyed. Eventually through their FB page I managed to get hold of another email address and from there I was able to communicate with them. They were very helpful when I finally managed to get a reply from them, so if you have any queries don’t hear from them in 2-3 days please do try to contact them again! They seem to have updated their website so I hope they have also improved their procedures.
Many of our friends were surprised that The Canopi is not expensive, and I think part of it is that the tents photograph well. Just do a search on IG and you will be impressed! In reality though, it is nice, but not luxurious. It is relatively new but some small bits and bobs could be better maintained. But overall it was clean and comfortable.
We reached Bintan at 1130am and headed straight to the resort to check in. The Canopi is the first resort from the ferry terminal, which is all of a 3 minute drive. Since check in is officially 3pm, we paid S$38 for a return bus ride for the 15 of us to the local hawker centre, which I had read about on blogs. We had the nasi padang as recommended by cheekiemonkies, and it was good! Simple and homely, and not too salty. We paid IDR1.4million for 15 of us.
On the first night, we decided to have their BBQ, which you can order from them on the day itself before 5pm. They will come set it up for you on your patio or in the common area (if you have one), and you do the BBQ yourself. We had 11 adults (including 2 teens), and 4 kids and we ordered 3 of the 4 person sets so that caters for a total of 12 people, and it was too much for us. We asked for the BBQ to start at 6pm, but since BBQs take time to set up and get going, and there is limited space on which you can BBQ, we probably should have asked for it to start at 5pm. Perhaps we should have brought our own electric hot plates as well!
The rooms come with breakfast which is a small selection, but filling enough. There is nothing fantastic but there is usually at least a few things which are nice, like a vegetable curry, or the freshly baked croissants. There is only 1 restaurant here, and you might read on other blogs that the food prices are around SG prices. Newsflash guys, this is not Tanjung Pinang town ok. Every Bintan resort charges SG prices, it’s nothing new and has been happening for decades (OMG can’t believe I’m old enough to say that). There are however, several small stalls at the Treasure Bay side which open later in the day which I did not try. You could always stock up your own pantry like we did.
Yes, everything here is our own!! Except for maybe those 2 bottles of mineral water.
The next evening we decided to go to a kelong for dinner. Apparently there are many kelongs around, and depending on which staff member you speak to, they might recommend different ones. There is one which is apparently a 15min boat ride away, but we went for the one which is a 5 min drive and 5 min boat ride away. The kids enjoyed the boat ride, past the mangrove shoreline.
However the mosquitoes enjoyed feasting on us when we were having dinner. At D’Bintan kelong, we ordered off the menu and the food wasn’t anything spectacular and came up to IDR4.6million. They do have set menus for 8 pax for IDR1.6million which is probably what we should have done. Well next time maybe. Or maybe not on account of the mosquitoes and average food. It was a fun experience though.
As they are building many more tents, it was a little noisy during the day, but that didn’t disturb us too much. Even at the spa tent you could hear the construction, but I was too tired to care! The massage was good value, Around IDR400k for 2 hours, but the spa tent has 4 beds divided by 2, separated by a canvas sheet (like tent material), so you might end up sharing a section with a stranger. Treasure Bay also hosts a spa, which my husband said looks more like a spa, since it’s not in a tent and I’m guessing has more space.
We stayed only 2 nights here and wouldn’t have minded staying longer. As it was late November, there were short periods of rain or it was overcast, but at other times it was ridiculously scorching hot too.
For your reference, and for those of you who don’t know, Pulau Bintan actually houses the town of Tanjung Pinang.
The Canopi Resort
Jln. Raya Haji KM 01 Kawasan
Pariwisata, Teluk Sebong Lagoi,
Bintan, Kepulauan Riau 29152
(+62) 770 – 69 – 2252
(+62) 770 – 69 – 2253