July 31, 2019

There’s a certain unspoken rule to dating a man who has a child from a previous marriage. Do what you can to make the most of your alone time with him. So like me, if you’re planning a quick getaway, then Montigo Resorts, Nongsa is where you should be putting all your romance eggs in one basket.

For those who have never considered Batam to be a vacation spot, it is only a 30-min ferry ride away. Upon whizzing through customs, pick-up is a breeze and in under 20 minutes, you’re entering the cool white sprawling grounds of Montigo Resorts. Even if you get a little seasick from the boat ride prior to your arrival, the breathtaking and expansive seaside view at the lobby will quell your discomfort immediately.


On the facade, Montigo Resorts, Nongsa, may appear no-frills to some, but the property allows for the beauty of nature to take centrestage. Sunsets and dramatic purple hues get a standing ovation juxtaposed with the rise and fall of waves at the far-extending pier. From the suites, views of the Singapore skyline stand brazenly against the blue skies, easing you into a lull state of peacefulness. Views aside, Montigo Resorts, Nongsa does have other tricks up its sleeves.

For one, the resort operates with the tiniest residence being a suite, and since all suites are guaranteed to have their own infinity pool, it’s a sure-win when it comes to living large. Be ready for those Instagram moments best captured at certain hours (i.e. sunset, dusk and early mornings when the light is more lenient on its subjects.) Then, there is the complimentary buggy service available for all guests to move around with ease; no need to break out into a sweat with those excruciating inclines just to get to breakfast—unless you’re up for some exercise. We would heavily advise taking a walk back to your villa from Tadd’s as the complimentary breakfast spread serves up regional favourites like fresh roti canai and nasi lemak, right down to the mandatory egg station that never gets old. But before I jump the gun on the food offerings, let’s explore the rooms, shall we?


The resort’s beachfront location and tiered arrangement ensure that each villa gets its own privacy—which is a huge part of the appeal of staying here. Yay to skinny-dipping at all hours of the day, uninterrupted. The premium one-bedroom villa boasts white walls and nautical-themed embellishments with a healthy dosage of inspirational quotes to get you on your feet. These surroundings give the resort a tranquil, laid-back air that is instantly soothing for tired souls. Stepping into the other two, three, four and five-bedroom villas offer a transportive experience into your own private oasis as well.

Aside from the accommodation, there are stunning, palm-fringed lagoon-style pools and a larger communal pool with direct access to the beach bar. The piña colada is the ace in the hole of all beachside holiday cocktails and you’re best off ordering it where you can visually see coconut trees growing on the fringe of the property. Although most renditions are concocted with coconut cream straight out of a carton, the imagery does feed into the vacation vibes. If you want to get a little more adventurous, there is a wide range of in-house activities that you can partake in such as archery, paintball and even ATV riding. To combat fatigue, we recommend making a beeline for their spa. Have your woes kneaded away with invigorating homemade body scrubs or surprise your partner with a special couples therapy session under one roof. Take note: spontaneity is not appreciated as you’re expected to call early to make a booking.


It’s understandable that you want your break to be perfect since you’ve been pining for couple time. And the last thing you want is to end up spending unnecessary money on mediocre food. Thank goodness for the three restaurants on-site that dish out quality fare, enough to make the hardcore foodies not want to leave the resort. Pantai is the seafood specialist, so come at dinner time and enjoy classic zi char-style dishes such as cereal prawn, salted egg flower crab wok-fried with curry leaf and fried eggplant with spicy red chilli, and minced prawn ‘balado style’ amidst a whole array of other choices. The poorly made daiquiri may be a bit of a hard sell, but the infectious smiles of the crew and genuine enthusiasm champion the humble establishment. Cafe Montigo makes a cosy spot for lunch with comforting nosh like ayam penyet hitting all the right flavour profiles. If that isn’t satisfying, head next door to Tadd’s and order Balinese chicken sate on lemongrass sticks while slurping on unctuous oxtail soup.

Looking for a holiday that puts you in the position to say that you’re a mere hour and a half away from work? Montigo Resorts, Nongsa is your best bet—even if it’s a Sunday check-in and Monday check-out affair. I’m not wild about the idea of sending my now-relaxed boyfriend back to his backlog of work and endless meetings, but it builds up anticipation for our next trip. And it might very well be Montigo Resorts again; albeit with the kid in tow this time.