I love to wander the streets of South-Bali and find places that are just two steps off main roads, but give you space to breathe, relax, and have an amazing time with friends.
In Canggu, I went to the new location of Crate Cafe and in Seminyak I found UMA. This week I will take you to both places with a great atmosphere; arty, industrial, and both with their own unique character.
Great time at Crate
My friends asked me which rock have been living under if I have never visited Crate before. It has the most shared food pictures of Canggu on Instagram. I must admit, staying in Bali made it impossible not to have heard of Crate. I have seen the pictures and people have been talking about it. To be honest; I thought it was one of those hipster places where everybody looks like a super model with sun kissed skin, fashionable clothes, and hairdresser worthy hair.
Walking into Crate was nothing like that. There were backpackers, business people with their laptops, and well yes, there were good looking models too, but no snobby vibe. I got a warm welcoming feeling from everybody who was there. People were super friendly; sharing a table, having a chat in the queue, and the waiters were making jokes and laughing while bringing out the food.
The food made me fall in love with this place. I first tried a dish called ‘The Mafia’, a healthy and vegetarian option inspired by a pizza, but completely different taste. The accompanied pink beetroot latte became my favourite drink as it reminds me of the pumpkin spice latte, something that is in my hear this time of year – even in tropical Bali.
Food, gallery & concept store
The concept of Crate is to offer good tasty food at an affordable price. Almost all dishes are 50.000 rupiah, about 3,50 euro. Drinks start from 25.000 rupiah. All ingredients are brought in fresh every morning, reducing the need for fridges (energy saving), and no food waste as they use all products that are brought in. The products are bought from local suppliers, and the same goes for the staff – only local staff. The owner told me that they are helping a big part of the community in this area by providing jobs (31 staff members) and buying the local food supplies.
Crate is not only a place to eat and drink, they also have Crate Concept Store and Crate Gallery. The concept store gives new upcoming brands the chance to get known by the public. The shop has a perfect range of clothes, jewellery, and accessories. Next to the store is the Crate Gallery, that recently opened and gives young photographers and artists the chance to show their work to a diverse group of people. It’s amazing to see that Crate gives a big stage to young passionate people. It has become one of my favourite places to bring my friends, to give them an experience of creative Bali.
Walking on the street of Seminyak with big screaming billboards, yelling taxi drivers, and lots of tourists, you are not given the impression that there is a hidden garden with a creative touch. I did not expect to find a small paradise in these busy streets. UMA surprised me from the first step I took inside. It is hard to find, but you just have a look out for a black sign saying “UMA”. You will walk through a small ally, and arrive in a garden surrounded by many things.
First off, you will see the concept store where artists sell their beautiful products. Next to it is an open space where every week there are different events. I was lucky walking into UMA when they were hosting an exhibition for artists who were launching their first products. Pottery, jewellery, bags, shoes, pins, you name it; it was there. For the January issue of Graysonsisters we found a few brands who will join our topic ‘the start-up’ and tell us more about their gorgeous designs.
Architect with a vision
If you are hungry, you are at the right place. There is a Thai restaurant called Warung Siam with all the favourite Thai dishes on the menu. The atmosphere is cosy, and gives you the feeling of being far away from the noise outside. If Thai is not your thing, you can hop over to TEMU Coffee next door. They serve high quality coffees, delicious teas, and a nice variation of western food – like toast with cheddar cheese. I enjoyed a chilled fruity tea, and my friend had a coffee that she really enjoyed.
At TEMU Coffee we also met the owner Jacob from Jakarta. He is an architect by heart and soul who opened UMA SEMINYAK three years ago. You can see that an architect is behind the wheels here, as every part of this place is symphonised. Jacob has the same vision as the owner of Crate by only hiring local staff, and working with local suppliers. UMA organise special evenings like; cultural festivals and film nights. It is a great place to visit if you are in Seminyak.
Text written by Ruby Kramer
Text edited by Rose Hodge