Friday, December 14, 2007

Bali Hotels and Resorts

Friends been asking me where to stay in Bali. Have only been there twice. Truly love the place and both hubby and I are eager to fly there again. Hmm, bila agaknya ye?

So, friends, here are some of my favourites.

Santi Mandala Villa & Spa, Ubud
When me and hubby went there, it was low season, so we felt like we had the place to ourselves. Santi Mandala is a little tucked away, it is not in the centre of the cultural haven Ubud, but why would you want to be, this location is perfect: privacy without isolation. There is a shuttle bus to take you to Ubud anyway.

If you love nature, peace and tranquility and are not seeking night life, this is it. The villa we stayed in was spotless, very romantic and we had a wonderful view, not luxurious but 'special'. It's nice in the morning hearing all the birds, roosters, ducks waking up at sunrise. For me what made the place special was the staff. They call you by your names – Mbak and Mas. They are forever willing to ensure your good stay and are always smiling. I can still see those wide Balinese smiles now, as I write. Well, If you wish to experience a bit of real Bali with luxury and peace, rather than the terrible tourist compounds of Kuta, Nusa Dua, then you can't go wrong with Santi Mandala.

View of the villas from the pool

Our villa

The pool

The open outdoor bathroom

Seri Suites, Seminyak
The Seri Suites is hidden away in a charming Balinese village, which means it’s out of range of the noise and traffic you may find in areas such as Kuta beach and the crowdier areas of Seminyak. It’s an excellent choice for people that want privacy and quiet on their holiday. The en-suite rooms that I tried are really well designed and equipped with a TV, DVD, stereo etc.

One special thing with the place is that the it allows food delivery from restaurants in town. Various restaurants pamphlets are put in your rooms. We tried ordering food from a northern indian restaurant. Boy, it was pricey but was worth it.

Pathway to the room
The pool

The living hall

Indian food we ordered

Grand Mirage Resort, Nusa Dua
There was a screw-up during checking in, so to make it up, instead of checking us in into our Deluxe Room, the Manager put us in a Suite! What was better was the fact that the suite was on the ground floor, and when you opened the door, it’s the beach!!

The Grand Mirage is not in Nusa Dua actually but in Tanjung Benoa which is a more tourist-friendly location. Nusa Dua has lot of quality hotels but little in the way of outside food and shopping, Tanjong Benoa on the other hand, has many restaurants and some markets. It is a very under rated part of Bali.The resort provides activities for those who are interested or you could laze by the beach and do nothing. A privately-run water sports centre was just next to the resort’s beach. You don’t have to do anything, just laze on the beach chairs and the operators will come to you with their lists of services. Not only that, you can also do beach shopping there : T-shirts, jewelleries, watches etc.

Grand Mirage Private Beach
Beach shopping

Mount Agung in the background

Turn-down service
Hard Rock Hotel, Kuta
This is a good hotel for the young at heart what ever age, but the hotel is dedicated to music so everything is themed that way. Rock & Roll, Reggae, Blues, Psychedelic, Pop and Alternative! So if you want Balinese, pick somewhere else. To those who's into surfing, this hotel is a good choice because it faces the Kuta Beach and located at the heart of Kuta town, where all the excitement is.

Famous surfboard

At the entrance
All-in-all, you can never go tired of Bali. It's very romantic! That's why Ashraff Sinclair claimed he went overboard with Bunga when they were caught locking lips by the beach there. Hehe..Perhaps will write more on Bali later. More coming!!!


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Eulalie said...

Keep up the good work.