My wife and I (mid 30's) spent several nights at the Banyan Tree Ungasan in November of 2013. We stayed in an ocean view pool villa and cannot exaggerate how beautiful and relaxing the villa was. The view was extraordinary and we barely noticed the one row of villas that were in front of (and below) us. The villa itself was exquisite and had every amenity you could imagine. As the first stop in our trip to Southeast Asia from Washington D.C. all we wanted was a bit of relaxation and pampering before heading to Ubud where we knew we were going to be spending alot more time engaging in active pursuits. Arriving at the Banyan Tree Ungasan (amazing arrival process that is done quickly and efficiently with a nice welcome gift), taking a dip in our private pool, and then having some wine on the most comfortable lounge chairs overlooking the Indian Ocean is not an experience I will soon (or ever!) forget. If you are looking for the ultimate in luxury and relaxation, this place is for you.
It is important to keep in mind that the resort is catering to couples who want to get away from it all. The resort is, therefore, located in an unbelievably beautiful, but isolated, location. This was perfect for us but people seeking more adventure should keep in mind that there really aren't alot of things to do in close proximity to the Banyan Tree. We did manage to pull ourselves away from the heaven that was our villa to go to Seminyak one day. It is about a 30-40 minute drive (with traffic... always traffic in Bali!) from the hotel and has an amazing beach, great night life and awesome restaurants. It was well worth the journey but, again, it was not particularly close nor convenient to the Banyan Tree. Nor are the other beach areas. We knew this going in but anyone seeking alot of night life might want to reconsider the Banyan Tree and stay in Seminyak or the other major beach areas instead.
The only criticism we had was that the Banyan Tree's beach (as opposed to the rest of the property) appeared to be more of an afterthought than anything else. Number one, it is FAR from the resort. We walked there but it took about 15-20 minutes to get to the beach itself down a long winding path. They do offer golf cart shuttle service but it would be nice if the beach was a touch closer. Once there, the Banyan Tree's beach is a tiny plot with a handful of nice beach chairs and not much else with random garbage and other items strewn about. It would have been nice if they made it a bit more inviting particularly since if you walk a few minutes down the beach you encounter other beach clubs that have far more inviting beach front areas (even live music at some).
At the end of the day, this was just a mild criticism and the rest of the resort was simply exquisite. The breakfast buffet was one of the most extensive we had in Southeast Asia and drinks or dinner at Ju-Ma-Na at sunset, although expensive, is not to be missed (try and call ahead and reserve a table closest to where the sun goes down). Also try and wake up at sunrise and watch the large family of monkeys frolic on the roof of your villa as they make their way down to the lower parts of the property! The resort gets an added kudo for having excellent room service and offering somewhat reasonably priced wine in the room. The staff are also all generally amazing and very friendly.
We went in November which was right on the cusp of rainy season. Although it did rain a bit, the weather was overall amazing and we were able to get a discounted rate.
Last tip would be to use local drivers rather than the resort's transportation options. The local drivers we used were about half (if not more) the price and just as good.
In sum, this resort is the ultimately in luxury and relaxation and we can not wait to return some day.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Set high on the cliffs near to the Uluwatu Temple, Banyan Tree Ungasan brings definitive fine cliff top living to the renowned beach island of Bali. An all-pool villa resort located at the southernmost point of Bali, Banyan Tree Ungasan offers one of the best unparalleled views of the Indian Ocean, complete with a level of comfort and privacy synonymous with the Banyan Tree brand. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Banyan Tree Ungasan, Bali Hotel Ungasan