I've always wanted to Bali and so, my husband and I did in Dec 2012. Being unfamiliar with the region, we opted to pick a good hotel. However, there are a lot of hotels in Bali (understatement of the year, I think).
Luckily for us, there was a Groupon offer for Sudamala Suites and Villas. A quick check on TripAdvisor assured us that it would be good so we took the chance. Our package included two way airport transfers, a 30 minute massage for two, daily breakfast and stay in a Deluxe Suite.
Our friendly driver met us at the Airport and we were offered a lovely chilled towel and complimentary water. Without our driver, I think we would have been a bit overwhelmed by the various touts and taxis at the airport. Bali traffic is quite bad so it was nice to be in an air-conditioned, luxury car.
The hotel's "reception" is something unique to Bali, I believe. Instead of the usual front desk, they have an open pavilion. Check-in was easy and we were led to our room on the first floor. Oh, what a lovely surprise it was! Much better than the pictures - double height ceiling, a lovely king sized bed, balcony overlooking the courtyard, sliding doors partitioning the bedroom from the well-appointed bathroom with an open concept wardrobe. A large LED TV, a great selection of international TV channels, air-conditioning with the option of a ceiling fan, toiletries from Crabtree & Evelyn, slippers and bathrobes provided for. The shower area is huge, no bath but who needs it when there's a good sized pool outside?
Some reviewers have complained about the smoke from the mosquito coils. Staff come around in the evenings to light them. The smoke can get very cloying and if you can decline having the coils lit but given the size and number of mosquitoes we saw, it's probably for the best.
There was meant to be free wifi in the room but it was not working during our stay. Instead, we had use of their LAN. We had our laptop so that was OK. But if not, wireless access is limited to certain areas like the reception and breakfast area.
There were lots of choices for breakfast catering to all tastes. Lots of local fruits with some local breakfast options, which makes a nice touch. One can enjoy breakfast to traditional music performed live.
Their in-house spa was very nice, private, clean and decorated; very similar to upmarket spas one gets in the UK or Singapore. It was very pricey though, compared to what was being peddled mere meters away down the street. That being said, I did not try any of the local massage parlours.
The hotel also provides in-house day tours (driver, transport and parking fees included in the price) and bookings for what guests want to do. We did not take them up on any of their tours. Bizarrely, our spa and tours menu was removed from our room towards the end of our stay. I was intending to make a reservation but didn't as I did not have the information to hand.
Also, somewhat strangely, we had no hot water for an evening. I think it was just one off as a call to the front desk sorted this out by morning.
The hotel location is a bit removed from the more popular spots. It takes about 30 minutes to travel to the west side where Seminyak, Kuta and other hot spots are. That being said, we were happy trundling up and down the local thoroughfare. Lots of food to be had that caters to the foreign tourist including an Irish restaurant pub. Also lots of opportunity to try local cuisine. Try walking to the right of the hotel (seemingly a dead end) that leds the way to the hotel's "private" beach. A few shops and eateries that way - we tried a local dish, Babi Guling at a little restaurant/bar there. Was pretty good!
Speaking of the beach, it was a bit of a trek to find their beach. The first time we tried to find it, we completely missed it! If you chance upon the local "market" selling food and such, you have traveled too far. Look for the purple banners (see photos). Think it's about a 10-15 min slow walk from the hotel. They provide towels there. Because of the distance of the hotel from the sea, if you're after a total beach holiday, I think that this is not the place for you.
Overall, we enjoyed our stay and would strongly recommend Sudamala Suites and Villas.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Set in the calm and relaxed environment of Sanur where centuries of Balinese art and cultural history have been nurtured, Sudamala Suites & Villas, Sanur offers you the perfect home for your Bali getaway. Like the environment that surrounds us, we have taken great care to preserve the artistic and traditional values of Bali into the design of our resort. So we invite you to stay in one of our spaciously elegant and cosy rooms and immerse yourself in our cultural soul or "Taksu" as it is known locally to experience our dedication in friendly local hospitality. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Sudamala Suites & Villas Bali/Sanur