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“WOW - but not in a good way unfortunately”
Review of W Bali - Seminyak

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W Bali - Seminyak
Ranked #19 of 143 Hotels in Seminyak
Certificate of Excellence
Perth
Level Contributor
11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
“WOW - but not in a good way unfortunately”
Reviewed 16 November 2012

Well, this was supposed to be the culmination of our Bali holiday, 2 nights at the W hotel with all its fantastic reviews. We were really looking forward to our stay, but ended up very disappointed.

First, some good points:

- the sleep quality was great, with a large comfy bed with soft sheets

- breakfast is excellent, with both a buffet and a la carte dishes available. Staff also offer small dishes from the kitchen, e.g. We tried broccolli soup, spring rolls etc.

- the staff at breakfast were very friendly and helpful. They brought some toys for our toddler and baby to play with, which was great. Unfortunately, this was the only glimpse of great service we experienced during our entire stay...

Now for the negative points. We have stayed in many hotels/resorts in Bali and can honestly say that the service at the W is the worst we've ever experienced:

- We arrived before the 3pm check-in time, so our room was not ready yet, which is ok as we went out for lunch. However, when we returned for check in, we were just handed our room key by a staff member and that was it. Nobody accompanied us to our room, gave us any explanation of the hotel facilities (e.g. Where or what times breakfast was) or any help at all. After I received our key cards, I had to ask someone where the lifts were so we could find the way to our room! This is the first time ever in Bali that we were left to our own devices, and we were perplexed. We feel that an explanation of the hotel layout/facilities and an escort to the room should be a minimum service offering for newly arrived guests.

- I also couldn't believe it when the check-in 'talent' told me we would have to pay for breakfast for our baby! She said the room rate only included breakfast for 2 adults and one child, but if our baby was going to eat, we would have to pay the normal breakfast fee. Our baby was only 14 months old! We then agreed our baby would not eat from the buffet, to avoid an extra $30 per day.

- the rooms: we had made a reservation for a spectacular ocean facing retreat. I had also put in a request to be on the highest floor, with a bathroom skylight. When we entered our room, on the 3rd floor, big disappointment. The balcony is screened off by steel bars so you don't have any view at all when you sit on the outside lounge! As we use our balcony often (when the baby sleeps), I asked to be moved to a higher floor so I could enjoy the 'spectacular views' I thought I would have. I didn't pay more than USD500 per night to be looking at steel bars! I have included some pictures so you can see the difference between our 3rd room floor and our 5th room floor. Moreover, my request for a high floor room was not taken into account when allocating rooms, but there were higher floor rooms available as we were able to move that same day - not what you would call great service.

- We were also disappointed with the pool area. The area feels crowded, mainly because of the numerous staff with headphones chatting and also the security guard overlooking it. We didn't feel we could really relax there. And despite the staff numbers, service was slow and I had to ask about my order on several occasions to check if they hadn't forgotten it. Moreover, upon arriving at the pool we had to go and ask for pool towels, rather than being greeted and towels brought over. Another observation was that at similar resorts we would be offered water at the pool side, but not at the W, which is a shame.

- Compared to other hotels, the W only offers small bottles of complimentary drinking water in the room, and certainly not enough for a family with a baby (there was a note stating you would have to pay for any additional water). We bought extra water from the supermarket, but what a let down after being used to getting large 600ml bottles in plentiful supply elsewhere. They also put some drinking water next to your sink, presumably for brushing your teeth, but be careful. This bottle, when examined closely, states it is 65,000++ per bottle! I feel this belongs in the mini-bar section, and not placed beside the bathroom sink where people would assume it is complimentary water to safely brush your teeth.

Overall we found the talent of the 'W talent' well below expectation, and had expected a lot more from this resort. We will not return as there are so many other hotels offering a fantastic experience at lower rates as well. Definitely not a place for families or those who want to relax and experience the stellar service that the Balinese are renowned for.

Room Tip: If you pay for an ocean facing room, make sure you're not on the 3rd floor as your view will be...
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  • Stayed July 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
20 Thank Scoofy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (819)
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  • Arabic first
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Dutch first
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English first
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 14 November 2012

I love it when something truly lives up to your expectations ....and when it surpasses them, well then you go back time and time again. We have stayed at the W now three times in the last 15 months the first just five months after opening. Suffice to say, we love it. Pleasingly this time in October we saw a new maturity in the resort...the staff were well settled in and confident and could not have done more for us. Their friendly greeting at breakfast each day, remembering our tea and coffee order, their friendliness.....was out of this world. The staff by the pool, in the gym, driving the golf carts, cleaning our room, booking our restaurants, taking us to and from the airport......were all superb!. The resort itself never ceases to impress, we had the most beautiful view from our top floor room. I cannot believe anyone could be anything less than impressed by this place and its beautiful well trained, friendly staff. I cannot wait to come back. Thankyou W .....Jules and James W

Room Tip: I love the ocean facing, it's worth the investment and the view is spectacular
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  • Stayed October 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Julie W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CraigSeaward1, General Manager at W Bali - Seminyak, responded to this review, 29 December 2012
Hello Julie W,

Many thanks for sharing your feedback with us.

It's such a pleasure to hear your comments on staying with us. It would appear that you are now a W brand ambassador, it's great to have you on board.

We look forward to welcoming you back to paradise and sharing another WOW experience with you.

Warm wishes,

Craig Seaward
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Singapore, Singapore
1 review
Reviewed 13 November 2012

This is the second time I stayed in W hotel, garden view this time round, at 217. Specially mention the occasion during bfast, the assistant manager Indra, ensure that all our expectations has been met and even arranged a dish which was no longer on the menu(we had it during our first visit). After showing Indra the pictures we took previously, he smile and went to arrange for the chef to whip it specially for us.
Delicious is an understatement for the dish, however the attitude to ensure all expectation are met were indeed commendable.
Also the rest of the crew also kept asking each and every customer there to ensure they had everything they need regardless it's additional work for them.
Please keep it up W Hotel Bali, it display a true service with a warmth and sincere heart!

  • Stayed November 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Chinyong T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CraigSeaward1, General Manager at W Bali - Seminyak, responded to this review, 29 December 2012
Hello Adleyh,

Many thanks for your review on your stay with us.

I am extremely happy to hear of our great time with us. It really is a pleasure for me to hear how our talents added that personal touch during your time in Bali.

Please do come back and enjoy some more of our Culinary delights soon.

Warm wishes,

Craig Seaward
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 November 2012

My wife and I just returned from a 3 night stay at The W and it was a truly memorable experience.

We stayed in one of the garden view rooms and it was great. Everything is nicely decorated...modern, without being too hip. The outdoor patio is nice in theory, but we were overlooking some construction that didn't match the rest of the package. The bed deserves a special note: it is amazing. Despite our best efforts, we had trouble getting out of bed before 11AM each day because it is so comfortable. You can even pick your own pillow if you want to!

The restaurants will get their own review, but I'll just mention that if you eat at Starfish Bloo or Fire for any meal (breakfast, lunch, or dinner), you won't be disappointed.

The service at The W was outstanding. Every employee (literally, every employee) will say hello to you as they walk by. The staff is incredibly helpful with guest requests, room cleanings, and being there when you want but otherwise being invisible. It was the best service I have ever had at a hotel.

While The W isn't cheap, you get what you pay for. It was an unforgettable stay and I would recommend it to anyone wanting a relaxing, resort getaway.

  • Stayed November 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Adleyh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kuala Lumpur
Level Contributor
121 reviews
52 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 220 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 November 2012

W Hotel is located about 30-45 min from the airport - traffic dependant, through the narrow streets of Bali.

I love the W Hotel concept, and it makes me want to renovate my home to look just like it! I cannot wait to return to W Bali !

Pros
- The check in was a breeze, literally because it was so smooth and there was so much sea breeze (with its open air concept).
- The rooms were beautifully designed, and there were many small things here and there that made the room a lot more special than your usual 5 star hotel
- Very nice buffet breakfast at Fire, and the quality was exceptional
- Strong security at the front entrance and beach entrance
- Lovely music selection in the bedroom (BOSE) and also throughout the hotel
- Wonderful steam room, one of the better ones I have been in
- Pricey food and drinks (but I suppose you should expect this at the W)
- Very friendly and attentive staff
- Very close to Potato Head (just next door, if you walk via the beach)

Cons
- Elevator had technical problems when we were there, forcing us to use the stairs for a few hours
- WIFI is supposed to be free in your bedroom and throughout the hotel - but the signal was a bit weak in certain areas, including certain parts of the bedroom and some parts of the pool
- Gym is very small and I wish it were bigger
- Jacuuzi was a bit too cold for my liking (less than room temperature?) which is strange as you normally like to soak up the heat while sitting amongst the bubbles
- Breakfast was nice, but inconsistent. Some food was not tasty, especially the "special treats" the waiters brought around to the tables for us to sample. Also the eggs benedict was overcooked (we ate it 3 times over 2 days, and it was overcooked each time. Almost like a fried egg).
- Aircon was not cold enough in the bedroom
- Strange to have a wooden bench in the shower, it seems to just get in the way
- Waves at the beach was very strong (while we were there) and looked unsafe to swim
- Wish they had 3 ply toilet paper, instead of 2 ply :-)

Shopping Tip
If you plan an afternoon of shopping, I suggest you book the hotel car (with driver) - as he can drive you to all the shops, wait for you, and you can also use the car to keep all your shopping bags. It is more expensive than booking a taxi for a few hours, but it's a lot safer and more convenient. Especially since a lot of taxis in Bali refuse to use the meter.

  • Stayed November 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank MacGrumpy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CraigSeaward1, General Manager at W Bali - Seminyak, responded to this review, 29 December 2012
Hello Macgrumpy,

Many thanks for your feedback on your stay.

I am very happy that you had such an enjoyable stay. The design narrative at the hotel make our property extremely unique whilst allowing you to experience the W brand.

Do come back and see us again for another WOW factor experience.

Warm regards,

Craig Seaward
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Schweiz
Level Contributor
14 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 November 2012

W hotels invest a lot into design with a lot of original details. That is great and often even inspiring. Not everything is 100% successful, though. I wondered about the wooden bench under the shower and the bathtub faucet design was just not suitable for its purpose (on sinks and shower, it was fine).

The W Bali stands out for its beautiful location and its service. The breakfast was among the top 5 I ever had in a hotel. Technology maintenance seems to be the weak spot in many Bali hotels, which however it shouldn't be in a W hotel. Here, the pool was oversalted causing greenish stains on white swimwear and the TV signal was just poor.

Nevertheless we had a great stay at this beautiful place.

  • Stayed October 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Zugo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CraigSeaward1, General Manager at W Bali - Seminyak, responded to this review, 29 December 2012
Hello Zugo,

Many thanks for sharing your feedback on your stay.

I am glad you enjoyed your stay with us and absorbed the W Bali design narrative.

I apologise that you experienced problems with our wireless & televison service. On your next stay with us please do alert whatever/whenever and we will make sure this is resloved for you and does not occur again.

We look forward to welcoming you back to W Bali again.

Warm wishes,

Craig Seward
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
22 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 November 2012

We recently stayed for 3 nights 3/11-6/11 in Garden View Room 310. On arrival at the hotel we were checked in immediately, however were not shown to our room and had to go in search of it as it was not on the lift side/arm. On entering the room it was amazing and certainly everything you could possibly need is catered for, again however...the garden view included a view of a building in progress inclusive of people banging away. There are certainly some special touches with the mats in the lift changed according to the time of day (Good Morning, Good afternoon & Good Evening), honeycomb strung at breakfast for ultra fresh honey, welcome drink station available to everyone all day and one of the most amazing buffet breakfasts setups (includes al a carte menu and waiters handing out tastings all inclusive). The whatever, whenever motto is also a novel concept. The spa is absolutely mind blowing and must be visited at least once for an experience to remember and then head to the end of the W driveway for the rest of your massages at $7.50 (compared to the $100 at the spa but please do use the spa as amenities and staff incredible). We had been worried about the noise factor given prior reviews but the music played was very chilled and not an issue at all. I believe this was becuase there were no events on during our stay. The rooms though were not very sound proof and if the neighbours decide to open and close their door every 5 mins or the kids upstairs jump around all night you will hear them, so I imagine if there is an event on it could but disturbing for those looking for a peaceful stay. With all the little touches and beachfront location it was an enjoyable stay but it is def not for the budget conscious.

  • Stayed November 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Cynthia1976
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about W Bali - Seminyak

Property: W Bali - Seminyak
Address: Jl. Petitenget, Seminyak 80361, Indonesia
Phone Number:
Region: Indonesia > Bali > Seminyak
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Business Hotel in Seminyak
#9 Family Hotel in Seminyak
#10 Romantic Hotel in Seminyak
#11 On the Beach Hotel in Seminyak
#17 Spa Hotel in Seminyak
#19 Luxury Hotel in Seminyak
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — W Bali - Seminyak 5*
Number of rooms: 229
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Escape hectic philosophies, and why not plunge into vibrant glitz amidst natural splendors? We're a new found playground along the shores of Seminyak, where trendsetting chic restaurants, clubs, fashions and eclectic galleries await discovery. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
w Retreat & Spa Bali - Seminyak Hotel Seminyak
w Retreat And Spa Bali - Seminyak
W Bali - Seminyak

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