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Bali - Honeymoon, accommodation questions

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Feb 19th, 2005, 10:44 AM
  #1
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Bali - Honeymoon, accommodation questions

We are currently trying to sort our honeymoon out for September this year flying out from the UK. We have been checking out several options and think we have settled on a few nights in Singapore before heading to Bali for 14 nights.

As is the general consensus on this site we are planning on spending about 5 nights in Ubud before picking a beachy type place for the remainder of the time. All fine so far but we are really struggling to pin down our accommodation choice for both of them as there is soo much choice aimed at lots of different budgets.

So here's the request; where should we stay? Here are some of our requests/requirements:

Budget - we don't mind spending a bit particularly on the beachy type place and have been looking at some places up to $200/night though don't need to go that far. We also would consider cheaper places in Ubud and have seen Tegal Sari or the Honeymoon Guesthouse, but also like the Alila Ubud.

Location - after Ubud anywhere which has beach type access for snorkelling, watching the world go by etc, but also needs to have access to good restaurants so that we aren't stuck with 1 or 2 choices. We don't want to go to Kuta or any other too noisy lively places, we want to relax. Sanur has been suggested but not sure what hotel there (Puri Santrian any good?)

Hotel - no huge place please, (the Bali Hyatt has a pizzeria, why go to Bali and have pizza?) both places have got to be lovely though, it is our honeymoon after all and would like somewhere smallish (boutique) where we get treated well

Finally, what are peoples experiences in terms of booking the whole holiday. We have had some good package quotes, this obviously limits out accommodation choice to bigger places (Bali Hyatt, Alila Ubud, Puri Santrian) but does mean we qualify for upgrades and so on. Or should we book independantly where we certainly have the choice of anywhere and at slightly better prices but lose the reassurance of booking through an agent and possibly some upgrades?
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Feb 19th, 2005, 11:55 AM
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we stayed in two places in the south last june...the conrad and the bali hyatt...

the conrad is new and quite lovely in every way...they have 3 or 4 restaurant options within the hotel and a few outside near by...

from there we moved to the bali hyatt...it seems larger...it has fabulous grounds...it has a few restaurant options including a very good chinese restaurant which they own directly across the street...the hotel has some age to it but has been quite well kept up...it is very nice for the price...but what we liked about it the most is that it is smack in the middle of sanur which we really liked....good restaurants which are far cheaper than hotel restaurants and maybe even better quality...good shopping and services (laundry)...like being aprt of a real town....bars, all kinds of services: camera shop, internet cafes, botiques, basket shops, banks, atms, etc....i would highly suggest this hotel....

i hope you are planning on haveing a driver/guide for part of the time...he will introduce to the hidden bali as well as the popular tourist places...this will be the best money you will spend...bali is very cheap by the way---bring an extra suitcase....
we used putu, who has often been mentioned here on fodors...he is young and very engaging...you will love him if you were to hire him....
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Feb 19th, 2005, 06:49 PM
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I go to Bali 5 or 6 times a year and usually alternate between the Alila and the Legian on Seminyak beach. Both are well designed, well run and offer both serenity and seclusion and liveliness, depending on what you seek at the moment. If you’re interested in the Alila, you should go for what they call a suite, which is really a big room with a wrap around balcony overlooking the river valley. For my money it’s one of the most breathtakingly beautiful rooms in the world. Ask for room 303.

At the beach I’d recommend the The Legian (the regular hotel rooms, not the villas). It is within walking distance of two of Bali’s best restaurants – Kudeta and La Lucciola, plus all of the Seminak choices for restaurants, shopping and spas. You can definitely “watch the world go by” or you can retreat to the spacious gardens, beautiful pool or seaview balcony. It’s a good balance. The surf is a bit rough, but the beach goes on for miles, the sunsets are magnificent, and the service is, I think, among the best in Bali.

You won’t get much snorkeling in Bali unless you go to the far north.

You should be able to do quite well in the $200 a night range in September.
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Feb 20th, 2005, 04:32 AM
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As for Puri Santrain, a friend recently stayed there and thought it was really nice. It has a more local and personal feeling than a lot of the other beach places, many of which are pretty huge. He also reported the food was really good and everything reasonably priced. He recommended the Club Rooms, which gets you a nicer room and private pool area only for club room guests. Anyway, I'll be staying there for two nights in March - Club Room at only $110 a night, breakfasts, afternoon snacks, and all taxes included. I booked directly with the hotel. Anyway, I can report back later after my trip.
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Feb 21st, 2005, 01:49 PM
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We are currently very tempted to splash out on the Legian and have been checking out prices on various websites. We contacted the hotel direct and their prices were higher than what we could find elsewhere, does that sound similair to what others have found?

We are also wanting to know which rooms are in the regular hotel and not the villas? We have been pricing based on a superior suite.

Thanks
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Feb 21st, 2005, 02:26 PM
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We stayed at the Oberoi and really loved it...accomodations with private terraces...the beach is supposed blessed in some way by the gods, and boy I can believe it. Just beautiful, and I can't exactly say why. (didn't find out til later about the beach's mystic, but it sure made sense to me)
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Feb 21st, 2005, 02:27 PM
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At the expensive end is the Alila (formerly the Serai) at Candi Dasa, which is incredibly romantic with great food (some of the best in Bali) and complimentary visits to the nearby Aman Kila (fantastic Beach Club and beach). Be warned, though, that brochures say "at high tide the beach is not visible at Candi Dasa"....which is Balinese for "there is no beach at all"...

My wife and I spent a week at the Serai before it changed name, and my daughter spent her honeymoon there and still raves about it. The Alila group has also taken over the Chedi in Ubud (also delightful) and offers good deals if you stay at both.

The Santrians are both good, but also family places, so you might have to put up with screaming kids.
The Alila Candi Dasa and Alila Ubud are geared for adults.
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Feb 21st, 2005, 04:40 PM
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The Legian like most Bali hotels is very inconsistent in pricing. It's like the guy sitting next to you on the airplane -- you always suspect that you're paying more for the same flight.

What the Legian calls "suites" are either one room (with bath and pantry), 2 room (separate bedroom and living area)or three room (2 bedrooms). The lowest price is the "studio suite" which is good sized room with a big balcony. The "superior suite" has a separate bedroom.

The key is to get on the third floor with the best view over the palm trees.
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Feb 22nd, 2005, 10:26 AM
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More questions...

How do you sort out a room on the 3rd floor at the legian?

How do the Oberoi, Alila Manggis and Legian compare? The Alila is cheaper and we have contacted them to see what deals can be done if we stay in both the Ubud and Manggis ones. But will it give the 5 star luxury of the Legian?? What is the area around each of the 3 hotels like, sounds like the Legian has other places to go, how about the Alila and Oberoi?

Still looking for comments on the cheaper accomodation in Ubud - Tegal Sari, Honeymoon guesthouse or others.
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Feb 22nd, 2005, 01:13 PM
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Hi Hobbess, me and my husband are peruvian and we were in Bali in august-september for our honeymoon, we had a great time! The best part was that we met a travel agent called Yani, a very sweet and helpful girl who had the greatest deals in the best hotels in Bali, she got us about 60% descount in the best five star hotels. I recomend that you write her an email and she is going to be more than happy to help you and recomend hotels, her email is [email protected].
We stayed in Benoa in hotel Novotel Coralia, a very lovely hotel, we were very happy there. We also rented a car so it was easy to move around looking for restaurants and beaches. A very nice area was Seminyak, beautiful hotels, excelent restaurants, it was a shame we got there just before leaving Bali. Another excelent hotel is Uluwatu Resort, it´s at the top of the cliff, a bit far away from everything if you don´t have a car but the food is excelent, the view is spectacular and there are only a few rooms (cottages). I hope you find this info useful! Good luck!
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Feb 22nd, 2005, 05:18 PM
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The Oberoi and Legian are quite close to each other. Same stretch of the beach, same neighborhood, same shopping, same restaurants. The Oberoi chain in general is top of the line. (For example their property in Lombok is the best.) In my opinion, the Bali property is a bit worn around the edges. The individual villas are set in a lovely garden but they're just looking a bit dated and the service is also somewhat on the jaded side. Another thing that worries me is that there's a noticeable drainage ditch that flows by the resort into the sea which always seemed a little suspicious to me.

The Legian is newer and I think more elegant and tasteful. The service is infinitely better. Some people don't like the block (three story) architecture. I agree that I'd rather not take an elevator to my room in Bali, but once I get there I'm in heaven. I don't think they'll guarantee a third floor room, but since it's your honeymoon . . . You should talk to the manager, Hans.

The Alila Manggis is really lovely, but for sure it's more isolated and the beach is at times non-existent. I like the Alila group and I think they've put a lot of heart into this property, but it's location works against it.

I can't remember if I've recommended this but you should also take a look at the Kayumanis in Ubud. If I were honeymooning again, that's where I'd head. (Been married 35 years and still find Bali romantic!)
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Feb 23rd, 2005, 01:37 AM
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I'm still searching for hotels for the last part of our trip and my husband has fallen in love with the Oberoi brochure...

I'd rather go for the Legian or the Bali Meridien for the end of our trip, but it's definitely difficult to make a choice!

When in Bali, we'll celebrate my birthday and our (almost) 10th wedding anniversary, so I want to be sure to make the right choice, like Hobbess for their honeymoon.
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Feb 23rd, 2005, 04:22 PM
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The Meridien's a favorite among golfers(the course wraps around the resort)but it's really not in the same league as the newer five stars. Plus they appropriated a sacred temple -- Tanah Lot -- which was deeply resented by the Balinese. It also doesn't have beach access.
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Feb 23rd, 2005, 08:47 PM
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The Oberoi rooms are great, but eating in the restaurant is incredibly expensive. The beach is also not necessarily safe (rips etc). The pool is very average. The hotel will be more crowded than the Alila (very quiet).

The Alila at Candi Dasa has a great pool, and the food is better and less expensive than the Oberoi.

I wouldn't pay for one of the Alila's expensive rooms (1st floor). They are the same as the ground floor rooms apart from having a sofa bed on the balcony. The ground floor rooms, instead, have a verandah table and chairs. But it is easier being able to walk to the pool from your room, rather than having to use the stairs all the time. Also pay for breakfast as part of your pre-booked package. The breakfasts are stunning whereas the Oberoi's was very average, and cost more.

When I was there the Alila (in those days the Serai) also had a great complimentary bus service that took you into Candi Dasa or adjacent tourist spots, and picked you up again at a pre determined time. It was NEVER late.

The Alila also offers a great afternoon tea that is complmentary (Oberoi charges like a wounded bull for everything - a bottle of Australian wine that I could get in Oz for $AUS8 was $US120 !!!)

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Feb 23rd, 2005, 08:55 PM
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PS....My daughter, for her honeymoon, spent 5 nights at the Alila and 5 nights at the Legian. While the rooms at the Legian were better, it cost a lot more.

Her vedict?

The Alila wins every time. mainly becaise of staff, service and atmosphere - especially at night when soft and 'live' music created by two Balinese musicians drifts from the beach up to the sumptuous and very romantic open air restaurant.
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Feb 26th, 2005, 01:40 AM
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Well having weighed up all the advice from the posts we have decided on where to stay while in Bali. We decided we couldn't not go to the Legian following some excellent recommendations and we also thought that the two Alila's offered excellent value for money.

So we are going to stay 4 nights in the Alila Ubud, 4 in the Alila Manggis and then 6 in the Legian. This worked out well for our budget. It does mean we miss out on staying in one of the much smaller places (Tegal Sari or Honeymoon) which have been well recommended but it is our honeymoon so we really want to maximise the luxury.

Now booking the flights and have the accommodations lined up so getting very excited for September, just got to get married first!!
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Feb 27th, 2005, 11:15 PM
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I think you have chosen a perfect combination. The following link is great for restaurants:

http://www.balieats.com/eating.cfm

The Ku de Ta is meant to be great, as is the Living Room and La Lucciola.
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