Time Travelled: February – March 2015
Accommodation: Grand La Villais, Seminyak
Address: Jl. Pangkung Sari, Br. Taman, Seminyak, Kuta, Bali, Indonesia
Phone:+62 361 739118
It is quite funny how we stumbled across this villa to stay at; we had places that were recommended from friends and family who had previously visited Bali to stay at but they were hotel rooms and being this was going to be our honeymoon, we were being snobbish and wanted a private pool villa to spend some quality alone time after the craziness that was our life leading up to the wedding day.
After a lot of research – we read vigorously through reviews and ratings of everywhere we choose to stay – Grand La Villais kept coming up as the best option, particularly within our price range. When we went to book through Expedia, it was $1,950.00 AUD for the 10 nights we were originally planning to stay and it included pickup from the airport to the hotel, breakfast and free cancellation up until a week before our arrival. All was good and well up until 2 months before our wedding/honeymoon… Our travel agent contacted me advising that our original flight, departing on the 24th February was no longer a direct flight from Melbourne to Bali, but would go from Melbourne to Sydney, stop over for a few hours, then fly from Sydney to Bali! This resulted in what would ordinarily be a 6 hour flight, into a minimum 14 hour trip!
After plenty of consultation with the travel agent, our only option to not spend our ten year anniversary flying everywhere was to depart a day earlier or a day later. After plenty of discussion we decided to fly up a day earlier so our ten year anniversary could be spent overseas. To ensure we didn’t have to change accommodation for the one night, I quickly jumped online to Expedia to see the availabilities and also the price difference to stay the extra night. Turns out, it would be $50 LESS to stay an additional night, so we thought ‘Hell yeah!’ and jumped on the phone to Expedia to get this all sorted.
While we were on the phone, discussing our predicament, the gentleman on the other line began the process of cancelling our previous booking to then re-book for the extended dates, but what he came back with shocked me… He said re-booking would cost us $1,245.00 AUD! I nearly choked, I asked, “On top of the $1,950.00 we have already paid?!?!” but thankfully he came back and advised that no, that is the total price! So not only were we staying an extra night, we were also getting back $700.00!
The accommodation we chose in Bali is quite possibly its only reason we stayed as long as we did in the country. Truthfully, Bali was unfortunately not for us, whether it be the wrong time of the year to go, we don’t know, it was a bit on the scary side for us with everything that was taking place at the time.
The Grand La Villais private pool villas were really good. It was amazing being able to wake up and literally open your door and you were in your own private pool. No need to get up super early to try and claim a poolside lounge chair. This. Was. Perfect.
The pool is big enough for a few people, I had a ball swimming by myself with the music playing and a drink in hand while my new Husband was off having a hit of golf.
The room itself is perfect for the honeymooning couple, with a Queen Size bed, mosquito netting, cupboard and drawers with a TV. The best thing about the rooms are the bathrooms, these are so nicely done and well presented. The only negatives with the bathrooms are: Windows don’t open so gets ridiculously hot in there – there is an air conditioner in there but does very little to reduce the heat, and with the AC, little critters make their way into the room i.e. spiders and geckos. These critters only got in on a couple of occasions, and I love geckos so they were fine!
Outside, near the pool, you have a day lounge and an outdoor shower along with an outdoor kitchen area and TV. We had no use for the kitchen – ours was dated and had what appeared to be water damage – but the fridge came in handy when we stockpiled all our water to keep it chilly for the exhausting hot days. It was also nice to order room service and sit outside by the pool watching some TV during the day as the fans on the roof were perfect!
Another thing, room service is surprisingly good! On the night we arrived, I was VERY hesitant for one: to order room service and two: order the carbonara… Bloody beautiful! The carbonara I ordered was quite large and came with a side of what could only be described as large garlic bread crouton – but it was sensational! My husband ordered the spaghetti Bolognese and he enjoyed his also.
The buffet breakfast is quite good. They change around a few items each day but it mainly consists of: Asian delicacies such as rice or noodles, bacon, chicken sausages, vegetables, potatoes, etc. Then you have your usual toast and pastries with fruit. There are also waffle and pancake stations and an egg/omelette station also which are all freshly prepared – we may had over done it on the pancake station while we were there, haven’t had a pancake since!
Eating at the restaurant at night was quite nice; I ate either the carbonara, chicken and vegetables, pumpkin soup, nachos, or tried their BBQ Buffett night which was fun, they had a live musician and a variety of meats, though the salads and sides were rather limited but for approx. $12 AUD each, can’t complain!
We loved the fact that each and every night, someone would come to your villa, clean the pool, set up the mosquito netting around your bed (and also make your bed) and then spray the inside and outside to rid of as many mosquitoes as possible. One thing about Bali, there are so many mosquitoes it is ridiculous so you must pack repellent!
With Bali overall, I think you will find that you will need to leave your air conditioning on all day, every day, even if you leave the room as it takes too long to cool down if you do turn it off for a few hours. Ours was turned off only once, and that was due to a thunderstorm where the power went off for a few minutes, otherwise, that cool box was staying on!
As mentioned before, we experienced a lot of thunderstorms while in Bali, almost on a daily basis. One particular night (night number two!) it was pouring outside and we finally went to sleep with the sound of the rain. During the night, I got up to go to the bathroom and freaked, the floor was cold and wet! I had no idea what to think and panicked, but thankfully my husband heard me and turned on the lights, it was just a lot of water which had made its way under the random door in the “hallway”. We quickly grabbed our luggage and moved it and then grabbed whatever towelling we could find to mop up the floor and then block the gap under that door to prevent further flooding.
PROS: Super friendly, food is amazing, reasonably clean, close to everything, price.
CONS: Mosquitoes, room flooding when it rains, walk way to and from the Villas could be re-done as they are quite mismatched and can easily trip.