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Old Apr 22, 12, 11:12 am   #1
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
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Trip Report : Alila Villas Uluwatu [Bali]

Hi! Having posted my first trip report on FlyerTalk earlier on Qatar Airways, I have decided to follow up with a review on my stay in Bali, at Alila Villas Uluwatu

Still a work-in-progress, I'll post it here as soon as I've finished each part.
Enjoy!

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Day #1
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Flying on Qatar Airways, we arrived in Bali right on time at 7pm. However, clearing the immigration and customs is another story altogether. The queue was pretty long, to say the least. Holding a Singaporean passport, we did not have to deal with Visa related matters.

By the time we got out of the airport, it was already 8pm. Stepping out, we were greeted by a sight of no less than 100 individuals, each holding some sort of sign or paper and waiting to meet up with his or her guest.

Ah, airport transfers. Kind of reminds me of the time when we were in Bangkok and headed for Cha-Am! Check out the mayhem!



We, too, were looking for a sign with our names on it. Took us a while but we finally spotted our resort liaison! After confirming our identities, he helped us with our luggage as we walked towards the pick-up area located a short distance away. So, where exactly are we headed? The answer is below -



Took us a while before the driver could get his car to us – bad traffic at the airport. Had a little chat with the Alila staff who had waited one hour for us (poor guy!), and it seemed like the situation at the airport is a daily occurrence. Bali is a very popular destination indeed! Meanwhile, our luggage were marked with Alila’s luggage tag that you see above. We were handed cold towels and bottled water as we set off on our 30-minutes ride to Alila Villas Uluwatu.

The short trip was uneventful – the two Alila staff sat in front, while we made ourselves comfortable in the backseat. The scenery was not unlike the ones we’ve seen while in Langkawi or Bintan. As we ventured nearer towards Uluwatu, the roads became narrower with limited street lighting.

The first sign that we’re near our destination is when the bumpy roads ceased to exist. Suddenly, we’re cruising on paved roads and little illuminated Alila signs point the way towards the resort.

We alighted to the warm welcomes of Alila! Not much paperwork to be done here – I handed over a credit card, our hotel voucher and passports before we were swiftly led to our one-bedroom villa. Along the way, we were given a brief guide to the facilities as we walked past them.

We hopped on a “club car”, which is basically a golf-cart-like vehicle they use to ferry the guests to and from their villas, which are located in rows on the gentle slope. Our villa number? 311. At night, outside each villa, the villa number is projected on the floor – sorry, the picture below isn’t that clear =)



Stepping in the villa, we took in the sight of the interior which was to be our home for the next three days! A brief run-through of the villa was given so at least we’d know what all the knobs and switches do, and how to get hot water etc. Alila had thoughtfully prepared a bubble bath with rose petals for us to relax in.



The lighting wasn’t that good at night, so you’ll have to wait for Day #2 post to check out the pictures! By the time we showered, it was pretty late (we arrived at Alila at 9pm) so we turned our attention to room service!

Went through the list of items and settled on :

Chicken Curry
Spiced chicken, green vegetables in curry sauce with white rice

Nasi Goreng Udang
Fried rice with prawns

Think it took less than 30-minutes for the food to arrive? The dining area was quickly set up for us in the villa before the food turns cold!



These crispy crackers were complimentary to every room service.



In case you are wondering what these are, they are two variants of chili, pineapples and cucumber/carrots. You may dip the crackers in the chili if you like – tastes pretty good that way!



Salt and pepper.



Fried rice with skewered prawns. A quick language lesson :
Nasi means rice, goreng means fried, and udang means prawn.
If you’re ordering Mee Goreng, that’s fried noodles for you since Mee means noodles.



Delicious chicken curry that’s tasty but not spicy enough for me!



White rice with fragrant fried onions sprinkled on top.



So far, the service and properties were what we’ve come to expect of Alila – excellent! We enjoyed our first taste of Balinese cuisine before turning in for the night – a brand new day awaits! Check out the subsequent posts for more details!

Alila Villas Uluwatu – Suprisingly Different
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Old Apr 22, 12, 11:13 am   #2
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
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Day #2 of our 4D3N stay at Alila Villas Uluwatu
The full trip report can be view at my travel blog as well.

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Did I mention I love the first morning of an overseas trip? As always, we didn’t wake up early for breakfast. Not to worry, breakfast is served at Cire until 11am. There are two restaurants at Alilas Villas Uluwatu – Cire (pronounced as “Seer”) and The Warung.

Cire serves “contemporary western cuisine prepared with regional produce”.
The Warung serves “traditional and wholesome Indonesian & Balinese cuisine.”.
Took a little bit of time before the camera lens literally warmed up, which explains the foggy picture.



We got to Cire, and were promptly given a seat. There is a daily menu that changes from day to day, and it looks like something below :



Breakfast is served ala carte buffet style. Basically, you can choose from any number of items (food and drinks) from the menu, and the kitchen would prepare it for you.

Upon ordering our food, we were given a choice of having our food served item by item, or all at once – we decided on having them all at once.

It is interesting to note that on subsequent days, our food would always be served all at once without them having to ask us the same question again. Check out below for a selection of some of the food we ordered!

Scrambled eggs on toast with seared mushroom.



Grilled sour dough with ham and gratinated cheese sauce.



Chicken sausage and bacon.



Potato salad with crispy bacon.



We ordered cappuccino. Pick from a wide range of drinks such as smoothie, fresh fruit juice, coffee and tea. One tip – ask about what juice is available! Sometimes, certain fruit juice don’t appear on the menu.



Some other items like baked beans didn’t make it into my pictures, nothing too special about them. Asian food such as black rice porridge and sticky rice dumpling are also available. Only a day ago, we were still living the 9-to-6 working life. It was a huge contrast to what we’re doing now – having a big and hearty breakfast at 10am in the morning, enjoying the view and serenity of the place.

After a satisfying breakfast, it is time to explore the resort and take in the surroundings!

There are a couple of cabanas like the ones below, lining along the cliff edge and facing directly at the ocean.





The Sunset Cabana extending over the edge, seemingly stretching into the horizon.



Another view of the postcard-perfect Sunset Cabana. On both Friday and Saturday, there was a wedding being held at the Sunset Cabana. We had a little chat with the staff, and were told that wedding ceremonies happen almost every other day at the Sunset Cabana.



The interior of the Sunset Cabana – an excellent place for chilling out at night.



Looking out from the Sunset Cabana, we could see where the ocean meets the cliff edge. The waves here are definitely not gentle at all!





Located at the southern coast of Bali, the Indian ocean lies ahead with absolutely nothing on the horizon except clouds. Seemed like bad weather ahead with some gray skies, even though there wasn’t a single drop of rain during our 4 days at Uluwatu.



Turning our attention to other areas of the resort, we located a cabana that is actually high up at the second level.





From the higher vantage point, we could see the roof-tops of the lobby are actually littered with volcanic stones. These are supposed to an eco-friendly way of keeping temperatures down in tropical Bali by absorbing the heat.



A view of the infinity pool from high up.


Last edited by Nivek; Nov 16, 12 at 8:05 pm.
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Old Apr 22, 12, 11:13 am   #3
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
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Day #2 of our 4D3N stay at Alila Villas Uluwatu
The full trip report can be view at my travel blog as well.

------------------

On the right is The Warung restaurant.



The small gym is relatively well-equipped – didn’t spot anyone using it at all during our stay.





Thoughtfully placed towels and bottles of water.





The gym’s restroom has an open concept which gives things a rather unique twist.





Throughout our stay in Alila, we noticed that there are various kinds of Alila products (shampoo, bath gels, body lotions etc) like these. Feel free to help yourselves to them as they’re complimentary!



Even the erm, toilet bowl .. has an open concept.



A dragonfly decided to drop by while I was there!



Pretty much of an overkill, but the library was huge and very well-stocked with the latest newspapers like International Herald Tribune and our very own, The Straits Times.



Two iMacs are free for use – we spotted some guests printing documents here.



Enormous reading table in the middle of the library, again with complimentary bottled water.





Some of the reading materials at the library.



The view from the lobby towards the ocean.
Tranquility.



More of these volcanic rocks along the sheltered passage ways.





There is dedicated, spacious yoga pavilion, where there are free classes every morning. We didn’t manage to wake up early enough to drop by to take a look.



The Alila landscaping is beautiful with a terrace-like design. Plenty of green stuff! Every morning, gardeners would toil under the sun to keep these in tip-top conditions – removing algae from ponds, picking up fallen leaves, etc.


Last edited by Nivek; Nov 16, 12 at 8:06 pm.
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Old Apr 22, 12, 11:14 am   #4
 
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Day #2 of our 4D3N stay at Alila Villas Uluwatu

------------------

The “club cars” that I mentioned earlier. The only time we took them was on the day we arrived at the resort. The walk to/from our villa wasn’t that bad actually, and we chose to walk when we had to.



The directions to the villas are on slabs of stones in the ponds. Each villa number has 3 digits. The first one indicates the row – 1 for the lowest level, and 4 the highest. The second and third digit is the villa number at the particular row.



The stairs we needed to climb to get to the villas on row 2, from row 1.



No details were spared – the gush of flowing waters all the way from the top.



More flora!



The view of the cabana belonging to a pool villa on a higher level.



More pictures to come in my follow-up post!
In Part 2 of Day #1, I’ll be covering our pool villa, our lunch and dinner!

Alila Villas Uluwatu – Suprisingly Different

Last edited by Nivek; Apr 26, 12 at 10:38 am.
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Old Apr 26, 12, 10:46 am   #5
 
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STILL at Day #2 of our 4D3N stay at Alila Villas Uluwatu

Guess I've kind of underestimated the number of pictures I'll be posting, hope you're enjoying them so far!!

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Pool Villa
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Before we take a look at our fabulous pool villa, let me explain the details on our key-chain. The villa we’re staying in is 311 – I had requested for a higher level one before we arrived but this was the best they can do. On the key-chain, there is three coin-like circular disc, representing 3. The 11 engraved on the top disc is obviously our villa number – a nice and simple way to remind us of our room number!



The entrance to our villa is plain and simple, with a heavy wooden door.





Entering the villa, our super-comfortable bed is just a few steps away. Prior to our stay, we had filled up a web-form indicating the type of pillows that we’d like. That is why we have three additional pillows in front, including the boomerang-shaped one. There are glass/wooden panels behind the bed that we can shift and slide to block out the sun.



A simple work desk. Doubt any guest would actually want to WORK here at Alila.



The living area is actually pretty spacious. The round table is where we ate at last night after room service was delivered. The LCD TV is mounted, and can be turned towards the bed. Located behind the wooden console is the vanity area.



The day-bed area with plenty of sunlight. Again, entire glass/wooden panels can be slide out or kept depending on the time of the day. In the picture below, the wooden panels are kept, but the glass windows are still in place.



Another shot of the bath tub in daylight where the bubble bath was prepared last night.



If you look closely at the picture above, you’ll notice that there is a concave slot cut into the bathtub. Opening the leather-clad container, you’ll find more Alila products such as sun tanning oil, sunscreen, mask, etc. Don’t worry if you forget to bring your own sun-tanning products!



The vanity area is directly connected to the outdoor area, and this side gives access to the pool as well.



The first of two shower area – the indoor shower with massage jets. Located on both sides of the bathroom walls, these massage jets can be powered up for more intense sprays. Forgot to take a picture of the ceiling – a rain shower is installed.



The second shower is an outdoor one, with a hand-held shower head and rain-shower as well.



TOTO tornado flush technology – don’t ask me why I know it.



The glass windows being kept by sliding it to the sides. Now, you can leap into the pool right from the day bed!

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Old Apr 26, 12, 10:48 am   #6
 
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More pictures!

------------------
Pool Villa
------------------

Full view of our private pool and cabana! The pool is actually big enough to swim in! We loved the pool, which was kept clean throughout our entire stay at the villa.



Our two sun-loungers by the side of the pool.



Our private cabana. In the previous post, the view of the cabana from the other side is shown. All three sides of the cabana has blinds that can be drawn.



The view from our pool villa – not too fantastic. Further down are actually rows 1 and 2 of the pool villas. The pool area is sufficiently private and discreet to be able to do some skinny-dipping and topless sun-tanning if you’d like to. Just avoid walking too near to the cabana!





View of the pool villa from the cabana. Nice, eh?



The secret passage where the butler can access our villa. We had indicated that we wanted privacy during our stay (again, indicated in the web-form prior to our stay) so this wasn’t really used at all.



The vanity area has two sides, for “Him” and “Her”.



After our first night at the villa, we had placed our necessities (contact lens casing, spectacles, etc) by the side of the basin. Upon returning to our villa, we realized that their staff has placed a small white towel underneath our items on both sides of the basin to keep them dry – a very nice touch.

For sure, the design at Alila Villas Uluwatu is much more functional and practical than that of Alila Cha-Am (e.g. stylish but awfully shallow basin).



Each day, the toiletries in the respective holders are replenished as long as you’re taken any item out of it. The items provided are bath gel, shampoo, conditioner, body lotion, soap and lip balm. You have no idea how much of these Alila amenities we carted home in our luggage!



No more living out of our suitcase! A very spacious wardrobe area. Hats are provided to shield the Mister and Missus from the sun. On the bottom, you can see a hand-carry bag which is a souvenir from Alila – useful for carrying stuff around in the resort, after which we can bring home after checking out.



Illy coffee pod (we have the same coffee as home!) and TWG tea are routinely replenished. Tried out the coffee machine during our afternoon swimming session.





The minibar was fully stocked with non-alcoholic drinks. Request for alcohol if you so desire!



The safe is hidden the drawer, near to the TV area.



We had indicated our music preference previously, and Alila has loaded the iPod Nano with a selection of jazz, hip-hop and chill-out music.



One last thing to point out regarding the subtle aspects – if you look at the picture below, the top portion is actually of the ventilated wooden vents where the speakers are hidden in. This way, music (or audio) can be heard throughout the villa, even when enjoying a relaxing bubble bath!



Alila Villas Uluwatu – Suprisingly Different
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Old Apr 26, 12, 1:02 pm   #7
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great to know about QR SIN-DPS (like EK HKG-BKK)
especially since SQ doesnt seem to have F at all, let alone newer layouts
ah, QR only has flatbed J, not F
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nivek View Post
The gym’s restroom has an open concept

Even the erm, toilet bowl .. has an open concept.
hmm...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nivek View Post
Doubt any guest would actually want to WORK here at Alila
they do have residences
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nivek View Post
Forgot to take a picture of the ceiling – a rain shower is installed
you FORGOT? amazing number of pictures
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nivek View Post
illuminated Alila signs point the way towards the resort.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nivek View Post
The glass windows being kept by sliding it to the sides. Now, you can leap into the pool right from the day bed
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nivek View Post
All three sides of the cabana has blinds that can be drawn
very useful details
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nivek View Post
At night, outside each villa, the villa number is projected on the floor
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nivek View Post
Breakfast is served ala carte buffet style. Basically, you can choose from any number of items (food and drinks) from the menu, and the kitchen would prepare it for you.

Upon ordering our food, we were given a choice of having our food served item by item, or all at once
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nivek View Post
Every morning, gardeners would toil under the sun to keep these in tip-top conditions – removing algae from ponds, picking up fallen leaves, etc.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nivek View Post
staff has placed a small white towel underneath our items on both sides of the basin to keep them dry

Last edited by Kagehitokiri; May 8, 12 at 10:48 am.
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Old Apr 26, 12, 8:05 pm   #8
 
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Fabulous trip report This is one of the resort I want to try in Bali. Thanks for sharing.
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Old Apr 27, 12, 2:50 am   #9
 
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This looks great. Thanks for sharing.
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Old Apr 27, 12, 5:00 am   #10
 
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Wonderful report. There are so many great places to stay in Bali!
Thanks.
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Old Apr 27, 12, 11:26 am   #11
 
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Alila Villas are doing a great job.
Stayed at AV Soori, really liked it.
They should only hire lifeguards to make the magic black sand beach swimmable...
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Old Apr 27, 12, 12:08 pm   #12
 
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I suspect that Alila are doing a better job these days because their CEO is Guy Heywood (ex Aman for years and years, and before that FS). However, not all Alilas are equal - you have to be careful which one you choose.
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Old Apr 27, 12, 12:18 pm   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vuittonsofstyle View Post
not all Alilas are equal - you have to be careful which one you choose.
they do have two brands - alila villas and alila

Last edited by Kagehitokiri; Apr 27, 12 at 7:38 pm.
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Old Apr 28, 12, 12:31 pm   #14
 
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Thanks Kagehitokiri, BENLEE, NYBanker, Ericka for your comments, hope u all enjoyed the pictures!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kagehitokiri View Post
amazing number of pictures
Yeah, I tend to take too many pictures when I'm travellling

Quote:
Originally Posted by BENLEE View Post
This is one of the resort I want to try in Bali. Thanks for sharing.
I actually came across your other FlyerTalk thread on Alila in Balia prior to my trip. Where did you eventually stayed in Bali?
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Old Apr 28, 12, 12:48 pm   #15
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deer View Post
Alila Villas are doing a great job.
Stayed at AV Soori, really liked it.
They should only hire lifeguards to make the magic black sand beach swimmable...
I totally agree, enjoyed my experience at Alila Villas Uluwatu very much. I guessed you have stay at Alila Soori previously? Do you have any trip report or photos to share?
I had a hard time deciding between these two!

Quote:
Originally Posted by vuittonsofstyle View Post
I suspect that Alila are doing a better job these days because their CEO is Guy Heywood (ex Aman for years and years, and before that FS). However, not all Alilas are equal - you have to be careful which one you choose.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kagehitokiri View Post
they do have two brands - alila villas and alila
Ah, I didn't know about Alila CEO. The only Alila property I've visited previously was back in Nov 2009, in Cha-Am. (no longer under Alila management now, the place is now known as Hotel de la Paix) Alila Cha-Am back then was fabulous, relatively new and stylish. Service on the whole was good, but not quite at the level of Uluwatu.

I do know that Alila would be opening a new resort at Bintan in 2014 : http://alilavillasbintan.com/main/villas

Meanwhile, hang on while I get ready the rest of the pictures! I'm not quite done yet! Still got a few other things to cover e.g spa, more food, etc.
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