Bali, Indonesia is a must-visit destination for any dedicated adventurer. From its lush forests to its vibrant wildlife there’s plenty to experience. Packing up your swimsuit, goSET, and shorts is easy enough, but finding the right hotel to stay at can be tricky. Bali has become a travelers’ hub in recent years and there are plenty of options.
Enter the Bambu Indah Hotel (“Beautiful Bamboo”), a cluster of 13 Javanese style homes tucked away in the forest. Each building is unique and luxurious in their accommodations. John and Cynthia Hardy purchased the property in 2005 with the intention of using it to house their family and close friends. Now the resort has opened itself up to other travelers and has quickly become one of the best hotels in Bali.
“We wanted them to be surrounded by the rich creativity and the history of Indonesia, while being comforted by the luxury and service of a boutique hotel.” – John and Cynthia Hardy
Bali itself is in the middle of the Indonesian archipelago and has a vibrant culture influenced by its own variation of Hinduism. The island is already recognized internationally for its contributions to art, music, and food, making it the perfect place for travel lovers. The hotel is actually located about an hour drive north of Denpasar (Bali’s capital) in Ubud.
One of the many vistas in Ubud
Unlike many of their competitors, the Bambu Indah Hotel is not located beachside. Rather it’s at a higher elevation and is actually cooler than it’s coastal counterparts (which is great if you visit during the hotter months). Ubud is surrounded by stunning rice terraces and forests, vistas you’ll be unable to appreciate fully if you stay along the coast.
Terraced fields in Bali
Views aside, the main reason for visiting Ubud is the culture. The village hosts exceptional traditional dance performances and multiple Hindu-Balinese ceremonies. In recent years the village has also come to have some truly lovely restaurants, cafes, and art galleries.
The general hospitality and vibrant nature of Bali are reflected in Bambu Indah as well. Each cottage is unique in design and location. With each home nestled in its own landscaped section of woods, some with their own water feature, it’s easy to feel like you’ve got your own private paradise.
In particular, the Udang House ("Shrimp House”) is an especially delightful place to stay on the property. With its glass floor over a natural pond, you can observe the aquatic life below from the comfort of your bed. Additionally, the roof of the bathroom is glass, and the shower is divided between indoor and outdoor portions. The house also faces views of the Sayan Valley, which can be enjoyed on its very own porch. The architectural design of the unit is made to seem as though the home is merged with the nature around it. Simply laying in the bed at night can be an ethereal experience when moonlight seeps through the roof and fish swim beneath you.
The glass-floored bedroom of the Udang House
(left) Exterior of the Udang House
(right) Glass-roofed bathroom of the Udang House
Udang House isn’t the only impressive architectural feat on the property. The tallest home open to guests is a 4 story unit called The Pagoda. While it was originally built for the use of the property owners, it has since been converted into a space for guests. The first 2 floors are used as bedrooms with glass windows on all sides (and curtains for those private moments). The top two floors are multi-use and are the perfect place to relax, enjoy the view, or read. The space is large enough for a whole family to spread out and enjoy their own private getaway.
(left) Exterior of The Pagoda,
(right) One of the bathrooms in the Pagoda
One of the bedrooms in the Pagoda
While any of the homes at Bambu Indah have serious romantic potential, the Kolam House ("Pond House”) just might take the cake. With its wraparound porch and garden pond, the home’s inherent serenity will make any stay relaxing. The house is actually placed on a shallow pond and is accessible by a series of stepping stones. The inherent privacy is ideal for any couple looking to get away. The private garden and dining area are ideal settings for dates and picnics. Before you know it, the home’s aura of calm will encourage you to spend your days in languid relaxation and appreciation of the nature around it.
(left) Exterior of the Kolem House, (right) Bedroom of the Kolem House
Interior of the Kolem House
If you’re looking to experience more of the surrounding land, Bambu Indah provides excursion and tour services. Popular destinations include neighboring villages, rice paddies, the Ayung River, Balinese blessings and ceremonies, and the Green School. The hotel even schedules special events for patrons on a variety of topics. From Balinese textile making to trips to a farmer’s market there's no shortage of things to do.
For days when you really need to kick back and relax, the hotel also has a spa with a variety of options. If you're looking for a soothing way to cool off, Bambu Indah also has its own swimming pond. The Kolam is cleansed naturally without the use of chlorine or other harmful chemicals. Instead, it uses "lava stones and a vegetation regeneration zone" to filter and clean the water naturally. The hotel also has its own garden where it grows ingredients used at Dapoer, the on-site restaurant, to make Balinese cuisine.
Bambu Inda's Kolam
It’s clear that the Bambu Indah Hotel is the ultimate getaway for any adventurer. It has a coterie of unique homes, each with quality accommodations tucked away in its lush surroundings. For someone who loves to travel, Bambu Indah Hotel in Bali is a can’t miss location. Just don't forget to pack your dotGREY goSET for the trip!
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