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“Needs updating. Pretty beach.” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Nirwana Gardens - Nirwana Resort Hotel

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Nirwana Gardens - Nirwana Resort Hotel
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Jalan Panglima Pantar | Bintan Resorts, Bintan Island, Lagoi, Riau Islands Province 29155, Indonesia   |  
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Ranked #2 of 3 hotels in Lagoi
Los Angeles
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Needs updating. Pretty beach.”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 5, 2013

There are many nice things to say about this "resort," including the fact that it has one of the best beaches I've been to in SE Asia so far. Beach was private, secluded, clean and had lots of wildlife. The water was quite shallow for a surprising distance out in the ocean. We had a great time walking around looking for fish and other seacreatures. Unlike many beaches in Phuket where there are motorboats for rent and a string of local businesses selling souvenirs and food on the beach, this beach was serenely void of any commercial activity. The downside to that is that with no local eateries, you are pretty much stuck with whatever the resort has to offer which in my view was pretty mediocre and overpriced. The staff were mostly friendly and helpful. The free breakfast was pretty good. They had a wide selection of different cuisines and tasted good. We walked a short distance to their recreation center and bowled a few rounds, practiced archery and ate at the less expensive food court. My chief complaint about Nirwana was how OLD everything was. The property is neat and tidy but there are just some things that water and paint can't cure. The beach towels were frayed on the edges, discolored and threadbare. The poolchairs were those cheap metal ones with the thick plastic straps. The furniture in the room look to be original to the hotel, meaning at least 20 or 30 years old. When we picked up a table lamp to move it, it literally broke in half. And this was the first hotel/motel in years that I've been to that had the regular bulky TV sets, not a flatscreen. None of this would have been so bad except that their prices were so much higher than what you'd expect for this level of quality PLUS you're in Indonesia! But the businesses here post all prices in Singapore dollars (SD) and clearly seem to prefer SD to their own currency. Their prices won't seem unreasonable by Singapore standards but then you look around and wonder, "Where is all the money going?" It's not going to higher wages.It's not going into A/C as most of the hotel is open-air and their fitness room is not air conditioned! And it's certainly not going into improvements. Suggestion: Either infuse some cash into the operations to justify your prices OR lower prices to make people feel they're getting value for their money. You might make more money on increased volume for services. Also, the gym needs an air conditioner!

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
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Singapore
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
59 helpful votes 59 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 2, 2013

We stayed here for a night over the weekend just for a short getaway from Singapore. It is our second trip here, the first one being way back in 2007. Over the last few years, I believe nothing has changed at all! You can see it as a good thing (well-maintained) or a bad thing (no improvements).

First off, I can safely say that 90% of the visitors here come from Singapore. Not everyone is Singaporean but at least, their last port was Singapore. So, everything here is catered in Singapore dollars.

For the hotel, don't try to be a smarty pants (like me) and change Singapore dollars to Indonesian rupiah (the rupiah has dropped a lot recently) thinking you can take advantage of it. The hotel has already catered this and if you decide to pay in rupiah, they will give you a very unfavourable rate. For example, I changed SGD 1 for Rp 8900 in Singapore. However, if I wanted to pay in Rp, they were going to charge SGD 1 for Rp 9250. Moral of the story, bring a lot of Singapore dollars if you wish to pay your stuff in cash, like, activities, hotel rooms and meals.

Service was as good as always. The staff at the ferry terminal collected our suitcase and brought it to the resort for us. Although we booked a deluxe room, we were upgraded to a suite. Sweet! One thing to note is that some parts of the hotel is undergoing renovations. The rooms next to us were being renovated but we weren't disturbed because it was just basically painting.

Room was comfortable. A little bit jaded (hence the renovations) but nothing to complain about. WiFi is weak in the rooms but OK at the lobby area. Breakfast is okay. The half-boiled eggs looked like un-boiled eggs, that's the only thing to nitpick on.

There is transport service to the nearby Pasar Oleh-Oleh for SGD 5 (yes, SGD again) per person which you can use for the whole day. Some things to eat, massage places, souvenir stores and Polo shops (of course) are available there. Once again, they all take SGD.

For comparison, we took a package of 1 hour Indonesian massage + Seafood BBQ package for SGD 54 per person from the hotel. Compared to the spa at Pasar Oleh-Oleh, I think it is reasonable because the spa charges SGD 33 for the similar 1 hour Indonesian massage. And, the Cafe Helo-Helo (imaginative, I know) isn't exactly that flash. We had something to eat there in the afternoon because we were starving. A pretty sad-looking tilapia fish was SGD 20. SO, if you take SGD 33 + SGD 20 that's about the same as the package offered by the hotel. And the dinner in the package was really good. You have a nice BBQ done by the staff, facing the sea and the sunset. We were the only ones that night and to have the beach to ourselves, the price was well worth it.

Activities that are available here are of course golf, the swimming pool, archery, BB gun shooting, trampoline. Everything is chargeable except for the swimming pool.

One other tip for travelers is with regards to the ferry. The Bintan Resorts Ferry website is VERY un-user friendly. A return ticket SIN - Bintan - SIN costs SGD 68.40. However, you MAY click the wrong button and choose the Published rate of SGD 45 (one way) x 2 = SGD 90. And you have no idea that you are over-paying until you are in Bintan and find out that everyone else paid SGD 68.40. If you do find yourself doing this, go to the counter at the ferry terminal over at the Singapore side to arrange for the difference to be credited into your credit card.

All in all, hotel is okay. We paid a cheaper rate by using the Tripadvisor promotion and got a suite. Can't complain can I? Next trip, though, we may try another resort within the area for the sake of variety.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BATAM
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed September 27, 2013

Wanted to bring my daughter for a short holidays and decided on BINTAN, Called Nirwana Resorts Hotel and mention cannot book over the phone, cannot check because office is closed. Please call back tomorrow morning 9am. Called and then told us cannot book by phone must go and book on-line.

Fine, okay, booked online SGD$490+ for 3D2N.

My husband, myself, maid and daughter. Extra bed. Clicked CHECK IN 1pm, selected from their website. (Read the reviews here that it's all bull. SUBJECTED TO AVAILABILITY. In the end, they just want you to check in by 3pm. Went on Monday, rooms only 20% full)

Reached 2pm. Receptionist says room not ready, because we paid for extra bed so have to make the bed. Room will be ready by 3pm instead. Please give me your credit card for verification. Receptionist swiped Rp 1,000. Okay, Got room keys. AND THAT'S IT.

Nothing else mentioned about bags or directions or sorts.
You are on your own.
Fine.

Our Room 1145, NO BELLBOY NOBODY took us to our room, carried our own heavy luggage and managed to find our room after 10 minutes... East Wing.

Room looks okay, very old furnitures like Bali style. In fact, the whole resort layout of pool, hotel rooms was very much like Le Meridian Bali 5 years back.
Can see that this hotel either open since 90s or something. Their 21" Fat Old model TV was so straining on our eyes. Everything else was in working condition except for their wooden window curtain. Yes, Wooden. Bali style what.

Nirwana Resorts Hotel is so secluded and isolated that we had to spend all 3 meals inside within the resorts. We drove from Batam to Bintan to explore. Took 3 hours there and 3 hours back. Each resorts is so secluded inside Lagoi, Bintan Resorts that it was like a maze and jungle. You just keep going in deeper and deeper.

MAKAN TIME.

DO NOT BOTHER to pay in Rupiah, their exchange rates are so ridiculous that it is higher than money changers or banks. Just pay in SGD, Breakfast Buffet is nothing great or special. Fried mee, congee, half boiled eggs, nasi lemak, mee / k.tiao soup, fruits, desserts, have tasted better and seen better quality.

1st night
Went for their DINNER BUFFET at THE COFFEESHOP although they mentioned special price for 3rd person. There was nothing special no discounts whatsoever for the 3rd adult. In all 3 Adults and 1 Child. Children below 2 FREE. 3 and above all must pay. Drinks pay seperate. Total Bill SGD $135.52

2nd day lunch, went back to same place, asked the waiter is there any lunch buffet available?
Waiter laughed, "Haha, We don't have any buffet for lunch. All a la carte."
Me, "OK? What about Dinner?"
Waiter,"No, We don't have any buffet for lunch or dinner. All a la carte."
Me, "HUH? What did we ate last night???"

NOTICE TO MANAGEMENT:
IF THERE WAS NO LUNCH BUFFET OR DINNER BUFFET AVAILABLE THEN WHY DO YOU GUYS KEEP ADVERTISING ON YOUR 21" FAT TV YOUR F&B PROMO AS WELL AS ON YOUR WEBSITE AS WELL AS PLACED A F&B CATALOGUE IN OUR ROOMS? STOP TELLING PEOPLE THAT YOU HAVE BUFFET WHEN YOU DON'T HAVE THEM.

Waiter," Oh, we only have WHEN THERE IS A LARGE GROUP OF TOURISTS. Last night, we had a tour group from Korea or Japan."
Me,".............................................................................." Totally Speechless.

Hey, Please go place some fine prints or T&C at the bottom of your promos at least.

2nd Night Dinner, wanted to try RIN Japanese Restaurant but decided not to, in case we got carrot chop again. Wanted to try SEAFOOD KELONG but also scared kana carrot chop again. Finally decided on Thai. Opps. Wrong choice.

Spent SGD $205 on Thai food really no joke.
Anyone who is planning a trip to Bintan Resorts, please be prepared to pay MORE.
Been there once, and never going back there again.

White sandy beaches, great view, cannot swim, red flags all around, jellyfish and tar blots warnings.
Quiet place basically for doing Nothing, Just eat,sleep in there. You pay TOP SGD DOLLAR for things that you can basically do elsewhere.

My conclusion, really not worth it. SGD $1000+ for 3D2N for a location so close to Singapore can do so much more.

3rd day checked out, pay cash in SGD and when I asked about the Rp1000 that was swiped to verify the credit card, the receptionist replied, "It will be refunded in 2 weeks, ANYWAY it is only around 20 cents Singapore Money." SGD 0.20 is also still money.

I am not concern about the Rp1000. I just don't understand why they need to verify when they can have our NRIC KTP PASSPORT ETC or simply read the numbers on the credit card, already key in all the information online so why need to pay so much to get this type of services when I have seen better elsewhere.

If you want to save money on food on holidays, just order a plate of plain SGD $2 white rice. or even better still, order the cheapest food example, Fried rice, noodles etc. I know we need to spend $ on holidays but this trip is the most ridiculous one in ages!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Lagoi hotels

Singapore, Singapore
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 24, 2013

we stayed here for the new year. the package was reasonable with a new year gala dinner. dinner was a huge buffet with a lots of variety of cuisines included. though for drinks one had to pay. the internal travel arrangements by bus was good. generally a well organised event. i would not mind going back for the next new year here again.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
27 hotel reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 21, 2013

Have now been to Nirwana 5 times, a mixture of work and leisure visits. The resort itself is massive and has loads going on. The pool is nice (watch out for swimming monitor lizards though - I've seen this twice!) and the beach by the Beach Club is decent too. The Beach Club huts are basic but the hotel and Myang Sari are of a higher standard. Be careful of jelly fish in the sea! The Spice restaurant is the best one there. The one issue I have with Nirwana are the prices. I know it's Bintan but it's objectionable to not just pay Singapore prices in Indonesia but actually more! For example, a 1.5 litre bottle of Coke which costs $3 in Cold Storage or $2 in a local Sing supermarket cost a whopping $12.50 in the resort centre!! And I'm not kidding! Bintang beer (and other bottles) can be bought at the ferry terminal for $2 a can compared with $8+ a can at the resort. I'm not saying you should do that but...!

Room Tip: The Beach huts are the cheapest for a reason.
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2013

This was my third visit to Nirwana - each trip has been a short visit with one of my daughters. Nirwana is a big complex, and this is Indonesia, so there are things that might be seen as not 'up to scratch' - the pool towels are a bit frayed (oh no!), the shower in the room isn't great (rarely used it anyway, just showered by the pool), and some parts of the resort are older and a bit jaded. Some of the food is a bit pedestrian. If nit-picking is your thing, you could find enough to spoil your holiday.

BUT, if you just want to enjoy glorious tropical weather in a stunning location with help from wonderfully friendly staff, this is your place. The horizon pool is stunning (my girls love the swim-up bar), and the rarely used beach is divine. My first stay was in the cabanas, and the little lake there has now blossomed into a magnificent lily pond. Nearby there's even a small zoo, featuring crocodiles, snakes, birds - and guinea pigs!

The buffet breakfast is generous and varied, and we could enjoy this enough to skip lunch (more time by the pool). There's a gym at the resort centre nearby, where you can also go 10 pin bowling, so we justified dinner by a couple of games and a good work-out. The gardens are immaculate, with the added bonus of the occasional iguana wandering by.

For tranquility and charm, go for the cabanas. We also like the main hotel, for ease of access to pool and other facilities.

Yes, it's not cheap, but in my view it's also not expensive considering the location and facilities.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, null, Singapore
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2013

Bought Deal.com.sg voucher and went with my girlfriend last week. Very nice resort with great swimming pool. Beautiful beach. The room I like it very much. Very Balinese and Holiday feel. Nearby got a Lotus pond, beautiful and lovely Lotus flower. Friendly staff. Will go again.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Nirwana Gardens - Nirwana Resort Hotel

Also Known As:
Nirwana Gardens - Nirwana Hotel Lagoi
Nirwana Gardens - Nirwana Hotel
Nirwana Hotel Lagoi
Nirwana Gardens - Nirwana Resort Hotel Bintan Island/Lagoi
Address: Jalan Panglima Pantar | Bintan Resorts, Bintan Island, Lagoi, Riau Islands Province 29155, Indonesia
Location: Indonesia > Riau Islands Province > Riau Archipelago > Bintan Island > Lagoi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 hotels in Lagoi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Nirwana Gardens - Nirwana Resort Hotel 4*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Cheery Family Hotel. Our unique blend of sunny Mediterranean spirit and warm Indonesian hospitality will make you feel more than welcomed here. In fact, with something to do for everyone in the family, you are assured of a great time in this sunny, cheery paradise! This family hotel offers 245 rooms & suites catering to every budget and need, offering breathtaking ocean, pool or garden views. The rooms are spacious and fully furnished with modern amenities for your comfort. ... more   less 
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