We stayed in a villa first, then a superior room. The villa was amazing quality - it was the sort of room you would see in Wallpaper magazine or you imagine to be a picture perfect dream honey-moon room. A private pool, large king sized bed in a beautifully appointed room, separate dressing room, indoor and outdoor shower, under-cover bath, a fish pond around the outdoor shower, and a pavilion in the outdoor area where you could take breakfast.
If staying in a villa, a gong (located at the villa's entrance) is sounded three times to announce the arrival of ones substantial breakfast. Alternatively one can join other guests under the large pavilion in the water gardens, which is used for gamelan practice some afternoons. The breakfast was all you could eat, and included two Balinese dishes in a self serve bay marie. There was a selection of pastries, bread / toast, spreads, sambals, fruit, and a choice of two fruit juices (all self serve). The excellent Bali coffee was served with a cinnamon stick, and the pleasant staff would regularly check for refills. The staff would also make eggs any style for you.
The superior room was not as special as the villa, but it was comfortable and the pleasant outlook of the grounds are what gives it the edge over other establishments.
Our only complaints are that we would have liked a shower, rather than a bath, and more natural light n our bathroom. While the bath had a shower fitting, it was the sort you had to hold in one hand while balancing in the slippery bath, and try not to flood the room with water. Guests with disabilities or who are older may find this bathroom setup unsuitable. We noted also that there was rotting wood on the base of the bathroom cupboard, the safe had no instructions and was broken (it started to beep and woke us up one night until we worked out how to take out the batteries), and the air conditioning temperature sensor, while fully functional, was an exposed chip stuck to the cupboard. These small details would better be addressed by an establishment of this quality and price range.
From our superior room, our outlook was to the warm crystal clear pool and the pavilion where one could enjoy Bali Copi / Coffee (stired with a cinnamon stick) between 4 and 6pm each evening. Even here we could sit on the lounges on the balcony outside the room and hear the stream which runs through the property, with a backdrop of the healthiest looking rice paddy on the island.
The afternoons had short down pours which were a welcome relief to the heat and humidity that builds before the storm starts. This period often coincided with afternoon tea time so one could sit next to the pool and see the rain coming down over the garden, statues.
ARMA includes a magnificent art gallery, which is complimentary for guests. It also has the ARMA cafe (which we didn't visit) and has nightly performances. ARMA has a Thai restaurant but if we wanted Thai food we'd go to Thailand or stay in Sydney.
ARMA was well located we thought - just on the edge of the main tourist strips so we could walk out to a range of nearby restaurants, including Warong Enak which has excellent Balinese food and a cooking school and some warongs intended for locals. We recommend the one next to the petrol station on the corner which is painted green with "festea" written over it - this serves and excellent nasi campur for lunch for $1 or so. There are also a few in the parking space opposite the petrol station which had excellent food for the locals. We hired a scooter, however, so we could move around freely without exhausting or dehydrating ourselves. Most guests of ARMA choose air conditioned vehicle transport.
Staff here are without exception are extremely friendly, helpful and pleasant. A team of staff attend to the grounds every morning. Everyone says hello and most speak sufficient English to attend your requirements, and even have a little chat.
We would definitely return to ARMA and Ubud as our first choice in Bali, provided the price remains within our price range. There are similar priced rooms in Seminyak etc but Ubud has the tourism conveniences and has maintained some sense of Balinese culture, without the hassles and stress of the east which I felt had fallen to an Australian market only interested in cheap prices, and food and culture that is barely distinguishable from what they can get at home.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.