Ayung Resort is classy, but comfortable – not stuffy. Our room was a ‘basic’ in the “Laksmana” block, which appears to have 18 rooms – 3 rooms on each side of a central staircase and 3 levels. Room 105 was close to the stairs on the ground floor – but is still above pool level. All rooms overlook the pool. Rooms have a complementary drinks bar fridge with only soft drink cans, ovaltine drinks and a large carton of fresh milk. Alcohol is available in your room through room service. The room has a kettle, plus a pod espresso machine (with 4 pods), plus a milk frother and a kettle. The rooms have two refilled bottles of drinking water.
The rooms are spacious and furnished with dark Balinese furniture that is above average quality (doors and drawers close!). A/C is a small unit, but temperatures are not extreme at this altitude. The floor and bathroom are alabaster marble – which I don’t like, but I guess it looks ‘classy’. Everything was sparkling clean except a small stain on the bed runner.
The whole property reminds me of The Samaya just out of Ubud – but I don’t think the Samaya has anything but cottages. The long, cobbled roads meander down to the river. Whereas the Samaya has a first class restaurant on the river, the Ayung Resort is in a steeper valley and has chosen to put the restaurant at the top of the property, where you can get commanding views of the river valley. Some of the rafting companies start their tours within sight of your breakfast table. A few reports talk about it being a new property, but it is well settled into its surroundings and the steady maintenance needed in Bali was already underway. It is a steep walk to the river – don’t hold high expectations of the ‘deer park’. This feature looks more like it might be more for the owner’s dinner indulgence than anything else – it is a sad, dirt pen with nothing growing, rickety fencing – but much better than your average Balinese cow stall. The bungalows look large and impressive from the outside. We saw plenty of monkeys, squirrels and bats in the grounds.
On our first day, we had ‘afternoon tea’ brought to the room – two small savoury tarts each (make your own tea).
Dinner service starts at 7pm – we would have been there at 6pm on the first night – tired and hungry from our travel. About 6:50, room service wanted to offer ‘turn down’ service – I said we would be out in 10 minutes, but the group of 5 staff clearly didn’t want to come back. I was given two chocolates at the door (the ones that mysteriously appeared’ for others) and that was our turn down service!
Dinner was about AUD$90 including 3 small beers and two good glasses of NZ wine. We only had main and dessert. We declined bottled water, but soon had glasses of chilled water poured that were topped up through the night. We were served a lovely ‘amuse bouch’ of smoked marlin and then warm bread rolls. Service was a little pushy – pressing us to order an entrée and quickly order more beer/ wine. Service and the experience were really lovely though. We opted for an ‘outside’ table on the balcony of the restaurant – and were offered a herbal mossie spray that smelt good. The lights clearly attract a few bugs from the valley jungle, but they were deftly swept away periodically and were not a worry.
At breakfast the service was still pushy – which just goes to show it is not mercenary in nature, as whatever you want is included in the tariff, but there is no buffet. We were a little undecided or unclear about breads and pastries to order, so we were served a large platter of everything. We saw a single diner got the same large board of options with two of everything – bread, English muffins, cheese muffins and cheese scones, Danish, croissant, bread, jams and a tiny pat of butter. Then fruit platter (surprisingly poor), and your choice of cooked breakfast. My wife ordered ‘plain scrambled eggs on toast’ – it wasn’t on the menu, but clearly they could do it. A bewildering choice of additions were declined. The eggs came not so plain - towered on tiny toasted English muffin with diced tomato on top, then a side of grilled vegetables. It was not exactly what we ordered, but the frills could be left on the plate and were very nicely presented and well received.
Our first full day included a long walk by ourselves to Tegal Lallang, then we spent an afternoon at the pool (the large Laksmana pool to ourselves). Lounges are dressed with two towels and one to use. We were offered cool towels and iced water to ease the pain. The gym is clean and well-appointed with good quality gear. Complementary daily yoga was not something we tried, but we saw it underway.
On our last day, we used the complementary shuttle to drop us in Ubud with or bags. Before we left the carpark at the drop off point, we had our taxi to our next hotel in Sidemen all sorted, and we were off!
Unfortunately, my wife felt suddenly ill less than 30 minutes after leaving the hotel. We had enjoyed our last three meals at Ayung Resort (dinner, breakfast, and lunch after checking out), so we are in little doubt that the sudden and terrible illness that spoilt the next few days of our holiday must have been caused in some way from the restaurant. We did both thoroughly enjoy the hotel and the restaurant. The lack of other similar experiences suggests that ours was an isolated experience.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Ayung Resort is a breathtaking, mystique and unique lifestyle hotel, perched high up on the bank of a mostly untouched tropical mountain rainforest gorge, in the traditional Balinese village of Payangan Ubud, surrounded by the gentle, spiritual tranquility and pace of Balinese life. Along this serene 8 hectares rain forest domain runs The Ayung, Bali’s most sacred mountain river. In the rocks of the hotels pathways and along it’s 600 meters long riverbank fronting the Ayung Resort, 250 of the finest Balinese Stone Carvers have painstakingly worked,for over a 2 year period,to carve the spectacular Hindu mythologies, Ramayana and Mahabharata amongst others. These stone carvings have become the most sought after photo opportunity of the hotel. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Ayung Resort Ubud Bali/Payangan