Aside from Nusa Dua and Kuta/Seminyak, I consider Ubud another distinct region to visit and stay in Bali. That was the rationale for moving into this slightly more secluded area that is also a popular spot for yoga and meditation retreats. The Sankara Ubud is a boutique resort with part of the driveway going through somewhat unpaved roads. Should guests arrive after sunset, it might be tricky to find. And naturally this is not easy either for guests to go out and take a walk, after all it is residential villages all around.
Right by the porch guests can be seated to be checked-in. As my friend has went ahead to check-in earlier, I was able to head straight to the assigned villa. I was assigned an escort who mentioned to me the resort’s facilities along the way. Guests are also provided with a welcome drink during check-in.
Room No: 801 Category: Deluxe Villa
I had been assigned a ground floor villa at the end of the resort, so it took a bit of a walk. Entry into the villa is by a traditional key and a long bench greets guests right by the door. The bench can also function as a day bed with 2 mini round bolster on each side.
In the centre of the villa is a four-poster King-sized bed with 2 bedside tables. The housekeeping team also made sure to spread flower petals all over the room. Like all Balinese resorts, straw-woven sandals were provided for comfort. Across from the bed, there is a sliding glass door that opens out to the terrace though it was not very easy to operate as it was not very well maintained. A smallish flatscreen TV lies on top of a small console on the left corner for those keen on watching TV while the front desk also supplies a selection of DVDs to go with the player below the TV.
By the wall, there is side table where coffee and tea making equipments are to be found, and adjacent to it, there is a dressing table/work table. A fruit platter was placed on the dressing table and it contains a few tropical fruits. Two bottles of water were placed outside by the coffee and tea set with two more placed beside the vanity counter in the bathroom.
Moving towards the bathroom on the end of the villa, there is the large wardrobe and a luggage bench. The bathroom itself is pretty spacious though a bit spartan. The vanity counter is located right beside the entrance to the bathroom while the toilet lies beside.
Somewhere in the halfway point, there is a shower curtain that can be drawn to hide the sunken bathtub and large shower area. While there was a separate rain shower, the sunken tub looks to be in quite a bad condition, and the louvred blinds was inoperable, though they fortunately were in a closed position.
Another thing I disliked about the bathroom was the amenities that was in a large bottle. While they might be eco-friendly, I just felt it was not hygienic. This was especially when the bathroom was not in tip-top condition.
As I mentioned earlier, there was a sliding glass door to the terrace where there is a towel and clothes hanger. There is another conventional door leading to an outdoor seating space with 2 chairs. Similarly, all the wooden doors are very difficult to open and close, fitting its rustic appearance, and certainly was not the most comfortable to use.
What was great about the room was the view of the greenery. The resort certainly put in some effort to create the perfect atmosphere that draws visitors to Ubud. There was a paddy field in the middle with villas surrounding them and the scenery was as peaceful as they come.
In the morning, guests staying at the resort can sign up for a complimentary yoga session held above the spa building across from the swimming pool. The session runs for an hour from 7am to 8am. After the yoga, guests could participate in other activities like a village hike/trek that is also complimentary. In the afternoon, there was an afternoon tea setup by the poolside with coffee, iced teas and assorted Indonesian pastries.
One of the main facilities in the resort would definitely have to be the nice infinity swimming pool located just beside the lobby. Even though it was a small pool, the ambience is serene and there seems to be not that much guests using them either. Do note though some villas have their own private pools here.
Breakfast for 2 persons was included in the room rate and it is served in The Kumbuh restaurant located on the second floor of the main reception building. Access to the restaurant is only via stairs and its open air setting does give it a nice view of the lush surroundings of this boutique resort.
There was no conventional breakfast buffet in this boutique resort. Instead guests are given a set meal that includes a savoury and sweet option. Diners could also mix and match from the pre-assigned sets. Some of the sets includes a classic Continental set with Danish pastries and granola to a healthy option with yogurt and fruits.
Though I had the Indonesian option of a Chicken congee for my savoury dish and a Pisang Ijo or banana wrapped in pandan crepe for my sweet plate. This was served along with freshly squeezed juice and a cup of coffee. I had actually forgotten to take a photo of both the menu and my congee before I started. I did enjoy this breakfast much better since the dish were tasty and a nice change from the buffet style breakfast.
Based on the daily rate of around Rp 1.5 million (~$120) inclusive all taxes, this was a pretty good value accommodation with breakfast and several complimentary activities. There was even a shuttle service guests could use to reach the Ubud town centre. The only downside to the low rate was the poorly maintained condition of the villa, and I do suggest guests check the conditions of their villa upon check-in before settling down.