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Hotel Alila Soori Hotel 4 star
Easyexperts
Kuta Beach, Indonesia -
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Amy Adejokun Section editor

This hotel stands out from the rest of the establishments in the area for its rather daring and original concept: composed of a series of villas offering upscale hotel services, it is located in a very isolated spot. Edged by rice fields and facing the sea, the establishment is located an hour along the coast from Seminyak. It must be said that the concept has proven a real success, especially teamed with the hotel's very pleasant modern architecture and wonderful facilities mostly aimed at couples seeking a private retreat. What's more, those who enjoy face and body treatments will love the hotel's spa, with its elegant dim lighting, but if it's a beach you're after, you may be disappointed.

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    Location 3.0 /10

    The road leading to the hotel from Kuta provides the perfect opportunity to see the interior of the island, to travel through numerous villages home to traditional artisans, and to get a feel for the real Bali, away from the overcrowded seaside resorts described by travel agencies and seen on postcards. The choice to open this hotel in an isolated location, in Kelating on the west coast of the island, was a conscious one. It is about an hour's drive from the trendy resort of Seminyak. It takes about 90min to 2h to reach Denpasar International Airport from here, and if you fancy visiting the Tanah Lot temple, which stands on a rock formation surrounded by water, count on about 30min for the trip from the hotel.

    Accommodation 9.45 /10

    The hotel offers upscale accommodation, consisting of 48 'villas' built on the seafront. These are actually more like studios or apartments, built on top of each other to form 'blocks' of two units. Several categories of rooms are available depending on whether you would like one room (the most common option) or two, a view of the sea or a rice field, etc. In any case, all of them have their own swimming pool (a beautiful overflow-style swimming pool). They are exceptionally large (the smallest start at 156m² and the largest measure up to 275m²) and the decor in all of them is in keeping with the establishment's architecture: modern and simple, with a combination of dark and light tones. We found it difficult to find fault with the impeccable amenities: a Wi-Fi Internet connection, an Apple TV (meaning a wide range of channels), a mini Hi-Fi system, an iPod docking station, etc. The guest rooms also feature a large bed, immaculate bed linen, several lighting options and French doors beside the bed which mean guests can access the pool directly from their room. You'll either have a view of the ocean (available in 30 of the units) or of the countryside (rice fields stretching out behind the hotel). Room service is available 24/7 (the menu is the same one as at the restaurant). The spacious and well-equipped bathrooms include a separate bath and shower and a number of Alila brand products, but it's a shame there isn't a shower outside. For large families or weddings, there are a handful of the villas that have 5 or even 10 bedrooms.

    Overview 7.70 /10

    The road to reach the hotel, a small route winding through the rice fields before finally arriving at the entrance gate, gives an idea of the peace and quiet that reigns here. Opened in 2009, the main building is simply superb, with its modern architecture incorporating a mix of wood and concrete and described as a 'contemporary Asian style' by the Singapore architectural firm that worked on it. In addition to being both compelling and minimalist, it is also eco-friendly, as the structure was built using noble and natural materials. At reception, where guests are greeted by calming music played by two musicians, the small tailor-made desks are a welcome change from traditional reception desks. The staff is friendly and the view from here stretches over the 16 acre site towards the sea. The dark colour of the buildings brings to mind the volcanic soil in Bali. Walking around the communal areas, where the atmosphere is refined and subdued, up to the seafront, which is open to the general public, is very pleasant. We particularly liked the recurring motif of the banyan roots hanging over the walls. A reading room with comfortable sofas and rows of books doubles as an exhibition space where the work of artists-in-residence is displayed. The restaurants and the bar look directly out onto the horizon from a small terrace area. Facing the sea and shaded by palm trees, a strip of lawn serves as a sundeck equipped with deckchairs with mattresses and parasols. As for the spa, it is superb. Plunged into semi-darkness, guests will really feel as though they are cut off from the rest of the world here. There is a wide range of treatments available (therapeutic massages, Thai massages, four hands massages, reflexology, etc.) and the choice of lighting is very tasteful. The hotel also has a well-equipped gym, which guests can use free of charge.

    Food and drink 8.45 /10

    The hotel has two restaurants. The first, the Cotta, is open for all three meals. In the morning, guests enjoy flawless à la carte service. On the menu are fresh breakfast pastries, fresh fruit juices (the smoothies are especially tasty), pancakes, a selection of Indonesian specialities (nasi goreng, mie goreng, etc.) and omelettes made to order. In the evening, this restaurant is full of character and absolutely suberb. What's more, you're bound to be pleasantly surprised by the restaurant's interior. It has a very beautiful high ceiling and guests are seated at very chic and convivial large wooden tables. The menu is contemporary and fresh, composed of Asian-style fusion cuisine heavily influenced by Indonesian flavours. The tables are very elegantly set and guests also have the option of eating outside on the terrace. The second restaurant, the Ombak, is open for dinner only. Featuring a selection of fresh ingredients, the menu changes according to the products gathered that day. There are a number of three, four and five-course set meals to choose from. Depending on how windy it is, guests may also wish to dine outside on the small terrace which looks out to sea.

    Beach 7.45 /10

    The hotel offers direct access to the seafront. There is no actual beach but there is a small strip of dark-coloured sand. Note that at times the sea can get quite rough and the waves quite strong. What's more, none of the usual beach facilities are available on this strip of sand. To make up for this, there is a lovely well-kept stretch of lawn facing the sea equipped with deckchairs with mattresses, which benefit from the natural shade of the numerous palm trees planted here.

    To know

    * This is not the Alila Group's first original creation. Indeed, this group is also to thank for the superb Alila Uluwatu in the south of Bali, on the Bukit peninsula.

    * The hotel proposes a number of activities, including walks through the rice fields and cooking classes.

    Equipment

    • Shuttle bus
    • Car park
    • Restaurant
    • Internet access
    • Air conditioning
    • Spa

      spa, massage, beauty salon

    • Swimming pool

    Traveller Reviews

    • Overall Score nc/10
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