On my recent trip to Kuta, Bali I had planned to stay in a 15USD a night private room, found via web search. Arriving at 11pm and finding no one at the airport to meet me (as I had requested), I took it as a ‘sign’. So I negotiated with a few too eager taxi drivers and went looking for a place to stay.
Knowing that I was rather at the mercy of my taxi driver and his potential ‘arraignments’ with area hotels, I anticipated a late night tour of the city. But surprisingly he seemed to remember a particular hotel as an after thought and delivered me to Suriwathi Hotel . And surprisingly he had no commission arraignment, just one of Bali’s many hospitable people.
I was pleasantly surprised to find this small ‘resort’ had standard rooms for 25-35USD a night, with aircon, hot and cold showers, television and breakfast included. Their upper end villas and bungalows were also reasonably priced. Unfortuantely no WIFI is available in the rooms at this time, but it is fast, free and efficient in their open air restaurant.
The open air restaurant is next to the pool and bar and feels more like a lounging area than a ‘hurry up and eat’ stuffy restaurant. There’s free breakfast for guests and a choice of four set meals from 8am-11am. You can also order from the regular menu until 11pm at night: Western, Indonesian and delicious salads
(the chef salad is especially nice).
The staff at Suriwathi Hotel all speak English and are eager to ensure guests’ comforts. Obviously a compliment to Manager Madi Widane, who is quite a charming host as well. Any arraignments you need assistance with, they will do their best to take care of. And with a genuine smile.
The gardens at Suriwathi are beautiful and quiet, although adjacent to a rather popular street. It is within walking distance from an ATM, money changer, mini markets and a variety of restaurants. It’s also only a few blocks from the beach, where there are plenty of people renting or selling anything from cold beers to Indonesian kites.
Kuta is one of the nearest stops after landing in Denpasar,Bali. For me it’s an excellent base camp. Although it may seem like crazy chaos to a new arrival, after a few days in town you can feel the balance of a solid community. The people of Bali are helpful and genuine, being respectful to them will indeed get you respect back. And my best tip? Although tempting as it is to immediately start ‘shopping’, wait a few days when your newness isn’t so apparent.
Sahadewa Streat No 12 Legian – Kelod
Kuta Bali – Indonesia
Tel: +62 361 753162
Fax: +62 361 758393