The Best Way to Top off (or Kick off) a Stay in Bali: Watermark Hotel & Spa
While I’ll be the first to defend hostels, there’s nothing quite like treating yourself to a little luxury every once in a while when traveling. Where better to pamper yourself than Bali, so I spent my last two nights on the Indonesian island in the lovely Watermark Hotel & Spa in Jimbaran. Read on for my thoughts!
If you’ve never been to Bali or just need a refresher, be sure to also check out my Bali travel guide for first timers!
Watermark’s biggest attraction, in my opinion, is its proximity to the Bali Denpasar airport. Just ten minutes away, the hotel offers a free airport shuttle. Airport taxis will try to gouge you despite official rates being posted immediately next to the “regulated” taxi booking desk, so being able an organized shuttle to your accommodation will take a big load off your back.
Based in Jimbaran, the immediately surrounding area doesn’t have a whole lot to offer. However, Watermark’s beach club is great (see below!), and it is fairly easy to get to places like Uluwatu and Kuta from there. Watermark also offers a free shuttle to the latter. While I think a trip to Bali wouldn’t be complete without getting a bit away from the airport area (wondering where to stay in Bali when venturing out to other parts of the island?), I’d say that Jimbaran makes a great place to begin or end your trip so you don’t have to trek all the way from the airport to, say, Ubud or the luxury villas of Seminyak, upon arrival.
During my stay at Watermark, I had the opportunity to check out two room types, the Superior Room and the Suite Room. Both were absolutely lovely, well-designed, and spacious. Remind me to never again take good air conditioning for granted in a place as hot as Bali, and Watermark certainly had that covered. The rooms were both complete with a massive TV, a good-sized bathroom, and a variety of toiletries. The Suite Room is larger, of course, featuring a balcony and lounge area. My favorite additional feature was the filtered water, a big plus in a country without potable water.
The Watermark features not one but two outdoor pools. I particularly enjoyed the rooftop infinity pool, which offers spectacular sunset views as well as comfy lounge beds and a pool bar. Also on the Watermark premises is Liang Spa, where I enjoyed a lovely Balinese oil massage and body treatment — but I’ll tell you all about that in a future post! For those in Club Rooms, the Club Lounge provides snacks and drinks, with a great selection of food during its happy hour. Other facilities include a kids’ play area, a fitness center, a ballroom, and a gift shop.
Perhaps my favorite feature, which I haven’t seen elsewhere, which is the departure lounge, which has outlets and comfortable chairs — as well as showers! — for those who have checked out from their rooms but are waiting to head to the airport.
The Beach Club
If two pools aren’t enough and you’re looking for some more fun in the sun, Watermark has its own beach club just down the road from the hotel. It’s a ten minute walk, but hotel golf carts are more than happy to pick you up and take you there throughout the day. Once there, you can sunbathe on comfortable lounge chairs and order drinks and snacks from the adjoining restaurant. It’s a quiet spot on the beach with white sand and warm water, so I’d definitely recommend paying a visit!
Watermark has three restaurants on site, all of which provide some seriously tasty food. W Senses serves international dishes alongside the pool and an impressive breakfast buffet, while Imadoki specializes in Japanese. Angelique Cafe is the place to go for quicker but still delicious meals. I’ll go into further detail about W Senses and Imadoki in a future post, so stay tuned for that!
I’ll continue to detail my stay at Watermark in a further posts, but let me just say for now that our visit was wonderful: relaxing, comfortable, and just what I was looking for to treat myself in Bali. As I mentioned earlier, I would highly recommend exploring other parts of the island, but for your first or last few days after arriving at the airport or before taking off, it doesn’t get much more ideal than Watermark Hotel & Spa.