Hilton has a total of 3 different properties in Bali with a 4th coming very soon after Jumana becomes fully incorporated under its portfolio with the LXR brand. I have shared previously that I hope to review and visit all 3 properties during my time in Bali. Following on the heels of my stay at Hilton Bali Resort, I am headed to the Conrad. Conrad Bali is located in Benoa, in the east of Bali. The location rather good, at least for connectivity to the airport since it is close to the tollway. Do make sure the driver take that route and you can really cut down on the travelling time. The small charge for it is worth it. Conrad Bali is currently the best Hilton property in Bali and I am keen to see how it will be after hearing so much about it. This is a super popular property for Hilton members worldwide.
Booking Process & Pre Arrival
I used the voucher that I got during the start of the pandemic for a 2-night stay in end april. It is a good use especially when the rates are otherwise through the roof during the week-long holiday period. With the voucher, I am paying 133 SGD a night. I do not earn any points or nights with this special rate. The day before my stay, I can see from the app that I have been upgraded slightly to a Deluxe King Ocean Front Room. Conrad Bali features 358 guest rooms and suites spread across 12 categories. It is a sprawling property despite the low number of rooms and suites. Do be prepared to walk quite a bit depending on where your room is located.
|Rooms||Executive Lounge Access||Bathtub||Room Size|
|Deluxe with Pool View||No||Yes||45 Sqm|
|Deluxe Ocean Front||No||Yes||51 Sqm|
|Deluxe Lagoon Access||No||Yes||45 Sqm|
|Deluxe Family||No||Yes||45 + 45 Sqm|
|Conrad Suite||Yes||Yes||110 Sqm|
|Conrad Ocean Suite||Yes||Yes||110 Sqm|
|Conrad Pool Suite||Yes||Yes||110 Sqm|
|Ocean Front Suite||Yes||Yes||90 Sqm|
|Lagoon Access Suite||Yes||Yes||90 Sqm|
|Pool Villa||Yes||Yes||235 Sqm|
|Conrad Penthouse||Yes||Yes||340 Sqm|
I arrive shortly after 1pm from Sanur. The drive took 20 mins via the tollway. Upon pulling up, there is a long driveway and you will have to undergo a security check here. It looks very good from the outside. In the lobby, I was helped by the staff with my bags. Check-in counters are located to the left of the lobby and it is a sit-down affair here. It was pretty crowded given the holidays. Check in was messy. I was left alone and waited for more than 20 mins before being assisted by the staff. That is so unacceptable for a Conrad and a 5 star resort. There is no elite line and no order at all. The staff attended to others who arrive later than me. It took such a long time before I had my keys. The lack of a suite upgrade even when there is one available was appalling. Even after prompting, the staff lie straight in my face and say that it isn’t available for both nights. I knew that it was! I was informed that only one night is available and you will have to change room. It felt like you ask for something and get 50% kind of feeling. Guests are also offered a 30 mins complimentary photoshoot which is a nice touch.
A tamarind juice with sprite welcome drink only arrived after the check in process was complete which is ironic. The flow isn’t right at all which then created an awkward vibe where the staff look at you and waits for you to finish your drink before wrapping up the check in process. This is probably why I had to wait for such a long time in the first place. I was then escorted to the room by the bellboy.
Deluxe King Ocean Front Room
I was assigned 2315 located on the second floor in the 3rd building which is the north wing. It’s quite a walk from the lobby and we would definitely have got lost without the bellboy showing us the way for the first time. The room was pretty lovely and upon entering I was pleased by the amount of natural light. The ocean view was a lovely sight to see, this is even though that we are only on the second floor. You have a hint of the greens, the sand and then the boundless ocean right in front of your eyes. Such an idyllic view with those coconut trees.
The room is a good size and measures 51 Sqm. Upon entering, you can find the spacious bathroom to the left of the room and I love the double door entrance. The bathroom comes with both a separate bathtub as well as a standing shower. The standing shower came equipped with both a wall-mounted showerhead as well as a handheld one. The toilet is also located in separate rooms. Water pressure and temperature control are excellent. There is a ledge in the showering room that makes it easy for you to wash your feet or take a seated shower.
You can get the ocean view from the bathroom and the bathtub which makes it a great companion when taking a soak. Blinds are installed for those who would like some additional privacy. The lack of a double sink does take away some of the glamour. You can find a hairdryer left under the sink and that got to be another damming part in the room with those press and hold kind of hairdryer. I should not be seeing this at a Conrad.
There also seems to be something funny about the amenities. These look like knock-off Shanghai Tang toiletries. I can’t believe that the cost-cutting gets to this level. The next day I luck out and got a real conditioner out of all the fakes haha!
On the opposite side, you can find two spacious wardrobes and they come with all the amenities that you might need, from bathrobes to bath slippers, a safe as well as an ironing kit. I do wish that they provide some sort of beach bag or hats that would be useful during the stay and great as a memento.
The room can be seen in one look with the centrepiece being the king size bed. The bedding was comfy and high quality as does the pillows which offer great neck support. On both sides of the bed, you can find nightstands where outlets and switches for the lights can be conveniently found. It is lovely to see that they had USB outlets installed.
Sadly the cleanness of the room leaves much to be desired, I can find weird spots on the sheets and even long strands of hair on the sofa when I first entered the room.
The TV is mounted on the wall opposite the bed with a good selection of channels. It could you an upgrade though as the size was way too small even for a room of this size. Below it is the minibar area. The fridge is left empty for your use and you can find some packaged tea and coffee being provided. The lack of a proper coffee machine is disappointing for Conrad. Left here is a cute Conrad bear which is the standard welcome amenity in Conrad properties. I appreciate the local influences and here in this location is a monkey. A care kit consisting of some disposable masks and a bottle of sanitiser is left here too. I know that they meant well but this got to be the first time that I have seen a half-used hand sanitiser which seems kind of ironic.
There is a little mini living area nearer to the side of the balcony. It’s always nice to have such an area even when you are not in a suite. You have couches on both sides of the wall and it can easily fit 4-5 people comfortable. Given the lack of a working desk, this also acts as the working area if you do need to get some work done. The wifi is easy to connect and the speed is fast.
The view from the suite is gorgeous as mentioned and this is so picture perfect. It looks straight out of a painting. The room comes with a little balcony although it’s more like a patio rather than a balcony. You can’t do anything there besides posing for a picture. You can see how dated the property is where some places are certainly in need of a touch up. They also do not provide turndown service in the evening. That is one huge moot point, especially in a resort where you will more than likely be lazing in your room during the day.
The gym is open 24 hours and you can use it anytime you want. If you would like to use it in the wee hours you can pre-inform the reception to get the air-conditioning on. It is located on the ground floor right below the spa. You can assist it directly using the spa lift. The gym is well equipped but looks rather depressing and gloomy! It does not look welcoming at all. The decor looks very dated as well.
The swimming pool is open from 6am to 10pm. There are various pools located all over the resort from the main one in the centre to a couple of lagoons around the property which some rooms on the ground floor have direct access. The main pool is gorgeous and has a good view of the beach and ocean. I love that the water is very comfortable for both a dip and swimming after being heated by the sun.
There are plenty of sunbeds and cabanas located throughout the resort, all on a first come first serve basis. The service is very good by the pool and the beach. Attendants will come by immediately with towels and ice water.
The Conrad Suites also have their own exclusive pool which is more quieter and quaint. It is also on the smaller side. While this is reserved for suites guests only there is no staff taking down names and everyone can access it.
Located on the oceanfront, Conrad Bali boasts direct beach access. It’s lovely to stay so near to the beach and there is an abundance of sunbeds. They are well maintained and the beach is clean. The place is great for a relaxing afternoon and tanning. Given that the beach is accessible by the public as well, you do have people coming by to offer rides or water activities which can be annoying. Relaxing by the beach with the sounds of the waves crashing is an amazing thing to do every day and enjoying the sea breeze.
The actual lounge is currently closed at the moment during my stay. Diamond Elite members and eligible guests are invited to the East Lounge instead to enjoy their lounge benefits as a replacement. The East Lounge is located right next to the lobby and guests can enjoy afternoon tea from 3 to 5pm and evening cocktails from 5 to 7pm. The lobby bar is quite chic and cosy with a view of the ocean and the pool below.
The environment is very comfortable and great for winding down the afternoon, it is nice when there is a little sea breeze to cool you down. Sometimes it can get a little stuffy. They could certainly do with some ceiling fans here. Check it out!
I was down for afternoon tea and you can find the menu here! The snacks come in a tiered stand and you can get additional items of your liking. Then you can choose the drinks that you want from coffees and teas. I love their homemade teas and iced coffee which were a lifesaver in the afternoon heat. The staff are good with customization as well.
The items were fresh and rather delicious, especially their cakes.
On my second day, they had some coconut cakes and chicken sandwiches. It’s nice that they switch things around and the coconut cake is really good!
Evening canapés start from 5 to 7pm and the staff took a long time to take orders and bring over the food. You have to make some effort to flag down one of the staff. I do have to commend the selection of drinks and beverages here. You can find all sorts of alcoholic options from cocktails to wines and beers!
There is a healthy number of cocktails and throughout my stay, I tried most of them. Here are some of my favourites. The various daiquiri, pina colada, mojito, maitai! Service is very sparse and they are not proactive in offering refills. Do try one of the local beers Bali Hai, it is super malty and delicious.
Food items change day to day. On my first night, we had some spring rolls, karaage chicken and nachos. They are great but took a long time to come. Pre-made canapés taking 40 mins to be served? That can’t be right!
On my second evening, we were served some fried croquettes, sushi and watermelon salad.
Overall good drinks but food-wise can be better. The service is generally well but can also be sparse at times as after all these staffs are not trained to provide executive lounge service. I am looking forward to being back one day and visiting the actual lounge. Life is amazing when you have a cocktail on hand and the sea breeze for companionship.
During our stay, we had some food from the restaurant as well. The menu is the same regardless of where you dine, be it at the restaurant, in your room or even by the pool. We also ordered once at the lobby lounge to complement the executive lounge afternoon tea offering. Do note that you will not enjoy the 25% discount for Gold and Diamond members if you do in-room dining. We tried mainly the local dishes and you have to do so too as they were really good. Check out the menu here. We got the Nasi Udang which came with 4 jumbo prawns and a spicy tamarind sauce. It was good with the fluffy steam rice. The staff very kindly got us some additional sambal on the side as well!
Right before we leave, we also got the Ayam Betutu to share which is traditional Balinese spiced chicken cooked in banana leaves. This is so delicious. The chicken marinade was delicious and it even came with some chicken soup on the side. They also use spring chicken and as such the meat was very tender. Highly recommend! You can expect to pay around 20 SGD for each dish.
As mentioned earlier, guests are offered a complimentary 30 mins photoshoot session around the grounds of the resort. The service of the photographer is included but you only get one free printed picture. The rest are chargeable. Do keep in mind that when taking part in such a session there will surely be some sort of upselling that you will have to endure. As long as you are firm, it should be fine. In the meantime, here are the additional prices if you want sometime more than the complimentary printed picture.
Breakfast is primarily served in Suku Restaurant. However, during days when the hotel is running busy Rin is open as well to cope with the crowd. I first went to Suku which is located on the first floor in the main wing. Breakfast is served from 7am to 10.30am and you have your choice of both indoor and outdoor seats. It is pretty busy when I arrived and the restaurant was packed to the brim. I was shown to the table and drinks orders were taken. However, the drinks never arrived and require additional prompting, even after this, they served the wrong items. The staff clearly could not handle this crowd after the prolonged lull period for the past 2 years.
There was a huge selection of food consisting of various sections and I will let the pictures do the rest of the speaking.
You can also order food made to order from live stations and I like the noodles and the breakfast burrito.
On my second day, I went to have breakfast at Rin which is a lot better. The food quality is better and the service is better since it is less crowded. Rin is located in the Conrad Suites Wing and near the suite’s pool. The staff are also more attentive here. The food selection is smaller though but it is supplemented by an ala carte menu to order from. I will recommend you to dine here instead if it is open.
Overall, I felt rather disappointed with the stay, perhaps I have heard and read too many raving reviews about this property in the past and have high hopes. Conrad Bali isn’t what it is in the old days. It is a mere shadow of its former self. The major lapse is in their housekeeping and staff playing games with suite upgrades which left a sour taste. It is by all means not a bad property but just not as great as what it used to be. A far cry from its former glory. I will not go out of my way to stay here given the huge selection of properties in Bali.