Alila Villas - Uluwatu, Uluwatu Indonesia, Bali
Alila Ula Watu is an ultra-modern, luxury hotel with an incredibly dramatic setting atop a limestone cliff. With little else within sight, the striking white and stark modernist design creates a dynamic contrast with the sea, cliffs and surrounding countryside.
The hotel has 60 luxurious, private, large pool villas, all with a comprehensive range of modern amenities and facilities and stunning views from private cabanas at the end of the good sized private pool. With a private butler on hand to meet your every desire, the service is fantastic. The clever design means that the villas, all stretching above and behind the reception, all have complete privacy with an unhindered eye line over the cliff and coast below. The bathrooms are large and well equipped, with the bedroom opening out onto the pool.
The combination of both a fine dining and local styled restaurant means quests have a comprehensive dining choice, all of which can be ordered through your butler and brought to your villa. There is a stunning communal infinity pool on the edge of the cliff and a wooden terrace overhanging the cliff with views along the untouched coastline.
The beach is 500 steps down from the hotel and you will be accompanied by a member of staff to look after you. For those looking to sample alternative eating options, Jimbaran is a mere 15 minutes away but the remote, private, incredibly romantic setting with the personal and attentive service mean people rarely make it.
Ultimate - There are very few hotels we would describe as 'ultimate'. Hotels in this category must have absolutely everything anyone could want and really be aiming for the stars. These hotels generally go well above and beyond and they would always be at the very top end of the market. These are for clients looking for that extra special place.
Six great and amazingly different hotels - we would happily recommend any of them. We had three excellent guides as well. And we lost track of the number of "Wow" moments. In addition to the obvious, including Paramban, Borobodur and Bromo, we would add our tour of the markets + rickshaw ride in Malang, and having coffee with Mr Rai at the Agung Rai Gallery in Bali. Our guide in Bali, Otok (?) was excellent at explaining local culture, and we left an offering at his family shrine.