Grand Nikko Hotel, Nusa Dua, Bali.
Grand Nikko Hotel, Nusa Dua, Bali certainly has a ring to it. We had to go down to Nusa Dua for a wine-tasting and it was just too far, after all that wine, to drive back to Ubud, so we picked a hotel that had a grand sounding name. Grand Nikko Hotel fitted the bill perfectly and is part of the worldwide Nikko Group of hotels. It’s the only one in the group called Grand. It’s also a grand place for families and kids.
We drove up to the entrance and were met by smiling staff. A nice Balinese man with glasses took our cases. First impressions are so important. We both felt good immediately and went through a smooth and efficient check in and were escorted to our room. There is a wide choice of rooms, suites and villas.
We had an Ocean View room. As you can see, it was spacious, clean and comfortable. I was pleased to see a traditional Kamasan painting hanging on the wall. There was a television with all the international channels, an electronic safe, which could fit a laptop, and complimentary water in the mini-bar.
We didn’t need a buggy, but if your villa is far away, they will actually take you by buggy, driven by a wonderful, smiling girl called Yeni. It’s almost worth booking a villa just for the fun of riding in the buggy.
It’s a big hotel with two wings, built on a 40-meter cliff. The central core of the hotel has an incredibly dramatic view of the Indian Ocean. My jaw just dropped gazing out at the view.
We immediately went down to explore. There’s a really imposing staircase from the entrance down to beach level. They also have elevators.
We saw a very impressive buffet being set up in the garden. They were getting ready for Balinese Night and we felt beautiful, soft breezes on our cheeks wafting off the Indian Ocean.
They had a sucking pig, babi guling, still untouched, but I’m sure not for long, as that’s one of the island’s most famous dishes. There was a vast array of food and there were drinks too.
I’ve got a small hotel in Ubud, Murni’s Houses, grand in its own way, and I know a good hotel when I see one. A good hotel has good energy and the Grand Nikko has lots of energy.
The staff are incredibly helpful – if you look lost, they come up to you and offer to bring you to where you are going. When you pass them in the corridor or meet them in the lift, they say hello and give you a big smile. How nice is that?
The hotel is large. I’m sure I haven’t seen it all, in fact, I know I haven’t seen it all. It has interesting statues and structures all over the place.
Balinese stonecarvers and sculptors are talented and I’m delighted that their works are on display. I particularly liked the three fishermen, back to back, with their shared catch on their heads. It was very appropriate for the ocean setting.
There are many comfortable places to sit and chill out. Tastefully decorated. Of course the whole place has wifi, which is vital these days.
There are eight restaurants, yes, eight, including a Japanese one called Benkay and one called Olooloos. Don’t ask me what that means! They serve Mediterranean food, but outside a Balinese couple welcome you in.
Breakfast is served in The Brasserie. It was very good indeed, regally and lovingly supervised by the charming Balinese sous-chef, Luh Sibang. She has worked there for eighteen years and is still loving it.
There are freshly baked breads, croissants, bagels, muffins, and doughnuts. Orange, tomato, watermelon, papaya and carrot juices. Scrambled, sunny side up, omelettes, poached and boiled eggs. Really whatever you want.
Western, Chinese and Japanese food. Indonesian fried rice, Indonesian fried noodles, chicken or pork congee and Soto Ayam (the famous spicy chicken broth). Unlimited smoked salmon too. Service was impeccable: lots of helpful staff helping you within seconds.
After breakfast there are a whole range of activities – the wonderful beach, of course, but also a fun jungle camp for children, a camel safari ride, fitness centre, tennis courts and sauna. There are probably even more things that I haven’t yet discovered.
There are four, maybe more than four, amazing inter-connected swimming pools, that just have to be seen to be believed, and a 30 metre water slide into one of them. One of them actually has sand coming up to it, which is a genius and safe way of keeping an eye on young childen at the beach.
Just wandering around I came across a wedding in the grounds. Not surprising as it’s a perfect place to get married with the well-kept beautiful lawns, pools and beach. I am sure that the wedding photographs were stunning. Grand Nikko has it all.
The Shore restaurant is ideally situated, yes, on the shore. We had lunch there and Komang, our kindly waitress, suggested that we join One Harmony for free and have 10% off all meals and future stays in the hotel group. We joined straightaway.
I love spas, and in fact, I have one in Ubud, Tamarind Spa at Murni’s Houses, so I am always keen to try them out. It was a real pleasure going to Mandara Spa. I had an excellent therapist, Oka Astini, and enjoyed the experience in a private villa immensely. I can certainty recommend it and have become a member of Mandara Spa.
The only bad thing was leaving, but, for sure I will return soon.
There are more photos in the Gallery.