Where to Stay in Bali – The Ultimate Hotel & Resorts Guide

Where to Stay in Bali – The Ultimate Hotel & Resorts Guide

After many a request, here is my list of the top #luxury resorts in #Bali that I recommend, including my in the know tips. The perfect places to #relax including hanging gardens, party pools, serene enclaves and more.


In the last few years I have been to Bali over twenty times – I know, it is incredible. Every time, I searched for the best luxury resorts in Bali and had to go down the list of options.

Some trips were done alone, others with friends, others for work and some of them with my partner at the time. There is no denying that the Island of Gods has one of the widest ranges of hotels and resorts you will find anywhere else. So, choosing where to stay in Bali can be daunting. All the international chains plus some Asian ones are present and the list of boutique resorts is endless. I have decided to put together a list of the top luxury resorts in Bali after many a friend request for help. It is hard to know even where to start.

But look no further. Check what you are looking for and I will suggest the best resort for your stay in Bali.

For Infinity Pool Views – Ubud’s Hanging Gardens

Ubud Hanging Gardens
Ubud Hanging Gardens

One of the world’s most photographed pool is in Ubud. The Hanging Gardens is a layered resort perched on the side of a hill. The wall is steep and the villas are hanging above a river. For the ultimate selfie, make sure to queue in the morning for a photo op at their split-level pool.

from  $397.65

Hotel Ubud Hanging Gardens

 Desa Buahan, Payangan, Denpasar, Indonesia
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Aside from the pool, the resort is gorgeous. You can read my review here.

In the know: The private pools can be heated! You may think Bali is a tropical place, and you are right, but the water can be chilly. Luckily, all villas come with a heating system that brings the water to a pleasant temperature so you can continue taking as many photos from the privacy of your villa as your selfie stick battery allows

Heading to Ubud and wondering where to eat? Look no further! Where to eat in Ubud, culture capital of Bali.

For the Complete Resort Experience – Intercontinental Jimbaran

Main pool swim up bar
Main pool swim up bar

Bali is full of fabulous boutique resorts so, why stay at one of the international chains? I wondered the same. Until I stayed at the Intercontinental Resort on Jimbaran. The hotel’s sprawling gardens are beautiful and peaceful. Despite being a large hotel it preserves its personalization. The staff knew our names since we arrived. The food was great and there were several pools to relax, not to mention the beach, with several sun loungers lined discretely on the grass above the sea.

from  $184

Hotel Intercontinental Bali Resort

 Jalan Uluwatu 45, Denpasar, Indonesia

In the know: Book one of the Club Rooms for an adults-only pool access with butler to bring you any drink or food at any time. Make sure to grab one of the handcrafted pina coladas from the coconut stall. There is a photographer in-house to take memorable photos in the pretty background.

For a Hipster Escape – Chapung Se Bali, Ubud

Chapung Se Bali pool
Chapung Se Bali pool

Seminyak is where beautiful people go to see and be seen but the crowds and horrendous traffic can turn it into a breeding ground for stress. Head to Chapung Se Bali, in Ubud, for the lush greenery of the island’s heart with the sexiness of a Nordic design and a pool to die for. Read my full review here.

from  $252

Hotel Chapung Se Bali Villa

 Jl. Raya Sebali No. 5 Keliki Tegalalang, Denpasar, Indonesia

In the know: the pool villas are extraordinary and provide exquisite privacy. 

the pool villas are extraordinary and provide exquisite privacy

Non-guests can buy tickets to enjoy the common pool for 150,000 Rupiah which can be used towards F&B credit. If you are an in-house guest, book your sun lounger at breakfast.

For Over the top Family Luxury – Mandapa, a Ritz Carlton Reserve, Ubud

Newly opened and making the waves in Asia the new Ritz Carlton Reserve offers much of the same river and rice paddy view as the rest of Ubud’s properties paired with the Ritz Carlton brand’s over the top luxury. Suites start at $500 with a 25% launch discount offer whereas the 430 sqm pool villas go as high as $1,000+ per night B&B. The hotel is located along the Ayung River and some of the most stunning villas have infinity pools facing the flowing waters.

In the know: The reserve has several children-focused activities to keep families entertained.

For a Party Weekend in Style – W Retreat, Seminyak

W Retreat Bali
W Retreat Bali

The W is located in the heart of Seminyak’s shopping and entertainment area. Occupying a large expanse in front of the sea, the retreat features much of the same funky, hip and too-cool-for-school vibes that make the brand so famously homogeneous. You know what to expect. Glitter, disco balls, sunset beats and great party-related amenities and services. 

Glitter, disco balls, sunset beats and great party-related amenities and services

The place to go for a party weekend. Don’t expect backpackers or cheap beer, this is party in style.

from  $278.75

Hotel W Retreat & Spa Bali Seminyak

 Jl Petitenget, Kelurahan Kerobokan Kelod, Kecamatan Kuta Utara, Badung, Denpasar, Indonesia
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In the know: the Sunday brunch at the hotel is artery-clotting. A pilgrimage for locals and visitors alike. Book early and come hungry and thirsty.

For a Wellness Retreat in the Unspoiled North – Spa Village Resort Tembok, North

Spa Village Tembok
Spa Village Tembok

Located in the least developed and most isolated part of Bali, Spa Villa Tembok is part of Malaysia’s luxury hotel chain YTL. It is a spa village before it is a resort and that is obvious from the moment you arrive and are welcomed by a massage as you are checking in. The rustic north is unexplored and offers volcanos, treks, waterfalls and unspoiled nature. Bali like you have never seen it before. Explore heritage villages in their original state, climb waterfalls, ponder around lakes or enjoy a dolphin spotting cruise.

from  $123.76

Hotel Spa Village Resort Tembok

 Jalan Singaraja - Amlapura No. 100, Denpasar, Indonesia
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In the know: The spa treatment under the stars is a unique and awarded spa experience

For the Privacy of Your own Villa With the Service of a Resort – The Legian, Seminyak

The Legian Bali
The Legian Bali

Bang in the middle of Seminyak yet enjoying the calmest of enclaves The Legian Hotel and Villas offers all the services of a full-blown resort with the privacy and silence of your own villa a few steps away from the happening strip on Seminyak. On the beach and facing the ocean is the hotel. You can use all the facilities and enjoy the sun and the beach with all the rest of the guests. But if you prefer to spend time with your loved one or your family, stay in the comfort and absolute intimacy of your villa on the other side of the road. The Villa area also has its own pool and all villas come with their own plunge version. You can enjoy cocktails and romanticism in the Villa section or at the main resort. This is a gem in the middle of the buzz and noise of Seminyak.

This is a gem in the middle of the buzz and noise of Seminyak
from  $470

Hotel The Legian, Bali

 Jalan Kayu Aya, Bali, Seminyak, Indonesia
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In the know: The resort can organize romantic dinners and BBQs in your own villa so that you never have to leave. But, should you need some music and people watching, the famous Ku De Ta and Potato Head are only a short walk away.

For Stunning Cliff-Side Villas – Bulgari Hotel, Uluwatu

Bulgari Hotel Bali
Bulgari Hotel Bali

Unfortunately, this is one of the few places on this list I have not stayed at. But I have visited it a few times for sunset drinks and dinner.

This is a stunning place. Expect the same level of luxury you would from the Bulgari brand plus some breath taking location. The villas are hanging from the cliff. They come with their private pools and views over the sunset. One of the truly top-end places to stay in Bali no doubt.

from  $1,124.73

Hotel Bulgari Resort

 Jalan Goa Lempeh Banjar Dinas Kangin, Pecatu, Indonesia
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In the know: If you cannot stay there (we know that the $1,000 per night rate is a bit off for most of us), you can go there for dinner and enjoy delicious food with awesome views and with the peace of such a gem. Forget Ayana or other crowded Uluwatu places, this is the sunset location to check out.

For Adult Kuta Surfing – Sheraton, Kuta

Sheraton Kuta
Sheraton Kuta

Most of my Aussie friends will associate Bali with cheap backpackers, drunken teenagers and surf. Sadly, the sea-facing area around Kuta can feel a little bit like that during the peak season. The Sheraton Kuta offers high-end hospitality in the heart of the wave-catching area but without the obnoxiousness of young travelers. Within a few steps from the hotel’s lobby you are in Kuta beach, your feet in the sand and with a surfboard rental stall in front of you so you don’t have to carry yours. Catch a few waves and return to the luxury of the hotel’s infinity pool without the noise and rowdiness. If you are coming for some fuss-free surfing in the almost-guaranteed and convenient Kuta Beach, the Sheraton is the right place to stay.

from  $153

Hotel Sheraton Bali Kuta Resort

 Jalan Pantai Kuta, Denpasar, Indonesia

In the known: the suites and rooms facing away from the beach are extremely quiet and you will forget you are in one of the busiest parts of Bali

For Romance and Service – St. Regis Nusa Dua

St Regis Bali
St Regis Bali

St. Regis is one of the longest standing properties in Bali and, as such, has a great rapport in service. Its location on Nusa Dua ensures great beach times. The resort is one of the most romantic on the island.

from  $506

Hotel The St. Regis Bali Resort

 Kawasan Pariwisata, Nusa Dua, Denpasar, Indonesia

In the know: The concierge can organize anything, just ask.

For the Resort Feel – The Mulia

The Mulia Bali
The Mulia Bali

Huge resort with over 1,000 rooms and villas spread over three distinct properties: The Mulia, The Mulia Resort and The Mulia Villas. The Mulia is the most exclusive part of the property with private cabanas, less families and more couples. The beach is private and for the use of the residents only. If you are visiting as a family, the Resort is a good choice. 

There are pool games, aerobic lessons, surf lessons, children’s area and several restaurants. The Resort is not for couples looking for peace. With the many children and activities happening peace is scarce. The Villas are aimed at families or groups of friends looking for their own private space.

from  $258.05

Hotel Mulia Resort Nusa Dua Bali

 Jalan Raya Nusa Dua Selatan, Denpasar, Indonesia
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In the know: Make sure to choose the right part of the property or you will be disappointed. Due to the structure of the resort, seaview rooms only face the sea from the side so you will be able to view the beach from the balcony, not the room. Choose wisely.

Still wondering where to stay in Bali? Get in touch with me at marpagesvidal@gmail.com and I’ll help you find the right resort for you.

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