Most Hilton fans have heard of the Hilton Garden Inn Bali Ngurah Rai Airport, as it is often mentioned as one of the sweet spots of the program. Our editor Dennis has been to the hotel quite a few times and will give you an overview with this review.
As he had a rather late arrival in Bali, he booked the first night in this hotel. Instead of booking the hotel for roughly IDR 550,000 (~€34) (which seems to be the standard rate), it can also be booked for 5,000 Hilton Honors points. He decided to do the latter.
Hilton Honors points can be purchased with a 100% bonus during various times of the year, meaning that one point is worth half a USD-cent. Accordingly, 5,000 points would cost US$25 (~€22).
The absolute savings are not particularly big, but you would be saving roughly 37% when comparing the price with a flexible rate.
The Hilton Garden Inn Ngurah Rai Airport is a typical airport hotel. It is located very close to the airport, only 5 minutes separating the terminal from the Garden Inn by car. The hotel, however, cannot be reached by foot (or its very difficult), especially because the sidewalks are not made according to European standards.
The hotel offers a free shuttle every half hour. After such a long trip, however, he decided to take a taxi to the hotel.
But be careful: The taxis are relatively expensive (IDR 100,000 (~€6)) for Bali’s standards, even though the distance is short. This probably is due to the airport surcharge that taxi drivers have to pay, but also may have to do with Bali’s taxi mafia. Even if you order a Grab (the Asian Uber), you’d be paying roughly IDR 80,000 (~€5).
For a short stay right after arriving in Bali or shortly before leaving Bali, the location is perfect – simply because the hotel is so close to the airport. Nevertheless, the location can’t be recommended for a longer stay. There aren’t many Warungs (small Indonesian restaurants) in the surrounding area, nor will you find supermarkets, bars, or any other kind of entertainment. You can’t reach anything on foot, so you’re always depending on some other transportation option. Also, you’ll always hear some of the loud traffic in your room. That might be fine for one or two nights, but probably exhausting in the long-term.
The check-in was simple and quick. The only somewhat annoying aspect was the security control with a scanner at the hotel entrance, as you’ll have to lift all your (possibly) heavy luggage up, so that it can go through the X-ray machine. Luckily, a staff member helped to lift the luggage. A security control is rather unusual for hotel entrances in Bali.
As he wanted to leave the hotel relatively late the next day, he asked for a Late-Check-Out. It was granted for 14:00, probably due to his Gold status.
The breakfast was also for free due to the status, but there was no upgrade. Possible better room categories would have been a room with a view of the pool, a family room, a one-bedroom-suite, and a presidential suite.
As a Gold member, there was also a choice between 250 Hilton Honors points or two snacks/drinks. He decided to go for the points, but still took a look at the available snacks, which can also be regularly bought.
This is quite useful for a quick meal or if you are thirsty for something other than water.
The hotel offers many places to sit down and is generally nicely designed and furnished. You generally feel well and there’s a feeling that there is a lot of space.
To be honest, the expectations were not very high for a room that costs US$25 (~€22) per night. Even for Bali, that’s a very cheap price for a hotel chain! But those expectations were proven wrong! The value-for-money here is simply great.
The bed was very comfortable. You can also choose between two different pillows with different softness levels. The desk’s chair was good and it was possible to work various hours without experiencing any back pains. This is something that is often not the case, even in far more expensive hotels.
The towel-swan and the message on the bed were a fantastic gesture.
Not a big deal, but the power socket was a bit loose and couldn’t support the weight of the MacBook charger. This problem had to be “solved”, as you can see on this photo:
The bathroom generally had a good standard, but the water in the shower had some temperature changes, especially in the beginning.
Breakfast was for free due to the Gold status. The expectations were also low here, as many hotels charge US$25 (~€22) for breakfast alone, instead of for the entire stay, as is the case here.
Despite these initial doubts, the selection was extraordinary. There were some hot meals with rice, sandwiches, fruit, cereals, yogurt, sausage & cheese, and an egg-station, where your eggs would be freshly prepared, just like you want them. There were also fresh juices, as well as coffee & tea.
The breakfast regularly costs IDR 150,000 (~€9), which is a fair price for the selection and Bali’s prices.
As a status member, there was also a Muffin as a small gift. A great surprise!
The Wi-Fi was fine. The exact speed is unclear, but it was sufficient for emails and browsing, however not stable and strong enough for Skype-calls.
One might think, that this review is over, but the hotel offers some more extras which should be mentioned.
There is a pool in the middle of the hotel. It is relatively big and there are some spaces where you can sit or lie down. The water and deckchairs seemed clean.
The hotel also offers a gym. It is sufficiently equipped for a good all-round-workout. There are some machines (by Life Fitness), weights of up to 10 kg, and cardio-equipment.
A great hotel with a superb value-for-money. The downside is the location, especially as you’re cut off from restaurants & shops. The security control before checking in is annoying and unusual for Bali. The room is top-notch, even if the noise from the street and the temperature changes in the shower can be bothersome. There was nothing missing at the breakfast, and the extras are extraordinarily good for a hotel in this price category.