We returned every year to our Bali summer hotel, Hotel Sanur Beach Bali; it was almost like a homecoming. My children practically grew up with the same waiters and pool attendants who recognized and remembered them. One year Tom’s top activity was Frisbee throwing. It got stuck on top of the thatched roof of the swimming pool bar and for several years when we returned it was more and more bleached from the hot sun and still welcomed us back from its high perch. I wonder: is it still up there?
This yearly holiday trip to Hotel Sanur Beach Bali was about the only constant in our lives at that time. My husband worked for Garuda Indonesia, the Indonesian airline and we were moving from posting to posting all around the world. This is an Aerowisata Hotel, a subsidiary of Garuda Indonesia and my husband actively promoted Bali and all its splendor.
I met him in Bali while working for a Swiss
tour operator; he was the sales manager of Garuda in Bali and I had to reconfirm my guests tickets with him on a regular basis. We often met at
Sanur Beach Hotel. At that time it was less than half the size it is today. The
rooms were located above the lobby and in a garden wing.
One of the main highlights I remember of the vacation was spending countless hours by the swimming pool. Somehow it was really fun by the pool! I remember learning how to swim here. Though probably not the newest, the pool today is still considered large, broad and deep. It was so deep and broad that occasionally people took scuba diving lessons. The pool was also close to the beach so that you could watch hotel guests play water sports in the sea. Then, once we needed a rest, the 24 hour coffee shop was always there with their fabulous Italian menu. A kids dream literally: Family, fun and friendly food.
When Hotel Sanur Beach added a new section on the other side of the property they had to make sure that the temple on its Eastern most side was still accessible to the community. Modern rooms with balcony now overlook the beach and the additional free form swimming pool with fountains. Please keep your windows closed when not in the room, the many tall trees are feeding grounds for squirrels and rodents that are attracted by your food.
Modern tiles and shiny marble floors are chosen throughout the building. The stone countertops in the bathrooms are juxtaposed with fresh leaves and flowers straight from the garden. The furniture made from tropical woods, bamboo and rattan combined with local fabrics in light colors reminiscent of Indonesian Ikat (handwoven cloth) create a cozy and comfortable atmosphere.
The breakfast, my favorite part of the day, is indeed a celebration. Although it is a four star hotel the buffet in the morning is splendid. Since the guests arrive from all corners of the world the choice of food is just staggering. International cheeses, sashimi and cold cuts together with the tropical fruit, egg station and homemade bread and pastries are a real feast.
This Bali summer hotel is a whole complex; a village within itself. The exotic well thought-out and maintained gardens are still vast and offer plenty of shade. Once you have entered into its grounds you do not want to leave anymore you have everything you need at your finger tips: Plenty of dining choices, differently themed restaurants in the garden and on the beach. Weekly cultural shows are performed on the open stage with a typical Balinese temple entrance as back drop. The children can play in the playground or mini golf area. This Bali summer hotel also offers conference facilities and several shops.
When you first arrive pay special attention to the decoration behind the check in counter. There should be an incredibly detailed and intricate wood carving. It shows a whole procession of Balinese walking in a festive pageant lead by a double tiered umbrella. It is the logo I used to see on letterheads and brochures many many years ago made into a three dimensional extraordinary piece of art.
I just read that Aerowisata has rebranded its hotels in April 2014. Sanur Beach Hotel is now Prama Sanur Beach, Jl. Danau Tamblingan, Sanur, and it is upgraded to a 5 star hotel. I wish them all plenty of success, may a whole new generation of guests enjoy their holidays as much as we did over many years. Considering the size, amenities and position right on a beautiful beach it deserves to be upgraded to a luxury resort. This truly is a Bali summer hotel!
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