From the moment I stepped out of the taxi at the lobby, I was addressed as "Mr. Ijaaz". How they knew who I was before I showed up, I have no clue - but I'm impressed. Having stayed at the Ritz-Carlton Bali last year in November, I knew I wanted to return. It just so happened that there were some fantastic deals available while I would be in Australia as part of my Aeroplan Mini RTW trip, so I decided to hop on a short flight to the beautiful Indonesian Island.
I typically use hotels.com to browse for deals, and then book direct with the hotel. I happened to be browsing through some dates in Bali, and stumbled upon a deal I just couldn't pass up. The site was showing The Ritz-Carlton Bali Pool Pavilions for just 4,500,000IDR/night (approx. $400 CAD) including tax and service. I thought the deal was too good to be true, as this particular type of room typically goes for double the price. Once it had been confirmed and linked to my Marriott Rewards account, I started to search for flights.
The hotel is a Tier 2 property, and points redemptions start at 40,000 Marriott Rewards points per night for a 1 bed Jr. Suite. This drops to an average of 32,000 on a 5 night stay with the 5th night free. 3 nights would have cost me 120,000 points, offering a value of 1 cent per point (cpp). While that isn't a bad redemption for Marriott Rewards, I value my points much higher and so I decided to use cash.
Arrival & Check In:
I was escorted to a seating area overlooking the resort, and was offered a welcome drink and cold towel. The wonderful check in agent took my passport, SPG Credit Card from American Express, and Marriott Rewards Gold Elite card (courtesy of The Platinum Card from American Express) and came back a few minutes later with my room keys. Marriott Gold and Platinum Elite Members are eligible for a discounted rate of $58 USD per person per day for Club Lounge access, which I opted for - more about that later. I was also eligible for a one level complimentary upgrade to the Garden Pavilion, however I declined as the room was much further from the Club Lounge and the Beach.
Once we had completed the check in process, the agent escorted me to the Buggy Lobby and we got a ride down to the villa. The pool pavilions are arranged in groups of three, and I was assigned suite 7102, the middle villa right beside the Club Lounge. Having stayed in The Ritz-Carlton Suite last year, I had high expectations and this room totally blew me away. It was incredibly spacious, and had access to a private plunge pool. I'll let the pictures speak for themselves on this one:
I'm currently on my second day at the hotel, and will be making another post in the coming days with more information about the Club Lounge, breakfast, restaurants, and the rest of the property and activities available.
Thanks for reading and we'll see you again soon - Ijaaz