Bambu Indah

Ubud & Central Bali, Indonesia
Book from GBP Book from £365 per night

Extraordinary eco-chic retreat with utterly unique houses set in an organic garden with natural pool and magnificent rice field views

Extraordinary eco-chic retreat with utterly unique houses set in an organic garden with natural pool and magnificent rice field views

Canadian eco-pioneer and jewellery designer John Hardy and his wife Cynthia are at the forefront of Balinese green design, and this stunning retreat is one of the many beautiful feathers in their cap.

Enchanting pathways cut through small rice paddies to bridge over a natural pool-river where you'll share the freshest of swims with tiny fish. Each beautiful house is different, and range from romantic woven pods and jaw-dropping treehouses to antique abodes with hand-carved teak and ensuites constructed from thick bamboo. Views across the Ayung river gorge are lush lime green, and the horizon rises up to picture-perfect mountains.

This is a real family affair, with John and Cynthia's daughters also contributing to the unique designs. Though totally original in form, each one is carefully laid out to make the most of the wilderness around it. Sit out on your deck and feast on their garden produce. Shoot the breeze then wait for the sound of frogs to fill the air as you drift off to sleep. Bambu Indah means beautiful bamboo in Indonesian. Unforgettable.

Highs

  • Beautifully constructed wooden houses with muslin-draped four-posters and unique touches - a treetop yoga deck in Guadua, a Japanese-style bathtub in Kuno
  • Natural setting amidst organic gardens and rice paddies
  • Some of the most stunning views in Bali
  • Amazing bamboo architecture and strong eco credentials (the owners also founded the world-acclaimed Green School)
  • Authentic and atmospheric, with lovely welcoming staff

Lows

  • Main deck overhangs a ravine, so more adventurous youngsters should be kept on a lead
  • Set away from the Ubud action, though there are daily shuttles and transport can be arranged
  • Narrow paths leading to the rooms can get slippery in the rain; bring sensible footwear
  • Be prepared to share your room with the resident wildlife, this is a true back-to-nature experience

Best time to go

April to October is the dry season, although it can rain at any time in Ubud. Note that Christmas and New Year can be very busy, despite being rainy season.

Our top tips

Don't miss a visit to the owners' Green School - the world's number one model of sustainability in education in the world.

Every aspect of the site and buildings are living examples of sustainability: the School's many buildings are cooled and powered by sustainable energy solutions including micro-hydro power, solar power, bio-diesel and predominantly natural air-conditioning. Indonesian bamboo, local alang alang grass, traditional mud walls and mud brick are used to construct classrooms, athletic facilities and other school buildings to minimize use of non-sustainable materials such as concretes and plastics. Their standard is to use 99 percent natural materials in any construction projects, to recycle as many materials as possible, and to manage their waste responsibly.

Great for...

Eco
Family
Great Outdoors
Romantic
  • Eco retreat
  • 18 houses for 2-6
  • Restaurant + bar
  • All ages welcome
  • Open all year
  • Outdoor Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • Beach Nearby
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Car not necessary
  • Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • WiFi
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Bicycles Available
Room: Moon

Rooms

The 18 houses are a mix of traditional teak buildings and unique bamboo designs. Each one is individual, charming and decked out with classic Javanese furnishings and a smattering of collectables from the owners' travels - from Tibetan rugs to African wallhangings. The rustic décor masks more modern touches: comfortable mosquito-netted beds, hand-beaten copper basins, open-air rainshowers, even Japanese washer-drier-high-tech loos.

For couples looking for romance, there are spectacular boltholes for two: Copper is named for its extra roomy copper bathtub that overlooks the Ayung River, ideal for romantic moonbathing; Guadua has a private yoga and meditation deck set in the trees; Cempaka House sits with the other traditional houses but its private garden and plunge pool makes it feel extra exclusive.

For a pair of couples or families there are a few two-bedroom houses: River Bend has an enormous glass-walled living room and a kitchenette; cosy Elora and Orin House is modelled on the Hardy family home; Jambu House and Mangosteen Duplex both feature two ensuite bedrooms across two floors and sit close to the main pool.

For something a little different, a few of the designs are in a league of their own: open-fronted Moon House gets its name from its crescent-shaped roof; the pair of Tents are set high up in the tree tops, where the views are unbeatable (and rates are budget-friendly); Tree House is a breathtaking structure tucked between two banyan trees, with woven bamboo walls to make it look like a giant bird nest - with a stunning bird's eye view of the jungle below, it's easy to believe it is.

Features include:

  • Air conditioning
  • Coffee / tea making
  • Cots available
  • Hairdryer
  • In-room treatments available
  • Minibar
  • Mosquito net
  • Safe box
  • Toiletries
  • Torch
  • WiFi

Eating

The beautiful open-air bamboo restaurant serves meals throughout the day, and special private dining can also be arranged in the central Minang House, on your veranda or on the deck overhanging the ravine (request in advance).

Breakfast includes fresh fruit, local coffee, homemade bread and something hot (perhaps Balinese rice porridge or eggs) - try the watermelon juice. For lunch we recommend the raw, vegan lasagne which was surprisingly delicious and super-fresh.

In the evening the daily dinner menu features organic ingredients fresh from the garden: we enjoyed a tasty Balinese fish curry with just-harvested rice and vegetables, washed down with some Balinese beer. Things wind down early in a place as tranquil as this so expect last drinks orders at around 9pm.

Ubud is just a 15-minute drive away, so there are plenty of options for eating out, from chic contemporary restaurants to traditional warungs. Bambu Indah’s neighbouring hotels also have some excellent restaurants open to non-guests, mainly offering romantic riverside dining.

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner by arrangement
  • Lunch by arrangement
  • Organic produce
  • Vegetarian options
Eating:
Activity: Minang

Activities

  • Lap up Ubud's culture by visiting some of the many temples, galleries and museums. There's also excellent shopping, dining and yoga opportunities (a 15-minute drive)
  • Take a dip in the freshwater, unchlorinated river-pool then chill on your veranda, soak up those views and watch the swallows and butterflies fill their day
  • Visit the owner's remarkable and truly inspirational Green School (a 20-minute drive), the Green Village and jewellery factory may also be of interest
  • Enjoy a massage or morning yoga in super peaceful surroundings
  • Go hiking in the surrounding hills; if John Hardy is in residence, don't miss the morning 'trash walk'

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Birdwatching
  • Hiking
  • Historical sites
  • Mountain biking
  • Plantlife / flora
  • Rafting
  • Shopping / markets
  • Traditional cultures

Kids

Children are welcome and older children will love the adventure of staying in a wooden house with nature all around.

Best for:

Children (4-12 years), Teens (over 12)

Family friendly accommodation:

Elora and Orin House is a great option, as it has a double room downstairs with a private garden bathroom, and one upstairs also with its own bathroom; both bedrooms can fit an extra bed or baby cot, too. River Bend, Jambu House and Mangosteen Duplex also have 2 double bedrooms. Sumba House can sleep up to 6, with 4 in the open-plan sleeping/ living area and 2 in an upstairs bedroom.

Cots Available, Family Rooms

Kids Activities on site:

  • Swing on a rope over a natural swimming pool
  • Take John Hardy's 'trash walk' and be inspired to clean up the environment by spearing garbage with a bamboo pole!

Families Should Know:

The proximity of the steep Sayan gorge and the old wooden balconies, plus the meandering pool, makes it unsuitable for toddlers

Distances:

  • Airport: 1 hour
Kid Friendly: Elora and Orin

Location

Bambu Indah is about a 15-minute drive from Bali's cultural centre, Ubud. It overlooks the Sayan Valley and and is a 1-hour drive from Seminyak or the international airport.

By Air:
Fly into Bali Ngurah Rai International Airport (47km). You can also fly to Jakarta's Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, then travel overland or take a connecting flight to Denpasar.

From the Airport
The property offers a transfer from the airport, which we'd recommend taking.

By Ferry:
There are frequent boats between Bali and the major islands in Indonesia, including Java, Lombok and Komodo.

Getting around:
The hotel offers bicycles, scooters and car transfers for getting around. There are also twice-daily shuttles into Ubud.

Detailed directions will be sent to you when you book through i-escape.

Airports:

  • Denpasar 47.0 km DPS

Other:

  • Beach 40.0 km
  • Shops 0.6 km
  • Restaurant 1.0 km

Rates for Bambu Indah

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