After hearing so many great things about Holiday Inn Bali Benoa, Bali Kids Guide had the pleasure of spending the weekend at this fantastic resort. The plan was for me to go with the kids Lola (8) and Marlow (3), but at the last minute my husband couldn’t resist the call of the beach and joined as well.
It took us about an hour and a half from Ubud, but from the airport it would be a quick 15-20 minute drive, or about 30-40 minutes from Kuta to get to the resort in Tanjung Benoa depending on traffic. Tanjung Benoa is also just a few minutes from the resort area of Nusa Dua, where you’ll find Bali Collection Shopping Centre, Pirates Bay Restaurant and playground and Surf & Turf Beach Club and Waterpark.
Arriving at the resort we were really impressed with the grand reception area with a massive colourful, round seat in the middle and towering wooden ceilings. The staff welcome was really friendly and we got lovely refreshing welcome drinks. From the lobby you can see the pool stretching down the middle of the resort, which is very inviting!
Our Room at Holiday Inn Resort Bali Benoa
We were really lucky to get a Kids Adventure Suite, which was absolutely fabulous! The kids were over the moon when they saw they had their own ocean-themed room with bunkbeds, a TV, a Playstation and colourful, kid-sized bean bags.
Sorry about the fuzziness, someone was very excited and wouldn’t stay still!
I was excited to think I might get to sleep in a big comfy bed without children attached to me (although this didn’t completely work out). Our room also had an outside terrace with a huge circular day bed, pool access, and was so close to one of the pool bars, we could order our cocktails without having to move from our day bed.
The bathroom wasn’t huge, but was spotlessly clean, had a nice shower and tons of towels, which always a plus when you are traveling with kids. There were plenty of soaps, shampoos and even a little note that said if you had forgotten any toiletries, the essentials were available for free at reception.
For the Kids
The circus-themed kids club at Holiday Inn Resort Bali Benoa was a huge hit with my kids, which was sort-of a surprise, because usually they aren’t keen for us to leave them anywhere.
Kids from 4-12 years old are welcome at the kids club, but my son who is 3.5 was allowed in without a nanny as he’s fully toilet trained and there weren’t so many kids there when we were staying. Kids under 3 can play in the kids club with a nanny.
The kids club is open 9am-5pm and then reopens at 6pm until 9pm.
The kids club is free for guests of the hotel! (Rp55,000 per hour for non-guests) Extra activities range from Rp50,000 for smaller crafts to Rp150,000 for things like t-shirt painting. The kids are super proud of their t-shirts though, so totally worth it! If you need a nanny it’s Rp50,000 per hour per child and don’t forget to book 1 day in advance.
It took me a while to get used to them not being with me, but I passed by the kids club a few times and they were having the time of their lives. They did tons of crafts, (some free some charged) played in the ball pit and on the trampoline and watched cartoons.
My husband and I spent most of the 2 days in the pool lounging and floating around on their fab floating bean bags. The beach area is quite nice, but to be honest I didn’t get in the water because of all the speed boats and jetskis. If you are there for the watersports you’re in the perfect spot, but for swimming Nusa Dua definitely trumps Tanjung Benoa.
We did love watching the parasailing and the flying fish going back and forth. It looked fun, but I wasn’t feeling particularly motivated to take to the air. Reading the newspaper in the pool was more my speed.
The pools are all no deeper than 1.20 meters and the kids area with a little slide and fountains is just 30cm deep, so great for little ones to splash in. The only disappointment was their big tipping bucket wasn’t working, but my son hates them anyway, so it was probably for the best.
Eating in the Resort
One thing we really loved about the resort was the kids menu and kids breakfast area at Pasar restaurant. Both had a lot of thought put into them and there were options that went a little further than fish and chips or chicken nuggets. The kids burger had veggies snuck into it, the juices were fresh and there were also things like veggie frittata, and chicken sushi rolls. And best of all kids eat for free when adults are eating at Holiday Inn Bali!
The kids loved being able to eat while they were in the pool. There are little stools so they could swim up and snack and then swim off again.
For adults there were also lots of great options. The tapas style menu at Nudi Beach Bar had some real treats, the burgers were delish and we had some of the best salmon we’d tasted in Bali. Best of all, the happy hour 2 for 1 cocktails and beers from 4-8pm was an excellent deal!
I escaped for an hour and had an amazing traditional Balinese massage at Tea Tree Spa, Holiday Inn Bali Benoa’s signature spa. The spa is underground and is like stepping into a totally different world. I was surprised at how luxurious it was compared to other resort spas I’ve been in. The ginger tea, foot bath, massage and refreshing drink after made it feel like a real ritual and I felt very relaxed and spoiled afterwards.
Round-up of the Holiday Inn Bali Benoa Resort
I can’t fault the staff at Holiday Inn Bali Benoa. From the reception, restaurant, bar and activities staff, they were amazingly natural and fun with kids. I was also really impressed with how pro-active they were about keeping kids entertained, bringing colouring supplies to the table before we ate and chatting and playing with the kids. Our room was really comfortable and the kids haven’t stopped talking about their room. They felt really special and like things were made just for them.
The breakfast was really good, the restaurant not too expensive and of course kids eat free if you eat so it really makes a big difference to the price of your stay if you take advantage of this.
It was quiet when we were there, but it was the week after Australian school holidays, so I can imagine it would be much busier and there would be more kids to play with during other times.
In conclusion, we loved the resort and would definitely go back!