I came across Tijili Benoa on Instagram and thought immediately that it looked really cool and funky. I’m constantly searching for new hotels in Bali that might be interesting to families and this one seemed to fit the bill. So why haven’t I ever heard of it? you may ask. Well, I wondered the same thing, so I did what any self-respecting blogger mum would do…I took the whole family to check it out!
Getting to the Resort & Checking In
Tijili Benoa is located just above Nusa Dua on the Bukit peninsula around 30 minutes drive from Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport. The overwater toll road that runs from the airport to Tanjung Benoa has made this area easily accessible and faster to get to Kuta, Seminyak and other places for day trip. We drove from Ubud on a Friday afternoon, which was pretty smooth sailing thanks to the toll road.
We checked in at around 3pm and had a quick look around. Our first impressions were that it was a really cool little hotel. The lobby is really bright and funky and there are tons of cool design touches. We loved all the green walls and cool characters decorating the building and public spaces. Once we’d had a peek at everything we were roasting and headed for the pool to cool off.
There are 270 rooms at the Tijili Benoa, which seems like a lot, but somehow it feels like a much smaller hotel. We had Interconnecting Deluxe Courtyard rooms perfect for our family of 4. You could even get a 3rd child in with no problem.
The rooms are bright and have lots of interior touches like the wall art, colourful tabletops and chairs. The galss doors of these ground floor rooms open out onto the hotel courtyard where there is a small playground. This was nice for the kids to be able to run outside a little while I was on my laptop.
The rooms were clean, but there is a little wear and tear on them. I noticed some holes in the curtains and a bit of mould. It didn’t smell mouldy in the room at all, but I think the curtains must be a little damp from the condensation on the large windows.
I was impressed with the quality of the amenities and also that the soap and shampoo in the showers are refillable. It’s one of my pet peeves when hotels don’t use refillable bottles, so this was really nice to see.
The Layout of the Resort
Tijili has rooms on multiple levels around a main courtyard. There is a large pool in the courtyard surrounded by grass and palm trees and a kids water play area at the side. Ground floor poolside rooms are available and there are chairs outside so you could watch the kids from outside your room.
The 2nd pool is on the 6th floor next to the gym and spa. It’s a beautiful spot but there are only a few chairs and one beanbag so it’s really better for couples or singles. There is a bar on the roof as well so an evening swim with a cold drink would be really lovely.
Tijili Benoa has two restaurant, Kakatua on the ground floor looking out to the courtyard, and Bamboo Restaurant on the beachfront. Kakatua is really stylish and modern where Bamboo is much more natural and beachy. I really liked the look of both restaurants and the kids loved all the big wall paintings of birds and bright coloured furniture.
Apart from the kids water play area there is also a kids club. The hotel recently moved it from the ground floor by the little playground to the 3rd floor above the lobby. It would have been nice to have the outside play area attached, but my kids really liked it anyway.
The room is really nice and bright with plenty of colourful toys, kids beanbags and a tv for watching cartoons and movies. We were really impressed with the quality of the toys and books and also the cleanliness of the kids club. Sometimes at bigger resorts things can be a bit rough around the edges, but this was pristine!
There was only one staff member but she was full of energy and all the kids seemed to immediately take to her. She really played with them and seemed like she was having fun.
My daughter Lola is 10 so doesn’t last long in kids clubs, but she was happy to be there for half an hour or so at a time. Marlow is 5 and would have stayed there all day playing lego and watching cartoons.
We only stayed one night but somehow we managed to fit in a number of meals. We arrived hungry and had a chicken burger with french fries by the pool, which went down a treat. Everything was really fresh and tasty and a pretty good size as well.
At night we went down to the beach for their Friday night BBQ. An acoustic band was playing and the atmosphere was really nice. Eating on the beach is also awesome when your kids don’t want to sit down and eat, or decide to spill everything. The selection was pork or chicken satay, pork ribs, or fish, which pretty much covered what everyone eats. The side dishes were a mix of salad, indonesian style noodles and rice. Dessert was a mix of fruit and Indonesian sweets that always go down well with the little ones.
The only thing I would say about the bbq was that we had to send fish back because it was pretty raw and I questioned the cook on some of the chicken. We all ate and were 100% fine, but it’s something to watch out for (wherever you are).
Breakfast was served at Bamboo Restaurant as well, although large groups are served in Kakatua. This is really nice because fighting tour groups for food is not fun first thing in the morning. The selection of fruit, cereal, toast, pasteries etc. was really good, and waffles, pancakes and eggs were cooked to order. The kids got waffles which were the best we’ve ever had in Bali!
A Roundup of Tijili Benoa
It can be difficult after only one night to make a judgement about a hotel, but in this case I think we got a pretty good feel for our accommodation. Tijili is definitely modern and funky, has great outdoor spaces, comfortable rooms and lovely staff. We loved the pools and the beachfront, and were really happy with the size of our rooms.
I think the atmosphere is the point that people might either love or hate. Some guests might love the quietness and the fact that there aren’t a million families around the pool, but others might say that hanging out with other families and finding new friends is the best part of the holiday. The majority of guests are Chinese and Indonesians, so the hotel is quiet during the day while groups are out on tours. We loved this, and if you’re going to be out a lot this is the perfect spot. If you plan to stay, eat and play inside your resort Tijili is probably not for you.
I think we’ll probably visit Tijili again for short breaks and would love to also check out the Seminyak property. For a great base, or if you just want a few days to chill, it’s a fantastic value-for-money hotel.
You can also check out the Tijili website for special offers and more info