The L Hotel, in the Seminyak area of Bali, just celebrated its grand opening at the beginning of September. The hotel offers comforts similar to many of the best resorts in Bali, but introduces a modern style that is a bit avant garde for an island where lauded accommodations tend to feature thatched roof villas situated in the tranquility of nature. Though the hotel lacks grass roofs, and is not directly on the beach nor cut into the jungle, there are still plenty of reasons to visit L Hotel Seminyak.
The L Hotel’s Rooms
Firstly, and most importantly, the suites are beautifully designed with a black, white, and silver color scheme. Guests are also treated to some unusually satisfying amenities, like a free in-room mini-bar, Kiehl’s bathroom products, a pillow menu, and Listerine (what hotel gives you brand name mouthwash?). The best suites have bathrooms with his and her sinks, waterfall shower heads, and tubs set up beside the bedroom for television watching.
Dining at L Hotel
One modern architectural choice that is either exceptionally cool or quite bizarre is the chic, yet small, hotel pool that sits beside the bar and downstairs restaurant, Lola. (Liking this pool most certainly depends on whether you’re drinking at the bar or waking up for breakfast, and whether the person exiting the pool is a sleek bombshell in a bikini or an obese guest panting from a few failed laps.)
However, what makes the hotel most unique is its rooftop restaurant, Luna. (Are you catching on to L Hotel’s fondness for a particular letter.) According to the head of F&B, Luna will be the third rooftop dining experience on the island. (I didn’t fact check this, but just from looking out across the expanse of terra cotta roofs stretching toward Kuta and the spectacular views of the peninsula to the southwest and surrounding ocean, he’s most likely correct.) With food prepared by two-star Michelin chef, Chef Rutgers–who was responsible for my phenomenal breakfast of eggs benedict, cappuccinos with thoughtful artwork in the foam (without one design ever repeating), and five-hour Asian marinated pork ribs–Luna (which was also set to open this month) should be quite a success. The rooftop will feature Pan-Asian cuisine from three stations–the “Japanese corner,” a tandoor oven, and a Chinese wok. At the moment, L Hotel is contemplating their approach–considering options like charging cover for diners that are not guests of the hotel. (There are only fifteen tables.) On the roof, you’ll also find DJs or live music, a bar made from recycled glass that looks like opaque aquamarine layers of a shale wall, and a meeting room. For those looking to enjoy a 1600′s dining experience, a ten foot table is housed in a private room so guests can sit like royalty.
Where to Stay in Bali: Seminyak vs. Kuta
Many travelers might wonder, why should I stay in Seminyak when the popular city of Kuta is only fifteen minutes away? Here’s why I preferred Seminyak to Kuta:
- While Kuta was a fun town, it’s pretty chaotic. Seminyak offered an escape from the crowds.
- The surf in Kuta is better mainly because of the outer reefs, but the beachbreak in Seminyak had great waves and there were only five other guys in the water. Kuta Beach had 500 riders vying for a wave.
- There were also a few trendy beach clubs nearby the hotel, like Potato Head, which looked like a small arena constructed out of window shutters. The club had a good Western menu, awesome pools, and access to and views of the beach.
- The beach and clubs are only a fifteen-minute walk from L Hotel, but the hotel provides shuttle service around the area.
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Disclaimer: The L Hotel hosted my stay, but the review is honest.