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All reviewsother guestsmanager gedebreakfast tablehome away from homefree transportrooms are largesmall hotelhave stayed here many timesboutique hotelhidden awaybusy roadten minute walkwonderful staythoroughly enjoyed our staypeace and quietfamily holidayeach morning
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Reviewed 3 February 2018 via mobile

Our stay at Pondok Ayu was short but it was perfect. They catered to our every needs, no matter what they may have been. Our kids felt at home with all the staff, and in fact our daughter Evi still talks about how nice Gede is. We can’t wait to come back, many thanks Patrick.

Stayed: February 2018, travelled with family
Thank demoleculer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 January 2018

As opposed to reconfirming all the great things that have already been said about the Pondok Ayu by many other well versed travellers we thought we would review this hotel for...............all the things it did not have!

Accommodation - We wanted to stay in a big room as we have 2 kids and like a bit of space. We wanted a room that felt more like a villa as opposed to a hotel room. The Pondok did not feel like we were in a pokey little room with a boxed in plunge pool like most new villas in Bali now are. The King Suite easily catered for 2 adults and kids. The Pondok did not charge us for the extra beds and the room did not have any of the usual maintenance issues that you may encounter with hotel rooms (faulty air-conditioning / hot water and alike) in this star and price bracket. We did not have to walk a mile or get ferried by golf cart to the pool each day as it was literally 5 steps from our room. We did not have to request extra towels or housekeeping attendance nor did we have to ask for help with WIFI or using the cable channels as it all worked perfectly well without interruption.

Food and Beverage - We did not have to go to the Supermarket on our first day and stock up with a weeks worth of dinks to replace the very expensive mini bar as we have always done in Bali (mainly because mini bar costs are the biggest rip off that any traveller will be subject to anywhere in the world). No we utilised every beverage in the bar because it was cheaper than the supermarket.....that's right cheaper! We did not have to complain about the quality of the room service or restaurant menu food even once and we had no problems feeding our young kids the simple but obviously fresh menu day in and out with no issues of crook little tummies. We were not subject to waiting around for long periods of time for food or drinks to arrive like we have in large hotels. Service was always prompt and with a smile. We never had to argue about the bill or any mistakes that had been made, the staff are very adept at keeping precise tallies of all food and beverage consumed. Thank god for us buffet breakfasts are a thing of the past.

Facilities - We did not have to go through the usual morning rig moral of fighting for loungers by the pool or arguing with staff because of people reserving their lounger with a towel etc. As this is a small hotel everyone is provided for. Pool was not green, pool was not over chlorinated or dirty, pool was not unsafe or under maitained. We thoroughly enjoyed our daily dips with our kids having the whole pool basically to ourselves - again just like the villa experience! The hotel grounds are typical Balinese chic. If you like commercial style shiny office block type hotels for your holidays then this charming little place is not for you. Dining options are simple just a round table next to the kitchen where you can chat with staff and other travellers whilst the sounds and smell of your breakfast is being prepared. There are 5 rooms and we stayed in the King Suite. If we didn't have kids we would of stayed in the king rooms which are more than adequate and comfortable for couples not to mention at a bargain price.

Services - We did not have to pack up all our laundry every few days and walk down to the cheap little laundry services that are usually provided near all bi and expensive hotels. Laundry in Pondok was more than reasonable and al clothes came back in tact, pressed and for the first time with no cross bleaching of colours between our local Bali purchases and our expensive clothes. We used the babysitting service twice daily for our 2 year old. Both at lunch and dinner during nap times. To be honest this was great because usually this stops the other 3 of us going out for dinner. Its funny how we would never trust people to babysit in our own city apart from family and friends but at the Pondok we had the opposite feeling. Highly recommend travellers using this service.

Staff - We always found the service provided by staff in hotels and hotels all over Bali by far exceeds our experiences in our home city. Yes you do have the odd disgruntled staff member but overall our experiences for the last 20 years have been positive. If you own a restaurant or have staff that you think are not living up to your expectations don't send them on an expensive training course....book them in for a couple of nights at the Pondok Ayu! They will learn everything there is to know about customer service, customer interaction, customer communication methods and service punctuation. Obviously this outstanding performance was instilled by the understanding of western service culture by the owners Barbara and Steve but its now more than that. This service culture is ingrained in the staff who work there and they themselves have adopted this approach. No Supervision standing over them barking orders, No signs of laziness or disgruntled workers. Just a bunch of happy and smiling employees wanting to do a good job and provide a great holiday experience for this customers. Probably because they love their jobs!

Location - I always laugh when travellers have an issue with the location of a hotel in relation to the beach or the city or shopping etc. like it is somehow the hotels fault that it is located where it is. The internet is a wonderful thing and a 5 sec trip to google will tell you where its located so if the location is not suited to you that's poor planning on our part as travellers as opposed to a lack of holiday experience provided from the establishment. The Pondok is not on the beach! We don't go to Bali for its beaches, in our opinion our beaches at home are much better. So the location was no issue us whatsoever. The beach and restaurant row was a 10 min walk (with a pram and kid in tow). We had no problems crossing the highway nor did the other travellers we witnessed using wheelchairs. If its not your cup of tea you can utilise the free private car transport when required. Likewise when our stay at the beach or restaurant was finished we just called them up and they came and picked us up again, all part of the free and welcome Pondok service experience.

Cost - A primary factor in us choosing our 11 day holiday at the Pondok was price. Like I said you get a villa experience for a 1/3 of the price. After staying here you realise just how much you are getting ripped off as a traveller in Bali these days. Its not the cheap little place it once was but with a bit of research you can still find places like the Pondok. Staying here will save you a lot of spending money to enjoy all the other things that you want to do in Bali!

A big shout out and thank you to all the staff at Pondok - Gede, Made, Putu, Kadek, Ayu, Ketut, Wayan. Likewise congratulations to the owners Barb and Steve for watching your hard work and financial investment come to fruition particularly where so many others have failed.

So if your sick of hotels that give you all things you don't want on holiday then the Pondok is for you.

If you want a cheap alternative to the expensive villa experience in Bali then the King Suite at Pondok is for you.

Would we recommend Pondok Ayu to our friends and family - yes we would.

Will we be back to Pondok Ayu?.................Absolutely!

Paddy, Andrea, Georgie and Livvie x

Room Tip: Go the King Suite
  • Stayed: January 2018, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
7  Thank paddyandandie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gede_Kartaya, Manager at Pondok Ayu, responded to this reviewResponded 3 February 2018

To Dear,
Paddy, Andrea, Georgie & Livie,

What can we say but THANK YOU THANK YOU for the fullest comments on Pondok Ayu that have ever been posted.

You certainly covered everything.

We can only say we really look forward to having you back at Pondok Again with your lovelly girls.


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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 December 2017 via mobile

I loved my time here. From the second I was met at the airport, to the time all the lovely staff walked me to the gate to say goodbye, I felt like family. Great room, clean, large, cheap minibar, good wifi. Walking and cycling distance to everything in town or they’ll drop you off and pick you up later. Safe and comfortable for a single female. Excellent made to order breakfast. I’d go back in a heartbeat. Hello to everyone at Pondok Ayu if you’re reading this, and thank you again!

Stayed: November 2017, travelled solo
6  Thank ljwtoronto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gede_Kartaya, Manager at Pondok Ayu, responded to this reviewResponded 17 December 2017

Hello and thank you for spending the time to do a great review for us and so glad we were able to make your holiday with us one to remember.

You have covered all off the little things that we are very happy to be able we supply to make it much easier for everybody.

We do hope that we will see you again at Pondok some other time.


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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 November 2017 via mobile

Recently stayed 5 nights at pondok..what an AMAZING place..picked up by GEDE at the airport and as soon as we got to pondok we received a welcome drink and got settled..the grounds were immaculate like our room with fantastic air conditioning..the pool was great for a refreshing dip...breakfast was very good and COOKED to order and a lazy lunch by the pool was very RELAXING...so PEACEFULalso...free transportation to the many good restaurants in sanur..we both got a massage from a lady that is booked thru pondok and we both would recommend that service also...a big thank you to all the TEAM at pondok ayu...a special thank you to PUTU for treating us like one of the family...


Stayed: November 2017, travelled as a couple
Thank Jimmy M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gede_Kartaya, Manager at Pondok Ayu, responded to this reviewResponded 5 December 2017

Hi there,
Thank you so much for the great review, we are so happy that our guests find exactly what we work so hard to achieve at Pondok , you certainly covered everything and we hope we can have the pleasure of having you stay with us next time you plan a holiday to Bali.

Our best regards to you both,


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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 October 2017

We recently spent 6 wonderful relaxing days at Pondok Ayu. Our trip was a last minute decision, so to find a vacancy at Pondok Ayu was surprising and very, very welcome. Our flight from Sydney was delayed and then after a detour to Darwin for refuelling due to Mt Agung's "imminent" eruption we arrived in Denpasar a little weary...but that all changed when we were welcomed by Wayan's smiling face and happy chat on our way to our accommodation. We found our room to be very comfortable, with everything we needed. Being on the first floor we enjoyed an afternoon breeze, which was appreciated after hot days. We appreciated being away from the hustle and bustle of Sanur "central". The 10-15 minute walk was not an issue for us so we did not need to avail ourselves of the free transport offered. Pondok Ayu is a small establishment, but we consider that part of the charm. We enjoyed sitting around the breakfast table getting to know the other guests along with the owners, Barb and Steve . What a thrill that was. They were charming hosts who extended such a friendly welcome to all the guests. The staff at Pondok Ayu are what makes this such a wonderful place to stay, so thank you all for making our stay one we will not forget.....and have not stopped talking about. Thank you too, Barb and Steve...it was a joy to meet you and hear about your lives in Bali. We look for to returning in the future.

  • Stayed: October 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
1  Thank potsmark
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gede_Kartaya, Manager at Pondok Ayu, responded to this reviewResponded 19 October 2017

Thank you so much for your time and lovely comments and we would LOVE to see you back at Pondok in the near future.

You were such an easy, happy, friendly, funny and easy going couple that our jobs were made so much a pleasure in looking after you.

Barbara and Steve would like to say that they enjoyed your company as well. They too enjoyed their laughs and stories with you both.

We wish you all the best. What more can we say but a big thank you.


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