Not surprisingly, we’re woken early by the buzzing of resort staff next to our room. We figured this would happen, so we’re not really pissed, but as we later learn, we’re both thinking the same thing about early mornings being the order of the day while we’re here.
Breakfast is an interesting meal. Not so much the food, or the hospitality – which are all great – but the conversation between Emma and I.
To cut a long story short, we discover that we’re both thinking the same thing: there’s nothing that we can do here in Candidasa that we can’t do at the Pelangi back in Seminyak. The beach is better (it has sand – a massive head start for those wanting a beach holiday in Bali), the food is better and the options of where to eat are endless, but the over-riding factor in all of this is the accommodation and that we’re meant to be here for another six nights.
You are welcome to call Em and I snobs at this point, but let me state our case. With ‘Heryn’ organising the accommodation for us through their holiday club and based on their own experiences with the places they’d stayed at and arranged for other people to stay at, we expected a little bit better a standard of digs from a place that Interval International would put their name and reputation behind. Simply put, we wonder if anyone from Interval has been to this place in a while, because we’d suggest that it’s probably below the standard Interval members would expect for the money they pay. Even contrasting the Bali Palms to the Honeymoon Guesthouse in Ubud: the Honeymoon Guest house has a simple romantic charm reflecting Ubud (the $60AUD per night tariff including breakfast doesn’t hurt either). The Bali Palms is simply outdated
Having said all of that, the place itself is fine if you want a beach-based holiday away from the boisterous dickheads and hustle and bustle of Jimbaran Bay/Kuta/Seminyak etc. It’s fine if you’re happy to have three square meals a day from the Bali Palms restaurant and curl up in front of the telly at night. We did note that at 41 years of age respectively, Emma and I were easily the youngest people staying at the Bali Palms which might give you an idea of the kind of people who would revel in these conditions, but it certainly wasn’t us. We agree after breakfast to put in a call to the Pelangi and if A) they could fit us in, and B) we could organise a driver to come and get us, we’d bail for the Pelangi.
While I’m on the phone to the Pelangi seeing if anything can be organised, Em does her research thing on the interwebz. According to Trip Advisor.com, the Pali Palms is rated 14th out of the 18 places reviewed in Candidasa. Other sites have a mix of rave and ultra-critical reviews, and interestingly, there’s no middle ground. People either love or hate this place. Our minds are made up. We’re back to Seminyak today by hook or by crook.
Thankfully, we’re able to get a room at the Pelangi, we can get a driver and so we check out and head back to Seminyak that afternoon.
All that aside, we want to thank the staff at the Bali Palms for the way they handled our early check out. As I said earlier, if you want a quiet seaside holiday and don’t want to get outside the boundaries of the resort, you’ll have a ball. If you prefer to get out and explore where you’re staying, maybe just plan one or two nights in Candidasa as part of exploring all points of the compass on the island of Bali.