You may have been to Bali before, but have you ever been to Lombok? This little Indonesian island is just a short domestic flight away and is great for a more romantic, laid-back and family-friendly vacation than its more famous neighbour.
When I was invited by the Indonesian Ministry of Tourism I stayed in a beautiful resort in Lombok that I think you really should know about. The Lombok Holiday Resort is located in the tiny village of Mangsit in the northwestern corner of the island, just around 1.5hrs from Lombok International Airport.
I really loved the garden setting of this five-star resort, so tranquil and peaceful. It is sitting on a well-maintained stretch of beach, and no matter where you are staying, it will only ever be a couple of steps through the tropical gardens down to the water. When we first arrived at the resort it was night time, so you can imagine my delight when I woke up to the sights and sounds of a tropical morning in this delightful holiday resort.
Our rooms were located in individual chalets of four, with the two bottom rooms offering outdoor bathroom facilities. The two upper rooms were boasting big balconies overlooking the garden, perfect for a relaxing sundowner! The higher room categories will give you even more space, privacy and close proximity to the beach, but I was already very happy with the room option I was given.
The room I stayed in was spacious and clean. The bathroom was clean too but the finishing was a bit clunky – however, at the end of the day it was the powerful and big shower that I really appreciated, so screw the awkwardly set floor tiles and the plastic sheet walls. Considering we were in Indonesia, this was still acceptable standards for a bathroom.
Breakfast at the Lombok Holiday Resort was served in an undercover outdoor setting with an extensive buffet to choose from which would offer you from Indonesian specialities like fried rice and noodles to bacon and eggs to Continental classics and sweets. Joghurts, cereals, tropical fruit – there was something here for everyone, and – most importantly – the coffee was also acceptable.
At the centre of the resort was the big lagoon shaped pool with lots of corners to explore for the kids. I have no doubt they will love the playful design and the different areas of the pool! Thanks to cabanas and trees there are many shady areas around the pool, so you don’t have to bake in the sun. Having said that, the pool is probably not at its best at the moment and you will see some discolouration of the tiles and some other things that might require maintenance.
In terms of food, the Lombok Holiday Resort comes with a number of restaurant options, and while we dined in town rather than at the resort, the setting was just perfect, with chairs and tables overlooking the beach and the garden. There was also not just one but two happy hours, so cocktails by the beach are an absolute must, in particular as you will see the most amazing sunsets from here!
For the little ones I could see a big playground with swings and climbing wall right in the middle of the resort which I am sure they would love. And if you would like to test your diving skills you will be pleased to know that the Lombok Holiday Resort is home to its very own dive centre, the Blue Marlin Dive Centre. I am not a spa person, but if you are after some relaxing massages you can have that done here right at the resort too. Wifi is also included but you won’t have it in your room. However, the lobby is not a bad place to spend a couple of minutes to check your emails and social media, so we really didn’t mind at all.
Location-wise this resort is the place to be if you want to get away from it all. Restaurants and nightlife options are at least 10 minutes away, and you will need to make use of the shuttle bus to get into town. However, the resort offers a minimart and a good selection of food and beverage outlets, so except for sightseeing there are not many reasons why you should feel compelled to leave the resort.
Overall, a pleasant experience in a country that obviously has different standards when it comes to five-star luxury. There are a couple of things that could be improved but for a relaxing family holiday away from it all, with the added bonus of spectacular sunsets, the Lombok Holiday Resort might be just the right choice for you.
Lombok Holiday Resort. http://www.holidayresort-lombok.com
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