Review: One Eleven, Bali

This resort in Seminyak, Bali, has no pool, no spa and no all-day restaurant. Instead, it brings everything to your own villa

There are hotels where you check in and sort of forget to do much of anything other than enjoy the facilities; One Eleven in Seminyak, Bali is just that sort of place. If you truly want someplace to live a life less ordinary, if only for a little while, then this is just the ticket. Now you have to consider this carefully because One Eleven is not for everyone. Take a look at the official website and you will understand. If this strikes your fancy – you will know immediately – then come back and read on for my experience of the place. If not, you have just saved yourself some time.

So then, what kind of resort in a tropical paradise does its presentation in stylized black and white? Clearly, the people behind this resort are not interested in being another Four Seasons or even an Aman, no disrespect to either of those places. It so happens that our team recently acquainted itself of the Four Seasons in JimbaranBay and rediscovered Amandari in Ubud and have nothing but good things to say.

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This is what One Eleven looks like from the outside. It is a bit fortress-like...

To return properly to One Eleven, I have gotten a little ahead of myself and I hope you have indeed looked at the resort’s website or you will be understandably perplexed. A familiar promise contemporary hotels make is that you will find yourself in an oasis of serenity and seclusion while being in the thick of the action; fortresses of solitude if you will for the smartphone toting post-3G generation. One Eleven makes the same promise but, I dare say, it keeps it.

O Neighbor Where Art Thou

Throughout my stay, I did not so much as bump into another guest on the way to breakfast. Ok, that is mostly because breakfast is both made and served in the villa. Yes, each of the nine villas has its own kitchen and yes, there are only nine villas spread across the 5,000 sqm property.

Arriving at One Eleven, you will not fail to notice how close it is to the heart of the action; this is Seminyak of course and Laksmana street – home to Ku De Ta amongst others – is a short walk away. Of course, the hotel can arrange transport if you prefer but old Bali hands know that walking is better, if possible, given the chaotic traffic of virtually every main street in Seminyak.

One thing you may fail to notice actually is One Eleven itself. The façade is entirely inconspicuous and so low-key that the image most used to introduce the place is a path inside the resort! Again, remember the One Eleven website…

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The pool in front of the villa is no mere water feature. Each villa looks pretty much like this

Walking in, just before you hit this path, as you pass the contemporary wood façade and detailing, you might wonder where the pool is. Well, it is actually in your villa so there will be no swim meets here with other guests; one less opportunity to mix it up with the neighbors. About that façade, one commentator likens it to a Balinese take on the Japanese ryokan concept but I am just not sure. Whatever the case might be there, One Eleven tells me that there are more than a million pots in the vertical garden that maintains the resort’s quietude, which is very impressive indeed and a totally random bit of information.

Your Own Private Bali

When you do get to your villa though, which is set in a row alongside the other villas facing the vertical garden, you finally see the properly made-up ‘face’ of the resort. One Eleven saves its best for the interior each villa so you could say the best part of the resort is what is in your room. This is of course vitally important if you plan on staying in as much as possible.

To recap a little, do recall that each 350 sqm villa comes with its own 14-meter long pool, fully equipped kitchen and an outdoor living room. The whole setup (excluding the room and attached bathroom) is open to the outdoor area and does not have curtains or screens and such. In a way, it is the kind of home some people truly fancy, practical considerations aside. Privacy is assured so there is no need to be coy at all here; there is nothing at all to stop you from diving into the pool from the living room if you so desire. There is also a 35 sqm spa gazebo in place, which I will come back to in a moment. 

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While it looks like the world can look in on you easily from this picture, it simply isn't possible


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