ARMA Museum & Resort in Ubud, Bali

by Santorini Dave • Updated: May 7, 2019

Review of Arma Museum & Resort in Ubud, Bali.

ARMA Resort – Unique setting amidst the exquisite grounds of a famous museum.

Positioned among gardens within the internationally-renowned ARMA art museum, this resort exudes tradition, charm, and elegance. The spacious rooms are in a traditionally-designed stone building facing the pool, gardens, or flowing creek, and surrounded by a pleasant veranda lined with rattan furniture. The décor is modern but Balinese, with ornately-carved doors and a marble bathroom. The secluded split-level villas are the essence of luxury: plentiful Balinese arts/crafts, massive private pool, outdoor jacuzzi, and corner sofa overlooking the greenest possible rice-fields. The main pool is surrounded by a checkered stone deck and flanked by a thatched open-air lounge area, while gardens burst with carvings, lily ponds, and cobblestone paths. There are three stylish eateries within the grounds and abundant facilities within walking distance.

ARMA Museum & Resort – The Location

  • Address: On the corner of Jalan Raya Pengosekan (southern extension of the major road, Jalan Hanoman) and Jalan Made Lebah. In the southern part of central Ubud, the most popular tourist region in central Bali. There are two entrances: the one for vehicles along Made Lebah street is inconvenient; far handier is the entrance facing Jalan Hanoman, alongside Kafe ARMA.
  • Area: In the grounds of the renowned ARMA art museum. A tranquil spot, with plenty of facilities all around. About 25 minutes on foot from Ubud market, and 10 minutes from Monkey Forest.
  • How to Get There: Best to arrange an airport pickup with the hotel, which is about an hour (35km) away (depending on traffic). See other options under “Local Transport” below.
  • Handy to: ARMA art museum. Monkey Forest. Shops and cafés on Jalan Hanoman.

ARMA Museum & Resort – The Basics

  • Guests: Focuses overwhelmingly on couples, and most guests seem to be over 50 who appreciate the serenity and seclusion.
  • Views: Rooms face the pool and/or gardens, with ponds, paths, and the creek. Villas are secluded behind lofty walls.
  • Private Pools/Jacuzzis: Villas feature lovely swimming pools (rather than just plunge pools), and some also come with outdoor jacuzzis.
  • Extras: Guests can wander in and around the marvellous ARMA museum and gardens for free (see under “Attractions” below).
  • Wi-Fi: Available free throughout for all guests.
  • Parking: More free and secure places to park than anywhere else in central Ubud, but think long and hard before driving in Bali.
  • How to Book: Booking.com will have the best rates.
  • Phone: (0)361 976 659
  • Email: [email protected]
  • Website: armabali.com

ARMA Museum & Resort – Amenities

  • Pool: Long and inviting, with a thatched open-air lounge area and checkered stone deck.
  • Spa: Massages can be arranged in the rooms, but there is no spa on-site.
  • Fitness Center: None.
  • Activities: Cooking lessons. Art classes.
  • Other Facilities: ARMA Bookshop. ARMA Boutique.

ARMA Museum & Resort – Food and Drink

  • Restaurants & Bars: Warung Kopi – Delightful café overlooking rice fields. Light meals, coffee, cakes, and famous iced tea. To avoid paying the museum entrance fee, tell the gatekeeper you’re going to the café. • ARMA Thai Restaurant – Amazingly opulent, with romantic tables and gazebos among rice fields. Authentic cuisine and silver service. • Kafe ARMA – Casual, relaxing, and street-side, with bright and inviting décor. Open all day for all sorts of meals and drinks.
  • Breakfast: Included in all rates.
  • Room Service: Available from about 7 am to 10 pm.

ARMA Museum & Resort – Rooms

  • Room Types: Deluxe Rooms • Superior Rooms • Suite Rooms • Resort Family Villas • River Side Suite Villas • Rice Field Suite Villas • Resort Superior Villas
  • Smoking Rooms: Management is not that tolerant about smoking, so check before lighting up anywhere in the resort grounds.
  • Best Room: Resort Superior Villas are extraordinarily lavish and spacious, featuring stylish Balinese design, modern décor, private pools, jacuzzis, and separate living areas.
  • For Families: The wonderful Family Villas are very spacious, each with 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, and a private pool.

ARMA Museum & Resort – Local Transport

  • Walking & Cycling: Ubud is surprisingly spread out and distances can be deceivingly long, but plenty of places to shop, eat, and drink are within walking distance of the hotel. A few hardy expats ride bicycles, but traffic in central Ubud and hilly roads elsewhere ensure that cycling is rarely enjoyable.
  • Public Transport: There is no reliable public transport anywhere in or around Ubud.
  • Cars, Motorbikes, & Taxis: Driving a car is not recommended anywhere in Bali, but motorbikes are popular for visiting local attractions without the traffic of the south. Both can be rented from agencies downtown. Metered taxis from southern Bali can drop passengers off in Ubud but are forbidden to operate here. So the best (and really, only) option for day trips is to charter a car with a driver. This can be organized with any of the several drivers hanging around the streets, or better, through the hotel.
  • Shuttle Bus: For towns popular with tourists (e.g. Kuta and Lovina), shuttle buses are comfortable and cheap, if a little overcrowded at times. The office for the major island-wide company, Perama, is only 400m north up the road (5-minute walk) from the hotel. The Kura-Kura Bus company links Ubud with southern Bali, but schedules are convoluted and routes, confusing.

ARMA Museum & Resort – What’s Nearby?

Restaurants & Bars

    Walk to all of these places from the side entrance alongside Kafe ARMA, and not the main vehicle gateway.

  • Warung Gana – Works very hard to compete with rivals. Daily specials of Indonesian food, pasta, and grills. Also, live music, free snacks, and children’s meals. Opposite Kafe ARMA. 1-minute walk.
  • Spaccanapoli di Ubud – Classic Italian-style bistro, with wood-fired pizza, checkered tablecloths, and hearty servings of pasta. Almost next to Warung Gana. 1-minute walk (50m).
  • Panorama Restaurant (0)361 973 320 – Colorful seats along the footpath, and quieter garden setting at the back. Tapas, pizza, pasta, and pastries. 100m up the street. 1-minute walk.
  • Siam Sally – Popular since many years for authentic Thai curries, soups, and salads. Also, impressive wine list. On 2 levels with quiet seats at the back. Worth a 500m stroll north. 7-minute walk.
  • Café du Monyet – ‘Monkey Café’ is arguably the most elegant in Ubud. Adorable setting includes avant-garde art, rice field views, and leather lounges. Also, live jazz and European cuisine. 8-minute walk (650m).

Shops

    The hotel is along the premier shopping street in Ubud, rivalling Seminyak for classy boutiques and inviting bistros. Look out for:

  • Namaste – The Spiritual Shop – At #64 (750m north), featuring an enticing collection of jewelry and incense. 10-minute walk.
  • Tegun Galeri – At #44B (1.1km north). Almost like a museum with its eclectic collection at pleasing prices. 14-minute walk.

Attraction

  • Agung Rai Museum of Art (ARMA) – The resort is within the grounds of this remarkable museum, the finest among several in Ubud. The 5 pavilions are crammed with traditional and contemporary art, and the gardens are sublime. Free entry for guests. Also, traditional music/dance shows and classes in arts/crafts.
  • Monkey Forest – May seem a little touristy, and is certainly crowded, but worth visiting for the eerie setting, ancient temples, and pesky inhabitants. (Hang on to everything.) About 1km away. 12-minute walk.

ARMA Museum & Resort – The Hotel

The resort is located in the grounds of the famous ARMA art museum.

The resort is within the grounds of the renowned ARMA art museum in southern Ubud, the most popular tourist region in central Bali.

Resort guests can roam the grounds or visit the museum for free.

Guests at the resort are welcome to wander around the grounds of the museum and visit the museum itself, for free.

The resort grounds are serene and colorful.

The gardens around the resort are so serene and vivid.

There are flourishing rice fields within the resort grounds.

Remarkably, within the resort grounds are flourishing rice fields.

The pool features a stone deck with colorful lounge chairs.

The sizeable resort pool features a lovely stone deck which is lined with colorful lounge chairs.

Kafe ARMA is a terrific joint by the side entrance.

At the side entrance facing Jalan Raya Pengosekan, Kafe ARMA is a terrific place to relax.

ARMA Thai Restaurant is a classy restaurant by the main entrance.

Near the main resort entrance for vehicles is the opulent ARMA Thai Restaurant.

ARMA Thai Restaurant offers outdoor seating.

The ARMA Thai Restaurant also offers tables and gazebos among rice-fields.

Rooms face the pool and/or gardens.

Rooms are in attractive 2-level buildings facing the pool and/or gardens.

The rooms share a common veranda.

Rooms face a delightful shared veranda.

Spacious Suite Rooms feature king beds.

Suite Rooms are particularly spacious, and feature king-sized beds.

The suite rooms have a pleasing decor and furnishings.

The décor and furnishings in the Suite Rooms are very pleasant.

Upper floor rooms oversee the gardens.

Rooms on the upper floor overlook the gardens.

Some of the villas offer views of the bright green rice fields.

Some villas face bright green rice fields.

Villas have high walls and stone doors.

Villas are secluded behind stone doors and lofty walls.

The private pools in villas are very large.

Villas feature idyllic private pools, far larger than ordinary plunge pools.

Warung Gana near the side entrance serves good value meals.

Opposite the side entrance to the resort (which is alongside Kafe ARMA), Warung Gana offers good value meals and live music.

Spaccanapoli di Ubud bistro next door is authentic Italian.

Almost next to Warung Gana is the authentic and Italian-owned Spaccanapoli di Ubud bistro.

Panorama Restaurant nearby has quieter seating at the back.

Panorama Restaurant, about 100m north of the side entrance to the resort, offers quieter tables at the back.

Siam Sally within walking distance serves authentic Thai food.

Worth a stroll 500m north of the side entrance, Siam Sally has been serving authentic Thai food for many years.

Café du Monyet is a very elegant cafe within walking distance.

Café du Monyet is probably the most elegant in Ubud, and only 650m from the side entrance.

Monkey Forest is just 1km from the hotel.

About 1km from the hotel is the renowned Monkey Forest.

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