Stumble Into Indonesia's Unseen Places
Our first stay amidst paddy fields in Ubud a few years ago at my friend’s house remains a really nice memory. So nice, Mumun and I decided to relive the experience again when we visited Ubud for the UWRF. With our friend Rani on board, we booked a paddy view accommodation via Airbnb, which later we found out is called Indigo Tree.
Was the stay as nice as how it appeared on Airbnb? Read on.
From the outside, Indigo Tree looks just like a big house among other houses and paddy fields, sitting on a narrow street. The reception area sits on the spot where a garage would be. Upon entrance, we were welcomed with a garden and some working men building more rooms. Passing a swimming pool, we were taken to a 2-storey building, containing 4 bedrooms. Our room was the one at the end of the upper floor, facing the garden, and the paddy view from the big glass window as you can see here.
This room doesn’t seem to be listed on their website but it’s listed on their Airbnb. It is spacious, equipped with a king-size bed, a window couch and an ensuite bathroom. The bathroom door is so extravagant with golden dragon relief on it. It’s so not my taste, but the inside is how I like a bathroom: semi open. It adds freshness to how showers make you feel.
Our room shares a spacious balcony with the other room on the same floor. This common area extends to a space between the bedrooms, an indented space that has a big divan against the glass window. We were the only occupants on the floor, so I could freely do my yoga exercise there on one morning, as well as sit blankly at the table still in our pajamas.
On idle times we sat on the window couch, which turned to be my bed for the whole 3 nights, and watch farmers plowing the paddies. We weren’t just staying near paddy fields. The swimming pool is even bordering with it, too! Mumun was especially awed with the fact that when you sit on the pool chair, you turn your head right you see paddy field, and left to see the pool. She did it over and over, as happy as a kid receiving her Christmas toy. That’s what happens when you have a city kid in a paddy view accommodation.
Free shuttle car
Indigo Tree is located in Pejeng Village, about 15 minute drive from Ubud Center. Because we weren’t hiring any transport and Ubud’s public transport system is close to non-existent, we requested a pickup with their shuttle car. The service is available from 8 a.m. until 10 p.m. with appointments via phone, SMS or Airbnb message beforehand.
The way to the villa is winding and without road lamps so it’s dark at night, so the shuttle car service comes really handy. They can only drop you off and pick you up at Nomad Restaurant, 3 minutes walk from Ubud Market, which is really convenient if you’re planning to just stroll around Ubud town. But if you’re the only requester, you could ask to be dropped off or picked up at some other points nearby for your convenience.
Before booking anything on Airbnb, I always read the reviews from the previous guests. In the case of Indigo Tree, because there have been so many reviews, I read only a few, which were a mix of satisfied and less satisfied customers. The disappointing points were mostly about how they were appointed to a room that wasn’t exactly what they saw on the Airbnb page.
Turns out, Indigo Tree has a few bedrooms listed on Airbnb, but they put same pictures on each listing. So yup, the accuracy is a bit low, and for me that’s a minus. So when I was booking a room I asked specifically about the room I’d be getting.
However, I was booking for 3 people, and there’s an extra charge for the third person. So I was quite iritated when we were only provided 2 towels, 2 bottled water, and was blamed that there were 3 of us checking in instead of 2. The receptionist even told me that Airbnb hadn’t informed them about the 3rd person. Say what?? It’s an automatic system, nobody had to tell anybody about that. Obviously there’s a miscoordination within their management.
Slow service, sometimes
They’re nice and polite, but a few times we had to ask for our extra towels, water and food more than once – sometimes more than twice – to have it finally delivered. And there is no intercom, so we had to walk back and forth to the kitchen or the reception for that. I don’t know what the problem is, they might be short of staff, but still.
The breakfast menu include the combination of pancake/toast, omelet/scrambled eggs, and sliced fruits/fresh juice, with tea/coffee. We tried all the combination and I have no complaint.
On our first morning, they allowed us to have breakfast on the balcony of our room, or in the room if we had asked. But the next mornings we were asked to eat in the restaurant because they were short of staff to be delivering the food.
It’s a semi open-aired restaurant, surrounded by gardens and another swimming pool next to it (I think it’s a kiddy pool). And it looks like the more expensive and bigger bedrooms that you can see on their website are located surrounding the restaurant and the kiddy pool.
Sure. Overall it was a nice stay in a peaceful vicinity. You just need to be more precise about what you want, make sure you communicate it clearly. But if you can’t tolerate any mistake, staying here might not the best idea.