What did Indonesia’s largest antique collector do when he ran out of storage space? He built a hotel and filled it with beautiful Indonesian antiques! Hotel Tugu Lombok is one of the most unique hotels we’ve stayed in, mostly because everywhere we looked was another incredible piece of furniture or a really awesome piece of art.
Almost as big as Bali, Lombok is the completely different island right next door. From its volcanic centre to idyllic beaches such as Mawun, it rewards travellers who want to explore. Many are drawn to mighty Gunung Rinjani, Indonesia’s second-highest volcano. Rivers and waterfalls gush down its fissured slopes, while its summit – complete with hot springs and a dazzling crater lake – is the ultimate trekker’s prize. Lombok is a truly hidden gem with so much to explore.
After spending the day exploring around in our rented moped, map navigating and mini adventures of each day, one of the best things about the trip in this island was coming back to our heavenly hotel. Here’s our review of Hotel Tugu Lombok…
The bumpy dirt lane to Hotel Tugu Lombok winds past emerald fields with cows and stands of palm trees. It eventually brings us to a striking colonial house surrounded by lily ponds. Once occupied by a Chinese family in Sumatra in the 19th century, this priceless hardwood house was moved – lock, stock and barrel – to the Indonesian island of Lombok, to serve as the hotel’s reception area.
As we entered the property of the Hotel we received a wonderful welcome from the reception staff, who checked us in and explained all the facilities within the hotel perfectly as our luggage was taken up to our room. When an old building in Lombok was about to be demolished the owner of Hotel Tugu Lombok purchased it and relocated it to the hotel property. This building is now used as the hotel lobby, where we enjoyed complimentary welcome drinks during our relaxing check-in process. After learning about this one building on the property at check-in we knew we were in for a very memorable stay!
Tugu hotel Lombok has several types of rooms. They include the usual range of suites, villas and bungalows. I think this hotel is very romantic. But wait, they also had the honeymoon villa accommodation.
We stayed in a 350 sq meter “Bhagavat Gita” villa. Our villa was obviously filled with antique, just like the rest of the property, but it was also the gardens that really impressed me. Inside the villa we had huge bed. The mattress must have been custom made for this bed frame because it was much bigger than a standard king-sized bed.
The room included two desk and three different seating areas. If I wanted to get some work done while I was here there was no problem finding somewhere to set up my office for the day! The villa was filled with natural light, beautiful carved wood touches and a fresh lemongrass scent. This was much more than a hotel room, but rather a home.
The semi-outdoor bathroom was just as impressive and included plenty of counter space and yummy smelling bathroom products. Our cooper sink was a really cool touch and it really popped next to the green tiles.
Just beyond the bathroom was a huge outdoor bathtub and rain shower. The entire area felt like it was taken from an Architectural Digest magazine! The space felt incredible unique, yet also very inviting.
On the back side of our private property was a plunge pool overlooking the beach and the ocean. We had a large cabana and a table and chairs where we enjoyed breakfast each morning. The cleverly designed gardens gave us a bit of privacy while still allowing us to have a beautiful view of the ocean.
Also, since the property is so large and the beach is so wide we rarely had other guests in froth of our villa. It was also as if the beach in front of us was a private beach for us, as most guests seemed to use the section of beach in front of the main pool.
THE BREAKFAST EXPERIENCE
Breakfasts are one of our favorite meals so we got up early in the morning to make take our time to enjoy the breakfast experience with no rush. We couldn’t resist to notice that several products were locals or traditional Indonesian and we felt that was a nice touch.
On one the coolest features about breakfast is that you can choose anywhere on the resort to eat it. Our villa had about 6 different areas where we could eat, but we also had the option of eating at the restaurant, on the beach or at any other romantic table set up in one of the many gardens.
That same concept applies for any meal of the day. Of course you have restaurant options, but you can also choose to eat you lunch or dinner by the beach or in a garden. This is awesome because it really spreads out the guests so it never feels too busy in one area. Obviously we went for the beach option and enjoyed every meal just in front of the ocean.
With a design engineered with absolute brilliance, the property and accommodation is part collector’s residence and part luxury hideaway, all wrapped in a delicate and time-honoured style of yesteryear. Tugu is not just a testament to old world charm. The hotel is equipped with a spa and fitness centre and is an excellent launching point to the Gili islands. Its six villas, five bungalows and eight suites with private pools range from 107-400 square metres with in-room iPod and 42-inch flat-screen TV. WiFi is free throughout. Sire Beach is likely one of the best for swimming along this northwest coast. There’s also an 18-hole golf course within walking distance of the hotel and yoga and meditation in the open air spa “temple.” You can borrow reef shoes for swimming (to protect your feet from corals at the edge of Sire beach). Less than 100 meters form the private beach you have floating platform where you can lay and sunbath and snorkel around to see the colorful fishes and star fishes underwater. They also had stand-up paddle boards and kayaks complimentary for the guests and that was one of our favorite experiences.
We really enjoyed visiting Lombok. Staying at Tugu Hotel Lombok was a bit like staying over night at an art gallery or a museum. You know you can just spend the whole day wandering around and appreciating every little small detail. At the same time staying at Tugu Hotel Lombok also made us feel like we were just staying in our own home. It was very homey and personal. The staff was extremely kind and helpful and you could feel that everyone truly loved what they were doing. It gave us that kind of great feeling that you rarely get in a hotel!