Club Bali Hawaii Resort in Anyer, West Java, Indonesia is a four-hour drive away from Jakarta, but if you're in town for access to the spectacular remnants of Krakatoa volcano and Anyer's relatively unspoiled beaches and diving, the long slog is worth it.
With the Club Bali Hawaii, you get a complete, family-friendly West Java getaway that offers sizable rooms meant for sharing; a water park; charming Hawaii-style entertainment (with genuine Hawaiian hula instructors); and the chance for adventure either in Krakatau or around nearby attractions like Ujung Kulon National Park and Banten Lama.
Family-Friendly Getaway, Four Hours from Jakarta
Anyer is a favored weekend getaway for many Jakarta residents, who tolerate the congestion of the highways to get to the seaside town's beach resorts. A number of resorts line the Jalan Raya Anyer road hugging the Anyer coast, many of them providing access to the town's fine beaches.
You pass by a good number of resorts before you arrive at Club Bali Hawaii, but one gets the feeling that you won't get as warm a welcome in the other resorts compared to the one you get at Club Bali Hawaii: true to their Hawaiian inspiration, guests get a fresh lei upon arrival at the resort lobby.
The resort is set in a beachfront lot about twelve hectares in size, set with attractively manicured lawns and paths. Past the large hotel building containing the lobby, suites, and coffee shop, visitors can walk to the water park at the center of the resort.
Around the fringes of the resort, surrounding the water park, you'll find the clifftop bar overlooking the unquiet Sunda Strait; a small lagoon where guests can go fishing; a fitness center; conference halls; and an "outbound center" with a ropes course.
Befitting a resort with a water park, Club Bali Hawaii is immensely popular with families - when your guide arrived, the pool was fairly buzzing with children swooping down the waterslides, generally having a great time in the sun. It's not a place for visitors seeking quiet, but it's the right destination for parents who want to show their kids a good time in West Java.
Apartment-style Suites in the Club Bali Hawaii Resort
The Club Bali Hawaii Resort provides 73 apartment-style suites. The room types comprising the Club Bali Hawaii's entire repertoire of accommodations starts with the studio units (standard and deluxe), which provide budget digs for single travelers, with only rudimentary shower facilities. The studio deluxe type room has a private balcony.
As one moves up in size and price, guests can choose to stay in one-bedroom apartments, two-bedroom apartments (choice of standard or deluxe) and four-bedroom Presidential suites, named after Hawaiian royalty. Non-studio units are divided into sleeping and living areas, and offer spa baths and showers, not to mention balconies offering views of the garden or the sea.
Your guide was billeted in a one-bedroom standard room, featuring a compact bedroom and a sizeable living room area overlooking the water park.
The sleeping quarters were modest in size, optimized for sleeping and rest. A compact closet and a washbasin stand along the wall intersecting the lobby area, and a window opens out to the lobby (curtains provide sleepers with privacy). On the opposite wall, a queen-size bed and a sofa are lined up. There was no television in the room - the TV was placed in the living room, more on that in a bit.
Living Room's Awesome Views of Sunda Strait
The living room was larger and brighter, with large glass sliding doors that opened up to the west, affording magnificent views of the water park, the Sunda Strait (and Krakatoa in the distance), and gorgeous sunsets. The living room was furnished with a dining table, two sofas, and kitchen accessories decking one wall - microwave, gas cooking range, plates, utensils, and a potable-water dispenser.
Both living and sleeping quarters come with individually-controlled air conditioning. The television (with cable channels) and IDD phone are both located in the living room area.
The bathroom was small compared to the rest of the apartment, with enough room only for a jacuzzi tub and a shower set; water closet; and sink. No solid soap bars here; Club Bali Hawaii Resort economizes by providing liquid soap and shampoo, stored in dispensers bolted on the wall.
The one-bedroom standard suites are homey and slightly rustic - your guide liked the water dispenser, a ceramic contraption sculpted to resemble a freshly-cut coconut. The kitchen is also stocked with a family in mind; I counted about ten coffee mugs in the cupboard, plenty of flatware, and enough plates and glasses to feed a large group.
The bigger suites are more luxurious, in keeping with their royal names, with newer furnishings and larger balconies facing the sea.
Bali With a Hawaiian Influence
The Club Bali Hawaii strives to stay true to its influence: the staff is dressed in aloha shirts, the bamboo-wood-and-thatch clifftop bar facing the sea feels like a direct transplant from Honolulu, and a couple of bubbly Hawaiian expatriates are on hand to perform authentic Hawaiian hula for the guests.
Take note, this is Hawaii altered to fit local tastes. There is a washbasin in the bedroom, and the bar serves no hard drinks (although they have a good selection of beers). Guests also have to contend with a lack of easy access to Anyer's sandy beach, and must be content with the rocky shores opposite the water park.
A small wharf to the south of the property provides access to fast boats that propel the resort's banana boats and take adventurous guests to Krakatau, about 26 miles to the west.
Your guide engaged the resort's Krakatau package, which consisted of transport to and from the volcanic islands, access to Anak Krakatau and hiking up a safe distance up the slope, and snorkeling off the larger island of Rakata.
The boat ride takes about an hour and a half each way, on a speedboat with two outbound motors riding over the choppy seas of the Sunda Strait. It isn't comfortable, but it's quite an adventure. Renting the boat for six hours costs about IDR 3,000,000, or $300. (Read more about the hike up the volcano: Climbing Anak Krakatau.)
Contact details, facilities (and WiFi), and more on the next page.