In Ubud we rented a villa, and it was a great way to stay. The villa was located down a tiny side street, and we had our own garden and a private pool, which was amazing. Otherwise, there was nothing fancy about the villa, which was traditionally decorated and had a modest 2.5 star rating on Hotels.com.
The Bali Putra Villa complex consists of several villas and holiday homes. In the main building near the large road, there was a front desk and a café, where breakfast was served. We had breakfast included in our stay, and we could choose between different kinds of egg dishes as well as fried rice or noodles for breakfast. I tried the banana pancakes on the first day, and they were so good I decided to stick with them for the rest of the week. You could also choose between coffee, tea or juice, but if you wanted both coffee (or tea) and juice, you had to pay extra, which I found a bit weird.
My bedroom was one stair up and from the room, I had access to a nice balcony overlooking the garden. The first night I forgot to pull out the mosquito net until after dark, when the mosquitoes were already out, so they had a real feast that night, and I woke up with a bunch of mosquito bites. The following nights I remembered to pull out the mosquito net in advance, and I slept like a baby. I don’t know whether it was because of all the yoga (we did 3 hours of yoga each day) or whether it was the comfortable bed, but I had such a good sleep and woke up rested and energized at 6am every morning.
The villa was cleaned every day, and in the afternoon, a really nice guy came by to remove the leaves and make sure that the garden and the pool looked nice. After sunset, he also turned on the porch lights and other outdoor lighting, so we could find our way home. The kitchen was outside on the porch, and my parents spent many evenings out there, in the close vicinity to the cold beer in the fridge:)
There was one bathroom in the villa, and it was newly renovated. The shower cabin had a beautiful pebble floor, and plenty of hot water with good water pressure, but you had to be careful when adjusting the temperature as the mixing faucet was very sensitive.
The villa was surrounded by lush nature and the neighboring villa had a papaya tree that my mom was secretly planning to plunder. In the evening, the garden was full of strange sounds from frogs, bugs and animals, especially along the part of the track that ran next to a swamp-like area from the main building to our villa. Some of the wildlife also made it inside the villa, so we had a gecko and a snail as permanent residents in the shower as well as a bunch of spiders, which were luckily so small that they were more cute than scary.
The main purpose of our trip was to attend the classes at Yoga Barn, and I had chosen Bali Putra Villa primarily because of the location. Our villa was only a 5-10 min. walk from Yoga Barn, so we could roll out of bed at 6:30am and still be on time for the Morning Flow at 7am.
The service and the general standard at Bali Putra Villa were better than 2.5 stars, and having our own place was great. The staff was really nice and friendly, though not super efficient, but as long as you do not expect international luxury, I think most people would be pleasantly surprised.
Many hotels and guesthouses in Ubud have an arrangement with drivers so the guests can get around the city without being overcharged, but the only time we booked transportation at the front desk at Bali Putra to go to a restaurant outside the city, we were charged almost double the price to get to the restaurant, as we later paid to go from the restaurant and back to our villa (with the transportation booked at the restaurant).