Bali, Indonesia

The Chedi Club Tanah Gajah

Rates from (inc tax)$350.00

Price information

If you haven’t entered any dates, the rate shown is provided directly by the hotel and represents the cheapest double room (including tax) available in the next 21 days.

Prices have been converted from the hotel’s local currency (21USD), via, using today’s exchange rate.


Rice, rice, baby


Peaceful paddy fields

The Chedi Club Tanah Gajah in Ubud was once the private residence of renowned architect and art-collector, Hendra Hadiprana; luckily for us, he’s turned his home into a (very special) hotel. Along with Hendra’s eye-bogglingly beautiful stash of rare art and artefacts, there’s a rice-paddy spa, superb restaurant and addictive butler service.

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A little wooden elephant, made by a local artist


Photos The Chedi Club Tanah Gajah, Ubud, Bali

Need to know


20: seven suites and 13 villas.


Midday (but you can stay until 6pm, if you pay 50 per cent of the daily rate). Earliest check-in, 2pm (flexible, subject to availability).


Double rooms from $350.00, excluding tax at 21 per cent.

Price information

If you haven’t entered any dates, the rate shown is provided directly by the hotel and represents the cheapest double room (including tax) available in the next 21 days.

Prices have been converted from the hotel’s local currency (USD423.50), via, using today’s exchange rate.

More details

Rates usually include breakfast, a welcome drink upon arrival, 24-hour butler service, a scheduled shuttle service to/from Ubud in a private car and WiFi. Daily extras include: minibar snacks and drinks; cocktails and canapés (6pm–7pm); papers; laundry.


Consider packing your favourite walking shoes, because the Chedi Club butlers conduct entertaining rambles around the rice paddies. If that sounds like far too much activity, book in for some pampering time. The spa utilises organic products; treatments take place in open-air rooms overlooking verdant fields.

Hotel closed

No check-ins or check-outs are allowed on 28 March 2017, when Bali observes Nyepi (Day of Silence). Bali’s airport also closes for the day.

At the hotel

Spa; fitness centre; tennis court; amphitheatre used for Balinese dance performances; gardens; DVD library; free WiFi. In rooms: TV, iPod dock, Bose sound system, free minibar (including selected alcoholic drinks), espresso machine, bath products made in Ubud.

Our favourite rooms

Feeling indulgent? Plump for one of the villas. The Pool Villas have private 10m plunge pools, alongside a generous sun-deck and balé. Sybarites should consider a Spa Villa, which has the added bonus of your own spa room with two massage beds, a sauna and a partially outdoor bathroom. Easy breezy.


The sea-green 35m pool – designed in imitation of Balinese water palaces – sits alongside lotus and swan-flocked ponds, looking out over verdant rice paddies. Well-cushioned sunloungers – sunscreen, fluffy towels and umbrellas are taken care of – are favourite sunshine slumber spots.


Be wrapped with detoxifying seaweed or have a cream bath – including a conditioning hair treatment – at the spoiling spa, which has two treatment rooms for couples, a yoga studio and a room devoted to manicures and pedicures.

Packing tips

Stylish couples play it down here in Bali’s verdant uplands, but sightings of Missoni bikinis and Chanel flip-flops aren't uncommon. Anything floaty and fabulous is worth flinging into your suitcase.


If you've ever fancied having a butler, now's your chance; all guests in villas at the Chedi Club are assigned one on check-in. Smoking is permitted in public areas.


Baby cots, high chairs and car seats are supplied free of charge. Little Smiths aged 3–11 can share a bed with parents (from US$35 a night) or request an extra bed (from US65 a night). Extra beds for over-11s cost US$100 a night; babysitting costs extra.


Baby cots, high chairs and car seats are supplied free of charge. Extra beds for older children cost US$100 each a night, and babysitting can be arranged at a cost.

Best for

11 years and up. They're then old enough to enjoy the local cultural activities.

Recommended rooms

The ultimate family nest would be the Two-Bedroom Estate with its considerable indoor and outdoor living areas and two large bedrooms. The living space of the Spa Villas can also be set up with an extra bed.


During high season, the hotel organises a range of different classes and activities: traditional dance, gamelan playing, painting and crafting Balinese offerings from local flowers and leaves. There are kids' DVDs in the library and, during the dry season (May–October), butlers will take children out to fly traditional kites in the surrounding fields.

Swimming pool

The photogenic communal pool isn't particularly kid friendly. Plunge pools in the villas are more suited for junior swimmers.


Children are welcome at all times in the restaurant and can even choose from their own menu. High chairs are available for small Smiths and the staff are able to heat milk and baby food if necessary.


Can be arranged for up to three children with 24 hours' notice. It costs IDR100,000 an hour.

No need to pack

Baby cots, changing mats and high chairs.


The Balinese adore kids, so while the Chedi Club feels designed for couples, children are looked after by the entire team who do their utmost to accommodate and comfort the smallest guests, even preparing indigenous recipes to sooth tummy aches and stuffy noses.


The Chedi Club Tanah Gajah achieved prestigious Silver status under the Green Globe Earthcheck Certification programme in 2009. Vast gardens are maintained using recycled water.

Food and Drink

Photos The Chedi Club Tanah Gajah, Ubud, Bali

Top Table

The best tables are along the open-air dining room’s perimeter, overlooking paddy fields and Bali’s sacred mountains. You can also request a private dinner, served on a platform in the rice paddies.

Dress Code

No need to dress up, although swimsuits and bare feet are a bit too exposed for this refined globetrotting crowd. Evenings call for tropical chic. The air can get chilly, so wrap up in a colourful pashmina.

Hotel restaurant

There are two culinary powerhouses at work in the Restaurant’s kitchen: Executive Chef Dean Nor, a striking Singaporean who has clocked up 17 years in top-notch kitchens, plus 'Mama Bali’, Ibu Ni Myoman Adriani, who prepares local ‘bumbu’ spices daily. (If you want to learn Mama’s secrets, book in for a cookery class.) Spice levels can be modified according to diners’ preferences; rice comes from the local paddy fields (which you can spy on from the sprawling bale). Try rijsttafel (the Dutch word given to Indonesia’s ‘rice table’ tradition, which sees multiple rice-based dishes served together); the Chedi’s version features nine delicious dishes. The sambal udang (spicy prawns) and sapi rendang (beef with coconut milk) are also worth writing home about.

Hotel bar

Sunsets see guests congregrating at the restaurant, which doubles up as the house bar, for signature cocktails such as the Tanah Gajah Purple: a heady, fruity mix of vodka, organic purple basil, lime juice, sugar syrup and ice. There's also a selection of imported cigars at the Bird Lounge. Don't miss 'Street Food Fridays' at the Pool Bar, where guests can nibble on local treats and swap adventure stories.

Last orders

Order in the restaurant until 10.30pm; the last drinks are mixed at the Pool Bar at 7pm. Breakfast is on offer between 7am and 11am (last orders at 10.30am).

Room service

At any time, guests can order from a room service menu of global offerings.


Photos The Chedi Club Tanah Gajah, Ubud, Bali
The Chedi Club Tanah Gajah
Jl. Goa Gajah, Tengkulak Kaja, Gianyar, Ubud


Fly into Ngurah Rai International Airport (, just south of the capital Denpasar, served by carriers including Garuda, Singapore Airlines, Jetstar, Air Asia and JAL.


The Chedi Club is an hour’s drive north of the airport; hotel transfers are usually included in the rates.

Worth getting out of bed for

Go on a guided local trek through the paddy fields (escorted by your butler, natch) or make the most of the morning yoga sessions, gym, tennis courts, cookery classes, twice-weekly kecak dance performances at the hotel's own amphitheatre. Also factor in some poolside lazing, pampering spa treatments and alfresco dining. Watch the sun set over Mount Agung (Bali's holiest mountain) without even leaving the hotel; you'll also want to go for a ramble by the lotus pond, to wave at the resident swans (the white ones are Dutch, the black ones, Australian). 

It's a short journey into Ubud: the hotel has a shuttle service, which takes around 15 minutes and goes via the famous Sacred Monkey Forest (hop out and gawp at the primates for free). This is Bali’s cultural and spiritual heart, so explore the galleries (don't miss Komaneka on Jl Monkey Forest and Rio Helmi on Jl Suweta), visit a temple or two and wander the aisles of the Art Market. Close to the hotel, there's a sacred ninth-century elephant cave, with natural baths that were once used to ward off evil spirits. The mountain setting also means adventure – rafting, mountain biking, elephant trekking and more – is on your doorstep.

Local restaurants

If you’re craving a temporary sensory respite from Indonesian flavours, beat others to a table at Locavore (+62 361 977 733), which serves European food (thanks to the clever Dutch chef) in a swish setting at Jalan Dewi Sita. Sit at the kitchen counter to nick some culinary tips from the chefs in action. Local seafood is given a starring role in dishes such as spiny lobster poached with Lombok seaweed butter and slices of raw Balinese abalone, and Sumbawa Island oyster, served with clam juice and sea urchin roe. Sweet-tooths, save time (and room, natch) for Room 4 Dessert (; +62 812 3666 2806), a shrine to sweet treats at Jalan Sanggingan. The drinks list is worth appraising too, thanks to its solid wine selection and tempting cocktails. If it’s a balmy evening, sit outside and enjoy your fancy patisserie in the courtyard. Get a true taste of Bali at Melting Wok (+62 361 9299716) at Jl. Gootama 13, whose nine tables are hot property. Pick from rice or noodle curry (with or without coconut milk), topped with meat, fish or tofu. There are usually a few daily specials to try, too; the chocolate crêpes and crème caramel are pretty popular. (Cash only.) For reliably tasty Thai food, spend an evening at Siam Sally (+62 361 980 777), whose airy dining room overlooks one of Ubud’s prettiest streets: Hanoman. There’s live music on Saturday nights.

Local cafés

Frozen yoghurt, wheatgrass shots, organic meals, cakes and good coffee are all on offer at Juice Ja Café (+62 (0) 361 971056; Jl Dewi Sita). Take a seat on one of the two balconies to catch the street action. Looking for a decent espresso-style coffee in Ubud? Warung Kopi Tatmuk (+62 (0)361 975 754; Jl Dewi Sita) roasts the beans it sources from around Bali and knows how to make a decent cup. Downstairs, you can relax cross-legged on the floor cushions or head upstairs to sit at tables on the shaded balcony.

Local bars

Laughing Buddha Bar (; +62 361 970 928) is just a baboon’s jump from Ubud Monkey Forest, but don’t expect a band of primates. Instead, this live-music-loving bar champions jazz, blues rock, fusion and world music on its diminutive stage; there are also salsa nights and regular album-launch parties. Happy hour here is generous – 4pm until 7pm. Continuing the musical theme, keep things lively in Ubud’s Jazz Cafe (+62 (0)361 976 594; Jl Sukma; Despite the name, you’ll hear blues, funk and soul here, too. Ozigo Bar (+62 (0)361 980 358; Jl Raya Sanggigan) is also worth a late night or two.


Photos The Chedi Club Tanah Gajah, Ubud, Bali

Anonymous review

Outrageously over-the-top life-size papier-mâché horses greet us in a village in the verdant hills of Ubud, Bali. When we ask the locals what this fleet of stallions is all about we’re told they’re ‘for special people’s funerals to carry them straight through the gates of paradise’. Well, Mr Smith and I may not be all that special, but as we enter the temple-like stone portals of the Chedi Club Tanah Gajah, we reckon we’ve been given a priority pass direct to heaven.

Evoking more animal magic, statues of the elephant god Ganesha flank the pathway to reception, decked out in dandy saris and bright red hibiscus flowers. Everywhere we look, lush, green paddy fields beckon, backdropped by misty mountains. Nearby Ubud is known as an artistic town and it feels like we’re walking into a rustic Indonesian painting.

After a cool welcome drink and snack of fried bananas, we’re introduced to our personal butler Agus. Mr Smith and I are not sure how we feel about having someone on hand night and day to attend to our every whim, but Agus puts us at ease with his smiles and jokes, and later we begin to worry that we’ve adapted far too quickly to the whole butler thing and life will seem a little emptier without him.

We’re whisked away on a buggy tour of the grounds, before Agus shows us to our sumptuous One-bedroom Spa Villa. The size of our Sydney apartment, it has a gorgeous living room, dreamy day-beds, and our favourite feature – an indoor-outdoor bathroom with a sauna, plunge bath, and what Mr Smith fondly dubs the ‘jungle rain shower’. A minibar connoisseur, he also declares the home-made chilli nuts and prawn crackers an excellent touch.

Beautiful local art and furniture from in and around Ubud fills the villa, from paintings and carved bedheads to stone sculptures and water features – all hailing from the private collection of the one-time owner, a renowned architect. Tanah Gajah was formerly his personal residence, before he thankfully turned it into a hotel and shared it with others.

To ensure we’re suitably chilled out, Agus books us in for some pampering in our private massage room (all part of the luxury of the Spa Villa – to our delight we find that we have one 90-minute treatment each included in our rates for every night of our stay). We choose a Balinese massage with signature long strokes and a hot stone massage. Two lovely ladies come to our villa, scrub our feet with salt and volcanic rock and then give us sensational massages that, instead of sending us to sleep, invigorate us before dinner.

Our butler offers to unpack our suitcases and fix us drinks but we decide we can just about manage to throw our things in a drawer and knock up a G&T. Before Agus leaves, he checks if we need any activities booked for the next day. I opt for sunrise yoga in a pavilion overlooking the rice paddies and we settle on a civilised walk later through the local villages with Agus. We turn down the more strenuous options, such as mountain biking down a volcano or whitewater rafting (it’s a holiday after all). A day trip to Ubud seems like a good idea, too, as we're just a 15-minute drive away, although we’re tempted to stay cocooned in the serenity of the Chedi.

Come evening, having ‘recovered’ from our afternoon of indulgence, we wend our way to the restaurant past black and white swans in lotus ponds, exotic birds in huge aviaries and a sleek infinity pool dominated by a statue of the omnipresent Ganesha. The hotel’s eatery is housed in an airy, high-ceilinged Balinese long room, with views over lantern-lit rice paddies. Accompanied by the soft percussive sound of the rindik, the chef creates both classic local and western fusion dishes with the help of a ‘Mame’, or traditional Balinese mother, who shares her secret pastes and sauces. We love the gado gado, presented with a modern twist, and the decadent nasi goreng, including wagyu, lobster and chicken sate. We’re also shown the fire pit where staff prepare a feast of babi guleng, a whole roast pig on a spit.

But it’s rabbits that prove the enduring image of our peaceful sojourn at the Chedi Club. The ever-hospitable Agus escorts us back to our villa after dinner with a torch, joking that he found two bunnies in the garden and has saved them as pets for us. We open the bedroom door and there are Agus’ rabbits on the bed, intricately formed from towels, surrounded by the words ‘Good Night’ spelled out in frangipani petals. Who needs papier-mâché horses to get to paradise?

The Guestbook

Whenever you book a stay at a Smith Hotel with us, we’ll invite you to review it when you get back. Read what other Smith members had to say in The Chedi Club Tanah Gajah’s Guestbook below.

We loved

Our villa - The Hadripani - was spectacular. Wonderful art, private pool, comfortable beds, spacious bathrooms - very peaceful. The gardens are fantastic and the restaurant setting and food, both wonderful. Our butler, Youni, was lovely. Attentive and ever-present - the ice-bucket never failed to deliver!

Don’t expect

Wild and crazy nights - it's peaceful and calming, although the town is only a short (and busy) drive away.


Stayed on 31 Aug 2016

We loved

Everything about the hotel. Our Butler Japa was perfect, wasn't too intrusive and did not push for us to book trips when he understood that although we liked eating out in the evening, we wanted to stay around our private pool during the day. Food supplied by the hotel was of top quality however rather expensive. Local recommendations: Siam Sally (Thai Restaurant) Café Wyan (Balinese Restaurant) Café Lotus (Restaurant with weekly show) Local Masters House for Woodwork - We bought Ebony Sculpture as holiday memento.

Don’t expect

Hotel has very large grounds, however only 20 rooms and therefore evening restaurant is very quiet. If you would like something more lively you need to get a taxi into town. (Free from 6am - 6pm)


Stayed on 22 May 2016

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