Batam is the largest city in the Riau Islands in Indonesia, across the South China Sea from Singapore. In recent years, it has become a popular tourist destination, with world-class golf courses, duty-free shopping, watersports, spas and beach resorts. Here’s our guide to the top places to stay.
Near both the ferry terminal and the airport, Grands I Hotel is all about location. Rooms are grand with plush, comfortable beds, soft lighting and hints of gold. Im search of retail therapy? You’ll find several shopping centres nearby, as well as plenty of local restaurants and spas in the area if you fancy experiencing local life.
At the Aston, you can expect exceptional service as soon as you walk through the door. Rooms come complete with a rain shower – it’s all about pampering yourself here. Head up to the 10th floor and unwind in the sauna before taking a dip in the whirlpool. Meanwhile, the Basil Restaurant serves top-notch grub – try the braised snapper fillet in a hot-and-sour broth.
Set in the heart of the Central Business District in Batam, this hotel is perfect if you’re on the lookout for a swimming pool and sauna. Sleek wooden floors in all the rooms reflect the natural light that pours in through the floor-to-ceiling windows. Tuck into the popular breakfast buffet, serving everything from cereals and toast to tropical smoothies. One of the most exciting attractions nearby is the Budhi Bhakti Temple, a vast Buddhist complex with a sculpture garden.
The Crown Vista Hotel is easily one of the most creatively decorated hotels in Batam, with batik, Indonesia’s traditional fabric, throughout. Each room features unique design touches, including patterned headboards and intricate cushions. Enjoy traditional Balinese treatments at the spa – the beer bath is a must.
Arguably the most luxurious hotel in Batam, Montigo Resorts Nongsa is the beach getaway you’ve dreamt about. It has more than 100 ocean-view villas, ranging from one to five bedrooms, many of which come with a private pool. There’s an outdoor dining and lounge area and rooms come with a minibar. Choose from one of four restaurants that serve everything from light bites and bubbly to fresh seafood.
A slice of paradise in the South China Sea, Turi Beach Resort is a luxury escape on a quieter part of the Riau Islands. Rooms are airy and light, with floor-to-ceiling windows, natural bamboo furniture and bright fabrics. Outdoor activities include watersports, rides on all-terrain vehicles, live cookery demonstrations and archery. If you prefer to take it easy, visit the spa for a traditional Indonesian urut massage before a sunset stroll down the private jetty.
From the outside, Harmoni One resembles a Vegas hotel: set in a grand building, it offers palatial elegance throughout, from the giant horse sculptures in the lobby to the plush armchairs in the bedrooms. Some rooms have carved stone panelling in the bathroom, while the suites come with a kitchenette, private patio and outdoor hot tub.
Swiss-Belhotel Harbour Bay blends a hotel, mall and trade centre into one, so everything you need is right here. The 179 rooms have warm, neutral decor, soft carpets and blackout curtains for beating jet lag. The hotel is just a short walk to the ferry terminal, so you can set off on day trips to the other islands. When you return, rejuvenate with a facial at the spa, or enjoy a massage in the comfort of your room.
Eska Hotel, in the heart of Batam, is opposite the Kepri Mall, with the Eska Wellness Spa next door for a treatment after some retail therapy. Rooms range from deluxe doubles to family rooms, complete with bunk beds for kids. Relax in the rooftop garden, where you can enjoy live music from a local band.