After enjoying a stay in the original Grand Mirage Resort a few years ago, we were excited to visit again and experience their new modern family wing - aptly named “Family Paradise”.
The new family wing is essentially another hotel building just a few hundred metres down the road. It is new, contemporary and simple in style, and although it ticks all the boxes for a family holiday I missed the swaying coconut palms, lush gardens and expansive green lawns that the older resort provides.
However, no matter which building you are staying in you will get the best of both worlds and are welcome to use the facilities, pools and restaurants of both, and it is just a super short walk along the beach path between the two.
The many options of room styles may be confusing, however guaranteed you will find a room to suit your families needs. There is a mix of rooms, suites, apartments and even some villas with private pools in the original resort.
Our “Family Studio Bunk Room” in the Family Paradise building was simple and spacious and could have comfortably fit a family of five with a queen bed for mum and dad, plus bunk-beds and a trundle for the kids. There are also slightly bigger suites that will also fit a family of five but also offer two bathrooms.
And if you want to splash out a little more, there are themed family suites with kids furniture and colourful murals on the walls.
I think it should be renamed “Kids Paradise”! 🙂 Hours and hours of fun can be had without even having to leave the resort!
The new mini waterpark area in the Family Paradise wing was a hit with my two who loved the smaller waterslides, splashing and running around, having the big bucket tipped on them, and also just the fun, happy and colourful vibe.
Once they worked up the courage to try out the big waterslide in the main pool, they were sold! Then it was just up and down, over and over!
The main pool is great, with a smaller shallow toddler pool at one end, and lots of different pool toys and balls floating around to play with.
The Bamboo Kids Club comprises of a room with an indoor play area (slide, ball pit etc) and little tables and chairs for drawing, games and craft activities, as well as a seperate Video Games room (which I am happy to say we didn’t venture into once), and an outside undercover games area with pool table, ping pong, giant chess and a wrestling area - what the?
The Kids Club is staffed by a lovely team until 5pm, but is open until 9pm under parent supervision so you can pop in for a play before or after dinner.
There is also a rock-climbing wall over near the big waterslide and a fun playground in the garden. Also keep an eye out for fun kids events they run from time to time including their famous foam-party.
This is first and foremost an “All inclusive” resort, and as we were not doing the all-inclusive package, we found the a la carte options for lunch and dinner quite expensive in comparison to other family resorts around the island. Perhaps the higher prices are to encourage you to take up the all-inclusive package, which I think would actually be a very worthwhile option for families who are planning to eat most meals within the resort. Alcohol, mini-bar, watersports, activities, laundry and other extras are also included in the package, so it is definitely worth checking out.
The a la carte menu for lunch, snacks and early dinners by the pool was not only pricey, but strangely for a family resort, there was no kids menu on offer.
The buffet breakfast spread in the new modern dining area was very good though. An extensive selection with all the regular favourites - pancakes, waffles, toast, bacon, eggs cooked to order, cereals, pastries, muffins, fresh fruit and even pizza and sushi!
Regular themed buffet dinners with live entertainment are held at the Rama Stage in the original resort, and on the Saturday night we dressed in our best kaftans, strolled up the beach and enjoyed a beautiful candlelit Balinese buffet dinner. It started off with the kids making traditional Balinese decorations, and after dinner followed with a Balinese Kecak dance show that the girls were mesmerised by.
The resort is in the Benoa area, not in the main gated section of Nusa Dua. The downside is that the beach in Benoa is not as pretty as Nusa Dua, and it is inundated with boats and noisy jet-skis, however the location is more central in terms of being able to walk out the front and have restaurants, shops, mini-marts & laundries at your fingertips.
There is a fantastic Coco Mart directly opposite the entrance to the Family Paradise wing which literally has everything you might need including snacks and drinks (chips, biscuits, fruit, Bintangs etc) to nappies, wipes and toiletries for bubba, to blow-up pool toys, sunhats, beachballs and baskets.
There is a Starbucks right next to the front of the hotel (which weirdly looks right in on the kids waterpark). It’s not my cup of tea for a cup of coffee if you know what I mean, but I did see a few parents from the resort popping in and out for their morning takeaway caffeine hit, so it is a handy addition to have on site.
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