As mentioned in a previous post, our taxi ride was about 40 minutes from the International Airport near Jakarta (Soekarno-Hatta International Airport) to our hotel. Because we were in Indonesia for Andrew’s work, we went with a centrally-located hotel that he has stayed in before (and that was recommended by his coworkers). The hotel is called the Harris Suites-Sudirman.
The Harris Suites-Sudirman hotel is actually located on top of a large Mall (FX Mall). Many of the hotels downtown are similarly set-up. The staff at the Harris Suites speak English and are especially friendly and accommodating! If you are going to arrive late (which we did), it’s good to give them a heads up ahead of time… we simply emailed before left the U.S. to let them know that our flight was getting in late and we’d arrive about an hour after that… We actually had two sets of reservations at the Harris Suites on this trip because we were spending the first weekend in Singapore. So, we arrived on a Wednesday night and checked into our room; we were placed on the 9th floor (the hotel has about 59 floors). The room was nice and clean. If you are used to large hotel rooms in the U.S. or other parts of the world, you should know that not all hotel rooms are the same everywhere. Our room for the first few nights was big enough to house a bathroom, a mini fridge and snack counter, a tv with a desk, and a bed. It wasn’t gigantic, but it served our purposes and was all we needed. Perhaps my favorite part of the rooms at Harris Suites are the gigantic floor to ceiling windows. Just beautiful; great views of the downtown business district.
Wednesday Evening – Friday Evening we spent at the Harris Suites. In the mornings, Andrew and I would head down to the Mall and grab coffee and a muffin for breakfast at one of the maybe only two places open at that time of day (around 8AM); Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf (Crazy, right?!?). We found the prices there to be comparable to what you would spend in the U.S. (ie, about $14US for two muffins, heated, 1 iced coffee and 1 iced latte). *Note- Harris Suites – Sudirman does not have its own restaurant* Andrew would then head off to work and I would return to the hotel room for a day of work myself. The Harris Suites offers free wifi and it works really well! I had no problems connecting to my VPN or accessing my files through the cloud. I typically didn’t eat lunch on these few days; I was wrapped up in work and the muffin was pretty filling. Also, after the first day, we stopped by the small store downstairs in the mall to purchase some water and snacks- so I was set.
When we were going to fly to Singapore for the weekend (before returning to the Harris Suites on Sunday night for a week again), the front desk gladly let us store bags for no cost (they gave us tags to turn in upon return). This was fantastic, because we really didn’t need all of our bags while we were gone. Additionally, the taxis at FX Sudirman are available 24/7 so there was no need to reserve one ahead of time; we did however, let the front desk know and they offered to give us a wake-up call and made sure a taxi was pulled up front and ready for us.
When we returned to Harris Suites after our weekend away, we actually requested a room on a higher floor. We were given a room on the 57th floor. The room was much larger than our first room with an additional big comfy chair and open space. The rooms ended up being about the same price despite the size difference (around $84/night). Here’s a picture that looked similar to the room we were in for the second part of the stay:
The Harris Suites also have a fitness center, a tennis court, and a swimming pool available to all guests:
Something else interesting about hotels in Indonesia and other parts of the world (ie, that you don’t see in the United States) is how the electricity works in the rooms. When you enter your room [using a key card], you place the key card in a slot on the wall and turns on the power to the room. This means that you can’t ignorantly leave the lights, TV, and a/c on while you are gone. Likewise, this means your room is hot if you aren’t there all day :0). When you leave the room and remove your key card, the power will shut off. Pretty cool feature if you ask me.
To touch base on the Mall again- I’ll write gain in a later post about the restaurants and amenities in the Mall, but for now I will show you these pictures of the inside of the mall. It isn’t very many malls that you can find a giant slide… yes that is a gigantic slide that children (and I’m assuming adults) can purchase a slide in… pretty awesome!
In addition to the slide and the food, the mall also contained two pharmacies, a small store, restrooms, some clothing stores, and an abundance of ATMs. One thing of note that I mentioned in a previous post as well– know how much money you need because if for some reason, you need a large amount of cash- we have found that there is a max on how much you can take out of the ATM (typically around $100 US) at a time and on how many times you can take money out of the ATMs per day.
1. Harris Suites (Website): This is the direct link to the hotel’s webpage where you can look up more information on the amenities, rooms, availabilities, prices, location, etc. It is in English. Note that Harris Suites are found in many locations other than Jakarta as well!
2. FX Surdiman Mall (Website): This provides a link to the mall that was underneath the Harris Suites in Jakarta. You can look up stores and restaurants on each of the floors and get other helpful information. It is in English.