What better way to celebrate a birthday with the family than staying and exploring a new oasis in the city?
Located in the city’s most prominent address, Menteng in Central Jakarta, Hermitage Hotel lays dead center in the midst of luxurious homes, diplomatic residences, and close proximity to Jakarta’s golden business triangle: Kuningan, Sudirman and Thamrin. First and foremost, Hermitage hotel is a 5-star luxury boutique hotel. Now the phrase “boutique hotel” has been used and thrown around a lot these days, but more than often in reality is that it merely is a sorry excuse for a hotel with less than 100 rooms. In the case of Hermitage Hotel, it is managed by GLA Hotels of France- first in Indonesia- of which define luxury boutique hotel management. A defining feature is that everything in Hermitage Hotel is about quality over quantity.
For those who are not familiar with the Menteng area, it might be a bit tricky to get to this hotel. Unlike your typical city hotel standing on a big street lit up with lights and traffic, the hotel is tucked in the midst of a residential area. Some might take it as a disadvantage, but for those who are in the know would indeed appreciate the location of this pleasurable hidden gem.
The building itself dates back to the 1920s, first built as a colonial telecommunications office. After the Indonesian independence, the building served as a government office building, then as a university. After the university moved to another location, it was in 2012 the original two storey building went under development and transformed into the nine storey Hermitage Hotel which opened to the public in June this year. The idea of the look of the hotel is to embrace and conserve its colonial roots, all the while not making the experience feel archaic nor spooky by retrofitting modern charm and amenities.
There are less than a handful of proper French restaurants in Jakarta, and L’Avenue is quickly gaining traction as one of the best in town.
The executive suite that we stayed in was 70 square meters oozing with luxury and homey comfort: from the marble floor, to the Hermes toiletries, to the toothbrush with the softest bristles ever found in a hotel. The play between white and cream colors in the room gave it a classic feel, all the while complemented with black lines on the floor and bathroom that gave a modern nuance.
The hotel’s main dining venue is L’avenue, which come night time transforms into a romantic venue with intimate lighting serving exquisite French food. There’s less than a handful of proper French restaurants in Jakarta, and L’Avenue is quickly gaining traction as one of the best in town. The service is just right: not in your face, but with staff that is always readily available to serve guests. The hotel also has a cigar lounge with the best Cuban selection, matched with fine wine from Bordeaux and Burgundy.
The crown jewel of the hotel has got to be its 9th floor. The first part is the pool area and on top is the open air, rooftop lounge with 360 degrees unobstructed views of the majestic city. Decked with sofas and bar stools, this lounge by all accounts is the city’s best kept secret perfect to host intimate parties of 10 to 30 people. Not loud nor flashy, the lounge’s simple elegance will definitely impress anyone, especially come night time when the city lights up.
Hermitage Hotel is perfect both the corporate traveller as it is near the business district, and for tourists coming to Jakarta wanting to experience Jakarta’s old world charm. Plus, for parents seeking an ideal place to celebrate a birthday with the family in Jakarta, a weekend stay in Hermitage will definitely not disappoint, as the hotel offers a pleasurable experience, great atmosphere, good food and most importantly friendly service.
Jalan Cilacap No. 1,