There is no way to discuss the merits of Budva’s Avala Resort and Villas without starting with the location. Simply put, you will struggle to find a more scenic place to stay in the city. The placement of Avala initially jumps out because of its convenience, with the Stari Grad (Old Town) practically on the hotel’s doorstep, but it isn’t until you wander out onto the balcony of the sea-view rooms that it hits you. Forget the accommodation aspect; if you are looking for a view of Budva’s Old Town, you won’t find a better vista than the one enjoyed from the balconies of Avala Resort and Villas.
Avala Resort and Villas would be a worthy stay for the view alone, but a hotel can’t exist purely on its location. Luckily for all involved, Avala excels in the accommodation aspect of the deal, from check-in to check-out. The former is a streamlined process conducted by cheery staff in multiple languages, with clear information and a helping hand with luggage and directions. As with many high-end hotels in Montenegro, Avala is huge, so the walk from reception to the room is lengthy, but it passes all the necessary spots. As far as initial acclimatisation goes, it is a valuable opening.
The size of Avala deserves extra mention. It was built to cater for all, and its 300+ rooms cover a wide range of sizes and styles. When the hotel is busy, the sheer number of guests and rooms can make everything a little hectic, but that doesn’t have to be a negative. After all, a little bit of chaos makes that beach time even more satisfying.
Rooms at Avala Resort and Villas
If we haven’t mentioned it already, Avala Resort and Villas is enormous. Many online reviews talk of Soviet-style service and atmosphere, and while one must forgive those reviews for not knowing about the history and politics in these parts, the implication isn’t entirely incorrect. Avala Resort and Villas has 303 guest rooms, five meeting rooms, spa facilities, a bar, and a vast lobby, all stretched over six floors on the edge of Budva’s Old Town. The rooms themselves cover a range of options, from standard rooms to luxury suites and beyond. Fancy a night in the Penthouse Grand Suite? We don’t blame you, but you’ll have to pay for the privilege of enjoying the 139-square-metre apartment with a sixth-floor sea view.
By all means, shell out for the luxury, but the standard rooms and suites at Avala Resort and Villas are more than enough for a weekend in Budva. The rooms have an undeniable minimalist feel that goes against the accusations of 20th-century decadence, with slate floors and minimal attachments. The juxtaposition is initially quite jarring, in truth.
That jarring feeling is quickly dissipated by the comfort of the bed. Sure, the beds in the rooms are strangely low to the floor, but they are as comfortable as you will find on the Montenegrin coast. The double beds are spacious with the usual chalk-white pillows, sheets and duvets. As an aside, it is a shame that all hotels seem committed to the same white bedding. Convenience aside, wouldn’t it be nice to see a bit of confidence and character shine through on the beds of Europe’s hotels?
The rooms are more long than wide, with a well-stocked bathroom (with an admittedly awkward shower system) giving way to a sizeable wardrobe, bed, couch and desk. Everything is fine, everything is good, but nothing about it jumps out and demands you extend your stay. For some, a hotel room is little more than somewhere to keep luggage during the day and somewhere to sleep during the night. If you aren’t looking for magic, the rooms at Avala Resort and Villas are more than enough.
If there isn’t a whole lot of magic in the rooms, maybe it is because all of that magic was used up on the view from the terrace. Is there a better view of Budva’s Old Town? Long story short, no, there isn’t. Exploring the streets of the Stari Grad is a beautiful experience, but you can’t get a view from deep inside. The view from the Ballerina statue? Beautiful, of course, but a little far out. The view from Avala Resort and Villas? Perfect. The rooms might be a little on the functional side, but the view from the terrace serves all the bells and whistles anyone could want.
Food, Drink and Services at Avala resorts
Breakfast is an event at Avala Resort and Villas. Okay, a good breakfast is an event no matter the location, but the spread on offer here is second to none. All tastes are ticked, with clear labelling allowing early-morning eaters to steer clear of anything they aren’t interested in, with tea, coffee, juices and water in abundance. Truth be told, the indoor setting isn’t the most inspiring unless you bag a window seat, but the terrace is a magnificent place to start the day. Fast forward to the evening, and the dining area moves from buffet to service, with a revolving menu of international dishes waiting to be devoured. Of course, Avala Resort and Villas is so close to Budva’s old town that there’s no excuse not to head into the town for your dining, but if you want to eat before leaving the hotel, you are in for a treat.
Speaking of treats, Avala Resort and Villas also has two outdoor pools for sophisticated swimming during the summer, as well as extensive spa facilities for guests and paying visitors. The swimming pool, gym, jacuzzi, sauna and Turkish bath are free for hotel guests, but massages and treatments must be booked in advance via reception. This isn’t free, but how often will you get the opportunity to enjoy a full body rub before sweating it off in the sauna? If this isn’t the time for such decadence, we don’t know what to say.
Budva isn’t short on accommodation options, but there are many reasons to get excited about Avala Resort and Villas. The view is at the top of the tree, without a doubt, and there simply isn’t a better-located hotel in the city. You can enjoy a picture-perfect look out at Budva’s old town as the sun sets, doing the same as the sun rises before walking five minutes out to Mogren Beach for a day of lounging by the sea, returning in the afternoon to explore the old town before practically falling into bed. The future may bring hotels with better facilities and services, but a better location in Budva is unthinkable.
That alone makes it worth choosing, and the services hold up their end of the bargain without being perfect. Does that matter? It all depends on how much time you will spend in the hotel, of course, but nothing is egregious enough to warrant a red flag. Besides, the romance of that view melts away all the potential negativity one could muster.
Disclaimer: This review was conducted independently, and the trip was entirely self-funded byus. Note: All opinions expressed are solely those of the reviewer. Please be aware that this article contains affiliate links, and any purchases made through such links may result in a commission for the publisher at no additional cost to you.