In my past travels, I’ve mostly just looked for whatever accommodation was cheapest, a strategy that usually landed me in a mediocre-to-crappy hostel. But my most recent adventures have been different because in Indonesia–where accommodation is significantly cheaper than the US or Europe–I’ve been able to find much better places to stay for roughly the same price I would pay for a dorm bed in a London hostel.
The Ministry of Coffee is one of the places that I stayed at while in Yogyakarta, and it was so amazing that I want to tell the whole world about this adorable little hotel.
Josh and I finished a morning tour of some temples and were dropped off at about 10:30, more than two hours earlier than the hotel was expecting us. But we had no problems checking in and were shown straight to our room.
You’ll find the friendliest people working at the Ministry of Coffee: With all of our activities already booked, we didn’t have any questions for the staff, but I’m sure they would have been willing to help book tours or transport if we’d asked. All of the workers were friendly and helpful, and I felt we received great service not just when we stayed at the hotel, but also when we stopped by a few days later to eat at the cafe.
The room itself was pretty basic–a bed, a small bathroom, an AC unit on the wall, and a balcony that provided a beautiful view of volcanoes in the distance.
What really made our stay here so special was all of the extra services offered by this hotel/cafe/library. The ground floor of the Ministry of Coffee is a cafe, where you can always buy one of the many coffee drinks or fresh juices or decadent desserts on offer, and during mealtimes they have a nice menu with plenty of vegetarian options.
I enjoyed lunch, dinner, and dessert here, but what really blew me away was the outstanding breakfast. As guests of the hotel, Josh and I received our breakfast free; when we checked in, we were given a menu with a few breakfast packages to choose from. We marked down our choices and the time we wanted to eat, and then we turned in the form that afternoon. (It is worth noting that for guests who are waking up early for sunrise temple tours, the hotel is happy to put together a box breakfast that you can take with you. I thought that was a really nice touch.) The next morning, when we went down to the cafe, they brought our drinks and food to us as each part of our meal was ready.
The portions were bigger than we expected, and Josh and I had plenty to share with each other; between us, we dined on toast, eggs, coffee, tea, orange and pineapple juice, corn flakes, fruit, and the most amazing French toast either of us has ever tasted.
It was the best breakfast I’ve ever had (at a hotel or elsewhere), and Josh and I would go back there just for a repeat of this meal.
As delicious as the breakfast was, that wasn’t even the best part of our time spent at the Ministry of Coffee. The reason that I booked a night there wasn’t because of its commitment to sustainability or fair trade coffee, but because it boasts its own library. In the cafe, there is a staircase that leads up to the hotel rooms and another stairway that leads to a different part of the building that has extra seating, a chess set, some children’s toys, and several shelves of books.
It’s not a full-size library, but with about 200 books, it’s much larger than you’ll find in the average person’s house. Most of the books are in English with a few other languages, and there are many different genres to choose from. Our stay here wasn’t long enough to just plop down and read, but we did enjoy a few afternoons of playing chess there with a sweet snack, and it was nice to be surrounded by books. There is also free wifi in the cafe and library, and I think it would be the perfect place to bring a computer to get some work done.
Another thing I was happy with was the Ministry of Coffee’s location. Nestled into the main tourist street, it’s within a five-minute walk of many restaurants and a few fair-trade souvenir shops. Many of the tour operators are nearby as well, and it’s easy to just stop by one of the offices to book a tour for the next day. There isn’t much in this neighborhood in the way of sightseeing, but it was a nice area to hang out during our downtime, and it doesn’t feel as chaotic as you’d expect a tourist-oriented place to be.
My ultimate verdict on this place is that you don’t have to be a coffee lover in order to enjoy your stay here. I highly recommend the Ministry of Coffee to travelers in Yogya. There are just so many factors that make this place better than most. For those who would rather stay elsewhere, I suggest still finding time in your schedule to stop here for coffee and cake. Be sure to try the Truffle Torte!
*All photos in this post were taken by Josh.
Josh and I stayed in the Standard Room, which was the cheapest option at 365,000 Rp/night (~$30 USD). Our stay was during the holiday, so the price we paid was slightly higher than other times of the year.
For more information or to book a room, you can visit their website.