Translated from German, Zeitgeist means "the spirit of the moment", and is the key principle underpinning AYANA's service philosophy. Here, we share our inside tips and favorite haunts to help you experience the AYANA Zeitgeist.
National heroes are often only honored momentarily, and forgotten as time passes. Which is why 10 November, Indonesia’s National Heroes’ Day, is such a special day to remind us of the courage of the men and women who fought for our freedom as an independent nation.
On this day, 10 November 1945, our heroes the arek-arek Suroboyo (Indonesian warriors from Surabaya) fought in the ‘Battle for Surabaya’ against Dutch and British troops. This battle was a critical moment in the Indonesian National Revolution, and became a symbol of Indonesian resistance against the colonisers.
The leader of the battle, Sutomo, also known as Bung Tomo, was the icon of the Indonesian National Revolution. He was reowned for his bravery and fiery speeches that uplifted Indonesia’s militia. However, Bung Tomo was only officially recognized as a National Hero in 2008, 27 years after his death.
Today, talking about heroes does not have to be so extreme as the people who fought in great battles and sacrificed themselves for their country. A hero can also be someone around us, someone inspiring, or someone who changes lives for the better. It can be our parents, family, friend, relative, or a complete stranger.
To honor National Heroes’ Day, we asked some of our team members at AYANA Resort and Spa about their heroes :
1. Yelly – Guest Recognition
Yelly’s hero is her mother who gave her life, who always understand her, who is a friend as well as her Mom. One piece of the advice that she remembers from her Mom is, “When you do something, do your best with sincerity, love and don’t forget to pray. After that you will get the best result.”
2. Sugi – Sales Executive
Sugi adores the man who taught him how to read, and taught him about the Balinese Tri Hita Karana philosophy (the balance between god, man and nature). That man is his Dad. He is apparently a bit grumpy to others but he never gets angry to Sugi. “Always stay healthy, Dad”, that is what Sugi always prays for.
3. Kariawan – To’ge Restaurant Server at RIMBA Jimbaran Bali
Soekarno, Former President of Indonesia, is Kariawan’s representation of a hero. Kariawan says that everyone knows Soekarno was a brave man who led Indonesia in the struggle for Independence. Soekarno will always be in his heart.
4. Anna – Russian Guest Relations Officer
Jared Leto from 30 Seconds to Mars is Anna’s hero. The movies he has starred in and the music his band plays really inspire her because they contain so many life lessons. She even has a tattoo of the band. Her favorite quote from Jared Leto is : “Tell me what you killed to save a life, tell me what you killed to prove you’re right” from the song Hurricane
5. Clive Edwards – Resort Manager
“Be careful of the power of your words,” said Clive’s father, who always been his hero. Clive respects his father’s wisdom, generosity, guidance and counsel. His father has been a major influence on Clive’s management and leadership style, in engaging with guests and team members.
The ocean was the bride on 10 October as the official launch of SKY, the exciting new weddings and events venue perched 35 meters above the Indian Ocean at AYANA Resort and Spa Bali. Dressed in their best white outfits, wedding planners, event organizers, travel agents and media enjoyed 180-degree ocean views and a magical sunset as they toured around the 7,500sqm venue, taking dozens of photos and uploading to the Instagram feed #SKYatAYANA.
AYANA’s wedding team had set-up mock wedding with bride and groom seemingly floating above the ocean at the end of the cantilevered wedding deck, which extends 3.5 meters out from the cliff-edge. But the mock bride was overshadowed by the views, as guests asked her to step aside so they could take photos of the panoramic seascapes. The wedding deck was spectacularly decorated with a full floral canopy, altar and tiffany chairs, and quickly ebcame the focal point for selfies. Guests enjoyed the bonus of having an Indonesian warship in the background (on official business in Bali for the presidential visit to Nusa Dua).
Thank you to everyone who joined us for this event!
The venue is probably the single most important decision to create a memorable wedding. Choosing the right wedding venue that meets all your wishes can be quite challenging, definitely not as easy as just choosing the perfect view or backdrop. Here are some tips to guide your location hunting.
Please make sure that you…
1. Know your budget. Make a breakdown how much money you (and your partner) would spend on your wedding venue, and Food & Beverage estimate per guest.
2. Calculate the number of guests you can fit in this budget. Then review your guest list together, several times.
3. “Feel” the venue. It can be the little details that are going to hook you. The ambiance of the chapel at sunset time, how your chosen flowers will go just perfectly with the garden?surroundings, the sky-high aisle that does not seem to end… The connection you have with the staff you meet at the venue, who give you the confidence that everything will go smoothly.
4. Understand the transportation, logistics and accommodation options of your chosen wedding destination.
5. Think big. Make sure your guests can come not only for the wedding but they also get a vacation at the same time. Choose a hotel that will provide this memorable experience.
1. Judge a book by its cover. You should come and visit physically the venue at least two times. Get the feel for it.
2. Let unexpected weather ruin your wedding. Research the seasons and best times of year for photography. Check that the wedding venue has a back up venue like an indoor ballroom. Or… if they can hook you up with a weather frog’s worst enemy, a real-life Rainstopper.
3. Forget to ask the hotel’s caterer about any outside catering’s reputation (if you need outside catering support). If you are not familiar with the local suppliers, ask.
4. Go crazy on options. Narrow down your venue options to 3 before location scouting. Putting too much on the list will just give you extra stress. Jot down the pluses and minuses for every venue.
5. Understate the meaning of compromise. The chosen venue ideally should hold the same soft spot for both bride and groom. Moving forward with big day preparation will be a lot smoother if you both have full confidence in your chosen venue.
6. Forget the rings!
Read our wedding couples stories here.
Do you find it difficult to relax on a Family Holiday? Were you so busy entertaining the little ones that you didn’t get any rest yourself? Of course, the point of a family holiday is to spend time with the children, but you can do that whilst also enjoying a bit of balance by getting some time for yourself as well. Perhaps you might even fall asleep during a rejuvenating spa treatment, drool during a midday nap at the private beach, or stay awake to savor UNIQUE sunset cocktails and dinner. And all without any ‘parent guilt’ because you know your little ones are having the time of their life at AYANA Kids’ Club.
Here we have a little chat with one of the kids’ best buddy.
Agung, Kids Club chief of fun.
How do you help your little guests to feel comfortable with you when you first meet them?
I welcome them with a sincere smile and treat them as a friend, then try to talk to them even though sometimes we face a language barrier — I can speak English and a little Japanese, but for others I usually communicate with body language, or give extra effort by browsing the translation online… or just communicate with heart? Haha.
What are the favorite activities for kids?
Cultural activities, like dress-ups and traditional dance or language lessons, as well as traditional games. Boys love to fly kites they make by themselves! Some kids prefer to be indoors, reading books, watching movies and playing some video games. Lucky?them, we have it all both at AYANA and RIMBA Kids’ Club.
How did you come to be at AYANA?
I graduated from college in Hospitality Management, and started working as a server at Kisik Seafood Bar & Grill. Then in 2011 I did a cross-departmental interview and moved to the Kids’ Club. That’s the special thing about AYANA; we really apply the philosophy of ‘right people in the right position’. Not only that, AYANA also provides the right training so employees can give the most of our natural talent. Happy carers = happy kids = happy parents!
John Lennon once said, “The time that you enjoy wasting was not wasted.” At RIMBA Jimbaran Bali by AYANA, we take that quote to the next level: “The time that you enjoy wasting is what brings balance to life!” And we have so many ways that you can happily waste time around the resort, without getting bored.
Poolside is the best place to lay back, relax, and let your body and mind rest. Enjoy the variety of 11 aquatic playgrounds around the resort and hop from one to the other, trying out the innovative poolside furniture to find the spot that suits you best:
(I prefer to call them Loveshacks at night with the subtle and pleasant lighting!) Whether to rest after exploring RIMBA’s six shades of blue, or enjoy a Rijstaffel Dinner for family-style Indonesian dining, these colorful shaded daybeds hidden away by palms beside the Cabana Pool are cozy and comfy, day or night.
The cave-style Cabanas at the Cabana Pool are chic and comfortable. The best thing is that you can enjoy the sunshine without fear of over-exposure, retreating into the shade when you feel like a break from the UV rays. Or you can safely shelter from a tropical shower and enjoy the soothing scent of petrichor! Each Cabana features richly-accented colors, and an eclectic mix of settees, love seats, swing chairs and futons.
Submerged Pool Beds
Admire the views and enjoy the sunshine while keeping cool, literally in the water. Located at the Upper Pool and Lower Pool, they are also great for families to keep an eye on the little ones playing on the waterslide!
The quietest pool at RIMBA, Three Monkeys Pool, has very unique rocking sunbeds for you to unwind and enjoy the tropical sunshine, fragrances and views or you might not because you will fall asleep at any minute, just like when you were little and your mother would rock you into a deep sleep!
With large daybed-style mattresses, the Canopy Couches at the Upper Pool and Three Monkeys Pool are the perfect balance of sunshine and shade.
In a tranquil corner of the gardens, across from the Pool Access Rooms, the daybeds at the Lagoon are surrounded by lush gardens which create a wonderfully fragrant atmosphere. You can spend hours here with a good read or just daydreaming and ‘wasting time’!
Lobby Sunken Lounge
This pond is not for swimming, but the sunken circular lounges are the best spot to snap a picture-perfect sunset reflected in the expanse of water. Take your time to get mesmerized and enjoy the golden time of day. You can also witness RIMBA’s weekly sunset performance that worth hundreds of likes on your social media!
UNIQUE Rooftop Pool
Enjoy beats and breezes, sun worshiping and stargazing, or swim and sip! This spectacular rooftop bar and restaurant has a great menu of modern Asian delights like Korean Chicken Wings, Curries, Beef Rendang Burgers and Wagyu Beef Cheeks, and an extensive selection of innovative cocktails. To top it off, the rooftop pool is bordered by super comfy daybeds including an over-sized circular one for a group of friends to make a day out of their UNIQUE experience.
Bride: Wilma Wilianti Tantranegara (WT)
Groom: Cameron Constantine (CC)
1. How did you meet and start your relationship?
WT: We met for the very first time in 2001 when we were about to start high-school in Jakarta. It was kind of love at first sight for Cameron.
CC: But the feeling was instantly known as mutual as we started dating soon enough :)
2. What is the character respectively of you two (like outgoing, cheerful, confident, or introverted, calm, sentimental)?
WT: Based on most people’s comment and feedback, people see us as a happy, friendly, and easy-going couple. But we believe that our differences and uniqueness complement us in many ways.
3. Can you share with us some meaningful thoughts or experiences that you have shared?
WT: The phrase “past, present, future” describes our relationship in the most perfect way as we have known each other for so long. Cameron had this sentence engraved on my engagement ring. And it leads to our lifetime commitment of “I love you today, tomorrow, always”.
4. Describe the proposal for us.
WT: Actually, it happened at AYANA too! We had a romantic private dinner at Asmara Gazebo in February 2013. It wasn’t a surprise event for both of us as we planed to have dinner there anyway. But behind the scenes, Cameron had a big plan. Prior to this dinner, he had already liaised with AYANA’s team and shared the plan. It was simple yet very romantic and memorable; and for sure I was really surprised as I did not read any cues from him before the dinner.
CC: Thank you for saying yes to my proposal, my dear wife. Thanks to AYANA team as well, at the end of our dinner we got a surprise personalized cake and card from all of Dava’s team with their signatures on it and we were really touched by their thought.
5. Why did you choose AYANA Resort and Spa Bai for your wedding?
WT: Because AYANA is simply stunning; besides it was the special place for our proposal day, we love the first-class service, the ambiance, and the breathtaking views.
CC: Overall the hotel took our hearts away. Most important thing, AYANA does have a great and professional Wedding Team as well which we’re really grateful for. I guess we can say AYANA is our ‘past, present and future”!
6. Which part of the hotel do you like the most?
WT: Oh, that’s hard to answer because each part of AYANA has its own uniqueness; however if we should choose it would be Astina Chapel as the most beautiful place for exchanging our vows, and…
CC: Ocean Beach Pool offers a great experience to enjoy sunset.
7. Did the wedding have a special theme? What’s your favorite and most unforgettable part?
WT: Yes! The theme actually came right after we chose the style, all the details and every little thing for our big day. From the place, decoration, and all the little touches, we came to the conclusion that our wedding theme was “Timeless”; everlasting, like our marriage will be.
The most unforgettable part were those touching moments such as exchanging vows, speeches from some of our guests, balloon LED release, first dance with fireworks, polonaise dance, and last but not least the decoration and ambiance that completed the whole day.
8. How did your guests feel about this wedding? Any surprise?
CC: All the guests were really happy, enjoying the beginning of the ceremony to the end of the celebration. Gorgeous venue, stunning views, our loved ones being there; these were the factors that made our wedding such a memorable one not only to us but also for them.
This family does not go to the hill when their hearts feel like singing. They simply head to a quiet corner of AYANA to play instruments that have been in the family for generations, hit a chord and sing along. Every afternoon, they play at the Main Lobby or Villa Lobby, with the Indian Ocean and our guests as their audience. Here, we speak with Wayan Januraga (WJ) and daughter Dyah Purwantini (DP).
How long have you been a rindik player at AYANA and has this always been your dream job?
I started to play music when I was a boy. At AYANA, I started in 1997 and yes this is my dream job. I cannot think of doing anything else. But my ultimate dream is to see my family’s Balinese music known worldwide.
Since what age did your daughter join you?
WJ: Hmmm I cannot really recall.
DP: Well I remember, I was 9 years old when I first joined you. I am 13 now!
It seems that you enjoy this very much, Dyah! Do you join your Dad everyday after school?
DP: Yes I really enjoy this. This is my hobby and at the same time spending time with my Dad. But I am not allowed to do this everyday as I have to put school as the priority. Only when I have done my homework and have no tests the next day I may join my Dad to entertain the guests at AYANA.
Pak Januraga, have you always educated your family with music? Especially Balinese music?
WJ: Always have and always will. It is in my ancestors’ blood and one of my missions in life is to pass this talent and knowledge down to my descendants. I taught my two children how to play traditional musical instruments like rindik, gamelan since they were 3 years old. As they grew older, they started to take on more challenging instruments like Gender Wayang. The one we perform at AYANA is the classic Balinese music with a little bit modern twist in the chords.
What about your wife? Is she also musically inclined?
WJ: My wife comes to play with us at AYANA’s Villa Lobby every now and then, mys on takes turns too, but he has less time now that he is about to enter college.
Dyah, what do you want to be when you grow up?
DP: A professional musician and dancer and to be able to perform Balinese dance and music all over the world with my Dad, Mom and my big brother. I love to participate in music and singing and dancing competitions in Bali. That is my starting step and let’s see what comes next.
Any advice you would like to share about music, Pak Januraga?
WJ: We have to pass on our Balinese music to the next generation and hope they will do the same to their children. Be proud of it, learn it, spread it, and keep it alive.
An unexpected guest is the last thing you want on your wedding day. Let alone, a gorgeous female who makes your groom’s heart tremor with excitement.
But that’s the exact scenario that Minni You faced on her wedding day in Bali, June 22th 2012, when an ‘uninvited’ female made an entrance just as the couple prepared to exchange vows. Minni watched as her groom, Tuan Pham, stared as the female sauntered down the aisle. She saw her husband-to-be’s pupils dilate as his attention was drawn to The Other Woman. But Minni wasn’t worried, because she’s the one who arranged this surprise for her groom! Here, they tell us the real story:
1. Tell us about The Other Woman.
We are big dog-lovers and we wanted our Golden Retriever, Pepsi, to be with us on our wedding day. I was not very optimistic about our chances, but Tuan was more hopeful. He tried everything but in the end, with all the logistics, paperwork and quarantine requirements, we had to let go of the idea. We were upset as Pepsi is like family to us. But then I found out that AYANA has its own kennels with many gorgeous dogs, and I??thought it would be nice to have one of these dogs represent Pepsi instead.
2. How did you end up having Laura at your wedding instead?
We arrived a few days before our wedding day, and I was missing Pepsi and went to AYANA’s kennels to see all these gorgeous Golden Retrievers and Labradors. They were really happy and healthy and I was drawn to one who looked a lot like Pepsi…her name was Laura. When my wedding consultant told me that I could actually have her at the wedding, my heart was filled with joy to the rim!
3. How did your husband react to that idea?
I managed to keep it as a secret from him until D-day. I remember sneaking out of my room the night before to see Laura, to tell her that we will have a big day tomorrow and she will be part of it. You can imagine how surprised Tuan was to see Laura, big-dreamy-eyes, all fluffy just gracefully walking down the wedding aisle towards us, as though it was a normal everyday thing!
4. What did your guests say about this beautiful, furry, “unexpected” guest?
We had 30 guests on our wedding and they were all so surprised! Our families even thought it was Pepsi for a second. Too funny!
5. We heard about the treats you sent to AYANA for Laura after you got back home from your wedding; that’s very sweet.
It’s the least we can do for Laura. I wish we could adopt her. Pepsi would be happy to have a friend but Laura belongs to the great AYANA family.
6. How would you sum up your wedding day at AYANA?
Beyond perfection. The exceptional memories that we experienced at AYANA have made us loyal guests for life!
How long have you been a dog-handler at AYANA and has this always been your dream job?
Ten years in total. Dream job? Not at first as I used to be afraid of dogs. I started at AYANA as a helper at the kennel, just to do cleaning. Then a K9 squad chief started to train me in a few basic skills about handling dogs. And I fell in love. First with the dogs, then with the job. So I went from being the trained one to being the trainer!
How many dogs in total do AYANA and RIMBA have now at the kennel? Are they all trained in security?
We have a total of 19 active Retrievers (16 Labrador Retrievers and 3 Golden Retrievers). Most hotels will use security dogs that belong to the K9 squad of the local Police Department. We breed our own and let the K9 squad come here to train them.
What’s their training schedule like?
The K9 squad from the Police Department comes here to train the dogs every day. As we have so many dogs, they have to take turns. The training is done on a lawn behind the kennels. Our dogs specialize in detecting explosive substances, so they are likely to be calmer, focused and less agressivve.
What role do you take part in training the dogs?
The chief of the Police Department’s K9 unit personally trained me for years to have the same level of handler skills as he had, because I am here every day along with my six colleagues. We know each dog’s personality, their ups and downs, the vitamins they need, their grooming schedule and of course, the mating season. I also know the best vet on the island as we only trust our dogs to be handled by the best vets.
In your opinion, what is the benefit for hotels having their own kennel?
A lot. We know our dogs really well and they know the area very well too. Their health is easier to monitor and control, too. We had a new litter this year, they are now six months old and will join basic training in a few more months. In the last 10 years, AYANA has bred six litters.
What do you love about dogs? Do you have a favorite from the entire pack?
You know that unconditional love? Dogs are an expert in that. I work with Retrievers, they are working dogs with the warmest character ever so it is impossible not to fall for them. But other breeds are just as loving. It is us humans who define what kind of a dog they will be.
I love them all but Adam (yellow lab) has been here longer than the rest so I have a strong connection with that smart boy. I helped Yessy and Olin (black lab) give birth, I took care of Nacha since he was the weakest puppy who has now become the strongest, so that also creates a special bond.
What advice would you give to a dog owner?
1. Commitment and patience to train them and to let them know you are boss. 2. Take them for walks, this allows you to create a close connection with them. 3. Never bail on them; they will never do that to you. 4. Longer walks :)
1. What do you do and how did you get into the industry?
I got a really bad headache when I was working on a cruise ship as Waiter in 1998. The doctor could not find any medical illness and I also tried alternative healing treatment but did not recover so well. Then one day, a Balinese Priest came into my dream and gave me healing water. The priest also advised me to meditate and pray to the Gods for good health. I eventually recovered after meditating for more than two years. Through meditation and spiritual guidance, I also learned how to stop the rain and people started asking for my help to do this.
2. Share with us an interesting story from behind the scenes?
The most interesting thing was when I was commissioned as a rainstopper for a summit event in 2003, during the peak of the rainy season. I worked with four of my friends and we were proud that we managed to stop the rain for this big event.
3. What is the worst part of your job?
I had heavy rain three days in a row few years ago and I could not manage to fulfill my mission because of opposing wind forces, and the clients who hired me did not fully believe that a rainstopper can stop the rain. If the client doesn’t really believe in what I do, it affects my ability to do it.
4. What is your favorite part of your job?
My favorite thing is seeing my client happy and satisfied with my job, and seeing the event runs smooth and successfully.
5. What is one of the scariest thing behind the scenes?
There are many that I ever experiences. The most scary that I remember was in 2004. Me and my friend were on standby at a Hotel Temple and we fell asleep around 11pm. When we awoke around midnight we saw a very large, tall man in front of us and we were really shocked and scared. But he disappeared after a few seconds.
6. How many companies or hotels use your service?
Apart from AYANA Resort and Spa, there are several hotels who hire me for a special event and also clients hire me for Balinese weddings.
7. What do you do for fun during your time off?
I spend my days off having quality time with family and shopping with them. I also enjoy taking overseas clients coming from Japan and other countries, on tours around my favorite places in Bali.
8. What is something you’d like guests to know about a rainstopper?
Rain is natural and sometimes we cannot predict when it will fall. My suggestion for guests who would like to hold an event, is that they should find a location that has a back up venue especially during rainy season, just in case the rainstopper ?cannot prevent the rain during the event.
9. What happens if rain falls during an event that you’ve been hired for?
I give the client back their money if it rains.
10. What do you do for a living in the dry season?
I run a property business because being a rainstopper is not my livelihood, it is my natural calling but it cannot be the main source of income for my family.