AYANA Zeitgeist

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.

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Hello everyone,

My name is Gede Bear and I am a repeat guest at AYANA. I first checked-in last December and have come back this year with my new girlfriend Ayu to join an exciting festive program. It sparks to life with the Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony tonight, and then I will be star attraction at the Teddy Bear Tea. (There will also be a big man in a red suit to hear the children’s wish lists, but I know Ayu will only have eyes for me.) We will not miss Breakfast with Santa at the Children’s Pool, jazz at Rock Bar, afternoon tea at Damar Terrace, the 12 Days to Christmas spa offers, Justin Quek’s guest appearance at Dava and the festive menus from our team of acclaimed chefs. Finally, what better way to welcome 2012 than with a New Year’s Eve performance by Mike’s Apartment, before hibernating in my villa to rest a little. An inside tip: like AYANA on Facebook for your chance to win exclusive giveaways.

Season’s Greetings!

 


Meet Saipul Herwin, an AYANA Superstar recognized as a key member of our team for his caring, sincere and passionate dedication to providing Villa guests with a level of service that does not just meet expectations, but makes them wonder how they ever put up with anything less. Congratulations Saipul, you make us all proud.

Q: What is your role at AYANA?

Head Butler – providing excellent service for our Villa guests to ensure maximum satisfaction.

Q: How long have you been with the hotel?

3.5 years

Q: How would you define great service?

I don’t provide good service or great service, but excellent service, which is defined by WOWing and thinking outside the box when it’s least expected by the guest. It’s not just anticipating guests’ needs, it’s anticipating the things they haven’t even imagined.

Q: You are an AYANA Superstar because our guests tell us that you always go the extra mile to ensure a memorable stay for them. Can you share an example of a time when you were able to help a guest or wow them with a surprise?

There are many occasions, I really love to find little ways to make people happy. If I think of the most recent one, a guest went to Nusa Dua to play golf early in the morning and they told me that they wanted to come back to the hotel by noon time. When they arrived at the hotel, I set up Pocari Sweat and fresh-cut fruits in their Villa with a little note. The guest was surprised and touched by the unexpected and thoughtful gesture. It was just a little thing but it made a big impact on their experience at AYANA.

Q: What would you recommend every AYANA guest experience?

It depends on the guest as different nationalities are attracted to different experiences. But if I were bringing my wife to AYANA, I would make sure we didn’t miss the Diamond Miracle treatment at Spa on The Rocks, sunset at Rock Bar, and ‘Pesta Lobster’ Dinner on the Pier.

Q: Do you have anybody you look up to or are inspired by?

My leader, Clive Edwards, for his energy
My colleague, Marian Hinchliffe, for her intelligence
My mom – as a single parent with 3 children, she has a really strong willpower to survive and provide me with the best.

Q: What do you like to do in your time off?

Surfing around Kuta and exploring Bali by visiting more remote areas like Nusa Penida and other neighboring islands.


Chef Andik Purnomo moved toBalito take on the role as head Indonesian Chef at Padi restaurant. He has introduced several of his signature dishes to Padi’s new menu, including some handed down by his mother. He talks about his cooking + life inBali.

Q: How are you enjoying life here and what is your favorite thing about Bali?

Chef Andik: I really enjoy the island-life, very laid back. My favorite thing is probably the environment here in Bali, there is still so much nature to be found, very different from where I grew up.Surabaya is a metropolis with tall buildings and a lot of traffic. I prefer Bali’s island vibe.

Q: Did you cook growing up?

Chef Andik: Yes I did, I loved to help my mother cooking when I was still in Junior High School I was 13 years old at that time but I never really thought of a career as a professional chef. I think it’s my destiny because I have the talent, god is the one who decided I had to become a professional chef.

Q: What influenced your cooking style?

Chef Andik: Of course my mother’s cooking influenced my style, I always loved my mother’s dishes and was always trying to make the food taste just as good as hers. And clearlyIndonesiainfluenced my cooking style as well, I am an Indonesian-born chef specialized in Javanese dishes. I really love art, food is not only to eat. I like to think about the presentation of each dish, I am always trying to WOW the guests by showing them something different than they’re used to.

Q: What is the main difference between Balinese and Javanese cuisine?

Chef Andik: The main difference is the type of Sambal (chili based sauce) used, in the Balinese kitchen they use a lot of Sambal Matah while in the Javanese kitchen we always use Sambal Mentah. The sambal Mentah is raw sambal which is grained, the Sambal Matah is chopped sambal. These two ingredients are used in many Balinese and Javanese dishes and often identify the origin of the recipe.

Q: In your opinion where is the food better, Java or Bali?

Chef Andik: (Laughter) That is impossible for me to say, I come from Java of course I am going to say Java. However the Balinese food is great too! I am just going to say I love Indonesian food, especially authentic home-style dishes!

Q: Do you have anybody you look up to or are inspired by in the cooking-world?

Chef Andik: Ibu Sisca Soewitomo, a celebrity chef from Surabaya. She is older than I am and has a lot of experience too. I had the honor to work with her for 2 weeks in Surabaya and learned so much from her.

Q: What would you cook at home but never cook in a restaurant?

Chef Andik:TempePenyet (beancake with sambal), it is very healthy because there is not much cholesterol. Tempe Penyet is actually one of my favorites, it is very famous in Java but it’s a small side dish and does not suit the AYANA audience.

Q: Which Padi dish would you recommend, why?

Chef Andik: Oh there are many, but If I had to choose it would be the Beef Rendang, Ayam Kremes and Mixed Satay. All three are very good dishes and we receive a lot of positive feedback from guests, especially from local guests because they are able to compare them to the same dish at other restaurants in Indonesia.

Q: What three ingredients would you recommend everybody have at home?

Chef Andik: Shrimp paste, chili (all kinds) and shallot spice (but all kinds of spices is even better), tasty and useful ingredients for many dishes.

A Model View

Charmaine Harn
International fashion model, eco-activist and host of reality show Supermodelme Season 1 & 2, Charmaine Harn is one of south-east Asia’s most in-demand models. A natural beauty of Chinese, French and Dutch heritage, she recently spent three days shooting for AYANA’s 2012 marketing campaign with British photographer Pete Seaward, who is shortlisted for the coveted 'Travel Photographer of the Year’ award by the British Travel Press Association.

Read Charmaine's blog post on her AYANA experience.

Chef Lert
After working for 5-star hotels on one of the most beautiful islands in the world, Phi Phi Island in her native Thailand, Chef Lert moved to another tropical island to join AYANA as Head Thai Chef at Padi restaurant.

Q: Did you cook growing up?
Chef Lert: Yes, a lot! I helped my mother all the time back home in Phuket. I also went to cooking school, so basically all I did was cooking. I cooked during the day at school and afterwards when I came home again I cooked for myself again. Cooking is a big part of my life. My mother taught me a lot but I also learned a lot from all the people around me.

Q: What made you decide to become a professional chef?
Chef Lert: It was quite clear from the beginning that I was destined to become a professional chef, I just love to cook and that will never change. A great hobby that allows me to travel the world!

Q: What is the main difference between Balinese and the Thai cuisine?
Chef Lert: To be honest the food is quite similar, both Asian. Only I would say that Thai food is a little spicier than Balinese, and also we use a lot more curry in Thailand than they do here in Bali. My all time favorite Thai dish is Tom Yam which is also available at Padi.

Q: Do you have anybody you look up to or are inspired by in the cooking-world?
Chef Lert: Not one person in particular, I am inspired by everybody I work with. I learn from everybody, everybody is specialized in a different area. Some chefs are very good at making a salad while others are very good at making desserts. I carry a notebook with me all the time and as soon as I see an interesting recipe or idea I write it down. There are many recipes in there now, gathered throughout my entire career.

Q: What would you cook at home but never cook in a restaurant?
Chef Lert: I make papaya salads at home all the time. Actually I can also make this at Padi, but it’s not currently on the menu. I just really like this salad so I make it often at home, plus it’s healthy.

Q: Which Padi dish would you recommend and why?
Chef Lert: Well the menu is a compilation of Thai, Indonesian and Indian recipes. If I may choose one from each country I would say my favorite Thai dish is the Tom Yam like I mentioned before. My favorite Indonesian dish is the Lobster Nasi Goreng i meme, and my favorite Indian dish is the Tandoori Murgh. But of course all dishes on the menu are good, that’s why they are there!

Q: What is your favorite thing about Bali?
Chef Lert: So many things, I like the Batik, the culture, the creativity, the wood carving, the paintings (laughter). I also really like the Balinese dances, when there is a Kecak or Ramayana dance at Langit Theatre I always get my camera to take some pictures.

Q: What three ingredients would you recommend everybody have at home?
Chef Lert: Chili, onion and garlic. I use these three ingredients in EVERY dish I make. They are essential for every kitchen. I love spicy food myself so chili is a real must, just sambal is not spicy enough for me.