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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So yes the rumor has it. What you heard is true. We have completed a renovation of over 200 hotel rooms and suites, resulting in a major upgrade to guest comfort, amenities and overall experience with stylish new interiors and brand new furniture and decor.

The renovation has upgraded all categories of rooms in the Hotel, from standard rooms through to ocean suites and the privileged Club Floor. The design and style is a mix of both Balinese and modern architecture. Canopied beds and furniture featuring intricate carvings by Balinese artisans, traditional textiles such as batik bed runners, beautiful artworks crafted in villages around the island, plush sofas and cozy daybeds on balconies combine to provide an intimate sanctuary immersed in Balinese ambience. The earthy and torquoise tones of the duvet covers and throw cushions add splashes of color to the chic, neutral furnishings and natural woods.

Modern elements are evident in marble floors, sound-proof ceilings, chic lighting of solid-state lamp that uses light-emitting diodes, iPod docking stations and well-stocked mini bars.
The bathrooms are …inviting! Equipped with rain showers and a huge free-standing tub that is big enough for two, while the spacious dressers and drawers are just perfect for a pampering vanity experience. Try not to glare at your reflection too much under the perfect lighting every time you walk into the room. Not easy.

Walls are painted with a water based environmentally friendly paint, and feature hand-carved woven rattan panels. In standard rooms, a traditional Balinese carved partition creates a feeling of extra living space, dividing the bed from the sitting area featuring a cozy round day-bed leading to the balcony for maximum ocean views.

Is that all? Certainly not. We also launched a new Club Connections Package? to provide Club-level guests with even more benefits, such as internet access in their rooms, sunset cocktails at Rock Bar, thalassotherapy?at the Aquatonic Seawater Therapy Pool, cultural dinner and dance performance at Langit Theatre, and airport transfers.
And to give you a heads up, this is not our final hurrah. More to follow!

 

AYANA’s Pastry Chef Made ‘Dena’ Sutisna has won many awards during his years in the pastry world. As he brings home the gold trophy from the recent Salon Culinaire event in Bali for his ‘Chinese Dragon’ sugar sculpture, he again proves himself as a non settler who keeps setting a higher bar every time he reaches a milestone.
We converse with him to find out the reasons behind his perseverance, why he thinks art is the core that embodies his passion, and how pastry can be his legacy for the future….

1. Where are you from? Where did you grow up?
Chef: I am from Denpasar both by birth and ancestry. I never lived elsewhere… this island is my flesh and blood.

2. At what age did your interest in cooking and/or pastry start? Was it part of your upbringing? Family business?
Chef: It was my uncle’s influence. He lived at our family’s house when I was little. I used to watch him bake, making cookies and believe it or not, I will always remember how our kitchen smelled so sweet and sugary at that time.

3. Are you formally educated in pastry/baking or did you go the apprenticeship route? Or both?
Chef: I say both. But the strongest pillars came from my apprenticeship.

4. Can you point to chefs or individuals who were influential in your pastry skills and development?
Chef: Easy. My ex boss. I can recite you the year I first work with him; 1996. His name is Bill McCarrick. He never underestimates his team, always open for new ideas and is generous with his knowledge and skill.

5. How is the appreciation of pastry and chocolate evolving in Indonesia?
Chef: For Indonesia in general, both private sectors and the government have shown a good appreciation and support. But Bali should be able to come up with something independently. This is something that requires an enormous effort form the Chef

Waking up at 4am on a weekend is never on my agenda, except for those days in my early childhood when I used to do an Easter egg hunt. So as I dragged myself out of the house, little did I know I was going to find something worth to treasure. Something worth a whole lot more than a bucket of cracked boiled eggs and a handful of kinder chocolates in horrible colors.

I am the newcomer in the family of AYANA Resort and Spa Bali. At the end of my very first week, an orphanage visit is on schedule. Though this is not the maiden visit for the company, this time it has its own perks. A marathon runner; Scott Thompson is on his 25 day run from Bali to Jakarta to raise money for children with cancer. Stopping by the orphanage was not part of his schedule, but he jumped at the suggestion from Jerome Colson, AYANA‘s Food and Beverage Executive, who is an ultra-marathon runner and volunteered to join Scott for 150kms from Bali’s airport to the orphanage in the island’s north.

The kids from Sanatana Dharma orphanage were lining up in such excitement when we arrived by car, ahead of the runners? The second I looked into those beaming faces, the 3.5 hour bus ride was instantly worth it. My nagging words of “Are we there yet?” The. Whole. Ride seemed painfully embarrassing compared to the children’s continuous shouts of “Where are they? Where are the runners? Where is Pak Jerome?” We waited for about 15 minutes before both Scott and Jerome made their grand entrance, all sweaty and if I am not mistaken – laughing in a heartfelt euphoria and surprise. We had fun. Breakfast continued with cleaning campaign, play games and challenges. Everything flowed as if it were just an event of a family visiting another relative after a long break. And in a way, it was.

I talked to some of the girls at the orphanage and find out that one of them, Titin (12 years old) wants to be a marathon runner someday and just enrolled her to a national athletic championship. I did not miss a second to raise that story to Scott. “Scott! We have a future runner over here!” was the line that brought Scott stepping away from the crowd of new fans. He approached Titin who was trying so hard to hide her blushing face. They made a pact, immediately talking about their passion for running. And when Scott handed her one of his running caps, everyone in the compound clapped their hands and cheered. It was an immediate bond, for Scott and Titin, if I may say.

Rp23 million was raised by the management and staff of AYANA for Scott’s noble cause. And that was just a drop in the ocean; so far, Scott has raised 370.000 USD from his 1250km run from Bali to Jakarta. In addition to that, a girl’s dream found its affirmation. And a newbie cannot be anymore rest assured that she has met a new family.

Visit Scott’s blog to find out more about the cause or read Jerome’s thoughts about that day here.

AYANA‘s new Weddings specialist Ria Kentjono shares her Top 10 Tips to ensure your big day goes off without an…er…hitch!
1. For brides, wear a simple dress with a short train, no big fluffy gown, no gloves. It’s too hot!
2. For grooms, the suit is not a must; some grooms do not wear a jacket or you could use a light material if you would like to wear a full suit.
3. Use moisturizer or foundation with SPF and do not apply heavy make up.
4. Pick a simple hairstyle, an up-do sleek style is normally longer-lasting and most convenient.
5. Wear wedges shoes instead of stilettos which will sink into lawn/sand, and you might want to share this tip with your female guests.
6. Prepare mosquito repellent, a spray is handy and portable.
7. Dont over-decorate the venue; simple and natural color that blends with the ambiance creates a beautifully stylish backdrop for your special event and photos.
8. Entertainment recommendation is light acoustic or piano with singer.
9. Don’t overdo lighting as it will be too hot and too bright. Flickering candles are romantic and perfect for a wedding!
10. Check the weather forecast 1 week before the big day and book a marquee as a back-up option to be safe in case the forecast doesn’t look good for an open-air celebration.

 

“When I serve from the heart, I get an equal amount of happiness as how my guests feel at the end of the day.”

1. What is your role at AYANA?
Villa Butler

2. How long have you been with the resort?
10 years

3. How would you define great service?
I serve genuinely from the heart with no materialistic expectation. The biggest reward is when I see them smiling and returning as our loyal guest many times.

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

I had a guest whose daughter lost her bracelet somewhere in the resort. The guest explained that the bracelet had a lot of sentimental value as she got it from a priest and had been wearing it for many years. I found the bracelet one day in their villa after they checked out and shipped it back to her. They were very happy.

Another occasion, I was serving a couple who got married at AYANA. On the day after their wedding, I delivered a hand bouquet to the new bride with a ‘congratulations’ note. The day after, I picked some flowers from our gardens and arranged them on the entrance path to the villa in a heart shape. She was very touched with these small thoughtful gestures.

5. What would you recommend every AYANA guest experience?
Rock Bar, Spa on the Rocks and romantic dining in one of our private venues.

6. Do you have anybody you look up to or are inspired by?
My parents taught me on how to serve sincerely without expecting anything in return. Mr Robert Watson and Mr Ton de Wit from the Guild of Professional Butlers in the UK, who have taught me fundamental lessons about service, especially that genuine service knows no boundaries and it does not necessarily cost a lot.

7. What do you like to do in your time off?
Spend time with my family back at home in Singaraja, North Bali.

 

“I love my job, my guests and AYANA. Everyday is a blessing because I can meet new people here and make friends with them.”

1. What is your role at AYANA?
Hostess at Pool Deck and Padi

2. How long have you been with the hotel?
2 years 4 months

3. How would you define great service?
Warm welcome (first impression) and close engagement with the guest as an honored guest.

4. You are called an AYANA Superstar because you always go the extra mile to ensure a memorable stay for guests. Can you share an example of a time when you were able to help a guest or wow them with a surprise?
I had a guest who stayed with us and was very happy with AYANA, and she went home and recommended AYANA to a friend who was celebrating their wedding anniversary. I took note of this occasion and sent a cake on their anniversary date and looked after them well during their entire stay.

I am naturally observant and note guests’ preferences in terms of their comfort. This is so that the next day, before they return to the pool, they will be surprised to find the same lounge chairs and table have been set up for them with fresh towels, cold water, and sometimes toys for their kids. I am also very good at remembering names and details like their favorite drinks.

5. What would you recommend every AYANA guest to experience?
Ocean Beach Pool, Spa on The Rocks, Rock Bar special cocktails.

6. Do you have anybody you look up to or are inspired by?
My dad and my cousins who have worked on cruise ships around the world. I look up to them and aim to be as accomplished and well-traveled as them in the future.

7. What do you like to do in your time off?
Spend time with my family at home. I like cooking and gardening.


I completed a 100km ultra marathon in November 2011. I was able to raise $3,400 and finally on January 9, 2012 I officially re-opened the library of the primary school of Seraya Barat, a small village in East Bali with 450 books on new shelving, 3 new windows, some seating arrangement for reading, and a big opening party with the 170 students being so excited!
I take this opportunity to thank all staff and guests who supported this project with generous donations and kind messages.
This is a small project that is changing the lives of 170 children of the poorest area of Bali. Once again, thank you all for the support.
I will keep you posted on my future running and fundraising projects…2012 will be an exciting year!

Jerome Colson, Food & Beverage Director

 

 

Meet Ravinder Dalal, who joins AYANA as Chef de Cuisine (Indian cuisine) at Padi restaurant, where he will work alongside the resort’s Indonesian and Thai chefs to present a pan-Asian culinary journey. Here, he shares his favorite dishes from his homeland, his first impressions of Bali, and why he admires Gordon Ramsay.

What made you interested to join AYANA?
Chef: I was interested to join AYANA because AYANA is a very good property, with a good hotel reputation and in terms of branding, the most famous hotel in Bali.

What is your passion working as an Indian Chef?
Chef: I really love to cook all kinds of Indian cuisine. Delhi is known for its distinctive food from the times of the Mughal era and people love to cook with various styles. Food from that time was rich and flavorful and sparked my interest and curiosity about the culture and customs of Indian gastronomy.

Which dish do you most like to cook?
Chef: Mouth-watering Kebabs with authentic aromatic flavors.

Which dish do you recommend guests try?
Chef: All! Because all of my Indian dishes are very special and have different flavors that complement the other. They are very nice to enjoy ‘banquet-style’ with your family or a group of friends. Some of my personal favorites are Dal Makhni (Black lentil stew with a blend of mild spices, tomato puree, cream and butter), Murgh dum Bryiani (Long grain basmati rice and chicken cocked with aromatic rice, served with raita), Arwaini Jhinga (Roasted shrimps with mustard seeds, yogurt, and agwain spice), Tandoori Murgh (Marinated tandoori chicken) and Roghan Josh (Lamb curry stew with Kashmiri spices).

I notice that you have won awards at many competitions including one in which you had to cook dishes that used mango as their main ingredient. Can you tell us a bit about this?
Chef: This competition was organized by Delhi Tourism and lasted three days. There were more than 100 participants from various hotels and restaurants, including 10 from the Hotel Park Royal Intercontinental where I was working at that time. On the first day, we had to cook an appetizer, on the second day a main course and on the third day a dessert. I was responsible for the appetizer and I created a Mango Chicken Fantasy and won the Bronze medal, as voted by the panel of seven judges. I was very honored and satisfied with this achievement as I entered the competition really just for fun.

What is your favorite thing about Bali?
Chef: Bali is a beautiful place. Balinese people are very polite and friendly. I also love the beaches here, I usually like to swim at the beach in my time off.

Do you have anybody you look up to or are inspired by in the cooking-world?
Chef: Yes, Gordon Ramsay for his passion, speedy work, creativity and excellent results.
Another one is Corporate Indian Chef, Anil Khurana.

What do you like to do in your time off?
Chef: Swimming, shopping (I usually look for clothes and shoes of good quality, when I see these two items at the mall I forget everything else!), watching movies and listening to music.

 

Dava Chef de Cuisine Jusman So is one of Singapore’s most acclaimed chefs. His 40-seat fine dining restaurant, Sage, was nominated ‘Best New Restaurant’ at the World Gourmet Summit 2008 (the same year Jusman won Best Rising Chef), awarded one of Singapore’s Best Restaurants by Singapore Tatler magazine, and named on the prestigious Miele List in 2010. Since moving to Dava, Jusman has relaunched the menu as modern French and introduced his most popular signature dishes, enhancing them further using local flavors and the best available ingredients to offer a new level of gastronomical refinement. Here, he shares his Top 10 Tips for serving a meal your guests will never forget.

Top 10 tips:
1. Always season whatever you are cooking with salt to bring out the flavor.
2. Always taste your food before serving to your guests.
3. If you don’t like what you see on the plate, chances are that your guests will not like it too. So don’t serve it.
4. Always use a well sharpened knife. It will save you time and energy when cutting meats and vegetables.
5. Use heavy bottom pots and pans. It helps to distribute heat evenly and prevents burning.
6. After cooking, always rest your meats for at least 5 minutes before slicing. It keeps the juices in.
7. Never keep cooked and raw food together in the same container.
8. Fat is essential in cooking as it adds flavor and moisture so be generous. If you are health conscious, use grape seed oil or extra virgin olive oil. If not, hit it with duck fat or lard! You will not regret it. Trust me :)
9. Always use a countdown timer when you are roasting something in the oven or boiling something on the stove. It saves you the trouble of having to wash a burnt pot/tray and start over.
10.When it turns black, it’s definitely cooked! But send it into the trash and start over because it’s definitely burnt too!