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Raffles Bali - Tranquil Pursuit by The Time Place Magazine
August 4th 2022

Tranquil Pursuit by The Time Place Magazine

An Awakening Self-discovery Journey By Raffles Bali Evokes All The Five Senses

In the past year, the wellness industry has taken over the world of travel. And Bali is among the top destinations, thanks to its serene landscape and authentic spiritual setting. In fact, the island of the Gods has long been a haven for those who seek tranquillity. From yoga with a view, bonafide spas, to diverse choices of restaurants offering healthy dishes, there is no wonder that Bali is adored by many wellness seekers, including Elizabeth Gilbert—portrayed by Julia Roberts in the hit biographical 2010 film, “Eat Pray Love”, which put the spotlight on Bali as an integral part of the main character’s life-changing journey.

Picturesque Spectacle

While wellness retreats are not new in Bali’s tourism scene, the opening of Raffles Bali still sparked much excitement. As the 15th Raffles in the world, this ultra-luxury resort is described as “an intimate oasis of emotional wellbeing” which is beautifully demonstrated by its secluded location at a hidden corner of Jimbaran Bay—just 25 minutes away from Ngurah Rai International airport. Nestled on the lush forested hillside of the spacious 23 hectare property are 32 villas that offer panoramic ocean views and ultimate privacy.

Raffles Bali also highlights a signature wellbeing programme entitled The Five Senses of Wellness. This first-ever Raffles Bali’s wellness retreat promises to serve its participants with a new level of rejuvenation. And as its name suggests, The Five Senses of Wellness aims to evoke all the senses with carefully curated activities by a group of wellness experts. Last May, The Time Place Magazine had the exclusive opportunity to experience this novel programme before its actual launch on Global Wellness Day. The cordial welcome by the Raffles Bali team, the lulling chimes of traditional Genta Urag, the refreshing Bedugul Berries mocktail by The Writers Bar and the breathtaking view of Jimbaran forest and sea provided a lasting impression upon our arrival. We further indulged on the unobstructed scenery from our Ocean Pool Villa with a private patio which features an infinity pool and a covered gazebo. This 470 sqm villa sports a timeless design with touches of Balinese aesthetic as seen through a batik tapestry hanging behind the king size bed and exposed ceiling made of rattan panels and wooden beams.

Immersive Journey

We began The Five Senses of Wellness with Sunset Blessing at the villa temple. Here, the Balinese purification ritual, known as ‘Melukat’, was held to cleanse our bodies and minds from negative influences. As the sun was setting and the birds were chirping, Desak Akeno—a well-known Medicine Woman and Balinese Healer—performed ‘Melukat’ by bathing us with holy water.

It was truly a one-of-a-kind experience to listen to her singing, to smell the fragrant fresh flowers on our hands and to feel the gentle afternoon breeze on our skin during the ritual. As promised, we felt refreshed and ready to embark on the self-discovery journey that Raffles Bali has prepared meticulously. On our first morning, Eoin Finn greeted us at the Signature Meditation Terrace to enjoy open-air yoga with an enchanting panorama. During the session, the globally renowned yogi and founder of Blissology emphasised that “yoga is a feeling, not a shape” and shared feel-good wisdom that made the start of our day full of joy and freedom.

Next on the agenda was a short trip to Sanctuary at Desa Potato Head, Seminyak, for Sistrum Sound Healing—a meditative experience which involves custom water beds with built-in speakers to deliver sound and physical vibrations to the body as well as brainwave stimulation through synchronised light frequency. The immense relaxation from this unique yet sophisticated healing method was unparalleled Our first day came to an end with the Rainbow Healing Journey and Fire Ceremony by Frances Fuller at Raffles Bali’s beach lawn. Widely known as one of the prominent leaders in Young Living Indonesia, Fuller guided us through emotional healing with the help of essential oils and journaling. We were asked to write down the things that we wish to keep and remove from our lives, then eventually threw the written paper to the fire as a symbol of letting go.

The next morning, we witnessed the magical sunrise at the beach while doing Qi Gong. Led by Stephanie Hoo, founder of A Gracious Life, this traditional Chinese exercise puts focus on regulating and optimising the flow of energy within the body, mind and spirit. It’s fascinating how simple movements can improve mental and physical health.

Our peaceful morning session was followed by a therapeutic Ikat Weaving Workshop where we learned how to craft our own ikat with a master weaver from Pesalakan Village. And what a better way to conclude The Five Senses of Wellness programme than a spa treatment at Raffles Spa? Imagine unwinding beneath the expert hands of a massage therapist, while enjoying the mesmerising view from the hill-view terrace.

Epicurean Delight

In true Raffles fashion, their Bali resort also provides the legendary 24-hour butler service which will cater to each guest’s every need. Days before our visit, a Raffles Wellbeing Butler—an upgrade from its regular butler service, now focusing on the wellbeing of its guests with added knowledge on nutrition and therapy—reached out to us to check on our dietary restrictions and preferences.

While our sight, touch, hearing and smell senses have been heavily spoiled by the well-curated activities from The Five Senses of Wellness programme, Raffles Bali presents a culinary journey with utmost delicacy to pamper our taste buds. There are three dining experiences that we got to enjoy and the best part is the farm-to-table concept as Raffles Bali grows their own herbs, fruits and vegetables in their garden.

Located at the highest point of Raffles Bali, Rumari—the first-ever Krug Ambassade in Indonesia—offers unique interpretations of local cuisines in contemporary style. For those keen to experience international style dining, Loloan Beach Bar & Grill will fulfil your cravings. A private dinner can be had at The Farm Terrace where up to eight guests can enjoy Italian-inspired cold cuts and choices of red meats from around the world, complemented by organic vegetables from the garden.

There are definitely more things to say about Raffles Bali. Its thoughtful villa amenities which include essential oils, weighted crystal eye masks and mood audio as well as the 24- hour Raffles Wellbeing Butler service made our stay truly unforgettable. Whether you are looking for a luxurious stay, cultural experience, or gastronomic indulgence, you simply can’t go wrong with a visit to Raffles Bali.

For more information please visit The Time Place Magazine