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.
Well-Placed-Insider’s tough job is being tested at UNIQUE Rooftop Bar, the ultra-glamorous sunset spot located on the rooftop of RIMBA Jimbaran Bali, the sister hotel of AYANA Resort and Spa Bali. UNIQUE (named so because it is) is just as dashing and spectacular for a lunch-time chill-out and poolside fun, as it is for sundowners and beats that set the tone for all-day play.
And about those cocktails… Well-Placed-Insider was lucky enough to road-test a few and these are my favorites (at least, the ones I can remember!):
1. Electric Blue Mojito (aka Rocket Fuel Mojito)
This concoction of rum, mint leaf, blue syrup and fresh lime gives a fresh sweet taste that boosts your energy… to sample another one!
2. Strawberry Rum Sundae
Made with rum infused coffee, coffee liqueur, fresh cream and a splash of grenadine syrup, and garnished with fresh strawberry, this girly drink is flavorsome and of course, has a serious caffeine effect. Now I am wide awake…
3. Tiffany Blue
Sorry, no ring in there. But this combination of white rum, coconut rum, fresh pineapple juice, coconut cream and a splash of blue syrup gives a delicious tropical beach flavor that deserves an “I do” too. Or, I do… want more.
4. Southern Nelis Pear
A good mix of fresh pear and peach fruit compounded with white wine and fresh lime to give a very fruitful zesty bite. It is a must have for a lazy Saturday afternoon basking under the sun.
5. Ginger Cooler
Made with a thumb-sized nob of fresh ginger, squeeze of fresh lemon, Sunkist mixed with vodka, grand marnier and topped with ginger ale, this is one bold drink for someone who really knows what they want. My favorite next to Strawberry Rum Sundae!
6. Spicy Watermelon Mojito
Nothing quenches a tropical thirst like fresh, sweet watermelon. Add white rum, sugar cane, lime juice, sparkling water and mint, and you have the perfect summer mojito, and a new contender for my favorite UNIQUE cocktail!
And now thanks to UNIQUE’s mixologists, Well-Placed-Insider finally understands that saying:
“I am only as strong as the cocktails I drink, the hairspray I use and the girlfriends I have…”
The sky was the limit when Bali’s first Ah Yat Abalone Seafood Restaurant tossed a plate of food into the air, as part of the ancient ritual of Yee Sang plate tossing to welcome the Chinese New Year. The celebration was a particularly auspicious occasion for Ah Yat, following its launch in Bali last November at RIMBA Jimbaran Bali, the new sister hotel of the award-winning AYANA Resort and Spa.
Enjoy the pictures of the feast below, and Gong Xi Fa Cai!
Why the ‘how to’? Because in past years, Well-Placed-Insider, along with many other OCD carriers out there, has learned a lot about how we make and break habits, and how we go topsy-turvy realizing that we are failing. This ends now.
Here are a few of the most common New Year’s resolutions-and ways to actually ditch them from your next year’s resolution list.
1. Go on a diet
Do I hear a “Guilty as charged!” echoing? Well-Placed-Insider is not one to talk after making this resolution three years in a row. Truth is, it is easy to get tired of following such a strict regimen and go back to eating pretty much what we loved to eat before, because dieting is simply hard,especially if we try the cold turkey way. But there is a solution.
Delete the intimidating word DIET and rephrase with:Make small changes to my eating habits. AYANA’ s Spa Cafe chefs are gems of solid advices on healthy yet yummy dietary tips. If you are having a sugar crash, grab a glass of fresh juice instead of that canned soda with is 200 everlasting calories. Switch from your daily bakery muffin to a bowl of oatmeal with fruit and raisins as natural sweeteners, or swap your latte for a cup of house java instead. Travel a lot? Make sure you only stay in places like?this?that give you space and fun reasons to exercise.
2. Save more, spend less
You go online and all these online shopping banners popping up hurt your eyes, so you just have to click it. And that only means it will follow you wherever you go… even when you are trying to obtain information for your report from the internet. And after all the hard work, you just have to reward yourself with a designer labeled bag, or a cashmere scarf or those shoes…oh those shoes!With this pressure to spend less, your consciousness will actually lead you to spend more because you will find justifications in your daily routine. It is just how the dynamic works and brings this resolution back to your list. It is a vicious cycle. But there is a way to stop it.
Make it a GOAL?to go on a shopping spree in Singapore, Bangkok, or Milan, or have?the most luxurious holiday in Bali with your family?or?make that dream wedding come true(yes even a beach wedding, with doves and three tiered cake). With these in mind, you will click the ‘close’ sign of an online shopping banner as soon as it pops up on your screen, and instead find yourself ?thinking of trying a?best kept secret spa treatment?at your holiday destination instead of swiping your credit cards on boots and perfume! (Psst… if this is your holiday destination,you can even make your own perfume)
3. Give up on smoking
Thankfully this is not one of Well-Placed-Insider’s resolutions, but it seems to be a common one! Well, it is not that you cannot stop being puff the magic dragon, you can, and you should. But if you are waiting for that perfect day when you will ?be able to stop because you made a New Year resolution, it is just not going to happen.
What is going to work??Well-Placed-Insider is going to share one success story here. A friend who successfully kicked the habit ?credited it to Stanford University internist Kelly Traver, MD, author of?The Program: The Brain-Smart Approach to the Healthiest You.?Check her website?and download the iPhone app.Yes, app! Add these10 extra tricks?and you are even more likely to succeed.
And when you have that stinging urge (only if its stings!) to get the sensation of holding a cigarette in between your fingers, this sweet dish from Rock Bar’s menu is the exception to the rule, Port and Cigar. But you should not try it if you made a resolution to diet.
Bernhard Butz-Executive Chef: “Gluehwine and Spekulaas”
You can never go wrong celebrating Christmas with Gluehwine (traditional German mulled wine usually enjoyed after a cold day of skiing) and Speculaas (gingerbread cookies). Speculaas always brings back memories of where I used to live in Germany… and the Gluehwine is just a must have during the holiday season.
Patricia Undjuk – Guest Recognition Supervisor, RIMBA Jimbaran: “Grandma’s Apple Pie”
I love (and really miss) my grandma’s home-made apple pie. We used to make tons of them and eat them over Christmas holidays. Since grandma passed away, almost all the women in the family keep trying to keep her recipe’s legacy but nothing really tastes the same so we never have that apple pie anymore. Maybe someday I can make it just like Grandma used to!
Giordano Fagiolli – Director of Food and Beverage, RIMBA Jimbaran: “Cappelletti”
My favorite festive dish is this homemade stuffed pasta with meat filling served in capon broth. This is a must have on the table during Christmas holidays in any household in Italy. Unfortunately it does not go really well with a hot climate and so is less enjoyable on a tropical island like Bali. Nonetheless, Cappelletti is something I always look forward to prepare for my family at Christmas; this way, my children can learn about their roots a little bit.
Arnold Sebastian – Dava Chef de Cuisine: “Christstollen”
I always have a soft spot for Christmas Stollen or Christstollen. It is the traditional and most famous bread from my hometown, Dresden, Germany. The whole family eat this delicious bread during the holiday season and I even make them now, of course! In fact, we just made Bali’s longest stollen at over 10 meters, and shared with guests after our Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony.
Are you one of those people who plays Christmas carols as soon as December arrives? Guilty as charged. Here is Well-Placed-Insider’s top 3:
Having to always take charge in deciding the family Christmas tree theme each year, this song makes the job easier.?And would you look at this beautiful tree at AYANA made from recycled wood and other natural materials, and how magical the angelic voices of the children’s choir sounded during the tree lighting ceremony on 7 December. Maybe Well-Placed- Insider will copy this theme next year!
“O Christmas Tree, O Christmas tree, You are the tree most loved! How often you give us delight in brightly shining Christmas light! O Christmas Tree, O Christmas tree, You are the tree most loved!”
Santa Claus is coming to town
It is true! And you can see him at AYANA for the Breakfast with Santa event on 21 December. Another of Well-Placed-Insider’ s long awaited festive agendas is this decadent Christmas dinner at RIMBA. With these kinds of events,you better not pout!
Little drummer boy
Christmas is not merely about gifts, lavish food and merriment. It is about giving, and especially giving love. So this beautiful song should always remind us about the core of Christmas spirit. Just like what guests experienced at this year’ s Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony, when children from a Denpasar orphanage came to sing carols and received gifts from guests and staff “Our finest gifts we bring, pa rum pum pum pum”
“Mama, I just ate our Christmas Tree” – Patricia Undjuk- Guest Recognition Supervisor
Christmas time is my favorite time of the year and I enjoy decorating the Christmas tree the most. When I was 10 years old, my mom decided to go a little creative and decorate the tree not with ornaments but with candies and chocolates.. It was the best tree ever but I could not help myself; I ate every single chocolate and candy the next day, leaving us with a naked-tall-upset-green-pine-tree with not a shred of color on it!
“White tapestry covered the city after I prayed for it at Church” Arnold Sebastian-Dava Chef de Cuisine
I was 8 years old. All the family members went to Church for Christmas Eve mass. I was a bit upset because there was no snow at that time even though it was freezing. But I joined the family for the mass anyway to pray for a White Christmas. As we walked out of the church after mass, the streets were covered in a white blanket! In my 8-year-old eyes, it seemed like magic; in only a few hours, all I could see was this white-almost silver- tapestry that seemed endless as it covered the whole town. Then my family went back home and we all celebrated Christmas Eve with a delicious dinner and I remember hearing the sound of wrapping paper being torn up all night as everyone opened their presents.
“Chestnuts roasting from our Nanas open fire?and it burst out presents!” Giordano Faggioli-Director of Food and Beverage at RIMBA Jimbaran
The thing that I fondly remember about my childhood Christmases was the smell of roasted chestnuts coming out of our grandmother’s wood-fired oven in the old family house. Yes, just like the famous “Christmas Song”. For me, it was a sign that Christmas was just around the corner and that we would be busy hanging out wreaths and decorations and would be spoiled with festive delicacies and of course, presents almost one month long!
“Christmas starts in November” Michel Ruata-Call Center
In my hometown, Manado-North Sulawesi, Christmas would start in November! From early November, each household kitchen would be busy baking cookies (in Manado, 90% of the people make their own Christmas cookies). The euphoria would start to elevate every December, when our parents would tell us to stuff grass into shoes so that Santa could take them for the reindeers and leave us presents in return. Then on Christmas Eve, after attending mass, our parents would give us a new pair of shoes and clothes.
“May there be no more walls” Martin Ehlers-Executive Assistant Manager (Rooms)
I grew up in West Germany, about 50 kilometers from the inner German border to the Socialist East Germany which was in existence until 1990. The border did not permit people to easily pass; one had to have a Visa months in advance. On 24th?December 1989- following a friendly revolution in the East German capital, Berlin, the inner German border opened. It was the best Christmas present ever. It was amazing to finally be able to drive across and to see our brothers and sisters. Everybody in Germany was so excited. When we drove across to East Germany along the just wrecked down border, people were waving at us with tears and laughter of excitement. Germany “united” in 1990 and it was a truly special Christmas for me.
Our Tree Lighting Ceremony was held on 7th December to launch our 2013 festive season, with carols sung by children from a local orphanage who received gifts donated by our guests. There was also an appearance from Santa and our festive mascots, Gede and Ayu Bear along with Junior Bear. The AYANA Christmas Tree, standing over 4 meters high, was designed by our Chief Florist Pak Sodikin, using natural materials such as drift wood, copper, seashells, embossed alumunium and Balinese fabric patterns, and cinnamon sticks. The full festive program for Christmas and New Year is available online at http://www.ayanaresort.com/en/festive/AYANA_Festive%20Season_FA_Sept13
Hear the beautiful voice of our choir from the orphanage opening the ceremony.
Collection of gifts that we brought to Mercy Indonesia Orphanage to celebrate with the children for Christmas this year.
Santa heard all the children’s wish lists. If you are nice you will get the best present ever!
Who wants to join Roger Habermacher, our General Manager, to turn the Christmas tree lights on? Pick me pick me!
If you said it with a smile, you got a Teddy Bear to take home too!
The weather forecast on 1 November said thundershowers, but the hotel’ s events team arranged a traditional rainstopper to seek the gods’s blessings for a ‘dry’event to launch the 282- room hotel. It worked!
The 700 guests in attendance enjoyed clear blue skies and a stellar Bali sunset from UNIQUE Rooftop Bar before continuing the party poolside at RIMBA Lawn until the early hours.
The event was also an introduction of new General Manager Roger Habermacher, who is responsible for both RIMBA and AYANA.
There were stilt walkers, hula dancers, fairies in giant bubbles, mermaids, tribal beauties, Amazonian warriors and moving “human” tables of canapes.
The highly-anticipated Ah Yat Abalone Seafood Restaurant presented a delectable array of authentic Chinese cuisine, giving guests a taste of what will be on offer when it opens on 10 November.
The high priest arrived on a dancing horse for a Mepatigan Purification Ceremony, which portrayed the ongoing battle between good and evil as humans seek to find the balance between god, man and nature.
An exclusive collabarative performance by renowned local bands Balawan and Batuan Ethnic Fusion involved a didgeridoo, percussionists and Okokan traditional musicians, before a breathtaking aerial silk performance.
The grand finale deserves an encore! Hayley Gene Penner, a Canadian singer-songwriter who composed AYANA Resort and Spa’s theme-song, “Until I am back to you” performed the track with a choir comprising employees from AYANA and RIMBA.
This was followed by the official opening of RIMBA and a 5 minute long spectacular fireworks show with missiles that set alight a giant “RIMBA” sign above the main stage to call it a night! A spectacular way to make an entrance, RIMBA Jimbaran!
Bali’s BMW Club launched a new touring program at RIMBA Jimbaran recently, arriving in style at RIMBA Lobby in sleek BMW 3 Series Convertibles and the latest 320 Diesel model.
The Bimmers (as they call themselves) did a full-day tour along north-east Bali’s coast, before arriving at RIMBA to end the day with sunset cocktails at UNIQUE Rooftop Bar, enjoying spectacular views across south Bali. They enjoyed UNIQUE’s selection of innovative cocktails in a stylish, edgy setting, with the bar designed around a central swimming pool over which hangs a chic mezzanine.
The tour was run by Bimmerfest Bali Club, a community for BMW owners on the island as part of the 200,000 current, new and past BMW owners around the world.
Look for AYANA to get some serious TV air time in the next few weeks. The contestants in the latest America’s Next Top Model cycle got a taste of the Balinese life at AYANA during filming earlier this year. AYANA also hosted the star and creator of the show, Tyra Banks, along with the models and the judges, who included fashion public relations maven Kelly Cutrone, former boxer and international male supermodel Rob Evans, stylist and photoshoot creative consultant Johnny Wujek and top fashion blogger Bryanboy.