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Old Apr 26, 11, 11:14 pm
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Asheville, NC
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Amanjiwo - site inspection

Amanjiwo is an exquisite and beautiful resort, but it's really all about the destination - the Borobudur area of Java. Relatively unspoiled by western tourists, Borobudur is a tourist destination to take advantage of now, before the rest of the world catches on.

There's so much to see and do in Java… and a fascinating culture to experience. Here are some of the things that Amanjiwo set up for us:

  • A pre-dawn visit to Borobudur (before the tourists for the day arrive), followed by a private picnic breakfast on a hillside overlooking the temple.
  • A visit to a local market.
  • Dinner at a private home.
  • A tour of the home shops of local artisans - who make such diverse things as palm sugar, pottery, tofu, and noodles.
  • A tour of the largest private art collection in Indonesia, with the collector himself - Dr. Oei Hong Kjien - as the guide.
  • A walking tour of some very impressive terraced rice fields, concluding with a visit to a Hindu temple.

Java is one place on earth where they have not seen a lot of western faces.

Now about the resort itself. Amanjiwo has just 35 rooms and had few guests when we visited in May - lots of opportunities for upgrades here except perhaps in July or August. Amanjiwo is designed with the UNESCO World Heritage temple at Borobudur in mind. Driving in the front driveway, you can see the temple framed in the picture window in the resort's facade (pictured above). The resort is designed in three concentric circles, an architectural allusion to the top of the Borobudur temple.

Guests suites are identical in design, differing only in the view offered. The floors, showers, and sinks are all terrazza, and extensive teak wood is used in the elegant rooms. You enter a palatial master bedroom area with a King bed on a terra-cotta pedestal centered in the room. There is a large desk in one corner (free and fast WiFi is provided for guests) and a large day bed on the opposite side of the room. Two large dressing areas each have their own sink and vanity. Suites have a separate step-in shower as well as an outdoor soaking tub. Garden view suites have views just of the landscaping while Borobudur suites offer a direct view of the temple itself. Some rooms have private and substantial infinity-edge pools, but the resort's public pool is spectacular and elegant as well.

Guest assistants can help you plan your sightseeing of the area, and Aman's driver-guides are knowledgeable and tireless! One complimentary activity is included either with a three-night stay (Aman Java Experience) or with the Bali & Beyond package.

I highly recommend Java as a destination, either in the middle of your trip to Bali - or at the beginning or end of your trip. Amanjiwo will not disappoint.

Last edited by DavidO; May 11, 11 at 7:39 am
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