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Bali is home to numerous ancient palaces and water temples
that create an atmosphere of elegant majesty.
Their designs are rooted in Balinese Hinduism,
a spiritual philosophy that emphasizes balance between the human and the natural--even the supernatural.
It is this balance that defines the wondrous delights of HOSHINOYA Bali
--a resort village nestled in a Balinese jungle that flourishes atop a hill,
which drops off to a sacred river flowing below.
The god Indra is said to have created the famous spring of Tirta Empul when he thrust his sword into the earth and drew water from the ground. These holy waters flow into the Pakerisan River, nurturing the jungles of Ubud that grow along its banks. Wherever you are in HOSHINOYA Bali, you feel the river all around you. Its booming roar echoes throughout the premises, while its waters turn into mists and rainclouds that constantly replenish the lush sheen of the resort's trees and plants. Its omnipresence makes you feel as if the river itself is a god.
You take a deep breath, filling your body with air so pure, it feels as if it may have never been inhaled by another being. The Balinese have long lived by the teachings of Balinese Hinduism, a spiritual philosophy that combines Hinduism with animism. In the spirit of this tradition, at HOSHINOYA Bali, flowers are offered to the gods every morning. In the evening, the sacred sounds of the gamelan ring through the premises, attuning you to the presence of the gods as you soak up the natural energy all around. Gradually, your body is immersed in both the natural and the supernatural.
One defining characteristic of a community is the sharing of water from the same source. You can see this in the subak, an irrigation system that has for more than 1,000 years nurtured a spirit of cooperation among the Balinese while sustaining the island's renowned rice terraces. The pristine waters that run through HOSHINOYA Bali come from subaks; they shape the very design of the resort. By sharing this water, you, too, become a part of the community, partaking in Ubud's philosophy and culture.
You dip your foot in the cold pool, and a pleasant tingle runs up your body. Three canal-like pools connect the villas of this resort village, offering aquatic bliss to all those who enter their waters. You sink your head below the pool surface and close your eyes as if in prayer. The pristine waters begin to slowly cleanse your body, lulling you into a comfortable stupor. As you lift your head out of the water, you see your neighbor across the pool and wave in greeting. The waters of Bali, it seems, are for both cleansing and for socializing.
You climb into an elevated gazebo, one of many scattered around the premises. From here, jungles stretch in almost every direction, while the trees are so close you could reach out and pluck a coconut. A gratifying sense of relaxation overcomes you; before you notice, you have dozed off. It is a deep sleep, the kind you have never experienced before. You feel as if you have melted away into the wind, as if you have become a part of the jungles that surround you. You wake up and leave your temporary abode, feeling more at peace than you have ever felt.
Ubud has long been an artistic center, where traditional art forms have evolved with the influence of visiting foreign artists. Villas in HOSHINOYA Bali feature walls decorated with wood-engraved pictures, each one telling a different story related to Ubud's birds, flowers, and trees. The stone walls of the poolside living areas also feature complex engravings with plant and animal motifs, creating an aesthetic connection between the villa interior and the majestic jungles that extend beyond the villa. You hear a gentle breeze passing through the villa; it is this seamless link to the outdoors that defines true Balinese relaxation.