By Dian Hasan | July 28, 2009
What does it feel to live a close-to-authentic “kampung” (village) lifestyle on the the Isle of Gods of Bali? A unique resort in Bali has the answer.
The ocean breeze that kisses our faces in the Balé (Balinese open-air pavilion) feels like the Gods have descended to watch over as a group of obedient students increase their breathing to overcome the discomfort of holding the Yoga pose for the few remaining seconds.
The large wooden platform shaded by a large roof, overlooking a sea of waving green fields, mesmerize us on this brilliant morning at Desa Seni (Art Village in Indonesian) as we move through the poses of our Kundalini yoga class.
A wooden chime rattles in the distance as this group releases the pose and settles on their backs for deep relaxation. The class is winding down. Desa Seni is a delightful little resort in Canggu, Bali that sits so comfortably in this former rice field that it seems inseparable from the landscape.
Yoga is embedded into the life of Desa Seni, a series of buildings, antique Joglo structures brought in from Java and incorporated into the resort with a modern twist. The Yoga classes include the classical styles of Iyengar, Hatha and Kundalini, and more modern styles of meditation and breathing techniques.
One of the partners (a former chef) has created a beautifully simple menu in the restaurant which, despite its obvious nod to healthy, organic produce and fresh preparation, offers a good variety of delicious meals from light and healthy to more decadent choices. The resort comprises 10 original houses, sleeping a total of 26. Each has been insulated for air-conditioning and the bathrooms are a delightful combination of the rustic features of the original buildings with modern amenities. A living museum and a great example of recycled old buildings and art objects.
The active partners overseeing Desa Seni are Howard Klein and Tom Talucci. “We built Desa Seni in 2006 after having lived in Bali for 15 years and seeing so much modern development. We felt that people who are coming to this island are looking to experience its rich culture and history and we decided to create a place where they could experience a traditional kampung (village) life and learn some Indonesian history,” they explain.
Desa Seni was inspired by the rich culture and history and specifically traditional Balinese village life. And bring such idea into the 21st century where guests can make important lifestyle and personal wellness choices: slowing down, eating fresh home grown organic produce, and taking the time to breathe. This is where the practice of wellness and yoga converge.
Desa Seni’s mission is to create a space where the entire resort is approached as a Spa; a place where you can relax, re-connect and improve yourself. In short, a personal rejuvenating experience awaits for those who seek serious self-improvement.