Situated in a natural amphitheatre, Amanjiwo (‘peaceful soul’) faces the world’s largest Buddhist sanctuary, the 9th century Borobudur, as well as the mystical Tidar Hill, believed to house the spiritual and geographical centre of Java.
Four slumbering volcanoes rise dramatically in the distance, while the rolling Menoreh Hills rise directly behind. In homage to Borobudur, Amanjiwo is designed with major architectural motif of circles, squares and crescents. The heart of Amanjiwo is a spherical limestone monolith centred by a bell-shaped rotunda. This main building is framed by 36 free-standing suites. High limestone walls thick with spider lilies and morning glories rim the rooms while stone walkways link suites with the main building and Pool Club. Domed roofs, lofty ceilings and terrazzo floors lend elegant shape to the suites. Interiors include a four-pillar bed on a terrazzo platform, sungkai wood screens, coconut wood and rattan furniture, batik pillows in classic Yogyakarta style, traditional glass paintings and beyond sliding glass doors, a sunken outdoor bathtub, centred by a brass gong, in a walled garden setting. The bathroom includes twin dressing areas and terrazzo vanities. All rooms include an outdoor kubuk (pavilion) with a day bed for private dining and lounging, and most suites offer views to Borobudur. Private swimming pools grace 15 of the suites.
The two-bedroom Dalem Jiwo suite is a discreet compound, complete with a private entrance, an entertainment rotunda and its own 15-metre swimming pool fashioned of pale-green Javanese stone set into the rice fields. The Dalem Jiwo butler, always on call, has separate quarters in the compound.
Guests at Amanjiwo can enjoy a range of Javanese beauty treatments in the Spa pavilion, partake in a game of tennis on the property’s two tennis courts and swim in the 40-metre infinity pool that looks over rice fields and Borobudur in the distance. A library housing a collection of books on Indonesian arts and culture is also the venue for a regular lecture series by leading experts speaking on topics ranging from temple preservation to Javanese art and culture. The Art Room features regular exhibitions from various artists and artists-in-residence.
Amanjiwo’s Dining Room, with its antique-finished, silver-leaf ceiling, serves Indonesian and Western cuisine in an open-air setting. Dinner and drinks can also be enjoyed on the Terrace – with its banquette seating, black-painted brass tables, teak chairs and Yogya-style batik cushions – the Bar or the colonnaded Pool Club.
The Dalem Jiwo Suite
10 Deluxe Pool Suites
4 Pool Suites
12 Deluxe Suites
On-site: Swimming Pool, Tennis Center, Art Gallery and Studio, Library
Massage: A range of Javanese and traditional beauty treatments are available at Amanjiwo, some of which incorporate the ancient holistic jamu method of healing. These can be enjoyed in the privacy of guest suites or in the specially-designed spa suite which has twin massage tables and an outdoor kubuk for relaxing afterwards with spicy ginger tea. The two-hour Mandi Lulur is a highlight, the traditional Javanese preparation of a princess on the eve of her wedding. Facials, massages and cream baths as well as a masculine version of Mandi Lulur are also available.
The resort is located within a natural amphitheatre with the limestone Menoreh Hills rising directly behind, the Kedu Plain in front and four volcanoes – Sumbing, Sundoro, Merbabu and Merapi – gracing the horizon. Amanjiwo looks out onto Borobudur, the largest Buddhist sanctuary in the world. Indeed, Borobudur is carefully mirrored in the resort’s design and central dome. The view runs arrow-straight through Amanjiwo’s entrance and the stone corridor that neatly cleaves the resort, up the steps to the soaring, bell-shaped rotunda, down to the Dining Room, on to the Terrace, past rice fields in an unwavering line to Borobudur itself. Several kampungs (small villages) are within walking distance.