Saturday, August 29, 2009

Bali Style

Bali oozes style. A relaxed, devout style that stands above and beyond the tropical-mythical style of Thailand or the French colonial beauty of Vietnam or the regal sultanate aesthetic of Malaysia. Bali’s style and aesthetic is accessible and can be felt and seen everywhere. If you ever find yourself looking at Asia style or d├ęcor books, you will notice most of the beautiful images are from high end resorts or private residences. Not so in Bali, its style is uniquely intertwined within Balinese daily life and placed in plain sight for all to enjoy. From the ornately decorated doorways of temples 

to the massive statues in the middle of streets and turnarounds

to the ornate stone carvings on building pillars and walls

to the ceremonial mini-structures where daily prayer offerings are made every morning and throughout the day

to the daily offerings seen everywhere

Even taxis make sure we are well protected
Shopkeepers could be seen folding bamboo leaves into little trays that hold the offerings at all times of the day and placing them either on the ground in front of their shops or in small temple structures within their shops
And of course there is the natural beauty of Bail to enjoy as well
We spent a majority of our time in Bali in Ubud, the cultural center of Bali. We were looking forward to exploring the temples, terraced rice fields, and sample the cultural arts. We found Nick’s Pensions online and our jaws dropped as we followed the receptionist through the tiered and meandering rice fields

passing brick cottages tucked into the rice fields

down through a terraced walk way towards a jungle ravine

to our brick cottages
The rooms are clean, simple, and minimal, but with that ever present Bali sense of style!The view from our little porchIn front of our villa was a bridge that crossed the jungle river and lead out to a small alleyway to Monkey Forest RoadNick’s also had a pool to cool off in

and a place to get free wifi

In the mornings the staff would always place a new offering at the front steps of our villa. Such a lovely way to start the day
One of the impressive aspect of Bali is their love of stone statues, found again everywhere; and the musicians found along the walkways at Nick’s were among our favorite, mainly because the staff would embellish the statues differently everyday and today was hibiscus.
Due to some rather strange circumstances we made up in our heads we decided to spend the last two nights in another hotel on Monkey Forest Road and again the beautiful Balinese details of the Lumbung Sari Hotel was immediately visible from the hotel entrance
as well as our balcony

and the small grounds of the hotel
We came to Bali looking for tropical paradise and relaxation. What we really found was pure inspiration from every corner.