YTL Life - - Life Feature -

Acom­pelling at­trac­tion of Spa Vil­lage Re­sort Tem­bok, Bali is the at­mos­phere. It in­spires and re­peat­edly draws guests to re­turn to this peace­ful lo­ca­tion with its beach of black vol­canic sand. The Ba­li­nese cui­sine served at Wan­ti­lan nour­ishes and for­ti­fies the body; the spa treat­ments re­store one phys­i­cally, while yoga and med­i­ta­tion at­tune both mind and body to at­tain peak state.

Ev­ery day at the re­sort, on mul­ti­ple oc­ca­sions, some­thing spe­cial hap­pens that con­nects you to the an­cient heal­ing tra­di­tions of Java and Bali. While you are sun­ning by the pool af­ter a swim, read­ing in the shade or bask­ing in the af­ter-glow of a lux­u­ri­ous mas­sage, you will be of­fered a small glass of spicy liq­uid, poured from an un­la­belled flask. This is jamu, a range of herbal elixirs made from an­cient Ja­vanese recipes and a fea­ture of ru­ral life among the fer­tile val­leys of these is­lands for hun­dreds of years. There are rep­re­sen­ta­tions of jamu recorded in the 10th-cen­tury walls of the Borobudur tem­ple. Jamu recipes are dif­fer­ent for men and women and there are vari­a­tions for par­tic­u­lar ail­ments, as well as merely to en­hance gen­eral well-be­ing.

In the vil­lages, the ton­ics are made by hand, us­ing knowl­edge passed down through gen­er­a­tions and com­mon spices and cul­ti­vated herbs or ones that grow wild, such as gin­ger, turmeric, clove, cin­na­mon, galan­gal, tem­u­lawak and ta­marind. Ladies re­ferred to as jamu gen­dong wan­der from vil­lage to vil­lage ply­ing their wares, a bas­ket of bot­tles car­ried on their hip and se­cured over the shoul­der by a tied sarong. A bucket con­tain­ing a num­ber of cups is hooked over one arm and they sell their jamu by the dose, like rov­ing phar­ma­cists. The Spa Vil­lage Re­sort staff mov­ing around the gar­dens will be sim­i­larly dressed and equipped.

Dur­ing your stay, you can even try your hand at con­coct­ing your own jamu. Check the ac­tiv­i­ties menu for the day and time. You will pre­pare the in­gre­di­ents, pound them with a mor­tar and pes­tle; then watch with your fel­low guests, gath­ered like al­chemists around a bub­bling caul­dron, as your po­tion comes to the boil.

By adding a lit­tle raw honey or lime, prepar­ing your own jamu is a sat­is­fy­ing process and can prove to be quite a de­li­cious treat.

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