The Story

Amandari is the original Balinese sanctuary, the first to honour the rich culture and village life of the Island of the Gods to become an icon of design the world over. 

It all began in 1970 with architect Peter Muller, whose deep appreciation for the beauty and community of Bali’s highland villages inspired his vision of a Bali-village style resort. He was a pioneer in this regard, as Bali’s verdant cultural center of Ubud was not yet the legendary tourism hub it is today.

Would travellers venture inland from Bali’s spectacular coastline to immerse themselves in the peace and beauty of the island’s spiritual, rural interior? Peter knew the answer, but it took him almost two decades to find a partner with the same insight.

Amanpuri had come into being on Phuket’s west coast in 1988, quietly introducing the Asian boutique hotel concept to the world. Seeking a new destination for a second intimate, culturally resonant retreat, Aman immediately saw the genius in Peter’s vision. 

Spoilt for choice, a breathtaking site atop the untouched Ayung River Gorge was chosen for its lush serenity, unparalleled views and sacred connection to Kedewatan Village nearby. Peter completed the resort’s design in just eight days, and a year later in 1989, Amandari opened as the very first of its kind.

Every detail of Amandari reflected – and still reflects – a traditional Balinese village, from the alang alang-thatched rooftops of the freestanding suites to the emerald curve of the rice paddy-inspired swimming pool – the first infinity pool in Bali. 

Features such as hand-woven fans, kamasan tapestries, coconut wood pillars and complimentary temple sarongs had never before been personally experienced by visitors to Bali. They’ve been endlessly replicated ever since.


Impossible to replicate however, is Amandari’s soul. Resting 129 steps above a moss-covered stone tiger that guards a 7th-century Hindu shrine, the resort is an intrinsic part of Kedewatan Village and welcomes locals as warmly as guests.

Children who learnt Bali’s traditional dances in Amandari’s Lotus Pond Pavilion now send their own, and the reception area – its split roof open to the sky – regularly hosts villagers carrying lofty umbul-umbul and banten offerings to the shrine.

Nowhere else can you get as close to the island’s palpable magic than in this living village, where the very spirit of Bali resides.

featured experience

Cultural immersion

Bali's complex and endlessly renewing culture offers new experiences from morning to evening - from temple ceremonies and gamelan performances, to village festivals and palace theatre. Discover the unique lives of the Balinese, their Hindu rituals and unique craftsmanship through tours or comprehensive activities from Amandari, offering guests the unrivalled access to the island's captivating soul.