SPECIAL REPORT

Sweet Retreat

by Li Haohan
13 Jun 2017

An unprepossessing wellness retreat was Aman Resorts' revolutionary proposition that challenged the standard and direction of resorts in the late β€˜80s

Back when resorts mostly meant gaudy outposts populated by loud tourists, in came Aman with its intimate retreat offering the unassuming warm hospitality of a gracious private residence. Since 1988, with the opening of Amanpuri in Phuket, Thailand, the resort has steadily won fans with its revolutionary concept.

Today, Aman has 31 hotels and resorts in Bhutan, Cambodia, China, Dominican Republic, France, Greece, Indonesia, India, Italy, Japan, Laos, Montenegro, Morocco, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Turkey, the Turks & Caicos Islands, the USA, and Vietnam.

Although the network may have grown tremendously, Aman remains true to its commitment to providing sanctuaries for “peace, wellness, and escapism”. And the new calendar of bespoke activities offered in its resorts support this.

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Amankila in Bali offers guests Hasya or ‘laughing Yoga’, a practice based on the belief that voluntary laughter provides the same psychological and physiological benefits as spontaneous laughter, strengthening all immune functions, bringing more oxygen to the body and brain, and fostering feelings of positivity. Sessions are conducted three times a week.

Aman’s custom-built traditional Indonesian phinisi vessels, Amandira and Amanikan, cruise through the Indonesian archipelago to some of the most remote parts of the islands where absence of connectivity forces guests into a digital detox – enabling them to unwind, disconnect, and reground. Guests who charter the vessels – separately or in tandem – can request for custom itineraries tailored to their interests.

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Renowned energy healer and hypnotherapist Tim Stoneman holds Emotional Pain Release and Hypnotherapy sessions at Amankora, Bhutan. The sessions are designed to heal pain and distress from past traumas, and release emotional attachments through meditation techniques that work with the subconscious mind to promote an overall improved sense of happiness, mental clarity, and peace of mind. Tim also offers life-transforming hypnotherapy sessions that calm the brain’s activity down to healthy levels, releases harmful, negative beliefs and behavior patterns to make room for new, positive, beneficial ones. The Energetic Emotional Pain Release experience will be available between 16th October and 30th November 2017.

His Eminence the 9th Neyphug Trulku Rinpoche of Bhutan’s Neyphug Monastery, will conduct the Meaning of Life retreat at Amankora in eight nights across four of the resort’s lodges. The retreat aims to fully immerse guests in ancient wisdom to awaken and rejuvenate the exhausted mind. The highly revered Buddhist reincarnate will lead lectures, mediation, yoga and temple visits.

The Meaning of Life retreat will run from September 10 to 18, and will include one 60-minute spa treatment per person, as well as several yoga, meditation and lecture sessions.

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Amanyara, the soothing retreat on the rocky coves of the Providenciales in Turks and Caicos, offers the Caribbean Stars Lullaby, therapy for improving sleep habits. Sessions are held at the resort’s spa or in the guests’ pavilion by an aqua therapist who encourages guests to completely surrender while floating under the stars and reconnecting with nature. Incorporating Zen Shiatsu, guests are gently aligned through a series of rotational movements, muscle stretching and foot reflexology. Sound therapy with Tibetan singing bowls complements the treatment for a deep sense of calm.