So, how long have you been here? It’s the first question I am asked by our guests as they settle back into our cushion filled bale, sipping lemongrass and ginger tea, taking in their surrounds. Most are surprised to learn that it has taken more than 13 years to create our place, commenting that it looks like the result of a well thought out plan. Nothing could be further from the truth.
We started with a patch of land, no electricity or running water, and a simple hut to sleep in. A series of inspired ideas (mostly unplanned, spontaneous ‘why not?’ moments), planted the seeds for Sharing Bali. Instinct was a major player.
“How did you end up in a Bali village?” is another question. One that I often ask of myself. A reality check. Until recently, life revolved around the fashion/lifestyle world, honing my creative and business skills in a fast paced industry, travelling the world, working alongside some amazing people. It had its ups and downs like any job, but I found a way to forge my own path building a life, not just a career. One that involved a lot of travel.
Swapping designer hotels for huts in a village, trekking through jungle instead of retail stores always satisfied my internal nomad spirit. I started to take more trips for myself.After some serious persuasion, armed with insider’s tips, I ended up in Bali.
First stop, Kubuku Bungalows set amongst the rice paddies in Ubud. I fell in love with Kubuku, and Wayan the owner, with life changing to one of bouncing between Australian and Balinese homes for the next 20 years. Ubud became my second home, but over time we were built out, Wayan’s simple bungalows dwarfed by masses of hotels and shops.
I don’t think I gave it more than a second’s thought when saying ‘Yes’ to buying land in a remote village in the hills.
Our first Bootcamp Bali Style in 2008 was a game changer. We had all the ingredients – outdoor grounds, treks on our doorstep, real food, simple bungalows, wonderful staff, all in a unique village environment. Rice sacks for weights, coconuts for tossing, bamboo stretchers and natural terrain were put to good use by Cliff, our first instructor.
Move over fluffy white towels. Stand back sleek spas. Our retreats were about to create a new model, breaking the concept of detox and deprivation retreats, as well as being the affordable option in a world full of luxury retreats. We were the first, there were no rules. The way forward became clearer, and a lot of fun.
It’s not always about fitness. We also enjoy the company of guests looking for a tranquil village experience and our retreats have expanded to writing, spiritual discovery, and total body and mind wellness.
Our staff are more like family and are at the heart of what Sharing Bali is today. Everyone is from our village of Singaprang or the neighbouring village of Gata. They are very much part of your Sharing Bali experience as amazing trek guides, fabulous cooks and housekeepers, and much more. You’ll get to know each one of them by name. There are no bystanders at Sharing Bali.
We live a Balinese way of life, ceremonies are part of everyday. Local life is our life, and we like our guests to be part of it.
The one word, one person or one image that sums up Sharing Bali is elusive. Each of our guests has their own reason for staying with us. In turn they leave a little something, adding to the layers that make up Sharing Bali.
So here’s a list of words that best describes who we are and what we do.
Where: Located in a small village in the hills north of Ubud Bali, Indonesia.
By: Karen, an ex-fashion industry Aussie, and Wayan her Balinese artist partner. This is our home, our way of life that we choose to share with travellers, friends & family from near and far.
Stay: 8 simple yet authentic bungalows set amongst rice fields overlooking the mountains.
Move More: Bootcamp, Fusion Fitness, Pilates, Yoga and Fitness Adventure Retreats. Jungle treks, sunrise volcano climb, a remote caldera trek, cycling and canyon tubing feature in the retreat programs.
Eat Fresh: Nothing but fresh local produce served in authentic Balinese village style at our dining table set in the rice paddies.
Take A Moment: Active days are balanced with plenty of time to relax, enjoy the quietness.
Fresh Perspectives: The simplicity of our surrounds allows one to focus on what’s important in life.
Have Fun: We keep it simple. Tossing coconuts. Splashing through rivers. Jumping for joy at sunrise. Friendships are formed, laughs are had.
Who: Ideal for solo travellers, especially women, looking for ‘vital experiences that kick-start the discovery of a whole new you.’ No single supplements!
We don’t claim to be lifestyle gurus. We have simply carved out a life that we like to share.
PS.Cantik aka ‘The Pomeranian Living In Paradise’ is always by my side and if you need some four-legged company he will happily hang out with you.