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Interiors

A Quick Course in Ubud Style from Bisma Eight Hotel

by Garrett Fleming

The Indonesian city of Ubud, made famous by the wildly-popular novel and subsequent film Eat Pray Love, is nestled amongst greenery and set against an unforgettable vista. Mountainous rice fields, playful monkeys and winding florals flourish here in the cultural center of Bali. The natural wonders aren’t the only thing about the destination that’ll catch your eye, though. Accommodations like Bisma Eight, a boutique hotel smack dab in the center of it all, prove even the manmade elements of Ubud are spectacular. Winding vines inch through its concrete walls and the great Balinese icon Lord Ganesh sits at the entrance, ushering guests inside to take a kite-making class, learn yoga or simply relax.

The accommodations and grounds of Bisma Eight knocked our socks so far off, we couldn’t resist getting more background on its design. As it turns out, when Arte Architect AssociatesFUUR and SHL Asia crafted the hotel, they fused modern amenities with traditional Ubud design. Curious to find out what this Ubud style was, we asked the hotel’s Director Tarun Melwani to shed some light on the subject. Luckily for us, today he’s generously sharing some insights into the ancient style. It sounds like class is in session, so put your phones on silent, grab a pen and get ready for a bad case of wanderlust. Enjoy! —Garrett

Photography courtesy of Bisma Eight

A Quick Course in Ubud Style from Bisma Eight Hotel, Design*Sponge
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The hotel in Ubud is made almost entirely out of sustainable materials. For example, the guest rooms' closets are trimmed in traditional "Indonesian-style, chicken-eye, bamboo weaves." This technique's one of the space's many subtle nods to Ubud style, a form that heavily relies on not only bamboo, but teak as well.
A Quick Course in Ubud Style from Bisma Eight Hotel, Design*Sponge
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The Forest Suites overlook a gorgeous Indonesian vista. "Rugs, bed skirts and dining table lamps were finished with jute and various wood/banana resins as a part of integrating a more sustainable approach [to] design," Hotel Director Tarun Melwani tells us.
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He also says, "The rooms were designed... to feel more like a well-thought-out-and-designed apartment featuring natural and modern materials combined with Balinese touches."
A Quick Course in Ubud Style from Bisma Eight Hotel, Design*Sponge
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Guest rooms feature both a shower and a traditional, Japanese soaking tub. It's the only American import in the hotel and came from Seattle, WA. The rest of the Ubud-style furnishings were sourced from local craftspeople.
A Quick Course in Ubud Style from Bisma Eight Hotel, Design*Sponge
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A shrine to Lord Ganesh in the lobby is another nod to Ubud style. He is the Balinese remover of obstacles and greets incoming guests, welcoming them to fully embrace the Ubud lifestyle during their stay.
A Quick Course in Ubud Style from Bisma Eight Hotel, Design*Sponge
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The hotel's concrete structure is a nod to Béton Brut architecture, which in French means "raw concrete." Works in this style are characterized by massive, unfinished concrete walls exposed to the elements and vegetation that seamlessly winds through the design.
A Quick Course in Ubud Style from Bisma Eight Hotel, Design*Sponge
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Sunsets at Bisma Eight are far from forgettable. They're the perfect end to a day soaking in the "boutique, tropical and modern" space.
A Quick Course in Ubud Style from Bisma Eight Hotel, Design*Sponge
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SHL Asia designed the landscaping to make guests feel as if they are wandering through a forest path. This closeness to nature is typical of many Balinese designs. Follow one forest path and you may end up in a class learning to craft a Balinese kite. Follow another, and you'll find yourself relaxing with some Hatta yoga. Both are just two of the many traditional Ubud experiences the hotel offers its guests.
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The hotel's eatery Copper Kitchen & Bar offers guests "an authentic and inspired blend of the flavors that have always brought people to Ubud." (Source: Copper Kitchen & Bar)

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Comments

  • Ubud has no shortage of incredibly designed hotels. I wish I knew about Bisma Eight when I went, but Balinese interior designs are so earthy and beautiful. You can feel nature and the craftsmanship in every detail.

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