Inside the Healing Haven at Bali's Mandapa Spa

The couples’ treatment rooms open to the outdoors and views of the Ayung River, which flows outside the spa. (MANDAPA SPA)

Known for having a profound sense of place, Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties entice guests to the far corners of the world with the promise of an intimate yet meaningful experience. Set amid the hills along the Ayung River, Mandapa, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve (Ubud, Bali) is one of four Reserve properties in the world. Surrounded by lush rice paddies and ancient temples, the resort is a tempting retreat for wellness enthusiasts, who can’t help but be drawn to Mandapa Spa, which captures the rich spirituality and healing culture for which Bali is known. 

With eight treatment rooms, three of which are designed specifically for couples, the spa brings the outdoors in with an open-air pathway that connects the reception area to the locker room, treatment areas, and relaxation lounge. The spa also features a yoga and fitness center, an open-air vitality pool with air and water jets, and heat experiences, such as a sauna, a steam room, an ice fountain, and experience showers. One of spa director Dwi Santini’s favorite design elements is the Ganesh statue that greets guests as they enter the spa. The elephant-headed Hindu god is considered the Lord of Good Fortune and helps remove obstacles. Santini is also a fan of the dome-shaped treatment rooms, which help preserve and restore energy. The spa’s soothing riverfront location sets the stage for relaxation, as the sound of the flowing water lulls guests into a peaceful state. “The view and the sound of the river automatically disconnect you from the outer world,” says Santini. 

Beyond its idyllic setting, the spa also provides guests with holistic and comprehensive wellness
and lifestyle programs that incorporate traditional Balinese healing practices; alternative healing therapies, such as Acupuncture ($151, 60 minutes), Vedic Astrology ($130, 60 minutes), Naturopathic Consultation ($151, 60 minutes); and yoga and meditation. In May, the spa introduced a new menu with treatments incorporating products from Subtle Energies, a cruelty-free, results-based aromatherapy and natural skincare line founded on Ayurvedic principles and created with intention. According to Santini, most guests are looking for treatments that are rooted in traditional culture. As a result, the spa also offers two Balinese blessing rituals.

What really sets the spa apart, however, are its local healers, who are on hand to share their unique talents. Spa-goers can take part in a session with Ibu Ketut Mursi, an intuitive blind healer, who addresses emotional and physical issues and may recommend specific herbs to treat various conditions. Those interested in having their chakras balanced can meet with Pak Dewa Made, a gifted traditional Balinese healer who acts as a priest in his family’s shrine. He scans for energy imbalances and weaknesses and then combines energy work and acupressure to help balance the seven chakras. Spa-goers can also experience Panca Mayakosha Healing ($130, 60 minutes; $151, 90 minutes) with Pak Wayan, who was raised in a family devoted to healing. After a prayer and meditation, he passes his hands over the body to help clear any unhealthy energy stemming from the source of emotional and mental burdens and physical ailments. Pak Putu is available for Wija Aksara Healing ($130, 60 minutes), which involves chanting “om,” to purify the physical, astral, and causal body before Putu places his hand on and around the body to transfer love and positive thoughts that help induce a deep sense of stillness and reinvigorates the body. For those in need of Healing Hands ($130, 60 minutes), Ibu Ketut Bunterini is a skilled therapist known for her loving touch. Using intuitive touch, she focuses on areas that need special attention. 

In addition to its lineup of local healers, the spa also brought back its rotating Master Healer series this year. The visiting Health and Wellness Masters create personalized wellness programs based on the individual needs of guests. In June, guests maximized their potential with Veronique Ficheux, a trainer, coach, and consultant whose unique approach integrates Neuro-Linguistic Programming, Neuro-Associative Conditioning, Emotional Freedom Technique, Matrix Reprinting, and Theta Healing. She is also a Tony Robbins coach and trainer. In September, guests can benefit from sessions with Khun Noom, a specialist in sound and universal energy healing and bodywork. 

With 24 full-time employees, the spa is able to accommodate approximately 40 treatments each day. Unfortunately, due to the recent eruption of Mount Agung, filling the spa has been a bit more challenging than usual due to the hit tourism has taken on the island. However, as things return to normal,
Mandapa Spa beckons spa-goers with its Shangri-La setting and traditional Balinese healing rituals. 


Spa Tours: Mandapa Spa at Mandapa, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve

A Conversation With Dwi Santini From Mandapa Spa

Take a Tour of The Spa at The Ritz-Carlton Bali