Like all Aman resorts, Amanjiwo is carved out of local material – here, it's peachy limestone – and the architecture reflects the style of the mystical temple complex alongside. It’s opulent, but rather refined too; the 36 elegant suites, all with terraces, are carefully positioned within the natural amphitheatre created by the Menorah Hills.
Each suite at Amanjiwo takes inspiration from the Buddhist temple complex of Borobudur. The mystical buildings of this ancient sanctuary are visible from this modern one, and Amanjiwo really is a sanctuary, with that exemplary Aman service and attention to every detail. Cradled within the amphitheatre of the Menorah Hills, surrounded by fragrant clove plantations and the pleasant pattern of rice fields, four volcanoes in view, it’s also a scenic sanctuary, a feast for the eyes from every terraced turn.
All suites have spacious garden terraces, some feature private swimming pools that start at the bedroom door and finish at traditionally styled pavilions replete with daybeds and those views. All have sunken outdoor baths in private walled gardens, and inside, where the ambience is airy and light, huge, four-pillar beds on raised terrazzo platforms, lavish bathrooms with twin vanities and dressing areas.
Public rooms are spread luxuriously out under soaring domes and ceilings to promote the best views. This is perhaps best seen in the main restaurant, an elegant affair with gleaming wooden floors and dramatic pillars in place of walls. It's all conducive to enjoying yet more of those gorgeous panoramas while sampling a menu of both Indonesian and Western dishes. Makan malan is a must, a succession of Javanese specialities served in small brass bowls. The hotel's signature cocktail, the soursop martini, is also a highlight.
There’s a spa suite with an outdoor platform, but treatments can also take place in guest suites, and all are expert. The 40 metre limestone outdoor pool, with soothing views over rice fields, is as lovely to look at as to swim in, and tennis courts also have glorious views. Then again, pretty much every terrace, bar, window here frames astonishing landscapes.
The hotel will organise any number of excursions to take you even more up close and personal to these, to Borobudur and beyond, with hikes into the hills, village tours and martinis in the rice fields as the sun goes down behind them. Guests at Amanjiwo have rare access into ancient Mendut temple after it closes for the day, an experience that becomes more enchanting still if combined with a visit to the local Buddhist monastery while the evening prayers are taking place.