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By Candice Marie Litchfield
Ask anyone who has been there and they will tell you: there’s something magical about Bali; a certain sense of the spiritual that radiates from each waterfall, blossom and stone. Fivelements retreat in Ubud, situated near the sacred Ayung River, is deeply imbued with this magic.
The holistic design of the retreat and its gracious surroundings seem to naturally enhance inner harmony. Its spacious eco-luxurious bedroom villas boast en-suite garden bathrooms and a large open-air shower area, as well as spectacular outdoor bathtubs constructed from large, hollowed-out boulders. Fivelements’ very own completely natural botanical essence amenities, sourced directly from local farmers, are an added bonus. So wonderful were these shampoos, shower gels and creams, I even bought some from the boutique to use at home. If a long, deep soak in a tub enveloped by nature isn’t enough to fully restore you, an impressive lighting design inside each room showcases the seven colours of the chakras, bringing mind, body and spirit in harmony.
Besides their spa-like bathrooms, Fivelements offers a range of health and beauty services, from indulgent massage rituals set within their luxurious treatments sanctuary, to a delicious healing cuisine served in the Sakti Dining room, where the pond centrepiece and softly lit ambience eases clients into a totally tranquil dining experience. Being dedicated foremost to health, the menu is based mainly on raw food dishes, such as zucchini ‘noodles’ with cashew pesto and freshly pressed juices, while the remaining food choices consist of light vegetarian preparations, which I found fresh, tasty and satisfying.
Of course, the retreat is mainly known for its spa, and on my first evening at Fivelements, I was welcomed in by a Sakti Ritual, which encompassed a deep muscle relaxation body massage, followed by a re-mineralising crystal sea salt exfoliation infused with holy basil and lemongrass. This was nicely finished off with a revitalising bath ritual composed of five powerful natural healing ingredients.
After meeting with the Beauty Manager, Stefanie, I was then booked in for the Super Food Facial, which is dedicated to supreme skin nourishment. I’ve had a lot of facials in my time, but knowing that this one was using only natural super foods made me enjoy it all the more, and I will definitely be applying many of these ingredients into my own beauty regime, especially the Spirulina, Colloidal Silver and essential oil face mask. My skin felt and looked radiant and revitalised.
While these treatments were all wonderfully effective, the second day at the retreat was one I will never forget.
A native from the nearby island worked to balance the five elements in my body, and performed a Balinese
reiki-like energy healing ritual on me, with immense results.
The session began with a foot bath and massage, and then lying face up with my eyes closed, surrounded by nature and the relaxing sound of the river, I felt the healer place his hands over me to begin the session. I immediately felt relaxed, and after a short while, something extraordinary happened: I began to see vibrant red colours. This soon changed into a sea-blue hue, which then meshed with a bright golden yellow shade, all of which fluently flowed into one another, like a kind of kaleidoscope.
Lastly I experienced a clear, bright, white light accompanied by an overwhelming sense of calm and well being. The healer then placed his hands over my head, allowing me to feel his energy vibrate through to my whole body, which gave me a tremendous sense of security and warmth. Throughout the session I was in a profound state of relaxation; yet super-conscious of all I was experiencing. The energy healing session finished off with a sudden rush of tingling sensations throughout my whole body.
This, and my entire experience at Fivelements, will stay with me forever. It was something completely unexpected, and absolutely unforgettable. After being there myself, I can confirm that Bali’s reputation for housing a mysterious, healing energy is completely justified.
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