On March 12, 2013 the COMO Shambhala Estate and Uma by COMO, Ubud will welcome Nyepi (the New Year) through traditional customs and lively celebrations. Following the Çaka calendar, Bali’s three million Hindu residents celebrate on the day after the new moon ends the ninth lunar month.
The resorts are going all out for the fete with papier-mâché gods and monsters called Ogoh-Ogoh for parades and parties. They will also offer a range of activities that allow guests to participate. A visit to a local village for the parade, brief lectures on the customs of the holiday, Nyepi Eve feasts and holiday cooking classes are offered to engage visitors in the spirit of the New Year. On Nyepi day, guests are invited to a yoga and Pranayama classes at Uma Ubud and a meditation and cleansing class at the Estate.
The holiday begins on the eve of Nyepi when sacrifices are offered, fireworks and canons are let off to ward off demons, and the enormous Ogoh-Ogoh are paraded throughout the villages and towns. The following day, Nyepi arrives, and the country observes a day of virtual silence and enforced reflection. All lights on the island are turned off. No fires are lit. No work is done and no travel is allowed.
The COMO properties require guests to stay on-property throughout this 24-hour period in respect of the calm meant to trick the remaining demons into abandoning the island thereby setting up a peaceful and happy start to the coming year.
Founded by Christina Ong COMO Hotels and Resorts is known for personalised luxury travel experiences that highlight wellness, cuisine, adventure and culture, service and design. Its porfolio of properties includes the Halkin by COMO in London, two Metropolitan by COMO hotels in London and Bangkok, Parrot Cay by COMO in the Turks and Caicos, Cocoa Island by COMO in the Maldives, and three Uma by COMO experience resorts in Bali and Bhutan. Point Yamu by COMO is a new property in Phuket, Thailand, opening 2013.
The company also manages COMO Shambhala Estate in Bali in partnership with its sister brand in wellness, COMO Shambhala, which promotes health, relaxation and learning through its products, services, cuisine, treatments and spa facilities within each COMO property.
Check out the accompanying video to see how celebrities visit Bali.