St Legere inspires landscape design for Balinese oasis Rimba Resort
While the Ayana Resort occupies a dramatic ocean cliff location, the newly opened Rimba Jimbaran is an 8 hectare site, set back from the ocean on a lush jungle hillside within the 77-hectare Ayana Resort complex.
Rimba Jimbaran Bali sits on pristine landscaped surroundings comprised of tall trees, lush greenery and abundant displays of spectacularly coloured tropical flora made complete with six multi-level pools that seemingly create the illusion of being on your own deserted island paradise surrounded by water.
Unique St. Legere philosophy
Designed by St. Legere under the inspired guidance of principal landscape architect, Dennis Selinger, completion of Rimba Jimbaran Bali resort’s landscaped tropical gardens and water features also celebrates the latest chapter in a working relationship between owner and landscape architect that has gone from strength to strength over the last two decades.
“My relationship with developer Karang Mas dates back to in 1991, when I worked with Sasaki Associates in Los Angeles”, says Selinger. “Back then, I was the project manager working with owner Rudy Suliawan to design and launch the Ritz Carlton, which Rudy later took independent as Ayana. Since then, I've worked with Rudy expanding the Ayana property and developing many other commercial, residential and hotel sites in both Bali and around Jakarta, like the InterContinental Hotel Jakarta."
Rhimba’s clean, modern design
St Legere developed Rimba's overall project concept, including the site planning, site grading, architectural massing and the
beginnings of some architectural styles. While not a "huge" site in terms of landscape design, landscape grading (land forming)
helped to create the feeling of grandness of size and openness.
Selinger explains that the style differences between Ayana resort, the Residences, and Rimba’s landscapes is that the original resort was more traditionally Balinese in detailing and overall appearance. “In the early 90’s, when the original Ayana Resort was being developed, visitors to Bali wanted a traditional Balinese feeling where they stayed, whereas today, visitors tend to appreciate a design which is fresh, modern, luxurious, and has more subtle hints of Bali.”
Selinger explains that they knew from day one that the overall design of Rimba needed to be kept much simpler than Ayana and needed to be a hotel that was more modern looking, with clean, uninterrupted lines and above all be an entertaining hotel.
“The Rimba was a big departure from the design of Ayana and is much more modern and not as "Balinese", except for some deliberate traditional accents. We believe guest expectations are going in this direction and cleaner, more modern lines have been successfully applied over the last few years into a number of new Balinese projects.”
“Since Rimba is set back from the coastline with no immediate relationship to the ocean, it was also key to have lots of water in the landscape design. Guests enter the lobby and immediately see a reflecting pond with a horizon view of the ocean," continues Selinger."Starting from the lobby as the highest point, five terraced pools cascade into each other and even over-hang each other.
To make this possible, St Legere made the key decision to raise the lobby level by several metres, affording the view, more height for cascading levels of pools and also allowing back-of-house and services to be located underneath the lobby which saved the huge expense of any excavation into the very hard limestone base on which the resort is built.” A sixth roof-top pool was part of the design elements of the “Unique Bar” venue with panoramic views, which will also serves the adjacent function roof and create a destination in its own right.