I left my heart in Jogyakarta during my previous visit to this enchanting city, a place that has long historical background and the center of Javanese Culture. I am in love with the cultural ambiance of the city with the locals who speak softly in Javanese languages some of them are quite perky, but always courteous with great sense of humor and great hospitality.  And this is one of the many reasons why I long to return to Jogyakarta.

As I check in the hotel PHOENIX, a Reception staff courteously greets me with a very warm welcome as he remembers me from my previous visit. So warm that it felt like coming home. I love this charming hotel that is conveniently located to city center. Dating back in 1914, the hotel had been a colonial landmark in the past and currently the hotel is adorned with stunning rooms and suites. I love my beautiful room that facing the guest’s pool as I love to swim a few laps prior to my sumptuous buffet breakfast at the Hotel’s restaurant.  Or sometimes if I feel like having a very casual breakfast, I could have it in the balcony of the hotel. So the choice is really ours….

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Room by the Pool @ the Phoenix Hotel                         Local Delicacies for breakfast

The breakfast at the hotel features American and Continental Breakfast combine with local delicacies such as GUDEG, Tempe & Tahu Bacem, Opor Ayam, Chicken Rice Porridge etc. The hotel also provides opportunity for the guests to try JAMU (herbs concoction). It has different kind of JAMU to keep you healthy and keep up with your stamina. A woman expert in mixing JAMU ingredients asks you what kind of herbs mix you would like to have, sweet or bitter (the bitter the better), what will be your activity for that day and she will make a special concocted JAMU for you.
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Jamu concoction @ Phoenix Hotel

It leaves me with an idea of Mixing JAMU competition in my next event maybe ? it could be fun….

This time I have included a visit to tourism village of KASONGAN, very well known as the village for the pottery crafters and where making pottery have been handed down from generations to generations. When you enter the village you will see pottery in different sizes and shapes in the yards of most of the houses. The burning furnaces are located in several corners of the villages and for the interest of the tourists the crafters will allow you helping them to shape clay into pottery in the furnace. It is a great experience to be able to do this, shaping a piece of clay for a pitcher, a cup or a plate and watch how the crafters create a more complicated figures such as “ LORO BLONYO “ or figures of a Javanese Bride and Bridegroom, a symbol of domestic happiness and prosperity.


Making pottery @ the village          LORO BLONYO Clay statues

If you are looking for authentic experience in the villages, a day program where you can share activities with the villagers could be arranged in the Tourism villages. We may arrange a CYCLING tour visiting different Tourism villages on the area. It is so divine to feel the breeze on your cheek while you are on your bike. To watch the boys bathing their buffaloes or to see a farmer works on rice fields. They welcome you to join their activities and share their lunch at the hut in the middle of the rice fields. It is their simplicity and sincerity that touch our soul and something that money can’t buy.

Cycling around the Villages

“ Fun “ in the rice field

The village experience may include activities that involve more of your creative sides such as learning to play Gamelan ( Javanese traditional music ), batik painting or making Shadow Puppets. It will depend which tourism village you are visiting as every village has different features and special activities to offer.

Test how talented you are in Playing Gamelan (upper picture )
or create a beautiful piece of Batik (lower picture ) 

Creative Corporate program could easily be arranged in these villages. Amazing Race using different kind of transportation such as bike, traditional horse carriages and other public transportation combine it with modern gadgets such as GPS, smartphone and QR Code to find clues would makes the challenges more interesting. It should include challenges to complete tasks that involve the activities with the villagers such as working on the rice fields, making art objects or learning harmony by playing traditional music instruments.

The Corporate’s Master Chef kind of program would be quite interesting to be done in these villages. We could create treasure hunt games to find the black box that contains of traditional menu and ingredients each team would be cooking. Or we can ask them to hunt for the ingredients by shopping in the traditional market, and practicing their Javanese Languages. Celebrity Chef or Mistery Judge could be invited to evaluate their culinary creativity.  To be more challenging we could assign a cooking task utilizing traditional cooking utensils.

“ Yummiii…. Traditional Dishes to tease our taste buds cooked by our colleagues..”

The simple people always appreciate even the simplest touch we are extending to them. And how fun it would be if we could do a CSR ( Corporate Social Responsibility ) program in the village such as to provide free public health services or improving the facilities in the village by painting the school walls or fixing its fences. Or help them with preserving the environment such as planting new trees or cultivating the endangered animals ie Turtle etc. It will provide opportunity to share activities with the villagers and it is a truly rewarding experience seeing how grateful they are, beaming with our efforts.

Last but not least, we could create lots of fun in “ PASAR RAKYAT “ theme dinner for all participants of your Corporate Event in Jogyakarta. We could choose an interesting venue such as the BENTENG VREDEBURG a former Dutch Fort (16th Century) that has been preserved and currently called MUSEUM BENTENG JOGYAKARTA features the stories & reminders of Indonesian’s struggle for independence.
All participants could be dressed up in LURIK SURJAN as the people in the street of Jogyakarta to enhance the “ Pasar Rakyat “ atmosphere.

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Lurik Surjan, a fashion for PASAR RAKYAT 

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Benteng VREDEBURG & Street Food Stalls

Street performers, Orkes Sinten Remen & Wayang HIP HOP

We could arranged a wide variety of traditional food stalls to be featured during the dinner as well as street performers including Dangdut and Keroncong group music namely ORKES SINTEN REMEN by famous Jogyakarta musician, JADUK FERIANTO and as a highlight, we could feature modern version of Wayang Performance called WAYANG HIP-HOP that is so unique and hilarious. The puppet master is a rapper and instead of SINDEN ( traditional singers for wayang performances ) he will be accompanied by a group of singers who will be featuring popular modern songs to enhance the story. WAYANG HIP-HOP stories could be customized to suit corporate messages to be conveyed to its staff during dinner in a fun and memorable way.

I do hope this information will inspires you when planning for your next event and to spice up your program, feel free to email me : putri.hidayat@panorama-events.co.id or just give me a buzz at +62 817 672 5555

We will be more than happy to create a memorable program in Jogyakarta or any other places of your choices in Indonesia….


Warmest regards from


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