Interview with Suwamana Wahyu Putra CEO Dijiwa Sanctuaries

Could you please tell us about Dijiwa Sanctuaries

Dijiwa Sanctuaries was founded by a core group of hotel professionals who, having gained extensive and intensive experience in Hotel Developments and Hotel Operations, seek to leverage our knowledge to assist the clients in their business challenges. We are hotel operator and Hotel Management Company.

Our focus is on creating and executing successful operation and marketing concepts and unique guest experiences that are tailored to a hotel’s story, heritage, and the culture of the destination. We manage all marketing efforts by streamlining communication and activities on all channels to increase awareness and brand recognition of a hotel’s unique story.

Dijiwa Sanctuaries sets a new standard for luxury getaways in stunning locations. Our boutique properties combine contemporary design with unrivalled personalized service, creating hidden worlds that are luxurious, exotic and romantic. By integrating our respect and understanding of the local environment, community, culture, cuisine and wellness, we create immersive experiences tailored to individual preferences and interests. We create space and time that feels private, where every moment and interaction feels intimately personal so that you leave with unforgettable memories, not just souvenirs.


Does the name Dijiwa have any special meaning?

Dijiwa is inspired by Indonesian words “ JIWA “ its means “SOUL”. With a tagline of “Sanctuary for the soul”. DIJIWA means “soul” in Indonesian language, which suitably describes as the meaning of Dijiwa itself is soul, there is a very strong passion from the soul to do hospitality business and to assure the perfection in every service given to our guests when they stay with us.

The hallmark of DIJIWA is the combination of innovative design and set apart by an unprecedented level of personalized hospitality, private spaces and bespoke journeys. DIJIWA sets the standard for stunning getaways in amazing locations offering private space in eco-friendly environments, committed to sustainable operating standards and unique guest experiences.


You made a bold move during the pandemic and established Dijiwa Sanctuaries. What inspired you to launch the new company?

In every difficulty/challenge there must be a chance or opportunity. We want to answer the anxiety of stake holders in this industry by providing solutions to the current situation, especially in hospitality industry.

I love the quote from John C. Maxwell

“You don’t overcome challenges by making them smaller but by making yourself bigger.”

To get results, it takes motivation and ability. I have worked in several hotels since 1998 and work under different hotel management/chains, managers, and General Managers. I’ve always been inspired by how they run their business, their values and leadership style. This became my guiding guide to pursue my dream of being a world-class hotelier. I always challenge myself to get better every day, at least learning one or two new things every day. I’m a result-oriented person, getting things done with great results is one of my motivations.

I often faced different ways of thinking and opinions in my previous workplace about how to run a hotel and cascading company culture. I think I should challenge the “status quo” in operating a hotel. Being Dynamic, Innovative, Joyful, Wellbeing, Integrity, Attitude and genuine interest are essential components to success in the industry. If you have those qualities, you’re already halfway there.

When working in hospitality, you can have productive days where you are excited and other times you just have bad days. But the main thing that makes me show up on both occasions, is my motivation to inspire others –. Dijiwa is a labor of love. It’s not a company it’s a home. Dijiwa is my dream, the dream that comes true.  I am not building a company through Dijiwa, I am building a dream with Dijiwa .


What is the most challenging thing you have experienced so far?

Working with hotels for almost two decades now has given me so much insight on what they encounter on a daily basis. From menial to revenue impacting problems, from operational to systems concerns, and from controllable to totally ‘out of their hands’ issues.

But COVID-19 is the most challenging thing I have experienced so far, to both our lives and livelihoods. The crisis is unprecedented and moving quickly, yet still deeply uncertain. Our business is all about people – this C19 affecting our lives and “people”, our hotel industry is among the hardest hit. Based on my research, it suggests that recovery to pre-COVID-19 levels could take until 2025—or later. The impact is huge, and not yet predictable, on both revenue and supply chains. Decisions being taken to shut down hotels, restaurants, not to mention the entire disruptive effect of the travel ecosystem, all have a significant impact on worldwide tourism. As a team, we are trying to mitigate the cash and working capital issues, and stay in close contact with our stakeholders.


Share the latest update from Dijiwa Sanctuaries

After 12 months establishing the company, we proudly present our no 12th collection located in central Ubud and also becoming one of Ubud’s Landmark – Puri Saraswati and Lotus Café. We also proudly launch our loyalty program namely Dijiwa Club. It is a loyalty program from Dijiwa Sanctuaries dedicated to appreciating our loyal guests and those who have been engaging with Dijiwa Sanctuaries. We offer exclusive access to all of our exclusive member-only benefits and privileges like: Lowest Member Rates (exclusive member rate guarantees you the best price available for your hotel room); Free Upgrade (a chance of getting better room than you can afford on your next journey (based on availability); F&B, Spa & Excursion Discounts (15% discount applicable for F&B, Spa, and Excursion at Dijiwa Sanctuaries collections);Flexible Cancellation

(make a booking with confidence with flexible changes or cancel without penalty); Surprise Gift

(enjoy complimentary gift voucher that will be spread randomly during any special event in a year)


Tell us the most memorable moment that has ever happened during your career

It was the time when I decided to run my own business. From professional to entrepreneur, It seems impossible until I take my first step, quit my job in late 2017 and the rest is history.

Now we are managing 12 operating hotels and projects. And we plan to expand throughout Indonesia in 2 to 5 years’ time. Our way to success is to rely on cultivating the talent necessary to achieving exceptional performance to support the growth and advancing in development relationships. Regardless acting as employers, hotel’s operator, joint-venture partner and advisor, we strive on solving complex challenges with proven strategies that focus on increasing value and maximizing return on investment.


What do you think is the secret to your great career in the hospitality industry?

There is not secret J, Hospitality Industry was not my first choice. I never graduated from college. Truth be told, I also never hold a diploma in any university. After my father lost in action back in 1989, I am following my uncle’s advice to work in a hotel. I started my career as waiting staff back in 1998 at the Chedi Ubud – a GHM Hotel. And the rest is history. The deciding factor for me to choose the hospitality industry as a career was not only my interest in the trade itself but my passion to please people and making them feel comfortable. The hospitality industry is about people and cultures and the difference in expectations that comes with that.

Working in the hospitality industry is not a job, it’s a lifestyle this is my way of life. I have lived and worked in 3 countries during my career and each experience makes me grow a little bit, not only professionally but also as a person. Each day is unique in this business and that is what makes it so stimulating. I can’t see myself in a different job.


What do you do for fun during your day off?

I like to be alone and meditate thru fishing J. Like famous fishing quotes once said “ “Fishing provides that connection with the whole living world. It gives you the opportunity of being totally immersed, turning back into yourself in a good way. A form of meditation, some form of communion with levels of yourself that are deeper than the ordinary self”