Once upon a time, in the times of the ancient trade routes along the Sea Silk Road, made by many began. The colossal 6400km maritime trading route merged Eastern and Western worlds.
With its vast distance connecting numerous commercial cities and ports, merchant ships and caravans would carry and trade goods such as silks, gold, jade, teas, and spices along this route.
At the height of the trade, a caravan departed Southern Europe and set its course for Eastern China, along the way gathering and selling goods in Eastern Europe, Africa, Middle East, and South Asia. As it left each port, more and more merchant ships joined in the journey, and the caravan grew dramatically.
Made up of many cultures and origins, those who travelled together on this extended journey that took several years to complete shared their beliefs and knowledge, formed a strong bond, and became a diverse nomadic community.
Members of the caravan were not only diverse in cultures but also in professions and skills. They were made up of engineers, navigators, carpenters, traders, performers, philosophers, farmers, just to name a few. All played distinct and important roles in the caravan’s survival.
While crossing the Indian Ocean, they encountered a major storm complete with strong wind, thunder, and crashing waves, and many ships were sadly sunk and lost. The surviving ships were scattered in the roiling sea through the dark of night.
Once the storm passed, the battered caravan found itself adrift in the vast ocean off their charted course. Considering the damage done to the fleet and the extreme fatigue and weariness people felt, they knew they needed to find land to recover their health and replenish their provisions.
So the carpenters and engineers patched up the ships, and everybody pitched in as best they could. And with the guiding hands of the skillful navigators, they followed the trail of the stars and eventually landed on a cape in the Andaman Sea. This cape, known as ‘Jungceylon Cape’ and originally a part of Phang Nga province, is what is known today as Phuket Island.
They encountered a major storm complete with strong wind, thunder, and crashing waves, and many ships were sadly sunk and lost.
Once they were shipwrecked and destitute they found a safe haven on an isle boasting fertile land, with plentiful coconuts, exotic fruits and fish, this isle is now known as Phuket Island. Keemala’s architecture, design, spa treatments, cuisine inspiration and ethos is inspired by the four fictitious clans who sailed the high seas to trade goods for years.
The group found that the cape was very abundant in resources. The soil was rich and perfect for agriculture. The water was clean, clear, and plenty. The tropical weather was mild and consistent. It was a very enticing location for this once nomadic tribe to consider settling down.
Finally, they decided to build a village up on the hillside where the mountain and lush canopy would protect them against the elements, while still having full view of the bay.
Some were concerned that the myriad of cultures within the group might clash and offend one another, having come from different backgrounds. However, these people fully embraced their differences and ultimately created a truly extraordinary, unified, and peaceful community.
The community consisted of four clans, each with distinct beliefs and way of life. They kept their traditions and offered their knowledge and beliefs, all the while being helpful and respectful of one another.
On the hillside the mountain had a lush canopy that protected them against the elements
The Pa-Ta-Pea Clan (Earth Clan) believed that being connected to the earth would bring them health benefits. Not only would they build their homes on the ground, but they would also incorporate earth into their walls, roofs, and furniture. Even the beds they slept on were made from soil and clay. This clan consisted of hard working farmers, fishermen, gardeners, carpenters, blacksmiths, and miners.
The Khon-Jorn Clan (Wanderer Clan) was an adventurous group made up of foragers, herders, performers, traders, and explorers who spent their time trading goods with other tribes they encountered on their journeys. Due to their nomadic ways they would prefer to construct semi-permanent homes so they could easily move on.
The Rung-Nok Clan (Nest Clan) enjoyed an opulent way of life and craved exclusivity. The clan was thought to be more superior in both intellect and creativity, and comprised of artists, actors, musicians, astrologers, philosophers, and poets. They believed that the future could be predicted from astrology. They would bathe under the moonlight believing that their souls would be replenished.
Aside from settling down and building a new home, this community was very much interested in their psychological and physical wellbeing. Having survived the brutal storm, as well as weathered years of harsh nomadic existence, they cultivated extensive knowledge about the human body, herbal medicines, and holistic treatment of the body and mind. As time went by, they etched their mark in this small corner of the world, and left traces of a unique civilization where their common beliefs, arts, traditions, and lifestyle continue.