Age is truly just a number according to the founder of PT Mustika Ratu, Dr Hj. BRA Mooryati Soedibyo. Being born female in a Keraton family from Surakarta, Mooryati has fought against all odds to beat the norms of what society says a woman should be. Despite the orthodox mindset of the community she lived in, Mooryati is ever grateful to have had parents like her own, continuously pushing her forward in life and making her the woman she is at 90.
Mooryati lived through part of the Dutch colonisation of Indonesia as well as the Japanese occupation. She also holds a doctorate degree, is a linguist, has studied beauty and health, has been greatly involved in the country’s political scene, married the man of her choice, is mother to seven children, and along with all that is the founder of the country’s biggest wellness organisation, PT Mustika Ratu, which operates within Southeast Asia as well as further afield in Europe and Canada.
“As long as your body, mind, and spirit are in sync and are kept strong through a healthy diet and exercise, along with determination and hard work, everyone can achieve whatever they wish to in life,” says Mooryati, who looks as graceful as ever in the living room of her majestic home.
Mooryati’s determination to prove to herself and to everyone around her that a woman is capable of achieving practically anything was exactly what made her do everything she wanted in life. With this outlook and perspective, one can say that she is one of the few lucky ones who have been able to experience such an impressive journey to date.
“My father was persistent when it came to education, and that was also one of the motivational factors for me to want to keep learning,” Mooryati explains. “I was part of the first batch who went to university during weekends to complete my doctorate degree in strategic management at the University of Indonesia while having seven children at home.”
Along with her other successes, Mooryati started a small business that produced and sold jamu, the celebrated traditional concoction of local herbs and spices, out of the garage of her home. Today, PT Mustika Ratu Investama is the overarching umbrella company of PT Mustika Ratu, PT Mustika Ratu Buana International, PT Mustika Ratu Centre, PT Mustika Princess Hotel, Taman Sari Royal Heritage Spa, Java Princess, and beauty pageant organiser Yayasan Puteri Indonesia.
[ Photographer: Hakim Satriyonegoro, Stylist: Adi Surantha, Make-up artists and hair: Mustika Ratu Beauty Queen Series, Dedeon, Armand Abdillah, Arnold Pamungkas, Boim Lauw, and Adheeragon, Wardrobe: Anne Avantie, Karen Millen Indonesia, and Private Collection ]
This story appears in the July 2018 issue of Indonesia Tatler. For the full story, grab the copy at your nearest newsstands, or subscribe here.